Monday, May 23, 2005

Support our Troops Loops

I read the bumper sticker, "Support our troops!" Then I read about the number of "troops" killed because their vehicles aren't equipped with the armor that would save their lives.

I read, "Support our troops!" Then I read about the shortage of body armor, which would save their lives.

I see "Support our troops!" Then I see the number of Generals who say we do not have enough "troops" in Iraq to properly accomplish the mission and lower the casualty rate.

I read, "Support our troops!" Then I read about a reservist who is one day an auto mechanic and three weeks later is an MP guard at Abu Grabe---without even minimal training---and accused of abusing prisoners.

I read, "Support our troops!" Then I read about the cutting of veterans' benefits by our Commander-In-Chief.

I see the loop "Support our troops!" Then I see the story where the administration that sent our "troops" to overthrow the brutal regime of Iraq-is denying millions in compensation to our "troops" who were brutalized as prisoners in Iraq during the first Gulf War.

Too bad all those patriots with the yellow loops on their bumpers don't demand that George Bush "support our troops!"

Thursday, May 19, 2005

On The Road

Am writing from Murfreesboro,Tennessee where I have been with my oldest daughter who had some heavy duty surgery at Vanderbuilt University Hospital. She suffers from Fibrous Dysplasia--an aberrant bone growth. Her's was in the eyesocket and on the cheek bone, which required an incision above her forehead from ear to ear and the peeling down of the face past the eye in order the shave away the bone growth. The operation was a success but there is no cure for Dysplasia and no guarantee that the bone growth will not return.

Odds & Ends

It is disconcerting to note that all the dysfunctional politicians are not housed in Washington, D.C. The Tennessee legislature is moving towards a bill requiring all parents of public school children to spend a minimum of 12 hours a month of volunteer time helping teachers in their child’s school. Apparently, it never occurred to the dimwits that there are single parents who have to work for a living and households where both parents have to work in order to make ends meet.

Newsweek & right wing talking heads

The journalist impersonators on television talk/news shows jumped on Newsweek like dogs on a bone blaming them for the anti-American riots in Afghanistan—after the magazine reported interrogators at Guantanomo were desecrating the Koran.

As Molly Ivins pointed out---that behavior is hardly news to any American media types who have not been living under a rock. Past interviews with released prisoners---and International Red Cross reports—included descriptions of interrogators kicking the Koran around, scribbling filthy words on the Koran, tearing pages out and throwing them into the toilet, tossing copies of the Koran in a pile and stomping on them.

The ultimate hypocrisy in this entire flap is the Bush Administration’s yapping about “lack of supporting evidence” and “credibility”. In case anyone has forgotten, people are dying in a war that was the result of a Bush story that was not supported by a scintilla of evidence. Remember weapons of mass destruction?

Judges and Jokers

Senator Bill Frist is slicing pure baloney in his argument that: (A) Democrats are playing cheap politics with the Bush judicial appointments and: (B) That there is nothing extreme about the nominees.

(A) Bush has a higher confirmation rate of Appellate judges (87%) than Bill Clinton (81%) or George H. Bush (77%).

(B) Nominee Priscilla Owens was described by her conservative colleagues on the Texas Supreme Court as “twisting the law to fit her hyper-conservative political views”. Her rulings have consistently been for the benefit of corporate interests. In one case the majority of the Texas Supreme Court wrote, “Most of Justice Owens’ dissent is nothing more than inflammatory rhetoric and thus merits no response.” She accepted money from Enron and Halliburton who had cases before her---refused to recuse herself and often ruled in their favor.In a parental notification case, Owen said that no matter what the law says a judge should not rule in minor's favor unless the minor understood religious objections to abortion.

Janice Rogers Brown views Franklin Roosevelt as a socialist and calls the New Deal a socialist revolution. She has indicated minimum wage should be outlawed, compares social security with cannibalism and opposes affirmative action.

(Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist defends their "mainstream" credentials by pointing out Owen was elected to the bench by 84% and Brown by 76%. He neglects to mention that Owen's opposition was token at best and Brown had none at all!)

As for Judge Terrence Boyle, his rulings have been overturned 120 times by the (very conservative) 4th District Court of Appeals due to gross errors. Some mainstream nominees!!