Today I Realized I Know a Lot About Politics

I have been a political junkie since shortly after George W. Bush and the Supreme Court stole the election from Al Gore.  I voted for Bush.  Had I failed to do so, he would still most certainly have been elected since no electoral college votes were going to go to Gore, so I don't have to feel too guilty about my vote having changed the outcome.  Within weeks of that election I already regretted my decision; and, in the process, I became almost (some folk would say I should leave out the word "almost") obsessed with what decisions were being made in our national and local political life.

The event that changed my life was 9/11/01 when Muslim SAUDI ARABIANS attacked the USA with airplanes killing nearly 3,000 people and destroying two landmarks.  Afterward then President Bush pushed us into a war with Afghanistan and its Taliban.  This despite the fact that no country has successfully fought a war in that region, except for the people of Afghanistan!  In spite of the fact that the terrorists who killed our people and damaged our emotional health as a nation were not from Afghanistan.  In spite of the fact that we couldn't even be sure that the man who claimed responsibility, Osama Bin Laden, was actually in Afghanistan.

Then the nationalistic warrior spirit (not the Spirit of the Prince of Peace whom so many Americans claim to follow) that ignored everything but vengeance, which is supposed to be God's according to those same folk who claim to follow that same Prince would also claim is in their book.  The Dixie Chicks were vilified before it was all over with for having some common sense and speaking their mind.  Muslims who previously had good relationships with their neighbors in the USA were suddenly in danger even in this place where we claim we have religious freedom.  The concept that diplomacy and/or limited action against the perpetrators themselves (including the planners) and not everyone who happened to be a right wing religious nut in Afghanistan and for whom that war became a recruiting tool for more religious nuts right up to today.

Anyone who challenged the warrior demon was called anti-American.  We even went to the point of attacking verbally our long-term allies, the French, by renaming the "French Fries" in the Capitol dining room "Freedom Fries."  That was one of the most stupid, time wasting of the many stupid, time wasting, fervor producing events of the day, too, with too many more to mention.

On top of that the American "conservatives" (which they are truly not but call themselves that) used their opportunity to continue the assault on the middle and lower classes, to enslave thousands of minorities in prison for minor offenses but making them vital tools for the Prison-Industrial Complex, and the list goes on and on because of what I consider to be the most devious and affective measures those so-called conservatives have used.  The corporate "news" media were complicit whether it was intentional or not, too, by not challenging the line of thought but just spouting it.

So today, I am looking forward to a probable victory by Barrack Hussein Obama for a second term as President of the United States.  I am following the news this morning on CBS when an event occurred I wouldn't have even noticed in 2000, but that I saw as instructional to those who don't see the ways that our thought patterns are being retrained by changing the meanings of words and phrases to mean something else entirely.

Obama surrogate Dee Dee Myers and Newt Gingrich were just on CBS this morning talking about the campaign. She did not challenge a completely false statement by Gingrich that may have won some votes for stupid people in Pennsylvania and elsewhere. Gingrich said that Romnmoney was concentrating in two areas where coal was a major industry and the "war on coal" was why he was there. Myers should have said something like, "Mr. Speaker, you KNOW there is NO war on coal." She sat silent instead. Myers did not say, "Mr. Speaker, what do you mean by a war on coal?"  at the very least.  Trying to keep the people of coal-producing areas and the miners themselves alive by environmental safety and mine safety is NOT a war on coal. It isn't even anti-coal for the most part. It is just plain good policy for the future of the people of that region and for the long-term continuance of humans on earth.

This is just one more example of the Republicans taking a word or concept that has one meaning and making it mean something else. Social Insur
ance becomes Entitlements, when much more money is lost and spent due to the corporations and very wealthy who almost all seem to believe that they are ENTITLED to pay less than the poor in percentages of income.  People who cannot find work and receive any kind of government assistance (even including Social Security and Medicare, more so Medicaid) are called lazy.  "Go get a job," they say while providing no jobs and blocking legislation that would provide jobs and improve the nation's infrastructure.

Teaching science and the Theory of Relativity becomes a war on religion; and we have states trying to teach religious doctrine (Creationism) as science in public schools to be "equal." (That is pure nonsense, of course. There is no such thing as creation "science." There is theology; but that isn't the same thing.)

Do you wash your hands? Then you believe in the germ theory. Just a theory, like evolution; but you believe it because it is true and because a scientist was smart enough to figure out the correlation between germs and disease.

Do you regularly fly around above the ground without an airplane or other device? That's because of the THEORY of gravity, which very few people would challenge, but still just a theory.

Choosing to treat all women equally by providing birth control as a part of their insurance coverage requirements becomes a war on religion, in spite of the fact that the majority of those whose religion believes that contraception is wrong use contraception anyway, and that the vast, vast majority of Americans believe in contraception as well.

Equal rights and responsibilities for gay people becomes a "War on Marriage."  There is even a little bit of anti-religion thrown into this mix because it is often (usually?) illegal for a church to perform a ceremony that resembles a marriage too much.  I know that was true when I was a pastor in Ohio.

So, when a major spokesperson for the Obama campaign fails to pick up on that and say something, I begin to think I have a future in TV "journalism" and a job with the next four years of the Obama presidency, in spite of the votes Myers lost with her failure to challenge Gingrich this morning.  We Progressives need to continue to learn how to utilize language change over the long haul to our own benefit.

Cuts in social welfare programs are often pro-death, anti-life actions.  

Expecting corporations and wealthy individuals to pay the same percentage of Social Security and Medicare taxes as the "underclass" is not a war on the wealthy.  It is taking away one of their entitlements.  (BTW, Social Security would be solvent in perpetuity if that one change were made in how it is funded and everyone paid that 8.5-15% (approximately) for their Social Security INSURANCE>)

The so-called pro-life people are almost always only pro-fetus, which is what I call them since they would let the baby starve to death after they're born for a day or three.  Most of them are also pro-war and don't equate our execution of innocent bystanders by drones in other countries as genocide but as "part of the cost of war."

Get out there and vote today.  But vote for someone who is, overall, making a positive long-term difference in the world and in the United States of America.  Don't let the ignorant rhetoric grab you on the way there.  Vote for the better candidate who is most likely to protect those whom Jesus talked about.  Then let the so-called Christian pro-war people learn the language of love.


Rick Santorum Can't Possibly Be As Ignorant As He Sounds

I have work I need to do; but I keep thinking about how ignorant Rick Santorum sounds when he makes any statement about theology or the Bible.

Surely he's just telling lies, because he cannot believe that his "biblical" theology is any different than the president's "biblical" theology. Both of them are based in their views of the Bible; and both of them are somewhat based in a "pick and choose" theological framework.

Santorum likely does not believe in the Biblical prescription for stoning adulterers or he'd have to stone his current wife if stories are true about her previous relationship(s) and this in light of the Bible's story about God telling Hosea to marry a prostitute (whore). Which one does Santorum actually believe is biblical?

I doubt if Santorum has realized that, when we talk about the Biblical foundation for so-called biblical creationism that there are TWO stories of the creation in those first few chapters of the Bible, that at least some of those stories in the first 11 chapters of Genesis are found in other societies with sometimes vastly different details, that Jesus (since Santorum is a so-called Christian himself) never said one word about homosexuality, gay relationships, or much of Santorum's ignorant platform but instead spoke strongly against divorce. (There are too many divorced people for Santorum to pick on them, I suppose; and, besides that, he is technically, from the First Testament's description of marriage, married to a divorced woman.)

There are literally hundreds of other biblical "commandments" that Santorum ignores because this isn't a pre-Jesus world, or a pre-science world either. Like literally everyone he takes the words in the Bible and THEOLOGIZES about them. I believe his theology is stupid theology; but I don't even believe he believes what he says when theologizing. In the midst of his claim to be a Christian while attempting to live outside the New Testament Gospels for the most part, we have just two lines in the Bible that should be among those he should quote:

"Love one another as I have loved you." "This is my commandment, that you love one another." (Just in case you don't know, these, according to the scriptures, were things Jesus said.)

Now you can THEOLOGIZE about what those two sentences mean; but it isn't biblical theology any more than Santorum's concept that birth control is sin nor than that the instant sperm and egg unite we have a complete human being, nor that the Bible even defines marriage as it occurs today.

I am sick of hate filled people like Santorum, who probably has a lot of self loathing going on that he is trying to overcome, speaking for the Christian Church.

For now, though, I had to get this out. My brothers and sisters whose skin color is and was dark had the Bible used against them for literally centuries from the very same perspective of biblical theology Santorum uses. Women were seen as chattel for centuries based on the very same biblical theology Santorum uses. I cannot let my gay, bisexual, or transgendered brothers and sisters continue to be treated as not quite citizens without speaking out. I cannot let his inconsistencies of theology go unchallenged.

For him to claim that Obama is not a Christian while acting hateful toward his own President
(1 Peter 2:13-15) "Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority, or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right. For such is the will of God that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men."

Jesus deferred to authorities when asked about a coin. Santorum acts as though he believes his ignorant theology is better than Jesus', apparently.

There are Facebook friends of mine who are much more able to write eloquently about the general topic I have written about above: (D. Miller or A. Gibson or N. Kemper, are you reading this?) I'll post their responses should they respond.

For now, though, I cannot let Santorum or anyone else act as though his style of theology isn't what helped to keep my dark-skinned brothers and sisters enslaved and considered to be less than human for hundreds of years in this country. I cannot pretend that Santorum's style of theology helped to keep my sisters of every race held as chattel for thousands of years, that his "biblical" theology is any more than, well, theology.

And, finally, this: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion."

Santorum can claim what he wants to claim; but the truth is that he wants to establish a particular type of religious doctrine on the people of the United States. The rules may be different in Islam; but it is no different from those who claim that Muslims would force us to live under Sharia Law.

If Santorum were to become president of the United States I would have little choice but to try to find a way to move to a different country where the people live in the 21st century, not the 13th century.