An unabashedly liberal political commentary on the issues of the day





















Poor John...

On a day when McCain is back to a serious speech at his most sincere best, surrounded by aging white Senators, Generals and Secretaries of State, moving his argument about the dangers we face to attacking Obama's lack of readiness to be Commander-in-Chief and segueing that into a nuclear-armed Iran threatening Israel and outright war in the Middle East also mentioning North Korea, Chavez in Venezuela, and the Castro Brothers.
Gaining steam toward total vilification of Obama as a threat to America, McCain is cut off the three cable news networks because the Fed has cut interest rates to 1%. McCain just can't win for losing.
Read Pearl Buck's "The Good Earth" and join me in running outside -- hands toward the heavens, trying to fool the gods into not noticing the good crop we have this year so that they won't once again try to test us poor peasants -- yelling "Bad rice! Bad rice!" It ain't over 'til it's over.


Okay, here's where I do the unexpected.
I see absolutely nothing wrong with Palin's wardrobe having been purchased by the Republican National Committee. Sure, that money could have helped someone in a tight Congressional race. Or it could have bought time for John McCain in Western Pennsylvania (too little, too late). But professional women have to project an image that is stylish, appropriate, and has class.
Every woman who has "made it" is a style-setter, one who becomes the role model for what younger women emulate. There should be a clothing allowance appropriate to the salary level of every professional woman. Fashion is an industry because we care about that stuff. We can't get by with just changing our tie every day.
And it's not sexist to talk about it -- we mocked John Edwards for the supposed $400 haircut (and his hair looked great), and Hillary's pantsuits have certainly come in for derision (and didn't she look smashing at the Al Smith dinner?), and McCain does wear $400 shoes. And Obama CAN wear a suit (honey, it never wears him!).
Gov. Palin: you go girl, and forget that backpeddling about "donating the clothes to charity (auctioned at some posh tax-deductible party where people with money try to show how much they care, and some of them actually do). Don't you listen to all those critics, Sarah. You look great!!

The wealth has already been re-distributed!

“We don’t need anybody redistributing the wealth!”  The only appropriate response to that new battle cry is: No, you’ve already done it. 

Republicans have successfully eliminated jobs, reduced wages, turned a successful middle class into a struggling majority of families one “downsizing” away from financial disaster. 

The Bush tax cuts – once so boldly criticized by Senator John McCain but which he now wants to not only make permanent but even expand – benefited the top 5% in our country, and the top 1% obscenely. 

The disparity in incomes between workers and owners is now beyond anything even seen since the robber barons used indentured labor. 

We’ve already had the wealth of this country redistributed – from huge surpluses and millions of decent jobs to a two-class society: the rich and everyone else.  And they have the chutzpah to claim Sen. Obama wants to redistribute the wealth?  It has become beyond sad. 

It’s time to admit that Sen. McCain doesn’t deserve to win.  



With the debates over, here's the question: What happens now?  The McCain campaign is back to robo-calls and mailers that are blatantly racist (fried chicken and watermelon???), while McCain says he wants to run a respectful campaign.  Oh, please. 

The increasing desperation of McCain and his hit-men is sad.  This man, who was once respected and honorable has become angry and increasingly acting like a cantankerous old coot who seems to think he was entitled to be President and can't understand why everyone has turned against him. 

The American people are hurting -- our economy has tanked, two wars without end,  our world reputation in tatters, jobs impossible to find, health care is a joke, our current President can't restore confidence and has violated every responsibility including protecting the Constitution -- and McCain wants to cast Obama as a dangerous radical who consorts with terrorists.  What a mess!

And while the Obama campaign cautions everyone to remember it's not over until people actually get out and vote, what's with the "Obama Flag" intermixed with the American flags behind him?  Somebody in his campaign has WAY too much time on their hands.  OOPS! Okay, I screwed up (gee, I don't know if I've ever said that before...).  The flag behind Obama was Ohio's state flag -- that's what the "O" was for. 

Oops, sorry.



    With the elections coming up, I feel obliged to comment on the insanity which is our political system, albeit maybe the best one yet devised by man. (Can woman do better?  Hopefully, we'll find out!  Surely it couldn't be worse...) 

     As if it weren't enough that we have discussions about whether Hillary wore a V-neck blouse because she needs to prove she's a woman (as opposed to that she felt like wearing that blouse that day, which would prove she's a woman), we now have a major paper discussing whether John McCain's sweater was "gay."  Oh, please.

     You know, there are real things happening out in the real world -- that place our news cycle seems to forget about.  Real people are working, and struggling, and dying, and suffering, and triumphing over adversity, and fighting for a better life, and trying to make a difference.

     Oh, sure, I know -- bo-o-o-o-oring.  We'd rather spend time focused on the trivia of celebrity lives than having to compare our own relative prosperity to those in really bad shape.  God forbid we actually had to be thankful for all we have.  That might lead to the need to be disgusted with how much we are losing based on the folly of our leaders.

          I can live for a few more months with absurdity -- although there are a lot of people, including men and women in our military, who will not.  But I cannot live with constant terror.  Being the victim of an Islamic terrorist act is less likely than being struck by lightening.  Having Dick Cheney as the most powerful man on the planet -- that is an absolute certainty of disaster.

     Whew!  Absurdity wins again.   



  • 1. The macho posturing and belligerent attitude of this administration must stop. Only visionary leadership that inspires the world to come together for peaceful co-existence can bring  the kind of cooperation that will destroy the threat of terror once and for all.
  • 2. As the world's superpower, the United States must set the example of cooperation, negotiation, positive incentives, and multinational responsibility for a peaceful world. The threat of force is inherently understood; it need not continuously be used to bully others into submission. The power of our ideas, our ideals, and our leadership should be what moves the world forward.
  • 3. We should be big enough to admit our mistakes, acknowledge hubris based on fear, and then enlist the support and cooperation of the world community through alignment on a common vision of what is possible.   President Kennedy got us to the moon based on such a positive vision, and the benefits that flowed from that were unimaginable.


     The world is hungry for the kind of leadership that can inspire all nations toward peace and prosperity. Everyone wants their children to live in such a world. But that cannot happen based on bullying, force, schoolyard rhetoric, or lies. We either model the behavior we want the world to emulate, or history will remember us as having missed the opportunity to make a difference at a crucial time in mankind's evolutionary history.


     It's our choice, but time is running out.



     Does no one really understand that the difference between Democrats and Republicans is a simple and obvious one:

  • Democrats want to do right, and therefore don't focus on doing well.
  • Republicans want to do well, and don't care if that means they can't do right.

     Democrats aren't as good at playing the political game because they keep thinking they should act on their principles -- inclusion, truth, peaceful means to consensus, etc.  They understand governing, but not power (possible exceptions for Bill and Hillary Clinton, and strategists like James Carville).

     Republicans want to win at all costs -- they understand power.  Unfortunately, in the process they are willing to forego principles, and really don't think about the impact their plans will have on real people's lives.  They focus on getting into positions of influence, not on what they need to do once they get there (possible exceptions for Jack Kemp, Newt Gingrich, and Chuck Hegel).

     What would it take to get someone in a position of enough prominence to have an understanding of how to effectively get and use power, but with an agenda that would truly make people's lives better?  If only...



     What matters in assessing Katrina and its aftermath is learning from the experience and not repeating the same mistakes, especially when they can cause people's deaths.

     There is a difference between reasons and excuses.  Acknowledging reasons is good.  Accountability is important when people are put in charge of important functions in a system.  Each part of the system requires the other parts to function effectively.  If they don't, the machine may do harm to other of its parts, slow down the overall output, or even stop.

     Making excuses, on the other hand, especially to shift blame, is bad.  We expect leaders not only to look good doing their jobs, and therefore appear competent, but to think smart as well - including taking responsibility whether they are literally "to blame" or not. 

     As I recall, that is also the way we prefer parenting, attempting at best to teach our children the difference between reasons and excuses.   The dog MAY in fact have eaten your homework.  That may be the REASON you didn't get it in on time.  But that's not an EXCUSE for being tardy, and having to take the consequences - perhaps a lower grade.  You had the RESPONSIBILITY to make sure your homework was not somewhere where the dog could eat it. 

     When lives and livelihoods are at stake, don't we expect our "leaders" to at least know the basics of doing their homework?



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