Friday, May 30, 2008

Ah, (former) Fox News Commentators....

....proving two of my long running points for me. Michelle Malkin, last seen ripping Sally Field for being against wanton death and destruction, recently proved two Markadelphisms in her campaign against Dunkin Donuts:
  • Most conservative pundits (and many Americans for that matter) have a child like understanding of Middle Eastern culture.
  • Conservative portray themselves as being against the "victim" culture and yet still love to play the victim! Hilarious...
Malkin blasted a recent Dunkin Donuts ad, with Rachel Ray, as being pro-jihadist, because Ray is seen wearing a scarf (at left) that, according to Malkin, all the terrorists wear. Gasp!

Dunkin Donuts has now pulled that ads and Malkin thanked them, saying, "It's refreshing to see an American company show sensitivity to the concerns of Americans opposed to Islamic jihad and its apologists."

"Popularized by Yasser Arafat and a regular adornment of Muslim terrorists appearing in beheading and hostage-taking videos, the apparel has been mainstreamed by both ignorant (and not-so-ignorant) fashion designers, celebrities, and left-wing icons," she said.

Actually, no.

Amahl Bishara, an anthropology lecturer at the University of Chicago who specializes in media matters relating to the Middle East, said complaints about the scarf's use in the ad demonstrate misunderstandings of Arab culture and the multiple meanings that symbols can take on depending on someone's perspective.

"I think that a right-wing blogger making an association between a kaffiyeh and terrorism is just an example of how so much of the complexity of Arab culture has been reduced to a very narrow vision of the Arab world on the part of some people in the U.S.," Bishara said in a phone interview. "Kaffiyehs are worn every day on the street by Palestinians and other people in the Middle East - by people going to work, going to school, taking care of their families, and just trying to keep warm."

Well, she's a Marxist traitor professor bent on the destruction of all things wholesome and good so what does she know anyway, right?!!??

Actually the real answer behind the scarf picture was given recently by Christian Lander, writer of Stuff White People Like.

White People’s body temperatures do not operate on logical or consistent levels, and because of this white people are often forced to wear clothing combinations that might seem strange or illogical...But without a doubt, the one piece of clothing that helps to regulate white body temperature in all situations is the scarf...A thin cotton t-shirt paired with a scarf to enable maximum temperature control in bars and places with air conditioning.

Hey, that's just what Rachel Ray is wearing!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

GI Bills A Go Go

Andy Tannenbaum, over at, had a nice take on the whole McCain versus Webb GI Bill brouhaha.

John McCain celebrated Memorial Day by attacking the new G.I. bill that passed the Senate last week 75 to 22. The bill offers tuition payments and other benefits to veterans after one enlistment. McCain wants the benefits to depend on how long you serve--the longer you serve the more benefits you get. While this position is certainly defensible, it may come back to haunt him. One of the key sponsors of the bill is Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA), himself a Vietnam veteran and an oft-mentioned possible Veep for Obama. If the Democratic ticket ends up being Obama/Webb, Webb is going to spend months saying: "I proposed benefits to help our men and women who fought bravely in Iraq and curmudgeon McCain opposes it." That position will be tough to defend.

I agree. What kind of sense does it make to attack a bill that give more benefits to vets in a time when there is a war that most of the people in this country don't support? As we move into the general election, I think we are going to see more of this tone deafness on the part of John McCain and other conservatives.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Ah, Fox News commentators.....

....helping me to prove my point regarding middle ground every single day:)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Bust The Joint Out

One of my favorite films of all time is Good Fellas. It stars Robert DeNiro (left), Ray Liotta, and Joe Pesci....directed by Martin Scorsesse. The film is essentially a history of the Mob from the 1950s to the 1980s, as seen through the eyes of Henry Hill, a real life mobster turned informant.

During one scene, a restaurant owner goes to Paulie, the mob boss, and asks for financial help with his eatery. Over the next few minutes, we see, very clearly, how the mob operates. Once they get their hooks into an establishment, they can do whatever they want. If the owner can't come up with the monthly kickbacks, it's time to bust the joint out, which basically means they run up a tab n the restaurant's credit, spending as much money as they can before they burn it down for the insurance money. Sometimes they run up the credit even if the guy does makes his payments.

Over the last 45 years this has been the modus operandi of the United States government when it comes to smaller countries. We loan them money and if they can't pay us, we bust the joint out, which, in geo-political terms, means we get to dictate its policy....a policy which is, of course, favorable financially to US corporations. We also get to take whatever goods we want. If the country decides to not listen to us or fuck us over, well....then you get Iraq.

And, if you are a defense contractor who has helped to buy off an entire administration, you can make some serious coin....

Last Thursday, Mary L. Ugone, the Pentagon’s deputy inspector general for auditing, submitted an internal auditing report of 8.2 billion dollars of taxpayer money to a Congressional oversight committee. According to the report, virtually all of the contracts did not follow ANY of the federal rules regarding contract payments and many of them had little or no record of what, if anything, was received. In addition, the report says that there was no accountability in nearly 2 billion dollars of Iraqi assets that were seized and distributed in pallets of cash. No records were kept of these disbursements and no one knows if this figure of 2 billion is even accurate.

As examples of this financial mismanagement, the report offers:
  • a document identified at the top as a “Public Voucher for Purchases and Services Other Than Personal.” It indicates that $320.8 million went for “Iraqi Salary Payment,” with no explanation of what the Iraqis were paid to do.
  • A payment of $11.1 million was paid to IAP, an American contractor, on the basis of a voucher with no indication of what was delivered.
  • a US Treasury check for $5,674,075.00 to pay a company called Al Kasid Specialized Vehicles Trading Company in Baghdad for items that a voucher does not even describe.
  • $6,268,320.07 went to the contractor Combat Support Associates with even less explanation than the item above.
  • a scrawl on a piece of paper says only that $8 million had been paid out as “Funds for the Benefit of the Iraqi People.”
A fucking scrawl on a piece of fucking paper? Are you kidding me?

The report also notes that the preparers were unable to find a clear set of records of payments, by the American Military to its allies, in the amount of 135 million dollars. These payments include 70 million to the UK, 45 million to Poland, and 20 million to South Korea. The auditors made repeated requests to find out what these payments were for and their requests were left unanswered. As the chairman of the Congressional committee Henry Waxman said, " “It sounds like the coalition of the willing is the coalition of the paid — they’re willing to be paid."

Bear in mind that this report, the first of its kind to come directly from the Pentagon (which means it is a primary source-unfiltered by the media), is in ADDITION to the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction report which could not account for 9 billion dollars in cash, last seen on these pallets. Remember this video from a while back?

Of course, this isn't even the best part. Because there were so many contracts to be examined, the auditors only took a representative sample of.......702 of them?!!? Just exactly how many defense contractors are there? And much taxpayer money has actually been wasted if 8.2 billion dollars is representative? Good grief....

I submit that Bush Co has busted the joint out and, stunningly, 28 percent of the voting public think he is an honest guy. I have spent a lot of time over the last few years wondering why this is and then I realized, after spending way too much time getting into the conservative mindset, that the reason for this is so many of them love to show the rest of the country how government is fucked up...even if it is done on purpose! Because then they get to point to reports like this and say, "See? This why we need less government and we need to privatize everything" while quietly masturbating (balls gently cradled of course) at the thought of a small government that lets US Corporations do whatever they want with no oversight.

Isn't that what we fucking have right now?

Apparently, the truth has been ignored or lost to them as this war has largely been run by private industry. There are just as many contractors in Iraq as there are soldiers. And there are private militias (Blackwater) running around doing whatever they want because they aren't accountable to the same laws that our armed forces are.

Take a look at these numbers. Go read the report. It is on the defense departments web site. Do any of you still think that we are in Iraq to "protect freedom?" It doesn't take a genius to figure out what happened to this money. It went to our very own little version of the Mob-US Defense Contractors-and President Bush gave them his blessing to do it. This was the plan all along, folks. They knew there was a ton of money to be made in Iraq and they seized the day. Our CEO President really wanted to show, once and for all, that he can be successful in business and make money for his friends, even if it involved fraud. As with the Mob, Bush wanted to be "made."

We are at the point, folks, where we need to protect the government from corporations and not corporations from the government. This report is an excellent example of the sad state we are in. If anyone thinks that the last eight years has seen more government control and that's the problem (as some have intimated to me), they clearly have their heads so far up their ass that they won't need to get their annual colonoscopy this year.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Honoring The Fallen

Today is Memorial Day. If you get the chance, call up a friend or family member of an armed forces service member who lost their life. Tell them how important their lives were and how important they are to you. In our current conflict, this is all the more important.

If you don't know anyone who has lost a loved one in the armed services, take a stroll through your local cemetery and honor the unknown with some kind words and benevolent thoughts. These days, more than any other time, we need to deeply understand the sacrifice that our all volunteer army makes every day.

Here's to the fallen...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

She Almost Had Me

For a brief 24 hour period this week, I considered the possibility of Hillary as the number two on the Democratic ticket. While it is true that I don't like her and think she is just about as wrong for this country as President Bush is, she would help Obama get into the White House. I mulled over the cost of doing business with the Clintons, the concept of keeping your enemies close, and thought that, in the spirit of being open minded, giving her a chance at the VP post might be a good idea.

And then she opened her mouth and I was reminded why she is revolting.

My husband did not wrap up the nomination in 1992 until he won the California primary somewhere in the middle of June, right? We all remember Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June in California. I don't understand it

I don't really care if she was tired or had a brain fart when she said is just plain wrong. Given the fact that Senator Obama has received hundreds of death threats since declaring his candidacy, this statement is so unbelievably insensitive that there is no way she should be VP.

Obama can win without her and her name should be thrown in the fucking trash heap.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Support (Part Two)

All of you may recall, I wrote a piece back in March of 2007 regarding the poor treatment that returning troops from Iraq have received at the various VA hospitals around the country. Rather than agree that changes needed to be made, many conservatives decided it would be better to use Walter Reed fiasco as an example of how government run health care doesn't really work.

Not really the point...but hey, remember, that is their modus, deflect, deny, blame liberals, and shirk all responsibility.

A couple of months back the conservative douche bag pundit machine, led by Bill O'Reilly, decided to come out with the statement that "there aren't that many homeless vets. Liberals like to make a big deal out of a few nutsos who live under bridges."

Actually, there are about 200,000 homeless vets and our government has all but ignored them. Put them together with the large numbers of PTSD (post traumatic stress syndrome) patients coming back from our current war in Iraq and what do you get?

A piece of shit administration that does not give a rat's ass about the troops. To them, they are just fodder that facilitates the purpose of making them and their pals rich on oil and defense industry money (side rant: a post is coming soon on this one, boys and girls, from a primary source in the Pentagon, which essentially proves this point).

Adding insult to injury was the vote of no support from John McCain and President Piece of Shit himself regarding Jim Webb's GI Bill. Take a look at what the bill has to offer and tell can anyone honestly say that these douche bags support the troops? This is a bill that enjoys heavy bi partisan support (75 Senators voted in favor of it, including several fiscal conservatives) and offers extraordinary educational opportunities for returning vets. It gives something back to the brave men and women who put their lives on the line for us around the world and John McCain doesn't support it?

So when Senator Obama said this yesterday:

Senator Webb and the leaders of both parties have introduced a 21st century GI bill that would give this generation of returning heroes the same chance at an affordable college education that we gave the greatest generation. I respect Senator John McCain’s service to our country. … but I can’t understand why he would line up behind the president in opposition to this GI bill. I can’t believe he believes it is too generous to our veterans. I could not disagree with him and the president more on this issue. There are many issues that lend themselves to partisan posturing but giving our veterans the chance to go to college should not be one of them. did some conservative react? They accused Obama of mis-characterizing McCain's position, stooping down to a low level, being naive and stupid, and blah blah blah...we are going to hate him no matter what...blah blah blah....

Well, let's take a closer look at McCain's position, shall we?

First of all, he didn't even vote on the bill. He wasn't in town! He doesn't have the balls to vote no on something and then he whines like a baby at Obama for being "naive?" What a dick...

Second, according to Fox News, McCain doesn't like the bill because he has "concerns that offering education benefits as early as the Webb bill allows would discourage people from re-enlisting." So, he wants to keep people in the army longer? Gee, that has worked out really well. Stop-Loss, anyone?

Well, we all know what happens when people get an education. They listen to the Marxist professors propagate lies about all the bad things the United States has done in the world and then they start to (gasp!) question authority. And if that happens (double gasp!), it will be the end of all things wholesome and good (i.e. douche bags stealing tax payer money and using it to steal more money from brown people, killing a few hundred thousand of them in the process).

Give a person an education and what do you have?

The answer comes from my favorite episode of M*A*S*H. The episode, entitled "QuoVadis, Captain Chandler?", tells the story of a bombardier (Chandler) who ends up at the 4077th and says that he is Jesus Christ. He refuses to go back to the front and, as is sometimes the case, Colonel Flagg shows up. Flagg is in Colonel Potter's office with Hawkeye and BJ.

Flagg: Damnit, Colonel, Chandler's turned chicken. All it takes is one GI with a messiah complex and before you know it you'll have hundreds claiming they are Christ and refusing to drop bombs. Then what will have?

BJ: Peace?


Thursday, May 22, 2008

Great Line

From the comments section, courtesy of BLK:

Two days after Bush lectured the Knesset about "appeasement," Israel began peace negotiations with Syria.This man is completely out of touch with reality. He's like a five-year-old in a perpetual temper tantrum.

It really is true. I am counting the days when our country can lead again as opposed to being an international embarrassment.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

One Note Samba

With another big defeat for Obama in a primary, the "liberal" media are sounding like a broken record. If I hear the words "White" "Middle Class" and "Voters" together on any news station, I turn the channel. Are they that dumb that they can't think of anything else to talk about?

What really cracks me up is that it is simply not true. White middle class voters (d'oh) voted for Obama in Iowa, Wisconsin, Oregon, Idaho, North Dakota, Wyoming, Utah, Nebraska, Missouri, Colorado, and yes, even Kansas. They did not vote for him in West Virginia, Tennessee, and Kentucky.

Gee, I wonder why. Could it be because that is where the supporting cast of Deliverance makes their home?

And, seriously, are any of those states going to vote for him in the general? Current polls show McCain up in all those states by 20 points.

Conservatives are cracking me up too. Bill Kristol wrote in his column, on Sunday in the New York Times, that he couldn't recall an eventual nominee losing that badly in a primary. Apparently he has a terrible memory because John McCain, THIS YEAR, lost to Huckabee in West Virginia by a score of 52 to 1 percent. And he lost to Romney in Utah by the score of 90 to 1 percent!

Ah, I love that feeling of a douche bag being so completely wrong.

Monday, May 19, 2008

The Big Lie

Last Thursday, President Bush was in Israel and addressed the Knessett, the country's legislature, to mark the 60th anniversary of the formation of the Jewish Homeland. Towards the end of his speech he said the following:

Some seem to believe we should negotiate with terrorists and radicals, as if some ingenious argument will persuade them they have been wrong all along. We have heard this foolish delusion before. As Nazi tanks crossed into Poland in 1939, an American senator declared: "Lord, if only I could have talked to Hitler, all of this might have been avoided." We have an obligation to call this what it is – the false comfort of appeasement, which has been repeatedly discredited by history.

The very night that President Bush made his speech I was sitting in the stands of my daughter's baseball game. A fellow parent and I were discussing our favorite television shows. She told me how much she liked 24 and I told her I was addicted from day one. She, being a conservative, looked at me, surprised, and said, "Wow. I didn't think a liberal would like that show."

Thus, we see how effective The Big Lie can be.

The Big Lie came up in comments recently and I really wanted to craft into a full blown column. I have to thank President Bush for providing me with an excellent opportunity to illustrate how the Big Lie works.

I find it hilariously ironic, on a number of levels which I will illustrate, that President Bush brought up Hitler while telling a "Big Lie." For you see, dear readers, it was Adolph Hitler himself that came up with the concept of the Big Lie. From his book, Mein Kampf

therefore, in view of the primitive simplicity of their minds they more easily fall a victim to a big lie than to a little one, since they themselves lie in little things, but would be ashamed of lies that were too big. Such a falsehood will never enter their heads and they will not be able to believe in the possibility of such monstrous effrontery and infamous misrepresentation in others; yes, even when enlightened on the subject, they will long doubt and waver, and continue to accept at least one of these causes as true.

In this case the Big Lie is that "some people" (meaning Democrats) who talk to our enemies are appeasers.

In listening to President Bush's speech, clearly he, and his merry band of cronies and pundits, don't have a fucking clue what appeasement means nor do they know what talking means. Let's consult the dictionary, shall we? Just as an aside, the simple fact that I have to explain this infuriates me, quite frankly, but when people with the emotions and intellect of eight year olds are running the country and supporting this president, I guess one must oversimplify.

appeasement: (noun): the policy of granting concessions to enemies to maintain peace.

Now, let's use it in a sentence.

Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain of Great Britain thought that a policy of appeasement would contain Adolph Hitler. By allowing him to take over small countries like Czechislovakia, Chamberlain thought Hitler would be satisfied.

How about talking?

talking: (verb): to speak or discuss; to give expression in words

And let's use it in a sentence.

President Reagan spent a great deal of time talking to the former Soviet Union. It was these talks, combined with America's overwhelming ability to outproduce the Russians, that led to the end of communism in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe.

So, I think we can all see that appeasing your enemy is not the same as talking to your enemy.

What we can see is a Big Lie that comes, ironically, right out of Hitler's playbook. During World War II, the United States Office of Strategic Services prepared a psychological profile of Adolph Hitler, which stated:

His primary rules were: never allow the public to cool off; never admit a fault or wrong; never concede that there may be some good in your enemy; never leave room for alternatives; never accept blame; concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong; people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one; and if you repeat it frequently enough people will sooner or later believe it.

Little did the OSS know, lo those many years ago, that they would be describing, in complete perfection, the conservative movement in this country sixty years later.The above paragraph sums up exactly how Bush et al operate and his speech last week further exemplifies this fact. Talking is appeasement, gol darnit, and if you don't subscribe to the Bush Doctrine, than you are weak and an appeaser! They have been very successful at doing this, hence my friend at the baseball game thinking a liberal wouldn't like a show like 24. She, by her own admission, spends her days listening to the "tap into your inner rage and pass it off as fact" talk radio hosts. They have convinced her that they are the keepers of the truth and the other, "liberal" media is all lies and propaganda.


So, President Bush, and other conservatives, want the country to believe that someone like Barack Obama would appease terrorists 0r terrorist states. This is a lie. To begin with, Obama is on record as saying that he won't diplomatically engage any terrorist groups like Al Qaeda and he won't recognize Hamas until they recognize Israel. As far as actual countries go, someone like Senator Obama knows that appeasement and talking are not the same thing. The two don't correlate and, if anything, the United States NOT talking with Iran has produced disastrous results and made them more influential in the region. He knows that if the Allies had spent more time talking to Hitler and studying him (reading Mein Kampf, maybe) rather than granting him concessions, we might have entered the war earlier and been able to prevent some bloodshed. So, we really need to start talking with Iran and re-establish full diplomatic ties with them. Both Secretary Rice and Secretary Gates, two member of Bush's cabinet, agree. Also, very ironic!

Senator Obama also knows, as do I and some of you, that when Bush and cronies say stuff like this, it is actually a mask for incompetence. The real reason why President Bush doesn't want to talk with countries like Iran is because he doesn't know what the fuck he is doing. The real reason why the pundits echo Bush's sentiments is because these people are completely devoid of any sort of cultural intelligence (i.e. they are bigots). Obama knows that Bush et al. don't understand anything about diplomacy and, quite frankly, they don't care. Bush would rather take the easy route. His actions prove that he always has. Rather than do the tough job of combating Al Qaeda, he chose to attack a weak country for a cheap win.

Bush's statement on talking and appeasing also makes no sense when you consider that the next day he went to beg the Saudis for more oil. The Saudis, who still have hundreds of madrasahs in which the hatred of America is taught on a daily basis and who were responsible for 15 of the 19 9-11 hijackers. And what about North Korea? They are a state sponsor of terrorism and recently attempted to supply Syria with material to make a nuclear weapon. We just gave them a bunch of concessions, in the form of food and oil, and Bush has the gaul to say that he doesn't negotiate? Well, to be fair, he actually doesn't since, again, he doesn't know what he is doing and, is more or less, letting the Chinese and Asst. Secretary of State Christopher Hill handle negotiations.

Sadly, the irony doesn't end there. Standing in the Knessett, I wonder if George Bush thought of his grandfather, Prescott Bush, at all. In the 1930s, Prescott Bush was the director of the Hamburg-American Line, a shipping company between Germany and the United States. In 1933, members of this company attempted, unsuccessfully, to stage a military coup against FDR and install a military dictatorship. Prescott was also VP of A. Harriman and Co, an investment company and bank, during the 1930s. This firm was the main Wall Street partner of several German businesses and may have helped contribute funds to the Nazi Regime.

Perhaps the most ironic part of his whole speech was the following line, summarizing our enemy.

On the other side are those who pursue a narrow vision of cruelty and control by committing murder, inciting fear, and spreading lies.

Funny, isn't that exactly what he and his supporters are doing? They have a narrow vision of cruelty and control by committing murder in Iraq, they incite fear here at home with false alerts and sensational claims of WMDs, and they spread lies about fellow countrymen who have different ideas about how to solve the problem of global terror. They label them as weak and shout blatant lies over the airwaves regarding people like Senator Obama-lies which actually contribute more to degradation of our country while serving as a mask for their own total lack of intelligence.

Bush's speech at the Knessett was just another example of how much of a national embarrassment he truly is. The only thing he really accomplished, in my eyes, was proving how well he and his administration have adopted the same tactics used to fool an entire country into believing outrageous after horrendous lie.

Let's make sure that doesn't happen here.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Liberal Fascist Thought of The Day

I find it interesting that the evangelical/family values crowd is referred to, both within and without of the Republican Party, as "The Base."

Anyone know what the Arabic translation of "The Base" is?

Al Qaeda.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Once More...Into the Breach!

This post is a response to a discussion Kevin Baker and I have been having down in comments. He put a longer comment up on his blog, which you can find here, so I thought I would bring my reply out into a full post as well.

I would like to start off by saying that I appreciated the support of everyone who came to my defense down below. I think I am probably a little bit less as skilled of a debater as some of my defenders made me out to be but posting on Kevin's blog has certainly made me tougher, no doubt.

I also want to make it clear, before I respond to what Kevin wrote, that, even thought I may not post again on his blog, I do plan on continuing to read it everyday. In fact, it will probably be the only blog I read everyday, other than my own of course. Many people here think I am nuts for doing this but I have always thought that you can't be intelligently critical of someone's point of view unless you fully understand it. I'm not sure I fully understand the conservative/neo conservative/classical liberal/whatever mindset yet but life is about the journey after all and this journey will most assuredly continue. Why spend that journey reading blogs like The Huffington Post or the Daily Kos who basically give me information that I already know?

At the end of the day, I think all 200-300 of you that read my blog should read his as well. It is informative in more ways than I can possibly count. When I made comments there, I always found myself thinking, man this would make a great column on my blog. So, if I see something that sparks my interest there, more than likely, I will comment on it here. And with that thought, here is my commentary on the post he entitled "All Markadelphia All The Time." I will pull some quotes here and there for this post but if you want to read the full text, I urge you to go to his site.

Let's start out with an oldie but a goodie

Do it again only harder

I have to admit that this has always struck me as being a terribly wrong and short sighted way to characterize liberals/progressives but I couldn't really figure out why....until today. When one suffers from groupthink, as Kevin et al do in regards to libs, they cannot possibly conceive of them as being anything other than a walking monolith of a single thought. One of the reasons Hillary Clinton is doing as poorly as she is in this primary season is that people don't want to hear the same old bullshit anymore. Kevin and company see Obama as no different than Hillary so it is no surprise that the word "again" is in this phrase. It is a mistake that they will regret come November. They will be flabbergasted after the first year of an Obama presidency when they realize that many of their dire predictions never came to pass. I look forward to that moment.

The correct phrase, if they took the time to actually understand where Obama is coming from, is:


Kevin fails to see the effect that Obama style politics can have on an area like....the South Side of Chicago, for example. If he took the time to talk to people there, as I have, they would tell him how Obama helped them out and (Gasp!) did it without the socialism/pile of skulls/boiling pit of sewage propaganda that Kevin's dogmatic belief system predicts.

that little factoid must explain why history doesn't appear to be taught in school much anymore

Actually, the reason why history isn't taught in school anymore is because it is not part of high stakes testing so schools remove it from curriculum at the grade school level. Thanks to No Child Left Behind, all of the focus must be on math, reading, and writing. I have a column coming soon on this topic. The reason why your daughter doesn't know about Pearl Harbor is due to the homogenized hoo rah version of America that has been taught in schools. Again, see Loewen's book. Speaking of which...

So Wilson was quite happy to use the Constitution as toilet paper, too.

Your long analysis of Wilson serves to prove a good point: all history should be looked at from a wide variety of angles and that is the job of educators. The bone I pick with you is that I do it and you don't. I am fully aware of how awful Communists regimes around the world were and still are. I am also aware of how horrible we have been and still are to this day. You aren't. Our government, throughout our entire history, has lied us into war after war. We killed four million people in Vietnam, Kevin, and you say that they were the ones who held the exclusive right to the title "monster" because they were....communists? If you were going by pure body count alone, those dirty commies might have the edge. So what? We have still killed millions ourselves in the name of our ideology. Does it make us better because we killed less people? Sheesh...

You almost grasp that there is no
"Third Way" you bend it to suit whatever situation comes up, but it's a system you apply daily.

Yes, it's true. I do bend to various situations and I am terribly sad to report that I do not set my feet in stone regardless of how much the world changes. The major reason we have fallen behind in the world is because we aren't malleable enough. This is the fault of people like you, Kevin. You refuse to change to a world that demands it. For some insane, illogical reason you take that to mean that the world is demanding that we become socialists. That is never going to fly here. We have to become more fluid and I'll tell you why: OUR ENEMIES ARE!!! They bank on us reacting the way you are and plan on us never changing our strategy, maintaining a shoot first, ask questions later policy.

then I suggest that we not darken each others doorsteps again

That's a little flowery, isn't it? Even for you, dude. I hope that won't be the case. You are always welcome to post here and I will be commenting here on ideas you throw out on your blog. As I have said before, I have learned a lot from our debates and hope to learn more.

Personally, I'm against government trying to make people... better.

So am I. But I am also against the government preventing people from becoming better. And that is why Obama is different. At the end of the day it really is going to be up to us, not him. Do you think the people on the south side of Chicago get any help from him anymore? No, he put some programs in place, removed some restrictions and cleared out some dead weight. There is less crime and more people back at work there. It's not perfect but it is better.

And that's what we are really talking about here. Pay attention to what the new wave of Democrats are saying. Take a closer look. They are not advocating a nanny state. That's what Hillary and John McCain are advocating. We are talking about an effort to bring this country back from the disaster that has been the last eight years. A large part of that effort is going to be centered around a return to good capitalism and a rejection of the "free market at gun point philosophy" we have now. Only in America, as Senator Obama says, can we have the freedom to pursue our dreams.

He is a living example of someone who took individual liberty and self reliance and succeeded. He didn't have anything handed to him on a silver platter and he certainly doesn't think that people are entitled to anything....other than to have a government that does not go out of its way to fuck them over by creating economic enemies around the world.

So, I am left wondering with what will happen if your predictions of the direction our country will take are wrong? You say you have history on your side but it is a history that strangely does not include an honest look at our foreign policy starting with the Monroe Doctrine and continuing through to President Bush's Iraq War today. Time and again, history has shown me that our enemies are born out of an abrasive and violent US policy that is little different than their own.

I see good in this country, too, Kevin. Unfortunately, those good people have been, for the most part, demeaned, mischaracterized, and slandered by people like YOU who do the bidding, consciously or unconsciously, of the men in this country who have the most to lose if we actually become decent for a change. Fortunately, most of the American people are pretty much done listening to this crap and they are beginning to see what it truly is going to take to get this country back on track.We are going to hear their voices in November.

It's going to be many voices and they are going to be loud.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Don't Forget Your Rubber Ducky

I think most people thought that Republicans were going to take a bath this fall. But if the special elections of the last few months are any indication, it's going to be a tub the size of the Pacific Ocean. Democrats have won in special elections in IL-14 and LA-3, both are R+7 districts according to the Partisan Voting Index. , which basically means they are Republican strongholds. These two elections alone should make conservatives nervous.

Last night's special election in MS-01 should make them shit pink twinkies.

The Democrat Travis Childers (left) beat the Republican Greg Davis (right) in a R+ fucking 10 district. Are you kidding me!!!?? Even I didn't expect this.

The victory isn't even the best part. The Republican Party poured tons of money into this race and even sent Dick Cheney there to stump for Davis. They ran attack ads linking Childers to Obama and....yep, that's right...Reverend Wright. The slime machine was set to 11 and Childers was everything from a thief to a friend of Osama's.

None of it worked. Not a single fucking bit of it. Perhaps the American people are finally starting to wake up.

You see, this is what happens when you you run the country into the ground. People are sick and tired of being lied to and screwed over. They have recognized the Republican Party for what it is and are starting to understand the outcomes of their failed policies. I think many Americans are going to be speaking very loudly and very clearly this fall, folks and if I were a Republican running right now, I might want to consider actually taking responsibility for the mountain of incompetence of the last eight years.

Think it will happen?

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

He Did and Said....What?

John McCain sure has a lot of 'splaining to do . According to various reports circulating around the web, McCain was at a dinner party in December of 2000 and told Arianna Huffington, Brad Whiteford, and Richarch Schiff that he did NOT vote for Bush in the 2000 election. This comes as no surprise to me after Rove et al fucked him over in South Carolina.

But what I do find very interesting is what he said after that. According to Mr. Whiteford, McCain said that President Bush "doesn’t have the concentration, and you talk for 10 minutes and then the guy wants to talk about baseball. I wanted to tell him how ridiculous and damaging his tax cuts would be to this country."

I am left wondering what a McCain presidency in 2000 would've been like and I suspect it would've been much better than the one we currently have. I think I might have disagreed with the maverick from time to time but he would've been ok and our country would've been in a much better place right now. I also think McCain would've done a better job than the Bush administration on Al Qaeda which would entail actually making an effort against those who attacked us 9-11 as opposed to letting them go.

The McCain of 2008 is old, tired, and desperately trying to be something he is not...pandering to religious conservatives like John Hagee and Rod Parsely and clinging to a failed policy in Iraq. He seems sort of pathetic, really, chomping at the dinner scraps that Bush has left him.

It's a sad thing to watch.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

"Liberal" Fascist Thought of The Day

Today marks the beginning of a new regular series here at Notes From The Front: The "Liberal" Fascist Thought Of The Day. It is my hope that it will enter the much enshrined ranks of the Grab Bag and the Shit Sack. So, without further adieu, I give you my "liberal" fascist thought of the day.

In looking for the roots of fascism in this country, one need only look at the reaction of a certain side of the political aisle when a student refuses to stand and recite the pledge of allegiance.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

What Color is The Sky in Their World?

I still read Kevin Baker's blog, The Smallest Minority but have felt no real compulsion to post the last few weeks. There are a few reasons why I have taken a time out (perhaps permanent) from posting. The main one is that I have neglected my own blog and would spend a longer amount of my limited time creating responses there and not writing here.

Kevin has been reading Liberal Fascism, the new book by Jonah Goldberg. He put up a quote today from the book that made me laugh for.....oh...about an hour. And then the sheer ignorance of it made me sad. I really have to get this book because from what I have seen so far it could be the finest piece of propaganda of the last century and, thus, an historical artifact. Here is the quote:

"Liberals are never responsible for historic misdeeds, because they feel no compulsion to defend the inherent goodness of America. Conservatives, meanwhile, not only take the blame for events not of their own making, but find themselves defending liberal misdeeds in order to defend America itself."

I would like a conservative to show me detailed examples of how they have taken the blame for events in the last eight years. The only time I can recall is President Bush apologizing for the federal response to Hurricane Katrina after a long amount of time elapsed. It really makes me wonder if Goldberg decided to come up with the largest amount of bullshit he possibly could-bullshit that would enrage the left, provide spanking material for the right, ingratiate him as a perennial butt boy of the thought leaders, and give him one large check from book sales.

Hmm...on second thought, maybe I should just check it out from the library.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Short Time Out

I thought it would be nice to take a short break from politics and turn to sports. All of you know that I live, breathe, eat, sleep, and shit Cardinals Baseball. Last night, Rick Ankiel, the center fielder for the Cardinals, played at a level I don't think I have seen since Willy Mays retired. Check it out here. It is in the video corner at the right.

Seriously, did I just witness an optical illusion....TWICE!

And he hit a home run last night too!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Here we go again...

There have been reports on TV and radio today that voters in districts in Indiana, that heavily favor Obama, are being forced to fill out provisional ballots even though they received confirmation of complete voter registration in the mail. This is apparently happening in the Northwest section of Indiana, a heavy Obama support area, which he needs to win the state.

Thus far, it seems to be only happening there which is beginning to raise some eyebrows considering that Hillary Clinton has key superdelegate support in that region.

Let's see what happens with the results tonight. Could it be true?

Monday, May 05, 2008

Time To Sprint

When I first happened upon The Huffington Post, I was pretty turned off. It seemed to be another example of the left trying to be like the right and thus, being a real turn off for me. Generally, I don't mind pointed criticism, even if it is cruel and unusual, but the Hufpost really seemed to be the other side of the same coin. Normally, my first impressions are accurate.

But I have given it a second look lately and I have to admit I think I was wrong. Take, for example, a recent piece by the woman herself entitled Probing the Political Paradox: Why The Right Still Gets To Set The Agenda. I urge all of you to check it out. Here are my favorite lines, with commentary.

"And I concluded that there are three main areas to look at, not only to help us understand how we got in the mess we're in, but also to help us get out: the media, the role of fear in our politics, and the failure of political leadership."

Yes, the "liberal" media is nothing of the sort. All of the news outlets are still on the Jeremiah Wright bandwagon and yet I see no mention of John McCain's skeletons anywhere (e.g. Pastor John Hagee). Fear is a topic I have talked a lot about on this blog and it's really true. Our country is run on half truths and fear. And there most certainly has been a massive failure of political leadership on both sides of the aisle.

"These three factors have combined to allow the lunatic fringe that has taken over the Right to hijack our country, our democracy, and our Constitution. So that 28 percent of the population that continues to support George W. Bush no matter how many bodies pile up in Iraq, how many jobs disappear overseas, how many For Sale signs go up on their block, or how high gas prices get, continues to dominate our politics."

Exactly correct. You really have to give credit to Rove, Cheney, Rumsfeld etc.. for being so adept at manipulating that 28 percent into submission. Kind funny that those who yearn for less government and whine about a nanny state have rolled over like little babies in front of these three daddies and continued to vote against their economic interests. But my favorite bit in her post?

"...the media which remains hopelessly addicted to the false belief that in order to be fair and balanced every story needs to be given the "on the one hand... and on the other" treatment. But not every story has two sides -- and the truth is often to be found not in the middle but solidly on one side or the other."

This really resonated with me personally. There have been some emails and lines in comments that have come up, accusing me of being more conciliatory towards conservatives, even weaker in my criticisms. I have really made a concerted effort over the last year or so to see their side and to fully understand it. I felt it was only fair. So, it is true, I have been consciously trying to see the middle of the road more so than I have in the past. Honestly, I'm not sure if I want to anymore. I think I have utterly failed in what Shakespeare championed so long ago:

This above all: To Thine Own Self Be True.

I haven't true to what I know is right and best for this country. It makes me physically ill to think that I have even tried to hear the other side on some key issues or even wasted thought on their delusions. I have come to realize that when you listen to some conservatives talk about the direction they would like to take this country (an unrestrained free market, stay the course in Iraq, no investment in education or health care), it's almost as if they live in a fantasy land...a place where their unhinged emotions and willing ignorance can flourish. Flagrant denial of what is actually happening to our country is the order of the day.

Take a look at Thomas Friedman's piece from yesterday's Times, Who Will Tell The People?

I am in complete agreement with him and, when I think about his piece and Ariana Huffington's piece at the same time, I realize that it is pointless to try to see the middle ground on issues where there is no middle ground. Time is running out folks. We have to face the unpleasant fact that our country is horribly broken and I am simply not going to attempt to appease these psychotic putzes anymore. As Friedman says:

We need a president who is tough enough to tell the truth to the American people....I’m voting for the one who can talk straight to the American people on national TV — at 8 p.m. — from the White House East Room.

There is something that is going on...something insanely horrible from an economic standpoint....that is a direct result of the conservative ideology of the last eight years. Friedman quotes Harvard's president, Drew Faust:

"Cutbacks in government research funds were resulting in downsized labs, layoffs of post docs, slipping morale and more conservative science that shies away from the big research questions. China, India, Singapore ... have adopted biomedical research and the building of biotechnology clusters as national goals. Suddenly, those who train in America have significant options elsewhere.”

This is the same part of the world we owe large sums of money to while we sink deeper and deeper into debt fighting a war that is not doing any damage at all to Al Qaeda. The reason why this election is more important than most...probably more important than the one in that we are "living on borrowed time and a borrowed dime," as Friedman puts it.

We no longer have the luxury of trying to mollify certain elements of our society and be apologists for neoconservative insanity. Our country as we know it is, quite frankly, doomed if we continue down this path. Take a look around you and see what happens to a country when it is run by someone who has a child like concept of...well....everything. The biggest problem, really, has always been that our nation's worst president was a Republican. If he had been a Democrat, we would've been able to move past the lunacy much quicker. But when you have a belief system where the number one rule is admit you are wrong and all is lost, it becomes tougher to evolve and see with width of vision.

When your feet are made of stone, it's hard to walk. Sadly, we need to start sprinting.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Top Ten List For Barack Obama

Some weekend fun.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Pefectly Summed Up

I pulled this quote off of Kevin Baker's blog, The Smallest Minority. It sums up, in a very eloquent way, how the conservative movement in this country has gone off the rails. It really dove tails nicely with a discussion that has been going in comments regarding national security.

And it was made by a conservative!

Take the republican party over the last 15 years. There is a central group of leaders who control 'conservatism' and conservatism is whatever they say it is right now. And what worse, it works. They can propose an idea that a few years ago would have been seen as profoundly un-conservative and their followers we become rabidly in favor of it. Inconvenient past history is covered up. People who point out the incongruity are denounced as the enemy and thrown out. We even have 'two minute hates' directed at libertarians who refuse to go along with the program.

Truly we've come to love Big Brother--and Big Brother is us.

---Stormy Dragon

Thursday, May 01, 2008

His Girl

Michelle Obama is simply extraordinary. This video gives great insight into her as a individual and as the spouse of the man who could change the world.

The last minute and a half is wonderful.