Friday, November 11, 2005

Partisanship

This post is not as timely as I would like it to have been. I should have posted it on Wednesday after the elections. I guess better late than never.

When I was growing up I was constantly counciled by my parents and teachers to vote “for the best candidate” regardless of their party. For years I did this, and it made sense back in the 70’s and 80’s. Usually I would vote Democratic, but occasionally the Republican made more sense and was better qualified than the Democrat, and I would vote for the Republican. This was especially true for races on the bottom half of the voting ballot – judicial races, county clerk, school board, etc.

However, this practice, that made sense in 1975, does not work any longer. The Republicans have changed the rules. They have put party on a pedestal higher than everything else. They have put the Republican party ahead of their country, their state, their locality, and their school. The demand party fealty above personal ethics and morality.

No race is non-partisan to them - city council, judicial races, school board etc. Their strategy has been to capture the reins of power from the bottom up. They have succeeded beyond their wildest dreams.

That is why I can’t understand or abide New York City re-electing Michael Bloomberg as mayor. Here is a true Democratic stronghold and they elect a Republican mayor. This is a mayor who openly supports the Bush Adminstration. This is a mayor who invited the RNC to have their convention in this Democratic bastion and did everything he could to suppress government guaranteed free speech against the Administration and the Republican party. I say better to have a shitty mayor for a short period of time than to have to suffer this Rupugnicant Oligarchy for decades.

Democrats must vow not to vote for ANY Republicans. Do I agree with John McCain, Cristie Todd Whitman, Brent Scowcroft, and other thoughtful moderate Republicans? Yes, but as long as they support Bush, DeLay, Cheney, Frist, etc., then they do not deserve the vote of one Democrat.

The Democrats did not make up the rules to this game. The Republicans did. They made everything partisan. Many Democrats still do not understand that the political rules have changed. Well they have, and here is your shot across the bow.

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Thursday, November 10, 2005

etc, etc, etc.

There have been a number of informative, inciteful posts at the following sites. Make time to read through the comment sections, because there are jewels to be found there as well. Although I link here, I also refer you to the right side of this blog, where links to Josh Marshall, Brad DeLong and Juan Cole can be found. If you are interested in economics, the Iraq War or the troubles in France, these will not fail to elucidate.

I would also like to mention this editorial from the New York Times (via Yellow Doggrel Democrat) that basically slams the Bush administration. As go the polls, so goes the NYT. The fact that "all the news fit to print" in the United States has only now opened their eyes to what is happening in this administration should be more frightening than anything the paper has to say.

There are, of course, many more topics to cover. The Alito nomination, Texas' approval of a ban on gay marriage (or any marriage), and torturegate (not to mention phosphergate), but those will have to wait for another time. In the absence of new posts from BOTB, please keep these issues in your thoughts and remember to write your representatives and senators. Every opinion matters!

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Tuesday, November 08, 2005

World to US, Step Back

The comments on bubba's post, Bush - Most Hate Man in the World, have started me thinking about the administration in a number of new ways. Is Bush really the most hate man worldwide, since Hitler? Do the neocons in his administration deserve most of the credit for this perception, or does the buck stop with the president? Who else is responsible? Is the War in Iraq small potatoes compared to Global Warming? Or are they related?

I think the truth is world opinion on Bush was formed in 2001, when he reversed President Clinton's support of the Kyoto Protocol shortly after he was inaugurated. That one act sent a message around the world that he and his people care more about keeping their corporate benefactors happy, than they do about keeping the world from self-annihilation.

Rather that being a red herring to detract the country from Peak Oil and Global Warming issues, the war in Iraq is emblematic of their indifference to all things not seen as contribuatory to their business-controlled self-interest. War is good business, especially when no one today is being asked to pay for it. Driving up massive deficits can't hurt the current administration because they will not be in power when the bill comes. What matters to Bush is 2006 shareholder return on investment and executive bonuses for the favored 500.

Hurricane Katrina caused an unusual blip on the screen for Bush and associates because it threatened to reveal the awful truth of what Bush and his team of Terrell Owenses have done to this country. Unfortunately a gutless congress, too scared to open Pandora's Box of evil created by those in power this close to elections, have paved the way to more debt, buried with the pork spending they so adroitly deny.

Americans are to blame for the mess this country is in because they had all the information about what this administration was up to and voted to reelect the man anyway. We live in a greedy, self-absorbed ignorant culture in America and the world is watching.

If the world could send just one message to the US, I am sure it would be to: look around for the forest through the trees; step up to the plate of humanity and try some falafel; step back from the abyss that is ignorance of science and history, the two speeding trains threatening to collide if not attended to responsibly. Bush and his people don't care, but it is not too late for the rest of us, if we start paying attention now.

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Monday, November 07, 2005

Does Cheney Owe Libby? Big Time

I haven't posted on the Plame Game since the summer, and had been somewhat hesitant to do so until the whole thing finished playing itself out, but this post by John Dean (via Brad DeLong, Nov.7th) is so intriguing, I just had to put in my dos centavos. Make sure you read to the bottom, because though he actually contradicts himself in the middle (maybe the implications hit too close to home), but his conclusion seems right on the money.

Dean should know a thing or two about politics and the law, having been the "Mastermind" behind the cover up in the Watergate scandal and having served time for obstruction of justice for his involvement. While serving his sentence, Dean flipped on his former Nixon administration cohorts, and became the sweetheart of federal prosecutors.

Libby is no John Dean. While Dean had files of information to protect him from becoming the Watergate scapegoat (this was the Nixon White House), Libby told what everyone knows now is the biggest fishing story ever. It was so stupid, he had to have known he would get caught., so what's the point? What Patrick Fitzgerald found in investigating the whole sordid affair, is that Libby's lie basically set up a firewall to protect Big Time Cheney. Unless the prosecutor can find someone or something else to pry open Libby (and maybe Rove), investigation over, Scooter takes the fall, gets pardoned, writes more porn.

Dean writes that the only thing that might throw a spanner in the works is a Democratic Revolution in the Senate at midterm election. That would be a tall order even in today's anti-administration climate. I count 43 Dem Sens + Jeffords (an anti-war independent). That makes 7 seats needed to take over the floor and demand accountability. Why not just six and force a tie vote? Who gets to break ties? The same guy who likes to break legs and laws, Big Time Dick himself.

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Sunday, November 06, 2005

Bush - The most hated man in the world?

As I was looking at coverage of the Summit for the Americas and the anti-Bush demonstrations there, I was wondering if there was anywhere in the world, outside of some Republican strongholds in the US, where an actual spontanous gathering of people at a Bush appearance would not result in a multitude of epithets hurled at the supposed "leader of the free world". Of course such a situation will never be allowed to happen, but hypothetically speaking.

This led to the next thought of who (and when) was the last person who was so universally hated throughout the world. I guess you could put Bin Laden in that category, even though history will show him to be a small powerless bit player in the overall scheme of things. Perhaps Ayatolla Khomeni, but it is really hard for me to guage how the rest of the world thought about him.

Certainly no American President has ever been so despised thoughout the world as Bush. Nixon doesn't even come in a close second. And the worst thing is that I don't think he really has any clue how much everyone hates him.

Now Bush is not a mass murderer on the scale of Hitler or Stalin (even though he attacked a small weak country under the cover of lies and false pretenses resulting in an ongoing struggle causing the deaths to date of over 26,000 of its citizens).

So I guess the best we can say about Bush is that he is no where near as bad as Hitler.

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