by Benjamin T. Moore, Jr.
After surviving eight disastrous years of the Bush – Cheney Regime and the near apocalyptic consequences of that, the nation decided to do something different for a change. Instead of electing the next fool in line, we decided to actually put some thought into it. We went with a young African-American Senator. Some might say, he had “limited experience” but he was extremely gifted. He was highly educated. In touch with the youthful vitality of our nation. Full of infectious hope, he would bring new ideas to the table.
No matter how great he is, he still needs blockers.
The weed of racism has deep roots in our American garden and we had to work mightily to overcome the choke hold of it’s grip on our politics. We refused to take “no” for an answer and beat back the doubters with the mantra of “yes we can.” And we did it! Then we all took a rest from our labors. It was almost as though we had passed our star “Running Back” the ball and we headed to the bench to watch the game. Politics like football is a team sport. No matter how gifted one might be, they cannot defeat the opposing team all by themselves. Did everyonereally believe that the Republican opposition was going to join us on the benches and sit back and watch President Obama run up the score? Based on our actions, or more correctly inactions, that seems to be exactly what we thought.
The very night of President Obama’s first inauguration, while we wept, danced and celebrated, Republicans were behind closed doors plotting our downfall and destruction. Their primary objective as expressed by Mitch McConnell, “was to make President Obama a one term President.” They purposefully decided not to govern and to obstructany and everything President Obama has attempted to do.
I’m beginning to suspect the real problem Republicans have is our President happens to be Black!
We have had a record number of filibusters since President Obama took office. They’re on track to shatter that record again this year. We’ve seen Republicans sponsor a bill, then when President Obama says “it’s a good idea” they’ve voted against and killed their own bill. Even bills that used to be proforma – no brainers – such as VAWA – The Violence Against Women Act – have met with stiff opposition. Whom in their right mind wouldn’t vote to pass the Violence Against Women Act? If you’re reading this, you’ve got a mother… guaranteed. That’s a bill you’d vote for if for no other reason than you’ve got a mother.
Racism Exposes Stupidity
Here’s the thing everyone needs to remember. The Republicans control the House of Representatives. Thus there is no need for even one filibuster in the Senate over a bill! If you need to, read that again. Before a bill ever makes it to the President’s desk for his signature, it must first make it through not one, but both Houses of Congress. Thus merely for the sake of seeming reasonable, why wouldn’t you let it pass the Senate with no opposition and let the Republican controlled House of Representatives take the hit for blocking it? Senate Republicans could act responsibly and give the impression that they were reasonable and above the fray. However their innate racism causes them to do things that simply make no common sense and ultimately, are bad strategically. I fully expect Mitch McConnell to lose to Ashley Judd in his next election and it will be his own fault. For those who need a refresher course on how our legislative process works, I present a classic “School House Rock.”
Given that Republicans have all lined up to be fitted with their patriotic, red, white and blue straight jackets, you would think that the Democratic Progressives would be pressing their advantage and mopping the floor with a Republican party in full disarray… They are not!
Have Progressives Lost Their Damn Minds?
When your foe has shot himself in the foot, you don’t rush over and bandage his wounds, give him a shot of morphine and a crutch so he can continue the fight. You put him away… efficiently and with finality. This is not a sport. This is a fight for the future of our nation. If you have the strength of convictions in your political philosophy and ideologies, you have but one objective and that is to shape this nation in accordance with your principles. Make no mistake, the Republicans – if they were not busily engaged in cutting their own throats – would press their advantage without hesitation if the roles were reversed.
Senate Majority Leader – Harry Reid
With the initiation of this most recent Congressional session, the Senate – under the control of the Democrats and Harry Reid – had the opportunity to change the rules and hamstring the rampant abuse of the filibuster process. No need to totally get rid of it. Just return it to the way it used to be. If you want to filibuster a Bill, hold the floor until you either cannot hold it any longer or until you persuade your fellow legislators to come over to your side. The way it currently is, a Senator can filibuster a Bill and the public might not even know which Senator had done this… or why! Have Progressives lost their damn minds? This one is a no-brainer!
The Subtle Bigotry Of Back Seat Driving
Have you noticed that there are an awful lot of Progressives offering free advice to President Obama via their talk shows? I’ve been paying attention to politics ever since the first Presidential election I was old enough to participate in. To be sure, there have been Presidents I have thought were excellent and Presidents with whom I had strong disagreements with… of both political parties.
To be sure, the media coverage fell along the lines you might expect. Pundits took issue and disagreed with Presidential positions and other Pundits defended those positions. What I have not noticed, up until now, has been every Tom, Dick and Harry with access to a television camera, telling the President of the United States how he ought to do his job. This is a new phenomenon. Yes, we’ve taken issue with a lot of the policies of nearly each and every President there has been. However, there was always the ever present, silent acknowledgement that the President had access to information that common people simply do not have access to.
Chris – I voted for Bush – Matthews
The game has changed with our first Black President. Progressives have now developed a cottage industry built around telling our President what he ought and ought not do. It is one thing to take issue with his decisions, it is quite another thing to proffer step by step instructions. I even heard Chris – yeah, I voted for Bush – Matthews saying that the President ought to have the Republicans over to the White House more for dinners and get-togethers. Really? Evidently he hasn’t been paying attention to the numerous times the President has done that very thing only to be rebuffed and snubbed by the likes of Boehner and McConnell.
How quickly we forget, the night before President Obama announced to the World the capture and execution of Osama Bin Laden, he was at the annual Press Club dinner, laughing and joking and being the butt of a joke about having forgotten all about Osama Bin Laden. While he laughed at the joke, he knew that an operation was under way to bring Osama to justice.
Moaning About Drones
Katt Williams – Perhaps not as crazy as we think?
This issue is simply stunning in it’s insipid stupidity! When Anwar al-Aulaqi met his richly deserved fate, the first thing by way of an epitaph that popped into my mind were the words of that great philosopher and fount of all things wise – Comedian Katt Williams - “you shouldn’t of been talking shit!” Yes, Anwar al-Aulaqi was born in these United States. At one time he was a United States citizen with all the rights and privileges pertaining thereto. For the sake of this discussion, let us presume that he had at no time renounced his citizenship and was a citizen in good standing.
Anwar al-Aulaqi gone to his own personal Jihad in the sky.
What seems to have gotten the Progressive panties in a knot is the fact that our government killed a United States citizen with “malice aforethought,” and without according to this citizen(?) the due process guaranteed under the United States Constitution. I hope you’ll find my summary of the issues satisfactory. Here’s the point. This happens every damn day in these United States, most often it happens to a Black or minority citizen. When a police officer – agent of the government – guns down an unarmed Black or minority person, that person is just as dead as Anwar al-Aulaqui! That person got just as much due process as Anwar al-Aulaqui. In almost every instance, there was far less justification for this murder at the hands of our Government than there was for the execution of Anwar al-Aulaqui.
I direct your attention to the Constitution of the United States of America.
Article 3 – The Judicial Branch
Section 3 – Treason
Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.
I personally saw video tapes of Anwar al-Aulaqi calling for the overthrow of the United States and attempting to foment violent uprisings. This is beyond dispute. Had Anwar al-Aulaqi been on United States soil or in a nation with whom we have extradition treaties, he would have been brought to justice in one of our courts of law. He was in Yemen. Our relationship with the government of Yemen is strained to put it mildly. We couldn’t really pick up the phone and have him delivered to us.
Could we have sent in Seal Team 6 to retrieve him? Perhaps. However, that would have been extremely costly and risked not only the lives of some of our nation’s finest, it would have put a lot of civilian lives in peril. Could we have sent in an attack helicopter to take him out? Of course! But what’s the difference? The fact of the matter is, Mr. Al-Aulaqi was brought to justice, efficiently and with the least amount of collateral damage possible. We did not put the lives of our military personnel at risk and we did it for a fraction of the cost of putting boots on the ground. So what’s your complaint? Have Progressives lost their damn minds?
My Rights Are Better Than Your Rights
One of the most surrealistic examples of idiocy occurs five nights a week on MSNBC at 9 pm. eastern time. That is when “The Rachel Maddow” show airs. Ms. Maddow is unabashedly lesbian. She has a partner or wife or whatever they term their relationship to be, and has referenced this fact on her show… usually in passing. You can almost guarantee that a segment of her show each evening will be devoted to the struggle for “Gay Rights.” Usually it is either the first or second segment.
I get it! Rachel is a lesbian activist and the issues which impact her lifestyle are very important to her. She is a tireless campaigner for Gay equality. The right to marry, the right to adopt children, up until President Obama did away with DADT – Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell – the right to serve openly in the military. These were issues that we’d hear night after night after night. All of it was under the aegis of the recognition of Rights and equal protection under the law.
The problem becomes apparent when the subject of firearms comes up. Rachel is as virulently anti-gun as she is pro-Gay rights. Although she is a Rhodes Scholar and has attended Oxford University on a full scholarship and holds the equivalent of at least one doctorate degree, possibly more, Rachel seems oblivious to the fact that if gun Rights are open for review and removal, so are Gay Rights. Rachel, if you cannot respect and support my Rights, why should I support and respect your Rights? The Second Amendment is not in the Bill of Privileges. It is in the Bill of Rights. Have Progressives lost their damn minds?
When Faking Ignorance Becomes Stupidity.
Lawrence O’Donnell is another blight on the ass of common sense. Although Mr. O’Donnell frequently gives the impression of being a lawyer – he references writing legislation for the Senate Finance Committee – it turns out he never actually went to Law School. Perhaps that might explain some of the cockamamie nonsense he spews when it comes to gun Rights and other legal matters.
On this evening’s show he was bawling yet again about guns. He recounted the story of a woman going through a divorce who was threatened by her husband. In particular, the husband told her that the did not want her new boyfriend anywhere near his young son. She ignored his advice. He subsequently showed up with one of his firearms and threatened her life. The police were called. He was arrested.
I sat in stunned amazement while Lawrence carped about the Police not removing this man’s firearms while he was under the protective order filed by his soon to be ex-wife. You do not have to be a lawyer to know, this isn’t the movie “Minority Report” we’re living in. We do not punish people for what they might do. Anyone can get a protective order. Here in Indiana, a protective order is filed as a matter of course whenever a divorce is filed for. Whether it is needed or not. As a matter of fact, in the right court, I could get a protective order against Lawrence O’Donnell. Chances are, he wouldn’t have to be present and may never even know I’d filed for one.
His guest attempted to allude to this fact, to wit: you cannot punish someone for something they haven’t done, but Lawrence soldiered on by pointing out that people have their passports taken even though they have not been convicted of a crime. Evidently Lawrence equates a criminal indictment with a request for an order of protection. It just occurred to me, perhaps Lawrence isn’t faking? Have Progressives lost their damn minds?
Snatching Defeat From The Jaws Of Victory
The Republican party is in disarray. They have no real leader. The crazy wing has taken over the Republican party. Now is not the time to join them. Now is the time to press our advantage. The NRA is not the problem. Most people who have owned firearms for any length of time consider the NRA to be a toothless lion. We own firearms for various reasons. The protection of ourselves and our families being primary.
The dirty little secret is, citizens of these United States really take the whole “land of the free, home of the brave” thing seriously. It is not a Republican thing nor a Democrat thing, it’s an American thing. As Democrats we realize that Government does and should play a vital role in advancing the quality of life. However, when Government begins to flex it’s muscle and tell us what we can eat and drink – Michael Bloomberg – we begin to find this as repugnant as Republicans wanting to insert government into a woman’s womb. There is not a lot of difference.
Each piece you run on gun violence doesn’t say we need to be disarmed. If anything it proves how dangerous society has become and why we need to be armed! After eight years of the “Bungling Brothers Circus” there is a lot that needs fixing. We have a competent and capable President in the White House that needs our support on the things that matter. This faux issue ginned up by the Progressives – not the Republicans – over Drones, is a waste of time, a distraction and only serves to weaken our position. Instead of attempting to tell our President how to do his job, how about we get behind him and help him? Or have Progressives really lost their damn minds?