The opinions expressed in the Mailbag are not necessarily those of BuzzFlash. More reader opinion is at "Contributors." You can write to Mailbag at http://www.BuzzFlash.com/contact/mail.html. Guidelines for submissions are at BuzzFlash FAQ #18.
[BuzzFlash Note: Letters received for yesterday's Mailbag were posted late. Your editor regrets the delay. We ran into a glitch. The July 19, 2006 Mailbag is here.]
Subject: What's Next in Evolution
I may have just figured out the neo con nightmare. Aside from traitors like Wolfowitz enacting the Strauss Doctrine within America and perpetually keeping America in fear; and aside from other traitors like Cheney making money on the dead bodies of US and international soldiers; and aside from Bush himself being a complete nincompoop there's something else...
Around 204 AD polytheism or the belief in multiple gods began to disappear. Interestingly enough, polytheism never discounted the fact that there was a supreme god over all other gods. For example, there was Zeus who was of course, the "Big Daddy" of them all.
As monotheism began to overtake the polytheistic ideologies, the world changed. People, serfs mostly, began to fall into line under one god and with that they also fell into line under single rulers as well. Everything became about "the power of one." (OH MY GOD! WHAT A COINCIDENCE?! JUST LIKE AMERICA!)
At any rate... Maybe what the neo cons are really frightened of is the fact that the next phase of human evolution is the realization that it's time for society to now go from one god to NO GOD. Maybe Muslim, Jew and Kooky Christians should realize that the traditions of religion are no longer required. Maybe "civility" is supposed to be the new religion and Bush et al. refuse to let their beloved and hateful gods fade into the sunset.
Sure, you can say that this is a crazy idea. You can say that this isn't good progress. But there was a time that cars were square, bouffant hairdo's were in, blacks couldn't vote, slavery was okay, and toxic waste could be "buried safely." Oh how wrong they all were.
If you're interested, I've decided to start a new church. I'm calling it "The Church of Atheism." It'll be the same as a regular church except we won't worship a god. We'll worship sensibility and reality and humanity. Every week we'll congregate and discuss the vicissitudes of life, politics and existence. We'll attract "thinkers and academics." We'll let them speak. No ministers. No single authorities. Instead multiple teachers speaking on multitudes of items. People will want to listen to those that wish to think and speak freely. Our god will be the earth, its people and all she holds. Our goal will be to excel in humanity while stomping out the zealotry and xenophobia being preached by those that call themselves "good christians."
Look, if a christian head case like Falwell or Robertson can get people to listen, maybe it's time that some of us followed their model. ...
Subject: Lights, Camera, Fraud
With the decreasing popularity of an unelected clown president and the rising tide of American dissent against Republican rule, November's midterm elections are not looking good for the ruling party. Look for a lot more swiftboating of Iraq veterans running for Democratic seats in the House and Senate. Expect more disenfranchisement and intimidation of minority voters. They did it in Mexico, Ohio, New Mexico, Pennsylvania and a host of other swing states. They are going to do it again, for they believe they can't be stopped.
In Mexico, video and photographic evidence is emerging that clearly shows the right-wing efforts to steal the national election. Here in the U.S., voters should arm themselves with camera-capable cell phones, hidden cameras and microphones to document the abuses of police, election workers and those who claim to be officials. Photograph the screens of electronic voting machines as they 'flip' your vote to the conservative candidate. Capture the responses of polling station personnel when they tell you some cockamamie story to cover the fraud. Videotape local police as they bar qualified voters from casting their ballots. Take down the license plate numbers of vehicles that are part of the fraud machine. Demand and photograph identification of anyone claiming to work for the state or the party.
These types of deterrents will send a clear signal that the American people, and not Big Brother, are watching. Make numerous copies of all your evidence and send it to all the networks, newspapers and cable stations to the point where they will have no choice but to publish the truth.
Together, we can end the tyranny. Alone, we will be consumed.
Subject: Bush and His Veto
You know, he has never vetoed a bill...that is a fact...but, as told to us by Arlen Specter and Hatch....two hard right republicans.....after he signs the bills...he goes through them and blacks out all of the bill that he has no intention of following....it is the truth...check it out! That is why this country is STILL going to hell in a handbasket....and we have two more years after this one....of this hellion!
Shirley ... St. Louis
Subject: U.S. official: Israel needs time to 'defang' Hezbollah (CNN)
U.S. ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton described calls for a cease-fire a "simplistic" solution to the problem.
He said he would clarify the U.S. position on the crisis after the U.N. team presents its findings.
"Among other things, I want somebody to address the problem [of] how you get a cease-fire with a terrorist organization," Bolton said. "I'd like to know when there's been an effective cease-fire between a terrorist organization and a state in the past.
"This is a different kind of situation and I'm not sure that sort of old thinking, conventional thinking works in a case like this."
Yet the same people, when attacked by a “terrorist organization,” resort to the same “old thinking” ... and throw a dart at an old map of nation-states and bomb the living s*it out of it. Seems somewhat hypocritical to me ... being “old thinking” and all.
John L. Johnson
Subject: Dainty Democrats
BuzzFlash is calling the Democrats and hurray for them. But let's be realistic. The Democrats have had a whole suitcase full of issues handed to them for the last five years. On almost every issue, they have failed to act in either our interests or their own.
The Emanuel Democrats are not going to stuff the stem cell veto down the GOP's throats because they are still clinging to the losing strategy that if they act like the GOP, then GOP voters will elect them. Never mind that this GOP is not a real American political party and doesn't represent American values. Never mind that GOP voters and leaders are fleeing the extremists who have co-opted the GOP.
The Democrats have been so busy sniffing after imaginary "swing voters" that they have failed both as legislators and strategists. They appeal to no one; neither disgusted GOP voters or their own base.
The Emanuel Democrats are not going to haul the GOP over the coals for war crimes and breaking Iraq because their corporate donors in "defense" industry might get their knickers in a twist or the White House propaganda organ might call them unpatriotic.
The Democrats are not going to hold the GOP's feet to the fire for graft and corruption because they know too many of their own have skeletons in the closet. The Democrats are not even interested in fixing the broken voting system that put them out of power.
Let's face it, the Democrats are not going to change any time soon. Like Israel, they know what they are doing is wrong but they are going to do it anyway. They don't believe anyone will stop them. The fact is we live in a one-party system and that party is closer to prewar Germany than any democratic republic on the planet. GOP policies are despised by everyone except by an ignorant minority. Everything they have done has failed miserably.
It wouldn't have taken that much for the Democrats to stop this at any time. They chose not to. We must be that opposition the Democrats failed to be. We must start now. It's no good waiting for the Democrats to hear us, for next rigged election or the next disappointing outcome from the broken DOJ. It's our baby. The longer we wait, the more entrenched these people become and the more difficult the struggle will be. We only need to look south of the border for a model of where to begin.
Subject: This Headline: "Britain endures hottest-ever July day 7/20" Needs To Be the One at the Top of the List!!!
This planet is heating up faster than anyone ever predicted. There's record high temperatures all over the world.
The environment needs to be the #1 priority for every nation of the world NOW!!! Before we all end up cooked like bacon.
Hot as Hell Huntsville Texas USA
Subject: Re: “G.O.P. Senator Resisting Bush Over Detainees" (NY Times)
Lindsey Graham is the worst sort of liar. Over and over again he has tried to subvert the rule of law and the Constitution while carefully and deliberately fostering a public image of someone who admires and reveres both.
His views are shaped not only by his understanding of the law, but also by his respect for an institution he credits with changing his life ….
Yes, it was his deep respect for the law that prompted the desecration of the ‘Great Writ’ that Graham attempted in the “Graham Amendment” to the last Defense Authorization Bill:
In the 2004 case Rasul v. Bush, brought on behalf of Guantánamo captives, the Supreme Court established the right of foreigners held by the United States to habeas corpus, the 800-year-old legal procedure grounded in the Magna Carta and enshrined in the US Constitution, which requires government officials to explain to a court why they are holding someone in captivity. Graham's amendment strips courts of the power to hear such cases.
Ban Torture or Protect Torturers? (The Nation)
The same kind of ‘respect’ led him to file a deliberately misleading Amicus brief in Hamdan v Rumsfeld, detailing a “debate” on the Senate floor that never took place:
Senators Graham and Kyl not only misled their Senate colleagues, but also shamed their high offices by trying to deliberately mislead the U.S. Supreme Court.
While some other Republicans argue that terrorists do not deserve legal or human rights, Mr. Graham has insisted that only a system grounded in the fundamental rights of the military code and the Geneva conventions will affirm the reputation of the United States abroad and protect American troops when they are captured by enemies. ...
“I’m a big fan of the Geneva Conventions,” [Graham] declared.
G.O.P. Senator Resisting Bush Over Detainees (NY Times)
Just not all of it:
Congress can approve interrogation techniques that would not allow Geneva Convention Article III to compromise our security.
Interrogation methods that Israel has banned as inhumane since 1999 [Torture by the General Security Service (btselem.org)] including sleep deprivation, loud noise and stress positions are the precise methods Senator Graham is eager to retain for use by American interrogators:
Cruel, inhumane, degrading treatment is different than torture. Coercion is different than cruel, inhumane, and degrading treatment. Keeping people up, stressful, physical, and psychological activity are acceptable means of interrogation. Always has been. Always will be. [on “The O'Reilly Factor," January 12, 2006]
Sen. Lindsey Graham on the Alito Hearings (Fox News)
“Always”? Only in the grotesque caricature of America Lindsey Graham works tirelessly to bring to pass. I’ll let Senator Graham have the last word on duplicitous, hypocritical politicians:
And let me tell you where it all comes down to me. If you can go back and explain to your children and your constituents how you can be truthful and misleading at the same time, good luck.
Subject: Mumbo Jumbo Bush
I have read all these explanations about the wordage of this man...who is the president. Is he an alcoholic, is he just dim...a redneck jerk, on drugs...testing drugs...or just like the silly geek we all knew in school? He is all these things. Have you all, any of you, ever had an alcoholic, who tended to call you after about 6 too many? I have...and even if you love this person...it is maddening. Bush has it...I know. He was not only wildly talking...making no sense...eating like he was starved...and trying to watch everything in the room and talk to Blair at the same time. and I am sure I am not the only person who saw the impatience on Tony Blair's face, it was like "Someone please deliver me from this!" Any person who knows a druggie or an alcoholic, very well...and talk to them ...they likely are three people. The person who works a regular job every day...and is the best person...or, the person who swears off for a weekend...and hates it. That one, will not talk to anyone...the other one is what Bush was at the G8!!Someone had on television a film of the German Chancellor with him coming up behind her and trying to give her a massage. It is almost like a four-year-old kid who is just getting antsy because he is so bored with the entire thing. He may not be aware of anything he said to Tony Blair...he was too damned busy looking around the room and chomping on Pig...or whatever it was he was busy eating...but, his actions were only second to what he actually had to say. To me, he is just frightening...we have him for two and a half more years...just think about what he could do!
Shirley ... St. Louis
Subject: Short Video
I checked out "YouTube" for a video of dumb-ya's latching on to merkel. It's even more interesting, and telling, 'in motion'. Very brief and you can absolutely tell how startled and uncomfortable merkel was ... bush starts out on merkel's right, suddenly veers over, and puts his hands on her shoulders. The entire video clip is five seconds long! The photos just don't do justice to how completely bizarre this incident is! I watched it a few times, hitting pause to check out body language, etc. It is worth dissecting!
Benjamin Franklin: "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."
Subject: Our Poor Country Going to S*it
Thanks for your great reads. I am just sorry that if something good doesn't happen for the Good of the country soon then we are going to be in a world of s*it. I guess we already are, the sh**ter. Thanks for your help!
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Stem Cell Research
Hard to believe in almost six years time our "president" has not seen fit to veto a single bill until now
And what a bill to veto
Stem cells, a petri dish full of hope, but our "leader" dashes that hope
Don't we deserve that hope?
Does Mr. Bush think these horrible diseases will disappear on their own like his memories of Jack Abramoff and Kenny Boy Lay?
If stem cells helped cure ONE disease it would be well worth it
Diabetes Alzheimer's ALS
The list goes on like ignorant comments from Bill O'Reilly
In other words, the list is endless
Maybe things would be different if one of his twins gave birth to an infant with one of these illnesses
Could he look his grand baby in the eye and explain why it's not important to cure their disease?
To explain why they face a lifetime of jabbing needles into their body, shooting insulin to survive
No big deal, I guess, to a guy who is used to jabbing needles in himself minus the insulin
Explain it to the ALS victim trapped inside their body, their mind as keen and aware as ever while their physical body fails, knowing full well what fate awaits them
Bush suffers from anti-ALS
His body strong and well while his brain craps out
Funny how Bush thinks stem cells are against his morals yet it's ok to lie to a nation to cause a war
His morals say it's ok to send our armed forces to their death
But a petri dish full of hope is immoral
There will be a cure for these diseases one day and stem cell research will play a part in that
It's just a shame that his first veto is for something so important
As with Katrina, this administration is a day late and a dollar short
Doin' a hell of a job, Bushie and if you think that's meant as a complement, stem cell research might help you, too
Subject: Goodbye, Blue Sky
I've been following the Middle East crisis. There is a song that comes to mind that seems to describe the situation fairly well.
[look, mummy. there's an airplane up in the sky.]
Did you, did you see the frightened ones? Did you, did you hear the falling bombs? Did you ever wonder why we had to run for shelter, When the promise of a brave new world, Unfurled beneath a clear blue sky?
Did you, did you see the frightened ones? Did you, did you hear the falling bombs? The flames are all long gone, But the pain lingers on. Goodbye, blue sky. Goodbye, blue sky. Goodbye. Goodbye.
(Pink Floyd, Goodbye Blue Sky)
When will we realize that when people go to war, it is the people on the ground that pay the price? When will we realize that this current situation is doing nothing but tearing open old wounds, and that this conflict will have ramifications for a long time. When will we realize that violence is not a solution, that violence begets violence? Turn on the idiot box and we see the "pundits" saying that this is WW3, or possibly the begin ing of it. I'm not going to go off on that, but I would like to bring everyone's attention to a statement made by someone who is generally considered the world's smartest man.
I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones. -- Albert Einstein
And if this indeed is the begin ing of WW3, and since the nuc-lar option is not off the table, this is what Oppenheimer said upon witnessing the explosion that resulted from the detonation of the first atomic bomb.
If the radiance of a thousand suns were to burst into the sky, that would be like the splendor of the Mighty One. ... Now I am become death, the destroyer of worlds.
I read something about folks getting ready for "rapture." I bet they're happy!!
Subject: A Letter to My Sh*t-heel Republican Senator
You’ve got to be kidding. Not only do you have the effrontery and incredibly poor taste to use in your campaign ads doctored images of the World Trade Center under attack, but you implicate your replacement, Sherrod Brown, in exposing our nation to similar dangers.
Please recall; 9/11 occurred under a Republican administration with Republican majorities in congress having been the rule for some time. The Republicans have proven they can’t protect American cities from terrorist attacks - even when amply briefed on the dangers by a previous Democratic administration. Similarly, they can’t manage natural disaster relief and cleanup to any other end than to disappropriate the poor of their homes and property; they can’t manage an unprovoked invasion of a small, weakened nation to any other end than to create unprecedented chaos in which the war profiteers are the only winners; and they can’t stop our closest ally in the Middle East from destroying the recently rebuilt infrastructure of the only real fledgling democracy in the Arab world - Lebanon. Republicans' ham-handed foreign policies virtually invite international rogues and terrorists to play their hands, and get while the getting's good!
You are a ne’er-do-well and a scoundrel in a party of venal fascists, and you have to go.
Subject: Questions for the One Story News Media
To All of the TV NEWS MEDIA,
With the 24/7 News Coverage on EVERY NETWORK about ISRAEL vs LEBANON, please answer these very simple questions:
WHEN DID THE WAR IN IRAQ and AFGHANISTAN END?
WHEN WAS OBL CAUGHT?
WHEN DID OUR TROOPS COME HOME? DID THEY HAVE A NICE PARADE?
WHEN DID THAT NUKE NUTCASE IN NORTH KOREA CROAK?
Just curious. I must have "slept" right through that news.
Windsor Locks, CT
Subject: Soulless Republican Wedge Issues
Playing politics with peoples' lives has become SOP within the Republican Party, and decent Republicans should be disgusted enough to put a stop to it. If you have an ethical problem with stem cell research, that’s your right. What you don’t have a right to do is misrepresent what this research actually is. Can the Conservatives ever tell the truth?
You don’t believe in stem cell research using blastocysts? Then don’t take advantage of the research. You don’t want your tax dollars spent on things you don’t believe in? Hell, I don’t want any of my tax dollars spent blowing the hell out of other countries. Guess we both lose on getting our own way. Americans are in danger of becoming a nation of backward, religious, folks like the Amish we find so quaint. I have no problem with these folks. Let them live their lives and worship as they see fit. If they want to drive their little buggies and look like something out of a spaghetti western, that’s fine, too. (Do they have to use very large pooper scoopers?)
The difference is that the right-wing nutbags want to force all of us to live in their backward world. No science, just what God would want. How they know just exactly what it is that God wants in regard to blastocysts is beyond all understanding. I don’t remember ever reading about that in my Bible. I’m almost sure that the word blastocyst is nowhere to be found.
What I do remember is something about bearing false witness. When I was a kid, Sister Mary Joseph used to scare the hell out of me by telling me what was going to happen to me if I lied. I still look around for her and her ruler whenever I am tempted to tell less than the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Too bad the Pinhead in the White House and his party never met Sister Mary Joseph. She’d have knocked the false witness crap out of them.
Subject: November Surprise
Until we make sure that all the voting machines are not rigged and that they have a paper trail and that all who are eligible to vote can be assured that their vote will be counted, we are doomed in November just like we were in 2000, 2002 and 2004. The republicans have gotten way too good at cheating and they are thirsty for more. It sickens me to think that we have so many crooks, cheats and liars running our country and the worst one is in the white house. I wish we had our own Rupert Murdock to take over the mainstream media and get the democratic word out. Bush's veto of legislation to fund stem cell research was just more proof that he is an imbicile.
I like to daydream once in awhile about what our country would be like had the supreme court voted for Al Gore in 2000 instead of W. We need to get a grassroots campaign going--make noise--declare war on the republicans! I don't know about the rest of you, but I am tired of energy companies and millionaires getting all the breaks. I want to see national health care, free college education for our youngsters--and let the pentagon hold a bake sale for their bombs!
Subject: My Letter to The New York Times re Bush's Veto of Stem Cell Bill
Thought I'd share with you and BuzzFlash readers the letter I sent to The New York Times regarding Bush's veto of the stem cell bill:
To the Editor:
Was I ashamed of President George W. Bush when, on September 11, 2001, he continued to read "My Pet Goat" after being told the United States was under attack, or because of his eventual folly in Iraq? Was I ashamed of him when he rushed home to Washington to address the Terri Schiavo matter, but did not rush home a few years later to address the Katrina disaster?
Am I ashamed of the president's recent behavior at the Group of 8 Summit in Russia, where he talked with his mouth full, massaged the Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel's shoulders with undeserved familiarity, and indicated to another G-8 guest that he wasn't going to talk as damn long as some of these others, and that he had to get going because he had things to do?
Yes, yes, yes, and yes.
Never, however, have I been more ashamed of the president than I am at this moment, because of his veto of the recent stem cell bill that Congress sent to his desk. This supposedly "compassionate" man would not be moved if he faced a stadium filled with victims of Parkinson's and ALS disease.
Congress doesn't get a pass either. How much arm twisting was really done to get the extra votes needed to override the president's veto?
It is even more infuriating to realize that this stem cell matter was probably contrived as a win-win situation for the president and the G.O.P. The president cheers up his base with his veto, and, since the majority of the public supports stem cell research, Republicans in Congress can tell their constituents, "Well, we tried."
The president has literally pulled the rug of hope out from under millions of disease-afflicted Americans and their families. Heck of a job, Mr. President."