Friday, December 29, 2006

Words of Saint James.

"If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless. Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

My brothers, as believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, don't show favoritism. Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in. If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, "Here's a good seat for you," but say to the poor man, "You stand there" or "Sit on the floor by my feet," have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?

Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him? But you have insulted the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court? Are they not the ones who are slandering the noble name of him to whom you belong?"

From me: Our faith provides us a way to constantly renew our comitment to civil rights, and the upholding of the dignity of all the people. This is what, as people of Christ, we are called to do.

"Your gonna do what with that rope!?"

Well this goes to show all middle eastern dictators that about 20 years afer shaking the hands of US diplomats you end up getting strung up by your own people.

It would be really cool if this execution would stop all the warring but I don't think it will accomplish much more than ending the life of a scumbag. So long Saddam, we hardly knew ya. Though what we did know about you really made us think little of you. Now I know that the muslim clerics in your country are all asking God to take vengence upon you. However I, as a Christian, would ask God to have mercy on your soul.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Lets Ban Gay Marriage! And waste more time!

I urge the Democratic majority in both House and Senate to ignore the bigoted, homophobic, crack-heads, on the right an not pay any attention to that non-issue. We have a nation to nurture and wasting time on non-issues such as gay marriage would not only be...well...a waste of time, but also it would really piss off the ghosts of these guys. Their spirit is still with us and it gives us the courage to belive that we can govern ourselves with wisdom.

Of course we can argure about if it is wise to let gay people marry. But it would be a stupid argument. If a gay person wishes to marry somebody who am I to tell them no. Marriage is as tough a business as there is in the field of interpersonal relationships. So if two gay guys or gals want to try to make a go of it then heck yes I am all for it.

Now onto making a nation where workers don't have to worry about having their jobs leave for Peru!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Goodbye Ford

I liked Jerry Ford. He was the perfect President for years 1974-1976. What was America like back in those days?

Unemployment was whopping 8.5%
The Budget Deficit: A poultry 550 billion

He had the luck to be the President to actually see the end of the Vietnam War in all its ugly failure. He pardoned Nixon and I think he probably did the right thing. Most all the scumbags that hungout with Nixon ended up going to jail and Nixon was destroyed politically anyway so I think Ford didn't really keep America from getting much more justice out of Watergate.

He also was President during Apollo~Soyuz. This may not sound like much now but back then it was HUGE. Two nations with 10,000 nukes pointed at each other and sworn to kill each other, went up to space to shake hands.

I would certainly take him over the turdsandwich in the White House now. However lots of scummy people who ill advise Bush got their false starts with Ford such as Rummy and Chenny. What killed Ford politically was Regan. Regan's upstart neo-con push for the Presidency in 1976 killed off the tremendously centerist, and potentially progressive, Republican party. That failure in 1976 was to bring to fruition the assinine policies of the Shrub of today. Ford ended up being good freinds with Jimmy Çarter. Both men have taken a beating from the press and their parties, but in the long run both men may shine brighter than, Regan, Clinton or the Bushes.

So long Jerry Ford! Thanks for helping out while you could.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Mom in Iraq

It was touchingto hear about the mother who went to Iraq to see the place where her son died. And it was touching to her words about how the media only reports "the bomb of the day" but unfortunately she is seeing the conflict through eyes stained with tears from a lost son. As an American I thank her son for his service and am sorry that he died. And I wish that the people who brought this war on be sent to prison for murder. This is a war that never needed to happen. While those who sought to kill us and hurt our nation are still at large, we are stuck in Iraq between violent factions bent on killing each other. There are lots of good things happening in Iraq, just like there were lots of good things happening in the 1860's in the USA, but they did not change the fact that the nation was ripping itself apart.

The reasons for being in Iraq or not are, in the long run, academic anyway. There is a huge cost to this war. The balance sheet will determine when this war, for America, ends. Remember WWII? The balance sheet was just as responsible for the dropping of the atom bomb as any other reason. Remember Vietnam? What tipped the balance? Money.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Politically Incorrect Santa III

Ho Ho Ho!

Merry Christmas!

Yes it is Christ's Birthday, again, and no it is not his actual birthday but a date that at least most of us can agree on and not shoot each other over. Not like that whole Easter thing. Anyway so it is the holidays again and time for me, Samta, to give you that ol' fire side chat. I know that FDR did it first but am one to take good ideas of others and run with it.

So here goes for 2006:

I was going to post a really nose-bleeder of a incorrect santa letter but I have had a Dickensian change of heart. You all live in won magnificently adorned and screwed up world. You live in the best and worst of times and have done so since he begining of your meteoric rise from monkey-ville, past Jericho with its problematic walls, and Rome with its good and bad emperors, and those miserable kings of soggy Europe, and the grand and ridiculous emperors of China, all the way to moon landings and asian wars a plenty. So I guess if you can still bother to come together and celebrate a 2000 year old event I outta respect that and not beat up on you all.

Merry Christmas


Thursday, December 21, 2006

The Big Stories and hard issues of today

Should Miss Nevada be stripped of her title because of lewd photos? Should Miss USA keep her title? And what about Miss Teen USA? There is a lot of snow on the ground in Colorado, and its winter! Should we get to have a nativity scene in downtown USA? Well all these stories are good for something. What I am not sure. I guess they keep our little minds of other things like the brake out of civil war in the Palestinian Territories, or the chaos in Iraq.

Or the 60 million Americans that suffer from malnutrition and hunger. This photo is of an American Citizen. This child was born in the richest nation in the history of man. This is not an old photo from the 50's or 60's. This is from 1996 Alabama. We have all the money we need to stop this kind of terrorism. But instead we waste our money killing people on the other side of the globe. To live in hunger, with no job, and no home, and no way out, is terrorism.

Merry Christmas :)

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Good News! Freightliner to build new plant!

After the doom and gloom around Freightliner having to lay off 4000 workers due to poor sales, the company has anounced that a brand new sparkling plant will be built to add to its capacity to meet the growing demand for their great trucks. Unfortunately the 4000 workers who got layed off in the US would have to move to Mexico if they wanted to work in that new plant.

Are we (The United States of America) insane?

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

More Chair Straighting

Lets see if I get the analogy correct:

The RMS Titanic has struck an iceberg and is sinking. There are too few life boats. So the White Star line decides to fire the captain and hire a new guy. Captain Rumsfeld smiles and walks off the bridge. Captain Gates takes his place. Outside, underneath Captain Gates, the dark cold ocean is getting ever closer, the ship is sinking. The physics of water, and bouancy are relentlessly closing off options for the good captain. He decides to visit the ships interior, yep it is sinking. He goes to the bridge and sure enough things are looking bad. His staff decide that perhaps more people should bail water. But Gates is no fool. Bilge will work as long as electrical systems and the boilers are functioning, but the ship is displacing 47 thousand tons of water, there is a gash below the water line, the force of water rushing in must be tremendous. Worse than those awful statistics is the 20 life boats that are rated as holding 1179 people. There are 3,500 people on board.

I hate that the Titanic scenario is matching our situation in Iraq but it does. The situation is not in the control of Washington, it is way beyond that. No new people are going to save this ship. Whatever is going to happen in Iraq, probably bad, is going to happen regardlesss of the "decider" or his minions. Come up with plans, talk to people, launch a study group, but the problem is that the situation is terminal. All the potential happy endings were written out of the equation before the ship was built. The RMS Iraq is sinking precisely because it was designed the way it was.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Prozac Problems

I listened to some really freaked out people talk about how Prozac ruined their lives. I do not doubt that they have had bad experiences. However in my experience Prozac has been a huge help. It is not a panacea for all that is wrong with your life and there are loads of warnings from Eli Lilly about how it works.

First of all like any such drug, it can effect different people in different ways. One side effect of begining taking a regem of Prozac is that your symptoms of nervousness or anxiety can get worse. This, for me, lasted a couple weeks then went away. Prozac does not instantly level out your illness. It takes about a month for it to really start to work correctly. It is also vital to take the med as perscribed. Do not take more or less as you think you need it. It is not asprin, it alters the way your brain cells communicate with each other. Also you should not simply stop taking it. Follow the directions for the medication and your doctor. Also make sure that you stay under the care of a qualified mental health professional.

For those whol like to self medicate:
Prozac is not a narcotic. If you are feeling a little blue and somebody offers you a Prozac it will not act on you like taking Codine for a sprained ankle. It does not act on you like Ativan either. The best idea is just DO NOT SELF MEDICATE.

Just my two cents worth regarding Prozac

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Climbing on Mt Hood

10,000 people a year attempt to summit Mount Hood. And a heck of a lot of them make it. So in climbing circles Hood is not very impressive. At least until you have been on it in a storm. I have been up on it in a storm and it sucks. Bad weather on Hood can be really bad, arctic bad, antarctic bad, himalayan bad. When you go from Portland to the summit in a single push, and that wis what most people do, you gain 11,000 feet of elevation. This is like climbing from base camp on Everest to the summit in a day. True almost half the climb is in a car on a highway, but the body is still effected. Another thing about Hood is that the upper section of the peak can stink to high heaven, litterally. Just when your wacked from slogging up snow slopes for five hours you get assaulted by sulfor dioxide from active fumerals.

Mountains and nature allow us to summit or not as they decide. If our desires and the cold, unfeeling, calculations of nature run against each other, nature always wins. Climbers are keenly aware of their smallness and fragility, the mountains and high places of the Earth make us aware. It is one reason why so many people go up to the hills. In the city it is all too easy to think ourselves important and in control, superior to the lower lifeforms of the wild. Mt Hood, and its rocky and ice-scared brothers and sisters, is a reminder that we are basically bacteria living on the skin of an apple.

Monday, December 11, 2006

The West and Middleast Working Together!

Who says that east and west has nothing in common? At least one pro-western group can work with the Iranians.

Today the Iranians are having a "conference" on whether or not the holocaust happened. As if it didn't happen unless the Iranians say it happened. They "liberally" say that if the evidence is there then they will agree that it happened. This is pathetic and I would really wish the world would rise up and shout these scumbags down. To allow this regime to gain the high ground is the best reason I can think of to impeach Bush. Thats right Bush. Bush's mishandling of the post 9-11 world has allowed this pimply little scumbag to claim leadership. Our heavey handed treatment in Iraq spearheaded Nenajad's rise to power in Iran. Our actions helped him solidify his own power base.

It is a pitty that even though both the Palestinians and the Jews have so much in common they cannot see each other. The conditions of Palestine are attrocious and it is made that way in no small part by Isreali actions as well as Hamas. But trying to say that the holocaust never happened is like Isreal saying that there is no problem in the occupied territories. Just because you say something is so doesn't make it so. Look at the mess in Iraq that was brought by believing dubious claims. The Iranians are going down the same bad path with their dunderheaded leadership.

I hope that the Iranian people, who have millenia of civilization to stand on, will not fall prey to this revisionist clap-trap.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Remember Pearl Harbor!?

I read a pathetic Neo-con diatribe about how Iraq is a failure because we used half measures. How we are too timid. What a load of crap. Watching a father cary his dead daughter out of his bombed house screaming "WHY WHY WHY" one wonders what, to a neo-con, would be full measures? They also brought up Pearl Harbor, like we forgot it or something. Well there is a big leasson in Pearl Harbor. Here it is:

The lesson is that Pearl Harbor shows the utter stupidity of premptive attacks. America did not attack Japan. Japan, wishing to teach America a lesson, and disaude it from getting in Japans way in the far east, launched a spectacularly successful series of strikes accross the Pacific, I guess the Neo Cons forgot about the Phillipines, Shanghi, etc, since they only bring up one of the multiple attacks. Anyway the Japanese, after all their initial success ended up getting creamed. They, like Bush, were little boys pushing stones down a hillside. Easily starting what quickly got out of their control.

The real enemy that hit us on 911 is still alive and doing fine. We have not really done much to the real enemy. Extremism, even in the good ol US is alive and well.

As long as we try to fight a war against terrorism we will never win! This is not being defeatist just smart. Fighting a war on terror is like fighting a war against mean people, or "bad guys" there will always be plenty of them to go around. We did not fight a war against facism in WWII. We faught against Germany and Japan. We had no problem allying ourselves with other totalitarians in WWII.

The biggest lesson of Pearl Harbor is "Let's not commit one!"

But this is all wasted on most of the knuckle walkers out there. To them the rules never seem to apply to them. Like Hitler and Tojo, or Stalin and Kruschev, the American Neo Con is blind to the reality of power. Power, real power, never comes out of a gun. Nations that base their greatness on force of arms are quickly vaporized.

All the Air Craft Carriers and tanks, fighter jets, and missles are a made possible by our power, they are not our power. Have we used them to get rid of Bin Laden? NO We have squandered the benifits of our power in Iraq. So our image is less than it was. That sin falls upon the heads of the American Neo Con. If the goal for the New American Century was to rid the world of American power then, I guess, they have done a good job. Like idiots who talked of new world orders, and thousand year reichs, and how they would burry this nation or that, the Neo Cons are only burrying themselves.

So what are we left with? Well throw the turd sandwiches out and get to work fashioning a pragmatic solution to this problem with the full understanding that there will be lots more problems coming, such is life i nthe big wide wonderful world.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Americans should really get to know Iraq

The image here is just a small section of Baghdad. This section is what is refered to as Sadr City. I noticed that Google Earth updated their imagery to 2006 images of the city. I wish they would give us the opportunity to layer the years. In so doing you could see the transformation of Baghdad from a city of parks, soccer fields, pools, golf courses, and jammed city streets, to a wasteland of bombed out buildings, acres of single-wide moble homes for contractors, and zig-zag paterned streets around the Green Zone. If you spent time flying over the city early on in Google Earth it wasn't a shining city by any means, but now it looks more and more like Mogadishu