Bill Maher Needs To Spend Some Real Time Thinking About His Ass-Backwards Stance on Muslims

Bill Maher Needs To Spend Some Real Time Considering Misguided Stance Toward Muslims:

I have a lot of respect for Bill Maher and I agree with him on many points, enjoying the way he delivers his points with acerbic humor and sarcasm.  In that sense he’s a man after my own heart, but his hardline stance on the religion of Islam is as confusing to me as someone who’s pro-life but advocates war and the death penalty; a walking contradiction unto itself sitting down, making no more sense than many of the conservative policies he’s enjoyed so much commercial success poking fun of.  

For someone who’s clearly intelligent, and claims to be an atheist on top of that to suddenly begin singling out one religion as being worse than all the others is somewhat ludicrous. I mean his documentary movie “Religulous” was all about poking fun at the craziness that’s secretly all modern religions if you look hard enough or as I like to say;  each organized religion is as bat-shit crazy as the next; they just take a different flavor Kool-Aid is all.

September 11, 2001 attacks in New York City: V...

September 11, 2001 attacks in New York City: View of the World Trade Center and the Statue of Liberty. (Image: US National Park Service ) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Shifting Opinions

I feel Chris Mathews made an excellent point when he was recently on the show when Maher went on one of his anti-Muslim tirades, saying things like

“most Muslims-at least half of them, I think, around the world-think it is ok to kill someone if they insult the prophet.  And that is a big problem. That is a clash of civilizations.”

It does make him sound like he’s giving the late Osama bin Laden everything he wanted by way of inciting a damaging and costly holy war or at least the perception of one between the United States and those of the Islamic faith; too easily dismissing people of the Islamic faith as being terrorists and alienating them in the process.

Although he typically possesses more free thought, or so I thought, than he has exhibited on this subject; it would seem he chooses not to use it, blindly accepting the Obama administration and the Bush administration before its weak rationale for the reasoning behind curtailing our civil liberties, the murder of US citizens overseas as in the case of Al-Awaki, the indefinite detention of suspected terrorists as happens at Guantanamo, and the aggressive prosecuting of whistle blowers to proportions unseen before the current administration, most notably with Bradley Manning, or the recent AP incident.

Maybe it’s the fact that he donated a million dollars to his campaign this past election and has a refusal to accept that it’s been a bad investment for him.

Double Take:

When I first heard him say some blatantly anti-Muslim shit on his show, I thought to myself, surely I must have misheard, he misspoke, or I missed the punchline to his joke. Maybe my overactive imagination was at work yet again, making mountains out of mole hills.  Surely he would go on to vindicate himself through saying something to the contrary, maybe even a “gotcha”, or that it would be put into context, but this was not the case.

Nothing was to come in the form of rebuttal; strange given the fact I typically agree with nearly everything this guy says; it’s witty, it’s funny, it’s honest in making fun of our political reality in all of its absurdity; it’s butter.

On this issue however, it smacks of being off brand margarine, devoid of it’s fancy packaging, or any flavor, it’s easy for me to believe this shit’s not butter.

What most pisses me off, and gives me added cause to worry about is the likelihood his bigoted stance will encourage those already of a more hard-line persuasion that they are being moderate or reasonable even; in addition to potentially misleading others who have come to place faith in his political commentary as being relatively on point (just delivered comically), as is the case with myself.

I can hear their argument now, “see, even Bill Maher believes Muslims are the problem”; using it as a justification for their continued xenophobia, their discrimination, their hatred and their desire for persecuting the Muslim population.

By using his show to air these misguided and mistaken beliefs, he effectively joins the ranks of the Rush Limbaugh‘s and Glenn Beck’s and all those like them; a shock jock like Howard Stern and nothing more.  Just another talking head blatantly opining without any regard for accuracy, or quality in his opinion or its contents.  By choosing to spread anti Islamic hate speech, Maher only gives comfort to those who would say we truly are in the midst of a jihad.

English: Osama bin Laden interviewed for Daily...

English: Osama bin Laden interviewed for Daily Pakistan in 1997; behind him on the wall is an AK-47 carbine. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Exceptions Rather Than The Rule:

Yes, there are concrete examples of Muslims desiring to cause us harm.  Unfortunately, both 9/11 and the recent bombing of the Boston Marathon were carried out by those who professed to follow Islam.

This in and of itself does not serve to prove or to justify Mahers point as being a valid one anymore than the Westboro Baptist Church is evidence that Christianity is intolerant, or the molestation scandals involving priests would imply that all who practice Catholicism like to diddle little boys, or that it stems from their religion.

Where Maher fails, as do many of us, especially in these times of fear, is in making the effort to see the situation through the eyes of another, placing yourself in their shoes for a moment (if its possible for yourself); doing this allows us to see that deep down we aren’t so different underneath it all.

One opposing view that it would be reckless and folly for us to ignore is that of the people we have consistently rained down death upon since the year 2001.  What do you suppose it is they see when they see us?   Are we not Christians?  Is that not violence?  In terms of sheer death and destruction, the massive body count and pile of rubble we leave behind us solidify us as being the most violent and destructive society in history. period. end of point.  We are more destructive than anything that has existed on this earth before us.  How eager are we all to be judged by world or by god (if you believe in one) on the merits of actions we played no direct part in?

Honeymoon’s Over:

For the first time I could remember, I couldn’t help looking at Bill Maher like he was at least semi-retarded… The degree to which he attempted to defend Christianity against those heathens who practice Islam was baffling and sickening to witness in someone who supposedly flat-out doesn’t believe in it at all.

(Did Bill suddenly decide to eat the poison apple?)

I’m not sure who exactly he desires these brownie points for, or with, but I just hope his high ass knows that they’re not actually brownies or made of chocolate (I’m not sure that anybody has told him this, he must have the munchies).

I really still can’t get over how belligerent he insists on being in his new pastime of being an ignorant fuck…. he sounds just like most of his more conservative contestants who like an addict hide their guilty pleasure of racism from themselves; oblivious to it’s existence despite it being as plain as day for everyone else to see so clearly.

That very same fuck, or those very same fuck(s) I’ve heard him rail against time after time after time on his show; easily making them out to be just plain ignorant or dumb, and now it turns out he should be doing it into a mirror.

Casting a blanket characterization that all people of one religion, Islam, have a greater propensity towards violence than others is just plain retarded, especially for someone who loves talk about how they’re an atheist, and thinks that all religions are stupid.

This view is no less racist and no less discriminatory than those views of black people he looks down on as being backwards, and intolerant.  Why would something apply in one instance, or fit on one hand and not fit on the other?
Prejudiced, is prejudiced, hate is hate; fear is fear; backwards is backwards; right is right; and wrong is wrong, one equals the other no matter how you slice and dice it.

That is why I was especially glad Glenn Greenwald happened to be the guest on his show this last week; checking Maher hard into the boards just as he started to get out of line.

Glenn Greenwald is the only person I’ve seen really stand up to him and challenge his views when he gets on this tangent.  When it got brought up this past week or so, Bill Maher looked like he had just got owned over the entire issue having the fact he knows nothing of what he speaks laid plain before his entire audience as he got his tongue twisted and nearly had himself a little shit fit; looking notably flabbergasted from the experience.

Portrait of Glenn Greenwald -creator of Unclai...

Portrait of Glenn Greenwald -creator of Unclaimed Territory blog and contributing writer at Salon.com (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Finally Something About the Muslim Population That Makes Sense on Real Time With Bill Maher: Glenn Greenwald

I don’t know how it is that I just really became acquainted with the work of Glenn Greenwald, but I have to say he easily offers one of the best assessments of the situation we now find ourselves in; both in terms of our eroding civil liberties and congressional and judicial oversight and the continued growth of executive power  here at home as well as the increased anti-American sentiments within the Muslim world; both of which are a result of our War on Terror.

(You can follow that link to see what else I have to say on that)

If you don’t already subscribe to his RSS feed, you should and I don’t recommend that lightly.

I would like to know where you all stand on this issue; I know it’s a sensitive one which is by no means agreed upon by everyone or even most people;

So let’s get this party started and found out where everyone and their opinion is currently standing.

Nows your time to chime in if you’d like to, I know I’d like to know whether your opinions fall more in line with the host Bill Maher, or with the journalist for the Guardian, Glenn Greenwald?

Or is your take entirely your own?

Drop me a comment and lets find out!

What’s the Word?

From The Blaze;

Muslim Rage

The Girl Next Door: Man Discovers Amanda Berry And One Other Missing Woman Were Right Next Door To Him

This is an incredible story. Man discovers several women who’d been missing for years had been held against their will by his own neighbor and helps them gain their freedom.  Give it a watch and let me know what you think.

Why FBI Request to Increase Cybersecurity To Combat “Subversives” Is A Bad Idea: They’re Obviously Compensating For Something

FBI & Free Speech

This book finally sheds a little more light on the FBI’s illegal surveillance program and its effect on the Free Speech Movement and California electoral politics.

This book “subversives” has a great story behind it.  The author had to fight the FBI for 30 years, for them to release the documents he uses as primary sources, costing the bureau over one million dollars in the process.  I recommend this as a read for anyone  (as soon as it’s not $40), I know I will, and no I’m not getting anything for it.

I know this book would tickle my fancy, especially since much of it focuses on the Free Speech Movement, which happened right in my backyard & Alma Mater, UC Berkeley.  It also documents the effort put forth by the FBI in undermining members of its leadership like Mario Savio and other leaders of activist organizations.  By using these struggles, the conservative movement was able to rise to power through Ronald Reagan; first as Governor of California (running on an anti UCB platform), and then as President of the United States.

If you would like a more detailed review, Matt Taibbi wrote a great review of “Subversives” in the New York Times Sunday Book Review I highly recommend you check out.

CISPA Internet Security for the Government

Cyber-Security up in tha motha fuckin hizzouse!!!! Guess who’s back! CISPA has returned to secure your privates

Forget the Soundbite, Its Time For A Reality Check

I think this book holds even more relevance than it normally would because of the recent push by Congress for us to surrender our online privacy rights via CISPA.  Through what I know and have learned, I feel that allowing CISPA to happen is a terrible idea and must be avoided at all costs.  The only thing this “cyber-security” measure allows the government to bypass the process of showing a judge enough probable cause for theme to get a warrant for our information; which they’ll then use to prosecute us with.

Without needing a judge to sign off on the legal reasoning of for their investigation, the FBI will be given free rein to decide as they will the merits of their case……yeah cause that worked out GREAT during the 1960s especially with COINTELPRO, the FBI’s illegal surveillance program they used against political dissidents.

Eventually, we must draw that line in the sand somewhere or another,  so where will it be?  Regardless of our personal political beliefs, if we’re skeptical of Obama or not, or what our general feeling about our government in general is.; it doesn’t matter.  When it comes to increased governmental  powers at the expense of our eroding ones; we must ask ourselves, “when is enough, enough? and “where do we draw the line at?”

History Repeats Itself

The one thing sure to stay the same, regardless of party, or administration is the natural inclination for power to seek more power.  Look at investment bankers, elected officials, and police officers; for the most part, each profession is plagued by scandal, irrespective of their location.

For those law-abiding citizens inclined to believe this isn’t their problem because they aren’t doing anything illegal or wrong; guess what, you’re wrong!

Martin Luther King leaning on a lectern. Deuts...

Martin Luther King leaning on a lectern. Deutsch: 1964: Martin Luther King Português: Martin Luther King (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Look at the way the FBI investigated Martin Luther King Jr., easily one of the most respected people from the Civil Rights Movement, and in general.  Almost from the moment he stepped on the national stage, gaining the limelight during the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott, he faced constant, heavy surveillance from the FBI…

Countless hours of audio recordings and stacks of papers detailing all aspects of his private life, even the most private and intimate, all for his POLITICAL views.  What then, did these tax payer dollars uncover, for surely there must have been a good cause

And that criminal activity was;
…drumroll……drumroll…..drumroll……

[Maury Povich voice]

He had an affair

[GASP] oh the horror, I feel much safer now….. It turns out he WAS human! (i knew it).

Now I know I didn’t get shafted on that whole rapture business and miss that second coming of Jesus I keep hearing religious people talk about, YAY! I’m still in the running….. WHEW….crisis averted….I guess? [shrug]

(Or maybe it was part of the Federal Holiday vetting process, which must be something similar to sainthood….right?)

I wish I had asked for a receipt and could get OUR money back for THAT dumb purchase, or at the very least could have them validate my parking, cuz I feel kinda cheated; lightweight hardcore…..so should you…..

The saddest part of it all;  they actually took it easy on him.  The level of harassment and surveillance he faced was nothing compared to those the FBI viewed as being more “radical” oriented. Our government didn’t knowingly falsify or misconstrue evidence against him, as they did with Leonard Peltier of AIM; who still sits behind bars.

FBI Gets Down And Dirty; Real Dirty, Like A Criminal Would

FBI agents and provocateurs never infiltrated the SCLC, taking actions known to be likely at resulting in violent conflict leading to his death (or did they) as evidence would suggest was the case with Malcolm X, and members of the American Indian Project, or the Black Panther Party (yet again).

The only thing all of these people held in common was making too much damn common sense.  Our government IS imperfect and SHOULD and COULD do better by its citizens and the rest of the world; apparently they were just outspoken about it and received lots of media attention for it. an outspoken view that our government not only could, but should, do better by its people.

Apparently our freedom of speech isn’t actually free; just ask Bradley Manning (held for over 1,000 days without trial or charge), or Julian Assange (now holed up in a Central American embassy, to avoid US extradition efforts), it’s only free when it’s positive.  Negative commentators get taxed, and taxed hard by the government for holding that stance; a modern-day cookie jar the profit from curse words goes in.

Somehow, FBI agents and the government at large, find ways to avoid, bend or outright break those very same laws they have a hard-on to convict someone else for. I’d imagine this to be some legal wheeling and dealing and moral stretching exercise something akin to tying Stretch Armstrong to a tree and the back of the car; or like Andre the Giant somehow squeezing into a tiny tin box;  a contortionists!
……OOOOOO…….AAAAAAA……

only to find out afterwards Andre and the box never existed; it was an optical illusion……GOTCHA SUCKA!!!!!

…..the government and its  agents/representatives in the FBI and prosecution just didn’t agree with them not agreeing with its politics I guess….

Which is precisely why I don’t want them fumbling through my digital detritus; free to make whatever subjective interpretations they may, pursuing their case to the end regardless of how much bullshit it is…..just look at how petty they were in the case of Aaron Swartz.

Come With Me If You Want To Live

If you’re like me and oppose the increased presence of the government, all up in our kool-aid, then please show your support by signing the petition, or looking at what campaign’s the Electronic Frontier Foundation has going on, or the Internet Defense League, both of currently have online campaigns going on.

Or if you have other ideas to combat CISPA leave me a comment and we can work together on it!

If you feel that CISPA is a GRAND idea, or can’t even be troubled to think about it at all, suit yourself; you’re probably smokin rocks. Just don’t say I didn’t warn you’re having a train run on you by some guy named “bubba” and his buddies when you’re at Leavenworth Federal Prison for something stupid.

I think this is my stop, I’m getting off

All aboard;

Choo! Choo!





		
				

How’s About We All Get On Telling Obama We Don’t Like CISPA Anymore This Time Than We Did Last Time

How’s About We All Get On Telling Obama We Don’t Like CISPA Anymore This Time Than We Did Last Time

English: The Seal of the United States Federal...

English: The Seal of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation. For more information, see here. Español: El escudo del Buró Federal de Investigaciones (FBI). Para obtener más información, véase aquí (Inglés). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I really think we made this as clear as we could possibly make it for them, since obviously they are grasping at coming to terms with the fact that we just aren’t that interested and for some strange reason they just don’t understand why we don’t think CISPA sounds like a very bright idea.  I would rather put my testicles in a blender set to high for 20 minutes only to have every single one of my ex girlfriends there to volunteer to act as my nurses; at  the same time.  If that doesn’t say count me the fuck out, I don’t know what does…

I’m not sure how everyone else is taking the whole needing to go over this with the Government and their Justice Department cronies, but personally I’m beginning to feel suffocated by their neediness on this subject.  Anything past occasionally having to repeat myself and the boundaries of our relationship and I get the sudden urge to run for the hills as fast as I can.  Talk about a stage 5 clinger…

How much clearer must we make it that our digital lives are a no-fly zone (not that those have worked well for Pakistan so far…), it might have been cute or endearing the first time they asked and we said no, but honestly, now its just getting fucking annoying.  Its about time they got up out our virtual kool-aid and started going to therapy or anger management classes or something like that.

I feel like the FBI is turning out to be one of those ex’s you knew was gonna be clingy and would in all likelihood blow up in your face at some point only to say fuck it, holding on  for dear life and enjoying as much of the ride as you can.  Now it feels like we’re faced  with being at that point where they’ve way overstayed their welcome in your personal space and aren’t taking no for a reason like this is let’s make a deal or some shit.

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...

Image via CrunchBase

Despite their adamant claims of not being interested in you at all, you come to find out they’ve been campin out on your Facebook, your Twitter, and your Google+ accounts and who knows what else….skipping straight over the whole socially awkward cyberstalker Mark Zuckerberg thing and going straight for full on pervert creepo about to be unwittingly caught in a sting on To Catch a Predator.

To Catch a Predator title card

To Catch a Predator title card (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Heres a novel approach, if the FBI, or any other government organization would like to know something about what exactly it is that is going on in our digital lives; they should try asking.  Obviously they aren’t past that whole stage where you have your friends find out when someone is interested in you or not  because the mere thought of talking to them scares you shitless. This is usually done via cutesy notes that folded like an origami ostrich and adorned with the all important checkboxes that need to be filled out and returned in order to decipher its meaning; all because you hadn’t hit puberty yet, or finally made it to high-school or whatever the case may be, I really just don’t give a fuck.

Now you’re faced with the unpleasant prospect of changing your phone number and moving or obtaining a new identity cause they just had to make shit awkward and turn out to be that crazy one everyone everyone has heard horror stories about from one friend or another, only now its your problem… great, just fuckin great…. smh…what else could go wrong…

Wax figure of Daniel Craig at Madame Tussauds,...

Wax figure of Daniel Craig at Madame Tussauds, London. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Just for future reference ya G men of the world out there snoopin around, I’m pretty sure that Daniel Craig playing the fictional character of James Bond already has the whole cloaks and daggers thing on lock; whatever it is you’re playing at, its giving off a strong creeper vibe, like of the charts strong.  I would recommend getting a life of your own to pick apart and some form of court appointed therapy to remedy that, at least until the voices stop….

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Standing In Solidarity With My Ameri-Family Today Following Our Recent Loss:

Joseph Messenberg murdered in New Orleans while doing AmeriCorps

Joseph Messenberg the AmeriCorps Volunteer Murdered in New Orleans recently

I just got word the other day about yet another senseless murder that can be attributed to our nations current gun violence epidemic.  Unlike many of the other instances, this one hit really close to home for me due the victim Jonathan Messenberg, aged 18 being an AmeriCorps member volunteering his time to others when it happened.

Although it’s always tragic when someone so young has their life cut so short, this instance really broke my heart to learn about.  This particular  young man was murdered shortly after beginning his first project during his Corps year with AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps which should have been a 10 month stint.  This is the same program  I participated in several years ago and credit as being a major influencing event in my life thus far.  This young man was in New Orleans to do some good for others, and it cost him his life.

In response to Joseph’s murder, NCCC has opted to remove both teams in New Orleans at the time, indefinitely.

I disagree with this response the organization has taken, unless there exists some sort of concrete evidence that his work with AmeriCorps was a factor in his death.  We do no service in shielding those we would encourage to tackle the tough issues of today and tomorrow from the very situations we would encourage them to become familiar with and take on.  Allowing what appears to  be a random act of violence thought to be in some way gang related occurring in a densely populated urban setting known to offer the inherent risks associated with violence to serve as justification for teams abandoning their current projects is a bad call all around damaging any reputation for being a committed agent of change the organization may enjoy within the communities it serves.  Rather than sticking around until the task at hand is completed, they have opted to abandon these communities, probably to the very same gangs at the root of the problem.

Reading his family’s description of him, I was able to relate to him on many levels as a person. His motivations for joining were much like my own and those of others in applying to the program; the opportunity to act upon personal convictions, helping others.  By focusing on the needs of others and not yourself for a change, you become connected to something larger and more important than your own ambitions; offering a true sense of community.  Exposure to this shared sense of community provides participants with a generally more well-rounded and healthy life perspective.

For what was essentially a selfless act by Jonathan to result in him paying the final price of his life at the age of 18 is well beyond being tragic.  My opinion is that it is one of those rare moments where the worlds twisted sense of irony is on full display, clearly visible for all to see.

Like most deaths that come as a result of gun violence, very little rhyme or reason has been left for others to begin to attempt piecing together any explanation to the inevitable question, WHY.

Ultimately it will add up to nothing more than a terrible choice by whoever pulled the trigger and the bad luck on the part of Joseph’s inadvertently being in the wrong place at precisely the wrong time. Its the only possible explanation regardless of working hours devoted to detective work, or creative ways to try to slice and dice it; this unsatisfying excuse for an explanation and its unsavory nature as close to one as will ever exist.

To know first-hand how much the program would have influenced and benefited someone like the victim, actively interested in influencing the world around them only makes the loss all the more devastating, and wasteful; if that’s even possible.

English: AmeriCorps logo

English: AmeriCorps logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For reasons we will never fully grasp,  Jonathan never had the full  opportunity to interact and grow as a conscious citizen among other people of similar interests.  He will no longer be able to later bring his experiences in the benefits of direct action to his future community or organization.  For his life to be cut short at precisely the time he stood to gain the most by virtue of his surroundings is an absolute travesty and a waste; a disservice to our future.

Gone forever is yet another potential community leader of the future both willing and able to take an active approach towards fulfilling our often neglected civic duty of ensuring we work to leave posterity with an improved product from that which we inherited.  By working to change the injustices we notice in society and not passing the buck off, we make sure that those who follow are less likely to become burdened with fixing the broken remnants of decrepit or discredited ideologies or entities they had nothing to do with.

For someone driven enough to turn their beliefs into actions to be cut down by men a lesser quality and scruples than himself only further salts an already festering wound.

what a waste, what an utter waste.

Speaking from my own experiences with the same program, as well as the general consensus of those I shared that experience with, I know that his time with AmeriCorps and what it taught him would have changed his life in so many meaningful ways; if only he had that opportunity or option.

I know that I can speak for all service oriented members of the AmeriCorps family both past and present when I say he is on our minds today as we reflect upon our shared loss; he is gone, but not forgotten.  My thoughts go out to his AmeriCorps teammates, his friends and most importantly his family as they mourn their sudden loss; may the ideals he stood for live on within each of you helping to guide your actions toward helping to carry out his goal of creating a better society than the one we currently live in, ensuring his memory and his passion will continue to live on.

It is my sincere hope no more of these tragedies are required in order for us to urge our elected leaders away from the lofty rhetoric surrounding the issue on both sides and down a path of common sense in our approach to gun control in this country.  Even by settling on things like mandatory background checks which it is generally agreed should already exist (unless of course you’re the NRA) offers the potential of decreasing the number of gun related deaths we now see.

http://www.nola.com/crime/index.ssf/2013/04/18-year-old_americorps_member.html

The Key To Living Your Life Happily

If You Intend To Be Happy In Your Pursuits You Must;

Be True To Yourself

So true though. You just gotta be yourself.

Its impossible to exaggerate the importance and power of “self talk” in relation to your overall happiness. When you think of yourself as having worth, you challenge yourself more, accomplishing more in the process and begin truly believing in the untapped potential contained within. Believing in yourself and doing what makes you happy translates into added benefits in all areas of your life as well.

People tend to want to spend time with you when you’re positive, comfortable, and confident in your interactions. Honesty and authenticity in your words and actions is easily recognized by others. You’ll enjoy healthier relationships; rich and fulfilling in nature. Acting naturally ensures the people in your life appreciate you for who are.

They accept and like you because of your “flaws”, not in spite of them. Doing things you enjoy even makes work, and getting an education fun. If you don’t have passion for what you’re doing, you’ll find its hard do well or for very long. It won’t matter how much it pays, what it looks like on paper, or what it allows you to buy; you can’t buy happiness.

These are lessons I’ve forced myself to learn and re-learn throughout my life. Being injured and off work for a long time, forced me to begin applying myself to find things I found worth doing because they were meaningful instead of just easy, or comfortable. At the beginning of my experience with the injury and with workers compensation, I felt stripped of my life. In reality it had been returned to me. With nothing to do with my time aside from being miserable (of which I did plenty), it forced me to pursue things I find interesting to combat my feelings of depression; a major improvement over a dead end job. I found a way to turn this into a positive, developing more new skills and experience in new area’s than I had in the last 2yrs of my life.

In doing so, I interned with the Obama campaign which I didn’t enjoy as much as I thought I would. In the process of my campaign work I discovered a program doing writing workshops for incarcerated youth from a campaign volunteer who volunteered with them as well. Getting involved in the program made me realize how much I enjoy working with those kids we like to label as being “at risk” and I’m good at it as well.

Live Your Life With

Let Your Passion Shine Through

With passion is the only way to live your life! Everything else is irrelevant. Do what you love and love what you do.

I spent a good part of my life living with a single mother in a dysfunctional family, having little money and even less direction.  In efforts to fit in I began acting out of character for myself.  Getting in trouble, ditching class, experimenting with alcohol and other substances inevitably resulted in academic consequences.  I can remember in 9th grade we did a mock year book categories for our science class, I was voted most likely to go to jail…I think they were only half being funny….lightweight-hardcore.

That assessment hit closer to the mark than they could have thought.  I nearly didn’t graduate high school on time if at all, let alone make it into a 4 year college which had always been a personal goal of mine.  Despite feeling disappointed, and discouraged from this, I kept at it, working harder because I had to, always with my eye on the prize.

When I began Junior College, I used the new beginning as such, devoting myself to my studies and becoming active on campus.  Soon, building each goal upon another the transformation was clear.  Going from a chronic underachiever to gaining an Associates degree, and then transferring to UC Berkeley and gaining my Bachelors degree in History. As the first in my family to go to college and without anyone to really guide me ensuring I was on the right track or what to expect it was really difficult at times; but I appreciate it as a personal accomplishment so much more for it.

My growth and transformation in this process taught me a lot about myself and the limitless potential within each of us so long as we allow ourselves to believe in our ability. Its gratifying to come through the adversity in your life, reaching your goals, never losing sight of that light at the end of the tunnel. The act of re-fashioning yourself into a better person, reborn from the ashes of your mistakes and your failures is redemptive and empowering. The ability to become a phoenix resides within each of us, it just needs nourishment to flourish.

Having lost sight of this for a time despite my accomplishments; I sank back into feelings of depression and self-doubt making many of those poor decisions again.  This experience gives me a deeper appreciation for just how fine a line it is separating “I can’t” from the “I can”, and achievements from everything you were too scared to try.

Realizing this makes me understand how important it is to help others pick themselves up and dust themselves off when they have stumbled or fallen.  The ability to see and believe in your potential is a flame you must vigilantly fan and stoke in yourself and in others lest it go out; quickly striking a spark igniting it again in times its snuffed out.

Theres no doubt in my mind,  my journey is not a special one, the adversity not nearly as severe or as challenging as what inner city youth face today. Poverty and all of it’s manifestations is ugly and brutal enough here at home, let alone the rest of the world, but it was something important to me, and I did it. Having applied as a long shot, I’d already began making arrangements to go somewhere else when I found out I had been accepted.  The opportunity to go to college, and the one that I did for that matter, forever altered the course of my life with impact, in a major way.  A gift for which I”m eternally grateful.

Thinking back now, I remembering just how close I came to never experiencing any of it.  I almost never mailed in the application at all…  This makes me wonder how many others are out there at this very moment who find themselves now in  similar boat as I was then, “application packets”  hovering over the waste basket… Which in turn resolved me to share my passion for education and lifelong learning and my story as an inspiration to others, hoping to help at least one person to take that shot, even if it is an “oh what the hell, why not?” and in the dark.

As it stands now, I’ve begun the almighty litmus test of turning belief into action, interviewing soon for several programs similar to Teach for America, where I can try making an impact right out the door, as well as volunteering.

To be quite honest, I’ve never been happier or more comfortable with a decision in my life my eyes finally opened to whats important in my life, and it makes me wonder “what the hell took ya’ so long?”.
Using my story as a lesson for others, I offer up these few bits of advice

My Advice To You

  • Don’t dwell on your mistakes, treat them as transformative agents for change instead.
  • You should chase those dreams your mind is quickest to abandon or discredit;
  • Live your life happily and fully, being honest to yourself at all times, and in service of others when you’re able.
  • By doing so not only will you be happier for it, you never know how many lives you’ll touch, or people you’ll inspire.

 

I Think Its HIgh Time We Tell Congress To WAKE THE FUCK UP!!!!!

John Boehner

GRUMPY OLD PRICKS (GOP)

MOST AMERICANS FEAR  FOR FINANCIAL & EMPLOYMENT PROSPECTS DURING DEEP CUTS OF SEQUESTER MODE:

CONGRESSIONAL SALARIES REMAIN UNTOUCHED IN “ACROSS THE BOARD” BUDGET CUTS: You Decide , Was It Accidentally on Purpose?

Reducing Budget of Congress for Duration of Crisis 

It looks like those budget cuts are shaping up to be not quite across the board like  they presented them to us, surely must have just been an honest mistake. we thought they were , Im sure it was nothing more than an honest mistake.  At some point we’ll get a courtesy “Ooops! Well I’ll be ….. it looks like those cuts didn’t make it across now did they?”  …..That’s ok, I’m sure they’ll make it up to us the next time they wanna hijack the country……

Im under the impression that congress is under the impression that “Do Nothing Congress” is to be interpreted literally, or they have mistaken it for being the job description.  Dammit!!!! I ran because  I wanted to do nothing!

Hahaha, it’s a good mental picture, and we have to at least try to keep laughing, otherwise we would feel even worse.

Rehash:

Official photographic portrait of US President...

Here’s Barry, say hello,  He’s had a rough week on the job.  He likes long walks on the beach and karaoke to unwind.

Ok, so our current  SNAFU involves a crises that was not only  entirely avoidable, but never should have existed in the first place! I don’t know, I’ll leave that one for now, maybe i  come back to it.  Obama wins and begins passing legislation that Boehner and Congress didn’t really agree with, so they’ve spent the rest of the time trying to kill that instead of fixing the budget….Does that sound about right?

In order to get Republicans not to commit what would have been economic suicide last go around, talking them off of the ledger and back to work.  Obama and Boehner come together and agreed on a number that needed to be cut from the budget by x date everyone agrees, shakes on it, the works, awesome it’s a miracle; especially for these two.

At this point we’re all shitting unicorns and pissing rainbows, for those of you layman out there, that means were really flipping peachy and ecstatic at this point.  When all of a sudden, the bottom dropped out  when the bottom dropped out  in being able to expect a painless solution going forward.  Despite the date begin marked on everyones calendar for importance, no one could seem to remember what day was.

Instead of getting together the night before a big game making sure that everything is fresh  everybody knows what needs to be done and they’re all well rested; I think The Executive Branch, and the Legislative have been out getting “shwasty” faced, and  debating  politics.

Not only were we, they, and anyone else involved who may or may not have a mouse in  who may have a mouse in their pocket…… we all knew what was at stake and we watched our elected representatives just stand there in awe,  watching the inevitable happen people in NYC on 9/11.

A train wreck so gruesome you can’t bear to watch but you can’t bring yourself to take your eyes off it.

Has Congress decided to go all jihadi terror cell on us? Are they waiting on us to get their general out of prison or something Like in Die Hard?  Or maybe us in the West Coast can finally get that secession from them.  The one they were talking about on and often as soon as they saw it would be Barack the “Muslim” Obamaaaaaaammmmmmaaaa assuming control once more?

What are their demands?  Aside from cutting funding for programs supporting the elderly or the weak ?  Do they have any? Or is that as far as they’ve gotten.

When people look back on our era, what will they say we’ve been able to carry out?   What will our legacy be ? Our major legislative victories What are our major legislative victories, and how have we cared for those victories won through the hard work of others?

IN EFFORT TO SAVE ON COSTS CONGRESS WILL FORCE AMERICANS CONTINUE PINCHING PENNIES INTO EXTINCTION

 SO, ABOUT THAT GRAND BARGAIN:

Despite conservative members of  Congress railing long and hard about the woes caused unto society by having a nanny state, with all these entitlement needing “welfare queens” or theives; people gaming the system for help from the government when they don’t really need it.  I mean the nerve to be getting paid and not to have to do anything for it……

hmmmmm…. that sounds kinda familiar…

Both houses of Congress are equally to blame for this mess, as is  the President, both current and past.  They all allowed this to happen,.  Party leadership especially.  Shame on leadership for allowing fringe elements to gain and wield undue influence, just as Washington had once  issued a warning to urging against political parties for that very reason.

I just don’t  get how having them doing all these theatrics is helping our workers, debt ceilings, showdowns and nonsense a debt ceiling showdown, or this nonsense now, in any way promotes a pro-business climate or helps our economy recover?  Isn’t This business about our loans defaulting, the budget slashed and the potential for the economy to crash down on their heads yet again, doesn’t really create a pro business climate now does it?

Eric Cantor headshot

Eric Cantor, who along with Paul Ryan was a leading impetus for pushing the sequestration on the the government.

Still, egomaniacs like Eric Cantor and Paul Ryan  seemed rather pleased with themselves.  Apparently the results must have gone as they intended.  It just makes me wonder how much you can  trust someone who’s repeatedly been untrustworthy.

When there was a deal on the table Boehner wanted to take it, putting all this distracting talk behind us.  But, Cantor and Ryan talked him out of it , convincing him that no retreat would somehow equate into being the very thing it would have avoided it.  If any deal is to be made, it will be on their terms, no one else’s.

Go Fuck Yourself Nation!”

Is what this tells me their saying to us.  Were they really so desperate to go from do nothing, to do anything even with an (*) on it.? What kind of leader would cut things from others,  while taking none of their own?

I’ve provided a link to a ballot that’s making it around asking congress to share in the budget reduction resulting from the mess they created.

I think we should go even further, changing the structure of their pay altogether, making it performance based like they want to do with teachers salaries.  If anybody comes across anything like that. let me know.  Let me know what you think

Heres Something Could Really Get Behind: Performance Based Salaries For All Who Hold Elected Office

An Army of One:

AN ARMY OF ONE:

Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.

-Dwight D. Eisenhower

Military Suicide

Too many soldiers have lost their lives to suicide.

 

At least 1 member of the United States Armed Forces will kill themselves per day through all of 2012. 

HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEM:

For the last 4 yrs., the United States has lost more troops to suicide than to enemy combatants.  Despite the suicide rate growing at an alarming rate, the Pentagon has no decisive answer to why so many soldiers are taking their lives as of yet.  Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said it best, this issue has grown to epidemic proportions.

Funeral Suicide military

Funeral for a fallen soldier

Wars are ugly, they’re costly, and they’re brutal (especially modern ones).  Additionally, mass deception accompanies all wars, hiding its true motivations.  Couched in terms like “freedom” and “democracy” or the United States self espoused benevolent intentions thinly veil the fact it is economic expansion and exploitation in the interests of US corporations driving the vast war machine.  The United States has become war hungry having entered into at least 14 large scale military engagements since the conclusion of WWII.  These expansion efforts haven’t come cheaply.  Almost as devastating as the loss of life, which is enormous, is the damage done to both our soldiers and our societies psyche.

There is a serious statement being made when more soldiers die at their own hand, than that of the enemy, to the tune of 1 per day.  Not only has the rate been rising, its doubled within the last 5 years, the last 4 of which their total has been higher than those killed in service.  By some estimates, this past year saw an increase to 349 suicides from 2011’s total of 310.   These trends don’t just stand out; they serve as a glaring indictment; not just of the Pentagon, or the Military-Industrial Complex, but each of us for allowing this to happen.

Regardless of our feelings on the military, or warfare in general,  I feel that we can all appreciate the sacrifice being made by those serving in the armed forces, and that they deserve more than is being done for them.  It is our duty to make sure they are taken care of when they return; providing access to services such as counseling and job placement are essential to fulfilling this mandate.

 OUTBREAK OF AN EPIDEMIC

 INCUBATION:

Since the beginning of the war in Afghanistan in 2001, the rate of troops being treated for mental health related issues has skyrocketed up 65% with nearly 100,000 soldiers now diagnosed with at least one mental health ailment.  There are several explanations for this growth, the most prominent being the elimination of the universal draft after the conclusion of the unpopular Vietnam War.

With a growing workload placed upon an increasingly smaller standing military, many combat troops experience rapid deployments and extended separations from their families. In addition to the strain placed upon the “combat” troops, support troops also experience added operational stress associated with being asked to do more with less.

The effects of this are many and run deeply within society, however should come as no surprise, with one source so aptly pointing out;

We have chosen to ask and allow a few to shoulder voluntarily the burden once shared by all. We have chosen to permit our leaders to involve us in wars the majority of citizens do not support. These choices have consequences that may include the creation of a constellation of social, cultural, and political conditions which conspire to elevate the rate of suicide in the Army and Marine Corps

The fact that the burden of war is placed upon the shoulders of increasingly few hasn’t slowed the United States appetite for war any, having been at war for the past 11 yrs. straight, costing the lives of an en estimated upwards of 15,000 Afghan civilians and more than 6,000 service members by costsofwar.org’s count.

Many of those who survive to return home will bear invisible scars with them which have the potential to make it difficult for them to adjust to life following a deployment.

Relationship problems increase the likelihood of returning troops committing suicide, with single people being 24% less likely to commit suicide than those separated or divorced. According to one official in contact with veterans of both Iraq and Afghanistan, nearly 73% of the people they lose to suicide happened 6 months after they returned home.

The military’s archaic approach to mental health only further reinforces the already existing stigmas surrounding suicide, PTSD and depression.  Often, the commanding officer’s initial reaction to a soldier claiming or reporting combat stress related mental health related issues is to assume that they’re faking it. Not only was mental health not very high of a priority, the stance often taken regarding its associated issues was antagonistic in nature only further exacerbating the problem.

Many soldiers are afraid to talk about their feelings (regardless of their toxicity) within a military setting, leading many who suffer to do so silently.  The Department of Defense Suicide Event Report published annually, has the number of soldiers who don’t lead on about their intentions  as high as nearly 75%.  Those that did discuss them did so with loved ones outside of the military.

Often the motivations for not sharing the emotional turmoil they are experiencing, relate to job security and social standing within their peer group.  Many of the older soldiers have passed on faulty information that reporting mental health related issues is equivalent to committing “career suicide”, potentially resulting in the soldier being ousted from the military altogether. When soldiers finally do overcome those barriers of reluctance and fear, they are not met with a welcome sight.  The military’s mental health services are woefully lacking. Many get turned away altogether.  That was the case for Captain Morrison, whose tragic story a recent TIME article chronicled.  An ailing Morrison sought help 6 times in 3 days each time being turned away and told to return later;….later…later…Finally,  after the third day, rather than rescheduling, he took his own life.  I’m sure this is just one story of many highlighting service shortcomings;

military suicide one per day

An estimated one soldier per day will take his or her own life in 2012.

SPREAD:

The lack of services available to soldiers due to under-staffing is no breaking news to the Pentagon.  Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta confirmed, we are behind the curve in services for our troops, adding that “one barrier is that the military doesn’t have enough caregivers to address this shortfall”.  Whats interesting is the fact there has been plenty of fair warning for the Pentagon to fill that demand, like it does so many airstrikes.  With their head in the sand, military leadership has largely ignored PTSD, and the suicides it can potentially lead to.  Such was the case when in 2006 NPR went to Ft. Carson.

In 2006 NPR investigated how well troops returning home from Iraq and Afghanistan were able to access the mental health benefits promised to them by the military.  At Ft. Carson, they were able to witness the culture of the military surrounding mental health first hand.  Those they interviewed recalled regularly being denied permission to go to scheduled treatment sessions and punishment.  This was confirmed by the commanding officers; explaining that they felt they were “faking” it, and that kind of behavior took away from the objectives of the military for which they are responsible and wouldn’t be tolerated.

Many soldiers exhibiting signs of PTSD, were not referred to a mental health professional.  This is a recurring and widespread issue throughout the Armed Forces and is documented in a study.  The investigative arm of Congress, the GAO, took a look at the data from the screening process for PTSD, their findings are alarming.  Nearly 80% of the troops who showed potential symptoms of PTSD were ignored and not given a referral for a mental health follow-up.

As a result of NPR’s reporting, the military did take action; initiating court-martial proceedings against one of the soldiers participating in the story.  The negative media received from the story didn’t spur them into taking action, only retaliation.

This sums up the military’s approach to mental health fairly well, in a nutshell.

PTSD Military mental health data

PTSD rates in the military

 

SYMPTOMS:

Although suicide rates rose all year, July proved to be the worst month, ever, setting the record for suicides in one month at 38.  Complicating analysis is the fact less than half of military personnel who committed suicide had deployed for the Afghanistan or Iraq war and only 15% were involved in direct combat.  Military downsizing, operational stress, and poor civilian job prospects upon returning were among the stressors. Nor is the epidemic partial to those on ACTIVE duty.  It appears that the National Guard, Air Force, Navy, and Marines Reserves have also resorted to taking their own lives, although in smaller numbers.

Still full of surprises, the statistics also show veteran soldiers with a ranking of Sergeant or higher committing suicide more than junior enlisted men 54-46 respectively.  This statistic is not what you would expect, but then again nothing about these suicides has been easy to predict.

PRESCRIPTION:

Despite the Obama administration increasing funding for mental health/family counseling programs within the military, in his 2011 budget, the numbers continued to rise.  Underestimating the crisis severity, and failing to decisively target the culture within the military surrounding PTSD & mental health doomed the increased funding from the beginning.

What good is a budget when people are either too scared to use it, or their diagnosis is overlooked?

Following the record pace set this year, especially during the summer and the increased media coverage it received; The Pentagon was forced to act decisively to “get out in front” of this issue they’ve ignored for years, despite years of research.

Since the suicide rate has reached critical mass, the Pentagon and the White House have gone into red alert, launching into frenzied action.  Secretary of Defense Panetta issued a directive to all branches of the armed forces forbidding the punishment, hazing, or harassment of those seeking treatment for mental health related disorders.

All branches of the government have begun mandatory trainings on the topic, detailing signs to look for and rules to follow about approaching mental health.  Additionally, in further efforts to change the culture surrounding the issue;

President Obama has broken with a long-standing unspoken tradition of not recognizing the bodies of those killed by suicide among the dead and offering letters of condolence to loved ones.  A move that was not met without its fair share of controversy, especially during campaign season.

But will this be enough?

Suicide Statistics

Suicide Statistics

REMISSION?

All of these are steps in the right direction, but the Pentagon needs to take a more proactive approach to mental health treatment if they want to see any significant gains.  Treatment needs to be encouraged and not merely allowed, for all troops, not just those who see action.  Doing so would normalize this healthy coping mechanism over time, erasing any stigma attached.

Not surprisingly, in all the research I did, not a single mention did I hear made of the best method of combatting this issue.

We could stop going to war; Period. Scale back or outright end our global military engagements.

If the United States can’t afford the programs, or the facilities to treat its Vets for mental disorders, or if it is unwilling or unable to give those services promised when they signed the contract; then the United States has no business making war in the first place.

No new war fought, no new tank built, or bomb dropped, until we’ve made serious progress in this area and other areas here at home.

It is up to us to make sure this issue receives the proper attention, and that our nation fulfills it’s obligation to current soldiers and veterans, seeing this problem solved  This is important to me because I, like everyone else, have loved ones who serve.  Because I refuse to turn a blind eye, living blissfully ignorant to this growing problem.

With the rising Middle-East tensions, let us remember that we as a nation must do better by these men and women who have sacrificed so much through their service.  Let us make sure that on any given night an estimated  64,000 veterans do not go without food, or shelter; sinking deeper into cycles of substance abuse, despair and addiction leading to the staggering statistic that an estimated 14 veterans commit suicide each and every day (The V.A isn’t able to keep as accurate statistics as the military is for those still actively serving in the armed forces). Data surrounding PTSD treatment shows minimal recovery rates, meaning that many soldiers who develop PTSD will live with it for the rest of their lives.

Let us do whatever is necessary to improve the conditions of those soldiers we already have before we rush into war.

More importantly, lets make sure that we are never again manipulated into a war that’s not in our interests and let’s do it for our veterans; past, present and future, now that we know what the true cost is.  For all you out there who “support our troops”, Michael Moore said it best in his Op-Ed “the only way you can honestly say you support the troops is to work night and day to get them out of these hell holes they’ve been sent to.”

They deserve better; We deserve better.

Resources:

An Army report on suicide – Comprehensive Soldier Fitness – U.S. …

Training to Administer DoD Deployment Mental Health Assessments

The War Within – RAND Corporation

Reframing Suicide in the Military – US Army War College

Suicide and the United States Army: – Dana Foundation

Suicide Awareness Pamphlet for Leaders – MyArmyBenefits – U.S. …

Department of Defense Suicide Event Report (DoDSER) | t2health

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I Guess There’s Only One Thing Left To Do

The Next Great Adventure

Never Conform; never bend to their will.  Become new new abolitionists instead!

If this is the case, all that’s left is to

Resist!

 

 

Author John Greene Gives Amazing Commencement With Lessons We Can All Take Away From It

A Useful Commencement Speech:

John Greene was recently asked to deliver the commencement speech at Baylor University for the graduating 2013 class; and the result was pretty awesome.  The lessons of humility, happiness, learning to be a nobody; and learning to not be a jerk are just as valid for the person who has long since graduated from college as well as the uneducated.

I really appreciated his wit and his humor and I would urge the same as he did;

Always allow for the possibility “Have a nice birthday sir, despite everything”  being the translation for those things we don’t understand in life; whether it’s graffiti in another language, or a person or situation you’re having trouble wrapping your mind around.

Saved From Itself: Mississippi Was Almost Set to Continue It’s Sad Racist Legacy Until Saved By The Bell

English: The Seal of the United States Federal...

English: The Seal of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation. For more information, see here. Español: El escudo del Buró Federal de Investigaciones (FBI). Para obtener más información, véase aquí (Inglés). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mississippi to Execute Willie Manning Tonight After Rejecting DNA Tests & FBI’s Admission of Error | Democracy Now!.

Despite the very real possibility they could be completely wrong about this conviction in the first place; having already received a personal admission from the FBI that they had made errors in the handling of this case and urging the state of Mississippi to take that one extra step as a precaution ensuring they aren’t about to execute an innocent man; committing murder in their own right.

When somebody else’s life is at stake, I feel like who is anyone else to deny that person the willingness to go the extra mile, even if it is just to humor them.  Whatever time you feel like you may have wasted in the process at least you’ll have the option of waking up the next morning to pick up where you may have left off, a luxury decidedly not afforded to someone recently executed.

With the advent of DNA, we are beginning to see quite a few instances where cases we once thought were a slam dunk turns out to be bunk; built entirely upon the strength of whatever our own individual prejudices we each secretly harbor; and nothing more.  We’ve become too quick to assume guilt well before innocence; somehow shifting the burden of proof from the prosecutions shoulders and onto our own…

If receiving an admission from the FBI that they made a few errors and it could have affected this man’s case doesn’t serve to qualify as being at least a shadow of a doubt as to his guilt then I don’t know what would.  The worst part about it is the reluctance on the state of Mississippi’s part to even look into the matter.  It’s almost like they’re scared what they would have found out if they decided to do that.

So if any of my readers are in the Gulf region and Mississippi in particular; I urge you to reach out to your governor expressing your doubts or your concerns about the execution going forward tonight as planned before at least giving the FBI the time of day to put their mind at rest that they didn’t really make a mistake and put the wrong man away; sentencing him to death.

UPDATE:

At the last minute, the Mississippi Supreme Court issued a stay of execution, for which many people let out an audible sigh of relief.  I just don’t really understand why that wouldn’t have been their first instinct or reaction when they discovered their had been a mistake on the part of the FBI in the handling of his case and that they were no longer confident with their original findings.

Tomas Young Reads His Last Letter To Bush & Cheney

Tomas Young is an inspiration to us all.

Shot through the back on his fifth day in Iraq and paraplegic ever since, Tomas Young became an outspoken critic of the Iraq War as being an illegal and unjust one for us to have gone into.

His advocacy and his message led to him becoming the subject of a documentary film entitled “Body of War” which documented his transition back into society as well as his activism and advocacy efforts following his injury.

Standing up for what’s right is something that comes second nature to Tomas, despite being wheelchair bound.  Thats what I call heart.

Plagued by mishaps and medical setbacks, (the most recent of which was having his colon removed;), ever since that fateful moment he ended up in a snipers sight, or line of fire, Tomas Young currently lives in hospice care and is preparing to die;

Naturally, he wasn’t going without first saying goodbye to those responsible for the Iraq War.

His “Last Letter” offers an extremely powerful condemnations of war; made all the more powerful because it obviously comes from a very real place.

Watch the clip, read the text; let it all sink in and then let me know about your thoughts while you’re at it!

 

Glenn Greenwald on Bill Maher Discusses Why Rationale For Killing al-Awlaki is Deeply Flawed

Glenn Greenwald owns the civil liberties debate yet again while a guest on Real Time with Bill Maher.

I’m glad theres at least one reporter who has a fucking brain these days and isn’t willing to just go along with whatever the Obama administration says should go, like the rest of the mainstream media that isn’t FOX News, at least.

The part he was just coming to at the end is really the most powerful and the most prescient portion of his argument and it’s what we are witnessing at the moment from the Obama administration and is something we will be forced to reconcile one way or another, especially considering how very little concern Obama has shown for his actions.

Until we show the Obama administration that we are not willing to just give up without a fight, and that we do not in fact condone it’s present course of behavior; then we should expect more and more and more egregious steps to be taken until the administration is met with some kind of response from us.

What’s your take on it? Do you think Obama is justified in doing something like that? Or do you think he has his head in the political sand and essentially has absolutely no idea whats going on in the first place?

 

Spielberg’s Most Recent Blockbuster Hit Gets Palin Kicking and Screaming

You Remember How Every Year We Have This Very Blah, Very Very Vanilla Dinner For The Correspondents;

But For Some Reason, This Year One Sarah Palin Took Offense For Whatever Reason And Raised Something Of A Stink In The Process

Good, hold that thought;

That video above was one of the “offending” culprits; from this most recent White House Correspondence Dinner; I must say, I’m somewhat stumped on this one…. I know it’s not the only skit that was shown during the course of the dinner; but I just can’t see anything wrong with it, like at all.

While I’ll admit I hardly watched any of the most recent installment of this awkward dinner for awkward people, lovingly dubbed “nerd prom”, I feel fairly certain there wasn’t much going on in terms of the “edge” factor.

There exists a fairly well established modicum of respectfulness where while the line gets flirted with it’s never crossed; which is why the former Governor of Alaska’s response to it seemed so bizarre.

I’m Confident It Was Uneventful and Awkward; Just Like The Last One & Every Other One Before It

Yet, for some strange reason; as I mentioned before, Sarah Palin decided that now was as good a time as any for a wig out moment of epic proportions.

Oh the humanity! This is the last straw!

I can’t stand this stupid “nerd prom”, it’s a waste of time;

but only when I’m not invited; when that happens it’s actually quite funny.

She was wound up SO tight and seemed so passionate about it when she used the term “ass clowns” to describe those in attendance, I had to make sure it wasn’t the porn star that played Sarah Palin in the movie “Nailin Palin”; doing a double take.

Why else would the former Governor of Alaska only show this moral indignation over the practice right now? More importantly, how did she settle on “ass clowns”?

What could possibly have offended her so much as to draw such “wit” from such an unwitty person?

Could they really be jilted lovers and the reason shes upset be she wasn’t invited; she wanted to be Obama’s ass clown  too?

[duh duh duh! and the plot thickens]

I thought that maybe for at least a second, it really was her in that porno that came out bearing her name and likeness right around the time of the campaign;  “Nailin Palin” I believe the name was;  [shrug]

It was lookin like all she needed was “Obama“, or at least a kinda sorta look-a-like; a few cameras;

then it’s lights camera action!
That must have been where the potty mouth came from, right?

Sadly enough, my investigation informed me my theory was wrong.  Palin and the pornstar from “nailin Palin” are not one and the same; the porn star is still currently employed.

English: Camp Buehring, Kuwait - Alaska Govern...

English: Camp Buehring, Kuwait – Alaska Governor Sarah Palin talks to Nome, Alaska, native 1st Sgt. Dewey Green. Palin visited the Soldiers of 3rd Battalion, 297th Infantry Regiment, Alaska National Guard to learn about their mission in Kuwait. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On A More Serious Note:

At least she’s taken something akin to the back burner for herself lately;  been able to keep her stupidity relatively cordoned off via a precautionary quarantine.

No need to dumb up everyone else’s otherwise perfectly healthy polluted air on her account now is there?

This approach is in stark contrast to the mistaken hands off approach during her failed VP bid in ’08, operating under the belief “how bad could she possibly be?”

It turns out if we had tried to answer that rhetorical question, the answer would have been pretty fuckin bad man.

I’m sure John McCain wishes he had that one back.

To put it into context;

dumb shit she said in ’08, still haunts us to this day, threatening our continued survival; or ability to learn anything new from this point on; and that’s not factoring in any random words of “wisdom” she’s offered the world since then; like the recent rant about the correspondents dinner (it was about time someone stood up to those “ass clowns” and their annual dinners; it’s only so obvious they’re at the root of our problems….).

Sadly, it wasn’t just those coming into direct contact with her stupidity who began to notice the effects;

In offering her an open Mic and a podium to stand on, we ensured the effects would be felt far and wide;

                                     Shit Went Viral

Before the sequester was even a glimmer in Paul Ryan or Eric Cantor’s maniacal eyes; Sarah Palin promoted deep and long lasting reductions; they were just of our standards.

At an alarming rate, many American‘s can do nothing more than sit and watch themselves lose more of their brain function with each passing hour; not just the typical television induced brain rot either; this is something else.

Hour by hour they stand helplessly by as the lose more and more of their brain function through no fault of their own; they’ve been victimized, by the steady influx of Sarah Palin’s retarded ass comments.

Unfortunately, knowing it is not themselves to blame for their leaky and shrinking brain.  It would appear that we have a first rate case of second hand dumb, (also known as “contact” dumb); in fact it’s the worst one ever recorded.

Once you’ve contracted it, the knowledge it wasn’t your own stupidity so much as your general vicinity to the stupidity of others that damned you won’t be a comforting thought.

I’d imagine it still feels pretty fucked up; kinda like getting lung cancer when you’ve never smoked in your life,  but slightly less fucked up on a scale of 1-10 .

I think both parties can agree on something for once; they’ve both adopted the catchphrase “friends don’t let friends get second hand dumb”

Side-note:

On a personal level, I do kinda gotta giver her props for using the term “ass clowns” not only in a complete sentence, but outside a fraternity setting (But I also have something of a potty-mouth as well, routinely making truckers blush). 
 
Well played Palin, well played; now if you could only work on your likability, you wouldn’t have to dish these jabs from the political sidelines along with the rest of yesterday’s news.

If We Stand Up They Lose

Don’t let the fact this video is from a Coca-Cola commercial fool you; looks can be deceiving, that’s just its day job.

Watch the video and take the advice to heart.

Our rights will continue to be curtailed and our interests will go on being ignored only for so long as we allow it. It’s amazing how empowering something so simple as standing up can be, but don’t take my word for it; try it and find out.

Yup; She’s a Boss

Elizabeth Warren must have that “me against the world”, mentality as she basically goes it alone in standing up for the little guy; you know, the ones that gave her their trust and put her there in the first place.

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