Sunday, March 18, 2012

Obama Innocent of International Intrigue

by Rich Miles

ATTN: All blithering idiots and Republicans (oops, sorry, that's redundant): George Clooney's arrest (and his dad Nick's, and several Dem congressdogs as well) in front of the Sudanese embassy in Washington DC on Friday Mar. 16 had nothing whatever to do with President Obama cracking down on peaceful protests. I would not be surprised to learn that the President had little or no knowledge of the incident until long after its conclusion. So please, spare us the baring of your lack of understanding of such things. Pres. Obama did NOT crack down on peaceful protests. And Clooney was released about an hour later on $100 bail. OK? Stop being so knee-jerk stupid. Something even mildly negative happening in Wash., DC does NOT mean Obama orchestrated it. Any more than it did when your darling GWB was there.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

What if? Part XXVIII

by Rich Miles

UPDATE 3/14: Santorum won Alabama and Mississippi, extending his streak of states that are filled pretty much UP with morons. I mean, how many lists of various accomplishments and standards find the states that Santorum won - pretty much ALL of them - near the bottom of those various lists? But hey, they know who they want for preznit. Don't even think otherwise!
Original Post:

Remember Thomas Frank's excellent book, and Laura Cohen's very fine documentary film of the same name, "What's the Matter with Kansas"?

Well, I'm here to tell you, whatever WAS the matter back in 2004 is still the matter. Because today, Kansas gave Rick "The Loony" Santorum a victory, one of his few in this primary campaign season. Among his other high points were Tennessee and Oklahoma, those two bastions of high-mindedness.

Now look, folks - let's get this clear. I don't think any of the Republican candidates are worth the powder it would take to blow them up. But Santorum is a particularly nasty piece of work. A fundamentalist raver, denier of global warming, hater of women, and on and on - and these folks in the above named states want him to represent their party in a national election against incumbent Barack Obama.

Well, as a Democrat, I can actually applaud the choice of Santorum, because I believe he will be easier to beat in the general election than most of the rest of Republicans. But the thing I simply can't let go of is, what if he wins?

What if all odds are tipped, and an entire country goes mad - again - don't forget that we elected Geo. W. Shrub TWICE not too long ago. So then we will end up with at least 4 and possibly 8 years of medievalism in our nation's highest office. And while I probably overreacted to GWB, because he simply didn't have the power I attributed to him, I don't want to spend those 4 or 8 years wondering when the damn fool is going to plunge us into World War III.

Because that is what is to fear from a Santorum presidency, among other things. Another war, centered in but not exclusive to the Middle East, avenging imagined wrongs to Christianity going back to the original Crusades and beyond. And our exhausted armed forces will be called up again, and become even more exhausted.

Or perhaps he will do what I would almost bet he is just dying to do, and force an Armageddon by dropping the Big One, the atom bomb, on our real or perceived adversaries. In fact, I won't just say I would ALMOST bet on such an eventuality. The mushroom cloud of an American bomb would be suitably biblical for a man of Santorum's overweening ambition and limited intellect and thoughtfulness. And he is a little man, in spirit for certain, and for all I can tell, physicality. But definitely in spirit. And an atom bomb would work better than a pair of 4" lifts to raise his prospects, figuratively speaking.

So I keep asking myself - no matter how unlikely it is, it is not impossible. So what if he wins in the general?

Can you imagine an America under such a limited and bellicose leader?

I can, and it makes me very, very afraid.

Friday, March 09, 2012

Ignorance is easier to control than intelligence

by Rich Miles

In today's (March 9, 2012) New York Times, my old pal Paul Krugman (I never really met him, but I FEEL like I know him) wrote a piece that he (or the NYT headline writer) titled "Ignorance is Strength",   in which he posits that the Republican Party has come to oppose higher education, because an educated electorate is a product of "indoctrination mills" that destroy religious faith.

Now, it's hard to interpret such a thought as anything but a statement that smart, educated people don't believe in the fundamentalist booshwah that people like Santorum and Romney and other morons of their ilk put out.

It is probably provable that this is true - the smarter and more educated one is, the less likely to believe in religious/superstitious claptrap. But as Krugman points out, that's just a happy side effect of being a generally educated person. The anti-religious "indoctrin- ation" that Santorum et al. fear so much is not intentional.

But again, Krugman sums up the intelligent thinking on the matter at hand by closing his column thus:

"After all, over the past 30 years, there has been a stunning disconnect between huge income gains at the top and the struggles of ordinary workers. You can make the case that the self-interest of America’s elite is best served by making sure that this disconnect continues, which means keeping taxes on high incomes low at all costs, never mind the consequences in terms of poor infrastructure and an undertrained work force. 

And if underfunding public education leaves many children of the less affluent shut out from upward mobility, well, did you really believe that stuff about creating equality of opportunity? 

So whenever you hear Republicans say that they are the party of traditional values, bear in mind that they have actually made a radical break with America’s tradition of valuing education. And they have made this break because they believe that what you don’t know can’t hurt them."

IOW, keep 'em poor and stupid, and they'll keep voting for the Republicans. Because they don't know any better. And because the Republicans are the party of willful ignorance.

Amen, Brother Krugman. Amen!!