Thursday, April 30, 2009

President Obama Continuing the Spirit of Change

What more can anyone add to a speech like this one?

Lady Di or Batman Forever

When it comes to Lt. Governor Diane Denish most people in this state knows her long standing record for standing up for education and young children in this state. She is in favor of more local control of our classrooms which educators and parents support. She is also in favor of better funding and more training for classroom teachers and instructional support staff. She does not approve of increased classroom size because she understands the research that clearly proves that such increases would only harm this state’s standard of education.

At present we don’t even know if Val Kilmer is really honestly interested in running for governor of this state. We have no idea of where he stands on very important issues such as education or equal pay for women. He has not put out even one statement on any of the very difficult issues facing our state during the current economic recession.

We know he has his own children and that he is a well educated and thoughtful person but at the same time he has no experience in state politics. Supporting the movie industry in this state is all well and good because it provides jobs for New Mexicans but before I would take him even a little seriously I would need to know a great deal more about his stand on issues. It appears he now has a local blog that is if it truly is the Real Val Kilmer but that is not even confirmed.

Lieutenant Governor Diane Denish, Democratic Party Chairman Brian S. Colón and local parents and educators will hold an event outside Washington Middle School on Thursday, April 30 at 2:30pm.

Update: According to Val's Webmaster, Jacque Talboy, The Real Val Kilmer is not the official blog of Val Kilmer but something put up by a fan. That is what we call having it confirmed that it is not his work. Still it would be nice to have an official public record of his options on issues that is if he is interested in running for governor of this state.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

State Senator Tim Keller Represents Southeast Neighborhoods

State Senator Tim Keller reallocates funds to support Southeast neighaborhood schools, communities and a local veterans support group.

From a news release sent out earlier today:

“Projects funded by Senator Keller’s reauthorization include: a Kindergarten building at Emerson Elementary; playground and patio equipment at Hawthorne Elementary; library books at Highland High school, La Mesa, Tomasita and Manzano Mesa Elementary; a sports field at Wherry Elementary; alley improvements and lighting in Trumbull; Elder Homestead and South San Pedro neighborhoods; NM Veterans Integration Center; the East Central Gateway Revitalization Plan and an International District Early Childhood Development Center.”

For far too long community funding was being spent on such items as a rugby team while older southeast heights neighborhoods went neglected but now just over one million dollars is being used to help revitalize neighborhoods in the Southeast side of Albuquerque and Veterans are receiving the support that they so richly deserve for their service to our country. These communities now have a strong supporter of the local voting public and veterans due to a grassroots campaign to replace a long time state senator with someone who would represent the interest of local communities. State Senator Keller started out as a community activist but soon found that the path to real change was to become an elected official in our state. While Senator Keller has a great deal to do in order to improve his local neighborhoods, he has the strong support of the voting public, local community leaders and other locally elected officials.

“Rey Garduno (Councilor District 6) added, "The southeast heights is fortunate to have a very productive partnership between city, state and county. Senator Keller's efforts to coordinate state funds will help kick start some of our revitalization efforts, something this vibrant part of the city needs.””

With the work of both Senator Keller and City Councilor Rey Garduno business leaders will find the “International District” a more inviting place for future development in an otherwise difficult economic environment.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Even the Long Time Republicans Want to be Democrats Now

Today Arlen Specter a long time republican senator from Pennsylvania made the move to the Democratic Party. Welcome to the party Senator Specter we are very happy and honored to have you. I hope you will take the time to review some of your more conservative stands in the near future. When you work with other democrats maybe you can come up with a middle ground that is better then either side could find in the past. There is nothing wrong with looking at an issue from all sides to find different points of view and maybe come up with new unthought-of solutions to past problems.

As Senator Specter said it is all about the voting public and no one party has the corner on right approaches when it comes to issues that are difficult to solve. The problem with the current Republican Party is that they don’t want to help fix the problems. They want to stop all progress and live in a past that has harmed the voting public on Main Street. We must be willing to encourage our representatives to take bold actions to help our country shine as it once did and can again.

The Democratic Party is becoming a party of people who put the welfare of the voting public first and politics as usual in the past. For democrats who question why Senator Specter choose to switch parties let’s give him a chance to prove that he did it for all of the right reasons.

Let’s hope that in the future more moderate republicans feel the need to review their views and make a stand to support the voting public rather then the party of no progress for the future.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Martin Heinrich reacts to Flu Outbreak

Congressman Martin Heinrich announced that he has established a swine influenza A (H1N1) virus infection resource Web site for constituents in the First Congressional District to provide critical updates and links to reliable sources of information such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the New Mexico Department of Health. Providing appropriate guidance for the public health community and the general public is a top priority for Congressman Heinrich.

“There is currently no cause for alarm in our area, but it's important to have the correct and most current information regarding this flu,” said Rep. Heinrich. “That’s why I’ve launched a section on my Web site with resources and everyday actions people can take to stay healthy.”

While there is, at present, no recorded cases of swine influenza in this state everyone should be reminded to wash their hands often and to call their doctor if they show signs of a flu virus. Individuals should also stay at home if ill so as not to infect coworkers. The current rational is that the energy room is not the place for people with symptoms of a cold or flu since it is flu season. Over running the local emergency rooms would only decrease the effectiveness of the hospitals and if you don’t have the swine flu then you don’t want to be exposed to the possibility of coming into contact with people who may have it should it spread to this state.

If anything this outbreak of the flu does bring the need for universal healthcare to the attention of everyone since there will be many people that don’t have healthcare that also don’t have a regular doctor in which to call. Let’s hope that the hospitals set up health lines so that uninsuranced individuals are not forced to use the emergency rooms for basic care.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Freedom of Religion

I am an American and I strongly believe in the rights given to us under the Constitution of the United State of America. I am also Catholic and very much believe in the teachings of the church. The thing is that to be an American I have to accept that not everyone in this country is Catholic and they have the right to practice teachings that are different from those of my church.

Yesterday we the Democratic Party of New Mexico voted to support Gay and Lesbian rights to practice their religious freedoms to be married by their own churches. We recognized their churches right to the freedom to marry anyone they so choose to under their own belief system. To have done otherwise would be a violation of their constitutional rights in this country.

Now if we plan on not upholding people’s constitutional rights in this state then we should say any marriage performed by anyone outside the Catholic Church is simply not legal. The Holy Pope has clearly stated that ours is the only real religion and that all other are just religious communities. If this is the fact and we are not following the constitution on this matter then the Catholic Church should be the only church allowed to perform marriages that the state would recognize as valid therefore all other marriages are not valid or legal and those individuals should not have any legal rights. Does this sound more then a little nuts to you? Just think how the Gay and Lesbian community in this country must feel at this point in time. Think how their religious leaders must feel about their freedom of religion. As Americans we don’t have the right to take someone else religious freedoms away for them just because they are not our own beliefs unless we are also willing to give up our own in the future. I am not a Lesbian but as an American I will support their rights to freedom of religion as all other Americans should in this state and country.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

State Party Chairman Brian Colón Brought to Tears

Today was the Democratic Party State Central Committee meeting at the convention center downtown.

The morning started off with a breakfast arranged by county First Vice Chairman Victor Raigoza on forth street and central at Nick’s Crossroads Café sponsored by Michael Padilla’s Company Altivus CRM Solutions LLC. The breakfast was very well attended. Both Congressman Luján and Congressman Teague were there along with Lt. Governor Diane Denish. Attorney General Gary King and State Treasury James B. Lewis attend along with State Senator Tim Keller and State Senator Tim Eichenberg. I also ran into Mayor Martin Chavez. I asked him if he was going to announce anytime soon but he said he is busy running the city and will look at that issue at a future date in time. I also ran into Richard Romero who is running to replace Martin Chavez in October of this year at the end of breakfast he was on his way to Santa Fe. Lt Governor Denish had some very good suggestions on how to improve education in a Win/Win for educators, students and the voting public. I will cover that in more detail later this week. Attorney General Gary King was defending his stand on taking non profits to court because he feels that they have crossed the line from education to non support of candidates when it comes to the voting public. It will be very interesting to see what the courts have to say on this issue. We had judges from all of the court systems at the breakfast this morning.

A number of people noted that CD1 Congressman Martin Heinrich was missing for the activities. I pointed out that he was off helping home owners understand the in and out of how to get the money from the Reinvestment and Recovery Act. Still he was missed by his friends and supporters.

By noon everyone was over at the convention center for the meeting. I missed the governor because I was dropping off my daughter for a camping trip. The first order of business was the resolutions. One was put forth to reduce the number of members to the County Central Committee. I was more then a little pleased to see it fail since the Democratic Party is a party of inclusion not exclusion. I would suggest that the rules committee look at a rule to require elected members to attend a percentage of the meetings or forfeit their position on the committee. I think this would clear up the problem they were trying to get at in the first place. The County Chair could appoint a replacement for anyone who went over the allowed percentage of meetings missed. The platform issue of supporting civil partnership came up and was voted onto the platform for support. As I said we are a party of inclusion not exclusion and while I would not want the church forced into doing anything they disagree with I still think that basic human rights should apply to all Americans. The state should not be in the business of handing out licenses for any church activity. Church and state should remain separate.

The next order of business was to elect officers. State Auditor Hector Balderas gave a very moving speech when he nominated Brian Colón for State Party Chairman. Brian was in tears about the part when it came to his mother and his father and all they had given him. I don’t think there was a person in attendance who could not completely understand his strong feelings of love and appreciation for all his mother had done for both him and his father. Chairman Colón received 100% support for his reelection to the chairmanship of our party. We are lucky to have him.

After the meeting we all went over to Chairman Colón’s casa to eat and be merry. We had a great deal to celebrate this year and the future looks bright for our party and our state. All in all it was a very good day to be a democrat.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Republican Candidate for Governor in 2010

Greg Zanetti of Albuquerque:

“I’m all for education. New Mexico ranks...well in education in the nation.

“Step one: What we are going to have to do is push the education issue back into the local communities. It cannot be controlled by Santa Fe and expect stellar results.

“Step two: Parents have to have more choices, whether that is charter school systems they can put their children into.”

He said schools need to get local control.

“There are a lot of public school teachers and administrators, who just hate the system. They would like to change it. They want more autonomy and more freedom. Let principles run their own schools and not Santa Fe.”

So New Mexico ranks well in education in the nation (Rank 48th). Albuquerque has a 50% dropout rate and it is increasing but that does not appear to bother Mr. Zanetti. He would push from parent’s choices which is code for private schools for the well off and no education for middle class and low income children.

On the other hand Lt. Governor Diane Denish has fought long and hard to increase funding for pre-K education to help the children of this state achieve a brighter future.

The republicans had better start searching for a better candidate if they want to not be humiliated in 2010. This republican candidate will most definitely not have the support of educators in this state with his lack of understand of educational issues.

Education is the one area where you cannot react like a Wall Street type CEO and hope to get the desired results for our state or our country. More local educational administration is not the answer at a time when we already have far too many high priced administration officials in this state and not enough of the tax payer's dollars reach the classrooms.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Volunteer to Serve Your Country

On April 21 President Obama sign into law the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act. Now all Americans can step up and serve their community and country in a time of great need.

From Senator Edward M. Kennedy himself:

“I hope you'll answer the President's call to serve. Find a service project in your community, and tell the President how you're delivering on change

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Higher Education stuck in Win-Lose Rut

The Higher educational system at this college is showing serious signs of stress in my college due to management’s lack of willingness to work with employees or the employee union to achieve a win-win for the college, the students, the employees, and the voting public. For years now we have had a top down management style which has prevented our college from receiving the highest awards.

Management has worked at Win-Lose for so long that they refuse to do it any other way. The new president has now decided that she will reorganize the college with very little input from the people being affected by the changes. When she does set up meetings to discuss change the decisions have already been made and it is clear to anyone trying to provide input that their opinions matter very little. People are left waiting for the management to make the final changes with little to no idea how those changes will affect their work environment and fearing for the worst in most cases. Middle management and the union are out in the cold and are beginning to show signs of anger and resentment toward upper management because of the lack of communication never mind them really trying to listen to the employees.

This type of management style has resulted in very poor working conditions for the college employees and will only harm the level of education in the near future. The college management is killing the goose that lays the golden eggs of higher education in this institution. I have to admit to not being surprised by this result since one of the first interactions I had with the new president showed that she had very poor communication skills. Let us hope that at some point the Governing Board begins to understand the degree of harm this new president is doing to the college they confess to love so very much. I strongly suggest that they being in a management expert such as Stephen R Covey to work out better systems and processes for change before it is too late. The cost of doing nothing will simply be too high for this city and the state.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Is Bipartisanship Possible in the Federal Government?

For the past eight years we have protested in silences for change in this country with little to no support or acknowledgement from the conservative press. Now the tables have turned and it is the conservatives who are protesting the government’s actions and the conservative press is making it into a huge grassroots movement for the Republican Party. The truth is that our country is made up of both liberals and conservatives therefore both sides must learn to work together in unison for the benefit of the whole country.

The Party of No (The Republican Party) must learn that the time of their views only is at an end and they need to come up with ideas that both sides can agree with in the future. The Obama Administration is reaching out and strongly requesting a positive reaction from their side so that we can include them in the forward movement of this country. We already know that there are republicans who want to see President Obama fail so that they can then say; “See I told you so!” These people are more invested in being right then making thing better for the voting public and somehow I can’t completely believe that they are the only type of republicans in this country.

Our Senators and Congressmen from this state are trying to reach across the divide created by the Bush Administration in order to work in a bipartisan manner which would result in lasting changes for this country. Our senior Senator Jeff Bingaman is standing firm on the desire to create legislation that will stand up to the test of bipartisan votes in the senate when it comes to environmental reform.

Yes, working in a bipartisan manner does take more time and skills to work with individuals that don’t agree with our views and it takes the act of a little give on both sides but a win-win answer to our environmentally problems can result if both sides are truly sincere in the endeavor. When you put people of different views together what results can be much better then any compromise if they are willing to use their brains to work for a better solution then what one side can come up with from a more narrow viewpoint. This is not a matter of giving up on a better solution but using all their skills and knowledge to create a better answer to our current problems. What the Obama Administration is asking for is that the men and women of our federal government work together to come up with new and better ways of moving our country forward in the right direction.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

What is Friendship

Friendship is a term used to denote co-operative and supportive behavior between two people which is not limited by age, sex, or race. In this sense, the term connotes a relationship which involves trust, mutual knowledge, esteem, affection, respect and love which often results in a degree of rendering service to friends in times of need or crisis. Friends will welcome each other's company, devote an allotment of time to each other and exhibit loyalty towards each other, often to the point of altruism. Their tastes will usually be similar and may converge, and they will share enjoyable activities with one another. They will also engage in mutually helping behavior, such as exchange of advice and the sharing of hardship. A friend is someone who may often demonstrate reciprocating and reflective behaviors. The values of friendship include the tendency to desire what is best for the other individual; sympathy and empathy; honest constructive viewpoint sharing, perhaps in situations where it may be difficult for others to speak the truth, especially in terms of pointing out the perceived faults of one’s counterpart; mutual understanding and a solid commitment to a lifelong relationship.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Pork and Beans v. Bologna

Bologna is what today’s tea party really is all about and if the republicans want to give pork and beans then the democrats should donate bologna to the food bank in order to tell rich republicans that it is way past time for them to cut the bologna and pay their fair share of taxes. It was the republicans that got us into a war in Iraq which has cost this country way too much. It was the republicans who drove our economy to its lowest point since the great depression. Here is a way to get out and tell the tea party people what you think of their drive to oppose change in this country.

"From Terry Riley:

I just read an article on the front page of the Albuquerque Journal promoting a demonstration against taxes. The lady who was interviewed would not list a party affiliation but did say that she is conservative. Their demonstration is called, "The Albuquerque Tea Party." They are objecting to Obama's rescue spending and to the taxes that they are paying. (See this Raw Story article for more info.)

I am going to hold a demonstration in support of President Obama and what he is trying to do to save our economy. I doubt that everything that he will try is perfect but he is working hard to fix a really big mess and he needs support. I also believe that it is time to bring attention to the tax cuts for the rich both on the federal level as well as the state level. We must rescind those tax cuts.Their demonstration is going to be one block west of the intersection of Louisiana and Montgomery and will run from 4 PM on Wednesday April 15th through 7 PM. I propose a counter demonstration at the intersection of Louisiana and Montgomery that will run from 4 PM through 6 PM on Wednesday, April 15th. They have bought radio ads supporting this demonstration and got a front page story in the Journal. Please, we must push back.

The demonstration that I am planning is about 150 yards east of the "Tea Party" demonstration and I would like to ask anybody who attends to concentrate on getting out a message of support and not to get into yelling matches with the other demonstrators or people who drive by. Civil demonstration is what gets attention. Certainly with the Journal having covered the lead up to this demonstration we should be able to get media attention to our presence. I will contact all TV and the Journal.

There is plenty of parking southeast of the intersection of Louisiana and Montgomery.
My suggestions for signs are:
Bush spent it...

Rich people took us to war!
Rich people need to pay taxes!

No taxes - no police
no fire department
no paramedics
no county hospitals
no highways
no airports
no air traffic controllers
no social security
no medicare
no country
Obama just started - give him a chance!

These are some suggestions, I am sure you all will come up with other good ones. Please come and help me show our support to Obama and the need to fix the problems without any more tax cuts.

Terry Riley

Note to the Republican Party: Your pork is this country's Educational system, Heathcare for all, and Renewable energy. Support President Obama and the American Dream!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Real Educational Reform Measures

I would like to strongly suggest that elected officials look closely at the issue of Educational Administration salaries. At a time when we are looking at ways to reform education the divide between teachers, instructional support staff and Administration salaries looks just like that of Wall Street CEOs and their employees. I want to see my taxpayer’s dollars going to the people who work with student everyday of the year and to improving the technology in the classrooms for those students. Huge Educational Administration salaries are just not realistic in a time of recession and they simple do not add anything to the educational process.

Why should a college president receive an 11% pay increase after just six months on the job when instructional support staff at the same college receives a 1.5% pay decrease due to an increase in payments to their retirement funding? This type of top down reward system was a failure on Wall Street and it could cause the same type of meltdown in our educational system. I would like to suggest that the federal government look at capping educational administration salaries at a percentage above the lowest paid individual in the educational system. This approach would encourage administration to keep salaries at a fair and even market price and that they not hold some individuals well below the national average for a pay rate.

Parents and taxpayers cannot afford to encourage the current system and as far as I can see it has not helped improve the system of education in our state. More money should be place into the system to encourage professional development of educators and instructional support staff and they should be rewarded for increasing their skills that directly relate to their field of instruction. Professional development should be a requirement for all educational employees. K-12 schools, colleges and universities should be required to provide meaningful professional development to all educational employees and not just administration staff.

U.S. Senator Moves to Increase Communication with Internet Community

Senator Jeff Bingaman moves into the internet age with YouTube and Facebook page. With the overwhelming success of last year’s election by President Obama more of our older elected officials are moving to take advantage of web technology. Senator Jeff Bingaman is also supporting the education of teaching professionals in the area of classroom technology so they can also increase their skill with communication of younger individuals.

By using YouTube Senator Jeff Bingaman can speak directly to the voting public and take the time to completely explain his view on issues and his reasoning on votes he cast in the U.S. Senate. Voters will be better educated on issues and have a clearer understand of his position so that they can either agree or disagree thereby allowing them to express their views directly to the senator in a timely manner. He is also providing podcast that can be downloaded and listen to at the conveniences of the voting public.

Now is the time for more elected officials to take advantage of web technology to speak directly with the public and involve them in the process of running our state and federal government. This should and can result in open government and clearer communication between elected officials and the voters.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Double Dipping By: Carter Bundy

I was reading this article on Heath Haussamen’s blog and was very impressed by the argument for the limiting of double dipping. Now I live in Albuquerque and work in the educational system where we have an associate dean who double dips. He spent 20 years on the APD payroll and now he is working for the college.

I understand his argument that if he went out into the industry that he could earn his retirement plus his salary which would not be capped but on the other hand he is working for the state government and that means that he is preventing other younger people from moving up the ladder to his position. At a time in this state when we have very high unemployment numbers how critical is it that we should allow double dipping from retirees. Governor Richardson said that they are providing a service in areas where few are trained to work but if that is true then why is more money not being put into the education of individuals in those areas of study? We need to look to the future and help people to move into jobs where there is demand by keeping retiree in those positions government does not feel the need to education future works. What happens when the time comes that those retirees can no longer work where will be the trained professional to replace them?

I am very impressed that Heath Haussamen took the time to post Carter Bundy’s blog on his website it was a very good move in my opinion.

Tea Parties

While hundreds of thousands of Americans are losing their jobs and the economy is in its worst crisis since the great depression thanks to the last eight years of the Republican Party’s rule over this country rich republicans and conservative democrats who have large sums of money stock piled away in the failing banks in this country are out having tea parties to protest the change promised by the Obama Administration.

They will fight tooth and nail to put an end to President Obama’s plan to end the Bush Administration’s huge tax cuts for the very rich in 2010. They want to see average Americans go without healthcare and a quality education if it will keep their bank accounts fat and happy. They never got the message that Middle Income Americans are fed up with the growing divide between them and us.

It is time to take our country back and give back the American dream to the middle class. It is time to show those people just what the Boston tea party was all about in the first place. They may not like the fact that their taxes are about to increase but it is time for the middle class and the economically distress in this country to rise up and take back this country before the dream is gone forever and the Republican Party cannot and will not put a stop to it. We should all show our support for the Obama Administration by supporting their bills to bring about a budget that will move America forward.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Work to Unseat Dishonest Democrats

The progressive wing of the Democratic Party is working hard to seat honest democratic candidates who strongly support open and transparent government both at the state and federal level. Our federal candidates have always strongly supported open government and have often lead the way when it comes to supporting bills that would make government more responsive to the voting public. New progressive elected officials in our state government worked hard to put forth bills that would open the state government so that the public could see how our laws were developed during the 60 day session. Our current Attorney General Gary King is also working hard to investigate any suggestion of scandal which might come from the more shady side of state government which has yet to be opened up to public view. He has shown a willingness to investigate individuals no matter which party they represent.

We have some very good elected official in this state who have serve their communities very well for many years and they deserve to be treated fairly by the press when it comes to their public image so it would be unfair, dishonest and completely untrue to say that because a few well known democratic elected officials have be found guilty as of late that all democrats in this state are dishonest or corrupt.

We all know that the Republican Party will paint with a broad bush this new scandal in as dark a light as they possibly can for their own benefit but we also know that their party has little room to be casting stones at our party considering the past history of their own federal and state candidates and elected officials.

The voting public should continue to push for more reform at the state and federal level so as to deal with any culture of corruption that may have slipped into our government. Our federal representatives are clearly open and honest and we are more than a little lucky to have them serving the voting public of this state now and in the future. Everyone in this state should give each case a fair hearing before they destroy a person’s whole life over allegation of wrong doing.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Patients is one of the most difficult virtues

I attended a conference this week and one of the sessions was on “The 7 habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen R. Covey. Patients and understand are part of those habits of highly effective people. Being positive in the way we approach people does work even when you don’t always get what you want the first time round. When it comes to my job I know that my goal is to get the same benefits that other college staff receives. I have been very proactive in trying to obtain those benefits. I will continue to work in a proactive method to make sure that all educational support staff in this state are treated fairly and with respect for the job that they do which adds to the profits of the colleges around the state.

It cost the taxpayers far less to retain students in our state higher educational institutions then it would cost them to recruit new students therefore it is far more cost effective to use instructional support staff then to perform recruitment activities. This is what we call a win-win result for the voting public. I hope that Wall Street Style Educational Administration and the voting public will begin to understand that educational employees are this state’s finest assets when it comes to cutting the cost of higher education for our state’s residents.

Educational Administration should be working hard to show educational support staff in a monetary method just how much they are appreciated. By providing a stable income to educational support staff you show them that this state cares about the future of its residents and you show businesses around the country that we are willing to invest in the people who make our educational system a success therefore employers are more will to move to this state in order to provide future jobs. Quality of life is very much an issue and so is skilled labor when deciding where to place a new company or expand an old one. No one wants to live in a state where educational support employees are living on state assistance just to get by from day to day. If the people who plan the state budget want to increase employment and reduce higher education cost they will start by increasing the pay rates of educational support staff in this state. It will be far more effective and will cost far less than hiring a hundred Vice Presidents or administrative staff.

By keeping educational support staff in the level of low income this state is killing the gooses that lay the golden eggs of student success and skilled labor.

Congressman Ben Ray Luján Adds to his Tour Schedule

Thursday April 9, 2009

9:00 am to 10:30 am – Rural Recovery Forum with Rep. Ben Ray Luján and Lt. Governor Diane Denish, Tucumcari Senior Center, 532 South 3rd Street, Tucumcari, NM

Monday April 13, 2009

3:15 pm – Forum on Small Businesses and the Recovery Act, Quality Center for Business, 5101 College Boulevard, San Juan College, Farmington, NM

5:00 pm – Veterans Forum, Shiprock Veterans Affairs Building, South US Highway 491, Building # 5080, Shiprock, NM

Wednesday April 15, 2009

10:00 to 11:00 am – Congress at Your Coffee Shop, Starbucks, 1801 Central Ave # 1, Los Alamos, NM

Thursday April 16, 2009

5:00 pm - Angel Fire Property Owners Meeting, 10 Miller Lane, Angel Fire, NM

Saturday April 18, 2009

9:30 am - Veterans Forum, National Guard Armory, US Army National Guard, Taos, NM

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Richard Romero for Mayor and Lunch with a District Court Judge

Richard Romero's campaign turned in more $5 qualifying contributions than any other campaign. His organization turned in 5,325 to be exact. The progressives, who supported President Obama, are turning out enforce to support Richard Romero for the next Mayor of Albuquerque. At present Romero had 7,000 signatures to place his name on the ballot and is now looking to turn his very well oiled organization’s eye toward acquiring another 4,000 to ensure that he will have no problem come the deadline.

I have been attending a conference downtown this week so today I walked over to the courthouse for lunch which was the closest place to get a bite to eat without taking my car and just happened to run into Judge Elizabeth Whitefield who serves on the family court. We had a very nice lunch and she is looking and sounding just great in her job on the bench. We saw Judge Bob Schwartz who thanked me for his St. Patrick Day gift bag. Please forgive me for giving them candy and toys Judge Murdoch but with a high stress job like being a judge they should be allowed to smile every once in a while and know that there are people in the voting public who appreciate all of their hard work to bring fair and balanced justice to our fair city. I am sure that both Judge Elizabeth Whitefield and Judge Bob Schwartz are performing a great service for the voting public of the City of Albuquerque and the Second District Court System.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Race for Mayor of Albuquerque

With three candidates being successful in bring in the donations for the mayors race so as to receive public funding we now know who our candidates are most likely to be in the near future. After watching Eye on New Mexico I can say that either democrat would be a much better mayor then the republican candidate. The republican candidate would do away with government oversight of businesses which we have all seen does the voting public more harm then good. He also supports taking taxpayer’s money which should be used for government services and using it to pay private businesses rather then keeping the current city services. In a time when more not less pubic services are needed why would we want our taxpayer’s dollars being spent on construction?

I have to admit that although I am not a huge fan of Mayor Martin Chavez’s grow at all cost behaviors of the last few years that I still respect all that he has done to increase services to the local communities and the economically distressed voting public in this city. I would strongly encourage people to vote for the tax to pay for the current public bus system in this city come October.

Richard Romero who is the other candidate is being supported by the progressive movement in this city and aligns his views with a more progressive common senses governmental approach. He was a teacher so he is aware of the problems faced by our educational system and my have a better understanding of the value of after school programs.

Either of these two candidates would do a much better job in the mayors office and I get the feeling that they would work far better with the state and federal government which is important for our city’s future growth and development. Now is the time to get out and support the democratic candidates to insure that we have the right style of government to move our city forward in the near future. Now is not the time to return to old worn out republican policy of the past at a local level.

Congressman Martin Heinrich to Tour Congressional District 1

WEST SIDE: Monday, April 6, 5:30 to 7 p.m.
Congress On Your Corner
Taylor Ranch Library, 5700 Bogart NW, Albuquerque, NM 87120

MORIARTY: Tuesday, April 7, 5:30 to 7 p.m.
Town Hall Meeting
Moriarty Civic Center, 202 South Broadway, Moriarty, NM 87035

KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE: Monday, April 13, 12:30 to 2 p.m.
For Kirtland personnel only

TOMÉ: Tuesday April 14, 5:30 to 7 p.m.
Town Hall Meeting
Thomé Dominguez de Mendoza Community Center, 2933 Highway 47, Los Lunas, NM 87031 (La Entrada Road and State Highway 47)

NORTHEAST HEIGHTS: Wednesday, April 15, 5:30 to 7 p.m.
Congress On Your Corner
Juan Tabo Library, 3407 Juan Tabo, Albuquerque, NM 87111

SOUTH VALLEY: Thursday, April 16, 5:30 to 7 p.m.
Town Hall Meeting
Armijo Elementary School, 1440 Gatewood Rd SW, Albuquerque, NM 87105

BERNALILLO: Saturday, April 18, Noon to 1:30 p.m.
Town Hall Meeting
Bernalillo Town Hall, 829 Camino Del Pueblo, Bernalillo, NM 87004

SOUTHEAST HEIGHTS: Saturday, April 18, 3:30 to 5 p.m.
Congress On Your Corner El Mezquite Market, 201 San Pedro Dr SE, Albuquerque, NM 87108

Now is your time to provide our congressman feedback on issues such as the budget process and the U.S. military's present in other countries.

Congressman Ben Ray Luján to Tour Congressional District 3

Rep. Ben Ray Luján Congress in Your Community Tour Schedule

Tuesday April 7, 2009

7:10 am – Congress on the Railrunner, Rail Runner from Santa Fe Rail Yard to Sandoval/US 550
2:30 pm to 4:00 pm– Open Office Hours, Rio Rancho District Office, Rio Rancho, NM
4:30 pm – Congress on the Railrunner, Sandoval/US 550 to Santa Fe Rail Yard

Wednesday April 8, 2009

12:00 pm to 1:00 pm – Congress on Your Campus, Eastern New Mexico University SUB, 1500 S Ave K, Portales, NM

Thursday April 9, 2009

8:15 am – Congress at Your Cafe, Pow Wow Cafe, 801 W Route 66 Blvd., Tucumcari, NM
12:30 pm to 1:30 pm – Congress on Your Corner, Mosquero Courthouse, 35 Pine Street, Mosquero, NM
2:00 pm to 3:00 pm – Congress at Your Cafe, Roy Sundries Cafe, 325 Chicosa Street, Roy, NM

Monday April 13, 2009

8:00 am – Congress at Your Restaurant, Bruno’s Restaurante, 6453 Main Street, Cuba, NM
11:00 am – Congress at Your Senior Center, Bonnie Dallas Senior Center, 109 East La Plata Street, Farmington, NM
12:00 pm – Congress at Your Restaurant, Chef Bernie’s, 910 West Main Street, Farmington, NM
1:00 pm – Open Office Hours, Farmington Civic Center Board Room, 200 West Arrington Avenue, Farmington, NM

Tuesday April 14, 2009

1:00 pm – Congress in Your Classroom, Santa Fe High School, Santa Fe, NM
3:00 pm – Open Office Hours, Santa Fe District Office, 811 St. Michael's Drive Suite 104, Santa Fe, NM

Wednesday April 15, 2009

11:30 am – Congress at Your Senior Center, 5 Vietnam Veterans Memorial Road, Espanola, NM
1:00 pm – Congress in Your Classroom, Espanola Middle School, Industrial Park Road, Espanola NM

Thursday April 16, 2009

12:00 pm – Congress at Your Restaurant, El Monte Carlo, 2435 highway 522, Questa, NM
1:30 pm – Congress on Your Corner, Main St. Marcantile, Red River, NM

Friday April 17, 2009

8:00 am – Congress on Your Corner, Eagle Nest Village Hall, 151 N. Willow Creek Drive
9:30 am –Congress at Your Restaurant, Double C Restaurant, 31033 Us Highway 64, Cimarron, NM
10:30 am – Congress on Your Corner, Elida Café, 801 Railroad Ave, Springer, NM
1:00 pm – Congress in Your Classroom, Union Elementary, Las Vegas, NM
3:00 pm – Official Office Opening, Las Vegas District Office, New Mexico Highlands University, Purchasing Bldg. on NMHU Campus, 903 University Ave., Las Vegas, NM

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

High Court Rules that Unions Can Bargain Away Federal Forum Rights

High Court Ruled:

“Ruled for employers who want to force unionized workers to pursue their age discrimination claims through arbitration instead of a federal lawsuit. The court, in a 5-4 decision, said an arbitration agreement negotiated between an employer and a union that strips them of their option to take complaints to court is binding on workers. The dissenting justices said the high court in the past ruled that unions cannot bargain away employees' federal forum rights in discrimination cases.”

I have to strongly disagree with the Supreme Court on this issue because with collective bargaining individuals are represented by unions that they may or may not take part in and they have no control over the final outcome or even a vote when it come to the contract that controls their rights. The idea that local untrained union representatives that may or may not have the skills to bargain could bargain an individual’s federal forum right away at the table is simply not acceptable. A union contract should never rise above an individual’s federal forum rights.

Federal Laws have always been treated in the past as above any state or local law or contract. It is obvious that the Robert’s court is putting the needs of employers above the welfare of individual citizens even to the extent of not upholding federal forum rights created by federal laws. When employers can afford high powered lawyers and negotiators that can run circle around untrained union representatives what kind of a contract can bargaining members expect?

Higher Education

Rearranging the deck chairs to save money is not the answer. Overtime college presidents are going to have to face the reality that the way to save money is to cut administration costs which will require downsizing the number of vice presidents and assistances to vice presidents. Cutting director positions which don’t require the same huge salaries as vice presidents and then turning around and hiring a new assistance to a vice president does nothing to solve the issue of a top heavy overpaid Wall Street CEO Style Administration. Cutting positions only to move the individuals to other areas also fails to cut cost in the long run. A certain college president in this state is clearly living in a fantasy world that has nothing to do with main street reality.

Not replacing instructional staff and reducing the number of instructional support staff also does not match with the goal of increasing the quality of a college student’s education. Cutting back on equipment and supplies for labs which are uses by college students may save the college money but does very little to help low income college students during hard economic times. Increasing the number of students in the classroom clearly does not match the mission statement of helping the students but then again that would have to first be the mission statement.

If anyone should be facing pay cuts it should be the overpaid Wall Street CEO Style Educational Administration in this state. There comes a time when the taxpayers simple cannot afford them any longer and that time is fast approaching.