Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Some things just aren't funny.

If the eyes are the windows to the soul, the sense of humor is the chimney. That's how I first knew there was something terribly wrong with then-candidate George W. Bush. I heard he mocked Karla Faye Tucker (the born-again Christian woman on death row) when he was governor of Texas and could have granted her a stay of execution. With pursed lips and I assume a falsetto he mimicked her plea for mercy to reporter Tucker Carlson: "Please ... don't kill me!"

That told me all I cared to know about Bush and his respect for human life and the awesome responsibility of his office.

But other Americans didn't pick up on that clue and enough of them voted for the guy to allow him to credibly steal the presidency. There was a minor skirmish involved with that, which prompted him to quip, "If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator (chuckle, chuckle)."

Again, what kind of person would say that? Someone you'd trust with your money, your life, your children's lives? I mean, would you buy a used car from someone who joked, "What do I have to do to get you to sign for this thing, hold a gun to your head? (heh, heh, heh)."

Of course the jokes didn't stop there, Bush was just getting warmed up. When 9-11 happened, Bush made light of the fact that he said he would never send the budget into a deficit unless we were at war, in a recession, or experiencing a national emergency. "Lucky me," he joked, "I hit the trifecta."

So we went to war, first with Afghanistan, and then with Iraq on the pretext that it was harboring Weapons of Mass Destruction. We see from the Downing Street Memo Bush *knew* the evidence supporting his claim about Iraqi WMD's was phony. Yet this man somehow had the tactlessness to joke about looking for them in a 2004 National Press Club dinner slide show. (Looking under a desk) "Nope, no Weapons of Mass Destruction there (yuk, yuk)!"

Considering the number of human lives and limbs lost at that point, that's one cold-blooded motherfucker.

I could go on and on about Bush's frighteningly inappropriate jokes that underscore his lack of concern about human life the responsibility he's been entrusted with -- but the sad thing now is that we're seeing the same kind of garbage coming from Republican presidential nominee John McCain and his potential running mate Mike Huckabee. Hmmm. Jokes about bombing entire countries and the assasination of the apparent Democratic presidential nominee. Two horrendous yet disturbingly plausible possibilities.

To paraphrase Stephanie Miller, sometimes you have to laugh, otherwise you'd just cry all day.

Monday, May 12, 2008

What I've been doing lately

Yesterday was a special 9-11 truth action day in San Francisco -- we hosted a West Coast Convergence with people as far away as Seattle, L.A., Colorado and Michigan. We had a parade both Saturday and Sunday, but I think overall we actually reached more people on Saturday because we hung around a much busier location than Golden Gate Park. I met a lot of wonderful people there, as well as familiar friends from the Bay Area -- including Carol Brouillet, printer of the "deception dollar." Everybody, please send healing thoughts and prayers Carol's way. She is a powerful force for truth, hope and change, but she's facing some serious health issues right now, which she mentions on her blog.

I've also been doing a lot of volunteering for Cindy Sheehan's congressional campaign against Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. We need 10,000 signatures from San Francisco voters to get Cindy on the ballot as an Independent -- no easy task. If you just happen to be a San Francisco voter in Pelosi's district, by all means come on down to our office at 1260 Mission Street and sign our petition -- better yet, help us circulate the petition to your friends. Let's get war funding OFF the table and impeachment (of Cheney and Bush) ON the table!

Another reason I don't like Hillary

I got this clip from this article on Daily Kos. I know the guy with the banner -- he's the Jes who wrote this earlier entry on my blog. The banner says "Obliterate Iran? Apologize!" (referring to Clinton's earlier remarks that the US would obliterate Iran if it dared attack Israel)

"Well, I certainly hope he didn't step on any of the cookies and the cakes ..."

This from a woman with no qualms about nuking a country with 71 million men, women and children.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Some hopeful news

Sami al-Haj, the Al Jazeera cameraman who I mentioned in this post, was finally released from Guantanamo Bay Prison after being held for 6 years without charge [http://www.alternet.org/rights/84285/]. For all those who sent positive thoughts and prayers out to this man, thank you. You never know what might tip the balance between life or death, months ago this man had all but given up hope.

May 1st the International Longshore and Warehouse Union [ILWU] shut down every port on America's West Coast to protest the Iraq War. This is major news. Yet the media seems to be ignoring it. This is the kind of power that can reclaim America for her people. Imagine all the truckers, dockworkers, laborers and professionals demanding a government responsive to the needs and will of everyday workers ... instead of throwing millions of their hard-earned tax dollars down a black hole called Iraq, scoring billions for oil companies and war profiteers. Our country is being dismantled and sold to the highest bidder. The ILWU knows this and they took the first step towards an effective remedy this May Day. Solidarity!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Videos for the sentimental

Both of these videos brought tears to my eyes, though they require the suspension of any cynicism:

If I Had One Prayer (music video)

Elephant Paints Self-Portrait (at first I was so floored by this animal's painting I knew it just had to be a hoax -- I watched carefully to see if the video wasn't done with particularly clever editing and puppetry. Then the camera backed away a bit and I had to admit I don't see how they could have faked this. If what we consider a "beast of burden" is capable of such a beautiful piece, what does that say about how we should be treating them?)