"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety" - Benjamin Franklin
Friday, May 28, 2004
Soldiers For The Truth
Those military absentee ballots may have helped the Republicans out in 2000, but if the writer of Voting With Their Feet
, is correct, then the Repubs best hope that a sheit load of those ballots don't make it back in time to be counted this time around.
"Unless so-called Army short tours in the badlands of Iraq and Afghanistan become manageable based on the number of troops available – right now the Army is trying to do the work of 14 divisions with 10 under-strength, active-duty divisions – we’ll see a mass exodus from the Green Machine and the inevitable return of the draft
Read the entire article here.
As we head into this Memorial Day weekend we all need to search our hearts and minds and ask ourselves, are we willing to continue to ask our servicemen and women to risk their lives for a war that is begining to look more and more like it was a mistake. Even if you don't agree the war was a mistake, you have to agree, it has been very badly mismanaged. How much more of this
can we withstand...
How do we face the reality that 'staying the course' means the probability of a re-instatement of the draft? How do we ask young men and women to go unwillingly to fight in a war they do not believe in or support? Are we prepared to face the disfranchisement of the thousands of young people who will refuse? The children of today are not as naively loyal as they were 30 years ago. Do you remember the nightmare that Vietnam wrought on this country? Fathers turned against their sons. Brothers against their brother. All for a war that in the end we lost. What did we accomplish? What are we accomplishing now? We are suppose to be bringing liberty and freedom to Iraq but we are willing to enslave our young to do so? That's what the draft is, afterall, because if you force them go against their will, that is slavery.
Are we willing to let our troops be the real live war toys for a group of rich white boys who never served a day of their lives? President Bush couldn't even be bothered to attend training for the National Guard duty
that was keeping him out of Vietnam. He was busy campaigning for an Alabama politician. Cheney had "more important things to attend to..." (his words), Rumsfield and Rove were off persuing college and careers. Is this
how we honor our troops?
No wonder there's a mass exodus from our fighting Green Machine
Incidently, do you know why they are called The Fighting Green Machine?
You want to honor our troops?
Bring them home!!
The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight
Is it any wonder that Iraq is such a mess? No one can seem to figure out who's in charge, or at least who was in charge when people were getting the crap beat out of them.
Now you've got the Secretary of Homeland Security, Tom Ridge, and the Attorney General at odds on just exactly what level we are at on that ever popular security alert chart.
We have Ridge who says, that things are holding steady at Bert level. That's his job, right? He should know these things, right?
Then you have Ashcroft who says there's, eniment danger
, and that we should be moving into the Ernie zone. What I don't understand is why Ashcroft is saying anything at all? Isn't he in charge of the justice department?
What is even more evidence that this bunch just can't get it together
is the fact that their fearless leader asked both
these men if they were in sync
on their information. ( Maybe they thought he was asking if they were going to be joining 'N-Sync')
Is it any wonder that the President is often left standing with egg on his face when he surrounds himself with people like this? That alone should be reason enough to revolk his Presidential privileges.
And to think they have the audacity to call Kerry wishy-washy
Of course this all could be a clever ploy to take some of the media focus off the Iraqi, quagmire/prisoner abuse fiascoes. After all there is one fairly smart guy in this bunch. It must be hell for Rove, having to deal with The Gang That Can't
Can't Get It Right Shoot Straight
Wednesday, May 26, 2004
Vice-President Gore Speaks Out
In a speech
at New York University,
-President Al Gore called for the resignations of several Bush Administration representatives.
In a searing indictment, Gore said President Bush's "arrogance, willfulness and bungling" in Iraq have put Americans at risk around the world, and urged voters to oust him in November.
"The unpleasant truth is that President Bush's utter incompetence has made the world a far more dangerous place and dramatically increased the threat of terrorist attacks against the United States," said Gore, Bush's Democratic rival in the 2000 election."
If there is any doubt that his assesment of Bush & Co. is correct, just take a look at the news for today .... "US in Clear and Present Danger"
Tuesday, May 25, 2004
Conservative Point of View
No, that wouldn't be me. Although I am conservative about a good many things, I don't think it would ever be fair to call me a conservative.
On the other hand op-ed columnist David Brooks is a well known conservative. He appears to be joining the growing ranks of the more central/rational conservatives that are losing faith in this administration. He, like many
wasn't impressed by the President's speech last night. Calling it Bush's Epic Gamble
, he points out that while we won the war (?), the battles just keep on coming. With no credible end in sight.
If conservatives continue to abandon Bush's sinking ship, soon all that will remain of the right will be the radical extremist who are so far to the right they might as well go ahead and call themselves the new KKK.
About That Election
A little ditty over at Mustang Bobby's
(see "Some Whimsey"), reminded me of the following article that I had read recently.
The Washington Post
...Thousands more voters, for reasons that remain unclear, punched more than one hole. Perhaps they thought they needed to vote for both the presidential candidate and his running mate. Or perhaps they felt that there were two holes aligned with the name of the candidate they favored. A subsequent analysis of these "overvotes" by the Palm Beach Post concluded that, after factoring in overvotes probably meant for Bush, the butterfly ballot cost Gore 6,607 net votes."
Patricia LePore, supervisor of elections for Palm Beach County, will forever be known as the woman who designed the so-called butterfly ballot that in all likelihood cost Al Gore thousands of votes in a state that George W. Bush officially carried by only 537.
Now tell me again how they
didn't steal the election in 2000.
Not many people can say they changed the history of the world, but Patricia LaPore can certainly say she had a big part in it.
It boggles the mind to consider what a different world we would be living in today if the man who actually won (a fact NO one disputes) the popular vote and would have won the election if it were not for the voting snafu's in Florida, had been President for the past four years. There most certainly would not be a war tearing apart not only Iraq, but this country as well. We wouldn't have the trillion dollar deficit, brought about not by a 'so called' recession, but by the massive tax cuts for the ultra rich.
I wonder if the Bush's ever thanked Mrs. LaPore for her help (albeit unintended she says)?
I'm guessing not. She isn't rich enough to even show up on their radar.
Sunday, May 23, 2004
I didn't write the following letter, but I could have. Over all it expreses my feelings to a t. There is only one area where I disagree with the author. That is in regards to Janene Garofalo's statement. I do not
think that everyone
who supports the President and his administration, has a serious character flaw. I do think that some of the more radical,
outragous ones do. Their anger and bitterness spills over and sour's everything they touch. While liberal bloggers blog about the government, and what ails it, conservative bloggers blog about liberal bloggers. They attack, they condem, they judge. All the while exemplifying by their own irrational, arrogant, and sometimes even ignorant behavior, all that is so very wrong with the far right wing of the Republican Party. Those are the people that I think have serious problems. I genuinely feel sorry for them. To live a life filled with so much hate. It must be miserable to be them. Which is probably why they feel the need to have a dog to kick.
I often wonder how many of you really support Bush or if it's just that you can't stomach Kerry and you see Bush as the lesser of two evils. I believe with every fiber of my
being it is Kerry who is the lesser of the two evils. He will be so much better than Bush. Since it's beginning to look like my sons and probably yours, as well as our daughters, will be forced to fight in this war, I think I have the right to express my feelings. ( Pending Draft Lesgislation Targeted for Spring 2005
A BUZZFLASH READER CONTRIBUTION
by Jimmy Lohman
For two years I have struggled to write this letter. Indeed, nary a morning has passed when I have not sat at my desk and labored over the right words to express my sorrow that anyone I know could support the cruel, misguided and hopelessly immoral wars being waged in our names.
During this period, as each sordid chapter has unfolded, as each new lie has been exposed and each new horror has stared us in the face, I have longed for the day when your eyes will finally see the truth. I have dreamed of the moment I can put my arms around you, cry with you and embrace your painful recognition that, in the immortal words of Pogo, "we have met the enemy and he is us." Your steadfast loyalty to an administration steeped in archaic concepts of world domination is a source of daily anguish, as you have come to represent, in my microcosm, that other half of our nation that will always believe "my country right or wrong" – no matter how horrific our government’s actions.
At the beginning of this global nightmare, you typified the patronizing attitude of those in power who claimed to know what is best. "You just don’t understand," you told your dear peace-loving sister, my gentle wife, one who could not possibly understand what drives men to kill each other. "Can’t you see that it is Saddam or us?" you reasoned. You told her she was naive, while you believed every word out of the mouth of Dick Cheney, who graduated in 2000 from CEO of the moribund Halliburton to Vice-President of the United States. As the months passed and the deceptions unfolded and Halliburton reaped untold billions from this despicable venture, I resisted the urge day-by-day to ask you, "Who is the naive one here?"
Occasionally, I would email you articles that exposed the lies or succinctly and eloquently reflected my agony over the murderous and self-defeating policies to which you continued to cling. I ceased and desisted, however, when Rebecca conveyed to me how much it annoyed you. "Leave him alone," she implored. "It will only cause a rift between you that I will have to live with."
But I can keep my peace no longer. Today the camel’s back broke. As the story emerges that the torture and abuse and genocide have been condoned and sanctioned at the highest levels of this corrupt administration, I am once again compelled to reach out to you and ask, "Is there no limit to your acceptance of these dreadful policies? Are you not big enough to admit when your president is wrong?"
I have wondered many times during this escalating ordeal what you would have done had you lived in Germany in the 1930's. Would you have been a good Nazi in the same way that you are a good American? Would you ever have possessed the objectivity or detachment, even after the war and the liberation of the death camps, to step back and say, "My God. How did I let that happen?" I knew you would scoff at a comparison that today seems less and less remote.
A week or so ago, on her Air America Radio show, Janeane Garofalo mused: "To continue to support this administration at this point you’ve got to have a serious character flaw." I have to agree, which is why I hope and pray that by now, you have joined the many well-intended Republicans, conservative columnists and pundits, generals, career intelligence officials, and many others who can longer countenance what is being done in their names. How many more American boys and girls must die and lose limbs for Halliburton? How many thousands more Iraqis must die defending their own country from those who claim to be liberating it? How much more anti-Americanism must be sown across this shrinking globe before those who put the perpetrators in power say "Stop!" How much longer will it take to "connect the dots" that link the litany of anti-human policies that are transforming the relatively peaceful forward-looking world Bush inherited into one that resembles more the Age of Attila?
I have repelled the urge to ask you whether this war is worth donating the lives and limbs of your own sons. If this combat is so important, would you sacrifice Johnny’s legs for Dick Cheney’s war? Would you donate Jacob’s sanity? Would you support Brad joining the National Guard and ending up in Iraq? If not, how are you so willing to donate the bodies and minds of other peoples’ sons and daughters? Thankfully, your boys are still too young to serve in this abominable and disgraceful endeavor. Give Bush four more years, however, and they will be old enough. Is that what you want?
In love and friendship,
Jimmy Lohman is a human rights lawyer and activist and musician in Austin, Texas.
Ironically, the same conservatives who believe that no decent American can sympathize with the other side during a war also generally believe that our troops in Iraq deserve the support of the Iraqis because we liberated them from an evil regime. Yet, following their logic, patriotic Iraqis would have had to support a homegrown tyrant over foreign occupation.
The difference, of course, is that we're not a dictatorship. So let's not demand mindless, knee-jerk patriotism
as if we were. I want to support my country because it's right, not just because it's mine.
I guess Fox Filmed Entertainment ( Fox, as in right-leaning Fox News, which is owned by Bush-supporting billionaire Rupert Murdoch) isn't nearly as worried about political fallout as The Disney Corperation.
Just a few weeks ago an unnamed source at Disney was quoted as saying "Disney avoids highly-charged political movies," regarding Disney's refusal to release Michael Moore's controversial film 'Fahreinheit 911'
. Later Disney relented and allowed Miramax to release the film after a few tweaks. Knowing Michael Moore, you can bet their were very few
On the other hand, The Day After Tomorrow
, which is your classic computer-generated cinematic confection, only the bad guy isn't an alien or a giant lizard, it's global warming. It could just as well have been called The Even More Perfect Storm. Most action-movie axioms don't translate to real life, but this one does. That gives Tomorrow a lot more political heft than your average popcorn movie. Especially when you've got left-leaning political activists, Al Gore and Al Franken, rallying around the film as a consciousness-raising tool.
Is the film's political angle raising any hackles within a notoriously conservative Murdoch Corporation?
"That is so ludicrous. We are a movie studio. The only call I'll get is to find out how big the gross is opening weekend." "We think it's fantastic," says Jim Gianopulos, chairman of Fox Filmed Entertainment.
You've got to admire people when they come right out and admit the almighty dollar rules. Murdoch may support Bush politically, but the man has his priorities straight. He knows no matter who's President, this movie will make him even richer than he already is. Politics be damned. Of course it only took Disney a week or so to figure that out too.
By the way, I see Fahreinheit 911
took home the gold at the Cannes Film Festival
. Imagine that.