politics, culture, sexuality, religion
Wednesday, July 28, 2004
lots of hopeful things are being said this week about Kerry...about how he will change things once elected. i see no evidence of this in his statements, except in regard to women's issues and perhaps (perhaps) healthcare. certainly his middle east policy sounds like a dittohead of Bush's quagmire. i think he will work better with other nations...but what else?
Kerry will only be slightly better than Bush as far as i can see....i tell myself the choice is not Bush or Kerry but the people they surround themselves with...and we know what destructive people surround Bush.... even a little difference might make a big difference in terms of the future....certainly the obvious difference will be women's rights and perhaps healthcare.
on the otherhand i think of Lenin's insight about voting for the worst in order to bring the real tensions to a head sooner....it bothers me from time to time that Kerry might possibly be no real difference at all.
but I have to believe that something must be done now...not sometime in the future....four more years of Bush will be a disaster any way you cut it.
do we vote our hopes or do we vote our anger?
Monday, July 19, 2004
Seen these stories in our So-called Liberal media lately?
First we torture their men and women, now, we torture their children
Norwegian, German, and Australian press broke this story over a week ago, reporting the US government has videotapes of boys being sodomized at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. Most of the more than 100 minors still believed to be held in American-controlled prisons in Iraq were taken into custody after US forces raided their homes.
Some of the children are taken to the adult prison and abused in front of their fathers-detained there- in an effort to make the parent talk. They are usually stripped naked, abused or fondled, or even raped by the American interrogators.
"The worst is the soundtrack of the boys shrieking," the reporter Seymour Hersch said last week. Hersh says there was "a massive amount of criminal wrongdoing that was covered up at the highest command out there, and higher.”
He called the prison scene "a series of massive crimes, criminal activity by the president and the vice president, by this administration anyway…war crimes."
The outrages are known within Iraq, and have cost us the support of moderate Arabs, says Hersh. European media learned that the Red Cross, UNICEF, and Amnesty International discovered these prisons and lodged complaints months ago with U.S. officials, to no avail.
We’ll call him the new Saddam for short
Iyad Allawi, the new Prime Minister of Iraq, handpicked by the Bush Administration, pulled a pistol and executed as many as six suspected insurgents at a Baghdad police station last month, just days before Washington handed control of the country to his interim government, according to two people who allege they witnessed the killings.
"The prisoners were against the wall and we were standing in the courtyard when the Interior Minister said that he would like to kill them all on the spot. Allawi said that they deserved worse than death - but then he pulled the pistol from his belt and started shooting them."
Presbyterians and Israel
“Leaders of the largest Presbyterian denomination have officially equated Israel with apartheid-era South Africa and voted to divest from Israel,” reports Arutz Sheva. Predictably, some leaders have mounted an attack against the PCUSA. “We were offended and distressed by the actions of the Presbyterian Church USA at your most recent General Assembly pertaining to Jews and Israel,” complained Anti-Defamation League director Abraham Foxman.
Saturday, July 10, 2004
Stains on the country
As of today 881 Americans are dead in Iraq, over 1000 "coalition" forces dead, and about 15,000 Iraqs. That's 16,000 bloadsoaked clothes.
And Clinton was impeached for one stained dress?
Tuesday, July 06, 2004
Independence Day Thoughts, part two
In the afterglow of the national holiday I am sure the flag waving will be more and more politicized by the right….but the flag and the holiday and the national symbols belong to all of us, more especially to progressives…even though Democrats are at times timid about flag waving (because it is so exploited by the rightwing). to those of us who are not happy with the direction of the country under George W. Bush’s “guidance”, America has always been beautiful and always been a place where progress was possible, where society could change for the better. For so many of us, America has always been a place for democratic values, social progress, equality, liberty, and a land of hope for all. So progressive Americans have worked through the years to end slavery, bring women into full civic participation, build a public school system where everyone could have an opportunity to learn and grow, stop child labor and sweat shops, end racism, bring an end to the exploitation of the poor by powerful moneyed forces….Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle comes to mind, as does the five day work week, paid vacations, and social security. (all progressive or liberal ideas)
Did you know:
the Pledge of Allegiance itself was originally authored and promoted by a leading Christian socialist, Francis Bellamy (cousin of best-selling radical writer Edward Bellamy). Bellamy wrote the Pledge of Allegiance in 1892 to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ discovery of America by promoting use of the flag in public schools. He hoped the pledge would promote an ethical vision which would counter the climate of the Gilded Age, with its robber barons, monopolistic practices, and exploitation of workers. Bellamy intended the line “One nation indivisible with liberty and justice for all” to express a more collective and egalitarian vision of America.
America the Beautiful was written by Katherine Lee Bates, a professor of English at Wellesley College. A member of progressive-reform circles in the Boston area, concerned about labor rights, urban slums and women’s suffrage, an ardent feminist, for decades she lived with and loved her Wellesley colleague Katharine Coman, an economist and social activist. Bates was an accomplished and published poet, whose book America the Beautiful and Other Poems includes a sequence of poems expressing outrage at U.S. imperialism in the Philippines.
Emma Lazarus wrote the lines inscribed on the Statue of Liberty: “Give me your tired, your poor/Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” Emma Lazarus was a poet of considerable reputation in her day, who was a strong supporter of social reform. Her welcome to the “wretched refuse” of the earth, written in 1883, was an effort to project an inclusive and egalitarian definition of the American Dream.
and one more thing...
From David Letterman:
Top Ten George W. Bush Complaints About Fahrenheit 9/11
10. That actor who played the President was totally unconvincing
9. It oversimplified the way I stole the election
8. Too many of them fancy college-boy words
7. If Michael Moore had waited a few months, he could have included the part where I get him deported
6. Didn't have one of them hilarious monkeys who smoke cigarettes and gives people the finger
5. Of all Michael Moore's accusations, only 97% are true
4. Not sure -- I passed out after a piece of popcorn lodged in my windpipe
3. Where the hell was Spider-Man?
2. Couldn't hear most of the movie over Cheney's foul mouth
1. I thought this was supposed to be about Dodgeball
Saturday, July 03, 2004
Independence Day thoughts, part one
Sorry the weblog has been silent for so long. I have been out of the country, working in refugee settlements in the Dominican Republic. It was a meaningful experience, one I engage in from time to time, through my local church.It is good to be back home.
the Fourth of July Weekend is here, and flags will wave (as they should) and speeches will be made, and no doubt, the Bush White House will claim some corner on patriotic truth, using the occasion to stygmatize those who dissent from a useless war, prison torture, padding the trough of campaign contributors, and the slow deprivation of our liberties.
One thought to the patriots of the days to come:
If you must wrap yourself in the flag to prove you are a patriot, and if you must wear your Christianity on your sleeve, then I humbly suggest that you are neither a patriot nor a Christian.
05/01/2004 - 06/01/2004
06/01/2004 - 07/01/2004
07/01/2004 - 08/01/2004
08/01/2004 - 09/01/2004