Saturday, July 12, 2008

trips abroad, and some politics

i recently went on a trip to canada, and in about 2 weeks i will go to austria on a much longer trip that will probably also include a few neighboring countries such as hungary and slovakia. vienna is actually called “wein” on many maps because that is its name in german, the language spoken in austria. and if you are going from vienna to the hungarian capital of budapest, the slovakian capital of bratislava is conveniently on the way there. there are a few concerns about this trip: having enough medications, having enough money in my bank account and getting all my bills paid, getting my laundry done, coming up with a list of things to do there, changing my sleep schedule to be normal for the austrian time zone, and eventually packing for the trip. i am sure i will take care of all of that.

on to some political matters: barack obama has disappointed me greatly since the day after his victory speech in june. on that day, he spoke in front of the zionist propaganda agency aipac, the most powerful lobbyist group in washington, d.c., one that has had 2 of its top people, keith weissman and steve rosen, kicked out of the organization after the fbi found that they were spies and had been passing classified u.s. government secrets to the government of israel illegally. a former pentagon official, lawrence anthony franklin, has already pleaded guilty to passing secrets to these 2 israeli spies, and is serving a 151-month prison sentence (between 12 and 13 years). keith weissman and steve rosen, the 2 israeli spies from aipac, are currently on trial for their crimes. it should be noted that not only did barack obama speak in front of aipac that day, but hillary clinton also did, and john mccain spoke to them a day or two earlier. hillary clinton and john mccain were both more zionist in their remarks (along the lines of the israeli right-wing likud party), while barack obama was slightly less biased in favor of israel and against palestinians. but barack obama did say that jerusalem should be undivided, which is something israelis want and palestinians don’t want. currently jerusalem is divided into israeli west jerusalem and palestinian east jerusalem. both israelis and palestinians want to claim jerusalem as their capital city. on such a contentious issue, a candidate for president of the united states should not take a position other than “let the israelis and palestinians decide that through negotiations.” as americans, the status of jerusalem is none of our damn business, and we need to stop having this imperialist attitude that we can go around imposing our will on the rest of the world and assuming that foreigners will just submit to our dominance. the status of jerusalem is a matter for israelis and palestinians to decide. not us. this was the beginning of barack obama’s public shift towards the right wing.

and then what else do we get from barack obama? he decides to support a fisa (foreign intelligence surveillance act) “compromise” that gives bush and the republicans everything they want, including giving telecoms immunity from prosecution. he supports a supreme court ruling striking down a gun control law in washington, d.c. a true liberal would support gun control laws. he complains about a supreme court ruling that says people who are not murderers cannot be executed, siding with arch-conservative antonin scalia’s dissent. barack obama justifies his view that people who are not murderers should sometimes be executed by saying that raping a young child is a horrible crime and people who do that should be executed. not very liberal... that is a very conservative viewpoint. and then what do we get? barack obama talks about his support for president bush’s faith-based initiatives plan, and announces his plans to expand the faith-based initiatives program to be even bigger. talk about pandering to the religious right! all throughout the primary season, hillary clinton was the one acting like a right-winger in public, while barack obama played the role of the left-winger. now obama seems to have switched sides and is now right-wing like hillary.

meanwhile, john conyers, chairman of the house judiciary committee that is in charge of impeachments, has proceeded with neither the impeachment of dick cheney nor the impeachment of george w. bush, both of which were introduced as articles of impeachment to the house floor by the noble and courageous congressman from ohio, dennis kucinich, a national hero. john conyers promised back before the democrats won control of congress that he would impeach bush if the democrats won control of congress and he were in charge of the judiciary committee. so far he has not fulfilled that promise he made. and nancy pelosi famously took impeachment off the table. congress, under democratic control, has continued to fund the war in iraq, passing war funding bills again and again and sending them to president dumbya to be signed into law. if they really wanted to end the war like nancy pelosi promised they would do, it would be easy! just stop passing war funding bills! the war in iraq costs countless hundreds of billions of dollars. with no money to pay for it, president bush would be forced to withdraw all our troops immediately. but most of the democrats in congress are complete sissies, afraid to stand up to the big bully, president dumbya, the sociopathic retard-in-chief.

liberalism has been completely abandoned, and most democrats are too afraid to call themselves liberals, while many democrats call themselves conservatives or moderates. both houses of congress still have a working majority of conservatives, regardless of which of the political parties the conservatives in question are members of. we must defeat the conservatives with strong liberal majorities in both houses of congress, and a strong liberal president who doesn’t wimp out and take conservative positions on issues to appeal to people who won’t vote for him anyway. the only way to solve our nation’s present crisis and prevent the downfall of the united states is through liberalism. i know nowadays most liberals call themselves progressives instead, but that is wimpy, a retreat, letting conservatives define the national discourse by turning liberal into a bad word they can use to make us look bad. you know what though? conservative is a bad word! every time i hear the word conservative i think of it as meaning “evil, incompetent, corrupt, greedy, warmongering, fanatical, racist, sexist, homophobic, theocratic, plutocratic, ultranationalist, and unethical”. i think of wealthy old white males who control everything, who do not care at all about us ordinary people, only about gaining more money and power for themselves at the expense of everyone else. i think about no-bid contracts for halliburton, about blackwater going on killing sprees in iraq and being immune from prosecution, about a rapidly increasing gap between the rich and the poor, about the ever-increasing numbers of people who are uninsured or underinsured and all the people who die from lack of quality health insurance. i think about tom delay, one of the most corrupt people in the history of congress, as well as an ultra-conservative religious fanatic. i think about hate-filled racists like the recently departed jesse helms, former republican senator from north carolina. i think about self-hating homosexuals like former rep. mark foley and current idaho senator larry craig. i think about george w. bush and his complete arrogance and refusal to ever admit he is wrong about anything, such as invading iraq.

and when i think about all these conservative republicans, i realize that they must be stopped, no matter what. if that means electing democrats who are not really liberal and sometimes support the conservative agenda, hey, that is better than electing republicans who always support the conservative agenda 100%. if we have enough democrats elected, a certain percentage of them will be actual liberals, and hopefully we can get a working majority of liberals in both houses of congress at some point. and hopefully we will be able to give people like barack obama the political courage to stake out positions on the issues that are left-of-center on a consistent basis, rather than staking out right-wing positions soon after winning the presidential nomination in order to pander to loyal republicans who would never vote for him. we must elect barack obama president no matter what the hell he does or what john mccain does or what any of the third-party candidates do, because there are only 2 parties that ever have any chance of winning, and barack obama is far more liberal than the staunch conservative john mccain. over the years, john mccain has deceptively developed a maverick persona, as someone who is not a doctrinaire diehard conservative on all the issues. yet we saw him campaign for bush in 2004, and we have seen him become more and more conservative over the years, especially once he started running for president. john mccain used to be against the bush tax cuts but now he is for them. he used to support amnesty for illegal aliens but now he wants to crack down on them. he flip-flops on everything and never gets called on it. and he is violating the campaign finance laws that he wrote himself. the supreme court already has 4 diehard conservatives, along with 1 wishy-washy conservative and 4 liberals. 2 of the liberals were nominated by republican presidents, namely richard nixon and george bush senior. that just shows how politics have gotten more and more right-wing over the past few decades, so that what was once considered conservative is now considered liberal. we need to shift the center of politics back to the left, as fast as possible, to undo all the damage that has been done. gasoline prices are out of control, and we have hardly any alternative energy sources thanks to the conservative republican energy policies our nation has pursued for a long time. and the clinton administration of the 90’s was not liberal; it was centrist. bill clinton was and is only slightly left-of-center, and by center i mean the conservative center as it is now, not the center that was much further to the left several decades ago. richard nixon was arguably more liberal than bill clinton, despite the fact that richard nixon was considered a conservative at the time. our politicians are deeply out of touch with the changing views of americans and the fact that the american people are becoming more and more liberal as they grow completely disenchanted with how conservative republicans, with the help of conservative democrats, have been ruining our country for years. the house and senate need new leadership. i suggest russ feingold as senate majority leader and dennis kucinich as speaker of the house, because they are the most outspokenly liberal/progressive people in both chambers of congress, and they have been the biggest critics of the bush administration, and have the best voting records. they would do far better than harry reid and nancy pelosi, who constantly make foolish compromises with the conservatives that help advance the conservative agenda, things like prolonging the seemingly endless war in iraq. there is a reason the approval rating of congress is in the single digits. congress does not stand for anything. they are suckers, willing to go along with the bush administration on issues where the bush administration is clearly wrong, yet they are liberal enough that all the conservative republicans disapprove of congress along with the liberal democrats. if you don’t stand for anything, you’ll fall for anything. we need to stand up and unite behind the principles of liberalism, help the democrats win as many elections as possible, and at the same time help cure the cancer of conservatism that has infected so many democratic politicians. i was hoping that barack obama was different from hillary clinton, that he was not part-conservative, that he really was a true liberal, that he would really be better than bill clinton was, and not have any of that centrist triangulation crap that the clintons are infamous for. but even if he is a centrist, that is far better than a conservative republican like john mccain. and once barack obama is in office, we can pressure him and remind him who put him in office, and get him to return to his liberal roots and abandon his foolish affair with conservatism. i think it might actually help at this point to have hillary clinton as his running mate, as much as i dislike her. i think there are plenty of clinton supporters who would vote for obama if she were on the ticket but might not do it otherwise. and there are of course the diehard members of the p.u.m.a. clinton fanatic movement who would not even vote for barack obama if hillary clinton were his vice presidential running mate. i know that p.u.m.a. is a moderately successful astroturf campaign organized by republicans to trick embittered hillary clinton supporters into voting for john mccain, writing in hillary clinton’s name for president, voting for some third-party candidate like ralph nader, or not voting at all. of course they want as many as possible to vote for john mccain, since p.u.m.a. is a republican party operation, but even getting someone to refuse to vote for barack obama is a victory for john mccain, even if that person votes for hillary clinton or a third-party candidate or does not vote at all. there are many disloyal groups within the democratic party, such as p.u.m.a. (party unity my ass), the blue dog coalition in congress (my congressman is a member of it, unfortunately), and the infamous democratic leadership council (or d.l.c.) that the clintons are closely associated with. the blue dogs and d.l.c. have been leading the way towards making the democrats more and more conservative over time, advocating a “middle way” between liberalism and conservatism in which the conservative republicans always end up winning. rather than casting these people out and making them become republicans, which is basically what was done to joe lieberman, i think we may be able to convert them to become supporters of the liberal cause. i staunchly oppose the “party unity my ass” p.u.m.a. campaign to destroy the democratic party by exploiting internal divisions, and i advocate uniting the party behind a common cause and supporting our democratic politicians whenever they are running for office against republicans. even if i hated barack obama’s guts and found john mccain extremely likeable, i would still staunchly support barack obama and staunchly oppose john mccain, because i am a very partisan liberal democrat and will support my party no matter what the hell happens. i disliked both al gore and john kerry when they ran for president, mostly because the media caricatures of them made a deep impression on me. but i voted for them anyway, because i knew it was the right thing to do. this is not about personalities or individual politicians. this is about policies that our government puts in place, about issues that affect us. i think john mccain could actually be much worse than bush, because bush is such an incompetent retard, but john mccain could actively work to ruin our nation much more skillfully. with our economy in a real crisis, the last thing we need is a president whose top economic advisor says we are a nation of whiners and that our economic problems are all in our heads and not real. the last thing we need is a president who will continue the war in iraq no matter what, throughout his entire presidency, and probably escalate the war and invade even more countries. john mccain promising to balance the budget is the biggest lie ever; his policies are guaranteed to make the deficit and national debt bigger than ever, through more tax cuts for the rich and endless war. and he called his wife a “cunt” in public, in front of reporters. what self-respecting woman could ever vote for a creep like that?