So, where is the line between someone voicing an educated opinion and a political attack? If you are a publicly acknowledged supporter of a candidate such as General Clark, are you not allowed to have a public opinion about an opposing candidate that casts doubt upon that person's qualifications? And why didn't McCain speak up for himself, instead sending his own retired military officer minion after Clark?
I really, truly despise politics.
Sabre rattling, weapon brandishing, prick waving. George Carlin called it the "Bigger Dick Theory" of foreign relations. The fact that time and again governments all over this planet return to violence as the sole method for resolving situations is just bloody depressing. That the Shrub and his band of thugs would be pushing an agenda of covert violence against Iran is unfortunately not all that surprising. If you have any interest in not seeing "more of the same" for the next four years, don't vote for McCain.
Two interesting points raised last night at the picnic:
- There is still time for people to write, call, fax and otherwise contact their Senators about this abomination that is the latest update to the ironically named Patriot Act. For whatever reason, most likely because they don't want to lose out on campaign money and they don't want to appear soft on terrorism, this latest update grants full immunity to the telecoms for their role in the warrantless wiretaps AND makes much of what the Shrub had been doing legal for all intents and purposes. FISA was put in place specifically because a standing president had felt he was above the law, and now Congress is going to give him carte blanche. WTF?
- Pelosi and Reid have taken impeachment off the table. Why isn't the presumptive Democratic nominee taking them aside and asking "WTF**2???". The Shrub has committed more egregious crimes against this country than Slick Willy or Tricky Dick, and impeachment is off the table? Jeebus.
It makes me ill just thinking about it. While you're writing to your elected officials about the Patriot Act, please write their counterparts in the House and explain to them that impeachment should not be off the table.
I follow ArtThreat on Twitter, and checked out this post about a rap video that ruffled some feathers. It is probably not safe for work due to language, but I think it is evocative and insightful, and worth watching even if you are one of the people who has been totally brain-washed by rhetoric about the war in Iraq. Especially if you are one of those people.
The painful truth is that in our bids to play kingmaker, the United States has caused more troubles for itself in the long run. Not content with simply protecting our interests abroad, there seems to be this need to manipulate events and internal politics, and for what? Saddam Hussein took the weapons, training and money we funneled into Iraq and made a royal nuisance of himself, ultimately costing the lives of many Americans in a war that has made us no safer than we were in September 2001. Nor have we really made Iraq that much safer for its inhabitants, have we? I'm not even going to start on the whole Osama Bin Laden thing... we fucked ourselves good with that little jaunt, didn't we?
Saddam Hussein is dead. Dubya will undoubtedly make some pointless statement about how this marks an end to a horrible era, but that much work remains to be done in Iraq. In other words, more lives will be lost, more money will be wasted, in a pointless attempt to somehow save face. Those who refuse to learn from history are doomed to repeat it... the sad state of affairs is that some of the same advisors to Dubya were there to see the Vietnam War end as a total catastrophe. Those arrogant bastards should know better dammit!
Here's a novel idea: let's get our noses out of other countries' governments. Who gives a rat's white fanny if the government is composed of Islamic fundamentalists? As long as they don't mess with our interests, what the hell is the problem? If they start messing with our interests, then go in and kick the shit out of them... at least then we'll have some kind of "just cause". Because the tack we've been taking isn't working folks... all we've managed to do is piss a bunch of people off because we want to tell them how to live their lives. At least we pay taxes for that privelege.
Saddam Hussein, may you rest in peace. Yours was a troubled soul, and if there is such a thing as reincarnation, perhaps you will get a chance to start making up for those things you did in this life. What you did was wrong, let there be no doubt, but you weren't alone in your perfidity.
WE'RE IN UR CONGREZZ,
TAKIN UR SEATZ!!!
Ganked from hughcasey. Everyone keep your fingers crossed, and hope for at least a 50/50 split in the Senate, if not a slim one vote majority. In the meantime, I'll be taking perverse pleasure in the thoughts of teeth gnashing going on at the White House, and the heartburn to be experienced by the House Republicants when Nancy Pelosi takes the stage as Speaker in January. At worst, little will get accomplished over the next two years but folks will see how obstructionist the Repubs and the White House are... at best, maybe we'll start getting the hell outta Iraq, reverse course on some issues that have been sandbagged in recent years, and set the stage for taking back Da Big Howz in 2008.
BOO-YAH!!! WE PWNZ0R UR HOWZ!!!
By way of /., something for you all to chew on: Congress and Dubya continue to erode our civil rights and move us closer to a police state. For fuck's sake, how much more of our essential liberties are we going to have to give up in the name of so-called-security before people realize that they're giving up a legacy for which so many men and women have given their lives to protect?
The worst part about this is that the lone dissenter in this travesty didn't even make a huge fuss to the media outlets. Folks, if there was any doubt in your mind that we need to "clean house" in Washington, this kind of crap should wipe those doubts from your mind.
I am so damned aggravated I can barely see straight... guess it is time to go do some manual labor to work off the stress.
This thought has been brewing in the back of my mind for a few days, so I figure while I am waiting for another computer to boot up, I'll pour a small draught for your consumption. In about ten days, those of us who reside in the United States have the opportunity to exercise our electoral rights in the 2006 mid-term elections. Above all, I encourage everyone who is legally able to vote to first educate themselves on the issues and the candidates in their home state or local burrough, and to then exercise their right and privilege as U.S. citizens by casting their vote on November 7. I'm not going to get into the evils of Diebold or the impression that We the People often have no real voice... I would like to think that if people made educate decisions when going to the polls that there might be some chance that we'd get more elected officials who are interested in something other than lining their nests with lobbyist gifts and campaign contributions from big business. I'm quite possibly wrong on that account, but that does not chang the importance of going out and performing your civic duty.
A note to those who don't bother voting: if you choose not to vote, you give up your right to bitch about your public officials. None of this bullshit about "Hey, I didn't vote that asshole in..." You want the right to complain about what's going on in the governor's mansion, state house or Congress? Get off your lazy, complacent ass and (1) educate yourself, then (2) get said lazy, complacent ass to the polls on November 7.
That being said, if your narrow-minded view of the world involves no equal rights for gays including banning gay marriage, restricting a woman's right to an abortion, taking away my rights to keep and bear arms, giving up civil liberties in the name of the so-called war on terrorism or in the name of protecting the children, or forcing your religious views on anyone who doesn't share them, please do us all one big favor and STAY THE FUCK HOME ON NOVEMBER 7!!!
Of course, the Dems need to hold up their end of the deal if they want the White House and Congress in 2008:
- Agree on a clear, unambiguous party platform. There was no real message in 2004, and it hurt the Dems badly IMNSHO.
- Make sure that the platform does not involve gun control in any way, shape or form. It is a losing proposition, and I think there are enough damn laws on the books that people should just enforce them.*
- Put forth a presedential candidate from the South (not Edwards), preferrably some who goes to church, has been an avid hunter all his life, and did an unremarkable [in any way] turn in the military, who speaks plainly about the party platform and the issues facing the nation. Yep, that rules out Hillary folks... she's not even an option, unless the Dems are truly interested in losing their shorts in the election.
*I would be curious to see some studies done on gun-related crime rates (preferrably by someone other than the National Rifle Association, even though I am a member) with concealed carry laws now on the books in so many states, taking into account how long the laws have been on the books and how many permits were issued in a given state. Of course, statistics is the third cannonical form of a lie, so the numbers could be tortured until they said what the researcher wanted.