Monday, July 31, 2006

Proper education can save Iraq

The key to a new beginning...

Iraq is in turmoil as can be seen here and here. Wondering what to do about situations such as this will boggle historians for many years to come. The problem should NOT boggle anyone! The reason for the secterian violence in Iraq is simple. Lack of education.

Some of you will think I'm crazy for labeling such a complicated problem with such an easy solution. However, I would like you to bare with me on this and let me know your thoughts in the 'Comments' section below.

First, let's take a look back to our own 'secterian violence' during the American Civil War. I call it this because, in reality, the violence in Iraq today is the same as the violence between our own people. People who chose to disagree strongly enough, that instead of debating the topic in a free open forum, they would rather kill the side that disagrees with them.

Religion or Slavery?

Iraq has two main religious sects in their country. The Sunni and the Shi'a make up most of the country's religious acolytes & followers. Shi'a Islam's followers currently make up a vast majority in Iraq over the Sunni version of Islam. It is in this majority & religious differences that the problem lies.

Much like the Hutu and Tutsi of the Rwanda genocide in the mid 90's, the violence today is being generated by the same part of the brain. One 'tribe' feels they are superior to the other 'tribe' OR feels that their religous doctrine should be the only one followed or even ALLOWED to be followed. This is craziness right?

This sounds an awful lot like how the South felt about slavery. They felt passionately enough about something that could have been discussed and resolved in a non-violent manner...but instead chose violence as the only course of action. So when it comes to countryman versus countryman...which is a more nobler cause? Religion or Slavery?

Education helps create Peace...

Neither of those are worth killing my fellow countryman in my opinion. So what would make people do it? I can sum it up in one simple phrase: Lack of a proper education. Now we all know that even with proper education a serial killer can be born. However, some are finding out that with proper education, you can ease racial tension. Should it not be said that a proper neutral education can help ease religious tensions as well? I think it should!

A proper education for all children could solve 90%-99% of all the world's problems. That's a statement I stand by and will continue to stand by until it is proven wrong. This most likely means I will be taking this stance to my grave...considering we, as a superpower, can't even educate all our own children properly.

A proper education across the world can accomplish a higher learning initiative that will trickle down for an entire generation. We can save this planet by saving our children. We can grow tolerence by destroying stupidity. We can start by investigating all the kindergarten through middle school teachers in Iraq for any hate-filled teachings. We can start by helping to ensure the proper education about the teachings of Islam through the Qur'an.

To battle!

The best way to battle racial and religious tension is to battle the lack of education in our rural and inner city schools. Everyone needs to go to their local PTA...contribute to their local charity that helps unfortunate children receive good educations.

I can only imagine how this country would be if it were more educated. For one, we would not have allowed a president we could 'drink a beer with' as the leader of our nation. We would want someone who could represent us respectfully no matter where he is or what he is doing. I cannot stress how important a good education is. I will be sending my children to the best school I can afford at the time. My wife and I are even willing to move if it means a better school district and a better education for our child.

I suggest we all begin making a positive influence on every child around us. Preach the good of a proper sideless education. Have a problem with evolution? That's fine...teach Creationism. But at least teach them BOTH so that tolerance is built.

It is okay to disagree with someone. It is NOT okay to kill them for it.

Friday, July 28, 2006

They've created a ninny...

We're stuck with a terrible war and a worse president, and all the GOP can do is scream, "Pelosi and her Nancy boys are coming"? This is pathetic.

This about sums it up:

By Garrison Keillor

People who live in mud huts should not throw mud, especially if it comes from their own roofs. As Scripture says, don't point to the speck in your neighbor's eye when you have a piece of kindling in your own.

I see by the papers that the Republicans want to make an issue of Nancy Pelosi in the congressional races this fall: Would you want a San Francisco woman to be Speaker of the House? Will the podium be repainted in lavender stripes with a disco ball overhead? Will she be borne into the chamber by male dancers with glistening torsos and wearing pink tutus? After all, in the unique worldview of old elephants, San Francisco is a code word for g-a-y, and after assembling a record of government lies, incompetence and disaster, the party in power hopes that the fear of g-a-y-s will pull it through in November.

Running against Nancy Pelosi, a woman who comes from a district where there are known gay persons, is a nice trick, but it does draw attention to the large shambling galoot who is speaker now, Tom DeLay's enabler for years, a man who, judging by his public mutterances, is about as smart as most high school wrestling coaches. For the past year, Dennis Hastert has been two heartbeats from the presidency. He is a man who seems content just to have a car and driver and three square meals a day. He has no apparent vision beyond the urge to hang onto power. He has succeeded in turning Congress into a branch of the executive branch. If Mr. Hastert becomes the poster boy for the Republican Party, this does not speak well for them as the Party of Ideas.

People who want to take a swing at San Francisco should think twice. Yes, the Irish coffee at Fisherman's Wharf is overpriced, and the bus tour of Haight-Ashbury is disappointing (where are the hippies?), but the Bay Area is the cradle of the computer and software industry, which continues to create jobs for our children. The iPod was not developed by Baptists in Waco, Texas. There may be a reason for this. Creative people thrive in a climate of openness and tolerance, since some great ideas start out sounding ridiculous. Creativity is a key to economic progress. Authoritarianism is stifling. I don't believe that Mr. Hewlett and Mr. Packard were gay, but what's important is: In San Francisco, it doesn't matter so much. When the cultural Sturmbannfuhrers try to marshal everyone into straight lines, it has consequences for the economic future of this country.

Meanwhile, the Current Occupant goes on impersonating a president. Somewhere in the quiet leafy recesses of the Bush family, somebody is thinking, "Wrong son. Should've tried the smart one." This one's eyes don't quite focus. Five years in office and he doesn't have a grip on it yet. You stand him up next to Tony Blair at a press conference and the comparison is not kind to Our Guy. Historians are starting to place him at or near the bottom of the list. And one of the basic assumptions of American culture is falling apart: the competence of Republicans.
You might not have always liked Republicans, but you could count on them to manage the bank. They might be lousy tippers, act snooty, talk through their noses, wear spats and splash mud on you as they race their Pierce-Arrows through the village, but you knew they could do the math. To see them produce a ninny and then follow him loyally into the swamp for five years is disconcerting, like seeing the Rolling Stones take up lite jazz. So here we are at an uneasy point in our history, mired in a costly war and getting nowhere, a supine Congress granting absolute power to a president who seems to get smaller and dimmer, and the best the Republicans can offer is San Franciscophobia? This is beyond pitiful. This is violently stupid.

It is painful to look at your father and realize the old man should not be allowed to manage his own money anymore. This is the discovery the country has made about the party in power. They are inept. The checkbook needs to be taken away. They will rant, they will screech, they will wave their canes at you and call you all sorts of names, but you have to do what you have to do.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Thank God for Keith Olbermann

The One Hour 'Daily Show'

Keith Olbermann, host of MSNBC's "Countdown with Keith Olbermann" has become my new John Stewart.

For quite some time now I have admired the way John Stewart has handled his 'news' program. Using his almost sophomoric wit and appropriate empty sarcastic stares at the screen. I would always look forward to watching him every night. Now, with the implementation of DVR, I can watch him ANY time and have continued to do so. But then a new show caught my eye...

I've never been a fan of MSNBC. From that horrific blonde with the male voice (Rita Cosby) the argumentative liberal who can't get enough of his own voice (Chris Matthews). Even the cocky 'youngling' who seems to be playing Anderson Cooper for MSNBC (Dan Abrams) brings swift headaches. I can't, of course, leave out the pissy & intolerable, yet somewhat sincere conservative (Joe Scarborough). Every time I see any one of them, after a few minutes, my blood begins to boil and I turn the channel in what could only be described as 'disgust.'

But then I happened to actually make it through one of their 8 o'clock shows one night...and the reason was, plain and simple, a brilliant satirist & best news story picker, Keith Olbermann. He starts the show with a claim that "these will be the top 5 stories you're talking about tomorrow." And you know what? He's right!

Olbermann doesn't just pick the stories that are popular (although he does usually put those as the 5th and 4th story), but he also picks heartwarming and even funny stories from across the nation. It is in those stories that lies the genius to his show. Every other news show (you can't REALLY call Daily Show a 'news' show) is about nothing but news news news. Because of this, you usually end up with either a boring, a depressing or a downright horrific newscast. Olbermann solves this with wit, satire & a long standing feud with Bill O'Reilly that has to be seen to be believed.

The O'Reilly Factor

The feud between Olbermann and O'Reilly has been going on for quite sometime (longer than I've been watching the show, unfortunately). The interesting thing about this feud is that the two have never met! The closest they have ever come was being in the same room 20 feet from each other, but never speaking.

O'Reilly, with his snide attitude and extreme temper, has done nothing but make an ass of himself over and over when it comes to Olbermann. It has gotten to the point where O'Reilly actually considers the word 'Olbermann' to be a curse word worthy of sending "Fox Security" after anyone who calls in on his radio show to use it. Yes you heard me right. Want proof? Click here: (if you have trouble loading it, please copy/paste it into your browser's Address bar)


If you are reading this and have NOT watched that video, I encourage you to do so.

Olbermann has a great segment on his show called "Worst persons in the world" where he runs over 3 people he feels have doing something to deserve the segment's title. O'Reilly is a regular (well deserved) on this list. The sad thing is...O'Reilly has probably created many more 'Countdown' viewers than he has taken away.

Let's play Oddball

Perhaps the most entertaining aspect of the show is his segment called 'Oddball.' This segment is dedicated to all the crazy things going on in the world. One particularly entertaining piece about the 'Running of the Bulls' brought us great video from the event itself. Olbermann actually goes for the bulls (rightfully so) and always has great words of encouragement for the doomed fodder.

Many years or many tears?

I do hope Keith's show has many years of success. However, the rising tide of 'conservative values' could possibly eliminate humor or satire from the air.

I applaud Mr. Olbermann. I applaud him a thousand times for having the guts to stand up to the biggest bully on TV (O'Reilly). I also applaud him for having such a great show. I wish him many years of success.

To quote Rachel Maddow...

Keith...please continue to 'poke that sharp stick at the soft underbelly of the r-r-right wing scheme machine'.

RedWing out...

Monday, July 24, 2006

Republican Comments vs. Reality Based Comments

The article in question:

Animal House Summit
Published: July 19, 2006

Reporters who covered W.'s 2000 campaign often wondered whether the Bush scion would give up acting the fool if he got to be the king. Would he stop playing peekaboo with his pre-meal moist towels during airplane interviews? Would he quit scrunching up his face and wiggling his eyebrows at memorial services? Would he replace levity and inanity with gravity?
"In many regards, the Bush I knew did not seem to be built for what lay ahead," wrote Frank Bruni, the Times writer who covered W.'s ascent, in his book "Ambling Into History." "The Bush I knew was part scamp and part bumbler, a timeless fraternity boy and heedless cutup, a weekday gym rat and weekend napster, an adult with an inner child that often brimmed to the surface or burst through.

The open-microphone incident at the G-8 lunch in St. Petersburg on Monday illustrated once more that W. never made any effort to adapt. The president has enshrined his immaturity and insularity, turning every environment he inhabits - no matter how decorous or serious - into a comfortable frat house.
No matter what the trappings or the ceremonies require of the leader of the free world, he brings the same DKE diction, bearing and cadences, the same insouciance and smart-alecky attitude, the same simplistic approach - swearing, swaggering, talking to Tony Blair with his mouth full of buttered roll, and giving a startled Angela Merkel an impromptu shoulder rub. He can make even a global summit meeting seem like a kegger.
Catching W. off-guard, the really weird thing is his sense of victimization. He's strangely resentful about the actual core of his job. Even after the debacles of Iraq and Katrina, he continues to treat the presidency as a colossal interference with his desire to mountain bike and clear brush.
In snippets of overheard conversation, Mr. Bush says he has not bothered to prepare any closing remarks and grouses about having to listen to other world leaders talk too long. What did he think being president was about?
The world may be blowing up, and the president may have a rare opportunity to jaw-jaw about bang-bang with his peers, but that pales in comparison with his burning desire to return to his feather pillow and gym back at the White House.
"Gotta go home,"’ he tells the guy next to him. "Got something to do tonight. Go to the airport, get on the airplane and go home." A White House spokesman said Mr. Bush had nothing on his schedule after he returned to Washington on Monday about 4 p.m.
When he began meandering about how big Russia was, you expected him to yell, "Yo, Condi!" and ask his secretary of state: "Hey, what’s the name of that other big country that has more people than any other country in the world? It begins with a 'C.' Dad spent some time there."
Perhaps it's that anti-patrician chip on his shoulder, his rebellion against a family that prized manners and diplomacy above all. But when bored or frustrated, W. reserves the right to be boorish - no matter if the setting is a gilded palace or a Texas gorge.
He treated Tony "As It Were" Blair like the servant in "The Remains of the Day," blowing off his offer to help with the Israel-Lebanon crisis, and changing the subject from substance to fluff at one point, noting about his 60th-birthday Burberry gift: "Thanks for the sweater. Awfully thoughtful of you." Then he razzed the British prime minister, who was hovering and wheedling like an abused wife: "I know you picked it out yourself."
After doing his best to undermine the U.N. and Kofi Annan, W. talked about the secretary general like a fraternity pledge he wanted to send out for more beer or a keg of Diet Coke: "I felt like telling Kofi to get on the phone with Assad and make something happen."
His loosey-goosey confidence that everything could be fixed with a phone call - and not even a phone call made by him, and not even a phone call made to the Iranians, who have more control over Hezbollah - was striking. He seems to have no clue that his own headlong, heedless actions in the Middle East have contributed to the deepening chaos there, and to Iran's growing influence and America's diminished leverage.
Mr. Bush may resent the sophistication required of a president. But when the world is going to hell, he should stop chewing and start thinking.

Republican Comments to the article:
:: Courtesy ::

From: Arec Barrwin
MD....When you spread you legs do maggots crawl out? Have you stopped smiling because your teeth are all gray and green? When your braless breasts sag, does your back ache?

From: SeanOGuano
"an adult with an inner child that often brimmed to the surface or burst through"Not at all like our Bubba, the most perfect Prez in American history.

From: crazyhorse691
Pathetic attempts at Journalism will be Dodos legacy to the world. Pity the fool; she is not worthy of anything more or less.

From: FormerACLUmember
Humorless washed up hag/drunk Dowd needs to get a clue. Who on earth reads her sewer bilge anyway?

From: RushCrush
She has HUGE FEET!!! yikes!

From: pissant
What a squalid, ignorant See You Next Tuesday

From: conservative in nyc (posted a picture of Michael Dougless (ex-husband to Maureen Dowd & Katherine Zeta Jones whispering to each other)
Here's another. You know, for Maureen Dowd's sake. This one definitely shows why Dowd is a man-hating shrew. One look at CZJ, and Michael Douglas dumped Dowd for a much better woman. And she had his baby.

From: geezerwheezer
Speaking of "Animal House", is Maureen Doud still the lead bitc*, or is she just still a dog? I saw the picture of her at the bar and wondered if she has varicose veins or are those just cheap hose she's wearing? Whatever, her legs look like they could hold up 960 lbs. of crap, which I hope is enough to support her. ( her feet look like she could water ski without skis)

And the most intelligent comment of the day has the most ignorant statement of them all!

From: Niuhuru
Y'know, with all that Bush keeps getting shoved onto his plate, they just never let up. It's sickening. They never give him a single break or show any sympathy. It's not his fault the Middle East has erupted in a war, it's not his fault 9/11 happened, and the immigration issue was ignored by Clintoon and in my opinion it's why it's built up to this. Bush is also battling embryonic stem stell research (which is disgusting and demonic, using children as spare parts) and he's also trying to get things passed that he wanted to do as President. Furthermore, the reason the idiot left is bashing him about Iraq, it's because Iraq isn't one of their trendy causes.

Progressive Comments to the article:
:: Courtesy ::

From: other lisa
He's a psychopath/sociopath check out The Sociopath Next Door for a description of a person who will portray himself as a victim while showing no empathy for others.

Recall Bush's behavior in re those on death row when he was governor.

Posted by: zeldon
Ole Bush showed he could chew buttered rolls and settle world affairs at the same time

Posted by: darby1936
He'd better not try doing that with a pretzel.

Posted by: 937-325-9136
Taylor Marsh and Crooks and Liars both have still shots from a video of Bush groping Angele Merkel, the chancellor of Germany, much to her surprise and chagrin.
The look on Bush's face when Chancellor Merkel reacts to his importuning oafishness is priceless. It shows what a clod this guy really is, much to our embarassment.

From: davesgonechina
Merkel's face when he started givin' the shoulder rub just screams "get your hands off me, you dirty sob". He reminded me of some old expat guys in China I know who are always using backrubs to try and get in the panties of women a third their age.

From: pastor
Bush showed his true colours. Bored and uninterested.


Thursday, July 20, 2006

Doesn't anyone NOTICE these things?

Is there no shame??

Has anyone (with the exception of a blurb from John Stewart) noticed how extremely awful President Bush looked while chewing with his mouth open? The G8 summit has some of the (supposed) top minds of leadership throughout the free world and THIS is what we have to see from our leadership? A gaping wide mouth full of food while talking to the prime minister of England?

Etiquette Much??

Forget the fact that he used a curse word. This is unrelevant to my point. I'm talking about the eating habits of the person we elected into office. Check this link about halfway through and watch Bush BEFORE he begins talking to Tony Blair. This is the person we elected? A common twit with an etiquette problem? Click this link to check it out.

Mommy problems??

We've all seen Barbara Bush and her pretentious attitude towards the victims of Katrina. Now we learn she didn't even teach her son the most common of ALL social graces? I mean HOW HARD IS IT to chew with your mouth CLOSED? We saw the Prime Minister of Germany handle it quite nicely when the camera is focused on her. I do believe Barbara needs to take her GROWN son back and teach the basics of social circumstances.

I figured it out...

It seems that Bush has ZERO contempt for the leadership of the world. He is more interested in stuffing his face than making us look good. He feels that he is SO powerful that he can just sit around and eat like he wants, talk like he wants and get anything he wants done. I suppose we can be thankful that he is right about the first two...but not the last.

War, War and more War...

The neo-conservative movement is the scariest thing to hit politics in my 31 years. We actually have a percentage of the population that WANT to have WWIII! Is this not insane? Should we really have 30-40% of the population thinking this is OKAY? This president is no more couth than Kim Jong Il in terms of what makes us think he will be any better towards any other social circumstanes? NOTHING.

Spidey says...

One thing that rings true about America is the advice that SpiderMan took from his late Uncle Ben. Words we should all live by and push for our leaders to consider: With great power comes great responsibility.

Government responsibility is what we lack and the first step in getting it is to win as many seats in the House & Senate as we can this November.

D-man out...