Monday, May 31, 2010

The Specter of Communism

So looks like Obama has committed a federal crime and even the liberal media are starting to take notice. Joe Sestak has repeatedly stated that the White House offered him a job if he would promise not to run against Arlen Specter for the PA senate seat. Senator Arlen Specter, of course, was a republican and Obama convinced Spector to change parties to become a democrat, giving the Dems a 60 seat super majority in the senate. That is, until the Democrat that was planning to run against then republican Specter, decided he still wanted to run against Specter for the seat, only now had to run against him first in the democrat primary since they were now on the same side.

Looks like Sestak was offered a bribe if he would change his mind. A bribe he turned down. This is a federal crime to offer someone a bribe for dropping out of a race for high political office. The Obama's people have completely dodged all questions, hoping the issue would go away. It didn't go away and Sestak defeated Arlen Specter in the recent democrat primary in an incredibly embarrassing election for Obama and his turncoat friend. Specter is now only the second democrat incumbent in US history to lose the primary for a senate seat. Now the Dems have a problem. Either let their guy(who they didn't want, but are now stuck with) running for the Senate to look like a liar, or allow Obama to be the liar. If Obama is lying and that gets out, the republicans can push to have a special investigator look into it, much in the way that republicans did the same to Bill Clinton for lying under oath about having sex with interns. Of course Clinton got impeached, but not removed from office, and the whole thing backfired on republicans by a public that saw it as a cheap political ploy based on something no one cared about. Well, and rightfully so. But Obama bribing a fellow politician is a little different than cheating on a spouse. Congress has to approve a special prosecutor. The Democrat controlled Congress will never vote for that, so it means the President has a free pass to break the law as he sees fit and there's nothing anyone can do about it. Or as Alcee Hastings, Democrat Congressman from Florida famously said earlier this year, "There ain't no rules around here. We make them up as we go along." Why does it seem that only us "right wing nut jobs," care as our government moves closer to socialism and bothers less and less to even have the decency to try and hide it.

Speaking of Clinton, Sestak and Obama's people seem to have suddenly come out with the explanation that Bill Clinton was the one that offered "the bribe," and that it wasn't a bribe at all but rather an offer for an unpaid volunteer position on some meaningless board--thus a thing of no monetary value, therefore not a bribe. Come on. Anyone dumb enough to believe that? He said the White House offered him a job, and now the story is someone not affiliated with the White House offered him a non paying job. It insults our intelligence. So why is Sestak changing his story? Because he doesn't want to be going into an election as a democrat accusing Obama of a felony. All sides know it's a lie, but it's a lie that ends the debate. For now.

Speaking of Obama and lies, I've noticed more and more this repeated crap about blaming the recession on the republicans. Every economist on the planet agrees the recession was mostly caused by the falling of the housing market. The housing market collapsed because the federal government was paying private banks to gamble--give loans to people that had no clear means to ever pay it back. The federal government, unwittingly, directly worked to destabilize the banking industry. It had been slowly building for a decade and was bound to burst eventually. Imagine how different things would have been had to collapse happened in 2009 instead of 2007. Whose fault was it? A combination of people in both parties. But blaming all republicans... as if all of us conspired together to bring it down like we're all one people that all know each other, it's just so ridiculous and stupid. It makes me think that either Obama is flat out lying, trying to shift blame away from the fact that his "stimulus bill" turned out to be a colossal waste of money that accomplished very little as he tries to find a scapegoat. Or, Obama seriously has no idea what he's doing or how a capitalist system works. So liar or idiot. I don't mean "idiot" in the sense that I think the system is easy to understand. It's far beyond me in its complexity, but then, I'm not trying to run the country. I don't blame him for not being able to snap his fingers and fix everything. I believe he genuinely wants to fix everything. I just wish he'd stop the blame game and admit that Dems screwed up too. After all, they had control of congress for a year before the recession hit. They can't escape without blame on this. That's not reasonable.

Well, as a side note, it looks like Obama's approval rating is going down because of public opinion on the handling of the oil spill. While it's good Obama's numbers go down, I sure wish they were going down for the right reason like: socialism = bad, healthcare bill = job killer, big government = inefficient, opposing Arizona's right to protect itself = wrong. I have very little idea what it's like behind the scenes with everything that's involved there. My gut tells me Obama is probably doing all he reasonably can, and therefore should not be facing fallout for this. BP has massive financial incentives to stop the leak. No doubt they're doing all they can. Though, to be honest, BP's motivations are slightly different. Due to the laws passed after the Valdez disaster, BP can only be sued for up to 75 million in damages. The damages have already exceeded that. So BP no longer has motivation to stop the damage. Their only financial motivation is not in the mess, but in the loss of oil. Obviously, they can't sell spilled oil.

I've read that other countries have closed offshore, gushing wells by using explosives to plug the hole. BP doesn't want to do that because then they're have to drill a new hole to get to the oil again. And that costs money.

Now, to delve into the conspiracy side. BP has given more campaign contribution money to Obama than any other candidate in US history. How much "hardball" can Obama really play to keep his "boot to BP's neck" as one of his aids put it? After all, Obama is in BP's pocket. Well, there's probably nothing to that. Just enough to raise a brow of suspicion.

I thought it was interesting how many left leaning news outlets explored that side of the debate and pointed out that BP gave to the McCain campaign as well--though not as much. Does that really matter? Kind of a weird detail but more of the "Oh yeah, well it's the republican's fault!" mentality. I mean, McCain isn't president. Does it make any bit of difference how much bribe money BP gave to people that ended up not being president? Isn't that completely irrelevant? I can promise you that if McCain was elected instead and the issues was raised, no where in the news would anyone be saying, "Well, they gave Obama money too, and more of it!"

Healthcare is still making news. The CBO came out and said that HC was going to cost a couple hundred billion more than previously estimated. This puts it well over the "deficit neutral" claim Obama made that no one seemed to believe at the time anyways. Why the recent change? Well, because as employers decide more and more that it's far cheaper to pay the fine than to provide insurance, more and more people are losing their insurance and being pushed into government programs thus turning this into socialized medicine--exactly what the Dems in charge kept lying to us, claiming wasn't going to happen and now it is. Are they idiots that didn't see it coming or did they know exactly what they were doing and wanted to move us into an unpopular socialist system through lies and deception?

I hate injustice. And I hate knowing that we have politicians that can flat out lie and think they can get away with it. I guess we'll know in November how many people are still falling for it.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Meg, Steve, and Me

I take voting pretty seriously, even though it's often a lost cause. California voters are dead set in this death march off the cliff. Decades of reckless entitlement spending has turned the state into a Liberal paradise. We have the third worst education system in the country, and yet also the most expensive. We have the second highest unemployment rate in the country. The highest taxes on businesses of any state in the country which is why businesses flee the state / are not hiring. The highest state and sales tax.

California is the posterboy state for why Liberalism does not work. And yet, you can't get the damn Liberals out of the state legislature to save our lives. I looked it up. The Democrats have controlled the State Legislature since 1970, controlling the creation of all bills and laws not otherwise voted on by the people. Now, I'm not trying to suggest that Democrats are bad in a general sense. Most aren't. But when one group stays in power too long, the radicals in their party--who would never get elected otherwise--start to creep in.

Had George Bush served a third term, and the Republicans not been voted out of congress in 2006, I'll bet you they would have seriously been working on a Constitutional amendment to define marriage as between a man and a woman, thus banning gay marriage at the federal level--for a very long time. Not cool. So see? I'm even saying is not good when my own party stays in power too long and the radicals from our side start to creep in.

Anyway, we get Republican governors, and every time I get my hopes up that they'll fix the mess in this state, but they go to take on the Liberal State Legislature and they cave. Schwarzenegger ended up being a fairly big disappointment. Still, he's a lot better than Gray Davis. Wow, he sucked. I think Jerry Brown has been an awesome Attorney General, but I would not want to see him be governor again. I'm too young to remember the last time he was governor, but I fear what would happen if he was, with no one to stop the Liberals from making our problems a lot worse. Arnold has atleast tried to stop the bleeding. I voted for his proposals during the special election. But he grossly under estimated the stupidity of California voters who prefer the march off the cliff.

Margret Thatcher once said, "The problem with Socialism is you eventually run out of other people's money." We've run out of other people's money, and when Arnold makes cuts that people fight like mad to oppose...I don't know what the hell is wrong with people, it's like they don't get that we can't keep spending. Like voters think, "I can't be out of money. I still have checks left!"

Look, I really hate the cuts in education. I was going to apply to Sac State, but I can't. They had to close their doors to people like me who already have BA degrees who are seeking another. His cuts affect me directly, and this really sucks for me. But I acknowledge that it has to be done. So I go to a JC for a couple years and hope things clear up until then. You make due without for a while.

I was hanging outside one of my classes talking to a fellow student. And this guy walks up to us asking us to sign a petition to increase spending for parks and libraries. The young woman I was talking to immediately took the clipboard and signed. I asked the guy how it would be paid for. He told me it was free. I pressed him on that and he told me this whacked out story about how drug dealers living in Columbia wanted to give back to the community so they were funding the bill. I really wanted to call the guy a moron for actually believing such an idiotic story. But you know, this woman I was talking to already signed it, and I didn't want to make her feel stupid, so I let it go.

But this in the mentality of people in this state. Tax dollars does not mean 'free money.' How many Liberals would have even asked the guy what the extra spending was going for? What if the petition was to pay for the state to pave all the parks in asphalt and turn them into dodge ball courts? Does it even occur to dumb ass Liberals to even ask these kinda of questions before volunteering to spend other people's money on crap we don't need?

Anyway, back to the governor situation. Putting aside the fact Steve Poizner has a really terrible last name, I'm leaning towards voting for him over Whitman. Whitman might be closer to my own political views--she's more of a social moderate like I am, but I get a sense that she's more likely to cave and side with Liberals. She also doesn't articulate herself well in "what I would do as governor" speeches. Most of what she says is meaningless "we have to get America back to work" bs fluff that they all say. That might not be an indication of the type of leader she would be, but it does make it more difficult to really judge the direction she says she will go versus how she'll really go. That, and I'm really not happy about the fact that, by her own admission, the only reason why she got into politics and registered to vote a couple years ago was because she didn't like what government policies did to her business.

Poizner is a lot more concrete in what he has to say in his speeches. Both seem to know the issues, but as much as people hate politicians, I think it really takes a politician to do a politician's job. Arnold is a good example of a non politician that means well, but just couldn't get it done. Alright. I made up my mind. I'm voting for Poizner in the primary even though he's way behind in the polls.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Words from the Otherside

This oil spill just plain sucks. It is interesting how political it's become. Sarah Palin is getting backlash for "Drill, baby, drill," and, although Obama recently flipped his long standing position on off shore drilling to now agree with Palin and others, he's mostly getting a pass on any backlash for it. What he's going to do now, I don't know. He's damned either way, I think. His environmental supporters on the left might not give him a pass if he still supports off shore drilling despite the accident at the Deepwater Horizon oil rig. On the other hand, if he caves to populist pressure and announces no new drilling, he'll appear weak for flip flopping twice.

Keep in mind, there's over 5 thousand off shore oil rigs operating in the world right now. Thousands in the Gulf of Mexico alone. If *we* decide to stop drilling, the other countries in the area that are already drilling are just going to fill the void. So the drilling isn't going to stop just because we choose not to.

But if we could stop everyone from doing it, which we can't, what would the alternative be? Well, we can stop driving our cars and grow our own food. Yeah, that's not going to happen. We can continue to buy oil from the Middle East which means our money ends up in the hands of people that hate us. Or we can invest in nuclear power. We still need some fossil fuels to put in trucks to haul the food from the farms to the stores.

Some people think we can just build windmills and solar panels. Here's the problem with that. Both take a lot of energy to build. And the ratio of energy to create versus energy created, is not very good. It's a positive number, sure, but would be a massive undertaking. Windmills are also expensive to maintain. And since they cover a wide area, you need a small army of techs in gas powered jeeps driving around fixing them all the time. Still, it's a positive gain, so it's not a bad idea. It's just that the amount of wind power we would realistically create would end up being a drop in the bucket compared to what we need.

This brings us back to oil. There's a lot of misinformation floating around by different people spinning their propaganda for political gain. Why the hell is oil such a political issue? Why do people care so much? I've heard people say that we'll eventually run out of oil and if we haven't moved to solar / wind / nuclear by then, we'll end up in the dark ages. And yet, we find new reserves of oil all the time. There is a finite amount, sure, but we're not going to near the end of it for centuries. It's certainly not a bad idea to have a back up plan, but the obsession with hating oil is silly. This all goes back to some whacked out liberals who hate big business and want to break the back of capitalism. Same with the global warming hoax.

No blood for oil! Remember that? I was in high school when people were mad at GH Bush for going to war with Saddam after Iraq attacked our ally Kuwait. A few years before the invasion, Saddam was making news for using weapons of mass destruction against the Kurds. I remember reading about it. I used to cut class and go to the library and read news articles. Yeah, I was a weird kid. But I remember all the Liberals at the time mad about the human rights violations of Saddam using weapons of mass destruction and the US not doing anything about it. I saw a political cartoon--I don't know why I still remember it years later, but it had a picture of some arabs yelling out "Help!" and GH Bush shrugging, saying, "Sorry, I don't speak Kurdish."

So a couple years later, the Kuwait thing happens and we go to war. The Kurds, seeing us as liberators, rise up to help fight Saddam. But as soon as Kuwait is freed, we turn our backs on the Kurds, and leave. Saddam, weakened, but not defeated, vents his frustration on the Kurds for rising up, and we see one of the worst cases of genocide in my life time.

Fast forward a decade and this time it's GW Bush as president. The UN has since passed a resolution ordering Saddam to destroy all his weapons of mass destruction, and he claims he has. He stalls and plays games with UN weapons inspectors, not letting them verify it to be the case. Bush said he thinks Saddam still has his weapons and pointed to evidence that he was deliberately hiding them. I remember when this was happening too. I saw the photos on the news of the weapons taken with aerial photos and satellites. It made sense to me. I was right along with him saying Saddam should be stopped. GH Bush should have done it back when Saddam was using weapons of mass destruction against the Kurds. Now his son will finish the job.

Only, one problem. Saddam actually did destroy his weapons and was complying fully with the UN resolution. Huh? Why the hell was he hiding it then? Well, Saddam kept a sort of journal. And it turns out, he was scared of Iran--his enemy--finding out he didn't still have his weapons. After all, Iran has a more dangerous army, and the only thing that kept Iran from feeling like they could wipe out Saddam, was the fear of Saddam's weapons. Wow, the irony. So Saddam pretended to still have his weapons to scare Iran away from attacking, and yet that had the exact opposite affect on the US who did exactly what he feared Iran would do.

Of course, Saddam said at his trial, he complied completely with the UN resolution, and that Bush was the one that should be on trial. As much as this sounds like, "a simple misunderstanding," thousands of people died in this "oops." It's hard for me to defend W Bush for this, even though at the time, I was right on board with it. Saddam's death is a great thing for the world, and although Iraq has had a tough time of things during this period, they're better off now. Still, a lot of innocence people had to die. And was it our place to play God with which leaders live and which die? It's a hard question to answer even you believe the result was worth the loss.

As a side note, of course Liberals objected to the war in Iraq--including Obama. It is interesting that some Liberals were mad H Bush didn't go to war with Saddam after he used weapons of mass destruction. And ten years later, when W Bush goes in to finish the job, Liberals were mad. Come on guys. Which is it? Of course, Liberals are not some monolithic group that all think the same. But it's still sort of funny. Well, the war wasn't funny.

I was thinking about all this the other day because I recently saw another anti capitalism propaganda film. I've seen several of them. But it was another about how the US only goes to war over oil. This one guy on there even said Bush purposely lied as Saddam never had weapons of mass destruction in the first place. I couldn't help but laugh. Such blatantly wrong information for what looks like an otherwise big-ish budget "documentary."

It reminds me of people that finish watching a Michael Moore movie and think it's real. Just frightening. Of course propaganda is used by all sides of every issue. The times you spot it the most is when it's used by "the other side."

My counter to the no blood for oil thing, I'm not aware of too much oil in Afghanistan. But on the same token, when the Taliban violently took over major cities there a couple years before 9/11, no one seemed to care. I actually don't even remember seeing anything about it in the news at the time.

Oh, something else. And this might make people mad. But during Clinton's administration, he was using predator drones to attack Afghanistan--a country we were not at war with. These same people we were bombing, decided to put together the 9/11 plot. I really don't want to make people mad here, but it's not factually accurate to call 9/11 an unprovoked attack. They definitely took it up a notch, but the notion that they attacked us first isn't entirely true. The difference is we were trying to avoid civilian casualties. They sought to maximize them.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

My beliefs are rad

Obama gave a speech yesterday in which he insulted and denigrated Conservatives, and then asked for both sides to quit insulting and denigrating each other. Hypocrisy is nothing new in politics, nor is it something one side does any more than the other. But is this political spin, trying to reshape public opinion of conservatives into radicals, or does he genuinely believe his position is the mainstream and everyone else is the radical?

He said that he's concerned about the rhetoric of one side distrusting government or considering it inefficient or bad. I watched his speech in utter disbelief. There's a name for Republicans that trust government to solve our problems. That name is Democrat. His speech was about as stupid as me standing in front of a crowd and saying, "The problem with you Christians is you don't follow the teachings of the Buddha." How does someone as intelligent sounding as Obama seem to be so blinded by his own ideology that he not only cannot see the opposition side nor understand the justification of its existence?

He commented on a Tea Partier's sign that said something about keeping government away from medicare. Ok, so that is a little funny / ironic. That's sort of like asking to keep religion out of the Bible. But I'd imagine the person holding the sign is actually trying to say is that the government should not further alter Medicare from what it presently is and does. That probably doesn't fit on a cardboard sign on a stick as well, nor is it all that catchy in a protest chanty kinda way. Or, of course, maybe the person with the sign was just stupid. But in either case, the President using that instance to insult someone for a sound bite is childish.

I've heard a lot of liberals try and insult Republicans by saying things like, "If you're against Socialism, how come you use the Post Office, Social Security, Medicare, Public Transportation, Public Schools / State Colleges, Government funded roads..." etc. This is an argument based on pure demagoguery. It reminds me of the argument creationists use to say, "If we evolved out of monkeys, why are there still monkeys?"

The reason why Republicans are not against those socialist programs I mentioned, is because we're Republicans. There's a word for people that are against ALL socialist programs. That word is Anarchists. Republicans are not Anarchists. We believe that government should be as small as possible, while only providing the bare bones services that benefit the country. Now, you might say that also describes Democrats. And it does, but where that line is of what's beneficial and what's wasteful is different for everyone.

It's also interesting to think about what political party we ascribe to is influenced by what the country currently is. For instance, I'm a Republican because I think the government is currently too big. But if the country were to radically move towards the right--passed Republicanism and into the realm of Anarchy, I would have to become a Democrat at that point and argue for why we at least need basic law enforcement and roads. And in such a bizarre world, I might be called a Socialist by all the Anarchists for suggesting such a thing. Of course, I will never be a socialist, but to an Anarchist who doesn't know just how far to the left I would go, I could very well seem like one.

But for the most part, I think Moderate and Conservative Democrats are ok and not all that different from Republicans. Of course, I'm most definitely NOT a social conservative, and agree very little with most conservatives on social issues. That's probably more because of my religious beliefs. Conservatives are overwhelmingly also deeply religious(I'm one of the very rare ones that are not). As a side note, fiscal conservatism and social conservatism are radically different things--and even seem to ideologically oppose each other. For the life of me, I can't understand why they tend to go together in most people. Like, "I want government to stay out of my life, but I'm ok with people using the government to force their religious beliefs on others--as long as it's the same religious beliefs I value," and "I want religion out of my life, but I think government should tax and oppress us however a group of politicians see fit," seem to describe most people. These are radical combinations in my mind, but yet seem to be one of the two categories that fit the bulk of Americans. Libertarians are one of the few groups out there that are in nether camp, wanting to keep both out of our lives. In some ways, I'm more a Libertarian that a Republican.

I understand that being an Atheist makes me a radical. Not that I'm crazy or anything. In fact, my "radical status," has as much to do with what I believe as it does with what percentage of people believe something else. If half the religious people in the world were to convert to Atheism, I would no longer be a religious radical, despite the fact that I personally have not changed.

My point here(yeah, I get off on tangents) is that I don't have a problem with Obama for being a political radical. My point is that he's either trying to get the mainstream to reject the other side, or he's completely unable to understand the other side.

I'm able to understand Liberalism. On the surface, it sounds like it's about helping people, working for a cleaner environment, and building a stronger world. Who the hell would be against that? I would argue that Conservatism shares this goal, something Liberals would laugh at. I just don't agree that giving entitlements to people encourages them to work more efficiently. I believe the opposite is true, and decades of soviet rule has proven as such. People need to be challenged. It's unfortunate that Liberals like to think they've got the "caring market" cornered and that conservatives must be heartless bigots just because we've figured out free handouts don't always motivate people.

I do agree with Obama that people who listen to Glenn Beck should spend sometime reading the Huffington Post and vice verse. I've actually read a few articles there I agreed with. Most of the Huff Post is childish Republican bashing. Much of what Rush Limbaugh says is childish Dem bashing. But people really should at least listen to the extreme and middle views every now and then. Even if you don't agree with the other side, you can not understand what your position is unless you truly understand what your position is not.

I think this works for religion as well. If you don't understand the fundamentals on hinduism, buddhism, or islam, then you are not really a christian. Can you imagine the first time you ever fell inlove and thinking this was the person you'd spend the rest of your life with. Everything about her just felt right. Then after you break up, you think, "What the hell was wrong with me? She was horrible to me! Why did I put up with that for so long?" I've been there too many times. Sad to think that most religious people will only know and accept the first religion they're exposed to, think it's "the one" and never leave it no matter how silly or illogical it is. Bah, anyways.

Speaking of agreeing with Obama on a completely different topic, playing hardball with Israel might just pay off. If he can get Israel to stop construction in East Jerusalem, and hand it over to the Palestinians, then I think he'll be the first American since Dr. Martin Luther King, jr to genuinely deserve the Nobel Peace Prize. I'm really hoping he succeeds there. I don't know if he's playing Iran the right way at all though. I guess we'll see.