Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Newt, You Scumbag

Guest posting from my husband...

Newt, you scumbag. When my wife told me that Newt Gingrich had said in an interview that we were involved in World War III and that the President should tell the American people as much, I thought: “Here is another example of the nut-job foreign policy of the neo-conservatives."

People like Dick Cheney think that a 1% chance of something happening is equivalent to a guarantee that that event will occur. For example, if there is a 1% chance that a meteor will strike the Earth and destroy all life, Cheney, et al, regard this as a certainty, and would argue that America should take pre-emptive action against said meteor.

What I failed to realize initially is the total “scum-baggery” of people like Newt Gingrich and their willingness to go to any length to amass power and to maintain that power. I didn’t realize that he was also quoted as saying that such a message to the American people would be a political “slam-dunk” for the Republicans. In retrospect, this was mental laziness and poor memory on my part.

The recent past is jam-packed with examples.

1. Bush and his associates (Cheney, Wolfowitz ,Gingrich, and more) managed to paint themselves as modern day warriors and patriots even though all found various escape routes from service in Vietnam. At the same time, they derided John Kerry, Max Cleland, John Murtha, and even John McCain as somehow less than patriotic, as liars, as mentally unstable, and as akin to terrorists. All of the aformentioned derided individuals did serve in Vietnam, were highly decorated and some (Cleland) were maimed by the experience.

2. Although there wasn’t a shred of hard evidence to support the changes in the terror alert status, the Bush administration was quick to raise and lower the status as it suited their political needs. President needs a little bump in his ratings. Okay: “We have unspecified information that unspecified terrorists will use unspecified means to attack an unspecified target at an unspecified time... go about your normal lives.” There’s no protection there, only fear-mongering.

3. The House of Representatives managed to renew the Voting Rights Act, a piece of legislation that should be strengthened and should have been a shoe-in. It took a long time, a lot of debate, and finally it passed although 33 Republicans voted against it, and the President has remained luke-warm and noncommittal. Let’s stoke up racial prejudice in the South.

The list goes on. Failure to help the victims of Katrina, incredible graft in the reconstruction of Iraq (destroyed by an unnecessary and politically-driven war) and Afghanistan (a war of inconvenience fought to prepare the American people for Iraq), banning gay marriage, imposing the Ten Commandments (generally a good set of rules, not often followed by Gingrich, Bush and Co.) on us through display at government offices, and many, many more.

So why not shout “World War III!” and use it to your political advantage? They’ve tried other things with varying degrees of success. Scum bags. There are problems in the world right now. The Arab-Israeli conflict is intensifying. The North Koreans are making new missiles. The Iranians want to enrich uranium. These should not, however, be the stuff of political advantage. They should be solved, mediated and put to rest.

I hope that the American people have had enough of the scare tactics of the Republican Party and its standard-bearers like Newt Gingrich. I hope they realize how their dreams and lives have been sold out to enrich and empower an elite few. I hope that Democrats will call the kettle black. Point out the bullshit of the current administration, the moral hollowness of the authors of the Contract with America, and point to the real issues. The Democrats have started to focus on the minimum wage and poverty. It’s about damn time.

Everyone needs to remember Bob Dylan’s song of the 1960s, Masters of War, and tell those in power:
You've thrown the worst fear
That can ever be hurled
Fear to bring children
Into the world
For threatening my baby
Unborn and unnamed
You ain't worth the blood
That runs in your veins

and send them to the unemployment line.

-Steelworker’s Son


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