Tuesday, September 28, 2010

S3706 on Senate Calendar for Sept 29th?

According to a tweet by @StabenowPress this afternoon Senator Stabenow's bill, #S3706, The Americans Want to Work Act, will be on the Senate floor tomorrow. More info: http://bit.ly/bvf2oU

Check out the tweet for yourself: https://twitter.com/StabenowPress

99ers are all encouraged to contact the following all day tomorrow and until this bill passes:

The retiring Senator Voinovich may be just what the 99er Nation has been praying for and all unemployed Americans are urged to contact his offices in mass this week. http://voinovich.senate.gov/

Washington D.C. Phone: 202-224-3353

Cincinnati, OH
 phone: (513) 684-3265 fax: (513) 684-3269

Cleveland, OH
 phone: (216) 522-7095 fax: 522-7097

Columbus, OH 
phone: (614) 469-6697 fax: 469-7733

Nelsonville, OH 
phone: (740) 441-6410 fax: (740) 753-3551

Toledo, OH 
phone: (419) 259-3895 fax: (419) 259-3899

Another possible ally in the fight to pass our Tier 5 bill could be Senator George LeMieux of Florida.
Washington, DC Phone: (202) 224-3041, Toll free: (866) 630-7106 Fax: (202) 228-5171

The two Senators from the great state of Maine may also be receptive to helping the unemployed “exhaustees” get this bill passed or at least stop a filibuster threat.

Senator Olympia J. Snowe:
Washington, DC Phone: (202) 224-5344 Toll Free: (800) 432-1599 Fax: (202) 224-1946

Senator Susan Collins
Washington, DC Phone: (202) 224-2523 Fax: (202) 224-2693

Call the White House comments line to demand the same. White House Comments Line 202-456-1111 Comment line is only open 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM Monday thru Friday EST. ***REMIND the President that this is an emergency and WE the people (middle class then - impoverished now) voted him in office. Now he needs to speak up for us and do whatever he can to assure our Tier 5 becomes law NOW!

More contacts: (Some my be duplicated)

Congressional Toll free Switchboard: 1-866-220-0044

Senator Harry Reid 202-224-3542 REID FAX 202-224-7327

Reno office:Tel 775-686-5750 Fax 775-686-5757

Reid Staffers:










Schumer Staffers:







STABENOW FAX # 202-228-0325

Stabenow Staffer Matt Williams 202-360-5014  matt’s cellular number

Stabenow Staffer Ilana Levinson 202-228-3674 Ilana direct number

Other Stabenow staffers:




ALSO: Stabenow's back office line: (202) 224 - 1437 Call them now. Call them often. Tell them you are from 99er press.

Here are additional Republicans we want to contact in mass now:
Senator Richard Shelby, 202-224-5744 Legislative Director Laura Friedel  laura_friedel@shelby.senate.gov
Senator George LeMieux, 202-224-3041 Legislative Director  Michael Zehr  (no email for Michael, email instead) ken_lundberg@lemieux.senate.gov
Senator John Ensign, 202-224-3041 Legislative Director Pam Thiesse  pam_thiessen@ensign.senate.gov
Senator Kit Bond, 202-224-5741 Legislative Director Kara Smith kara_smith@bond.senate.gov
Senator Susan Collins, 202-224-2523 Legislative Director Rob Epplin  Rob_epplin@collins.senate.gov
Senator  Scott Brown, 202-224-4543 
Steven Schrage – Chief of Staff  (I cannot release his email. Have no other staffer emails to offer)
Senator Olympia Snowe, 202-224-5344
 Legislative Director Ron Le Francois ron_lefrancois@snowe.senate.gov

A complete list of legislators can be found at: 

These are the most up to date contacts I have, so if any of them has changed their email due to the heavy traffic in our past campaigns, the emails may be returned.

Incumbent too timid to debate in MN District 2

According to the campaign spokesman of former MN State Representative Shelley Madore, currently running for Congress in Minnesota's Second District, they received a formal response Monday from GOP incumbent Congressman John Kline (R-MN) rejecting an opportunity to debate her in front of a live audience in the Second Congressional District at any time that was convenient to him.
"Only 12% of voters believe most members of Congress are more interested in helping people than in helping their own careers. Seventy-six percent (76%) say most in Congress put their own careers first. Skepticism has remained this high since October."
Rasmussen Reports
In a year when incumbents are on shaky ground, Kline is keeping his head down. "It saddens me that the voters of this district will have one 25-minute radio interview just one week before the election as their only opportunity to evaluate our ability to best represent them in Washington," said Madore discussing the incumbent's reluctance to make time to appear before district voters. Kline's voting record is more conservative than Michelle Bachmann (MN-6), and his district gets back less than half the federal taxes they pay now that Kline's anti-earmark ideology has painted him into a corner when it comes to helping his constituents.
"Rep. John Kline has been in office for eight years; he seems to take for granted that his seat is secure despite the 18% public approval rating for members of Congress. I believe the voters of this district have had enough of elitist Washington politics.

I have appeared at FarmFest and the Goodhue County Veterans candidate forums and will participate in two Transportation Alliance candidate forums in the next two weeks, all of which John Kline has refused to attend. In his response, John Kline cited his conversations with voters at community events over the summer. I have spent the last nine months listening to voters' concerns about jobs, health care, transportation and education funding. These are serious times and demand a serious candidate willing to work for your vote."

Former Minnesota Representative Shelley Madore
Madore's campaign has reportedly conveyed an additional offer made Monday by the Burnsville Chamber of Commerce to host a debate, seeking an opportunity for voters to compare and contrast the two candidates and their records in a setting where the public can see and judge both.

According to Rasmussen incumbents are in trouble, and Kline's lack of initiative for projects within the district while he continues to vote for earmarks inserted by other members of his party leaves him open to questions from the voters. His record of voting against funding for veterans has led some to accuse him of supporting war without supporting the warriors. Madore's 35 Cent Tour has successfully explained to Minnesotans that not all earmarks are pork, and at least one survey suggests swing voters (those who report they have not stuck strictly to one party in the past) believe Kline needed to do more than repeat talking points if he wanted to represent them in Congress again - and I'm inclined to believe them.

Thomas Hayes is a political strategist, entrepreneur, and journalist currently working for the Madore for Congress campaign in Minnesota's Second Congressional District. He contributes regularly to a host of web sites on topics ranging from economics and politics to culture and community, and helped the Madore campaign to a convincing upset victory in the August primary.

TechCrunch Disrupt SF: Sara Lacy Eats The Panelists

This blogger watched the TechCrunch Disrupt SF "Women In Tech Panel" from Gate 73 while waiting to board the flight to Denver then to Atlanta. In fact, this post is being written as I wait standby. The tweets preceded what was on the USTREAM broadcast:

EmilysHere - why is sarah lacy so angry? #tcdisrupt
10 minutes ago via web

sue_anne - Had high hopes for #womenintech panel. Unfortunately moderator set a bad tone and it turned in to a snarkfest. #tcdisrupt

emilyjo - RT @tenaciouscb: Renaming "Women in Tech" to "You shut up. No, you shut up." #tcdisrupt <--watching online...exhausting!

Those Twitter tweets sum up what part of the panel I saw here at the gate. In fact, when the livestream was first activated, Sara's angry voice lit up a good 20-foot square area of the gate. Volume down on the computer.

First, let's get this out of the way. Sara's awesome. She's done a lot for herself in carving a good niche in tech journalism. She's a friend. Well, we'll see after this little crit, but for now, yes.

To watch her just go out and eat the panelists was disappointing. Presented with an effort to show Women In Tech getting along, Sara revealed just why there's a problem after all: infighting.

In other words, the old problem demonstrated at times when a minority of people in any group faces discrimination - one person saying "I'm OK," and the other saying "I'm not." The the two fight rather than seek agreement.

Well, I've got my ticket. On to Denver.

And wishing I were backstage to see the aftermath of this war.

Sara, don't hurt em.

Google Blogger Needs Stop Auto-Removing Blogs; Making Mistakes

There are millions of blogs hosted by Google's Blogger division and under the "blogspot.com" domain. Many people use their blogs as the basis for their business activities. So, it should come as no surprise that the same people are shocked to learn their blogs are deleted because they're called "spam blogs" when in point of constant fact they're not.

Recently, this happened to a friend of mine, who's blog this blogger set up on Blogger.com, extolling the virtues of using the service and how she could base her fitness business there and generate revenue. So when Blogger took her blog down as spam, presumably because she posts maybe twice a month, she went ballistic on Google, Blogger, and me.

She called and just started crying and yelling: "Google's doing this! They run everything! It's not right! I'll go broke! You've got to do something because you got me into this. Why did they do this? I have the right to blog when I want to!

Basically, I tried to explain that one needed to update their blog so it didn't look like a website. She didn't care. "So fucking what! That's bullshit! It's my blog. I can blog when I want." And more crying.

Basically, she's right; she can blog when she wants to and Google has to stop acting like God. Regardless of the Terms of Service, which most people don't read, Google and Blogger do by their words make you the user think the blog is your blog. After all, the search for "Blogger.com" reads "Blogger: create your free blog."

Really, given what they can do, they should call it "their blog" because the Terms of Service state they can remove it for any reason. That's mean and unnecessary legal language that should be jettisoned immediately.

That language should change. It implies that Google Blogger can decide "We don't like that you're writing militant black stuff," not tell you that, and take your blog down. Now what militant black stuff is differs from person to person, so that would be a mistake. But you get the point.

My Friend Gets Her Blog Back

After a few hours Google Blogger did restore my friend's blog. But really that should not have happened. Google Blogger should be in the business of helping people maintain their online businesses, not scaring the crap out of them just because they can.

This economy is too bad for too many people to allow that policy of auto-removing spam blogs to stand. Google Blogger must get rid of it, and sooner rather than later.

Google Blogger has the potential to change the world just by making it easier to blog, but also by letting bloggers know it stands with them and will not yank their content just because some Blogger autobot was drunk with power.

TechCrunch Disrupt SF: AOL Close To Buying TechCrunch. Movie?

TechCrunch, the Tech blog started by former lawyer Michael Arrington, is reportedly the center of a deal to be purchased by AOL.

If so, the deal, expected to be announced at TechCrunch Disrupt SF, is a major sign of the growing power and value of blogs.

PerezHilton.com was recently valued at $20 million, and was at $48 million.  From that, and given TechCrunch revenue generation of about $3 million, a fair estimate for purchase is about $30 million.

Michael started TechCrunch in 2005 and has skillfully grown it to where it is today, known not just for covering the Tech industry, but and at times for better, sometimes worse, influencing it.

Michael's best move was in bringing in Heather Harde as CEO. Her presence has served to add stability and legitimacy to the organization around the blog. The conferences have dramatically improve in terms of presentation and sponsor visibility.

Though it all, Michael has managed to maintain a sense of humor:

According to Gigaom, the terms of the deal have not been announced. AOL CEO Tim Armstrong, who was at TechCrunch Disrupt New York City, is expected to appear at TechCrunch Disrupt SF this week, and that, reportedly, is when the deal will be announced.

Congratulations to Michael, Heather, and the staff at TechCrunch. This blogger's waiting for the movie.

Wonder what it would be called?

Arianna Huffington Called "Quintessential Opportunist" By BitterGate Blogger

Arianna Huffington 
The Huffington Post's controversial policy of refusing to pay bloggers has created its first high profile critic: Mayhill Fowler. In a blistering blog post, Fowler calls Huffington Post Founder Arianna Huffington the quintessential opportunist for, from Fowler's perspective, using her and generating web traffic, ad revenue, and publicity from Mayhill's work.

If you don't remember her name, Mayhill Fowler's the person behind the Obama "BitterGate" scandal. During the 2008 Presidential Primary Campaign, then-Senator Barack Obama appeared at a fund-raiser at the Pacific Heights district of San Francisco on a bright, sunny, April 6th Sunday day.

Mayhill was there and took a tape recorder that was hidden from view of the campaign staff. If they saw it, staffers would have certainly kicker her out of the mansion as she not only wasn't supposed to record Obama, she wasn't even supposed to be in the building as she was banned from the campaign.  Yes, before BitterGate.

BitterGate's Mayhill Fowler 
Fowler recorded Obama making this now-famous statement:

So it's not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

Her recording led to this blog post in the April 11th, 2008 Huffington Post, and a giant firestorm of negative publicity that was a nightmare for Obama For America.

Harder still for the campaign to take, as this blogger has explained before, Fowler wasn't even supposed to be in the room when Barack made that statement. Mayhill had already crafted a reputation for quoting people without notes, only to have someone complain they were misquoted in one of her blog posts where she was overly critical of everything the Obama campaign did.

Mayhill tried to present herself as an Obams supporter, and some have quoted her and her husband's campaign contributions level as "maxing out" at $2,300 for the primary as proof. But this blogger knew better as Fowler was consistently aiming to report negative news about Obama for America and positive news about then-Senator Hillary Clinton's campaign.  

How did I know this?  Because I was the first Huff Post blogger assigned by staff to work with Mayhill as we both lived in Oakland, California at the time.  I took note of her anti-Obama blogs entries and backed away from working with her as I was and still am pro-Obama.

But Mayhill hit her targtet. Her BitterGate story has been referenced over 9,000 times online and many times on television. And for a time, it threatened to derail the Obama For President effort.

Eventually, Barack Obama overcame BitterGate, and everything else, to become president.

Mayhill Fowler Becomes Famous But Remains Unpaid

Regardless of what Mayhill claims in her blog post, she was highly sought after for appearances on radio and on panels.  This, over the time where The Huffington Post was taking major shit for Fowler's actions.  What she did was the supposed to be the stuff of Fox News, not the liberal Huff Post.

Many who experienced Mayhill's anti-Obama work weren't happy with that episode.

Still, Fowler continued to blog and take trips to political events, all paid out of her own pocket.  In her blog post complaining about the stories she pitched and The Huffington Post's refusal to monetarily support her desire to do them, Mayhill still doesn't get that many people still hold a grudge against her for BitterGate.  A lot of those people have relationships with Arianna Huffington.

So when Arianna told Mayhill the Huff Post didn't have a budget to fund her requests, even as they were paying Sam Stein, what she meant was she didn't have money for someone viewed as an enemy of the Obama campaign.

What Mayhill doesn't seems to have learned is that forming relationships and protecting them is a lot more important than issuing the blog post that's a campaign torpedo.  So, The Huffington Post figured they would just let her go and do her thing now that the campaign is over and Obama won.   The Huff Post wins because they're not paying her or encouraging her.  Thus, they're not liable for whatever she does.

Mayhill's Right: The Huff Post Model Sucks

For all of her faults, Mayhill's correct when she blogs that "The Huffington Post business model is to provide a platform for 6,000 opinionators to hold forth. Point of view is cheap." There are ways to cause bloggers to be paid. The Huffington Post, and some other newssites, are operating under the wrong business model. At Zennie62.com we cause bloggers to be paid and some have made as much as $60 per day for very little work.

But where Mayhill's wrong is in writing as if The Huffington Post was going to, at some point, pay her.

There was never a plan for that and a number of people didn't want it.