The “Hitching” fracas

October 22, 2014

According to the owner of the Hitching Post, if gay marriage became the law, he would have to close his business. That was before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the 2006 gay marriage ban here in the state of Idaho. Now that gay marriage is legal in the state of Idaho, the owner of the Hitching Post has decided to sue the City of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho for “discriminating” against “his” religious freedom. To that end, the Coeur d’Alene Press had an editorial solution that I think is worth reading. If the owner of the Hitching Post wants to declare his “for profit” business to be a religious non profit, then he can certainly proceed to do so. Otherwise, under the non-discrimination ordinance that the city of Coeur d’Alene has adopted, he can’t discriminate against gays and lesbians getting married. But of course, the “my way or the highway” approach to this discussion, is the topic of the hour. Just as it produced the desired effect of inundating city hall with a lot of hate mail. Seriously? I think that the people “thumping the bible” over gay marriage, need to step back and get a grip.

The only thing that the bible says about homosexual behavior is, thou shalt not lie with a man in the same manner as you would lie with a woman. It says nothing about gay marriage. It discusses “sodomy,” as a type of rape of men. But instead, as is found in Genesis and Judges, you can sodomize a woman with no problem. But again, rape isn’t marriage. Nor is male prostitution, as a type of homosexual behavior, the equivalent of marriage. What the bible does not discuss, it can not frown upon then can it? Which ultimately argues, that the bible thumpers need to read that good book, a bit more thoroughly. Especially that part of the book where Jesus commands, “The hatred that lies in your heart toward your neighbor, is the same as murder.” He didn’t say who among your neighbors you could safely hate, that would not be classified as “murder.”

I regard the “Hitching Post lawsuit,” as first and foremost a publicity stunt. The said owners want their fifteen minutes of fame at the expense of the taxpayers. I don’t guess that they would take in to consideration the fact that Coeur d’Alene is a religiously diverse city. Not everyone agreed with that constitutional amendment banning gay marriage back in 2006. And what about the constitutional rights of gays and lesbians, which the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals confirmed? The two greatest commandments found in the midst of Jesus’ teachings: love God and love your neighbor; seem to be of greater importance in this day and age, than who enters into a committed relationship, or who does what in the privacy of their bedroom. The headline in this morning’s Coeur d’Alene Press, with reference to the Hitching Post lawsuit that sparks outrage. The “outraged” citizens are ignoring pertinent scripture, while acting like they want to “lynch” the elected officials of city hall, just because the state wide gay marriage ban was overturned. What’s that going to prove, besides informing everyone that the word of God should only be trotted out and used as a weapon?

Otherwise, it gets stored on the shelf and otherwise ignored, when it calls for your own personal moral obligations; both public and private.

If as a non-Christian, I am wrong about gay marriage or even about being a non-Christian, then I already have a good understanding about where I am slated to go. Now what about the people who use their bible solely for political reasons? I’d say that is a very good question immediately in need of an answer. The bible calls for the believers to be a decent human being even in the face of a sinner. If God can love someone who hates him by bringing forth both sunshine and rain; then the followers of Jesus, have an equal obligation to do the same. Precisely, to exercise the same pure love. Thumping the bible in order to declare, how “God” frowns on a secular state granting marriage certificates even to gays and lesbians; is not an expression of pure love. Acting like a virtual “lynch mob” with angry and hate-filled e-mails over a pending lawsuit, is also poles apart from Jesus’ teachings. well in that case, if I am wrong in my opinions, then I have plenty of company for my sojourn in Hell. Thus, I am reminded of a parable found in the New Testament. A man who being indebted to someone else, and is made a slave for that reason, is freed in a Jubilee year. You now know of the expression, “pay it forward,” this is where it comes from. The now “former” slave was expected to pay forward his good fortune to the next man indebted to himself. However, not only did the former slave decline to do so, he spoke and acted very harshly to that particularly poor man. Once his “former” master got wind of this particular act of ingratitude, he clapped his manservant back in chains. Letting it be known that as of now, the fellow would work off his still existing debt to his master. The point of this story? The owner of the Hitching Post has never confronted the possibility of his business being closed down. The only reason for the ordinance, is that gays and lesbians will not be discriminated against in housing, jobs, or where they may wish to do business. They don’t have to do business at the Hitching Post. They can get married before anyone with the authority to perform a marriage. That includes a judge. Any church could perform such a ceremony; it doesn’t have to be the Hitching Post. So, why is the owner wanting to sue the city? Probably while he was trotting out all of his “religious objections,” he was forgetting all about his religious requirements. Leave the judging to God. The scriptures pertaining to that can be found in Acts.

What’s at risk?

October 15, 2014

The U.S. Supreme Court decided to sit out the gay marriage ban debate in their non decision of only a few weeks ago. Since that happened, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals struck down gay marriage bans in Idaho and Nevada, Governor Otter personally demanded an emergency stay which was also ultimately struck down, and now gay marriages are legal in Idaho set for today: 15 October 2014. I didn’t write any letters to the editor extolling the civil rights victories for gays. I don’t figure that I need to, since I am going to make my opinions far more public than the local newspapers. And that is, by putting them on this blog. I am not a Christian, I do not have religious issues with gays and lesbians partnering up and marrying if they wish. What I go by, is what the Declaration of Independence had to say in part, all men (humanity) are created equal. And being equal, have the rights granted by their creator, to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I will also argue, that the founding fathers insisted on this country becoming a secular nation. You are free to believe anything you wish, as long as it is a privately held belief. As for what amounts to your public morals; the real argument should be, how you treat your fellow man, not what you impose as religious law on people who can legitimately disagree with you. Which a lot of big government religious activists have yet to wrap their heads around.

So, on this 15th of October 2014, the Coeur d’Alene Press was already hosting at least two anti-gay marriage letters to the editors, and one statement by a writer who saw an economic upside to it. One letter headline read “What went wrong,” another letter headline warned that marriage as an institution was at risk. Of course it is, and heterosexuals put marriage as an institution at risk every day. But you don’t hear about that when it comes to the big government religious activists. Where they are concerned, someone else (such as the gays, for example) must be at fault, because heterosexuals can’t handle having a marriage between one man and one woman. To the heterosexuals I argue this, get your own house in order before you complain about what your neighbor does. The institution of marriage is more at risk because of the attitudes and habits of the heterosexuals, than it will ever be from gays and lesbians.

No, it isn’t marriage that is at risk, it isn’t because you are a heterosexual that you are at risk. Rather, it has to do with the push back from the secular base of this nation, that has successfully won ground from the new religious left. I could also see where that push back could find its way into the voting booths in November, as well. When people finally get tired of the following:

  • Race, gender based, against the elderly and the poor (because they might vote Democrat), voter suppression laws
  • Religion as an excuse for government to regulate women’s reproduction and reproductive health to the most extreme measures, that can be set into law
  • Political ideology that is more about fear mongering than actually addressing a positive future for the citizens of the country
  • Blatant corruption that a recent SCOTUS decision now declares can be unimpeded by law

Then the voters will do their own push back at the polls. You can be certain of it.

Last night, the latest “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” had a particularly hilarious response to the “get money out of politics” movement. Who of course fund raise constantly for money to win against the GOP come November. Under the circumstances, maybe the argument should not be “get money out of politics.” The argument should instead be, does your candidate behave as though he or she has an intelligent grasp of the issues? How about his or her constituents? Can you say that the opposing candidate has been caught in numerous lies? How about felony charges and convictions? Jon Stewart made particular fun of the Democrats last night, and personally, I think they deserved being mocked. But I think that both he and I would personally agree, that we could work toward erasing corruption in politics. Currently, that corruption centers around the GOP. If Democratic affiliated groups are spending more money, to try to get their candidates into office; it is because they are plainly fed up with the current Congress and its failure to “do something.”

A slightly different theme, but still in line with the headline of this blog post: “What’s at risk?” A Facebook “discussion” came up recently about the cons and pros about GMO or frankenfood. With respect to Monsanto, who insists on inserting insect repellent into seeds. Or rendering corn, “Round Up” proof. What has not been studied, are the long term consequences of levels of toxicity, that may factually build up in a human body. That like Mercury in fish, may not just digest and ultimately pass out of the human body. If it hasn’t been studied, because Monsanto a chemical company wishes to broaden their market base and rushes these doctored seeds out to some very eager agribusiness buyers, then yes there would be a legitimate concern by a good many people as to whether such seeds would produce edible food. IE, food that won’t sicken or kill you. So, on Facebook were a couple of fellows who took turns trying to defend the “science” behind frankenfood. We unlock the secrets of DNA through scientific research, and companies like Archer Daniel Midland or Monsanto, commercialize transmutation by artificial means. I fail to find the “scientific” method behind what amounts to the work of mad scientists. If there are no long term studies about the health effects of frankenfood, if companies like Monsanto pour a lot of money into opposing anti-GMO ballot measures through out the 50 states, then I think we obviously have a problem. But no one among the Monsanto apologia choir is discussing the countries that have banned frankenfood and with good reason. Thus, while populist liberalism is all about making fundamental changes in the social, political, and economic order in a nation. Monsanto’s corporate liberalism, is all about making fundamental changes about our food supplies. With no thought about the long term consequences to our collective health; because the bottom line is all about profits, not people.

In this season of politics

October 13, 2014

I actually read through George Nethercutt’s latest editorial, as found in the most recent edition of “The Inlander.” This time, I am not going to address or rebut on a blow-by blow basis, what he wrote. It isn’t worth my time and effort. Instead, I will comment on the fact that when it comes to pre-election politics, Mr. Nethercutt is always guaranteed to lie about something, misinform about something else, or ignore anything that would make his fellow GOPers out to be total losers. Well, they are. So is Mr. Nethercutt. If he is going to harp on matters of value all the time, then the first value must be that of telling the truth.

At the age of 60 my chosen career is that of writing fictional books. That’s right, I write a falsehood, hoping that you will buy it, read it, and enjoy it. But between ourselves, myself as the person producing the book and you as the person supposedly buying the book; we already do know that it is fictional. It is not material to be taken seriously. It is not intended to change the world. It is a falsehood intended solely for your entertainment. That being said; Mr. Nethercutt, if he wishes to be taken seriously, should take just as seriously the people who read his written comments. Otherwise, the Republican Party that has already dragged down Congressional poll ratings, may very well be in for a rude surprise this year.

Did the GOP during the years Clinton was in office, actually work with him on a number of issues? Not exactly. Was the “Contract with America” really intended to re-invent Congress and make it more accountable to the voters? Not exactly. The sole purpose for such a “contract” was to put the GOP in power. After that, they could cause serious headaches for President Clinton while engaging in not so serious politics themselves. Monica Lewinsky comes to mind. Today, GOP “values” is that of telling women they can’t have a menstrual cycle, apparently. A menstrual cycle washes away a “living child.” Just as women can now be criminalized if during their pregnancy, a miscarriage happens, or at the time of birth, the child does not live. The only argument I am seeing here, is in the name of some perverted use of the bible, or in the name of some perverted use of religion, we see the kinds of governments forming that the GOP once said they were supposed to be afraid of. I noticed that Mr. Nethercutt mentioned nothing about that.

What he did mention, was “progress on tax reform.” Never mind that since this progressive era on tax reform —Yes, it actually did change substantially a lot about this nation, and not necessarily for the better.— Business interests look for new ways in which to avoid having to pay any taxes at all. What is also true with high levels of poverty, there are fewer people to take over the taxpaying that business interests and the truly wealthy don’t wish to pay. Yes, the unemployment rate went down to 5.9% Which is a good thing. But it did not happen with the GOP actually working with President Obama to bring this country out of a recession. It had to happen despite the fact of how much the GOP engage in obstruction as a career. Which I find to be an irony. The GOP don’t want “babies washed away” during a menstrual cycle, but they don’t value their constituents or the children of their constituents enough, to actually want to do something for them.

Locally, with regards to Spokane, Washington’s political races, one which was showcased in “The Inlander.” Seems it is a Mr. Patookas, an underfunded and nameless underdog versus Representative Cathy McMorris-Rodgers. I am an Idahoan, therefore I am not in a position to vote for Mr. Patookas. However, maybe this blog post ought to encourage Spokaneites in McMorris-Rodgers’ 5th district to vote for her opponent. If you are as tired of her as you claim to be, then it shouldn’t matter how underfunded Mr. Patookas happens to be. Or the fact that he is a man who “lacks name recognition.” You do know who the man is, because “The Inlander” mentioned him. So, even if he gets to Congress on the anybody but McMorris-Rodgers vote, it will be because you prefer him over the individual you have no use for. I have no use for Ms. McMorris-Rodgers, but I don’t live in her district.

In the closing page of “The Inlander,” was this hilarious commentary, in which the author whines about how reading books is hard to do. In this era of instant gratification, entertainment at your fingertips, he no longer reads books. In which case, I don’t suppose that I can tell him all about my Kindle book, “Are You a Space Alien?” You can only find it on the internet, it is immediate entertainment at your fingertips, yes it is also a book. Welcome to the 21st century. My actual argument is, if you prefer social media to reading, that is your loss. If you prefer instant entertainment to actually continuing your education, that is the fault of yourself. I don’t find books “too hard to read.” I find something useful that I wish to read, then over time I proceed to read it. Reading books you see, adds to ideas. By reading other peoples’ works, it broadens horizons on where I might just take my own writings. What is hard for me, is trying to understand the people who want “instant entertainment” over learning new things. If it can happen on “YouTube,” then it will also play out in politics besides. The presumption is, that the voters prefer to be ignorant. If they are ignorant, then they are more readily controlled.

GOP: Out to insult the voters

October 9, 2014

Yesterday, I received and tossed in the trash a mailed political advertisement from the Idaho Republican party. The political ad listed the names and faces of the Idaho GOP, who will of course work hard at fighting the “President Obama’ administration of a big government liberal agenda.” What ever that is supposed to mean? So let me digress for awhile and discuss something that came up on Facebook. You can form groups, you can create pages, you invite people to like the latter or include them in the former. Given the fact that I am a writer of this blog and books, I took an interest in the literary and political groups that Facebook hosts. Very recently, I entered into a discussion of what “socialism” meant to the old left. In part, it is egalitarian, non authoritarian, democratic in nature, etc. In short, “today’s idea of socialism” looks a lot like the founding fathers’ concepts for this United States of America. Even further, it looks a lot like something you would read out of Thomas Paine’s “Rights of Man.” But Karl Marx wasn’t born, I don’t believe, during the American and French revolutions. But he likely came of an age in the early to the middle of the 19th century when both revolutions were still young, they were the talk of European courts, and undoubtedly created fear among a good many of them. Just think of it, with a delicate shudder of horror, the common man rising up and creating a government for himself? To which Karl Marx would have replied as he came of age, why not? First coining the word “Socialism” = putting people first. And in the decades to follow, coining the word “Communism” = a government controlled or owned by the common people. I would say that he initially followed closely the agendas of two revolutions: the idea that the most common of men would be regarded as the equal of their “betters,” was the factual basis underpinning both revolutions. But only in the first revolution was the argument heard, that no foreign government shall tell an independent American nation what rules it must now follow. We’ll make our own rules from now on, thank you very much. Of the French revolution, it was a public uprising against their own government. France, as far as the rampaging mob was concerned, would no longer be governed by kings and aristocrats. They named their new government of the people, the Commune. It wouldn’t be difficult after that, to imagine how Karl Marx could add an “ism” to the “rule of the mob.”

This trip down memory lane being complete, let us then turn to how the GOP have, since the 1980s, chosen to see democracy. If one of the basic premises of socialism is to be “democratic in nature,” and there is a history of “mob uprisings” against European kingdoms, then let us now treat democracy (demos = the people, cracy= authority) in a pejorative manner. “We aren’t a democracy, we are a Republic.” So how did we become this “republic” without the help of the common people desiring independence from Great Britain? Weren’t there many occasions during the American revolution, when mobs rose up against representatives of the British crown? Yes there were. And once you read thoroughly the U.S. Constitution and the history that buttressed the reason for its very existence, in many ways the document is actually socialist, as it would be defined to day by the old left. But the word would not be invented until the 19th century. Even further, our country’s government was also communist from day 1. That is, the day when we formalized the U.S. Constitution through a 2/3rd majority vote [of the people] and created a government out of it. To put it bluntly, this country has been “socialist/communist” from the time of its founding. Yes, I am being deliberately snarky here, but it is still a subject matter that needs to be deeply thought about. Now onto capitalism: the second leg in the stool for an American revolution.

The original concept behind capitalism was not “pursuit of wealth at all costs,” but rather as Adam Smith was to see and define it: a commercial enterprise. Either it would be a self-sustaining one, such as goods produced through a farm or ranch. Or it would be one in which you had to constantly invest new money; such as the manufacturing of durable goods. Ideally, a commercial enterprise could survive and thrive quite well in a “socialist/communist” state. That is, if you go by the original ideas of how such a state should look like and the commitment required to keep it in existence. But by the time of the Bolshevik revolution, the mob uprising there ultimately did not create a “socialist/communist” state. Instead, it created an absolute rule by party also known as totalitarian. Thus today, we will always associate “socialism” with the totalitarian label or even the word “communism” equally as a totalitarian concept. Totalitarian to mean, the party which is the government controls every aspect of human life, every aspect of human society living under such a regime. And under the circumstances, commercial enterprises become literally state owned. I have blogged about this before, of course. But there is a vast difference between “state ownership” and “government regulated.” The latter is called “laws” incidentally, with the expectation that you need to follow them, so that you don’t end up harming your neighbors, complete strangers, customers, or members of your own family. Laws are required, if you want to set up shop and do business with anyone. With laws in place and a scrupulous desire to comply with them, wouldn’t it be more likely that people would trust you enough to do business with you?

The digression being complete, Republicans since the 1980s have used their concerns about “state ownership” to oppose any and all laws that only regulate (but not own) private commercial interests. The resulting disasters and scandals which followed? The S&L bailouts for one. Real estate speculation that caused a “housing bubble,” before that collapsed and left a whole lot of misery behind. Banks collapsing and disappearing. Banks and mortgage companies running amok to the ruin of their customers, because they were protected against their customers’ interests through the help of a Republican activist government. That’s right, a Republican activist government. Think about it for awhile. How did the GOP wish to see “socialism” or “communism?” Wasn’t the real argument that of “the state” to mean the government, that was simply too big for its britches and needed to be cut down to size? That’s right, we all publicly heard that. But that argument seems to have been tossed in the dust bin of history when ever it comes to cases of special pleading. Ronald Reagan assisting American based businesses against Japanese competition. Bill Clinton providing American businesses a new trading platform via NAFTA and CAFTA. Both Bushes calling for the bailouts of an industry that couldn’t understand the words “providing an honest service and further, doing right by your customer.” Even more than that, I recall G.W. Bush handing back taxpayers’ money to keep the nation’s businesses afloat. In a recession he could not publicly acknowledge, but his actions proved otherwise that it already existed. Or the special pleadings of religious interests, Colorado is set to pass an anti-abortion law that criminalizes all forms of it. A woman who is “considering ending her pregnancy” for what ever reason, should have a government invasive vaginal ultrasound. Or how about the NRA? Government liberalized “open carry laws” has seen (according to news reports on Facebook), three teachers so far harming themselves with firearms. Or “open carry” groups who act very immature and intimidating, as they shop at retail stores or dine at restaurants.

Also, The Republican party decided to assign to “socialism” a culture of dependency and the hand outs to the moochers. Of course, they mean everyone else who isn’t a corporate CEO who funds a lobbying group, or a well funded religious interest, or an equally well funded gun lobby AKA the NRA. But in fact, the culture of dependency plus the matter of hand outs, which is these days very blatant along with the corruption, does indeed start with those particular interest groups. No one else has the money to become culturally dependent on the government, or to receive truly substantial handouts. To say the least, the Republicans don’t bother taking a critical and objective look at themselves, or the party they have since manufactured from the time of Reagan. That is a shame really. There is a big government liberal agenda, it is one run by the Republicans. What they don’t want is competition from the Democrats, especially that of President Barack H. Obama. Remember what was said about totalitarianism? What exactly it did mean when it was implemented? Thomas Cromwell helped to implement a Christian totalitarian state. A lot of people died because of it. The outcome of the French revolution was for a time, a totalitarian state. A lot of people died because of it. The outcome of the totalitarian state that developed from the Russian revolution caused a lot of misery and death. As it did in China, Vietnam, and other countries where the “people’s revolution” took root. At its basis, there can only be one thought, one belief, one way of living, one ideology to follow. Resist it and you die.

So following the tossing of that political ad in the trash, “The Daily Show” with Jon Stewart aired some moronic GOP political ads now appearing prior to the Congressional elections of 2014. First ad, the woman acts like she is “dating the President” on social media. The second ad, the woman acts like she wants to become a fiancee to a GOP hopeful or incumbent. The third ad, the woman plans to get “married (?)” to a GOP hopeful. Fourth ad, a well dressed woman going out to her formal party, who will she be “dating” by the time November comes around? I’d suggest that these women read my blog and recall, that the GOP listens more to the well funded special pleaders before they will ever listen to you. They are more likely to pick your pocket and shift your money away from public unions as an enormous subsidy (hand out) to wealthy private corporations. Also called robbing Peter to pay Paul. They don’t care about your child’s education or your health care needs. Nor are they of the opinion that you have a right to that Social Security that came out of your paycheck on a monthly basis, during your entire working career. They don’t care if toxic spills enter the water, you are supposed to cook, clean, and eat with. So, now they hand out these ads that are so infantile that Stewart could make some very honest fun of. Both him and Kristan Shaw. As a Republican (because originally the GOP/Democratic parties were socialist = egalitarian in their political views), I can’t even say that I am offended by the ads. But I would be offended by anyone, who’d actually forget about recent history, and vote for the infants who put such ads together. Quite a difference in politics that has since shaped this country, over its more than 200 year old lifespan.

Scary politics

October 3, 2014

I’ll start this blog post with Mr. Jim Hollingsworth’s letter. it was published in today’s Coeur d’Alene Press “Readers Write” column 3 October 2014. In this letter, Mr. Hollingsworth argues that IUDs (inter uterine devices) are abortifacients. Precisely, by planting such a device inside a woman’s vagina, it prevents a fertilized egg from being implanted and therefore “killing the unborn.” Until the anti-aborticidists got hold of this particular argument, I never had heard of an IUD or any other method of birth control being used specifically for an abortifacient. Anyone with an actual interest in researching the facts, could get thoroughly educated on the matter of what birth control methods do or not do and likely as not, proceed to never write a letter regarding such an issue out of total ignorance. But you can be sure that in Mr. Hollingsworth’s case, Christian=total ignorance. But we already do know that to be against aborticide among some extremists in the Christian community, is to also be against everything else that reduces the likelihood of woman bearing children. With that thought in mind, I initially e-mailed Mr. Hollingsworth at his published e-mail address, and discussed another anti-aborticide letter which he had written. I pointed out then about the facts of humanity’s history of violence. To which he could kind of agree. But he did not answer the e-mail advising the fate of children once they were born. Which I regarded as interesting. So, Christians should not make use of IUDs and by extension? Government should have within its power, to materially intervene against a woman using such a birth control device, or obtaining an elective end to her pregnancy. However, what becomes the responsibility of government toward its constituency within this country?

“The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” had a good and hilarious take on “Ebola in America.” The literally “pissing in their pants out of fear” Republicans in Congress of the threat Ebola poses now that there are confirmed cases of Americans who now have the disease. Just as the GOP and their apologia choir on Fox News, fanned the flames of fear in creating a linkage between Ebola and ISIS/ISIL. On the other hand, statistics on CBS Evening News about the first greatest threat to people living in this country: heart attacks! That can kill around 600,000 people per year. The GOP reaction? If it is going to cost money, we don’t want to do this. The tens of thousands of people who die from entirely preventable diseases, certainly to include children. What might prevent these kinds of tragedies, such as Medicaid expansion? If it is going to cost money, the GOP don’t want to do this. The very real threat of climate change. We certainly had proofs of climate change here in the Inland Northwest with a very violent storm on the 23rd of July, 2014. Whether some people might argue that it was not a tornado, with reference to the news media in particular; it was none the less a violent storm that injured a number of people and destroyed a lot of property. There is a possibility that someone also died because of this storm. The kind of storm that I don’t think the Inland Northwest had ever actually experienced before this year. Is climate change a threat to human existence? There is evidence to suggest that it is potentially fatal to already existing wildlife. The GOP reaction? If it threatens the profits of the corporations that already hold the GOP purse strings, they refuse to do anything about it. Finally, what about some 33,000 gun deaths each year? If it threatens the interests of the gun lobby AKA the NRA; you can be sure that the GOP will refuse to consider it. What I call, very cheap politics.

This is October, time for the witches to emerge, the pumpkins to be carved, and on the 31st the children to come out in costume and get their handouts of candy and other treats, as they come knocking door to door. It is also the closing weeks of Congressional, mayoral, city council members, gubernatorial, county commissioners, voter initiative, etc. campaigns. Because it is 2014, the GOP in particular are going to say what they will to retain their seats in Congress and try to claim new seats in both Houses of that governing body against the Democrats. Some Democrats make it easy enough for the GOP to do that by engaging in Obama attack ads. That’s right, the Democrats attack the titular head of their party to try and stay in office. Jon Stewart featured some of those more disgustingly hilarious ads on his show, in the last few weeks. I wouldn’t exactly say that the Democrats were “craven.” Make that instead, just like the Republicans, the Dems being discussed here are political opportunists. It has to be an issue today that works in their favor before they will run with this particular ball. If it does not, they have no problem becoming the party of backstabbers. Or representing themselves as the chief among such backstabbers. One name comes to mind, Clay Aiken. There are others as well. Bill Maher was recently quite disgusted with the antics of the Democrats in the year 2014. His disgust about them was featured in an interview that ultimately found its way to Facebook. Besides the fact that I enjoy Bill Maher, I think he was quite right to say what he did. So, it isn’t just the GOP involved in scary politics, it is the Dems as well.

I wouldn’t know what radical Mr. Hollingsworth pays attention to, in what I would call the actual world. He seems to be hiding in a cave most of the time, unless he comes out sometimes to run for political office or present for publication, some anti-choice letter to the editor. But if you are going to call a fertilized egg a “person,” the situation involving the future of that fertilized egg can only get more complicated from here on out. After all, it might develop into a fetus and be born as a child. Then what? Reread the blog post and ask yourself, then what? Pro-life is actually an argument that advises, this child should be valued enough to have a future. The way the political parties are going now, they act purely out of self interest and not on the behalf of the people—inclusive of children—whom they are supposed to be representing. So, what is the future of that fertilized egg that Mr. Hollingsworth “so desperately” wants to see born? This is no longer a matter of cheap politics, and these are definitely scary times to introduce that “future child” to.

You will not like this

September 26, 2014

I picked up the latest “Inlander” and found in the opinion section, a clueless type who had issues with the U.S. funding Israel some billions of dollars a year. Ms. Taylor Weech did not like it that some 500 Palestinian children died. Or that some thousands of Palestinian citizens over all died in that particular conflict. Perhaps if we weren’t subsidizing Israel and providing that couuntry’s government with all the latest weaponry, then all these “innocent” lives would not be lost.

My history about Israel’s existence as a state may not be complete. But I do know from the Balfour agreement that it was not one accepted by the Arab/Islamic/Palestinian world. That as a consequence of this agreement, the PLO was launched, where the main targets were the people of Israel, further, anyone of Jewish origin. After the PLO came Hamas as a political successor. Along the same line of thinking as the PLO, Hamas does not believe that the state of Israel should exist. Thus, whether “we” wish to agree or not with how the Israeli government has reacted to threats to its own existence or that of its citizens, I fully understand why they did so. What is not so understandable, is the refusal of Israel’s neighbors to learn to live in peace. Perhaps if they did, maybe 500 children’s lives would not be lost in this last conflict.

I don’t guess that the people who spend a lot of time seeking to condemn the tiny nation of Israel for something; would care to consider looking at all of the facts first. Like Hamas setting up missile sites (they did do so) near U.N. schools and “safe zones.” Fire off rockets or missiles near those schools and safe zones, and you can be sure that tank rounds, incoming missile launches will indiscriminately destroy—not just the intended targets—but also everything around them. Then Hamas can callously show to the world how those “terrible Jews” are such monsters. Well, Hamas are terrible monsters. They don’t have a problem using kids to further their particular war against the Jewish state.

So, shoot off a few rockets or missiles near a U.N. school, parade a bunch of dead bodies before the T.V. camera, invite westerners in to look at the carnage that Hamas was co-creator to. Expect those westerners to come back to the states, pleading the cause of a movement that is officially recognized to be terrorist in its agenda. Presumably, in the name of the deaths of innocents.

So what would happen if we did stop all funding in armaments and subsidies to the state of Israel? Well, given the many decades of hatred, now well over 60 years and counting that the Islamic nations have for Israel; it would be a massacre of innocent Israeli citizens and their children. Oh and with our international trade in oil, we will have helped to fund such a massacre. Just as with our international trade in oil, we have at least indirectly aided the terrorists. The only better way is to first recognize the facts on the ground of why the middle east is such a flash point. It isn’t about territory, it is entirely about religion. It isn’t about “taking land that doesn’t belong” to one people’s or another, it is about religion. It is about an interpretation of God that entirely justifies why men, women, and children can die all the way back to Old Testament times. It is also about the western European invasion of those same lands, in the name of God and Jesus.

I think of such people as Ms. Weech as needing a lot more education. An education that isn’t all that hard to get. Google is a wonderful thing; it can provide on line encyclopedias such as Wikipedia. It can provide on line news sources. It can provide the means to find the massive resource materials at your finger tips, that otherwise would take years of research and a whole lot of money to discover. Is there some kind of problem with using that kind of technology, before spouting an out there opinion to any newspaper? And we are not just talking about a weekly such as “The Inlander.” Yes, Ms. Weech has a right to her opinions being published and read. But there is more than one side to this sordid and tragic story of those Palestinian children who died. They were betrayed and destroyed by their own people. You can be sure that the people who would condemn Israel for those deaths, won’t take that specific fact into consideration.

Hilarious politics

September 17, 2014

Of course it is not just Facebook where certain arguments will be presented in a written, photographed, or possibly a digital format. You could find the same thing on various websites or YouTube video. Very precisely on websites where pure bigotry against President Obama takes center stage. Or YouTube videos in which the ignorant misrepresent their understanding of another language, plus the era and context in which it would have been initially penned or spoken. Say for example, biblical scripture found in the Old Testament. Over the course of centuries in which the Old Testament (also the Tanakh) would have been jotted down, and those books contained within it finally accumulated together and canonized, there were pagan cultures surrounding the Jewish people. But as of yet, there were no Islamic peoples or Christians then in existence. Christianity did not officially get its start until well into the first century AD. Islam as a religion, did not arrive until about the Tenth century AD. So, I don’t know how the original Jewish language of many thousands of years before, could be made to apply to Barack H. Obama’s name today. But someone trying to employ a scripture out of Isaiah, I believe, tried to do just that. Just as they tried to photoshop “devil horns” for the man, during his ISIL speech. The latter in particular was being shared extensively throughout Facebook.

I also saw this hilarious photo of a guy writing this comment on the dusty back window of his car, to display his foolishness to the world: Obama is the antChrist. That’s right, “ANT CHRIST!” Just as more locally, the ignorant GOP and “TEA Party” types post “your savior” Obama, to the Democrats who also happen to post comments to the Spokesman-Review website. However, “savior” and “Christ” are not interchangeable. A savior is a person who preaches a message, to inform people of what it would take for them to lead a better life. A happier and more healthy life. Christ however denotes a “king.” Being an Aramaic word for king. And the background for saying someone is a “Christ,” has to do with that person being anointed for that particular role or task. This is according to some religious scholars.

Well then, “anti” having two meanings: in opposition to, or false; coupled with “anointed one” or “king;” then an “anti-Christ” is a “pretender to the throne.” In this case, “the throne of God.” A person who tries to make certain claims to greatness under very false pretenses. Really, is it all that hard to figure out? In Jesus’ lifetime, he literally did warn his followers and disciples against people who make specific false claims. Inclusive of seeking to cast out demons in Jesus’ name. At one point Jesus warns that his putative followers “will not find him” among those who falsely make this or that claim. At another point, Jesus said of those who would “cast out demons in his name,” that if they have not followed the teachings of the master, Jesus would not know them. Here are two very telling examples of false teachers or would be false leaders. Expounding on the same theme, the Apostle Paul would later declare, “do not follow this man or that, do not even follow me…” For everything that was being instructed, presumably was so that his congregations would follow Christ (King) Jesus. The argument of false teachers and being warned against them, was around even before the Book of Revelations.

With the Book of Revelations, the anti-Christ took on the dimensions of an ultimate tyrant. In the centuries that have since followed the writing of this last book in the New Testament; regrettably, there have been many occasions for ultimate tyrants to make an appearance. Only as human migration entered new territories, has the reach of any “ultimate tyrant” expanded. Under the agenda or cause deemed either religious or political, agendas or causes for which wars and invasions were made possible, could an ultimate tyrant lay waste to far more territory and many more people’s lives. With the advent of greater and more sophisticated technology, could even more property and territory be absolutely decimated, and many more lives lost. To pin the “ultimate tyrant” label on a single president however, because you hate the fact that he isn’t white and a Republican, with an “American name” (what ever that is supposed to mean); must be met with a derisive snort. We still do elections here,we can replace any politician every two, four, and six years. “The ultimate tyrant” is the guy you can not get rid of.

Citizens United among other recent SCOTUS decisions has led to “Corporations are people,” “as people, corporations can claim religious exemptions to federal laws,” “money is the same as speech.” SCOTUS rulings that give the Koch bros, Monsanto, those who comprise “War Inc.” (another video viewed on Facebook), unlimited access to the same government that the voters install through our election cycles. With understandable cries of alarm from the (old) left about the rise of Oligarchies. Or even more out there, fascism. With reference to the Book of Revelations, the third horseman of the apocalypse was a man who carried weights and measures. You know, a man of business. If in the course of his career his apocalyptic ride was to bring the false king in his wake (according to the History Channel), well that false king wouldn’t necessarily be found in our Presidential elections. Rather, the false king is a coalition of people who turn politicians into corrupt puppets, so that they will only be answerable to the money used to buy them. With very brazen ads to that effect found even on Facebook. George Bush was a businessman (however he failed in his various ventures) before he entered politics. You can say of him (as you can say of any Republican desirous of having him become President) that the conditions were set up to make our current circumstances (where business oligarchies rule behind the throne) possible. After all, government should be run more like a business. More correctly, government ought to have precisely one special interest that it most surely should answer to, those with the most influence and money to make things happen. As noted above, the ultimate tyrant is the guy you can’t get rid of. With plenty of money to spend or otherwise hoard, ultimate tyrants could rise up in an otherwise “capitalist system” and use that system to beat humanity into compliance. We already saw the start of it when President George Bush entered office. Given the international reach that these people like the Kochs, Waltons, Monsanto, etc. have now; the world is quite ready for the rise of an anti-Christ all right; but he isn’t in the White House. No, they are the ones buying judges and politicians.

Attitude: it isn’t the clothes

September 15, 2014

I read the George Nethercutt editorial in last week’s “The Inlander.” Seems he bemoans what has become our increasingly laid back world. People are too busy texting, or talking loudly in their phones, to pay any attention to other people. Or for that matter, to even pay any attention to everything that is part of their general environment. He’s of the opinion that if more people wore suits, that might change our culture.

Bob Hope was quite the comedian in his time, and did a number of funny movies, inclusive of “The Ghost Breakers.” But this movie also came from and represented an era that I have no doubt Mr. Nethercutt would like to ignore. There is a segment in this movie where Mr. Hope has his African-American manservant completely dress him. Seems he is completely incapable of putting on and tying his own shoes. Yes, he is wearing a suit and tie. And in the fifty or better years since this movie was first shown in theaters, that is one of the least funny segments in the entire show. But then, our attitudes seem to have changed a bit, perhaps for the better. So, Mr. Nethercutt pines after a time when men wore pin stripe suits and bow ties to ball games? There was also a darker undercurrent that existed in that same time frame that no pin stripe suit could ever hide. A little historical research would very quickly reveal it.

Men would dress professionally to go to the office. But unless they are on a business trip, why would they wear a suit on all occasions? The same thing would be just as true of the women. Besides, a suit denotes that you are a person of class. It would be highly suggestive that you are a person of money. You are a person of great success and seek to impress with the clothing you wear. That would be entirely true of Mr. Nethercutt. So, maybe his real issue isn’t that enough young men are not dressing for success; it is instead that they are so busy texting and talking loudly in their phones, that they aren’t noticing him! I’ll sympathize just a bit. These days, a lot of people are very self-centered. I seem to have “lost” a Facebook “friend” when she took a selfie of a most hideous looking hair style and thought that this is what she wanted in a “do.” More power to her, I gave her a “like” and thought I would have a little fun with it. Like at least one other guy, right? I also mentioned my new book “Are You a Space Alien?” now on That was when the woman turned into a real bitch and engaged in a lot of shrill ranting, screaming and attacking that anyone could take away from her “moment in the sun.” I was only going to share my accomplishment. So the woman can’t seem to recognize the spirit in which it was intended (now I seem to have become “more important than herself” because I am a published author”—as if Facebook is now some kind of competition on questions of self-importance), and decides to “unfriend me.” I won’t miss her.

Oh and by the way, the woman is only a journalist… Onward. I don’t see where dressing professionally would change the kinds of attitudes that people choose. After all, it is an attitude that you do indeed choose. People actually do choose to be caring and compassionate, a business suit or otherwise dressing professionally, doesn’t enter into it. Also, people also choose to interact with other people: smiling, waving, and engaging in greetings. A business suit won’t make it more likely. On the other hand, walk any day of the week through say Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. You are sticking to the sidewalks where possible, you watch for traffic, you turn on the crosswalk signal light, you wait for the signal light to change on your behalf… And you would swear that no matter what their age or gender, it must be a blind person at the wheel. They will run right over the top of you in an utter hurry to get to their destination. No smart phone in sight, these are drivers who pay attention to nothing because they feel they own the road. You have to become a defensive pedestrian as a consequence, of dealing with people who truly have that kind of lack of consideration for others.

The demand that people “wear suits” or otherwise dress professionally, is a superficially cosmetic argument against our so-called “eroding standards and values.” Does Mr. Nethercutt wear a suit when he vacations at his summer home in Idaho? I highly doubt it. But that is not the point. Our eroding culture, values, and standards are from the choices we make, not the clothing we wear.

The Sucker Game

September 6, 2014

(This title is not a rip off of the books titled “The Hunger Games.”)

I picked up the latest copy of “The Inlander” today, and there was Robert Herold opining about the ideology of government hating politics. Further, how House Representatives such as Cathy McMorris Rodgers seems to hate the people she wants to keep putting her back into office. I really won’t go much into his hilarious commentary. Sincerely, it is hilarious. But that is not to make fun of the man. Instead, it is an unintended stand up comedy about the people in the 5th District.

I have not lately visited the Spokesman-Review, however I know whereof Mr. Herold speaks in terms of government hating trolls whom people like Newt Gingrich have fed down through the years. People generally living in a district that is high poverty, labor exploitative; and a Representative who is opposed to food stamps, women’s pay equality, and birth control. Referencing Facebook, my Democratic Facebook friends sometimes post links, photos and etc. that tends to get a bit hostile toward our current interpretation of “capitalism.” I “shared” one such post, where it is to be acknowledged that major corporations don’t feel they have a responsibility to include worker pay plus a decent 40 hour work week into their cost of doing business. So now, they want to kick the can over to the government. The business interests do want socialism; and people like Cathy McMorris Rodgers tell her constituents to just suck it up. You aren’t getting a thing from government while I am around. However, at the end of Mr. Herold’s opinion column, seems that Loudoun County, Virginia has become the place to be for extremely wealthy people. Make that extremely wealthy lobbyists, who absolutely do not hate the government that they want special favors from.

So when ever I see some rash and otherwise absurd comment about “too much government,” and what makes the “party in charge” commie or socialist. At least one of my responses does come to mind, “That’s for guys like you, not for the wealthy and influential who insist on big government being there for them.” Because you see, that is the actual facts of the matter. Government shouldn’t be there “for the people.” And it is the people who are being taught to hate its very existence. Government should only be there for the wealthy and well connected; as though we were trying to recreate, not just an oligarchy, but also an aristocracy. Meanwhile, people are taught to hate the government, by the very politicians who still want to be re-elected into that very same evil entity. That is what is hilarious. Further, I had seen Rep. McMorris Rodgers’ ads. Oh yes, she will go to Washington, D.C. and fight the very things that would most likely assist her constituents. That is, the people who vote for her. As for her real constituents, the people who can now spend unlimited amounts of money on the behalf of her campaign; she won’t fight Washington, D.C. where she is in a position to do something for these specific special interests.

Steve Gleason of Spokane, Washington ultimately went pro-football when he joined the New Orleans Saints. Then his personal tragedy struck in the form of ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. These days, the man can not move at all. That is how far and how fast this illness has progressed. For this, he and his family have my full sympathies and blessings. So, out comes the “ice bucket challenge.” Accept having a bucket full of ice water dumped all over your head. After that, donate what you can to the ALS search for the cure fund. Or skip the bucket and just donate the moolah. It started in Spokane, Washington, I think. Then it went international. I also saw people post videos of the “ice bucket challenge” that was sometimes goofy, idiotic, outright troubling, or all in good fun. I can certainly hope that money has come in to aid in a search for the cure of ALS. However, there are people such as “Right Wing News” who decided to exploit that for their own purposes. And you guessed it, a “FACEBOOK ‘friend'” decided to pass on something that was utterly crude. Seems the bucket will now be filled with urine and turds and President Obama (among others) are nominated to dump it on their heads… I suggested to this fellow, after advising him of what the “ice bucket challenge” was supposed to be about; that if he liked it so much, he should dump that bucket on his head and post the video to Facebook. Apparently, he didn’t like the idea of completely humiliating himself in front of the rest of the world. He’d rather that the other guy do so—such as President Obama. My personal opinion? You don’t have to love the Presidents whom the people elect. In fact “Slick Willy” (Clinton), “Tricky Dick” (Nixon), “The Chimp” (Bush), “Ray-gun” (Ronald Reagan) are all obviously names spoken in mockery. It is something that any President can expect when being elected in a country built upon dissent and presumably a democracy. However, to make public a demand that any President inclusive of President Obama should publicly humiliate themselves, such as “Right Wing News” described; will I think create quite a retaliation. I could have said to this fellow, that if he wants respect then he also needs to give the same. Or I could have said, given who and what you say you represent, then that is something you do not do especially where it may serve your own interests. After all, the kind of people who’d post something this crude in the first place, would have no respect for the “FACEBOOK ‘friend'” in question. He’s just another sucker, prepared to be used by people to get their really pug ugly message out. And afterwards, to be dispensed with, when he no longer serves a purpose. Much like, you see, McMorris Rodgers’ constituents in the 5th District.

Interesting times

August 29, 2014

I will begin this blog post tonight with a bit of a discussion on the Thom Hartmann T.V. show found on RT a Dish Network channel.  I got just a tad tired of watching “Inside Edition” and what actually amounted to warmed over celebrity news, and decided to check my channel favorites.  I modified my list and when I was done, I hit the channel guide to find something a bit more interesting to watch.  Thom Hartmann proved interesting to watch.  Well he had no problem identifying “Progressive” as being “for the people.”  I will only agree with him to a point however about what is now identified as “conservative:”  promoting or otherwise being a camp follower of the rich and powerful.  At any time in American history, we did have periods of time when the rich and powerful were upheld in all things.  Anything they wanted to see happen, did happen.  And when economic disasters struck, it was of course the people themselves who were left holding the bag.

However, there was one woman in his “Your Take, My Take” segment who apparently bought into the GOP talking points.  Precisely, President Obama hadn’t followed through on his big promises.  Well now, what I find more than a little interesting here, how much do you pay attention to actual news?  If you can post a YouTube video asking Mr. Hartmann such a question, or send a tweet asking him another question, then Googling on line news should be entirely possible.  President Obama has been very active carrying out his agenda.  It has been the GOP who have tried to slow the President down or to stop him all together.  If you want to get angry about someone or something, become informed and get educated.  Blame the right people for why this country is not in better shape today.

What was really hilarious however, a true “Libertarian” had to first be a millionaire or a billionaire living in a lawless society.  Well now, checking out Somalia where there is no actual government, and piracy seems to be the only way in which money could enter that extremely poor nation; a millionaire or a billionaire you would think anyway, would surely wish to have the layers of security surrounding them that only governments and laws can provide.  Just ask J.P. Morgan/Chase where on the news this evening, that giant bank reports a security breach.  In a truly lawless society, how secure would the millionaire or billionaire really be with all of his wealth?  Not really.  The reason why the Koch bros are all opposed to Medicare, Social Security, and etc. in their reinterpretation of what they think “Libertarian” is supposed to mean; because it might help the little guy whom they already care nothing about.  That is, before you then get into this discussion of Koch bros style of corruption.  And how flagrantly the GOP show the rest of their constituents, just how readily they wish to be corrupted.  In this case, “conservative” now means how willing you are to be bought by the Koch bros of this world, how willing you are to personally serve the interests of people like themselves.  Only, when would the Koch bros and others like them, finally decide that a politician is a useless middle man?  If folks like Thom Hartmann are worried about the loss of Democracy in this nation today, then that is a particularly chilling thought they fall short of contemplating as of right now.  If wealth can buy anything inclusive of government, then wealth should simply put you in the position of being that government. 

I have some particularly enlightening discussions with one of my neighbors.  Earlier today, we had something of a discussion about the new radical smear job on Hillary Rodham Clinton.  Something of what she said, being lifted out of context and compared to what Hitler had once said.  Never mind that Hitler’s views of “society” involved his “master race” theory and all that it would take to create one.  If you weren’t an acceptable member of the “master race,” you could get yourself very dead.  What Hillary Clinton said, would have been a bit more viable to the modern era of this country and its politics.  Say, you are a corporation that fracks for natural gas.  Is your need for profit as that corporation, one that must supersede the health and well being of your neighbors and future customers?  If you are the person who faces cancer risks from fracking, then you are more likely to agree with Ms. Clinton and the environmentalists, than you would with the corporate profits that literally do come at your expense.  Society is a collection of individuals.  Take the rest of “us” out of that equation and what do you have left?  It still takes “us” to make those corporate profits possible.  So, the real problem here isn’t wealth or even the desire to obtain it.  The real problem here, is the fantasy that some people with a great deal of money, suddenly develop: they forget where and from whom their wealth is actually rooted.  As long as they don’t wish to invest in the rest of society, and wish to disconnect from what they regard as the “common run of people,” then what do they do when they discover that wealth isn’t an unlimited resource?  It still takes the common run of people to generate it.  Political theory drives this particular “Libertarian” thinking.  And it is a political theory that ultimately drives a wedge between wealth and a capitalist society.

Ferguson, MO was on my mind for awhile. Being often on Facebook, I saw some particularly blow by blow accounts, inclusive of arson, vandalism, and looting.  But the first night that I could watch a new “The Daily Show,” Jon Stewart nailed it with his soliloquy about race.  Especially after he played a number of clips from Fox News, natch, in which the anchors and etc. were whining repeatedly about who the real “racists” were.  Among other things, of course.  So Mr. Stewart duly informed his wide-spread audience about race.  To include one of his correspondents who happens to be an African-American dressed to the nines in a suit.  The cameraman, a “homeless elf type,” as Mr. Stewart said. And where they were going and what they planned to do once they got there.  Who got stopped?   It wasn’t the white homeless looking dude.  After that, Mr. Michael Che was looking for that one safe place where he wouldn’t have a deadly run in with a cop.  Only when he thinks he is safe in outer space, that is when a cop actually does show up…  Major gut busting LOL! over how that skit was fully played out.  Ultimately, my views of the people who entertain their devoted fans on Fox News; if “race” offends end the bigotry.  By ending the bigotry then you won’t be “offended” any longer.

Finally and briefly, a Facebook friend shared a video of a squirrel munching contentedly, on an apparently venomous snake.  The snake fights the squirrel, the squirrel fights back, and the squirrel is noshing on the snake’s tail as the now bloodied snake is trying to crawl away.  Under the circumstances, I’d say that 21 December 2012 brought something into existence, something very strange, when a squirrel decides that snake makes a most delectable lunch.  And “The Nation” manages to catch the GOP laying aside all pretenses, about how corrupt they truly choose to be.


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