Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Bush-Cheney Myths ...

That torture made America safe ...

That the surge brought us "victory" of sorts in Iraq ...

Read HERE for a fascinating review of these preposterous ideas ...

Monday, December 29, 2008

The Evangelical Hoax

Evangelical Christians are under intense pressure to offer a Jesus better than any other Jesus, and a way of life full of power and miracles ... but it's just not the way it is: it's illusion rather than reality:

From recent research:

Teenagers who pledge to remain virgins until marriage are just as likely to have premarital sex as those who do not promise abstinence and are significantly less likely to use condoms and other forms of birth control when they do, according to a study released today.

The new analysis of data from a large federal survey found that more than half of youths became sexually active before marriage regardless of whether they had taken a "virginity pledge," but that the percentage who took precautions against pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases was 10 points lower for pledgers than for non-pledgers.

"Taking a pledge doesn't seem to make any difference at all in any sexual behavior," said Janet E. Rosenbaum of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, whose report appears in the January issue of the journal Pediatrics. "But it does seem to make a difference in condom use and other forms of birth control that is quite striking."

Once again, the vaunted "evangelical" better-than-you promise is revealed for what it is - nonsense.

I am a Christian, but the "selling of Christianity" like cars - "bigger and better" has gotten the evangelical wing of the church into deep trouble - they've promised more than they can deliver and they've done great harm to a whole generation of children - sure, they didn't beat them with switches (maybe they did); they just backed them into a corner from which they escape as all humans do - just by being human.

There is good news ... there is grace for human beings being human ... there is grace for us all ... just as we are.

Bush Fails Right to the End

With the latest over-the-top aggression by an incoherent Israel, Bush tells Hamas to lay off the rocket attacks, and if so, this will bring about a peaceful resolution.

That's like telling the hens to lay off the fox for awhile - sure, the rockets hurt, but now there are 300 dead Palestinians and how many more wounded - many times more than dead and wounded Israelis.

Let's be truthful - Israel, illicitly founded in 1948, has been America's bad boy ever since, and with tacit American approval, Israel is bent upon eradicating both Palestinians and Christian Arabs within its boundaries.

Not every Israeli favor this madness, but the henchmen of death hold all the cards.

A two-state arrangement - "yes, yes" everyone says, but Israel will never allow it, and as long as America refuses to both challenge and protect Israel, this will be "war to the end."

The brutal treatment of the Palestinians is inexcusable and continues unabated, and when Palestinian resentment and despair reach a boiling point, then American jumps all over them, "condemning" the violence and cheering on the Israelis, to keep the Middle East destabilized, because a Mid-east in turmoil is beneficial to the Neo-con dream of oil domination. A peaceful Middle East would pose an enormous threat to our hegemony, just like the European Union does.

As long as the neighbors are fighting amongst themselves, we're at liberty to pick their apples, and if they get a little fussy about it, we just stir 'em up a little bit more - see HERE for a BBC article.

American policy is abysmal - a failure in every respect, and though I believe Israel to be an illegitimate state, it exists, and there's no going back in time.

The Palestinians need restoration; they need to be freed from their virtual imprisonment in Gaza and elsewhere, and Israel needs to protected.

This could be accomplished in a heartbeat, but for the lack of American resolve and the madness gripping much of the current Israeli leadership.

Check out THIS for more insight ...

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

From Huffington Post ...

Laissez-Faire Capitalism Should Be as Dead as Soviet Communism

The collapse of Communism as a political system sounded the death knell for Marxism as an ideology. But while laissez-faire capitalism has been a monumental failure in practice, and soundly defeated at the polls, the ideology is still alive and kicking.

The only place you can find an American Marxist these days is teaching a college linguistic theory class. But you can find all manner of free market fundamentalists still on the Senate floor or in Governor's mansions or showing up on TV trying to peddle the deregulation snake oil.

Ideologies, by definition, never work, simply because they're conjured up in the mind with a perfect universe, and in a perfect universe, either Marxism or Laissez-Faire Capitalism would work.

A strong economy will be a working partnership between the conscience of Marxism and the energy of Capitalism ... a realpolitik rather than ideology.

Toyoto Takes a Hit

New York Times -

In the United States, for example, it has halted work on a plant in Mississippi and enrolled idled employees in classes at its truck factory in San Antonio, because fewer of them are needed on the production line.

Analysts said the industry shake-out was likely to get worse next year, with weaker companies being forced out of business or acquired by stronger competitors.

The Southern Autoworker will feel the pinch, and who will go to bat for them?

Monday, December 22, 2008

More About Unions

So, the Prez wants the unions to make further concessions, to bring themselves into line with the transplant auto companies.

Union busting is the heart and soul of the Southern Repubs ... why?

Look, the Southern auto worker is making good money ONLY because of the UAW in the north.

But if the UAW is dismantled, or further weakened, guess what? We're gonna see southern wages and benefits slashed.

The worst thing that could happen right now is to force the UAW to surrender its worker protections, because all workers, everywhere, will suffer ... while the rich folk dance on its grave.

Meanwhile, billions more for Wall Street.

Make any sense?

Only if your a fascist! Government for the rich, by the rich, of the rich!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What DOES the Bible Say?

Click HERE to see my post in a Facebook discussion for a group working to repeal Prop 8.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Union-Busting #2

Senator Phillips Corker, Jr, a millionaire real estate developer, led the fight to defeat the bailout. While enjoying the best of the best, he tells millions of middle class auto workers to take a wage cut and surrender benefits. And apparently it all came down to a timeline. Ron Gettelfinger, head of the UAW, has given plenty of ground since becoming head of the UAW in 2002, but Corker, resolute in his effort to bush the UAW, stood his ground and the deal went down.

Who is this FRESHMAN senator from Tennessee? A millionaire ... a fascist ... and a (you fill in the blank - just about anything low down and dirty will do).

Betraying a huge GM plant in his own state ... but let's put the pedal to the metal - I wonder how many of those folks are so-called Reagan Dems - voting Republican for ideological reasons - the Pro-Lie position? Religious reasons? Evolution?

Who knows, but Tennessee went Republican ...

Okay, enough ... what was was.

But can it be? The Repubs putting in the last few nails on their fascist coffin?

Whatever one thinks of the auto industry, it's a huge part of America, larger than the Wall Street Jungle and the twenty- and thirty-something goons that broke our back.

Millions of hard-working, honest Americans, making their housepayments and sending their children to college are in jeopardy because wealthy fascists are plotting to bring even more foreign auto plants to the south, with the promise, of course, that unions won't interfere.

I'm pretty disgusted, and I hope you are, too.

Union-Busting Southern Republicans

Let's be honest. The GOP (Greedy Old Party) has never been about workers, but only capital. In other words, they're fascists, pure, plain and simple. Billions for Wall Street, but not a dime for Main Street.Link
Here's a great quote from Robert L. Borosage at the Huffington Post:

What was the sticking point? It wasn't getting rid of the CEOs that drove the companies into the ditch. It wasn't forcing the creditors to cut their loans in exchange for stock, giving them a stake in the future. It wasn't accepting an auto czar to enforce the agreement and drive a transition to fuel efficient cars. That was agreed to. No, led by benighted Tennessee Senator Bob Corker -- known previously solely for his "call me" race bait campaign ad that helped him win election -- Republicans wanted to break the union, and punish the workers.

And why?

The South is emerging as a major player in the auto industry, but non-unionized. With plenty of new plants and more on the way, the Southern labor market is enjoying an unusual prosperity, and when it ain't raining, who needs a union.

In time, as the work force ages, and questions of retirement and medical benefits emerge, we will witness a new climate for unions. When this younger work force experiences the harshness of the corporate world - a world devoid of compassion, driven as it is by Wall Street, they will begin to ask, "Who will defend us after we defended the company? Who will go to bat for us after we've spent ourselves for them?"

We see this emerging with FedEx employees. There was a time when FedEx employees received the same wages as UPS (unionized), but with the slightest vagaries of the economy, wages and benefits have been stripped away like a child pulling leaves off a branch. Suddenly, a union looks pretty good, but it's an amazing story how the head of FedEx, Fred Smith, crafted the company in partnership with fascist elements in our government - I mean Repubs, and all those silly and foolish Reagan Dems - to make unionizing a very difficult process. A brilliant and evil man.

But the Teamsters are working hard in conjunction with local groups to come to the defense of the FedEx employee. Check out the work of CLUE (Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice) and LAANE (Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy).

The crudeness and callousness of corporate America is a poison in the American soul, and justice is the antidote.

I write this blog as a Christian, and I know that justice is the heart and soul of a living faith. A faith without justice, a faith that talks Jesus and fails to build a Jesus world is an imposter of the worst kind. Women and men of faith everywhere need to take up the cause of American workers, and workers around the world.

Perhaps there was a time private companies had some compassion for their workers, but that element is long gone in publicly traded corporations.

Sure, the auto companies made plenty of mistakes, but so did Wall Street, and no one clamored for wage concessions for Wall Street employees. Granted, some Republicans weren't too keen on bailing out Wall Street either, because core Republican philosophy is essentially Darwinian - survival of the fittest. While fighting Darwinism in the schools, the Repubs practice it economically with a passion.

Sure, poorly managed companies ought not to be rewarded, but a bailout for the auto industry isn't a reward, but a means by which a new industry might emerge, and new unions also, in partnership with a new government.

With a disdain appropriate to a medieval despot, Southern Republicans are throwing the north away - a final battle in their Civil War.

Lincoln was right: the economic philosophy of the South was corrupt, and it still is. Fascist to the core!

What with all the last-minutes rules emerging out of the twisted remains of the Bush Administration, the fascists are well on their way to adding their final flourish to the mess they've made. In their dash to the finish line, implementing more failed policies in a near-suicidal craze - like an insane lover - "If I can't her, you can't either."

Oh for a new vision of life, a vision of compassion and cooperation - recognizing the role of a real government, of the people, by the people and for the people.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A President with a Heart

President-elect Obama has issued a statement about workers at a Chicago factory (Republic Windows and Doors) - they deserve what they've worked for.

Here's a bit more of what Obama said:

"When it comes to the situation here in Chicago with the workers who are asking for their benefits and payments they have earned, I think they are absolutely right," Obama said Sunday at a news conference announcing his new Veterans Affairs director. "What's happening to them is reflective of what's happening across this economy.
    "When you have a financial system that is shaky, credit contracts. Businesses large and small start cutting back on their plants and equipment and their workforces. That's why it's so important for us to maintain a strong financial system. But it's also important for us to make sure that the plans and programs that we design aren't just targeted at maintaining the solvency of banks, but they are designed to get money out the doors and to help people on Main Street. So, number one, I think that these workers, if they have earned their benefits and their pay, then these companies need to follow through on those commitments.
    "Number two, I think it is important for us to make sure that, moving forward, any economic plan we put in place helps businesses to meet payroll so we are not seeing these kinds of circumstances again,'' he said. "Have we done everything that we can to make sure credit is flowing to businesses and to families, and to students who are trying to get loans? And to homeowners who have been making payments on their homes but are still finding their property values so depressed that it becomes very difficult for them to make the mortgage payments?
    "That's where the rubber hits the road and that's going to be the central focus of my administration."

Amazing - we have a President with a heart, and we will all learn that heart matters. We will see our economy recover, with benefit for all the people, not just the upper tier. What has happened since the Great Liar is a travesty, a crime of now imaginable proportions - the pillaging of the once-great American economy.

A union official said: "Here the banks like Bank of America get a bailout, but workers cannot be paid?" said Leah Fried, an organizer with the union workers. "The taxpayers would like to see that bailout go toward saving jobs, not saving C.E.O.'s."

But then this follow up by Bank of America: ... "Neither Bank of America nor any other third party lender to the company has the right to control whether the company complies with applicable laws or honors its commitments to its employees."

Talk about evasion of responsibility ... but this much I know: they'd care and they'd get involved if the company didn't pay them.

The American financial industry has become a-moral,  without moral orientation, and therefore immoral ... it's all about money, and that's a dark pathway for them, and for the nation as a whole.

The wheels of God's justice turn slowly but surely ... and if, like the ancients, we begin to think that God isn't looking at us, that God doesn't care what we do, we compound our error and further the injustice. It isn't just about doing something for the sake of doing something; it's doing what's right, because what's right works, and works well.

Justice is profitable.

Monday, December 8, 2008

The Best and the Brightest?

A thoughtful op-ed piece by Frank Rich ... delineating the difference between intelligence and wisdom. Calling on some parallels between Kennedy's and Obama's team-building, Rich reminds us that "the best and the brightest" failed Kennedy and the nation. Be sure to read his last paragraph. With a team so bright, it will be all the more imperative for Obama to be sure the buck stops with him.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Chambliss Wins Georgia

Chambliss wins ... America loses ...

A disappointment, but not a surprise ... those crackers would as soon die in a failed economy then to give up their pro-lie positions and low taxes mythologies ...

Clearly a win for the palintologists ... and Neanderthal christians ...

Oh well, for a spiritual break, read Jan Karon's book, "Home to Holly Springs."