Archive for July, 2008

About the Greatness of America; What Is Great About It?

Wednesday, July 16th, 2008

 

       To say, “America is great,” says nothing about either America or greatness; there is no communication.  The statement requires clarification. 

      Assuming that America is referring to the United States of America, then America is defined as a sovereign nation, one that is well recognized.  ‘Great’ is an adjective that could mean a number of things but for convenience sake, the meaning of ‘great’ used in context with America, is ‘being beyond the average’.  So, to say that America is great begs the question; what is great about America?

      To a patriot or a chauvinist (and there is a difference), America could be ‘great’ or beyond the average in economic opportunity, wealth, natural resources, or democracy (democracy exists to degree).  However, to an enemy of America, America could be ‘great’ or beyond the average, as in a ‘great pain in the ass’.  As a matter of fact, America can at times be a ‘great pain in the ass,’ to the patriot, when America is at times mismanaged or leaders have corrupted American values.

     To a chauvinist, American can do no wrong.  Personally, it is my belief that America has too many chauvinists, which is bad for America because if the chauvinists rule America, the nation does not have to justify its image or greatness.

     To study American History and Geography is to discover many ways in which America is beyond the average when compared to other sovereign nations.  However, it is to belabor the obvious, to state that half the sovereign nations of the world would be great or beyond the average in almost everything.

     In my personal assessment of my America’s greatness, there is only one aspect of greatness that cannot be matched by any other sovereign nations in the world and that is American democracy!  America is not the only democracy in the history of the world: there was ancient Athens; there was Switzerland in 1291; and there was America which was created in the image of both Athens and Switzerland.  But the democratic Republic of America is unique in its Constitution and in its Bill of Rights.  Constitutional America is far from perfect, but it has continuously improved over its more than two hundred years of existence.  It is the greatest in the world!

     Becoming a soldier in the United States Army is an exhilarating and illuminating experience, among other things.  An American soldier takes an oath to defend America, but the oath goes beyond defending America, a soldier also vows to defend the Constitution of the United States.  The reason for including the Constitution in a soldier’s oath is self evident.  To a soldier taking that oath, the Constitution takes on a whole new meaning.

     The Constitution provides that when the President of the United States takes office, he or she takes the following oath: “I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of the President of the United States and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”  In America, it is evident that the U.S. Constitution is a sacred trust.

     The Constitution of the United States of America is unequaled, unparalleled!

     In American politics, the two party system prevails.  In terms of issues, there is little that separates the two parties, and to prevail requires compromise, compromise, compromise.  However, in the institution of American Constitutional government, the United States Constitution can never ever be compromised!

     Unfortunately, in the history of the United States there have been incidents where the U.S. Constitution has been compromised by heroic Presidents of the United States, in times of chaos and exigency.  For example, President Lincoln suspended habeas corpus during the Civil War and President Franklin Roosevelt imprisoned American citizens of Japanese heritage during World War II; in both cases, in the aftermath of the emergencies, the Presidents were censured for violations of the Constitution.  Those violations of the Constitution are dire marks on otherwise heroic behavior and the otherwise greatness of America.

     When it recently became public knowledge that President Bush had carried on a covert operation of spying on American citizens in violation of the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution, by interception and recording of electronic communications of Americans without a valid Warrant, Democrats and Republicans alike were aghast.    President Bush defended his clandestine violations of the Constitution as a power of a President to defend the nation in time of war.  However, President Bush’s Oath of Office, like that of all Presidents, included the requirement that he ‘preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.”; there is no provision in the Constitution for a President to violate it, in war or peace.

     The spying operation by President Bush, in violation of the Constitution, was a shameful act.  That President Bush suffered no consequences for violating the Constitution and his oath of office, compromises and dishonors the Constitution of the United States.  Under these circumstances, America has failed the American Constitutional forefathers efforts to create a truly great constitutionals democratic Republic. 

     Americans in all walks of life must be made aware of our nation’s currwent failure.  Certainly, President Bush has failed the American soldiers, especially those in harm’s way, who are fulfilling the obligations of their oath to defend the American Constitution.

     In summary, that aspect of greatness for which America has no equal is the Constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights.  For America to be the greatest democratic Republic in the world, the U.S. Constitution cannot be compromised in any way, shape, or form.  When the Constitution is violated, America’s greatness is totally diminished!

What Life Is About!

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

 

At those times, when memory strikes out at me

and I am in such a mood

that I grieve for myself;

I ask those unending spirits that be,

“What purpose this heart had beat within?”

This and that perspective of mine,

attributed to my wit, long passed,

what genuine mark will survive

when flesh on these bones decay?

What of those, I gave heart and soul

and in return, they gave to me.

Aye, that and that alone survives,

love that I had for you. 

 

Pearls From the Mouth of the Muse!

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

Those living beings who inhabit the earth and have never seen a UFO, have never contemplated the heavens.

First, Strike Out the Democrat Enemy Within; Then Go To November!

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

     Today, I was asked to sign a petition to censure Senator Diane Feinstein for her vote to give immunity to telecom corporations for being a co-conspirator with President Bush to secretly violate the U.S. Constitution’s Fourth Amendment and secretly and indiscriminately intercepting and recording electronic communications of American citizens without a valid Warrant.  As a liberal democrat, there can be no compromise for violations of my Constitutional Rights.  Therefore, I gladly signed the petition and added my comment along with my signature.  This is my comment:

 

      “If liberal democrats are to be totally ignored by Democrats serving in Congress, then the Democratic Party no longer serves the liberal democrat agenda and we need to form our own party, so the Democratic Party will have to give us consideration if they want our contributions and vote.  It is time that the Democratic Party recognizes liberal democrats as a force to be negotiated with; it is, after all, our party.  If Democrats in Congress feel obligated to placate ‘centrists’, Neocons, and other conservatives, who violate the Constitution, then those Democrats can look to someone other than liberal democrats for contributions and votes.”

 

     Otherwise, it is time to purge our Democratic party of the Feinsteins, Liebermans, and other ‘Neocon Lites’, in order to serve the real purpose of our party members.”

 

     Liberal democrats ARE the Democratic Party!

The Disappointment of Obama; Will It Cost the Election

Saturday, July 12th, 2008

       Barack Obama is an eloquent speaker, who introduced himself to American politics and the Democratic party as a liberal democrat that had come to save the American democratic Republic from the damage inflicted by the fascist Neocon Administration of George W. Bush.  Liberal democrats from all walks of life joined Obama is his cause to restore the U.S. Constitution, end the unjust immoral wars of President Bush, and return the government of America to the people, wresting it away from the plutocratic corporate America that President Bush had empowered to overrule the will of the people.

     “Yes we can!” Obama shouted; “Yes we can!” young idealistic Americans responded, along with the old liberal Democrats that are remnants of the Roosevelt-Truman Era.

     Senator Obama recently became the presumed Democratic candidate for President based on his movement to restore the Constitution and end the cycle of fascistic government and war mongering that has been the policy of the Neocon Bush Presidency.  Obama defeated fellow Democrat, Senator Hillary Clinton, based on the contention that Clinton was strictly political in her attempt to defeat the disastrous Bush Administration; Clinton made every effort to be a “centrist” candidate, to win independent and Republican-leaning ‘conservative’ voters.

     On July 9, 2008, Senator Obama shocked his loyal backers, by voting favorable on legislation that would grant immunity from prosecution to telecom corporations.  American telecom corporations had entered into a conspiracy with President Bush to secretly listen and record private telephone conversations and internet emails of American citizens without having a legal warrant issued that justified such otherwise ‘unlawful search and seizure’; this is a direct violation of the Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution.

      “The right of the people to be secure in the persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons and things to be seized.”

      The Constitution is quire clear on the issue. 

      It was only recently that it was discovered that the Bush Administration had been secretly and unlawfully intercepting and recording private communications of American citizens, without warrants, and that the telecom corporations were co-conspirators in the clandestine operation of the President in violation of the Constitution.  Even Congress was unaware of the operation and appeared outraged when it was uncovered.

     After the secret operation was discovered, President Bush defended his action indicating that he was President and America was at war with terror and thus he was justified in violating the Constitution; now, his operation was found out and he wanted Congressional approval of his violations of the Constitution and he also wanted immunity for his telecom corporate co-conspirators from prosecution.  On July 9th, President Bush got his wish and Senator Obama voted for the legislation to give telecom corporations immunity from prosecution.

      Obama followers were devastated!

      In the height of his campaign against Clinton for the nomination, Obama promised to fight and filibuster against granting immunity to telecom corporations; his supporters believed him.  Restoring the Constitution was the ‘centerpiece’ of his candidacy.

      Now, Obama’s vote for immunity for telecom corporations was a total violation of the trust his supporters had in him, just as the telecom corporations had violated the trust of their subscribers by participating in the illegal Bush operation against telecom customers.

      The Senator’s explanation for reversing his promise to his supporters was a non-explanation.  The bill voted on was, “an improved but imperfect bill”, Obama timidly explained.  Senator Obama’s vote and explanation to his followers does not fit a Senator voting his conscience.  Senator Obama needs to explain who or what changed his mind for him and why he changed his vote; his vote was obviously not in the interests of the people who lent their support for him in his race for the Presidency.  As of July 9, Obama supporters will have an extremely difficult time justifying their vote for him in November.

      Senator Obama’s vote in reversal of his prior promise was not a vote on a superficial issue that could be simply explained as a compromise vote; the vote for telecom corporation immunity from prosecution was a vote to compromise the Constitution of the United States; it is the same Constitution that Senators and all government personnel, including soldiers, take an oath to defend and protect.  Obama owes a better explanation to the American people; just who was he representing when he cast his vote.

      Recent Democratic candidates, Bill Clinton, Al Gore, and John Kerry have all felt a necessity to appeal to the more conservative voters, at the expense of the liberal Democrats, for some odd reason.  Liberal Democrats have felt left out of the Democratic Party’s election process.  In 2000, enough liberal Democrats voted for Ralph Nader that President Bush won the election over the expected winner, Gore.

      In every American Presidential election, thirty percent of the eligible voters fail to vote; these voters obviously believe that none of the candidates, including the Democratic candidate, represent his or her interests. 

      It is obvious to the liberal Democrats that Senator Obama has not voted in their best interests on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.  The question now appears to be, will liberal Democrats think their vote will make any difference at all in November?  Or will they vote for Nader or write in Mickey Mouse?

       President Bush and his compatriots have managed over the last seven years to make the term ‘liberal’ appear to be a dirty word; it isn’t.   A dictionary definition of a liberal is: “Holding political views supporting civil liberty, democracy, and use of governmental power to promote social progress.”

       A liberal Democrat certainly has nothing to apologize for.  It does not appear rational that a Democratic candidate who appealed to liberal Democrats, would have to repudiate that appeal in order to appeal to anyone else or any other voters” 

       One would also think that conservative voters would be just as impressed for a candidate to vote to uphold, defend, and protect the Constitution as liberal Democrats. 

      Further, it does not seem possible that under any circumstances, a member of Congress would actually vote to make telecom corporations that knowingly and intentionally violated the United States Constitution and their subscriber’s trust should be made immune from prosecution for their illegal behavior.  In fact, such an act makes voters wonder why they should vote in federal elections at all.  Obama’s supporters thought that he was going to be different; what a disappointment!

Oil, Oil, Everywhere And Not A Drop To Tank!

Tuesday, July 8th, 2008

       My father courted my mother in a horse and buggy and that provides some perspective into how long that America has been an ‘Automobile Society’.  That may sound like America has been an ‘Automobile Society’ for a long time, considering that I am only a short time away from becoming the beginnings of fossil fuel myself.  However, the point is that the Fossil-Fuel Dependent Era, compared to the history of the world, is not a long period of a time; perhaps the world is simply ready for something new.  Actually, the world is overdue for something else, but the oil and automotive industry have convinced Americans, at least, that fossil fuel is God’s absolution from original sin.

     Many Americans seem to think that the entire world is like America, in terms of automobile dependency, which is not true.  Fortunately for them, most of the world is void of the commute hour traffic that Americans enjoy for doing penitence for all their other sins.  But, for Americans who have been conceived in a car, they believe that if the world runs out of oil there will be no more children conceived and the world will end.

     Actually, America is probably the only totally ‘Automobile Society’.   Europe would like to be, since the trend is for Europe to ape everything American, good or bad.  However, Europeans have no hope of joining America’s ‘Automobile Society’ for a very good reason; there are no parking places in Europe.

     In my lifetime, America has always faced the day when no fossil fuel will be available.  The argument simply was that there was only a limited supply of dead dinosaurs to provide gasoline for the American family sedan.

     The truth of the matter is that in America, it was the lobby of the automobile industry that convinced Washington D.C. and the nation that Americans should dismantle the railroads, pull up the rails of the trolley, and eliminate bus routes.  It was a Constitutional Right for every American to own his own car.  America was convinced that it could not live without a full gas tank.  Because Europe had a parking problem, they fortunately retained their mass transit, public transportation to use when it was faster than driving the traffic ‘grid’.

      Suddenly, America has encountered a threat to their beloved ‘American civilization’, as Americans are prone to refer to it (to others, it is an oxymoron).  Gasoline prices suddenly escalated to astronomical proportions.  The democratic Republic of America faces annihilation.  All of America, except Amish Americans, went into panic.  Americans wanted answers.

      The oil industry, whose profits soared beyond their wildest dreams, responded by informing the people that it was simply an economic matter of ‘supply and demand’, just like the rising costs in the medial health care insurance industry, and Americans ‘should get over it’.  This explanation satisfied the White House.  However, Americans were somewhat puzzled by the explanation that there was a shortage of oil when they had encountered no problems in finding a filling station that was not eager to fill their gas tank.  The fact that the oil industry is a monopoly and can charge anything they decide to charge because they can, never seem to enter the minds of Americans; after all, the oil companies are always so compassionate and nice on television commercials.

      Of course when a catastrophe strikes America, the industrious and ingenious Americans consider it a call for action and a resolution of the problem.  The oil industry responded immediately of course offering to drill for oil in areas previously considered off limits for humanitarian reasons.  There was also the underlying possibility that America could invade Iran and further control production of Arab oil, to lower gasoline prices.

     No one in America suggested that America restore the public transportation system that had been dismantled years ago; unfortunately, that would be regressive and archaic.  Meanwhile, the serious-faced Amish community developed a classic wry smile to the chagrin of their ‘English’ neighbors, who had inside plumbing.

      The Washington D.C. crowd assured America that they were on top of the issue, despite President Bush being unaware of the price of gasoline.  Washington politicians indicated that they would indeed find a means to lower gas prices; they just needed time to study the problem.  Most of the members of Congress miraculously came up with an original solution, not unlike the solution of the oil industry, it will be necessary to drill for oil in Arlington Cemetery.  Liberals suggested nationalizing the oil industry.  A conservative Congressman from Iowa suggested that fields growing bio-fuel be converted to hay fields, to the delight of the Amish.

      Religious leaders were uncertain about why God had provided Islam with so much of the fossil-fuel deposits.  Some suggested that the price of gasoline be resolved by killing  all 1.6 billion Muslims, just as all the Philistines had been slain in the Old Testament. Some believed that God was punishing America for producing ‘dirty’ movies and that the solution to high gas prices was the censorship and boycott of movies.  The Amish admitted that they had no solution.

      Interestingly, there were no suggestions that good ol’ American ingenuity be used to provide public transportation and that alternate fuels, such as hydro-electric, solar, atomic, and hydrogen, be developed on a ‘crash’ basis (immediately).  If America could develop the atomic bomb in a matter of a few years and develop computers that can be held in the palm of the hand in a matter of months, cannot Americans resolve this crisis in a matter of days, weeks, or months?  Of course, the big object to overcome would the obvious demise of the oil industry that would be relegated to producing charcoal starter for Fourth of July barbeques.  Pity.

GREAT IDEAS: Exercise machine for the Computer Dependent

Monday, July 7th, 2008

Here is a great idea for an exercise machine that is specifically built for bloggers or others who acre computer dependent: a stationary bicycle with a computer key board and 20 inch screen, instead of handlebars.

 

President Bush, the Iraq War, and Intellect Or Lack Thereof!

Monday, July 7th, 2008

     The President of the United States is a totally bizarre nincompoop.  Eighty percent of all Americans oppose his war in Iraq and want America out of Iraq.  Imagine, the most powerful nation of earth having a President that defies the people and insists that America must sacrifice its soldiers and ‘stay the course’ in Iraq because there is chaos and violence during America’s occupation; then only months later, the same President, attempts to convince Americans that his “Surge” policy has ended the chaos and violence in Iraq and insists that America ‘stay the course’ in Iraq because there is no chaos nor violence there!

 

     Thought for the day:

What has America done that God considered so bad that He punished the democratic Republic by giving its people such an arrogant, sadistic nincompoop for President?

Senators McCain and Obama Owe General Wesley Clark an Apology

Friday, July 4th, 2008

     Much has been made and much has been said about General Wesley Clark’s response to Bob Shieffer’s belittling remark about Sen. Obama, on the CBS television program “Face the Nation”.

      “I have to say, Barack Obama has not had any of those experiences either, nor has he ridden in a fighter plane and gotten shot down, I mean,” Schieffer remarked.

     “Well, I don’t think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be President,” Clark responded.

     General Wesley Clark is a brilliant man, valedictorian of his West Point class, a Rhodes Scholar, and a Vietnam War hero that was shot four times and received the Silver Star medal.  Clark has served America in military executive positions, including commanding NATO, and received a numerous commendations and medals.  Wes Clark made an intelligent remark about Senator McCain’s military record, “. . . I don’t think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be President” and it isn’t.

      McCain’s heroism is not in and of itself a qualification to be President and neither would Clark’s being shot and winning a Silver Star.  Both men are to be admired for their heroism and their experience shows exceptional character and neither one of them should or would deny the other’s character in those acts of heroism.

     Certainly all Americans including myself, admire John McCain’s military service, but if I had to make a decision on who would be my President based on ‘riding in a fighter plane’, personally I would prefer a President who rode a fighter plane and DID NOT get shot down to be my President, for obvious reasons.  That is not to imply that getting shot down was any particular fault of John McCain and certainly his survival was heroic, however, he could impress me even more, if he had the character and presence to agree with General Clark’s statement; it would show good judgment.

      Man is either victim to or beneficiary of the circumstances in life; some become heroes and others are never remembered.  The Presidency is about judgment and not circumstances.  Circumstances are a matter of luck (or Divine Province).

      Senator Obama has stated that he disagrees with General Clark.  Pity.  General Clark is an honorable man and has said nothing wrong.   Ironically, in denouncing General Clark’s statement, Senator Obama has shown poor judgment and his whole campaign has been about his having qualities of good judgment because he never rode in a fighter plane and was shot down.

     Hopefully, Senator McCain is not basing his campaign on riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down.  The competition of Navy pilots who rode fighter planes and did not get shot down would devastate McCain’s campaign.  Americans have already experienced President Bush, the senior, a man who rode a fighter plane and was shot down but had no other qualifications; Americans admire President Bush’s heroism but were not impressed with his Presidency.

      Furthermore, if John McCain actually is not basing his Presidential campaign on his war experiences as qualifications, he should frankly be honest and admit it; it would show both character and good judgment.  Unfortunately, Senator McCain has not chosen to agree with General Clark.

       Obama and McCain, in my judgment, both owe an apology to General Clark; he has said nothing wrong.  And, both Presidential candidates should read General Clark’s biography and be made aware that General Clark’s record of experience and judgment genuinely qualifies him for the Presidency and it has nothing to do with his heroism in battle.  General Clark has executive experience far beyond that of either of the two Presidential candidates.  I just might want to write Clark’s name in on my ballot in November.

Qualifications for the Presidency of the USA!

Friday, July 4th, 2008

Face the Nation

(CBS News) – 6.29.08
SCHIEFFER: I have to say, Barack Obama has not had any of those experiences either, nor has he ridden in a fighter plane and gotten shot down. I mean…
Gen. CLARK: Well, I don’t think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be president.
SCHIEFFER: Really?
( The above is courtesy of ‘Direct’, San Diego County Democratic News Letter) 
      Actually, the Constitution says that being a ‘nartural born’ citizen (one born in America) is a qualification for a person to be the President.  John McCain was born of American parents in the Panama Canal Zone and not in America.  Read it in the Constitution, yourself!  But then, McCain says that part of the Constitution does not apply to him.  Of course, it did apply to Alexander Hamilton, one of our forefathers who was unforunately born in the Carrabean.
      Perhaps, the good Senator McCain would entertain a motion to amend the Constitution so that it applied to everyone and anybody could become President of the United States; one, for instance, would be Gov. Schwarzenegger of California who maintains his Austrian Citizenship in addition to his naturalized American citizenship.  Of course, Californians will elect anything that moves to be its Governor, including citizens of Austria.