Friday, August 26, 2005

a mixed bag....

Well, regardless of the desire of the American Legion to prohibit protesting, the American people are fortunately much more sensible, on this item at least. I was a little surprised at these poll results, to be honest because there are so many out there who claim that protests and a non-uniform level of support for the troops is hurting America. Oh well, at least they are comfortable with protesters stating their points of view, even if Rumsfeld called us "Stalinists" and Orrin Hatch called us "nutcakes" (see previous post). As usual, the common man has a bit more sense than Cons (-men). It's like people who claimed that Ralph Nader was responsible for Al Gore not winning the Presidency in 2000. No. Al Gore failed to campaign on the basis of a historically healthy economy. He declined to give Bill Clinton a prominent role in his campaign because Clinton was so disliked in parts of the country. (What about the parts of the country where he was very popular?) He was dull. And he campaigned defensively, defining himself in terms outlined by the Monkey Gov. Had he aligned himself with his President and held up the US economy as evidence of the success of the Clinton administration, he would have won no problem. But he was too chicken, too vanilla to do so. For whatever reason, he was averse to really defining himself in bold and persuasive ways. His loss, not Ralph Nader's. If Gore really had run on the strength of the US economy, sure, many of Nader's supporters would have stood by Nader, but some of the borderline Nader voters would have been swayed and there's no way he would have hindered Al Gore's election. Similarly, people who say that protesters are hurting America need to remember who is (ostensibly) running the country. The policies that expose our troops, that alienate Muslims, that run roughshod over the wills and policies of our former allies, that diminish the rights and abuse prisoners, that claim to be representative of democracy while imposing an American sheen on sovereign international countries; that bully and badger poor countries for more favorable trade terms, that stiff countries which fail to endorse US business policies, that render prisoners to countries where they can be tortured while proclaiming that "freedom is on the march", that continue to reward the rich while imposing an increasing tax burden on the lower-middle class and the poor in this country; that stiff US veterans, that fail to properly arm our troops who serve bravely and patriotically, who fail to train US troops in dealing sensitively with Muslims; that continue to link 9/11 and Osama Bin Laden and demonize mourning war mothers while outing folks with ther nerve to call them out, who continue to reject calls for full inquiries on what happened in response, and also what failed to prevent 9/11, while harassing small, oil-rich countries with the cojones to reject neo-con business as usual and continuing to reject calls for deadlines on pulling out troops (even though we're supposedly making progress) while re-inforcing ever larger military bases, that is what is hurting America. Were it not for protests and those holding Monkey Prez' feet to the fire, well, I dread to think where we'd be. Unfortunately, the difference between where we are and where we would be would not be as big as one might hope, so far have we come down the wrong path. Nevertheless, onward.

And here is an excellent article about the long-term dangers of encroaching, creeping, consumerism. A sign that this is still a big problem is that the MSM still hasn't even broached the topic. Nevertheless, the cost, in terms of a recession as a result of a debt-ridden economy, not to mention the increasing looking out for #1 and the ideas that promotes, are fearful. We are going to reap a bitter harvest and an economic meltdown if we continue on this path. And finally, one more article with lots of unanswered questions.


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