Friday, May 04, 2007

Old White Guys On Parade

One of the negative side effects of being a political junkie is the overriding desire to watch a Republican debate that I know ahead of time will make my blood boil and cause me to swear in front of my children. Oh well, I’m somewhat calmed down now, 14 hours later.

Just looking at the stage last night, filled to overflowing with middle-aged white men, the difference between the Democratic debate and the Republican debate couldn’t have been clearer. There is no diversity in the Republican Party, and listening to them try to position themselves as the most regressive, most narrow-minded, and at times, most ridiculous, it’s not hard to understand why.

The most inane question asked and answered was, “Do you believe in evolution?” Are you kidding me? Not surprisingly, many of them said no and John McCain, who said yes, had to qualify his answer with, “but when I hike the Grand Canyon, I see the hand of God.” Puh-lease! I can’t believe that we are effectively limited to two Parties in this country, and that one of them caters to the cavemen among us, it would be hilarious if it weren’t so frightening.

The answer that made me scream the loudest came from Rudi Giuliani. While he was defending President Bush’s record on “the war on terra”, Giuliani went on and on about how important it is to be on the offensive and to make the rest of the world, Iran especially, fear us. That answer was to be expected, but what caught me off guard was his reference to Reagan, “When they looked into the eyes of Ronald Reagan, 5 minutes later, they let the hostages go.” That’s an amazing selective memory you have Rudy! We now know that the hostages were let go on Reagan’s Inauguration Day because there was a deal brokered ahead of time to sell them weapons if they did. I’m sure if President Carter had been willing to break the law in order to retain power, he could have, but that’s only a well tread road on the Republican side of the aisle. Bastards!

Besides the fact that I couldn’t be tempted to vote for any one of these knuckleheads if there were lots of money and a date with George Clooney in the offering, last night, these men looked like old, tired, worn down America. Be afraid, give us authoritarian power and we will protect you and bring back the good old days, before enlightenment, before democracy and before science. According to the Republican Party, all we need is God and a strong “leader” to lead the way. The only problem is, God is a myth and we live in a Representative Democracy. We don’t elect leaders, we elect representatives and I hope it becomes obvious to most Americans that the current field of Republican presidential candidates represent the past and will only hurt our future prospects. There are plenty of middle-aged white guys on the Democratic side too, far too many for my taste, but at least they’re not regressive middle-aged white guys.

A perfect example is John Edwards, who has taken the ballsy step of scrubbing the term “war on terror” from his lexicon and his web site. It’s about time the Democrats dismissed this frame instead of trying to fit into it! There is no war on terror, only a manufactured “long war” that provides opportunity for the military industrial complex and cover for the further erosion of our constitutional rights and freedoms. Voting for a Republican, any Republican, will mean more of the same, and as a country, we simply can’t afford it. Don’t be afraid of terrorism (then the terrorists win), there are logical ways to deal with terrorism that don’t involve bombing and invading sovereign nations thereby increasing anti-Americanism around the world. Instead, be afraid of marching toward the future with a President who had his back toward it.

10 Comments:

Anonymous david said...

Just a quick comment on the disrespectful line "God is a myth".

I agree with your post on almost all points. But there's an old retort to the moniker "atheist": "It tells me what one doesn't believe, not what one does believe."

Progressive & liberal theology was pretty hot until John Paul II came to the throne of St Peter. And then he, with the help of Ratzinger (the current pope), squashed all the radical thinking. And the progressive churches, both Catholic & Protestant, began to wither and die. Oh, you see plenty of the evangelicals about, but not the progressives.

And yet this God myth is a pretty good one. Consider that the God of the Bible can't be named or depicted. That he goes by the name "I am that I am". What does it mean? And The Word (ho logos) meant message, reason, intelligence, organizing principle in Greek philosophy.

Jefferson thought all Americans would one day be Unitarians. And I find the thoughts of Emerson very attractive. The problem with Science is not that it is without God, but that it is perpetually uncertain, tentative, and unfinished. We all need to establish some axioms or inalienable rights upon which we build our daily lives.

Hitler borrowed much of his eugenics philosophy from American scientists. It was the fashion of the day to sterilize criminals and prohibit the procreation of 'undesirables'. Social Darwinism made sense to those without hearts or faith.

One doesn't have to be Christian or Unitarian or have any particular faith. One can be a pantheist. But one has to have some kind of faith in life. A faith that murder is wrong, that freedom is better than slavery, that truth is better than lies, that we should love our neighbours as ourselves.

God may be a myth. But we cannot live without myths. It's how we survive the traumas of birth, puberty, love, old age, and death. Most of the people in evangelical movement have come there to make sense of their suffering. Fundamentalist theology offers a quick fix. But these people still crave myth and meaning. And they have to be told why progressive liberalism can be more fulfilling then being born again. (The 'born again' still have to grow up again. And it's just as painful as the first time.)

Read about the Jubilee in Leviticus 25. Isn't that the foundation for a socialist welfare state? Didn't Jesus tell the rich man to sell all he had and give it to the poor? And, if God won't tell Moses his name, how do we know that Allah, Krishna, Buddha, or Manitou isn't the same God?

Okay, so that wasn't a short comment. But read The Crusaders and then read Gore Vidal's Julian. People need myths to live by. And progressive liberals are offering NOTHING. There's a void on the Left. And simpleminded faith rushes in to fill the void. And it's dangerous not to offer something. There is a pressing need to revive the Perennial Philosophy.

4:26 PM  
Blogger Michael Kwiatkowski said...

I didn't even bother watching the Republican debate, because I knew it would just be a bunch of wealthy old white men trying to channel Ronald Reagan and pretend to distance themselves from the Shrub while embracing his imperial foreign policy. The Democratic debate wasn't much better, at least not the portion of it I caught. I was incensed that Barack Obama chose to compete with Hillary Clinton for who could channel George W. Bush more, as I explain in my blog.

At some point, America is going to have to stand up and demand actual candidates for president, instead of candidates for who's going to be the next Bush.

7:22 AM  
Blogger RoseCovered Glasses said...

I am a 2 tour Vietnam Veteran who recently retired after 36 years of working in the Defense Industrial Complex on many of the weapons systems being used by our forces as we speak.

Politicians make no difference.

We have bought into the Military Industrial Complex (MIC). If you would like to read how this happens please see:

http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/features/2007/03/spyagency200703

Through a combination of public apathy and threats by the MIC we have let the SYSTEM get too large. It is now a SYSTEMIC problem and the SYSTEM is out of control. Government and industry are merging and that is very dangerous.

There is no conspiracy. The SYSTEM has gotten so big that those who make it up and run it day to day in industry and government simply are perpetuating their existance.

The politicians rely on them for details and recommendations because they cannot possibly grasp the nuances of the environment and the BIG SYSTEM.

So, the system has to go bust and then be re-scaled, fixed and re-designed to run efficiently and prudently, just like any other big machine that runs poorly or becomes obsolete or dangerous.

This situation will right itself through trauma. I see a government ENRON on the horizon, with an associated house cleaning.

The next president will come and go along with his appointees and politicos. The event to watch is the collapse of the MIC.

For more details see:

http://rosecoveredglasses.blogspot.com/2006/11/inside-pentagon-procurement-from.html

8:48 AM  
Anonymous biloxi said...

I agree 100% with rose-colored-glasses ~ the entire system which has governed America since the first coup d'etat occurred is crashing: President Kennedy's murder (see JFKII video and JFK, Jr.'s too), and then the second coup, Reagan -- with the Ruling Elites' main hit man Paul Volcker -- whose sleight of hand converting the money system into the digitalized monetization of signatures to create credit as money which is simply now an empire of endless debt. And, Greenspan furthering the many bubbles to keep our economy floating long enough for the Neo-Nazis to fulfill the 300 year goal of One World Government.

There are no more bubbles to keep America afloat - credit as money - which is nothing more than debt, is exposed for the fraud it is.

And so it collapses. This is inevitable because the eastern countries have been going for thousands of years, not just a mere 200.

Russia, China, India - the largest land masses - have no intention of allowing the western banksters to own their nation states.

Imagine our economy like the one in Africa because this is what these banksters intend, else how could they own the nation state America?

It takes a lot of terrorism to get people to surrender their sovereign rights, but the MIC is determined to do its job effectively because it is big government.

The enmeshment is all the politicians, mostly (exclude Congressman Ron Paul and Senator Gravel) which means the government is owned by the rich and the rich also own the military because it is the MIC.

Grow lots of food and don't forget how important water is - the cities that do not produce water yet suck the water dry, will be the first to go.

As the Ruling Elite who own and operate the MIC find their free lunches disappear upon the other nation states around the world demanding currencies of value for the imports they deliver to the USA, expect the unexpected.

John Edwards has been endorsed by the Bilderbergs.

Don't be shocked should John McCain win and this is a travesty when Congressman Ron Paul could actually turn this madness around. Perhaps no one heard him say (1) he intends to stop the illegal income tax extortion; (2) he also intends to shut down the illegal Federal Reserve System.

Should we not hear politicans promise to do just these two things, we can count on them being no more than a whore for the OneWorld Government and this is the Ruling Elite in control of the western economy that's singing its Swan Song.

10:49 AM  
Blogger smarterthanthou said...

Your comment "middle aged white men" is ageist, sexist and racist. For a so called tolerant liberal, you seem to have crossed your own lines. Why is this a safe comment? So much for the "party of tolerance". Whatever.
Hypocrite.

11:14 AM  
Anonymous david said...

smarterthanthou, nice try, but you wouldn't know an ageist, sexist, or racist comment if it bit your sorry WASP ass.

LGND was being accurate. Where's the diversity? What? The RNC couldn't even find a token woman or person of color to run? And Brownback is the youngest at 51, Huckabee, 52, but the rest are mid-60s and up.

And what about diversity of viewpoint? What a sorry lot of robots the Republicans are? No one representing the far right or the far left here. No one to shake things up.

LGND's title "Old White Guys on Parade" sums it up nicely. The RNC is the nostalgia party. These guys were doing the Miss Neo-Con Beauty Contest. They smiled, mouthed sweet-nothings, and said how much they love Ronnie Raygun, hated Chuck Darwin, and feared Mohammed Ali (the generic Muslim, not the prizefighter). It was a pathetic throwback to an earlier generation.

12:24 PM  
Blogger The (liberal)Girl Next Door said...

smartherthanthou--It's funny that you should mention the "middle aged white men" description because I was going to refer to them as young black women, but I was afraid people would find that confusing. Oh well, maybe next time.

4:21 PM  
Anonymous Dale H said...

LG~

I'm more disappointed that
you did not acknowledge the not so closeted transvestite "Rudi the Rouged Protector".

"smarterthanthou" is meant to be an ironic moniker, isn't it?

8:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love self-hating girls (if you are white that is).

You: "There are plenty of middle-aged white guys on the Democratic side too, far too many for my taste" equals = political correct

Me: "There are plenty of low-income black guys on the Dem. side too, far too many for my taste" = racism..

Poor u when your "representative democracy" disintegate, because it's only you and the white lefties that believe in such a utopia or nightmare perhaps? All other groups are race-conscious, and when your "white" hate-subjects are out of power, be ready for your own doom. I pity you are brain-washed like muslims and christians.

ps: maybe u should get a clue and undestand that the rep.leaders don't give a damn about religion in particular but only voter-groups..doh

Samson

8:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow where is davids blog that guy sounds smart. Lincoln was Universalist/Unitarian in his later beliefs, Like Jefferson, Confucious, Socrates and Lao tze,etc he was a true believer in the "Divine Will" "Providence" and or "Way of Heaven"
In order to have a Theology you have to believe in God but weakminded University products think its just too square to talk about God or Jesus.
The Liberal girl is right! W'e cant have more of these old people. All candidates must call themselves progressive and be able to define it within the terms set forth by Bruce Springsteen. They also may not be any less cute than that great statesmen and expert on Islamic Jihads, John Edwards.

5:39 PM  

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