General Stanley McChrystal, the recently appointed commander of the US army in Afghanistan, has given an extraordinary interview to the Wall Street Journal, in which he says America is losing the war and the military has one year to get results before public support evaporates.
By tradition, the Congressional Summer Recess, now under way, is a key time when our representatives in Washington have to go home and spend time in States and districts. They often use these breaks in their normal schedules to check in with their constituencies - We the People - providing opportunities to be seen by the average Americans who elected them, and to let us hear from their own mouths what they're up to as our representatives.
This gives us, the people, a rare chance to engage them personally the same way that well-paid professional lobbyists do routinely while they are at work in DC.
One of the most pressing issues that will be on the table when our legislators reconvene is the pending Health Care Reform bill, which you no doubt know already -- unless you've been living under a rock. Democrats in Congress have shown willingness to enact the most radical reform yet in our health care system, though their version is still far from a universal system, otherwise known as "Socialized Medicine" that we really need and deserve. The best idea they have been pressured into including is to provide a "public option." This would presumably allow all Americans the choice of signing on to an employer-provided insurance plan, another group plan with private insurance or to use a health insurance plan paid for out of public funds - a tax supported insurance plan.
The Repugnicans, on the other hand, have reacted to the very idea that our health care system may need fixing with predictable over-the top fake outrage and hyperbole -- but no alternative other than to sustain the untenable and expensive status quo. Obviously, their only concern is to protect the ridiculously high profits that insurance companies reap under the status quo -- those same companies that own what has become the increasingly bizarre Repugnican franchise, lock stock and barrel.
For this summer's recess, in the year that health care reform has a chance of actually passing, the Repubnican syndicate is taking its noisy empty-headed freak show on the road, exploiting cadres of excitable racists, homophobes, religious fanatics and other deviants and malcontents who are fed up with having to endure life with a queer-loving, satan-worshipping, secret muslim/commie, half breed nigger getting so much air time up there on their TV sets. The job these simple minds are given is simply to attract attention by being their rude true selves which is guaranteed to land some of their own pasty white faces and red necks on TV to lend some balance to the dark sinister face of that Obama character who wasn't even born in this country as far as they know. Health care? Who cares? There could be any issue on the table and they'll be there if they might get on TV. Heck, you don't even have to pay a lot of them!
The Repugnicans learned how exploitable these volunteer hotheads can be to their Stop Obama/Fail America campaign during the 2008 presidential campaign when their hot but stupid VP pick, Ellie Mae Clampett, played better with the ignorant hillbilly gang than Gomer Pyle did as the top of their ticket. Not enough to win, thank god, but enough to stop any kind of progress by pissing us all off so much we have no rational choice but to block them out. So all these rude and hateful meat puppets have to do to shut down any discussion about important things is to rudely, loudly disrupt the exchange, no matter what the topic may be.
I am getting so sick and tired of these ugly hateful mobs that I just end up feeling dirty and, moreover, inadequate to the task of thinking up enough invectives with which to denounce them. There is just no way I can think of to talk about them with any kind of respect that humans deserve. All I can think to do is turn to a professional who is skilled in talking about such things with appropriate restraint. Who would that be, you ask?
If these are "Average Americans" all I can say is how sad it is that the bar has been set so low. And whatever happened to the good old American idea of bettering yourself through competition to become above average?
Now the goddamn idiots at Faux News and that lying sack of excrement, Rush Limbaugh, have the nerve to try and portray supporters of Health Care Reform as the ones who are stirring up trouble! Those Repugnican mouthpieces are decrying the Service Employees International Union as violent thugs after an SEIU member was violently teabagged at a Town Hall meeting yesterday (Aug 6)! See for yourself and then sign the SEIU petition at their website.
Once again "guided by a president who has no experience of war and defers to the bull-necked generals and militarists whose careers, power and profits depend on expanded war, we are transformed into monsters..."
The Amazing Pavement Drawings of fellow Nabob, JULIAN BEEVER
To view a slideshow of this Masterful Artist's Illusions just click on the Giant Butterfly above
The Roots of "The Culture Wars" written November, 2008
At the 1992 Republican National Convention, Pat Buchanan lobbed the first explicit attack on modernity, officially declaring a War on Culture in America.
Seizing the RNC podium and appropriating the GOP mantel as a platform to wage his long-fantasized Culture War, Buchanan delivered a rousing speech that presumptively enlisted the support of that party under the leadership of first President Bush.
Buchanan denounced the "radical feminism" of Bill and Hillary Clinton's " agenda [that] would impose on America -- abortion on demand, a litmus test for the Supreme Court, homosexual rights, discrimination against religious schools, women in combat -- that's change, all right," he said, "But it is not the kind of change America wants. It is not the kind of change America needs. And it is not the kind of change we can tolerate in a nation that we still call God's country."
Those words may ring familiar as they were echoed anew at the 2008 Republican National Convention, because the still powerful GOP continues to be a propitious vehicle for the marauding legions of backwardness and ignorance. They may have been defeated by and large in the latest round of national elections. But, to them, this was merely a set back and we can be sure they are already regrouping for their next assault on reason.
In the current transition back to a liberal Democratic Party-led government we must not allow ourselves to become complacent, over-confident or narrowly factional in our pursuit of a progressive realization of the Constitutional promise of freedom and equality for all of us.
Recall that, even after Buchanan called on his minions to support George the First that election went to Clinton. But they were far from defeated and eight years later they came roaring back with a vengeance by the name of George W. Bush.
If anyone thinks the reactionary Religious Right will just roll over and play dead while the Obama Administration does its best to clean up the phenomenal mess Bush left in his wake...