Monthly Archives: April 2011

Part of a FaceBook Discussion

Ok, I’ll say what I’m thinking: Millions of left-leaning, good, decent white people help vote the brilliant, charismatic black guy into office and we’re all walking around in amazement, bursting into tears, and recognizing a spectacularly historical moment.

What we did not anticipate was how deeply ingrained in the 47+% who voted against him is the deeply (white) American conviction – – not always conscious or formulated, but there — that no white man can take orders from a black man and still call himself a man. Hence the vomiting out of all that Nazi, Communist, fascist name calling, the busy birthers – – Trump, of all people, and the millions who still tell pollsters they believe Obama is a Muslim. To say “Obama should step down, like Lyndon Johnson, admit he’s been a failure and let someone else run on the dem ticket,” is right out of the Tea Party playbook, isn’t it?

Obama doesn’t walk on water, he hasn’t brought about world peace in record time and we don’t yet have a chicken in every pot. So throw the bum out, he has let us down, we had no idea he was a politician. But don’t just vote him out – – ask him to step down in disgrace. WTF.

The man is a Chicago POLITICIAN. Can’t we get past the tantrums? Do you really want the right to win? And who among the Dems would be dumb enough to run against him? My argument is not an endorsement, just a slim hope that in a second term, without the need to campaign, etc. he might get it together to swing for the fence. I, too, feel deeply disappointed about dozens of issues. I can hardly wait for the book he writes once he is out of office, and can only hope it is honest and revealing. Just now though, abandonment seems unproductive. Complain, protest, demonstrate — hold his feet to the fire.

The Left got Obama in office and it is our job to call him out loud and clear on his wrongheaded positions, to support him with equal fervor when he gets it right, and to keep in mind the talk of bringing about his Waterloo and failure that started the moment he took office. We should take him to task, but we should also hang in and not cave to the grand old liberal tendency to fall into squabbling factions and fight each other harder than we fight our enemies.

The Tea Party is a new phenom. and we need to be mindful of the steady rise of the fascist mentality it promotes. All they need is a couple of charismatic leaders… and the bar is damned low considering that Beck almost pulled that off and Fox is going strong. Any Dem. Pres. would be up against it, but race is a significant dimension.

From Meg D. A Treasure Trove of Photographs

Rev. Peter J. Gomes dies at 68 | Harvard Gazette.

The link above opens dozens of photographs posted by the Harvard Gazette; they compiled a spectacular series of pictures from Peter’s decades at Harvard.

WBUR Gomes Memorial Comment

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The memorial service was both beautiful and painful.  There was a reception afterwards at the faculty club. I planned to spend a few minutes and stayed more than an hour. Hundreds of people, many who arrived from all parts of the world, meeting and instantly bonding with stories and memories of Peter.

Afganistan Massacre

Afghans Angry Over Florida Koran Burning Kill U.N. Staff

Omar Sobhani/Reuters

In Mazar-i-Sharif on Friday, Afghans chanted anti-American slogans during a demonstration to condemn the burning of a copy of the Muslim holy book by an American pastor.

As many as 20 U.N. staff may have been killed.
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That’s it. Everybody out of the damn pool. Call me incorrect on every level imaginable, but there is nothing good that our military can do in a country full of tribal crazies high on opium and profoundly resentful — perhaps justifiably so — of any Western intervention on their turf. Why are we unable to learn from British and Russian experience? We have marched into quicksand.
I am not in favor of a draft, but If we had a fair and equitable one this Iraq and Afganistan crap would have been over long ago. Instead we have made cannon fodder of the less educated and underemployed and sent them off as an American mercenary army to do battle with the wretched of the earth for no reason our soldiers can really explain or defend. Bin Ladin will probably die of old age before we get our hands on him — if we even really want to.
Ok, so I was wrong about that last bit. Glad they got him. But I stand by the rest.

“The Rich Get Richer And The Poor Get… Children”

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/01/business/economy/01jobs.html

Many Low-Wage Jobs Seen as Failing to Meet Basic Needs

 

Justin Lane/European Pressphoto Agency

A study on economic stability says many jobs today are unlikely to cover fundamentals like housing, utilities and food.

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This article touches on so much more than it actually says. It is infuriating, heartbreaking, and illustrative of a national ethos that is increasingly indifferent to the jobless, the uninsured, the homeless, the elderly on fixed incomes, the undocumented with children born here, the mentally ill — anyone who needs services considered as basic rights in every other western industrialized nation.

We blame the victim, allow our schools to deteriorate, and accept a political system in which creationism and the President’s birth certificate continue as matters of serious discussion even as a Congresswoman recovering from being shot in the head at a political gathering quickly became a non-topic.

Seeing Huckabee, Bachmann, Palin, Limbaugh, O’Reilly and their ilk taken seriously leaves many of us feeling frustrated and angry. Lately, however, I will admit to a fear of increasing chaos. The center is not holding.