Thursday, December 30, 2010

Happy Holidays, Mr. President

by Rich Miles

Dear Mr. President:

I've been trying to think of a good gift for you, to offer my thanks for all you do for the American people, and I think I've come up with something you may find useful. Sorry I'm a bit late for Christmas.

At any rate, here's what I think you should say the next time the Republicans get their respective and collective tails in a knot about whatever. In essence, I am volunteering to serve your administration as a speechwriter - for just this one speech. I'm not auditioning for the job. I just want to give you this. It came into my head almost fully-formed, and I want you to have it. I hope you'll use it, but it's a gift, so you'll do with it as you will. At any rate, here it is:
Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. I have some brief remarks I'd like to make concerning the recent (controversy du jour - insert crisis here.)

I'd like to start by addressing my worthy opponents in the Republican party, by saying that effective today, the rules of the game are changed.

No longer will I or any other members of the Democratic Party be intimidated by the empty threats of Republican leadership or rank and file.

No longer will Democrats seek bipartisan compromise for its own sake. When the business of the American people can be concluded with bipartisan action, that will be a good thing. But this administration will not seek such action in and of itself any longer.

You have accused us of many things, including class warfare, profligacy with the public purse, raising taxes, unpatriotic behavior, and lots more.

And the truth is, most of those accusations applied to YOU rather than us - especially the accusation of lack of patriotism.

Because, you see, the bills you want passed, the laws you want to see on the books, will, if made into law, ruin our country - literally push its face into the dust, and kill many of its citizens. For instance, if you succeed in dismantling Social Security, as you seem so intent on doing now, many people will die - many people will have no family to support them in their later years, when they are too weak or sick, or simply OLD, to support themselves. And they will die for lack of the Social Security benefit that might have given them the facility to save their own lives.

And we will not take the blame for these deaths. For many years now, we have taken the blame for a whole raft of social and political ills, because to defend ourselves against your scurrilous attacks would make US look worse than YOU. So by and large, we let you lie, and defame us, and condescend to us, without so much as a reply.

But no more. From now on, when you lie about any or all of us, we will call you out. We will challenge you to provide proof to substantiate your claims. And if you fail to do so, we will call you what you are: a liar. It will be time-consuming to do so, but it will be consuming of far more resources than time NOT to.

And we will do this on a local, state, regional and national level. In fact, if the opportunity arises, we will do it on an international level.

Because enough is enough. As you Republicans well know, the kind of people who become Democrats are generally gentle people, who value truth and fair play and comity and bipartisanship whenever possible.

And those who tend toward becoming Republicans are generally regimented sorts, rules-followers who value winning at all costs - at ALL costs, even the loss of their integrity, and sometimes the loss of their souls. Who call bipartisanship the political equivalent of date rape. Who will do whatever it takes, regardless of the scurrilousness of the behavior, to defeat and humiliate their opponents - especially humiliate. Who don't really want to compromise on any issue, no matter what they say. Those are Republicans.

It didn't used to be so. There was a time when Republicans truly WERE fiscal conservatives, as they claim to be now. But they were men (and, very occasionally in those days, women) who could be reasoned with, with whom a mutually-acceptable compromise could be reached.

No longer. No longer is there any such thing as mutually-acceptable, and Republicans seem to believe that, IF the compromise IS mutually acceptable, there must be something wrong and weak about it.

That's the Republican Party today. It's undeniable. And we, members of the Democratic party, have let this go on for far too many years, taking the blows and the lies without response, losing elections we should have won, MIGHT have won except for the crooked dealings of our main opponents.

But no more. No longer will we, the Democratic party, allow your crimes and misdemeanors to go unremarked and unpunished. We will stand up, and shout "Liar!!" at the top of our voices. No longer will we simply roll over and take it. And when we do this, and you fight back and say that WE are the liars, we will show the proof. It will take some time, years, likely, to make this strategy - we call it the "truth strategy" - work with the majority of the American people. But it will take eventually. We feel certain of it.

Now, we realize that this change in us will be abrupt for you in the Republican Party. We see that you will be confused sometimes, as the doormats you used to run roughshod over suddenly grow spines and fight back - or refuse to engage at all, which I rather expect will infuriate you even more.

But this, the partisan wars we now live in, can't continue. The people's business - the passage of laws of importance to the daily wellbeing of the American people - is not being tended to. And Americans are suffering, in more ways than one. And it has to stop. Now.

So we will not any longer merely roll our eyes, and try to ignore you, and hope we can get our message out despite your dirty dealings. It will be rough in the beginning, and we may fail at our goal many times before it begins to register with Americans, and indeed our allies and enemies abroad, who are dismayed that it has taken us this long to stand up to our adversaries, and quite literally to take our nation back.

I believe I have made my point, and there is no point in belaboring this issue any further. But today will henceforth and forever more be known as Independence Day II. The day America was liberated from the tyranny of the Republican Party. Or at least, the part of it that seeks to destroy America.

You see, we in the Democratic Party don't think we're always right. We just don't think YOU'RE always right either. And we've been acting as if we do think that for too many years now. No more.

We're not declaring war on you, Republicans. Not unless you make it necessary to do so. We're trying to restore a genuine two-party system in America. Instead of one party who shouts lies, and another party who allows the shouts, and most importantly the lies, to go unchallenged.

We think this is a better way. And after the dust settles, and we all start working together and actually achieving things for the benefit of America and Americans, we think you'll like it better too.

But whether you do or not, this is the way it's going to be from here on out.

Thank you for your time and attention, and God bless America.
That's what I think Americans want. Not all this feuding and fighting and inaction. What do you think, Mr. President?

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Guess who opposes the Bush tax cuts?

By Rich Miles

Much has been said in recent years about how different it is to be a Republican today, compared to what it was like, say, 30 years ago and more. I still hated them back then - Nixon was still a dick as long ago as 1973 or '74, and Reagan managed to cruise through 8 years in the White House without ever setting feet on the ground - but remembering what I do about the era, it really wasn't as bad as it is today. Though it was bad enough.

But there are a few personalities from the Reagan era who remain at least curiosities today. And one of them is....

(drum roll please)

David Stockman. For those who didn't live through it and don't care to look him up, Stockman was the budget director for Pres. Reagan from the beginning in 1981 until the end of the first term in 1985.

The budget director, mind you. Not some minor functionary whose opinion we may safely discount, but the budget director. A guy who knew something about what was going on. Whether we agreed with him or not.

But yesterday, on NPR's Terri Gross-moderated "Fresh Air" program, Stockman said, not for the first time, that leaving the Bush tax cuts in place, especially in the top brackets, would bankrupt the United States.

That's right - bankrupt it. Not just damage the budget process, not just increase the deficit, but BANKRUPT the United States!

And this is the opinion of the alleged creator of Reaganomics, the program that almost bankrupted the U.S. 25 or more years ago. So for the prime mover of that debacle to complain about THIS debacle is just a shall I put this? frightening!!

Here, read the whole thing for yourself, and don't trust any more Republicans, OK? It'll only come to grief.

I mean seriously, don't these people ever even listen to EACH OTHER?!?

Monday, December 13, 2010

Cletis? That you??

Let me just take a moment to recommend a newcomer blogger to you - he does a bit of rewriting and reposting, but his original stuff is quite interesting. Head on over and take a look at

I think you'll find him amusing...

Welcome, Mr. Cletis, to the land of the living here in Left Blogsylvania. We can use all the help we can get these days.

Rich Miles

Friday, December 10, 2010

Elizabeth Edwards R.I.P.

by Rich Miles

It's an odd thing that so few of the local bloggers have written about the passing of Elizabeth Edwards. She was a woman of distinction, of accomplishment, and a woman who showed the rest of us what it was like to conduct oneself with dignity when circumstances sought to relieve her of any vestige of dignity.

I saw her speak during the pre-primary 2008 election season. She was extolling the virtues of her husband, and as I listened, all I could think of was, I wish I had a woman who had that much faith in me.

As it turned out, I DID have such a woman, but I didn't know it, but that's another story for another time. In any case, Elizabeth spoke eloquently of her husband, and his plans for America, and how all it would take to accomplish these plans was for all of us to vote for her husband, get him the Democratic nomination and then he'd be on his way.

She may have been right, I don't know. None of us will ever know if John Edwards would have been a good president, because he couldn't keep his dick in his pants, but at that point in time, Elizabeth thought so.

And now, she's gone and John is unquestionably mourning her. As well he might. I feel saddest for her little girls.

But in any case, we are all the poorer for the loss of Elizabeth Edwards. We should keep that thought in mind as we move toward 2012. She, even with her by-then unelectable husband, might have taught us some dignity. God knows we can use some of that in America these days.

I admired her. You should have too. God bless her, and may she rest in peace.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

War! What is it good for? Absolutely nothing!

by Rich Miles

If you go back over my essays for the past 6 years or so, one of the things you will find is a relatively frequent use of the expressions "I don't know how..." or "I can't understand how" this or that happened.

And in almost every case, you will find that I will be making that observation about a fine point of human nature. For instance, "I don't know how these people can be so effin' stupid as to" vote for such and such a moron candidate.

But now, I think I may understand, at least a little bit better.

People vote for Republicans because they (the repugs) appear to be able and willing to kick the shit out of the opposition. And deep down in their shrivelled little hearts, that's what the "people" want: politicians who are as close as we can get today to the ancient warriors. Men like Achilles, and Odysseus, and in another context, Geronimo and Chief Joseph. George Patton. George Custer. All our heroes, not just the ones mentioned here but many more, are bloody, murderous men, who were ruthless to their enemies and took no prisoners.

(Why doesn't Hitler make this list, you may wonder. He certainly had the raw skills. It's because he overdid it, and killed too many innocents. And did it too publicly. Too visibly. IMHO. And this we couldn't stand in our relativistic moral universe.)

And these are the men we want our leaders to be like today. But we're too civilized for all that, so we elect Republicans instead - men who do the rhetorical equivalent of killing all the enemies, who at the very least do the modern equivalent of counting coup on their adversaries, an exercise with no other purpose than to humiliate their enemies, and weaken them by that.

Every once in a while, we tire of all the bloodshed, and we elect some Democrats for a while. But sooner or later - usually sooner - our bloodthirstiness catches up with us, and we elect the ones who do the most damage to the enemy, who leave the most mutilated corpses on the field of battle - the Republicans.

We are not so civilized as we think much of the time. We seek leaders to do these things for us, and to keep us in a state of war as close to constantly as possible. (Think about that one for a minute - how long have we NOT been in some war or another in the history of the republic?) And it is our leaders' duty to make it look as if WE are the peaceful ones, who only go to war when provoked. But a closer reading of history will show differently. We were not provoked in very many of our longest conflicts.

For you see, wars are excellent ways for leaders to control the people. It's happening right now. It's been happening in an undeniable way since 9/11. We are being lied to and controlled. I don't need to offer examples of this, because thinking persons will see it with very little prompting.

And the rest don't matter.

How much of our nation's substance has gone for "defense" - how much could we as a race have accomplished if we had not spent so mucn on war?

Impossible to say. But the above is, I believe, the reason why we vote for Republicans, despite clear and unmistakable evidence that it's bad for us to do so. They spend all our money on wars. They kill our children in wars. In short, they keep us in control with wars. And we let them do it, because we WANT war. Macro or micro, World War or political wrangling - we want war. We want the conflict. It makes us feel manly - even though women sometimes feel it too.

And that is why we keep electing Republicans. And it makes me so very sad to see it. Every time it happens. The older I get, the more it simply wears me out to see it. My fellow human beings are so foolish as to yield (without knowing it most of the time, I believe) to their "baser instincts". That of the kiiler. The maimer. The destroyer.

I don't know why human nature is this way. I personally do not conform to this model. But I know why our leaders use it this way. Because they can. Because we let them. We don't put together the cause and effect - haven't done so for 5000 years and more. And the net result has been nearly 5000 years of war and death and destruction.

And as Sean Connery says in the film "The Untouchables": What are you prepared to do about it?

Major government corruption

by Rich Miles

Geez, I didn't sleep last night with contemplating this Ark Park thing. Our economy is in deep and ongoing shit, and promises to remain so for years to come, and our illustrious goobernator proposes to GIVE AWAY multi-millions of taxpayers' dollars to religious nut-freaks who preach total rubbish!

THIS will rob you of sleep! It did me, anyway. How do politicians think this shit up? How do they twist their powers of rational thought around until it looks like this? I really don't get it.

And there's really not much chance that the lege will put a stop to this, since our Senate prez has recently embraced the nutso-crazoid Tea Party, and the rest of both houses is liberally (get it? LIBERALLY) sprinkled with some of the worst mental cases ever to occupy a public office. Which is saying something in this day and age.

A couple off-hand predictions: you know that 900 jobs they're bandying about? Most of them will be part-time with no benefits, and the merest whiff of unionism will get the perpetrator run off with a shotgun (figuratively, I think.) I'll have more predictions as time goes by, but these two I'd almost bet on. File these away some-where, where you can retrieve them when truth time comes.

GOD, people! Can't you do any better than this? I mean really, must you bury your heads in the sand like this? Must you waste time, effort and money on shit like this? There is so much more we have to achieve, not only in this state but all across our country. Can we do no more than sit around jacking off?

I wasn't kidding about the taxpayer revolt, you know. Bring it on!

Friday, December 03, 2010

OK, so I missed something...

by Rich Miles

OK, I didn't read about the Ark amusement park before I wrote the piece on Ken Ham and the governor. Sorry about that.

But having said that, the only thing I could find in reference to Steve Beshear's involvement in this massive goatfuck is that the governor "joined" the developers of the park, and that the developers will seek tax breaks - which is where MY tax dollars enter into it.

Because obviously, if the creationists get tax considerations, that's the same as the state supporting this unquestionably religious undertaking.

And that makes me sick to my stomach.

I did not, and as far as I know, neither did any other Kentuckians, vote in favor of giving tax dollars to a bunch of religious nuts. It's estimated that the park will produce some 900 jobs when it opens in spring of 2014, and in the abstract, that's a good thing. Lord knows we can use another 900 jobs in Kentucky, especially in Grant County, where they're trying to put this monstrosity.

But if this is such a winning plan, consider this: the reason most governments give tax breaks is as an incentive for the business receiving the breaks to stay in the jurisdiction that is providing the tax breaks.

But one is tempted to ask: if Kentucky doesn't provide the tax breaks, where are these zealots going to go?

I mean, Ohio and Indiana have been known to go off the deep end in matters religious on occasion, but seriously - do you think either of those states would want this bunch of loonies enough to offer incentives?

I've been surprised before, so I can't say "no" with certainty. But I think not. I hope not.

So why are we in Kentucky paying these fools for the privilege of having them stay here? I mean, they already have their own incentive for staying here, in that they've already put the museum here. So where would they go?

And why has Beshear cozied up to them like this? Inquiring minds want to know.

Is it time for the taxpayers' revolt yet?

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Our governor is an idiot!

by Rich Miles

Steve Beshear is taking bribes from Ken Ham. Not just campaign contributions, but actual bribes.

That's the only explanation I can come up with. Or at least the only one that doesn't require me to come to the conclusion that the governor of my state (Kentucky) is a complete lamebrain, who is sucking up to the republican radical religious right-wingers nearly a year before the 2011 election.

Ken Ham is the moron - and I use the term advisedly - who owns and operates the Creation Museum up in Northern Kentucky. The museum that says that dinosaurs co-existed with humans several thousand years ago. The one that tells this tripe to children, who are intellectually malleable enough to actually believe it.

Yellow Dog at Blue in the Bluegrass calls this intellectual child abuse. I concur. It is very likely that children who are indoctrinated with this mind rot now will hold these beliefs well into their adult years - all efforts to rethread these kids' heads in the intervening years notwithstanding. There is even the possibility that the kids will grow into adults who NEVER recant this shit. After all, there are an awful lot of adults who were taught the pabulum of fundamentalist religion as children, sometimes as infants, and still hold those beliefs today, the evidence of daily living on this planet notwithstanding.

But our governor - our GOVERNOR, the chief executive of our state - accepts this crap. Not only accepts it, but embraces it. And we have to lower our eyes as we walk the streets anywhere away from home, lest anyone recognize us as Kentuckians.

You know, I was a member of one of the political organizations who endorsed Beshear in '07. Sure wish I could take that vote back. But even as I say that, I realize that there wasn't much else to choose from at the time. Gatewood Galbraith? Steve Henry? Etc.?

When do we get some GOOD candidates for governor? You know, ones with a bit of intellectual acuity about them?

What's that you say? NEVER???? Never as long as we're Kentuckians?

I was afraid you were going to say that.