Wednesday, May 20, 2009

It's time we get back to being Americans and live up to our Constitution

Stories like this highlight the vast dividing line between rich and poor.

I've been fortunate to grow up middle class. I've had every opportunity to succeed. My parents were not so lucky. Both came from poor country stock and both carry the attitudes and proclivities of the poor.

Those attitudes impacted me in a significant way--making me sensitive the the plight of the poor and downtrodden. These lessons, more than anything, explain my tendency to support the many over the few--the weak over the strong. Essentially, growing up with middle class resources, but a lower class mindset shaped my political values.

For many decades now, a scary, class-ist, and ultimately aristocratic attitude has governed our society. Hopefully, its final expression in the Bush administration and their mouthpieces in the press (Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, and Glenn Beck to name a few..) will be nothing more than a death shudder of a narrow and mean view of society.

Policies enacted over decades make it easier to exploit those with little social power. Greed--encouraged by an ideology of self-reliance and a laissez-faire agenda reminiscent of pre-Depression era government and country, has resulted in an exploitative society that is nothing less than predatory.

It's time we own up to meanness. It's time we live united as a people. Too long have self-interest and the narcissism of certain self-satisfaction governed our land.

We should begin by treating the poor as people instead of like peasants to be abused for our own gain.

If we fail, then it won't be too long before our aristocratic tendencies lead to our undoing.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Cafferty Agrees with me on dealing with Bush Administration...for what it's worth.

As a charter member of the crotchety old fart club, of which I consider myself a member in good standing, Jack Cafferty of CNN calls for a special prosecutor for the Bush Administration.

Obama is making a big mistake by ignoring the crimes of the last administration. Until the matter is examined, publicly and fully, then our country won't be free of taint from the Bush years.

I say again that it's not a liberal/conservative or Republican/Democrat issue; it one of crime and justice.

It should surprise no one that two cronies from the Nixon Administration (Cheney & Rumsfeld) share a large part of the blame for the screw-ups and law-breaking of the Bush years. You can't teach old dogs new tricks. Both Cheney and Rumsfeld learned at the feet of the master--Tricky Dick. These two bozos retained the paranoia and the deceit that marked the Nixon administration. On top of that, they had something to prove.

I think Cheney and Rumsfeld went to great lengths to turn the Bush Administration into a continuation of the Nixon years. In some sick psychodrama, they sought redemption for themselves and Nixon by making policy indicative of their previous tenure. America is saddled with the results of these two geezers who couldn't let go of their ignominious service with Nixon.

Obama must excise this blot from our collective conscious. Pelosi, although a good conciliator, should own her failure to impeach Cheney and Rumsfeld; she could have stopped the tragedy of the Bush years caused by the Dicky & Donny Show.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Pelosi dust-up is tacit admission that Bush administration engaged in torture.

In a display of "gotcha" politics," the Republicans have pounced on Nanci Pelosi's allegation that the CIA lied to her about torture.

I don't know who to believe in this dust-up. I'm inclined to think Speaker Pelosi was informed of the torture. Thinking back on my general complaint of the Democrats during the time in question, I suspect she was. Democrats displayed such spinelessness just prior to the mid-term elections in 2004, so it's in keeping with their character at that time.

What should result from this?

If the Speaker was informed, then she should admit her complicity in the torture for failing to act. On the other hand, if she was misinformed, then those responsible must account for their omissions.

In my opinion, the best approach to resolving this matter--the ENTIRE matter--is to seat a Truth Commission to evaluate and report on everyone involved in the torture issue--including Nanci Pelosi.

The Republicans, by attacking Pelosi, tacitly admit torture occurred by the Bush-led government. Owning up to their part in these sordid events instead relying on a logical fallacy (Tu quoque - "you did it too") to score political points would begin the process.

I don't expect that to happen.

Now's the time for the Obama administration to show some leadership and jettison the impunity granted by their "looking to the future" agenda. This isn't a liberal or conservative issue, but one of justice and criminal activity going unpunished.

The current administration shirks their responsibility by ignoring the criminality of those aligned with the previous administration. Looking to the future doesn't mean ignoring the crimes of the past; it means we must properly resolve issues of the past in order to move into the future.

Letting previous malefactors slide as a courtesy scarcely qualifies as responsible governance.