Friday, September 17, 2010

Not MY Idea of "Values"...

An event called the “Values Voter Summit” began in Washington, DC yesterday and will run through Sunday. Their “cause” according to their website is to:

“Protect Marriage – Champion Life – Strengthen the Military – Limit Government – Control Spending – Defend Our Freedoms” 

One of the scheduled speakers for this event is Bryan Fischer of the “American Family Association”. (If you are unfamiliar with this man, I suggest you check out the video clip at the end of this post. WARNING: If you are actually what *I* would consider a freedom loving American, he will likely either outrage you, or just turn your stomach).

Some of the people who will be sharing a microphone with this man at this “Values” based event include:

Former Governor Mike Huckabee
Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK)
Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC)
Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN)
Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN)
Former Governor Mitt Romney
Former Sen. Rick Santorum
Gary Bauer, President, American Values
Christine O’Donnell (newly nominated Senate Candidate & Sarah Palin Clone)
Sean Hannity
Dr. James Dobson
Governor Tim Pawlenty (R-MN)
Newt Gingrich
Tony Perkins, President, Family Research Council
Charles W. Colson
Ken Blackwell
Phyllis Schlafly, Founder, Eagle Forum

In addition to these speakers which are, to me, an absolutely revolting lineup already (especially when you add Bryan Fischer to the mix...have you SEEN that video?), you can add representatives from these absolutely stellar organizations as well:

The Heritage Foundation

B. Kenneth Simon Center for American Studies

The Tea Party Express

The Family Research Council

Liberty University

The Liberty Council

Roundtable topics include the following list (which to ME is the actual “Agenda from Hell”, though I’m sure all those in attendance would emphatically disagree):

American Apocalypse: When Christians do nothing, secularists do everything
– The Case for Christian Activism

The Falsehood of the Inevitability of Same-Sex “Marriage”

A Special Polling Presentation:
Who are the Tea Party and Christian Voters and what do they believe?”

Indivisible: Social and Economic Foundations of American Liberty

Why Christians Should Support Israel

How to Reach the Online Generation (Without Losing Your Soul)

Who’s Politicizing Science? The Obama Administration’s War on Life

And of course, the old standby: “Getting Out the Vote on Election Day

When President Obama gave his state of the Union address in January of this year, he criticized a Supreme Court Decision that he said he believed “would open the floodgates for special interests” while Justice Alito shook his head and called the President's statement “Completely untrue”. But now as we watch the “special interests” (that are the multi-millionaire Koch brothers that literally bankroll this “Tea Party” movement, we can see that “Justice” Alito was the one who was saying something “completely untrue”.

When Jon Stewart today announced his “Rally to Restore Sanity” ( he held up a number of sample signs for his rally. One of them was a list of things that he’s “NOT AFRAID OF”…I agreed with the bulk of his list. “I’m not afraid of Muslims / Tea Partiers / Socialists / Immigrants / Gun Owners / Gays”…I’m sorry Jon, but on that list, I afraid that I AM afraid of “Tea Partiers”. I have deep concerns that all the people that are blowing them off and assuming that they don’t really have a viable chance to pull off some devastating wins come November is really just kidding themselves. I believe that people who underestimate them do so at their own peril. People underestimated the ’94 “Contract with America” (orchestrated by many of these SAME people I might note) too…until it provided a decisive victory for the Republicans, giving them their first majority in both Houses of Congress since 1953. And once they HAD that decisive power, they used it to try to destroy the President and everything that he was trying to accomplish for the country, and they’ll do the same this time too.

To believe that they can’t pull it off this time with all the money that they have behind them now is, in my humble opinion, foolhardy.  Do I HOPE that they’ll fail? Of course I do…but to just assume they will and allow oneself to get complacent is, in my assessment a dangerous mistake. The fact that someone like this Bryan Fischer can share the same stage, microphone and cheering audience with Senators, Congressmen, Governors and Presidential candidates (past and likely future) is absolutely horrifying to me.

President Obama gave a speech in Connecticut that sums up the corporate takeover attempt that they are currently trying to pull off:

I SO hope that my fellow Americans see through these people before it's too late. 

For those unfamiliar with the vile things that Bryan Fischer has to say:

Thursday, September 9, 2010

The Mad Tea Party

Between Glenn Beck (who makes Howard Beale look ‘rational’), Sarah Palin (who makes George W. Bush look ‘brilliant’), Michelle Bachman (who makes Charles Manson’s eyes look ‘sane’), and the rest of their sign-carriers with their blatant ignorance, it is very obvious to me that the Tea Party people are completely unhinged.

Recently Dick Armey, one of the driving forces of the so-called “Tea Party Movement” was a guest on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. The exchange between them was very odd and at one point the conversation went like this…

Armey proffered that if the two of them were stuck on a deserted island, “one of us is going to be the government.”
“I’m going to have a gun”, said Armey.

“I’m going to have a boat”, replied Stewart.

To which Armey answered, “I’m going to shoot a hole in it.”
So, in the event of being “stranded on a deserted island” Dick Armey would shoot a HOLE in the boat that could rescue them both if Jon Stewart won’t do things exactly Armey’s way. That kind of rationale sounds reminiscent to me of that crazy woman in Nevada who is saying that if the election doesn’t go the way they want, it’s time to engage in a “second amendment remedy”. Which sounds suspiciously like a candidate for a seat in the United States SENATE, actually advocating armed revolution if they don’t like the way a legal ELECTION turns out. She’s talking about this as a means of fighting against “tyranny”.

I have news for Ms. Angle, if the election were to be cancelled by the government so that voting could not take place…that would indeed be “tyranny”.  In fact, in the event of something like that happening, I might even pick up my gun and stand the line with her. But a legal election not going your way is NOT grounds for armed revolt. Unless of course Ms. Angle would like to live in a banana republic where armed brute force is acceptable to overturn an election, in which case I suggest she find some third world state to live in, because she can’t have this country.

Now, I understand completely that these people are angry and that they literally HATE the man currently occupying the White House. That is a feeling I can certainly sympathize with…I lived through it for the eight long, miserable years of the last administration. I think I can honestly say that I doubt anyone has the kind of animosity that I felt (and in honesty, still feel as we’re still suffering the consequences of his horrendous leadership and the Right’s unbridled power for all those years) for George W. Bush and everyone associated with his administration. Everything that they did…Enron, Katrina, Terry Shaivo, the financial and oil deregulation, the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, the pandering to the religious Right, the unfounded dual front wars, Gitmo, Abu Ghraib, torture, extraordinary renditions, the economic collapse…the list goes on and on. All these horrors that George W. Bush and his vice presidential henchman inflicted on this great country, completely sickened me to such a degree that I was actually beginning to become embarrassed for this great country that I love so dearly.

I was so relieved when the Bush era ended and the country overwhelmingly elected President Obama. But it didn’t take long to see that the Right was going to do exactly the same thing to this Democratic President that they did to the last one. The first part of the plan is to get the big money people to write a lot of really huge checks to fund the movement.  Back in '94 it was Richard Mellon Sciafe and his "Arkansas Project", this year it's the Koch brothers and their "Freedom Works". 

The players may have changed, but the game remains the same...tell one outrageous lie after another, completely erode the President's support among the people, and then come up with some plan to trick the American people into giving them back the control of the country. In 1994, they called it the “Contract with America” and/or “the Republican Revolution”, this year they call it the “Tea Party” (though some are still babbling about “revolution” as well).  But, it doesn’t matter what they call it, it’s still the same game.  Like the song goes…”same old story, same old song and dance…”

And then, if they do manage to take back the power (as it looks like they might), they will again do the same things that they did before, mark my words. They will further obstruct government with senseless hearings,  “investigations”, government "shutdowns" and other distractions. In fact, the first book on the “Case for the Impeachment of Barack Obama” is already written.

Then, also just like before, they will wield their power like a cudgel, probably pulling the same tricks they played last time they had the gavel... locked committee door meetings, threats of arrest for demanding access, teamed with threats to remove the "Filibuster", thereby taking the one shred of power that the minority possesses.  I was appalled when they threatened their "nuclear option" to abolish it before, but then recently found myself wishing that they actually had, because then they would have been the powerless ones the last months and wouldn't have been able to block and obstruct as they have.  This time if they threaten it again, perhaps we should just let them.  They won't hold the majority forever, though they think they will. 

Then, again just like last time the Right had unbridled power and a president whose character has been completely assassinated, they will run roughshod over the government. So while they’re tying up the President with all that ridiculousness, they will also take us back to the same old republican policies that put us into this horrendous mess in the first place and likely repeal all the good work that has been done thus far in the Obama administration

And then it’ll be a whole new song…”meet the new boss, same as the old boss…”

Monday, September 6, 2010

Obama at LaborFest

When I first began writing this rant many hours ago, I was so angry that I was literally shaking. At that point I had just gotten off the phone with a woman who answered the phone in the “news”room at WISN-TV, Channel 12 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, after having given her a piece of my mind.

You see, I have been a loyal viewer of WISN TV literally for years. Every single day from 10 a.m. when The View starts through the afternoon soap operas, while I’m working on various projects throughout my day, my television is tuned to Channel 12 – Milwaukee. In fact, my television is actually programmed to simply automatically change to that channel for the entirety of the day and I have even posted here in the past about things on ABC; from talking about "The View" to a little rant about a bad programming choice having to do with their afternoon Soaps. But that loyal viewership almost ended today.

Today, my President spoke at Labor Fest in Milwaukee. I was actually quite sad that I couldn’t afford to make the trip down to Milwaukee to see him live, in person. I did go to Labor Fest one year in the mid-90’s to see President Clinton speak there, and I got to shake his hand, an experience I would have loved to be able to repeat with President Obama. But my finances, my health and my circumstances did not make a trip down to Labor Fest possible, unfortunately. However, I was looking forward to seeing his speech on television, at the very least.

Earlier today, ABC re-ran the episode of “The View” on which President Obama was a guest (my blog post on that event is here: while the ladies are on hiatus (they return with live shows tomorrow). Seeing the rebroadcast of that show once again made me sad that I hadn’t found a way to get down to Milwaukee to see the speech in person. But then shortly afterward, WISN cut away from the holiday reruns of all their daytime programming to show Air Force One arriving at Mitchell Field, and they mentioned they would be carrying the President’s address live from the festival. So I kept my TV tuned to WISN, even though they were indeed reruns of episodes of soap operas that I had seen long ago (and didn’t really need a refresher on). As the reruns played on the muted TV, I basically just ignored the television while I did internet work and waited for the President to speak.

Finally he took the stage and I watched while he made a very good speech. He talked about his new plan to rebuild the infrastructure of our country, the roads and the railroads and the bridges...all badly needed improvements to once again make our infrastructure the finest in the world, as we used to be...and which will also create badly needed jobs. He talked about all he’d tried to accomplish since taking office and about the roadblocks and obstruction that the other side keeps piling in the road. He mentioned how their answer to literally EVERYTHING he says is “No”.

He gave a wonderful analogy (this is paraphrased, if you want to see the exact quote you can view the video at the link listed below, the story begins at around 34 minutes in) about how the republicans even admit that what they want to do if they get back in control is to do EXACTLY what they did before that drove us into the ditch in the first place. He talked about how after they drove us into the ditch they simply stood there criticizing while the Democrats rolled up their sleeves and got down in the ditch and worked to push the car back out…all the while the Republicans stood watching, shaking their heads, sipping cold drinks and saying things like “Can’t you go any faster?” One we get the car back on the road, a little damaged from the experience and covered in mud…sure a bit of work to do, but it’s out and operable…all the Republicans do is just point to the dent and mud screaming, “LOOK what THEY did to your car!!” and then they have the nerve to ask for the keys again! I’m with President Obama, “NO! They can’t drive!!”

The President had just finished that analogy, which I thought was terrific, when the two talking head chicks from the “news” staff interrupted him in mid-sentence, speaking OVER the President (while I was screaming at them to shut up, of course they couldn’t hear me) and proceeded to give the “republican response” to the President’s new plan before he’d even finished SPEAKING! Then they informed me that if I wanted to hear the rest of what the President of the United States was saying on a visit to our local city, I had to go to their WEB SITE to see/hear the live “streaming feed” (I guess people who don’t have internet and/or computers capable of viewing live video feeds don’t NEED to see the president) and “we now return you to regular programming”.



They cut off the PRESIDENT of the UNITED STATES to show RERUNS of a SOAP OPERA???

I was stunned…I was staggered. I was FURIOUS!! I quickly tried to pull up the web site to see the live feed, but by the time I found it and it loaded, I could tell that he was getting ready to wrap it up, so I missed a good chunk of the speech and only got to see the closing. (Luckily, I did eventually get to see it all, uncut and uninterrupted at: Thank you to them for posting it!)

I was so incredibly angry that a Milwaukee “news” channel did not consider it relevant to cover the entirety of a Presidential speech announcing a major policy initiative right here in our own city. I couldn’t believe that they couldn’t at least show the respect to the office of the Presidency to cover his remarks in their entirety. All things considered it was a relatively short speech, being made right HERE, in their very own city. How could they even consider cutting it off to show reruns of old soap opera broadcasts???

I was so incredibly angry that I called the television station. When a girl answered the newsroom line, I explained my utter fury that they cut off a presidential speech being made in Milwaukee in order to show two squawking head women talking OVER the President of the United States and discussing the “response” that the “party of No” had put together to the President’s job creation plan (what a surprise, their answer is “no”)!

The woman on the phone then chose to simply enrage me further by trying to tell me that “we carried the whole speech in its entirety.” Um NO!!! YOU DIDN’T!! And lying to me and telling me that I should believe what you’re telling me rather than my own lying EYES and EARS is certainly not the way to calm me down and keep me as a viewer of your station. It made me so much angrier that she was trying to tell me something that I knew to be completely false. This made me so much angrier, but also suddenly felt somehow “off”. I told her that it seemed to me that by cutting off a live local statement by the President and giving coverage to a simply quoted printed STATEMENT from the GOP instead; WISN was attempting to influence the news, more than simply reporting it.

I explained that, as I saw it, the way it could have been FAIRLY handled would have been to continue to cover the President’s speech, and THEN in the inevitable wrap-up, report the GOP response. In this way, they would be giving both sides the full benefit of coverage (especially since the GOP chose to simply release a printed statement rather than a video statement), and giving the people the FULL news story (rather than just ignoring the needs of those without computers/internet who might want to see what their President has to say). I also told her that considering that the only programming being pre-empted was just reruns due to the holiday, it was even the smarter programming choice.

That’s when I told her that it seemed to me that WISN was attempting to influence the election by not giving the viewers the full story and that I have now decided that WISN is nothing but a propaganda channel along the lines of Faux News.

I explained to her what a loyal viewer of her channel I had been. I also explained that since I am centrally located between two cities that both have major network affiliates, I can (and do) CHOSE to watch WISN, unlike other people who are simply stuck with whatever channel is local to them…that I could certainly get my regular ABC viewing from the Green Bay affiliate just as easily. I said I wanted to know how they could possibly justify this decision

All she said in response was, “I’ll pass on your comments.” I decided to pass them on myself…using this page.

Later on in the 6:00 News broadcast, they did seem to be a tad more respectful and slightly less biased, so I’m not AS angry as I was, and am therefore not QUITE ready to give up on WISN just yet, but I know that in the future I’ll be VERY aware of watching for further similar incidents in the future, hopefully it won't happen again.