But first . . .


Mike Mattes: ‘Please tell your readers to get living wills to avoid all this mess and have their wishes followed. They can go to agingwithdignity.org for info and the forms.’

Steve Strunk: ‘I find it extremely distasteful that the state government of Florida and especially the US Congress should think that they have any cause for action in this case. Given that the courts have already decided in this matter, it would seem that any law passed to over-rule the court’s decision could never stand the separation of powers clauses of the Constitution. I am starting to feel ashamed that I have been a Republican my whole life. Prior to the last election I had never voted for a Democrat. The party that I had always counted on to keep government small and out of these situations has suddenly become the opposite of what I had thought it meant to be Republican. The party is now a big government party imposing its will on the people and trampling state’s rights. This party now knows what is best for everyone and is not afraid to act on this belief.’


Rosina Rubin: ‘It took me 13 years to get my husband to register as a Democrat, and he is a good barometer of moderate Republican thinking. George Bush doesn’t embody the Republican Party values in which he long believed; but when he hears Democrats talk scathingly about ‘the Republicans,’ he feels unwanted by the Democratic Party. This language may appeal to the faithful, but if we’re going to win big, we need to reach beyond the faithful. So I’ve been telling everyone who will listen that when we talk about ‘the Republicans’ we need to be specific (i.e. say ‘George Bush’ or ‘Tom Delay’ or ‘the Senate Leadership’ or ‘our opponents on the other side of the issue,’ whatever it is that we mean), but let’s try really hard to not to push the swing voters away by accidentally making them feel that we’re talking about them.’

☞ Exactly right. There are millions of Republicans who agree with the Republican leadership that we should be pushing for a global ban on stem cell research (as we are) . . . borrowing the costs of the war from our children (as we do) . . . drilling in the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge (as soon as possible) . . . tilting the playing field ever more heavily in favor of the rich (as Jesus would have?) . . . retaining the right of FBI terrorist suspects to buy firearms (as the NRA applauds us for doing) . . . tearing down the separation of church and state (lest judges be allowed to decide matters like the Schiavo case).

And even these people’s views should be respected.

But the Republicans I know – and I know a lot of them, including a surprising number of gay ones (albeit no lesbians) – generally lament these positions. They long for the days of the Eisenhowers and Rockefellers and Javitses, and wish that the Bill Welds and Rudy Giulianis could actually play leadership roles in their party. (Bill Weld couldn’t even be confirmed ambassador to Mexico, let alone considered a presidential contender.) In my view, these folks are basically in the sensible center (maybe one click to the right), as the Democratic leadership also is (maybe one click to the left). We need to let them know we’re very close on a lot of issues; and that they should feel warmly welcome in our tent, at least until they get their party back.

And now . . .


Lajon Webb: ‘I’m an Independent Associate with Pre-Paid Legal Services. Our company was formed nearly 32 years ago to provide affordable access to the justice system for middle-income working people like you and me. Pre-Paid is to attorney fees what major medical is to hospital and doctor bills. In other words, many of the legal services you need most are prepaid through your membership. We place you, your family and your business under an umbrella of legal protection provided by a nationwide network of quality law firms. Here is my website for further information about our company.’

Doug Mohn: ‘PPD is pre-paid legal insurance of questionable value sold through a MLM organization. Andrew Tobias, Consumer Advocate, would tell people to run from this product. Andrew Tobias, stock tipster, is probably going to regret this one. Be sure to tell everyone to sell after the short covering run-up finishes, because long term this company is a dead end just like all pyramids.’


Joe Cherner: ‘It’s obvious to me that the U.S. housing bubble is about to burst. Since I don’t own any U.S. housing, what could I do to bet I am right?’

☞ Buy puts on . . . everything. Except that, of course, you could be wrong, or too early, and lose your entire bet.


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