Thursday, December 15, 2011

With a whisper and the stroke of a pen

If anyone reads this they would have noticed this post was different until now. I wrote about the passage of the most recent update to the National Defense Authorization Act that had the potential to authorize the indefinite detention of American citizens. The final version of the act addressed that issue specifically as was pointed out to me after writing that post.


I am very, very glad to admit I was wrong.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Idiocracy

How can we, as a nation, ever expect to climb out of the hole we have dug for ourselves when there is vehement support for idiocy. The sheer fact that someone like Michelle Bachmann, Rick Santorum, Rick Perry or Herman Cain is seen as possibly qualified to run this country is demonstrable proof that a large number of people have taken leave of their senses.

This has nothing to do with left or right or partisan politics this is about people being so caught up in WHATEVER ideology they support to realize that maybe they are taking it a little too far.

Maybe, just maybe, we could tone it down a little and think before we talk or before we vote or before we make impulsive statements on national television that we know are %100 bold faced lies and say it with a straight face and a smile.

(cough HPV vaccine cough)

Anyone running for President should not make things up out of thin air to scare people into supporting them which is exactly what that was.

For all they preach about "the good ol' days" when American was great and everything was perfect. The GOP candidates and their base done even try to live up to the fictitious American past they imagine in their heads.

The fact that there are people running for President, getting media attention and worst of all receiving money from willing donors who have the reasoning abilities of a child are considered legitimate is embarrassing to our whole country.

According to Paul Krugman in the New York Times on 12.4.11, they've either got to be cynical in which case they know what they are saying and doing is nonsense and they don't care

or, and I don't know which is worse

they genuinely believe what they are saying because they genuinely don't know any better...


Scary times folks, scary times

Friday, December 2, 2011

common sense solution for public assistance

I'm sure that we have the sharpest minds in the country working on how to save the government money. No doubt my simple ideas have already been thought of and passed over by our elected officials in their infinite wisdom and who am I to question their judgment or motivation.

But

Just in case others are interested, I have decided to put forward an idea for a way the government can save money on public assistance that also creates a workable compromise between the left and the right.

Republicans often say Democrats have created a welfare state while Democrats argue that Republicans do not care enough about the indigent and the needy and that the private sector simply would not provide enough assistance on its own.

There is about as much truth as there is hyperbole in the claims of either side and certainly government assistance can be and is abused; not by the majority of those who receive assistance, but by enough that it creates a problem. I would also like to preface this by saying I did not pull this idea out of thin air and that others have reached the same conclusion I have but there is never any mention of it as a possible solution by those with the power to actually implement it. It may seem harsh to some or not harsh enough to others. My ideas are based on what I view as common sense and the belief that everyone has free will to make decisions that affect their own life.

THE SOLUTION:

Mandatory testing for illicit substances and a one additional child limit for those receiving government assistance.

If you don't want to submit to testing then don't, that is your right and the government has no business invading your privacy. But if you are going to ask the government for help why can't there be stipulations in place designed to make sure everyone is on the level?

If you don't believe the government has any place telling you how many children you should have then have as many as you want. But if the government is going to help you provide for the children you already have then there ought to be a stipulation that you cannot continue to create more people who will then need more government help.

RESULT:

Those who abuse drugs and have children to keep government assistance have made that choice on their own and of their own free will and that needs to be respected but the rest of us should not have to fund their irresponsibility if the cost of those decisions negatively affect others. For the majority of Americans who receive assistance, that genuinely need the help, these stipulations will have no effect.

Why nobody seems to be discussing this as a serious option I do not know...

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Insert catchy but thought provoking title here

Point to me one single straight couple that decided to throw in the towel when they saw that a gay or lesbian couple got married.


..... I'll wait......


Thought so.

Now point to me one single straight person that remembers making the active decision to be straight...

again I'll wait....

What does all this have to do with anything you ask? Discrimination against LGBT individuals and banning of homosexual marriage is wrong, unconstitutional and nonsensical. Anyone who says otherwise is either a liar, hypocrite, bigot or any combination of the three.

I would like to challenge anyone, anyone at all to try and justify that sort of blatant and systematic discrimination.


I will wait.....

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Shutdown meltdown

There is going to be a government shutdown tomorrow and I, for one, am happy. I hope the shutdown is horrible, costs jobs, puts people out on the streets, causes losses of wages and creates an egregious amount of damage. Maybe then our elected "representatives" will actually take notice at what their childish, insignificant bickering and blatant political opportunism and demagoguery has caused.

Whatever happens as a result of the shutdown will be entirely their responsibility. Because of the inability of our leaders to rise to the level of our expectations of them we, as a nation, have been put in this situation.

Too many of our elected officials are beholden to special interests, private industry, and the wealthy. They claim to act in the best interests of all Americans yet when it is time to make the tough decisions they shy away like children. Our national debt is skyrocketing and instead of taking a little more money from the people who have the most money, they would rather take it from the poor because the lesser in society have less power, fewer people to stand up for them and less political power. The wealthy, who hold the most political power, are untouchable because raising taxes for the wealthy, even a measly 3% could cost a politician millions of dollars in campaign donations.

Republicans and Democrats in congress ought to be ashamed of themselves and we as citizens should not have to suffer through their incompetence anymore. We deserve better. We deserve more than empty campaign promises or good times to come and happy thoughts and portraying the other side as the enemy and as evil or wrong.

Quite frankly it doesn't make much difference whether a candidate for office is a Republican or Democrat; one will most likely equally fail as much as the other to make any real change that benefits the PEOPLE. The only differentiation is which side of the aisle they will be slinging mud from.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Libya

The big question facing the activities in Libya right now is whether or not NATO and the UN should impose a no-fly zone over Libyan airspace. For the past few weeks rebel forces in Libya have been decimated by pro-Gaddafi bombing runs over rebel-controlled areas. The fighting has affected not only the rebel forces but certainly a massive amount of the civilian population. However, what sets the uprising in Libya apart from Egypt, Tunisia, Bahrain or Jordan is that the movement has changed from one of protests and demonstrations to one of open skirmishes and war.

The United States certainly should side with the people in wishing to see Gaddafi removed from power but the Obama administration should not be drawn in to picking sides in a civil war. There is a drastic difference between supporting and assisting peaceful demonstrators and providing military support to one faction in a civil war.

Though I am wholeheartedly in favor of removing Gaddafi from power, I am not in favor of the United States getting involved in a civil war in Libya over the issue. The imposition of a no-fly zone may be the answer and that may be enough to tip the balance in favor of the rebels but if that comes at the expense of just one American life, it is too much. Our military is already engaged in two pointless wars with no end in sight, the last thing we need is to be involved in a civil war in Libya.

What is happening there is a crime, it is wrong and it needs to be stopped; not at the expense if American lives.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Let's have some decency folks

With presidential election season just around the corner it would be nice to have some candidates that maintain a sense of decorum and decency as they compete for support. In lieu of the hard times that all Americans are facing it is crucial that those who seek our nation's highest office do so in a dignified manner. We have seen far too much muckraking and bombastic rhetoric from the left and the right lately and we, as a nation, must put that aside and conduct ourselves responsibly. GOP Presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee may desire to be a serious candidate for the 2012 GOP nomination but if he continues with his campaign of outrageous comments he will surely find himself out of the race before it even begins.

His assertions that President Obama was involved in the Kenyan Mau-Mau uprising or that actress Natalie Portman is a unfit mother serve not to further meaningful political dialog about pertinent issues but to drag down his credibility as a man who could lead this country. It is disappointing to see someone who has some very legitimate positions on domestic policy debase himself in a half-assed attempt at gaining support from the conservative right.

Should we as a nation seriously consider electing someone to the Whitehouse who when millions of Americans are out of work, our economy is still in the gutter, revolution in the Middle East is changing the face of our foreign policy in the region, not to mention the dozens of more worthwhile issues facing our country, spends his time making unfounded remarks about the President's status as an American citizen and slandering a Hollywood actress? Aren't there more important things going on that someone who wants to be President should be focused on? How does his belief that the President was not born in the United States or that Natalie Portman is shameful boost his resume and make him someone anyone should vote for?

Though I do not always agree with conservatives on their viewpoints I do respect their general tendency to at least conduct themselves respectfully and with decency. Conservative voters should be able to chose conservative candidates who do not waste their time pandering to outrageous fears and base notions. I have nothing against conservatives, they have legitimate views that deserve a voice; just not the voice of fringe lunatics who would rather spew meaningless garbage from their mouths than work to offer real solutions to the problems that face ALL Americans.

Pleas, folks, get yourselves together and lets actually try to live up to our heritage as a great nation. Conservatives almost without exception believe that America is an exceptional place. Let's act like it.