The Claireifyer

Almost everything you think you know is changing

Claire Dobie

Claire Dobie
Martinez, California, USA
April 26
freelance writer, editor, researcher, proofreader
I was a TV news anchor and reporter in three major markets and now focus on writing, editing, research and proofreading. See my crude but functional website at My favorite quote is Mark Twain's "The difference between a word and the exactly right word is the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." With approximately 2,000 books in my garage library, ninety-nine percent are reference books because I am an admitted information junkie. I could not tell you the current hottest novel except "Fifty Shades of Gray" because my friends and daughter read it. Not really interested. Research--not S&M--is my heart. I've interviewed Ronald Reagan, Sen. Ted Kennedy, the Sr. President Bush, Governor Jerry Brown, and entertainers such as Patti LaBelle, Sister Sledge, David Brenner, and Melba Moore. Seizing the day, observing people, smiling at strangers (especially those with grumpy faces), and yielding to the guy in the car who's been trying to get into traffic for the past five minutes are my favorite things to do.


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APRIL 14, 2011 8:13PM


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The song "Dirty Laundry" released in 1982 by Don Henley refers to the unscrupulous tabloid-type aura of the news business.  ("I make my living off the evening news. Just give me something-something I can use. People love it when you lose. They love dirty laundry. " 

Welcome back to the '80s--only worse. Don doesn't need anyone to "whisper in my ear" and give him dirty laundry. More than a decade of filth has piled up all around us.  The old and tired Republican rhetoric likes bubbles and suds but the load is still dirty even after a power wash setting.

Joan Walsh had to battle grease and grime on MSNBC today (and each time she goes up against a Republican guest). And the lady won the battle with style and grace as usual. 

Walsh fought the good fight with FORMER Congressman Ernest Istook on Cenk Uygur's show today and once again, showed her chops and cool! This is not meant to be a kiss-ass compliment for Joan, but over and over again, she has proved to be a class act, armed with factual material and effective delivery—clear, concise, sincere. Add to that her professionalism, knowledge of past events as well as present,  AND a gracious, witty sense of humor, and I say she’s the woman to watch if you want the truth, logic and insanity behind today’s politics and politicians.

That said (even though I grow weary of that tireseome phrase), Istook was rude, of course. He shot off his BS talking points, probably with the intent of  provoking a fiery Joan.  She refuses to let that happen. Like Obama, she gets her point across without yelling or allowing angry veins to show. Istook hogged the screen with the usual Rep-crap and Joan pushed back and politely observed she had not interrupted him during his rant.



Istook danced all around Cenk’s questions, especially the repeated “Are you going to vote for the Ryan Plan?” which Istook never answered. The closest he came to a civil reply was “Well, we’ll find out.”

Like Joan, I am sickened and horrified by the cruel intentions and  evil orchestration of the Republicans who propose deficit cuts by kicking the poor and elderly to the curb.

It gets curious-er and courious-er, doesn’t it? They just don’t get it. They believe their own PR and it becomes reality. They withdraw or dismiss as “not intentionally meant to be a fact” retractions. They skew the results of the polls with counter-logic, and they are chronic prevaricators. When I listen to them—sometimes twice for the same clip—the word mental illness springs to mind. I don’t say that to unkind. I honestly believe the majority of the GOP and all of its Tea Party subsidiary members, are soul-less. Somewhere, back in their childhood, they were taught to hate, especially to hate those who are not like them.


The big claim—the one that raises my adrenalin a little higher each time I hear it—is “Don’t forget, we pay the highest amount of taxes.” NO, NO, YOU DON’T!  You pay more tax dollars than the average Joe, which THEN TRANSLATES TO A HIGHER PERCENTAGE OF TAXES.” There’s a BIG difference.

In fact, given that stat, which is true (percentage-wise, that is) the proof is in the pudding. You’re paying the HIGHEST PERCENTAGE because you make—I didn’t say “earn”—millions of dollars as opposed to struggling families who struggle every day to downsize their own households.



During the McCarthy Hearings in the '50s, it was Joseph Welch who went off on Sen. Joe McCarthy, shouting out "Until this moment, Senator, I think I never really guaged your cruelty or your recklessness.....Have you no sense of decency, sir?" I ask that question of the Republicans now. And I will ask again, and again. I wish that more Americans would have the  chutzpah to do their part in spreading the word that the Republicans are cruel and reckless and have no sense of decency.

Still, it’s not enough. It will never be enough because the super wealthy do not have to experience that lifestyle.  Even if  they grew up poor, like little Johnny Boehner, they must have forgotten all sense of decency and civility and roots they learned. Or, sadly, they never learned. And they want to keep it that way. Their mantra is Don Henley's bridge: "Kick 'em when they're up, kick 'em when they're down...kick 'em all around."

In the words of the late millionairess, Leona Helmsly, “Only the little people pay taxes.”



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