31 October 2009

A Special Place in Hell

I can't help but think there's a special place in Hell for anyone who would allow a child to suffer needlessly.  And after watching the behavior of American politicians during the still-continuing furor surrounding health care reform, I'm sure it's full of Republicans. 

As they have everytime health care reform has been proposed, not a single Republican is showing the slightest sign of supporting it.  Despite all we've learned of the inadequacy of the American health care system, Republicans' loyalty to their extreme ideology remains intact.  They're standing-by the special interests and their rich supporters. 

That intransigence is killing children.

A recently released Johns Hopkins Children Center study of children and health insurance reports the deaths of 17,000 children in the last two decades because they lacked adequate health insurance.  According to "lead investigator Fizan Abdullah, M.D., Ph.D., a pediatric surgeon at the Johns Hopkins Children's Center, '(i)f you are a child without insurance, if you're seriously ill and end up in the hospital, you are 60 percent more likely to die than the sick child in the next room who has insurance.'"

I don't know if that will change any Republican minds when they read the study but I don't think so.  They're minds are closed and their hearts are cold.  They need something to warm them.

23 October 2009

Global Obstruction Pathology

Republicans are the party of "no."

They continue their opposition to health care reform and in recent days they've opposed net neutrality and, appallingly, protecting female workers from rape by their co-workers.  Before that, their opposition included clean air (cap and trade) and worker's rights (card check.)

I'm sure they'd like everyone to believe all this is principled opposition but I don't think so.  I think there's something in the human psyche which drives some individuals to opposition regardless of reality.  They can look at something, see it clearly and still take a counterintuitive position on it.

Let's call it Global Obstruction Pathology.

The party of no is full of individuals who suffer from Global Obstruction Pathology.  It's a willingness, maybe even a visceral need, to oppose anything which doesn't spring from their own self-interest.

Republicans know health care reform is necessary and long overdue.  They've said so and some have even admitted their party has been wrong in not pursuing it long before now.  They can't support it, though, because the Democrats want to do something about it now.

They know our environment needs protection.  It was their party, long-ago in the Nixon era, which created the Environmental Protection Agency.  You'd think they'd support "cap and trade."  It's a market-based solution to the pollution problem.  Republicans are supposed to love markets.

Their opposition to protecting women from rape by their coworkers is a mystery.  The 30 Republicans who opposed the Franken amendment to stop rape won't say why.  Maybe they just had to say no because of their GOP.

16 October 2009

Coddling the Military

Do you thank military members you see?

One the hate mongers on my local hate radio station was talking this morning about his son's experience on the way to deployment in Iraq.

First of all, it's rather odd that radio hate mongers or their families, in particular, and conservatives, in general, actually serve in the military.  Our recent experience tells us conservatives mostly send others to die in their wars.  But it's not so odd of radio hate mongers to talk about honoring the military.  Glorification of the military is an integral part of fascism and American conservatism is the new world version of fascism.

This guy was saying his son had experienced receiving the good wishes and thanks of persons in an airport where he changed planes.  That, too, isn't so odd.  Many Americans have taken to thanking military persons in uniform for their service.

I wonder if it's healthy, though.  Our country wasn't designed to be the Uniformed States of America.  Our Second Amendment, for instance, guarantees the People a civilian military.  That's because a military is a threat to democracy.  Do we dishonor our founding principles when we encourage militarism by thanking those in uniform?  

I think we do.  Moreover, we endanger our democracy by coddling and glorifying them.  We should return to the days when Americans pursued peace not war.

09 October 2009

A Memorable Day

This was a remarkable day.  With the news of Barack Obama's Nobel Peace Prize came not congratulations from throughout America but ridicule from rightwing hate radio.  From the early morning to the late afternoon, they ranted and railed.  They claimed he had done nothing to deserve a peace prize.


He's not George Bush.

For most of America that's enough.  For eight years, Bush bombed and killed innocents.  He started wars and dreamed of starting more.  He wallowed in blood.  He embarrassed America.  He's a blot on America's reputation.

Barack Obama changed that.  He came to office with a determination to extricate America from the bloody mess Bush had created.  He came to expiate our guilt.  He came to cleanse our reputation.  He came to restore America's honor.

And the world loved him for it.

The world wanted the America of old back.  They wanted the America that fights to free men from oppression not to create it.  They wanted the America that creates peace and prosperity not the America that creates war and poverty.

The Nobel Peace Prize says the world is happy with what Barack Obama has given them.

03 October 2009

Conservatives Cheer US Defeat

I never thought I'd see it and when I did I wished I hadn't.  It was a stomach-turning sight.

When the the International Olympic Committee (IOC) rejected the American bid for the 2016 Olympics, the Conservative world erupted in wild cheering.  Hate radio talk show hosts giddily announced the news.  Rush Limbaugh was almost uncontrollable in his glee.  He bounced-around in his chair at his microphone like a four-hundred pound schoolboy as he chanted President Obama's name to associate him with America's defeat.  Glenn Beck said the news was "so sweet."

So sweet, Glenn?  The news of an American defeat is "so sweet?"  Why is that, Glenn?  How can you claim to be a patriotic American when seeing it lose makes you so happy?  Why do you hate America so much?