Posts Tagged 'Obama'

An Open Letter to Those Asking After the Election “How Did This Happen”?

Dear Friend,

We all knew this day would come.  The day after the 2016 US Presidential Elections.  We knew there would be one group of people greeting this day either in excited jubilation, or, at the very least, a sigh of relief.  We knew there would be another group of people who would face this day in disappointment or even dread.  There is a third group, those who couldn’t care less, but since they are indifferent, it is unlikely they would even read what I have to say.  This letter isn’t for them.  It’s not even for the celebratory group.  It’s for you who are scratching your heads in stunned disillusionment wondering how in the world America ever came to this.

I shouldn’t have been surprised to see many of my FB friends from Europe and Oceania expressing their stunned disbelief at the election results.  Just yesterday, I was reading a Time magazine article that said, of the world’s nations, only Russia and China were supportive of the idea of a Trump presidency.  The article, a compilation of submissions from Time’s correspondents around the globe, was refreshingly candid about why different groups felt the way they did – and the reason was almost always cultural.  The Russians and Chinese, accustomed to authoritarian leadership, respected Trump’s “take charge” attitude.  Europeans, who lean toward socialist democracy, identified with Clinton’s left-leaning politics, although there were pockets of Trump supporters among the far right European groups:  the National Front in France, the Independence Party in the U.K., and the Dutch Party for Freedom.  The one region with a marked divide in support was, not surprisingly, the Middle East, although the divide was different than you might think.  While Jewish Israelis and Arabs throughout the region were strong on their support of Clinton, Israelis with dual American citizenship gave Trump a slight edge because of his open support of Israel and his endorsement of moving the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. (Time, Nov. 8, 2016)

To be honest, I didn’t see Donald Trump having a snowball’s chance in perdition of victory, not even during the day yesterday.  As the numbers came in, I could not allow myself to indulge in more than cautious optimism.  But for weeks now, I haven’t been able to get 1980 out of my head.  There were just too many parallels.  We had an ineffective liberal president in the Oval Office who only paid lip service to his favored special interest groups and ignored the rest of America.  We had a long-shot non-politician as the Republican candidate being lambasted as a loose cannon who would start World War III the instant he got his finger on the nuclear button.  For the first time in ages, there was a vocal movement to vote third party.  And until just before the election, the polls were showing a significant projected margin of victory for the Democrat.  Even Iran’s feeble attempt to threaten American voters is a parallel – over the U.S. Embassy hostages in 1980, and over the 2015 Iran Nuclear Deal in this election.  If you are too young or were too uninterested at the time to have followed the 1980 election, I highly recommend you read up on it.  You’ll be amazed at how similar it sounds to the last 18 months or so.

There is one other parallel to 1980 that I have only alluded to so far.  I did that on purpose because, dear reader, it answers your question.   You want to know how Donald Trump got elected?  It happened because, just like in 1980, the Democrats attempted to disenfranchise what one of the election night commentators (I forget which; I bounced around so many different news outlets last night) called “John and Mary Q. Public.”   These are people who usually either don’t vote at all, or don’t normally vote as a bloc.   Despite what the media has been trying to tell you (remember, on August 28 of this year, CNN’s Chris Cuomo openly admitted “We couldn’t help [Hillary Clinton] any more than we have.”) (Morefield, 2016), John and Mary Q. Public transcend race and socio-economic status.  They are the nameless, faceless Americans who just want to make it through the day and from paycheck to paycheck.  Under normal circumstances, they don’t care about politics or politicians and only want to be left alone to live out their lives as they see fit.  They are what Richard Nixon called “the silent majority,” and usually they are just that – silent.

Only one thing awakens this sleeping giant and gets them to the polls – anger.  And the usual source of that anger is the feeling (regardless of whether or not it’s justified) that they’re being denigrated by one party or the other.  This year, I have had the privilege of having frank discussions with voters of all races, tax brackets, ages, and education levels.  If there is one thing people particularly resent, it’s being told that “Because you’re an X, you must support Y.”  Even today, my stomach was churning at being told that “college-educated women supported Clinton.”  (Full disclosure: I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and am currently working on my Master’s Degree in Public Administration.)  Uh, I didn’t support Clinton. Nor did many other college-educated women I know.  And among us, not a single one appreciated it being assumed that we did.  But I digress.

Back to John and Mary Q. Public.  Over the past 8 years, they’ve seem their lives become more difficult.  One, or perhaps both of them, either lost their job between 2008 and 2010, or had their hours/pay reduced.  Then came the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare.  Where they once had adequate health care partially subsidized by their employer, the ACA took that away because to continue to offer health care coverage to their employees would bankrupt the company.  Or perhaps they had private insurance coverage that, again, while not ideal, was manageable.  Or they decided that, for whatever reason, they couldn’t or wouldn’t purchase health care coverage and take the risk that they wouldn’t need it.  It was their freedom to choose, and the ACA took it away.  To add insult to injury, the ACA put the universally-despised Internal Revenue Service in charge of verifying that all Americans have health care coverage, lest they pay penalties when they submit their required annual tax returns.  When it became clear that Americans were opting to pay the fines because it was more affordable than the premiums on the Obamacare plans, the government increased the fines.  On October 24, less than three weeks before yesterday’s election, it was announced that premiums for ACA healthcare plans would soar another 22% on average, compared to an average 7% increase the year before.  Let me say that again:  a 22% increase on average.  In Arizona (a state whose election results are still unconfirmed as of this writing), the average premium for next year will increase by a whopping 116%.  (Luhbi, 2016) And so many underwriters of Obamacare plans have opted out of the program rather than go bankrupt that many Americans only have one choice of healthcare plan.  Where’s the freedom in that?  Where’s the “life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness”?  When people can’t support their families because they’re forced at legislative gunpoint to feed a bloated governmental Jabba the Hutt, they’re going to take action, especially if the party in power adds fuel to the fire by providing free health care to favored special interest groups but not to them.  This isn’t a race thing or an immigration thing or an anything “thing.”  It’s simple human nature to want to provide basic needs for your family.  When your government tells you that others can get special treatment but you can’t just because you don’t have a coalition or a lobby or a non-governmental agency presenting you as a victim, you’re going to be upset and justifiably so.

Please understand that I’m not talking about the truly needy:  the destitute, those who cannot provide for themselves because of physical or mental impairment or the very young and very old without families who can provide support.  John and Mary Q Public understand that.  Despite what you may have read during this election cycle, they’re not stupid.  But they are fed up.  They’re fed up with members of special interest groups being provided food, clothing, shelter, and healthcare all for free while veterans and those receiving Social Security get shafted.  They’re tired of being told that they can’t display the American flag in their own country because it “might offend someone.”  They look back to a time (that many remember, or at least heard about first-hand) when 18- and 19-year-olds took up arms, fought and sometimes died for the sake of freedom in places like Normandy, Sicily, North Africa, Italy, Germany, seas and islands throughout the South Pacific, Vietnam, Cambodia, Iraq, and Afghanistan.   Then they see 18- and 19-year-olds at home clamoring for “safe spaces” because someone scrawled a candidate’s name in chalk on a college sidewalk. (Seriously, is this current generation of young adults so collectively sheltered and spoiled that none of them realized all you needed to make that scrawl go away forever was the contents of their ever-present water bottle?)

I’ve left out several things on purpose:  the allegations of racism, of misogyny, of inappropriate language caught on a hot mike, of lawbreaking (or, at least, egregiously bending) and of sexual scandal.  Despite what many would have you believe, there’s enough to go around on both sides.  Neither candidate was squeaky-clean.  Not everything said about either candidate was true, nor was everything said about either candidate false.  And dang it, if there’s one thing I’m sick of, it’s the inevitable litany of accusers who are silent as the grave on some wealthy public figure for decades until lo and behold, this figure is leading in the polls and gaining momentum among the undecided public.  Then, as soon as support dries up and goes away, so do the accusers.  This has happened for at least the last three elections (probably for longer) and enough is enough.  I don’t believe in coincidences and this pattern has happened far too consistently for me to give the benefit of the doubt.  I’ve also decided not to mention single-issue voters – those who choose a candidate solely based on their stance on religious freedom, abortion, immigration, foreign policy, the Supreme Court, what they look like, etc.  These are people whose vote was decided long ago and are not germane to this discussion.

Finally, what John and Mary Q. Public were thinking was this.  On one side, we have four more years of what’s been going on the last eight.  President Obama said that a vote for Clinton was an endorsement and continuation of Obama’s legacy.  Donald Trump, Gary Johnson, Jill Stein, and all the other candidates offered themselves as alternatives.  Even though Bernie Sanders gave Clinton and Ted Cruz gave Trump their endorsements, many of their supporters could not stomach voting for the person whom they saw as denying their candidate a “fair chance” at the nomination.  Like John Anderson did in 1980, the third party vote wound up tilting the Electoral College vote for the Republicans.  In the last Presidential Debate of the 1980 cycle, Ronald Reagan famously advised voters to ask themselves “Are you better off than you were four years ago?”  In 1992, Bill Clinton’s campaign team famously paraphrased Reagan’s question into a statement:  “It’s the economy, stupid.”  How ironic that in 2016, Hillary Clinton’s anticipated coronation was halted by the same sentiment.  John and Mary Q. Public decided that no, they are not better off now than they were eight years ago (whether it was because of the economy or any other reason that mattered to them).

So to my friends both here in America and overseas who are disappointed and dismayed at the outcome of the election, believe me when I say that I’ve been in your place.  I was there in 1992, in 1996, in 2008, and again in 2012.  The last election was the worst for me; I honestly didn’t believe that America would survive another four years of Barack Obama’s policies.  I was wrong.  For those of you who think that America cannot survive four years of a Donald Trump administration, I have every confidence that history will prove you wrong, too.  Don’t despair.  Get involved.  Start caring about your government, not just the White House, but your Congressional delegation, too.  Your Governor, your state senators and representatives, and your local governments.  Attend city council and county commission meetings.  Our government is of the people, by the people, and for the people.  And guess what – you ARE the people.  But if you don’t do something, someone else will.  Remember that.  Don’t let discouragement turn into disinterest – let it be your motivation to do better next time.

And for all those who can’t understand how America can be Germany in 1933 all over again, it’s because we aren’t.  We’re America in 1980.  God bless us all, and God help us all.

With Love,

Ginny  >^..^<

References:

Luhbi, Tami (October 25, 2016).  Obamacare Premiums to soar 22%.  CNN Money.  Retrieved from http://money.cnn.com/2016/10/24/news/economy/obamacare-premiums/

Morefield, Scott (August 12, 2016).  CNN’s Cuomo comes right out and admits it: ‘We couldn’t help Hillary any more than we have’.  Bizpac Review.  Retrieved from http://www.bizpacreview.com/2016/08/12/cnns-cuomo-comes-right-admits-couldnt-help-hillary-377744

Time Magazine (November 8, 2016).  What the World Thinks About the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election.  Retrieved from http://time.com/4560936/election-2016-europe-china-russia-middle-east/

Obama Wins Nobel Peace Prize

All I have to say is:  YGTBSM

A Middle-School Lesson for Obama and the Democrats

This is an entry I’ve been meaning to post for quite some time, and feel a strong need to get done while there’s still time before the election, especially with Barack Obama wanting to “spread [America’s] wealth.”  If that statement hasn’t made your alarm bells start clanging, read on:  the following is for you!

Although I was teaching English/Language Arts in the small, rural, impoverished district where I was employed before I moved to the state capitol, at some point during the year, there would arise an occasion to give this small lecture about how Communism/Socialism only works on paper.  I never got to complete the lesson, because someone would indignantly shout out the “moral of the story” before I could finish.  That’s ok–that’s how I wanted it.  I wanted them to realize the lesson on their own and they did.  Every time.

To make my illustration, I would begin by writing on the board that famous one-sentence summary of Marx and Engels’ Communist Manifesto:

From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.

I would then lead a brief discussion of the meaning of that sentence, to ensure that everyone understood what it meant.  I’d then ask the students “Sounds good, doesn’t it?”  The students would agree.  I would leave that quote on the board throughout this mini-lesson.

At this point, I would choose two students to come to the front of the classroom and stand beneath the quote.  I was always careful to choose two students who loved being the center of attention and who could take a good-hearted ribbing.  For the sake of this illustration, I’ll call them “Chris” and “Tyler.”

“Chris,” I’d tell the students, “is a model student.”  Chris is always on time to class, prepared with pencil, paper, and textbook.  Chris takes notes in class, and asks questions in order to ensure understanding of what is being taught.  Chris’ work is always turned in on time, neat and legible.  If there is something Chris still doesn’t understand when class is done, Chris will come in before school to meet with me.  When it’s time for the big test, Chris has kept up with the chapter reading, so on the night before, all Chris has to do is review the things that need reviewing.  Chris gets a good night’s sleep and eats a good breakfast the next morning.  Chris uses the test-taking skills taught in class and takes his/her time.  When I grade the test, Chris’ hard work has paid off, for (s)he has earned a “100” on the test.  I then write a large “100” above “Chris'” head.

Then there’s “Tyler.”  Poor, poor, Tyler.  Tyler is always the last one in class and the first one out.  Tyler’s attendance record has more “no shows” than Harry Houdini at Halloween seances.  When Tyler DOES show up to class, don’t expect to see pencil or paper.  Tyler couldn’t locate the textbook if his/her life depended on it.  Tyler’s idea of taking notes?  Writing a snarky comment on a piece of paper and passing it to a classmate.   The only question Tyler has ever asked in class is “How much longer, Miss?”  The night before the test, Tyler stayed up all night IM’ing someone from MySpace.  Tyler overslept on test day, skipped breakfast, and missed the bus.  Tyler stumbles loudly into class halfway through the period, and announces loudly enough to disrupt everyone:  “We had a test today?”  Of couse Tyler “Christmas tree”‘s the test, marking random answers here and there.  Still, Tyler beat the law of averages and scores a 40 on the test.  I write a large 40 above “Tyler”‘s head.

At this point, I stop to remind the class that 70 is the minimum passing grade, and write a large 70 between “Chris” and “Tyler.” I then remind them of the quotation written on the board above both of them:

From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.

Next, I tell the students that since, according to the principles of Communism/Socialism, “Chris” has 30 points more than (s)he needs, I am going to take those points and give them to “Tyler,” who needs 30 points to pass.

I turn around and, with a different color marker, begin to cross out the “100” above “Chris”‘ head, and draw an arrow toward “Tyler”‘s “40” which I also cross out, replacing each score with a “70.”

Funny thing is, though, I never get to finish.  As I illustrate Communist/Socialist theory on the board, some student–usually one of the more vocal ones, rather than one of the highest-scoring ones–invariably shouts out “But Miss, that’s not fair!”

At that point, I stop.  I cap my marker and put it on the tray.  I turn to the class and benignly smile.  I say quietly and calmly, “And that’s why Communism doesn’t work.”

Middle school students have a super-heightened sense of what is or isn’t “fair.”  They pick up in five minutes what tweed-clad graying Economics professors haven’t learned in over 100 years:  Socialism doesn’t work.  It goes against all of human nature.  If we work hard to earn something and play by the rules, dammit, it’s ours.  Keep your grubby hands off it.  Conversely, if you want to be lazy, that’s your perogative.  If you choose to do so, however, don’t expect someone else to take up your slack.

Please don’t misunderstand me.  I know the system fails from time to time and people who DO play by the rules occasionally lose.  I’m there now myself.  For the first (and hopefully, the last) time in my life, I’m drawing Unemployment.  What I need is a short-term stop-gap measure until I’m back on my feet.  I don’t need some overprotective government entity doing everything for me and making us all pay out the wazoo for it.

The thing we’ve forgotten all too quickly is that whenever liberals attempt to “stick it to the rich,” it’s us average Joes who really get the shaft.  Back in 1991, Congress imposed a “Luxury Tax” on high-ticket items such as jewelry, cars, and boats with a selling price of over $30,000.  What happened was that rich people STILL got the luxury items they wanted–they just bought “gently-used” items instead of new ones in order to avoid paying the tax.  It was the middle- and lower-class wage-earning workers who MADE these big ticket items who wound up paying–by losing their jobs.  No demand means no employment.  The rich stayed rich (hell, they SAVED money in the long run), and the poor workers lost everything.  This “luxury tax” wound up costing the Federal Government money in lost income and sales taxes and increased unemployment and other assistance payouts.  The next Congress couldn’t repeal the “luxury tax” fast enough.

You’d have thought the Democrats would have learned their lesson.  Sadly, they haven’t, else Obama wouldn’t be preaching “sharing the wealth.”  You’d have thought America would have learned its lesson as well when it comes to a “sore loser” tax.  Judging by the number of people who are swallowing Obama’s proposal hook, line, and sinker, I think it’s safe to say that we as a nation haven’t.

Those of you who haven’t yet taken advantage of early voting, it’s not too late.  Let Obama and the Democrats know that you are not falling for this sucker play.  Show them that you’re smarter than that.  My middle school students were.

Postscript:

Apparently, I wasn’t the only one with this Tale to tell.  Waiting for me in my Inbox when I finished was the following link on the same subject.  It’s well worth the read.  I just hope that by using the name “Gator,” he doesn’t mean that he pledges allegiance to the Florida Philistines.  The Dawgs are going to kick some serious Gator tail in Jax on Saturday, then blacken it and serve it on rice, Cajun-style (in remembrance of our sweet victory over LSU this past Saturday)!

Food for Thought

My last post generated quite a bit of interest, and a modicum of criticism.  In accordance with the policies in my House Rules, I posted those that presented logical discourse and debate.  The one who had nothing to contribute but name-calling and anti-Semitic rhetoric got the attention he deserves:  none.

It was, however, the criticism from much closer to home that stung me.  I was told to my face (by someone who is NOT voting for Obama) that my post was shallow and descended into character assassination.  That hurt.  I wrote my post as a cautionary tale (in the spirit of my teaching philosophy derived from George Satanyana’s “Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it”) in order to get my 1.4 daily readers to understand that his/her duty as an American citizen is to go into the polls an informed voter.  Don’t choose one candidate over the other because of something that happened decades ago, or because of an accident of birth, or because of who he chose as a wife, or because of what his kids did (or didn’t do).

Think about your values–what is important to you?  What to you is worth defending?  Worth dying for?  Worth preserving for your children, and for generations after that?  What is it you want people to think when they hear the words “United States of America”?  Once you’ve figured out what your values are, research the candidates.  Look not only at friendly sources, but unfriendly ones as well.  Get the view from all sides, because I guarantee you, there is no such thing as objectivity in media.  There was for one brief, shining moment in the mid-20th century–Edward R. Murrow led the way, but in less than five years after Murrow’s death, even Uncle Walter was showing his true colors of bias.

What matters to me?

The Constitution I swore to give my life for when I joined the service back in 1985.  Even though the Air Force released me from that oath when I received my Honorable Discharge in 1993, I still feel bound by it.  I still will, if necessary, die to defend it.  The ENTIRE Constitution–the Preamble (which, thanks to Schoolhouse Rock as a kid, I have completely memorized), all seven articles, and all 27 amendments, ESPECIALLY the first ten. I’m going with the candidate whose stated positions are more in line with mine regarding a strict interpretation of the Constitution.  Point to McCain, but only because his view is ever-so-slightly stricter than Obama’s on the Constitution.

That includes the First Amendment, which I spent three months studying as a senior in college, under the instruction of one of the foremost scholars of 1st Amendment law in the country, Dr. William Lee at the University of Georgia.  The 1st Amendment states:

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. [Emphasis mine]

Note that the Amendment guarantees freedom OF religion, not freedom FROM religion.  Sorry, ACLU, you’re dead wrong!  Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and the Wahhabists have as their stated goal the deaths of all who do not worship their way.  Sorry, pal, but that ain’t the American way.  If I die for my faith, I fully intend to take as many of my murderers with me as I possibly can.  I’m willing to let God sort it out–are they?

Which leads me to the Second Amendment.  The founding fathers learned their lesson when the British government seized their guns at the first opportunity.  They specifically wrote the Second Amendment to prevent that from happening again.  I AM the NRA, and I DO vote.  I’ll be damned if I drop the ball on my watch. Point to McCain.

Twice already, I have mentioned dying for what I believe in.  That’s my choice.  “Choice” is NOT forcing an innocent to die for one’s own misfortune or stupidity.  Abortion is cold-blooded, pre-meditated murder, period.  Even in the case of rape or incest–there has already been one innocent victim, why must there be two?  Castrate the bastard who did it, and take care of the pre-natal needs of both innocent victims:  mother and baby.  When we were first married, my husband and I sat down and had a serious talk about the Right to Life (which was called “Inalienable” by that Patron Saint of Liberalism, Thomas Jefferson).  We both were in total agreement that if, God forbid, I were ever to be raped and become pregnant as a result, that we could not punish an innocent baby for the circumstances of his conception.  Neither one of us knew if we could raise this child in our own family (and so far, thank God, we have never had to make this decision), but there are SO many good families out there aching for a child to call their own.  One of my very best friends and her husband just recently gave up on their quest to adopt after 16 years on the waiting list.  It was heart-wrenching to see her go through the process of giving up a dream.  Neither Presidential candidate satisfies me on this issue.  Point to Sarah Palin.

Obama made a point of saying at one of his myriad rallies that “All sexuality is sacred.”  Bullmalarkey.  Does that include rape?  Pedophilia?  Incest?  Beastiality?  When it comes to homosexuality, call me a realist.  I know it has gone on since long before recorded history.  It will continue to go on long after I’m cold in the ground (did I ever mention before I don’t want to be cremated?  I don’t, but not for any religious reasons.  The “why” will have to be a Tale for Another Day).  We can make laws against it (and adultery, and premarital sex) until the Second Coming, but it won’t matter a hill of beans to what goes on between two consenting adults in the privacy of their own bedroom.  (On the other hand, I’m all for laws against sexual activity when at least one party does NOT give consent, or is not an adult).  HOWEVER, what you do in the privacy of your bedroom needs to be just that–private and in your bedroom.  Don’t parade it in front of me or my kids, don’t flaunt it, and DON’T make a mockery of a Holy Sacrament instituted by God the Father Almighty by calling what you do “marriage.”  John McCain is on record as supporting the Sanctity of Marriage Acts spreading among the states like a healing salve.  Yes, I know all about the fiasco of his first marriage and transition to his second.  I’m not happy with it, but I’m much less happy about what Obama has said and done.  Point to McCain.

I believe that a stronger America is a safer America.  September 11, 2001 marked the first time in 189 years that a foreign power committed an act of aggression on the American homeland (Hawaii and the Aleutians were merely territories when the Japanese attacked in WWII).  On the morning of September 12, 2001, I bought a red, white, and blue cloth bracelet bearing the slogan “God Bless America” that was being sold as a fundraiser that week by the school where I taught at the time.  Sales had been slow before 9/11; afterward they couldn’t keep them in stock.  It’s still on my wrist, just above my watch.  I remove it only for sleeping and washing.  It’s a constant reminder of what can happen if we let our guard down for just one moment.  I like Theodore Roosevelt’s philosophy of diplomacy:  “Speak softly and carry a big stick.”  His “big stick” was the Great White Fleet.  Ours is the ultimate “wack-bonk” stick:  we hit (“wack”); they fall (“bonk”). [Hey, Instinct, did we agree on 5 or 6 cents per click royalty for the use of your Registered Trademark?  I forget.]  Obama wants to meet the most insidious America-hater on the planet, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, without conditions.  He hobnobs with Hamas.  He wants to abandon all we have worked for in Iraq and Afghanistan, making the deaths of our servicemen valueless and their beliefs (and those of the rest of us veterans) meaningless.  I’ll throw in my lot with the man who has been on the receiving end of the “tender mercies” of America’s enemies.  I want my country represented by a pit bull, not a pansy.   Red, White, and Blue point to McCain.

There’s my two cents and a bit more.  Vote your conscience and vote for the future of America.  But above all, vote.

Margo Channing, the Broadway superstar in the classic 1951 film All About Eve portrayed so brilliantly by Bette Davis, said it best:  “Fasten your seat belts, it’s going to be a bumpy night.”  Make that a bumpy fortnight.

Open Mouth, Switch Feet

My friend Jen sent me this amazing excerpt from a nationally syndicated radio show (whom I won’t identify here because, if I had known the source before I heard it, I would not have listened, and it is WORTH the listen, believe me).

A “man on the street” reporter in NYC goes into Harlem and asks passers-by for whom they intend to vote on November 4.  Of course, to a man, the interviewees answer “Obama.”  They are then asked why they won’t vote for McCain.  Each makes a claim not to like McCain’s stated policies, or something to that effect.

Then the reporter asks the interviewees which policy statements made by Obama is more convincing to them.  Just one thing–every policy stance the reporter mentions is actually a McCAIN issue!  Guess what–every single interviewee embraced the McCain side every time, including the selection of Sarah Palin as the VP nominee!  You have got to hear this to believe it!

Man on the Street in Harlem

Tell me again how this election is about the selection of a president based on an informed electorate????  Or rather, the real lesson learned is this pearl of wisdom:

Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large numbers.

Mind you, this could have happened in just about any liberal stronghold.  This reporter merely happened to choose Harlem, probably for a combination of proximity and liberal saturation.  I’d be willing to bet that if said reporter headed into any number of “blue state” strongholds, he’d get a similar result.  I’m also not saying that all liberals are political Neanderthals–it’s just that it seems that the number of liberals who became so due to independent thought and not by absorbing regurgitated party lines are few and far between.  Tip O’Neill was one.  Lanny Davis is another.

Just for once, though, I’d like to have an intelligent conversation with a liberal about policy that didn’t result in shouting and name-calling on the part of the liberal as soon as I reveal that I don’t agree with liberal thinking.  I’ve tried, most recently on a “networking site for professional women” that had no room for women who think independently of the feminist line.  What a disappointment.  And they have the unmitigated gall to call us Stepford wives?!?  Go figure.

The Vote Reaper

There is a conspiratorial cabal of us conservatives who congregate at The Daily Kitten (the link is to your right)–Instinct (the Wingleader), MeezerMama, her hubby MeezerRoboto, and me.  We had a little “round table” this morning that kept me in stitches.  One thing that I can’t resisting putting out for all to see is this bit of amateur filmmaking brilliance posted by a contributor who calls himself “machosauceproduction.”  It’s one of those things that makes me say “Dang, I wish I’d thought of that!”  Then again, if I had, the impact wouldn’t even come close to this.  Friend, why aren’t you on the talk show circuit–you’d kick * and take names!

The whole time I watched it, I couldn’t help but recall this classic political bit by the Wayans brothers from back in the days of In Living Color.  I thought it appropriate to put them head to head.  Enjoy!

I Don’t Know What to Think…

I was minding my own business, surfing YouTube last night, when I stumbled upon this most interesting clip from a most unlikely source. It originated on al-Jazeera and is translated by their puppet Babel fish, MemriTV. It is a clip of a speech make by Muammar Gaddafi, emasculated dictator of Libya. Buried within the turds of anti-American and -Israeli rhetoric is a most interesting diatribe on Barack Obama. See for yourself.  Then ask yourself why this isn’t raising questions in the American media.  Their silence is deafening.

Which leads me to a bit of a conundrum–what happens when what you’ve suspected all along is confirmed–by someone you know to be the most vile, depraved lunatic on the planet who has never before spoken a single credible word ?

For those of you not politically aware in the time period of roughly the mid-1970’s to the mid-1980’s, at that time, Muammar Gaddafi was Public Enemy #2 (#1 being, of course, the USSR) and was considered to be at times even more dangerous than the Soviets because he was such a loose cannon. In May 1986, President Ronald Reagan had had enough with Gaddafi’s threats and sabre-rattling and ordered Gaddafi’s home bombed in an effort to hold a 2000-lb. laser-guided recall election. Sadly, we didn’t get Gaddafi, only his daughter. Still, he seemed to get the message–he has behaved comparatively much better in the years since, although I will never trust him half as far as I can throw him.

We had so little accurate intel on the dude that we didn’t even know how to spell his last name using our alphabet until he decided to write a Minnesota girl a letter in 1986. Saturday Night Live made a hilarious sketch on the speculation re: the correct spelling of Gaddafi’s last name–my favorite, too, was “Kadaffy Duck.” It’s too bad no one’s posted that on YouTube!

Anyway, back to the Obama connection. This isn’t a Black thing (or African-American, or Person of Color thing–I have friends who separately insist that each one of those is the correct way to say it, to the exclusion of the other two. They are in the minority–most of my friends and acquaintances of Sub-Saharan African origin don’t really seem to care which you use). If Condi Rice had run, I’d have been first in line to volunteer to do grunt work on her campaign. Ditto for JC Watts, whom I have had the distinct privilege to hear speak. A few years ago, an African-American student of mine told me he wanted to be President one day. More power to him, and if he follows through, I’ll be there for him, just because he has always been strong enough to be smart when being smart wasn’t “cool,” and smart enough to be strong when his little brother only cared about being “cool.”

Bottom line about Obama is that his history has more holes than Swiss cheese. He refuses to release his birth certificate, or even allow it to be seen. His citizenship is not in question; as the biological child of one American citizen, he is a native-born American regardless of where he was born. Still, what have you to hide, Barack Hussein Obama, Jr.?

I find it most interesting that there is no refutation of Gaddafi’s claim that you studied in an Islamic school in Indonesia. 200 million other Americans would give their right arm to be able to say “In your face!” to Gaddafi–why aren’t you doing it when the opportunity is handed to you as an engraved invitation on a silver platter?

How could you attend a church for 20 years, listening to the same pastor preach the same message of racist hate week after week (MLK must be spinning in his grave over the way his message has been adulterated) by the very man you claim led you to Christ, and then say you didn’t know he felt that way??? Looking at men from the inside was good enough for MLK. It is good enough for Almighty God Himself. Why isn’t it good enough for Jeremiah Wright, and why don’t you care that it isn’t?

When you say you want “change,” have you given any in-depth thought as to what that change should be and how you are going to accomplish it, while keeping our country strong? To me, your statements seem to say you want “change for change’s sake.” Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot of stuff in this country that badly needs fixing. What scares me more though, is throwing the baby out with the bath water, all in the name of “change.” You seem to have forgotten the tub is still occupied, and you are swinging at the open window and at the count of two.

Above all, why, Barack Hussein Obama, Jr., can’t I shake the intense impression that you are a “sleeper.” Again, for the benefit of my esteemed readers who weren’t politically aware during the Cold War, sleepers are undercover spies who are sent to an area and ordered to blend in. That’s all. No contacts, no intel gathering, nothing. That is, until he is activated.

That’s what makes a sleeper so dangerous–he lives a bland, ordinary life until he acts, usually inflicting great, unforseen damage. Kim Philby was a sleeper for the Soviets, having risen to the upper levels of MI6 and acting as liasion to the new CIA–therefore having access to the secrets of TWO countries–before the heat got too great and he defected. The Scientologists used both overt and sleeper tactics over a 20-year period to infiltrate the Internal Revenue Service in order to obtain the 501(c)3 status that they had long coveted.

Obama’s squirreliness and evasiveness regarding everything in his life from his birth certificate, to his education, to his relationship with his father, to his racist attitude toward his maternal grandmother who helped raise him, to his religion(s), to his experience (or lack thereof) give me pause. When a person works so hard to hide the little things that don’t matter, what am I supposed to think about this person when it comes to the big things that DO matter? When food in the fridge stinks, you throw it out. When the words coming from a candidate’s mouth stink, you either find someone else you can support or at least find a “lesser evil.” In this case, there are at least two “lesser evils” out there. Pick one.

There are more things about Obama that give me pause, but he’s not the only one. A lot about McCain makes me less than confident about the 2008 elections as well. Those details; my thoughts on Ron Paul; and why, much as I have liked and respected Bob Barr throughout his political career, I will not vote for him in November are Tales for Another Day. I promise that sometime between now and November, I will address them. Today, though, it’s Obama’s turn.

I leave you with this video clip for a fantastic miniseries the BBC produced in the early 90’s and exported later to PBS. It is a humorous chronicle of two forgotten Soviet sleepers in Britain who are suddenly remembered, to the consternation of all. Be sure to read the sidebar on the YouTube page for additional info.

I firmly believe that Barack Obama is a sleeper, but not at all a funny one, nor a forgotten one. I pray that I am wrong, but I don’t think I am. Time will tell.


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