Justin Krebs's blog

In a Game of Monopoly Without All the Rules

Banks behind foreclosure fraud & the mortgage crisis
are failing to comply with the meager settlement,
underpaying homeowners, facing no real enforcement.
They continue to pass go and collect $200.

While Lauryn Hill serves time for tax evasion,
Enron's Jeffrey Skilling gets a reduced sentence
& Wall Street's criminals evade repercussions.
Some folks have a Get Out of Jail Free card.

Student debt has now surpassed credit card debt,
both of which are at an all-time high.
And since bankruptcy can't discharge that debt,
Americans are force to keep rolling the dice.

It can feel like 99% of us are on the losing side
of a big game of high-stakes Monopoly.
Yet in Monopoly, we all start with the same cash
& the same rules apply to everyone.

Maybe Monopoly is fairer than what we're seeing now.

Take a Chance on a night of pints & politics,
like a Community Chest for like-minded liberals
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Mourning After Obama's Morning After

The President got in bed with Republicans
to help him pass gun control legislation,
but it was no love-match, they screwed him over
& the morning after has left us with no new laws.

He continues to court conservatives
on immigration reform & budget deals,
and he's willing to make big compromises
that the morning after look more like mistakes.

Now to do extend a hand to the Christian Right
to appeal to those who won't ever be appeased,
his administration is opposing access
for young women to the morning after pill.

Just because there's no pill to fix
the bad political mistakes Obama has made
doesn't mean he should deny Americans
a legal course out of a bad situation.

Whether a pill or some political will,
we could all use a way to make things right --
it's better than mourning after the morning after.

Join a night that you won't regret
with conversation, comrades, discussion & drinks
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Boston Massacre: A Mass Scare Into Mass Care?

As we try to make sense of the Boston bombing,
some say it should make us fear Islam,
distrust immigrants & be suspicious of our neighbors.

Some set off alarms & say the rules don't apply
invoking WMDs, seeking military tribunals,
arguing against Miranda rights & defense attorneys.

We're scared so we consider desperate steps:
more surveillance, monitor Muslims,
cancel public events, limit individual rights.

But it's also a moment of extraordinary generosity,
as people open homes, hearts & wallets;
of communities pulling together in caring;
of respect for our public first responders.

And tempered voices call for patience,
speak against stereotypes & frenzied reactions
& affirm that a stronger civic space
will keep us all safer in the end.

The last Boston Massacre was part of a Revolution.
Maybe this one will be part of our Evolution
and the Massacre can turn Mass Scare into Mass Care.

We'll think of Boston as we share a drink together,
sharing public space & public space in a pub
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

America's Running A Marathon, Not A Sprint

We demand answers to Monday's horror,
but aside from consoling the injured
& showing support to the city of Boston,
there isn't a quick way to assign blame,
exact revenge or salve our grief.

We seek just action in response to Newtown
but foolish Senate "traditions" halt progress,
allowing the conservative mindset of a minority
to prevent a majority from passing gun laws.

For many immigrants, it's been a long road,
sometimes painful, frightening, exhausting,
yet it seems that there may be a finish line
if we all have the stamina to continue.

A Marathon is a democratic event:
the terrain is equal, it's free to watch,
the public is there every step of the way.
And it's long. Painful. Yet achievable.

In American democracy, right now
we're running a marathon, not a sprint.
Let's hope we have the training, focus,
courage, will-power & endurance
of those Marathon runners we all admire.

Our hearts are in Boston, Newton
& with all our fellow Americans.
Come share your thoughts with friends
as we share a drink & share the night
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

More Social. More Security.

More Social. More Security.

We can reform immigration in a way
that builds community with people & families
who are contributing to America --
or we can keep criminalizing our neighbors.

We can pass sensible gun regulations
to create a sense of trust, safety & relief
-- or we can succumb to the paranoia
calling for more guns, danger and distrust.

Our budget can strengthen our country,
invest in infrastructure, provide a safety net
-- or can cut successful social programs
that support the most vulnerable among us.

So why is Obama out to cut Social Security,
when on issue after issue, we need policies
that are More Social for More Security?

You can be secure in the social scene
where you share views, and sip some booze
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Are They Ignoring or Just Ignorant?

As the GOP tries to connect to Latino voters,
they first apologize for a Congress member's slur
-- which he says he didn't realize was a slur.

While Congress considers steps on gun violence,
conservatives oppose action, deny the facts
& cling to the myth that more guns make us safer

And though some on the Right have come out
for marriage equality, others still claim
that same-sex couples are a threat to marriage.

It can be hard to tell whether right-wingers
are truly ignorant of the world around them
...or whether they just prefer to ignore it.

If only we could ignore them a little more...

Here's a fact you can't ignore:
good company & good conversation
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

The Grand Old Party or A Gay Old Party

As arch-conservatives cling to definitions
of marriage as between a man and a woman,
more and more Americans come to believe
that people have the right to marry whom they love.

While the Supreme Court's right flank
seems uncomfortable recognizing gay families,
Anthony Kennedy, the presumptive swing Justice,
is recognizing history's swing toward equality.

Dem leaders finally follow public sentiment,
2016 contenders and coming out for gay rights
& though the Republican Party lags behind,
more GOP voices are calling for change.

In the end, people love who they love,
couples have the right to start families,
and why stand in the way of a great wedding?

Whether through Courts, States or the Capitol,
before long, even the Grand Old Party
will be celebrating a Gay Old Party,
and we'll all be better off for it.

Speculate about SCOTUS, pipe up about politics
& pass around a pitcher to share a toast
as you gather with like-minded lefties
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Congress: Can't Budget, Can't Budge It

Even the recent heinous acts of gun violence
aren't budge the US Senate, which is too scared
to tackle a restoration of the assault weapons ban.

Superstorm Sandy, the series of climate crises
& the hottest seasons on record can't budge
the climate change deniers in both Houses
into any action on carbon reduction.

Despite an election that rejected him,
nothing will budge Paul Ryan
from a Tea Party budget plan
that slashes popular, essential programs.

It's one thing to say Congress can't budget.
But when it comes to Congress, nothing --
not common sense, popular sentiment
or urgent necessity -- can budge it.

Congress: can't budget. Can't budge it.

If you need a drink to lift your spirits,
or some comrades to share spirited talk,
join your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

If The Vatican Can Act, Why Can't The Hill?

The President having GOP Senators for dinner
didn't stop them from having him for lunch.
He may win over their taste-buds and tummies,
but it's a far reach to their hearts and minds.

Paul Ryan's past budget proposals
have turned the Republicans into lemmings,
yet despite a decisive national defeat,
Ryan's new budget is a lot like the old.

More Americans speak against the sequester
but stopping cuts requires Washington action,
and in DC these days, the hardest task
is getting Congress to do anything at all.

We need a group of proud aging men
with differing goals & fractured alliances
to can get together to make a decision.

They just did it in the Vatican --
why is Capitol Hill having so much trouble?

Whether discussing the white smoke in Rome
or just the hot air and dark tempers in DC,
share your thoughts, a drink & a night
with your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Filibustered and Feeling Busted

Because Congress created a Doomsday device
that it was unable or unwilling to confront,
we're now stuck with the sequester
& it's senseless, severe service cuts.

Because conservatives remain in the grip
of the dystopian paranoia at the NRA,
commonsense gun laws finally introduced
already face a steep uphill climb.

Because Democrats were too timid to stand up
to their own Prez over illegal drone strikes,
it took the bane of liberals, Rand Paul,
to raise the issue through a filibuster.

When a man droning about drones is the most
functional, uplifting act in the Capitol,
we might as well cheer a filibuster --
because otherwise we're feeling busted.

Lift your spirits, your voices & libations
and fill-a-pitcher instead of filibuster
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

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