OK-SAFE, Inc. Blog

December 30, 2013

OK-SAFE 2013 in Review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 13,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 5 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Happy New Year from OK-SAFE!

September 6, 2013

Insure Oklahoma to continue for another year. Changes include using federal exchange

OK-SAFE, Inc. – OK Governor Fallin today issued a press release announcing the extension of the Insure Oklahoma program for working, low-income Oklahomans.

The Insure Oklahoma program was set to expire at the end of this year. The one-year extension continues the program through 2014 and includes directing some low-income Oklahomans to use the federal insurance exchange (known as the  federal Health Insurance Marketplace.)

To meet the mandates of the (Un)Affordable Care Act, this Health Insurance Marketplace is supposed to be up and running by October 1, 2013.  There is some doubt, however, as to whether the federal system will actually be ready to go by then.  (Really?)

Click here for Governor Fallin’s Sept. 6th press release on the Insure Oklahoma extension.



Highlights of the changes are below:

“Though the Insure Oklahoma program was set to expire December 31, 2013, the federal government has approved a request for a one year extension with certain modifications which are outlined below. For more information, please visit www.insureoklahoma.org or call 1-888-365-3742.

·         Agreement extends Insure Oklahoma through December 31, 2014

·         No changes in Insure Oklahoma through December 31, 2013

·         No changes in Insure Oklahoma ESI plan through December 31, 2014

·         Changes in Insure Oklahoma IP plan, effective January 1, 2014

o   To qualify, income must be at or below 100 percent of the Federal Poverty Level ($23,550 annually for a family of four). This is a change from the current qualification level of at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level ($47,100 annually for a family of four). There are currently about 5,300 individuals who are at or below 100 percent of the Federal Poverty Level enrolled in the Insure Oklahoma IP.

o   IP members will have the following co-payments for services

§  Pharmacy: $4 generic prescriptions and $8 brand prescriptions (decrease from $5 and $10, respectively)

§  Inpatient Hospital Services: $50 per stay (no change)

§  Outpatient Services and Physician Visits: $4 per visit (decrease from $10 – $25 range)

§  Emergency Room Services: $30 per visit (no change)

o   Those individuals above 100 percent of the Federal Poverty Level qualify for the federal Health Insurance Marketplace and related advance premium tax credits, which will be offered to individuals and families earning up to 400 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. There are currently about 8,000 individuals in this category currently enrolled in the Insure Oklahoma IP.”

July 4, 2013

Common Core Exemplifies What’s Wrong with the Republic

Opposition to Common Core continues to grow.  The article below is from Richard Fry, a colleague in Kansas:

Common Core Exemplifies the Problems with the Republic. And is part of the U.N.’s Sustainable Development

The Root Evil

The vast majority of conservative grass roots citizens will agree that the problems the Republic is facing comes from the fact that our “public servants” are no longer following the Constitution or the will of the majority  of citizens within the bounds of the Constitution.

Our public servants are no longer responsive to us nor represent our desires. Instead they serve the interest of special interest groups including the biggest special interest groups, the political parties themselves.

A few years ago I defined this as Representative Disconnect.

They tell us they are representing “our best interests” i.e., they know what is best for us, which bespeaks of a paternalistic government not a representative government.

Business and a Totalitarian Government

The Progressive Globalist wish to co-opt and nationalize business. The Conservative Globalist (GOP) are willing to be controlled  by business in a neo-fascism arrangement sometimes referred to as “crony capitalism”.  The bottom line is that  both desire a system of top down rule rather than bottom up governance. Either system will result in a totalitarian system in which the people are not treated as the sovereigns but another cog in production, a mere resource to be managed and manipulated.

Under this system we have no real right to privacy as our lives need to be managed for the well being of the collective. What we eat, where we live, how we live all needs to be managed to optimized the benefit to the collective. All our activities need to be monitored for compliance. Common Core (CC)  takes this monitoring to a whole new level.[i]

How Common Core Fits Into the Puzzle

Common Core (CC)  is at the very heart of this top down totalitarian system.

Bill Gates buying a new Educational System

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation paid hundreds of millions of dollars to have the common core developed and to promote it. BMGF paid two non-governmental entities (NGOs) , The National Association of Governors (NAG) and  the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO),  to retain an private organization (Achieve, Inc.)  to develop the standards. Rather than the public -private  partnership often touted by the fascist this was purely a private-private partnership. [ii]

Globalization of Education

Although these educational standards are promoted as “state common core standards” there is nothing about them which is from or related to the states except for the fact it is the states these “national” standards  are being foisted upon. In fact these represent a move toward globalization of education. [iii]

Citizen Liberty Pimped Again by State Government

Although the promoters of CC  say that states have voluntarily  signed up for the CC program the reality is they have been coerced and bribed by the federal government which  is of course in bed with this private-private enterprise.  Also in most states the CC has not been foisted upon the people  by their representative legislatures but sneaked in on the people through the state School Boards.   [iv]An example of imposing laws and policies through administrative / executive  action rather representative legislative action. Another hallmark of totalitarianism.

This is how it was done in Kansas. “It is easier to get forgiveness than permission”  is their ploy.

We are Free to Not Make a Choice

This  illusion of voluntariness  was even how it was done at the local level. I attended a seminar where a Kansas Department of Education attorney spoke how the adoption of the CC at the local district level was totally voluntary. Five minutes later she said the state would test based on the CC. When I later asked her if testing to the CC was in essence a “left-handed mandate requiring the local districts to adopt CC” she responded “Yes”.

The United Nations and Global Education

As noted there is a very strong international / global aspect to the CC. Some consider the NGA to be a conduit for the United Nations (U.N.)  into American education. [v] Bill Gates has been called the U.N.’s “sugar daddy” regarding the U.N.’s more recent efforts to affect U.S. and world education systems. [vi]This certainly is not be the first time the UN has tried to meddle in the U.S. education system. [vii]

Bill Gates has stated that  he has spent  $5 billion since 2000 to recreate the education system worldwide. [viii] Gates’ Microsoft  entered in to a written agreement with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on 11/17/2004 to help it promote its global educational effort. [ix]Microsoft is a partner with and sits on the Board of Directors of The Global Partnership for Education. [x]

The African Common Core System

The U.N.’s education program is being promoted in Africa by the Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA). ADEA was set up under a differnt name in 1988 by the World Bank (part of the U.N.)[xi]

If you look at the phraseology used by ADEA for core curriculum for  Africa you will find it mirrors that used here in the states.[xii] First is the title of the document,  Common Core Skills for Lifelong Learning and Sustainable Development in Africa .  Certainly there is no pretense about what the primary objective is of this educational curriculum i.e., promoting the U.N.’s  political theory of Sustainable Development.[xiii]

It states:

           ” Building on the theme and outcomes of the ADEA Biennale held in Maputo the 2012 Triennale aims to assist towards educational   transformation by focusing on the core challenge of how to    promote critical knowledge, skills and competencies for sustainable development in Africa in the framework of life long learning.”

(Emphasis added.)

          “This common core needs to be the foundation for all people, young         and old, enabling them to contribute to the promotion of sustainable   development: in terms of preservation of the environment, the    careful use of natural resources, the construction of inclusive      societies and the fostering of peace and solidarity.

          ” The effort made to shift paradigm in education, the need for which had been reiterated in the Maputo Biennale, continues to be          imperative in the area of basic education as the initial        structured           form of acquiring skills and competencies for children,     youth and adults. The acquisition of common core skills by all can   never succeed without corresponding shifts towards adopting           a holistic, integrated and inclusive approach to basic         education, the   move towards a diversified but equitable    basic education system and thus the full recognition of     alternative pathways for education and training; and Sub-Theme 1:       Common core skills for lifelong learning and sustainable           development in Africa 8/12 the emphasis of reform on learning processes and outcomes that are relevant in learners‟  lives and         in the context of sustainable development.”


The reality is that the transformation of the U.S. educational system via the U.N.’s educational theory,  Common Core, in support of its political theory Sustainable Development , is yet one more method being used by the Globalist  to undermine the fundamental principles of this Republic.

 It is treason to the principles of the Republic and destructive of the Liberty of its citizens.

Our elected officials have a duty under their oath to the Constitution and our state officers under the principle of Allegiance and Protection to education the citizenry as to what is going on and to rally them to defeat these attacks on our American way of life. However, once again they are failing in their duty.

Our  main focus must be to build awareness  of the source of our Liberty ,the scope of our servants duty and a healthy respect for what will happen to those who do not respect our Liberty or uphold their oath.

For the sake of liberty,

Richard D. Fry

November Patriots

General Counsel

Patriot Coalition

 [i] Tiffany Gabbay,  Indoctrination and Data Mining in Common Core: Here’s Why America’s Schools May Be in More Trouble Than You Think, The Blaze (03/27/2013) http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/03/27/indoctrination-and-data-mining-in-common-core-heres-why-americas-schools-may-be-in-more-trouble-than-you-think/

Indoctrination Here! Common Core Standards: The UN Has Penetrated America’s Public School System (Supporting Videos!) (03/28/2013) http://vineoflife.net/2013/03/28/indoctrination-here-common-core-standards-the-un-has-penetrated-americas-public-school-system-supporting-videos/

[ii] Dave Hodges Rotten to the (Common) Core, The Daily Sheeple, (1/20/2013) http://www.thedailysheeple.com/rotten-to-the-common-core_012013Anne Hendershott, The Ambitions of Bill and Melinda Gates: Controlling Population and Public Education, Crisis Magizine (03/25/2013) http://www.crisismagazine.com/2013/the-ambitions-of-bill-and-melinda-gates-controlling-population-and-public-education

[iii]Phyllis Schlafly, Bill Gates Teams Up With UNESCO, Eagle Forum (11/30/2005) http://www.eagleforum.org/column/2005/nov05/05-11-30.html

[iv]Common Core vs. Heritage Academy’s Standards, National center for Constitutional studies

[v]Dave Hodges Rotten to the (Common) Core, The Daily Sheeple, (1/20/2013) http://www.thedailysheeple.com/rotten-to-the-common-core_012013

[vi]Phyllis Schlafly, Bill Gates Teams Up With UNESCO, Eagle Forum (11/30/2005) http://www.eagleforum.org/column/2005/nov05/05-11-30.html

[vii]Phyllis Schlafly, Bill Gates Teams Up With UNESCO, Eagle Forum (11/30/2005) http://www.eagleforum.org/column/2005/nov05/05-11-30.html

[viii]Top Ten Scariest People in Education Reform: # 5 – Bill Gateshttp://whatiscommoncore.wordpress.com/

[ix]Phyllis Schlafly, Bill Gates Teams Up With UNESCO, Eagle Forum (11/30/2005) http://www.eagleforum.org/column/2005/nov05/05-11-30.html

[x]The Global Partnership for Education,http://www.globalpartnership.org/who-we-are/partners/private-sector-foundations/ (The Global Partnership for Education started as the Education for All – Fast Track Initiative (EFA FTI) in 2002);

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Education_for_All_%E2%80%93_Fast_Track_Initiative (“The Education for All Fast-track Initiative (EFA FTI) was created as the first ever global compact on education, to help low-income countries achieve a free, universal basic education.[citation needed] It was launched in 2002 as a global partnership between donor and developing country partners to ensure accelerated progress towards the Millennium Development Goal of universal primary education by 2015.”) ;


(The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are eight international developmentgoals that were officially established following the Millennium Summit of the United Nations in 2000, following the adoption of the United Nations Millennium Declaration.)


[xii] Concept Note on the Sub-Theme 1 Common Core Skills for Lifelong Learning and Sustainable Development in Africa

[xiii]Concept Note on the Sub-Theme 1 Common Core Skills for Lifelong Learning and Sustainable Development in Africa


May 29, 2013

Fusion Centers and IBM’s SmarterCity – Big Blue Monopoly

OK-SAFE, Inc. – From Part 5 in a series on Fusion Centers by independent researcher Vicky Davis of Channeling Reality.


Fusion Centers – Part 5



A major step in the march to fascism begins in 1988 with legislation sponsored by then Senator Al Gore to fund the building of a high speed, nationwide “data superhighway” that would allow corporations and researchers at the universities and national laboratories to collaborate in research, product and systems development.  While it might have sounded like a good idea at the time, it was the beginning of the socialization of business costs and the privatization of profits from those public expenditures.   It also set the stage for the corporate takeover of government.   


New York Times, December 28, 1988, Sharing the Supercomputers


“Officials at the National Science Foundation envision computerized ”collabatories” in which scientists using computer work stations could directly view and control the output of complex machines, such as particle accelerators, wind tunnels, telescopes and nuclear reactors, even though they were thousands of miles from the actual apparatus.”


”The infrastructure we will need in the 21st century goes beyond traditional public works projects,” Senator Gore said. ”I envision a national computer network linking academic researchers and industry, using the nation’s vast data banks as the raw material for increasing industrial productivity and creating new products.”


”It’s possible that if we simply let a completely self-motivated marketplace develop our data communications infrastructure for the future it will be either inferior to what is being developed in Japan or Europe or owned by companies in Japan and Europe,” said Russell Neuman, a political
scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab.


 Read rest of Vicky Davis article here.



April 26, 2013

The Best Legislation Money Can Buy

[UPDATE:  Link to 4/25/13 House video now noted below.  SB 804 audio begins at minute marker 02:06:36 in the Afternoon.]

OK-SAFE, Inc. – What can you buy with $14,500?  A small car, a boat, or perhaps a garden makeover from Reader’s Digest.

In Oklahoma, $14,500 can buy you a piece of legislation.

After looking into SB 804 by Marlatt/Jackson, Creating the Affordable Housing Act, allowing tax credits for builders for certain low-income housing, it is evident that there are serious concerns with the legitimacy of this bill.

Some of the concerns include the fact that one particular builder of low-income housing projects, namely Jeffrey E. Smith, a real estate developer out of Columbia, MO, made $14,500 in campaign contributions in 2012 to 9 legislators and the (Republican) Majority Fund.  (See List below). The legislators who received Smith contributions included Speaker T.W. Shannon and Senate Pro-Tem Brian Bingman, as well as Sen. Bryce Marlatt and Rep. Mike Jackson.  The latter two authored SB 804.

Jeff E SmithJeffrey E. Smith is president of Affordable Equity Partners and JES Holdings headquartered in Missouri.  According to the OK Ethics Commission 2013 lobbyist report, Affordable Equity Partners hired James Milner as their lobbyist in Oklahoma.

The fiscal analysis report on this bills indicates there is $9.2 million in tax credits for this.  According to the bill’s language, these tax credits would be transferable, meaning there is no telling who may actually end up benefiting financially from this re-direct of our tax dollars.   SB 804 seems to be the means to assure the direction of those tax credits.

Several advisory board members of JES Holdings and Affordable Equity Partners have ties to the International Insurance Society, Price Waterhouse Coopers, and KPMG – all large corporations.  Is that where the tax credits are heading?

SB 804 reeks of being  “favor-factory” legislation and is not really a “conservative” idea, as its advocate claims.  [Unless conservative means protecting the status quo of the economic elite at the expense of the citizen taxpayer?]

The advocate for SB 804 refers to Jack Kemp and Ronald Reagan as evidence of “conservatism”.  That tactic is a blatant Appeal to Authority, a method used by those who do not have a solid argument of their own.   There is no credible evidence that low-income housing has done anything more than make builder/developers wealthy and the residents more likely to be dependent on state- subsidized rental rates.

The advocate for this bill is not demonstrating compassion for people – his compassion is for his own bank account.

SB 804 is corporate welfare, plain and simple.

Thursday, April 25, 2013 Vote in the House:

SB804          Tax credits; creating Oklahoma Affordable Housing Act; providing tax credits for builders of certain low-income housing. Effective date.
4/25/2013    H    Motion to reconsider adopted: Ayes: 52 Nays: 20
4/25/2013    H    Third Reading, Measure failed: Ayes: 39 Nays: 40
4/25/2013    H     Notice served to reconsider vote by Representative Jackson
“H” denotes House action.

House Video of Floor Debate

SB 804 was debated in the late afternoon on Thursday 4/25/13 and defeated by a vote of 39 Aye/40 Nay, thanks in large part to all the calls and emails from the grassroots in OK.

Video of this debate will be is posted here.  Debate on SB 804 begins at minute marker 02:06:36 in the afternoon session.

2012 Campaign Contributions, from the OK Ethics Commission reports:

Transaction Date    Contributor Name    Contributor Address    Committee Info    Transaction Amount

  • 9/5/12    SMITH, JEFFERY E    PO BOX 342    BRANAN FOR SENATE – 2010    $1,000.00


  • 10/17/12    SMITH, JEFFERY    P.O. Box 342    Brian Bingman For Senate 2014    $2,500.00

SELF EMPLOYED    Columbia, MO 77777

  • 11/2/12    SMITH, JEFFREY E    P O Box 342    Friends Of Bryce Marlatt 2012    $2,000.00

SELF    Columbia, MO 65205

  • 9/6/12    SMITH, JEFFREY    PO BOX 342    Friends Of Mike Sanders 2012    $500.00


  • 9/20/12    SMITH, JEFFREY    PO Box 342    Clark Jolley For Oklahoma Senate 2012    $1,000.00

JES HOLDINGS    Columbia, MO 65205

  • 10/24/12    SMITH, JEFFREY    P.O. Box 342    Friends Of Rob Johnson 2014    $1,000.00

SELF    Columbia, MO 65205

  • 9/13/12    SMITH, JEFFREY E    P O Box 342    Mike Jackson For House Seat     40 2012    $1,000.00


  • 9/13/12    SMITH, JEFFREY E.    P.O. Box 342    Colby Schwartz For State House 2012    $1,000.00

SELF    Columbia, MO 65205

  • 9/10/12    SMITH, JEFFREY E    P O Box 342    Friends Of TW Shannon 2012    $2,000.00

SELF-EMPLOYED    Columbia, MO 65205

  • 10/22/12    SMITH, JEFFREY    PO Box 342    Majority Fund    $2,500.00

JES HOLDINGS    Columbia, MO 65205

  • Total 2012 Campaign Contributions:  $14,500.00

February 21, 2013

Total Domain Awareness – NYPD and Microsoft Build Hi-Tech “Crime Dashboard”

OK-SAFE, Inc. – Perhaps you thought Person of Interest was only a TV show – that the pervasive use of CCTV cameras and IT systems for round-the-clock surveillance of unsuspecting citizens was something in the future and not really being done.

In New York City it is reality.   The NY Police Department partnered with Microsoft (uh, oh… wait for the crash!) to develop what they are calling a hi-tech “dashboard” of crime and events in the city.

Total Info Awareness Seal

Referring to the system as “Domain Awareness” (as in “Total Domain Awareness” or “Total Information Awareness“), the woman in the video points to an electronic interactive “dashboard” that indicates an incident somewhere in the city, i.e, a 911 call about a “suspicious package”.  Next to this pops up an electronic map showing the location of the incident and identifying nearby surveillance cameras, of which New York City has thousands.  All connected to this system.

From the UK Telegraph, 2/20/13:

NYPD and Microsoft build hi-tech crime fighting dashboard:

Created by Microsoft and the New York Police Department, the Domain Awareness System, known as “the dashboard,” is state-of-the-art crime fighting technology.


“The dashboard,” instantaneously mines data from the NYPD’s vast collection of arrest records, emergency 911 calls, more than 3,000 security cameras, license plate readers and portable radiation detectors and aggregates it into a user-friendly, readable form in the control room.

Eventually, that data will be able to be seen in real time by officers on laptops in their squad cars and on mobile devices as they walk their beat.

The article goes on to say:

New York could make millions of dollars under a deal that allows Microsoft to market the software to other law enforcement agencies and civilian companies around the world in exchange for 30 per cent of the revenue.

NYPD + Microsoft:  A perfect example of a public-private partnership (aka government sanctioned monopoly); where a corporation has authority it would not have without the coercive power of the government.

Rest of UK Telegraph article here.

November 2, 2012

Who’s Funding SQ 764?

OK-SAFE, Inc. – A search on Campaign Reporting on the OK Ethics Commission website reveals who the money is behind the “Yes on SQ 764” effort. (Ethics number 312002).  SQ 764 creates the Water Infrastructure Credit Enhancement Reserve Fund and would allow the Oklahoma Water Resources Board (OWRB) to issue up to $300 M in bonds.

This measure would provide the funding to implement the highly controversial Water for 2060 Act, (HB 3055), one of the most dangerous bills ever passed by the Republican-led Oklahoma Legislature.

HB 3055 reads “the public policy of this state is to establish and work toward a goal of consuming no more fresh water in the year 2060 than is consumed statewide in the year 2012”.

If passed, SQ 764 would provide the funds to make this dangerous and costly bill a reality in OK, leading to the rationing of freshwater, regardless of its abundance.  (See below the Campaign Contributions chart for further details on SQ 764).

Yes on SQ 764 PAC

The “Yes on SQ 764” PAC was established in June of this year by the Oklahoma Municipal League, the OK Rural Water Association (ORWA), and the State Chamber Of Oklahoma.  Chair of this committee is Homer Nicholson, Mayor of Ponca City; Treasurer is Arnella Karges of the State Chamber of Oklahoma; and Deputy Treasurer is Billy G. Simms, Pres. of ORWA.

The big contributors to this committee were BancFirst Corp., contributing a whopping $15,000, and the Chickasaw Nation, who contributed $10,000.  Other donors included a general contractor from Manhattan, KS, a law firm from Dallas, TX, and a financial advisor firm, also in Dallas.

How very…regional.

Last minute contributors included the State Chamber with a contribution of $3,800.

Campaign Contributions for “Yes on SQ 764”:

Name & Address of Contributor Occupation & Employer or Principal Business Activity Date Accepted Amount of Contribution
BancFirst Corporation Banking 11-Sep-12 $15,000.00
Chickasaw Nation Native American Tribe 20-Sep-12 $10,000.00
RICK SMITH FINANCIAL ADVISOR (sic) 24-Aug-12 $5,000.00
Municipal Finance Services Municipal Financial Advisor 12-Oct-12 $5,000.00
The Public Finance Law Group PLLC Law Firm 9-Oct-12 $5,000.00
State Chamber Of Oklahoma Legislative Advocates For Business 10/31/12 $3,800.00
Okla Rural Water Association PAC Special Interest Association 10/29/12 $2,500.00
ORWA Assurance Group Business 10/29/12 $2,000.00
FirstSouthwest Financial Advisor – Dallas, TX 10/31/12 $2,000.00
Butler Engineering Consulting Engineering 13-Sep-12 $1,500.00
HDR Engineering, Inc. Consulting Engineering 10-Sep-12 $1,500.00
Holloway Updike & Bellen, Inc. Civil Engineering – Consulting 22-Aug-12 $1,000.00
United Trenching Incorporated Water & Sanitary Sewer Installation 22-Aug-12 $1,000.00
Krapff-Reynolds Construction Company Utility Contractor 28-Sep-12 $1,000.00
Lasso Corp Oil & Gas Investment 20-Sep-12 $1,000.00
M&E Consultants, LLC Civil Engineering 20-Sep-12 $1,000.00
AEP-PSO Electric Utility 20-Sep-12 $1,000.00
Walters-Morgan Construction, Inc. General Contractor – Municipal Infrastructure – Manhattan, KS 17-Sep-12 $1,000.00
Jess Mark Nichols Farms Farming 11-Sep-12 $1,000.00
WDB Engineering PLLC Consulting Engineering 16-Oct-12 $1,000.00
Bank Of Cushing Banking 5-Oct-12 $1,000.00
McCall, Parkhurst & Horton, L.L.P. Law Firm – Dallas, TX 5-Oct-12 $1,000.00
Wind, Water, And Agriculture (wwag) Pac Political Action Committee 10/25/12 $1,000.00
JOE E TARON, DDS RETIRED 24-Sep-12 $500.00
Myers Engineering Consulting Engineers 10-Oct-12 $250.00
J.D. STRONG DIRECTOR – OWRB 22-Oct-12 $200.00
JOE S FREEMAN CHIEF – OWRB 18-Sep-12 $100.00

Total contributions to date, including last minute contributions: $68,675.

SQ 764 Recommended Vote: No

Title: Creates the Water Infrastructure Credit Enhancement Reserve Fund; allows the OWRB to issue bonds

Ballot Language: This measure amends the Oklahoma Constitution. It adds a new Section 39A to Article 10. It would allow the Oklahoma Water Resources Board to issue bonds. Any bonds issued would be used to provide a reserve fund for the Board. The fund would be a reserve fund for certain water resource and sewage treatment funding programs. The fund could only be used to pay other bonds and obligations for the funding programs. The bonds could only be issued after other monies and sources are used for repayment. The bonds would be general obligation bonds. Not more than Three Hundred Million Dollars worth of bonds could be issued. The Legislature would provide the monies to pay for the bonds. The Legislature would provide for methods for issuing the bonds. The Legislature would provide for how the fund is administered.

Comments: This measure would provide the funding to implement the highly controversial Water for 2060 Act, (HB 3055), one of the most dangerous bills ever passed by the Republican-led Oklahoma Legislature.

HB 3055 reads the public policy of this state is to establish and work toward a goal of consuming no more fresh water in the year 2060 than is consumed statewide in the year 2012”.

If passed, SQ 764 would provide the funds to make this dangerous and costly bill a reality in OK, potentially leading to the rationing of freshwater in this state, regardless of abundance.

August 22, 2012

State Chamber Admits Running Campaigns – Thinks Tax Cuts Don’t Matter

[9/4/12 UPDATE to this post: Both Nathan Dahm (R-SD 33) and Ken Walker (R-HD 70) won the runoff elections on August 28th, 2012.  Since no Democrat candidates filed for these seats, the August 28th election decided these offices.  The Oklahoma Legislature will convene for the First Regular Session of the 54th Oklahoma Legislature (2013-2014) on Tuesday, January 8, 2013 at 12:00 Noon.]

Uh, and for us, you know, political guys, you know, a lot of times we, you know, the legislature spends a lot of time talking about things that just don’t matter – I mean, they want to talk about tax cuts and all that stuff… So we’re going to have to figure out… how to help, uh, refocus maybe the legislators’ attention on things that are actually going to create jobs, versus worrying about tax cuts and tax credits and stuff like that.” [Chad Warmington, State Chamber]

OK-SAFE, Inc. – The Oklahoma State Chamber of Commerce held a lunch time Legislative Wrap Up Meeting on Tuesday, July 17, 2012 at Northeastern State University, at the Broken Arrow Campus.

Manufacturers from the surrounding area were invited to attend, and Chamber President Fred Morgan and lobbyist Chad Warmington each gave presentations before taking questions from the audience.

Both Morgan and Warmington made statements that left little doubt as to the Chambers intentions, revealing what most in the grassroots already knew – that the Chamber is an agenda-driven institution, single-minded in its’ efforts to advance corporate interests only, operating virtually without conscious and with little or no regard to principle when it comes to policy issues.  The Chamber wants what business wants.  Period.

These Chamber representatives admit they actively find, recruit, and run the campaigns of, candidates who will vote the way the Chamber wants them to vote;  they call these recruits their “pro-business” candidates. (For those out there who still think there is a chance your Chamber-supported candidate will actually represent the interests of their home district, please understand – it doesn’t work that way.)

Fred Morgan, a former legislator/lobbyist, took over as President of  the  State Chamber a couple of years ago.

Morgan stated that before he came, “…we really weren’t very politically engaged.  But we know that in order to [unclear] that…we know that we need to be engaged and we need to be engaged not just at the policy advocacy level but we need to be involved in the political level as well. So we have engaged very heavily at the political level.  It’s a lot easier to lobby a legislator who shares your ideas, and your goals, and who knows something about business. And Chad is going to go through a lot of the projects, kind of sum up our political projects.” 

The Chamber of Commerce doesn’t want to waste a lot of time working with legislators who may not agree with them, so they’ve decided it’s better to pick and run their own guys; Morgan referred to this as being “politically engaged in the process.”

Warmington admits,“So we run campaigns, essentially, out of one side of our shop.”  His power point presentation detailed the State Chamber’s recent activities and projects on which they are focused.

Some of those activities include:

  • Finding and recruiting candidates to run for office, regardless of party affiliation
  • Running campaigns, including mail pieces – positive for their pro-business “friends,”  and negative for their opponents, called either “anti-business” or “trial lawyers” – and radio and phone calls (live).
  • Educating the newly elected candidates so they’ll vote the “right way” – called being “pro-business”
  • Partnering with the Research Institute for Economic Development, or RIED, a 20-year old special interest group, to rank legislators.  RIED is described here.  The annual RIED Report claims to score legislators on “business, jobs, and economic development”, but the criteria used to rank them is virtually unavailable.
  • The use of The Political Intelligence Report , a subscription information site to provide ‘intelligence’ to their members.  The Intelligence Report is also used to encourage or discourage campaign contributions, among other things.
  • The creation of “We Are Watching Them” website, for tracking votes and detailing a “top offenders” list of legislators who don’t vote the way the Chamber wants them to vote.
  • The creation of the Oklahoma Civil Justice Council, an evaluation system to criticize judges who render decisions that the Chamber’s corporate members don’t agree with.  The criteria is based on whether the judge’s decision “expanded or contracted” liability for businesses.

This recently-created Council has been criticzed by Rep. John Bennett, a conservative legislator, who pointed out that judges are supposed to be impartial.  In turn, Bennett is being targeted by the State Chamber for being “anti-business.”

Campaigns Without Conscious

Warmington was quite enthusiastic over the Chamber’s agenda – and without conscious, it seems, when it comes to how the Chamber conducts campaigns for their chosen candidates.  He never once mentioned the character assassination the Chamber engaged in while “defending” their “pro-business friends” during the recent elections.  Think this didn’t happen?  Just ask Pastor Paul Blair of Edmond, OK  who ran against the Chamber’s buddy Senator Clark Jolley, or Kevin McDugle of Tulsa who took on the progressive Senator Brian Crain in the primary elections this year.   The State Chamber demonstrated they have no qualms about running dirty campaigns and will work to provide political cover for their “friends”.

In Tulsa county, the State Chamber has endorsed these candidates in legislative runoff election, set for August 28, 2012:

  • SD 33 – Tim Wright
  • HB 70 – Shane Saunders

The grassroots supports the real conservatives Nathan Dahm (SD 33) and Ken Walker (HD 70) in these races.

[9/4/12 UPDATE – Nathan Dahm won the SD 33 election on August 28, 2012.  Ken Walker won the HD 70 election on August 28, 2012.  Neither office had a Democrat file so the runoff election decided these offices.]

The audio of the July 17th State Chamber meeting is available on America in the Balance on Truth in Focus internet radio – click on the July 20, 2012 podcast.    The transcript of this event is available in pdf format on the OK-SAFE website here.

Quotable Chamber Meeting Quotes:

“This ain’t your granddaddy’s State Chamber.”  

“… we have engaged very heavily at the political level.”

What we decided is that we couldn’t just wait and hope and pray that good legislators showed up at the Capitol… so we run campaigns, essentially, out of one side of our shop we don’t care what party you’re from,…”

“We have our legislative agenda…. [A]nd if they’re voting against the legislation the business community wants they you’re, you get a bad score…”

How do I get off your list?”  And I said, “It’s very easy, just kinda vote your way off the list… if you vote the right way, you’ll get off the list.”   

“I  mean, we absolutely helped switch votes.”

“Oklahoma Civil Justice Council is not directly related to the Legislature, it’s another project we wanted to point out. We’re doing the same thing with Judges and we’ve caught a little bit of heat for it.  It’s a brand new project that Fred uh, has, uh, been spearheading…. And we’re going to do the same job of evaluation system on Judges and all we’re going to judge Judges on are, do they expand or contract liability for businesses…?”

“But part of the problem is we spend all of our time to recruit good business candidates, we get them elected, we get them educated, we get them to vote the right way on a bill, and then the bill goes to the Supreme Court and gets struck down…. we’ve got some work to do making sure that the business community…. understand who these Judges are…”

“Representative Bennett came out and criticized us for having the gall to evaluate judges…”

“So, again, this is the, the RIED Score, many of you have seen it. It lists who got what…. so again, we go back to party affiliation, we don’t care what party you’re from – we just care that you’re voting for business.”

Uh, and for us, you know, political guys, you know, a lot of times we, you know, the legislature spends a lot of time talking about things that just don’t matter – I mean, they want to talk about tax cuts and all that stuff… So we’re going to have to figure out… how to help, uh, refocus maybe the legislators’ attention on things that are actually going to create jobs, versus worrying about tax cuts and tax credits and stuff like that.”

July 14, 2012

Obama expands NAFTA Superhighways, signs MAP-21 into law

OK-SAFE, Inc. – See the post below from our friend Terri Hall of Texas TURF.

At issue is the resurgence of the Trans-Texas Corridor, sometimes referred to as the NAFTA Superhighway, and the promotion of triple P’s – Public-Private Partnerships.

Click here to read the entire article by Terri Hall.  Click here to read OK-SAFE’ s position paper on PPPs.

Obama expands NAFTA Superhighways, signs MAP-21 into law
By Terri Hall
July 13, 2012

Some have tried to convince the public that the Trans Texas Corridor and NAFTA Superhighways are dead. But Congress recently passed a new, two-year federal highway bill, Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (or MAP-21), that not only gives priority funding to these ‘high priority’ trade corridors, it also makes it easier to hand them over to private corporations using controversial public private partnership (P3) toll contracts.

On July 6, President Barack Obama signed MAP-21 into law. As with most bills these days, Congress had to pass it in order for us to know what’s in it. Only the committee members, conferees, and lobbyists had the access to know precisely what was in it, and big business, big energy, and various and sundry special interests got just what they wanted — including state highway departments that got the environmental rules so relaxed, they can literally add toll lanes to any highway without so much as a public hearing or ANY study of the impacts, so long as it’s within the existing right of way.

Does it have-ta be NAFTA?
Americans have seen their jobs exported for two decades, and many argue NAFTA is what started the downward spiral. Though most high tech jobs have gone to Asia, U.S. manufacturing got outsourced to Mexico, and eventually to China, too. Even American agriculture is feeling the effects of NAFTA. You can drive through the San Joaquin Valley in California even now and see signs along what used to be a booming farm community criticizing Senator Barbara Boxer for using arcane environmental policy to destroy farmers’ ability to grow food in order to quietly enforce NAFTA’s import/export mandates.

Ditto for the Mexican trucking program that drew loud U.S. protests during the Bush Administration from truckers and those concerned with  non-English reading drivers, smuggling, and illegal immigration, which Obama quietly approved in March 2011.

In June 2011, the Texas Legislature repealed the Trans Texas Corridor (TTC), a 4,000 mile network of multi-modal toll roads, toll rail, toll  truck lanes, as well as tolled utilities, telecommunications, and pipelines of all sorts — that would all fall under the control of a private, foreign corporation for a half century. It was the most ambitious plan proposed of the NAFTA superhighways. The TTC would be gigantic, 1,200 feet wide, which is like four football fields end to end. Dubbed the biggest land grab in Texas history, it would be near impossible to traverse across or drive cattle or school buses under it, since the developer only had to build overpasses where it intersected existing interstates.

On the first leg, there would have been only 4 exits through the entire state of Texas and it would have displaced one million Texans. Since the developer also got the exclusive rights to the land surrounding the toll and railways, it would be granted a state-sanctioned monopoly and the ability to charge concession fees and choose all the gas stations, hotels, and restaurants on this captive audience revenue-generating corridor. So the TTC would have effectively bisected whole communities, crushed economic development along the remaining private property adjacent to the tollway, as well as cut-off access to huge parcels of farmers and ranchers’ land, rendering the parcels virtually useless.

The driving force behind Texas Governor Rick Perry’s ambitious plan was foreign trade — to accommodate the influx of what was initially thought to be goods from Mexico, but that soon got supplanted by even cheaper goods from China. The TTC’s primary purpose was to facilitate the free flow of people and goods across the border from the deep water port, Lazaro Cardenas, in Mexico into the interior of the U.S. and up into Canada.

Threat to sovereignty and freedom to travel
Texans immediately realized the threat to state sovereignty and property rights. They had a visceral reaction to having their land forcibly seized through eminent domain and handed to a foreign entity, Spain-based toll giant, Cintra. The more they learned, the less there was to like.

A fairly new financing and development agreement for the time, a P3, would be the primary procurement method for the TTC, and it was all negotiated in secret. Neither the press nor the Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott were allowed to see it. Abbott had to sue the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) just to get it released.

The financial guts of the contract were still withheld until the eleventh hour prior to Perry’s re-election in 2006, under threat of yet another lawsuit — this time by property rights advocates. Texans discovered these P3 contracts included profit guarantees and non-compete agreements as well as financial incentives to manipulate speed limits to slow down the free routes and enhance speeds on the tollway. The non-compete clauses prohibit or penalize the state for the expansion of free alternative routes in order to ensure congestion on the free lanes and force more drivers to pay the toll.

Rest of article Examiner dot com.

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