Paul's View

Racism and political correctness

As a political observer, I am thoroughly convinced that a Donald Trump nomination as the 2016 Republican candidate for president will very likely result in both a landslide victory for Democrats in keeping the White House and a retaking of the Senate. It could even result in drawing enough Democrats to the polls to give them an outside chance of retaking the House of Representatives. From a Democrat standpoint, therefore, a Donald Trump candidacy would be a welcomed event; from an American standpoint, having a blatant racist at the top of the ticket of one of our two major parties, it would be an affront to every ideal for which this nation stands.


The Donald and his cheap labor plans

   A recent controversy involving Donald Trump concerned whether or not he said that wages in

   America are too high and should be reduced. After Bernie Sanders took him to task for it, Trump

   denied that he ever said it. He did, indeed, say it. I myself heard him say it on more than one

   occasion during more than one interview. His saying it, however, is not of major concern; he says

   a lot of things since there apparently is no filter between his brain and his mouth. The real

   problem concerns the inability of some voters to take the time and effort to understand the true

   impact of what he is saying and why he is saying it. What is being missed is the importance of

   the context in which he says the things he says.


Of caterpillars, loopholes and stump speeches

During this current campaign season we once again are hearing a great deal about closing the corporate tax loophole. What, however, is, exactly, this loophole? How does it work and how do we close it? A perfect place to start is with the all-American company, Caterpillar, who masterfully took advantage of the loophole to avoid paying, as Bernie Sanders would put it, their fair share of taxes.


On Syrians, rationality trumps fear

Legitimate concerns should never serve as an excuse to abandon rational thinking. Certainly, when it comes to the Syrian refugee issue, there is a basis for some level of concern about a potential threat to our safety and security that a wave of Syrian refugees could potentially pose. However, having serious concerns and seeking legitimate ways to mitigate those concerns is vastly different from exploiting those fears for political gain.



Fight for District 8 is on


The most important ingredient to a democracy is the people's right to vote. To exercise that right most effectively requires an informed electorate. On Tuesday, November 17th, I attended a forum of candidates that was designed to provide just such an opportunity for voters. The Women's Democratic Club of Montgomery County (WDC), in conjunction with the Montgomery County Democrats, hosted a forum of the seven Democratic candidates seeking to fill the 8th District Congressional seat that will soon be vacated by Congressman Chris Van Hollen as he seeks to win the Senate seat of retiring Senator Barbara Mikulski.


Government regulates business for public good


Government regulation impedes the free market economy and stifles the growth of business, both small and large. At least that is what business would have you believe. When I think of government regulation, I can't help but remember my days serving on the New Jersey Grand Jury and listening to case after case of illegal dumping by "business" into our rivers and lakes and the Environmental Protection Agency regulations that were violated for the sake of profits. Rather than as a nuisance that serves only to impede the growth of business, having spent my entire career with the federal government, I recognize the need for government to regulate the excesses and abuses of capitalism to protect the public good.


ATF, time to do your job on guns!


It is estimated that approximately 40 percent of gun sales in the United States are not subject to background checks.  Most point to gun shows and the Internet as the loopholes in the existing background check law thus necessitating the need for additional legislation from Congress to close this universal loophole.  Although it may be true that the 40 percent figure is a result of gun show and Internet sales, the real loophole, call it a glaring pothole, is the result of the vagueness in the language defining "engaging in the business of selling guns".  It is this lack of specificity regarding what constitutes "engaging in the business of selling guns" that has made it so difficult for ATF to enforce existing background checks requirements for gun sales at both gun shows and via the Internet.


The price of Global Warming and us

Everything does, indeed, have a price and climate change is no exception. The question is: Who is going to pay for it? In Maryland Congressman Chris Van Hollen's recently proposed bill on combating climate change, The Healthy Climate and Family Security Act of 2015, the answer is: Those who are the primary contributors to carbon emissions in our air, namely the fossil fuel industry! Based on the polluter pay principle, it will be the coal, oil and natural gas companies who will bear the cost of reducing carbon pollution and the damage it does to our environment.



Presidential debate finesse rules

Maybe it took experiencing the first two Republican presidential candidates debates to be able to gain an appreciation for what transpired on the debate stage when the Democratic presidential candidates held their first debate on CNN on October 13th in Nevada. Gone was the immature sniping among the candidates replaced by a discussion of relevant issues, positions and experience.


Gun ownership should require liability insurance

It is common sense that ownership of an item brings with it a degree of responsibility to use the item both thoughtfully and safely. I can't imagine too many disagreeing with that general premise although I am sure there are some. The requirement to carry mandatory liability insurance by those who own automobiles is an example of state government acknowledging that ownership brings with it that level of responsibility.