I’m not racist!

A woman on Facebook tried to prove that she wasn’t racist (on a page filled with racist anti-Obama memes) because she had a black boyfriend. My response:

I’m not interested in your credentials. I’m simply mocking you and every follower of this page for what you know in your ‘ittle-bitty soul has been vile, mean, petty, and racist epithets and memes directed toward Obama and his family. You really want me to start digging up the various “ape in heels” comments? You associate yourself with racists, so I don’t give a dime who your boyfriend is. You truck with foul people and that makes you their ilk.

Period.

Security bombs

Americans are spoiled whiney babies who don’t realize how good they have it, how awesome and efficient and well-organized American civilization really is.

And then reality comes along to make my point in a very sad way. As people bitch and moan and complain about long lines at airport security, another passenger plane falls victim to terrorism.

Since 9-11, no plane originating on American soil has suffered a terrorist attack. I just wanted to mention that, Please feel free to resume your bitching about lines at airports.

Heaven Cent

I stumbled across a fascinating concept today. No where in the Bible–ABSOLUTELY NO WHERE–does it say we go to “heaven” when we die.

Christian preachers and priests are advertising a promise that neither God nor the Bible ever made.

Now, John 3:16 promises everlasting life, but what does that mean? Obviously it does not mean physical immortality since pretty much everyone who has ever lived has also eventually died, Highlander movies and tv series notwithstanding.

Logically, then, it must mean everlasting life of the soul. But the Bible never confirms this. Check it out yourself. The closest it comes is a far reaching metaphor in John 14:2, which says “In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.” That’s it? That’s what 2000 years of Christians have pinned their hopes on? It doesn’t even really say anything.

Take this, and the fact that there is in fact no contemporary original evidence that Jesus ever existed, and what you get may be the biggest con job in history. Bigger even than the Mormons and Scientologists!!!

States Rights

Throughout the history of the United States the assertion of states’ rights has boiled down to one element: a state’s right to treat its own people like shit without interference by the federal government. As far as I know, no state has yet taken up arms, literally or figuratively, for the right to treat its citizens better, to improve working conditions, wages, or access to health care. No. The only right that states have ever proven that they are willing to kill for is the right to enslave their own citizens.

Ignorance as virtue

I came upon a blog post by Phil Plait, the Bad Astronomer about an unfortunate comment by aspiring presidential candidate Marco Rubio.

Rubio is a rising star in the Tea-Republican Party, a self-made son of Cuban immigrants who fled from Fidel Castro’s regime (oh wait, no they didn’t; he made that up) for a better life in America.  There is a whiff of a birther conspiracy because Rubio’s parents were not naturalized until after he was born.  I doubt it will amount to much unless he actually gets close to the brass ring of a nomination, and then it will first be used by one of his Republican rivals.

But my focus is not on his credentials, but on his character.  He is clearly unwilling to contradict TP dogma about creationism, and it is equally clear that he is smart and knows both the scientific (i.e. correct) answer and the Biblical literalist answer.  This is sad on so many levels.

There is a political party with significant influence over the GOP that denies the reality of science.  They have taken the concept of faith and turned it into a virtue of ignorance.  And they are lifting up as one of their standard bearers a man who lacks the strength of his convictions to either embrace or to reject their dogma.

And thus you have the spectacle of an educated man who understands the issue but is unwilling to face it, a man who furthermore is being embraced and uplifted by a constituency that he may (or may not!) agree with, and a man who has no problems accepting their approbations and donations and votes even as he dodges one of their pet issues.  In other words, he is using the TP and the conservative Cuban zeitgeist of Florida as a boost to political power.

One wonders if Marco Rubio actually, honestly, believes in anything except the need to dodge direct answers to direct questions.

Updated my “About” page

Greetings, Wanderer.  I am Archfiend Maleficus.

I like to call myself a “moderate extremist”.

I have been, over the course of my life, a Republican, a Libertarian, and a Democrat; a conservative, an anarchist, and a liberal; a fundamentalist Southern Baptist Christian, a Buddhist, a pagan, and an atheist.

I have, literally, been on both sides of just about every debatable topic I’ve ever encountered.  And I am articulate and open-minded enough to take a “Devil’s Advocate” approach to just about any topic as well.

One of my favorite journalists, Hugh Downs, once said in regards to the divisiveness of politics: “An eagle needs both a right wing and a left wing to fly straight.”  I don’t know if he got the quote from elsewhere, but for now I can attribute it to him.  It’s a nugget of wisdom I have never forgotten.

In the same vein, the science fiction writer Robert A. Heinlein once wrote: “No one is the villain of their own story.”

I will not belabor the point.  There is no “right” side to most arguments.  Everyone thinks they are “right” in their opinions, else they would not have opinions.

The point is, the political orcs who demonize the opposition are the real threat to our republic.  The answers to political problems must come from the crucible of opposing ideas, meaning one ingredient must always be compromise.  The so-called virtue of the refusal to compromise, when exercised in the arena of politics, is actually immoral, and toxic to the republic.

I have an agenda.

We all do.  My agenda is to hammer some sense into the intransigent foot soldiers who participate in political dialogue like it is a blood sport.  Now, I may be harder on the right than the left, but that is because I currently see the greatest threat to our republic as the authoritarian religious right and their effort to remarry politics and theology.  “Social conservatives” have their own agenda, to impose their own subjective morality on society, and such a utopia is incompatible with a free, democratic system of government.

 

BREAD

George W. Bush gave the lowest 20% of tax payers an annual tax cut of $74. That was very kind of him. $74 a year is about $6 more a month, which would buy an extra 4 loaves of bread a month, 1 a week. An extra loaf of bread a week. GWB, you are so compassionate!

At the same time, GWB gave the highest 20% of tax payers an annual reduction of $8,421. That equates to an extra 468 loaves of bread per month, or 117 loaves per week! That’s a lot of bread! So he gave the richest 20% of people 117 times more “relief” than he gave to the poorest, JUST BECAUSE they made more money. What is “fair” about that?

Also, the GWB tax cuts gave to the highest 1% of tax payers an annual reduction of $97,028, which equates to 1,348 extra loaves of bread per week. So, GWB gave to the very richest people in the country 1348 times more “relief” than he gave to the poorest, JUST BECAUSE they were the very richest people in the country. What is “fair” about that? That seems like the opposite of fair to me.

And now GOP lawmakers are fighting tooth and nail against Obama’s efforts to make sure the lower and middle classes are able to to keep their extra bread, so that the sad, struggling rich can continue to afford to put an extra 1348 loaves of bread per week on the table for their starving families. What the GOP has lost in morality it seems to have made up for in insanity.

They want to push the entire nation over the fiscal cliff in order to save that extra bread for the richest of the rich.

http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/numbers/displayatab.cfm?Docid=1860&DocTypeID=2