Monday, September 29, 2008

How To Survive In America's New Hoovervilles

Hopefully this piece will not offend anyone's sensibilities, because the last thing I'd want to happen is to hurt one faction's feelings, and have no one heed the advice contained herein. Advice designed to help you through this crisis that's about to come crashing down around all of our heads.

There are several steps you and your family should be taking right this minute, (not tomorrow, not the next day, but today), to safeguard your very survival should the unthinkable happen and the markets collapse.

Before you listen to the naysayers who are running around claiming that the markets will correct themselves and no action by the Congress is necessary, bear in mind that as the credit for companies to keep goods and services moving dries up, the sky really is about to fall. Not only that, but for the better part of this past year, while many of us were screaming from the rafters that this very crisis was going to happen at this time this year, those very same naysayers called us tin foil hatters. So keep that in mind as you watch a brief respite from falling stocks today, because in the end, this orchestrated collapse of our economy is going to happen come hell or high water if we don't pay the ransom being demanded by the criminals on the Street.

Since the very first order of business is going to be food and shelter, we should first look to the professionals as to how to make your very own shanty shack. Ideally, you'll have been smart enough to gather camping gear, and if you did, you don't need to read any further. This is for those who find themselves suddenly homeless, and that's why we'll look at how the already homeless build their shacks and how they survive on a day to day basis.

Considering that there is safety in numbers, it's not advisable to go off into the woods or the desert by yourself. Should misfortune befall you, you'll be on your own, and that's never a good idea. So, the best idea would be to choose a site such as the lawns of state capitol buildings, the park across the street from the White House, or some other such publicly owned building.

When you first understand that you're going to have to take to the streets with your family, gathering essential items is your first order of business. Assuming you're going to be on foot due to the high price of gasoline, duffel bags and backpacks are the order of the day. A couple of tools you won't be able to do without are:

a small hand axe

a small hammer

a utility knife

a hunting knife

a handgun (just in case)

a high grade flashlight with extra batteries

a portable radio

one set of eating utensils for each family member

plastic or aluminum plates, bowls, and cups

sewing thread and needles

nylon rope

a hand shovel

lighters and matches


a small first aid kit

deck of cards

pen and paper

And of course, you'll need blankets, coats, a change of clothes, and as much canned food as you can carry, as well as a can opener, a small frying pan, and a small pot.

Your shelter: If you can not gain access to large sheets of corrugated metal, don't fret, because you can still build a simple but effective little home. First, locate a tree or large rock and tether one end of a blanket to it by piling other rocks or tree limbs to that end. Or use a length of your rope. Stretch the blanket out carefully and anchor the other end to the ground, making sure that it slants upwards to allow rain to roll off of it. Next, take your shovel and dig a hole large enough under the blanket for you to rest comfortably in. Stretch another end of your blanket to where the mound of dirt you dug out is and tether that end under the mound with rocks and dirt. Finally, stretch the blanket over the other side and tether it the same way. You can now slide under the blanket and have some shelter from the elements. This foxhole shelter will suffice until you gather the wood and metal sidings you'll need later on to build your new home.

Food: Making sure to dig a fire pit and surrounding it with rocks, you can easily gather some wood and start a fire. Use kindling to get the fire going, then build it up slowly. Now, you can heat some of that canned food you were smart enough to take with you. Got Spam?

Bathrooms: If you're lucky enough to have chosen a park that has a public restroom, you're in better shape than most. You have toilets, a sink to wash yourself, your clothes, and your eating utensils. If not, then you're going to have to use the behind a tree method for toileting, and drag potable water around. That being such a pain in the ass, I recommend finding a park with a bathroom.

Socializing: It's only natural to be wary of your new neighbors and to try to keep to yourself at first. That's not going to happen, because as soon as you set up camp, the community is going to come over to check you out. They're going to want to see if you're an easy mark, and if you have things they might want to steal. At this point, it's ok, to let the handgun poke out from your waistband. Everyone will get the message and become immediately helpful and friendly. Now, you've got brand new friends and your nights won't be too boring because you can play poker or rummy. (Someone may have been ingenious enough to garner a bottle of moonshine!)

Panhandling: Hey, you've got to eat right? This is no time to be proud or shy. It doesn't matter that you used to be a Wall Street banker, that life is over now and you need money to buy food and beer. The first thing to do is to find a street corner that doesn't have a lot of army troops or regular police hanging around. Find a large piece of paper or cardboard and make a sign asking for help. Don't mention to anyone that stops that you used to work on Wall Street or you're dead meat. Say you were an auto worker or something if asked. To maximize profits, any time someone gives you any bills, put them in your pocket. This way, as people pass by, all they'll see is the change and be more willing to give you something. If they offer to buy you food, accept it, save it for later, and get back to work. If done correctly, you should be able to make enough for food and drink, and believe me, by now, you're going to be drinking.

Dealing with authorities: Say you're just walking along and you're stopped by some gung ho army guy or police officer. They ask you where you live because you look a little ragged. Give them your old address and say the water has been turned off or something along those lines. Do not look directly at them or you'll get tased. Do not smart talk them or you'll get tased. Do not disagree with them when they call you names or you'll get tased. And whatever you do, don't try to run, because not only will you get tased, but then you're getting some broken bones for sure.

As you settle into your new life, you'll begin to gain knowledge of how to survive on the streets and in the New Hoovervilles the Republican Party has so generously helped to provide for us. You'll learn the ins and outs of dumpster diving, and which restaurants pour lye on the food they throw away and which ones are sympathetic and leave good stuff. You'll learn how to shift from foot to foot as you wait in a four block long food bank or soup kitchen line. You'll learn how to forage for wood, metal sheets and nails to build a more permanent house in the shanty town. You'll learn what despair and hopelessness means, but try not to get too discouraged. Because if all else fails, you can shoot one of those big fat squirrels running around in the park. They say they make good eating.

There's many other things you need to know, but these basics should help you get started. Don't be afraid to ask questions of those who have been homeless for years, because they'll try to help you get situated. They too were like you when they became the first victims of capitalism run amok, and so, they know what you're going through. Hopefully this mini guide has helped prepare you for what's coming. If you haven't already begun to put together your survival kit, then do so now. Because if you think this entire article was just silliness, then go to the White House web site and read Presidential Directive NSPD-51 and HSPD-20. No one knows where this thing is headed, but if the actions of our government and Wall Street are any indication, we'll see each other in some park very soon indeed..........

Sunday, September 28, 2008

My Ridiculous Bid To Become Premier Of The North American Union

In order to justify the continued lunacy of the candidacy of John McCain, the talking points of the Republican Party, and Sarah Palin as the choice for Vice-President, I have had to suspend all the rules of reality and when I did so, I realized that I too could be the leader of something big.

Since the general consensus seems to be that we are moving towards an inevitable North American Union consisting of Mexico, Canada, and the United States, I thought I'd apply for the newly formed Premiership of this new nation, and as my running mate, I choose corporate icon Ronald McDonald.

Now, before you go running for the little white coat and tin foil hat, you have to admit that what I propose is no more ridiculous than say, giving taxpayer money to a bunch of bottomless pit pig corporations. (Just kidding Corporate America! But I need the little man's vote!)

You see, since I have traveled fairly extensively over the course of my lifetime, I know the subtle differences of how people think in different areas of the country. Knowing those differences will give me an exclusive insight as to how best bring all factions to the table and get things done. It's very difficult to get a Seattle liberal to sit at the table with an Alabama redneck, (Can I say redneck? Shoot. I don't care.), but with plenty of Starbucks and fried 'gator, I'm sure the differences will just magically melt away.

Especially when people from both coasts, as well as those in the Heartland, understand that we are all a part of a brand new country called The North American Union, and as such, we must include those from Mexico and Canada as those who call themselves Namericans.

Now, if you're worrying about what sort of experience I would bring to the table, look at where I live and you'll see a virtual buffet of things that I have knowledge about. Living in Nebraska, surrounded by miles and miles of corn gives me the experience of not only knowing how to shuck a cob faster than you can blink, but since we use a lot of that corn to make ethanol, I have a keen insight into the workings of the energy industry. Not only that, but since corn is used to feed cattle,chicken, pigs, and make corn syrup, (which is used in virtually everything nowadays), I also know how to keep the food supply of our newly formed nation safe, produce it in greater quantities, and put something in every pot. (Or is it the other way around? Hmm.)

Having traveled to both Canada and Mexico several times, I have foreign policy experience. Being stuck directly in the middle of the current United States, I can't see either about to be assimilated countries from my house, not even with a telescope, (I know because I tried), but I have successfully navigated a drive from San Diego to Tampico, ordered native Mexican dishes without speaking a word of Spanish, hit a pinata', eaten the worm at the bottom of the bottle, and have set Vancouver and Ottowa alight by hitting many of their well known watering holes.

I've even been to Anchorage, and so understand fully the need to keep Vladmir Putin from rearing his KGB head over our airspace, you know, when he comes to visit us and he goes to where? That's right. Alaska. I'll put my foot up his Russian backside and set the world afire if need be to keep capitalism safe for the even bigger corporate conglomerates sure to arise from this merger between nations. (Don't worry Corporate America. I'll build enough bomb shelters to keep the rich safe from the fallout.)

Unlike some other people who think they're so smart, I'll go to Spain and visit with what's his name. I know Spain is our ally, and am even willing to forget having to revolt against them because of their stupid tea party. Or was that some other country that had a tea party to revolt against a government that no longer represented them? I can't remember, but you get the general idea. I'm willing to at least talk to our potential adversaries like what I call 'The Three F's'. You know, France, Finland, and the Falklands. I won't give away the store, but I'm willing to make concessions to remain friends with these rogue state sponsors of terrorism.

Since I've solved the oil crisis by producing more ethanol, I figure we'd better turn our attention to the problem of water supplies. With global warming on the rise and droughts springing in the southern parts of our new Union, invading Greenland would appear to be our only viable option. Knowing that the leaders of that country are actively seeking to deny the world drinking water by purposefully melting all the ice in their country, we would be derelict in our role as world leader if we didn't stop that from happening. Plus, it would create jobs by starting an industry for bottled glacier water! So I can run the economy too!

To help offset the current trade imbalance with countries like China, I've come up with a plan to save on shipping costs. We're going to have all of the products we import from there shipped directly to the WEST coast. It's a lot shorter distance than having to all the way across Europe and the Atlantic, and any shipping costs across the country will be offset by the jobs created in the train and trucking industries.

One of the first acts of my new administration will be to send my Vice-Premier to spread the love that clowns have with their hamburglars all over the world. What Head of State could recent the combination of a funny little clown who makes them laugh while feeding them at the same time. You've got to admit, my friends, it's a brilliant strategy to reassure the world that the North American Union is their friend. (For now.)

My second act to jump start the economy would be to reverse the 800 billion Ameros shoveled by the bucket full to Wall Street, and give it away to all Namericans as a stimulus package. But this time, Namericans can not spend their rebate on porn site memberships like 30% of you did last time around. You may, however, spend it on actual DVD's that deal with whatever subject matter you like. See? We'll have lots of freedom.

Well, except that we will not tolerate protests against the government or the Corporate World. Anyone caught protesting either of those will be tasered on the spot, no questions asked. It's only reasonable after the Utopian leadership I'm going to give you. Other than that, the right can protest against the left and vice-versa. You can also protest against things beyond the government's control, like the sun rising in the east or something along those lines.

And if you are having reservations about my choice of running mate and what experience he has to be Vice-Premier, give it a rest. This guy has restaurants in almost every country in the world, for God's sake! How much more experience do you want in a national leader?

So that's it. That's my proposal to elect me Premier of the North American Union. I know that the issues I've addressed are going to take some time to absorb properly, so you've got one month to decide if my Mickey Mouse campaign has a shot at success. If you've got any other questions, you can always address them to my campaign spokesman, W.C. Fields. Now, all this thinking has worn me out, so I'm going to take a vacation (which I'll be doing a lot of during my reign as Premier) to Las Vegas, have a few Manhattans, throw a little dice and possibly even get some of that 'What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas' whatchamacallit. I'll expect to see you all at the polls come November, doing the right thing, being patriotic, and well, all the rest of that stuff.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Nebraska Must Not Change Child Safe Haven Law

Ridiculed by most of the media in the nation after passing one of the most comprehensive and sweeping child safe haven laws ever, the State of Nebraska nevertheless went ahead and signed the legislation into law. Being the last state to sign this type of legislation intended to prevent child abuse before it started, Nebraska's law goes much further than most other states in that not only infants could be dropped off at so called 'safe haven' sites such as hospitals, but the wording also permits the safe drop offs of older children as well.

Since taking effect, 16 children of varying ages have been left at safe havens. In one case, a father of nine dropped all of his children off, and the media had a field day. But while reporting on the case of Gary Staton, the father who left his kids, aged one through seventeen, at Creighton Medical Center, they didn't tell the whole story. In an attempt to titillate the reader or viewer, they merely reported the fact that the children were left, and used the case to try to illustrate why the Nebraska law was backwards and needed to be change.

Mr. Staton is a single father to those nine children. He also has another daughter, who is 18 years old, and who, after the death of her mother, became the primary caretaker of the rest of her siblings. His wife of 17 years died last year, a woman for whom Gary would have gladly given his life for. Inconsolable, he fell into a deep depression, and stopped being able to take care of himself, let alone the children, who had to depend upon each other to survive. Gary ended up losing his job, and with the bills piling up, made the decision to take advantage of the new law by taking the children somewhere that he knew they would be safe.

Not the act of some irresponsible man as the media tried to portray him, Mr. Staton did what he did out of love and concern for the well being of those children, and it was only after all of the media attention that relatives stepped forward to heroically claim the kids. Where were they before the storm gathered and the crisis of mind became intolerable for Mr. Staton?

Other kids were being left at hospitals in Omaha and Lincoln, kids a little older than one would normally expect. With the media breathing down their necks, the politicians began to backpedal and some now speak of the need to change the wording of the law. But if changed to what others may deem to be 'acceptable' age limits for children to be safely left at these havens, what will happen to the older children who are in a very bad situation? The very nature of the law was to safeguard against abuse of children, and how will any change in the law accomplish that? Will we say that we will allow for the dropping off of children up to five years old, but not children who are five years and one week?

The argument that a lot of people are struggling and must be forced to raise their own children, with the mentality of 'pulling yourself up by your boot straps' are ridiculous, and must be ignored. Because despite the way the Staton story was presented to the public, those children were clearly in danger and it took courage to recognize that and bring them to others who could and would care for them properly. The same holds true for the other kids who have been left with hospital staff. Should we force parents who are either unable or unwilling to care for their young to keep them in an environment wherein they may be subjected to neglect and abuse? Where the core values of these kids might have been warped and twisted and we allow for the raising of more maladjusted young adults set loose upon an increasingly maladjusted society? Or would it not be better to allow these young ones to have a chance at a better life?

Any time a new law is passed, especially laws that allow for an escape hatch such as this law gives, there is going to be an initial rash of people who see a chance to get themselves out of a bad situation. This is normal, and will eventually subside as more parents are made aware of other options available to them. The course to take here is a public education campaign, not a changing of the law to appease those who could care less about the safety of potentially abused children, but only in headlines or catcalling from the sidelines. Politicians are never going to please everyone with every law they pass, but in the case of Nebraska's safe haven laws that allow for greater protections for children than any other state, they clearly got it right the first time. There is no need to revisit this law, and in fact, other states would do well to adopt it.

Because in the end, if a parent who is addicted to drugs or alcohol can have the cognizant thought that they are not doing the right thing for their children, and needs to get the child or children to safety has a place they can bring them without the draconian measures of arresting them for doing the right thing, they are twice as likely to do so before abusive behaviour begins. The same holds true for parents or guardians who are in the position of Mr. Staton, who clearly understood he was incapable of acting as a responsible parent, and out of love, let his children go. If Nebraska takes this hard fought for safety net for children away due to pressure from far right wingnuts and the media, then the State of Nebraska will be endangering the very children they wished to protect in the first place.

Maybe it's not the Nebraska law that needs to be changed, but the thinking of those who label what is intended to help children as 'abandonment' and 'shucking responsibility'. Maybe it's the mindset of those who can not imagine ever doing something like that themselves, that is, until a situation like that of Mr. Staton comes along. Maybe proponents of changing the law in Nebraska because it was intended to save kids who are in 'immediate danger' need to explicitly explain the parameters of 'immediate danger' for the rest of us. Because if leaving 9 children in the care of a depressed, overwhelmed, barely functional father is not leaving them smack dab in the middle of 'immediate danger', then we need to redefine the meaning of that phrase also. Maybe the real problem is that there aren't more laws geared towards the actual protection of children, and maybe you can force your state's legislature to adopt laws that will provide a safety net for parents BEFORE abuse starts and not after.

No. Changing Nebraska's safe haven law is not the answer. Giving it time to settle is. In this time of fiscal uncertainty, it serves to save resources in the form of less police manpower having to go on ride alongs with social workers to remove children from homes where the situation became so bad, that the children were being abused. It serves to free up those same social workers to be able to work on cases where parents don't take advantage of the law, and keep their little ones in harm's way. It serves to give unwanted kids a chance to have a happier childhood, which is then reflected in their ability to contribute to society, rather than become maladjusted criminal types who clog up our courts and cost taxpayers to house them through their adulthoods in prisons. In the words of Herbert Ward "Child abuse cast a shadow the length of a lifetime".

While this argument will probably never change the minds of those who are too short sighted to see farther down the road than the immediate future, it does hopefully give pause to the knee jerk reaction of those who are crying out the old "See, I told you so" anthem. Because while they chant that anthem over and over and try to force the State of Nebraska to tow the national child safe haven law line, I'm reminded of another anthem by Pink Floyd that goes "Hey! Teachers! Leave them kids alone...............................!"

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

To The Supreme Court Of The United States: re; Troy Davis

To the honorable members of the Supreme Court of the United States,

As you are aware, Troy Anthony Davis will be executed tonight in the State of Georgia for the murder of police officer Mark Allen MacPhail in a Burger King parking lot back in 1989. The sole evidence used against him was the testimony of nine eyewitnesses, seven of whom have recanted their testimony, and in fact have pointed their finger at one of the other supposed witnesses, namely one 'Red' Cole.

The recantations of these witnesses came about due to police coercion of their original testimony, with threats of bodily harm or imprisonment for non co-operation. This travesty of good old boy justice must not be allowed to stand. While fully understanding the mentality of police when one of their own is killed, we must, however badly the desire for revenge, make fully sure that one is actually guilty before a person is put to death for that crime. Lynch mob mentality should hold no place in the meting out of justice, and lynch mob mentality is exactly what the State of Georgia is proposing and intends to carry out.

There are many cases that provide precedence for the Court to stay the execution of Troy Anthony Davis, or to order a new trial. Since the resumption of the death penalty in 1977, more than 100 people have been released from their sentence of death due solely to unreliable eyewitness testimony. In the Davis case, that is literally all of the evidence they have against him. Eyewitness testimony. That has been recanted by most witnesses, one of whom, Antoine Williams, could not even read when ordered by police to sign a statement implicating Davis. The true finger of guilt has in fact been pointed at one of the witnesses who testified against Davis, but this evidence has been ignored by the State of Georgia.

No murder weapon was ever found, again bolstering Davis' argument that he was not the killer. There is virtually no physical evidence linking Davis to the crime, again, other than the tainted testimony. This alone brings about more than enough criteria for reasonable doubt, and the Court should find that had many of these facts been known at trial, no conviction would have ever taken place. The Court should also consider the fact that one of the attorneys on Davis' legal team was drunk while in court, and therefore Davis did not receive competent legal counsel.

Justices of the Court, while considering the merits of granting a stay of execution, please consider that many proponents of the death penalty have called for a new trial for Troy Davis. Proponents that include former FBI Director William Sessions, who has said that executing Davis would be "intolerable." These death penalty supporters have, to a person, reviewed the case against Davis and called the case a "travesty of justice."

Consider also the actions of the officials and courts of the State of Georgia. In this, an election year, it would not benefit the Chatham County District Attorney's Office should it be found that their office had wrongly prosecuted an innocent man. Undue pressure has been placed upon the Georgia Board of Pardons and Parole to reverse their decision of last year staying the execution. The Attorney General of the State of Georgia has secluded himself and refused to accept lawful petition for redress from the People. These are not the actions of law enforcement officers with nothing to hide, and their actions should speak loudly enough by themselves to give the Court pause. The listed extenuating circumstances, and others not listed here, cry out for Your Honors to issue a writ of Habeus Corpus, a stay of the execution, and an order setting aside the guilty verdict of Troy Davis, with the date for a new trial, one in which Davis will be exonerated, set for as soon as possible.

In many cases, the death penalty is clearly warranted. Wanton killings can not go unpunished, murderers of children should never escape the long arm of the law, and cold, calculated snuffing out of human life should have no place in a civilized society. But what we have in the case of Troy Anthony Davis is a clear case of injustice, and to allow this execution to take place would be to make us all complicit in the murder of an innocent man. Allowing this execution to go forward would do little more than reinforce the lynch mob mentality that is permeating the air, and for the reasons stated, the Court should and must consider the relief asked for.

Monday, September 22, 2008

A Plea To MSNBC On Behalf Of Troy Davis

Dear MSNBC, since Troy Davis is incarcerated in Georgia and sentenced to die Tuesday for a crime that he did not commit, he can not write to you himself. So I'm doing it for him.

Found guilty of the murder of a police officer more than 15 years ago on the testimony of nine witnesses, seven of those same witnesses have recanted their testimony, and in fact have pointed the finger of guilt towards one of the other two remaining witnesses. The seven have all said that they were coerced into giving false testimony by police at the time, with threats of bodily harm, or incarceration themselves.

And so, Troy Davis has been fighting this battle for his life all this time, pretty much out of the sight of the public. With the exceptions of Amnesty International, who has written an extensive report on his case, and the N.Y. Times, there has been almost no coverage whatsoever of the fact that the State of Georgia does not care hat Troy Davis is innocent. They're going to murder him any way. The school of thought is that he was convicted, it doesn't matter if there is overwhelming evidence of his innocence, and that since it's not Unconstitutional to execute an innocent man, they're going to proceed as scheduled. That is, unless they get a spotlight shone on them, which is what the Davis family desperately needs.

CNN tried to gain access to Mr. Davis, but was rebuffed by prison officials, and so they dropped the story. No profit in a story of an innocent man if you can't talk to him, I know. But just this one time, will MSNBC step up to the plate and make a few phone calls, or fly someone to Georgia to try to interview state lawmakers or someone before it's too late. We all know that when the mainstream media gets involved, the powers that be are a little more willing to take a step back.

No less than Pope Benedict, the European Union, and Bishop Desmond Tutu have tried to intervene on behalf of Troy Davis, but alas, we all know what good that will do. The U.S. and especially it's government, do not appreciate being told what to do by foreigners. But the one thing they fear more than anything in the world is bad publicity, and that's exactly what MSNBC has the power to give them.

So, on behalf of all of those who have been trying to shine a light on a tragedy about to happen, I humbly ask that you write this story up, get it on the air, demand accountability from Georgian officials, and help us to stop the execution of an innocent man. It used to be the train of thought that better for ten guilty men to go free rather than one innocent man be executed for a crime he didn't commit, but in these troubling times, the adage has turned on itself to mean that they would rather execute ten innocent men/women, rather than allow one guilty person to go free.

Hell, they rather just execute ten innocent people period, and if that's the country we have reduced ourselves to, can the complete collapse of our society be far behind. Help us, MSNBC, to help Troy Davis. Just once, put profit to the side, and do the right thing. You'll forever be remembered as the network that went out on a limb to stop an innocent man from being killed. The network that hears the voices of it's listeners, mainly us, and took action when everyone else was afraid to.

Because if this case does not get immediate publicity, they will kill Troy Davis, period. Innocence doesn't matter to these people. A cop was killed, and so they are sure as shoot going to kill someone back, even if that someone is an innocent man. Ain't that America, it's something to see baby....................................

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The Strangest And Weirdest Things

Needing a break from bashing the very strange campaign for President of Sarah Palin (and John McCain of course), I thought I'd try to make a few people laugh with some of the even stranger goings on that have happened around the country recently. Believing that it would take forever to compile a list of truly magnificent idiocy, I was surprised at just how many truly weird people and events happen nearly every day. Only in America.

First, there's the case of the Piggy Bank Burglar of Wilson, Wisconsin. Apparently desperate for some spare change, he broke into a home and emptied twenty dollars in change from the piggy bank of a sleeping two year old girl. Busted by the mother of the child, he ran off, only to get caught by DNA evidence he left behind in the form of blood after he cut himself on a window screen gaining entry to the house. Sentenced to six years in prison due to a lengthy criminal record, America's piggy banks are safe for at least the next few years. Too bad we can't say the same about our Treasury.

Knoxville police received an hilarious 911 call from a would be museum burglar who jammed himself into the ventilation shaft attempting to get into the museum. When rescue personnel extracted the witless wonder, he told police that he wasn't trying to steal anything, he was actually on a mission to defuse a bomb that had been placed inside the museum.

I think God may have frowned down upon the wheelchair bound man who, along with his brother in law, were on their way to church in Cedar City, Utah. An argument broke out between the men on the way to worship, and the man in the wheelchair just lost it. He pulled a ball point pen from his pocket and proceeded to stab his brother in law in the face. While he was driving.

A free living 40 year old man in Tallahassee, Florida got the shock of his life when he discovered that police don't appreciate residents walking their dog in the nude. When approached by officers, the man reportedly said that Allah had told him to watch a Bruce Willis movie and then walk his dog naked. faster than you can say "Don't tase me bro", the naked man was zapped and is now resting quietly at the local mental health facility.

Maybe there's something in the water down in Florida, but a woman with her three kids in the car with her suddenly turned to her children and asked them if they thought they had enough faith to keep an approaching bicycle rider from being run over. When the children didn't answer, the woman ran the poor bicyclist down. She then stopped her SUV, stripped off all her clothes, ran around the crime scene ranting and raving, stole another car that had stopped to help, and promptly drove the car into a ditch. Police say she appeared to be under the influence of some type of drug. Good deduction Sherlock.

In what can only be described as the beginning of the second civil war, the town of Fraiser, Colorado is suing International Falls, Minnesota over which city should be called 'America's Icebox'. An earlier lawsuit resulted in the town of International Falls paying Fraiser the sum of $2,000 in order to trademark the name. When the trademark renewal time came and passed, Fraiser sued again. International Falls claims they will never back down this time, with residents saying that it's bad enough they have to live in the frozen God forsaken place and that the least they can get out of it is a recognizable trademarked name. (Just give Fraiser the extortion money already!)

In the University of Texas' Jester Hall (Really! That's the name!), 26 teen aged cheerleaders had to be extracted from an elevator that broke down. Taking 25 minutes to get the doors open, one fainted and two others had to be treated for shock at the scene. Apparently cheerleaders in Texas can not read the elevator signs that warn in big red letters " No More Than 15 People May Enter This Elevator At A Time".

In little Valentine, Nebraska, one man is attempting to make the town live up to it's name. Spreading Vaseline or baby oil on his bare buttocks and groin area, the sneaky streaker presses his well oiled parts against storefront and church windows in order to, ahh, leave his mark so to say. Obviously not a total nut case, the man stops his activities during the winter months, but is right back at it as soon as the weather warms up. (Are you telling me that in a town the size of Valentine, no one notices some greased up naked guy running around at night?)

A Correyville Ohio woman has been charged with aggravated assault for trying to force a peanut into the mouth of a neighbor she was having a dispute with. Before trying to force the peanut into the other woman's mouth, she allegedly threw a handful of peanuts at her neighbor who claims to be allergic to the nuts. ( Police Officer Skippy was over in a jiffy, explaining that the woman's husband, Mr. Planters, was having an affair with the neighbor, Mrs. Nutella. Both are said to belong to a group trying to draft Jimmy Carter for President.)

In Seattle, a man will be spending the next 12 years asking himself what he was thinking when he lured his blindfolded wife into their garage, telling her he had turned it into a haunted house. Once inside, she allowed her husband to handcuff her, thinking it to be a part of the charade, then walked up the steps of a ladder. Hubby then took a prepared noose and slipped it around wifey's neck and pushed. After she lost consciousness, he released her, feeling remorse he claims, and begged her not to call the cops. He told her that after a year and a half of marriage, he felt trapped, and figured this idea was better than a divorce. Not buying it, the woman called police, but my question would be: Woman, have YOU been to see a shrink?

And finally we turn our attention back to the economy. President Bush's recent 'stimulus' package of rebate checks had a very unusual consequence. So many people spent their rebate checks on pornographic web site memberships that the Adult Internet Market Research Company says they saw an immediate 20-30% increase of adult pay site membership increases right after the stimulus checks went out. I guess many curiosity seekers don't realize there are about 10 million free porn sites on the web.

So that's the state of America today. People literally losing their minds, some having fun at the expense of others, and others just, well, I don't know what the hell they're doing, but I imagine they must derive some sort of pleasure from it. As for me, I have to go now. I just saw an article about having sex with a squid, and I'm, um, er, going to do some research, yeah, that's it, research on the subject and get back to you. Have fun today.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Mr. Bush, Can You Explain A Few Things?

Watching three of the five largest investment banks in America either collapse or be bailed out to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars, it crossed my mind today that this very same White House has time and time again slashed the piddly little budgets for the most vulnerable Americans of all. Namely the poor, the elderly, the disabled, the veteran, and the homeless.

Mr. Bush, can you explain to the nation why it seems to us Lilliputians that you have once again bent us over and fornicated us, and that when you were done, you allowed your Wall Street crime partners to use us all also? How could it be that when people were screaming from the roof tops that this was going to occur more than a year ago, we were labeled tin foil hatters? Could it be that during that year of further short selling of stocks, your cronies were able to rape the economy and make off with untold wealth? Is that why the Wall Street Journal was not worried in the slightest? because this was the plan all along? You know, to steal as much money as possible on your administration's way out the door, calling it a saving of the economy, when in reality it is little more than a strong arm robbery occurring right in front of everyone's faces?

Mr. Bush, can you please explain to our veterans that you sent off to fight in a false war why it is that you have consistently slashed funding for their health care, housing for their families while they were stationed overseas, and why you even managed to get your Pentagon lap dogs to declare that veterans benefits were "hurtful to our national security"? Why in Feb. of 2008, there wasn't enough money for the V.A., with you slashing the budget for the agency once again?

Mr. Bush, can you explain to us what would have happened to Social Security accounts had you gotten your way and privatized yet another social safety net program? Isn't it true that the entire program would be in complete collapse, with almost half of Social Security recipients losing virtually all of their benefits? Why in the world, do you think, that your successor, John McCain, is still advocating for the privatization of the only source of income for millions upon millions of our seniors?

Mr. Bush, how can it be possible that it's alright to allow the Federal Reserve Bank to print up money made up of thin air to bail out your friends, but yet again this year you cut the budget for education grants? What is backing up this miracle money, or haven't you figured out yet that this 'bailout' is going to cause inflation on a scale that will destroy many more American households?

Mr. Bush, why did you put forth yet another budget this year that slashed funding for housing programs, Americans with HIV, Medicaid, the Center For Disease Control, homeless shelters, food banks, child care assistance for single working parents, and yet there seemed to be a ton of money for corporate welfare programs that weren't cut at all, but actually had their share of the tax burden cut again?

Mr. Bush, can you explain to the residents of Nashville why they must endure the indignity of a virtual tent city near the outskirts of town? Or why this many years after the horror of hurricane Katrina, people are living in a tent city under a highway overpass? For that matter, explain to the people of Southern California why in Ontario there is a massive shanty town that consists of almost 1,000 people who have lost their homes, and why there are children being allowed to live in squalor and despair. Seattle may not have a tent city per se, but they sure have their own shanty town in the form of a 'car camp' for those fortunate enough to have been able to retain their vehicles during their own personal financial melt down. As a matter of fact, the Ballard area of the city is seeking out ways to build more camps due to the unusually high amounts of people needing a place to park their car to sleep at night.

Mr. Bush, do you have any words of comfort for the people of Oregon's Dignity Village, another Hooverville made up of a patchwork of tents and trailers? Is there a bail out in the works for them, or will you once more turn a blind eye to the suffering of your countrymen, even as you give away our nation's treasure to corporations once more?

Mr. Bush, as the victims of yet another hellish hurricane recoil at finding out their homes are completely gone, that they have lost everything they have ever worked for, and now live in temporary shelters with no plan in place to get them permanent housing, what is your economic stimulus plan to help them put their lives back together?

Mr. Bush, why is the silence so deafening when the subject of those who have lost their homes comes up, and why can't you find the money to help the newly homeless get themselves and their children off of the streets? Is it that you want to be known as the worst President in the history of our nation? The President who made Herbert Hoover the model for how he ran our country? A President so detached from the suffering of every day Americans, that he can cynically give a trillion more dollars to corporate interests that are not even American companies any more, (they're multi-nationals), but who will not turn to the nation and say that you are going to help the homeless, the poor , the sick, and the veterans of America as much as you've helped fatten the coffers of your corporate friends?

And knowing all of this Mr. Bush, how is it that you can expect reasonable people to vote into office your protege', John McCain, who is in a large way directly responsible for allowing this financial collapse to occur? Who even now lies about his position on the Commerce Committee, avoids any discussion of his role in the collapse of the Savings and Loan banks during the Keating 5 scandal he was embroiled in, and who can't remember that Spain is an ally of the U.S.?

Lastly Mr. Bush, you should remember this as you sit in your church pew and act as though you are a pious and devoted man of God. You should remember that you were supposed to help the poor, the weak, the sick, and the elderly, and that you did NONE of them. You gave the entire store away, you have turned the U.S. into a banana republic, and you have crushed the hopes and dreams of millions upon millions of Americans. May you rot in hell sir...................

Thursday, September 18, 2008

There's A Break In The Heartland

With the economy in shambles, with the candidates for President jousting over who is to blame, with Americans from all walks of life worrying about spiraling prices of food and gasoline, and with the U.S. infrastructure in the Midwest literally crumbling before our very eyes, the once assured red states in America's Heartland are slowly but surely creeping ever closer to going blue come November.

In Nebraska, a state that is continuously placed squarely in the McCain column by television political pundits, Republican lawmakers are in open revolt over the pick of Sarah Palin for Vice President. Senator Chuck Hagel has denounced the choice, saying that John McCain and Republican operatives who claim that Palin is qualified to be Vice President are 'stretching'.

The significance of that statement to Nebraskans should not be underestimated. For one thing, Nebraska is not an all or nothing state as many pundits seem to make it appear. The state's electoral votes are split into three districts, with the area comprised of Omaha proper having one electoral vote, Lincoln and surrounding counties have two, and points west of Grand Rapids holding two votes. Omaha and Lincoln are already in the bag for Obama, giving him 3 electoral votes right off the bat, and the rest of the state west of Lincoln has a much different demographic than it did even in 2004. There are many Hispanic voters in that area now, making the once 'safe' red state of Nebraska up for grabs. And finally, surrounding states look towards Nebraska to see what they're going to do, then mostly follow suit.

In Kansas, another red state stronghold, Democratic Governor Kathleen Sebelius has been campaigning hard for the Obama campaign, pointing out that Obama's mother was born in that state and the changing demographics there can most certainly put that state into play. Kansas City, Kansas. Wichita, Manhattan, Lawrence, Topeka, all have larger Democratic constituencies than in 2004.

In Missouri, a state that pundits keep punting around like a football, voters in Kansas City, Missouri are overwhelmingly Obama supporters. St. Louis, Springfield and many smaller cities along the I-44 and I-70 corridor are falling into the Obama column, which would make Missouri much more likely to vote Democratic.

In Ohio, once the purging of voters is complete and the attempt to steal that state again is thwarted due to overwhelming vigilance on the part of voting rights groups, at the end of the day, there will still be many more Obama supporters than McCain/Palin ones, and pundits may want to get on this bandwagon now, and just place Ohio in the blue column.

Interestingly, even though Montana has Democratic Senators, a Democratic Governor, and the populace has been consistently leaning towards Democratic ideals, the pundits keep claiming the state for the McCain campaign. But if one gets down to the local level, areas such as Missoula, Billings, Butte, and Helena, the areas with the greatest concentration of people, are all going for Obama. Hence, Montana goes into the Obama column.

Colorado. Does anyone truly believe that there is some sort of 'race' for this state? Maybe in times past, but with high levels of registered Democrats in Denver, Colorado Springs and much of the I-25 corridor, this one should be an easy call for even the most jaded of talking heads.

New Mexico is a toss up state? Very funny. In what universe?

Minnesota is most certainly going to vote Democratic, as well as Wisconsin and hard hit Michigan. All this talk of hard fought battles is just that, talk. Political pundits use 'polls' and don't actually research local newspapers to read the comment sections and the editorials that are all in favor of Barak Obama.

This break from the Republican Party by the people of America's Heartland is going to be the final straw for the McCain campaign and they know it. Toss up states? Pennsylvania, and that's only barely. North Dakota, another state already given away to McCain is actually a toss up state. New Mexico, still a toss up, will eventually fall into the Obama column, as will Nevada. The truth is, even states such as South Dakota are in play, and Democrats should react aqccordingly.

So what does all of this mean? It means that all of the arguing, all of the political punditry, and all of the lies of the Republican Party are for naught. This election is already over, the final nail in the right wing coffin being the collapse of the economy that they completely deregulated, while allowing for bridges, roads, waterways, and all manner of infrastructure to fall apart when they held sway in the Congress for twelve years. All of the bluster, all of the finger pointing at the Democrats, and all of the bald faced lies of the Republicans do not change the fact that every domestic spending program put forth by the Democrats was blocked by them, every warning about Wall Street firms was ignored by them, the surge did not work, with the Sunnis ready to rejoin Al-Quaida, and everything that is wrong with this country is the Republican's fault, and the American people know it.

Ican't see Russia from where my house is, but I can see the Heartland of America. I'm no political pundit, but I can and do read editorials from newspapers all over the country. It's a hobby. Come November 4th, the Republican Party and the political pundits are in for a shock. In what is shaping up to be the largest landslide in American history, the Republican lie machine is being laughed at. And when the Heartland red states are running for the door and waving Obama banners, the time of the neo-cons is finally over. Not a moment too soon.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

U.S. Media Must Stop Pandering To McCain Campaign

On all of the major news networks, for at least the recent past, has covered the campaign of John McCain almost exclusively, as though Barak Obama had decided to end his own campaign.

Every single day, CNN has spent all of it's time speaking exclusively to McCain campaign spokes people, openly pandering to them in ways that make knowledgeable viewers blush. Allowing all of the Republican talking points and wild accusations to go unchallenged, they mention the Obama campaign briefly as an after thought. Between Blitzer and Dobbs, they should just allow Rupert Murdoch to run their station. The only saving grace for CNN is Campbell Brown.

Speaking of Fox News, if it can be called a news channel, all one is allowed to see there is the John McCain Show. Viewers are treated to the vitriol of Sean Hannity and Bill O'Reilly, two of the biggest liars ever allowed to call themselves mainstream media personalities. The entire network is a veritable den of snakes, an illegal extension of the Republican Party, and whose fair and balanced logo could be easily seen as a school yard bully beating up smaller children.

Even MSNBC has begun pandering to the McCain campaign recently. All day long, we are treated to a virtual who's who of Republican liars, who are allowed to spew their propaganda unchallenged, and which is then what the casual viewer believes. Scarborough and Matthews are clearly biased in favor of Mccain, although to be fair, Scarborough would be biased for Richard Nixon were he to come back from the dead. It's only when night time falls that the Obama campaign gets any balanced coverage, ie; Countdown and The Rachel Maddow Show.

The myth of media bias towards the Obama campaign is just that, a myth. Between Rush Limbaugh's three hour tirade, Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, Glenn Beck, Laura Ingraham, and all of the other right wing talk show and talk radio hosts, there's at least a five to one ratio of talking points favorable to the McCain campaign. The most recent example would be the fact that whenever McCain or Palin give a speech, it's covered from beginning to end most of the time. Obama gets about five minutes into a speech and the network cuts away to talk to a Republican propogandist.

Even the so called mainstream coverage has become so biased that it's almost impossible not to notice. Make believe 'political analysts' on all of the major networks have all thrown out the subtle 'Obama doesn't have much experience' lie, and allowed the thought to be reinforced by Republican operatives time and time again. Bill Schneider for instance has repeatedly thrown the question out there asking whether Obama's four years in the U.S. Senate was enough experience for him to be President, as well as questioning whether voters could overcome his being black.

T.J. Holmes did the exact same thing when he said that Americans were going to have a hard time voting for someone with virtually no foreign policy experience, and the sentiment has been picked up and repeated like a mantra by every single U.S. media outlet over and over again.

By contrast, John McCain has enjoyed nothing but high praise from all of the media outlets for what NBC's Brian Williams said was McCain's “vast foreign policy expertise and credibility on national security.” The sentiment was echoed in Newsweek, when they claimed that no one could question John McCain's foreign policy credentials. But yet, even after McCain showed his ineptness in just that very same arena of foreign policy, by his not knowing which countries bordered which, he was given a pass by the media. Or when McCain claimed that Shiite Iran was backing the Sunnis in Iraq, the media covered it as though it were some sort of small gaffe instead of the clear indication that Mccain had no idea of what he was talking about. Even Joe Lieberman had to correct him in one instance.

Or we can look at the media's extensive coverage of the non story about Barak Obama's connection to Tony Rezco. Practically called a criminal by the mainstream media until Obama could prove his innocence, Republicans to this day use Rezco as a talking point and the media never calls them on it. The flip side of that coin is so obvious, and with the economy collapsing all around us, the media has become so remiss in it's duty that it could be called criminal. They refuse to bring up John McCain's involvement in the collapse of Lincoln Savings and Loan, or the corruption that was involved and of which John McCain was a key player in, namely the infamous Keating 5 scandal. It's almost as though it never happened.

Bill Ayers of the 1960's Weather Underground was vaguely acquainted with Obama in Chicago and the press trumpeted the right wing propaganda line that Obama had ties to terrorists. Once again, it took ridicule of the entire situation for the story to die down, but yet, that very same media makes absolutely no mention of McCain's proud announcement that terrorist and criminal Oliver North of the Iran-Contra scandal had endorsed him for President. North killed more civilians than any Weather Underground could have ever dreamed of.

No mention is made of the association of John McCain with G. Gordon Liddy. McCain beamed as Liddy endorsed him, even though Liddy was a key player in the Watergate scandal and has called for his listeners to kill federal agents on his talk radio show.

When Obama opted out of public campaign financing, the media condemned him as one voice. But when McCain broke the law and a legally binding promise to accept public financing for his campaign, he was given another pass by the fourth estate. It's become almost a joke that the press allows John McCain's campaign to use his P.O.W. days as his credentials to run the country. As though he were the Vietnam War's ONLY prisoner of war.

It boils down to this and the U.S. media had better start paying attention. John McCain stands for the total destruction of the United States of America, and his sidekick is a far right wing nut job, who would love nothing more than to have a shot at starting a war with Russia to usher in the Rapture. The Fourth Estate has to stop pandering to this campaign, period. Stop allowing them to spew lies on national television.

The McCain campaign throws out an accusation of media bias, declares a no interview policy, and the networks fall all over each other to get back into favor with a campaign they should just ignore. Because when the Iraq war began, every single major network anchor and reporter sat in front of Americans and said that even though they try to be unbiased in their reporting, they wanted America to win of course. This is the same exact situation. This is a war for the survival of our nation, and by favoring McCain and the Republican Party, they are drawing voters to his side. When they allow the likes of Sarah Palin to hijack the news cycles for more than a week, they harm the electoral process. When they allow the Republicans to repeat lie after lie after lie every day, even when it's known they are lying, the media is complicit in perpetuating those lies. It is time for the media in our country to recognize that our survival is at stake and act like patriotic Americans, and help the rest of us save our country, end of story.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The Greatest Show On Earth

Barnum and Bailey could never have conceived a greater or more entertaining venue in all of their years of traveling circus days. With their high flying trapeze artists and animal acts, the stuff of legends was born through their vision of how dazzling the masses should look.

But never in a million years would they have ever thought that they could be upstaged by the American Idol mentality that has taken over the political arena, most notably the current race for the Oval Office.

We've got a dancer vs. a sleight of hand artist. A beauty queen vs. a one liner comedy act. We've enjoyed singers of songs and actors of outrage on both sides of the side splitting soap opera that has so captivated a nation that they have no idea of what they are voting for or voting against any more.

In the still most powerful country to ever grace the world stage, there are hucksters of distraction everywhere, dazzling us with tales found to be untrue, but told again any way in the exact same fashion, as though no one had caught them lying in the first place. Like a three card monte game, the stories are moved swiftly through the media, spinning round and round, nuanced by talking heads into important issues, when in reality, the talking points have nothing to do with the ability to run our country.

There used to be a time in America when if a politician who was running for higher office was caught bald faced lying to the people, they'd be hounded so badly by the press, and humiliated publicly to the point that they'd be forced to drop out of the race, and hide their head in the sand until the storm of controversy had blown over. Not so any more. Now, the politicos hold the press in their pockets. They wine them and dine them, and invite them to exclusive parties. rubbing shoulders and glad handing celebrities, the media becomes light headed with giddiness.

Having made 'friends' with certain candidates, it then becomes difficult to be objective and dig deep for the truth, even when they know for a fact that what they are putting forth as the truth is nothing but more lies spewing forth from the candidates' mouths. Complicit in the carnival atmosphere, the clowns whirl and do somersaults for the politicians who are best placed to further a media career.

Faltering economy on the verge of complete collapse? Hey! look over here! Watch the candidate eat pie with the locals! Dead soldiers arriving from war zones they claim to be placated? No problem! Watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat! Homelessness growing, poverty at an all time high? Well, Geez, that's terrible, but watch the beauty queen strut across the stage to the cheers of adoring fans that have no idea that she hates everything you stand for! Rising unemployment and food prices spiralling out of control? Don't you worry because Tada! We just cut taxes for the richest 1% of the country again! Follow the flashing lights and pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. That rabbit hole is off limits to the public.

Does this sound sarcastic and angry? Good. It's meant to sound that way. Americans are so unplugged as to what is really going on, and the powers that be are utterly dependent on an uninformed populace to get away with their dog and pony show politics. They present us with a shiny little ball on a chain, swinging it back and forth, back and forth, until everyone is asleep and lulled into a false sense of security. The man behind the curtain? Oh. Well, that's, er, that's just the shadow of the moon you're seeing, pay no attention. When in reality, it's that shadow that has caused us to forget exactly what we are supposed to be thinking about this election season.

We're supposed to be looking to see who will bring change to the failed and destructive policies of the past decade. We should be looking at the current White House and the squatters who still reside there and thinking about the loss of civil liberties, the lies, the wars, the poverty and the death caused by those people. And about who in this race wishes to go even further than Bush and Cheney's maniacal plans. Who will stop the madness, and get things back under control, and who is actually partly responsible for the current crisis with his voting along with Bush almost all of the time. Who has as his advisers, the exact same people who advised the current regime. Or who can and will usher in an era of change, responsibility, and prosperity for all.

That's the choice we truly have to make and make it right now. Do we want to talk about what the real issues that are facing us are all about? Or do we want to watch the greatest show on earth continue, one that is a bridge to nowhere, and will lead us full circle four years from now, in a worse situation than before, involved in God knows how many more wars, with a completely shut off from the public government, and more jobs shipped overseas? It is incumbent upon every patriot in America to stand up and demand answers to our questions. To not allow candidates to refuse to speak to the People's questions, or if they do, to reject them out right.

Because we are not running an American Idol show here. We are voting for the office of the President of the United States, and for those who would rather watch the circus act, and end up with another administration that rapes your wallets and pocketbooks, you'll have only yourself to blame. The rest of us have to get on every message board, every media site, every chat room and social networking place and get the message across. The message is very simple and goes something like this: They are at it again. They are lying and distorting facts to steal another election, and have hypnotized you, so wake up, get back in the game, or get left behind.

Now, bring the clowns back out. I could use a good laugh............................

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Was Russian/Georgian War McCain's Doing?

If this were a trial, and John McCain and his advisers, including Randy Scheunemann, the McCain campaign guru who is the founder of Orion Strategies, the lobbying firm for the country of Georgia were the defendants of that trial, for criminal conspiracy,there would be enough circumstantial evidence to convict them.

No one wants to talk about it. Certainly not the government in power at the moment, because McCain represents their last best hope for the continuation of the failed policies of the past eight years. Not the media, because the gutless wonders of the MSM don't even have the guts to say the word liar in the same sentence as McCain or his lying little barker Sarah Palin. So we'll have to examine some very interesting tidbits that happened before, during and after the events that ended up with thousands of people dead and wounded, and around 100,000 people left homeless.

It has been widely reported in the media (because they were told so by the McCain campaign), that Scheunemann stopped lobbying for the country of Georgia in March, 2008. But records show that Scheunemann was still working for Orion as late as the end of May, 2008. Having received close to a million dollars for his work on behalf of the government of Georgia, he was also listed as an agent of a foreign government. Scheunemann has been around the U.S. political scene for a long time now. Having worked as an adviser to Bob Dole during his Presidential run, then advising Republican Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott before going to work for the Mercury Group, the 'change' campaign running now doesn't really like to talk about the fact that in 2000, Scheunemann worked on John McCain's failed campaign.

After that debacle, he went back to lobbying, ending up with a seat at the Project For A New American Century, or PNAC. McCain also doesn't want you to know that 9 days after 9/11, it was Scheunemann and the Committee for the Liberation of Iraq formed by Scheunemann that lobbied President Bush for an invasion of Iraq.

Working closely with Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, Scheunemann lobbied Congress and the Bush administration to further the Georgian desire to become part of both NATO and the European Union. The Senator he worked most closely with was none other than John McCain. During the time that Scheunemann worked for the country of Georgia, ethnic cleansing was taking place, instigated by the government in Tbilisi, who started the national rallying cry of "Georgia For Georgians Only!" Ossetians were pushed into the enclave provinces of North and South Ossetia and basically told they were less than citizens of the country of Georgia. During the entire time of the Bush administration's courting og Georgia and John McCain's sudden concern for the status of Georgia in the E.U. and NATO, persecution of non Georgians became the norm.

2008. The two provinces of Ossetia and Abkhazia have become so hostile to the central government in Tblisi that they claim status of independence, with Russia allowing the free flow of people and goods from the provinces in and out of Russia. Going so far as to issue passports for the residents of the breakaway provinces, the Russians let it be known in no uncertain terms of the consequences of an attempted invasion by the Georgian government of Mikheil Saakashvili. Also warned by the United States State Department and Secretary Rice herself not to provoke the Russians, the situation seemed to be settled for the foreseeable future.

But yet, against all reason and common sense, Georgia invaded Ossetia on August 8th, killing 2,000 civilians by estimates from humanitarian groups. Saying they were merely trying to reclaim territory owned by Georgia, the ethnic cleansing began anew. With shocking speed and ferocity, Russian forces came to the defense of the Ossetian people, moving with breakneck speed to demolish the puny military forces of Georgia, and retaking all of Ossetia and Abkhazia.

Even as the Russian and some European media were reporting on the genocide being committed by the Georgians during their invasion, John McCain swiftly moved to the international spotlight in backing the Georgian actions and condemning Russia. In direct contradiction of the stated policy of the current administration, McCain, needing to gather his right wing base, began his very own foreign policy, issuing dire warnings to the Russians. The resulting flip flop by the Bush administration was stunning in and of itself, but in an election year, with McCain as their Party candidate, they had no choice but to go along. Stepped up missile shield deployment to Poland, and bellicose statements by administration officials have caused the neo-cons wettest dream to come true. A restarting of the Cold War.

With Scheunemann being in constant contact with Georgian President Saakashvili, he arranged a telephone conference with John McCain on April 17th, 2008. At that time Scheunemann was still a paid lobbyist for the Georgian government and a McCain campaign adviser. The conversation between the men is not known, nor would anyone expect McCain to admit it, but it seems to be fairly clear that a green light was given for an invasion, due to the Georgian military's preparations immediately after. Given McCain's constant contact with the Office of the Vice-President before the Georgians invaded, one can assume that Darth Cheney must have given McCain the green light also. Those pipelines transporting oil are much too lucrative to Cheney's Halliburton.

It would not be unprecedented in American politics for a Presidential candidate to author overseas events to suit their needs of the moment. Ronald Reagan convinced the Iranians to hold on to the hostages until after the election by promising them arms. Dwight Eisenhower, in order to placate Joe McCarthy and the far right wing, convinced the Hungarian people to revolt, insinuating that the United States was ready to come to their aid. When the uprising and brutal repression came, the U.S. sat idly by. And now, by John McCAin's own admission, he had other candid conversations with the Georgian President who after the Russians expelled them from Ossetia, made clear his displeasure with John McCain after McCain's bellicose speech, saying he expected action, not words.

That's almost as good as telling the world that for all of the money his government had paid to the lobbyist Scheunemann, and for all of the cash he will rake in from Orion after the election, Saakashvili had expected a military response by the United States after the Russians moved in, and was a little bit angry that he had been taken to the cleaners. That he had done his part to help McCain with the far right of the Republican Party, and now McCain wasn't holding up his end of the bargain. Perhaps the Georgian President was given the impression that a U.S. Senator had the authority to go to war.

We are now in a posture of anger and cold shoulder with the Russians. Our relations have come to a halt, and there are bombers in the air at all times on both sides. Because of this, John McCain has a lot of explaining to do about all of those phone calls to the Georgian president. What did he assure them of? Don't even try to say he was talking about the weather. What was paid lobbyist Scheunemann's role in the entire affair?

And since we know we are not going to get answers to these questions, we had better start thinking about the implications of having all of Bush's people back in the government come January, with McCain as the titular head. The Cold Warriors of the Nixon years that have stuck around just behind the curtain all these years have achieved their goal of destroying Reagan's glasnost and pushed the U.S. into a Cold War posture once more. Do we really wish to have the sneaky back room deals about war and peace to make a comeback in American politics? Do we want a pliable President in the form of an elder statesman who may not make it through one term, only to leave the country in the hands of a political neophyte? One who has already stated that she would start a shooting war with Russia? And do we want in office someone who would use a foreign government's desire to retake parts of their country and turn it into a blood bath for his own political gain?

Some will say that this never happened. But ask yourself about how many positions that John McCain has completely reversed himself on in order to pander to one segment of society. How he lies and distorts the truth about virtually everything, and then come back and read this again. Hopefully it will open your eyes to a larger picture of who this candidate is, who his best buddies are, and what could conceivably happen were he to assume the Oval Office. Forget the lipstick, the bridge to nowhere, and the troopergate story. What we should and must understand is that despite the mantel of maverick and agent of change, John McCain has shown us who he truly is, and that's an agent provocateur.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Bush Administration-Year One

Americans knew they were in for a long road back in January of 2001. Having just been through a grueling election that ended with the Supreme Court packed with friends of his father appointing him to be President of the United States, George Bush's official motorcade was forced to speed to the inauguration through throngs of angry, egg throwing protesters. Protesters that the U.S. media never showed us, and made seem as though all had gone well as George W. Bush was sworn into office.

The inaugural speech was riddled with references to God, angels leading the nation and how we, as Americans, were responsible to care for the poor. He said "Many in our country do not know the pain of poverty, but we can listen to those who do. I can pledge our nation to a goal. When we see that wounded traveler on the road to Jericho, we will not pass to the other side."

Alas, although making for good sound bites during that speech and his State of the Union address the following week, Bush set to work right from the outset to do all he could to screw the poor, and then set his sights on the middle class. Slashing budgets for social safety net programs almost with the lazze faire of a butcher chopping meat in his shop, the Bush Doctrine of giveaways to his rich friends and corporations was underway. Quietly signing legislation passed by the Republican controlled Congress to privatize Medicaid, the program designed to provide the poor with medical coverage, the Republicans, with Bush leading the charge, managed to make it impossible for the poor to go to their doctors, while at the same time adding more middlemen in the form of insurance companies now being in charge of all decision making for the program itself.

Wielding that pen while the media, being exhausted from having to cover the stolen election, decided to take some time off and not report on the programs the Bushies were tearing apart, nor the corporate welfare increases going into effect, tired Bush himself out so much that vacations became the norm. He vacationed 54 days before August of 2001, when USA Today questioned whether or not his next vacation, a month long jaunt to Crawford, Texas was a wise decision.

And vacation the President did. On August 6th, 2001, Bush received the Presidential Daily Briefing report entitled "Bin Laden determined to strike inside U.S.". The report was the result of a crescendo of reports from intelligence sources all over the world. Sources from Israel, who arguably has the very best apparatus for garnering intelligence in the entire world, the Russians, the Syrians, and the European intelligence community. Despite the fact that the PDB was the end result of blaring warnings being issued from all over the world since may of 2001, the Bush administration saw fit to ignore them all and continued to fish in Texas, while Cheney vacationed in Wyoming.

No one needs to be reminded as to the horrible events of 9/11. The images of bodies falling or people jumping to escape the flames are forever seared into our souls. Buildings falling, screams and wails echoing off of New York's concrete canyons, and the sobering pictures of a mayor of a major American city running the streets because he had no where else to go will haunt us forever, and be the rallying cry against the Republican Party for eternity. Almost immediately after the events of 9/11, the Republicans desperately attempted to lay the blame at the feet of the previous administration, knowing full well that the outgoing Clinton people gave the incoming Bush administration so much information on the Bin Laden threat, that Bush CHOSE TO IGNORE, that the lewdness of their failure to act became a rallying cry to those who believed the only possible explanation was complicity on the part of Bush and his people.

9/11 happened after the Bush administration had been in power for eight months, twenty per cent through their first term, and yet, to this day, they admit no responsibility. But at every turn, they try to claim the events of that day as their own personal rallying cry for war, for the stripping of the rights guaranteed by the Constitution to all Americans, and the excuse to close all government oversight off from the public.

In the aftermath of 9/11, we now know that the Bush administration had plans already drawn up for a war with Iraq, even though Iraq had nothing to do with the events of that day. John McCain blatantly connected Iraq to the Anthrax attacks, saying that Iraq was the second phase of operations after Afghanistan, whom we invaded in reply to the Taliban's refusal to hand over Bin Laden without evidence. To this day, no evidence has been offered, and Bin Laden is on no FBI most wanted list due to lack of that evidence.

While Bush was busy laying out plans for the Iraqi invasion, John McCain was busy running around the country saying things like the U.S. Congress should bring out their dead after the Anthrax scare, that after we got done with the Middle East, the people there could go back to selling camels or whatever it is they do over there, and that the world would know who was boss after we had taken over Iraq, Afghanistan, and Iran. He also promised that Bin Laden would be dead by Halloween of that year.

But what should really scare the hell out of everyone about John McCain and Sarah Palin was McCain's support for the last minute changes that Bush sought to insert into Congress's use of force authorization back in 2001. Just seconds before the Congress was to vote, Bush sought to add wording to the bill that said he had authority to use the military within the borders of the United States, against U.S. citizens! Tom Daschle, the former Democratic Leader said : "Literally minutes before the Senate cast its vote, the administration sought to add the words 'in the United States and' after 'appropriate force' in the agreed-upon text. This last-minute change would have given the president broad authority to exercise expansive powers not just overseas -- where we all understood he wanted authority to act -- but right here in the United States, potentially against American citizens. I could see no justification for Congress to accede to this extraordinary request for additional authority. I refused." ...

In November of 2001, Bush was absolutely gleeful because of the new acquiescence of the media. Not daring to question anything the monster in chief did, Bush began to issue a series of Presidential Directives. Cloaking them carefully at first to be directed against only non citizens, we all know about the later tossing out of Habeus Corpus, the Posse Comitatus, the declaration in the Patriot Acts that U.S. citizens could now be charged with domestic terrorism for attending or planning protest marches, and all manner of expansions of police powers in direct violation of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. No one said anything, because of the Rove campaign to paint anyone who dared to question the President as an enemy of the state. They backed up their words by getting well known and respected journalists fired for asking too many questions.

In December of 2001, Bush restarted the Cold War with Russia by announcing that the United States was pulling out of the ABM Treaty. And then making it seem as though the Russians were the bad guys. Ten years of glasnost and gains wiped out by a neo-fascist group of people determined to feed the military/industrial complex no matter what.

But the most egregious statement that has ever left the lying mouth of George Bush came when he was asked by a reporter at a Christmas party the Bushes were at in 2001. Expecting to get a solemn response from the Commander In Chief, who had just been witness to the events of 9/11, the aftermath and the invasion of Afghanistan. A reaction to the suffering of the entire American nation and the fears and worries of a people unsure what the future was going to hold. Asking the Bushes how they were feeling that Christmas season, George W. Bush did not hesitate to answer that he was feeling fantastic and having the time of his life.

Still want more of the same? Or does beating your head against the wall appeal to you? The above is only a taste of what our country will endure under a McCain/Palin administration. Those two will make Bush and Cheney seem like Alvin and the Chip Monks when they bomb bomb bomb Iran, destroy all domestic social safety net programs, drill baby drill everywhere that they suspect may have oil, and if the 'executive privilege' claims being made not two months before the election are any indication, we're in for a hellish nightmare. Forget the die hard neo-cons and fascists who will back McCain.Palin no matter what, much the same way they still claim Bush/Cheney was the greatest Presidency of all time. These people don't care about you, the country, or the rule of law. They care about ripping off the nation for every last dime it has, then getting out, leaving the corporations in charge and Americans living like the paupers during the time of their other hero, Herbert Hoover.

Just as Bush did during his first year in office, McCain would completely eviscerate the remaining Bill Of Rights, since McCain agreed with Bush that Americans had too many rights and voted along with Bush not 90%, but 95% of the time, and 100% of the time in 2008. Don't fall for their lies and smear campaigns yet again. They speak of being religious, but bear in mind that the devil's greatest trick was to make you believe that he did not exist. The Republicans' greatest trick and in particular the new Karl Rove driven campaign of the hiding from the media McCain/Palin campaign is that they aren't really corporate shills and lobbyists, but reformers.

Monday, September 8, 2008

John McCain = America's Hypocrite And Bush's Pet

Disappearing into the morass of frenzy surrounding the pick of Sarah (Lipstick Pitbull) Palin as John McCain's Vice Presidential pick is the debate about who John McCain really is, what his policies are and how he would govern should the sheeple of America help the Republicans steal a third election in a row.

All of a sudden an unknown woman who has done little more than bark out thinly disguised disgust for all Americans that try in their every day lives to make a difference and help others, has become some sort of mainstream media icon, as though her sudden appearance on the national stage has heralded the second coming of Christ Himself.

Putting aside for the moment that this woman probably couldn't point out Delaware or Arkansas on a map of the United States, we had better start returning to the true issues at hand, and stop allowing mainstream media, and the far right wing fascists to control the conversation with their bait and switch tactics, lest we fall victim yet again to the old Karl Rove strategy of not talking about what ails the nation, but pandering to the most divisive issues that will pit Americans at each others throats long enough for no one to notice that they're even doing it again.

John McCain is no 'maverick'. How anyone has fallen for that baloney is beyond all reason, but fall for it they do. McCain's own voting record in the Senate shows him for the phony he his. That's not to say he isn't a very shrewd politician, because he is. So shrewd that he knew how to vote against an issue that he knew would be unpopular, then vote for the very same thing a couple of years later. How quickly people tend to forget that even George Bush said that John McCain was ready to set forth his agenda.

Everyone has stopped talking about the fact that John McCain voted along with Bush to privatize Social Security and that he still holds that position. He has stated that he still feels that the program needs to be privatized and would fight to do so were he to win.

John McCain voted right along the neo-con line for tax cuts for the ultra wealthy, and wants to make the giveaway to the rich permanent. The only ones that want these tax cuts to remain in place are the corporations, the fabulously wealthy, John McCain and the suckers he can convince that it would be in their best interest to accept the crumbs from the altar of excess.

Interestingly, as John McCain tries desperately to repaint himself as a reformer and a maverick, he doesn't have any qualms at all about taking huge sums of money from many of George Bush's biggest corporate lobbyist bundlers. Here's a couple of them listed below:

Wayne and Lea Berman of Ogilvy Government Relations, who have raised more than $250,000.

James Courter of Idt Corp., who has raised more than $200,000.

Alfonse D'Amato of Park Strategies, who has raised more than $250,000.

Thomas Fiorentino of Fiorentino & Hewett, more than $200,000.

David Girard-diCarlo of BlankRome, more than a quarter of a million dollars.

Gaylord Hughey, a lobbyist at large (Wasn't there another 'lobbyist at large' who visited the White House a lot?), more than $150,000.

Thomas Loeffler of Loeffler Group, more than $250,000.

That's just a few of Bush's campaign contributors that are contributing to John McCain and Sarah Palin's sprint for the White House lawn. If McCain is such a maverick, why would he need Bush's people to raise money? For that matter, why would the President's speech writers have to write Sarah Palin's speech for the convention? Because they're all one and the same group of people, wallowing through the same mud, the same blood of Americans, and the same steal all you can and get out group of corporate lobbyists.

Medicare patients who are thinking of voting for McCain may well wish to read over his plan to rewrite the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit. On April 15th of this year, McCain said that he believes most people should be required to pay for their own medicine. In a glorious showing of his out of touch with reality mentality, he included 'most Americans' in with Bill Gates and Warren Buffet. On the same day, McCain declared that he would begin to cut funding for and even eliminate many social safety net programs in order to jump start the economy by giving even larger tax cuts to corporations. Compared to the Bush Doctrine, wherein the President froze or decreased spending for domestic programs in order to facilitate his corporate tax cuts, one would have to draw the conclusion that John is really McSame.

George Bush, instead of denouncing the massive amounts of wealth being garnered by CEO's, said that CEO pay should be commensurate with the success of the corporation. That would be right in line of McSame's statement in April that Americans were fed up with watching CEO's make exorbitant salaries and perks, and that their pay should be based on performance. Not that there ought to be some sort of equality in pay, but just more of Bush's talking points.

It's 3 A.M. and a hurricane destroys a major American city, stranding thousands and thousands, bodies floating down streets, and millions of lives devastated. What does a President do? Well, if your name is Bush, you have birthday cake on the tarmac of an airport with your good friend John McCain. If your name is John McCain, you vote along neo-fascist lines and deny Medicaid coverage to the survivors of Katrina. You vote against investigating fraud and abuse in the aftermath. You vote to deny an extension of unemployment benefits to the disaster victims. You vote against forming a commission to try to discover what went wrong with the government's response, because you know damned well the commission is going to find that your Party was responsible for FEMA being under the control of a horse trader, and the umbrella organization known as Homeland Insecurity was the reason that FEMA couldn't respond quickly enough. And oh, yeah, you voted FOR all of that stuff. And unlike the photo op rush to be on the scene before the latest non disaster, you were actually campaigning in Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina before someone in your campaign told you it might make a good photo op to appear in New Orleans. Long after everyone else had come and gone. Now THAT'S leadership we can count on!

But even better yet, in one of the most telling statements of McSame's politicking, he declared in January of 2008 that FEMA itself should be handed over to Wal-Mart and Fed-Ex. Privatized in order to make it more efficient. Or in other words, so they could rip off the tax payers just like the Oil Companies that are paying huge sums of money to elect McSame, or the Insurance Industry that has reaped windfall profits by ensuring that people on Medicaid can't go to their doctors or receive medications due to the program being privatized by Bush and the Republicans. is that called 'progress' or something?

And while Bush and Cheney were lying straight into the faces of every American and every ally and person the world over about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, John 'the surge' McSame said "Saddam Hussein continues to acquire, amass, and improve on his arsenal of weapons of mass destruction. He continues to attempt to acquire a nuclear weapon. These are all well-known facts." Oh? What 'intelligence' did John McCain get? Was it the same 'memos' that Cheney was handing out? Or was he just spouting the party line? And if McSame believed so much in this war for oil, then why did he consistently vote against our troops every single chance that he had? he voted against funding for armor for vehicles, body armor for the troops, health care for the returning wounded, and even voted against H.R. 1591, a bill to provide funding to continue the war in Iraq, because it contained $1 billion in aid for the returning wounded. So why does John McCain hate our troops?

These are just a few of the hypocritical stances of John McSame and his religious adviser, er, Vice presidential pick. McCain will say literally anything to any group in order to get elected. Straight talk? Give that a rest. No one believes that crap any more. What America believes now are the words of our glorious leader that still squats in an office he was never elected to "There's an old saying in Tennessee--I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee--that says, fool me once, shame on--shame on you. Fool me--you can't get fooled again." You're damned right.......