Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Today’s New York Times chronicles the American government’s quest for ever-more-intrusive airport security systems. The ostensible purpose is to thwart terrorists and wannabes like last week’s Nigerian “pants bomber.”
But what if the solution to terrorism is much simpler?
The fact is that Americans suffer from classic “doublethink” about terrorism.
Doublethink, a term coined in George Orwell’s novel 1984, is the ability to hold two contradictory thoughts at the same time while ignoring the contradiction.
Even if they watch Fox News, most Americans know that their government bombs people and sponsors repressive regimes all over the world. At the same time, they believe that America just minds its own business in the world, never bothers anyone, and certainly doesn’t do anything to make people hate us and want to attack us.
As a result, they are completely baffled by acts of terrorism. They think that terrorists are irrationally hostile toward the United States and the Western way of life, and that nothing short of an impenetrable security system can stop them from attacking us.
And because there’s no such thing as an impenetrable security system, the result is a never-ending parade of more oppressive and intrusive security procedures. And more billions of taxpayer dollars wasted.
The solution to terrorism is not to shovel more and more tax money into boondoggles such as the Transportation Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security, nor to let the government wiretap everyone, nor to lock Americans into their houses and let them out only under police supervision.
The solution is to stop bombing wedding parties and to tell local dictators that they’re on their own.
Copyright 2009 by N.S. Palmer.
Tuesday, December 29, 2009
Let's see... Ah yes. Congress.
They slipped the healthcare bill through. On Christmas Eve. I hate that.
It's so cowardly- they can't bear to actually try to compromise and consider that they might be wrong about it; we have to get it through at all costs, even if said costs include lying about it and pushing it through when we know no one is paying attention, and they can't do anything about it.
Which leads me to another topic. Why is Congress in session so often?
I mean, I don't think they even have the right to say they live in their home districts anymore. They don't live there. They live in D.C. for practically the entire year. I don't see how that is good for our country. When they have enough time to pass an attaboy for an athletic 'hero', we have problems. That shows that they have entirely too much time on the floor, and not enough time actually listening to their Constitutents.
And that, in turn, leads me to yet another pet peeve.
Why in the world is the Senate/House floor always empty when anyone is speaking? I mean, it's like the minute they aren't the center of attention anymore *shoom* out the door they are.
I understand they are busy men. I mean, they have to work hard to schmooze all those lobbyists and come up with 1,000 page bills none of them even read, and of course, there's all the Pork Cram Time they have to get in. All those things are very, very important.
Friday, December 25, 2009
Saturday, December 19, 2009
And the holiday wishes start.
A smiling young salesman, after handing you your receipt, widely smiles and wishes you- "Happy holidays!" At this point, there are two responses: 1) smile, return the greeting, and walk away, 2) glare at him, turn away, and walk off in a huff, determined to spread the word of the highly offensive greeting you were given amongst all your friends and online acquaintances.
Heh. I guess you know where this is going, eh?
Every year, we go through the same thing. Christians, their tender sensitivities hurt by the salesman's greeting, loudly yell- "Jesus is the Reason for the Season!" and "Keep Christ in Christmas!" until, by the end of the Christmas season, they're all so tired, they have to retreat back to the comfortable, worn holes of gay rights and abortion.
The most outspoken 'War on Christmas' soldier is the American Family Association, which annually posts a 'Naughty or Nice' list of companies that are "FOR" Christmas. (They can't even find a way to incorporate Christian terminology into the name. They have to borrow from Santa Claus!)
Christmas has become the holiday of the MasterCard. Our only thoughts on Christmas morning are "I hope Sally likes what I got," and "I wonder what I got!" Very Christian thoughts, there. In effect, Christmas has ceased to be the celebration of Christ's birth that the Catholics made it into, and it has more and more begun to resemble the original pagan origins.
So what are we putting Christ's name to? Christ's name is more and more used to justify the most excessive consumerism that is seen the whole year 'round. Do we really want Jesus' name reduced to that?
But beyond that, the 'War against the War on Christmas' is just plain petty. Does it really matter what the greeter at your local grocery store says in the way of holiday greeting? 'Happy Holidays' is a nice- and much shorter- way to say "Merry Christmas, Happy Thanksgiving, Happy New Year, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa!" all in one simple greeting. How can you get offended by that?
And in the end, the way someone greets you is really irrelevant. Christians waste their time fighting about such a fringe issue when what they should really be concerned about is winning souls!
Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Waaaay back in the 1960s — yes, during that tiresome decade of Woodstock and flower power and Vietnam — something remarkable happened in Czechoslovakia.
From the end of World War II in 1945 until 1989, Czechoslovakia was dominated by the Soviet Union, which was the 20th-century’s nom de voyage for the Russian Empire. Its official ideology was communism. Its official governing method was oppression.
In 1968, a reformer named Alexander Dubček became leader of the Czech Communist Party, which was the country’s ruling party. He wanted to keep the egalitarian goals of communism (such as equality and social welfare) but get rid of its oppressive aspects. His government allowed free speech, including open dissent from government policies. He reined in the secret police.
Dubček called his movement “communism with a human face.”
Naturally, the Russians couldn’t allow it. They invaded Czechoslovakia and put an end to that experiment.
How little things have changed. In 2009 under President Obama, the United States is now being treated to “Bush-ism with a human face.”
One must admit that it is a slight improvement. Instead of having to endure the smirking, murderous, simian countenance of Dubya Bush, we now hear very similar policies from the serious, calm, intelligent visage of President Obama. It cuts the nausea factor by quite a bit. It’s been months since I threw my shoes at the TV set.
But it’s still Bush-ism: Bail out the Wall Street sharks who wrecked the economy, but not the unemployed whose jobs and lives the Wall Streeters destroyed. Sell out health care reform to the in$urance companies, the drug companies, and their hired lackeys in Congress. Crank up the war against Afghanistan. Slow down the exit from Iraq. Beat the drums about largely imaginary terrorist threats. Provide legal defense for the Bush regime’s chief torture apologist, John Yoo. Leave in place the instruments of oppression established by the Bush regime, such as the Transportation Security Agency, no-fly lists, warrantless wiretapping, and the Department of Homeland Security: instruments that never stopped a real terrorist threat, but hyped plenty of fake ones and beat down the American people into cowed submission lest they be put on a “watch list.”
An article in today’s New York Times recalls the worst paranoia and propaganda of the Bush years, when hapless loudmouths and street thugs were framed as dangerous terrorists. The Times article, “Domestic Insecurity,” uses the same weasel-words that we saw over and over in propaganda from the Bush-Cheney regime: the supposed terrorists were “accused of being drawn into terrorist scheming,” “accused of helping plan the killing spree in Mumbai,” “accused of going to Pakistan for explosives training,” and they “allegedly participated in a rocket attack against U.S. troops in Afghanistan.”
Anyone can be accused of anything, and since the Bush-Cheney regime’s signature event of 9/11, they have been. Jose Padilla was accused of plotting to explode a “dirty bomb,” and was then tortured in an unsuccessful attempt to get any evidence at all that would implicate him in such a plot. The “Miami Seven,” who couldn’t have assembled a bomb even if they’d bought it “ready to assemble” at Wal-Mart, were led by an FBI agent provocateur to take an “oath of allegiance to Al Qaeda” before being framed for a virtually non-existent plot to blow up the Sears Tower in Chicago. There are many more such cases.
Are any of our current “accused people” actually guilty of anything? The Bush years taught us to doubt it. The Obama administration hasn’t given us good reasons not to doubt it.
I still believe that President Obama is trying to do the right things. The problem is that he’s not trying very hard. Instead, he’s “going with the flow.” Since 2001 (and even before that, to a lesser degree), the flow has been in the wrong direction.
Copyright 2009 by N.S. Palmer. May be reproduced as long as byline, copyright notice, and URL (http://www.ashesblog.com/) are included.
Monday, December 14, 2009
I am critiquing President Obama's recent strategy/policy speech for Afghanistan and Pakistan.
"They've blown up buildings, derailed foreign investment, and threatened the stability of the state. "
Yes and only we can do that. Because we are the all-important American people. The fact that we did this to two countries already (well, maybe not the second one...not all the way) is of no import. The only thing that matters right now is that....
Terrorists are evil. They want to kill us. Allah is evil. Muslims are evil. Terrorists are evil. Kill them!!!
"We will insist that action be taken, one way or another, when we have intelligence about high-level terrorist targets."
I have an idea. When you hear about some high-level al-Qaeda operative somewhere...send an assassin! A good assassin- you know, like one from a movie or something. It would be cheaper, and vastly more effective than our current regimen of invade - occupy - switch countries.
"The government's ability to destroy these safe havens is tied to its own strength and security."
I love how he makes it sound like we're going to be helping the Pakistani people. They don't want our help. They've been feeding us low-lifes from the Taliban for years- many of whom have absolutely no knowledge of anything.
And now we're going to invade them. Despite his high-flown words, that is basically what we're doing. We're going to send in troops. And occupy them.
"It's important for the American people to understand that Pakistan needs our help in going after Al Qaida. .... And that's why we must focus on military assistance on the tools, training, and support that Pakistan needs to root out the terrorists."
Uh-huh. Military assistance, my eye. We'll be giving military assistance as in oh, a bunch of troops occupying them.
"And after years of mixed results, we will not and cannot provide a blank check."
Really? I mean, that's worked so well for us in the past. You know, what with the Afghan-Soviet war (where we channeled funds to the Mujahideen...through Pakistan), or 'Nam. Or Korea. Or pretty much any other country where we went in to help and ended up making a bigger mess than we started with.
The fact is President Obama, that you can't provide a check at all. Maybe you haven't noticed, but your country is like...bankrupt. There is no money. There is no more money to pursue your dreams of imperialism, begun by your predecessor. Sorry. But there is no way we can pursue this or any other war!
"To avoid the mistakes of the past, we must make clear that our relationship with Pakistan is grounded in support for Pakistan's democratic institutions and the Pakistani people. "
What mistakes of the past would that be?
Because I seem to remember...oh let's see, a failed mission in Vietnam. Or a blood bath in Korea. Or the Afghan-Soviet debacle that ended in (recently) disastrous outcomes for us. Or a war in Iraq/Kuwait that was waayyy out of our proper role.
So maybe this time, just this once, we could pursue a policy of non-interventionism. After all, if we don't mess with them, I doubt they'll feel inclined to mess with us.
"Now a campaign against extremism will not succeed with bullets or bombs alone. Al Qaida offers the people of Pakistan nothing but destruction. We stand for something from the time."
Oh yeah. We see how beautifully an American invasion turned out for the Iraqis. And the Afghans. I mean, they're dancing in the streets, they're so....wait.
Oops. Was that our bomb?
"So, today, I'm calling upon Congress to pass a bipartisan bill co-sponsored by John Kerry and Richard Lugar that authorizes $1.5 billion in direct support to the Pakistani people every year over the next five years, resources that will build schools, roads, and hospitals, and strengthen Pakistan's democracy. I'm also calling on Congress to pass a bipartisan bill co- sponsored by Maria Cantwell and Chris Van Hollen and Peter Hoekstra that creates opportunity zones in the border regions to develop the economy and bring hope to places plagued with violence. "
No. No. That is not the way it's done. Of course, considering the precedent that has been set by previous presidents, it's no wonder he's a bit confused.
When you invade a country, you have to declare war on them. Not just send in soldiers and give them money. That is way unconstitutional.
"As we provide these resources, the days of unaccountable spending, no-bid contracts, and wasteful reconstruction must end. So my budget will increase funding for a strong inspector general at both State Department and USAID and include robust funding for special inspector generals for Afghan reconstruction."
Unfortunately, your budget is already bankrupt. Sorry.
"I remind everybody the United States of America did not choose to fight a war in Afghanistan. Nearly 3,000 of our people were killed on September 11, 2001 for doing nothing than going about their daily lives. Al Qaida and its allies have since killed thousands of people in many countries."
Apparently, President Obama, just like his predecessor, sees no problem with invading an entire sovereign country to get at a couple hundred terrorists. And going over there and attacking them simply confirms what the terrorists think of us.
In Osama bin Laden's announcement of the inauguration of the World Islamic Front, he proclaimed their purpose in attacking the US and her people:
Considering this (which was written during the Gulf War), its easy to see that we're merely repeating past mistakes. And that Osama bin Laden's points, at least in his mind and the minds of his followers, are still quite valid. We are confirming his position and his beliefs about us.
And I am quite sure that others will see that he still has a point. And though they may not join his organization to perpetrate violence, they will still agree with him, and bin Laden wins a PR victory.
Well, I guess that's the end. The rest of it is just kumbaya, everybody loves everybody else.... ^.^
Here's a link to the transcript, if you'd like to read.
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Anyway. My question is this- what is patriotism? What comprises patriotism?
I don't think patriotism includes blindly following a certain party because they profess to be 'American'. Nor is patriotism hanging an American flag outside your house. Nor is patriotism merely acceding to the demands of our politicians, or accepting what they do. Neither, in my opinion, is patriotism agreeing with a war merely because we're fighting it.
Some of those reasons are misguided. Some are silly. And some are just...well, lemming-ish.
When we think patriotism is based on what party we are a part of, we're really just giving in to pride about how smart we are. Patriotism is not based on your beliefs. Patriotism is also not based on a show in front of your house, either of American flags or little yellow ribbons. That leads into the war thing.
Just because we're fighting a war, doesn't mean you have to support it. And just because you don't support it doesn't make you less American. It makes you critical, but not un-American. Patriotism is also not just submitting to what our politicians do. We are the bosses of our politicians, and as such we should be active.
And that is what I think patriotism is- having a healthy, yet critical, love for your country, but not one that amounts to fanaticism. We do not want American fanatics. Patriotism is being able to acknowledge that your country has faults, but being willing to do something about those faults.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
And my thoughts on the matter are still unchanged. But I'm going to go through the speech and detail why, just to be objective and all that.
"Many people in the United States and many in partner country that have sacrifices so much have a simple question. What is our purpose in Afghanistan?"
Really? You're just now noticing that is a question? Hmm. What was your first clue? The upswell of public opinion on the polls?
The fact of the matter is that we have no purpose, despite his professed reasons- which sound eerily like something out of the Bush administration. Say hello, once again, to the Bushama Administration.
"Al Qaida and its allies, the terrorists who planned and supported the 9/11 attacks are in Pakistan and Afghanistan."
Oh. I see now. And it makes so much sense to attack an entire country just to get at a few underground people who are hidden where you'll never find them. Ah, but he already knows that:
"They have used this mountainous terrain as a safe haven to hide, to train terrorists, and communicate with followers, to plot attacks, and to send fighters to support the insurgency in Afghanistan."
Ah. So we're going to fight not one, not two, but three senseless wars on the basis of the fact that these men are...hidden? Uh-huh. I see how this makes sense. We're going to throw our entire army at an underground organization that we will probably never track down.
I say we will never track them down because we haven't yet. We've managed to get what, five of the men who actually knew a single thing beyond "Oh yeah, we were gonna' blow up a building." Yeah, our track record is impressively amazing.
Let's see- Osama bin Laden was first put on the FBI's Most Wanted List in 1998 or thereabouts. Al Qaeda was formed in 1988. That means we have had almost twenty years to catch he or his organization leaders. Twenty years. Twenty years in which we fought four years and wasted lots of time- oh, and we launched some cruise missiles at where we thought bin Laden might be.
Also, one bit of trivia that never ceases to amaze me- we helped the Afghanis get weapons. In fact, we gave them weapons. During the 80s', when the Soviets were locked in a war with the Afghanis for control of their country, we gave the Mujahideen weapons and money. Bin Laden benefited from this in a rather round-about way, by joining a man named Abdullah Azzam in Afghanistan- who was a Mujahideen.
Bin Laden and Azzam created the splinter group Maktab al-Khidamat- which, in the long run, only trained 100 mujahidin and only funneled $2 mil to the Afghan Mujahideen. Al Qaeda rose out of Maktab al-Khidamat. During the Afghan-Soviet war, the US and bin Laden were basically working together, in the common pursuit of getting rid of the Soviet threat.
The Taliban also rose out of the Mujahideen- they replaced the constant fighting of the Mujahideen, with some sort of stability and order. This gave them great popularity amongst ordinary Afghans. And the Taliban also took advantage of the weapons we channeled to Afghanistan during the Soviet-Afghan war. We created the monster we all hate now.
"But this is not simply an American problem, far from it."
I didn't know Afghanistan was an American problem. Or maybe it is- since we created it, we should fix it....despite the fact the Afghanis didn't want us to fix it. They're tired of us being there, tired of us destroying their way of life, and they just want us to leave.
Neither is Pakistan our problem. Bin Laden may or may not be our problem, but a full-scale invasion of a sovereign country is not the answer.
"For the Afghan people, the return to Taliban rule would condemn their country to brutal governance, international isolation, a paralyzed economy, and the denial of basic human rights to the Afghan people, especially, women and girls."
And that works for them. Just like having Saddam worked for the Iraqis. What, are we the International Meanness Police now too?
We have enough problems here at home. Like our economy. This constant warfare is killing us. It is killing our economy, it is killing our military, and it is slowly and surely killing our country. We cannot maintain this steady rate of warfare and conflict without serious consequences.
"A return in force of Al Qaida terrorists who would accompany the core Taliban leadership would cast Afghanistan under the shadow of perpetual violence."
Perhaps President Obama should study his history. Before the Taliban took control, there was constant in-fighting between the Mujahideen. After the Soviets left, the Mujahideen aimlessly turned on each other. The Taliban conquered them. Too bad for the Mujahideen.
And the Taliban brought stability to the region. They established a steady government that worked for them. True, they were a bit kooky and some weird rules (according to us) but it worked for them.
"We are not in Afghanistan to control that country or to dictate its future."
Oh really. So we're just there to....ruin their infrastructure...and kill their people...and destroy their government....and stay there forever...and....dictate...what they can do.
Not the same thing at all.
"We are in Afghanistan to confront a common enemy that threatens the United States, our friends, and our allies and the people of Afghanistan and Pakistan who have suffered the most at the hands of violent extremists."
President Obama has a mistaken idea of what terrorism- and terrorists- are. Terrorism is a tactic. Terrorists are the people that use the tactic. In this case, they are Muslim extremists. We cannot 'confront' the terrorists, for the simple reason that a) we have absolutely no idea where they are, b) they won't let us know where they are, and c) did I mention we don't know where they are?
Once again- the decision about their regime is the Afghani peoples'. Yes, the Taliban had quite a hold. But the Afghani people have proven time and time again that they can conquer despite a stronger enemy. If they truly wanted out from under the Taliban, I have no doubt they would do something about it.
They do not need our help for their freedom- especially not so we can impose our idea of what freedom is.
"So I want the American people to understand that we have a clear and focused goal to disrupt, dismantle, and defeat Al Qaida in Pakistan and Afghanistan and to prevent their return to either country in the future."
Ah yes. And how do you plan to do this again, Mr. President?
I guess he shares the mistaken ideas of his predecessor- if we tear up enough roads, kill enough civilians, and dismantle enough regimes, bin Laden will hand himself to us on a silver platter.
Sorry, but I don't think it works that way. Bin Laden has proven that our meddling merely makes his resolve stronger. The more innocent civilians we kill, the more territory of theirs we take over, the more Muslims come around to his way of thinking and join him. We cannot fight a radical ideology with guns and troops.
And maybe, just maybe, the man has a point. Even Hitler had some sort of logic under his depraved, mentally unstable ravings. Bin Laden's point is simple- Americans are inhabiting their countries. We need to leave.
I do not agree with his way of trying to get us to see that. But I definitely agree with his point. We are meddling way too much in the politics and dynamics of that region. We need to stop while we're ahead. And by stop, I mean cease and desist completely. Not leave a few half-hearted squads of soldiers to guard their state secrets, not leave advisors there to continue telling their new regime what to do.
"And to the terrorists who oppose us, my message is the same. We will defeat you."
Keep saying that. If you say it often enough, it might come true!
That we will defeat the terrorists has been the mantra for the past eight years. Guess what. The terrorists are still at large, and there is no indication that our inept intelligence services and our futiley struggling army will be able to catch them any time soon.
"To achieve our goals, we need a stronger, smarter, and comprehensive strategy."
I have one for you- leave the people alone! After all, the strongest way we can make these people see that we mean them no harm is by showing that we trust them to make their own decisions.
Ah but yes...they're just like the average American- too dumb to know what's best for them.
"To enhance the military, governance, and economic capacity of Afghanistan and Pakistan, we have to marshal international support."
That might be difficult to do. Especially in light of the fact that Britain isn't all that keen on the way they got into Iraq....I doubt they'll be feeling too eager to jump head-first into yet more conflicts.
"And to defeat an enemy that heeds no border or laws of war, we must recognize the fundamental connection between the future of Afghanistan and Pakistan..."
If they heed no borders, then we cannot fight them in the conventional sense of the word. They don't have borders. They don't recognize borders. They spread like a disease. There are terrorists everywhere- there are even terrorists here in the US!
The fact of the matter is that we cannot pinpoint where the terrorists are. They could be anywhere in the Middle East, in North Africa, East Africa...practically anywhere in the world. It is impossible to fight them with conventional means.
"Al Qaida and other violent extremists have killed several thousand Pakistanis since 9/11. They've killed many Pakistani soldiers and police. They assassinated Benazir Bhutto. They've blown up buildings, derailed foreign investment, and threatened the stability of the state."
And what are we going to do?
We're going to go in like we went into Afghanistan and Iraq, kill hundreds of thousands of their citizens, destroy their infrastructure, take over their government...and when we get down to it, the terrorists will be long gone.
Look out for Part II.
Monday, December 7, 2009
Well, I see nothing wrong with that.
So long as he was read his Miranda Rights before he was arrested. Which I doubt. Highly. Mostly because he was captured not by American forces, but by the Pakistani Intelligence Services!!
Otherwise, he must be tried as a prisoner of war. And he needs to be tried. In fact, the international agreement we entered into concerning POWs means we must try him somehow. (Those are the Geneva Conventions, in case you were wondering.)
The problem is, at this point, that most of the men in Guantanamo Bay and the other unsanctioned prisons all over the world have not even had a chance to access counsel. These men are totally cut off from the world. They are charged, on evidence that is either coerced out of them or largely circumstantial. It must be circumstantial, because terrorist organizations don't just let their records out into the open (kind of like government and government officials).
Add to that the fact that many of the men detained at Gitmo and CIA black sites were not even captured by US forces- they were captured by Pakistani or other Middle Eastern forces, and then turned over to us. Makes me wonder- are the men they are giving us really terrorists, or just people the governments of those countries want to get rid of? And what are those countries' incentives?
Changing the 'status' of these men does nothing. Redefining them as 'enemy combatants' does nothing. An enemy combatant is a soldier who is fighting against you. When you capture him, that makes him a prisoner. Since we're supposedly at war, that makes him a prisoner of war. He should be afforded every courtesy generally given to POWs.
During World War II, the German and Japanese POWs were treated very well. This was because we hoped if we treated them well, our men would be treated well if captured. In fact, the POWs were treated so well that some of them stayed here, having gotten a very good taste of life in America.
I'm not saying that we should feed the men in Gitmo T-bone steak and turkey every day- but I do think there should be some semblance of openness in the process of everyday life and interrogations at Gitmo. The silence about what goes on there is worrisome.
There's also the problem of the CIA 'black-sites'. They are places generally in other countries with known histories of human rights violations where the CIA imprisons people with no oversight, no legal counsel, and giving absolutely no way for anyone to know where they are or what goes on behind their walls.
And all this in the name of national security.
We have imprisoned teenage boys, forced recruits, and cooks. Yes, some of them (a very few) have actually committed crimes. But the problem is that we don't know which ones have and which ones have not. They are given no trial, there is no review of the evidence, these men don't even have the benefit of a lawyer!
The CIA abducts men from their homes, sends them to other countries (extraordinary rendition) where it is quite likely they will be tortured or killed. These men are not told what they are being charged with, they are not given the benefit of a formal arrest, the arrests are not even carried out in an acceptable fashion!
And we justify all this by saying that they're 'just terrorists'. We don't need to worry about it because they want to kill us.
I have just one thing to say to that: even an evil man deserves a chance to defend himself. We gave Hitler's cronies that much benefit. We should do it for these men.
Saturday, December 5, 2009
As we all know, President Obama has chosen to send more troops to Afghanistan; a predictable decision everyone saw coming- at least, I did. I didn't watch his entire speech (mostly because I'm sure it was full of the same kind of justification and rejustification that always comes after a decision like this) but I read the recap.
Firstly, I don't think more troops should go there. Especially not when we want to leave.
Secondly, I think we should be drawing out a lot quicker. This war has been dragging on long enough, just like Iraq. It's time we sit down, mind our own business, and let them work out their own problems. If the Taliban takes them over again, that's their problem. The minute they attack us, it becomes our problem- a problem that should be dealt with in the correct way, not with preemptive action that ignores the proper chain of command.
I'm a bit upset at Obama's lack of spine on this issue. Instead of sticking by his promise to bring the troops home from the Middle East, he caved. And he's going to keep caving. Instead of sticking by his guns, saying "No, I'm bringing these boys home like I said I would," he's taken action that will prolong both the money-guzzling and the life-guzzling wars we have going on.
Anyway, on to lighter subjects. Or a lighter subject.
It's been about two weeks ago now I guess- a couple walked right into a White House party.
Sorry. I don't mean to laugh.
I just find it hilarious.
They went through two checkpoints. The Secret Service let them in. Twice. They then proceeded to have their pictures taken with the whos-who of Washington.
And the most hilarious quote in this entire thing- "What would have happened if they had had Anthrax or another biological weapon hidden on their person?!" (Somebody on Fox News)
Well, I'll tell you- everybody at that party, including them, would be dead.
And then nobody'd be laughing, but we'd be able to get out of having to listen to all those celebrities' and Joe Biden's gaffes.
That's not nice.
But the Salahi's didn't have any bioweapons. And they just wanted pictures taken with Obama and the other elite. I can't blame them. I also can't blame them for trying something that I'd love to try.
I mean, who doesn't want to get into the White House? And if the Secret Service will just let you in...
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Well...Fox News didn't seem to waste any time. They've already linked Hassan to every terrorist organization on the globe. Before long, they'll probably be linking him to a few we've never even heard of. All because he was a Muslim, and owned a Koran. (Help!)
We shouldn't hurry. When people get frantic and panicky in things like this, bad things happen. Just look at the aftermath of 9/11- 9/11 itself was a horrible, terrible occurrence. But the aftermath was just as bad. People panicked. The government fed off that, and pushed the PATRIOT act through in the name of keeping us safe.
We gained extra baggage in the form of the Department of Homeland Security, and two wars in the name of stopping terrorism that are now nothing more than black holes for money and lives.
That is what excessive speed and hurry to do something about these types of things cause. The Fort Hood shooting is still too fresh for us to try to do anything. Bring Hassan to justice. The right way. But don't fall into the panic trap. That is how bad things happen.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Monday, November 9, 2009
I thought I'd just post and say- or type- a few words about some of the current events, as well as...well, a few rants I've been forced to hold in over the past few weeks.
Fort Hood Shooting
It's been all over the news. Such a crisis warrants all of us pulling together. But there's one thing that bothers me: the huge controversy over why the guy did it.
Hassan is, obviously, a Muslim. So what? Is that reason, like I heard some say, to completely ban Muslims from being in the armed forces. Uh...no. That's completely unconstitutional. Neither is this proof that his actions were jihadist.
From what I understand, Hassan was upset because he did not want to be deployed. He disagreed with the wars. So he was upset. He was angry. People have done much stupider things because they were angry. I do not think, with the current information I have, that Hassan's actions were motivated by religion. They were motivated by his own feelings of frustration and anger.
The 'healthcare' bill passed the House. They snuck it through at midnight. (Shows what cowards they are, if you ask me.)
Anyway- I have stated before that this bill is not about healthcare. It is about insurance, and giving a boost to them. The insurance companies will receive a boost because of this. That is why they are the No. 1 promoters of these bills.
Probably the one single reason I do not agree with this bill is because it will not fix a thing. It will only apply another temporary fix to the problem. Anything we do, at this point, would only add a temporary fix. We need to completely rethink our system- release ourselves from the narrow constraints of the insurance system, coupled with the medicare system, and fend for ourselves. Stop relying on third parties to do our work for us.
It will never cease to amaze how conservatives gripe about how the government is going to 'dictate care'- but they fail to realize that the insurance companies do just that. Insurance providers tie doctors and patients' hands, and keep them, in some cases, from getting care they should get.
And yet that is a better system? Give me a break!
The Constitutionalist in me does not want a universal system. But we need a fix, not a bandaid. I do not know if a universal system would fix things or not. But hey, it might be worth a try.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Why did I open this with that, do you ask?
Well, I'm not really sure. We were just on the subject of bones, so I thought it would be cute. Anyway, this is going to be a rant more than anything, so if you can't deal with religion and ranting, I suggest you go find a nice book to read. It'll be better for you, believe me.
One of my online friends was talking about something President Obama supposedly did. I haven't found (and honestly, haven't looked. How lazy is that?) any evidence for it, but anyway. Supposedly, Obama refused to go to the 'National Day of Prayer' shindig. (I didn't go either. Everybody declare a national emergency. I'm not standing up for our country's founding morals!) Anyway.
After that, the President supposedly called for a Muslim jamboree, with prayer rugs, Mecca models, the whole nine yards. Or something like that. So, of course, this is instant proof that a) the President is a Muslim, and b) the moral culture in America is falling apart.
Now...say what again?
I'll give you that yes, his calling for a national Muslim prayer day does indicate he's a Muslim. But so what? There's no religious test for the Presidency.
But that the moral culture in America is coming apart at the seams? Uh...you lost me. (Yes, this is where we get to the 'backbones made of cartilage' part. This is also where we get to the religious part.)
Did anybody ever stop to think that maybe, just maybe, the moral culture is falling apart because Christians aren't doing their jobs? Think about it.
We traded in Moody Spurgeon for Benny Hin.
We traded in witnessing for nightly idiot-box fests.
We traded in good preaching for apologetics.
We left behind street preaching and took up shamefaced leaving of tracts in toilet stalls at McDonalds.
Yeah. That has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the moral fiber in our country is shot. Just the fact that these evil liberals have taken over Washington!!
Okay. What about the evil conservatives that sure haven't hindered them?
What about you? Yeah, you, sitting there reading this. Do you ardently pursue the Word? Do you witness to those around you with the joy of the Lord? Do you try?
Or do you settle for half-truths and compromises, hoping (in vain) that you will pick the 'lesser of two evils'?
Grow up, America.
Get a backbone, Christians.
Not quite. Of course, I'd have quite a bit more respect for Congress if they'd just go all the way if they absolutely must pass some sort of healthcare bill and just give us a universal system. It's not as if they listen to their constituency in any case.
The bill(s) currently being proposed will not create any kind of system at all; they will merely give more power to what we already have in place. The bills will mandate health insurance coverage for every man, woman, and child, in the US, and create a radically expanded Medicare-like program for those who cannot afford private health insurance (my family would be one of these families).
However, I do not believe this will solve the problem. The insurance companies are the problem, not the lack of government involvement. Insurance companies are corrupt from the bottom up. They deny coverage to many on a regular basis, sometimes for the most idiotic reasons. They jack rates on those who are 'at risk', and people still go bankrupt.
The current bills will only cause that corruption to spread wider, and will put yet more people at the mercy of the insurance companies. Furthermore, I believe some people will simply not get coverage, as they do now, because the fines imposed for the lack of insurance will be much less than getting the actual insurance.
So these bills will not be creating a 'universal system', and will not truly solve anything.
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Of course, I am not going to be getting the swine flu vaccine. In my opinion, the risks (irreversible brain damage; death) are not worth the payout (may not get H1N1). So I'm just going to pass on the vaccine, and if I get it and die, I'll have no one but myself to blame.
But statistically speaking, I'm not going to be getting it.
Of course, we actually don't have any statistics, because the CDC has stopped testing/reporting on cases. (Remember when the big outrage over Mexico refusing to report caused an outrage? A generous dollop of two-facedness anyone?)
Just last week, H1N1 was actually going away. Of course, those statistics are now moot, kaput, totally false, and obviously wrong. (Sounds a bit like some Ministry of Truth action there...) But now, just as the panic and pandemonium over this was starting to go down, President Obama is reviving all the ruckus. Why?
Why, over that terribly large number of 900 deaths in North America alone! (5,000 worldwide)
Let us forget the fact that 200,000-500,000 people die in the regular influenza season. Yearly.
And we're screaming and writhing, virtually comatose in our horror, about 5,000 deaths?
Don't get me wrong. I'm not minimizing the threat here. Well, maybe a little. But it just seems to me that that number doesn't warrant this kind of hysteria- especially when we don't even know how many people have actually got it, because the CDC has stopped testing.
When the CDC starts testing again, and we actually know for sure how many people have it (and its higher than the regular flu count), I'll start panicking. Not until.
Friday, October 23, 2009
Thursday, October 22, 2009
My apathy maketh me to lie down before the TV, I am led through all you-can-eat buffets.
Commercials restoreth my appetite, they lead me in the way of gullibility for profits' sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of responsibility, I shall fear nothing uncomfortable, for the government is with me; their rhetoric and promises they comfort me.
I preparest a table in the presence of my TV, I anointest mine head with a pillow, my cup runneth over for my belly's sake.
Surely good living and willful ignorance will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in a state of euphoria all the days of my life (hopefully).
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
October 20, 2009
I originally published this column back in January of 2005. Since then (and especially lately), many people have called and written with requests to republish it. So, with a few minor revisions, here it is.
More than thirty years as a student of American history, constitutional government, and the Holy Bible leads me to the conviction that the two major political parties in this country (at the national level) are equally culpable in stripping America of its founding principles. In my opinion,
both the Democrat and Republican parties in Washington, D.C., have zero fidelity to the U.S. Constitution and zero respect for America's foundational precepts.
In my studied opinion, neither the Democrat nor Republican Party (at the national level) has any intention of slowing the out-of-control expansion of government. Neither party has demonstrated any loyalty to preserving and protecting our constitutional form of government.
Like National Socialists and Soviet Socialists of old, the only thing that concerns Democrats and Republicans today is who is in power. Both are equally willing to destroy the freedoms and liberties of people without conscience or regret as long as their party remains in control.
I am absolutely convinced that without a renewed allegiance to constitutional government and State sovereignty, there can be no resolution to America's current slide into socialism and oppression. Therefore, it is critical that we cast aside our infatuation with partisan politics and
steadfastly stand firm for the principles of federalism and freedom, as did America's founders.
Might you be a modern-day Minuteman who understands the principles of freedom and federalism? I offer the following test. Read it and see if you, too, are a Constitutionalist. (Yes, Martha, this is another Jeff Foxworthy spin-off.)
1. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that every congressman, senator, President, and Supreme Court justice is required to obey the U.S. Constitution.
2. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that before the United States invades and occupies another country, Congress must first declare war.
3. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe the federal government should live within its means, like everyone else is forced to do.
4. You might be a Constitutionalist if you think that taking away people's liberties in the name of security is not patriotic, nor does it make the country more secure.
5. You might be a Constitutionalist if you would like to see politicians be forced to abide by the same laws they make everyone else submit to.
6. You might be a Constitutionalist if you understand that we have three "separate but equal" branches of government that are supposed to hold each other in check and balance.
7. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that the federal government has no authority to be involved in education or law enforcement, or in any other issue that the Tenth Amendment reserves to the States, or to the People.
8. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that gun control laws do nothing but aid and abet criminals while trampling the rights and freedoms of law-abiding citizens.
9. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that the income tax is both unconstitutional and immoral, and, along with the I.R.S. and the Federal Reserve, should be abolished.
10. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe the federal government had no authority to tell former Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore that he could not display a monument containing the Ten Commandments in the Alabama Judicial Building in Montgomery; or to tell a Pace, Florida, high school principal that he could not pray before a meal.
11. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that Congress or the White House or any sovereign State is not required to submit to unconstitutional Supreme Court rulings.
12. You might be a Constitutionalist if you understand that freedom has nothing in common with illegal immigration.
13. You might be a Constitutionalist if you understand that outsourcing American jobs overseas is not good for America.
14. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that the United States should get out of the United Nations and get the United Nations out of the United States.
15. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that it is not unconstitutional for children in public schools to pray or read the Bible.
16. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that the Boy Scouts are not a threat to America.
17. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that the federal government should honor its commitments to America's veterans and stop using U.S. military personnel as guinea pigs for testing drugs and chemicals.
18. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that U.S. troops should never serve under foreign commanders or wear the uniform or insignia of the United Nations, and that they must never submit to illegal orders, such as turning their weapons against American citizens, or confiscating the guns of U.S. citizens.
19. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that the federal government has no business bribing churches and faith-based organizations with federal tax dollars.
20. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that federal agents who murder American citizens should be held to the same laws and punishments that any other citizen would be held to. (Can anyone say, "Waco" and "Ruby Ridge"?)
21. You might be a Constitutionalist if you understand that NAFTA, GATT, the WTO, and the FTAA (and similar agreements) are disastrous compromises of America's national sovereignty and independence.
22. You might be a Constitutionalist if you would like to see congressmen and senators be required to actually read a bill before passing it into law.
23. You might be a Constitutionalist if you understand that it is the job of government to protect and secure God-given rights, not use its power to take those rights away.
24. You might be a Constitutionalist if you understand that there is nothing unconstitutional about the public acknowledgement of God and our Christian heritage.
25. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that government bailouts and "stimulus" expenditures defy virtually every principle of free enterprise and are a flagrant leap into socialism.
26. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that airport screeners have no business touching women's breasts, using sophisticated machinery to look through passengers' clothing to see their naked bodies, confiscating fingernail clippers, or denying pilots from carrying handguns.
27. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that many public schools' "zero-tolerance" policies are just plain stupid.
28. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that parents have a right to homeschool their children.
29. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that governmental seizure of private property is plain, old-fashioned thievery.
30. You might be a Constitutionalist if you are personally determined to not submit to any kind of forced vaccination.
31. You might be a Constitutionalist if you oppose any kind of national health insurance.
32. You might be a Constitutionalist if you believe that U.S. troops are not the world's policemen, that they are not "nation-builders," and that their purpose is only to defend American lives and property, not to be the enforcement arm of international commercial interests or global elitists.
33. You might be a Constitutionalist if you understand that the county Sheriff is the highest law enforcement officer of his district and that federal law enforcement (much of which is unconstitutionally organized, anyway) is obligated to submit to his authority.
34. You might be a Constitutionalist if you are determined to oppose America's merger with any kind of regional, hemispheric, or international government, such as the North American Union.
35. You might be a Constitutionalist if you oppose sending billions of taxpayer dollars as foreign aid; the U.S. State Department meddling into the private affairs of foreign countries; and ubiquitous foreign entanglements that require vast sums of money, create animosity and hostility towards us, and expose us to foreign wars and conflicts in which we have no national
36. You might be a Constitutionalist if you would like to meet one single congressman or senator besides Ron Paul who acts as if he or she has ever read the U.S. Constitution.
Well, how did you fare? Are you a Constitutionalist? If so, your country desperately needs you to stand up and fight for freedom's principles before they are forever taken from us. This means never again voting for anyone--from any party--who will not preserve, protect, and defend the U.S. Constitution. So, don't just take the test; make the pledge!
Note- I disagree with #10. Judge Roy Moore was wrong, and any public show of faith (praying, posting 10 commandments) by a public official is wrong and unconstitutional. #24 is also iffy- I think you all know where I stand there. ;)
Friday, October 16, 2009
We sat down, and I started the conversation.
Liberty: I'd like to discuss the current wars and the recent actions that have been taken.
Barack Obama: Yes, about that- I uh, I'd have to say that my actions in Afghanistan are wholly justified.
Sean Hannity: What, giving up?
Liberty: Mr. President, before your recent lengthy deliberations on the subject of further troop increases, you sent yet more troops into Afghani territory. Do you think that was justified?
Liberty: And do you think the troops will be able to do their job with what they have?
Obama: You know, I'm listening to my advisers, and they tell me that the troops will be able to.
Hannity: But you're basically surrendering.
Obama: No, no I'm not. We're pursuing a new line of attack, that is all.
Liberty: Would you care to expand on this new line, Mr. President?
Obama: Well, uh...it's going to be revolutionary.
Hannity: You didn't answer the question.
Liberty: I agree with Mr. Hannity, Mr. President. Would you please expand on your new plan of attack in Afghanistan?
Obama: You know, I just think that I am unable to currently reveal our plans.
Liberty: Well, you'll let me know once you can, right sir?
Obama: You'll be right behind Fox News.
Liberty: Well then. What about the Iraq conflict? What are your plans there?
Obama: You know, we're really trying to get out of that.
Hannity: That's a mistake. Those people are trying to kill us.
Liberty: Do you have any proof of that Mr. Hannity?
Hannity: well...uh, you know, I didn't bring it with me. It's on my other laptop.
Liberty: Of course it is. Now in my research, I've found that there is no actual proof that Iraq was giving aid to terrorists, including al Qaeda and the 9/11 conspirators. Three studies, two from the congress and one independent bear this out.
Hannity: You know they're skewed towards the liberals.
Obama: I always thought it was the other way around.
Liberty: Gentlemen, let us pretend for one moment that all these studies are unbiased- which they are, for the most part. What would you say then?
Obama: That obviously, Iraq was not giving aid to al Qaeda.
Hannity: I would say that the reports were sketchy, just as they are now..
Liberty: Thank you gentlemen. Now then, Mr. Hannity- on your show, you have defended some of Bush's less-than-constitutional measures multiple times, including the PATRIOT act. How do you line up the nature of the PATRIOT act with your professed love of the Constitution?
Hannity: You know, I don't think there's any way those two things can be adverse to each other. The PATRIOT act is good- it protects us from terrorists.
Liberty: But it strips us of our fourth amendment rights. How can it be in keeping with the Constitution?
Hannity: Sometimes, certain liberties have to be compromised in the interest of keeping the American people safe.
Liberty: The founding fathers warned against that. Patrick Henry famously declared "Give me liberty or give me death," and Ben Franklin specifically said that any people that would give up liberty for safety deserved neither. What would you say to that?
Hannity: I would say that desperate times require desperate measures.
Liberty: So you're saying that the founding fathers could not possibly have foreseen what is happening today, and so what they said- including the Constitution- is basically moot?
Hannity: Uh, no, not at all.
Liberty: So what are you saying?
Hannity: I'm saying that sometimes, we have to compromise.
Liberty: But where do we stop compromising? You've said it yourself- once we start giving up liberties, we're well on the road to socialism.
Hannity: Yes, I have said that.
Liberty: Right. So, how does that bear out with your stance on the PATRIOT act.
Hannity: I don't see any contradiction.
Liberty: Yes. I'll let you think that contradiction over that for a while. Mr. President, do you have anything to add?
Obama: Well, I'd just like to say that I don't think the PATRIOT act was a mistake, and that there comes a time when the traditions of the past should be forgotten. It's time we moved on.
Liberty: So tell me, if we move on past the Constitution, what is left of our system of government?
Obama: We still have the men and women of America, as well as her leaders.
Liberty: But the whole point of the Constitution was to keep her leaders in check.
Obama: I don't see why they need to be kept in check.
Liberty: I think the logic is quite indisputable. It is common knowledge that power corrupts, and checks have been put in the place of people who would try to grab too much power- namely, the Congress, the President, and even state governments.
Obama: I'm guessing you watch Fox News.
Hannity: Talking like this? No she doesn't.
Liberty: Mr. Hannity is correct, Mr. President. Would you agree with me that power corrupts and we should have checks in place of too much power-grabbing.
Obama: I think that would be safe to say.
Liberty: So if we move on past the Constitution, what checks will be in place for that power-grabbing?
Obama: Well, some restrictions would have to remain in place, of course.
Liberty: So you're basically saying that we should pick and choose what we want out of the Constitution?
Obama: Uh...no. No, that's not what I'm saying. I'm just saying that some of the restrictions and regulations in the Constitution are outmoded, and I don't think we should be so fanatically bound to the stuffy traditions that people had 200 years ago.
Liberty: If you study history, our system of government and the Constitution that was made isn't exactly a 'tradition.' The Constitutional Republic was a very new, revolutionary idea in that day and age.
Liberty: If we wanted to be held to the traditions of that day, we'd be held to a monarchist system with repressive royalty.
Hannity: Heh. She's got you.
Liberty: Mr. President?
Obama: Yeah, well, maybe we should talk about the merits of change.
Liberty: This discussion is not about abstract concepts Mr. President.
Obama: Of course. You know, I have a press conference at four.
Liberty: You'll be out of here in plenty of time. Both of you, what is your opinion of the new healthcare bills in the Congress?
Obama: It is an admirable expression of the way this country is going. Of course, it could be improved, but that'll come.
Liberty: It is my understanding that earlier in your career, you were an avid proponent of a single-payer system.
Obama: I never said that.
Liberty: You were captured on video saying that you wanted this. If you do, why don't you just come clean and say so now that you are in power?
Obama: I do not recall that incident.
Liberty: You didn't answer the question, Mr. President.
Obama: I think that this country is just simply not ready for that kind of program.
Liberty: Very well. Mr. Hannity, what is your opinion?
Hannity: This bill will give undue power to the executive branch.
Liberty: But letting the executive branch use 200+ signing statements for it's own ends, and letting it put people in jail for nothing but the suspicion of terrorist activity is alright?
Hannity: I didn't think that was what we were discussing.
Liberty: But it is related. Would you mind answering the question?
Hannity: No, I don't think so.
Obama: Time is ticking.
Liberty: I'll take up just a few more moments of your time Mr. President. I'd like to ask you about your recent Nobel Prize. Do you think you acted in the best interest of the US as a whole?
Obama: Totally. I didn't personally receive the prize, not really. The prize was more like something that was awarded to the US as the whole.
Hannity: That didn't prevent you from taking it.
Liberty: Some have suggested that you could have refused the prize as an undue honor and instead conferred it upon the military or simply refused it.
Obama: You know, I really have to get going.
Liberty: Would you mind responding first, Mr. President?
Obama: Not at all. You know, I think I responded with as much humility and gratitude as possible. I think that I needed to accept the prize so as to give the world a better opinion of us.
Liberty: What does taking a token of the personal opinion of five Norwegians do for the world's opinion of us? Wouldn't having a revolutionary new foreign policy accomplish that more directly?
Obama: You know, it's over now, and I have to get going.
Liberty: Of course. Thank you for your time, Mr. President.
Hannity: Yeah, uh, I've got to get outta' here too- show comin' up!
Liberty: Certainly. Thank you for your time and your patience sirs.
Note- Unfortunately, this interview has not yet occurred. Apparently, neither President Obama nor Sean Hannity care about my opinion. However, I'm still holding out hope. In the meantime, this will have to do.
Monday, October 12, 2009
We would like to extend a thank you for some things. For starters, thank you for letting us shelter our delusion that we are still the top dogs of the universe. You can't know how important that makes us feel. We enjoy knowing that at any given time, we will be able to mandate our will upon you, the ignorant, unwashed masses of the globe.
We also thank you for humbly submitting to our occupation of your countries. We know that Germany has not been in the grasp of a tyrannical dictator for sixty years, and we also recognize that Iran just might feel threatened by the American military bases surrounding it, but really, we thank you for giving us the benefit of the doubt on that matter.
We also thank you for cooperating with our imperialistic vision of the world. Once again, being able to occupy your countries even in a state of peace makes us feel very important and as if we were actually doing something to contribute to peace.
Because of your humble, honest cooperation we can all have peace, regardless of whatever arrogant dishonest drivel comes out of our leaders' mouths. Peace is good. Peace is our friend.
Understandably, we also thank you for the right you have reserved to us- the right to crush you if you trespass on any statute of our very important, as yet unspoken, American-world treaty. However, we can sincerely say that we have not had many problems with you.
And so, we can all dance and sing kumbaya in the peace and serenity that comes with cooperation. Thank you.
The United States of America
(Note- this letter is not real, however IMO it conveys the view of our current foreign policy.)
Friday, October 9, 2009
Barack HUSSEIN Obama.
Osama bin Lyin'.
I hate it. It is getting very annoying- people (especially on the right) making a big deal out of his middle name, or the similarity of his last name to someone else we all know. Is this seriously the biggest piece of ammunition we can bring out on this guy?
Frankly, it's annoying when people make such a big deal out of his name. Hussein is a common name in the Muslim community. So it also happened to be the name of a tyrant. So? Is that your ultimate problem with the man? Can the President help that his name is the same? Do you think the baby intentionally chose it because he foresaw that Saddam would become a dictator?
Or making a pun on his last name and Osama bin Laden's. His last name came from his father. Could his father help it?
This kind of nit-picking and completely un-subtle hinting is petty and- to be totally honest- pretty dumb. It doesn't matter what his name is. Let's focus our attention on what really matters: the fact that his policies are going to hurt America.
The committee for the Peace Prize stated that this was the reason for Obama receiving the prize- "extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples."
Of course, this prize is not due to any personal achievement (whatever that unimportant council that actually awarded the prize says), but to some mystical "affirmation of American leadership." Last I checked, he saw himself as the American leadership, so...wait a minute! That means that this prize is due to personal achievement!
Whatever that personal achievement is, I think it is just a little freaky that he was nominated, not a few weeks ago, but on Febuary 1. That means that Obama had only been in office for rougly two weeks. Before that time, he hadn't done anything. (Except of course, getting those pesky Bush recriminations out of the way and rearranging the furniture in the kids' bedrooms. Apparently, he promoted inter-country peace by having a mix of Arabian and Israeli bedroom furniture.)
I'll end with this little tidbit- "Some analysts have speculated that the prize could give Obama additional clout as he forms a strategy for the war in Afghanistan and attempts to engage Iran and North Korea."
Oh yes! Attacking people will sooo promote "extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples."
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
Monday, October 5, 2009
From the page-
"Under the Senate bill and a similar House proposal, a patchwork state-federal insurance program targeted mainly at children, pregnant women and disabled people would effectively become a Medicare for the poor, a health-care safety net for all people with an annual income below $14,404."
I applaud wanting to make sure poor people are able to get good healthcare. I know that sometimes I seem to be some sort of cold, calloused jerk who only cares about her money. That might be true, to a limited extent- I love money as much as the next person.
But it is wrong that states are being required to spend more money, even as they are going as bankrupt as our federal government.
State governments have been cutting spending anywhere they can. That's a good idea- it's something our federal government should have done long ago. As I've said before- it's not smart to spend trillions of dollars when you're trillions of dollars in the hole.
When you've dug yourself into a hole over your head, stop digging.
We have to be making compromises here. What do we want more- healthcare or education? Money or bankruptcy? Because sad to say, that's the point we're at. We cannot have the best of both worlds. It will no longer work.
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Does this make any sense, that opposing the war is synonymous with opposing our troops? That wanting an end to the war without further violence is just the same as wanting all our troops to fall down dead?
Does that connect?
The Iraq war was a preemptive action on the part of the US, against a sovereign country that was no threat to us as of our attack. Iraq was not behind the 9/11 attacks, ruling out the excuse of a war of holy retribution. Attacking a sovereign nation without provocation is wrong, not to mention unconstitutional, whether for the purpose of 'furthering democracy' or no.
But why does speaking out against the war equal attacking our troops in the minds of many?
Frankly, I really don't know. Would anyone care to shed some light?
Friday, September 25, 2009
This is scary for a multitude of reasons. Number one- Barack Obama is, just to clue you in, the President of the United States. He is not the Messiah, the Savior, or Superman. He's basically a figurehead for the nation who (Constitutionally) gets to veto bills he doesn't like and look pretty for the cameras.
This cult of personality that has grown up around the man is frankly frightening. Not to mention its idiocy, it brings undue attention to someone who really, in the grand scheme of things, isn't (or shouldn't be) all that important.
I've put the text to the songs in the top video below for your...enjoyment.
Mm, mmm, mm!
Barack Hussein Obama
He said that all must lend a hand
To make this country strong again
Mmm, mmm, mm!
Barack Hussein Obama
He said we must be fair today
Equal work means equal pay
Mmm, mmm, mm!
Barack Hussein Obama
He said that we must take a stand
To make sure everyone gets a chance
Mmm, mmm, mm!
Barack Hussein Obama
He said red, yellow, black or white
All are equal in his sight
Mmm, mmm, mm!
Barack Hussein Obama
Mmm, mmm, mm
Barack Hussein Obama
Hello, Mr. President we honor you today!
For all your great accomplishments, we all doth say "hooray!"
Hooray, Mr. President! You're number one!
The first black American to lead this great nation!
Hooray, Mr. President we honor your great plans
To make this country's economy number one again!
Hooray Mr. President, we're really proud of you!
And we stand for all Americans under the great Red, White, and Blue!
So continue ---- Mr. President we know you'll do the trick
So here's a hearty hip-hooray ----
Hip, hip hooray!
Hip, hip hooray!
Hip, hip hooray!
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Prior to President Obama, every president since FDR has appointed 'czars' to head various parts of his administration. FDR set the precedent with only 12 czars, and after his terms, the number began to decline. Until, that is, Bill Clinton. Clinton upped the ante with 7 czars, but HBush far out-appointed him, with 31.
President Obama has quickly outpaced even Bush, eight months into his four-year term, with 32 czars as of last count.
According to Politico, President Obama's czar positions range from an 'Afghanistan Czar' to 'WMD Policy Czar.'
Apparently, the czars are yet another layer of government, reporting directly to the President, as well as a few to Hillary Clinton, the Secretary of State. These czars work on solutions and policy. In a way, they are somewhat like the advisement department of a company.
Of course, in the grand company of which Obama is the CEO, that role is supposed to be filled by his cabinet. But oops, somebody didn't tell that to FDR or to Obama. Quite an oversight there.
According to a professor of government at Dartmouth College, Linda Fowler, "presidents often appoint czars in a symbolic move to show they care about an issue. They also are trying to control a sprawling bureaucracy..."
Personally, I think this system of czars is messed up. The President isn't supposed to control policy on any issue at all! Having czars to do his bidding is even more unconstitutional. The czars are filling a role which is supposed to be handled by Congress.
Of course, if Congress wasn't so busy with all the other junk they deal with, they might be able to fill their Constitutional capacity better.
Apparently, that term is now a racial epithet!! That's right. We can't use a scientific term for a spatial anomaly because it might hurt some black person's feelings. Like Commisioner John Wiley Price.
Seriously? A blackhole is properly defined as a collapsed star which has folded in upon itself and now sucks in energy. Why do they call it a 'blackhole'? Well, because the hole is- you guessed it- black. It's nothing. It blots out the stars behind it. It is black.
This term is not a racial epithet, and I don't see how you can make it into one. But what did Mr. Price say?
#1- this dude is way over the top, in my opinion. For starters, the only time 'black' takes on a negative connotation is when you make it so. I do not think 'bad' when I think 'black'. I think of the cute little girls I taught. Get over yourself already!
#2- this morning I was watching the science show The Universe on the History Channel. A white hole is something completely different than a black hole. In fact, none of these white holes have ever been observed, they are merely a scientific fact/theory that falls under the Theory of Relativity. They put things out- the exact antithesis of what black holes do.
#3- has this gentleman ever looked at the color black? It is generally seen as 'dirty' because it is completely devoid of light to the human eye. Also, this gentleman's skin is not black. It is actually a quite pleasing dark brown. ;)
#4- the day someone apologizes for the use of a scientific term is the day I know the world has completely gone nuts.