Monday, October 20, 2008

Green Party Russian Roulette

Today I heard an advocate for the Green Party talking about their strategy for the '08 election. He said that Barack Obama is ahead 14% and so we should vote for Cynthia McKinney, in order to get her to 5%, which will make people sit up and pay attention. I thought about this strategy, and it reminds me of the game of Russian Roulette. You load one bullet in the chamber of a gun, spin it, aim the gun at your head, and pull the trigger, knowing that there's a 16% chance you may die. If McKinney steals 5% of Obama's vote, if the election were held today, that would leave him in the single digits. Right now, the Republicans have already managed to purge millions of people from the voter roles. That combined with and all the other election fraud leaves Obama in danger of losing this election within a margin of error, and if he does, America is dead, and no one will care that McKinney scored those attention points. This election is too important to play this game. I agree with many of the policies of the Green Party, but in this "strategy," they are like children playing with a gun. Instead of showing up every four years, like Ralph Nader, and enthusiastically trying to crush and trash the Democrats, maybe they should try organizing their party in between elections for a change and push for things like such as instant run-off voting. They should put the gun away, and vote for Obama.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

9/11TM A New Low

On September 10, Keith Olbermann made a blistering “Special Comment” that accused the Republican party of making political hay out of the absolute terror of 9/11, and trade marking it to further their agenda.

At the 2004 Republican National Convention, they offered a “tribute” to 9/11, on prime-time television, when children were watching. Instead of a tribute, what people saw were the most horrifying videos of planes hitting the buildings and people jumping to their deaths, again opening up the deep wound. After doing that, Dick Cheney literally told people, if you didn’t vote for him, we would “get hit again.”

Yesterday, Sarah Palin sent her son Track off to war in Iraq, reminding him and the world that he was fighting against the people who hit us on 9/11, and delighted in it. This is in 2008, years after even President Bush said there was no connection between Iraq and 9/11.

She knows it’s a lie, so then why did she say it? Was it because this would galvanize patriotic Americans around her sacrifice? Because she still really thinks that there is a connection between Iraq and 9/11? No. She’s not that stupid. Here is the real reason; just as Bush shamelessly used our young soldiers as props for his propaganda, she is using her own son as a prop in order to get elected. This is the most reprehensible act I have ever witnessed, and each time I think I will no longer wonder at how low these people can go, each time they hit a new abysmal watermark, I am surprised.

Where is this country headed, when 50% of Americans give this “Dick Cheney in a dress” a positive approval rating? My fellow Americans, the time is very short, and our future decisions are extremely grave. This is not a beauty pageant contest. We must understand the urgency of this situation and shout out to our brothers and sisters from the mountaintops at the top of our lungs that we cannot allow these horrible people to continue to lie to us, use us, and kill us, and others from other countries that they are salivating to kill. Especially the new terrifying boogiemen, the “Islamofascists.” Psychologists say that the pleasure of killing is even greater than sex. I guess that’s why these people are so attached to their guns.

If Sarah Palin won’t hesitate to use her own son as a prop, then how will she treat yours? She won’t think twice, or “second guess” what anyone else says. In her own words, she “won’t even blink.”

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Congress considering a blockade on Iran - An act of war

The U.S. House of Representatives is considering a new resolution that could effectively demand a blockade against Iran -- an act that would be widely seen as an act of war and could invite Iranian retaliation, possibly leading us into a shooting war. Condi was on TV yesterday saying that Iran has two weeks to comply to our demands, otherwise face tougher sanctions. This is the condition to stop uranium enrichment completely, before negotiations can even begin. Ironically, the N.I.E. (National Intelligence Estimate) has concluded that Iran has not been working on nuclear weapons capability since 2003, but only on peaceful energy.

Barack Obama has called for unconditional negotiations, which we have done successfully with N. Korea. Also, yesterday, CNN aired video describing the high tension on board our Navy boats in the Strait of Hormuz, the little 20 mile bathtub drain at the end of the Persian Gulf, through which 40% of the world's oil flows. This is a tense situation, and congress may be voting soon that could bring it to a whole other level.

Over the last three weeks, 77 House Democrats and 92 Republicans have agreed to cosponsor this resolution, but I and many others think many do not realize its dangerous implications.
This resolution (H. Con. Res. 362) was introduced by Representative Gary Ackerman. The most alarming provision "demands that the President initiate an international effort to immediately and dramatically increase the economic, political, and diplomatic pressure on Iran to verifiably suspend its nuclear enrichment activities by, inter alia, prohibiting the export to Iran of all refined petroleum products; imposing stringent inspection requirements on all persons, vehicles, ships, planes, trains, and cargo entering or departing Iran; and prohibiting the international movement of all Iranian officials not involved in negotiating the suspension of Iran's nuclear program."

Such a blockade imposed without United Nations authority (which the resolution does not call for) would be seen as an act of war. Congressional sources say the bill might first go to committee, which gives us a little more time to pressure our representatives. But whether or not it goes first to committee, or directly to the floor of the House, action on H. Con. Res. 362 is needed now.

I urge you to ask your representative not to support this dangerous step toward war with Iran.

Congressional leaders seem to have assumed that there would be little opposition to this punitive measure against Iran, and they have put it on a fast track to passage. But due to the threat of war, many organizations and reasonable members of Congress are working overtime to stop this bill. Won't you join them?

Please take action now -- ask your representative to oppose this dangerous path that could lead directly to war with Iran.

You can find the full text of the resolution and list of co-sponsors here:

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Now this is scary

Letter published in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette:

On his recent stop in Pittsburgh, John McCain said on KDKA TV that he recited the names of the Steelers defensive linemen when he was asked under interrogation for the names of his squadron mates ("McCain's Mind No Steel Trap in Recalling Steelers," July 12). He said, "When I was first interrogated and really had to give some information because of the pressures, the physical pressures that were on me, I named the starting lineup -- defensive line of the Pittsburgh Steelers -- as my squadron mates."

Of course, it's untrue, and the sleaziest kind of pandering, because Mr. McCain was shot down in 1967, and the "Steel Curtain" didn't exist until 1972. He has repeated this story many times in different places, but in those instances, the Green Bay Packers were the ones who were named.

This is frightening to me, because this person is running for president, and to blatantly lie like that to Pittsburghers, to assume that they are not smart enough to notice, shows not only a complete lack of authenticity, integrity and judgment, but also calls into question his ability to govern.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Progressives - Don't Get Your Panties in a Wad

All the people who are screaming bloody murder about what Obama said about the Supreme Court ruling on capitol punishment in the case of child rape, or any other issue they accuse him of "flip-flopping on, need to understand one thing. The primaries are over. This is a very serious general election process, and Barack Obama is doing exactly what needs to do get elected. Do you really think Obama is for capitol punishment? No!

Think about this: what do you think the right wing smear machine would do with child rape issue? Don't you think they would then say "Barack Obama is FOR child rape." You know they would say that. Or they would say about the FISA law, "Obama is against protecting us from terrorists by not listening to them." Or what if he came out for gun control? No, no, no, NO! These aren't the things that you talk about in a general election. He isn't talking about these things, and he is brilliantly navigating through this election process. This not about being as tried and true about policy as he was in the primaries, and if you think it is, you are completely missing the point, and do not understand the way an election works.

Obama will deal with policy after he gets elected, but he can't blow it in the meantime, so don't get in his way by going off on a tirade against him. If you have paid any attention at all to any general election process, you would know that both sides tack to the middle in the general. On the other hand, if progressives demand that Obama supports everything they like, then that is kind of childish. He is dealing with this election in an adult fashion. Everyone that is so upset with on this or that policy that they don't support him any more because of these things frankly need to grow up or shut up and go home until the election, because they're just going to cause problems. Don't rock the boat! He's winning!

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Sunday, March 23, 2008

Fun With Numbers

This fascist corporatocracy called the Bush Administration just gave predatory lenders a 30 billion dollar bail out a few days ago, leaving homeowners in tent cities. That's half the treasury. It's stunning, but Bush crime family steals big so people won't even realize it because of shock. It's the economic part of what Naomi Klein talks about in "The Shock Doctrine," and now it's happening fast and furious. Besides the war profiteering, and the oil companies making record profits, it's the biggest heist in history.
To give you an idea of how much money that is, remember when Paul Bremer lost 9 billion in cash - cellophane bricks of hundred dollar bills in Iraq and and blamed it on primitive accounting practices? That's 21 big rig tractor trailers full of cash. So 30 billion they just gave to the predatory lenders would fill 64 trailers full of 100 dollar bills. If those containers were put on a train, it would be over 3/4 of a mile long. That's our tax money, that we and our grandchildren, and generations beyond will have to pay back with interest. You can see that amount of money from space. Forget about ENRON, and Bear Sterns - whole economy is falling apart because of deregulation, and Spitzer was trying to go after some of the vultures on wall street who were taking advantage of the deregulation and cashing in at the expense of millions of innocent homeowners. The cons wanted to protect their crony crime buddies in the financial sector, so of course he was politically whacked.

It's such a huge story, but there is so much going on, and to worry about, that I'm just so shell-shocked that I can hardly decide what to focus on. It’s too much. Spitzer's not the only one who has been whacked recently. Admiral Fallon - the only obstacle between peace and Cheney's war with Iran has also been taken out. That's even more worrying to me, because that means Armageddon.

And the only hope in the situation is electing Barack Obama, but the Democrats are self-destructing in these prolonged primaries, and if the super-delegates can't come together soon, and decide between these two candidates like in a couple of weeks, instead of dragging this cage-fight until Labor Day, and the election is like four days later, I guarantee you will see repeat of the nightmares of 2000 and 2004, and we will have four more years Grandpa "Bomb Bomb" McBush.

These are the things that keep me up at night.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

How many vets sleep under a bridge?

During the January 7 edition of MSNBC's Countdown, host Keith Olbermann named Fox News host Bill O'Reilly the "winner" of his nightly "Worst Person in the World" segment for saying that Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards "has no clue," as Media Matters for America documented, regarding Edwards' statement that "tonight, 200,000 men and women who wore our uniform proudly and served this country courageously as veterans will go to sleep under bridges and on grates." Olbermann stated: "But our winner -- well, it's Bill-O night. He blasted John Edwards for noting in Iowa that 200,000 vets sleep each night under bridges and on grates. Quoting Bill-O: 'The only thing sleeping under a bridge is that guy's brain. Ten million illegal alien workers are sending billions of dollars back home, and Edwards is running around saying nobody has any money.' " Olbermann continued: "Seriously. First off, Lou Dobbs is going to kick your backside for working his side of the street. Secondly, it's 200,000 tonight. Over the course of the year, the Veterans Administration says, 336,000 vets will be homeless on and off." Olbermann concluded: "Why don't you try changing positions with one of them, Bill? See how long you last, then run your mouth about Edwards. The over/under on that, by the way, would be three minutes. Bill Orally, tonight's 'Worst Person in the World.' "

This morning I met two separate homeless vets who sleep under bridges, so I wrote to "papa bear."

Mr. O'Reilly,

I was on my way to a Penguins game here in Pittsburgh, in the middle of a blizzard, there was a man sitting on some cardboard on the sidewalk holding out a paper drink cup in his hand. He was sober. I knew it would be single digit temperatures tonight, so I game him my change, and warned him that he'd better get some shelter tonight. He told me that they only have about 12 beds left in the shelter, and he can't get in, and in order to get into the Veteran's Administration facility "you have to be practically dead." I asked, "You're a veteran?" He said, "Yes, I'm a Vietnam veteran. I stepped on a land mine." (He pulls up him pant-leg to show the scars) I gave him $5, and I said, "You know that talk-show host Bill O'Reilly? He says you don't exist. That there are no vets sleeping under bridges." He pointed to the Fort Pitt Bridge and he said, "You can go right down there tonight and see them. They gave me some blankets, but it gets cold!"

Later on another man approached me for some change. He was also a Vietnam veteran, who sleeps under the bridge, and that every year, there are more and more new Iraq veterans joining him under the bridge. I talked to a Iraq veteran from the first war begging under an overpass at a Steeler game. I gave him some money, and wished him well.

Be a man, and show them the money as promised Bill, otherwise you will be sleeping under a bridge in your next life.

- Scott

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Fear mongering will no longer win elections

The following is a letter to the editor of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette:

Bob G. Wyeth, in his January 3, 2008 letter, "Bhutto's killing is a reminder of what we're fighting" said that Democrats are disappointed that Bhutto was killed because it draws attention to national security issues, which "cuts against their plans for coronation on Jan. 20, 2009." As a Democrat, I must say that I was deeply saddened at the news, not for political reasons, but because Mrs. Bhutto represented hope for democracy in an unstable Muslim country. To use such an event to stir up fear and terror in order to stay in political power is an insidious tactic that the majority of Americans are not buying anymore. We also think that George W. Bush's policies have made us less safe. When asked about Bin Laden, to his everlasting shame, our president said, "I don't know where he is. I'm truly not that concerned about him."

To blame Mrs. Bhutto for her own death by saying she "went and got herself killed," or "she hit her head," is just disgusting, and adds insult to injury. There are many questions that remain unanswered. Why wasn't she provided the protection that she requested? Why was there only one exit from the venue? It's very politically convenient for Mr. Wyeth, the Republican spin machine, and the Pakistani government to jump to conclusions and blame Al Qaida when there hasn't even been an investigation yet, but they have to, because fear is the only platform they are running on. Thanks for the reminder, Mr. Weyth, but I am not afraid.