Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Foxnews already has called South Carolina, West Virgina, and Kentucky for McCain and Vermont for Obama. Calling states before 8pm is annoying to me. Its early! Why give anyone any "false" perceptions? Obama is right now leading the Popular vote but McCain is leading the electoral vote by a significant margin? Please!
Now CNN and Foxnews are calling more states for Obama when there are less than 20 Percent of the results in! Yes some states are forgone conclussions, but still let me digest the evening. I will do my best to keep up with NJ local races when I know as well.
Interesting contrast in how CNN and Foxnews are covering the election. CNN was focusing heavily on demographics and their reporters at different locations. Foxnews is going to their plethora of analysts and playing with their touch screens to compare 2004 to 2008. NBC and ABC is doing similar to what Foxnews is doing. CBS seems to want to make calls quickly like Fox and CNN, which can be annoying because I like to see numbers and atleast 50 percent of votes are known.
The Democrats have gained new Senate seats in North Carolina, New Mexico, and New Hampshire. While CNN and CBS are projecting Pennsylvania for Obama, ABC and Foxnews are cautiously saying it might go Obama's way. This is a huge victory for Obama. McCain was expected to put up a strong fight for that state, but it looks like the cities in Pennsylvania carried Obama for now.
A major concern in this election is if the Presidency and Congress are all under control by one party. As we saw during the Clinton Administration, a Democratic President and Republican Congress got a great deal done. But when both branches of government are controlled by the same party, little good gets done (2002-2006: Republican; 1992-1994: Democrats; 1976-1980: Democrats; etc.)
*UPDATE* 9:20pmOhio might be going to Obama? Interesting since there was 200,000 "invalid voting ballots in that state...
This is annoying how early these networks are calling these states so early. Under 20 percent is in for Missouri, but called for McCain; under 15 percent in Wisconson but called for Obama, under 20 percent in of Wyoming called for Obama; under 20 percent in Arkansas called for McCain; and only 25 percent in Ohio for Obama! This is disgusting! It doesnt matter who wins, this is annoying and they should always wait for atleast 40 or 50 percent.
Another thought: if so many youth came out for Obama, what does this say about the next generation? McCain may have voted with Bush "90 percent of the time", but Bush only vetoed a couple bills in 8 yrs! He had 4 years with Democrats in control of Congress and 4 years with Republicans in control of Congress. So we know that the issues McCain differed with Bush (excessive spending, government waste, special tax cuts for the rich, and reform messures) makes McCain more of a moderate than a Conservative overall. So if the youth came out thinking McCain and Bush are one and the same, then there is a lot of false pretense going down in America.
Even though the popular vote between Obama and McCain is close, Obama has a strong lead in the Electoral Vote. Also, there have been several gains for the Democrats in the Congressional seats. If Obama does pull this off, it should not be too suprising since it is rare to have one party stay in the Presidency for more than 8 years. Remember 2000 (Democrat to Republican), 1976 (Republican to Democrat), 1968 (Democrat to Republican), 1960 (Republican to Democrat), and 1920 (Democrat to Republican).
I have a questioning thought for everyone: Remember how in 2000 Democrats said Gore should have won because he won the popular vote? How many Republicans now will say the Electoral College is "dated" and "inaccurate" because McCain kept it close to Obama in the Popular Vote but not the Electoral Vote?
It is official, Senator Barack Obama has been elected President of the United States. Aside from being the first African-American President elected in USA history, Obama is the first Senator elected President since 1960 (John Kennedy) and the youngest also since 1960 elected (Kennedy - 43; Obama - 47). America has choosen its next President, now we must deal with the consequences. And there are always consequences with every new President.
History predicted that a Democrat would be elected this year because of Bush's low approval ratings and the fact that Americans like some change every 8-12 years for the last 100 years. Sadly, this was an election where people saw the letter next to the candidates name instead of looking at the person who was running. It shows in all the exit polls and how different counties broke down in key states such as Florida, Ohio, Virgina, New Mexico, and Iowa. We live in a nation that is so divided on the lines of politics.
My initial reaction as a History major and Political observer for 16 years is very different than many may think. This is what America wanted and deserves. I say this because during the Primaries for both parties, I saw how the "front runners" were not always the best candidates. The most qualified man on the Democrat side (Bill Richardson) didnt even get half a look. The new Vice President was ignored as well by the democratic electorate (Joe Biden). It turned out to be a fight between different factions in the Democratic Party: Clinton Democrats Vs. MoveOn.org Democrats. On the Republican side, the frontrunners comprised of a Veteran and Bi-Partisan Senator (John McCain), a flip-floping Governor (Mitt Romney), a Republican Populist (Mike Huckabee), and a liberal Republican Mayor (Rudy Giuliani). While two men were judged excessively for their religon (Romney and Huckabee), McCain stole the moderate base of the Republican Party from Giuliani. Republicans tried to pick a candidate who could gain Democrat voters to switch teams, but it backfired because McCain forgot to appeal to those voters and focused strongly on getting the Conservatives behind him.
As we can tell by the election results, the "Conservative Base" did not come out in support of McCain like they did for Bush in 2004 and 2000, which they also did for 1980, 1984, and 1988 for Reagan and Bush Senior. Barack Obama used McCain's alliances with Bush (Illegal Immigration, tax Cuts, Iraq, Health care) against him. Instead of McCain distancing himself away from Bush, he kept saying he has a record of "Reform".
Obama initially was a "Dark Horse" candidate but showed himself as a rallying cry candidate. Yet Americans know so little about him. We have not had such a virtual unknown candidate elected President since Jimmy Carter in 1976. At last check, Obama only beat McCain by 3 million votes. That is not overwhelming margin. Bush beat Kerry by 4 million. Obama capitalized on the divided nature of American politics just like Bill Clinton did in 1992. But unlike Clinton, Obama has gotten a true majority vote (atleast 50 percent of voters) which shows that the visseral dislike of George W. Bush and his Republican collegues is deep because they lied. Republicans ignored what made Ronald Reagan great: Fiscal Conservatism.
These Republicans spent like crazy, made special spending deals with Democrats, and capitulated too much. In a simple terms, Bush and his Republicans tried to get away with being Fiscal Moderates and lost their own game. Democrats just let the Republicans destroy themselves by encouraging them ignoring their Political Origins. Why should we be suprised by a strongly left Democrat being elected President when he appealed to the emotions of a betrayed electorate?
Saturday, October 25, 2008
The Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) is a group that was created as the product of movements of the 1960's concerning Economic Justice and aiding the poor and those on Welfare. Part of their ideology is that they want to focus on helping the poor and "push" them up the classes ladder while bring down the "rich" so there is less of a gap between the rich and poor.
What makes ACORN a problem is that their ideology is anti-American and anti-Constitution in nature. They use the victimization mentality to motive the poor to support political candidates with socialistic agendas. These agendas include economic justice (which means punishing the rich and using that money to support the poor while depending on the middle class to absorb the poor and rich into their part of society and become the supporters of the economy), have the government control the economy and other facets of life, and to institute a more radical form of Affirmative Action. While to some these ideas sound good or reasonable, they go against all the ideals this nation was founded upon. ACORN likes how, for example, Hugo Chavez runs Venezuala. Venezuala economy is a disaster and the great "money maker", oil, is under such strict control by the government, they are having trouble making prospective profits!
Also, ACORN on their website denies they have ever had legal trouble concerning voter registration. But the truth is that they have had voter fraud issues in Missouri, Michigan, Seattle, and let us not forget their legal troubles in Florida, New Mexico, and Ohio.
Senator Barack Obama has said he has no affiliation with ACORN aside from representing them in a legal case. But here is a detailed article on Obama's history with ACORN which included him being involved in their voter registration efforts. Below is a video of Senator Barack Obama in December 2007 at an ACORN rally/forum and see Senator Obama speak for himself to ACORN about his position on ACORN (fast forward to the 1:50 mark of the video):
So now that we know Senator Obama DID work with ACORN and that he wants ACORN INVOLVED in his "Change" for America, now watch these two videos from an ACORN conference from this summer:
So is this what we want? Forget the whole anti-Bush rhetoric or the fact that one presidential candidate is a Democrat and the other is a Republican. Do you want a man whose ideology is in-step with people who want to change this country from what it was created to be? Obama and those who are involved with ACORN want to change this nation into a country where the government controls your life and the poor are babysat by the government, never encouraged to make their lives better. Obama talks about the American Dream, yet Social and Economic Justice stifle such dreams. He doesnt want to fix what President Bush has done, he wants to change this nation in something we wont recognize. Is that what you want?
Epilogue: Next video is the best media story about Obama and ACORN, courtesy of CNN's Lou Dobbs:
Friday, October 17, 2008
I don't want to dwell on this issue as some in the media have done, but for those out there wanting a quick overview of the issue, these reports are accurate and solid. I played this first video on my radio show last Saturday. Giving the media deserved credit when credit is due; this first video is a report on CNN's Anderson Cooper 360:
Now here is a video of Independent Political Analyst Michael Barone being interviewed on Foxnews by Greta van Susteren about why this is important:
The previous two videos, hosted by liberal members of the media, give the best perspective on this issue.
Now lets get back to debating the issues....
Sunday, July 13, 2008
I found this on The Heritage Foundation Blog site and felt it is worth republishing here. This summarizes what is really going on with ANWR and Oil Drilling and it's all true! Take time to see this and open your mind:
First, do you know what ANWR is?
ANWR = Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
Now, a comparison:
And some perspective:
Note where the proposed development area is (in the ‘ANWR Coastal Plain’):
This is what the Democrats, liberals and ‘greens’ show you when they talk about ANWR. And they are right, these are photographs of ANWR:
Isn’t ANWR beautiful? Why should we drill here (and destroy) this beautiful place?
Well, that’s not exactly the truth.
Do you remember the map?
The map showed that the proposed drilling area is in the ANWR Coastal Plain.
Do those photographs look like a coastal plain to you?
What’s going on here?
The answer is simple.
That is NOT where they are wanting to drill!
This is what the proposed exploration area ACTUALLY looks like in the winter:
And this is what it ACTUALLY looks like in the summer:
Here are a couple screen shots from Google Earth:
As you can see, the area where they are talking about drilling is a barren wasteland.
Oh, and they say that they are concerned about the effect on the local wildlife.
Here is a photo (shot during the summer) of the ‘depleted wildlife’ situation created by drilling around Prudhoe Bay. Don’t you think that the Caribou really hate that drilling?
Here’s that same spot during the winter:
Hey, this bear seems to really hate the pipeline near Prudhoe Bay, which accounts for 17% of U.S. domestic oil production.
Thursday, July 3, 2008
Brooke Bennett was found dead yesterday about a mile from her uncle's residence. Her uncle has been arrested for kidnapping her to initiate her into a child sex ring. Brooke's stepfather has also been arrest for destroying evidence that could have helped police in finding Brooke's whereabouts.
This situation angers and disgusts me! Two men who are entrusted to take care of and protect a child, a stepfather and uncle, facilitated and aided in putting Brooke Bennett in danger, leading to her eventual death. This is a sign of the evil that society has allowed to occur.
Yes, I blame society. We live in an America where we have the "War on Drugs" and the "War on Terror", while we obsess over the lives and activities of celebrities and we worry about whether the New England Patriots have "spied" on teams over the years and if they cheated more than a "few" times. But yet, there is a pandemic of tragedies involving the sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, and deaths of our youth.
In today's world there is an attitude toward men saying "Boys will be Boys". This mentality removes any legitimate expectation of men to be responsible and productive citizens in society. People have tried to make men into insignificant "sperm donors" who are not good for anything.
So, since the expectations for men are so low, what happens? Men and boys fall into becoming self-absorbed, depraved individuals. While not all men become pedophiles or have pedophilic tendencies, the slippery slope is there. There are more deceitful and predatory males than "good guys". I say this as a male. The fact that MANY men have turned into using, self-absorbed, sex obsessed, irresponsible, lazy pigs is generated by the low expectations laid upon them by other men AND from women. When women do not hold men responsible to be REAL men, they become mentally lazy and deviant.
The majority of males have turned into wimps or predators. It is sad and is an evil that is being ignored by many people, especially those in positions of power, such as judges, lawyers, and politicians. The excessive rise of the numbers of pedophiles and child/female predators in today's society is utterly repulsive. People seem to live in a world of ignorance, thinking things such as "That will never happen to me" and "Deep down, everyone is a good person".
Everyone needs to wake up. We live in a depraved, evil world were things such as what happened to Brooke Bennett happen right under people's noses. What has been mentioned in numerous news reports on TV is that Brooke's uncle is a convicted child sex offender who "graduated" from a pedophile rehabilitation program. Rehabilitation for pedophiles? Pedophiles and those who prey upon children and women are NOT like alcoholics and drug junkies! This is not some addiction, this is a mental disorder! These people are messed up in the head. This is not normal. These are people who are disturbed, abnormal individuals.
Numerous psychologists say that pedophilia is a mental disorder. Rapists have a recidivism rate of 94 percent and child molesters have a recidivism rate of 90 percent. Compare that to murders (including manslaughter) which have a recidivism rate of 62 percent. That’s a major difference, 30 percentage points, between those two types of criminals! Yet, people want to "rehabilitate" these people?
This topic is also personal to me. I have known and been friends with numerous women who have been the victims of molestation and rape. Just in this last week, a friend of mine who is a minor had two different men in different vehicles attempt to pick her up while she was waiting for a ride home. One of these men even said to her that her mom has "sent him" to pick her up. Once she threatened to call the police, the one man drove away and the other drove away once her ride home showed up. I personally have seen pedophiles stalking children and women in stores and on local boardwalks. These men have similar profiles: they don’t like to look people in the eye, they like to be in areas where children may be, they look down a lot, and they usually walk with erratic speeds (example: slow-fast-slow).
I am tired of hearing about how these men are "people too" and how they have "rights". Let’s get something straight. Men have responsibilities. Men are creatures designed to protect and defend children and women, not to take advantage and prey upon them. We have numerous young men going to jail for numerous years in excess for drug possession charges in comparison to those who are convicted of child molestation crimes! You explain to me how some kid who was caught with a bag of crack in his pocket is more of a danger to society than a guy who fondles a 5-year old child? Why does the kid who had the crack on him get a jail sentence of 5 years and the child molester gets out after 2 years for good behavior?
We do not need a "War on Drugs". Drug addicts need rehabilitation and help. We need a War on Predators, all kinds! These sick, evil intentioned men are dangerous. Rape and molestation destroys lives and scars people for life! We as a society need to start caring more about the rights and safety of our women, children, and youth more than we are about ourselves! The moral standing of a nation defines its future.
Stop thinking about how it can't happen to you or anyone you know. Take a minute to think about it this way: What if Brooke Bennett was YOUR daughter, YOUR friend, YOUR girlfriend/future girlfriend/future wife, YOUR niece or grand-daughter...? Everyone needs to get out of this mindset that it can't happen to you or someone you know. Everyone needs to stop thinking weird, disturbing, or bad people are "good" at heart. Women need to STOP excusing the bad actions of men. According to studies, the majority of cases of abuse, rape, and molestation are never reported. If the guy is a jerk or mean or abusive or a user or a deviant, get away from him! Surround yourself with friends (male and female) you can trust and who will give you sound advice. Men, I challenge you to grow up and start being REAL men, not wimpy, self-absorbed, horny freaks! Take responsibility; treat others and yourselves with respect. Women also need to stop being so naive about how many dangerous and predatory men are out there. I am a male and I know these pigs when I see them.
Remember ladies and gentleman, "All that is necessary for evil to succeed is for good men to do nothing".
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Many people have either read or heard the news about the US Supreme Courts 5-4 ruling in the habeas corpus case for enemy combatants of the USA (BOUMEDIENE et al. v. BUSH) and the easing of restrictions for immigrants to gain citizenship in USA case (Dada v. Mukasey). Both cases had the nine US Supreme Court Justices split along the exact same lines of majority and dissent in the case.
In both cases, the majority included Justices Anthony Kennedy, Stephen Breyer, David Souter, John Paul Stevens, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg; the dissenters included Chief Justice John Roberts, Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito.
Many in the media are painting these cases as divided along ideological lines. The Associated Press has referred to Justices Breyer, Souter, Stevens, and Ginsburg as "liberal", while calling Justices Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, and Alito as "conservative". The problem with such "labeling" is that such terms put these justices in a box and narrow how people look at them. The reality, despite the spin of the media on TV, Radio, and Online, is that these cases are not divided along "Conservative" versus "Liberal" battle lines. There is a much more subtle, yet dangerous issue that lies behind how these Justices took sides in these two cases. That issue is the interpretation of the law and the Constitution.
To give a little background, the job of a US Supreme Court Justice is to review and decided cases brought before him or her without ideological bias and to use the US Constitution as the basis for their decisions. But the reality is that US Supreme Court Justices have been employing agenda, ideology, and prejudice in their judgments for over 208 years! Whether the case be Marbury v. Madison (1803), Dred Scott v. Sandford (1856), Everson v. Board of Education (1947), Berman v. Parker (1954) or McConnell v. Federal Election Commission (2003), the US Supreme Court has a history of it's Justices invoking their own bias and ideology into the debate and to help formulate their decisions.
Some may say that such bias and ideological reasoning falls along political lines. They claim political agendas are what rules the day with the justices' decisions. This is not true though. It is a legal division that creates world views and defines how these Justices interpret everything. It is the legal debate between the interpretation of the Constitution by the "Letter of the Law" and the "Spirit of the Law".
The "Letter of the Law" refers to a "strict" interpretation of the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights. We can gather an example of a "strict" interpretation by looking at the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances. (http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/constitution.billofrights.html)
A "strict" interpretation of this amendment would take away from the wording that the US Congress can never pass a law or resolution that respects, restricts, or regulates the activities or beliefs of a religion. Also, Congress cannot prevent any religion's splitting into denominations or sects and Congress cannot impose the restrictions upon a religious entity that it may against a business per say.
On the other hand, the "Spirit of the Law" refers to the "reasonable" interpretation of the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights. A "reasonable" interpretation of this same amendment would take away from the wording that the phrase "Congress" is not just in reference to the US Congress (US House of Representatives and US Senate) but to all three branches of the US Government. With that understanding, the US Government cannot respect, disrespect, restrict, hold expantion, prevent or promote the exercise of any religion. Also, they cannot tell any religion, not matter how big or small, what, how, and why believe or not believe.
While the above examples are limited in scope, they give you an idea of what we are dealing with when these US Supreme Court Justices make their decisions. The argument of "Spirit" versus "Letter" has been going on since this nation began. Even people at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia were concerned about how things were worded because they didn’t want people to "misinterpret" the intentions and purposes of what was being written. Although the Bill of Rights seems to get the most public scrutiny, many people do not understand that the Bill of Rights was meant to be a counter balance to the articles in the US Constitution and limit the powers of the Federal Government.
Now with some background and understanding about the elements of history and law that are associated with the US Supreme Court, we can see how the debate between the "Spirit" versus "Letter" of the Law is key in both of these decisions. In the case, Boumediene v. Bush, the majority five justices give the right given to US citizens of habeas corpus. This is a Latin term meaning "you should have the body". In British Common Law and US Judicial Law, the term refers to having the individual or group of people who being charged with a crime or crimes brought before the court to face their charges and accusers. This is something that leads usually to the accused party to face a trial in front of a judge in some capacity. The reason why this "right" was being withheld from those who have been labeled "enemy combatants" by the US government is because historically anyone who attacks, declares war with, engages, attempts to harm the USA or US troops are considered "hostile enemies". Usually in official acts of war, as declared by a declaration of Congress (examples: War of 1812, Mexican-American War, Spanish-American War, World Wars 1&2), it is easily defined who an "enemy combatant" may be, usually someone from a country that the US declared war on. But in "wars" in which Congress never made any official declaration of war (Korean War, Vietnam War), it was understood that the enemy was anyone who overtly attacked US troops or who were on the side of the Communists.
But in the military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq (Also, known as the "War" in Afghanistan and Iraq), we were not battling a specific people or nation, but segments of people and militants within those countries. Many of the "enemy combatants" held in Guantanamo Bay are there for the gathering of intelligence and because if released, they would go back to the "battlefields" and conduct operations against the USA and US troops. The idea of the "Bush Doctrine" is that America is at War with terrorists and radical entities that hate America and want to destroy the USA and kill Americans. So, like in team sports, in order to prevent defeat, you take offense against the enemy to ensure security and eventual victory.
The five justices in the majority in this case though (Kennedy, Breyer, Souter, Stevens, Ginsburg) looked at Authorization for Use of Military Force of 2001 (also known as "AUMF" of 2001) which was passed after the events on 9/11, giving the President of the US the power to conduct any military activities and actions necessary to find, capture, and punish those responsible for 9/11 and to prevent any further attacks on the USA and its interests. The five justices took an approach that the "Spirit" of "AUMF" is that we must "punish" those who were involved in the "acts of treacherous violence were committed against the United States and its citizens" (http://news.findlaw.com/hdocs/docs/terrorism/sjres23.enr.html)
According to these justices, what the Bush Administration has deemed "enemy combatants" are being held in Guantanamo Bay as "criminals". Now, since criminals such as those in Guantanamo Bay are usually deemed "war criminals", they are to face a tribunal or "war court". The court already order this to be done in the case of Hamdan v. Rumsfeld (2006). But the claim in this recent case was that since Guantanamo Bay is not on foreign land but on US "ground" in Cuba, those prisoners should stand trial in federal US courts for their "crimes".
Part of the Justices argument lays with the understanding that Congress never "declared war" against Al Qaeda, Osama Bin Laden, the Taliban, or such terrorists, but that they only gave President Bush military power to protect the US from further attacks and to track down the "criminals". They claim that the AUMF of 2001 resolution does not give power to the President to deem who is and who is not a war criminal or enemy combatant and that Congress does not have the right under the Constitution to hand over any of its Article 1, Section 8 powers under the US Constitution to the President.
The Justices who dissented (disagreed) with the majority (Scalia, Roberts, Thomas, Alito) took a "letter" of the law interpretation to the case. These Justices understood that AUMF of 2001 fell under Article 1, Section 8, Clause 11 which states Congress has the power to:
To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water
Technically, according to the "letter" of the law, the AUMF of 2001 resolution can be seen as a "Letter of Marque", which is traditionally known to be similar to "warrant". Because of the balance of powers, Congress has the power to declare war and regulate and maintain the military. Since the President of the USA is the "Commander-in-Chief" of the military, it is Congress' job to tell the "head" of the military what to do. Part of the minority justices' dissent is based upon the idea that since Congress has the power to tell the President to conduct "all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons" (http://news.findlaw.com/hdocs/docs/terrorism/sjres23.enr.html). So, if the president deems these people "war criminals" or "enemy combatants" being held in Guantanamo Bay and since these people are not citizens or "constructive persons in society", these do not get to have the same rights and privileges as those who are on US soil and get to be protected by the US Constitution and Bill of Rights. It is the job of the US Congress, not the US Supreme Court, to redefine who is or isn't a "war criminal" or "enemy combatant". (US Constitution Article 1, Section 8, Clauses 9,10,12,14,15,16,17,18)
In summary, the "Spirit" versus "Letter" of the Law divide has brought such a decision down from the Justices on the US Supreme Court. Interesting, the same split of Justices occurred in the Dada v. Mukasey case, in which the court made allowances for those immigrants who overstay their visa to apply to stay in the US and not be deported. In the "Spirit" of the law, Justices Kennedy, Breyer, Souter, Ginsberg, and Stevens ruled that if the individual was initially here legally and is making an "attempt" to remain here legally, those persons should be helped in their desire to be here legally and/or become US Citizens. The "Letter" of the Law dissenters Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, and Alito stated that this is an immigration law issue, that laws and regulations already make this situation easily avoidable since it is specifically dependent upon the immigrant to within the timetable to make such appeals and efforts to stay in the US and/or become a citizen. They went as far to say this issue is "beyond" the realm of the US Supreme Court's domain.
This is not an issue of Conservatives versus Liberals. That is a lie from the media. The media's creation of these "battle lines" is debunked in other cases. For example, in the case Hustler Magazine v. Fallwell (1988) was an 8-0 decision in favor of the porno organization over the Christian minister. "Conservatives" William Rehnquist and Antonin Scalia were in the majority with "Liberals" William Brennan and John Paul Stevens. In the case Van Orden v. Perry (2005) in which the court upheld that the Ten Commandments' monument that was located outside of a government building should stay. In the majority in that decision were so called "Conservatives" Scalia, Thomas, and Rehnquist, along with "Liberals" Kennedy and Breyer. Finally, in the recent case United States v. Williams (2008), the court upheld the illegality of the pandering, solicitation, and creation of Child Pornography. "Liberal" justices such as Breyer, Stevens, and Kennedy joined "Conservative" justices Scalia, Roberts, and Thomas in the 7-2 majority.
There is a war of ideology in the chambers of the US Supreme Court. Unlike a similar one that occurs between Conservatives and Liberals, this is a war over how to interpret and apply the law and the US Constitution. The "Spirit" versus "Letter" is a debate that may evolve slightly from age to age, it wont be resolved anytime soon. The ideological war of Conservatism versus Liberalism is predicated upon different world views and is interwoven into our society and media. Do not let the media trick you into thinking the world is a Republican versus Democrat and/or Conservative versus Liberal war.
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Pat Buchanan has come out with a new book titled "Churchill, Hitler and the Unnecessary War: How Britain Lost Its Empire and the West Lost the World is about how Churchill". Aside from the insidious title, Buchanan was on CNN recently and showed his true colors on the topic in the interview, especially within the last minute and a half:
Here is the transcript of Buchanan's ignorance:
BLITZER: Hitler had plans of exterminating the Jews in the '30s, a lot earlier.
BUCHANAN: Wolf, I have not seen any plans of extermination. Hitler went genocidal after the invasion of Russia was broken down in Russia, after he declared war on the United States, and he was looking defeat in the face. It was at that point that the Wannsee Conference was held, Wolf. as you know, that was in January of 1942.
BLITZER: What about all the anti-Semitic laws? Kristalnacht? All those Jews who were rounded up in Germany starting in the 1930s.
BUCHANAN: Look, there's no doubt Hitler was anti-Semitic from the time even before he wrote Mein Kampf. What we're talking about, when you mention the Holocaust, for Heaven's sakes, is genocide. We're not talking about anti-Semitism, there was anti-Semitism in Poland for those years. The Nuremberg Laws were in 1935, they were dreadful. As a consequence half the Jews had left Germany before Kristalnacht, which was in November 1938. Another half fled after that. They were outside Germany when the curtain fell. What Hitler did was a monstrous crime, Wolf. But it was a war crime. Had there been no war there would have been no Holocaust in my judgment.
Buchanan, who claims in the interview he has studied Hitler a great deal, seems to either be purposefully ignoring what History says happened, or he is attempting to re-write history. Hitler DID have plans for the extermination of the Jewish people. In Mein Kampf and other writings of Hitler and those close to him discuss how people such as Jews and Blacks need to be eliminated or subjugated. Hitler's claims about the "superiority" of the Aryan race and his plans were subtle, yet known. It was because of Hitler and his comrades’ speeches and writings that Winston Churchill pushed for war with Germany, to "...save Europe and the Jewish people from a mad man...”
This farce that many Jews "escaped" before the events of Kristalnacht and "another half", as Pat puts it, escaped after that is not part of the historical record. Hitler's Third Reich wouldn't let many of these Jews leave. And where could they go? The US limited the number of legal immigrants allowed into the country during the 1930's. These Jews were not welcome in the surrounding nations of Poland, Italy, and Austria. Stalin's Soviet Union looked down upon having outcasts from other countries coming into his (Stalin's) empire. Anti-Semitism was rampant also in the Middle East and the home of modern day Israel. While some Jews took refuge in Belgium and France, their "safety" was quickly turned into terror when Nazi forces invaded those nations and began rounding up anyone Jewish and anyone who was "allied" with the Jews.
Also, this fable that Hitler "went genocidal after the invasion of Russia was broken down in Russia" suggests that Hitler only committed genocide against the Jewish people because he went "nuts". Buchanan refers to the Wannsee Conference as the point when it was "decided" the implement "The Final Solution". Yet, if we look at the timeline of events, Dachau was created in 1933 and Auschwitz was transformed into a concentration camp in southern Poland in 1939. While the specific numbers are subject to question, we know a minimum of 1 million Jews were killed before the Wannsee Conference in 1942. Also, in 1941 Hitler met with the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Mohammad Amin al-Husayni to discuss the obliteration of Jewish hegemony in Europe and the extension of the Nazi "anti-Jewish program" to the Arab world. Hitler told Al-Husayni:
Germany stood for uncompromising war against the Jews. That naturally included active opposition to the Jewish national home in Palestine....Germany would furnish positive and practical aid to the Arabs involved in the same struggle....Germany's objective [is]...solely the destruction of the Jewish element residing in the Arab sphere...
That is just one example that Hitler didn't walk into the Wannsee Conference in January of 1942 and during the conference say "Hey, let’s institute the Final Solution!" Historians have discovered other writings by Hitler in which he discusses his plans of exterminating the Jews and working to eliminate other lesser peoples. Hitler was a staunch believer in Social Darwinism and Eugenics, which was a complete vindication and reinforcement for the anti-Semitic and racist beliefs of Hitler.
What Buchanan doesn't mention is that he himself has an anti-Semitic history and has based many of his positions and beliefs around that dark cloud that hovers over his political career. Buchanan's desire to rewrite history to reflect his way of thinking is disgusting and conservatives should stop trying to find an ally in Buchanan for the same reason they distance themselves from the likes of Michael Savage: damaged goods. Buchanan is dangerous in that he is presented as a "Conservative commentator", as if he is someone whose opinion is worth while. But anyone, no matter what the label, who distorts truth and rewrites history should not be trusted and should be discarded. The fact that Buchanan is unapologetic about his positions in this book tells me that he is no better then the likes of any other person who twists the truth to benefit their prejudicial beliefs.
Conservatives like Buchanan are dangerous because they are trying to implant this spin into the mainstream and them, along with the isolationists, anarchists, and racists, are trying hard to gain ground. Those who care about the truth need to stand in their way and stop letting those around them fall prey to these sorts of lies. The idea that Hitler "wasn't so bad" starts us down a dangerous road that blurs the difference between good and evil, right and wrong.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
I happened to have on TV in the background Fox News' "O'Reilly Factor" last night, and saw this segment in which Dick Morris was the guest on the show. Filling in for Bill O'Reilly for the last few days has been radio talk show host Laura Ingraham. Take some time to watch this segment where Laura gets crass with Morris, who is suppose to be the "expert guest" on the show:
I must preface what I say with the fact that I do not care for Laura Ingraham. But this proves my point about her rudeness and elitist attitude. At about 3:55 in the clip, here is where Laura shows her true colors:
Ingraham: She hasn't been making comments like we need to, uh, make sure we don't offend our allies overseas and how we set our thermostat, what we put in our mouth for food and what we drive for SUV's, so I think the statement over the weekend in Oregon by Barack Obama went right to his view of what true change is which is a change of America's sovereignty, she's never said anything like that Dick.
Morris: I'm just pointing out the facts that on three crucial issues, crime, illegal immigration, and education he clearly is to the right of her...
Ingraham: So then why does MoveOn.org...
(Morris tries to talk while she talks over him)
Ingraham:...why does MoveOn.org not like Hillary?
Morris: Laura let me finish! Ok? You want me on the show, let me finish.
Laura: Alright, don't...
Morris: On other issues like...
Laura: Chill out...
This was the second or third time Laura has ran over what Morris said, but this time he spoke up for himself. Laura thinks she knows better than Morris, yet every point where she is wrong about something, Morris shows he knows more and knows better. She got the whole Super Delegate deal wrong, she thinks Obama is totally more liberal than Hillary, and she goes into the interview trying to pontificate a point and trying to use Dick Morris to make her point.
I have listened to Ingraham's radio show three times. All three times she came across as rude, pompous, and impetuous! Whether complaining about men's leg hair or calling Democrats stupid or telling a caller how much smarter she is than them, she exudes no class. Radio show hosts like Ingraham, Hannity, and Levin call names and get rude with people, like that is going to convince anyone to their side of an issue.
The fact is that Dick Morris was correct with his information and Laura was wrong and she thinks she knows all. I am unsure about Morris' last comment about how the voting results are along racial lines, but Morris understands something that many of these conservative talking heads like Ingraham and Hannity seem to forget: Obama may be liberal, but Hillary is dangerous. Yes, Obama has a tendency to be more vocal about his views, because he is less of a political practitioner than the slick Clintons. Hillary is very smart. She usually knows what to say, what not to say, and how not to say things. Obama is actually, as Morris describes, more of a Populous Candidate while Hillary will do whatever it takes to win and have power. If you want to know where she stands on issues, she has almost 8 years worth of Senate votes on her record we can reference. On Education, Health Care, Illegal Immigration, Israeli Sovereignty, Russia-USA relations, and a few other issues, she is to THE LEFT of Barack Obama. Yes, on Iraq and Taxes Obama is more left. But guess what? The Republican nominee John McCain is more left than Obama and Hillary on Global Warming and more to the left of Obama on Education, Israeli Sovereignty, and Russian-US relations.
So we can nit pick all day. I am unsure why Ingraham was picked to sub in for O'Reilly, but she acts like she knows better about the Clintons than a guy who worked with them off and on for almost 20 years! He knows Hillary personally and professionally. And if Laura is wrong about the Super Delegates and about how "liberal" Hillary "isn't", then she needs to stop preaching and start learning. Instead, she tells Morris to "chill out" and puts a smile on her face as to say "Ha-ha, I ruffled your feathers". Laura, this isn't High School where the Alpha Female is trying to one up the smart kid in class, this is National Television.
And all these Conservative radio talk show hosts who are so "afraid" of Obama getting the Democratic Nomination and who are bloviating so much about how Hillary Clinton is more of a "centrist" than Obama need to wake up. Whether Obama could become another Jimmy Carter type of President is not the problem. The real problem is that the Republican voters and Republican "powers that be" allowed John McCain to be the nominee. The real issue is that Conservatives are concerned that McCain does not have a chance against Obama. Whether he does or not is to be seen because the whole setting for the General Election has not been set yet. It's May, not September. And Laura, you wrote a best selling book called "Shut up, and Sing", being rude and elitist does not appeal to Moderates like me. In fact, your impetuousness is a major turn off to many people and Conservatives AND Liberals need to quit the pompousness and name calling and start talking about issues for a change.
Friday, May 9, 2008
Well, Arizona State University has decided to eliminate the Cheerleading squad. They did this as a response to photos appearing on the internet of 6 members of the cheer squad in their "bras and panties". According to rumors online, students at the school and those close to the situation claim that the university has been looking for a reason to cut the cheer squad. Some say it is for financial reasons, others say that their was some feud between the administration and the cheer squad over the years.
Whatever the real story is about why the cheerleading squad was cut, the fact is that the appearance is that the school cut the program as a reactionary move over photos of 6 of the 16 member squad. On the surface, it seems like a very brash move by the administration of a public university.
The fact that this was the thing that "pushed" the school over the "edge" is pathetic. Sure, the photos (which Foxnews went out of its way to show as much as possible during Shepherd Smith's two shows at 3pm and 7pm) can be considered "racy" in nature, but hypocrisy abounds in this situation.
Arizona State University (ASU) is known as one of the top "party schools" in America. For those out there who might equate extreme college partying with movies such as "Old School" and "Van Wilder", then Arizona State fits the bill. According to Rankings by Playboy magazine in 2002 and 2006 and Princeton Reviews' annual college rankings, ASU is a top notch party school, getting very high grades.
So the fact that a public university tries to use "racy" photos of some cheerleaders as an "excuse" to cut the program is similar to the Pastor of a church getting mad his parishioners brought their Bibles to church on Sunday! You are ok with the "party school" image, yet you have a problem with racy photos by your cheerleaders? That's hypocritical. Cheerleaders are viewed, whether it is justified or not is debatable, as "sex symbols". The stereotype is that cheerleaders are suppose to be "cute" and "sexy" and that many are "easy" and "ditzy". Many cheer squads at many colleges wear uniforms with short skirts and tops that reveal their midriff. Yet, a public university is going to cut a program that is a mainstay at colleges and universities across America? Especially as a reaction to racy photos of cheerleaders at a school which is known for, shall I say, amorals?
You can't have it both ways. Even tiny junior and community colleges have cheer squads. ASU is being hypocritical and ridiculous. The school is not being upfront and honest with the public about the situation. The should be. The taxpayers pay their salaries directly. As a public institution of learning, ASU should be held accountable for all their actions, good and bad. Adults are suppose to run a university, not hypocrites.
Tuesday, May 6, 2008
Here is the news report by WCBS 2 News:
So this is what US Congressman can do with our tax money. They can lease nice cars without spending a dime of their own paychecks. This is disgusting and disgraceful waste of taxpayer money. There are US Congressman leasing cars for 700 plus per month! I think everyone should demand this "loophole" be closed immediately or there be some type of money cap put on the use of such funds. Buick? Lexus? Cadillac? Why can't these people use their own money to lease or buy such cars?
Also, in the video above you see some of the Congressman getting out of the backseat of their cars. So with what money are they paying for their drivers? People wonder why the Federal Spending defecit is so high. Well, frivilous use of Federal money such as this adds up. Lets do some quick math:
-There are 435 United States Congressman
-The average payment per month for the leases in the above video come out to $605.20
-Now, lets assume that all US Congressman utilize this loophole (I am sure that there are those who do not, but this is a figuretive excercise), so if we multiply 435 Congressman by $605.20 equals a total goverment expenditure of $263,262.
-Then for the year, it would cost the US Government (according to these rough estimates) $3,159,144 a year to pay the leases for all US Congressman to have their own government subsidized cars
I have not taken the time to figure out how much gas and insurance costs as well, but those are also paid for by the US government.
Do you think our government is using our tax money wisely or foolishly? I say foolishly and it disgusts me. We should demand this loophole that allows this to be eliminated or regulated in some way. This is ridiculous!
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Ok, so I happen to head over to the Drudge Report to checkout what is "new" in the news. The creator of the Drudge Report, Matthew Drudge, is famous (some Clinton supporters might say "infamous" though)for "breaking" news and get stories before almost anyone else has gotten a wiff of the juicy details. But tonight I go to the website and the main headline says "DISNEY GIRL 'EMBARRASSED'". Then, directly bellow the headline, another headline that says "15-year-old actress who plays Hannah Montana for DISNEY poses seminude... Developing..."
Now the main headline story links to a Entertainment Tonight story which says that in an upcoming edition of Vanity Fair magazine that Celebrity of Disney Channel fame Miley Cyrus will apear "Semi-Topless" in a picture. Cyrus, who is the star of the popular TV show "Hannah Montana", has said in an interview:
"I took part in a photo shoot that was supposed to be 'artistic' and now, seeing the photographs and reading the story, I feel so embarrassed," she tells ET. "I never intended for any of this to happen and I apologize to my fans who I care so deeply about." (http://www.etonline.com/news/2008/04/61009/index.html)
In the ET article, they story describes the "semi-topless photo" as the following:
As seen on our show promo last week, they show Miley sitting in profile with just a blanket wrapped around her chest. (http://www.etonline.com/news/2008/04/61009/index.html)
In the second headline, which links to an ABC News story, goes into further detail about the "developing" and "breaking" news story.
First of all, if this is such "important" and "breaking" news to Mr. Drudge, then the Drudge Report is truly become a proliferation of gossip and news instead of pure news and politics. It sickens me that THIS passes for news! This reminds me of the 24 hour news coverage of Anna Nicole Smith's death. The fact that these supposedly "respected" news institutions report this People Magazine-esque gossip and tabloid material really makes me less and less interested in keeping up with news anymore. I do not want to hear and see the same stories two or three times an hour on the TV network news or two or three times on a news website. Its annoying and disgusting. Anna Nicole Smith died, ok its sad she died, just tell me how she died and what not if you want. But almost a million people die every day, she was never an important figure in world affairs or anything like that, so why are we harping about it? Same with Ms. Cyrus, she didnt commit an aggregious crime or engage in peace talks or anything really important, all she did was pose for a not tasteful photo of her with only a blanket covering her chest. That is not breaking news.
Secondly, why is a 15-year old celebrity who is supposedly "known" for having a wholesome, good girl image posing for a picture with only a blanket cover her chest? Why are we having to sex up a minor? I do not care who she is, she is only a mid-teens girl! I am seriously disapointed in her father, Billy Ray Cyrus, for letting this be done to his daughter. He is a male, he should know better then expose his daughter in such a sexual and suggestive way. While I am disapointed in Miley Cyrus too, she is a minor and her father allowed this to happen.
But we are all suppose to say "poor, poor Miley" because she now feels embarrassed? Well maybe you should have thought of that before you took the picture. The "artistic" excuse is lame, but what do you expect from a celebrity 15 year old but an excuse of some sort? Every teenager has come up with random excuses for doing things they shouldn't have done, and Miley Cyrus is no exception.
Either way, this is not news and all you sick, celebrity obsessed people know it! And if any "adult" males run to the magazine section or search online for photos of Miley Cyrus with a blanket of here chest, you are just a bunch of sick pervs!
Thursday, April 10, 2008
I just read an article which just reminded me of why government in its current state has a tendency to not help people, and at times hurt them. Many of these government programs are intended to "help" to "poor and needy" among us. The problem that occurs is that these programs tend to keep people "content" where they are at in life and doesn't try to help them break the chains of their circumstances or try to rehabilitate people.
An example of this is Atlantic City's Needle Exchange Program. As explained in an article by Jesse Kurtz in the Casino Connection, there is a place in Atlantic City, New Jersey called the Oasis Drop Center. The purpose of this government funded program is to allow IV drug addicts and other needle users to exchange their dirty needles in order to get clean needles so they are less likely to transmit to others or they contract any diseases or STD's themselves. Government officials say this program is meant to bring down the number of people who may contract HIV and AIDS.
Jesse Kurtz explains in the article:
In addition to needles, Oasis hands out drug paraphernalia, including free cookers and cleaning materials. Everything short of the heroine rock is available, free, at Oasis. The needle exchange clientele is not limited to Atlantic City residents. IV drug users come from near and far to avail themselves of the free goodies. Atlantic City is in this way the IV drug destination of New Jersey.
Now, this government created and funded program does not try to help rehabilitate these addicts or help them break the cycle in their lives, the government instead is supporting an individual's addiction. Taxpayer dollars are going towards helping Heroine addicts conduct the daily rituals of their addictive lifestyle.
While one may say, "But the government is trying to prevent the spread of AIDS, their intentions are good....". But we must remember a saying from Samuel Johnson, "Hell is paved with good intentions".
This needle exchange program follows in the tradition of many other infamous social programs such as Welfare and Unemployment. While the programs' "intentions" are good, they do little to help people rise above their current state in life and enable people to be set in the poverty cycle they are currently in. Programs like Social Security and Welfare have their origins from President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal reforms.
Roosevelt's reforms were intended to help bring American out of the Great Depression. But there was a major key to Roosevelt's programs: to be a bridge until people got on their feet with new or better jobs. It was never Roosevelt's intention for people to live off of these programs, but that the government would act as a friend giving a "loan". Roosevelt reasoned that the programs would eventually pay for themselves when the people the programs helped would get jobs and begin to pay taxes. Roosevelt believed in benevolence, not a pro facto "Nanny State" where the government takes care of everyone until God Knows when.
Instead of having government programs that facilitate people staying in the rut their lives currently consist of, why not spend these millions of tax dollars on programs that uplift and change people's lives? I know people whose families have been on Welfare, whose parents had to apply for unemployment just to get buy. Neither of these programs helped these families find jobs, build resumes, none of these programs help people go to trade schools to improve their skills so they can get better jobs. I have been in these places, they seem like treasury buildings that process people's papers then the staff dish out food stamps and unemployment checks.
Government Programs such as Welfare, Unemployment, and Social Security have good purposes and operations, yes. But handing a single mom with 4 kids 200 dollars worth in food stamps every other week and unemployment check every other week is doing nothing but making sure that mom and her children do not starve! Where is the government program that helps that mom build a resume and get a new job? Where is the government program to help her send her kids to safer, and better schools that are not dangerous and gang infested? Where are the government programs to help educate her if she needs it to get a better job? No, these programs exist on paper, not in reality!
Instead, government officials are worry about how much their salaries’ are, doing favors for their cronies, making sure drugies have clean needles, and ensuring our children are taught the proper sexual positions in our High Schools. And seriously, if you are going to have a needle exchange program, why not have one for Diabetics who need these needles more so than some Heroine junky? The Diabetic will die without their insulin shot. The Heroine addict will go into withdraw and have to think about their life more. God forbid the government instead put the heroine addict in rehab and help them get a job and give those clean needles to the Diabetic!
Thursday, March 20, 2008
"The Bible we have now is not the one that was revealed to Issa [Jesus] and the Old Testament is not the one that was revealed to Musa. Muhammad is mentioned in both (original versions), but the Tora and Bible we have now, there is no mention of him....
It means that it (Bible) has been forged. Prophet Muhammad was sent to mankind. Allah wanted mankind to have one religion. The Koran that we have is the only book that was sent by Allah. We believe in the Bible as well as the Tora.....
We cannot be Muslims unless we believe in Issa...We have to look for the Bible and Tora that were sent to Moses and Jesus, but where can you find them? Unfortunately, the holy book that was sent by Allah was written by mankind and forged...."
This is the momment where I put my "History Expert" Hat on. As a History Major, I'm REALLY into History. Religious History has also facinated me. So when I see a dictator, whose only real professional expertise is that he can terrorise people into doing what he wants, gets up on a stage and starts lecturing about the textual history of the Bible, I know everything out of his mouth is going to be some ideological theory that he was brainwashed with.
The fact is that numerous historians from various backgrounds have shown that the Bible we have today was written and organized in it's current form long before Mohammed was even BORN! Historians such as Josephus and Phileo vouched for the historical authenticity of the Bible. We know that Alexandrian scholars of the 3rd and 4th Centuries had the Old and New Testament texts. There is tons of historical proof to show that Mohammed was NEVER in the "original text" of the Bible because Mohammed was not even alive when the different books of the Bible were written and when it was organized.
This farce that runs in Islamic circles that Mohammed was suppose to be in the Christian Bible and in the Jewish Torah and Tanakh is historically inacurate and intellectually dishonest. And the fact that Gadaffi helps to propagate this idiocy is sickening. When gullable and uneducated people get a whiff of this kind of rhetoric, they can get confussed and get led to believe it may be true. This is what concerns me. Educated people know better, but how do we make sure the uneducated or blissful masses are not so deceived by propaganda?
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Also in the news, former New Jersey Governor James McGreevey has "confirmed" accusations by former campaign aide and driver Teddy Peterson. Peterson has alleged that he, McGreevey, and McGreevey's ex wife Dina Matos McGreevey had "consensual sex" together over a two year period. Dina has denied these accusations, which just happen to come up as she is in the process of suing the former governor for damages because he kept his homosexuality from her. McGreevey resigned his governorship back in 2004 after allegations came up about his homosexual affairs.
I do not understand these people. Spitzer, the Patersons, McGreevey, Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich, and many other politicians: they get married, later have affairs and then try to produce an excuse for it. What is the purpose of being married then? This sickens me that these people even have these affairs. If you are married, you are supposed to stay loyal to your partner. If you cannot, go tell them you cannot, do not go cheat on them. No matter what face they put on in public, the partner of the cheater always gets hurt. And if there are children, this affects their lives too. Spitzer and Clinton had affairs with women who were around the age of one of their daughters. Sick! Gingrich had an affair during the time of the impeachment proceedings of President Clinton, who was being impeached for lying under oath about an affair himself! What is with this people?
And where is the public outcry against these people? There is some, but there also is an overwhelming, "It's their personal life" excuse farce thrown around. If you are a politician, supposedly representing the voters who put you into office, why are you spending your time, while in that position, going around having affairs? You need sex that bad, go to your wife! And if that is not good enough, go get some counseling with you and your wife. Today's society has become so blasé about people having affairs. There needs to be some moral standard upheld here! If you are "taken", then you should not go sleeping around. And if having an affair or cheating on your spouse or "significant other" is so "okay", then why do people sneak around doing it and keep it a secret? Well, psychologically, if you keep something secret and sneak around doing it, you have some fear of being caught and there is an element of conviction there for the "deed".
Just because numerous politicians do it and people on TV shows and movies do it, does not make having an affair and cheating on someone make doing it "glamorous" or "cool" or "exciting". And it is more than just taboo; having an affair or cheating on some is down right WRONG! If you have that much trouble controlling yourself, stay single or talk to your significant other about it. Do not be like Spitzer and Clinton and McGreevey and leave your family and friends out to dry. They did it in such a public view.
I want to leave you readers with this thought: The only well known politicians in the news over the last several months who has no marital history issues is Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. Does anyone focus on what they are doing "right" with their personal lives? No, the world obsesses about everyone else's indiscretions. We need to stop walking around like lemmings all googly-eyed about people's "dirty secrets" and affairs, and start looking up the positive traits of those who are doing things the right way. Obama's and Romney's marriages should be standard setters, role models for a world which is engrossed with news about the indiscretions and affairs of numerous politicians.
Thursday, March 13, 2008
For those out there who have been so immersed in Political news you may not have heard about this. A new study released by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) reveals that 1 in 4 Teenage Girls have contracted an STD. Dr. Sara Forhan, the leading researcher for this CDC study, said the following:
"What we found is alarming....This means that far too many young women are at risk for the serious health effects of untreated STDs, including infertility and cervical cancer."
Alarming is an understatement. Disconcerting is my word of choice. The fact that this many teenagers, if not more, have contracted a STD is something people need to understand the "why" instead of the "how". "How" is easy: Sexual Promiscuity and Psychological Immaturity.
The "why" is more deep and disturbing. Some people seem to want to blame Abstinence Education for causing our young people to be ignorant and having a lack of knowledge about sex and one's "sexual nature". Others point to parent's lack of role in the children's lives or the parents not talking to their kids. But both of these finger pointing excuses are by products of people who do not want the truth. So let’s address some of the issues that come into play concerning the sexual activeness of today's Teenagers:
1) Ineffectiveness of Sex Education
Our High School's have as part of their curriculum, under the subject/class "Health", what many know as "Sex Ed". The purpose of having this in schools is to "educate" young people of what sex is, the repercussions of sexual activity, and in many situations, HOW to have sex. Despite the reality that people have been having sex and engaging in sexual activities for thousands of years, today we need a class to give our High Schoolers a crash course in "Sex". While "sexual health" is important for our young people to know, many schools do not just limit it to "if you have sex, this can happen" type of information. They get detailed "you take the male penis and push it into the female vaginal hole...." and some teachers have been known to talk about sexual positions, different types of condoms, anal sex, and oral sex. There is a difference between "education" and "over-exposure".
2) The "sexing up" of our young people
Our young people as a result of TV, music, movies, and advertising are more and more desensitized to sex and sexual indecency. While people may argue to whether this is a good ("They need to know about the real world...") or bad ("They are still children, they don’t need to be thinking about...."), the fact is when you have TV shows like "Dawson's Creek" and "The OC" where everyone seems to be sleeping around with someone, movies like "American Pie" where sex is a major subject and sexual humor is saturated into every scene, along with music where Rappers talk about their "B****es and H**oes" and "tap that A**" while rockers who have songs that say, "You're a crazy b***h, But you f**k so good...When I dream, I'm doing you all night", do we really expect out young people to NOT take an active interest in being sexual? Despite the fact that our "Sex Ed" classes may discuss STD's and pregnancy, the subliminal messages of TV and music are the LACK of consequences for such excess activity. Also, the clothing industry has gotten in on the act. High School and College girls go to Victoria's Secret. They do buy 4 thongs in a packet for 6 dollars at the likes of Wal-Mart and Kmart. The mini skirt has been back for years. Skimpy bikinis are more than a fad, and then the parents say "My little girl is growing up so fast!"
3) Obsession with the other gender
While pornography magazines and websites are for "those 18 years of age and up", if you were to anonymously poll under 18 males, many of them would admit they either seen pornographic images of some sort. Despite the rating of "R", kids still sneak into those films. Any honest male has been in the locker room and heard the conversations "Man, she got some big a** t**s". Sure, boys while be boys, but in a society in which guys start seeing girls "wanting it" and then girls dressing LIKE they want it, if you can't do the math, you never will. I am a male, I went to school with these guys. And I was the cry shoulder for the girls. I will never forget the broken record words and phrases that would fall out of their mouths, "I thought he loved me", "I thought that was the only thing I could do to keep him", "He told me if I loved him I would", or "I thought he used a condom", "I thought we were being careful", and of course "He was so rough, I told him it hurt, he just kept going". And there in lies the origin of the infamous female "gossip" center. These same girls would go around telling everyone anyone who would listen, "He's an a****le", "He used me", etc. At the same time, the guys would go around talking about their "exploits", with all the details. And every guy, at some point, has wanted to be one of "the guys" and fit in. Of course, we have all acted upon that desire to "fit in" differently. But despite all these things that happen, you still have these girls who are "boy crazy" who throw themselves at guys. You still have women who will do "anything" because they "love him". You also have the women who run around thinking they can "change" the bad boys.
These are three major factors in our young people's worlds. And let’s stop placing all the blame on the parents. It is not always their fault. You can have parents who will do everything for their child, raise them right, and that child still goes out and does drugs or lies to their parents about their friends and hangs around the wrong people. The truth is, if your son or daughter wants to do things without you knowing, they WILL find a way to do so. A parent’s influence goes only as far as the child will accept their role in their lives after a certain point.
Notice how I say "point" and not "age". There is a reason for this. Every young person has different levels of maturity and intellectual development. Despite your kid's C's and D's, they can apply themselves to outwit you and others.
The truth is that parents, teachers, the media are dually responsible for this study. Young people and children are sponges. They soak in everything, break it down, and then act.
Honestly, and this may enrage some people, a major reason for the high rate of Teenage girls contracting STD's is Hygiene. Yes, we all have heard our parents tell us to wash our hands after going to the bathroom, before we eat dinner. We have been told we should take one shower a day. We have been told we shouldn't wear dirty clothes. We have all been told we should brush our teeth at least once, if not twice, a day. But how many people actually listen? Being a "clean" person has a lot to do with it. And it's always the ladies being clean, but also they guys they choose to be intimate with. If one is not clean, they become a breeding ground for disease and sickness. Not keeping up with your immune system, not eating the right foods, not taking showers, washing your hands, brushing your teeth, it all adds up. Doctors say that HPV (an STD that can lead to Cervical Cancer) can be contracted through Oral Sex. Not to be crude, but how many young ladies really think about if that guy's genitalia was washed properly within the last 24 hours? The same applies to females. Does Sex Ed or the media or Parents really teach kids the wash themselves completely? One's cleanliness and appearance is a reflection upon how much they respect themselves.
And of course, let us not forget, society tells our young women "If you don't look like this..." you are not pretty or beautiful or cute. And you do not think THAT affects how they treat their bodies and who they let touch their bodies?
One more factor that has gotten us to where we are today: Religion. Especially Christians. The Bible says, "For God loved the world so much..." not "For God loved those who wait till marriage to have sex so much..." The judgmental mentality of Catholics, Christians, and Muslims everywhere have towards those who have sex outside of marriage and those who have children out of wedlock is disgusting. Let me tell you a story and I will leave all involved anonymous:
There was a girl who attended a Christian school. That girl had sex with another student who attended that school. It was rumored a few months later that the girl was pregnant. The school nurse told the administration. The school expelled both students. They later allowed the girl to come back to school when she never gave birth to a baby. Some suspected she had an abortion.
Yes, the Bible speaks about how fornication (sex outside of marriage) and adultery (when a married person cheats on their spouse) are sins. But the Bible also says in Romans 3:23, "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God" and in Romans 6:23, "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." The Bible doesn't have a grading system, like you and I do, of what "sins" are worse than others.
Even Jesus, in John 8:1-11 had a woman who had committed adultery brought before him. The people who brought her before Jesus wanted to stone her. Jesus told these men, "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her."(verse 7) When all these men left, Jesus said unto the woman, "Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more"(verse 11)
The lack of compassion in religious circles today for those who are involved in "sexual immortality" disgusts me. These people are so concerned about women aborting their babies, yet they cast out and push away these pregnant women when they are most vulnerable. Many abortions happen because these girls are "shamed" and feel the only way to gain favor back is to rid themselves of the baby or "fetus". It's a vicious cycle, but it happens all across this country.
Christians are ordered to forgive by Jesus in Mark 11:25-26:
"And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.
But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses."
In summary, EVERYONE is to blame for this situation coming to pass. The blame needs to be spread around. Teachers, Media, Parents, Churches, other young people, EVERYONE. This is the culture we have created around our young people. The truth needs to be realized before we can start attempting to "fix" any problems.
Saturday, February 9, 2008
Pedro Martinez, Juan Marichal filmed at cock fight
New York Mets Pitcher Pedro Martinez is seen in a You Tube video at a "Cock Fight" in the Dominican Republic, where it is legal. Cock fighting, which is similar to dog fighting, has been claimed to be a part of the "culture" of the island nation. Martinez says that, "I understand that people are upset, but this is part of our Dominican culture and is legal in the Dominican Republic,'' Martinez said in a statement issued by the Mets. "I was invited by my idol, Juan Marichal, to attend the event as a spectator, not as a participant.''
This is very disgraceful. While it may be legal in the Dominican Republic, it is NOT legal in this nation. And in the eyes of many, it is seen as a disgusting activity. Using the excuse of "its part of the culture" is lame. In other parts of the world, euthanasia is part of the culture. In some Muslim nations, it is part of the culture to punish the victim (if she is a woman) for being raped. In some regions of Africa, Clitorectamies of young girls is a part of the culture. Just because something is "cultural" does not make it right or good.
I know some have said that the US should not "force our morals" on other people around the world. But this has nothing to do with that. Martinez is an employee of a team in the US, pay US taxes. If he is unhappy about how he will be viewed or his lack of desire to ascribe to the US way of life, then he shouldn't be here. In this nation, we have a strong desire to promote good and condemn evil. No matter what anyone says, cock fighting is a form of animal abuse, just like making children in Muslim countries be suicide bombers is considered a form of "child abuse".
We need to stop letting people run around and use excuses such as "tradition" and "culture" for inappropriate and immoral behavior. We are all born with an understanding of right and wrong. If you are sneaking around doing something, then it is probably wrong. If something is done in secret and denied in public, it is probably something wrong or bad going on. We as humans naturally are proud of the good things we do and are embarrassed about immoral and "bad" things. Pedro Martinez, along with many others, need to get beyond "culture" and start admitting right is right and wrong is wrong. Our society needs to stop making excuses for such behaviors and activities. We must start standing for good and against evil before evil takes hold to the point that we loose our moral reasoning. Every "great" country and nation that has lost its moral reasoning have all fallen. The Roman Empire is a prime example.
Thursday, February 7, 2008
1) Republican Nomination: The race has totally changed. Only two candidates have any real chance at winning the nomination. For Republican votes, the choice is between a moderate Republican (John McCain) and a Social Moderate Conservative, Fiscal Liberal (Mike Huckabee). Huckabee did not do bad on Super Tuesday. Huckabee won 5 states on Super Tuesday (6 overall). McCain won 9 states on Super Tuesday (12 overall). While McCain is the likely nominee, Huckabee could make the road very difficult. I am unsure if Huckabee can truely fill the "anti-McCain" shoes of Mitt Romney. This "lack" of choices while alienate many voters and force other to pick a candidate who does not stand for their beliefs (similar to Dole in 1996, Ford in 1976). This election will change the Republican party one way or another, causing it to be more or less Conservative in the long run.
2) Democrats: Romney was the candidate who Democrats attacked and spoke the most ill of. He also was the candidate who had the strongest contrast on issues with the Democratic Presidential Candidates. The same cannot be said about McCain and Huckabee. McCain and Hillary Clinton have similar voting records and positions on several issues (Education, Bush's Tax Cuts, Illegal Immigration, Veteran's Benefits, etc.) Huckabee, while staunchly Pro-Life, is against school vouchers, is not very conservative in his fiscal policies, and his socialistic approach to get America "healthy" (National Smoking Ban, Limiting what children eat at school, taking away health care/benefits from those over a certain weight). Sure, McCain is a seasoned politician and Huckabee is funny, but they lack the charisma (Obama) and political machinary (Clinton) of the Democrats. The lines are also more blurred now so whoever the Democratic Candidate is must be able to seperate himself from their opponent while grabbing votes from the moderate Republican ranks who "dislike" the Republican Candidate. Obama could probably do a better job at than than Hillary, but she may appear more "tolerable" than Obama on certain issues to some moderates (Foreign Policy and Health Care).
On top of all this, there is already discussion about another Presidential bid for Romney in 2012. This would only work if Romney continues to stay active in the public eye. But this leaves the 2008 Presidential election in a quagmire because there are no "sure" choices, but flavors. Instead of making a decission between Pizza or Cheesesteaks for dinner, we are making a choice between Pizza toppings, but still getting pizza. Th race will only get more rediculous if New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg enters the race as an independent candidate. The only choice between him and the current candidates (if I may continue with the pizza analogy) is that he is white pizza compared to the others. Its still pizza.
Sunday, January 27, 2008
Obama - 295,091 (55%)
Clinton - 141,128 (27%)
Edwards - 93,552 (18%)
Kucinich - 551 (0%)
The winner from Saturday is Barack Obama and the losers are Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, and John McCain. Here is the breakdown:
Barack Obama: This win in South Carolina trancended race and gender. According to the CNN exit polling breakdown, the race breakdown shows that while Obama won "the black vote", he also won soundly the "Non-black vote" among those between the ages of 18-29 years of age. But Non-Black vote between the ages of 30-59 was not "won" by Senator Hillary Clinton, but by John Edwards! Also, among those who believed Obama was the "most qualified" to be President, he received 96 percent of their votes. Among those who believe Clinton is the "most qualified", 72 percent voted for her and 20 percent voted for Obama. Obama has been doing his best to get away from race and gender. Winning South Carolina was essential to give him momentum entering the Super Tuesday primaries. He has a great shot at doing well on Super Tuesday and could come out with a slight edge in delagates. This race for the nomination is far from over and Obama has a good shot at being the nominee.
Hillary Clinton: This loss may have been expected, but losing by 28 percent certainly was not part of the expectations. Also, the demographic she "won" in South Carolina was the 65 years of age or over column (where she only beat Obama by 8 percent) speaks to the fact that among some democratic voters, her and her husband's message is old and uninteresting. She lost to Edwards and Obama among those who were "Non-Black" and under the age of 65. She has entered the same boat as McCain on the Republican side: having a limited demographic to draw from and needing to convince the rest you should be their choice. Losing by 153,000 plus votes is a damaging blow to the Clinton campaign entering Super Tuesday. She needs to do much better than Obama on Super Tuesday to show she is "nationally" electable. If Obama does better or they both finish failry close to each other in number of states and delagates, her campaign will need to re-evaluate their strategy or they can kiss their White House hopes good bye.
John Edwards: Congrats John, you won the white vote in South Carolina. That is all he can hang his hat on at this point. His home state, the state he won in 2004, he came in a disapointing third place. Edwards needs to evaluate his options, whether he wants to stick it out inorder to play "kingmaker" at the Democratic Convension or if he wants to cut his losses and endorse one of the two front runners. Whoever the nominee is, they should try to distance themselves from allowing Edwards to be their running mate. Edwards has made a habit of voting one way while he was a Senator and running the other direction while running for the Democratic nomination. Also, the fact that Edwards was a self promoter while running with John Kerry in 2004 raises many flags among Democratic faithful. Obama has stolen the identity as the "new" and "fresh" candidate anyways.
Side Note: I mentioned John McCain as a "loser" earlier. I say this because McCain did very well in South Carolina among those between the ages of 45 and older. If Obama becomes the nominee, McCain will be in trouble because Obama has polled very well among those under 45 and McCain has done well with those over 45. If those between the ages of 18 and 45 young people come out to vote like they have in South Carolina, Iowa, and New Hampshire and the Obama campaign hits the college campuses hard before the General Election, McCain will fall easily. The messages of Clinton and McCain is full of so much rhetoric and are so intrenched in the culture of dirty and deceitful politics, that unless you are a die hard supporter, it is hard to choice either one on principle.
Friday, January 25, 2008
Ok, many have seen the video of the Sotuh Carolina debate in which Senator Hillary Clinton brought up Senator Barack Obama's history with Tony Rezko. Rezko has been indicted by the Federal government and will soon stand trial. Now there has been a photo of Mr. Rezko having a profession photo taken with him and First ladt Hillary Clinton and President Bill Clinton.
This morning on the "Today" show, Senator Clinton has said she does not know Mr. Rezko. It is true that when one is President and First Lady, you do numerous photo shoots with people you may never see or meet again.
Well, I did some research and it appears neither Antoin "Tony" Rezko, nor anyone with the last name "Rezko", has ever given any campaign donations to either Bill or Hillary Clinton (click here for the entire list of Rezko contributions). Mr. Rezko has donated to the campaigns of Al Gore, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, Rick Lazio, John Kerry, and Barabara Boxer. The largest contribution he has made is $15,000 to the "DNC SERVICES CORPORATION/DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL COMMITTEE". Also, I found that among those who Rezko has contributed to more than once are George W. Bush, John Kerry, Barack Obama, Rod Blagojevich, and Luis V. Gutierrez (For another comprehensive list, click here).
So the "grand" discovery of this photo of the Clintons with Tony Rezko does not appear to lead to any legitimate "connections" between the Clintons and Mr. Rezko. Rezko appears to have spread his money all over the place, mostly to Democrats. In this case (until other information appears) the Clintons are not being deceitful, they are just throwing mud around.
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
But many do not know the full story about Fischer and what occured with him before and after the 1972 championship. As a small boy, Fischer was mentored by legendary Sports reporter and author Dick Schaap. Here is a video of a documentary done by ESPN's Jeremy Schaap (son of Dick Schaap)about the "real" Bobby Fischer (You can watch the whole ESPN report that was broadcast over the weekend by clicking here):
The ESPN Sportcenter version of the report by Jeremy Schaap is longer is more detailed. But as you can see, no matter how much people see Fischer as some "Cold War" hero, he was a deranged, anti-semitic, anti-american man who died misserable. I am sorry, but I can never "look up to" or "admire" a man like that, let alone call him a "hero". What makes him so special compared to the "Miracle on Ice" 1980 US Olympic Hockey team that beat the "unbeatable" USSR Hockey team? Fischer on numerous levels fails in comparison.