Thursday, November 20, 2008

Big Silly Goose

There once was a man from Nantucket and, thanks to years of practicing yoga, he was able to do amazing things. But, the real question is, was he violating sodomy laws by doing such amazing things? Speaking of sodomy, Prop 8 has been in the news. There is so much anger directed at those who voted for Prop 8. Well, you better direct some of that anger my way.

Californian's voted for Prop 8 and I was one of them. Now many will tell me I'm a horrible person and I'm discriminating against gay people. But, that's not the reason I voted for Prop 8. I voted for Prop 8, because I don't feel it's the right of judges to overrule the popular will of the people, and mandate gay marriage. Gay marriage is all about recognition. Gay people currently have all the same legal rights as straight couples, through civil unions, but that's not enough. They want their relationships to be sanctioned and accepted by the public.

I, for one, am more than willing to support a ballot proposition that recognizes the right of gay people to be completely retarded, like straight people, and get married. If they want to be miserable bastards and know the joy of a nasty divorce, that's fine by me. They will have my support, as long as the proposition also protects churches from having to betray their faith by recognizing something that violates their religious beliefs.

If gay people want the recognition and approval of the people, why don't they just ask for it? Why don't they craft such a proposition and ask Californian's to cast their vote in its favor? It's irrational to expect acceptance and recognition, from the public, if you try to force an agenda down their throats. Leave that kind of behavior in the Castro District, where it belongs.

If you want the acceptance and approval of people, outside the gay and lesbian community, you have to ask them for acceptance. You can't gain acceptance by using judges to force an agenda upon them that grants you the right to get married. You can't force someone to accept you. At best they just have to put up with you. If you want acceptance, you have to ask for it. GLAAD, and other organizations, seem to want a fight more than anything else. It's in their interest. Without a fight between gay and straight people, they don't have a mission.

Therefore the gay community has a choice to make. They can either support the same combatant policies that have brought them to this point. Or, they can reject these negative tactics and instead try to make their case to the people why they should be given the privilege to marry. If you want my support, all you have to do is leave the lawyers at home, and ask. Sorry for the Castro district joke, but I couldn't resist.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Just How Far We Haven't Come

With the win of Barack Obama a great number of the people across this country, and the media in particular, are patting themselves on the back and cheering at just how far we have come as a nation. By electing a black man to the presidency, we have somehow proven that we aren't racists. Well, I for one, am not cheering.

What are the substantive differences between President Elect Obama and previous politicians that have been elected to the most powerful office in this country? Barack Obama is a rich, elitist with an Ivy League education. He began his political career in big city politics, while associating with some less than reputable characters. He came to office with political baggage, that was born out of his tendency to put political convenience before principle. How does any of this make him different from other politicians? The truth is, it doesn't. The only substantive difference between Barack Obama and other men who sought the office of the presidency, is the hue of his skin. What does it say about people when they consider a genetic trait, of which we have no control over, to be the most significant quality in the President Elect?

If racism was truly behind us all, there wouldn't be people like Chris Mathews patting themselves on the back, and leg, for electing a black man to the presidency. They would treat him like any other politician, and see beyond his race. But, sadly, that's not the case. Those who consider this such a significant event, based solely on the hue of President Elect Obama's skin, have demonstrated just how far we haven't come.

The day we can move beyond identity politics will be a day to celebrate. The day when people are judged by the content of their character, rather than the color of their skin, will be a great day in this nations history. Sadly, November 5th was not that day.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Rage, Rage Against The Dying of the Light

What does an inexperienced politician, with socialist tendencies, have to do to win the Presidency of the United States of America? Not much, apparently. But, he does require a lot of help. He requires a biased media that is blindly supportive of his candidacy. The help of the extremely rich, and famous, will also be required. Finally he will need the support of an astonishingly ignorant electorate.

His support in the media does not have to be complete. But, it helps when 90% of print and televised media is on your side. Where is the proof of this clear bias you might ask? Lets just look at the treatment that a fellow Democrat was subject to during the primaries. During this period of the election the media demonstrated their bias to such an extent that they began treating one of their former favorites like she was a Republican. It was so transparent and blatant that even the rocket scientists at Saturday Night Live felt the need to mock, the clearly over the top, bias within the media. When a Democrat gets the Republican treatment, it's clear to all, but the most willfully ignorant, that the fix is in. But, this is not enough for the candidate to win. They require help from some familiar, and some not so familiar, faces.

The role of the extremely rich, and famous, is to allow their star power and prestige to benefit the candidate they support. And, like in no other election, they made their presence felt. From the ridiculous get out the vote videos, to Oprah's endorsement of THE ONE, the Hollywood crowd have made their vacuous voices heard. But, let's not forget the role of the extremely rich. THE ONE has also benefited from the active help of one of the least ethical people on the planet, George Soros, and a future exploiter of the tax exempt foundation loophole, Warren Buffett. With the help of such men, THE ONE has enjoyed unprecedented support from 527's, and other nonprofit organizations, as well as undeserved confidence and credibility concerning economic matters. Even with the help of the rich and famous, THE ONE wouldn't have made it this far, without his greatest source of support, the masses.

Only with an electorate made up of the ignorant and emotional, could THE ONE even begin to HOPE to win. Thanks to a nation of voters that have been conditioned by shows like American Idol, THE ONE has been able to run a campaign on nothing more than affective language and imagery. How else could the people of this nation be convinced to vote for a candidate that embraced, a racist theology, a domestic terrorist, and a socialist ideology. All while accomplishing little of significance in his life, let alone his political career. His greatest accomplishment is a speech. Yes, the greatest achievement of note, by the next President of the United States of America, is that he was able to make a speech during the 2004 Democratic Convention. The ignorance and irrationality of the American electorate cannot be ignored, given the results of this election.

What brought us to this point on November 4th 2008? Nothing short of a perfect storm. Major media with an agenda, the rich and famous flexing their collective muscle, and a populous that has exercised their franchise in willful ignorance. This is a turning point in this nation's history, but we have a choice.

Those of us who dissent can choose to call it a day and stop trying, or we can say NO. We can decide to never let this happen again. We can decide to make the day the Dem's are celebrating, the day we are preparing. We can focus on the elections in two years that will determine who runs Congress. We can decide to repeat the revolution of 1994, only this time we will learn from our mistakes. We will live up to our word and not spend like Democrats. We will not allow THE ONE to use Congress to get re-elected. We will prevent THE ONE from destroying this country from within and protect our Constitution from perversion.

In the face of a horrible loss, we can choose to be like our founders, stand up for principle and refuse to let what they fought so hard for, be destroyed for the sake of political convenience. We are Americans. We can do great things. Let's decide to prove that tonight by not letting defeat fill our hearts. Instead, let's allow our resolve to be further strengthened for the fight that will come in 2010.

Tonight is not a night to celebrate, but it is a night to join together for a common cause and realize that, while we have taken a hit, this is far from the end. There is a quote that states, “Everyone has a plan until they've been hit.” Well my friends, we have just been hit. It's our time to stand up, dust ourselves off, and prove that we will not be defeated so easily. As a great man once said, “The future doesn't belong to the fainthearted, it belongs to the brave.” Let's prove him right.


Improbable. That's the word that best describes this election. No other descriptive term could be more accurate. We are talking about an election in which the Democratic Party will win because of the financial crisis. This becomes evident when looking at the polling trends since the crisis began to dominate news coverage.

What could be more improbable than a political party benefiting from a crisis they created? The Democratic Party created and pushed The Community Reinvestment Act. They shielded their friends in Fannie and Freddie from scrutiny and government reform. How improbable that a man who called for reform, John McCain, is rejected by the electorate, but a man, who lovingly embraced the source of the crisis, Barack Obama, is now going to be the next president.

If a screen writer were to submit a script, with this plot, it would likely be rejected. Why? Well, what sane person could believe that people would be so ignorant as to vote for the party, and candidates, that were responsible for the economic pain they are feeling? To believe that a person would have to conclude that they live in a nation of, at worst, masochists or, at best, idiots. I guess this is why they say nothing is impossible, no matter how improbable.

Why I cannot be an "Independent"

I first need to state that this in no way addresses people who are part of the American Independent Party. The focus on this political blog, or pog, are the anti-party “independents.” They are individuals who are opposed to political parties and reject identifying with them. They have come to the conclusion that political parties are the problem, or that, by identifying with a political party, a voter somehow stops becoming objective in their decision making process. This is a position that I could not disagree with more.

Significant portions of both parties still vote across party lines, for president. This also carries over to state and local politics. The strict party line voter is not the dominant force that some would have you believe. An individual does not cease to become objective once they join a political party. Those who are active political party members are simply more politically engaged and have reached firm conclusions concerning certain policies that inform their voting habits. The opposition to parties, by independents may simply be an overreaction to vocal hyper partisanship.

If it is the case that, these individuals have confused their opposition to hyper partisanship with an opposition to political parties themselves, they have made the mistake of throwing the baby out with the bath water. This is an often repeated error where one behaves in a rash manor and fails to realize that they are getting rid something good by rejecting something they dislike. They fail to realize that the symptom that they take issue with, hyper partisanship, is in fact not the result of the party system, but the result of the failure of them, and others like them, to get involved in party politics.

When people reject the party process they all but guarantee that the voices of hyper partisans will become dominant. By rejecting party participation you have acquiesced the decision making power to the hyper partisans that you oppose. Your rejection of party labels has allowed the hyper partisans to become the dominant voices in politics. You have cut off your nose to spite your face.

Primaries usually attract only the most passionate and interested voters. But, by not participating in primaries “independent” voters, have all but guaranteed that they will end up with major party candidates who don't represent them. Your opposition to participating in party politics is only hurting you.

One of the greatest benefits to joining a political party is the ability to influence the decision of who that party will put forward as their candidate. As a political libertarian, I am registered with the Republican Party. That party best reflects my positions concerning issues of federalism (if you think that is just about the federal government you should return your high school diploma), judicial philosophy and various fiscal policies.

I was able to cast my primary ballot for Ron Paul, the candidate that most closely reflected my positions on key issues, excluding Iraq. While Paul did not win, my vote expressed to my party that the issues Ron Paul addressed were of significant concern to me. The point of voting is not that your candidate always wins, but that your opinion is expressed and you have the opportunity to try to convince others of the value of your position. By being an “independent” you have thrown away a significant opportunity to express your views.

Calling yourself an independent has become “cool” in recent years. Many consider themselves more enlightened or open minded by adopting this label. I could not disagree more with their rational and I hope that this pog will inspire some to reconsider the value of the “independent” label.