Walden Fails to Support an Oregonian Veteran, Hero, and All Around Beautiful Person – He Supports Timber Instead

A friend from Medford sent me this letter because he knows how much I believe Walden puts his campaign donors ahead of all the people of Oregon, and this was just another example of that behavior. The letter was sent to the Medford Mail Tribune, who printed it as a “guest opinion”. Walden have you no shame.

As Americans we honor our veterans. It’s what we do. Our veterans and their families make huge sacrifices for the rest of us. And when they come home, many veterans turn to nature to help them transition to civilian life and to soothe the wounds, both physical and psychic, that often come back with them. From my decades of experience as a fishing guide, I know that wild steelhead rivers and the opportunity to fish them are vitally important for many veterans. In fact, a few vets have dedicated virtually their entire civilian lives to conserving our wild steelhead streams here in the Pacific Northwest. Of these, the most renowned is Frank Moore of Idleyld Park. Born and raised in Oregon, Frank Moore is one of the “greatest generation,” and served honorably in the European theater in World War II. When he returned home after the war, he settled in with his wife, Jeanne, to a cabin on his beloved North Umpqua River, where he proceeded to turn his passion for steelhead fishing into a profession and eventually founded the legendary Steamboat Inn. This locale has been a mainstay of the steelhead fishing experience on the North Umpqua since the early 1950s. Few Oregonians have had a more profound, positive influence on so many of their fellows in the Beaver State than Frank and Jeanne, now married 75 years. This remarkable couple have been a role model to hundreds if not thousands of people over their decades of effort to protect Oregon outdoor treasures like the North Umpqua River. Rarely is there a time when they don’t have guests visiting — often from other states or Europe. Sharing conversation, meals, time on the water with a rod in hand. Looking for wildflowers in the woods. Casting lessons in Frank’s pond. Numerous Veteran’s Day parades. Frank and Jeanne are the centerpiece of all these activities, and more. Their influence on their friends, community, and state have been well documented. Frank and Jeanne have been featured in numerous movies, television specials, magazine articles, news stories and films produced by conservation organizations. They have received awards from civic organizations as well as from every level of government. Even foreign countries have paid tribute. France and Italy both sent representatives to Oregon to honor Frank for his contributions as an American G.I. in World War II. In recent years, conservation and sportsmen’s groups, local businesses, tribes and elected officials have come together to create a fitting way to honor Frank and Jeanne Moore and, at the same time, protect the iconic fish that brought Frank and Jeanne back to the North Umpqua river: establish a special designation for some 100,000 acres of national forest lands along Steamboat Creek as the Frank and Jeanne Moore Wild Steelhead Sanctuary. This designation would ensure that these public lands are managed primarily to conserve habitat for the North Umpqua’s summer run of wild steelhead. This designation requires action by Congress.

Currently, thanks to Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and Rep. Peter Defazio, there are bills in both the Senate and the House to establish the Frank and Jeanne Moore Wild Steelhead Sanctuary. The House version needs a co-sponsor. Sportsmen have urged Rep. Greg Walden to join DeFazio in honoring the Moores by creating the North Umpqua wild steelhead sanctuary. Two hundred veterans recently signed and submitted a letter to Walden asking him to do just that. It’s not clear why he has, thus far, not stepped up to co-sponsor this legislation. It’s hard to imagine a more non-controversial, bipartisan cause than permanently honoring Frank and Jeanne Moore and their efforts to conserve wild steelhead in the North Umpqua. Not often do we get the chance to honor one of our “greatest generation” veterans like Frank Moore and his beloved bride, Jeanne, like we can now. Frank Moore celebrated his 95th birthday on Jan. 30. Please join me in urging Congress to act now, to honor two of our greatest Oregonians and to better protect the North Umpqua’s legendary summer run of wild native steelhead. — Dean Finnerty is wild steelhead initiative manager for Trout Unlimited

The Knowledge To Govern – Experience Does Matter

Hello my fellow district 2 neighbors.  I wanted to share a few thoughts with you about the Democratic primary race that is really getting some attention. The field is getting full as two more candidates have filed to run in the last two weeks. That brings the Democratic Primary up to 7 candidates. That is 6 more than 2016 where we only fielded one candidate. On one hand, it is truly remarkable that so many people have shone the desire to join this race and truly want to unseat our ten term do nothing congressman.

Well actually do nothing is not entirely accurate:

  • He does want to take away health insurance from 160,000 of his own districts neighbors who obtained it under the Affordable Care Act.
  • He does want to gut the Environmental Protection Agency so we can watch our limited water supply become undrinkable.
  • He really wants to work with Paul Ryan to reduce Social Security and Medicare payments for the 170,000 retirees in our district
  • Ryan and Walden call those “entitlements”.
  • I call them getting back what you paid for your entire work life.
  • Walden wants to overturn the 2013 Food Safety Act, put in place with the help of a Bend Resident who testified before congress about her baby contracting salmonella poisoning from a tainted snack.

You know when you get right down to it, I think I would prefer Walden actually DO NOTHING, because it sure as hell would be better than the things he is trying to do.

But let’s get back to the Democratic primary race. While I applaud everyone who has entered the field, I have some concerns at this point. It is great to want to do this but you voters have got to do some homework and judge for yourself who has the background to not only represent you, but also has the ability to understand governing issues.

  • Issues such as trade policy surrounding NAFTA and the TPP, as well as 20 other free trade agreements that effect employment levels and wages.
  • Understanding monetary policies, such that you can be a voice for the district when the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department propose new directions that could positively or negatively affect our local economy.
  • Knowing how fiscal policy of taxation and budgeting will effect not just the nation, but specifically our district.
  • Knowing what does it mean to our district when policies move foreign exchange rates?

These issues may sound like something you might read in the Wall Street journal and seem far away from impacting our everyday life. But the reality is they do impact us directly and you need someone who understands them to be your representative. As someone trained in economics, these were the things I studied.

Why is the ability to understand these things important? If you really understand what these policies mean and how they impact the district, you can be the one who stands up and calls them out. You can be the “whistle blower” if you will. And that is exactly what I want to do in Washington. I want to be the person that calls out the lies and deception. I want to be the one who tells you exactly who is getting the gravy and who is getting the shaft.

I encourage you to look at all the candidate’s specific training, careers, accomplishments. Ask the tough questions at the candidate forums. Then choose the one you think can best represent you by participating in policy making that supports you and your family and calling out those that hurt you.

My name is Tim White, and I have the background you need in a new congressman.

Thank You

Tim


Paul Ryan Thinks $1.50 Increase in Take Home Pay is “Fabulous”

House Speaker Paul Ryan faced a backlash Saturday after he tweeted about a secretary’s $1.50 weekly increase in take-home pay as a sign of the Republican  tax plan’s success. No I am not making this up. This moron actually tweeted this. The article describes a high school secretary, Julia Ketchum, in Lancaster, Pennsylvania as “PLEASANTLY SURPRISED” that her pay went up $1.50 a week or $78 a year, more than enough to cover an annual Costco membership. Ryan deleted the Twitter post in hours, however, after lawmakers and social media users criticized him for appearing to be “out of touch”. Senator Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, wrote on Twitter, “this was not a PR mistake. It is what they really think”.

I have written two blogs on the impact of the tax cut, showing real tax calculations for individuals. My example shows that for the medium income American family of four, at $59,000 per year, the increase in take home was about $300 per year. So Ryan’s tweet about the secretary, who is probably making $30,000 per year, getting a $78 annual benefit is right in line with what I have been saying. America, most of you just got screwed, BOTH Republican and Democrat. What I find amazing through it all is the blind belief by Republican supporters that the tax cut is really going to be some great windfall for them. Recently in the Bend Bulletin, a “guest columnist” wrote after reading Walden’s holiday letter, that someone making $78,000 a year was going to see a 58% reduction in their taxes.

The unfortunate thing is, reality will very quickly catch up with these misinformed people who want so hard to believe the Republicans give a damn about them and Democrats are just trying to ruin their lives. I am trying to campaign on the basis of “PERCEPTION vs REALITY” and help people understand that what the Republicans tell you: ie: a $1.50 weekly increase in take home is wonderful, versus the reality that you once again got the short end of the stick. Will enough people wake up and smell the coffee in time to put me in office, instead of their do nothing for 19 years current congressman, only time will tell.

I promise you this. If you give me the opportunity, you will ALWAYS be told the truth. Wouldn’t that at least be refreshing for a change.

The Truth About the Tax Bill And The Sales Pitch the GOP Base Fell For

On December 21, 2017 (sorry for the late response but this one was hiding in my pile of homework) a “guest” columnist wrote as George W. Bush was overheard saying at Trump’s inauguration, “some really weird ****”. It was basically a rehash of a letter Walden sent to the district (at tax payer expense) quoting all the benefits Oregon’s middle class was going to get from the tax bill. The guest writes “the biggest percentage of tax reductions go to those earning between $20,000 and $50,000”. Let me give you q quick lesson in tax calculation. As 98% of people in this bracket file using the standard deduction we will use that and we will assume they are the average married couple with two kids. And I rounded the tax tables to nearest thousand for simplicity.

Old Tax Calculation: $50,000 minus $12,700 standard deduction,  minus $16,200 personal exemption = AGI of $21,100. Taxed at 10% on first 19,000 = $1900. Taxed on remaining $2100 at 15% = $315. Total tax due = $2215.

New Tax Calculation: $50,000 minus $24,000 standard deduction = AGI of $26,000. (Did somebody forget to tell you they did away with the “personal exemption for you and the kids” OOOPS!!! Taxed on first $19,000 @ 10% = $1900. Taxed on remaining $7,000 at 12% = $840. Total tax due = $2,740

Now if you have no kids, which of course the average American family does not (sarcasm intended) you get a tax reduction. But if you happen to have little Jimmy and Janie, you just lost money. Of course the example the GOP is selling and unfortunately their base is buying is exactly that. A no kid family example.

By the way, the corporate tax rate was reduced from 39% to 21% AND THEY DID NOT LOSE ANY DEDUCTIONS.

Then this weirdo guest columnist goes on to quote a family of four making $78,000 gets a 58% reduction. If this is what happens to the math ability of people when we legalize pot, I am going to rethink my support of it.

Then Mr. Guest Columnist quotes Walden directly “for those who choose to itemize their taxes, I worked with my colleagues to maintain provisions important to Oregonians such as preserving the ability to deduct medical expenses, and a combination of property and state taxes up to $10,000.” Please somebody tell this bat poop guest columnist there WAS NO LIMITATION ON PROPERTY AND STATE TAX DEDUCTIONS BEFORE THIS SCREW JOB. (I apologize for the use of bat poop).

Look I live in Bend and I do get my Bulletin every day because the NY Times won’t deliver to where I live and the Bulletin will. And I am a newspaper junky. The cool thing is the Bulletin reprints articles from both the NY Times and the Washington Post almost daily. The point is, this is not MIT level physics. If the Bulletin is going to reprint this garbage (and with the young right wing editor they are going to do this), they can at least do a little basic math checking first.

Would they print something from a nut job that claims the earth is flat?? Walden is nothing but a mouthpiece for the GOP who sold his soul and his district out a long time ago. The majority of Americans, with the average income of $59,000 will see about $300 more take home annually. Ah not so for people in the top brackets, particularly those whose income is based on Proprietorships or S Partnerships (which is what Trumps entire personal income excluding the presidential salary is based upon).

You know I came to hate the term “repeal and replace” but that is exactly what we are going to do with this horrible tax bill when I get to DC and Democrats take back the House, Senate, and White House.

Tim White

A Fighter For the 2nd District AND rural America

 

Greg Walden’s Year End Progress Report Receives a Grade of “F”

HOW THE GRINCH STOLE THE 2ND DISTRICT OF OREGON

Greg Walden’s Year End Progress Report Receives a Failing Grade

On December 29, 2017, Greg Walden sent, at tax payer expense via the franking privilege of the United States Congress, a letter to the 2nd district constituents, describing the progress he has made on important issues. The letter was a collection of political spin on various acts that Walden supported in 2017. I did not receive the letter as I have been somehow overlooked by his office since filing to run against him. It was however given to me by a supporter. The Walden Claims written here are verbatim from that letter.

Walden: As your representative to Congress, I wanted to report to you on some of the progress we’ve made on issues of importance to our district, state, and nation.

Walden Claim #1: Congress passed, and the President signed into law, my legislation that modernizes the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This legislation will bring new medicines and medical devices to market sooner, spurring innovation, consumer choice and most importantly competition to drive down prices. This measure also opens up the hearing aid business to competition for the first time.

The Unspun Truth: The act is called the Regulatory Accountability Act. In 2011 Bend resident Chrissy Christofer’s 10 month old baby contracted Salmonella poisoning from a seemingly healthy puffed rice snack with Spinach and Kale. To make a long story short Chrissy ended up in Washington testifying about her experience and the end result was Congress passing The Food Safety Act, a sweeping reform giving the FDA authority to mandate recalls and increase inspections. Walden’s Regulatory Accountability Act will slow or even stop federal agencies from creating new rules to protect consumers from unsafe food. The irony is Walden supported the initial act and now boast about undoing it. He goes on to tell you that tying the FDA’s hands will “spur innovation, consumer choice and lower prices The Bend Bulletin on January 23, 2018 reprinted an article from the Washington Post reporting how Americans are using LESS health care but spending a lot more as the cost of medical services and drugs have SOARED. They reported the price of physician administered drugs for chemotherapy jumped 42%. Use of brand named drugs for skin diseases up by 165%. . Does the fact that Pharma and Health Insurance are Walden’s single largest campaign contributor make you wonder about his new found dedication to health cost reduction?

Walden Claim #2: For the fifth year in a row, the House passed legislation I helped write – the Resilient Federal Forests Act – to improve federal forest management, reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire, and harvest the burned dead trees while they still have value. At meetings and roundtables throughout our district, I’ve heard one message loud and clear from Oregonians: enough smoke; enough fires. This bipartisan legislation gives federal forest managers new tools to better manage our public lands. I’m working with members of the Senate to find a path forward.

The Unspun Truth: Walden describes The Resilient Federal Forest Act as all about forest management. After all the wild fires in Central Oregon last summer, this topic is high on everyone’s radar screen. The reality is this act has little to do with forest management and everything to do with allowing the timber industry to harvest previously untouchable trees on public land. It does this by designating public land that experienced a forest fire as a “catastrophic” event and therefore not subject to existing laws. The term he uses is “salvage operation”. This act makes it “legal” to circumvent environmental laws, the endangered species act, and child labor laws. This act should have been called the How to Make Money out of a Forest Fire on Public Land Act. And in case somebody wants to protest a “Salvage Operation” this act contains language reading: “no courts may issue restraining orders, preliminary injunctions or and no injunction pending appeal shall be issued by any court of the US with respect to any decision to prepare or conduct a salvage operation in response to a large scale catastrophic event”. And finally this little add on: employment of employees ages 16 or 17 years in a logging or mechanized operation in an occupation that the Secretary of Labor finds and declares to be particularly hazardous for the employment of individuals of such ages, shall not be deemed to constitute oppressive child labor if such employee is employed by his parent, or by a person standing in place of his parent in a logging or mechanized operation owned or operated by such parent or person.

Walden Claim #3: Congress passed, and the President signed into law, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to ensure our troops have the tools and training they need to keep themselves and us safe, and give our men and women in uniform the largest pay raise they have seen in eight years. The President also signed into law my bill H.R. 4374 that makes sure our warfighters have access to the very latest medicines and medical devices unique to the battlefield.

The Unspun Truth: On December 12 Trump signed a $710 BILLION dollar military spending bill, for the benefit of defense contractors, not our troops and not to keep America safe. Walden paints this as a huge win for the troops with largest pay increase in eight years. Military pay in 2017 will go up 2.1%, and this was approved by Obama. Trump’s bill raises pay 2.4% in 2018. A 0.3% change that Walden calls the “largest pay raise in 8 years”, Obama gave the military a 3.4% increase in 2010 so his first fact is just plain wrong.

  • As for this huge pay raise Walden crows about, it actually equates to $39 a month ($9 a week) for a Private First Class and $71 a month ($16 a week) for a Sargent First Class.
  • Total (labor and benefits) for the active military equates to $127 BILLION out of the total $710 BILLION (or 18%). The 2.4% pay increase for 1,282,000 active military personnel equates to an increase of $1.2 BILLION in base pay.
  • That leaves 82% or $583 BILLION for defense contractors. The people who donate to congressman and senators to keep them in office

This $710 BILLION dollar bill was a HUGE win for the defense contractors, so much so that some generals and admirals actually said “what are we going to do with all this stuff. The Navy is getting 13 new ships and 2 more carriers. They asked for 8 new ships. The Navy is getting 24 Super Hornet Fighters (at a cost of $71 million per). They asked for 14. The navy is getting 90 Joint Strike Fighters (at a cost of $95 million per). They asked for 70. And here is a little tidbit about Lockheed Martin’s impressive record on this program: The price tag for the F-35 program at $400 billion for 2,457 planes, is twice the initial estimate, three years behind schedule and some $200 billion over its original budget. Gosh darn good job. Lockheed’s CEO Marilyn Hewson, made $19.4 million last year. She has a base pay of $1.6 million, but by meeting annual and long-term goals, such as screwing over the American tax payers with a 100% cost over-run on the F-35 program, earned an additional $17.8 million. The Army gets 7,500 more troops, the Marines 1,000. Air Force 4,100 and the Navy 4,000. In total 16,600 new troops at a cost of $1.6 billion out of the total $710 BILLION.

There is absolutely no reason for this level of spending beyond defense contractor CEO pay and campaign donations. As I say on the campaign stump, China has “1” carrier and Russia has almost “1”, as it is reported to be in need of repair more than it actually works. And we will now have 13 carriers. Russia spends $70 billion annually and plans to reduce that figure. China spend $220 billion annually. Collectively we spend more than the next 11 countries combined. This is absurd and obscene, all in one bill. As Walden does receive campaign money from Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Boeing, perhaps he does have something to crow about.

Walden Claim #4: To address concerns I’ve heard from veterans and VA officials in our district, I’ve worked on multiple bills this Congress to improve veterans’ access to health care and other benefits. My legislation to introduce medical scribes into the VA system passed the House unanimously, and will help VA doctors focus their attention on caring for veterans, not paperwork. I also introduced a bill to allow VA clinics in rural areas to better recruit doctors to care for our underserved veterans. And I was proud to support landmark VA reform that will finally hold agency leaders accountable for their performance. Our veterans deserve nothing less for all they’ve done for us.

The Unspun Truth: This one is really so bad you do not know where to start. Scribes? Really? We don’t implement electronic data input, record keeping, or consolidation as most every private physician has had for over 20 years? You hire ‘SCRIBES’ to write the stuff down on paper for the doctors? And you wonder why the VA in Bend asked me to hold for over 3 hours to talk to somebody? But that is another story.

A recent article in USA Today detailed the abject failure of the VA over the last 15 years with respect to hiring policies. It was reported the VA has had a policy of hiring doctors and health care staff that had their licenses revoked in one state but managed to get a license in another state. The VA issued a national guideline in 2002 giving hospitals discretion to hire clinicians after “prior consideration of all relevant facts surrounding” any revocation as long as they still had a license in another state. This issuance was given even though a federal law passed in 1999 bars the VA from employing any health care worker whose license has been revoked by any state. Is your head spinning yet?

The VA in Iowa City hired a neurosurgeon, John Schneider, who revealed in his application that he had numerous malpractice claims and settlements and Wyoming had revoked his license. USA Today reported malpractice claims against Schneider included cases alleging he made surgical mistakes that left patients maimed, paralyzed or dead. Not surprisingly his VA patients in Iowa suffered complications. One patient, Richard Hopkins, died from an infection after four brain surgeries by Schneider in a span of four weeks. Of course Schneider denied responsibility blaming other providers for the poor outcomes.

There were other reported hiring snafus. A VA hospital in Oklahoma hired a psychiatrist sanctioned for sexual misconduct who then slept with a VA patient. The VA in Toma, Wisconsin hired a psychiatrist disciplined for medication violations who then over prescribed narcotics to veterans. A Louisiana VA clinic hired a psychologist with felony convictions. They did fire him after determining he was a “direct threat to others”. Whatever that means. Of course when this story broke a number of our elected officials were “appalled” and sent letters “expressing concern”. When I read these stories and hear the lame responses from our elected officials, I wonder, where does Walden stand on this issue, as if I don’t know? He is very proud to support landmark VA reform to hold VA leaders accountable for their performance. Sure Greg. Why don’t you ask the widow of Richard Hopkins? I am sure she is thrilled with your “landmark” support.  Walden supported cutting the Individual Unemployability (IU) benefit for veterans. This program supports over 225,000 veterans including 7,000 over age 80. When David Shulkin, head of the VA was asked by Rep Mark Takano “don’t you risk putting these veterans into poverty by reducing their benefits”, Shulkin responded the VA is sensitive to that possibility but needed the funds for the Choice program. And what is the Choice program? It is a program Walden supported that allows the VA to turn away veterans and send them to private doctors. Ask any veteran about this. They are mad as hell over it. I know. I got an earful from several of them.

Summary: I could go on and on but I think these four stories tell the complete picture about Greg Walden. Our district reflects his lack of focus on doing anything of substantive value for the district. Simple question to ask yourself. Walden came to office 19 years ago. Are you, is your family, and are your friends and neighbors, better off today than 19 years ago? There are a small number of pockets within the district that are better off but, as a whole, the answer is no. There are fewer jobs in the district today than before the crash of 2007, and of those that have returned most are service jobs that do not pay enough to support a family. Crook county jobs are down 19%, Gilliam down 20%, Harney down 10%. Grant down 16%. Our district is rapidly aging, with the over age 65 population increasing 24% since 2010. At the same time period, 3% of the working age youths have left the district.

We need to reinvent the district and we need a congressman who will put his time and attention towards that goal. Not sending you professional choreographed letters. Does anybody think Walden actually sat down and wrote this dribble? The days of lumber are gone, never to return. 70% of our ranchers are over 55 years of age, 22% over age 70, and the kids do not want the occupation. The roads are something out of the 1950’s and simply say to the manufacturing world, don’t bother. We need to change the mindset of the district. We need to tell the young people you don’t have to leave but instead help us reinvent this district. We need to understand education is the ONLY thing that will turn this ship around. Stop looking at educated people as though they are the enemy. They are not. Ignorance is the enemy. If you do not want to reinvent the district for yourself, then do it for your children.

Tim White

A Fighter for the 2nd District of Oregon

 

 

 

National Parks – To Be Saved NOT Exploited

 

National Parks At Risk

Why is it when some people see a picture like this they think, oh how beautiful, we should keep this just like it is forever. And then there are some who think, wow I bet there is oil under that lake and uranium ore in those rocks. Damn namby pamby environmentalist. We need to get rid of them and their stupid regulations.

Well they got one step closer to that wish today with the resignation of 10 of the 12 chartered board members of the National Park Service Advisory Board. And why did these 12 people resign. Their explanation was their position and authority had been marginalized under the Trump administration. You know, the one Greg Walden supports every step of the way, then comes home to Oregon to tell the voters in the 2nd district how he is fighting to protect and maintain public lands. In their resignation letter, board Chairman Tony Knowles, former Alaskan governor, wrote he and the other members have stood waiting for the chance to meet and continue the partnership, as prescribed by law. Our request to engage have been ignored and the matters on which we wanted to brief the new Department team (Ryan Zinke) are not part of his agenda. There are over 200 boards in the U.S. that must, by law, have their charters reviewed, many are frozen because the Interior Department has yet to approve their updated charters as is legally required under the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The Rocky Mountain Committee has been unable to meet for over a year. So on one hand Zinke tells people local input is important for BLM to consider. Then on the other hand he does not approve their charters so they can legally meet. In two other instances, Zinke disbanded committees. The Hunting Heritage Conservation Council was replaced by the Hunting and Shooting Sports Council, who emphasizes using our parks for sport shooting and promoting hunting. Yes, that’s right. Create a safe environment for the animals in a park setting, then shoot them. Another council, the Advisory Committee on Climate Change and Natural Resource Science, was simply disbanded. No great surprise there. Wait. I went to Walden’s town hall in Bend where he specifically said he was concerned about climate change. In a pigs eye he is.

The National Park System Advisory Board was established in 1935 and has held elected officials from both parties. It used to be both Republicans and Democrats shared concern for the posterity of our natural land. What is really fascinating is the initiative for our park service began with Republican Teddy Roosevelt, 26th president from 1901 to 1909. As a leader of the Republican Party during this time, he became a driving force for the Progressive Era in the United States in the early 20th century. As a leader of the Progressive movement, he championed his “Square Deal” domestic policies, promising the average citizen fairness, breaking of trusts, regulation of railroads, and pure food and drugs. Making conservation a top priority, he established many new national parks, forests, and monuments intended to preserve the nation’s natural resources. Yes folks. Once upon a time Republicans were progressive. What the hell happened???

The utter disrespect and contempt for those people selected to protect and maintain our national parks gets even nastier. One of Zinke’s top deputies is taking advantage of the board resigning by taking over their office space in DC. A guy by the name of Domenech, assistant secretary for insular areas (whatever the hell that is) is moving into the National Park Service offices, which they have occupied for over 50 years. A spokesperson for Zinke said they will be relocated elsewhere in the building. I’m betting in the basement next to the boiler room.

The Coalition to Protect America’s National Parks, made up of current and former retired Park Service Staff, sharply criticized Zinke’s treatment of the long-standing board stating: “This discourteous and disrespectful treatment of the board is inexcusable and unfortunately, consistent with a decidedly anti-park pattern demonstrated by Zinke’s department. Zinke claims he is pro-park and has a pro-park agenda. We are now convinced we are waiting for that agenda in vain.”

A Journey Begins With A Step. Make Walden’s Next Step a Defeat in November

Tim White

A Fighter for the 2nd District of Oregon

Why Do We Keep Treating Native Americans So Badly

This writing is based on an article from the Confederated Umatilla Journal of November 2017.

Back in the 1930’s, the construction of the Bonneville, The Dalles and John Day dams on the lower Columbia river flooded homes, villages and traditional hunting and fishing grounds of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Reservation, the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation, the Nez Perce Tribe, and the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation. The U.S. government in return promised to fully compensate them for their losses. And in the great tradition of the U.S. Government when it comes to honoring treaties, promises and commitments made to native Americans, they mostly ignored them. Some tribal members continued to live along the river in mobile homes and dilapidated temporary housing. Then earlier this year, Congress approved $3 million for the Army Corps of Engineers to begin planning new housing near the The Dalles Dam. The Corps had half the money in hand and in order to continue the work, needed White House’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to reprogram $1.5 million from elsewhere in the Army Corps’ budget. Unfortunately, you already know where this story is heading. The OMB staff said the money would not be forthcoming because the Army Corps should not be in the housing business. Sure. They are only in the business of flooding existing housing and forcing people to relocate at their own expense. The area Democrats from Oregon and Washington State, including Wyden, Merkley, Blumenauer, Murray and Cantwell sent a letter to OMB reminding them the federal government has a legal and moral responsibility to address the unmet obligations of the U.S. to the four Columbia River Treaty Tribes…for the loss of tribal homes and villages associated with the construction of the dams more than 65 years ago. And, no Greg Walden did not lend any support even though this falls right in the middle of his district.

The OMB responded, reminding the Democratic representatives that it is the great tradition of the U.S. Government to ignore promises and treaties made to Native Americans. Okay. I made that last part up. In reality, the OMB simply chose not to respond at all.

Charles Hudson, Director of Government Affairs for the Portland-based Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission, representing the interest of the four tribes, called the White House decision “disappointing”, saying now as the cold windy winter is about to set in, the timing could not have been worse to pull the plug on this program.

Here is how Tim White, Democratic candidate for the 2nd district would have phrased his response. Dear OMB, “Your decision to do nothing, after 65 years of doing nothing, is despicable. They needed a lousy $1.5 million to continue a program that should have been corrected 65 years ago when you flooded these people out of their homes. The U.S. Government spent more than $1.5 million last week just to fly Trump to Florida for a round of golf at his obscene rich white man’s playground. When you go to church this Sunday, ask God to forgive you. I sure as hell don’t.”

Tribal members, while I certainly applaud the efforts of the Oregon and Washington State Democrats on your behalf, it is not enough. Democrats must take back control of congress to ensure these programs are completed. Yes, this should have been done a long time ago. Help me help you by defeating Walden in November. That is a step in the right direction.

Best Regards

Tim White

A Democratic Fighter for the 2nd District of Oregon

Defense Contractors Win – America You Lose (Again)

On December 12 the Liar in Chief, AKA Donald Trump, signed a $700 billion dollar military spending bill. And do not even bother asking if Walden voted for it. Of course he did. But remember we have a lot of military plants in the 2nd district of Oregon don’t we? No??? But they do have them in the wealthy districts that routinely donate to Walden. As if that would influence his vote. I call this a military spending bill rather than a “defense” bill because that is exactly what it is. A reward to the military contractors that contribute to the members of Congress and Senators, to keep them in office. This amount is $110 billion more than approved under Obama. It is so huge that even the armed services are going wait. What the hell are we going to do with all this stuff. The Navy is getting 13 new ships and 2 more carriers. They asked for 8 new ships. The Navy is getting 24 Super Hornet Fighters (at a cost of $71 million per). They asked for 14. They are getting 90 Joint Strike Fighters (at a cost of $95 million per). They asked for 70. And here is a little tidbit about Lockheed Martin’s impressive record on this program: The price tag for the F-35 program at $400 billion for 2,457 planes, is twice the initial estimate, three years behind schedule and some $200 billion over its original budget. Gosh darn good job. Lockheed’s CEO Marillyn Hewson, made $19.4 million last year. She has a base pay of $1.6 million, but by meeting annual and long-term goals, such as screwing over the American tax payers with a 100% cost over-run on the F-35 program, earned an additional $17.8 million. The Army gets 7,500 more troops, the Marines 1,000. the Air Force 4,100 and the Navy 4,000. Of course the most likely recruits are all currently hiding from ICE officers so it might be difficult hitting these numbers. (humor intended).

There is absolutely no reason for this level of spending beyond CEO pay and campaign donations. As I say on the campaign stump, China has “1” carrier and Russia has almost “1”, as it is reported to be in need of repair more than it actually works. And we will now have 13 carriers. Russia spends $70 billion annually and plans to reduce that figure. China spend $220 billion annually. Collectively we spend more than the next 11 countries combined.

Congress has no idea how to contain these expenditures within allowable spending levels without looking for reductions elsewhere. That large crack you just heard is the Medicare floor breaking. AARP are you awake? Ryan and McConnell have already floated the idea of cuts to Medicare in 2018 just to see how loudly the public reacts. And during all this discussion, Hawaii somehow sets off their missile warning system that requires two things to happen: 1) the military informs them of an impending strike and 2) the state agency responds by sounding the alarm. It is not like somebody accidentally sat on the alarm button or worse yet…..what does this button do???

As Dwight Eisenhower reminded us in 1961…..beware the military industrial complex…..they are a threat to democracy

 

The Truth About the Tax Bill (A Gigantic Lie)

Well folks, I did take a little break over the holidays to recharge the batteries and I am back now and in full battle gear. Let’s talk about the horrendous tax bill.

The truth about the tax bill is that it rewarded a limited number of people. To be specific 1) Corporations who provide the campaign funds to keep congressional and senate members in office; 2) The very wealthy in this country who by virtue of owning 76% of the wealth, primarily in the form of corporate equity, will benefit enormously from the upward movement of stock price, which has already occurred and will continue into the foreseeable future; and 3) Those who own partnerships, S Corps and Sole Proprietorships, who will now be able to pass through 20% of their income at the corporate rate of 21% rather than the personal top rate of 37% (formerly 39.5%). So these people received a double bonus. And in case you are wondering, our current president’s entire source of personal income falls into this category.

Just for fun I performed a calculation of various incomes at the prior and new rates to see just who benefits and by how much. I took into consideration the doubling of standard deductions from $12,700 to $24,000 for a married coupled, and the elimination of the $4,050 allowable per person and dependent deduction.

Income Annual Savings
 $              20,000  $                           –
 $              80,000  $                        393
 $            160,000  $                    2,453
 $            250,000  $                    5,973
 $            400,000  $                  13,981
 $            500,000  $                  13,789
 $        1,000,000  $                  29,565

The median family income in the US was $59,000 in 2017. At that rate a family can expect to receive approximately an after tax increase in take home income of $300. In Oregon where the median family income is slightly less at $57,000, the increase in take home will be slightly less. For those paying no taxes but benefiting from the increase in the child tax credit, your increase in annual take home will be $300. The question you must be asking your self now with all this available income is should you plan a trip to Hawaii or Paris.

This tax cut in effect will add $1.5 Trillion in national debt, making us more vulnerable and limiting our ability to react to future recessions or even depression as we nearly experienced in 2008, all so the wealthy can become even wealthier. Yes you did hear Trump say you were going to get so much money you won’t know what to do with it. Trump’s personal economic adviser Gary Cohn suggested you remodel your kitchen with your savings. Yes you can do a lot with $300 these days.

Help me get to a congress and fight these lies. I may not be able to stop the monster, but I can damn well expose the hypocrisy that is congress.

 

 

 

“YES” Measure 101 – Protect Health Care for all Oregonians

Hello fellow CD2 Neighbors. As I was recently driving home from a holiday visit with my kids and grandkids, I drove past numerous anti-measure 101 signs on properties of folks who were obviously struggling economically. I could not help but wonder why these people would be so much against something that is so much for their benefit. Yes it is a 1.5% tax on various medical premiums and service, that was originally passed in 2003 with support from BOTH Republicans AND Democrats. The funding in turn then provided medical coverage for most of these same people that now have anti measure 101 signs on their property. I could only think that in 2003 the Republicans had not gone completely right wing crazy and now they have. I can not help but wonder what it will take for those people who have been left behind in the new economy to open their eyes and minds and say hey, we are getting really hosed here. The recent horrendous tax bill has as Trump was quoted as saying, made rich people even richer. And for once he was telling the truth. The stock market, which is where wealthy people invest their money is up 6% in just one month. The long term annual return of the NYSE is 6% annually and it did this in just one month because of the tax bill. So what happens if measure 101 fails in Oregon? Insurance companies, medical suppliers, etc. will all make more money and many of those people with anti measure 101 signs in the yard will lose their medical coverage and continue to fall further and further into poverty. I just want to scream. Stop the madness. If measure 101 fails, the projected loss of state revenue is nearly $700 million with a projected loss of federal matching funds of $1.9 billion. That puts at risk the health insurance of 350,000 Oregonians, starting with most of those folks with the signs in the yard. So I am going to vote to pay my fair share to care for those people who need me to do so, despite their ridiculous signs. And I ask all of those with a heart and a conscious, to do the same.

And if you are wondering where Waldo is on this issue…let me assure you….he will cast the first no vote for the measure…..