Friday, April 25, 2008

Harriet Beecher Stowe agreed with Jeremiah Wright

Republicans and their fellow travelers seem profoundly insulted that Rev. Jeremiah Wright would say "God damn America" for our treatment of blacks, but Harriet Beecher Stowe, the author of Uncle Tom's Cabin, a book that arguably accelerated the movement against slavery and therefore helped put Abraham Lincoln, the first Republican president in office, agreed with Wright.

These are the words she closes her anti-slavery novel Uncle Tom's Cabin with:

This is an age of the world when nations are trembling and convulsed. A mighty influence is abroad, surging and heaving the world, as with an earthquake. And is America safe? Every nation that carries in its bosom great and unredressed injustice has in it the elements of this last convulsion.

For what is this mighty influence thus rousing in all nations and languages those groanings that cannot be uttered, for man's freedom and equality?

O, Church of Christ, read the signs of the times! Is not this power the spirit of HIM whose kingdom is yet to come, and whose will to be done on earth as it is in heaven?

But who may abide the day of his appearing? "For that day shall burn as an oven: and he shall appear as a swift witness against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger in his right: and he shall break in pieces the oppressor."

Are not these dread words for a nation bearing in her bosom so mighty an injustice? Christians! every time that you pray that the kingdom of Christ may come, can you forget that prophecy associates, in dread fellowship, the day of vengeance with the year of his redeemed?

A day of grace is yet held out to us. Both North and South have been guilty before God; and the Christian church has a heavy account to answer. Not by combining together, to protect injustice and cruelty, and making a common capital of sin, is this Union to be saved,—but by repentance, justice and mercy; for, not surer is the eternal law by which the millstone sinks in the ocean, than that stronger law, by which injustice and cruelty shall bring on nations the wrath of Almighty God!

Uncle Tom's Cabin

Arguably, God did damn America for slavery. More Americans died in the Civil War than any war until World War II, and far more died as a percentage of the population than any war before or since.

Slavery may have ended 150 years ago, but the Jim Crow period of discrimination against blacks ended a mere 43 years ago when Rev. Wright was already an adult, and recently enough that nearly every politician in Washington can remember those days. Are we so certain that we are without sin that Wright's words are an indictment of him rather than of us and the injustices we allow to continue?

When a family goes bankrupt to pay the hospital bills that keep their child alive, or is turned out of their house because of the fine print in a mortgage, or can't afford to send their child to college so they send him to war, a war that takes the lives of a million people who had no means to be a threat to us, all so the wealthy could get wealthier, those are just the kind of injustices Stowe had in mind.

None of this will trouble those on the right because their religion has been carefully crafted to not interfere with making a buck.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Biden's pathetically small nod to reality won't end the war

Many anti-war blogs and websites are praising Sen. Joe Biden for asking the ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker, whether there was more al Qaeda in Iraq or Afghanistan, and therefore which location is it more important to eliminate them. Crocker was forced to acknowledge that 2+2=4, that al Qaeda is more concentrated on the Afghan Pakistan border.

Big fucking deal.

What a pathetic, pyrrhic victory.

Until he and other Democratic "leaders" in Congress hits big oil’s role in pushing for war & Iraq Oil Theft Law, he is just another worthless hack, pointing out an internal flaw in the Bush propaganda that any fifth grader with decent short term memory could have identified.

Biden is pushing for the division of Iraq on ethnic lines, something the vast majority of Iraqis don’t want, and when given a chance to attack the hydrocarbon law Bush is forcing on the Iraqis that gives 88% of their oil income to big oil companies, Biden either feigned ignorance or actually believed the talking points of the Bushies about the oil law that he mindlessly repeated, about the oil law dividing revenue between ethnic groups, which in reality is only a scant few lines in a document tens of pages long.

Iraqis are not fooled by this bullshit. Even the Bush-approved Iraqi parliament is afraid to pass the Hydrocarbon Law because they know they could never walk freely among Iraqis if they did. Big oil has gone to the extent of trying to BRIBE Iraqi PMs to pass the law and they still won't do it.

Despite the news blackout of how big oil lobbied for and plans to profit from the Iraq war, most Americans know the war is about oil. Our elected representatives insult our intelligence when they keep debating the war in terms of fighting terrorism and spreading democracy, neither of which are helped by killing a million Iraqis and thousands of our troops.

To their credit, the British parliament has had an open debate about the role big oil has played and is playing in the Iraq War.

It is a stain on our democracy that no such debate has occurred here, and that we are left applauding when a piece of moral filth like Joe Biden points out a mistake the equivalent of saying Santa Claus lives at the South Pole instead of the North.

By making token efforts at criticizing the war without pulling the pants down on the true motives, Democrats allow the war costing so many of our tax dollars and lives will continue.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Joe Lieberman will be VP on BOTH Clinton and McCain 2008 tickets

Sen. Joe Lieberman with running mates Senators John McCain and Hillary Clinton

It has long been suspected that Joe Lieberman would make history by being the first person to run for vice president for both major political parties, but now he will top himself and potentially appear as VP candidate for both parties at the same time.

Lieberman was Al Gore's running mate in 2000, and has been widely rumored to be John McCain's choice this year.

Today, Lieberman not only announced that he will be on the Republican ticket, but that he will also be on the Democratic ticket if Hillary Clinton is the nominee.

"I think this shows what is really great about America," Lieberman said at his press conference. "There is something for everyone in this decision. Voters get to choose between two candidates who differ on issues like gay rights, abortion, and whether blacks should continue to be allowed to vote, all issues which people of good will can legitimately disagree on, while the business community can be reassured that when president Bush is out of office, nothing will change in terms of tax, regulatory, trade, or our Iraq and future war policies."

Sen. Clinton said, "Joe is the smart choice. He is trusted and beloved by pundits, Republicans, corporate lobbyists, really all the people who matter. This signals them that they will not be forgotten by a new Clinton administration."

When asked if he had been approached by Sen. Barack Obama's campaign to be his running mate as well, Lieberman appeared pain. "We have not closed the door on that possibility," he said, "but Sen. McCain and myself recently tried to persuade him of the merits of having me on his ticket, and we have yet to hear back from him."

"Frankly, he is turning out to be a bit of a divisive personality," Lieberman added. "Even before these revelations about his pastor, Sen. Obama said some very hurtful things about the Iraq War before we even got it started. We were trying to put something together that could help building contractors, defense contractors, security contractors, and of course the oil industry, and his comments were not helpful at all. Just recently, he refused to even show up to vote for the Kyle-Lieberman amendment to exterminate Iran, a bill that had broad bipartisan support.

If he does win the nomination and eventually the presidency, he needs someone like me close by to help him straighten out his priorities. "