GigaRot :: Politics :: Iraq :: Liberties Lost
American politics is no more absurd than politics anywhere. Honestly. Trust me on this one. No new taxes.
Laura, The Sneetches, and Building a World of Fear
Laura Ingraham, writes of the "dangerous" world knowing that horror movies attract those most gravely frightened. And she makes a point of distinguishing between those invited to the party, and those not, when she writes
The American people know it. American liberals don't.
Ergo, American liberals are not
American people. Possibly liberals are people imported from Transylvania; or American, but perhaps somehow not people, not equal..
You only could play if your bellies had stars,
And the Plain-Belly children had none upon thars.
Yes, if one acknowledges another as a human, with a differing point of view, one might be called upon to consider another view of the world. If one were to risk allowing a little light in, who knows where that might end.
Laura tells us we should be scared of the world. Indeed, after reading her article, I am a bit scared:
America is not the world's problem--America is the world's solution. [...] The United States is the only great nation in the world whose people are willing to make real sacrifices of blood and treasure for world peace. If we don't do it, no one will. President Bush knows this. The American people know it. American liberals don't.
America is the world's solution? "Calling Dr. Freud, calling Dr. Freud! Please report to Laura Ingraham's room immediately!"
Sacrifices? Sure, Bush's war has killed the American economy - so it's been a lousy last couple years here, but any American's career problems are probably not as severe as for the (once) professors at the University of Baghdad.
Real scarifices of blood? Well, accurate numbers are difficult to come by, but approximately the same number of innocent Iraqi children have been killed by America's guns and bombs as American soldiers have fallen. We willingly gave our volunteer soldiers, they lost their young children's lives without a choice in the matter.
Is the world a dangerous place? It is never a constant. Ther world is much more dangerous now than during the years under Clinton, and this is much thanks to the leadership of George Bush and his team of armchair generals, and the war they have put in people's hearts worldwide.
Can even Laura truly believe that the violence we (America) have started in Iraq has made the world more peaceful? If all the surviving friends and relatives of the innocent Iraquis we've killed held a grudge (like the Hatfields and the McCoys) we'd be in a heap of trouble, more than we could handle.
But mostly, they want to live their lives, away from violence; mostly they dream of an opportunity for peace and happiness. Still, our massive influence hits them - bullets, bombs and death - and we cannot think this makes any people gentler or kinder.
An "axis of evil"! Bush told Laura, you, and I.
If we build it, they will come.
Secure Coffee Cups: Standard Issue for the Bush Years?
As shown on Design Boom
, efrat gommeh's secure coffee cup. Finally we get some sage advice on security from those with experience.
I understand these will be handed out as "our gift to you" if you sign up for a new bank account, or attend a Bush fundraiser.
BUSH: Because we're serious about security. BUSH 2004.
Calling Elections Off: Democracy Postponed
There is danger without, and there is an even greater danger within as the Government considers how to postpone elections
The premise is that terrorists could attack the U.S. during an election, and that the Government should have the authority and a plan for rescheduling elections. Allowing the Government the power to postpone an election is an inherently dangerous proposition, however, and it shows little appreciation for the value of Democracy.
It is the responsibility of the people, the electorate, to vote, not because it is a nice day out, or convenient, or even safe. Voting is an act of bravery in much of the world, because it is an exercise of the people's power. In less established Democracies, one might be coerced or killed for voting
. Voting freely, exercising Democracy, is one of the least safe things a person might do. We forget this, we forget what our wonderful U.S. Democracy offers us.
Dictators and Kings ensure a people's safety; democracies ensure a people's freedom.
Be brave and pick one. Show guts and vote.
No matter what.
[Google: election day violence]
For the record: The Living Room Candidate
This is a terrific resource for the American people, providing a multimedia online archive of presidential candidates' TV commercials.
The character of each candidate's campaign is captured publicly for all time. Republican and Democratic candidates alike should keep this is mind: what you tell the voters, and how you make your pitch are going on a very visible record. Show some character.
As for this Bush 200 commercial, it is some what humorous that we were asked to fear Gore would spend a trillion dollar surplus. Perhaps we got the message, for we elected Bush instead, but got what we feared: that trillion dollar surplus is no more, and we will have to shoulder a trillion dollar deficit into the future.
Look at their kids and you know how different a people we are
Some monster BMX skillz shown here in Palestine, and I believe that's a double peace sign flash. Pay homage to this young man.
BMX in the MiddleEast is for brave, young hearts.
Perhaps it is important to keep the MiddleEast at war to protect the U.S. dominate position in "extreme sports". Knowing the scythe of death as Palestians do, what could be more ballsy?
That's not to say if the tables weren't turned, some ballsy Israeli kid wouldn't do the same. Danger makes some cower in holes, in the shadows, or behind a gun, but it brings out such true bravery in the very best of mankind.
Salutations to a brother.
Bush Campaign's Church Outreach
SAVED THIS ONE FOR SUNDAY:
Your president believes it is OK to bring his election campaign into your church
In my opinion it is bad enough that you see politicians on TV trying to convince us how church going they are (and therefore suitable to receive your vote).
What Bush's campaign is doing may be technically legal, but it seems intended to replace one's conscience with peer pressure, and I think that mocks true faith of any kind.
HR 4077 - The Pirate Act
Do you want to see the power of a self-concerned lobby in U.S. lawmaking? Get to know HR4077, The Pirate Act.
Some very intelligent people
have been arguing in recent years over whether society would benefit from the re-examination of some intellectual property concepts, that we as a society need to think about shared knowledge and the public good; but what we've heard most loudly is the recording industries cries of foul over digital file sharing.
Copyright is a legal principle that should not be lessened or otherwise modified without great thought and public debate. Congress, however, is reacting to the music industry's lobbying by making copyright stronger; a general legal principle is being revised to appease an industry who is concerned over their profitability.
For every person that "gets" the Internet, there seems to be a retrogrouch who is scared of it (and the grouches have more money).
Read about HR4077 [here]
or read [HR4077]
. If you don't like it, tell them
LA Times CONFIRMS: The Fall of Hussein's Statue Was Staged
What you know
is what you were led
The LA Times reports:
It was a Marine colonel - not joyous Iraqi civilians, as was widely assumed from the TV images - who decided to topple the statue, the Army report said.
American public opinion, worse yet - your beliefs - have been manipulated by the U.S. Government to serve their needs.
Hundreds of American lives, and thousand of Iraqi lives, have been lost as part of a show to get you behind your "War President". You've surrendered civil rights, to be missed later; you've spent billions in taxes you'll owe far into the future to fund a whimsical overthrow of a country on the other side of the world that wasn't bothering you.
There was no war that Bush did not create - and stage in dramatic fashion. This "War President" is a "self-made man", at your expense.
Here's True GigaRot: Defense bill will require export licenses for 650mHz Pentium III's
CNN reports how Defense bill threatens IT exports.
You do not notice what isn't hurting you. U.S. Export rules for IT loosened greatly during the Clinton era - I say this because I was involved in IT exports, and lived with the rules. As one might observe, there was not a sudden resurgence in Communism due to the availability of PC's in the world at large. In fact, other parts of the world blossomed with opportunity and became more stable. Even the U.S. was more prosperous and stable.
IT technology is all manufactured overseas these days, and we are in a fight to lead in technology. Maybe the countries where the computers are made might elect to restrict shipments to the U.S.?
Who are these fools writing the Defense bill?
Saddam in Court, Acting "Presidential"
As reported by CNN
"Hughes said the defense will be pursuing a change of venue because 'any trial in Baghdad will not be fair.' Hughes said that under Iraqi law Saddam remains president of Iraq because he was overthrown in an illegal invasion. Therefore, he said, Saddam still has immunity from prosecution."
While it is hard for me to believe much of anyone would buy into Saddam's claims that "Bush is the criminal" or that Saddam did nothing wrong, it is fascinating, and a bit scary, to watch this in action. I suspect most crazy, violent despots see themselves in the right. If I am President for life, and my word is law, how can I do wrong?
Scary as well was Bush's speech in Turkey this week, talking about "freedom" spreading to the region. "Free" and "freedom" are great psychological trigger words, but have little concrete meaning. To talk about "freeing" a region of the world from one system of Government to be ruled by another is always self serving.
Someone in a far away country may say "I will free America from Democracy and Christianity, and give them the freedom of following God's true word, as spoken to me."
Specific freedoms are something else. Don't "free" me from the society I live in, instead give my society the right of freedom of the press and give me freedom from search and seizure without due process. Don't "free" me, instead give me rights and choice, and make it the law. Ecetera here:[The United States Bill of Rights]
While Saddam's acts eclipse any bad acts Bush has done, there can be a mild comparison in thought processes. Power corrupts thought processes
, and GWB has had the power of wealth and privilege all his life, living in a world where the rules you and I live with were not a consideration.
In his mind he is President for Life.