Not A Bad Place At All To Be

I posted “Ennui” yesterday before the Supreme Court ruled yesterday in favor of gay marriage. Since then I’ve seen an outpouring of joy over that ruling in the news and on social media.

There are many opinions about this topic. Some, on either end of the spectrum, feel very strongly about it. Yet when the decision was handed down, you saw no buildings being burned or people beating on each other. That’s not how, for the most part, this country rolls.

Over this past week, I’ve also seen support for the members of the Charleston AME church and a rising tide of voices calling for an end to the official sanction of the display of the Confederate flag. People across the south are (peacefully) deciding the flag must go. I’m sure many of them have mixed feelings about it, as it is truly part of their heritage. But many of those same people do realize that it is an affront to a sizable part of our population.

I prefer to think of these two, separate movements as more indicative of what our country is all about. The terrorist who shot up the Charleston AME does not truly represent our country. The tens of thousands of people who’ve shown support for the church and the victims are.

That’s why I get tied up in knots when the president steps up to the microphone and us about our shortcomings. He should step back and not just look at the tragedy, but the reaction to it. We are a rather good people, we Americans.

 

Ennui

I began this blog during the 2008 presidential election. I was fired up. John McCain was a hero of mine and I thought he’d make a hell of a better president than either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama.

Obama was elected and I think him a very poor president. Not because he’s black. Not because I think he was born in Kenya. Not because I think he’s a Muslim. Politics has been called the art of the possible. We live in a system where winning an election buys you a seat at the table. At that table you must work with others to get things done. President Obama doesn’t do this. He doesn’t play well with others. In his mind politics is a zero sum game. It goes beyond not acknowledging that nearly 50% of the country does not agree with his policies. He’s tells that other half of the country that they are wrong headed, that they are, at best simpletons, at worse agents of evil. Purveyors of inequality and racism.

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This is the End…

Clay Bennett editorial cartoon…well…maybe not the end for Chris Christie, but probably the end of my supporting him for the Republican nomination in 2016.

The governor of New Jersey is embroiled in a scandal involving the closure of several lanes on a busy bridge during his overwhelmingly successful reelection bid last fall. It seems that the mayor of Fort Lee, New Jersey refused to endorse the governor’s bid, which inspired Christie’s deputy chief of staff, Bridget Anne Kelly to conjure up some “traffic problems” in the form of the lane closures on the George Washington Bridge, causing four days of, at best, extreme inconvenience. At worst the closures may have put lives in danger.

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Nothing Special

gb2

This week Great Britain’s parliament handed it’s prime minister a stunning defeat, voting down a measure that would have allowed the UK, as part of a NATO coalition, to attack Bashar Al-Assad’s for an alleged chemical weapons attack he perpetrated on his own people.

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Zimmerman Walks

220px-TrayvonMartinHoodedAnd so George Zimmerman, the CNN-described “white Latino” accused of killing Trayvon Martin, walks and the trial, with it’s uniquely American bitch’s brew of media frenzy, armchair litigation and racial politics is over.

I’ll say up front that I did not follow the trial day in and day out. I’ll also say that, while I think those who feel aggrieved by this verdict are misguided, I commend them for their restraint in peacefully protesting the outcome. Their behavior is by far the most noble thing to come out of this whole tragic, sordid affair.

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Zero Dark Thirty

0dark30

Went to see Kathryn Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty last week. The movie is about the search for Osama Bin Laden and the raid that resulted in him becoming fish food. It’s basically the story of “Maya”, a CIA analyst who pieces together the puzzle of where Bin Laden had been hiding since perpetrating 9/11.

I very much enjoyed the movie. Having a bit of first hand knowledge of how our nation’s intelligence apparatus functions, I’ve always been a bit peeved at how the intelligence community is portrayed in movies and on TV. According to Hollywood, the FBI, CIA, NRO and NSA are all interchangeable. The people working in these organizations have unlimited information instantly available to them. They all work in pristine, sleek state of the art operations centers, chock full of the latest communications equipment and thirty foot high high definition monitors. Bad guy on the PA Turnpike? The Hollywood CIA agent can instantly bring up the guy’s photo at a toll booth, order a drone strike on him and, when the missile misses, board a helicopter and take the terrorist down in a shootout somewhere outside Harrisburg.
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Chicken Wars

Note..my own views on gay marriage are somewhere near the bottom of the post

Not too long ago, a certain individual defended on religious grounds his conviction that marriage was defined as a union between one man and one woman. Surely this vile Neanderthal was ostracized for his hateful beliefs. Certainly the career he built tanked because of such hateful and bigoted views, after which he was banished from polite and civilized society.
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My Vote For Barack Obama

With Rick Santorum now out of the race, the nomination, presumably, goes to Mitt Romney. Already general election hijinks are in high gear. We have Barack Obama barnstorming the country, touting the “Buffett Rule”, which would have millionaires paying a minimum 30% tax rate. Obama says this will help “stabilize our debts and deficits”, conveniently ignoring the fact that it’ll raise about 4 billion dollars a year. We borrow about four billion dollars a day to finance our current deficit. We have the Democratic Party bemoaning the Republican “War on Women”, while a high level Democratic advisor goes on TV and claims that, because Ann Romney didn’t choose the path that liberal feminists thought she ought to choose and chose the positively medieval existence of a stay-at-home parent, her opinions about the economy don’t really mean much.
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Death of an American

Anwar al-Awlaki enjoying a smoke after breakfast

First, let me just say that I have absolutely, positively no problem with the way Americans Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Kahn died last week. One minute they’re eating breakfast by the side of the road, the next they are countless crispy pieces littering the bleak Yemeni desert landscape. One hopes that as al-Awlaki was cramming the last date he would ever taste into his mouth, he heard the whine of the falling Hellfire missile and was able to put two and two together.
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