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Wednesday, November 30, 2005
On this day:

Driving While Blind

If we dare seek a future glance into the Bush Administration’s abysmal environmental policy, we need look no further than China. China is well known for lacking not only safety policies for factory workers, but also lacking sanctions and restrictions for polluters. Earlier this year we learned about toxic water near a MSG factory, causing many of the poorest agricultural neighbors forced to drink from streams and wells serious intestinal problems.

Today we hear about an explosion at a petrochemical plant and the subsequent release of a 50-mile long slick of highly toxic waste floating seaward toward some highly populated areas. Typical to any totalitarian government, lies, cover-ups and a series of “blame game” attacks follow the poison slick downriver. Not unlike the FEMA disaster of New Orleans 2005, which will likely mark one of the greatest disasters in American history, so too will this gob of petroleum by-products be seen as one of China’s most disastrous accidents.

The similarities of policy are staggering: Neither government cares about the health of its people, neither care about clean air or potable water. No thought is given to the future of generations or to what kind of world we are leaving for our children. Only economic growth (read: money) and political strength (read: military power) matter to the leaders of both China and the United States. Both nations are bent on a myopic policy of unrestrained growth unmindful of any destructive impact it may have on society, humanity or our fragile planet.

In both nations leaders are driving the force of hyper-industrialization blindly. We, the powerless people, must stand aside and watch as our future is abandoned, our children’s children pay untold costs, and our globe heats up on its way to extinction of all life. All the while we pray that we don’t get run over by the sightless drivers of our political malcontent.

I'm Dreaming of A ...

In this time of year, when Holiday Cheer (horns blaring impatiently near shopping malls, the occasional vulgar shout as another vehicle takes the parking spot you scoped out) and Purchasing Orgy ("More, more, cheaper, cheaper...") collide, we again hear the insipid yet bucolic strains of music of Christmas Past. It should remind us of better times. Not, however, at the expense of current times. Perhaps we should update some of our favorites to reflect the season as it is during the New American Century.

I don't profess such talents, but If I tried, I would start with something about a White Phosphorous Christmas, in honor of all the Iraqi civilians burned by the oxydizing political effects of our nation's Culture of Life:

"First, I think it should be a stated goal of United States policy to not melt the skin off of children. As a natural corollary to this goal, I think the United States should avoid dropping munitions on civilian neighborhoods which, as a side effect, melt the skin off of children.

You can call them 'chemical weapons' if you must, or far more preferably by the more proper name of 'incendiaries.' The munitions may or may not precisely melt the skin off of children by setting them on fire; they do melt the skin off of children, however, through robust oxidation of said skin on said children, which is indeed colloquially known as 'burning'…

No doubt the Three Wise Men are rolling in their graves.

Monday, November 28, 2005
On this day:

Who Put the Green in the Holidays?

You know what frosts my tinsel?

The current trend in holiday retail sales reportage, as if this is yet another spectator sport, is vulgar. Since when is it important for the MSM to announce the retail sales? Whose idea is this anyway? Even the systematic destruction of a foreign land takes a step aside for the “news” of how people in this – the most fat-rich nation on Earth – spend money.It’s disgusting.

If holiday shopping were an Olympic event, it would follow these rules: The gun sounds when the turkeys are carved and gobbled. Then we all put our joggers on and race to the nearest mall, armed only with greed and plastic money with which to spread Holiday Cheer through Purchasing Power. The last one with a positive credit rating loses. Only by outspending ourselves compared with last year can we prove to the Spirit of Christmas that we’ve got what it takes for another round of Holiday Retail Frenzy™.

The first Saturday after Thanksgiving, we hear about how Wal-Mart and Target boasts good sales, while Sacks and Needless Markup struggle. What: are these sports teams or corporate entities (what’s the difference, anyway?) Who cares how other people are spending?!? This is important, how?

Now I hear today is “Cyber Monday,” for Christ’s Sake. It’s not enough I tax my feet for the pleasure of Corporate Greedmongers, I now have to One-Click my way into bankruptcy as well. Let’s remember the rules for filing have changed in favor of the lenders, so buyers beware.

Has anyone heard a national news story about feeding the homeless this Thanksgiving? Has anyone heard broadcasted a story about visiting ill children on MSM? How about locally sponsored Church events? If these things are happening, they’re invisible. The message is clear: being nice is not news. The media doesn’t care, but it does care about how much money we spend on holiday gifts.

The holidays in America, if you’ve been under a rock (or maybe in a bombed-out building in Falluja) is about money. Everything in America is about money. To quote Pink Floyd: “Don’t give that do goody-goody bullshit.” Only the bottom line matters.

Happy Holidays

Sunday, November 27, 2005
On this day:

Suffering the Blahs

After a while, politics gets boring. Media is repetitive, uninspired, and still – despite all the Internet accomplishes – our main source of information. Don’t bother to stifle your yawns. Important news is never printed; Bodypolitik does not want us to know.

Most of the political blogs I read struggle to refresh the stale in much the same way as newspapers. As the new news replaces the old news, one becomes the other. Blogging off the newswire is doomed to the same procedural limitations as the MSM, yet more so for being further from the source. The sheer volume of fourth-hand virtual reporters gives way to homogenization of reportage, as surfers only read people with whom they tend to agree. I, for one cannot stomach Michele Malkin, and to peruse Powerline sends bile upward.

We are preaching to the choir, Left and Right: no one else is listening anymore. How many times need I read reinforcements of my political stance? My worldview needs no reinforcement, although it is nice to know others share it. Politicking to the likeminded is counter productive. This is not debate. The open-mindedness of Hamilton-Jeffersonian discourse is dead in America. No doubt they hated one another, as does the Left and Right, but they shared a common understanding of the healthiness of political debate. We’ve lost that.

All you who feel they harbor an open political mind can speak out now. I write in generalities, seeking an overview, a pattern. I speak for the vast majority of Americans who waste too much of themselves in the endless struggle to “get by.” Yes, there are a few of you who have more-than-average time and/or interest to follow the dichotomy of American politics. You are too few to influence the many, or to sway a vote. I note your presence now sit down.

There are always the fence-sitters, fewer these days, for whom the vast majority of political contributions are spent to knock one way or the other. They who own the most power in our upcoming elections, simply for their unpredictability, for whose indecision the rest of us must pay in tolerating banal political tripe, are the crux of what remains of political discourse in America.Should any read our bloggings and be swayed? Are we whistling into the hurricane force winds of war-weariness and political disgust? As we preach to the acolytes, will any dissenting voice wander in from the storm? While we’re all beating our drums, one question rises above all:

Does it matter?

Friday, November 25, 2005
On this day:

From The Empty Promises Department:

File this alongside of other empty promises made by GWB, like his “uniter, not divider” spiel or vowing to bring morality back to the White House. “No Child Left Behind” ended up being No Child Left Unfunded (or is that Untested?). Dare we say “Mission Accomplished?”

Now we learn, via WaPo, that (gasp!) Mr. Bush’s promise, boldly called his “Vision for Space Exploration,” is more political vaporware. NASA doesn’t have the money.
A large deficit in NASA's troubled shuttle program threatens to seriously delay and possibly cripple President Bush's space exploration initiative unless the number of planned flights is cut virtually in half or the White House agrees to add billions of dollars to the human spaceflight budget.

Sources familiar with ongoing negotiations between NASA and the White House say the administration has no intention of spending extra money to deal with a shortfall that some space experts say could exceed $6 billion from 2006 to 2010, when NASA plans to retire the shuttle for good.

We know where that money is going: Halliburton, et al. After all, who is going to pay for the white phosphorous chemical weapons we use to combat terrorism and its phantom WMD’s? That money has to come from somewhere. NASA, build on the backs of Democratic administrations past, seems a likely fall guy for diversion of funds into the pockets of Republican shareholders present, in the guise of “rebuilding.” Right: Ask Philip Bloom about that.

George is consistent, I’ll say that. He fails to deliver even now, when his “political capitol” is spent and the bills are overdue. He creates the Department of Homeland Security, which can’t function during a crisis. His Federal Emergency Management Agency incompetence cost untold lives, and his War on Terror has turned America into a nation of terrorists in the eyes of the world. The only Department that works in this administration is the Department of Empty Promises, one which no one admits exists.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005
On this day:

When Push and Shove Collide

While the village idiot of Crawford, Texas is flying around Asia on a free (to him) sightseeing tour of ego-bolstering proportions, the dogs of War are nipping at the heels of the few congressmen brave enough to demand change. The Big Dog, of course, is (the) Dick Cheney, who intends to continue to bombast any detractors. As a one-man Ministry of Propaganda, he has little choice. The Party bet all its cookies on Iraq. They forces through their agenda with great relish and fervor, and everyone involved knows this sad truth: There’s no going back.

Any group who embraces the hard line, aggressive politics characteristic of the Bush administration must do so by burning many metaphorical bridges. Now, their collective backs are against the raging torrents of a wide, deep river of discontent, verily foaming with distrust, and all the bridges used to get there are blackened stumps protruding from the rising waters. In this political era of recriminations and regrouping, some truths can no longer be avoided. To wit:
"The flaws in the intelligence are plain enough in hindsight, but any suggestion that prewar information was distorted, hyped or fabricated by the leader of the nation is utterly false," Mr. Cheney said. "Senator John McCain put it best: 'It is a lie to say that the president lied to the American people.' "

I agree with that. The President did no lie to the American people. His keepers did. George W-is for-Wimp Bush only did what he was told, only said what others told him to say. That’s George’s secret; he believes what he says, and he’ll provide a good showing because of this. That the information fed to the empty figurehead of the Republican Party (heil!) is erroneous does nothing to deter the earnest, shameless delivery of untruths to the public. The evil troika of Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and Cheney are the liars; Mr. Bush is the fall guy.

So while the visage of our Cowboy-in-Chief is galloping around as far away as his handlers can send him, the real work needs addressing. This is stuff of subtlety and nerve, of which our Favorite Shrubbery has little, and so it falls to the Presidential Insurance Policy (would you want Cheney in the top job?) to manifest his ire at all truth seekers, and in so doing, spin a web of lies to reinforce the aging web already in place.
"The terrorists believe that by controlling an entire country," he said, "they will be able to target and overthrow other governments in the region, and to establish a radical Islamic empire that encompasses a region from Spain, across North Africa, through the Middle East and South Asia, all the way to Indonesia. They have made clear, as well, their ultimate ambitions: to arm themselves with weapons of mass destruction, to destroy Israel, to intimidate all Western countries and to cause mass death in the United States."

Sounds threatening, doesn’t it? Yet America believes that by controlling an entire country, we will be able to overthrow other governments in the region, and to establish a radical Democratic Empire that encompasses much of the same areas Mr. Cheney mentions as well as all of Europe, the two Americas, and much of the Pacific Rim. We have made it clear, as well, our ultimate ambition to create a United States of Earth in the form of economic slavery and American dominance of all markets throughout the world.

That, my friends, is the goal of the New American Century, as has been hinted at for the past sixty years, since the end of World War 2. Many of the administrations critics have many of the same goals, overall. Only the methods are debated. As a whole the entire establishment of our so-called Two Party System is in agreement about American Global Domination in one form or another. The Cold War taught us that economics, utilized properly, can be just as effective a weapon as a cluster bomb. The term “corporate warfare” is not always a metaphor. In light of this it’s easy to see our great nation has been involved in some kind of warfare constantly for the past century.

And we, the enablers, the blind, self-absorbed and overweight, hyper-consumers of America, look the other way while our nation dominates the world. Some of us think this is a good thing, but most of the world disagrees. I’d like to end this rant with one obvious point: we’re grossly outnumbered; China alone has over one billion people. When push and shove collide, as they inevitable will, we cannot possible win against such odds.

Friday, November 18, 2005
On this day:

Your Tax Dollars at Work

Yesterday we learned about Philip Bloom, grafting to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Today, we read about an Ex-convict taking bribes as comptroller in Iraq. Millions of dollars are involved in this case. Robert J. Stein, despite a conviction of felony fraud (or perhaps because of it), was hired as a financial officer of the American occupation in Iraq, received – according to authorities - "bribes, kickbacks and gratuities amounting to at least $200,000 per month."

While we fire bomb civilians, we graft money earmarked for rebuilding. While we Scrape clear the residue of fused soil and depleted phosphor, we steer money back to our selves, thereby stealing from the POTUS.
Corruption is what we voted into Washington DC. We are bankrupting our nation for the sake of swindlers, liars, and thieves like Mr. Stein, of whom a former boss said: "This guy is a thief. He's a con artist and a crook.” That is the kind of people hired by the Bush administration, and its cronies. If they’re not completely unqualified, like Mr. Brown, formally of FEMA, they’re quite capable crooks.

God, but this is depressing…

Thursday, November 17, 2005
On this day:

A War of Words

Big Dick Cheney is well rested, after his recent health problems, and willing to take on the Democrats. I like his rhetoric, only because it’s so thin: It seems – again – that disagreeing with the elite by questioning our leaders integrity regarding the case for war is "one of the most dishonest and reprehensible charges ever aired in this city." That is, besides the lies that got us here in the first place.

Also, to question our leaders, after insurmountable evidence against the war in Iraq, is "making a play for political advantage in the middle of a war." Perhaps “making a play for political advantage” during a national crisis is somehow more acceptable?

I think not.

Epidemic Alert!

I have to say I’m not surprised about the grafting charges brought against Philip H. Bloom. He is victim of the same mindset the rest of the warmongering elite suffers: the end justifies the means. Our sorry excuse for foreign policy screams out every time Our Favorite Shrubbery speaks about “staying the course,” that the ends justify the means. Bloodshed and torture are nothing against the ideals we are shoving down the throats of others. Our national penchant for no-bid contracts, in both Iraq and in Louisiana, cries real tears that the ends justify the means. Due process is only a bother when we are trying to rule the world. Now we find that entrepreneurs find any excuse to scarf up all the riches they can get, because the ends justify the means. What better end is there to the American mind?

Money is GOD! Power is currency to the Political elite; with power, one can get more money. Money is power to the business elite; with more money, one can but more power. Together, we see an endless reciprocality of privilege, manifesting a paradigm of greed, dishonor, and war. Such is the currency of our deity, and the virtues we give lip service to become our sacrifice to the God of the Almighty Dollar to whom America kneels in obeisance.

We, who by doing nothing default to acceptance of this God and his adherents. We, kept enslaved by materials wealth, drained of spiritual acumen, are the victims of the Money God to whom our leaders pray. By pretending to look away, by avoiding our civil duties of voting and political participation, we allow the unthinkable. Victims, yes, as well as enablers. We have no one to blame but ourselves.

I knew this when I voted against our useless president: twice. I know this even better now. Mr. Bloom is an adherent of a false God, but he is only a minor manifestation of a larger sickness. And, we may not recover.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005
On this day:

What's That Smell?

"Ooh, what's that smell? The smell of death surrounds you." -Lynard Skynard
A joint statement by the American Embassy and the United States military command called the situation "totally unacceptable" and said American officials "agree with Iraq's leaders that mistreatment of detainees will not be tolerated."
Can you smell the hypocrasy here? Who taught the Iraqi Security Forces? The same people who have blood on their hands. If it is "totally unacceptable" over there, so it is over here, too. As for the ousting of Saddam Hussein, I'll quote another well-known song:

"Here comes the new boss, same as the old boss..." -The Who

Tuesday, November 15, 2005
On this day:

I Can't Wait!

And you thought Christmas was a long way off...

Only 1161 days left.

I Can't wait

Sunday, November 13, 2005
On this day:

He Did It, Says King

Jordon’s King Abdullah II confirms, for the delectation of the American Media, that Al-Qaeda is indeed behind the hotel blasts that killed 57 people last Wednesday. How such an esteemed monarch can be privy to the minds and deeds of underworld sociopaths is beyond me. Jordon, long an ally of America, now makes statements which can be interpreted to bolster our administration’s sagging legacy in the War on Terror. ™

I can’t avoid suspicion, here. How much did it cost George Warmonger Bush to get the King to announce their certainty? Reports I’ve been reading about the so-called leader of Al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia, Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi, is that he’s dead. Many in Iraq, especially in his hometown of Zarqa, believe as much. Yet for months American propaganda has worked hard to create another larger-than-life boogeyman with the same name.

If he is already dead, then is would be easy for the Busheviks to trot out “proof” of his demise when politically expedient – and not a moment sooner. We cannot seem to get our iron grieves on Osama Bin Laden - remember him? - instead we create a new goon, one that is, as Monty Python would have it, “mostly dead”, and pin the anarchy America has created in the region on him. Then when the time is as ripe as a corporate coffer, the Bushheads can show the closed coffin of their alleged demon.

Nice and tidy except for one troubling detail: Americans don’t believe the hype anymore. The Boy Who Cried Terrorist, cried out a few to many times, as he treads a podium made of 2000 dead American servicemen and –women. We just won’t buy it. Hearing the same from a foreign King firmly in the grasp of our administration is not going to sway us, either.

Saturday, November 12, 2005
On this day:

That Dog Won't Hunt.

The NY Times reports on Our Favorite Shrubbery and his Veteran’s Day speech in front of yet another coerced audience in Pennsylvania. Military bases offer a cheap and effective way for our Lamest Duck Ever to reinforce the carefully spun “macho” image of a hands-on, DIY president, or they’re the only places where the administration can assure, with reasonable confidence, no one with an “Impeach Bush” sweatshirt will interrupt the proceedings. Chances of a terrorist attack on a military base are lower, too.

Our Wind-up Monkey-in-Chief said the following:
"The stakes in the global war on terror are too high, and the national interest is too important, for politicians to throw out false charges," Mr. Bush said. "These baseless attacks send the wrong signal to our troops and to an enemy that is questioning America's will. As our troops fight a ruthless enemy determined to destroy our way of life, they deserve to know that their elected leaders who voted to send them to war continue to stand behind them."
He’s beating the same drum as ever: disagreement is treasonous, well-documented accusations are “Baseless” and somehow, Iraq becomes the ultimate evil, possessing power to “destroy our way of life.” That last floors me; I’ve been paying attention lately, but…When did that happen? How did Iraq, after two bloody years of systematic destruction, collateral damage bordering on genocide, and routine torture at the hands of American military somehow become so powerful as to undermine the “American Way™?” As a side note, I’d still like the media to report on who sells Iraq their weapons and munitions.

Finally, the stab at Democratic senators fooled into voting for the war. What I’ve been hoping for from my party-of-choice is an admonition of guilt, an apology. What the Democrats should present to the people of the United States is a letter of wrongdoing, admitting the error of their waysin regard to voting for the war. A statement they were guilty of believing presidential spin, innocent of the depths Dick Cheney would go to achieve his personal agendas of war profiteering, and unaware of how desperately the Neo-cons lived for war, American military supremicism, and imperialism. A simple “I’m sorry. We were wrong” goes a long way in life; especially when America will not get the same from the Republicans. I, for one would forgive a congressional representative who admits error and vows corrective action. They’re only human.

So much for the obligatory sound byte on taxpayer dollars, acted out before a captive audience disallowed free expression. So much for the threadbare platitudes, offered un-asked for and unwanted, by a wannabe GI Joe known for such verbal gems as “Mission Accomplished,” and “Bring ‘em on!” This trick is so tired not even the newspapers can resuscitate it. Let George believe we’re listening, he’ll feel better about himself.

When will he realize that dog won't hunt?

Legacy Issues

If I could write a letter to the president, it may look something like this:

Thank You Mr. Bush, for killing thousands of innocents, for lowering the quality of life for thousands more injured in you war-for-profit, for presiding over economic stagnation and the looting of the National Treasury. For the unfortunate dead, their suffering is over. In some ways, they’re the lucky ones.

For their families, for the maimed, and the families of the maimed, the rest of their lives shaped by your policies. As hundred of wounded veterans return home to a bankrupt nation, they face struggles affording the lifestyles they left behind, forcing their parent and spouses to shoulder burdens of care, compensation. These vets will bring home less money, if at all, adversely affecting the lives of their children, limiting the future choices of education and opportunity, perhaps for decade to come. Such is you presidential legacy, Mr. Bush.

Further, I would thank you for helping the Democratic Party regain its footing after the sound beating they've taken in past years. Your policies have almost single-handedly reinvigorated them. Thanks. They needed it. Finally, I would thank you for setting the precedent of becoming the Worst President Ever. This can only act to strengthen America, as we shed new light upon the festering sore of extremist ideology. No one could have done more to steer our nation back to the center, where it belongs, and I thank you.

From a constituent who has voted against you - Twice.

Friday, November 11, 2005
On this day:

Imminent Disaster

Pat Robertson is talking out his backside again. From this article in WaPo, he is quoted as saying via his mealy mouthpiece, the “700 Club,” in response to a vote in a Pennsylvania city ousting a school board that backed “intelligent design” curriculum:
"I'd like to say to the good citizens of Dover: if there is a disaster in your area, don't turn to God -- you just rejected Him from your city," Robertson said on his daily television show, "The 700 Club."
"And don't wonder why He hasn't helped you when problems begin, if they begin. I'm not saying they will, but if they do, just remember, you just voted God out of your city. And if that's the case, don't ask for His help because he might not be there," he said.

Now, if anybody could claim to know God, it’s Pat Robertson. Being on a first name basis with the Big Guy did nothing for Pat’s bid for president back in the day, but one never can tell. If you can take the word of Mr. Robinson - and you should, who knows Him better? - God is just as petty and spiteful as his human pets. We are, after all, made in his image (or, is He made in ours, I never quite get that.) Clearly, judging by the words quoted above, the City of Dover, PA. should be vaporized by some cosmic calamity any day now…

Property values should plummet after this news gets out. The outbound freeways will jamb, mass riots, the whole bit. Don’t forget to tune up your Tivo to catch all the footage.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005
On this day:

Carpe Diem, Dems!

According to the plethora of Democratic Newsletters I receive, the Folks Dyed Blue won a major coup on Tuesday. I didn't notice. As far as I recall, Illinois had no elections this week. Either that, or the local party was held in the basement somewhere. With chicagoland as blue as it is, this is unlikely.

But the glowing reports are overstated - imagine that! - as only, what, two governorships will change their wallpaper? One thing I've longed suspected is proved, however, that the Democrats in New York City have all moved to the New Jersey suburbs. How else would you explain Bloomberg's triumph? Okay, money. And perhaps a little closet racism thrown in? Could it be that the longstanding Irish and Italians families, not known for intermingling, disapprove of having an Hispanic as mayor? A Jew would be better, no?

Did I say that?

But I digress: The Blueman Party is in marginally better shape, but not enough to crow about. Much more works needs doing. Giving money to your local party is good, but giving time is better. For me, in Cook county, Illinois, helping the local Democratic Party is like opening up a crystal shop in Waterford, Ireland. But many areas need supporters who give more than our of their pockets. Go for it; the time has never been riper for change.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005
On this day:

Holy Shrubbery, Batman!

This NY Times editorial moves like a fight scene from the 1960's batman series:


Take that, Hedgerow-man! (Hehehehe Great Fun!)

Or, we could cue Bob Dylan: "The times they are a'changin'..."

Monday, November 07, 2005
On this day:

Here's the Beef!

Brazilian president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, feted George and Laura Bush at his residence for an outdoor Brazilian-style barbecue. The menu included several premium cuts of beef, as well as lamb, oxtail and cheese. Brazil's beef exports have been hurt recently due to an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease that has led more than 50 countries to suspend their imports. By serving Brazilian beef to Mr. Bush, Mr. da Silva was saying that there is no cause for the rest of the world to be alarmed.

It's Okay for George to eat tainted beef, he already has foot-in-mouth disease.

Sunday, November 06, 2005
On this day:

Nail the Hammer

This guy’s got more balls than Buckminster Fuller.

I would quip that Tom DeLay is Satan, but Lucifer would be too smart to get caught; Tom obviously is not. I have no doubt, however, that Tom DeLay is evil. He’s becoming this nation’s icon of political underhandedness, intimidation and character assassination. He wins by playing dirty, and I’m sure in his crusty, black shriveled heart, he revels in it.

According to WaPo, he’s treating his legal defense as yet another campaign. Read that to mean he’s plying a multi-tiered strategy to raise funds, destroy the character (perhaps even the career) of his competition, and appeal to his staunchest supporters to help spread the manure. To Wit:
Other politicians caught in a legal bind have tried to make a similar case that they were victims of prosecutorial excess or partisan attack. But few have done it to the degree of DeLay and his allies, who have launched an aggressive campaign to portray the former House majority leader as both a victim of a vendetta and an irreplaceable champion of conservatism.

Right. Let that settle a bit: Tom De-freaking-Lay is a victim. “I was just minding my own business, when…” If this whole drama didn’t threaten to undermine our republic, I would laugh; but it’s too serious a matter. What kind of Dawn of the Dead republicans are still able to swallow that crap?
By so doing, DeLay's team hopes to accomplish three critical goals: undermine the stature of his Democratic prosecutor, Ronnie Earle, in the minds of potential Texas jurors; win over DeLay's suburban Houston constituents before a potentially difficult reelection campaign; and retain his political base in Washington before a planned return to power.

Power: It’s that last word that motivates him. While he holds out his cup to some of the nation’s richest sociopaths, whining all the time about how downtrodden he is, both of the knives up his sleeves are slick with gore. His constituents, bowlegged and unwashed, gun-toting beer-spillers, are all too involved in bar fights to bother thinking about the issues. To them, anyone nicknamed “The Hammer” has got to be macho enough to support.

The official line is the charges against DeLay are “egregious” (meaning offensive for those DeLay constituents), but somehow the concepts of money-laundering and conspiracy, illegally funneling corporate money into a public campaign are not seen as offensive. Forgive my tender sensibilities, but allowing big business to purchase a senate majority is quite “egregious” to me. This is not “of the people” democracy in action.

To take a play from the Texan book of Western Justice, I say we find a very tall, strong tree and hang the bastard, let him swing there until the buzzard are fed. Apologies to those who find this offensive.

Saturday, November 05, 2005
On this day:

Powerful Stuff

No ideology is worth the death of so many young people. Paul Fusco photoblogs his impressions of military funerals.

Nod to: Alternate Brain

Two Americas, One World

What is happening during the Summit of Americas is good news for globalization and for the poor peoples of the world. Americans must see that our brazen policies can hurt us. Americans must see what others think of the U. S. of A. It matters.

Global policy in America has been to push a global economy on the rest of the world, yet we wish to do so on our terms. I see this as the economic equivalence of China’s annexation of Tibet. This time, America is trying to annex the entire global economy. Are we supposed to act surprised if the nations “out there” don’t like our terms?

If we play fair, America stands to lose our unprecedented growth. The stacked deck of economic privilege we’ve been enjoying will even out until we will be forced by the greater economic global community to compete on our merits. Like equals. Imagine what that would do to our gluttonous policies, habits and lifestyles. It will hurt America at first because we build our system as inherently exploitative, and now we find we cannot keep up the ruse.

In the long term, however, America will recover from this shift in economies because we will be forced to shift. The whole globe will benefit, long term, from a truly free and balanced unity of economy. Let’s stop thinking about hypothetical political boundaries. Let’s instead realize the move toward globalization is not only inevitable, it is the only possible future of humanity: One World, One People.

It is an unfortunate by-product of our collective societies that nothing gets noticed without violence or a threat of violence. American media wouldn’t have deigned to print anything at all about peaceful protesting. Mr. Chavez’ stadium filled protest notwithstanding, without the rioting, we average Americans would remain ignorant of the fact that our foreign policy is broken. We need new leadership – real leadership – that understands the interconnectivity of nations and is willing to give a little while taking only a little in return. That’s not what we’ve been doing. We’ve been doing our best to rape the rest of the planet for our SUV’s and our satellite TV’s.

That cannot be sustainable, in any sense of the word.

UPDATE: Skippy nails it.

Silent Revolution

I’ve noticed a quiet trend recently.

In the 2000 election season, many cars on the road proudly boasted their driver’s allegiance to one or the other presidential candidate. For many months afterward, even as long as two years, cars tooled about still decorated with sloganeering. By the middle of 2001, when war became an issue, the slogans morphed into those inane yellow ribbon-thingies, further morphing into the puerile patriotism we’ve come to know.

During the elections of 2004, the sticker shock heightened into furor; the cars I witnessed in the battleground state of Wisconsin were boldly festooned with pro-whomever, cheap-shots-at-the-other-guy, all in red, white and blue. Many gas-guzzlers in evidence were pro-Bush, while the Kerry crowd drove smaller, sometimes older cars, carefully. What this says about the drivers of those vehicles, I’ll leave to your imagination.

Here’s the trend part: Today, very few cars boast bumper stickers or ribbons of any sort. Many signs of patrician patriotism have, like the weathered ribbons, faded. I see very few “W” ovals and only a couple of Kerry/Edwards rectangles in evidence; fewer and fewer ribbons risk exposure to the elements. Somewhere on a quiet suburban night, one can hear – if listening carefully – the susurration of vinyl implements removing political afflictions from trusty steeds.

This is such a quiet revolution, this unstickering of America. What strikes me most is how soon after the last election the colors are fading: one year only. The last time I saw anyone plummet as far and fast as Our Favorite Shrubbery is, she was on a roller coaster. While I fantasize that all the “W” voters have repented, I know better; “Once bitten, twice shy” would be a good rule about now, but humans aren’t that logical. Nevertheless, this reversal of shirtsleeve patriotism shows people are beginning to think again.

And that can’t be a bad thing.

Friday, November 04, 2005
On this day:

Psst. Pass It On

I'd like to pass along an interview of Dahr Jamail, written by Benjamin Dangl. This story needs to be shared.

Are you fed up yet? No!?! Here's four reasons more.

Thursday, November 03, 2005
On this day:

Too Little Too Late

The Democrats are flexing their muscles in congress. By exploiting an old parlor trick, they shut out the Republican Party for two hours yesterday to force resolution of the stalled Senate Judiciary Commission inquiry into the mishandling of information leading to war. Mishandling: I like that. We dare not say they LIED, that would be, um, the truth. And truth is not what sells newspapers.

But I digress. The Democratic emails I receive are full of bluff-and-bluster verbiage of self-congratulations. But they haven’t actually accomplished anything. They’re just having a meeting to discuss the feasibility of putting a planning commission together to work out the viability of opening a dialogue with their teammates on just what to do next. Meanwhile, they have no qualms about asking for more money from “concerned Democrats” like me. Damn right I’m concerned.

I am truly concerned about the lack of substance coming from the Washingtonian Donkey Party. If they truly wanted to oust the Elephants, they need to examine how the game is played: Find a platform, stay on target, form a cohesive unit and stay on message. Any message will do that contrasts with the methods of the ruling party. Stick to your guns, people!

What Senators Schumer, Reid, and Durbin accomplished was to get their names in the papers. By Sunday all this will have blown over and the Bushoviks will stay the course. Now; if these same three senators would prepare a platform of countermeasures attuned to ending the war, balancing the budget, housing and feeding the poor, bolstering Medicaid, and reinventing the educational processes while revoking some – if not all – of the damaging environmental reversals our Favorite Shrubbery™ emplaced… That would be newsworthy – perhaps even vote-worthy.

Otherwise it’s just too little too late.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005
On this day:

Be a Speechwriter

Thanks to Linky & Dinky, those bad boys of the 'net, for finding the George W Bush Speechwriter thingy. Too bad the Save Speech subroutine is broken - at least I couldn't save my edit of vituperative utterances. [sigh] It would've been fun to post a link here.

I bet you can make your own, though... great fun!