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Divernan's Journal
Divernan's Journal
May 3, 2015

It certainly could not be more out of date - looks like it's from the 1990's.

I've been working/volunteering on Democratic campaigns at the national, state and local level since JFK. I have NEVER, not one single time, known a candidate to use non-current photos, i.e,. from the way back time machine.

Whose brilliant idea was that? Some 20-something whiz kid on her campaign staff? What next? James Carville with a head full of hair?

And speaking of hair, a word about hair styles for professional women - I'm a retired female attorney - about HRC's age, so have interacted professionally and socially with female lawyers, judges, doctors, CPAs, MBAs, bankers, politicians, etc., for decades. They find a good stylist, get a cut which is flattering without being distracting, and they stick with it.

Think Sandra Day O'Connor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elizabeth Warren, Barbara Mikulski, Angela Merkel, Margaret Thatcher, Indira Ghandi, Ladybird Johnson, Roslyn Carter. They each settled upon a basic hair style with which they were comfortable, and were psychologically secure enough to not be constantly changing. Women (and men) who have an important message to convey want their audience/listeners to focus on their message, not their appearance.

And yes, yes, yes - I am fully aware that a candidate's values and actions (not her campaign rhetoric) have far more significance than her level of security/self-confidence about her appearance. When it comes to values and actions, HRC is at the bottom of my list of preferred candidates - but in case she does end up winning the primary, I very much hope that some strong-willed campaign adviser can get her to stick to the same hair style for the entire campaign, and dress in dark, professional, business-style clothing - lose the whole wardrobe of pastels or brightly colored pants suits.

April 11, 2015

Judge Orders Kane to Explain Aide's Firing

The whole Kane situation is getting really messy. I'm sorry I voted for her - as a government attorney myself (now retired), I knew she wasn't as well qualified for the AG's office(small county assistant district attorney) as her primary opponent, Patrick Murphy (years as State House of Representatives staffer,then years as JAG officer in Bosnia and Iraq, then 2 term U.S. Congressman). But I have to admit, as a female lawyer, I yearned to see the first woman Attorney General. She has self-destructed, not because she is a woman, but because she was not qualified to handle the powers and responsibilities of her office. Lesson learned: vote for the best qualified regardless of sex, race, etc. I digress. Sorry. Returning to the Keystone State brouhaha:

HARRISBURG - A judge on Friday ordered Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane to prove she did not violate his court order when she fired a top aide this week - and said she would face contempt charges if she did.
Montgomery County Judge William R. Carpenter directed the embattled attorney general to appear at an April 27 hearing before a three-judge panel to review the circumstances of her decision to oust James Barker, a chief deputy attorney general.

Barker was among several top aides to Kane who testified last year in the leak investigation that now threatens her career. The Inquirer has reported that his testimony appeared to contradict Kane's claims that she didn't violate any laws when she authorized the release of confidential information to the Philadelphia Daily News.

During that inquiry, Carpenter issued a protective order to prevent any witnesses from being harassed or intimidated. He said this week that even though the investigation had ended, his order was still in force.If the panel of judges find that Kane violated it, "an indirect criminal-contempt hearing proceeding will follow forthwith," Carpenter wrote in a filing Friday. A contempt-of-court finding can result in jail time.
Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/news/20150411_Judge_orders_Kane_to_explain_aide_s_firing.html#o0xRM75obWdiaQAw.99

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly

Mess One:
According to this article, although Kane's office initially described Barker's dismissal as part of a "restructuring" of the attorney general's criminal division, in a later statement, the office said the 53-year-old appeals chief was fired because of alleged leaks out of a sitting grand jury, although it did not specify which leaks. Another big, bush-league mistake on Kane's part not to have an explanation firmly in place before firing Barker and sticking to it. For further insight into the rumors and speculations swirling around Kane, read the comments to the OP link - including a few oblique references to Hillary and Bill Clinton, which lead us to Mess Two.

Mess Two - the Clinton connections: A Tale of Revenge, Payback & Rumors

Kane took time off from her job back in 2008 to serve as a northeast Pa. surrogate for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. As pay back, Bill interfered in the PA Democratic primary to endorse Kane over former JAG lawyer(deployed in Bosnia and Iraq)/Dem. Congressman Patrick Murphy. Murphy backed Barack Obama in the 2008 primary. Bill not only endorsed Kane, he repeatedly and actively campaigned with her in both the primary and the general election. There are numerous photos and videos of the 2 of them together, laughing and smiling, with arms around each other. http://www.politicspa.com/breaking-bill-clinton-endorses-kane-for-ag/33207/ Add those to her dark, flowing, Monica Lewinsky look-alike hair, and there are rumors that the divorce action Kane filed last December is linked to Bill.

Clinton endorsed Kane in her competitive primary against former Rep. Patrick Murphy. The rally in April – and the resulting television ad - helped to catapult Kane to a win.
Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/news/20150411_Judge_orders_Kane_to_explain_aide_s_firing.html#o0xRM75obWdiaQAw.99

When Kane, the wife of a wealthy Scranton businessman, ran for attorney general last year, she benefited from a Bill Clinton political score that needed to be settled. Her better-known, union-endorsed primary opponent, former Congressman Patrick Murphy, had done the unthinkable in 2008 and endorsed Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton in the state Democrat primary.

Clinton repaid that favor by fundraising, endorsing, cutting ads and bringing out the big guns for Kane over Murphy. He thereby reminded Pennsylvanians and Washington political-watchers that the Clinton machine still has big game in a big state — and that Kane was their girl.

Read more: http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2013/12/29/kathleen_kane_is_the_democrats_new_it_girl_121080.html#ixzz3X08HnJUV
In other words, Bill Clinton backed her vociferously in the primary, not because she was the best qualified, but because of the Clinton commitment to revenge on anyone - even fellow Democrats - who crosses them.

Kane, who touted her blue collar background in campaign ads, married a man described as the wealthy scion of a Scranton family. He ponied up $2.25 million in contributions to her race for AG. What thanks does he get? Once elected and after 14 years of marriage and 2 sons, she filed for divorce from him last December. As the song goes, money can't buy you love.


April 9, 2015

Fracking linked to Radioactive Gas (Radon) in Homes

We Pennsylvanians can "thank", cough/blame/cough both Dem. Governor Rendell & GOP Gov. Corbett for the fracking. Rendell was Gov. from 2003 to 2011; Corbett from 2011 to 2015. Radon is the second-leading cause of lung cancer in the world after smoking, according to the the Environmental Protection Agency. Approximately 40 percent of Pennsylvania homes are believed to have radon levels above the recommended limits, according to the state DEP.

The researchers were careful to note that the side-by-side increases in radon and fracking only represented a correlation, and should not be taken as a declaration that fracking directly caused an increased radon presence in homes. However, study leader Brian Schwartz told ThinkProgress that it’s possible fracking could be the cause, and noted that more research is needed on the subject.

The amount of radioactive material in Pennsylvania homes has increased alongside the state’s fracking boom, according to a new study published Thursday in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

Researchers from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health asserted that levels of radon — a odorless, carcinogenic, radioactive gas — have been on the rise in Pennsylvania homes since 2004, around the same time the state’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) began rapidly increasing the number of permits it issued for unconventional gas drilling. There had been no similar increases in indoor radon concentrations prior to 2004, the study said.

The research is not the first to raise concerns about radioactivity exposure from Pennsylvania’s fracking operations. The state’s Marcellus Shale — the underground rock formation where gas is derived from — contains a lot of Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material, or NORM. Specifically, the Marcellus Shale has 20 times more NORM than typical shale formations, according to the Institute for Energy & Environmental Research.

Because of this, there’s evidence that radioactive elements have made their way into the environment, particularly though wastewater. Fracking uses a lot of water to blast underground shale rock, and the produced water that’s leftover from Marcellus Shale drilling operations contains on average nearly 500 times as much radon as the federal drinking water limit, according to the Johns Hopkins study. That water is generally injected back underground in disposal wells or stored in pits, where it can leach into the environment.

After analyzing the radon data, the study found a “statistically significant association” between how close houses are to Marcellus Shale fracking wells and how much radon is concentrated on the houses’ first floors in the summertime. This, the study said, “suggests a pathway through outdoor ambient air, but does not rule out the possibility of radon moving from the basement to the first floor.”

April 3, 2015

HRC lacks vitality & strength, & relies on + 200 advisors to direct any assertiveness.

The book's author opines: The new standard for aging women should be about vitality, strength, and assertiveness.

First there's the Hillary and her over 200 advisors problem. We know she's assertive, especially when it comes to speechifying/cheerleading for Goldman-Sachs, or urging military interventions/wars. But assertiveness which is triangulated based upon polling, opinion groups and sucking up to potential corporate donors has nothing to do with womanly wisdom accumulated with age. It's strictly eyes-on-the-prize, say whatever it takes to get elected. If she were elected, it would be Let the Good Times, i.e., the corporate quid pro quos, Roll.

Fineman mentioned that Our Next President™ has more than 200 economic advisors, which he said sounds great until one realizes it means that she has no particular idea of her own as to the right way forward, i.e., she's totally flailing. Totally stumped. Which is why we aren't hearing from her.

Of course, things quickly devolved into a discussion of Hillary vs. Warren. The DLC woman said that none of this Progressive crap matters anyway because Hillary and Warren would do the same same things as President. Finemen wasn't buying it, at all: he said that Warren was about going after a system that's corrupt to the core and which needs to be blown to smithereens and rebuilt, whereas Hillary was basically OK with the way things are - maybe a few changes, but nothing fundamental.

That's it. That's exactly the difference.


It's about time we all started looking at "strength and vitality", as per the op link. There's the whole issue of HRC's health history, both the known episodes and the unknown. Warren is dynamic and energetic and looks to be in good physical condition. HRC? None of the above. This is not about physical attractiveness; it's about health history, physical fitness and personal energy level and being able to handle the demands of the campaign trail and the Oval Office.

I'm close in age to both women, have MANY female friends in that age bracket, and many of us have to struggle to keep our weight under control (Damn you, Cadbury Easter eggs!) That would be a lot easier if I could afford a personal dietician, a physical fitness coach and the latest high tech exercise equipment. HRC has the financial resources to avail herself of every possible method to maintain a healthy weight. So why is she an unhealthy, obese, size 18? Obesity is an abnormal accumulation of body fat, usually 20% or more over an individual's ideal body weight. HRC is at least 50% over her ideal weight. Obesity, as we all know, is associated with decreased energy levels and increased risk of illness, disability, and death.

When she left the SOS office and pretty much disappeared from public view for months, I expected her to make a gargantuan effort to get herself back in a healthy physical shape in preparation for a campaign. She'd watched Bill lose a significant amount of weight, and should know what is required to do so. One explanation is that she may be on some medication which results in weight gain. Prescription drugs used for mood disorders, diabetes, high blood pressure and seizures, among others, can have that effect.

Bottom line: any candidate's health is a legitimate concern, and weight is a major factor thereof.
April 2, 2015

Good post - thanks. Re your SCOTUS

mention, I say that the single, most important, overriding issue to HRC's corporate/Wall Street/Big Banks/Koch Brothers backers/supporters/donors/handlers is that of SCOTUS appointments. That is the issue where the quid pro quos will come home to roost. There is no way in hell she would appoint someone without the implicit, back stage approval of her wealthy, profiteering BFFs, and quite possibly an ex parte backroom sit down with an appointee to make sure his/her judicial philosophy is in sinc with corporate profiteering.

Ya know - someone can be liberal/progressive on gay marriage and abortion rights, as long as they know which side the Clintons' bread is buttered on when it comes to issues the One Percent gives a damn about.

The SCOTUS appointments are the the sine qua non of corporate control of the U.S. economy

April 1, 2015


The university does not disclose the Institute's operating budget, and the poll does not accept clients or outside funding.[1]

The poll has been cited by major news outlets throughout North America and Europe, including The Washington Post,[5] Fox News,[6] USA Today,[7] The New York Times,[8] CNN,[9] and Reuters.[10] Quinnipiac's Polling Institute receives national recognition for its independent surveys of residents throughout the United States. It conducts public opinion polls on politics and public policy as a public service as well as for academic research.[1][3] Andrew S. Tanenbaum, the founder of the poll-analysis website Electoral-vote.com, compared major pollsters' performances in the 2010 midterm Senate elections and concluded that Quinnipiac was the most accurate, with a mean error of 2.0 percent.


HRC fans can be heard to say that these results aren't significant. But they are whistling in the wind if they dispute or ridicule the quality of Quinnipiac's polling. Here in Pennsylvania, politicians of all stripes pay close attention to Quinnipiac's results.
March 29, 2015

Shock: Bill Clinton offered debate advice to Romney

In September 2012, when Mitt Romney, the Republican presidential nominee, spoke at the annual Clinton Global Initiative gathering in New York, Mr. Clinton gave him advice backstage about how to appear in command when facing off against Mr. Obama in their coming debates.

The Shock: Bill Clinton offered debate advice to Romney headline was used in the HuffPo link to the NYT story. And it IS a shock. More basically, why the hell did Bill Clinton even give Romney, the goddamned Republican candidate, pride of place and a spotlight at the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting?

Other excerpts from the linked, long and worth a read, NYT article:

Hillary Rodham Clinton’s advisers are once again grappling with how to deploy Mr. Clinton, a strategic imperative that was executed so poorly in 2008 that it resulted in some of the worst moments of her campaign.

Making sure Mr. Clinton has his own campaign aides is a priority: As he has aged and retained a demanding schedule, he has become more dependent on a staff. Mr. Clinton, who has lost more than 20 pounds since 2008, sends an aide to buy his dress shirts at Bergdorf Goodman, and when he steps out of his chauffeured S.U.V., he sometimes spreads his arms awaiting an aide to put his jacket on each arm.

In hopes of collaborating with Mr. Clinton better than in 2008 — if not controlling him outright — advisers to Mrs. Clinton are involving him more closely in early campaign planning, and they are discussing whether to deploy a senior aide to travel with him to keep him focused on his wife’s central message. . . He has said that if his wife wins the White House, he will maintain the family’s home in Chappaqua, N.Y., and continue to lead the philanthropy.

Mr. Clinton is never as enraged or unpredictable as when his wife comes under attack. He will also remain focused on the Clinton Foundation, which has come under criticism for its fund-raising practices. (While Mrs. Clinton is likely to be campaigning in the next several months, Mr. Clinton will have a packed schedule of foundation-related events, including a big trip to Africa with supporters of his charity.) He runs the risk of reinforcing a Republican argument that the Clintons are America’s baby boomer past and do not represent a generational change in leadership. And he remains a wild card: What part would he play if he returned to the White House as first gentleman?

Basically, it appears that Bill will be packed off the campaign trail and even out of the country via the boutique family foundation(the usual high profile, luxurious meeting - private jets, 5 star hotel/presidential suites/ large personal retinue of handlers); and should HRC make it to the Oval Office, he'll be staying in Chappaqua! So it wouldn't be "two for the price of one" this time around.
March 25, 2015

Old time machine Dem caught with most fraudulent petition signatures ever.

This incident is a fine example of Allegheny County's (that's Pittsburgh and its suburbs) problem - a 72 year old Machine politician who is so addicted to the perks and power of holding elective office he doesn't have the sense to frigging retire. Politicians like this turn younger generations off from voting at all, let alone registering as a Democrat. Having served 7 terms in office in the State House gets him a lifetime state pension of 2.5 x 13 years( i.e, 33%) x the annual average of his last 3 years' salary in office. Figure around $72,000 a year plus an increment for being a committee chairman to make around $75,000 a year x 33% =s $24,750 per year pension, plus lifetime full health insurance including prescription, dental ($3000 per year) and eyeglasses. Next add in his social security.

He turned in petition sheets with 358 signatures. 343 were challenged and he dropped out of the primary rather than wait to be humiliated in court and then thrown off the ballot. What were some of the names? Australian actors Russell Crowe & Naomi Watts, Pennsylvania poet laureate Sam Hazo, pioneer sports medicine physician Freddie Fu, Steeler great Jerome Bettis, county council president John De Fazio - none of whom live in Robinson's district. One might place Allegheny County Councilman Bill Robinson’s nominating petitions among the great works of political fiction were they not so unimaginative and repetitive.

For campaigners too lazy to comb the streets gathering signatures, the time-honored shortcut always has been to copy names from a list of registered voters. Maybe you switch hands as you copy the names to mask their single source, but you just hope that nobody checks back with these people and that they’re not dead. We’ve seen the occasional forgery conviction for such trickery, but at least those showed real effort.

What Mr. Robinson turned in, however, is downright embarrassing for someone with more than 40 years in politics. The Hill District Democrat has served on city council, in the state House of Representatives and on county council, so he’s a veteran of dozens of campaigns. Yet he turned in sheets, endorsed with his signature, that are so clearly fictional that one can only look at them in awe.

Do the challengers have a strong case? I don’t know. Is the Monongahela damp? Are there any deer in Mt. Lebanon?

It’s hard to know where to begin. One is tempted to start with the Australian-born actors, Naomi Watts and Russel (sic) Crowe, whose names stand amid the muddle of signatures on Mr. Robinson’s petitions that appear to have been written by a single hand. We might also note that his own name appears at his address on four different pages.

March 24, 2015

Till Clinton Foundation expediter's fees brought in millions.

Funny thing - how did all these foreign nations ever manage to make any charitable contributions re national disasters (like Haiti) before Bill showed them the light?

Servant to the poor. Butler to the great.

Hypocrite and toady and inebriate!

Everybody bless the landlord!
Everybody bless his spouse!

Everybody raise a glass

Raise it up the master's arse.

Everybody raise a glass to the master of the house!

March 24, 2015

Clinton Foundation will broker the deal for a generous percentage!

The Clinton Foundation's theme song should be Les Miserables' Master of the House.

Master of the house
Doling out the charm
Ready with a handshake
And an open palm
Tells a saucy tale
Makes a little stir
1 percent appreciates a bon-viveur
Glad to do a friend a favor
Doesn't cost me to be nice
But nothing gets you nothing
Everything has got a little price!

Master of the house
Keeper of the zoo
Ready to relieve 'em
Of a $mil or two
Skimming off the top
Making up the weight
Pickin' up their knick-knacks
When they can't see straight
Everybody loves a landlord
Everybody's bosom friend
I do whatever pleases
Jesus! Won't I bleed 'em in the end!

Residents are more than welcome
Bridal suite is occupied
Reasonable charges
Plus some little extras on the side!

Charge 'em for the lice
Extra for the mice
Two percent for looking in the mirror twice
Here a little slice
There a little cut
Three percent for sleeping with the window shut
When it comes to fixing prices
There are a lot of tricks he knows
How it all increases
All those bits and pieces
Jesus! It's amazing how it grows!

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