Sunday, December 12, 2004


That headline has nothing directly to do with this post, it's just a bumper sticker I thought of this morning. Hell, I'm already nervous enough about the bumper stickers I already have on the back of my car. I might not feel that way had my car not been vandalized several times during the election because of my Kerry stickers. If nothing else, Homeland Security officials can use them to take note of who they need to dispose of...

Oh well, I just wanted to write in since I've gotten a new link or two and because I do miss writing in the blog. With the election over, it feels like there's not much to work toward, but in fact the opposite is true. Started reading "Don't Think Of An Elephant" by George Lakoff. It's actually pretty perceptive, but so far, all I've been reading is how progressives/liberals can't communicate as effectively as the right.

The Problem

Lakoff seems to be arguing (and I say "seems" because I haven't finished the book yet) that if progressives would only use the right words and what he calls the right "frames," we can take back America. I sure hope so, but I kind of have my doubts...and here's why.

It's said pretty well in an Arianna Huffington column that she put out a few weeks before the election. She said that the Repubes were appealing to the lizard part of peoples' brains to motivate them to vote for the Terrorist-In-Chief. Meaning of course, that their appeal was to the primitive, base part of people's psyches. And that is certainly true and that's why I fear that no amount of appeal to peoples' good sides is going to pay off for long. Because most people are intuitively racist and sexist and mean and bitter and the Repubes know that and want to use it to the fullest.

I do recommend reading the book, though, and I hope I'm convinced.

A Few Other Things

1. Can we please end this war? Not only am I getting very tired of American and Iraqi casualties, I'm sick to death of the yellow ribbon stickers and all their different varieties. The people who put these stickers on their cars mean well, but they really just demonstrate the following point...

2. Since when did being an American make you a perfect, guileless, creature of unending love and kindness? The reason I ask this is because in conversations with my parents and others,in conversations between pundits on TV, in the underlying assumptions of news stories and on and on, there is this sense that no person who is American would ever intentionally do anything wrong.

For example, the guy who killed the Iraqi with a shot to the head while the cameras were rolling is not a bad guy, he's just in the heat of battle. Yeah? How come none of the other soldiers freaked out and shot the Iraqi?

For example, how come the media, influenced by John O'Neill and his ilk, painted the soldiers in Vietnam as saintly do-gooders, when many soldiers admitted to atrocities and studies have shown that they happened?

Why does my father assume that George W. Bush is among the purest of the pure because he's the freaking President of the God-fearing nation of America when his career in oil and politics is so clearly linked to the saintly nation of Saudi Arabia?

I don't know the answer to these questions, except to say that we've developed a severe case of the "It can't happen here" syndrome. Even as American citizens are held incommunicado for months without being charged, and people are penned into "free speech" zones during important civic events, and government workers are subjected to secret background checks and fired with no explanation and no chance of appeal, or an un-elected president takes us to war on the basis of lies, we all try to comfort ourselves with the idea that it's only an anomaly, or we don't know all the facts, or that America is just not the kind of place where such things happen.

Wake The FUCK Up

Well, if you think that way, wake up, would you? You're helping to ruin it for everybody by allowing this crap to go on. Please think for yourself, please question what your preacher tells you, what your teacher tells you, what your mommy and daddy tell you, what your boss tells you and so forth.

OK, two more is a list of some evil Americans to prove that just because one is a citizen of the U.S., one can still do bad things:

Al Capone
John Gotti
Timothy McVeigh
Jeffrey Dahmer
Eric Harris
Dylan Klebold
John Mohammed
Charles Manson
and so on...

Ben Franklin
Watched the History Channel specials on Ben Franklin. I didn't know he invented the glass harmonica. I didn't know he consorted with hookers and had a child with one. But most importantly, I never knew that he quit working in his early 40s because he felt he had enough money and wanted to pursue other things. That is amazing--he had sex with whores, yet he wasn't a whore himself. Also, his inventions like bifocals, the lightning rod and the Franklin stove were never patented by him--he never made a dime from exclusive rights to them. He did it just to help the world and to contribute to the ages. If that doesn't refute Bill O'Reilly in this post and vindicate what I said, I don't know what does (scroll down to "Incentive Theft")...

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