Monday, May 21, 2007

30 Vitally Important Things Republicans Haven't Mentioned in Debates

After two republican debates, 10 candidates have spoken for three hours about a lot of mostly irrelevant topics with mostly immature, condescending talking points designed to raise emotions while keeping intelligence and insight as far away from the stage as possible.

While they argue about every stem-cell, fighting-them-over-there, 9/11, abortive surge they can stir up, actual, real topics that matter to actual, real Americans are being ignored.

Just off the top of my head, I came up with these 30 as-yet unmentioned topics affecting more than just a few Americans.

1 - Healthcare and 50 million uninsured Americans.

2 - Hurricane Katrina and the (lack of) rebuilding in New Orleans and the Gulf Coast due to lack of promised funding. When democrats added it to the Iraq Accountability Act to further fund George W. Bush’s $560 billion venture in Iraq, Bush called it “pork”.

3 - Upgrades to securing the homeland, or, indeed, any homeland security proposals.

4 - Gas prices and oil company profits both at record levels.

5 - Corrrecting global warming and the environment.

6 - Energy production that doesn’t profit oil companies or pollute the planet (i.e. solar, wind, etc.).

7 - Numerous republican tax cuts that overwhelmingly favored the upper one percent.

8 - A $9 TRILLION (by Election Day 2008) republican national debt (which means that 100 million taxpayers each owe $90,000 to pay back what George W. Bush has borrowed so far - if no further anticipated debt or interest were to accrue).

9 - Underfunding education.

10 - Increasing gun violence.

11 - Alberto Gonzales (in conjunction with Karl Rove, Dick Cheney and George W. Bush) and his illegal and/or unethical actions as White House Council to the President.

12 - Alberto Gonzales (in conjunction with Karl Rove, Dick Cheney and George W. Bush) and his illegal and/or unethical actions as Attorney General.

13 - Scooter Libby (in conjunction with Karl Rove, Dick Cheney and George W. Bush) and the outing of a covert CIA operative and undercover program to prevent the truth from getting out about Iraq, Saddam Hussein, and the complete lack of a nuclear program or weapons of mass destruction.

14 - How three prior escalations in Iraq have failed, and what the backup plan is if/when the newest one doesn't work as they promised.

15 - How every escalation in Iraq has been prefaced with a give-it-90-days/six-months promise, but has never been addressed when the 90 days/six months ends.

16 - Unbid contracts in Iraq for companies such as Haliburton, which will pay a huge sum of money to Dick Cheney upon his leaving the vice-presidency in January 2009.

17 - Healthcare for veterans and wounded American military defeated by the republican Congress in April 2005.

18 - Conditions for families of military.

19 - The lack of a reserve military force.

20 - The lack of desert training for troops deployed to the Middle East.

21 - The lack of proper equipment, such as vehicle and body armor, night vision, helmet liners, and radio communication for military.

22 - The depletion of states’ national guard units.

23 - Substandard military pay.

24 - George W. Bush's attempts of raiding Social Security to help pay for Iraq. (Maybe Al Gore's "Social Security lockbox" phrase wasn't so silly after all.)

25 - George W. Bush's proposed Social Security plan involving gambling with the funds on stock market investments (after the first $2.2 TRILLION go to the wealthiest Americans). I guess he doesn't quite understand that Social Security is an insurance plan, not a pension plan.

26 - The administration's rejection of cheaper generic drugs for the elderly's Medicare.

27 - The administration's rejection of the ability to negotiate volume discounts on drugs for the elderly's Medicare.

28 - The administration's rejection of cheaper drugs from Canada for the elderly's Medicare.

29 - Richard Nixon (hey, they really like talking about other dead Republican presidents - Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford, and, back when republicans were the progressive party, Abraham Lincoln).

30 - George W. Bush. Have you noticed? They're afraid to even say his name having mentioned it only once in each debate.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Jerry Falwell has made this world a better place... that he has left it.

To paraphrase an old joke it is said that when someone has died you should only say good.

Jerry Falwell died today. Good.

Besides conning and stealing hundreds of millions of dollars from those who would turn to him for prayerful support, Falwell also promoted hatred of virtually every demographic that was non-male, non-White, non-heterosexual, or non-Christian (the right kind of Christian - not the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. type of Christian who believed that God loved all his children equally).

He supported segregation.
He supported apartheid.
He blamed everything from AIDS to the 9/11 attacks on non-males, non-Whites, non-heterosexuals, and non-Christians (or the wrong kind of Christians).

And he did it all in the name of God who he said committed these acts against humans out of anger and revenge.

If God is omnipotent, why would he be subject to primitive human emotions such as anger and revenge? If God is all-loving, why would he perform such acts of hatred against his children?

No, the real hatred, anger, and revenge came from within the heart and mind of Jerry Falwell - a criminal, bigoted, and evil man who may now have a lot of explaining to do to a certain supreme being.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Move Over Jack Taylor, Here Comes Barry Bonds

You're probably thinking that headline is a mistake. Surely, you surmise, I meant to say, “Move Over Hank Aaron, Here Comes Barry Bonds”. It is, after all, Hank Aaron whose career Home Run record Barry Bonds will soon be breaking.

No, I meant Jack Taylor – the holder of the single most unbreakable record in major league baseball although that’s not the reason for the comparison.

You probably haven’t heard of Jack Taylor because, due to changes in the conditions of the game, his record is now almost meaningless just like the career Home Run record is about to be.

Taylor pitched in the major leagues for 10 years in the first decade of the 20th century, mostly for the Chicago Cubs, then a powerhouse team.

Four years Taylor won 20 games, but that’s not his record. He was a decent enough hitter that he even played 15 games at 3B, but that’s not his record.

His unequaled feat is that from 1901 to 1906 Jack Taylor pitched 185 consecutive Complete Games.

As an addendum to that record, Jack Taylor also holds the record for the highest percentage of career Complete Games pitched at 97.2% (278 Complete Games out of 286 total Games Pitched).

So why isn’t Jack Taylor in the Hall of Fame? Why isn’t the best pitcher award called the Jack Taylor Award? Why isn’t Jack Taylor touted for the pitching ironman record the way Cal Ripken, Jr. and Lou Gehrig are held up today as the top two all-time record holders for Consecutive Games played by position players?

After all, Taylor TWICE pitched both halves of a doubleheader, and once eclipsed that by pitching a complete game in a 19-inning extra-inning affair.

But we don’t celebrate Taylor, a fine pitcher of his day, for his records because almost no one pitches Complete Games today. The record has become a yawn. Pitchers today face conditions far different from 100 years ago.

Pitchers today throw harder to be more effective while they’re in the game. Pitchers 100 years ago threw more for movement and location, but saved something on their velocity so they could go longer in games. The ball wasn't wound as tightly so Home Runs were much less common in the dead-ball era before 1919.

Rosters today carry 10 to 12 pitchers per game to allow for frequent replacements. Rosters 100 years ago carried six or seven pitchers because there wasn’t enough talent to go around.

The last time a pitcher threw as many as four consecutive Complete Games was Roy Halladay in 2003. Halladay would have had to do that 45 more times in a row to get close to Taylor.

Likewise, the conditions of the game played by Barry Bonds are completely different from those played by Hank Aaron.

Bonds has never denied the accusations of two San Francisco Chronicle reporters who wrote a book detailing illegal cheating by Bonds with steroid and Human Growth Hormone (HGH) abuse.

If you think basbeall's steroid and HGH cheating are all in the past, think again. Human Growth Hormone is STILL NOT TESTED by Major League Baseball.

In 2006, Barry Bonds announced he was going to play for the United States in the World Baseball Classic tournament. He pulled out shortly after the tournament announced it would test for Human Growth Hormone.

From the time Hank Aaron came up in the 1950s, and throughout his brilliant career into the 1970s, he never had breakthrough years going from 20 home runs to 70 home runs in a season. Aaron never gained 40 pounds of pure muscle. Aaron never went from a size 10 shoe to a size 13½. Aaron never gained several hat sizes.

Aaron relied on great talent and hard work. Aaron was able to face hateful and racist remarks from Babe Ruth admirers with quiet dignity and self-respect when he eclispsed the Ruth's career Home Run mark.

Accusations against Bonds of wife-cheating, tax-cheating, and baseball-cheating combined with his disdain for the media and fans have long since claimed any respect due from either himself or from those who love the game.

It bears repeating. Human Growth Hormone is STILL NOT TESTED by Major League Baseball.

Records are made to be broken, and the falling of Aaron’s mark was inevitable. As the career Home Run record is overcome by Barry Bonds, we don’t mourn the passing of the memories of Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron, or their names in past record books.

What we mourn is the passing of the formerly time-honored record’s importance.

Barry Bonds has not only diminished the value of this once-revered record, but he has also become as relevant as Jack Taylor, the holder of a record that just doesn’t mean as much anymore.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Absolutely, Unbelievbaly TRUE Political News!!!!

I'm not kidding. No satire this time. These U.S. political news stories from this week are 100 percent TRUE!

1. Arab tourists spend $12 Billion a year traveling abroad. Got that? $12 BILLION! These aren't militant Islamic extremists I'm talking about. These are law abiding, rank and file citizens just like you and me, except they spend a LOT of money traveling abroad. This week, Dubai hosted a foreign travel tourism convention where representatives from other countries were able to show off how wonderful it is to travel to their countries. Instead of sending promoters for the United States, U.S. officials sent two guys from the Homeland Security office who were there to explain to potential visitors how they'd be fingerprinted and tracked upon their entrance into the United States! The stupidity of discrimination and prejudice is ASTOUNDING.

2. At Thursday night's Republican presidential debate, Tommy Thompson actually said employers should be allowed to discriminate against workers who were gay. One wonders if he would also allow employers to discriminate against workers who were straight, but adulterers. Would he have employment applications exploring one's sexual preferences and conduct, or perhaps simply upside-down pink triangle patches so we can identify those people at a glance? I'm sure the evangelically-preferred party would have no problem with that considering that John McCain, Rudy Giuliani, and Newt Gingrich have a history of eight divorces between them, mistresses living with them in the house along with their minor children (who have now become of age and disowned the father, and vice versa), an ex-wife first finding about their impending divorce when seeing it announced on television, an ex-wife having to sign divorce papers while dying of cancer in her hospital bed, and even a marriage to a cousin!

3. Despite a sitting, two-term president from the same party, the republican candidates went to great extremes not to mention George W. Bush's name. In 90 minutes, the candidates mentioned the president's name only once. Sen. Sam Brownback said,"I'd leave that up to President Bush" when asked about pardoning Dick Cheney's senior deputy Scooter Libby who was found guilty on four counts of obstructing justice and lying while trying to cover up for the outing of undercover CIA agent Valerie Plame thus destroying years of covert CIA work in order to prevent the American people from knowing that the republicans were misleading them about any threat from Iraq in the run-up to the invasion. On the other hand, they mentioned the late Ronald Reagan's name an astounding 19 times!

4. Three republican candidates actually admitted to not believing in evolution - Sam Brownback, Mike Huckabee, and Tom Tancredo. I wonder if they believe in that whole "Earth revolves around the Sun" theory.

And, like, my sneak preview predicted, the republicans had a lot of hate-speach against Mexicans, gays, women, etc., although maybe not in the exact words I predicted. Still, the evidence of Alzheimer's Disease among the candidates was very Reaganesque.