4/24/2008: "It's a very close race, but if you count, as I count, the 2.3 million people who voted in Michigan and Florida, then we are going to build on that," declared Hillary Clinton, claiming that she has the lead in the popular vote.
Here's the rub: she's cheating. The DNC ordered the candidates not to stump in Florida and Michigan because they violated the party rules by moving up their primary dates. In fact, he wasn't on the Michigan ballot at all, while Hillary was. If you count those two states anyway, she would be up by a mere 100,000 votes. If you split Michigan's vote alone, Obama would still be in the lead.
Hillary is desperate, and with good reason -- Obama is winning easily. She's fighting tooth and nail and can't seem to get back on top, while he's looking relaxed, natural, positive, and is winning.
And before I wrap this up, I want to say shame on James Carville for sitting on "Larry King Live" lying to the entire nation, spinning the same fantasy math. I have a huge amount of respect for Carville's intelligence and political acumen, and I hate to see him painting lipstick on this pig of a lie that Hillary is marching around in the hopes that everyone will see a beauty queen instead of a rank swine. Astonishing. His wife, the equally respected uber-conservative Mary Matalin, must be shaking her head...
4/20/2008: Former President of Jimmy Carter has decided to visit with Hamas leaders concerning peace with Israel. I don't believe Mr. Carter is a sacred cow, but he is certainly a natural world leader, and none can possibly refute his contribution to world peace, but he sure got people stirred up when he went against the wishes of politicians ostensibly on opposite sides of the aisle. Not that I trust our current crop of Democratic leaders nowadays, what with the betrayal of taking impeachment off the table.
And Barack Obama, when asked, refused to put Mr. Carter down for it. Even when pressured by his party, he would not distance himself from Mr. Carter's Hamas meeting.
Somehow John McCain is suggesting that, because Obama refuses to repudiate Jimmy Carter, that he's "out of touch" and "elitist." Johnny, that was weak. That's the best you've got? Puh-leeze... Obama had the brass to call peace peace and war war and to respect the power of intelligent discourse. John McCain supported war with Iraq in the face of lack of credible evidence of WMDs and urges bombing Iran, and then gets offended when called a warmonger, yet he slams Obama for supporting peace.
Mr. McCain, shut up.
4/20/2008: Food prices are doubling, or worse, around the globe, to the point that people in some countries are rioting. Oil prices are above $114 a barrel even though the world's current supply is healthy. The United States has allowed its fears, its ignorance, and its prejudices to be used to sway federal and state elections. We were scared into attacking a nation that posed no threat in order to suck money out of our treasury by way of the military-industrial complex. American's are not only okay with that, but they re-elected the very people that lied to them. And while we wage that war, we have allowed people who killed Americans to reclaim victory over us. Those lies are forgotten, the blood of our best and brightest is spilled, all while other countries suffer under horrors reported by largely ignored because the tyrants were smart enough to set up shop in Africa. American citizens are more than ready to throw away all their rights whenever a politician tells them those rights suspensions will only affect the bad guy and will keep the good guy safe.
Things are getting ugly, and the American people are numb to it. The rich are harvesting us like a crop, butchering us like so many well-fed cattle, leviathans devouring us like krill. And we do nothing.
The Constitution is ignored, pushed aside, and those we elected to save us from such an globe-altering, history-shifting abomination show their true colors when they refuse to take the very action they were elected to take. And we do nothing.
People are dying in countries that we could easily take, hold, and bring justice to, but we are unable to extricate ourselves from Iraq solely because our leaders are too busy enriching themselves. And we do nothing.
Our politicians act like a politically incorrect pastor or a poor choice of words when describing disenchantment with the U.S. political system is the worst thing that could possibly happen while our schools, jobs, environment, treasury, and security drain away. And we do nothing.
Just keep on not thinking people. I'm going to continue stocking up on emergency supplies and turning my backyard into a garden, you just keep merrily fiddling while Rome burns...
4/16/2008: Republican Sen. John McCain says his proposed 'gas tax holiday' would give Americans a break at the pump. The idea is that the government will pick up the tab for one day for all the taxes you'd normally pay on each gallon of gas.
Pretending for just a moment that there wouldn't be a run on gas cans, let's think for a moment about what John McCain is saying. Those taxes are used to pay for infrastructure, emissions research, alternative fuel research, and scads of other programs that We the People voted for. What he's saying is not, "Hey, the gas companies that are sucking America dry are going to foot the bill for a day," oh no! Hey's saying, "You're still paying the gas companies, you're just not paying yourself."
Not clear on the concept yet? Try this: he's taking money out of your bank account, putting it in your pocket, and calling you richer.
It's the same crap George Bush pulls whenever the complaints over the economy get loud enough. He gave each taxpayer a $300 check a while back, called it a "tax rebate," and then taxed us on it as income. But whose money was it? It was already your money! But instead of that money working for you and your children, George bought your compliance with it. That's right, he took money out of your left pocket, put it in your right pocket, and told you to be happy about it!
And John McCain is no different. He thinks you're stupid and token gestures will make you compliant, willing, soft, and weak. And with most of you, he's probably right. The rest of you, though, the thinkers rather than the minions, already get it that John McCain's policy is to serve up the same crap you've dealt with for the last eight years.
O Lord, please let John McCain get beat badly in November...
4/4/2008: McCain can whine about labels all he wants, but this one fits. John McCain is a warmonger: "one who urges or attempts to stir up war."
John McCain, in spite of the warnings that the case for war that Bush put forward was fraudulent, mocked Democrats that attempted to resist the rush to war with Iraq. He urged war. He helped to stir up the population in favor of going to war. He is a warmonger.
And now he argues that the movement to set a withdrawal date and draw down troops would have a huge cost. I would argue that John McCain doesn't have the leadership skills to weigh costs. How much more has it cost us to wage this war, so far, than Bush's best estimates for the total cost, beginning to end? Try about $700 billion to date. He told use it would cost about $40 billion. He had a guy fired for saying it might go as high as $200 billion. And now, projected outward, it's going to cost us over $1.5 trillion, not counting VA benefits to injured vets.
John looks so sincere and knowledgeable when he's regurgitating the NeoCon line, but the truth is, the cost will be bourn regardless, and we have failed utterly to create an effective democratic government in Iraq. At this point we're negotiating with and paying off the very insurgents we were calling terrorists just a year ago in order to get them to restore the peace that the Iraqi government won't spend the billions in oil money reserves it's accrued to enforce. McCain has no plan for ending the war; he's perfectly comfortable, as he's stated on multiple occasions, wasting our childrens' future on an endless occupation. The money we need for education, tech research, social net programs, our economy, our infrastructure, etc., is being routed to Iraq and the same contractors that keep spending our money with no noticeable return.
John, either embrace reality or sit down and shut up.
4/4/2008: Hey, guess what boys and girls?! The Bush administration accidentally allowed a rather eye-opening memo get declassified and released to the press! Grab some popcorn and a chair and get comfie!
Titled, "Memorandum for William J. Haynes II, General Counsel of the Department of Defense Re: Military Interrogation of Alien Unlawful Combatants Held Outside the United States" and dated 3/14/2003, Alberto Gonzales' DOJ asserted:
WOW! Alberto Gonzales, of the Department of Justice of the United States of America, decided all on his own that the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution didn't apply to the military! He felt that the Bill of Rights had some kind of small print that outlined exclusions for the Commander-in-Chief and everyone that works under him. That's AMAZING!
So they're saying that the Fourth Amendment, which expressly forces government entities to obtain warrants before searching your home, property, or private communications, doesn't actually apply to the... wait for it... GOVERNMENT!
This is one of those moments when you have to wonder if there aren't people in our own government that actually hate America and its freedoms and have conspired, at the very highest levels, in their hatred or perhaps just their arrogance, to take away those freedoms. It's scary beyond belief to me that the American people actually re-elected these people to office. Amazing.
4/4/2008: In 2006, eight men plotted to plant bombs on trans-Atlantic airplanes leaving out of England. They were stopped (through good police work, by the way, not pre-emptive war), and they are currently on trial. What I find most interesting about this is that six of the men video-taped messages to be watched after their deaths which explained that the men were seeking revenge for U.S. and English involvement in the war in Iraq.
That's right: Bush's war is generating terrorists, JUST the way I and so many others said it would.
Go ahead, let it sink for a minute. I'll wait.
Okay, that's enough time. If you voted for Bush in 2004, thank you very much you freaking moron.
4/4/2008: Randi Rhodes has been suspended by Air America Radio.
Yes, the Queen of True American Liberal Radio with the heads of more right wing whack jobs swinging from her belt than anyone else on the radio today was at a private function in San Francisco and was given the stage and the microphone. In the spirit of entertaining friends and family in a private setting, she launched into a raunchy rendition of Stupid People Whoop-Ass. Unfortunately, the execs of Air America were made aware of the over the top and admittedly vulgar statements she made about Hillary Clinton and Geraldine Ferraro.
The AAR execs decided that those statements couldn't go unchecked and suspended her.
Naturally, her fans are dumbfounded and enraged. On the other hand, I can't blame AAR. In a constant fight to remain relevant -- and all radio stations are in a constant struggle against the information firehose that is the Internet -- they have to maintain the moral high ground, or at least avoid falling completely in the ditch. So they gave Randi a little time to chill out. She was there representing Air America, and they had to handle the situation accordingly.
Nevermind that Ann Coulter gets invited onto Faux News repeatedly even after publishing a book that accuses the widows of 9/11 of enjoying and profiting from the deaths of their spouses, even opining that their marriages probably sucked and 9/11 was the best thing that could have happened to them. Coulter has crossed every shocking, off-color, homophobic, anti-Semitic, sexist, and racist line there is, and can't be kept off the air, but Randi Rhodes expresses her personal opinion about Clinton and Ferraro, two public figures who have been part of a less than exemplary attempt to rip the Democratic nomination out of the hands of more qualified candidates, and she gets a public rebuke.
Doesn't seem fair, does it?
Well, it is and it isn't. I'm just looking forward to hearing Randi on the air again. She's a Liberal Shock-And-Awe Machine, and this will hardly slow her down.
4/4/2008: And by the way: Randi was right about Geraldine Ferraro.
4/4/2008: Jesse Ventura was on the air saying that he wished that the ballots for president had a third option, "None of the above." He likes the idea of being able to specifically state that he has no confidence in the government and the choices given.
He also looks up to Ron Paul.
Clearly the damage Jesse suffered to his cranium as a pro wrestler is starting to finally take its toll. Jesse, get on the Obama train or shut up.
4/4/2008: Faux News reported that John McCain has turned into a money raising machine.
Ignoring the fact that Obama raised $40 million last month alone to McCain's paltry $9 million. No mention of that anywhere on the entire channel. Hmm...
Your Constitution has been violated.
There were never any WMDs in Iraq.
(carried over from last month)
3/27/2008: Back when Jimmy Carter was president, the economy was recovering from a period of inflation and an artificially produced oil shortage. We were still dealing with the Iranian hostage crisis and, while negotiations were making progress, our single attempt to rescue them had ended tragically and had highly embarrassed the U.S. and its troops. The end result was that Jimmy Carter seemed okay with domestic issues, but was weak when dealing with the rest of the world. Too soft spoken and too soft on foreign relation, Mr. Carter set the stage whereby the GOP would dominate the presidency for the next three terms.
In came Reagan. A great speaker, tough on countries that had come to see America as soft, and with a supply-side economics plan that dug companies out of the inflation rut, he was what this country needed, at least for the first four years. His policies were in effect for too long, leading to the excess of the 80s, the spin from inflation to recession, and the march of the GOP towards power madness. His second term, which he spent in the first throes of Alzeimer's, was largely controlled by this second in command, George Bush, Sr., and ended with his administration flouting the Constitution, the separation of powers, the bailiwick of the federal Congress, and the rule of law itself in the Iran-Contra scandal. What should have been grounds for impeachment instead was ignored so an old man could fade from public view with his last shreds of dignity.
Then came George Bush the Elder. A WWII veteran and self-made multi-millionaire, he understood serving in the military and running a business. He should have known better than to allow Reagan's economic policies, by then derided as "Reagonimcs" and universally described as "sucks," to continue ruining the economy, but then again, his family was benefiting from the "trickle-down economics" theory, so why mess with a good thing, right? So what if the rest of rich were hoarding what, in principle, is supposed to be economic expansion funding? So what if the economy was stagnating as money was invested overseas and in luxury items? So what if the middle class was shrinking as industry moved to poorer countries through lack of regulation?
Whether it was because the DNC woke up or because of Dan Quayle's inability to spell "potato," Bush failed to get reelected.
In came Bill Clinton. He flipped the economy back to demand-side, decreasing the tax burden on the middle class that had become nearly unbearable under the GOP. He eliminated tax cuts and loopholes that had enriched Bush and his buddies for 12 years. He put the subsequent funds back into schools and social net programs. The elderly stopped having to eat cat food and live in pain with no meds. Social equity programs flourished. The economy and our technological advantage leaped up like a freed Clydesdales and surged forward. But there was a problem: the tech sector was throwing venture capital around like it was toilet paper. Things got completely out of control, and just before reality started to set in, Clinton's 8 years were up and he was handing control over the government to a man with exactly one thought on his mind: toast.
George W. Monkey Faced Frat Boy Bush ignored the programs Clinton had put in place to track down and destroy Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda. He threw out every initiative for improving our education and healthcare systems. He put every national resource we have on the auction block. He was going to get rich, and he was going to stick it to whoever he could. The average American citizen went from being a valued human being to an expendable, renewable resource for the uber-rich to fence in, manage, and consume. And when 9/11 occurred, he had the only reason he needed to invade the oil rich lands his family wished so desparately to control. While he marched our military around the globe to take over as many countries in the middle east as he could destabilize, while plundered our treasury and slashed the budget to focus all our monetary resources into no-bid contracts with companies he and his staff colluded with, he lifted nearly the entire tax burden from the shoulders of the rich and corporations and placed it solidly on the middle class. And to get the money the middle class wouldn't pony up, he began borrowing on a scale that would have embarrassed even Ronald Reagan. We owe other countries hundreds of billions of dollars we simply cannot pay, and we have invaded, based on known lies, countries that have become havens and training ground for terrorist organizations.
And now we have a choice to make, and folks, I don't really care which of the Democrats gets into office, but our next president cannot be a Republican. John McCain, the presumptive candidate for the GOP, is Reagan at the wrong time and the wrong place. Trickle-down, supply side economics is raping our country, sucking all the money into the pockets of the people who need it least. We need to scale back on the saber rattling and random attacks, the bluster and lack of diplomacy. We need more soft words, less big stick, especially since our big stick is broken. We need support for education, healthcare, Social Security, Medicaid. We need to control offshoring of jobs. We need to regulate the damage being caused by NAFTA. We need to reacquire our technological edge. We need a rebuilding of FEMA. We need to finally fix the problems created by Katrina. We need to do away with signing statements, shore up the separation of powers, and make sure our president can no longer violate the Constitution without severe and immediate retribution. We need to treat the average citizen like they matter again.
John McCain will do none of this. John McCain will leave trickle-down economics burning our middle class for another four years. He will leave our military in Iraq, he will continue to let Afghanistan fester, and he will drain our resources into the pockets of contractors in those two countries. He will not help the middle class. He will not help the poor. He will empower the Republicans in his party, and the pendulum will continue to swing so far out to the right that the clock will surely tip over.
I respect John McCain's sacrifice to his country in Vietnam -- who doesn't? -- but no more than I respect John Kerry's sacrifice, and the GOP "swift-boated" him, spit on him and his service, all to hold on to power. "Swift boated," a phrase that has come to mean "a coordinated campaign of lies designed to publicly impugn one's character." So why should McCain's service make him sacrosanct? It shouldn't. But I digress...
We need someone, anyone, to heal this country, and not one person that the GOP put forward qualifies. Period, end of story.
Democrats: You must vote for whatever candidate gets the nomination from the Democratic Party. You must pool your support of the Democratic candidate, regardless of who he or she may be, and defeat the Republicans. You must show the world that America is not weak or stupid. We showed them how stupid a little fearmongering can make us back in 2004. Now it's time that we correct that. You must do the right thing.
Look, I am so in favor of Barack Obama that I just can't imagine Hillary taking the nomination. No way, no how. And yet, if she gets the nomination, I will staunchly support her against McCain. I worry that she's too corporate, that she'll lie to get to the White House, and that's not the kind of character that we need from our president, but McCain is not to be tolerated, and, if I have no other choice, I will gladly put her in office.
So let's get real people. Let's evict the evil that is the GOP.