Tag Archives: news

How To Make The News

Bookmark and Share This is a “how to” for you all you activists out there.

It is for those of you who are mad as hell and not going to take it anymore.  It is also for those of you who are so caring that you are helping others through efforts in your community.  It is for those of you who realize that one person can FreePressmake a difference and are willing to get off your rumps to make that difference.

You may be involved in something that is currently a minor effort.  Maybe you are assisting senior citizens on your block.  Maybe you are organizing a tea party protest.  Whatever the effort, you could be doing something that involves or could involve more than ones self.

That small effort, that personal goal could become a bigger than life event that gets attention and involves many more people and ultimately creates more help for others,  prompts greater awareness of an issue or cause or expedites positive societal change.

Such efforts begin with getting your word out and there are few better ways to get the word than through the endless opportunities available through what is commonly called earned media or what most people would call “free press”.  The contemporary proliferation of informational sources and news outless is infinitessimal and it is all available to you if you know how to take advantage of it.

So how do you turn your effort and cause into something that hundreds of thousands of people hear about on the radio, watch on television or read about on the internet or in the newspaper?

It all starts with a press release.

Press releases are an important initial step in getting your message out.

Done properly a press release helps to spread your message. However, an effective press release goes beyond what you want to say. A truly effective press release approaches the story from the perspective of the reporters or media outlets that you hope cover your narrative.

A reporter or news outlet is looking for stories that are topical and or controversial They want to write about something that grabs peoples attention. A press release discussing your monthly garage sale or monthly group meeting is not a story that they will consider dedicating much ink or airtime to. For your press release to get any type of significant news coverage you need a good sense of what is commonly called “spin” and you must “spin” your story into something that has greater ramifications than what it may convey on the surface.

Contemporary technology has only helped to exaggerate the long held rule of thumb, “if it bleeds, it reads”. The juicier the stories the greater the coverage. Thankfully and hopefully the press release you wish to distribute does not consists of gruesome mayhem but short of being as dramatic as some acts of violence how can you insure that your story gets covered?

What one can do is craft their press release into something that relates your topic to other newsworthy events at the time.

For instance, if one were to be organizing an event dealing with high taxes, they would be wise to try to piggy back their event to something such as state budget negotiations. The turmoil that revolves around the creation of a state budget is often heavily followed by news outlets. As such your press release could directly connect your tax protest to the newsworthy, controversial budget negotiations. During times like that, a press release with a headline like “TAXPAYERS REVOLT AS THE DEADLINE FOR A STATE BUDGET APPROACHES” will catch the attention of print, television and radio journalists as well as bloggers. For those looking for a good story to tell, your headline provides a new and saucy angle for them to cover.

Once you have your angle and headline, your press release should be as brief as possible and precise as possible.

Reporters often tend to take a news story in their own direction. That makes it incumbent upon you to write a press release that is strong and unambiguous, leaving no room for reporters to interpret your press release in any way other than the way you want. Crucial to this control of the story is selecting a press secretary or group spokesman and there must only be only one. A single spokesman helps to insure that the focus of the story never wanders off into an unintended direction.

The opening sentences of your release should contain the gist of your story. Using the same story example I previously gave it might read “Fed up with the high cost of living and ever increasing taxes, a grassroots network of Georgia taxpayers are banding together and preparing for a massive march on Atlanta”.

This initial statement, after your headline, makes clear what your release is all about and if it sounds important and big enough to the reporter reading it, they will continue to go on and read the details contained in the rest of the release. But before you get into those details, such as time, date and place, now that you have captured the attention of the reporter or news outlet you can begin to embellish the importance of your event.

You can start citing some of the conditions which inspired your grass root movement and then go into details about the group itself. Explain that participants in your effort span a cross section of citizenry ranging from housewives to business leaders and from teenagers to senior citizens.

At this point it would be important to briefly demonstrate some of the organizational capabilities of your group. At some point you should be able to refer to something like your “online headquarters” where members meet and coordinate their efforts. For this you should have a convenient web address that a good reporter will include in their story. This will increase traffic to your site and increase membership.

It is also good to have the ability to refer to a group blog.

One of the best blogging platforms is wordpress.com. WordPress is free and offers a wide range of templates as well as numerous pages and the use of widgets that enable you to provide links to anything that you want observers to have access to.

If you have a blog that contains compelling posts about your cause and that come from the view points of different groups members, this will help add credence to the newsworthiness of your story and offer insightful background to anyone covering your press release. Just be sure to have enough data, blog posts and information on it to impress the reporter. A blank blog that has infrequent posts will only leave the impression of an empty , inactive organization and not lend any weight to the capabilities or seriousness of your effort.

With all this in mind it is important to correctly present your well worded, carefully crafted press release.

Typically the top of your release contains a group image and heading. Below that, on the left, in bold and capital letters is the phrase FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE and below that goes the title, name and telephone number of the contact person for your story.

                                                                                                     ———————

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                      July 1, 2009

       Contact: Barack H. Obama
       Press Secretary 202-666-6663

                                                                                                       ———————

Following that goes your headline centered and in capital and bold print.
                                                                                                        ———————–

      I.e.:

 “TAXPAYERS REVOLT AS THE DEADLINE FOR A STATE BUDGET APPROACHES” 

                                                                                                       ———————-

After the body of your press release is written typically its end is confirmed by the typing of three number signs, below the story and centered on the page.
                                                                                                        ———————-

                                                                                                          I.e.:    ###

                                                                                                     ————————

Once the hard part is done the frustrating part begins.

It is the part involving the development of your media list and getting your press release out and into the right hands. For a list of news outlets in their own state one can go to :

http://www.usnpl.com/

In many cases you may have to call and verify any numbers you get or for a proper fax number to a news desk or assignment editor.

For major daily newspapers one is wise to send several releases to several different entities at the same paper. You may want to send one to the assignment editor or assignment desk, and in many cases, you will want to send one directly to one or two reporters who tend to cover stories similar to the one you are issuing.

In all cases write on a cover sheet or on the top of the press release to who’s attention you want. For example, ATTN: Larry Higgins or ATTN: Assignment Editor

Be prepared to spend more time on trying to assemble an effective media list than on writing your actual release. Also anticipate having to resend your release a few times. If you are persistent, it will be worth it. But you have to be sure to cover all your bases and that includes the many small weekly newspapers that are out there.

For those local weeklys it is best to establish a more personal touch though. If you live in Franklin Lakes and are reaching out to a local newspaper in Cape May, you might be wise to alter your press release and use a Cape May resident as the focus of the story. Local papers are more likely to cover events involving their local readers. By taking this route some weekly newspaper editor is more likely to allow the paper to do a story that can contain a headline that reads “Cape May Man Cultivates Grass Root Tax Protest” than they are to run a story about somebody in Franklin Lakes.

And don’t ignore you local weekly’s. Often times major daily’s will pick up on a story that they come across in those periodicals.

If you present your story properly and professionally and articulate your case in a way that makes a reporter say “this is good stuff” in time, they will be coming to you before you get to them.

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A BUMP IN LONEGANS ROAD TO VICTORY?: An Interview With Steve Lonegan-Part III

antlonegan3Bookmark and Share   On the issues, Steve Lonegan has proven himself to be well versed , prepared and experienced. As a former mayor he understands the ramifications of the legislation and mandates that come out of Trenton. In the previous two parts of our interview, Steve Lonegan didn’t just argue for a conservative approach to state government and governance, he demonstrated the how’s and whys of wrong minded liberal leadership. At the same time he presented concrete, conservative solutions to the problems that liberal leadership have presented us with today.

In this final part of our interview, I asked Mayor Lonegan about his campaign.

His campaign raised a few heads when late last year, Steve Lonegan stated that he would accept public matching funds in his race. Some saw that move as hypocritical, others, like Lonegan simply see at is playing by the rules of the game that we have to deal with.

Of course Jon Corzine won’t have to play by those rules. He has the luxury of reaching into his own wallet and financing his campaign on his own. After all, that is how he won his last two statewide campaigns. He bought both his seat in the United States Senate and his office in Trenton. And oddly enough, the so-called “rich” Republicans running for Governor in New Jersey, do not have the independent wealth of a limousine liberal like Corzine, so, by accepting matching funds, they are assuring themselves of having at least enough money to let people know that they are running against Corzine.

So far, Lonegan has raised over half a million dollars. That amount puts him significantly ahead in the field of current and potential candidates. As for those who may have had any doubt about how serious a run for the nomination Lonegan would make, the half a million he raised and the half a million that he will receive in matching funds makes for a million reasons to take his candidacy seriously. And that is just so far. More money is coming.

When asked if expects to be able to raise enough money to bring his name ID up to the level of Chris Christie, his major rival for the nomination at this point, Lonegan feels that he will raise an amount of money comparable, if not even, to Chris Christie.

As for raising enough money to be competitive with Jon Corzine if Lonegan is our Republican nominee for Governor, Lonegan states “I don’t need to outspend Jon Corzine to win”. “We need to have enough money to get our message out” he added.antlonegan4

Lonegan believes that Corzine has to raise and spend tons of money, maybe even an historic level of campaign spending all to simply defend his record,. Lonegan made it clear that Corzine has to explain why he created “the highest taxes in the country and an economic decline which has our friends and neighbors leaving the state”.

Lonegans punctuates the spending question in this campaign by adding “I think Corzine should spend $75million  or $100 million dollars. I think that could be the best economic stimulus package New Jersey could see”.

That statement could be funny if it were true, but the state of New Jersey has no major media market of its own and so much of the campaign dollars spent in the race for Governor of Jersey will be split between the New York media market in North Jersey and the Philly media market in the south. So even a boondoggled bundle of bucks in our state’s own election won’t benefit New Jersey that much.

  • “If the primary ends up being a hard hitting, bloody battle, well so be it.  Let’s get ready for the general election”     -Steve Lonegan, 1/21?09-POLITICS 24/7 Interview

That aside, with all things being equal, I asked Lonegan how he would describe himself and his political ideology to me, a self-proclaimed, “bleeding heart, Jack Kemp, conservative who is a heavily armed dove“. To which Lonegan replied that he is  a “principled conservative who believes in free-market principles and values of limited government and lower taxes who has been elected three times in a small town that is 2 to 1 Democrats to Republicans”.

But with the Republican field for Governor already comprised of another self avowed Conservative in Assemblyman Rick Merkt and will soon be having another in Mayor Brian Levine of Franklin Township, I asked Lonegan how he would differentiate himself. To that he replied, “I raised half a million dollars”.

Aside from that, the Mayor did admit that he and Rick Merkt “agree on a lot” and that he is “great and has a great record and is a terrific guy”.

  • Levine “has positioned himself as a pro COAH and Abbott funding moderate, so that will be interesting”                            -Steve Lonegan, 1/21?09-POLITICS 24/7 Interview

As for Brian Levine, Steve Lonegan has to muster up the desire to speak nearly half as nicely.

After saying that Brian Levine is a nice fellow, he throws in the fact that Levine is a small town mayor, and that,is something Lonegan likes. But that is about as far as the liking goes. Once those platitudes were over Lonegan stated “that Levine has positioned himself as a pro COAH and Abbott funding moderate, so that will be interesting”

With that out of the way, the Mayor agreed with me on the fact that Republicans need to be unified in November and so I asked him he could promise to keep the campaign civil and avoid any mocking tones and obey Ronald Reagan’s eleventh commandment which dictated that “thou shall not speak ill of fellow Republicans”. 

That so called commandment was first uttered by Reagan during his 1966 primary for the Republican nomination for Governor of California.

As for employing that phrase here in the 2009 Republican primary for Governor of New Jersey, Lonegan stated “Oh, absolutely. There is no need for personal attacks or mocking tones, however we will be hard hitting on the issues and the record”.

He added, “if you can’t make your way through a good, hard hitting, primary, how do you expect to take on Jon Corzine’s millions of dollars?”. So I will put my record up against anyone and I will be looking very carefully at Mr. Christie’s record and his positions on the issues and we will define the differences. If that ends up being a hard hitting, bloody primary, well so be it. Let’s get ready for the general election”.

So it looks like the stage is set for a few battles. One will be for the hearts of the conservative wing of the party. That battle may include Chris Christie if he gets off of the ideological fence but it will certainly include Merkt and Levine against Lonegan.

The other battle will be for the minds of all Republicans. That battle will not only include the emotionally charged ideological arguments but the electability argument as well.

It is on that argument that Steve Lonegan may have his greatest challenge and in that challenge he may not be making things any easier for himself.

Some may think the electability question may be raised by what a few see as Lonegan’s brashness. But what they may see as brash others see as open and honest.

For me the potential drawback to Lonegan’s success here, lies not so much in Lonegan himself as it does in his choice of staff.

Until now, one issue in particular, has not come up in the shaping primary race but I am afraid it might.  That is the selection of Steve Lonegan’s campaign manager, Kevin Collins.

The selection of Kevin Collins as his campaign manager could create a problem.

The source of the problem dates back to an incident in 2007.

antmailer2Collins designed a campaign mail piece in a Republican state senate primary against State Senator Kevin O’Toole.

Senator O’Toole is of Korean descent. And the piece referred to his Korean ancestry by claiming that O’Toole exploited his heritage by claimimng to be a minority and asking for special rights when his senate district lines were being redrawn during the redistricting process. The Collins campaign mailer described Kevin O’Toole as “The Republican Al Sharpton” for taking advantage of minority rights protections.  It also included a photo comparisson of the two.

The mailer was a low point for Republicans. It was typical race baiting and should not have ever been considered by Collins or the candidate on whose behalf the mailer was sent out. Worse than the mailer were some of Kevin Collins’ replies to accusations over the mailer. At one point Collins said:

“We could have altered the photo. We did not. We could have made a more jaundiced look to his skin. We did not.”

The judgment was so bad that Collins was even officially rebuked by all thirty of the Republican assembly members serving at the time.

In a unanimously signed  letter, the 30 assembly Republicans wrote “Mr. Collins has crossed a line and we believe it would no longer be appropriate for him to do work on behalf of any candidate running as a Republican in this state”.

When asked about the incident Steve Lonegan replied “ Since then, even Kevin O’Toole has hired Kevin Collins

A call to Senator O’Toole’s office to confirm that statement was not responded to but Lonegan went on to say “I don’t think the Republicans should have the democrats telling us us how to run our own campaigns”.

Problem is, it is not Democrats who joined together in denouncing the Collins mailer and requesting that Collins have no part in Republican campaigns in New Jersey. It is fellow Republicans who have decided that.

A call to Assembly Republican Minority Leader Alex DeCroce about this matter also went unanswered so we have no idea where assembly Republicans stand on their banning of Collins but others are not so quiet about the Lonegan hiring.

Jonathon Kim, President of the Korean Association of New Jersey called Lonean’s hiring of Kevin Collins “disturbing”and he thinks the Mayor might be “shooting himself in the foot” by hiring Kevin Collins.

To this Lonegan simply replied “well, he’s wrong”

For his part Steve Lonegan says “Kevin Collins is an effective individual, knows politics and has outstanding character and integrity”. and that he “will not have someone on his/my campaign personally attacked by Democrats”.

But it may not even get to the point where Democrats have the chance to do the attacking.

Lonegan first has to get through fellow Republicans and one cannot help but wonder if this issue will be brought up among his rivals or any of  the Republicans who, back in 2007, declared Kevin Collins persona non grata in New Jersey.

Personally I have no hard feelings either way. The O’Toole mailer does seem to be a bit over the line but I am not sure it is a demonstration of politics at its worst. However my real concern is the effects of Lonegans’s decision to hire Collins during the general election.

If this incident is not addressed and gone by then, what if Steve Lonegan does become the Republican standard bearer? Do we want our conservative candidate for Governor being attacked and labeled as insensitive to minorities or of running a campaign prone to racial divisiveness?

Come November, we will need every vote we can get to win. Such a victory will need to tap into almost every demographic we have, including the significant Korean population of the state, a population which is quite Republican oriented.

So I do hope that this issue gets addressed sooner rather than later and I do also hope it does not damage the chances of Lonegan’s promising campaign.

Kevin Collins is a decent man and he has done some good work including the work of challenges that some may have turned away from.

When Hillary Clinton was running for relection in New York, few came forward to challenge her and fewer volounteered time and money to campaign against her but not Kevin Collins. He managed the campaign of Hillary Clinton’s opponenet, John Spencer.

The same holds true of New York’s Chuck Schumer whose most recent opponent, Howard Mills was also managed by Kevin Collins.

Collins also managed past efforts for some candidates which I hold in high esteem. One of them is former GOP Assembly Republican Majority Leader Paul DeGaetano (in fact, he is one person I wish was running for the job of Governor this time around).

So Collins has paid his dues and fought the hard fights and along the way, everyone is entitled to a mistake or two. But this is politics and whether we like it or not, everything is on the table, including Collins mistake.

Hopefully it is not an issue that will blow up. Hopefully the past actions of Assembly Republicans regarding Collins and Lonegan’s present actions of hiring Collins as his campaign manager can somehow be balanced.

It is hard to quantify Lonegan’s decision in bringing Collins onboard the campaign. Some could say it is a courageous call on Lonegan’s part. Others may say it was a stupid decision that opens Lonegan up to attacks that can further advance liberal accusations that Republicans are out of touch with and insensitive to racial concerns.

Either way, on both the issues and his approach to the issues, Steve Lonegan’s campaign promises to be the stuff that political drama’s are made of and he will be the one candidate in this election who is certain to grab headlines.

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CORRECTION:  Rick Shaftan, a strategists and aide in the Lonegan for Governor campaign,  alerted us of an inaccuracy in the above post.  In it we attributed the quotation known as Ronald Reagan’s eleventh commandment to Ronald Reagan himself.  Mr. Shaftan made it known that the quote was first used by Gaylord Parkinson who was the California Republican State Chairman who used it in response to attacks on Reagan during his primary for the california gubernatorial nomination.

Mr. Shaftan pointed out “The Eleventh Commandment is quoted most of the time by liberals who would never quote anything Reagan said. It’s ironic that when they quote it, they are not quoting Reagan”.

We thank Mr. Shaftan for his historical accuracy and hope he was not calling us at POLITICS 24/7 liberal.

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TWIN PEEPS

Maybe there is something to the pseudoscience of face reading! When I first looked at corrupt Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich‘s face (I like to refer to him as Gov. Doucheblag), the dude who was charged with attempting to sell President-elect Obama’s vacant Senate seat to the highest bidder (!!), I immediately thought, OMG, he looks just like Lyle Menendez! All you true-crime aficionados out there know who I’m talking about: Lyle and his brother Erik were charged with murdering their parents and then going on a shopping spree with their credit cards in Beverly Hills in the ’90s. Good times . . .

GiggleSugar

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Be Sure To Sign The Petition To

REPEAL THE CONGRESSIONAL PAY HIKE

Sign the Online Petition – Repeal The Automatic Pay Raise That Congress Is Receiving

Pass The Link On To Family, Friends and Co-workers

http://www.gopetition.com/online/24301.html  

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Results for the latest POLITICS 24/7 poll are in!

As for who you want to see be the next Chairman of the Republican National Committee

the results are as follows:

40%  –  KEN BLACWELL

20%  –  SAUL ANUZIS

20%  –  MICHAEL STEELE

  7%  –  KATON DAWSON

 7%  –  CHIP SALTSMAN

 7%  –  Other 

 0%  –  MIKE DUNCAN 

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PUSH AGAINST CONGRESSIONAL PAY RAISE HEATS UP

ant1bailout2

Bookmark and Share     About a week ago POLITICS 24/7 started a petition effort designed at showing Congress that we oppose the automatic pay raise that they will be accepting this year.

We are not going to go into the obvious and numerous reason s why. Besides we already did when we launched the petition. Suffice it to say that the times we are in do not merit a pay raise for those who have their hands in our cookie jars and are manipulating the economy for the worse as we speak. Beyond that, I will not ramble on with my own strongly held opinion.

Instead I present to you the words of others in regards to the Congressional pay raise.

They are the words of some of the people throughout America who have signed the petition opposing the pay raise. They are the hard working people. People from the middle and lower classes who are all dramatically effected by what those in the political class do to them.

Ms. Mati Falconetti of Hopatcong New Jersey wrote……..

“With the economy being in the shape it is in, and billions of jobs being lost, taxes in New Jersey being raised, I don’t see why and or how Congress should get an increase in any of its budgets including salaries. It would not be fair especially when the common citizen is in a devastated financial situation”.

Ms. Bernadette Sava of Huntington Beach California wrote……..

“End the greed now and start serving the people or step down to allow someone who will!”.

Patsy Hicksop of Socorro New Mexico added…….

“This is a disgrace for Congress–they only represent themselves, not the American people in the worst economic situation in decades”.

Saint Paul Minnesota’s John Sturm was particularly angry with Congress when he wrote……..

“How could you people have the audacity to complain about CEOs getting million-dollar bonuses while their companies are going bankrupt when you vote for a pay raise for yourselves while the country is in a recession and headed for a depression? Why don’t you make a law that says if you want to SERVE in Congress (since that’s what you’re SUPPOSED to be doing), you have to read the Constitution at least once. Oh yeah and that Declaration of Independence thing.”

Mr. Biaggio Rinaldi from Granby Connecticut directed his anger at one of his two United States Senators, the one who ran for the democratic presidential nomination:

Mr. Rinaldi wrote……….

“Sen. Chris Dodd should give back the part of his salary to the Treasury when he took up residence in Iowa”.

One of my favorites came from Mrs. Gaelyn Keith of El Dorado Hills, CA. She wrote:

“Reduce spending before there is another Boston Tea Party”.

Another emotional but accurate petition signatory wrote…………

“If you take this pay raise, you will be showing the people on “Main Street” just how concerned you are about their welfare. A pay raise for you at this time of economic crisis is not only laughable; it is ludicrous. Show the people of America you care. Stand up for America and for the constituents that put you in your seat. Imagine what they are going through. Look at the unemployment numbers – how many of them are getting a pay raise? Please, use your influence and ask fellow members to say no.” 

That came from Andrea LaGrow of Rincon Georgia.

Then there was Richard Lewis of Lynn Massachusetts who wrote……..

“I’m going backwards every day and you give yourself a raise. how about you let us do your reviews for now on, if you do good you get a raise if not your out of luck. I’ve had it with you all just getting a raise some of you have done nothing, why would you think you deserve a raise“.

I think it is clear.

Congress has an approval rating in the teens and the people do not believe that, in the middle of  tough economic times, now is the time to accept more money from the people they are hired to serve.

Stephen Hibbard of Plymouth Massachusetts said it best when he signed the petition opposing the pay raise and wrote:

“The idea that these wasters are even thinking about a raise right now is sickening. I take home 20k a year. Where is my raise? Oh yeah I don’t get a say on my salary. Why should you? I think the House should vote for the Senate’s raises, and vice versa. They should vote NO!”

We are all opposed to this, yet in our nation which is based on the will of the people, only some people are going to get what they want. They are the 535 members of Congress who despite our feelings, are going to accept the raise. A raise which they conveniently arranged to be automatic so that they could not be blamed for voting themselves the raise.

So what are we to do?

Well if you have not already signed the petition do so. If you have, get others to do so as well.

In addition to that call and write your Congressperson and United States Senators.

In addition to that write a letter to the editor to both your major daily newspapers and your local weekly newspapers.

An undeniable proliferation of public denouncements of the pay raise for Congress is the only way that we can get our representatives to do the right thing.

Let them know that although they did not vote for the raise, they could easily propose and support legislation that repeals the raise. Without doing that, their acceptance of the pay raise is as good as having the nerve to vote for a pay raise.

Truth be told, legislation to repeal the pay raise has already been proposed.

Arizona freshman Democrat Congressman Harry Mitchell, got 34 co-sponsors of his bill and an updated version introduced by Mitchell and Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, has 70 to 80 co-sponsors.

So while you write your representatives and demand that they reject their raise, tell them to support the Mitchell-Paul bill….or else! And while you are at it, let Congressmen Mitchell and Paul know you appreciate their bill. Thank them for the effort. People always hear from others when they have a problem or complaint but we often to neglect to give people the proper attention and appreciation that they deserve when they have done something right.

Click on Congressman Paul’s and Mitchell’s name to send them an email.

To contact your own Congress member click here.  There you will find what you need to get in touch with them.

For those of you here ,where I live, in New Jersey, find your local newspaper and their contact information here.

If this pay raise goes through the only ones to blame are ourselves. After all, would you reject a pay raise if your boss was giving you one? So these folks in D.C. are only doing what comes natural to them….taking money. But unless we make it clear that if they do not repeal the pay raise, we will be firing them come election time.

But before we have to wait for their reelection efforts, let us prevent the pay raise from continuing through to fruition and let them know we oppose it and that we will oppose them if they accept it.

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antcap1234

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AND DON’T FORGET………….

BE SURE TO SIGN THE PETITION URGING THE NOMINATION

OF SENATOR BECK FOR LT. GOV.

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ONCE UPON A TIME, GOD WAS MISSING FOR SIX DAYS………

Eventually, Michael, the archangel, found him, resting on the seventh day.

He inquired of God. “Where have you been?”

God sighed a deep sigh of satisfaction, and proudly pointed downwards through the clouds, “Look, Michael. Look what I’ve made.”

Archangel Michael looked puzzled, and said, “What is it?”

It’s a planet,” replied God, “and I’ve put Life on it. I’m going to call it Earth and it’s going to be a great place of balance.”

“Balance?” inquired Michael, still confused.

God explained, pointing to different parts of earth. “For example, northern Europe will be a place of great opportunity and wealth, while southern Europe is going to be poor. Over there I’ve placed a continent of white people, and over there is a continent of black people.”

“Balance in all things,” God continued pointing to different countries.

This one will be extremely hot, while this one will be very cold and covered in ice.”

The Archangel, impressed by God’s work, then pointed to a land mass and said, “What’s that one?”

Ah,” said God “That’s Washington State, the most glorious place on earth. There are beautiful streams, hills, and forests. The people from Washington State are going to be handsome, modest, intelligent and humorous, and they are going to be found traveling the world. They will be extremely sociable, hardworking, high achieving, and they will be known throughout the world as diplomats, and carriers of peace.”

Michael gasped in wonder and admiration, but then proclaimed, “What about balance, God? You said there would be balance.”

God smiled, “There is another Washington…wait til you see the idiots I put there.”

Submitted by Jon, Emmitsburg, Md.

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TAXPAYERS TO CONGRESS “DON’T EVEN CONSIDER ACCEPTING A RAISE!”

The new year will give us a new President and a newly elected Congress.  Only 61 individuals are truly newly elected to it though.  The remaining 474 are simply returning to continue their work (two are moving from the house to the senate).  But in this session, all of them are expected to bring about that much “touted change” that many of them promised along with President-Elect Obama.

How much “change” they will actually bring and what kind of change they will be responsible for has yet to be seen but early on, there exists one change that they will effect right away.

While the nation and the world have entered into economic troubles, the 535 collective members of the House of Representatives and Senate will have the opportunity to see their salaries change with an increased of as much as $4,700 a year.

The pay raise is automatic and turns out to be about a 2.8% increase and although it may not sound like much, when one considers the circumstances of the times that we are in, accepting such pay raise would be criminal.

I say criminal because there do not exist many American institutions that can determine their own salary at their own whim. And there are even fewer institutions that would dare to accept more money when they have less money to spend. 

On top of that, given the fact that elected federal office holders already make a touch more than $169,000, most Americans feel that that is quite suitable. In fact many Americans might consider it to be a great deal more than suitable. Seeing as how Congress currently has an approval rating of 18.4% and a disapproval rating of 73.4%, I would say that most Americans think that $170,000 for the bad job they are doing is totally inappropriate and way too much.

So why should they get almost $5,000. More for their poor approval?

Even more disturbing,  how can they look voters in the eye and claim to understand that the economic climate is rough but that it is necessary for them to shoulder additional costs that Congress had a hand in creating in the first place.

While Congress approves bailing out almost every faction of the private sector that requests help, how can they also accept more money too? Is that the type of change that the elections of ’08 meant,……… more spending and higher Congressional salaries?

The amount of money we are talking about in regards to the pending pay raise may be minuscule when compared to a 7 or 8 hundred billion dollar bailout but it is still more money being spent. It is still more money being paid by taxpayers and it is still more money than each member of Congress requires. But more than that , accepting a pay raise during the time we are in is a horrific symbolic gesture that essentially tells the American taxpayer “screw you, were in charge and we are going to do what we want, when we want and how we want”. Never mind the out of work salesman who has no conglomerate that can’t slip congressmen or senators a hefty campaign donation and then request federal assistance for himself. Never mind the additional taxes that Democrats will be requesting taxpayers to pay or the out of work taxpayer who can’t afford to pay their property taxes this year.

By accepting a pay raise, Congress will be making it clear that they have absolutely no concern for the people whose money they spend.

With Democrats in total control of government, if the 2.8% pay raise goes through, than their hold on power will be short lived. If Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi do not put a stop to increasing their salaries than folks, they are not just greedy, they are downright stupid and should not be in office in the first place.

Having control of government makes Democrats responsible for what happens in government.  It makes them totally responsible. Accepting a pay raise at a time like this is something that they will have to be held accountable for and they will.

But there is still a chance for them to save face. If they act responsibly and derail any efforts to increase their salaries, they can spare themselves the blame and avoid the certain repercussions of their greed and irresponsibility.

That is one reason why President-Elect Obama should publicly urge the House of Representatives and the Senate to show the American people that they have their priorities in order and that they are aware of the tough times we may be in and demand that they forgo any raise and repeal the 2.8% increase that they will receive.

It is also why POLITICS 24/7 has issued a national petition.

It is a “Declaration of Rejection of a Congressional Pay Raise

As a free society, we cannot simply wait for our representatives to act. We must make our desires known before they act.

In the case of irresponsible government action we cannot wait for irresponsibility to be enacted, we must avoid it from happening . So we have initiated a petition to Congress. It is a petition that calls upon them to reject any increases in theirsalaries, staffs and office budgets, as well as personal expense limits, and currently allocated per diem expenses. If such a vote or votes are passed at any point during the sessions between January 2009 and January 2011 we demand that a new vote repealing such increases be brought to the floor of both the House of Representatives and the Senate”.

Simply click here for the “DECLARATION of REJECTION of CONGRESSIONAL PAY RAISE” Online petition and make it clear that will tolerate spending more on Congress than they are worth and that you certainly do not intend to tolerate their greed.

After signing it you must still do two things.  Pass this petition on to others.  Just cut and past the following link into an email

http://www.gopetition.com/online/24301.html

Then send it to friends, family and business associates and urge them to do the same. 

Once you’ve done that, the second thing you must do is contact the two U.S. Senators representing you in your state and your congressman.  Do so either by phone, snail mail or email.  No matter how you want to do it, just do it!

If you are really ticked off over this potential pay raise, write your local newspapers too.   Send letters to the editors voicing your disapproval of any hint of raising congressional salaries at a time like this.

BE SURE TO SIGN THE PETITION

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9 SYMPTOMS OF CONSERVAPHOBIA

conservaphobia: noun. The fear of the American conservative political movement, often based on unfounded   stereotypes and distortions.

You might be conservaphobic if:

  • You’ve never really listened to Rush Limbaugh because you’re already sure that you disagree with practically everything he’s ever said.
  • You refer to liberal Catholics, Protestants and Jews as “people of faith” but conservative Catholics, Protestants and Jews as the “religious right” or “radical religious right”. (Maybe you have a thing for alliteration too.)
  • You think all white Republicans are racists and all black Republicans are sellouts.
  • You are a champion of first amendment rights except in public school classrooms and in front of abortion clinics.
  • You’re glad you’re not a Republican because after all, they want to starve school children and senior citizens.
  • You actually think that “liberal” and “progressive” are synonymous.
  • In your opinion, a government donation to the poor is somehow more effective than yours would be.
  • You only listen to and respect the views of “open-minded” people who think like you do.
  • You blame society’s problems on “religious fanatics” and “corporate greed”, never on the irresponsible behavior of individuals.

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TABLOID TERRORISM AND THE OBAMA SUPPORTERS BEHIND IT

Libelous Liberal Debate Amounts To Tabloid Terrorism

Libelous Liberal Debate Amounts To Tabloid Terrorism

I have struggled with whether or not I should give attention to a little listened to, low rated, struggling propaganda filled, left wing, smear mongering, radio station called Air America. I was torn. Do I give them attention or do I let them fade into the air on their own. I decided that keeping them a secret is not the right course to go. I determined that the best course of action is to shed light on their campaign of disinformation, distortion and despicable conduct. I felt that the secret of their existence should be exposed because it will help to establish the truth.

Air America is a small radio network that is propped up by liberal activists like Al Gore and George Soros. Their reason for being is to extol the virtues of liberalism and to promote the candidacies of any and all liberals. From comedian and Minnesota Democrat U.S. Senate nominee Al Franken, to liberal presidential nominee Barack Obama, Air America is vigilant in their pursuit to get them elected to office.

In doing so they rarely promote the candidates of their choice by putting forth their plans or policies. Instead they focus on Republicans . They go off the script of rational debate and enter into a National Enquirer mode and post and air headline grabbers smearing Republicans. Headlines like “Sarah Palin is Spiro Agnew in Drag” or “ Sarah Palin Wanted To Ban Books From The Library

Air America ignores any sense of decency or truth and runs with made up scandals and word of rumors that are outrageous and despicable.

Recently they went with a fairytale claiming that Track Palin, the son of vice presidential nominee and Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, is a racist.

According to Air America

“Sarah’s son Track is a serious Nazi sympathizer but he joined the white power movement rather recently. His story is not yet told. He was overheard talking about Mexicans in a derogatory way to other members of his unit. They were engaged in a conversation about immigration and it turned racial. Someone mentioned that John McCain while at the US Naval Academy harassed on a daily basis the first Mexican American cadet in Naval academy history. This caused Track Palin to say that he didn’t believe Mexicans should be allowed into our country and he did not understand that this Guy was an American of Mexican heritage“
 
Now how this can be passed on as news is beyond me. The story is devoid of any evidence and any reliable sources. It is only story on Air America. Not even the liberal icons of biased news on MSNBC have lowered themselves to this degree of trying to falsify truth and portray a smear like this as news or being newsworthy.

Yet Air America, in panic and desperation chooses to run with stories such as that one and more. At late they have been particularly dealing, on a relentless front, with Sarah Palin. Her popularity and the energy that her entry in this election has injected, petrifies liberals who thought that only their messiah, Barack “America” could attract praise and bring a fresh new face on the scene.

They believe that putting something in writing or allowing it to go out on the airwaves makes it believable or even true. Well in light of that thinking I am suggesting that those who do not believe in the Air America approach to debate, actually engage in that approach. Help the liberal, media, gossip mongers to understand what reckless abandonment brings to the table. Create for Air America, and their supporters, the same kind of atmosphere that they have created. Establish an environment in which they must defend against distortion and lies.

Do so by cutting the following excerpt and pasting it anywhere and everywhere that you can.

“There are claims that Democrat Barack Obama was spotted conducting extramarital, sexual activity with male Chicago gang lords in a back alley before he announced his race for President. Additional details indicate that Senator Obama later went home and bitch-slapped his wife Michelle before having a homosexual menage-a-tois with another Chicago gang lord and Obama financial backer, convicted Chicago slum lord, Tony Rezko. On top of that, in return for the sexual favor, Mr. Rezko made an unrecorded donation of $2,500 dollars to the Obama for President effort. All of which was conducted in front of Obama’s religious mentor Rev. Wright, who was there to fulfill a deviant sexual fetish by watching.”
Is any of this true, I don’t know? But by the standards that Air America uses to post and air their own disgusting lies and smears, it is worthy of reproduction. Now you may find that excerpt offensive and you may be angry at me for even suggesting it. Maybe even as angry as I am of the devoid of fact, liberal establishment that is the impetus behind such smut merchants as the Daily KOO’s or Air America in regards to someone simply because they are Republican.

I am willing to deal with distortions or even lies about a candidates record. I am willing to argue over the interpretation of a candidates statement or their policies but I am not willing to tolerate or accept fictional creations as a basis for determining who the next President of our nation should be.

Liberals and defenders of these tactics may claim that Air America is only countering the preponderance of conservative radio talk shows. The problem there is the fact that these talk shows do not fabricate headlines. They discuss them, granted they do so with the ideological slant that they come from, but it is about the truth, not fictional distortions.

I do not want to become a tabloid terrorist like Air America. I want to be able to stay on topic and make a difference in the real world. That can only be done by dealing with reality and true facts and that I will do. I believe that to solve our economic woes we need to know the real reasons that led to them. To fight terrorism we need to know the true facts involving terrorist and their activity. By liberals pumping out headlines like “Bush Lied, People Died”, no cause is advanced or problem is solved. Nothing is accomplished by running with lies that state Sarah Palin pretended to give birth to a child 5 months ago but it was actually her daughters child, . I don’t want to engage in a debate about fairy tales. Fairy tales end however the storyteller wants them to but truth is a result only reached by the telling of facts.

So I will continue to offer my opinions based upon truth and the facts but in the mean time I also offer you the opportunity to cut and paste in participation with the Air America tactics that liberals base their debate on.

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FRANK RALEIGH LAUTENBERG AND NEW JERSEY…PERFECT TOGETHER?

I recently had a conversation with a friend who was quite active in New York politics. He served on many a presidential campaigns and was the campaign voice for several local and statewide officials in New York. He has long since retired and moved away but during this conversation I mentioned Frank Lautenberg’s name and he said “Lautenberg, is he still around?” I chuckled and explained that you wouldn’t know it but he is still there. I really had no obvious evidence to point to his existence but I assured him that Frank was still there and that he was running to stay there.

After that conversation, I got to thinking , why did Frank Lautenberg run again? I mean back in 1982 Lautenberg ran for the United States Senate and he started off as a major force. During his first term he was the impetus behind the raising of the legal drinking age to 21 in all states by linking federal funding for their highways to their raising the legal age. He also revolutionized the airline industry by successfully authoring legislation that eliminated smoking on planes. But since then his, legislative activism and personal leadership has waned, In 2001, after 3 terms in office, he fittingly retired, only to come out of retirement to replace Senator Bob Torricelli on the ballot in his doomed re-election effort. Although state and party laws deny anyone the ability to replace a nomination within days of an election, the New Jersey Supreme court decided that laws do not matter and allowed Torricelli , who was under investigation for criminal conduct, to be taken off the ballot and replaced by someone who had a better chance to win the election. That person was Lautenberg.

Lautenberg didiwon that election, but what did Lautenberg’s return from retirement bring us? Aside from proving that the law did not matter and that he was above it, his six years since then have produced little, very little.

Oh Frank is a reliable liberal vote in Washington. He was counted on to support opposition to the efforts to combat terrorism. He was counted on to vote for any and every tax hike that came out of the collective congressional agenda. But aside from being a reliable vote for the liberal agenda, Frank did little for New Jersey and he did even less when it came to bringing any new energy for new ideas or directions. It seemed that Frank’s only major accomplishments were achieved back in the early 80’s when his once fresh voice led the way to sensible reforms that in some cases saved lives.

Credit must be given when and where credit is due and so, Lautenberg’s two landmark initiatives are to his credit. But after 24 years of legislating in the federal government on behalf of New Jersey, where is the credit that he once deserved to be re-elected for today. Since his 1982 -1988 stint, there is little merit that warrants electing Lautenberg to any of the terms since then.

The only level of increased activity that Lautenberg has demonstrated exists within his staff. It is a staff that has one of the largest numbers and highest payrolls in the senate. His chief of staff earns one of the highest salaries offered on Capitol Hill to any other colleague with the same title and responsibilities. As Lautenberg’s Chief of Staff, Daniel Katz has earned $81,183.59 just between October 2007 and March of 2008. Compared to others this is no measly sum of money. Yet, I do not begrudge Daniel Katz the money. He earns it.

He must work hard to control and motivate the other 52 staffers that account for Lautenberg’s senate activity. Daniel Katz must also work twice hard to make his inactive Senator appear busy and productive. It is a job that cannot be done alone. That is why Lautenberg’s staff includes 12 legislative assistants, aides and directors, who between October of last year and March of this year have been paid a combined total of three and a quarter hundred thousand dollars or to be exact $324,786.75.

Oddly enough along with having state directors and deputy state directors Frank also has a South Jersey Director and two Deputy South Jersey Directors and an assistant to the South Jersey Director. Now we all know that that New Jersey is famous for it’s extraordinarily large size. At 7,418 square miles it ranks as the 46th largest state in the nation. But these South Jersey, patronage, posts reflect less of a legislative need than a political need. Congressman Rob Andrews who challenged Frank for the democrat nomination is from South Jersey and most of the rumblings to replace Lautenberg come out of South Jersey.

These South Jersey directors have earned a combined $58,437.42 during the five months between October ‘07 and March ‘08. Add to this another $99,579.61 which has been paid to state and deputy state directors during the same time period.

The rest of Lautenberg’s staff consists of a rarely used speech writer along with an executive director, press secretaries, schedulers, constituent service directors, specialists, handlers and assistants, legal counselors, legislative directors, assistants and specialists. It also includes a legislative correspondent, director of correspondence, systems administrator, special project coordinators and numerous staff assistants.

In total, Lautenberg’ 53 staffers, and five month, nearly one and a half million dollar payroll ($1,437497.80), must work hard to make a sitting Senator who has little initiative to point to, look active and productive.

Everyday, leading up to his race for the nomination against Andrews, Lautenberg’s staff has produced countless press releases staking a position on an issue. In fact his staff has been responsible for the Herculean task of trying to demonstrate Frank Lautenberg as a constructive part of government in the face of his lack of real initiatives.

Let’s face it. Since Lautenberg’s first term 27 years ago, he has nothing to show for it. His latest claim is that he insured that the federal Homeland Security money provided to New Jersey is doled out on the basis of need. Accept for a press release, Frank did not correct the problem that existed in this area. Republican state legislators brought up a lawsuit against the state after revealing that Homeland security money was being given out only to districts that had Democrat lawmakers representing them. The Corzine administration was allocating money meant to shore up security in our state based on politics, not need. Frank Lautenberg’s press releases did not change this immoral activity, the threatened lawsuit brought about by Republicans did. But I guess if you have little effort or action of your own to point to, your staff must take every opportunity to make their boss look good.

Making Frank look good is a hard job though. In his days since 1982, Frank bitterly clings to his only major accomplishments, raising the drinking age and prohibiting smoking on airplanes.

His subsequent representation of New Jersey since then has not produced much else. In fact due to the democrats representing us in the U.S. Senate, New Jersey continues to be one of the lowest ranked states in terms of our return on the tax dollars that we send to Washington. Together, Lautenberg and Menendez have been unable to get much bang for our buck and through it all they maintain their liberal mantra that helps to continue the crisis of affordability that exists in New Jersey.

Perhaps the greatest shame in all this is not, the lack of initiative or leadership that an 84 year old man has in Washington, DC. but rather that the state of New Jersey does not have the ability to produce a citizen that can provide leadership in D.C.

Republican nominee Dick Zimmer is a worthy candidate. He has a good, proven twelve year record serving in congress as a representative from New Jersey. He has commendable views on policies pertaining to energy and the economy. His views on foreign policy are more attuned to the times and better suited for the times than the liberal, tea with terrorists approach that Lautenberg liberals take. But in New Jersey, none of this matters. The Republican party of this state has yet to get it’s act together and put forth an agenda that offers a clear difference from today’s ruling class liberals.

Even Dick Zimmer, as capable as he is, can not wage a decent campaign against Lautenberg.  The state G.O.P. has been unable to raise sufficient funds for our candidates. Current fund raising records show that Dick Zimmer has raised a few hundred thousand dollars, while the aging, millionaire, founder of one of the nations largest payroll companies, Frank Lautenberg, has a couple of million for his campaign.

It is also a shame that New Jersey operates under such a shroud of hypocrisy. The hypocrisy of a candidate who first took office in 1982 by attacking his opponent, Millicent Fenwick, for her age which at the time was in her low 70’s. The hypocrisy of a man who came out of retirement and was resurrected by breaking laws that switched his name in place of a candidate that was losing. The hypocrisy of a man who is elected to office to do things for New Jersey but has actually accomplished little for New Jersey in over two decades.

It is all a shame but it is a shame that New Jersey deserves. We deserve what we get and in Frank Lautenberg what we get is an aging fat cat, devoid of ideas and drive and propped up by an over million and a half dollar staff that is occupied by patronage posts that are charged with making Lautenberg look productive.

There is one thing New Jersey will accomplish when it keeps Lautenberg on the job for us. It will break a record and make Lautenberg the longest serving United States Senator in New Jersey’s history. That s something but it doesn’t mean much when it comes to the benefits we have gotten out of that long service, or should I say lack of benefit.

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