Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Random rants about random Presidential candidates

I have an extreme distaste for trial lawyers. It was trial lawyers who robbed me of a very good career in electronics and the retirement benefits that went with it, for something that happened sixty years ago at the bequest of the government, and for which nobody who worked for that company, or administered it at the time I worked there, had any blame or responsibility. Trial lawyers are all about greed, and personal gain, often taking up to 60% of the jury awards for themselves. They have no conscious when it comes to taking jobs away from people and causing them to suffer as much as their clients.
John Edwards is one of these trial lawyers, who made hundreds of millions of dollars off of the victims of his lawsuits. He has made it clear that, if he would become President, he would continue to rob people of his jobs by attacking "Corporate America" with more taxes and regulations. He has made a personal precedent to put corporations out of business, and to help make the middle class as dependent on the Federal government as are many of the poor.
As a Libertarian, I think it is laudable that Ron Paul has exposed the public to Libertarian answers to social and economic issues, and has received an overwhelming positive reaction to such. However as far as foreign policy is concerned, Dr.Paul is either naive or totally ignorant. For one thing, he has said that it is "ridiculous that America would be attacked because we are too rich or too free." I agree with that statement, such a thought isn't only ridiculous, but is outright propaganda promulgated by the extreme left to make their "hate America first" point. What Paul is missing, when he addresses the war on terror this way, is that the fanatics who would attack America are not attacking us because we are too rich or too free, but because the majority of Americans and Europeans worship God on Saturdays and Sundays. These religious fanatics, such as Ayman Al Zawahiri and Osama Bin Ladin, have convinced their followers that in order for the Seventh Imam, the Islamic Messiah, to come to earth, that the earth must be cleansed of infidels, that is those who do not follow Sharia Law the way it is interpreted by the Wahadi school of thought. Ignoring this threat, or pulling out of the Middle East, as Dr. Paul suggests we do, will allow these extremists to gain power, possibly taking control of an entire nation in which they can expand their resources. Isolationism, Ron Paul's foreign policy, will not make them or their jihad go away.
A question I would like to ask Dr. Paul, Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, and Barak Obama, is based on the following scenario, which is a legitimate projection considering the situation in the Middle East:
If the United States leaves a weakened government in Iraq, Iran, Al Qaeda, Saudi Arabia, and other foreign powers will find it in their interest to support and step up insurgency in that country. Eventually, Iran will invade Iraq with Iraq's oil resources as its goal, and Saudi Arabia will join in battle against Iran. The Straits of Hormuz will undoubtably be closed, and there will be no Middle Eastern oil exported anywhere. To the above mentioned candidates, I ask:
"With practical energy alternatives twenty or thirty years down the road, with restrictions on domestic oil exploration and drilling, how do you propose to get groceries on the shelves of the markets with the severe oil shortage caused by the inevitable world war in the Middle East, and how will you respond to the wrath of the rest of the world putting the blame on America for creating the situation."
I will bet that they would not even be able to answer the question.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

A Modern Christmas Classic

Thanks to Poor Grrl Zone for digging this up! Most of us have heard this song on the radio, but I remember seeing this video when it first came out. I am still as touched by it now as I was then. It expresses, in a song, a Christmas message that transends generations.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Thanking the troops

It is my opinion that we can not thank our military members enough, especially this time of the year, when many of them are separated from their families. It doesn't matter if you support the mission in Iraq and Afghanistan or not, the troops deserve a thank you for putting their lives on the line for your right to support or oppose the war. They are doing this voluntarily--as there is no draft--and are doing it because they believe it is their call to duty. Military life is no picnic, war or no war--to serve means to give up many rights that so many of us take for granted.
This time of the year, many of us would like to thank our troops overseas by sending them a positive message appropriate to the Christmas and Channukah season. Due to the possibility of threatening or derogatory messages, the Post Office cannot deliver messages addressed "to any soldier," but there are many ways that have made it possible to express your thanks. Poor Grrl Zone has posted one way, putting up this link where one can sign in and have Seasonal greetings and thanks sent to our military troops. Exploration of many of the links on the sidebar of Lift That Torch, Ring That Bell (this blog) may also be useful in finding links to similar "Thank the Troops" sites.
Another interesting "Thank the Troops" initiative has been begun by The Gratitude Campaign, originating in Seattle, Washington, where ignorant politicians would not only have their constituents believe that all NASCAR fans are "toothless trailer trash," who are unwelcome in their city, but that everybody is against the Iraq mission and the troops should be treated as second class citizens at the best. Initiating a unique visual method of expressing gratitude, the originator of the movement explains how he came up with the idea:

For the past several years as I've been traveling around the country, I've been approaching soldiers in the airports and thanking them for serving for us. On several occasions I have noticed that it felt a little awkward for both of us. There are several reasons, some of which I am even just now learning as I produce this film and talk to more soldiers. But they have always appreciated being thanked, and I have always felt better having expressed my gratitude.

I started to think that it would be nice if civilians had a gesture or sign that they could use to say "thank you" quickly and easily without even having to approach. I did some research and found the sign that we are now using.

This is an idea that should catch on, and hopefully will become a major movement.
As a former military member myself, I can tell you how much gratitude is appreciated by those who are fighting for the cause of freedom. Aside from the devotion to duty, gratitude is the most important gift to receive from those for whom they are fighting.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

The new neocons?

Watching the Democratic Party Iowa debates, the one thing that surprised me was that every candidate agreed that, as far as trade policy goes, the "neocons" are correct. Every single one of the candidates seemed to agree that trade agreements should be tied to human rights issues, as they were during the Reagan Administration. This is how regime change can best be accomplished, as it was the way the old USSR regime fell. Natan Sharanski's book, The Case For Democracy, has been read by George W. Busch, Condileeza Rice, and about everybody on their staffs and is acknowledged to be the "handbook" for foreign economic policy.
Apparently the Democratic Party candidates have read it as well, for some of them quoted directly from the book. Or perhaps quoted somebody they heard quoting from the book. Somebody like, perhaps, Dick Cheney?
They tried to make this sound like a different tack than that being taken by the State Department, but those who have been paying attention to the news know that, for one thing, there are presently ongoing negotiations that are precisely about human rights issues, with China and Pakistan in particular.
Perhaps they hope that we don't pay attention, or, just as likely, they just haven't been paying attention.
Theoretically, they have the foreign economics policy right, but listening to there proposals for the domestic policy, they all want to make the American citizenry more dependent on the government for their jobs and food. You can't have things both ways and say you are for freedom. But, that's politicians for you.