Tuesday, October 30, 2007
There's talk again of allowing drivers licenses for illegal immigrants. NY Governor Eliot Spitzer has said that he will go forward with his plan allowing illegal immigrants to get licenses.
I have blogged about illegal immigrants before, so I'll try not to repeat myself. The idea of rewarding illegal immigrants with drivers licenses is a terrible one. First of all, I doubt that there are very many people who are stupid enough to apply for a license if they're illegally here. Maybe there are plenty of stupid people in the NY government - hello Eliot Spitzer - who think this is a good idea. Same with Vermont, Arizona, and Washington.
Does anyone seriously think that rewarding illegal activity will help curb it? This topic is very troubling to me, because I do have a lot of sympathy towards immigrants in general. I understand the powerful desire to live a better life, and to have a sense of hope for the future. Just come here legally. We shouldn't be rewarding illegal immigration, or illegal anything else. Spend the money that would be used on licenses and the infrastructure to run that, to provide legal assistance to any illegal immigrant that wants to become a legal immigrant.
We should be finding ways to take the immigrants who are already here and processing them as applicants for citizenship. I'm not talking about amnesty which is another terrible idea, rewarding illegal immigration again. I'm not in favor of Minuteman type vigilantism either. However, there has to be a reasonable middle ground between the extremes of amnesty and vigilantes.
I don't have the answer to what that would be, but I do believe that giving a license to an illegal immigrant is not going make the problem better.
Thursday, October 25, 2007
This OP-ED piece from today's LA Times is startlingly blunt and dead-nuts accurate.
I think this is a brilliant piece by her, although I do think they should be tried as criminals, and then locked up in a loony bin. Good job, Rosa!
(Slight edit just to clarify - I have nothing but sympathy for the wildfire victims. Their losses are horrendous and I wish them all the best. All I'm pointing out is the huge disparity between this and Katrina, and the fact that race appears to play a part in relief)
I've been reading about the way disaster victims are being treated in Southern California. Here's a good report on the relative luxury that the predominately white, affluent victims are receiving;
Massages, Acupuncture and Hugs
Contrast that with the treatment the poor people of New Orleans received. Two stadiums, one mostly black and poor, the other mostly white and affluent. In one, people are truly happy little campers with tents, balloons for the children, plentiful food, massages, water, and more. Now think back, waaaaaay back to the distant past, to the days before electricity, television, weather forecasts, disaster planning infrastructure, helicopters, internal combustion engines, common sense...wait! Katrina was only 2 years ago! So then, why is the situation so completely different in California?
Where are the ARMED troops pointing guns at civilians? In New Orleans, SWAT teams and National Guard troops patrolled with loaded weapons until finally Lt. Gen. Russel Honore restored order among the military force, by ordering troops to lower their weapons and reminding them that they were not in Iraq. Somehow, fortunately, Lt. Gen. Russel Honore was put in charge - which is one of the only things that went well in New Orleans.
I haven't forgotten the heroic rescue efforts by the thousands of brave men and women who helped out. I haven't forgotten the Coast Guard saving all those people, or the people who did try to do the right thing. But I also haven't forgotten, nor will I ever, the sight of people dead outside the Superdome, or the bodies laying in the streets, or the reports of people forced to live in their own shit for days in the Superdome while Michael Brown dined on steak.
I'm not angry at the people at Qualcomm Stadium. I feel for them and hope that they come through this OK. But it is remarkable how different the scene is compared to the horror of New Orleans. There's no way you can look at this and compare the two disasters without seeing that poor black people got treated like shit, while affluent whites are getting pampered. When you have massage therapists and kosher food available, there really is no need for Geraldo Rivera to fly in and hold dying babies up to the camera. That was the right thing for him to do, as so many in the media did during those awful days in New Orleans.
Now the media and guys like Geraldo who like to posture so much, should be asking questions about this blatant disparity in treatment. Black people in the media, and black people in general should be clamoring for explanations about this. If Detroit was destroyed by fires, do you think the victims there would get the same treatment as the victims in San Diego? I think it would be a lot more like New Orleans.
Is Bob Cesca reading 'Read My Mind'? He posted this a day after I posted "More Lies of the Religious Right". Coincidence? Two great minds thinking alike? Or is he a fan of mine? I say coincidence, and he wrote a damn good post which you should read, right after reading mine first of course.
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Here's yet another attempt by the Religious Right to hijack history in order to further their agenda. Mike Huckabee said this at the Republican debate this past Sunday. Hey Mike - Fuck YOU! The Founding Fathers weren't interested in your delusional wet-dream of a theocracy. They were creating a new nation in order to get away from precisely the type of shit you'd put us in.
I'm so, so, so fucking tired of people like Huckabee pandering to the ignorant masses and playing on the prevailing religious majority. If you are one of those "god-fearing" good Christians, hey, keep your religion out of my government! You want to go to church and pray to an imaginary dude, great. I have no problem with that. But please stop trying to make the rest of the country (and now the world) subscribe to your superstitious bullshit. You're the problem - not Atheists, not Agnostics, not scientists, not Al Gore. You. You and the need to make the world follow some looney biblical ideal. That was a fairy tale. Allegory, metaphorical hocus pocus to explain an unexplainable world. And then came ENLIGHTENMENT!
See, eventually people began to study the world scientifically. They learned certain truths. Of course, the Church burnt many of these poor fuckers at the stake for going against church dogma. Religion is so nice, isn't it? At this point, you're wondering, "Dave, what the hell does this have to do with Huckabee?" I'll tell you what it has to do; Huckabee and his ilk want to bring us back to those Halcyon days of burning scholars and scientists at the stake. Extreme, maybe, but the stakes (haha) couldn't be higher.
Monday, October 22, 2007
Saturday, October 20, 2007
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
What is it with Bush and his hatred for everything non-Christian Conservative? His newest move is the appointment of Susan Orr to The Department of Health and Human Services. This move is more than a bit puzzling, if not simply a blatant disregard for the post. She will be responsible for contraceptive programs in the US. The problem is that Orr is anti-contraception. She was the senior director for marriage and family at the Family Research Council, which is a conservative group that is against contraception. Not only are they against contraception, they want no one else to be able to choose contraception. The Family Research Council opposes any federal money for contraception.
So how does this make sense? In a twisted, evil way it does. Let's say you're the president of a country, and in that country there are millions of people who are very different from you. Because these people are different from you, you fear them. And because you fear them, you hate them. Now, how do you handle this situation? You put your friends and cronies in positions of power to control and suppress those that you fear and hate. For example, you appoint a woman who is vehemently opposed to contraception in charge of national policy on contraception! Brilliant!!
The audacity of putting a person in charge of a policy that she is opposed to is stunning. The thing that continues to anger me about these fucking right-wing Christian conservatives is their inability to tolerate any other beliefs than their own. Aren't Christians supposed to be tolerant and loving of others? I ask this because at every opportunity, Christians will tell you about what a great guy Jesus was and how he loved everybody and that's really what Christianity is all about.
UNLESS...you aren't a subscriber to their belief system. Then it's "Fuck you!", we'll legislate you into insignificance at the least, and non-existence if they can swing it.
This hatred of everything non-Christian is becoming more and more transparent in the US thanks to Bush. One of his good soldiers, Ann Coulter recently was spewing some hateful talk about how Jews need to be "perfected" into Christians. This is a very dangerous thing. It's not a far leap to go from spouting shit like that to marginalizing a people and then vilifying a people and ultimately calling for the genocide of a people. Apropos of that, genocide is something Bush doesn't want to recognize in regards to Turkey and the Armenians killed a century ago. For him, this recognition threatens his ability to wage war on yet more non-Christians in the Middle-east. I'm glad Congress passed that resolution. Genocide is genocide, whether calling it that causes political headaches or not. We need more defiance of Bush's agendas.
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
This is a picture of a lake in Georgia. Well, what's left of it anyway. Seems that now that the water in the Southeast is almost all gone, people down there are scratching their heads about how this came to be. This article in the NY Times is worth reading.
I wonder how so many people still can't comprehend the realities of global warming. Al Gore just won the Nobel Fucking Peace Prize for his work on the dangers of it. The Southeast is in a record shattering drought (Biblical proportions for you Christian right-wingers?) that is causing severe problems. And yet there are many voices out there screaming that global warming is a figment of the godless liberal loonies.
How about we do this; Divide the country into two regions - one where science and empirical evidence determine the course of action, and the other where religion and god rule. Because that's really where this divides - along religious vs. scientific lines. The religious right denies any and all concepts that global warming is the looming catastrophe that all signs say it is. The religious right contends that our effect on the climate is negligible.
Fine! Let them live in their denial. Just let them live in a place where their narrow views won't affect the rest of us. You know they will be doing a lot of praying for rain in the coming weeks and months in Georgia. I just wonder at what point will these zealots realize that global warming is a big problem. I wonder, but it probably won't matter. The religious right will most likely attribute everything to God's Will, and see it as a sign of the coming Rapture. Remember friends, God is a loving and benevolent guy. Riiiiight...
Monday, October 15, 2007
Flag pins and the great controversy surrounding the wearing of them has gotten to be one of the most annoying and infuriating “issues” in recent months. Barack Obama chose not to wear a flag pin on his lapel, and has been attacked by many as being unpatriotic.
Wearing a flag pin doesn’t make you more patriotic than someone who doesn’t. A patriot doesn’t have to go around telling everyone how patriotic they are. A patriot shows his patriotism by his actions. You can wear 1,000 fucking pins and do unpatriotic things that harm your country – just look at the assholes in the White House.
How many American soldiers have they killed in this unnecessary and illegal war? How many people have been illegally tortured? How many people have been illegally detained in
This lapel flag pin wearing gives me the same uneasy feeling I get when I see someone driving a car with a big flag attached to the antenna or wherever. Or the dolts that bring flags to sporting events that don’t have any other countries competing in the event. It seems like such mindless jingoism. I know which country I’m living in, so why do these people feel the need to wave flags? Are they trying to say that
This flag waving false patriotism extends to many areas in our society. Watch football on TV and you’ll see all of the commentators wearing their flags. For them it’s probably mandated by the network, so I can almost give them a pass for this. What bothers me is that the networks seem to be making policy on patriotism. It will soon become a competition to see who can have the most flags festooning everything. This is so stupid and offensive! Putting flags everywhere doesn’t mean you’re more patriotic than someone with less flags or none.
Friday, October 12, 2007
Now for most rational, intelligent people the thought of guns in schools is pretty disturbing. Not so for the gun nuts. His argument was that since guns already exist, and we have a Constitutional right to own guns, that guns aren't the problem - it's the people who shoot holes in other people with their guns that are the problem.
The solution for Mr. Beck, is that schools need more guns. He was saying that the problem in America 2007 is that good guys aren't toting shootin' irons around, like back in the good 'ol days of America 1887. In America 1887, good guys had guns, just like the bad guys, and when the bad guys started trouble the good guys were there with their firearms to stop it.
What Mr. Beck fails to realize is that we do have these good guys; they're called POLICE nowadays, Mr. Beck. Arming every citizen with a loaded gun, teachers included as he argued for on his show, will only make this country an even more dangerous place than it is now. Can you imagine the chaos if everyone was running around with guns? Road rage would become a shootout at every traffic light. Someone cut you in line at the movies? Blast 'em! Scariest of all is the thought of having teachers patrolling schools with guns. We have teachers in this country that think nothing of having sex with their underage students - all we need is to give those lunatics guns.
The thing about these gun nuts that drives me crazy is their argument about the right to bear arms. Sure, you NRA loving folks do have that right, but the Constitution has been changed many times in our history. These changes are what educated people refer to as AMENDMENTS. As times changed, amendments needed to be made. For example, the 2nd Amendment, which gave us the right to bear arms. So that was added in as seen fit during the formative years of our nation. Other important examples would be the 13th Amendment and the 19th. Look them up if you don't know these - if you're an American and you don't know what these are, you should!
The point I'm making is that as the world changes, our Constitution has reflected those changes. To this point in history these changes have been to the betterment of society. Some bigots and racists will disagree with that, but they are not enlightened and therefore their opinions should be derided and scorned. We have passed the point in time where we need to make the 28th Amendment - one that will prohibit the owning of guns.
I can hear the outraged cries of the gun nuts howling about our need to protect ourselves, or about the need to maintain a militia in case we have to revolt against our own government or a foreign invader. These people have watched too many TV shows and Rambo movies. Do they really think that a militia serves a real purpose in 2007? Do they really think that they could prevent an army with tanks and jets and hi-tech weaponry from doing whatever, with assault rifles, handguns, and grenades? This thinking is much more in line with the guerrilla fighters in Afghanistan or the Taliban than it is with a reality-based view.
A) This isn't Afghanistan - you won't be supported illicitly by a world superpower.
B) If we ever need to defend our country against a foreign invader, how do you propose to fight nuclear bombs?
C) The British aren't coming!
We don't need a militia. Period. That's the only reason the 2nd Amendment was created. Now that we don't have this as a concern, we don't need the amendment. We repealed Prohibition - we can repeal the 2nd Amendment too. Of course this probably will never happen because the gun lobby is so powerful. I also think there's more than a little bit of racism involved, but that's a post for another day.
Tuesday, October 02, 2007
The hatred and aggression is continuing to pour forth from Bush's Reich cabinet -
I hate all Iranians, US aide tells MPs
Of course, the twisted woman denied making those comments, which is contrary to the testimonies of three British MPs.
It seems to me that the pretense of democracy is fast dissolving here in the US. When twats like Debra Cagan can make comments to members of another nation's government like she did, with no concern for consequence, we are surely in deep, deep shit.