I will be teaching Public Speaking instead of Interpersonal Communication, from 12:00-1:10, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. The text is Public Speaking: Challenges and Choices, by Dan O’Hair and Rob Stewart.
The money you earn does not reflect your value as a human being in society. The money you possess does not alter your entitlement to the necessities of life. Money only serves as a means for a few to leach off of others.
Yeah, I told you that all the huffing and puffing by the Democrats about ending the Iraq war was “safe,” that none of those votes mattered because they could appease their constituents with complete confidence that Bush would veto any bill that limited the war.
And sure enough, when the Democrats on Capitol Hill capitulated this week, probably a few were surprised anyway. But Larry Chin writes, “In refusing to definitively corner a scandalized Bush administration, the Democratic Party leadership has earned itself a tidal wave of rage, vitriol and disgust from Americans who harbor any illusions that the Democrats have any intention of ending the war, or ‘bringing the troops home’.”
While the Democrats have certainly earned that “tidal wave of rage, vitriol and disgust,” even from Americans who didn’t harbor any such illusions, there’s something else I’ve been saying for a while: The Democrats were and are collaborators. They supported the invasion, they supported the infringements of civil liberties, and they have, in general, sought to be as Republican as they could possibly be. Any move toward impeachment or war crime trials or anything of the sort should hold the entire political establishment accountable.
The Republicans and Democrats are factions of the same criminal New World Order, funded by the same criminal interests, beholden to the same think tanks, foundations, corporations and military-intelligence-industrial interests, following the same geopolitical script, written by bipartisan consensus.
Given this reality, it is no surprise that the Democratic leadership has kept its promise to keep the impeachment of Bush and Cheney “off the table” and reach “across the aisle”. Consensus interests are at stake.
So yeah, I’m still voting a straight Peace and Freedom Party ticket next year.
The Associated Press has a story that I had to get from Canada. “Asked in April why they felt things were veering in the wrong direction, one-third overall volunteered the war and one-fourth blamed poor leadership.”
In other words, Bush led them to defeat, therefore U.S. citizens are unhappy. “Nine percent faulted the economy, 8 percent a loss of moral values and 5 percent gasoline prices.”
I don’t think they get it, yet.
“[Incoming British Prime Minister] Gordon Brown is prepared to risk the future of the ‘special relationship’ with the United States by reversing Tony Blair’s support for the Iraq war, President George W Bush has been warned,” according to a report in the Telegraph. The White House fears Brown is “a much weaker political leader than Blair. There’s the fear in Washington that he won’t be as strong an ally.”
There is, of course, some question what benefit this “special relationship” has for Britain. In its present form, it has overtaxed the British military, just as the U.S. military is now overstretched, and Blair’s “apparent subservience,” to adopt former President Jimmy Carter’s term for it, “had been a major tragedy for the world.”
Carter minced no words, saying, “One of the defences of the Bush administration… has been, okay, we must be more correct in our actions than the world thinks because Great Britain is backing us.”
It is odd, after all, that outgoing British Prime Minister Tony Blair has been so intent on supporting the U.S. in an imperial adventure–recognized as such from the beginning–when the U.S. maintained official neutrality while Britain retook the Falkland Islands from Argentina (which calls them the Malvinas). Professor Robert Terrell thinks the British believe that they can moderate U.S. behavior through their “special relationship.”
Perhaps so. But by joining the U.S. in this disaster, Britain became complicit in war crimes, and the deaths of anywhere from 655,000 to one million Iraqis, not to mention its own troop losses, as well as those of U.S. and other coalition troops. Blair never seemed to realize that he had a duty to the British people and to humanity in general that supercedes any allegiance to the U.S. in general, and to President Bush in particular.
Carter said, “So I think the combination of Bush and Blair giving their support to this tragedy in Iraq has strengthened the effort and has made the opposition less effective and prolonged the war and increased the tragedy that has resulted.” Carter expressed hope for a policy change that Brown now may be delivering.
According to the Telegraph article, “President Bush’s aides fear that Mr Brown will boost Democrats’ demands for a timetable for a US pullout from Iraq and encourage wavering Republicans to defect – leaving the President more isolated.”
Elaine Corden casts Dr. Phil as a secular preacher with all the repressive values of an evangelical Protestant but who has recently taken to the sort of hate speech that brought down Don Imus and the sort of sensationalism associated with Geraldo Rivera. Only recently has Corden detected a simplistic, retribution-oriented “old-school, blame-the-individual approach to behavioral ails [that] absolves viewers from looking at the ugly fissures in American society as a whole.”
“Sen. Clinton has made clear that Wal-Mart has an obligation to provide good health benefits and good wages to its workers. Wal-Mart workers should be able to unionize and bargain collectively,” says spokesman Howard Wolfson. But during her time on Wal-Mart’s Board of Directors, “She was not a dissenter,” said Donald G. Soderquist, Wal-Mart’s former chief operating officer and the board’s vice chairman during Clinton’s tenure. “She was a part of those decisions.”
This is the same “cautious” politician who has–until it became clear the United States was losing–supported the war on Iraq and apparently still supports the infringements on civil liberties that accompany Bush’s “war on terror.”
“Clinton assumed the role of loyalist reformer, making the case for measured change without rocking the boat,” says the article, pushing Wal-Mart to hire more female executives and more environmentally-friendly policies. Which surely helps explain why “present and former female employees of Wal-Mart or Sam’s Club . . . may have legal claims in a class action sex discrimination lawsuit against Wal-Mart.” It also surely explains how Wal-Mart and other big box retailers “are vacating their existing stores to build bigger outlets, leaving the landscape littered with dead malls, abandoned strip developments and empty big-box superstores. . . . According to the latest tally from Sprawl-Busters, an organization that helps communities fight superstore sprawl, the United States is home to 380 empty Wal-Mart stores.”
Apparently, there was more fun at the Republican debate than I was aware of.
Ron Paul, who apparently has opposed the Iraq war from the beginning, had the temerity to suggest that “the 9-11 killers were ‘over here because we are over there.'” Patrick Buchanan (yes, the conservative) writes that “Osama bin Laden in his declaration of war in the 1990s said it was U.S. troops on the sacred soil of Saudi Arabia, U.S. bombing and sanctions of a crushed Iraqi people, and U.S. support of Israel’s persecution of the Palestinians that were the reasons he and his mujahedeen were declaring war on us.”
Buchanan, too, has long objected to this war. I guess that makes him a traitor, too.
The irony of it all. According to the Wall Street Journal (in an e-mail bulletin), “Wal-Mart Stores Inc. reported its worst-ever monthly same-store sales, tallying a 3.5% decline and noting that its shoppers have expressed concerns about their personal finances, the cost of living and high gasoline prices.”
As previously posted, I will be teaching Interpersonal Communication (Communication 1004) at CSU East Bay in Hayward this summer. The class is scheduled for 10:40-11:50, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. I will be using Bridges Not Walls as the text. My office hour will be on Mondays, from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm in (I think) Mieklejohn Hall, rm. 1102 (the dungeon).