Friday, October 31, 2008

Rachel Maddow

Here's a video in two parts of Rachel Maddow's interview of Oct 31, today, with Obama.

This is my first look at her program and style. Impressive. She has become something of a phenomenon lately, and I can see why.

It's also a great chance to see Obama comfortable in his own skin.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

PNAC: The Neocons and McCain

Here's a piece to be read and taken seriously. It's about the neocon's plans for America, going back to the early 1990's. Project for a New American Century(PNAC) is a manifesto for a militaristic United States. Bush/Cheney have given it a good start. McCain is an early supporter of this group and is counted on by the neocons to continue the plan. He's their boy.

He is a soldier/citizen, not a citizen/soldier. His language, his demeanor, his associations and his temperament are all about fighting.

That's why he must not be elected.

Obama, like Bill Clinton before him, can throw a wrench in this machinery and stop it now. It won't go away anymore than it went away during the Clinton years, but it must be thwarted for as long as possible. The military/industrial establishment will always be with us it seems, but it must not be allowed to rule the country.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Irony Is Fun

Here's the Boston Globe's Wasserman cartoon for the day.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Don't Laugh

Here's a story about psychology influencing a person's political preferences.

I am qualified as a practitioner of the Myers, Briggs Type Indicator(MBTI) which is based on the work on Personality Type by Dr. Carl Gustav Jung, the distinguished Swiss psychiatrist who practiced until his death in 1963.

In the story found at the above link a strong correlation has appeared between residents of Red States and those who consider themselves conscientious, less open(to differences), responsible and traditional.

Jung's theory of personality and the MBTI sort people according to Extraversion vs Introversion, Sensing vs Intuiting, Thinking vs. Feeling and Organized/Planful vs Spontaneous/ Open as a way of living.

Data gathered over decades support the expectation that those who report in the MBTI preferring sensing, either feeling or thinking and a Planful approach to living would describe themselves using the same descriptors found to be predictable by the researchers who conducted this recent study.

The MBTI data indicate that people with these preferences represent about 25% of the general population. What's quite interesting is the correlation with Red States, and that the 25% figure is similar to the statistic associated with the Conservative base.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Just Imagine

Just imagine what we can accomplish by electing Obama.

In addition to ridding ourselves of Bush, Cheney and their fellow neocon war criminals we can also get rid of and forget about bastards like Michael Hayden, who, in this piece, calls charges of illegal eavesdropping on unsuspecting civilians and military members "ridiculous".

We will have made a chance for America to be proud again of our President as we were with JFK.
Here's one of the things he said back in 1963. Remarkable in view of what Cheney/Bush have done in the name of the United States.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

An Important Read

Here's a fine piece of writing by Roger Cohen, in his New York Times column today.

I commend it to you.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

More Fun

Here's a post on a blog by a self-described "old broad", saying why she calls Palin a bitch, McCain an ass and Bush a jackass. She has some words for Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh too.

She might just upstage Joe the Plumber.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Monday, October 27, 2008

Just For Fun

Here's a cartoon from the New Yorker.

I think I recognize the interviewer. I worked for him for a few months way back.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

"War Without End", Amen

Remember Iraq? That's the country we invaded in 2003.

For a variety of reasons the main stream media no longer posts stories from Iraq on its front pages. Whatever anecdotal stuff is published is usually shoved back to Section B.

Since we haven't had much reporting to keep us up to date on Iraq you might be interested in reading the article associated with this link. It's five computer screens in length, but thorough and revealing. Even if it's found to be exaggerated too much by half it is eye opening, not to mention disturbing.

The article is a condensation of Michael Schwartz's work, "War Without End".

Colin Powell reportedly once told Bush, "You break it, you own it".

Well, clearly we broke it, but if we're owners we're acting like slum lords, unwilling to make what we own habitable for Iraqis.

Our occupying forces of course live on comfortable oases.

Now it seems we're threatening to shut down everything we run and manage if Maliki doesn't sign off on the treaty which justifies our continued presence in Iraq for three more years. It's being called blackmail, which seems to be an accurate label. This is not a threat to leave the country, but a threat to stay, withdraw to the oasis bunkers and watch while all Hell breaks loose.

This is what our government has done, is doing and will continue to do if McCain is elected.

It's hard to be a proud American these days.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Bush. "We'll Leave When They Want Us To Leave"

Right! And the Pentagon is going to slash it's defense budget by 50%.

Here's the latest threat from the Bush Administration to Iraq.

So much for the sovereignty of Iraq, and Bush's pledge that we will leave when they want us to leave.

To paraphrase Derrick V. Jackson of the Boston Globe of a few weeks back, it took 4000 plus American soldiers' deaths, 30,000 more wounded and untold Iraqi deaths and casualties to make Iraq safe for Exxon.

Who's really sovereign to the Bushies is Big Oil. Yes, it's time for a change.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Garrison Keillor, In His Own Words

"Anybody who got whacked last week and still thinks McCain-Palin is going to lead us out of the swamp and not into a war with Iran is beyond persuasion in the English language. They'll need to lose their homes and be out on the street in a cold hard rain before they connect the dots."

The above quote is from Garrison Keillor's latest piece which I found on

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

What Does the Word Authority Mean?

As I contemplate the temperaments of both McCain and Obama I'm struck by how the words each of them uses indicate two different and distinct definitions, connotations, of the word "authority".

It's not an academic point. It has to do with why they want to be president and how they would use the office.

McCain believes in having authority, that is to say, a position of power. He wants to be president for the power that office would vest in him. As a military man, with a top down, command and control world view, he wants the very highest position in the land for its commander-in-chief role. Like Bush?Cheney he sees the presidency as being the seat of power, the commander-in-chief of America, not just the military.

The unmistakable clues can be found in his language which is sprinkled with military jargon. Ready to "do battle on day one". Not wanting to dampen the "ferocity" of the woman who called Obama an Arab at one of his rallies. And McCain's acolytes, the Bill Kristols, using militaristic analogies like "I attack" and "give it a shot" and in their spun columns cheering him own, as in "Onward Christian Soldiers".

He relies on demonizing his opponent, calling for "victory" over the enemy, and calling that opponent weak and soft on terrorism because he proposes discussing differences, tantamount to surrender in McCain's view. It's a black and white, all or nothing, win or lose world view. It guarantees continued aggression, by using language that pits people against each other, of right or wrong, good or bad, righteous or evil. You're either for us or your against us.

This is the language of the neocons who stir up dissension and conflict around the globe in order to set the stage for future battles for which the arms industry and the Pentagon, the military/industrial complex, can justify designing, making, selling, and employing the tools of war, so they can play with their new toys. The ones who die with the most toys wins.

Obama, in stark contrast, believes in that definition of authority which has to do with knowledge and expertise; being an authority on something. He wants to be president in order to have the platform it provides to persuade others to follow him; to be able to use his knowledge and expertise in the country's behalf. He salutes another for being an authority on something important, not simply because that other is, for a time, in a position of authority.

The choice on Nov. 4 is clear.

We have a candidate whose temperament is such that he will use the presidency for its position of authority in his treatment of the people of America and the people of other countries, relying on the power of that position to get his way. It is at least a negative and veiled threat approach.

And we have a candidate whose temperament is such that he will use the presidency as a platform from which he can address Americans and others around the world, coming from his own personal strength as an authority on the challenging issues which he wishes to address, in order to persuade others. It is at best a positive and non-confrontational approach.

One wants to be in charge as a way of leading his subjects by virtue of being in a position of authority. He wants to rule.

The other wants to persuade people to follow him by virtue of his ideas and proposed solutions to complex problems. He wants to govern.

The former smacks of a monarchy. The latter is the way of a democracy.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Words Matter

Here's William Kristol's screed in today's New York Times.

It's truly amazing how he and his neocons, who are all about making millions in war machinery, use the language of war, and frame their arguments in terms of war.

McCain is losing his bid to be elected president because of the current economic crisis. The Iraq and Afghanistan wars have become Section B topics in the main stream media. George H.W. Bush lost his bid for a second term because of a bad economy, even though he had led the coalition to kick Saddam out of Kuwait.

In this piece Kristol is advising McCain to remind people that the president is commander-in-chief, not just a super administrator. His entire argument is based on war. He even ends the piece with "give it a shot".

Of course anyone might have used that phrase. Except, in Kristol's case it serves as a bookend for his entire message which he began by quoting a French General, "I attack".

The use of the militaristic metaphor in advising a candidate who aspires to be president of our democracy exposes and magnifies Kristol's world view that America is and needs to be all about war.

For contrast, James Carroll compares McCain's and Obama's world views, using US/Russian relations as an example.

It baffles the mind that anyone can still claim to be undecided. The contrast in world views is stark, vivid and clear. The possibility that many voters(some polls tally them at up to 12%) will flip a coin in the voting booth is truly frightening. That's tantamount to our future being decided by people who don't get it, don't care or who really are the dunces John McCain has been appealing to for the past several weeks.

For further enlightenment on the unenlightened, read Ruth Marcus of the Washington Post on the undecideds of West By God Virginia here.

Leanderthal, Lighhouse Keeper

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Just When You Think---.

It seems like I've said this already at least once. But just when you think the GOPhers can't go any lower, up pops this dastardly piece.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Finally,Someone's Calling Them Out

Here's a piece on the Associated Press, AP, turning its back on factual reporting and turning to editorializing.

Their owners, the real editors, aren't happy; no surprise.

And finally Ron Fournier is being exposed for what he really is, a right leaning flack, disguised as an "accountable journalist".

And you wondered why the AP poll is the only one in recent days to call the presidential race pretty much dead even. Even Fox News isn't doing that. Stating their own dead even poll numbers as facts when all other polls show a large spread and statistically similar facts, is tantamount to stating an opinion. It is no longer reporting but editorializing.

It's become clear that anything with the AP label attached can no longer be considered factual.
They are creating a vacuum which Nature abhors. It only remains to be seen who or what fills it.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Ya Gotta Love 'Er

Gail Collins of the NYTimes has that knack for telling an important story, and with humor.

Here's her stand up routine on the Electoral College.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Saturday, October 25, 2008

This Doesn't Sound Good

Here's a piece about Israeli politics that doesn't sound encouraging. The Ultra Orthodox party, Shas, wants a commitment from Livni, who's trying to form a coalition, that there be no negotiations with the Palestinians over Jerusalem.

No negotiations seems to be a hallmark of far right Fundamentalist thinking most everywhere in the world. So, we as humans, have the ability to speak, but some won't consider using it to work out disagreements. I think that makes those people flawed humans, not in the sense of sinful, but character flawed.


Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

He Should Know

Here's a piece by an Israeli who believes Obama's foreign policy ideas are better for both America and Israel, than McCain's.

He should know. He cites chapter and verse to support his opinion.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Consider the Words of an Old Hymn

"And they'll know we are Christian by our love, by our love. Yes, they'll know we are Christian by our love."

Try to square that with the message coming from the far right Evangelical wing of the GOP.
This article details that message.

A McClatchey journalist wrote recently about such people wearing the teachings of Christianity on their sleeves, but cannot find room for them in their hearts.

These are the same folks who like to ask, "What would Jesus do?". Perhaps they need to brush up on his teachings.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Never Thought I'd Read Something Like This

Here's an article by David Frum, a right wing GOPher, essentially throwing in the towel.

Who would have thought?

But such thoughts have to be brushed aside until after the election. Ignore them for now, and not let them influence us Obama supporters into becoming complacent.


Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Muslim Terrorist? Hardly

Here's a really moving piece on the depth of Obama. Some have said that McCain and his henchmen wear the teachings of Christianity on their sleeves, but cannot find room in their hearts.

Obama has room in his heart.

We need to elect this brilliant and also kind man. As Garrison Keillor wrote recently we need to "recognize a leader when one comes along and have the sense to let him lead".

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Friday, October 24, 2008

Stay Focused On The Task At Hand

Some of the best coaches, as measured by success, have emphasized the basics of the sports in which they coach. In football it's called blocking and tackling.

The next POTUS will have a plate full of problems, but there is one which might be like blocking and tackling, going back to basics.

He must coach his players, members of Congress, on the need to concentrate on the basics. In today's America that's about the need to convince us all that putting people back to work is the first basic step in returning America to a real contender, a winner. That means the need for jobs.

As a retired business manager I am keenly aware of the importance of a recognized need which requires work before a job could be justified. Jobs are cost centers; salaries, wages and benefits are very real costs.

That need which requires broad based recognition is the rebuilding of the nation's infrastructure. It's falling down around us like London Bridge. Roads, bridges, tunnels, etc., are the life lines of commerce and society. We've taken the view that once they are built they don't have to be maintained. This is known in business as deferred maintenance, and it's a killer if it's not addressed.

It isn't glamorous or exotic like going to the moon. It's more like what FDR inherited.

He identified needs which required work, which meant jobs. Some detractors claimed they were "make work" jobs. I was not yet around at the time, so I'll not comment. But I was around as we came out of that Depression.

Here's my own caveat about this. It might be valid to claim that WW II got us going again. Certainly it required lots of jobs. I'd hate to think that we need another war to get us out of this mess. Can we find enough work, short of war, which requires the jobs people need to have any chance of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?

McCain would likely consider war. Obama not, I think.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

McCain's Dunces

David Sirota has written this piece which exposes McCain's low esteem for his "fellow Americans", those he addresses as "My Friends".

He treats his "friends" as dunces.

It seems like most of us "dunces" get it.

McCain is the true dunce for openly displaying his condescension toward the American voter.

Sadly, there are some who will never get it, and don't want to get it. For example consider the 20% of citizens in West By God Virginia who say they think Obama is a Muslim. To them that's code for the "N" word.

What's a word for lower than dunce?

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Another Stay of Execution

Cross your fingers, toes and heart that this time rational people will pay attention to the fact that 7 of 9 witnesses have recanted their testimony that Davis killed the officer.

Execution is killing which is against the Laws of Moses if you take them seriously.

It's against all human decency if you think that matters.

In this case it would likely be killing an innocent man.

I just don't get the Supreme Court.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Today's Must Read

Here's a piece which really should be spread far and wide, though the MSM likely won't do it.

That's why blogs exist.

I especially like the second of the two parts.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Thursday, October 23, 2008

A Muslim; More Than A Person Of Faith?

Sometimes one has to admit that some cold, hard facts cannot be ignored, but must be acknowledged and faced.

Here is a piece which cites some statistics which I submit need to be acknowledged as cold, hard facts and faced. To wit, nearly 20% of those polled in West Virginia believe that Obama is a Muslim.

As Colin Powell suggested last Sunday on Meet The Press, one might ask, "So what?"

The "So what?" is that the word "Muslim" for some, including apparently 1 in 5 of those polled in West Virginia, has become the equivalent and currently more seemingly respectable substitute for the word "Nigger".

That is to say that when someone identifies someone else as a Muslim, he is saying more than that he is a terrorist. Both terms serve to provide the still prejudiced members of our still tribalistic society with labels they can use to deprecate and dismiss another as less than human.

When such poeple in our own country call someone a Muslim, they are still actually calling that someone a Nigger. One has only to ask how many white folks are called Muslims in places like West By God Virginia to verify that observation.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Sure Says A Lot

This doesn't say it all, but it sure says a lot.

This piece captures much of what I like about Obama. His identifying a "Teachable Moment" grabs me, as does his belief that he can talk "as an adult" to "Americans as adults".

As Garrison Keilor wrote recently, "---if we will only recognize a leader when one comes along and have the sense to let him lead".

We've got to elect this guy. Pass it on.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Sticks and Stones; Names Bounce off Me.

It's hard to believe but there he goes again. McCain keeps using the old standby from the Rove play book. Accuse your opponent of what you yourself have been accused. It's like pretending to be a human backboard for criticism.

The McCain/Palin diatribe against so-called "elites" is another example of this hypocrisy. Both of them are wealthy, well connected, social butterflies, famous, highly visible and act like they are better than others. That's an all inclusive definition they use to identify "elites".

Why anyone still thinks this sleaze deserves to be our President is beyond me. But I'm still seeing people putting out yard signs which say McCain/Palin. Barack is right. No time to get complacent, let along cocky.

An AP poll yesterday reported a dead heat. Hard to square that with other polls which report a 10 point lead, give or take, for Obama.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Nailed It!!

As usual, Gail Collins nails it.

Here's her take on the despicable nature of the GOPhers' campaign. Her talent is being able to make the point with humor, and at the expense of the low lifes who distribute the toxins.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Truly Vile

Just when you think you've seen the bottom of the barrel of McCain's campaign poisonous brew he reminds you that you ain't seen nothin yet.

Here is an email I received showing a new mailing from McCain depicting Obama as a terrorist.
It's about as specific as could be, though through innuendo, and without actually saying Obama is a terrorist. That's left up to the rabble they incite at campaign rallies.

I expect that this will be rejected by all decent minded people, Republicans included. McCain seems not to care, but relishes the idea of being elected by his rabble.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

E.O. Wilson on The Source of Ethics and Morality

Hateful People

Here's a piece about the guy who bankrolled Swift Boating against Kerry, now doing it for Race Baiting against Obama.

One has to wonder how such hateful people manage to convince themselves, as they surely do, that they are good and decent folks, doing what's right.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Don't Forgive Them

Don't forgive them because they DO know what they're doing.

Here's a column in a Middle America newspaper about the increasingly transparent racism exhibited by the McCain cabal.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

McCain: "I've been tested", and found wanting

Here's a piece on McCain claiming that he's been tested and Obama hasn't been.

McCain cites his experience sitting in the cockpit of his fighter jet on the deck of the USS Enterprise, expecting to bomb Cuba. He says, in part, we were "anxious to fly our first mission".

First and foremost it was JFK who was tested as President. McCain was anxious to be tested as a bomber. No small difference.

As I've said many times, words matter. McCain's world view informs his rhetoric. He says he's "battle ready" to be president on day one. He told a woman who shouted out that Obama was an Arab, that he didn't want to dampen her "ferocity".

This man's speech, his erratic behavior, his willingness to do anything, say anything to get elected betray him as being unfit for the nation's highest office. We can't take the chance that his documented rages might move him to push that awful button. We simply can't risk having a fighter pilot, anxious to start a bombing run on another country, in the Situation Room wielding ultimate power over life on earth.

Yes, he's been tested as a fighter pilot. Now he's being evaluated as a contender for the highest office in the land, and leader of the free world. One can't be tested as president without being the president. As a contender for that job he is found wanting.

Adding to the worry McCain says that Palin "shares my world view". Uh oh.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Aboooouuuut Face!! March!!

Ruth Marcus is generally considered to be a conservative columnist for the Washington Post. Lately she's been criticizing, even chastising, John McCain for running a campaign that is neither "civil nor civilizing".

Harold Meyerson weighs in with his expose of McCain's attempt to revive old myths, trying to stir up old animosities.

Here's Kathleen Parker, who until a few weeks ago, could be counted on to write columns praising Republicans. She calls McCain's campaign a "side show" and takes seriously the Bradley and anti-Bradley affect.

And would you believe that Michael Gerson writes today in WaPo about hopes for a moderate version of Obama standing up to an emboldened and radical liberal Congress. Gerson also, until, just now actually, has also been thumping his Thesaurus for McCain/Palin.

These folks are raising their heads gingerly above their cubicle walls since the Washington Post, considered to be a moderate/conservative rag, endorsed Obama a few days ago.


These are sensible, educated and articulate people who are put off by the McCain/Palin down and dirty campaign. Now, if we can just get the nasties out there to not vote against their own interests------.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Foot In Mouth Disease

Here's another gaffe by Congressman John Murtha, D-PA. For a seasoned politician who should know better he is really stupid.

This piece was on the Drudge Report which of course twisted what he said to their liking, which is anti Obama. In this case they ignored the past tense Murtha was using But to even use the terms red neck or racist to describe your own home state people is idiotic. At this point in his career he should remember and be alert to what opposition media will do with one's words.

Barack, please have a talk with this guy. A good old PA Dutch Uncle talk.
With friends like this-----?

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

The Audacity of Hope

Could it be true? I dare to hope. This article claims that Rovian politics has had its day, that the Internet has given the public the means to see the smears for what they really are, desparate attempts to save McCain from certain defeat.

It's interesting that the writer points to how much the Internet and YouTube have changed the political campaign game in just the past four years.

I've been a voice crying in the wilderness for months, trying to alert folks that the smears are right out of Rove's play book. The Rovian tactics are what sunk McCain in 2000 and he has prostituted himself so completely that he has hired the very same people and firms that screwed him back then, in an attempt to screw Obama today.

It's heartening to read the recent articles about how Rove's tactics have become so transparent to no longer have the desired affect this time around. However there are still far too many nasties out there who buy into it. Like awful commercials, they wouldn't be run if they didn't work, if there weren't enough people to believe the lies.

Not everyone has access to the Internet or the skill and interest in using it to verify what's true and what's crap. In fact those who don't are the real targets of the Rovian tactics. McCain is counting on enough of them in the swing states with large electoral votes to help him win.

Remember Rove cut his teeth on these tactics as a direct mail advertising guy. That marketing concept counts on flooding the mail with junk, filled with exaggerations, half truths and subliminal messages, knowing that 1% or fewer bites translate into millions of dollars in sales. The same approach worked for the Bush campaign in 2000 and 2004. Some are saying it's no longer working and might actually be turning people off.

We can only hope.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Touched By The Hand Of Rove

McCain and Co. are targeting Acorn to avert attention from the subject of this article.

That's what they do when they are guilty as sin. They deflect the accusations back onto their enemy, loudly and angrily, believing, as Rove has told them, that the average Joe the Plumber won't bother to question or check the facts.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Not Vindictive, But Provokable

Bob Herbert here bemoans the dirty tricks of the McCain campaign and elements of the Republican Party to disenfranchise voters who appear to favor democrat candidates.

It's been going on since at least the campaign of 2000, and is likely to have thrown that election into the arms of the Supreme Court justices who appointed Bush as President.

Imagine, if that contest had been fair; no war in Iraq, no Guantanamo, no secret overseas prisons, no renditions, no waterboarding. Perhaps even no 911, and no war in Afghanistan.

It's time Americans of all stripes, party affiliations and personal prejudices said to McCain, his henchmen and their neocon cabal, "I'm not vindictive by nature, but I am provokable".

The most effective way to do that is by voting for the Obama/Biden ticket.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

McCain: "I'm Not George Bush".

Quite right.

McCain is not George Bush. He's Dick Cheney. The reason McCain must be beaten is because his world view is much like Cheney's. Might makes right. Solve problems by defeating your enemies, whether on the battlefield or in politics. Shoot first. Ask questions later.

Cheney and his neocons conned W. into invading Iraq, a project which McCain has championed from the start, and which Obama was against from the start. That's the real contrast, which has become lost during the past few months; overshadowed by the economy.

Actually that's good because the testosterone bloated nasties in the electorate are more likely to defeat McCain over their pocketbook issues than the war in Iraq. Remember that George H.W. Bush lost a second term due to the economy, even after being the hero of the first gulf war.

McCain is likely to advocate for war with Iran. He shares the neocons' belligerence, but for different reasons. Neocons stir up trouble around the world to make $Billions in arms sales. McCain just likes to stir up trouble for its own sake. He is belligerent by nature. He would make, for the neocons, an even more manipulable puppet than George W. Bush.

McCain would be the fulfillment of the neocon's wildest dreams. For the past eight years they relied on Cheney to convince Bush to do their bidding. With McCain as President they could bypass the middleman, or middlewoman as it were. Middleperson to be PC.

I can see Sarah Palin shaking her pom poms now. What a nightmare.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

You Can Change The Names But Not The Behavior

This article doesn't name the town or city in which this event occurred. But make no mistake, the red meat thrown at the audience was at least partially racially motivated. In the '50's and earlier places like this were pretty much all Democrat dominated.

As the Democrat Party became more liberal the Republicans moved into that vacuum in the South. Only the names have changed to protect the ignorant. It's still a racially divided society.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Monday, October 20, 2008

Obama In The Flesh

If you haven't lived or spent time in a southern town here is a really good anecdotal piece to give you a feel for a typical slice of the experience.

Note that Obama chose to go to a mostly white frequented diner, when a mostly black frequented diner was nearby. Note also that a woman named Fanning got most of the print in the story, though others were more moderate or even supportive, as in "at least he's not a war monger".

This is a small southern town. I lived and worked in the big city of Atlanta during the 60's when racial tensions were at their peak. Atlanta was blessed with a smart and decent mayor, a white man named Ivan Allen, Jr. who worked with the black leadership to avoid what happened in Birmingham.

The business I was in had five locations in small towns in Georgia which I visited frequently. The societies and cultures in those towns were much like those described in the article here, except in the '60's a black man would only go into an all white diner if he were trying to integrate it. And his reception would have made Fanning seem like an angel of tolerance.

So, we've gained some in tolerance and decent behavior, but voting behavior is still pretty much the same in the small southern towns. Note the pastor's preference for McCain, based on Iraq progress. That might be genuine, but often it's a transparent cover for prejudice.

Ya gotta love Obama for going into that diner. No telling if that might have influenced some folks to vote for him, just because he's a flesh and blood nice guy, not an abstract idea of a black man.

As Woody Allen once said, ninety percent of life is showing up.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Here Comes The Desperate Two Minute Offense

I'm doing all the Crying in the Wilderness I can now with just a couple of weeks left before election day.

McCain has dropped all pretense of decency and is letting the dogs loose to smear Obama day and night. He knows he's lost unless he can get the swing states and their electoral votes securely on his side of the score board.

As you will note if you read this Alternet piece, he's given up on the national popular vote and is throwing everything he can at Obama in those swing states. He's acting as if his life depends on winning the election. He is a do or die soldier. It's his nature, or at least the nature that's been let loose over the past several months.

His lying knows no limits. He is willing to attack Obama anyway he can. He will throw enough crap at him in hopes that some of it sticks. He is counting on the mindless low -lifes, whose hate knows no bounds and who just need a target for it, to rise up out of the trenches and follow him screaming and hollering at the enemy, hoping to unnerve them into doing something foolish.

Until recently McCain had refused to bring up Obama's former pastor, Jeremiah Wright. He's been using William Ayres as a straw man, crying foul over Acorn and anointing a non person, Joe the Plumber, as the arc angel Gabriel, announcing the word from on high that Obama is evil.

This is all straight out of the playbook for the team that wears the all black uniform. They play for Rove University's College of the Black Knight which is renowned for it's Right Wing Department of Dirty Campaign Tactics. Their cheerleaders are especially trained to work crowds into a frenzy, encouraging shouts of Muslim, Kill Him, He's a Terrorist, he's the Anti-Christ and other heinous threats. McCain himself might not say these things, but if his wingnut fans do, that's all the better in his mind. Like Pilate he washes his hands a lot.

Now it seems that the sleaziest of McCain's advisers have convinced him that Wright should be back on the table and fair game. These guys only hunt when the game is confined and the prey can't get away. They like shooting ducks in a barrel. Wright isn't really the target. Obama is. He can't get away because he's in the game and has to deal with the incoming shots and flak.

Then again, though Obama is the opposition to be attacked, the real audience is the mass of rabid fans in the stands who need somebody to hate.

Between now and election day the chants and the rants will mount and swell into a deafening roar. It's often difficult to stay cool and keep one's composure in the face of such noise.

Obama has demonstrated that he will stay cool, and can play within himself. His teammates feel that and trust him to lead them as Quarterback and Defensive Captain, calmly selecting the plays designed to take advantage of the erratic, disorganized and undisciplined opposition and barking out the signals to execute both his offense and defense game plans.

He knows that McCain has already tried three hail mary's, and will try as many more as he can get in before Nov 4. He can't stop the clock and he is out of time outs. Obama also knows that McCain will tell his team to play as dirty as necessary. He has nothing to lose by doing so. Remember he's acting as if his life depends on winning this contest. It's his whole life on this game. It's his last chance. If he loses he will be a beaten man. He defines success only in terms of total victory.

And if he loses he will likely never admit that he beat himself.

Be ready for any and all kinds of attacks for the next two weeks. They're coming. Obama isn't likely to employ a prevent defense. He will look for his openings and stick to his game plan which is all about issues. That's the last thing that McCain wants to have to deal with. He's already lost the game on those terms.

Be steady. Hold firm.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Who, Me?! Just Asking.

Woody Allen once said, "I wouldn't join a club that would have me as a member".

If John McCain of 2008 could ask John McCain of 2000 if he would vote for him, what do you suppose would be his answer?

Try this on.

"My friend, I wouldn't support you for dog catcher. Tell me this, how could you be George W. Bush's sidekick and also a maverick? "

Then read this.

"I'm the same, it's the entire press corps that's changed". And did you know that in ninety-nine percent of McCain rallies the people that shout frightening stuff are Obama supporters?

I go with the old saying that a person is known by the company he keeps.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Hormones Are Where It's At

Check out this link alerting you to one of the most dangerous molecular structures in the Universe. Strangely, it is also one of the most essential, to a point.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Check Out This Site

Here's a link to a site I've come across that presents in an easy format the major stories of the day. I'm going to it first, and then to other places it might lead me to.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

William Kristol And The Beckoning Flame

Here is this week's William Kristol column. I'm drawn to it like a moth to flame.

I write him deprecating emails, I seethe at the sight of his shit-eating grin.

I want to haul off and ignore him but I don't. My diatribes against him are thinly veiled wishes that he would disappear from the scene so he could no longer lure the unsuspecting "vulgus" into his trap.

I need help. Please advise.

If you charge for your counsel I have Medicare and Medex. If they don't cover emotional counseling, use the codes for headache, upset stomach, IBS and posterior pelvic soft tissue chronic pain when you submit your charges for reimbursement.

Seriously, I would greatly appreciate receiving comments which include your ideas for responding to Kristol. Use this week's column for analysis and comment. Tell me how you would respond.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Thought For The Day

"Sometimes a concept is baffling not because it is profound but because it is wrong."

E.O. Wilson on Emmanuel Kant's belief in transcendental morality.

Now I understand why I don't understand Sarah Palin. Guess that makes me an Empiricist.

And that's more than you want to know about me.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

"The Safety Net Has Become Seriously Frayed."

Here is a link to Garrison Keillor's most recent thoughts on the state of affairs today.

This phrase stood out for me.

"-----but we can rise above it if we will only recognize a leader when one comes along and have the sense to let him lead".

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

More On The "Invisble Hand": Palm Up Under The Table

Recently I've written about the need for voters to tell those in Congress that they will be voted out of office if they continue to take money from lobbyists, while tacitly acknowledging the quid pro quo of the deal; that they are consequently beholden to their donor just as surely as they would be to an employer, benefactor or patron.

I've focused on the taking of campaign money, but it seems that encouraging gifts to one's favorite charities also qualifies for scrutiny.

Here is a classic example. I've appreciated Murtha's opposition to the war in Iraq, but other than that he's a Democratic Congressman for whom I have come to hold little regard.

The subject of the article linked to here is a clear example of Murtha putting himself in a position of holding markers which defense lobbyists will surely call in. It's well known that Murtha is held in the highest regard by influential Pentagon types.

Last week he opened his big mouth about western PA being a hotbed of racism. Stupid. Just plain stupid. He's supposedly an Obama supporter. Joe Biden, from western PA must have gone ballistic.

Is it any wonder that the public is fed up with Congress? The exception of course is one's own Congressman, who is pure as the driven snow and above reproach. How many music lovers in Johnstown, PA are put out with Murtha? How many of them could care less that he greases the skids for defense contractors to have their way with Congress?

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Saturday, October 18, 2008

To Tire Swing or Not To Tire Swing. Say What?

Here's a real quick and easy way to review what the pundits are saying about McCain.

I found it illuminating and kinda fun.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

A Voice Crying In The Wilderness? Perhaps Not

Here is an essay which could too easily be dismissed as the rantings of a wingnut. But what the author says should be considered seriously, discussed openly and kept in sharp and continued focus. Americans need to be alert, wary and vigilant.

It shouldn't be lost on anyone that Naomi Wolf identifies herself as a True Conservative. And, she counsels, "This is not a liberal nightmare".

I wrote about this subject in a post dated October 8, 2008 entitled "Unspoken Fear" when I saw the article about the US Army Brigade soon to be activated within our own borders, the President as their Commander in Chief. This is not the National Guard under the command of the state governors.

I urge you to Google "Posse Comitatus Act" and read a few of the referenced links. It's most enlightening.

Also, on October 9, 2008 I posted a link to a video entitled "Fascists Are Us". It too lists signals and events of which we should be keenly aware and concerned.

It's too easy to dismiss the writers of such warnings and cautions as Alarmists, especially in view of the power grabs of the current administration over the course of the past eight years and the fact that we have fought four wars since WWII which haven't been declared by Congress. It's not only creepy, but it's creeping.

Consider the Unitary Executive Doctrine which the Bush/Cheney and Co. cabal has been slowly but steadily implementing. It's a far right interpretation of the Constitution which gives the President essentially unlimited and unchecked power in time of war.

These neo-cons have cleverly gotten Congress to support a war on terrorism which, by definition, has no limit as to time, place or enemy. Terrorism will always be with us. There can be no such thing as victory in spite of the fear mongering rhetoric coming from Washington, Senator McCain and The Joker from Alaska, Sarah Falstaff.

McCain is supposed to carry on this subterfuge in the name of patriotism and Country First. Don't be fooled. He is a soldier by genes, memes, family background and training. Listen to his words carefully. He told a woman who shouted out that Obama is an Arab that he didn't want to dampen her "ferocity", but that she should be "respectful". He says he's ready to "do battle" on day one. These are the words of That One who shoots first and asks questions later. He must be kept out of the White House.

But that in itself is not enough to stop the insidious movement toward a time when those in power are set on ruling not governing. Americans must confront members of Congress who accept donations from the neo-cons of the military/industrial complex. That money is spent with the expectation that it will grease the palms of those who can and will use their influence to support the donors' often nefarious agendas. Americans must remind, even threaten these politicians, that they can and will be thrown out of office by the voters, if not actually recalled.

I know, I know; this is a lot to expect of the voters, most of whom elect people so they, the voters, can get on with their own lives and leave the governing to the politicians.

We've seen recently though that when the voters get slapped upside the head, as in the current financial meltdown, it gets their attention. Articles like the one linked to here can serve as that kind of wake up call to this most insidious threat.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

A Most Articulate Endorsement

Read here a most articulate endorsement of Obama for President by the LA Times.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Wanted: A Special Place In Hell For These Perps

Here's a story that is so infuriating it's difficult to talk about it.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Friday, October 17, 2008

Who's John McCain: The 2000 or 2008 Model?

Here's an article that begged to be written.

John McCain of 2000 isn't running for president in 2008, though it's hard to tell from the main stream media's nostalgia for That One.

Retort to McCain: "You aren't the John McCain of 2000. If ever I wanted you to be president I would have voted for you eight years ago". Or: "Senator McCain you're no John McCain of 2000".

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Half A Tax is Better Than None?

Just couldn't resist this one.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Looking Out For You

Here's why I keep covering you up with stuff. I'm looking out for your mental health.

Remember, the writers are ahead of the readers, so you'll always have plenty of brain therapy available.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Voter Suppression

More to make the blood boil. I find myself using the word "despicable a lot lately.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper


Here is an article about another hateful thing during the campaign that is so despicable and heinous as to be truly frightening.

Recently a "Christian" minister delivered a prayer invocation at a McCain event that was essentially a claim that My God Is Bigger Than Your God, as the blogger The Old New Englander called it.

What next? There's only on Abrahamic, monotheistic faith left to hear from. Let's hope they chose to abstain from publicising such trash.

Makes me want to resign from the human race. But then, that might be considered racism.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

No Matter Who

The key phrase in this piece is the beginning of the first sentence in the second paragraph. It starts, "No matter who becomes president".

This has been the subject of a number of posts to this blog over the last several months.

The most important section of this piece addresses how little difference there has been in foreign policy over the past many years, especially with respect to the Middle East. Oil has been the key to what's been going on. The power of Big Oil has been dominant. And with the top two officers of the country coming from the oil industry-----well, what did we expect?

But even with a non-oil oriented guy in the White House that industry has enormous influence in Congress with huge amounts of money used to buy the support of influential politicians who have powerful friends in the Pentagon. It's not only been the GOP neocons who have been beating the war drums for many years. This writer points out that administrations from both parties have supported our being the world's policeman. The military/industrial complex has been perhaps the most powerful coalition of all over the course of history, and not just ours.

Bottom line is I don't see a whole lot of change in foreign policy in the near term, except for the real hope that Obama can coax the rest of the world back to becoming our friends again. That will no doubt be difficult, in spite of his positive world view, because of the financial meltdown which will inhibit the US from continuing huge foreign aid commitments. Sorry to say some of those friends won't be easily wooed back without those commitments.

Follow the Money.

Undoubtedly many who discover that the writer of this piece lives and works in France, will dismiss his views as anti-American. It's just these people who preach American Exceptualism around the globe. Arrogance, hubris and condescenion are not often attitudes of those who make genuine friends easily.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Trickle Down Behavior

Here's a local story which just might be an example of a trailing indicator about behavior at large.

It's pretty much a truism that the behavior of the leaders in any organization, small or large, trickles down and pervades the entire organization.

The "I got mine, you get your own" attitude of the Bush administration is a classic example.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Redefining The Invisible Hand; Revisiting the Meaning of "Free"

Here's a story which sheds new light on, if not redefines and updates, Free Enterprise as the manifestation of Adam Smith's Invisible Hand. Free Enterprise, as a label for a kind of economic system, is an oxymoron by definition.

It's clearly not free. People pay serious money to procure what they want.

Influential politicians who, in league with Pentagon friends, are able to grease the skids to help launch multi-million, if not multi-billion dollar projects, sometimes, as is the case exposed in this article, siphoning off funds which were originally intended for other projects.

Perhaps the writer of this piece has his own political agenda, but the most recognizable people he singles out by name are Republican politicians; e.g. Trent Lott and John Stevens.
So long as politicians need huge amounts of money to finance their election campaigns they will be vulnerable to those are willing to buy their influence.

The so-called Invisible Hand has actually been exposed for what it has always been; a theoretical, Utopian pipe dream which ignores the Darwinian type evidence of Socio-Political Survival of the Fittest. The only invisible hands are those reaching under the table, not above board.

The irony here is that those who refuse to accept the science of Darwinian Evolution as the system for conducting life on Earth are often the very same people who believe in and endorse Survival of the Fittest as the system for conducting business on Earth.

Freedom of Enterprise might be a more accurate label for a kind of economic system.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Fun And Games In The Oval Office

Here's a clever site. You can visit Sarah behind her new desk. Be sure to click on everything with that finger pointing hand.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Satire to Some; The God's Truth to Far Too Many

Bush's Resignation Speech:-)

I'm not laughing.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Why I Hate Spontaneous Photos

Paul K. might consider giving up the Nobel if he could get back this photo.

Is he sucking his thumb or trying to quit smoking a pipe?

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Ode To A Once And Former Conservative

An awful lot of us have been saying this since Bush II, or even since Newt G.

William F. once told his son, I recently read, that he spent his life separating the Conservatives from the kooks.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Winter Soldier

Here is an excerpt from a book that had to be written.

Horrifying is even too pale a word to describe what our soldiers were ordered to do in Iraq.

"Worse than Saddam", one terrified woman shouted. What could be worse than Saddam to these people? Apparently us.

Sarah Palin would likely call me a traitor for saying these things. Rove's students are skilled at branding their enemies what they themselves are guilty of.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

The "ick"

I read somewhere recently that McCain is focusing on the "ick" in maverick.

You go--- Cute but a little banal perhaps? And I'm like ---Ya think?

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Harold Ford, Jr. Speaks

Harold speaks from personal experience. Please note in particular the reference to his being ahead in October 2006, but lost after the Call Me Harold video came out. All the while McCain campaigned for Corker, speaking not a word about the down and dirty ad.

Who is John McCain? We know.

I'm especially glad to see Harold Ford, Jr. jump into this fray. He's a good man who should now be a Senator, but for the sliming against him two years ago. I've been wondering where he's been.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Friday, October 10, 2008

In Their Own Words

Watch and listen here to McCain and Palin in their own words.

This is a video response to the question that is being raised by all decent Americans. How low can they go? So low that they are apparently willing to accept the risk that their race baiting rhetoric might actually incite an unbalanced person to believe he or she is carrying out the will of the people, or maybe even God, by "taking out" Obama.

This is not alarmist. This is serious shit. Check our own history and that of others; for starters, consider the assassination of Itzhak Rabin by an Israeli right wing nut job, Fundamentalist Jew.
The equivalent in our own country would be an American right wing nut job, Fundamentalist Christian. The common denominator is a "nut job" who is convinced that taking out Obama would be doing a service for the country, or even even God, since those he heard shouting "kill him" claim to be good God fearing Christian folks.

Onward Christian Soldiers

As I mentioned in an earlier post, David Gergen, the seasoned and relatively moderate political advisor to candidates and presidents of both major parties, has publicly expressed concern for Obama's safety. He also pointed out that the McCain reference to "The One" is code for "Uppity". The unspoken word which usually follows "Uppity" is "Nigger". One can understand why Gergen stopped short of completing that racist epithet.

My work life took me to Atlanta, GA for many years, during which I was exposed to such hatred.
I agree with the guy who wrote in to Washington Monthly saying that if McCain is not likened to Lester Maddox and George Wallace when our history is written, the historians will not have done their jobs.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Let's Hear It For Bloggers.

This article explains why bloggers exist, and need to keep crying out for truth.

The Main Stream Media is still skittish about nailing McCain and Palin for their lies, cheap shots, innuendos and for stoking hate at their rallies. The MSM's very existence depends on access to politicians, and angering them is not in their financial interest. Bloggers are so vulnerable to intimidation.

Again, if you don't understand something, follow the money.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

McCain and Palin Tolerating, If Not Encouraging, Threats Against Obama. Shame, Shame, Shame.

Here's an article which deals with the threats to Obama which are being whipped up by McCain and Palin. When someone shouts publicly, "kill him", "he's a terrorist" and other inflammatory outcries neither McCain nor Palin says a word. They just let it echo without any cautionary message.

Here's another article on the subject. This is really dangerous stuff, and the GOP candidates are doing absolutely nothing to stop it. We are now seeing just how low these people will go to win the White House.

David Gergen has expressed concern for Obama's safety. He's no alarmist. He's a seasoned political advisor, having served both GOP and Democratic Presidents.

Most well intended people understand that unbalanced people are capable of thinking that these threats actually need to be carried out, and by golly "I'm the one to do it".

McCain and Palin are doing nothing to thwart these threats. I guess, like Pontius Pilate, they could just wash their hands and declare self-exoneration. Clearly, they know no shame.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Thursday, October 9, 2008


Found today on the Web.

Putting the "ick" back in Maverick.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Fascists Are Us?

I just "Stumbled Upon" this video.

Sure would like this to generate some comments.

See "Comments" at the end of the post.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

More on McCain Out of Control

Here's a piece on McCain's temper tantrums.

This is scary stuff.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

"Give Us Barrabus"

Sarah Palin is Charlie McCarthy to John McCain's Edgar Bergen. She's doing her best to not let on that he's throwing his voice, trying to make it look like she's actually The One doing the talking. Or is it the other way around? Aye, there's the rub. Who is Edgar and who is Charlie? Who is "The One"?

It's an important question. There are many reports today that McCain's latest tactic is to appear to distance himself from smearing Obama. Off the record conversations with some of his advisors though admit that they are free to smear all they want. That would include Palin apparently.

She is using her blinding smile to detract the eye from the movement of her lips through which pass really hateful shit. She seems to be thoroughly enjoying playing Pontius Pilot to her very own religious fanatic mob, inciting some to shout frightening threats, e.g. Kill Him; He's a Terrorist.

When this is all over and done with in a few short weeks Palin will likely wash her hands of it all and, like Pilate, go back to her life as a political hack, the vindictive, corrupt and two faced governor who had no problem portraying her opponent as a traitor, but all the while praising and encouraging a seditionist mob, the actual traitors, of which her husband, First Dude, was a member and which apparently she praised and encouraged just this year as Governor of Alaska.

She will have had her virtual and analogous "fifteen minutes" of fame which she can memorialize in her scrap book, bookended by storied, and therefore exagerated, examples of past successes; bloody hockey fights, airborn wolf shooting trophies(like honoring someone for shooting and killing fish in a barrel,) photos of "dressing" moose(which really means skinning, flailing and violating the corpse of another species, but a valuable species in as much as all species are valuable by definition, as a part of the fabric of life as we know it, and which, by its own nature, was incapable of harboring a conscious ill will toward its killer, but would have chosen flight, not fight, if given half the chance.

It smacks of the cries of those who are vulnerable to being sufficiently whipped into such a frenzy as to shout out, "Crucify him" and "Give us Barrabus"

McCain is a predator by nature. Obama is a healer by nature.
This is no small thing.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

How Very Odd Indeed

Here's an interesting piece on different views of Sarah Palin. In one case, that of David Brooks, a conservative columnist for the NYTimes, two different views on Palin come from that very same David Brooks, separated only by a few days.

To quote McCain, "Who is the real David Brooks?". On the theory that the latter view might reflect a learning curve, the Voice wants to believe he's more of the latter than the former.

Tending to offset that though is the reality that Brooks' views in print often run counter to his views in person. He can be one guy on The News Hour, and another in the New York Times.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Art and Life on the Campaign Trail: Which is Imitating Which?

If Hollywood were to make a movie for the big screen of today's campaign, it would be difficult to create a better satire than the one we're actually living with, and watching on the small screen.
When watching Tina Fey play Sarah, it's hard to distinguish the real from the virtual.

Standing in for Moe, Larry and Curly are Sarah, Cindy and John. They keep running into and tripping over each other with outrageous comments and cartoon like facial expressions.

Sarah mouths stuff which is the opposite of John's own mouthings, Cindy goes off the deep end with, "Obama is waging the dirtiest campaign in U.S. history". (Hello? Wouldn't that be her husband?) And John is hitting Barack upside the head with over the top insults of a racial tinge; as in, "That One"; objectifying the human being, reducing him to a thing, not a person. In a sitcom that line would be accompanied by the usual and predictable canned laughter.

Tina Fey is the natural to play Sarah of course though Sarah is so much a caricature of herself, so much like Tina's impressions of her, that it's become difficult to tell them apart. But who would play Cindy and John. I don't think you could improve on the real "things".

Michael Moore For Director. How's that for a front yard sign?

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

The Unpoken Fear: The Elephant in the Room? It's the GOP Icon

Where does an elephant roam? Anywhere it wants.

Here is a piece about using our military, not our policemen, for crowd control. A significant element of our military has just been deployed right here in the U.S.. Do you wonder why Bush ordered that? Police Departments in our cities and towns have been the first responders to crowd control problems for years. Why the need to hand it over to the military now? Could it be because, unlike the local and regional police forces George Bush is their boss? And why not the National Guard? Could it just be because the 50 state governors are in charge of that line of defense, not George Bush?

Among the scenarios being considered as we approach the elections on Nov. 4th is the possibility that the Bush Administration might actually take matters into their own hands if Obama wins, as is widely forecast.

History is full of stories about overthrown governments, palace coups, and the like. One thing they all seem to have in common is the use of the military to solidify the power grab. Bush will be Commander-in-Chief until Jan 20, 2009, leaving him plenty of time to use that authority to declare a state of emergency, suspend the Constitution and enforce that gambit with the military.

Will that military obey Bush if it were to happen? If they didn't who would lead them?

I don't think it's being alarmist to think ahead about such a possibility. Bush/Cheney and Company have exhibited heavy handed, arrogant, my way or the highway behavior for eight years. What is to make them suddenly acquiesce to the will of the voters? They've betrayed, ignored and scoffed at the will of the voters all along.

It's important to acknowledge that these people don't wish to govern, they prefer to rule.

To be forewarned is to be forearmed. Be alert!

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

A Partial Litany of the Voice's Personal Opinions

Sarah Palin has become a caricature of herself, with the help of Tina Fey. That caricature has the element of a joke. While she is getting a lot of face time and exposure I doubt that she is taken seriously by enough people to help McCain. While it's usually true that people mostly vote for the person at the head of the ticket, the idea that Palin could actually be called upon to function as President in the event of a tragedy I believe might actually hurt McCain.

Racial prejudice has not gone, nor will it ever go, away. It was only two years ago that Harold Ford, Jr. was beaten by a member of the good ol' boy club, a former Mayor of Chattanooga, TN, in his bid to become the first black Senator from that state since Reconstruction. He ran for that position, having been impressive as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives. Harold was done in by a late campaign commercial with a transparent racially coded message; a come hither female voice pleading, "Call me Harold". McCain went to the Volunteer State to campaign for the previously obscure Republican candidate, and was notably silent on the subject of that slanderous commercial. White people, especially older and relatively less educated ones, are not above pretending to others that they are not prejudiced against blacks, but still vote against one in the privacy of the voting booth. Some years ago, when I lived in Atlanta, GA, Lester Maddox, a notorious white supremacist who redefined racism, and whose symbol was a not so subtle ax handle, ran for and won the governorship of the State of Georgia. Not so surprisingly it was almost impossible to find anyone who admitted to voting for him.

Cindy McCain claimed today that Obama is "waging the dirtiest campaign in U.S. history". Just another example, taken from the Rove University Campaign Playbook, of a GOPher accusing an opponent of that which the accuser has been accused and found guilty. It's so outrageous and over the top that it would be considered silly, were it not for the reality that so many of the gullible will fall for it. Rove knows gullible. He perfected his craft in the direct mail advertising business. Need I say more?

Tom Brokaw doesn't seem to work at hiding his favoritism for John McCain. Perhaps it's because he has this thing for The Greatest Generation. As moderator of Meet The Press recently he uncharacteristically ended the program with what appeared to be a personal
comment which seemed to imply an endorsement of McCain. I suspect that Gwen Ifill might favor Obama personally, but she didn't let on in her role as moderator of the VP debate. I lived in Atlanta, GA when Brokaw worked for the NBC TV station there, and admired him then and after, up until recently when he began to state his personal opinions, showing his Narcissistic tendency. He has sacrificed his previously earned reputation as an objective journalist. I'll give him this: He's still almost as influential as he thinks he is. But he needs to get over himself.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Race and the Campaign for President

Politico has published the views of a number of qualified people to speak to the question about the influence of race on this election.

Here is the comment with which I most agree. Others are worthwhile, useful and valuable, but this one looks at the big picture from forty thousand feet, which I, myself, am inclined to do.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

The Palins and the Alaska Independence Party

Apparently Sarah Palin and First Dude are not just accused of guilt by association with members of the Alaska Independence Party(AIP). Based on the reporting included in this piece and others First Dude was actually a member of AIP for seven years, and Sarah Palin as Governor of Alaska cheered them on earlier this year.

This is an organization that was founded to promote secession from the United States of America. That seems to qualify for the label Anti-American.

According to this account the founder of the group, Joe Vogler, was a "raging Anti-American". That seems to be confirmed by quotes from his public rants.

This kind of actual membership in such a group makes any accusation made against Obama for past association with Bill Ayers appear ludicrous.

It's a shame Obama might have to use this information to offset the spurious claims McCain and Palin are making. Obama is doing all he can to avoid mud wrestling of this kind. But he deserves to be excused if he does use this to embarrass his opponents. Then he should point out forcefully that McCain and Palin are doing all they can to deflect attention of the voters away from the real issues at hand, the loss of jobs, the loss of savings and investment values which all Americans find themselves faced with.

Here again is a quick reminder: George H.W. Bush lost his battle for a second term because the economy had soured so that the voters needed someone to blame, and it happened on Bush I's watch. This even though he had been given credit and cheered for his success earlier in his first and only term for putting together the powerful coalition which chased Saddam out of Kuwait and back to Baghdad.

Barack has every right to tar McCain and Palin with the same brush they are trying to use on him, but then he must keep turning the flood lights back onto the big picture, the economy which has tanked on Bush II's watch, backed by McCain's record of voting to support Bush 90% of the time.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Work, Work Everywhere, And Not a Job in Sight

Here's Bob Herbert's eminently rationale piece on the economy in today's NYTimes.

He focuses on the essential need for jobs and the huge amount of work to be done, but which isn't being done for the lack of jobs to address them.

It's been reported widely that our infrastructure is falling down around us, as was exemplified by the collapse of that bridge in Minneapolis. There's tremendous opportunity there to put people back to work.

FDR inherited an economy in dire straits, as will the next President. FDR put people back to work by funding infrastructure needs. Obama could do a similar thing.

If McCain is elected he will likely continue to channel money into the military/industrial complex, designing, manufacturing and selling war machinery. Such machinery is for tearing down the fabric of societies, not building and repairing that fabric. And it's now clear that the euphemistically labelled "defense" sector of the economy is not about creating jobs, but eliminating them or reducing their value as seen last week in Boeing's cynical approach regarding it's employee's best interests.

Good, productive jobs are those which address all the needs of Americans, not just those who make millions by stirring up ethnic hatreds in order to justify the need for weapons.

The aging US infrastructure is once again presenting us with a marvelous opportunity. Let's see what values are brought to the White House next January. That revelation will no doubt tell us where our tax dollars will be focused for the next several years.

And remember; no jobs, no taxes to collect for funding whatever it is Americans will chose by the way they vote.

It's the jobs people. The work is there to be done. There must be jobs to be had for doing that work. The oil of the work force is funding. "A word to the wise is sufficient."

If you're a voter, vote; if you're a prayer, pray; if you're a speaker, speak; if you're a writer, write; if you're a player, play. Whatever. Don't just stand there, do something.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Working the Mob

Here's a piece which lists specific examples of what McCain and Palin are managing to stir up with their exhortations, carefully scripted and designed to elicit mob-like behavior by opening up the shallow graves of prejudice dug by those who must find causes outside themselves to justify their frustrations.

It's also possible that the individuals who shout out these awful things are planted in the crowd with intent to create a frenzied atmosphere, reminiscent of Nazism in the 1930's. Either way what McCain and Palin are doing out of desperation is egregiously and intentionally hateful.

These two who claim to be paragons of patriotism are exhibiting a kind of behavior characteristic of those who betray the highest and best values and mores of the land they cynically profess to love.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Monday, October 6, 2008

McCain Honorable? I Don't Think So

You've really got to read this one.

Even if only half of these incidents are historically accurate, and if for some reason you're still inclined to give McCain the benefit of the doubt on the issue of his character, this should settle it for you.

This man has no business anywhere near the Oval Office, let alone have access to the nuclear codes.

He's clearly a hothead, not one who can keep his cool in dire circumstances.
The Russians are sending war ships to Venezuela, and have agreed to share nuclear technology with Hugo Chavez. Who knows what they might try? Another Cuban missile type crisis perhaps? I sure don't want McCain having the last word on anything of that nature.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

The Pirate and the Parrot

Here's an article which highlights McCain's desperation. Today he called Obama a liar. Once again he is accusing Obama of exactly that for which he himself has been exposed.

This is typical behavior for a politician of the Rove School of Corrupt Campaigning.

The amazing thing is that he and his campaign advisers telegraphed their new tactic; smear Obama in an attempt to "turn the page" on the economy, a euphemism for diverting attention of the voters from concentrating on his greatest vulnerability, the economy and the bailout of Wall Street. He's losing ground rapidly to Obama on the issues. So this once self proclaimed paragon of virtue, honesty and integrity now resorts to character assassination.

Check out this link for confirmation. Shameful.

Palin has become the parrot on McCain the Pirate's shoulder, squawking the same invective right on cue. Arrgh!!

Fortunately the polls are indicating that most voters have got them pegged for the Charlatans they actually are. They get it.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Wisdom And Understanding

Roger Cohen could become Obama's Merlin. One can only hope.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

I'm Like, Pleez, Pleez. Don't Elect This Woman

This is what you'd have to listen to for at least four years if Palin is elected.

Sarah to Bill Kristol: "I'm like-----total reversal here---".

That's the kind of talk you'd hear from someone running for the High School Year Book Most Popular award.

I'm like---Hello? Epiphany here. That's Sarah Palin. And I go--- I get it now.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

"A Call To Arms" and "Take It To 'Em Boys"

Here's two opinion pieces in today's Boston Globe.

First Piece

Second Piece

There might be a lesson here somewhere.

Ya think?

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Sunday, October 5, 2008

We Are So Screwed

Here is an article the gist of which should make every decent person's blood boil.

Pay particular attention to the paragraph which begins, "Lawmakers want to be able to say--".

As usual, if you don't understand something, follow the money; understand that the Golden Rule means the one with the gold rules, and thems what has gets.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

An Urgent Plea from the Poor Little Rich People

Ya gotta love this.

Thanks to

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Make-Believe Maverick

Here's a rather long, but important expose of John McCain's character.

The Voice would be reluctant to buy into the sordid stories of McCain's POW time and subsequent earlier life were it not for the obvious lack of honesty and integrity he has been exhibiting during the campaign.

In an earlier post today, you will find thoughts on McCain as a so-called Maverick, including the surprising initial definition of the word, as found in dictionaries.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

"Provide for the Common Good"; The US Constitution

Here's today's NYTimes editorial. It's about Senate Republicans' opposition to extending Unemployment Insurance, even though the House has passed it.

Once again the GOPhers behavior shouts: 'I got mine, get your own! You're own your own. We only socialize losses of the rich. Pull up your own bootstraps. Safety nets are for us, not you.

So, we bail out the wealthy whose malfeasance has caused the loss of jobs and homes for millions, but turn our backs on those millions. This is the kind of behavior which makes me ashamed to admit being of the same species as these arrogant, cold hearted beings.

These people are criminals for having shredded much of the Constitution, including the pledge to "Provide for the Common Good".

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Oh, Please!!

Maureen Dowd on Palinese. Compared to her W. is master of articulates.

Oh, Please, give her the hook!!

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Unconscious Racism

Here is a column by Nicholas Kristof in today's NYTimes which should be required reading for anyone intending to vote for President on November 4th.

In it Kristof cites authorities on racial prejudice who make a clear distinction between racists and racism.

It didn't surprise me so much as it caught me up short, making me more conscious of my own possibly uncouscious instincts.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

McCain, The Prevaricating Maverick

"The pages weren't numbered so I had no idea what was missing." That's what Dr. Sanjay Gupta had to say about his experience as a member of a selected(not select) group of journalists who were permitted to look at McCain's health records recently.

So it's come to this: John McCain, would you buy a used car from this man? Who would ever have thought that he could be vulnerable to such a question, the self described maverick and straight talker? But today it's a fair question.

Just so you know, the word "maverick", as a noun, was originally defined, especially in the Southwest, as "an unbranded calf, separated from its mother, who belongs to the first person to put a brand on it".

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Saturday, October 4, 2008

A McCain Cartoon And Other Tasty Morsels

One reason for this post is to display the cartoon of McCain on the left side of Alternet's home page.

Also, by clicking on this link one can bring up a number of very good articles which appear on that home page.

The Voice especially enjoyed David Sirota's second major piece on the bailout.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Double Standards

Read here about Israel's "no tell" policy on their nuclear capabilities and how that's playing out in the Middle East these days.

Then read here about the nuclear deal between the "US of Bush" and India.

Talk about double standards!!

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

I Got Mine; You're On Your Own. Not!!

Connie Shultz says it well.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Jim HIghtower, Channeling Molly

Jim Hightower, it seems, was Molly Ivins' best friend, which adds considerable weight to his views, in the opinion of the Voice.

Here's his take on the bailout.

The Voice continues to be conflicted over this conundrum. The mind is influenced by Tom Friedman's observation that the guy I hate and I will both drown if we are caught occupying the same sinking boat.

But Jim Hightower, Robert Reich, David Sirota, Bernie Sanders and others influence the heart to feel contempt for the malfeasance of wealthy financiers who enjoyed their privatized profits, but now want to socialize their losses.

It seems that holding one's nose and supporting the bailout is needed to save the credit system from complete freeze up. Such a freeze up would end auto loans, mortgages, business financing of needed inventory and Accounts Receivable, and virtually all healthy expansion of the marketplace. Business would have to be conducted on a cash basis, not the accrual basis which is characteristic of most businesses today.

"Neither a lender nor a borrower be" is so last epoch. Such a policy would, if adopted widely, effectively shut down the marketplace as we know it and depend on it. We would all be back to running and buying from roadside stands for our lemonade and apples.

Extreme Conservatives might love it in the abstract, until they couldn't, in fact, find what they needed available in the marketplace.

Now where did I leave my clothes pin?

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Friday, October 3, 2008

Bush's Raison D'etre

Here's an expose, although sloppily written, of the Bush Administration's Pentagon and Big Oil collusion.

As Derrick Jackson of the Boston Globe wrote a few weeks ago, to paraphrase, it took more than 4000 soldiers' live, 30,000 more wounded, countless Iraqi dead and wounded and $600B to make Iraq safe for Shell.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Testifying Under Oath

Here's a piece listing the statements Palin cited as facts , but which, in truth, are lies.

Question: Why can't we decide that candidates are actually testifying before the electorate when they claim to be citing facts which are actually lies, and thus should be required to do so under oath? The old saw is you're entitled to your own opinions but not your own facts.

Answer: We couldn't afford to build all the new prisons required for housing the perjurers.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Just For Fun

Here's something just for fun.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper

Be Careful What You Wish For

What would you think and say if it became clear that the Pentagon were to find itself fighting for its life, like the financial markets are today?

It's tempting to say that one could only wish, but it's also true that one needs to be careful what one wishes for.

Here's an essay which should spawn some really good discussion. It speculates about the demise of the Pentagon.

What would happen to our economy if suddenly the Pentagon stopped buying weapons of war?

One needs only look at the percentage of the work force employed directly or indirectly in the design, manufacture and sale of such weapons. Without those jobs the unemployment rate would skyrocket, resulting in virtually instant Depression.

Weapons are for fighting, which requires an enemy. The unravelling of the USSR deprived us of Enemy No. 1, the Evil Empire of Ronald Reagan, initiator of the arms buildup of all time.

As is true in most kinds of unhealthy, self defeating behavior there is usually a co-dependency at work. The US and the USSR were co-dependents, enablers of each other's apparent self destructive behavior. But at the same time that behavior created millions of jobs in both lands.

The neocons have found a way to declaw the threat of being deprived of our enemies as defined by countries. They have declared war on terrorism, which by definition has no end. In that sense the neocons have become our enemy from one point of view, and our benefactor from another.

In the abstract it seems we should have as our work the banishing of war. In reality that would, as our economy is presently constituted, be our undoing.

And even beyond that, the human species, as descended from other species of Nature, continues to act as if its survival is dependent upon intimidating, if not destroying, others. This is the ultimate in co-dependency; Survival of the Fittest, through Natural Selection, the prime mover of Darwinian Evolution.

It's baffling that so-called Conservatives have become the champions of destruction at the expense of conservation. They eschew Survival of the Fittest as a science but publicly practice it in the socio/economic sphere. The Conservative mantra and ideology is, You're Own Your Own. Social justice is for wimps. And these are the same folks who claim Jesus as their personal lord and savior, conveniently ignoring the give-your-enemy-your-shirt nature of his message and teachings.

Further considering this through the lens of politics, it's unrealistic to expect that much will change, especially quickly, regardless of who becomes President and the size of the majorities in both houses of Congress. Politicians and the military/industrial complex reward each other in the process of insuring that we remain a superpower, under the guise of national security, but actually in order to spread our hegemony over the globe for the purpose of intimidation, leading to the theft of resources

Talk about co-dependency!!

The neocons, abetted by their bought-and-paid-for politicians, continue to fan the flames of ethnic hatred around the world, thus preparing future battlefields for Beta testing their new toys. This is a brilliant strategy as seen from the point of view of arms manufacturers and the military. It is no longer dependent on one or a few countries to be enemies. In fact it's others' behavior which is targeted, with no need to be concerned about boundaries of sovereign countries. Behavior requires other people to exhibit it. If the neocons don't like a peoples' behavior, they are branded as terrorists.

As it's been observed many times, one man's freedom fighter is another man's terrorist. Carl Jung provided a way to evaluate behavior; consider the results; beneficent or destructive? And you'll know it when you see it.

In Iraq and Afghanistan, the conflict is defined as a war on terrorism, not a war on those countries. The wars just happen to be within their borders.

To take it even farther, it's not really a war on terrorism. That's merely a euphemism for an attempt to grab resources which exist inside borders; in the case of Iraq it's oil. The big irony is that the neocons wanted Iraq's oil so badly that they undermined the retaliatory move against Afghanistan as the enabler of the 911 attacks in order to invade Iraq for its oil.

For a really good education on this topic, check out Resource Wars, by Michael T. Klare, Henry Holt and Company, LLC, New York, 2001. It was written and published before 911, but seems anticpatory of it.

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper