Saturday, May 08, 2004

Today's unplanned community service

This afternoon I went to a nearby park to shoot around (hoops) and ended up playing with two young (like less than 10) african-american boys and "teaching" them how to play ball.

Oh and I got help from a total stranger: a GOP-leaning political science PhD candidate at Harvard from Upstate New York. I think all in all, I played "basketball" for about 3-3.5 hours. Mostly trying to keep the two boys from tackling each other when one had the ball or watching them chase after a fumbled catch.

Still I think I had fun playing with the kids, although I would have liked more competition although Mr. Harvard and I played 3 1-on-1 games to 11 (I think I won).

I am wipped out. Maybe now I can catch up with what happened yesterday and today with Rumsfeld and all that nastiness in Iraq. As expected, they knew more than they initially led on, there were some bad people put in charge..."the man who directed the reopening of the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq last year and trained the guards there resigned under pressure as director of the Utah Department of Corrections in 1997 after an inmate died while shackled to a restraining chair for 16 hours." (NYT)

My favorite are the opplogists for these sadists. The top reasons are: They're at war; these are bad people; just letting off some steam; etc. I am sorry but NO. America prides itself in standards of human rights (well since 1865/1968 anyway), we have stict laws on the treatment of prisioners even in war. We pushed for the Geneva Convention rules. The US is supposed to be above all this. Even if these people raped your sister, you are supposed to treat them better than they did to your family and than "they deserve" not just because it the right (and by the way Christian) thing to do, but the law!

The entire National Security team of the Bush White House (including the Commander-in-Chief himself) has proven over and over that they are not up to the job and they are forfitted their credibility and right to continue to represent America. The only way to fix this Pottery Barn warehouse of Iraq is to clean out and get rid of Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Rice, Perle, Cheney, and of course el Presidente.

With new management, the world will finally take us seriously and we might still have a chance to fix Iraq if a President Kerry were to make fixing it (and Israel-Palestine) his number 1 foreign policy goal. I know the "War on Terror" is an on going mission, but really without peace in these two hot zones, we will never be able to stop the impending onslaught of angry Arabs who want to harm America and her insterests (and our Allies'). Just my $0.02 for the day,

Friday, May 07, 2004

Friday Roundup

  • A LA House panel voted 4-1 to approve a bill that would ban low-slung pants. Bill sponsor/LA state Rep. Derrick Shepherd (D): "In our society we have a line of decency that should not be crossed, and that line starts around the waist area" I guess there aren't a lot of skaters in his district, at least ones that vote.

  • "I know the left like I know every inch of my square body" -- Rush Limbaugh on his show today. Talk dirty to me Rush! Limbaugh on the Abu Ghraib prison scandal: "This is no different than what happens at the Skull and Bones initiation [which Kerry and Bush are a part of] and we're going to ruin people's lives over it and we're going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time. You know, these people are being fired at every day. I'm talking about people having a good time, these people, you ever heard of emotional release? You of heard of need to blow some steam off?" Josh Marshall has the best response yet: "You know when you're worked to the bone and you really need to unwind there's just nothing like grabbing a half dozen Arab dudes, stripping them naked, tying their bodies together against their will and pressing one guy's penis up against another guy's butt to make it like they're having anal sex. Right?"

  • Arizona Senator John McCain blames Karl Rove for the loss of New Hampshire's "Man of the Mountain," on tape!

  • The class of 2004 at William and Mary College are so lucky: Jon Stewart (class of who knows) will return to W&M to receive an honorary doctorate (and give a speech), Stewart once offered this sage advice to W&M students: "If you're gonna go to Nags Head, and you're gonna get high. ... Just wait til you get there. There are a lot of cops on Yorktown Pike."

  • Quote of the Day: "Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants to see us happy" -- Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790).

Thursday, May 06, 2004

Two little words

The "three little words" that are hard to say are "I love you," for George W. Bush, they are only two little words: "I'm sorry"

Those words, or their equivalant will never, apparently be uttered by this President. Clinton too likes to blame others for his actions (see his upcoming memoir, My Life), but he did say "I'm sorry" after he got caught with Moncia Lewinsky. Bush who has gotten caught with lying/being fundamentally deceptive on many issues, especially Iraq, has never come close.

Even as the Abu Ghraib prison scandal widens and finally threatens Rumsfeld's job, Bush couldn't say 'I'm sorry" to the Arab people who are now convinced he is just as bad as Saddam.

I have avoided talking about Abu Ghraib because all the facts are still streaming in, and we still don't know who knew what when. Appearantly, a lot of top people don't read reports like Major General Taguba's March 3rd report to the US Army (and Rumsfeld and Bush), which outline lots of bad stuff. And CBS News sat on these photos for two weeks thanks to Joint Cheifs Chair Meyers, who supposidely never told the president about it. How many more photos or eyewitnesses are there out there in Iraq with similar stories? What about Afghanistan, are there similar experiences?

Even if these folks were 100% Al-Qaeda/Bathist-torturers, do two wrongs make a right? Shouldn't the US live up to higher standards of human rights and shouldn't they follow their own executive orders?

Will there ever be any objectively good news out of Iraq? Or for this president? Can anyone name one thing he did that Gore wouldn't have done? I bet Gore would have done tax cuts, (just better, more targeted ones) Education Reform, and Faith-Based stuff as well, since he campaigned on that.

How is Kerry not cruising versus this "I'm never wrong" President (besides $180 million)? This is why people don't trust politicans. Bush won't admit mistakes, and Kerry won't admit to falling when snowboarding. Who cares? If you cooled your ego for a second, I think people would see that you two are just two men, and the one that looks like a real man that can own up to his own mistakes and be a human, well they just might win.

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Darn, lost laugh

Yesterday, I went onto Nader's site out of morbid curriousity. I found a fundraising ticker with a whopping $651 dollars for the week. OK it was Tuesday but that is freaking pathetic. But I waited too long, becuase a few other morons gave him money and how it is at $27,067-- more than I take home in a year, but not enough to print out enough posters to cover Panguitch, UT.

Still, who are these people that give Nader money? Those people that give loose change to fountains in the mall? Probabbly more like the ones that give cash to homeless people.

Their heart's in the right place, no doubt (except the Bush supporters), but there are better ways to do what they are trying to do, even with less money (both in the case of helping the homeless and getting rid of "corporatism" in America). Maybe they are helping Kucinich run ads in Oregon now too. I call them the St. Jude-ists, after the patron saint of lost causes.

PS The Utah GOP primary is on Sunday and I am excited to find out who will face the Matheson boys (Jim-- 2nd Congressional District, Scott Jr.-- Governor) in November. PPS watch Ken Salazar's 2 minute (I know that is super long in TV terms) ad here (Windows Media Player Required, sorry).
Cinco de Mayo

Despite what corporate raiders want you to think, it is not yet another excuse to drink tequila or Mexican Beers (sorry Corona). Its too bad that all our holidays are becoming so Hallmark-ed that people don't even know what they really stand for anymore. Like Easter is about the resurrection of Jesus, not marshmallow bunnies and Cadberry Eggs. St. Valentine's Day is another wired one, but you know the story. But I bet you didn't know the one for Cinco de Mayo.

I always thought it was Mexico's independence day from Spain, but really it is about defeating the French (Napoleon III particularly) with some help from US troops along the Texas border in 1862. But Mexicans know how to party and have been pretty thankful since to the US, helping make up a large chunck of our Armed Forces, and jumping at the chance to join after Pearl Harbor (and I bet after 9/11).

Mexicans, well actually all immigrants, really impress me. The move to a foreign country, where many people openly discriminate against them, get stuck in crappy, dead-end low-wage jobs. Yet they still manage to send lots of money back home to their families and loved ones. Theirs is an amazing sacrifice and testament to what America is supposed to all about.

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

Picture of the Day

In this picture George W. Bush is attempting to read Americans' minds, and change them (if they are against him).

And you thought he wasn't that clever. Oh, according to the LA Times, nearly $1 billion could be spent on this 2004 White House race. $300 million or so has already been raised by Kerry and Bush alone (of course $180 million of that is Bush). Thanks Wonkette!

Also, so a plug for my old job trying to do a blog (without comments, of course; just like Bush, they don't like to not have control of content) on Education. The DLC/PPI is very-pro-charter schools (so don't expect unbiased reporting) but they read all those boring education studies for you, as Mickey Kaus said, so it is nice on that end.

Have a jolly good day folks!