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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 4/30/16 edition

April 30, 2016

Filed under: Can we all agree — Tags: , , , , , , , — admin @ 6:52 am

Can we all agree that, effectively, the primary season ended this week when Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton posted lopsided wins?

Can we all agree the GOP has a tough demographic battle ahead, unless they change some of their basic party policies?

Can we all agree Trump cannot win a gender battle against Hillary?

Can we all agree that combining California’s liberal reputation with Donald Trump will make the month before the California primary a real circus?

Former Speaker John Boehner at Stanford this week,   (Stanford Daily Photo)

Former Speaker John Boehner at Stanford this week, (Stanford Daily Photo)

Can we all agree that former Speaker John Boehner looked and sounded absolutely thrilled with an opportunity to blast Ted Cruz?

Can we all agree Ted Cruz’s stunt, naming Carley Fiorina as his VP choice, backfired badly because it makes no sense, just like his announced deal with John Kasich to split up the remaining primary states?

Can we all agree Trump’s foreign policy speech this week did not change many minds, supporters thought it was great and opponents say he still has no idea how the world really works?

Can we all agree the bombing of a Doctor’s Without Borders hospital in Afghanistan needs an independent investigation rather than a Pentagon report?

Can we all agree the occupation of Iraq’s parliament proves what most Americans now believe: maybe they needed to have a dictator in charge?

Can we all agree the voter I.D. requirements making their way through the courts do nothing but suppress voting when we should be encouraging everyone to get to the polls?

Can we all agree the GOP message has gotten lost in a torrent of bad headlines from the Koch’s supporting Hillary, to California fundraisers having trouble raising money?

Can we all agree that, if experts are correct,  we may be seeing a major change in teen attitudes toward sex?

Can we all agree when your attorney calls you a ‘little jerk,‘ you have some serious issues to overcome, even if you are a terrorist?

Can we all agree it’s pretty amazing that Dennis Hastert’s past, as a child molester,  did not catch up with him sooner?

Can we all agree that while most of the stock market seem panicked by Apple’s recent sales report, it might be wise to wait a bit before selling all your stock?

Can we all agree, speaking of Apple., the FBI iPhone hack may not be a real bargain, if it won’t work with the next generation iPhone, due out in the Fall?

Can we all agree that sending more combat troops to Syria reminds too many baby boomers of our slow descent into the Viet Nam War?

Can we all agree that the economy might not be in the best shape but it’s still pretty far from the disaster some politicians claim?

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady

And finally:

Can we all agree the court decision reinstating Tom Brady’s 4-game suspension had little to do with the original allegations, but was simply a verdict concerning labor law?

 

 

 

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CWAA Can We All Agree – 4/23/17 edition

April 23, 2016

Can we all agree that Prince and David Bowie were pop music icons who will be missed by everyone – even folks who were not fans?

Prince in concert

Prince in concert

Can we all agree that the Democratic nominee for President will be Hillary Clinton?

Can we all agree she still has an image problem to correct before November?

Can we all agree that no one believes Donald Trump’s new campaign manager when he says the candidate is really more presidential behind closed doors?

Can we all agree, the GOP convention may be the best political TV in many years?

Can we all agree that despite protestations by North Carolina’s governor that he will not change their so called ‘bathroom law,’ the mounting PR nightmare along with court cases, may force the issue?

Can we all agree that if the FBI had been smarter and hired a $125 million hacker first we could have avoided two weeks of endless pontification over privacy and public safety?

Can we all agree that the dramatic  rise is suicide rates in the United States may be the first visible evidence of what income inequality is doing to the country?

Can we all agree that every climate change denier should be given a free tour of the Great Barrier reef to see what they are causing?

Can we all agree that the Earth Day signing of the climate change treaty is just a start and may be too little, too late?

Can we all agree that it is unacceptable that over half the country is still breathing polluted air?

Queen Elizabeth with her grand children and great grandchildren.

Queen Elizabeth with her grand-children and great-grandchildren.

Can we all agree it’s really pretty amazing that Queen Elizabeth is the only English monarch most Americans have ever known? Happy birthday Your Majesty.

Can we all agree that if the UK’s Science minister were any kind of a fun bloke, he would let the nation’s new research vessel keep the name given to it through an internet vote? Long live Boaty McBoat face!

Can we all agree that while Harriet Tubman is an excellent choice for the $20 bill, replacing an impeached slave-owning president, most Americans have no idea who she is?

Can we all agree that this may be the first time a Broadway show played a role in currency policy?

Can we all agree we were heartened to hear that three people had been charged in the Flint water crises, but know that many more deserve to be punished for the harm they caused to that city’s children?

Can we all agree that Curt Schilling may have been a great pitcher, and a pretty fair TV broadcaster, but he doesn’t understand that free speech doesn’t mean you should blurt out everything that floats through your brain? Professionally, I would say he has no emotional intelligence.

Can we all agree that the same could probably be said for Kelly Ripa, but at least she had the sense to keep her mouthy shut?

Can we all agree that we all loved actress Doris Roberts, because she said what we all wanted to say at some family gathering?

Can we all agree it will be interesting to see how many Volkswagen diesel owners decide to keep their cars, rather than let VW buy them back?

Can we all agree the there is always at least one triumphant story to emerge from the Boston Marathon?

Can we all agree that Islamophobia is reaching new heights when a single word can get you thrown off an airplane?

Can we all agree that judicial approval of the NFL’s concussion settlement won’t keep the issue out of the public consciousness when football season starts this fall?

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 3/5/16 edition

March 5, 2016

Filed under: Can we all agree — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , — admin @ 7:32 am

Can we all agree the GOP debate this week might have been the low point in 240 years of American politics?

Can we all agree the performances by all the candidates should appall every American?

Tourists in Yosemite National Park (Eric Riess photo)

Tourists in Yosemite National Park where the names of popular landmarks were changed this week. (Eric Riess photo)

Can we all agree that the debate  has done nothing to slow Mr. Trump who seems destined to dominate the airwaves right through November?

Can we all agree Ben Carson’s departure from the race was as mystifying as his entrance?

Can we all agree that we’re not sure what emotion comes after ‘full panic’ or ‘desperation,’ but the GOP leadership is certainly there?

Can we all agree the GOP leadership doesn’t seem to have much in common with Trump supporters?

Can we all agree that no one really knows how the FBI’s email server investigation of Hillary Clinton will turn out, but it continues to give the GOP hope?

Can we all agree that Trump’s march to the GOP nomination is having an impact on the President’s strategy for naming a new Supreme Court Justice?

Can we all agree that, legal arguments aside, the FBI looks pretty incompetent in dealing with the software on the iPhone they want Apple to unlock ?

Can we all agree Chris Rock did a pretty good job addressing and defusing  the racial issues at this year’s Oscars?

Can we all agree the while it will be tough to measure the impact of United Nations sanctions on North Korea, it was encouraging to see China and the United States agreeing on something?

Can we all agree it’s nice to have Scott Kelly back on Earth after 340 days in space?

Can we all agree the geeks who attend the South by Southwest (SXSW) music festival must be freaking out now that the President and First Lady have agreed to speak at the event?

Can we all agree we are a bit mystified how a judge can claim that he can teach 3-year-olds immigration law, so the government doesn’t have to provide them with an attorney?

Can we all agree, despite what some politicians say, the economy must be in pretty good shape if it created 242,000 new jobs last month?

Can we all agree we are slightly incredulous that a retiring police detective just ‘dropped off’ a knife he had kept, knowing that it came from the property where Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman were murdered 22 years ago?

Can we ll agree that abortion rights activists were cheered yesterday when Justices blocked a Louisiana law with provisions similar to the Texas law argued earlier in the week?

Can we all agree we were saddened at the end of an era this week as we watched the names change in Yosemite National Park?

Can we all agree that it’s nice to hear that monarch butterflies and manatees appear to be making a comeback?

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 2/27/16 edition

February 27, 2016

Filed under: Can we all agree — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , — admin @ 6:57 am

Can we all agree there were no winners in this past Thursday’s GOP debate –  only losers and the list is pretty long?

Can we all agree ‘debate’ is probably the wrong name for what turned out to be a WWF SmackDown of Mr. Trump?toles022316

Can we all agree that the GOP only has itself to blame for the monster they have created?

Can we all agree that NJ Governor Chris Christie must really dislike Marco Rubio to effectively end his political career by backing Trump?

Can we all agree that by this time next week both races will have been decided?

Can we all agree that having the backing of the White Supremacist movement will probably thrill Trump supporters?

Can we all agree that Mitch McConnell is doing the GOP no favors in refusing to even consider a Supreme Court nominee? He even managed to convince a Republican governor that being nominated to the court is really not that special.

Can we all agree that regardless of what happens in the battle between Apple and the Federal government over unlocking iPhones, at least the courts will establish some ground rules?

Can we all agree if Microsoft had a more popular smartphone Bill Gates would be on the same side as Apple CEO Tim Cook?

Can we all agree that no one really knows what’s going on in the Chinese economy? Not even the Chinese.

Can we all agree that the Chinese must be really upset with North Korea to go along with new sanctions backed by the US?

Can we all agree that the California legislature should approve a proposed bill ending Daylight Savings Time?

Can we all agree that if we had $400 million to give away, like Phil Knight, we might find something else to do with it, rather than giving it to one of the nation’s richest private universities?

Can we all agree that shutting down the prison at Guantanamo Bay is the right thing to do?

Can we all agree there will be no truce in Syria until Mr. Putin decides it’s in his best interest?

Can we all agree we have all become immune to climate change, when news that the sea is rising at the fastest rate in 2800 years doesn’t even raise an eyebrow?

Can we all agree there is something seriously wrong when, in one week, six people are shot in Michigan, three in Kansas, and five in Washington while the state of Iowa votes to remove the age limit on gun possession?

Can we all agree, while we are on the topic of guns, what Tennessee really needed was an official state gun that could be used to shoot down an airliner?

Can we all agree, now that charges against former Texas governor Rick Perry have been dropped, he should probably re-enter the presidential race?

Can we all agree it doesn’t really matter who heads FIFA if member countries do not really want to get rid of the corruption?

and finally:

Can we all agree watching 106-year-old Virginia McLaurin dance with President and Mrs. Obama brought a smile to our faces?

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Can We All Agree – 6/27/15 Edition

June 27, 2015

Can we all agree that President Obama may have just had the single best week any modern president ever had?

Can we all agree that The Supreme Court Ruling on the Affordable Care Act was perfect for everyone?

Can we all agree that it solidified a Democratic legacy and gave the GOP something to oppose with no political consequences?

Gay Pride at The White House

Gay Pride at The White House

Can we all agree that The Court’s approval of gay marriage had the same impact?

Can we all agree that Justice Antonin Scalia has officially gone off the rails in his dissents?

Can we all agree that the speed with which the GOP was able to reverse the vote on fast-track trade authority, really makes you wonder about congressional motives for the enormous waste of time on so many other matters?

Can we all agree that Rep. Nancy Pelosi was badly out-manuevered?

Can we all agree that a symbol, like the Confederate flag, can indeed incite violence?

Can we all agree that removing the Confederate flag or any references to it, may be the single biggest impact of the 9 deaths in South Carolina?

Can we all agree that the President’s speech on Friday in Charleston was among his most moving since he took office?

Can we all agree that he will not replace Taylor Swift atop The Billboard 100?

Can we all agree that musical artists of every stripe owe Ms Swift a huge debt for her stand against Apple’s initial royalty payment system?

Can we all agree it would be nice if she changed her policy for photographers who provide her with publicity?

Can we all agree that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s apology for the Boston Marathon  bombing was too little, and too late, even for those of us opposed to the death penalty?

Can we all agree that while the GOP Presidential race got another entrant, no-one even noticed the additional clown in the car?

Can we all agree that we are all losing interest in terrorist attacks around the world?

Carli Lloyd #10 of the United States celebrates as she heads the ball past goalkeeper Wang Fei #12 of China in the second half for her team's first goal in the FIFA Women's World Cup 2015 Quarter Final match at Lansdowne Stadium on June 26, 2015 in Ottawa, Canada. (Photo by Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photo/Getty Images)

Carli Lloyd #10 of the United States celebrates as she heads the ball past goalkeeper Wang Fei #12 of China in the second half for her team’s first goal in the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015 Quarter Final match yesterday. (Photo by Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photo/Getty Images)

Can we all agree that when we lose interest, it’s probably just a matter of time before an attack hits closer to home?

Can we all agree that when the Greek Prime Minister calls for a referendum on a debt bailout, he’s not showing much leadership?

Can we all agree that the US Women’s Soccer Team’s victory over China to reach the World Cup semi-finals was pretty lopsided, even though the final score was only 1-0 ?

 

 

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Can We All Agree – 4/5/15 Edition

April 5, 2015

This week’s commentary on the news:

Can we all agree that no matter what kind of agreement the EU and US reach with Iran, Mr. Netanyahu and his GOP will oppose it?

Can we all agree that it’s better to be talking with Iran than fighting with them? Although it’s tough to ignore their state sponsored terrorism.

Can we all agree that the continuing revelations about the copilot of the Germanwings plane, make the whole episode, much more tragic?05kentucky2-master675

Can we ll agree that Lufthansa Airlines is in a lot of trouble if they knew their pilot was seriously depressed, and still allowed to fly?

Can we ll agree that, it’s not the ‘liberal press’ or ‘militant gays’ that are behind the brouhaha over the Indiana and Arkansas religious freedom bills?

Can we all agree that the European Union’s skepticism about the business practices of Google, Apple and Facebook is much healthier than the unquestioning ‘regulation’ of US agencies?

Can we all agree that for residents of the northern third of the country, ‘Play Ball’ may be the most welcomed phrase they’ve heard in a long time?

Can we all agree that while McDonald’s decision to give raises to minimum  wage employees at company stores, is good news, $12/hour is still not a living wage?

Can we all agree that while California’s drought is very serious, exempting farmers, who use 70% of the state’s water, undermines Governor Brown’s credibility? BTW: It’s supposed to be raining for the next three days here in Northern CA.

images Can we all agree that outside of  Kentucky, most of us were pulling for Wisconsin in the NCAA semi-final on Saturday?

Can we all agree that varsity letters should be awarded for academic accomplishment, as well as extra-curricular activities such as  speech, drama, music, art, and dance?

Can we all agree that the charges against  NJ Senator Robert Menendez are an indictment of the Citizen’s United, Supreme Court decision?

Can we all agree that Trevor Noah is off to a bad start as host of The Daily Show, even though he hasn’t even hosted a program yet?

Can we all agree that while cheating is wrong, and should not be condoned, we are troubled by  the potential jail terms that the Atlanta educators are now facing?

And finally,

Can we all agree that the thought of Al Franken and John Stewart in the US Senate is very funny?

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Who Pays the Price?

March 21, 2015

By now Americans are aware that the products we use can come with unseen consequences. That appears to be the case for the latest smartphone you bought.

Producer Heather White introduces her film "Who Pays the Price?"

Producer Heather White introduces her film “Who Pays the Price?”

A soon to be released documentary movie, “Who Pays the Price?” tells the story of Chinese workers whose lives have been ruined by the jobs they took at factories which flaunt international standards.

Produced by Heather White, Lynn Zhang and Dal Lamagna, the film documents the plight of workers who were forced to use benzene and n-hexane to clean and mark components to smartphones and a myriad of electronic devices we use every day.

The chemicals, are well-known carcinogens and countries all over the world have agreed they should not be used without protection. But in China where they have not signed the international treaty on worker safety, the chemicals continue to be used with impunity.

The film details the life-threatening illnesses that are attributed to the chemicals and the system that has left them with no alternative to a lifetime awaiting an early death. It is a fate that many have chosen to hasten rather than be a burden on their elderly parents.

It is an indictment of both the labor practices in China, and the blind eye that consumers turn as long as they can get the toys they want.

Hospitalized workers in China, injured by unprotected chemical usage.

Hospitalized workers in China, injured by unprotected chemical usage.

“Who Pays the Price” is scheduled to be released this fall and will be the topic of a number of magazine articles later this year, so you will hear more about it I’m sure.

Heather White, a former San Francisco resident, was in the Bay Area last week, hosting a screening of a shortened version, trying to raise funds to complete the project and a planned book.

Ms White, has long been a leader in fighting for the improvement of working conditions. She founded Verite, a well-known verification company which exposed and then worked to improve the plight of workers in textile firms making products for high-end brands around the world. She has now turned her attention to the electronics industry where labor laws and unverified supply chains have made enforcement of even rudimentary standards, almost impssible.

Her goal is not to tell people to discard their smartphones or tablets, but to make them aware of the working conditions that will continue unless some public pressure is brought to bear.

Companies such as Apple and Samsung are certainly aware of what’s going on, but a complex series of factors has made them hesitant to face up to the problems. It’s easier just to deny responsibility and hope to discredit any reports that interfere with their profits.

I urge you to take a look at the trailer on the website and make a contribution or contact Ms White for more information on how we can use our technology without killing the workers that manufacture it.

 

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