The Military members that have served their nation honorably have sometimes been exposed to extreme levels of combat and service-related strains. Persistent with these experiences has been an increasingly large number of veterans that continue to find the health care services in Maryland amongst the lowest rate in the country. This has been a persistent issue. Maryland ranks 49th in providing our veterans health care support and ranked 38th overall. With a large number of veterans and retirees that are located in Maryland, these critical statics mean that many of our most honorable citizens are having to accept some of the worst care in the country.
This persistent issue represents a huge shortfall of state leadership.
The first day in office we will ensure our veterans:
- Medical care for our veterans is a top state priority. This will be addressed immediately. It is unacceptable that Maryland ranks 49th of all states providing medical care to our valued veterans. They served to ensure the safety of our nation and they deserve better.
- Maryland implements programs that ensure Maryland is an ideal state to retire in. This includes no income tax for Military retirees. Combined with our innovation hub (that has programs specifically for our veterans) to develop innovative businesses that employ veterans and many Marylanders.
- Military members of every branch live by the credo that no one is ever left behind. Our warrior programs take a complete accounting of every veteran in our state. This includes ensuring that the 500 or so homeless veterans are accounted for, in programs to ensure they are provided the services they need and no veteran is left without the care and support they need for a transition into the workforce.
Domestic Policy Reform
“Power tends to protect itself merely to maintain its own status and control. Principle gives up power for the sake of creating the best public policy.” Dan Webster
We as a nation of citizens have seen policy after policy sold to the public that has little or no benefit to our communities. Some of these “policies” have cost billions and in some case trillions of taxpayer dollars. Many have asked the question “What does that policy have to do with my community, home or neighborhood?”
We have seen too many of our leaders become willfully ignorant to the cost of life and treasure of policies that are an abject waste of resources. We are better than this. You know it, and I know it. We could not run our own households like this and we need to begin to elect leaders that are outsiders and not part of the political industrial complex.
Career politicians are what created the problem and we as a nation need to elect leaders that understand what regular Americans experience every day.
The days of long-winded political pandering is over. We need domestic policy reform that includes ensuring your voice is clearly represented. Clearly communicated that those fiscal deficits that are handed down to generation after generation are not acceptable. Endless investments in areas that do not help the middle class and struggling poor are unacceptable.
We need to reform public expenditure priorities around those things we know will translate into real change in our neighborhoods. Education and health take front and center and with your support, we will get to the heavy lifting of making sure those areas that are common sense priorities to you and your family are the priorities of your state and federal legislatures. It’s time for the change we all know we need!
What we all know……. is that college has gotten extremely expensive over the last 3 decades! This has been a serious issue for a long time and leaders at the state and federal level have not been able to come up with real solutions for the middle class and the struggling poor.
We as a nation need to do a much better job with college costs, transparency and ensuring there is a solution to the escalating expense that puts this important part for many of developing effective skills out of the reach of so many. Additionally, the cost creates a persistent issue with significant student loans for decades. This is unacceptable.
Our platform is simple: Maryland needs to lead the charge to develop programs that ensure developing the most advanced skills possible is well within the reach of every single person in the state.
This program will benefit many throughout Maryland, especially those families with single parents unable to consider college due to the cost of childcare and housing. We will make that investment in the future of our citizens ensuring they are well positioned to make Maryland the most competitive state in the country.
The tuition growth chart below helps to frame the extraordinary scope of the problem. The wealthy know these realities well, but they can incur the costs. The middle class and struggling poor are often with few options to solve this issue.
This really tells a very important part of the American story. In a nutshell few things impact the generational growth of individuals and family income growth greater than an education. When the growth of the cost of college increases on the levels that have been seen over the last 30 years, this impacts who can go to college and how those costs can and cannot be absorbed by the individual or that family. This is a very critical issue. For many from poor families, this is the way out of poverty. For the middle class, this can be the way to improve their ability to compete for jobs and grow.
Which brings us to a critical cost: college. When compared to inflation-adjusted incomes (almost flat) college costs have become astoundingly expensive. 400% what they were 30 years ago.
Our solution addresses these critical areas:
- Free college for the STEM disciplines. We are looking at expanding to all majors, but this will be the starting point. This would include housing and meals. We need to put the most disadvantaged in a position that college is achievable for all those that want it. We need to start looking at college as an investment in the long-term success of our citizens, their families, our communities and our state. These college programs would partner with industry to ensure we are training to the long-term required staffing goals and ensure that the ability to pay for these programs is funded by the exceedingly flush corporate superstructures.
- Innovation HUB. Establish expansive private/public coalitions between industry, finance and market leaders to create a series of programs to develop ideas into thriving innovative Maryland based companies. Create a dynamic environment that entrepreneurs can engage with teams of talented and innovative business leaders. This investment in the ideas and the early stages of development ensure that as these companies develop the jobs also grow. This is a program marketed throughout the country to attract the best and brightest to Maryland and grow the talent that is already here.
- Maryland has a large retired military population. The incubator will also be marketed to this critically valuable talent pool. They possess extensive skills and experiences invaluable in the creation and management of innovative businesses.
- Veteran Services. Maryland also has a very large veteran community. We propose the creation of Veteran Exchanges and Commissaries. This would provide an important community of those that have served an opportunity to get access to very reasonable goods. We would expand the homeless outreach program for full accountability of every single homeless veteran.
With an estimated 19% of Maryland voters working within the government, the role of these highly trained and exceptionally dedicated professionals has been and continues to play a central role in national security, support of critical services and the enduring defense of our nation.
The current threat of cyber attacks helps to frame how essential it will be that our leaders have first-hand experience working on these challenges and have extensive real-world experience understanding what challenges we will face in our immediate future and long-term.
Many of our leaders do not have this experience. Many throughout the nation see the discourse and evolving events of the last year surrounding the administration’s stance on the Intelligence Community as troubling, to say the least.
Institutions that have long been held in the highest regard because of the overwhelming track record of defending the nation have seen partisanship transform conversations into petty targeting of these venerated institutions. This is well demonstrated when viewed from the fact that in polls most American’s (60%) trust these stalwart institutions contrasted by 60% who do not trust the current president.
We are at an important point in our nation’s history.
Louder and more informed voices from our leaders need to take the national support for these professionals and the voices of the workers of Maryland to the White House to ensure much more is being done to end this pettiness and focus on the business of the nation.
This undermines national security by sending a message to our adversaries that the president and his administration are at odds with the professionals charged with defending the nation and distracted from major national security issues.
As a nation we have top national security concerns. These include:
- Ongoing Cyber threats from adversaries.
- US and Russian involvement with Syria.
- US and Russia involvement in the Ukraine.
- Ongoing challenges with Iran. Many of our leaders have been on the wrong side of this issue.
- Increasing US and China tensions.
- North Korea as a real threat to stability in the region.
These are the areas that our leaders should be focused on, not attacking the institutions charged for decades with protecting our nation.
Maryland is at the heart of a significant part of that process of defending the nation and we will ensure there is an exceptionally strong representation that communicates the critical value these extraordinary professionals deliver every single day.
Jobs, Jobs, Jobs
When incomes are adjusted for inflation, they have been flat for decades. Our current policies are not making an impact on the continued erosion of the middle class, and doing almost nothing for the working and struggling poor. We will build an enterprise within Maryland that helps develop and grow the entrepreneurial spirit within Maryland.
We have seen the nation spend billions and trillions on things that few will ever see impact the lives and the lives of their families.
We will make the building of an enterprise of innovators and entrepreneurs a foundation of our work. This will bring business leaders to the table. To see the vision of this highly qualified workforce contribute to innovation and new company growth spurred on by the funding and resources to see new business ideas established and flourishing within Maryland.
Our innovation hub brings together business leaders, financiers, and cutting-edge thinkers to develop a business environment second to none. This will include the talent and resources to propel Maryland and its innovative businesses and business ideas into the future.
This will increase the jobs in Maryland, draw new industry interest into Maryland and work to expand well established and successful businesses already growing in Maryland.
This will be a state-wide business outreach of the innovation hub to “Train, Innovation, and Win”. We know the future of Maryland will be on our collective ability to find and fund those big ideas that are the future of innovative business. We know our state is full of talented people, existing business superstars, and future business leaders. We know if we empower them to drive innovation, they will grow into companies leading the industry and employing many Marylanders.
The Innovation Hub is new and represents our vision for the future of Maryland and Maryland business to drive jobs by investing in our best and brightest! We are excited about your business ideas, your current business and know your success is our collective future! Let’s get there together!
“There’s a way to do it better—find it.” –Thomas Edison
Maryland has a unique opportunity to lead the nation with innovation and the development of brilliant new ideas. This is our campaign’s collective new vision of Maryland. Tap into the existing exceptional base of talent in Maryland and develop organizations around them to refine and introduce new ideas that find a better way. A better way that includes manufacturing, renewable energy, science, and technology, just to name a few.
This is our enduring legacy, to become the great next frontier of innovation by building great platforms for the innovative minds here in Maryland to thrive in and help them develop the business and technology ecosystems that transform ideas into successful companies. This requires the infrastructure and using a cross-functional teaming approach that has been successful in businesses all over the country. I know what you are thinking! Why is this not done now? There is a growing base of talent in Maryland that is developing great ideas and there are business ideas that can result from many of these startups.
To make this happen your leaders need to understand the enormous value these startups can become.
If your state and federal leadership lack that vision, they will not be able to translate the long challenges that have to be overcome to help foster the creation of Maryland based industries into solutions that grow businesses. Career politicians cannot solve this problem.
We have a plan for a large-scale innovation hub that is designed to tap into the existing talent in Maryland and provide the leadership, training, and support that will be essential at taking early stage development ideas into thriving businesses led by Maryland’s best and brightest driven visionaries.
This will require a wholesale change to how Maryland views startups and requires a significant convergence of academia, the private sector, and government. This will also require the ability to attract and support the expansion of investors for startups and funding intuitional support for growing businesses.
Our vision for Maryland innovation includes comprehensive business/startup mentorship, guidance and a cultural shift from viewing innovation as what happens somewhere else to what we do here as a culture. This taps into the qualities and mindsets of leading entrepreneurs and that will transform Maryland into a leader of innovation and job creation!
“In a country as wealthy as ours, for us to have people who are going bankrupt because they can’t pay their medical bills–for my mother to die of cancer at the age of 53 and have to spend the last months of her life in the hospital room arguing with insurance companies because they’re saying that this may be a pre-existing condition and they don’t have to pay her treatment, there’s something fundamentally wrong about that.”
Health Insurance has an impact on all Americans and represents challenges that directly affect all communities. With 10% of Maryland families living at or below the poverty level there continues to be a persistent issue with developing programs that are innovative and lead to real social change. Many of the most vulnerable of us are also suffering from a lack of preventive care that leads to extraordinary medical expenses. This challenges how we view our entire community and how we prioritize our collective care.
Health Insurance for All
The current administration has made attacking the services that provided 20 million Americans health insurance a real issue by repealing critical components this life-saving policy. Our leaders have not done enough to meet this challenge and sadly have folded on fighting for the working class and struggling poor. Maryland will lead the country in the creation of a solution to the current health insurance shortfall. With the president’s platform to eliminate the individual mandate, this presents the greatest possibility of existing policies to see increases of 50% putting 150,000 of Marylanders at risk. We are better than this. Maryland will lead the nation in developing state solutions that combat this continued assault on the middle class and struggling poor.
The Corporate State and Wealth Inequality in the United States
Within the United States, there has always been a drive for profits. It is as old as the nation and viewed coast to coast as part of the American dream. The US is clearly the land of opportunity and much can be said about the indomitable spirit of Americas to innovate and develop businesses. The current state of the nation is that the powerful and wealthy have become generationally brilliant at making money.
The richest members of the Forbes 400 wealthiest families have soared to $81 Billion in 2016.
Corporations are systems that often grow over time in their effectiveness and efficiency. Simply put, for them to survive and thrive in the countries supply and demand market they must always innovate their ability to sell more for less. How this impacts you and your family depends on which part of the equation you are on.
If you are wealthy, you have mastered the process of acquiring and keeping capital. This is clear when considered for those making $10 million or more, their salaries only make up 15% of their income. Where is the rest from? 25% is from owning a part of a business, 15 to 20 % from dividends earned on stock they own or from or from interest from large savings. This is many of the 10.8 million (yes million) of the nations millionaires make and grow their money.
If you are not wealthy, you are often trading labor hours for a salary. When labor (or income) is compared to the year over year increase in returns for capital it is easier to see where some of the problem is. Simply put labor is not doing as well as corporate profits.
So with all that said, how does this impact you and your family? This impacts you in some important ways.
First: Labor grow has not improved with the growth of profits. This is a reality.
Second: Americans are doing a lot more work, producing a lot more output and giving their companies a great ability to resell the products and services they create. Essentially, you are working harder and doing more every year, your company is utilizing that labor to increasingly turn a profit, but they are not compensating the workforce for this increase in productivity! Compensation is not keeping up with productivity.
Okay, there is another important mechanism at work that directly impacts how you and your family experience the economy. The vast majority of Americans are not able to save much. On average the working class saves about 5%, so they put about 95% of what they make back into the market when they buy products and services. These transactions support the hiring of employees.
When the top 10% control 90% of the wealth what do THEY do with all that money? They put it into things that employ very few people.
You see the problem here. 40% of the wealth of the wealthy simply sit in accounts. That money is effectively removed from the market that can directly benefit the working class. So the more that the wealthy make, the more they put their money into things that need fewer employees to manage that wealth. This is having a devastating effect on the middle class.
The very important bottom line
So with everything covered above, there is a very important bottom line.
This is the way that you and your family experience your purchasing power.
If you have said to yourself “It seems like my money does not go as far” that is because it does not. There is a mountain of economic a play but if you compare the increase of income (normal growth) to what that money can buy (real growth adjust for purchasing power) there is a shocking reality.
It is easy to see how this has changed over time. Simply search for “Inflation adjusted” homes, college, utilities etc. What you will find is the cost of things you buy and pay for and how those costs have been going through the roof!
So when you compare the inflation-adjusted cost of the major things you pay for compared to the inflation-adjusted incomes for the middles class you can see the intense crisis that exists and will likely get a lot worse.
Welcome everyone. I am seeking the democratic nomination for U.S. Senate for Maryland. I have been both a Republican and Democrat and know firsthand what challenges face many families across Maryland and the nation.
Our national presence on the world stage has always been a reminder of the great value of the tenants of our democracy.
The exceptional cost paid by so many before us reminds us of the price of freedom. Ours is a many faceted shared experience and it demonstrates what makes our nation such an exceptional collection of people. We are taught to regard the whole human species as one family, and what we know is that these shared experiences are what binds us.
From coast to coast, black, white, Latino, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender, those born in the United States and our cherished immigrant brothers and sisters, we all have many of the same dreams and that is what galvanizes us into a nation that has been the greatest country in human history.
It is this fundamental diversity that dates to the founding of the nation that continues to demonstrate why we are exceptional. But, we are at a crossroads Brothers and Sisters and some would present to you a very different narrative. The narrative that these differences should divide us.
The inherited wealth of this nation has defined and elected their new standard bearer, his marching orders are well defined by actions, words, suspicion, and insults. This is not a new narrative in the tradecraft of oligarchies. This is not a new idea in the pursuit of hegemony and the ever-growing corporate state. But, the iron law of democracy always persists where the reflexive nature of bigotry attempts to hide. We as a nation have always been about big ideas.
The establishment political structure of career politicians is not getting the job done. You know it, I know it, and they know it! It is time! It is time to look within our own communities for the solutions that will make our democracy work for all of us, not the just the powerful few. Maryland deserves better and the nation has always been better than that.
We need new ground engaged leadership that understands that the pain of inequality can be severe. That catchy political promises that do not translate into solutions for the working family are completely useless.
We must not passively accept from our so-called leader’s those things we know to be wrong. Wrong for our families, wrong for our nation and counter to all our closely held beliefs. It is time to come together and breathe new life into so many of these stale ideas. It is time for families everywhere to ask the question “How do we get the change we need?”. It is time to insist on policies that help grow the middle class and address the erosion of our collective ability to do better. It is time.
We must not stand by while those things we know to be wrong are done in our name and our countries name.
I am running for the United States Senate because like many of you, I am concerned. I am very concerned about the behavior of our elected officials. I am concerned that still, there is little being done for the middle class and for families struggling to make ends meet.
This includes the lack of a real visible response from our elected officials in both parties about systemic problems of inequality, social injustice and false narratives presented as political facts! Some of these escalating injustices have real-world impacts that we have not seen addressed. This includes persistent income inequality, unemployment, insane costs of college, poor job growth, an assault on national healthcare and the right to pursue the American dream against an ever-growing and increasingly powerful corporate state.
I am running for the United States Senate to represent the great state of Maryland because like many of you I refuse to retreat from the belief that we are better than this.
We can change these policies because they are ours to change.
We must do a better job working together for the future of our children and grandchildren.
We will control the politics and policies in our communities and it is long overdue.
We can. We must. We will.
I am not a career politician, I am a career American. Crafted in the street of hard knocks. Like many of you, I am looking for common sense change that we can see implemented in our communities now. I am asking for your support to change our collective future. To take your message and concerns to Washington. We have a plan and we need you, your financial support, volunteers, your help getting everyone to the polls and above all things, we need your prayers.
God bless you, your family, and this nation of ours that has been great from its founding and greater because of each of you! Lets go!
A Stronger Voice
A stronger voice. A stronger fighter for you and your family.
The presidency of Barack Obama ushered in a dynamic that the nation was excited for and had been many decades in the making.
Almost immediately the fault lines between the old and new were well established. Regrettably, in both parties, there is a highly established Political Industrial Complex. The PIC attacks things that challenge the status quo on both sides. We all know that we are better than this.
As President Obama advanced the mandate he was charged with from support well demonstrated by two landslide elections, the opposition parties develop insurgent positions, extreme tactics and an assault on norms, decorum, civil discourse and American traditions that the nation had long considered to have evolved beyond. This aberrant behavior developed into the global spectacle of what our lesser angels look like, sound like and do.
Most of the nation felt then and now our leadership failed to take the fight to them, failed to draw a line in the sand and failed to make it clear that this was not acceptable in our America.
Above all things, failed to meet the perfidy and wholesale assault on our cherished democracy with the solutions that address this tired call to retreat to an era that lacked social inheritance for most. Masked in shifts and pivots a willful ignorance and amnesia to the truth.
We know better, and we know we should do better. Our leadership needs to be considerably stronger fighting for you and your family.
Stronger in fighting to ensure your voice is heard and above all things, stronger at winning for you! You and your family need new strong leadership to ensure you and your family experiences are presented in the White House and you need stronger leaders that are fighters ready for the next chapter in the continued struggle for social equality for all, not just the wealthy and powerful. The midterms represent the needed turning point to begin to get the nation back on track for progress and Maryland needs fighters in the White House fighting and defending the future of Maryland.