Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Sunday, December 28, 2008
Friday, December 26, 2008
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Friday, December 12, 2008
Oh, how deeply Righties hate him.
In transition, they berate him,
To Marx and Lenin they equate him,
Quoting Preacher Wright verbatim.
Oh, how much it must frustrate ’em
That they can’t investigate him,
That impeachment won’t await him,
’Til they first inaugurate him.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Sunday, December 07, 2008
Friday, December 05, 2008
Thursday, December 04, 2008
I know that to forgive is divine, but gosh it’s hard to watch this spate of Bush exit interviews on TV without hurling something at the screen. Take the recent interview on ABC: a cozy fireside chat featuring Bush, seated beside Laura on a couch, with Charlie Gibson tossing him puffballs about “regrets” or “mistakes” during his presidency. In reply, Bush—wearing his slacker grin—rues “intelligence errors” about WMD in Iraq, while sympathizing with those who died on that account; and later, when asked about the tanking economy, explains that it was caused by actions of others: lax regulators, greedy bankers, a “housing bubble”—anything but the malfeasance of his administration. Indeed, throughout the entire interview, Bush consistently resorted to that common responsibility-shirking device of the passive voice: “Mistakes were made.”
If only once—and when better than now, finally?—Bush would acknowledge where, in our democracy, the buck stops. But no. Instead, he uses these lame-duck interviews to attempt to rewrite history in his favor: forgetting the Katrina disaster; omitting his failure to be alert to terrorist attack and to capture Osama bin Laden; failing to mention his kicking the UN inspectors out of Iraq when they were consistently reporting an absence of WMD; refusing to include, as a direct cause of the nation’s economic collapse, his own persistent demands that banking and lending regulations be eased.
The process of redemption begins with assuming responsibility. If Bush should ever do so, then I’ll consider forgiving him. Perhaps.
Update: It was published on December 8, 2008.
Tuesday, December 02, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Second, make some announcements next week, then dribble them out in the succeeding weeks to keep the pot boiling. You're risking being thought of as "political" by maintaining this hands-off position during the transition. That is, some of us are beginning to feel that you're allowing Bush to stew in his juice as the economy implodes and the wars drag on, rather than doing something--anything--about these things. I mean, what about some specific proposals for the upcoming lame-duck session of Congress?
The words "hope" and "change" are more than campaign slogans: They're cries for help. Respond, Barack. Help us.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
First, the letdown. I had so much energy invested in the campaign and outcome that no amount of celebratory sensation could dissipate it, and so, like a balloon at the completion of its deflation, my body/mind sagged and shriveled. I spent the morning after the election watching postmortems on television and found myself barely able to pack my car to get out of the Las Vegas motel before checkout time. Then, while driving toward Tucson with no radio reception in my car, I listened to folk music CDs and got a dose of sobriety, realizing that we'd done this before: Forty-five years earlier, in August 1963, when Martin intoned about the dream, and we felt, for a few moments, that it was possible to reach the mountaintop. Well, we didn't then, and I felt unsure--sad, wise, conditioned--knowing how easily dreams can lead to rude awakenings.
Second, the resolve. I visited my daughter and her little daughter in Tucson and realized, fully, how deep a debt I've incurred by being lax in my contributions to the world they'll inhabit when I'm gone. I decided I'd better get busy cleaning up the place--its environment, its populace, its psyche.
Third, the calm. Really, I thought as I drove back to SB from Tucson, there's nothing magic in my revelations. What needed to be done has always been there, right in front of me: It's the next right thing, just as I'd always known.
Thursday, November 06, 2008
Monday, November 03, 2008
My canvass-mate was a sweet, 18-year-old black girl who'd taken the day off from school to do this for Obama, after, she said, having "blown it off so many times before." The irony is that on this day when she'd decided finally to do it, Michelle Obama was attending her high school for a campaign appearance, so this task caused her to miss both that and a day's worth of classes.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
It's worse than an "October surprise," it's an eternal, international nightmare.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
To the editor:
Okay, I get it that it's sexist to mention, in the context of Sarah Palin's candidacy for Vice President, anything about "lipstick on a pig." But what I don't get is why, then, the Republican National Committee has deemed it proper to spend $150,000 on her wardrobe? Am I missing something?
Update: It was published in the News-Press, Sunday, October 26, 2008.
Saturday, October 18, 2008
For a handy explication of the differences--sometimes more subtle than I'd like--between Obama's and McCain's views on American foreign policy, check out this essay. As to domestic policy, no contest.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
I'd paddle to the Hague to be inside the courtroom to watch the trial of Bush/Cheney on those charges. Hell, I'd even resuscicate my dusty old shingle if there was a one-in-a-hundred chance I could participate in the trial, if only to fill the prosecutor's water cup during final argument.
Monday, October 06, 2008
How would life feel if this happened? Wait one month and see.
Sunday, October 05, 2008
Saturday, October 04, 2008
Thursday, October 02, 2008
Thanks, Bush. Thanks, Congress. Fuck you all.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Monday, September 22, 2008
A truly frightening document, describing a truly frightening future.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
I'm still quasi-burned out, but I do have this assessment of the presidential race: The tide, the ship of state, the momentum--whatever you call it--is turning. The Palin thing is getting old, and, for that matter, has become tainted by such things as truth and sanity. "You can fool some of the people..." etc.
Indeed, as I blogged some time ago, Palin may still turn out to be "the gift that keeps on giving," because we Americans have such a short memory that with five weeks to go until the election (an eternity to a child, or to the American electorate) our good Sarah and her father, John McCain, have finally begun to become exposed for the frauds they are. (In addition to the many revelations about Palin's past and her veracity, check out this scathing comment by a former McCain-supporting reporter for the Washington Post. Ouch!)
So, fellow humans, take heart. Americans may not be as dumb, bigoted and foolish as I think they are.
Tuesday, September 09, 2008
What this quote reveals to me about Obama are these things:
1. He's getting sloppy with his language. No matter how conditional and nuanced the remainder of his sentence or paragraph is, this single line has handed McCain a quote that he will hit Obama over the head with continuously from now until November. But that's only my superficial problem with it.
2. He's fallen for the "surge" and "success" definitions of the Bush/Republican regime. If the surge is defined by the limited concept of the infusion of more American troops, and success is defined as merely a decline in the number of Iraqi and American deaths, then the surge has been a success. But what has taken place in Iraq since last winter is much more than increased American troop levels; and the "success" isn't success at all, but wreckage and imprisonment and a deferral of retribution.
First--and before any additional American troops arrived--the Sunnis decided to take American bribe monies and turn on the al-Qaeda cells in Anbar province. This had nothing to do with more American troops, it was a stopgap measure that decreased al Qaeda's killings, but simply increased the power of Sunni tribesmen, to the chagrin of the Shiite leaders in Baghdad.
Second, cities like Fallujah that had been the scene of much violence in the past have been turned into ruined fortresses, devastated by two American assaults and bombings, with berms surrounding them and Identity Cards required for entry, and massive police presence to ensure "peace." In other words, we've made armed camps out of Iraqi towns, and this happened independent of any surge, and in many cases was accomplished before the surge was even announced.
Third, within Baghdad, blast walls and checkpoints and multiple troop stations throughout the city have created Sunni and Shiite ghettos, suppressing violence between the sects, but not extinguishing it. This is not "success" it is deferral.
Finally, in addition to the increased American troop levels, there have been insidious tactics--assassinations, spying, infiltration--used by Shiite supporters of Iran's influence that have caused decrease in violence through outside forces unrelated to the American presence, indeed, antithetical to it. This, plus the injunction by American enemy the cleric al-Sadr, that his militias stand down temporarily, have suppressed violence in the short run only to promise it hereafter.
So--Obama's understanding of what's truly at work in Iraq appears restricted, uneducated--and that's most troubling of all, because that could mean that as president he'd be acting and reacting as unwisely as have America's leaders for the last five years with regard to Iraq, and if so with Iraq, what about the rest of the world? Obama needs to read posts such as this in order to comprehend Iraq's present status, and if he did he'd never use the language of America's leaders and pundits when assessing what's afoot in Iraq.
Monday, September 08, 2008
Sunday, September 07, 2008
It began during the 1952 presidential election, when war-hero Eisenhower—“I like Ike”—beat untelegenic Stevenson—sloganless egghead. Next, handsome Kennedy’s appearance in a televised debate, contrasted with stubble-bearded Nixon’s, forecast the result of the 1960 election. By “it” I mean the indisputable fact that many Americans’ choice for president is dictated by commercial television’s superficial, capsulized diagnoses of the candidates’ proclivities rather than by the merits of his/her character and programs.
Sometimes, the outcome results from TV’s characterization of the eventual loser: Goldwater—warmonger; Humphrey—LBJ clone; McGovern, Carter, Dukakis, Mondale—wimps; Dole, Bush I—colorless; Gore—wooden; Kerry—waffler. Other times, it’s based on TV’s casting of the winner: Reagan—trustworthy, affable; Clinton—bright, bubba; Bush II—beer buddy. Occasionally, TV’s negative snapshot of one candidate, coupled with its positive image of the other, results in a landslide, as happened with both of Reagan’s victories.
The upcoming election reveals the frightening culmination of this process. With only weeks to go, it’s been reduced to Obama, newcomer rockstar, versus McCain, war-weathered maverick. Even the veep race has become infected by the image of God-fearing, gun-toting, game-changing Palin.
I fear for our nation, because with all that’s at stake, the many Americans who rely on commercial television for their news and views may once again cast their votes based on electoral information presented by the same folks who peddle beer and pretzels—and presented with the same degree of intelligence, depth and care.
Thursday, September 04, 2008
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
Now, with the Palin nomination, I've surmised that Rove is using that device to ease the submission of a more mainstream name, and this article reaches the same conclusion.
Tuesday, September 02, 2008
Sunday, August 31, 2008
Oops, my mistake, my bad. Those are the names of their five children.
Friday, August 29, 2008
This choice, to me, is the death-knell for McCain. It makes the Democratic ticket look staid and solid; it makes the Republican ticket look like a trick, a con, a silly game. Obama suddenly becomes a relative veteran in all fields of governance compared to the heartbeat-away lady from where? I mean, could McCain have picked anyone with less experience governing people than a two-year (the least time anyone can have been governor, as of 2008, given the sequence of elections in this nation) executive of the nation's least-populated and most-irrelevant state? You can't write a less-credible story--Random House would throw your fiction manuscript back over the transom before it even landed on the desk.
Besides the obvious observations--including the one above--I have this thought: Think about those wavering independents. The ones who haven't chosen a party preference because they vote according to policy or personality, not party. Think what this choice tells them. I believe they now see what's afoot. An attempt by the Republican Party to win the White House by whatever means they can, even at the expense of our nation's fate and future. To which I say, Youbetcha--welcome to the real world, finally.
I have this final observation: As tempting as it is to think of this as McCain's "Harriet Miers moment," he's stuck with Palin. He can't back out of this blunder like Bush did with Miers, because he'd risk a McGovern-Eagleton style catastrophe, and undercut his "judgment" maxim. So, McCain is stuck with her for the next two months, and she'll be a gift to the Democrats that keeps on giving.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Monday, August 25, 2008
For those of you who missed it, check this out and be amazed. And inspired.
Michelle Obama Delivers Keynote Address at DNC Convention
Sunday, August 24, 2008
(That website, Antiwar.com, is a great place to visit for one-issue essays. The contributors are of all political stripes, from Ron Paul and Pat Buchanan on the Right, to peacenik lefties. Their common denominator: Abhorrence of war, as immoral and/or as an effective solution to disputes.)
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Small world, eh?
And, get this: Iraq's government has okayed its first huge oilfield-development deal with a foreign government, namely, China. I'd love to be a fly on the wall in Cheney's office right now.
Saturday, August 09, 2008
Friday, August 08, 2008
If he'd gotten life, as was possible, the news would be everywhere. Or am I missing something?
Thursday, August 07, 2008
God help us. We're governed by evil idiots. Can't anyone in power see that we're despised because of what we do in the world, and that the only way to quell the hatred the "third world" populations feel for us is to change what we do?
Am I missing something?
Does this mean that Democrats are dumber than Republicans and Independents? Or what?
So now I know why I'm such an ardent Obama supporter. Because I'm smart.
Wednesday, August 06, 2008
There are other links, too: Iraq business articles, news of political developments throughout the nation (not just Baghdad), US military reports, and so on. It's a good way to satisfy yourself that you're staying abreast of what's happening in the nation we continue to occupy by force of arms.
Tuesday, August 05, 2008
(As background, one of my former law partners handled a case that contained this issue: the obligation of state authorities to follow the Vienna Convention by advising arrested foreign nationals of their right to consult their own national representatives before and during trial.)
Sunday, August 03, 2008
Friday, August 01, 2008
Well, what I don't get is this: Why is it so hard for pundits to realize that even the Bushies are capable of rational thoughts. And the rational thoughts that formed the bases for our invasion and occupation of Iraq are all of the above, plus another compelling one: The NeoCons' desire to make Israel secure from its neighbors' hostile intent.
How hard is it to imagine a bunch of folks--Rummie, Wolfie, Condi, Cheney, Bush, Libby, Addington, and three or four more--seated comfortably in the Oval Office tossing about justifications for the Iraq invasion? Some of them--Wolfie, certainly, and Libby--may have harbored the NeoCons' basic reason most dearly; others--Cheney, Condi--the oil rationale; others--Bush, for sure--the legacy and the get-even justification. And all of them would have wrapped their reasoning in the "democratization" rubric and the US-security b.s. as cover for their underlying wants.
I'm certain Alexander wanted both land and trade routes, the Brits both goods and spoils, the Spaniards both gold and territory. I mean, we humans are complex enough to think more than one thought at a time, right?
So, why did the Bush administration attack Iraq? For all of the above reasons, and perhaps for others that I'm not diabolical enough to imagine.
As you doubtless know, Bush's "strong economy" has produced net job losses for the last several months, an economic factor which, along with many more, indicate that the US economy is in the ditch. Some of the other indicators: record prices for gasoline, crude oil and oil-based products--everything from plastics to perfumes; increasing food prices; loss of high-skilled jobs in manufacturing, aviation and the like, producing a declining wage base; tightening of credit due to loss of confidence (as well as cash) by lenders, complicated by the slumping housing market which has cost homeowners trillions of dollars of wealth and dried up their source of borrowing. And on and on.
And so, it is with some trepidation that I await (although I may not be able to stay awake until then) the upcoming release of US job-creation numbers. It's predicted that there will be a net job loss in the range of 50,000. If it's substantially more than that, it's time to learn Spanish, bigtime.
Update: 51,000 lost jobs. The seventh consecutive monthly loss. Unemployment rate jumps to 5.7%, which is going to frighten investors, I predict, when the market opens in an hour.
Thursday, July 31, 2008
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Indeed, because I was so immersed in my own law-school experience, as a student and editor, a graduate student, then later as a teacher of legal writing, I found this presentation of Obama's experience intriguing. I would love to have had him as a student, would love to have taken a course from him, would love to talk law with him, anytime, anywhere. In fact, if anything, this article makes me want Obama to lead our nation more than ever.
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
And if it struck you (as it did me) that our Air Force's involvement was problematic, check out the last two paragraphs of the article, which demonstrate that we'll be occupying a "sovereign" Iraq forever, but largely, hereafter, from the sky.
And then there's this story. Says it all, doesn't it?
Monday, July 28, 2008
Today's news is so bad, it's frightening. Increases in numbers of cars in India; China's new insistence on driving bigger autos ("size matters in China"); a pullback of exports of oil by Mexico to US refineries--all driving up the price of gasoline here to levels that won't recede substantially, ever again. A failure of our "anti-terror" efforts in Pakistan, the ongoing frauds committed by private contractors in Iraq, the absurd show trials in Guantanamo. And these stories, mind you, are all from mainstream media sources, and I haven't included a mass killing in the US and a bombing spree in India.
"I read the news today...Oh, boy."
Friday, July 25, 2008
Okay, Bush will get away with it. But didn't Caligula, didn't King George III, didn't, in fact, Hitler? I mean, sure, he had to kill himself to avoid humiliation, but he was in a palsied state, hidden in a bunker. A quick bullet, a bit of gasoline with his mistress in a shallow grave, and outtahere!
No, except for Nixon--who faced a negative Congress in a negative time--our system doesn't work. Nor do most systems. And, after all these decades--centuries, really--of decadence, I'm not sure it's even the best system there is. America, my country, you suck.
Thursday, July 24, 2008
But that's whaddup these days. The media, the mainstream of American thought, the vast majority of politicians--everything--cast our difficulties in such terms. So--what's Obama to do: talk like seers such as Nader and Kucinich, from the fringe of politics, and forever remain there? Or must he--and we as Obama's supporters--talk the talk f0r now, in order to walk a different path in the future?
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Is this a miscue by McCain? Is it a mis-recollection? Or is McCain simply lying?
Another question: Why doesn't the corporate media ask that last question?
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Karl Rove's maxim: Attack your opponent's strength (in 2000 it was that Gore's too intellectual and a wussie; in 2004 it was that Kerry's a fraudulent soldier), so that whenever his positive message is presented, it's colored negatively by the tag-along story. From now on in the 2008 campaign, not only will the media be mindful of, and resistant to, favorable coverage of Obama; the audience will too. The positive message will carry the negative message along with it.
And you don't think Rove's a genius?
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Here's a letter I wrote yesterday to the SB News-Press. I'll let you know if it gets published.
Update: It was published in the News-Press on Saturday, 7/11/08.
Let's see... The majority of Iraqis want the US to end its occupation of their nation. The "sovereign" government of Iraq demands a timeline for our departure. The strong majority of Americans desire an orderly withdrawal of US troops, as does the presumptive Democratic nominee for President.So, one is compelled to ask: Who is it that continues to insist that our troops remain in Iraq, with continuing exposure to violent death and injury due to hostile fire, and further alienating Iraqis and incurring the disdain of peoples around the world?The answer is of course obvious. There are three powerful people--three men--whose continued militant defiance flaunts the urgent demands of billions of other citizens of the planet: Bush, Cheney and their desired
replacement--indeed, their surrogate--Senator John McCain.
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Monday, July 07, 2008
Sunday, July 06, 2008
Saturday, July 05, 2008
Thursday, July 03, 2008
At the bottom of the article, the suggestion is made that our fellow "rich" nations will express concern about the weak US dollar, namely, that it's causing the rise in oil prices, priced of course in "petrodollars." Of course, that's true, and in part explains the increasing price of oil. But what can the US do? If it decides to "strengthen" the dollar by, for example, increasing interest rates on borrowing, its economy, already in the tank will drop even deeper. If it does nothing, inflation--derived from high oil prices, mostly--will continue to spiral out of control.
Wednesday, July 02, 2008
Monday, June 30, 2008
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
But my support of Obama's candidacy isn't out of "white guilt," nor do I think Obama has appealed to that. True, he hasn't adopted the rhetoric of "black candidates" who've championed the economic and social plight of lower-income, city-dwelling blacks. But he's not running for Congress from a ghetto district, he's running for President of all Americans, and his rhetoric reflects that. I believe Obama's the best candidate in a long time--perhaps since our nation's founding--from the standpoint of representing the interests and aspirations of poor and middle-class Americans. And that's not because I feel guilty, but because I feel, finally, vindicated and hopeful that at long last our politics and our culture can address that burning issue.
Nader's remarks were, I think, too abrasive a means to convey--to remind us--that is that we still have a long way to go before any candidate may point out, as directly as Nader repeatedly does, what ails America--its rampant consumerism, its evil gap between rich and poor, its corporate-dominated culture and economic system. John Edwards (whom Nader endorsed) said some of these things, and look where that got him.
So, I agree with much of the content of what Nader said about Obama's campaign and about the state of the major parties' nomination process generally. I just wish he'd said it with a bit more aplomb.
("He's done so much for the affluent that he deserves to have effluent named after him." Priceless.)
That's biased reporting if I ever saw it.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Compare that to Scalia's recent factual fart.
Says alot about the state of the Supreme Court, and for that matter, the state of the nation, eh?
Monday, June 23, 2008
Sunday, June 22, 2008
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Monday, June 16, 2008
Friday, June 13, 2008
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
But then, I think, what about my child, and her child? Shouldn't I hang around as long as I can, and do as much as I can to help them avoid what my generation--I--have wrought?
And then I think this: I have no choice. I'll live as long as I live, and I'll do as much as I can.
I cannot be so. Right?
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Monday, June 09, 2008
Friday, June 06, 2008
Underway--without much mention in the US, but under intense protest in Iraq--are negotiations, soon to be completed, of an agreement between the US and Iraq that governs our forces in that country. There are provisions about our troops' presence, their powers and immunities, their relationship to Iraq and the US, and, of course, the bases they inhabit and the weapons they use. It's a detailed exposition of this country's military, economic and political future in the Middle East, set forth in a binding agreement.
Many Iraqis are protesting such a deal as infringing on their sovereignty, and as not within the power of the present (puppet) administration of Iraq. They insist that any such agreement be subject to a national referendum, which the Iraq administration is resisting, knowing that the deal will be defeated if subjected to a popular vote.
Meanwhile, here in the US, there's nothing. Yes, there are some spineless protest letters from Senators, addressed to the White House, insisting that there be no provisions in such an agreement obligating the US to intervene militarily on Iraq's behalf--that would require a treaty, the Senators say, which would be subject to Congressional approval. But I haven't heard or seen a peep from the media about the incipient deal, even though it could cost America billions of dollars and countless lives, for an indeterminate period in the future, certainly well into the term of the next administration.
Wake up, America! Wake up, media! Wake up, Congress! The monsters who brought you this evil war and occupation are attempting to bind you to continue it indefinitely, to fix it so that no matter who takes over the administration they will be hamstrung by this odious, horrific deal. And, if you don't think it's odious and horrific, here's a brief exposition of its terms, as presently on the table.
Thursday, June 05, 2008
Wednesday, June 04, 2008
Well, it turns out that eighty years after Lawrence, they're still a grander folk than we. They, unlike placid Americians, demand that our occupation cease, while we do nothing to end it.
Is this a lunatics/asylum circumstance, or a fox/henhouse situation, or what, exactly?
Monday, June 02, 2008
Fair game, don't you think?
I won't be satisfied with a "he-said, she-said" stalemate; I want a firmly established line. Trouble is, that usually takes at least a generation to materialize, and I don't have the time.
Friday, May 30, 2008
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Friday, May 23, 2008
Question one: Is this the person you want picking up the telephone at three a.m.?
Question two: Imagine if McCain had said something like that. The entire election would be over, now, in May.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Remember those phrases from previous presidential elections?: “Give us a choice, not an echo!” and “Tweedle Dee or Tweedle Dum!” Those were the outcries of many American voters when the candidates of the two major political parties didn’t seem to differ much on policy, purpose or practice.
Of course the candidates claimed they differed greatly, but we knew better. No matter which of them prevailed, America would stay on the same course, a course it pursued with fervor and certainty except when the interruptions of FDR—with later assistance by JFK and (yes) LBJ—altered America’s course for our common good. But in the four-plus decades since the last true “choice not an echo”—embodied in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965—we’ve not really had much choice.
Well, now we do. As Barack Obama’s supporters chant, “Not This Time.” Not this time will Americans be cowed by fear of adversaries, by fear of the unknown, by fear of the future. This time the choice is between courage and confidence on the one hand, and fear and cowardice on the other. The choice is between offering America’s outstretched arms to the world’s poor and needy, to the despoiled planet, to its global adversaries; or simply continuing to train America’s armaments against perceived enemies while ignoring the true causes of the planet’s ills.
It’s a choice I, and, let us hope, a majority of Americans welcome.
Get trade secrets for amazing burgers. Watch "Cooking with Tyler
But it so happened that my running shoes had run out of bounce, and so I did buy a new pair of New Balance shoes on sale at Big 5. Price (a clearance price): $39.00. And, of course, made in China.
Monday, May 19, 2008
Sunday, May 18, 2008
Saturday, May 17, 2008
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Monday, May 12, 2008
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Saturday, May 10, 2008
Friday, May 09, 2008
Grab your coat, pay the lady in the cloakroom and hale a taxi. Get outa here. To some nation south of here, preferably, but not one that hates the dollar. Mexico, maybe, or Argentina (maybe). But not Europe or Africa or Australia. Perhaps--dare I say it?--Vietnam.
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
Bad news: Sales of a just-released video game exceeded one-half billion dollars in just a few days. It's called Grand Theft Auto IV, and here's what it's about:
"Grand Theft Auto IV" follows the criminal exploits of protagonist Niko Bellic, an immigrant-turned-gangster who travels from Eastern Europe to Liberty City, the game's fictional locale based on New York City. As Bellic, players can hijack cars, earn cash for criminal activities, shoot innocent bystanders and visit strip clubs.
Tuesday, May 06, 2008
Monday, May 05, 2008
And then there's this: Disneyland in Baghdad, surrounded by barbed wire adjacent to the Green Zone. You tell me: Could you sell a screenplay with such an outlandish premise?
Her latest gimmick--the "summer vacation" from federal gasoline tax, which is but a parody of McCain's, with a politically-expedient announcement of a years-later, after-the-fact "windfall-profits" tax--is merely a capper in a long string of her "say-anything-to-get-elected" ploys that have made a mess of this nation for more than a generation. She's but a chip off Bill's block (the substituting of "bl" for "c" is purposeful): President "Don't-ask-don't-tell"; President "Welfare-reform"; President "Deregulate-media-ownership"; President "Nafta-Cafta-America-afta" (I made that up, BTW.) Clinton's presidency was a disaster, saved only by a dot-com bubble. Without that--and a few saving Executive Orders in his last days, all of which were, by law, reversible (and reversed) by Bush--he wrecked the Democratic Party, turning it into an amorphous mass of yea-sayers to corporate influence.
I won't vote for McCain if Hillary's the nominee of the Democratic Party. But I sure don't know what I'll do. (Do they accept mail-in ballots from Tahiti?)
Thursday, May 01, 2008
Guess who's right, according to a host of economists, including Bush's own former chief economist.
Saturday, April 26, 2008
Thursday, April 24, 2008
And now this: Our government concealing burials of the dead at Arlington National Cemetary. More outrage--and more teeth-gritting frustration--I cannot feel.
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
But this one's too good to pass.
Monday, April 21, 2008
(To be fair, these numbers are driven by the deep-conservative hordes in and around Phoenix, and in the backcountry. The Tucson area, where I'm from, is quite liberal, still.)
Sunday, April 20, 2008
Saturday, April 19, 2008
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Update: It appeared in the newpaper on Friday, April 18.
To the editor:
Consider me a "bitter small-town American." True, I live in blessed Santa Barbara, California, not in Pennsylvania or Ohio or any of the other "rust-belt" states that have lost so many well-paying jobs in the last twenty years, without recourse or redress. But I, like most Americans, have seen my civil liberties vanish, my health-care costs increase, my gasoline and grocery prices skyrocket, my Earth deteriorate, my national debt explode, my nation wage an immoral war and incur the disdain of billions of fellow humans.
To be sure, I don't "cling" to guns or religion as a result, and I don't take my bitterness out on immigrants. But I surely do blame the Bush/Cheney/Clinton line of leaders, as well as the rest of the media and political cabal, that doesn't respond to the needs of ordinary Americans. I want--I yearn for--America to change, fundamentally. I want Americans to run America again.
I therefore support Barack Obama for president, because of the remaining candidates, only he, to his credit, "gets it"; and only he, however inartfully, addresses it.
Monday, April 14, 2008
Friday, April 11, 2008
And here's Obama's reply to Hillary and McCain, who attacked Obama's comments as being condescending to working stiffs, as being outrageous and out of touch with America's mainstream: I'm right. I'm in touch. I speak truth to reality.
I must say, Obama's good. In fact, great.
Monday, April 07, 2008
Saturday, April 05, 2008
Friday, April 04, 2008
Wednesday, April 02, 2008
Sunday, March 30, 2008
Friday, March 28, 2008
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
And of course Rove was right.
Friday, March 21, 2008
My reaction to his "typical white person"comment was immediate. I knew two things: First, that it would add two more days to the news cycle on Obama's race-thingee; and second, that the Right would spin the remark into something damaging to Obama, likely that he was denigrating whites, painting them as racist as a group, and hence displaying his own racism.
Of course I was right on both counts. But my problem isn't with the Right's reaction, but rather with my own, a cringe. I realized that I wanted the racism question to go away, to disappear into the shadows, the same shadows that Obama's speech had shed light on. I was, I realized, part of that culture that would talk about race in private, but was still fearful of addressing it as a matter of public concern, and most fearful of a black person addressing it.
If I cringed--I, an enlightened one--is it likely that others could overcome that reaction? Can we change a culture--or even honestly acknowledge one of its powerful memes--in time to vote a truth-speaking black person into our highest office? Can we even nominate such a person to run for it? I'm beginning to think not.
Monday, March 17, 2008
Is this burning the barn to roast the pig? Your suggested adage?
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Thursday, March 13, 2008
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
"The more people I meet, the more I like my dog."
"Where is Bush taking Americans? And why are we in this handbasket?"
And the last one, presumably an observation about McCain's melodic "Bomb, bomb Iran" reference:
"McCain: Putting the laughter back into slaughter."
Sunday, March 09, 2008
Thursday, March 06, 2008
Monday, March 03, 2008
Well, I gotta tell ya, it ain't been heartening. From "Go to hell" to "Go elsewhere" it's been a long, hard telephonic slog. And even those folks who've been knowledgeable about the process have avoided committing to Obama. Some of this may be due to his color, some due to the sections of Texas covered by the area codes I was given (southeast Texas--truly backcountry), but some of it may be due to Rush Limbaugh, who's no dummy.
Sunday, March 02, 2008
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Second from the last graph, as counterpoint to the Democrats' enlistment of new voters, the Republicans offer this effort in Ohio's upcoming primary:
"Maggie Nafziger, the county GOP executive director, says the database used to target such voters includes things like applications for licenses to carry a concealed weapon.
'I can find the answers to those questions on anyone in Ohio,' Nafziger tells CNN. 'Then we go after them.'"
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
The Bush administration's cavalier reaction: "That's democracy." My reaction: Meanwhile our troops and treasure are being wasted.