Thursday, September 18, 2008
When the Teethwife and I got married we found out what a hassle it was for my wife to change her name over to mine. I mean for us to gather all the paperwork, fill it out, pay the charges, and then ship them out to each individual bureau took alot of precious time out of our busy schedule.
Of course, as it always is, it turned out that a friend of mine developed a site called NameBirdie.com that, for a nominal fee, will allow you to download all the forms from one place and tell you where to send them. Plus it's 100% guaranteed. I don't know if anyone who reads my blog happens to be getting married, but if you are, or if you know someone who is, you REALLY need to head over to NameBirdie.com. Take it from me, name changing is something you don't want to go at alone. The time you'll save will let you do more important things--like reading my blog.
Monday, September 15, 2008
Allow me to make one more point. I don't think there is a liberal around that doesn't have more respect for Hillary now than pre-Palin. Seeing what a sham Palin is really brings into focus how qualified and good a politician Hillary is. Frankly Palin's not fit to carry Hil's bra...
God I want to say something else but I won't.
Let's be very clear and realistic about this: They are liars. Period. No equivocation. No ambiguity. They are liars in everything they say from claiming that Palin never supported the Bridge to Nowhere, to saying that she never asked for earmarks or McCain saying that the only piece of important legislation that Obama passed was teaching little children sex education. These are all lies.
Here's the video:
What's sicker? The McCain camp has even acknowledged that lying is their strategy:
“We recognize it’s not going to be 2000 again,” McCain spokesman Brian Rogers said, alluding to the media’s swooning coverage of McCain’s ill-fated crusade against then-Gov. George W. Bush and the GOP establishment. “But he lost then. We’re running a campaign to win. And we’re not too concerned about what the media filter tries to say about it.”
Got that? So, to 'win,' we're not concerned by what 'the media filter' (the truth) tries to say. And this is all supposed to sit well with the American public.
Not that the media has been doing much of a job recently. If they were they might as well switch their whole paradigm over to Factcheck.org. (Which probably wouldn't be a bad idea). I understand their need to handicap the race and keep it close, but at some point it wouldn't be a bad idea for us to put on our little patriotic hats and say, "hey, maybe this shit is bad for America." But for some reason we seem to have a problem calling out lies and liars. Even more frightening, we seem to have the hardest time doing so when these lies have the most disastrous results. Sure, the media had no problem calling Clinton a liar when he got caught with Monica, but why is it so hard to call Bush a liar when we found no WMDs, and books have been writing exclaiming the fact that our president knew that was the truth and yet still led us to war? Why?
It's one thing to debate the merits of a particular position when both sides have veracity, but to debate a lie is like masturbating with a vise grip. It's painful and probably won't get you anywhere. The only thing you can do with a lie is expose it and ostracize the liar.
The good news? The truth is out there and the American public, white, black, Latino and the thousand million others in between of all creeds and cultures are reaching their threshold for bullshit. As Sully writes:
"I still believe that the actual truth matters in the world. If propaganda could win in the end against truth, then Bush's approval ratings would be somewhere in the high 80s. They are in the lower 30s. In the end, the American people are not fools. And facts are facts."
You know, I'm going to vote for Obama because I think he's the best man for the job. I have never said that people should vote for him simply because he's a black man or a Democrat. But now I think I have found a simple reason to vote for him. You may disagree with his policies or philosophy, but in the end not only should you vote for him, you must vote for him because Obama in all his liberalness has argued with you honestly, earnestly and truthfully. Against an opponent who's modus operandi is deceit and lies you must, I repeat, must side with the candidate who has treated you in good faith. To reward McCain, a man filled with toxic cynicism, is to endanger and threaten our country, our planet and, perhaps more importantly, reason and truth, which are the building blocks of all human progression.
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Hold on—wait a minute.
When I wrote my last piece for AHH I really had no idea it would set off as much debate as it did. Personally, I figured I’d get a couple of comments along the lines of, “Yawn,” and “Check out my Myspace page!” But I had no idea that so many people would get so heated about a concept that I thought was remarkably redundant. But as I read through some of the comments I realized that much of the anger came about because we really don’t have a definition for institutionalized racism in this day and age. Either we’re using our parents and grandparents definition, or we’re using the signifiers pushed on conservative television. (Did someone say that article was a ‘lame attempt to get African Americans riled up so they can keep passing along racial hatred.”? The last time I heard the term ‘African-Americans’ and ‘riled up’ I think Morton Downey Jr. was on the air.) Both definitions are outdated and polarizing. In fact it’s those very same definitions that keep our discussion on race from evolving. So let’s try to clear it up.
When we talk about racism and in particular, as is the case in my last write up, institutionalized racism, we are talking about two things. The first is the general pattern of the socio-political and cultural foundation of
Listen, like millions of Americans I went to see Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, and without giving away any spoilers I’d like to quote something the Joker said that is right on the money to this conversation:
“You know what I noticed? Nobody panics when things go according to plan, even if the plan is horrifying. If tomorrow I tell the press that like a gangbanger will get shot, or if a truckload of soldiers will be blown up—nobody panics, because it’s all part of the plan. But if I say that one little old mayor will die…well then everyone loses their minds! Introduce a little anarchy, upset the established order and everything becomes chaos. I’m an agent of chaos. And you know the thing about chaos? It’s fear.”
Love that Joker.
Racism is part of this plan. It is part of the pattern that helps keep the social order and maintain the power structure in the
I say this not to be polarizing. I’m not even saying it as a reason not to vote for McCain. Personally, while I happen to be an Obama supporter, I don’t think a person should vote for Obama just because he’s black or just because they want to strike a blow against racism. I personally think that Obama is just the better man for the job and I happen to agree with his relatively moderate liberal views that I believe will negate the negative neo-conservative policies of the Bush admistration. I bring this up only to explore and look at what part racism plays in Republican campaign techniques and why it works or doesn’t work.
Many people were upset with me because they think that the political attacks on Obama are status quo political attacks. Well of course they are! The question isn’t, are they unique, but rather what tool did they pull from their tool box to make these attacks? With Gore they attacked his personality—that’s Xenophobia, he’s not like us. With Kerry they attacked his patriotism—that’s Nationalism, he hates our country. But with Obama they use all of the above plus tons of disrespect and an almost delusional and willing ignorance of his accomplishments, and when you bang that down to the nitty-gritty the fuel that helps them make that argument is racism. You see, it’s easy to believe that what Obama did doesn’t matter, or doesn’t exist because it doesn’t fit in with those racist stereotypes we know about blacks today. It doesn’t fit into the pattern. It’s not part of the plan. OJ is part of the plan. Pac-Man Jones is part of the plan. Flava Flav is part of the plan. But Obama, his biography and his current stature isn’t. Why do you think that the memes of ‘Muslim’ and ‘Terrorist’ and ‘Unpatriotic’ stick so well that they can write whole books that go best seller even though a few minutes on the Internet can expose the lies those books are based on? Because it’s better to just stick to the plan, and, to me, this plan is called racism.
Finally, I just want to make one more point: Racism is stupid, and people who are racists are stupid. Chris Rock once made the point that people who adhere to an ideology without looking at the reality of a situation are idiots, and racism is one of those ideologies. When someone sees a white guy in a suit and automatically thinks they’re a racist Republican—you’re being dumb. And when someone sees a black guy in an SUV and automatically thinks they’re selling drugs—you’re being dumb. But that’s easy and that’s why we do it, both black and white, against ourselves and others. It keeps us safe and insulated against harsh reality that everyone not only has the right to be judged as individuals, but that they should be judged as individuals because it’s the most intelligent and productive decision to make. But in our quest to be color-blind let us not forget that there are people and institutions who use racism to achieve their own ends, and let us not confront them with anger but rather let us look at them eye-to-eye boldly, confidently, and rationally. My post was not meant as an excuse to call people ‘Cracker’ or ‘Nigga’ or to rail off on ‘white supremacy’ and it wasn’t so people can say that people use race as a ‘crutch’ to excuse their own weaknesses. Maybe I did come off a bit heated at some of the blatant hypocrisy of the GOP and McCain, but all in all I intended only to study how racism was being tossed around at the RNC. This election is too important to get bogged down in the tools used by the few rather than to observe the big picture.
The only way to evolve is to first recognize the pattern and then step beyond it never to look back.
Saturday, September 06, 2008
"Like him or not, you have to give Barack Obama credit for waging a smart, focused campaign. Destroying the Clinton machine was a major achievement and so was putting together a successful convention in Denver. Obama is now firmly a part of U.S. history, no matter what happens in the presidential election.
"The problem some Americans continue to have with the Senator is that he is long on charisma but short on detail. This frightens some voters. Who the heck is this guy, anyway? So when Obama finally agreed to speak to me this week, specifics were on my mind.
"First, the man. The Barack Obama I witnessed is self-confident, determined and driven. He was acutely aware of his surroundings from the moment he entered the room. He looks you in the eye and touches your shoulder. He understands how to connect one-on-one.
"As far as philosophy goes, Senator Obama is convinced that the federal government should be in control of income distribution and, to some extent, should regulate the free marketplace. That is a classic liberal position, and Obama promotes it well.
"The Senator also believes that poor Americans have a basic right to free health care and monetary supplements from the government with no strings attached. The American substance abuser, for example, would derive the same benefit as a hard working, laid off worker would. Again, classic liberalism. No judgments made regarding entitlements.
"So, if Barack Obama does become president, there will definitely be change. His left-wing base will demand it, and he will come through. You can decide if that's change we should believe in, but keep in mind that the unintended consequences of government interference in the marketplace are impossible to predict. Free markets have a way of chafing under government imposition.
"On the foreign policy front, Obama has convinced me that he is tough but cautious. He rose up quickly because he vehemently opposed the Iraq war. But now I see a man who understands the victory that has taken place in Iraq. I don't believe he wants to screw that up. I could be wrong.
"After going mano-a-mano with Obama on television, I am also persuaded that he is a sincere guy—that he wants the best for all Americans. He's an ideologue, but not a blind one. He understands that his story is incredible, and, I have come to believe, he is grateful to the American system for allowing it happen.
"It is true that we don't know whether Senator Obama has the ability to solve complex problems, but you can say that about all presidential contenders.
"Like most politicians, Obama has used guile and good luck to accumulate his power. He can be ruthless, kind, unfair, and generous. In short, he's a real person trying to achieve an unreal position—that of the most powerful person in the world.
"God help him."
Just particular to note, O'Reilly, consciously or subconsciously, has completely undermined the GOP's whole strategy by stating that Obama is tough--the subtext being that he'll keep America safe. If that's so then what does McCain really have to offer?
PS: "Mano-A-Mano" Are you kidding me? I thought Ford Fairland put an end to that shit?
Friday, September 05, 2008
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
"The one moment that stays with me tonight, oddly enough, was not Palin's speech. It was a line from Giuliani, a New York mayor with a young
Hey Rudy, wanna know what else can only happen in America? Only in America can the descendants of Irish immigrants grow up to be a complete Douchebag on television.
Well Palin gave her speech tonight; she had to nail it and she did. Regardless of her experience, or lack of, there is one thing that is striking-- she's got gumption to spare. She came out swinging and she left swinging attacking Obama with everything in the GOPs arsenal. She didn't come out as an appeal to Hillary supporters, she came out as an answer to Joe Biden, with a thicker spine than Rudy Guiliani but better legs. Without a doubt she will energize the Republican base.
And yet, I feel desperation coming off of them in waves. Everything about, not only Palin's speech, but the entire RNC platform reeks of fear, from their complete lack of respect for Obama to their blatant hypocrisy, to their attacks on the media (been a long time since they were your 'base' huh McCain?), to their outright lies (Let's see Palin's "Maverick status" hold up for the next couple of weeks) all tell of a blitzkrieg ploy that sees no farther than the end of the week.
If McCain follows the plan then he'll get his bounce. People will eat this stuff up. But when the mist settles and the last piece of confetti is swept up the GOP will still be the party of Bush and his cross will be theirs to bear, and no amount of cute jokes will alleviate that weight.
These debates will be killer.
PS: Seriously, what up with everyone playing hot potato with Palin's kid? I mean isn't it past that kid's bed time, or is this just more Republican family values?
In any case if you're dying for coverage (and who wouldn't!) check out Klein and AL for their take.