"We Don't Torture"

Thursday, April 23, 2009

George W. Bush Converted Me to Democracy, Made Me A Democrat

I need to state my political allegiance because I feel that it is important in this day and age to be open and honest.

I have labeled myself an independent for a number of years, but that ended during the Bush presidency where I felt it was important to join a united front against that man. When I saw him campaigning I was disturbed. As an individual with an average to above average IQ, there is no question that George W. Bush would be a subpar president at best and hell on wheels at worst. What I did not know at the time is that he would surpass my worst expectation.

Being an independent I can honestly say that I vote for the individual whose skills and level of competence best match the job at hand, rather than a particular party. That has typically served me well and I have voted for someone from every single major political party or another. Sometimes the libertarians make good member of the state legislature or the county board of supervisors, green party members are good on a local level, democratic senators seem to be the most competent, and republicans are good in moderation in most positions.

Voting is just like facilitating a job interview, you have to ask the right questions, trust the answers and expect a high level of excellence on the job. That's how I see it and how I exercise my right to vote.

Back to Bush. I don't care what party you are with, whether you are Republican or something else, you need to acknowledge that Bush is NOT a bright guy. He's not completely stupid, as the many quotes saying things such as "He is much sharper in person" (ad lib) confirm. But the real debate should be about how important it is to each constituent that the president is intelligent.

The 2008 presidential election seemed like a referendum on this issue when Sarah Palin was basically laughed out of the election by a majority of voters. She is also a little dim.

Do I mind throwing these epithets around? Normally yes, but when the fate of the free world and the entire world is at stake, I think it's excusable to call it like I see it.

So Bush made me a democrat. Because I would not, could not vote for someone who I wouldn't trust to housesit for me, let alone live in the whitehouse and run my country. So I picked a team, the one which seemed less damaging, and I haven't regretted it since.

I still vote independently in local and state elections, but I stopped voting for republicans altogether. This wasn't all Bush' fault, it was also due to the conniving of Karl Rove, Cheney doing a good impression of Dr. Evil from Austin Powers, Colin Powells innacuracy at the UN followed by the cancellation of the Roadmap to Peace, and his resignation, 9/11 occurring, the fight against the 9/11 commission, no bid contracts, torture (which I always knew was happening), failure to sign the Kyoto Protocol, nomination of Harriet Miers for the Supreme Court, everything about Alberto Gonzales, Tom DeLay, and the list goes on...

I got tired of republican antics, which have meant campaigning and representing their constituencies with hypocrisy on a regular basis. And I have tried to respect the GOP, but they have lost credibility with me. So I voted for Obama, and I campaigned for Obama and I do not regret it at all, because U.S. politics under Bush and the Republican majority was making me feel dirty, like I needed a shower.

And I liked John McCain for years. I read his book "The Faith of My Fathers" and I loved it. It was charming and warm and spunky, and I rooted for his family. I still do. if it was between John and Hilary I might very well have voted for him, but Hilary was not the candidate, and then when the primaries were over, John disappointed me, he sold out his own instincts, not to mention ethics and started using Rovian methods and became a shadow of his former self. I turned on McCain, when he turned on himself, and I hope he comes back to us.

In the meantime, in the interest of full disclosure, I am politically independent, but I have voted for democrats, more often than not in the last 8 years. And though I wish the GOP would get it together, I do not endorse them at this time, and I frequently laugh at their actions, because it is a healthier reponse to laugh rather than cry.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

"We Don't Torture", Said Bush, Well, A Classified Red Cross Report Says Otherwise

An extremely classified document created by the Red Cross and sent to the CIA discussed in detail the techniques that interrogators were using at " CIA black sites", and what roles that physicians were playing in this form of interrogation.

This report also directly contradicts the words of former president George Bush when he very clearly stated that "We Don't Torture", discussing the techniques used, in the words of fourteen "high value detainees".
This report confirms the use of:
  • Suffocation by Water
  • Confinement in a box
  • Prolonged Nudity
  • Sleep Deprivation
  • Prolonged Stress Standing Positions (held for up to one month)
  • Exposure to cold temperature
  • Prolonged shackling
  • Daily beatings
  • Threats of ill-treatment
  • Use of a collar to slam detainees against the wall
  • Forced to defecate and urinate on themselves
  • Forced shaving
  • Deprivation/Restricted Provision of Solid Food
  • Deprivation of access to open air
  • Deprivation of access to exercise
  • Deprivation of access to appropriate hygiene facilities
  • Deprivation of access and restricted access to the Koran, the holy book for many detainees
  • Deprivation of access to prayer, as it is carried out within the religion
  • Threat of sodomy and other sexual acts
  • Threat of being infected with HIV
  • Threat of the arrest and/or rape of detainees family
  • Each of these methods being combined with other methods
The Red Cross clearly advocates against this type of "interrogation", and suggests that torture is not necessary. This report specifically states that,
"The ICRC believes that the U.S. can achieve its objectives while respecting its obligations and historical commitment to respect international law"
To read the shocking truth about the U.S. and torture, READ THE REPORT.

The facts in this report are in direct opposition to Executive Order:
Interpretation of the Geneva Conventions Common Article 3 as Applied to a Program of Detention and Interrogation Operated by the Central Intelligence Agency. This order specifically lays out the intention and promise, if you will, that the administration won't condone and the CIA won't perform “cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment” of detainees, as defined by Section 2340 of Title 18 of the United States Code or "acts intended to denigrate the religion, religious practices, or religious objects of the individual" along with other guarantees that were not met.

If you prefer common English to legalize, here is the transcript to a press conference which discusses this particular executive order. If you prefer to see an end to torture by government bodies and officials in the United States, than TAKE A STAND and
ask your Congressperson to Co-Sponsor H.R. 104, which is legislation that would establish a national commission on presidential war powers and civil liberties.

I believe that torture is wrong on many levels, the first of which is because it makes violence a commonality inside the justice system, making violence against prisoners acceptable. This means that despite the true innocence or guilt of the prisoner, and despite the seriousness of the crime that they committed, they will not be safe. Secondly, and this is not an original moral dilemma, as it has been discussed with regularity in 08' and 09', if the U.S. tortures prisoners we have no right to expect that other countries will not torture their prisoners who may or may not be American, and we are without credibility when we attempt to put an end to human rights violations elsewhere.

For me, torture is just ethically wrong, for others that is not the case, but in either regard these two issues, which I just mentioned should be taken seriously if we, as Americans want our country and our countrymen to be safe.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Note to America & the Supreme Court, Re-try Mumia Abu Jamal

This is so frustrating! It has been years, and Mumia Abu Jamal is still in prison, and society has not confronted the major, structural problems with the American justice system. Hasn't John Grisham taught us anything? Is a new trial too much to ask in cases where everything about the original trial was tainted. What is the harm? Who doesn't know that Mumia is telling the truth? And he isn't expecting to be let out, just to get a fair trial. Most white people say race relations have gotten better over the years, so than we should all be able to acknowledge that they used to be worse. Here is one excerpt from the O'Reilly Factor where Bill O'Reilly makes that exact point in his discussion about a statement he made.
O'Reilly told The Associated Press,
"If you listened to the full hour, it was a criticism of racism on the part of white Americans who are ignorant of the fact that there is no difference between white and black anymore."
Pay attention to the word ANYMORE. Once we do that, and even under the (bad) assumption that the racial divisions in this country are gone, logic says that Mumia's original trial took place in a climate where there were socially accepted differences between black and white people, at least according to many white people) and that 10 white jurors may have created a specific outcome of that trial. And the outcome may have been different if the jury had a different percentile of white jurors AT THAT TIME or had the same percentile NOW, in this new era where "...there is no difference between white and black anymore."

I realize that there are a million factors to consider. Because, if society recognizes that every case like Mumia's, where the juries racial makeup was a prevalent factor in the juries decision, and therefore the judges ruling, than this changes everything. And if the solution, as I suggest, is to re-try cases such as Mumia's, than we are opening the door to a million re-trials, and a new look at double jeopardy as it stands. From a fiscal point of view this is crazy. And from a constitutional point of view this is virtually impossible, because it means considering the idea that the framers were right, we are all created equal, but that the justice system in this country has not always worked to uphold this concept, and that the constitution itself would have to be amended to fix this aberration.

But what is the alternative, accepting that so many black men have found their lives in the hands of white jurors, back when O'Reilly (an apparent spokesperson for white, male America) would have said that differences did exist between white and black, and doing nothing? South Africa accepted this fact did years ago and did something about it. The state recognized that there was a cultural, political shift after Apartheid was abolished, and realized that Mandela was imprisoned during a different and more racially charged time in history and when that same form of prevailing racism no longer existed their was no reason to hold him to an old cultural standard. And Mandela was free at last.

Why is the U.S. who pride ourselves on being developed and ahead of other nations in innovation and understanding so far behind on this. Why do we keep a man locked up, who very clearly did not commit the crime for which he is being charged, who only wants a chance at a fair trial, something that he is yet to receive.

Mumia Abu Jamal deserves better than this and so does America. We need make it right. Please click on this link to learn more about the case and to help Mumia and America.

*The quote from Bill O'Reilly and the article it came from can be found at: http://abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=3649826in

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Sean Hannity of Fox News gets beaten by a girl, Host of America's Best Dance Crew & World Poker Tour Layla Kayleigh

No one can tell me that I'm politically biased, well not that biased, because I regularly pay attention to current events, in and outside the United States, and to the discussion of political commentators from all sides of the aisle in an effort to be "fair and balanced"

This is why on Thursday, April 2, 2009 had you come over to my house, you would have found me watching a show whose host is neither fair nor balanced, and whose opinions lean in a McCarthy-est fashion toward the right, Mr. Sean Hannity of Fox News.

Mr. Hannity had on three guests. The first was Patricia Murphy from Citizen Jane who barely uttered a word, seeming daunted by the circus atmosphere and the breath that is wasted by anyone who acts to oppose Hannity on anything. The second was the Reverend Jesse Lee Peterson, President/Founder of Bond, which is apparently some sort of loonybin, if I can judge by the founder's statements during the show (see transcripts below). I am not a therapist, but I am undoubtedly sure that the Reverend Jesse is not just a hate monger, but has a few screws lose and may need a week or two in a padded room and some pills to calm him down. And ironically, Hannity is on the board of Bond which he proudly announced to his viewers, which seems to be just a tad hypocritical since the
Reverend Jesse Lee is as anti-harmony as the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, if not more, and I could swear that Hannity had some problems with Obama's Ties to the Reverend Wright. And if I were Hannity I would not associate with this man, and I would strongly consider denouncing him because this association is clearly destabilizing his credibility (at least with me). Speaking of credibility, Hannity's third guest managed to do what very few guests have done before and put Hannity on the defensive. Internally, he might have even acknowledged that she had a point. Her comments were also practical and intelligent. So kudos to Layla Kayleigh of World Poker Tour and Dancing with the Stars fame for putting Hannity in his place, and doing it without name calling, and with a smile on her face the entire time.

Here are the transcripts to the show courtesy of: http://www6.lexisnexis.com/publisher/EndUser?Action=UserDisplayFullDocument&orgId=574&topicId=100007214&docId=l:950702632&start=6

Copyright 2009 Fox News Network, LLC.


April 2, 2009 Thursday

Is Obama Administration Pushing Towards Socialism?

Jesse Lee Peterson, Patricia Murphy, Layla Kayleigh

HANNITY: And tonight on the "Great American Panel" he is the founder and the president of BOND, Brotherhood Organization for a New Destiny, of which I'm a proud board member. The Reverend Jesse Lee Peterson is here.She is the founder of Citizen Jane Politics, and a Washington columnist for the soon-to-launch Web site, Politics Daily. Patricia Murphy is with us.And she is the co-host of MTV's show, America's Best Dance Crew, and the host of the world poker tour. Layla Kayleigh is on board.Good to see you. Do you gamble?
LAYLA KAYLEIGH, CO-HOST, MTV'S "AMERICA'S BETS DANCE CREW": A little bit from time to time.
HANNITY: A little bit. And you win?
KAYLEIGH: Sometimes.
HANNITY: So let's talk economics. I don't like the road to socialism. I don't think it's good for our kids and grandkids -- why are you giving me that look?
KAYLEIGH: I don't know -- you guys throw this word around, socialism. Define socialism.
HANNITY: Government running of the economy. And if you want the official definition, government running of the economy. For example, like GM, or companies, the nationalizing of companies. That is the Webster's dictionary definition.But when we're going to accumulate $1 trillion plus of debt every year for ten years...
HANNITY: ... we're spending too much money.
KAYLEIGH: May I ask you a question?
HANNITY: It's your show. I'm just...
KAYLEIGH: Obama's been president for how many months?
HANNITY: A short time.
KAYLEIGH: A short time. When did this mess occur exactly?
HANNITY: If you're asking me if he inherited a recession, the answer is yes. But he was the one that increased spending with the omnibus bill 8 percent, and he's the one that said he wasn't going to have earmarks, then gave us 9,000 of them.
KAYLEIGH: No, no...
HANNITY: He's this one that is proposing a $4 trillion debt -- debt with a $634 billion down payment on nationalized health care. And Jesse, I don't think we can sustain it.
REV. JESSE LEE PETERSON, PRESIDENT/FOUNDER, BOND: And he's still talking about spending money. Today he held a press conference in London, and he was talking about the amount of money he's going to spend on Africa and other countries, and I'm thinking where's he getting this money from if we're so broke?I realize that Obama's going to go down as the greatest of great deceivers. He's a very dishonest man. He held a press conference today, and he did not defend this country. We were accused, according to the report, by the other so-called leaders, of causing this economic crisis.And Obama said, "Oh, we have to humble ourselves in America. Yes, you're right, it's because of Wall Street," but he left out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and all those others.
KAYLEIGH: Well, I think what he said was fine.
PETERSON: So yes, he's spending money and spending money, and I'm wondering where is all this money coming from?
What he said at the press conference was that the United States needs to take part of the blame, and that's because he's on British soil. He was with the G-20.
HANNITY: Oh, so when he's on American soil...
MURPHY: ... on the G-20 believe it's the United States. And it's partially the United States' fault.
PETERSON: When President Bush went to a foreign country, he didn't weaken himself. He didn't give in to them. He stood up.
(CROSSTALK)HANNITY: Has America not advanced the human condition more than any other country on the face of the earth? Has America done that?
KAYLEIGH: America...
HANNITY: No, no. You've got to -- I answered your question. Now you answer my question.
KAYLEIGH: Listen, America's a great country.
HANNITY: I didn't ask you if America's...
KAYLEIGH: We all know that, right? He's abroad, and he has to appeal to the different leaders of other nations...
PETERSON: Because he's a soft liberal. That's why. He's not...
(CROSSTALK)HANNITY: You didn't answer my question. Did America's capitalism advance the human condition more than -- and create a standard of living and wealth that even the poorest in America have a pretty high standard of living by world standards?
KAYLEIGH: All I know right now is we're in a crap fest and we're in a big mess.
HANNITY: You don't want to answer my question. You don't want to answer my question. Has America created, for example, the pharmaceutical drugs that prolong life, extend life, and give us a better quality of life? Did capitalism cause that? You won't answer that, so you can't deny it...
PETERSON: It's difficult for liberals to tell the truth because the truth set you free. And so -- so she can't answer that, because it requires her looking at that reality and what is happening.
MURPHY: The United States is the largest economy in the world. It needs to be the driver of the solution, and I think that's what...
HANNITY: The reason I was trying to get -- although she ducked my question. But what I'm trying to get to is this. Is that capitalism got us there. And we made it without nationalized health care, and we made it without putting our kids in debt $10 trillion. We're going to triple our debt under the Obama spending plan. And I'm saying that's...
(CROSSTALK)MURPHY: But when the government picked winners and losers in the fall, this has all become totally corrupted, I want to say, because there is no more free market anyway. So the government is still picking winners and losers, and I think that is a fundamental problem.
HANNITY: And Jesse picked up on this. Government caused all of this when they decided every American should own a home, whether they can afford it or not.
MURPHY: They also said...
(CROSSTALK)PETERSON: If you want to know -- if you want to know what socialism looks like, look at the black community. It is -- I mean, from generation to generation for the last 50 years has been taken over by the government. And now unemployment is out of control, families broken, anger, I mean -- and dependency on government. You have -- you have 90 percent...
HANNITY: You're missing -- I've got to -- he's done this in three months, but...PETERSON: He's spent more money in three months than any other president has ever spent.MURPHY: I'm OK with that.
HANNITY: You're OK with it?
MURPHY: And nobody else is spending money.
HANNITY: In three months he has spent more money and tripled the debt that any -- he's spent more money and more -- given us more debt than George Washington to George W. Bush in three months. And you want to say, "Well, oh, we've got to experiment with going bankrupt"?
KAYLEIGH: What would you have him do?
HANNITY: I'll have my answer.
PETERSON: That's a good question.
HANNITY: Free-market capitalism, less government bureaucracy. Regulation.
PETERSON: It's too late.
HANNITY: It's not too late. We can stop the budget. Four trillion dollar budget.
MURPHY: Democrats are some of his harshest critics right now on the budget. They say that it's...
HANNITY: I think it's a ruse. I don't believe that for a -- I think they're all going to line up and sign on to it regardless, because they -- they have absolutely no courage to stand up to him.
PETERSON: Obama is a very insecure...
(CROSSTALK)KAYLEIGH: It will be your children and my generation...
HANNITY: Then why would you support it?
KAYLEIGH: You're a bit disconnected from the youth of America right now.
HANNITY: Why would you support putting trillions and trillions of dollars on their backs?
KAYLEIGH: It's not an ideal situation no matter what you do. It's a mess. It's a mess.
HANNITY: He's adding $10 trillion. Do you realize when he's done with his budget, that we're going to pay $806 billion a year in interest?
KAYLEIGH: No, I don't, because I'm not an economist.
HANNITY: I'm helping you out here.
MURPHY: The private sector...
PETERSON: A lot of people don't understand the nature of Obama. Obama's a very insecure man, and he wants power -- he wants power by way of government.
HANNITY: No, no, no, he's secure with a teleprompter.
PETERSON: That's why he gives those long boring answers.
HANNITY: I'll do it just like him.More with our "Great American Panel" coming up, and "Hate Hannity Hotline," straight ahead.
HANNITY: And we continue now with our "Great American Panel." All right. Tax cheat Tim Geithner, he's on with Katie Couric. Let's roll the tape.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)KATIE COURIC, CBS NEWS ANCHOR: Will you exert even more influence in the future if these CEOs are not managing their businesses properly?TIM GEITHNER, TREASURY SECRETARY: Recovery here depends on the financial system doing a better job of providing credit. We want banks to go back into business and making sure they provide the credit that, you know, families and businesses need to invest in the future.And we have to provide assistance to make that possible. Again, we're going to make sure we do that on conditions to protect the taxpayer, provide the kind of accountability that the American people want.And again, the test will be what's going to make these institutions stronger.COURIC: So you leave the option open to actually pressure a bank CEO to resign?GEITHNER: Of course. Of course.(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: You're the only socialist on the panel. You are...
KAYLEIGH: Look, I want to make something clear, OK?
HANNITY: All right.
KAYLEIGH: I wouldn't be here if I didn't agree with some of the things that you say.
HANNITY: Like for example?
KAYLEIGH: I think if you're too far left or too far right, you're just as bad as...
HANNITY: I think that's a bumper sticker. It think that's a platitude.
KAYLEIGH: But some are saying you are not serious. I know you.
HANNITY: Daniel Hannan was just on saying, don't do what we did in Great Britain. Don't socialize medicine. Don't nationalize, you know, private companies. Let capitalism ring. And you're saying you do not care if we give our kids $10 trillion debt.
KAYLEIGH: When did I say that?
HANNITY: You said, how dare I attack Obama?
KAYLEIGH: No. And first of all, he's our president now, and he's going to be our president. So...HANNITY: So what? He's wrong.
KAYLEIGH: Yes, he can be wrong. But this attitude that you have...
KAYLEIGH: ... is only going to divide us. We have to come together and find solutions.
HANNITY: OK, so I must -- I can't be critical or else I will divide the country.
PETERSON: I wonder -- I wonder if you felt that way during President Bush's term. I mean, they went after President Bush from day one.
KAYLEIGH: And when they went after him, what were they called?
PETERSON: They called him all sorts of names.
PETERSON: Did you say, "We should unite together"?
KAYLEIGH: Time out. Time out.
PETERSON: Did you say it then?
KAYLEIGH: I want to say one thing. When people attack Bush, there were called unpatriotic.
HANNITY: Not true. That's not true.
KAYLEIGH: Yes, it is. I heard that...
HANNITY: They said the surge lost, the war was lost. The surge failed. Why do you -- you think the -- this is where America is right now. Americans don't want socialism. They're angry, and they're going to be showing up at tea parties. And they think that we are headed down the wrong road. Why shouldn't we speak out?
MURPHY: I think you're absolutely right to speak out. I think that screaming at each other isn't particularly helpful. And no...
HANNITY: This is a discussion. All right.
PETERSON: I think that Obama is the worst thing that could happen to America. And we're making a big mistake by allowing him to take over these businesses, General Motors and other businesses, because if we allow this to happen, this guy is serious about what he's doing. The messiah is a far left social liberal...
HANNITY: Let me move on.
PETERSON: And everybody's right about him, by the way.
MURPHY: These companies went to him and asked him to do this for them. They sold part of their company...
HANNITY: No, no. But they understand they wanted them to seize companies, determine pay and rescind retroactively the money that got to begin with.
MURPHY: We don't know that. We've even seen the contracts.
HANNITY: Let me give you a last topic here. University of Maryland student union was going to run a porn film for students. I've got a problem with this. Why are you laughing?
KAYLEIGH: It is very funny.
HANNITY: What's do funny about it? Do you want your kid -- to send your kids to college to watch pornography?
KAYLEIGH: You're telling me you've never watched pornography?
HANNITY: I don't watch pornography.
KAYLEIGH: You've never in your life?
HANNITY: When I'm flipping through the channels only.
KAYLEIGH: When you were in college -- when you were in college, did you never watch pornography? Honestly? I do not believe you.
PETERSON: Liberals -- liberals love to corrupt the hearts and minds of the children. When they grow of age to vote, they vote for the Democrats. So that's what this is all about.
MURPHY: I don't think this has anything to do with Democrats and Republicans.
MURPHY: The ideas don't seem as bad until they hit FOX News. And then it seems like a really horrible idea. And they've decided to cancel the screening.
KAYLEIGH: It is a free country.
HANNITY: It's a free country.
KAYLEIGH: They're adults. The taxpayers are not paying. They did it after school.
HANNITY: After-school activities. It is after school.
KAYLEIGH: They can download.
MURPHY: Big deal. Come on.
PETERSON: They are trying to corrupt young children. They're behind this, because...
KAYLEIGH: Are you a virgin, Jesse?
PETERSON: What does that have to do with...
KAYLEIGH: Are you a virgin?
PETERSON: What does that have to do with...
HANNITY: You want to answer that?
PETERSON: Yes, are you a virgin?
KAYLEIGH: No. Of course I am not.
PETERSON: Now we know.
HANNITY: All right. I'm getting out of this before somebody asks me. But I do have two children.All right, now...
KAYLEIGH: You can be a born-again, though.
HANNITY: Right, all right. That's -- I don't believe that.)And don't forget: we want you to send us your tax day party videos via our Web site: FOXNews.com/Hannity.
KAYLEIGH: What's wrong?
HANNITY: We also want to issue a correction. Now, last night incorrect winner of the Obama puzzle. And, well, after going back to our blog and checking the post, we got this.We want to announce that the actual winning guess of Hillary and Bill and Chelsea and the slogan, "More of the Same," it came from a viewer named Jeff. And Jeff, let not your heart by troubled. We'll send you the books personally signed by me.And thanks to all of our viewers for going to our blog and bringing this to our attention. We admit a mistake. We are sorry. And thank you again for your posts, and please keep them coming.
HANNITY: And by the way, your fears, even your grand ideas and criticisms of her. And before we go, by the way, a reminder about our special shows coming up on April 9. We have our "Six Ideas to Save America." People say, "Well, where are the positive solutions?"That also includes an interview with Jeb Bush, his first since leaving office. Then on April 15, we we'll be broadcasting from a tea party in Atlanta. I will be there in Atlanta, where one of the dozens of tea parties around the country will be going on. And we hope you'll be watching.By the way, John Rich -- I'm thinking rich -- is going to be performing. So you want to come to Atlanta, if you can.That is all the time we have left this evening. Thank you for being with us. But let not your heart be troubled. The news continues. Greta Van Susteren is standing by to go "On the Record." And we'll see you tomorrow night. Thanks for being with us.

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Sunday, March 29, 2009

"Marijuana seems to be the gateway drug to becoming president." Considering marijuana legalization in California.

This is in response to the idea that California legalize marijuana in order to fix the economy. What a controversial idea! The downside is that the DEA would no longer have the same credibility, law enforcement officers from a number of agencies would be out of work, there would be another bureaucratic agency added to the already bloated system, revenue from court fees would decrease immeasurably, accidents on the roads could potentially increase, since it can be as dangerous as texting while driving, people might be potentially losing motivation daily and marijuana could become chemicalized, much more so than it is now, sold by major corporations that don't care about customers health.

The upside? CA jails would be emptier, as would courts, snack companies would increase their bottom line, there would most definitely be a new source of state revenue based on taxes for growers and consumers (which might be offset by the lack of revenue from court fees assessed on people charged with marijuana related offenses), people would be smiling more, and sleeping more, and eating more. and those individuals who have become monetarily successful through the farming of marijuana would lose a lot of black market money, but would have a head start on the new legalized industry. And more people would have the opportunity to gateway their way to the presidency.

As you can see the issue is not as simple as it seems. It is clear that there are enough pot smokers in California to support a marijuana industry, illegal or otherwise, but would legalizing it help the economy. That is not so clear. And with the social stigma attached to marijuana in this country it seems that regardless of the pros and the cons this argument will continue and legalization will not happen, not in the immediate future.

How do we fix the recession?

Republican Connie Mack suggests less regulation as an answer to the economic problems in America. Hmmm. I think the only thing Americans have agreed on is that lack of regulation in the business sector is a problem. But I guess we could try it his way, but then wouldn't we be going right back to way we did things before. The way that didn't work so well???

How do we fix the recession? I don't know. I have some ideas, which I'll unroll in the future, but I am not an economist, and I cannot attest to their workability. I think that is Tim Geithners problem, even though he is an economist, he can't know if anything works until it succeeds or fails and the problems are so massive and complicated that there is no clear solution.

Do I want Geithner to resign? No. He is trying and he is coming up with some very clear implementable ideas which do not include deregulation, so I am appreciative of the effort no matter the result. He is also taking a lot of flak for the bailout bill and AIG bonuses, but it is congress that goes in and like a bad media editor erases the good lines and the smart ideas from the bill and then ducks when the flak starts flying, while Geithner gets hit over and over again. I don't envy him, but I sure hope he succeeds because if he doesn't I won't be blogging anymore since I won't be able to afford my internet bill. So god speed Tim Geithner. Good night and good luck.

Friday, March 27, 2009

My favorite postings of the day

Glenn Marsh on Politico.com
Bachmann: The only GOP member that makes Palin look like a member of MENSA and a citizen of the "real" America. Logic and reality don't exist in Bachmann's private little patch-o-Crazysota.

Posted By: The Party that Ain't | March 25, 2009 at 06:42 PM

A GOP budget with no hard numbers

Posted: Thursday, March 26, 2009 2:43 PM by Mark Murrayhttp://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2009/03/26/1867398.aspx

And here is what the GOP "Budget Plan" meeting would look like:

Boehner: Come on guys, doesn't anyone have ANYTHING???

McConnell: Well I got out the old Bush budget and I think we should just go with it.

Boehner: Dammit Cantor turn that damned Brittany Spears crap off, we're trying to figure this out!

McCain: I say SPENDING FREEZE on everything but military spending.

Cantor: Who the hell invited McLame, I mean McCain?

Boehner: What do you think Mitch? Mitch??? Someone wake his ass up!

Cantor: How about we just attack like usual and have Michael Steele say some more dumb things and maybe they will all forget about our budget?

McConnell: Yeah distractions. I like it!

Boehner: Okay lets rap this up I got a tanning appointment in 20 minutes

All these Repubs have done is work on their tans since November (I'm lookin' at you Boehner) ...give them some coloring books and a box of crayons because clearly since congress entered this session the GOP has been doing NOTHING.