Sunday, February 24, 2008

Vote Republican If You Hate America

Voting Republican is not patriotic. Unless, of course, you believe that being a patriot means selling out your fellow countrymen to make more money. And, if we go by the 2004 election results, more than half of the people who voted feel this way. The question is, how were the Republicans able to hijack the idea of patriotism, convolute it’s meaning and convince people to vote against their own best interests?

Republicans stand for everything that is wrong with our government and our country. I’m not even going to go near George W. Bush because, as far as I can tell, he’s a complete psychopath (and I’m going to use him as a textbook example as to why people shouldn’t use drugs). Read this if you don't believe me. So, I’ll use john McCain and his “lobbyist problem” as my example. I could care less if they ever held hands, canoodled or whatever, that’s not the issue (but the Republicans would like you to focus on that because it’s easier to defend). No, the real issue is McCain’s sense of integrity and judgment. Why would someone who is so outspoken against lobbyists in the legislative process turn around and accept favors from and do favors for a lobbyist? McCain garnered huge campaign donations from this lobbyist’s clients, which leads one to believe that he was doing something for these people (and he was). McCain put his own self-interests above the needs of the American people and then expected people not to notice or care.

Yet somehow Republicans have managed to trick the general population into believing that they stand for “small government, low taxes,” and have labeled the Democrats as “tax and spend.” However, this is completely incorrect and not based in reality. For an example of how Republicans actually govern we’ll use Ronald Reagan (everything about his presidency). George W. bush says that if his tax cuts are not made permanent “the average American will see a tax increase of $1,087,” which is true, but not accurate. Bush is averaging the tax increase that millionaires will see and the decrease that the lower and middle class will see and it still comes out to an increase. Here, I can play that same game: Bill Gates and a homeless man have an average of $20 billion between them. That’s true, but it’s not accurate.

The hypocrisy is maddening. If being patriotic meant blindly accepting whatever the government says and does, there wouldn’t be an America for us to be patriotic about. If the founding fathers had not stood up to the injustices of the King, we would not be Americans. So, obviously, in America being patriotic means speaking out against a government that is unjust and asserting our right to personal freedom. However, Republicans would have you believe that being patriotic means believing whatever they say and accepting their corrupt ways as “best for America.”

Look at the titles of their legislation: The USA PATRIOT Act (clever acronym: Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001) which actually weakens civil liberty protection; the Protect America Act which allows the government to invade your privacy; the No Child Left Behind Act which, aside from being completely ineffective and weakening our public school system, actually requires all schools to distribute the name and home phone number of all enrolled students to military recruiters. These examples of legislation don’t even scratch the surface, but they illustrate the fact that Republicans have established a system in which voting against their fascist ideas makes it easy for them to point to someone and say “That person isn’t a patriot because they voted against the USA PATRIOT act,” or whatever legislation they are pushing. (On a side note, where can I get a job making up acronyms?)

And, I’m still not sure how Republicans can claim to be the party of morality and righteousness. Literally every day another Republican is indicted, outed or arrested (or some combination thereof). Just this week we’ve had McCain and his lobbyist issues, his campaign co-chair Rick Renzi indicted on 35 counts of fraud, extortion and money laundering, and Bush-appointed federal judge Robert Somma arrested for DUI while wearing drag. I mean, C’MON! Where do they find these people?! Their moral compasses a beyond broken, and yet Republicans continue to claim that they (as in all of them) are of sound morals and judgment. Nope. I’m not buying that at all.

I could go on forever. The corruption is deep and widespread. Republicans have hijacked America and turned it into their own little perverted playground. It’s time for us to take it back. Every time a Republican does something and then tries to sweep it under the rug, we’ll be there to keep it plain sight. Since the media is not going to help, we’re going to have to be the vigilant, patriotic citizens our founding fathers envisioned. Don’t let people hold our leaders to the low standard Bush has set. Expect more from our government. Vote Democratic in 2008!

Monday, February 18, 2008

What We're Fighting For

I know that the debate of Clinton or Obama is occupying people's minds, but I thought we could use a reminder of what we're fighting for. Set to the song Fighter by Christina Aguilera, a brief summary of the past seven years. Enjoy!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Jesus Take The Wheel? Not On This Crazy Train...

Now, don't get me wrong. I am supportive of religions and of people practicing their religion of choice. But, to me, religion is personal and should remain so. I fully believe in separation of Church and State, and I am more than put off when people suggest it should be otherwise.

The other day, I happened to drive by this "mobile billboard," so I stopped to take some pictures. 

What do you think? Is this going too far?

So, is this supposed to mean that marriage is more important than the 10 Commandments or was the guy just too lazy to take down one sign before putting up the other? I guess I could call the number on the back of the truck to find out.

"Truth not tolerance." Catchy, but I don't that that was Jesus' message. This is a very disturbing set of ideas, and the more I look at this, the more sickened I become. 

For someone who is supposedly against same sex partnerships, that's an awful big picture of two men kissing. Do you suppose he took that picture himself or just surfed the internet until he found a suitable image?

Good quote. I guess he hasn't heard this one: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..." First Amendment, Constitution of the United States of America.

Wait, what is that on the windshield?

Oh, it's a parking ticket! Hahaha, guess you can't park that "trailer of trash" on a bridge overlooking the freeway. Hold on. Is that a video camera? Am I being recorded as I laugh and take pictures? I must be! And that man cowering in the back seat must be the owner of this monstrosity. And he's too spineless to come out and take ownership of his offensive ideas. Sickening. 

In case you were ever wondering why people think the Religious Right is crazy, this is a prime example. 

Monday, February 11, 2008

Oh, I Bet That Tastes Terrible!!

Have you noticed how many Republicans are now endorsing John McCain as a "true conservative"? Yes, I have too. And it made me wonder: What the F*** are they drinking?? Well folks, I've figured it out. Republicans across the country have been chugging this delightful new cocktail. But, you'd better hurry, this one will only be around until November 4, 2008!

McCain Kool-Aid Cocktail

aka: The REAL Jungle Juice

1 common language (usually English, Spanish when necessary)
1 “good” pinch of select “herbs” (can substitute cocaine, if desired)
2 prescription painkillers (Oxycontin preferred)
1 ½ oz Southern Comfort
Grape Kool-Aid Powder

1) In a large Hurricane glass, muddle the common language, herbs and pain medications until sufficiently jumbled.
2) Stir in Southern Comfort (and then a little extra for good measure).
3) Add Grape Kool-Aid powder (enough so that your friends and donors won’t be able to tell you “fell off the wagon” at close range).
4) Toss in a few ice cubes.
5) Layer fear, hatred, xenophobia, and aggression (or any combination thereof).
6) Garnish with $100 bill or newest insider-trading stock tip.

Drink quickly (and discreetly) and order another!

*Best when served by Karl Rove and Bill O’Reilly.

Variation 1:
Take two Oxycontin. Chug bottle of Southern Comfort. Make derogatory comment about passing minority. Watch Fox News until you pass out. Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Money, It's A Hit: How Cash Perpetuates American Ignorance

I know that today is the day after Super Tuesday, but I don’t really have anything to say about the contest that hasn’t already been said. I was happy to see such a good showing for Edwards, even though he has left the race. I think that goes to show that people are very connected to his positions on the issues, many that aren’t addressed as forcefully by the remaining candidates.

Moving on, I was talking with friends last night and we were talking about how poorly Americans handle foreign affairs (and domestic, too, but that’s another story). What is it about our society that let’s people feel that it’s okay to ignore and be ignorant about the rest of the world. I have been thinking about this and I came up with my answer: Money. In our capitalist society, money is the driving factor. But, it’s gone beyond influencing careers and motivating 80-hour weeks. The desire (need) for money is showing itself in every facet of our society. People are lining up to take lie-detector tests in front of the whole country, for the chance to win money! It’s an embarrassment. And our weakness is in the fact that society devours the spectacle.

I’m sure you’re familiar with the show ‘Are you smarter than a fifth grader’ (and if you’re not, don’t feel bad…you’re not missing anything). But, I caught a clip that literally made me cringe. Kelly Pickler of American Idol fame was the celebrity contestant. Her question was, “Budapest is the capitol of what European country?” And do you know what her response was? “I don’t want to sound stupid, but I thought Europe was a country.” Yes. That is true. And the sad thing is that she isn’t unique. International ignorance is the norm, not the exception.

The flip side to this story has to do with another celebrity. Montel Williams, retired Naval Officer and talk show host, was on a Fox News program to discuss the death of Heath Ledger. Instead of focusing on the one celebrity who died, Montel challenged the anchors to talk about the war in Iraq and the soldiers who die in harms way. They couldn’t do it. They didn’t know. And they kept trying to bring him back to Ledger, but Montel held his ground. Well, they couldn’t let the embarrassment continue so they went to commercial and Montel never came back. A few days later, his show was cancelled after numerous Fox affiliates refused to renew his 2008-09 season. Unbelievable! A television personality who tries to bring the attention to international affairs LOST HIS JOB. This is not acceptable.

You’re probably wondering how this goes back to money and why it keeps Americans from being valuable international citizens. Well, TV is driven by money, money comes with ratings and “boring” world events don’t draw ratings. But, people making fools of themselves for money? Instant ratings! And why? Because Americans are focused on money. We need money to live, to meet our basic needs. And many Americans’ aren’t able to meet their needs in their current situation.

People in the most dire situations worry about having enough to eat, a safe place to lay their head at night, having clothing that is sufficient. So of course, they must focus their energy on earning enough to meet their basic needs. But, many people are not at the basic level. They worry about having enough money to cover medical costs, about whether their child is getting a decent education at the local public school, and about whether all that money they pay to Social Security will be there for them in the future. So again, the focus shifts to money.

But, imagine what it would be like if people could take some of these issues off their minds; if they knew that they were medically secure, if they knew that their children were getting the best education, if they knew that their money was going to be there for them in the future. Imagine how people would respond if they knew their taxes were being used in ways that are tangible to them. I argue that people would be better citizens if their needs were being met.

And it doesn’t take a miracle. It takes a responsible government, a government who gives back to the people in order to strengthen the country. The way I see it, the government is the greatest benefactor of satisfied, well-cared for citizens. A government can only take from its citizens for so long before unrest sets in (see the Declaration of Independence if you have any questions about that). We are at another fork in the road. Do we take the path on the right that promises greed and government waste, or do we take the path on the left that promises a government that is will to take responsibility for its citizens?

We must choose the path of responsibility. We must free our people from the burdens that the government has piled on them. When we have citizens that have met their basic needs, they will be able to focus their energy outward. They will be better neighbors, at home and abroad. America will be able to return to a position of leadership and respect when our citizens are freed from the cycle of greed that has been forced upon us by an irresponsible government.