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Archive for May, 2005

Cowboys

Gooey, syrupy, right wing kool aid drinking propaganda. And I loved it. Turn up the sound. Made by a 22 year Navy vet.
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Message from Randi
More Op-Truth Randi Pics
05.25.2005

What a week!

Thank you to all the New Yorkers who made it out the Operation-Truth fundraiser on Saturday (pictured). Even though the media refuses to cover these wars and why we’re fighting them, this great group of vets are still working day and night to get the truth out there.

I spent Tuesday and Wednesday in Washington. I testified at a House Forum on the sorry state of our news media and spoke with several Senators and Representatives on and off the air.

I’ll be honest, it is rough out there. You’ve got to stay informed. The truth is on our side. We may have to fight twice as hard to get it, but that’s only because the Republicans will do ANYTHING to twist or suppress it.

Thanks for listening…I’m coming home now!

Love ALLways,

Randi

Randi as in Randi Rhodes, personality on Air America radio. She’s fighting for us and the fringe cause. In this case, Operation Truth. I don’t know much about them, but they claim to be a non-profit advocacy organization for veterans, and nonpartisan.
Let’s see…non partisan…advocacy…non-profit…Oh,just like the AARP. I’m sure they aligned with Randi Rhodes because they were non partisan. Groups that link to them include impeachbush.org. How dumb do I look?
I blogged before that fringe left causes often give themselves names that imply that they are the last bastion of democracy and/or truth. Typically, they do things like quote Voltaire about how "dangerous it is to be right when the government is wrong." Here’s a good clip from the "about" page from the Voltaire-quoting, Operation Truth linking dangerouscitizen.org:
“Somewhere the saving and putting away had to begin again and someone had to do the saving and the keeping, one way or another, in books, in records, in people’s heads, any way at all so long as it was safe, free from moths, silverfish, rust and dry-rot, and men with matches.”
— Ray Bradbury, narration from the novel, Fahrenheit 451

The purpose of this site is to educate the reader about her/his right and duty, as an American Citizen, to dissent whenever the government acts unjustly. This site offers articles for learning about some of those unjust actions, like the "war on terrorism" and the "war on drugs", both which involve the "war on democracy". This site also offers resources for dissenting without resorting to violence.

The Hangman’s Noose pictured in the Dangerous Citizen logo is a symbol of persecution, inspired by the trials and hangings of 19 people unjustly accused of witchcraft in 1692. The noose is used here as representation of the consequences often risked by those who dissent.

They disagree, so they don intellectual flak jackets and act like they are Mel Gibson in The Patriot. Debating on the substance of issues and policy hasn’t worked, so they resort to quoting futuristic nightmare novels and philosophes to pimp themselves as freedom fighters instead of 60’s wannabes. This is why, short of economic calamity or a Watergate type event I am fairly certain that the 2008 election will look like 1972 again. Moderates get repelled by the fringe.

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Most local school budgets passed, and the discussion on both sides ranges from sour grapes to gloating. My view on the almost automatic way they pass is guilt good marketing from the districts. I feel this guy’s pain:
Either the homeowners in New Rochelle love paying higher taxes, or they just don’t care. Four thousand voters in this year’s budget is not only a disgrace, it’s disheartening to those of us who can no longer seriously consider spending our lives living in this community due to ever-increasing taxes. In 13 years, school taxes have more than doubled, and with over 25 years until retirement, it looks like most of the gold in my golden years will be going toward property taxes.
This letter to the editor from a resident of a district whose budget failed makes some good points:
Residents in the Mahopac school district served a long overdue wake-up call to school administration with the largest single budget defeat in school history. Not since the dark days of routine budget defeats and austerity of the mid-1970s has the community responded in such a vocal and unified fashion. With the defeat of one incumbent, abstention of another and a slim five-vote victory margin for a third, there can be no clearer indictment of the direction that this board and superintendent have us heading. From nearly 30 percent in tax increases in three years, to the single most disastrous capital construction project in area history, to continued wasteful spending, residents have said: Enough is enough.
A drive through most neighborhoods around election day will yield lawn signs that say some variation of "support our students, vote YES on the budget." How utterly distasteful. So I am against the children if I vote no? BULLSHIT. What about eliminating waste? These school boards will leave no stone unturned to bloat the budget, and here are just a few of the best scams justifications:
  • Capital Expenditure Amnesia. In 2003 or 2004 millions were asked for on a one-time basis to revamp athletic fields etc. A diligent mind will expect that expense to disappear the following year, and while the line item may, the new budget is mum about that one-time project and represents the old budget baseline without being forthright that those millions can be taken off this new year.
  • Insurance and Pensions. This year, one of the largest increases was a whopper of an increase in health insurance and pension contributions. Now, it may be a low blow to ask professionals to work in the TWO MONTHS they get off each year that regular joes don’t, because they do have to do continue their own studies etc. However, it seems to me that if a few school districts changed insurance companies because the premium change was excessive, competition would save a few bucks here. Just my deranged, free market mind. It worked for my company.
  • The Presupposition of Efficiency. Why cut waste? There is none (wink). We are elite New Yorkers and do not need to see how the yahoos do things at a fraction of the cost in red state Jesus Land.
  • Sanctity (insert gregorian chant) of Special Programs. Scarsdale has special education. So does Yonkers next door. So does everybody. Are they consolidated? Do you really think that Scarsdale parents will send their kids to the same place as Yonkers kids? Consolidation therefore never comes up. Every district does their own thing (to far too large a degree), and you can’t question it or you are against helping special students.
Obviously, there are far more places that good money gets wasted by school boards. Sadly, this will never change because the people who really belong on school boards are too busy earning a living to get involved. When a fiscal conservative does manage to get elected, he is in the minority and ostracized publicly by his fellow board members all too often because he’s wrecking the curve.

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Jane Galt at Asymmetrical Information has the sanest, most intellectually honest take on filibustering judicial nominees I have found.

A little honesty, please

Can Democrats and Republicans stop pretending that there is some exquisitely fine distinction between judicial filibusters and legislative filibusters that makes flip-flopping on whatever they said five years ago something other than a gossamer-thin wrapping for the otherwise naked use of power? Or that they really, deep down, care about the deepest arcana of Senate procedure?

The fact is that Republicans are going to shove conservative judges down liberal throats because they can, not because there is some cosmic principle of justice involved. And Democrats should tone down the histrionics about the fundamental illegitimacy of Republican court-packing, when the reason the Republicans are so determined to pack the court is that it is the only way Democrats have left them to undo the quasi-legislation that liberal judges wrote after Democrats packed the court decades ago. Having remade the rules about how legislation gets made, you can’t just tell the Republicans that it’s some sort of metaphysical abuse if they try to touch the ball.

I kind of envy the writing style too. I couldn’t say as much in so few words. I’ll bet you a dollar she has a copy of The Elements of Style on her desk.

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Too bad I missed this newscast, but who watches local CBS news anymore?
NEW YORK — TV reporter Arthur Chi’en has been fired for shouting the "F" word at two hecklers during his live report at a subway train station.
Chi’en was doing a story about Metro Card scammers when two men began shouting about radio shock jocks Opie and Anthony. The two hecklers were making obscene gestures behind the reporter. Chi’en kept talking and when he finished his report, he turned to the two hecklers and said "What the (expletive) is your problem."

Chi’en thought he was off the air, but apparently the mike picked up the obscenity.

With the FCC cracking down on obscenity, Chi’en was fired Thursday.

Can you imagine the anchor after that one?
Um, yes, well, thanks Arthur, now here’s Mr. G. with the weather.
F$%^&#@ rain and winds like a M(*&^%$# tonight, folks!

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I meant to chime in on the lefty moon bat indignation over the leaked pictures of Saddam Hussein, but Atlas Shrugs says it all, via her commentary on how the NY Post handled it. Classic Noo Yawk tabloid humor.

Nyp_521

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This writer gives me hope that more liberals will see how radical some in their midst have become.

– Keith Thompson
Sunday, May 22, 2005 

Nightfall, Jan. 30. Eight-million Iraqi voters have finished risking their lives to endorse freedom and defy fascism. Three things happen in rapid succession. The right cheers. The left demurs. I walk away from a long-term intimate relationship. I’m separating not from a person but a cause: the political philosophy that for more than three decades has shaped my character and consciousness, my sense of self and community, even my sense of cosmos.

I’m leaving the left — more precisely, the American cultural left and what it has become during our time together.

I choose this day for my departure because I can no longer abide the simpering voices of self-styled progressives — people who once championed solidarity with oppressed populations everywhere — reciting all the ways Iraq’s democratic experiment might yet implode.

My estrangement hasn’t happened overnight. Out of the corner of my eye I watched what was coming for more than three decades, yet refused to truly see. Now it’s all too obvious. Leading voices in America’s "peace" movement are actually cheering against self-determination for a long-suffering Third World country because they hate George W. Bush more than they love freedom.

Like many others who came of age politically in the 1960s, I became adept at not taking the measure of the left’s mounting incoherence. To face it directly posed the danger that I would have to describe it accurately, first to myself and then to others. That could only give aid and comfort to Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter and all the other Usual Suspects the left so regularly employs to keep from seeing its own reflection in the mirror.

Aptly put. He goes on to make this point:

A turning point came at a dinner party on the day Ronald Reagan famously described the Soviet Union as the pre-eminent source of evil in the modern world. The general tenor of the evening was that Reagan’s use of the word "evil" had moved the world closer to annihilation. There was a palpable sense that we might not make it to dessert.

When I casually offered that the surviving relatives of the more than 20 million people murdered on orders of Joseph Stalin might not find "evil’" too strong a word, the room took on a collective bemused smile of the sort you might expect if someone had casually mentioned taking up child molestation for sport.

My progressive companions had a point. It was rude to bring a word like "gulag" to the dinner table.

Oh, how I can relate! One of the criticisms affluent liberals like to level my way is that I lack a "world view," and that if I could get out of the country and see how others perceive us that I’d change my tune. This is as despicable a generalization as a guy who locks his car door at a red light because a black man is standing on the curb. My wife was born in Korea. She has blood relatives living in the gulags of Kim Jung Il. Ask her about socialism and I’ll look like George Soros’ love child. None of my parent’s sons married an American. One brother met his Guatemalan wife whilst in the peace Corps in Central America and another married a Brit. We collectively have friends and relatives on every inhabited continent and we communicate far beyond Christmas cards. What the Chappaqua cocktail party crowd doesn’t understand is how this has actually galvanized our views.

Some things are admittedly complex, but not as much as elitists like to think. It’s very simple, and one doesn’t need John Kerry’s Yale nuance to grasp it. Socialism is bad. We are the good guys. That includes republicans. If you want to improve things here and abroad, start from there.

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