Monday, December 14, 2009

I'm Sick of Living in the United Corporations of America

It looks like the Democrats might strip Medicare expansion out of the health care bill. No public option, no Medicare expansion, and MILLIONS of new clients for the insurance companies.

If this past year has proven anything, it's that we only have one political party in power, the corporation. The revolving door from Congress to K Street, the housing crisis, the health care reform debacle, the military industrial complex, the failure of corporate media to inform the public on anything, Big Oil and Big Coal's influence on global warming and alternative energy legislation, etc., etc., etc.—all evidence that the elected officials in the House of Representatives and United States Senate represent corporate, not public interest. They are in it to maximize profit, not run a country.

Each election, we go through a sham process. The discourse is kept at an eighth grade level so that all issues can be avoided. The news cycle bounces from distraction to distraction. In the end, we get a corporate representative at least three quarters of the time. Just a different flavor of the same kool-aid. And it all tastes like aspartame.

Kucinich and Paul are good examples of the possibilities outside of a corporate run government on both sides of the aisle, but obviously they are in the super-duper minority…and that’s not working out too well for the country.

I like Nader. I would vote Green every election if I could. The Green Party brand has failed though. Green with a capital G has taken on a meaning almost completely outside of the political party.

My new Party would be similar, but with a huge emphasis on anti-corporate governance. The primary platform would be based on the goal to eliminate corporate interests from government influence ENTIRELY. I'm still thinking it through and debating it with good people, but let me know if you have any ideas.

I've never been a Democrat, but I vote with them most of the time because, well, look what happened the last time the other guys were in power. This next election, I might begin casting protest votes. It would be nice if I didn't have to write in a candidate.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Health Care Reform...It's Gonna Happen!

Whoa...where am I??? This place is kind of scary. No wonder nobody likes to come around. Anyway, I was going to blow this entire place into cyber-oblivion, but since the Summer of George has officially ended, I decided to ease my way into politics. My only rule has been no cable news. I'm just not ready for all out stupidity yet.

It's going well so far. No hyperventilating. I haven't punched any walls, and I only verbally assaulted one person (sorry Doc). I'm planning a head-first dive into FOXMSNBCCNN in a week or so. For now, I'm sticking with the Times, Rolling Stone, HuffPo, and Reddit; and I'm starting each day off with a little Stewart and Colbert.

The reason I'm getting back into this mud fight is because we're living in a very important period in the political history of the United States. Health care reform is only going to happen once. There will be college classes covering it. Books will analyze it. And, just like with welfare reform in the 90s, we will be living with the results for the next generation. Unlike many who are allowing themselves to be brainwashed by the steady chorus of fear mongering from the Right, I'm excited about the possibilities. There is a real chance we can finally fix one of the most morally inexcusable failures of this broken country we live in. I don't care how much money I have to throw in, if we can provide the 50 million uninsured with coverage, I'm on board. If we can free the middle class from the slavery of employer-provided health insurance, I'll turn over seventy-five percent of my paycheck. I'm not kidding.

The last few days, I've been trying to educate myself as much as possible on the ideas they're throwing out there. For those of you who don't want to wait for me to make sense of it and put my biased opinion out there, here are two great resources you can go to. First, Talking Points Memo just posted the Congressional Budget Office's Analysis of the House Health Care Bill. It's worth the hour or so it will take skim through it. I guarantee that you'll be able to better follow the complex Health care debate over the next month after reading this document.

For those of you who don't have the time to read through a 14-page report, watch Jon Stewart's interview with Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius from The Daily Show last night. Almost everything she says makes a lot of sense no matter how terrified you are of socialized medicine (I'm writing this small so as not to alarm you).

Part I:

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Kathleen Sebelius Pt. 1
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political HumorJoke of the Day

Part II:

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Kathleen Sebelius Pt. 1
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political HumorJoke of the Day

I hope you learned something. Feel free to explain to me why you're so afraid of a public option or what sense you've made of this 1000 page document that the Senate is reading over. I don't want to hear any bullshit socialism/communism fear mongering. Think with your brain for once. Buzz words and talking points are for the weak minded and uninformed.


Friday, January 23, 2009

Fox News is Scared Shitless and So Should YOU!

Okay, I had to share this. Fair and balanced Faux News wants you to be afraid--very, very afraid. So, lock up the house, turn on the alarm, arm yourself to the teeth, and hide under the bed 'cause Obama's comin' for yuh!

The next eight years are going to be fun.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

People Who Don't Walk Their Dogs are Oppressors!

A couple of months ago I was walking my dog, Asher. He's a 7-year-old black lab. He grew up down in Cape Girardeau where I rented a house next door to a huge fenced in chunk of land owned by my fraternity. He was raised without a leash around a lot of people. His best friend growing up was a goat named Duke (a goat I ultimately got stuck taking care of). He's completely socialized and has never so much as growled at anybody or anything. The rabbits that hang out in our South City yard rarely even flinch when he comes lumbering out the back door. I know everyone says this type of shit about their dog, but ask anyone who's ever met Asher, the most violent thing he's ever done is accidentally knock over a beer with his whip-like tail.

KBO and I like to take him on walks without his leash. He never goes more than ten feet ahead of us and doesn't chase after animals or people when he sees them. It's pretty safe. Anyway, Asher and I were minding our own business listening to some Ryan Adams (Jacksonville City of the best albums of the decade and closest I've ever gone to embracing country music), when some dude pokes his head of his house. The yard was littered with pink bikes and large plastic things of varying degrees of obnoxiousness.

"Hey! Hey you!"

Asher stopped and turned around, so I took off my headphones.

"Excuse me!" The voice behind me was definitely hostile. I hate assholes.


"You know there are leash laws!"

"Don't worry, he's harmless. I've had him for seven years and he's never bit anyone or anything."

My words echoed deep within the corridors of this dude's icy stare.

"Okay, yeah...sorry."

I called Asher, he came running and sat down next to me, I put his leash on, and we walked quickly away. Looking back on it now, I wish I had something more clever to cut this guy off his "I have four kids so I'm better than you" pedestal. But I didn't.

On the way back we walked up the ally. It runs right aside old Leash-Law's fenced in back-yard. His dogs freak the fuck out. He has three of them and they bark like they want to rip your throat out when you walk past. There's a gap in the fence where these caged Cujo psycho-beasts broke through in a desperate lung for the blood of some poor innocent leash-less dog-walker. Fuckers.

I remembered this sequence of events when I walked past the yard today, Asher fully leashed, and tried to discard some poo in the ally dumpster. As I stared into the eyes of the crazed creatures, I began to feel sorry for them. And all of the other dogs in South St. Louis that are permanently imprisoned in their back yards. Leash-Law never walks his dogs. He lives twenty feet from my house and I've never seen his dogs outside of his yard. I mean, the dude has four kids at the perfect age to walk their three dogs. Why don't you walk your dog Leash-dude?

South city folks love dogs. Not just one dog, but three or four. Between the house next door and the one right across the alley, there are a combined SEVEN dogs. All of them bark with passionate intensity at any movement. I'll be working in my backyard for hours and they will bark and bark until the neighbor sprays them with a hose. These dogs are never walked either.

I know we have more important matters to attend to with Israel on a genocidal rampage in Gaza, and the economy recovering from eight years of irresponsible conservatism, but this is something I really need to get off my chest. Dogs need to be walked. They need to be socialized. They should be taken to the park. They should be allowed to run around. Anyone who buys a dog just to imprison in a small backyard or chain to a tire should be sent to asshole rehab. Fucking oppressors.

So, the next time you cringe at the site of a leash-less dog, Dude-on-the-Corner, you better recognize. Not all dogs have been caged to the point of insanity. Chill the fuck out.