Tuesday, November 28, 2006

How many more KIA's are acceptable?

Idaho has given 16 of our sons and daughters.
Montana has given 14.
Utah has given 17.
Wyoming has given 9.
Nevada has given 34.
Oregon has given 56.
Washington has given 62.
California has given 329.

How many more of our sons and daughters must die before America brings them home?

Monday, November 27, 2006

"PEACE" unacceptable?

Woman faces fines for wreath peace sign
By ROBERT WELLER, Associated Press Writer
Sun Nov 26, 11:13 PM ET

A homeowners association in southwestern Colorado has threatened to fine a resident $25 a day until she removes a Christmas wreath with a peace sign that some say is an anti-Iraq war protest or a symbol of Satan.

Some residents who have complained have children serving in Iraq, said Bob Kearns, president of the Loma Linda Homeowners Association in Pagosa Springs. He said some residents have also believed it was a symbol of Satan. Three or four residents complained, he said.

"Somebody could put up signs that say drop bombs on Iraq. If you let one go up you have to let them all go up," he said in a telephone interview Sunday.

Lisa Jensen said she wasn't thinking of the war when she hung the wreath. She said, "Peace is way bigger than not being at war. This is a spiritual thing."…

{Thanks yet again to http://www.makethemaccountable.com for sharing this...}

Sounds like the time when I coordinated a Candelight Peace Vigil here in Gooding, Idaho... a woman in my church (with children in the military) complained to my pastor and wanted my membership revoked...

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Don't talk the talk... walk the WALK.

Posted at Huffington Post

Let's Go, Chickenhawks! Preempt Rangel's Draft

Congressman Charlie Rangel plans to reintroduce a bill calling for the reinstating of the draft under the banner statement: if you're prone to knee-jerking America into war again, you had better be prepared to put your hawk-ass where you hawk-beak is. Otherwise, think twice before you rah-rah another misguided armed conflict because Uncle Sam will be asking you for help. And that help will involve a bit more than slapping a yellow-ribbon magnet on your SUV before waddling downstairs to play SOCOM.

The bill's ultimate fate not withstanding, I figure while the president and Senator McCain examine more troops in Iraq, those of you who are so inclined should volunteer right now. And if you're older than 42, but you have service-aged children, bestow upon them your old W'04 bumper sticker and demand they support the war by signing up. You chickenhawks like preemption, so it's time to preempt Congressman Rangel. The links:
Enlist in the ARMY
Enlist in the MARINES
Enlist in the NAVY
Enlist in the AIR FORCE
Enlist in the COAST GUARD

Or for those of you in favor of the privatization of our military, check out the Middle Eastern job opportunities at Halliburton. This is a recommended path for those of you who can't do more than two pull-ups or more than 35 sit-ups (the minimum physical requirement for service). But at least you'll be in The Shit and, because you're so gung ho, you'll get to test your full-steam-ahead bravery while under fire -- without the assistance of wussy firearms. Who needs weapons? You're stay-the-course brave! It'll be just you, your truck and a good old fashioned two-way radio when the hajis start lobbing RPGs.

Let's go, chickenhawks. Preempt Charlie Rangel's draft. Over the next week or so, we can expect to read about a sudden jump in military recruitment primarily composed of Americans who think the Iraq War was a most excellent adventure -- but especially amongst those who don't want America to cut-and-run like all those effete San Francisco liberals.

And if the draft was somehow reinstated, I guarantee that a large percentage of chickenhawks would immediately:
1) flip-flop and begin to second guess this and future wars,
2) figure out ways to attain a medical excuse or college deferment for themselves or their kids,
3) hide all of their military dress up costumes, and
4) cry.

Meanwhile, draft or not, working- and middle-class families will continue to send their sons and daughters into a war which the chickenhawks, with all their faux-patriotic sloganeering, blindly triggered without any thought given to the facts, the history, the motivations or the consequences of their words, deeds and bumper magnets. The lazy and incurious will continue to lob coward-bombs from the comfort of their computers and talk show microphones while the grunts they sent into war are maimed, tortured and killed; all so Republicans could be re-elected and so the administration's corporate associates could profit from our tax dollars and the blood of our fellow countrymen.

It's time to go long, chickenhawks. Or will you cut-and-run from the war you want so badly yet refuse to fight?

Truly thankful...

Thanks again to Carolyn Kay at MakeThemAccountable.com for passing on another gem...

Saturday, November 18, 2006


I want some Demoglad! However, it seems to have limited availability in Idaho...

Friday, November 17, 2006

Prove your commitment to the cause, George.

This week I attended a funeral service for another Idaho hero. As I am still trying to process my emotions and feelings about this poor family's loss (as well as America's loss), I continue to hear Bush promote the war in Iraq and his commitment to victory. I find myself thinking yet again how easy it must be for him to risk the lives of our American troops... when none of his own are willing to sacrifice for his cause. I posted the following eight months ago... I doubt there has been any recent developments (i.e. enlistments).
March 22, 2006
I received this via e-mail from a member of the Gold Star Families for Peace. In case you didn't know, there is only one requirement to be a member of a Gold Star Family: Your loved one is killed as a result of war. As I've mentioned previously, my family has paid those dues.

How many Americans are willing to pay those dues? NOT GEORGE. He can't even talk his OWN family into "sacrificing for the cause". I guess they don't need the money (enlistment bonuses) enough or they are not worried about getting a higher education (another selling point for recruiters) or they don't care about defending America's freedoms (one of the so-called reasons for this war) or they don't care about democracy in Iraq (another so-called reason for this war).

How can he continually attempt to sell this war to Americans when his own family doesn't buy into it?

Either the Bush Kids Put Their Lives on the Line for George's "Noble War"...

...or the Troops Need To Come Home!

Like George did, the new generation of Bushes let other Americans die for them.

Bush has derided the mothers and fathers of our nation's war dead for not wanting any more young American men and women to die in Iraq. "We owe them [the already killed and wounded soldiers] something," he told veterans in Salt Lake City (even though his administration tried to shortchange the veterans agency by $1.5 billion, according to Maureen Dowd). "We will finish the task that they gave their lives for."

Yet, not one -- not one -- of any of Bush's children or his nieces and nephews have volunteered for service in any branch of the military or volunteered to serve in any capacity in Iraq. Not one of them has felt the cause was noble enough to put his or her life on the line.

Here is the full list of the children of Bush and his siblings who have chosen to let other young men and women -- mostly poor, rural and minorities -- die for them, because they have no desire to die for George W. Bush's alleged "noble cause" (assuming an eligible age of 17 with parental consent to join the military):

Military Service Eligible Children of George W. Bush
Jenna Bush
Barbara Bush

Military Service Eligible Children of Jeb Bush
George P. Bush
Noelle Bush
John Ellis Bush Jr.

Military Service Eligible Children of Neil Bush
Lauren Bush
Pierce Bush

Military Service Eligible Children of Marvin Bush
Marshall Bush

Military Service Eligible Children of Dorothy Bush Koch
Samuel LeBlond
Ellie LeBlond

Furthermore, not one of George's siblings served in the military when they were eligible, and Bush got a cozy stateside position in the Texas Air National Guard to avoid risking his life in another "noble war," Vietnam.

Why do George W. Bush, his siblings, and their children think that the war is "noble" enough for kids like Casey Sheehan to die in, but not them?

If it's not "noble" enough for the Bush family to risk their lives fighting for, it's just a disastrous graveyard for poor and middle class Americans, dug deep to advance Bush's partisan agenda.

Bush can be brave with other people's children, because he has nothing personally to risk. Instead the cost is paid in the lives of the real Americans who are not born into the lap of privilege and risk-free lifestyles reserved for the elite.

Fourteen months and 1,020 caskets later

I want to post on my thoughts and feelings after attending the funeral services for Spc. James Lee Bridges ("Doug") of Buhl, Idaho -- but I'm just not ready yet. As I deal with my own emotions and heartache, I'm thinking of the horrific pain and trauma experienced by Doug's family. I'm thinking of the expressions on his mom's face and remembering my own mother's screams when the Marines arrived at her door. I'm thinking of the youth and beauty of Doug's fiancee and the heartbreak she must be experiencing so early in her life. I'm thinking about what the next few days, weeks, months, and years will bring to this family and how unbelievably difficult it must be for them all. I'm thinking about how, even as intense love and support was expressed that afternoon, how clueless most of our friends and neighbors really are about what Gold Star families experience. I'm worried about how the little conflicts among this poor family will cause even more damage (and perhaps permanent scars) as they try to deal with their family dynamics and dramas while still bleeding from their own heart-wounds. I'm hoping their friends and neighbors continue to surround them all with love and patience and comfort and prayers... not just this week, or this month.... but for years to come...

As I'm processing, I'm reviewing some of my older posts. I decided to re-post my very first entry... the day I decided I needed a safe place to vent, to process, and to express my opinions. After fourteen months, I still feel this way... only more so, after attending the funeral services for Spc. Bridges.

August 16, 2005

It is a sad day when our fellow Americans believe that we should blindly follow our leaders as sheep to slaughter... as Hitler Youth and Nazis followed Hitler... without having the freedom to ask "are we doing the right thing or not"?

We, as Americans, have the intelligence and freedom to question our government without fear of being arrested, tortured, killed, etc. If the German people had the freedom and democracy as we have, then Hitler would NOT have succeeded. Trying to take away the freedom of Americans to have the ability to think for themselves and to evaluate their own values and opinions is UN-AMERICAN, in my opinion. That is how Hitler succeeded, how Saddam succeeded, and that is how North Korea functions... is THAT American people are wanting??

Because "I said so" works for parents of little children... it shouldn't be how American leaders treat our citizens.

I respect that some people would like to accept the "message from the top" without questioning it.. I don't understand it, but I accept it. I'm the same way, really, until I find my trust level shaken. Once that trust is betrayed, then I really cannot blindly follow.

I understand and completely respect that many of our military personnel are unwilling and/or unable to question or challenge the purpose or reasoning of their mission in Iraq. Their role is to obey their commanders, including the President. That is part of the dynamic of the success of our military force. Our military is doing their job supremely well, some (i.e. reservists) in ways which are above and beyond what they expected.

That being said... WE as citizens have an equally critical responsibility. It is OUR job to choose commanders and leaders who can do the job with integrity and wisdom. We need to choose leaders who wisely utilize our resources (whether natural resources or HUMAN resources) with consideration for the future... the BIG picture. We need leaders who think about more than their own agenda, their own benefit, and their own egos.

Our leaders also have a responsibility to represent the needs and desires of their constituents… THEY ARE OUR representatives. Our American leaders should NOT be dictators. We have the right to request honest explanations for the decisions that impact our lives. If our troops are fighting to provide freedom and democracy to the Iraqi people, then don’t we have the right to demand democracy here in America? Isn’t that what our soldiers fought and died for in previous wars? I believe that those who attack Americans for their freedom, who criticize our right to free speech, and for our expectations of a democracy--whether Iraqi or fellow Americans, they are the true enemy of America.

When it comes right down to it, our troops are doing their jobs... are we doing ours?

The reason why Cindy Sheehan is receiving so much support from many Americans is that we appreciate her for having the courage to demand a response from the administration via the President. People are saying that Cindy and anybody else who questions the administration that we are criticizing the troops themselves—but that isn’t true!

If I were sent to fight a war that I questioned, I would hope and pray that my country -- the Americans in which I swore to protect -- would care enough about ME and would try to protect ME by demanding accountability and legitimacy so I would NOT be asked to risk my life for "nothing". These soldiers are not disposable resources... they are valuable human beings who deserve to only be risked when necessary... and some of us believe it is not necessary. Is that really so wrong? Don’t we have an obligation to protect THEIR lives as they are sworn to protect OURS?

I value our troops enough to not be willing to risk their lives over an illegitimate war. I consider that "SUPPORT". If others believe the cause is worthy enough to die for, then they have the right to believe in that cause. But do not deny the rest of America the right to make sure that our troops are valued enough to ONLY be sent out to risk their lives for a LEGITIMATE purpose.

What about the Marines and soldiers who DO question why they are there -- and THERE ARE THOSE IN IRAQ with the SAME QUESTIONS, not just us "liberal commies" here stateside -- and wonder why the American citizens aren't speaking out about it? Did it occur to anybody that they are unable to speak out about their own concerns about their purpose and pray for our country to wake up and bring them home? I'm not talking about crybabies here, I'm talking about our troops who would GLADLY die to protect our country... and do not believe that being in Iraq is where they need to be.

If you have not heard the screams of a mother as she sees the Marines at her door, then you are not able to understand what Cindy and almost two thousand other mothers have experienced since “Mission Accomplished”. Yes, maybe some of our fallen heroes would not want their mothers to criticize their Commander-in-Chief, but it is my personal belief that:

(1) they would appreciate and respect that America is a democracy and not like Iraq, and

(2) from Heaven, where they are able to see and understand so much more than we can from earth, they are able to see the truth and they will be telling Cindy Sheehan “OOOOH RAH!”

To those who criticize Cindy’s supposedly “recent” conversion and wish to imply that she is being manipulated by outside forces due to some of her original comments after her first meeting with President Bush, you must understand the process many of the grieving families go through…

We do NOT want to acknowledge that our loved ones died in vain, for our President’s personal agenda/finances/ego...

We do NOT want to show disrespect to their Commander-in-Chief…

We do NOT want to tarnish their memory and honor with our personal opinions about the legitimacy of the war.

It may even take a while before we start to realize that we are NOT believing what we are told about the purpose of the war. Cindy and many other family members may have originally met with the President with the intense HOPE that he would be able to comfort them and help them believe in the integrity of the war and that there truly WAS a noble cause in the death of their loved ones. Their hearts and souls may struggle with what they want to believe and what they are actually discovering about the situation and the leaders involved. Who would really WANT to think that our country wasted the lives of our loved ones for a mistake…? Didn’t our country already go through that once?

Some people call it “flip flop” but others feel that gathering knowledge, allowing for new information, and having opinions evolve based upon the information gathered is MUCH more intelligent than sticking to the same opinion no matter what. That is the kind of thinking that Columbus fought against the “flat earth” thinkers… there are people today who still don’t believe that people have landed on the moon… no matter what information is provided to them, no matter what proof available… they refuse to evolve. Some of us have evolved our thinking, based upon the information available, that perhaps this war is NOT in America’s best interests.

I don't demand everybody agrees with me, but to keep an open mind and respect that many Americans feel the way I do. Stating that our questions to our leaders are unpatriotic and unsupportive of the troops is cruel, arrogant, and ignorant. By attacking our American privilege to request honest dialogue from our leaders, that is more damaging to America than our criticism of our leaders. Our country was FOUNDED by pilgrims who questioned their king and his abuse of power over the people... unlike other countries who accept the tyranny and dictatorship of their government.

Would it be right for Americans to not question our leaders no matter WHAT their "mission" was when they send our men and women to kill and be killed in foreign countries? If we had a leader who decided that we needed to attack England or Canada or Mexico for some reason (especially if their reasoning turned out to be false), would people still say "We must follow our President without question"? Would it make a difference if the people we attack look like us or is a Christian country like ours? It sure helps us with our conscience, doesn't it, that they have a freaky religion and dark skin and dress in sheets and beekeeper suits...

How would we feel if we were attacked because of our beliefs? Oh, yeah, we were ... on September 11... and we didn't like it, did we? Obviously some people didn't mind enough to actually focus our retaliation on the right individuals (it was bin Laden -- not Saddam) or the right country (he's Saudi Arabian -- not Iraqi, he's in Afghanistan -- not Iraq) but those are just minor details, right?

So, are we in a war to provide democracy to another country while we deny Americans democracy here at home? Or are we fighting terrorists (wrong guy, wrong country)? That is the information we are seeking... and we are being told to stop asking these questions? Doesn't that scare people? Is it that impossible to realize that Americans were LIED to? Is that acceptable to us? Do we not have a right to an explanation? Or are we to continue to be sheep...?

I understand that our troops are doing an awesome job and I am NOT criticizing THEM... but I have a right to understand why one thousand eight hundred and forty three (plus however many since today's date) other Americans died. Is it so hard to deny those of us who have lost our loved ones in Iraq an explanation for that loss? It's a lot easier to keep up the support of the administration until the only contact you have with your son, husband, brother, etc. is at his gravesite. That gives you a little bit more to think about. It can change your perspective and your priorities.

Some people think that it is okay to attack Cindy by saying that her son would be appalled at her behavior… they may be correct. Many of the living Marines and soldiers now may be horrified to think of their mother or family attacking their Commander in Chief. However, again, they also believe in democracy and freedom… this is part of the package.

I thank God that so many soldiers and Marines died believing in what they are doing... and I hope that they would recognize that the freedom they risk their lives for is the same freedom that allows us to ask our questions. But, unlike many of you who don't believe we should ask these questions, I can't ask my Marine about it any more. I no longer can argue, whine and moan, and be his "bleeding heart liberal" big sister who annoys the crap out of him any more... and people tell me that I don't have the RIGHT or the FREEDOM to ask "WHY"?

I know that how I feel would upset him greatly him off to no end... I hate knowing that... it's one thing to irritate off my little brother when he's alive… it's another when he's dead. I do respect him for what he was... a MARINE in all CAPITAL letters. But he also died in the name of democracy and America and freedom...

To deny Americans the ability to express their opinion is a greater insult to those who died -- than our questions about WHY.

To continue to have Americans killed for an illegal war, for an illegitimate “cause”, to avoid admitting a mistake is a MUCH worse insult to those who have already died in this war.

Do people really think that our Fallen Heroes would support the deaths of more men and women to further the justification of their own deaths, when the purpose of the war is proven to be no longer valid?

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Gooding Drinking Liberally

I've had several people contact me about Gooding Drinking Liberally... we want to start it up again.

However, this is NOT my group... it's for anybody in the area who wants to socialize with other liberals, progressives, Democrats, Independents, or left-leaning thinkers. We can share, laugh, watch liberal movies, have speakers, whatever. It is not a political organization and does not endorse any political party, candidate, etc., but will mostly provide support for each other as we process our concerns about certain issues which we (as liberal-types) feel are not being addressed by conservatives in our (as citizens of Idaho and America) best interest (whether it is education or civil rights or whatever...). If you have any questions or want clarification, please let me know...

If you are in the slightest bit interested, please e-mail me with answers to the following questions:

  • Are you interested?
  • How often do you want to meet?
  • What days?
  • What times?
  • What locations? (THIS IS ONE OF THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES! Any suggestions???)
  • Do you want "special guests"?
  • Do you want to gather and watch certain shows/movies together?
  • What else would you want?

No Child Left Behind - The Football Version

NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND---The Football Version

1. All teams must make the state playoffs and all MUST win the championship. If a team does not win the championship, they will be on probation until they are the champions, and coaches will be held accountable. If after two years they have not won the championship their footballs and equipment will be taken away UNTIL they do win the championship.

2. All kids will be expected to have the same football skills at the same time even if they do not have the same conditions or opportunities to practice on their own. NO exceptions will be made for lack of interest in football, a desire to perform athletically, or genetic abilities or disabilities of themselves or their parents. ALL KIDS WILL PLAY FOOTBALL AT A PROFICIENT LEVEL!

3. Talented players will be asked to workout on their own, without instruction. This is because the coaches will be using all their instructional time with the athletes who aren't interested in football, have limited athletic ability or whose parents don't like football.

4. Games will be played year round, but statistics will only be kept in the 4th, 8th, and 11th game. It will create a New Age of Sports where every school is expected to have the same level of talent and all teams will reach the same minimum goals. If no child gets ahead, then no child gets left behind. If parents do not like this new law, they are encouraged to vote for vouchers and support private schools that can screen out the non-athletes and prevent their children from having to go to school with bad football players.

Thanks to The Royal (Northwest) Mounted Valise --who also thanks A. G. Rud for having this "funny analogy comparing football with NCLB. Well, funny in a sad, sad way."

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Amen and double Amen...

I am sick to death of the radical religious right in Idaho trying to scare Christians into THEIR version of Christianity. I'm broken-hearted that their fear tactics seem to be working.

However, I'm having an uplifting moment that today's Times-News (Twin Falls, Idaho-based newspaper which leans to the right) published a column by Steve Gushee where he points out how dangerous people such as Ralph Reed and James Dobson are, who he calls "present-day Pharisees".

"They prostitute their faith for political gain, misrepresent God's Word and invoke their Lord to judge people with whom they disagree."
Do you suppose that people like Bryan Fischer and Adam Graham recognize themselves?

Gushee continues to state that:

"The Olympians of sin are those who distort the faith, manipulate Scripture and make a mockery of Christianity to gain power."
Recognize anybody?

He reminds us that:

"Jesus scolded those caught in sexual misdemeanors, but he castigated with unusual force those who championed their faith even as they misused it, trampled on the poor even as they said their prayers and incited violence even as they called upon the Prince of Peace."
Does this sound like the political party of so-called American values and compassionate conservatism?

In case certain people have forgotten, Gushee reminds us that Jesus:

"...rebuked the woman taken in adultery. However, he railed against those who wallowed in religious sanctity but twisted it to use against others."
Do you hear this, Otter/Kempthorne/Craig/Foley/Haggard/Limbaugh/Chenoweth/fill-in-GOP-name-here...?

Readers are reminded of Jesus' anger toward these hypocrites:

"Woe to you, scribes and Pharisee, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice, mercy and faith" (Matthew 23:23).
Gushee's final words should resonate with sincere Christians...

"Jesus would weep."
I'm not familiar with Steve Gushee and his beliefs, but this article spoke to me. I can only hope (and pray) that others who desire to follow God--and not men who pretend to represent God--can hear these words as well.

The full article is posted here.

My other thoughts:
Do we REALLY want GOP to be our role models on family values and spirituality?
Idaho's Government: Our new spiritual leaders
How can an Idahoan be a Christian AND a Democrat at the same time?
Christianity in politics
Dear God...
Third Millennial Prayer for Children
"God's Politics: Why the right gets it wrong, and the left doesn't ...
Read your Bible some more, George!
A moment of Prayer
Does anybody remember the phrase "Compassionate Conservatives"?
Politicians, please PRIORITIZE!
Family Values? Or Homophobic?
I Am Liberal

Post-Election Thoughts

Where is my Idaho?
"Idaho has always been conservative, in fact borderline libertarian, but there was a time when they could smell bullsh*t a mile away. What has happened to my Idaho?"

Nanny 911 to the Rescue
"This week, the American people finally reached their breaking point. They finally had had enough. They finally realized that their household was out of control, and that they needed to bring in someone who could do something about it."

Nationwide attention to Idaho's insanity has begun:
Still Crazy After All These Years: The nuttiest congressional district in America keeps its reputation intact.
The rest of America may be hungry for common-sense centrists who'll change the tone and solve the country's problems. But in Idaho, voters looked at the extremism of the last six years and said, "Bring it on," "Stay the course," and "Full steam ahead!"

"Hacking Democracy" on HBO
{Program it, tape it, go to a friend's house... but WATCH it if you can...it will be showing repeatedly throughout November. I recognize that this year's election was mostly in Dems favor, but I can't help but wonder if this was even in spite of any shenanigans occurring in our election system. If those who try to alter the system just didn't quite alter it enough...? I know, I know, pretty paranoid thinking... but still...}
"Well, it's pretty symbolic: our democracy is literally lying in the dumpster. These are things that if the government was really running elections, and they weren't privatized, we would have a right to that information. We would have a right to know where every penny went that had anything to do with our elections. It's amazing that we have to dig it out of a dumpster to find out. "

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Why friends shouldn't let friends vote stupid...

On Saturday, Spc. James Lee Bridges of Buhl, Idaho was killed while conducting a mounted patrol in the Iraqi city of Baghdad. He was 23 years old. His enlistment would have ended in two weeks -- but he was called back to serve another deployment.

I am praying for his family and his fiancee.

Support the troops... bring them home.

Buy Idaho Quick... before it's all sold off!

Thanks to our fellow Idahoans who supported Club For Growth's spokesman Sali, "Write the Check Out to" Simpson, "Put A Dollar In My Pants and I'll Dance For You" Otter, "Children are just little widgets" Luna, and "Let Me List Your Property" Jones, we can say "Goodbye" to the Idaho we've known and loved.

We are truly the best state money can buy...

A little sunshine...

Maybe the citizens of Idaho have let me down (for God's sake, 57% still approve of Bush even though 60% of the rest of the United States seem to be waking up)... but last night's nationwide elections seem to have started a little bit of improvement for our country:

Even with headlines such as:
Rumsfeld spokesman says the defense chief gives no indication he will leave early 8:07 a.m. November 8, 2006
Democrats' win alone won't drive Rumsfeld out Wed Nov 8, 2006 10:50am ET

As I type this, I'm watching Bush on MSNBC announce Rumsfeld's replacement!

My favorite quote:

"I thought we'd do better yesterday...
shows what I know! Heh... heh!"

It's a dark day in Idaho...

The Sniff Test posted exactly what I'm thinking...

"Good that the state rejected Howard Rich's land grab proposition 2. But...Oh...boy...you've really swallowed the Kool Aid on Risch's tax shift from wealthy to middle class property owners. And, getting nervous about the election, Risch has PROMISED to take the sales tax off groceries (an idea Democrats proposed a couple of legislative sessions ago...but the Rs wouldn't even discuss it.)

Listen up, Idaho media. Listen up, you brain dead voters who never pay attention until you've received 50 GOP robo-calls that get you marching off to the polls like so many lemmings. Hold him to it. Mark February 15th on your calendar. Ask yourself if Risch has made good on the promise. That should be about halfway through the 2007 legislative session. Then call his ass every day until you get sales tax relief on groceries. Let's see if Little Jim keeps his promises.

Stupid bigots dragged their knuckles to the polls long enough to pass the marriage amendment... Just remember: all those rights you voted away for gay couples also won't go to hetersexual co-habitors. The fine print on that bill spells it out clearly: there are couple rights IF you go and get hitched. No more recognition of civil unions. I'm predicting it will take a couple of decades for Idaho to get over its homophobia.

Now...in our Superintendent of Public Instruction race and our controller races, I am taking real exception to you moronic pieces of excrement passing as human beings who went to the polls today with no clear idea of the candidates' qualifications or positions on anything other than you were going to vote Republican no matter what.

The trends are looking very bad for controller candidate Jackie Groves Twilegar...a woman with a masters degree in finance... because you knuckle-dragging, troglodyte lemming voters HAD to vote R...for the woman with a GED. No corporation on earth would choose Donna Jones to manage that much money over a Jackie Groves Twilegar.

And, in your slavish devotion to the Republican Koolaid, you gave far more votes to a man to run our public schools who couldn't even get hired to teach in one because he simply doesn't have the qualifications.

Are you out of your minds? Just stupid? Come on. Admit it. You didn't bother to read or pay attention to ANYTHING about the candidates before you voted.

Proves my point: huge numbers of Idahoans are so brainwashed, they'd vote against Jesus if you put a D after his name on the ballot. Satan would scrape out a win if he had the R after his name. It's an Idaho thing. Shame on you people. I hope the half-educated kids end up taking care of you when you're in the nursing home."

{Gee, and most of those nursing homes are run by Dan Adamson... serves them right.}

Monday, November 06, 2006

How can we support the troops?

A letter from one of our own citizens who risked everything for our country...

I believed the lie. As an Army reservist, I went to Iraq to protect America from weapons of mass destruction. But when I got there, I soon discovered there were no WMDs and no plan for us to succeed. I endured 12 months of combat and barely made it out alive.

We can't change the past. But in two days, we can change the future. This Republican Congress must be fired because they are still putting their own egos above the truth—and above human lives.

This election is our last chance to show what happens when politicians use fear and lies to start a war. If they get away with it this time, they'll do it again. But if it costs them their power, we can send a message to future politicians in the only language they understand—and stop the next unnecessary war before it begins. The choice is ours.


On the morning of September 11th, 2001, I watched the attack on the World Trade Center with a special horror because the people killed were all civilians without training, arms, or defense. I called my unit that afternoon and begged, "Wherever this came from, send me there."

But that's not where they sent me. They sent me to Iraq.

Around a month into my tour, my small unit was ambushed by hundreds of insurgent fighters at a Coalition Provisional Authority base. The local security force (hired by corporate mercenaries) deserted immediately, taking guns and radios with them.

We were besieged for 22 straight hours under a steady stream of small arms fire and rocket propelled grenades. Forces from multiple nations attempted rescues throughout the night. At dawn, when morning prayers created a pause in the attack, we managed to escape with our lives.

I spent the next 11 months doing convoys, writing reports, and getting to know the real Iraq. I talked to hundreds of Iraqis; many became true friends. I saw the rage after Abu Ghraib. And I saw way too many innocent civilians die as the country slipped further and further over the edge.

The troops I served with suffered from limited ammunition, armor, resources, and staff. While we brushed our teeth in dirty water recycled from the showers, Halliburton reps got rich off contracts handed to them by their Republican friends back in Washington.

Reservists like me risk our lives when Congress says we must—and we need citizens like you to hold them accountable when they betray that trust.

This Tuesday is our very last chance to do that. It's the last chance for Americans to stand up and say we will not forget, we will not excuse, and we will not let this betrayal happen again.

For my fellow troops still in the field, for the thousands who have yet to put on the uniform, and for the hopes we all have for a peaceful world—it's time to Call for Change.


–Ginmar, concerned citizen
Sunday, November 5th, 2006

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Want to look good in a bikini? Get an abortion!

Bill Sali thinks women have abortions in order to look good in a bikini...??
Is it just me or is that really what women focus on when they are considering their options? I don't think that having an abortion is every young girl's dream!

Seriously, folks, if Sali is elected to Congress, Idahoans will be missing the days of white supremacists--because those were the days we could say "They don't represent ALL Idahoans!"

But if elected, Bill Sali WILL represent all Idahoans and, quite frankly, that should scare the daylights out of us...

I won't have the opportunity to vote for Larry Grant... so PLEASE, if you know people who DO live in the 1st Congressional District, TALK TO THEM! Let them know that they should not vote Republican just to support their party! They are IDAHOANS first!

Support Idaho... vote for Larry Grant!

This isn't an election... it's an INTERVENTION.

Can it be any more clear? Rep. Mike Simpson is an enabler to GOP incompetence... he ignores the crisis in Iraq, the economy, the debt, the health care and educational system, and the abuses of power by his friends DeLay and Foley. It's time for a change. It's time for Jim Hansen.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

It's not Kerry who dishonors the troops

I realize Kerry's explanation for his "botched joke" is that it was directed at Bush, not the troops... but does anybody besides me find a kernal of truth behind his words? I can't believe the GOP is getting all worked up over this perceived insult toward the troops! I know there are great opportunities in the military but we can't pretend that our troops are filled with the top GPA high school students. Many young people join the military because college is not an option for them, academically or financially. Even Army admits that:
According to the U.S. Army Recruiting Command's Strategic Partnership Plan for 2002-2007, "Priority areas [for recruitment] are designated primarily as the cross section of weak labor opportunities and college-age population as determined by both [the] general and Hispanic population."

I'm not the only who has concerns about military recruiters focusing on low-income and minority populations in inner city and rural areas--where young men and women do not have much hope for attending college or finding high-paying jobs. There is a large focus on Latinos (see also this article) not only because of their birth rate but even more lucrative deals are being made by promising citizenship to young undocumented immigrants.

Recruiters are very aware of this and plan accordingly, while simultaneously denying their intentions:
"JROTC gets into large cities that are cash-strapped because the people there are looking for programs that provide options," he says. "Is that "targeting'? No. Is it serving a population that needs it? Yes."
Americans need to recognize what is a true insult to our men and women in the military. A comment suggesting that young people need to do well in school or they may end up in an unpopular war? Or a statement such as this:
...Kurt Gilroy who directs recruiting policy for the Office of the Secretary of Defense, noting that it is important to "maximize return on the recruiting dollar [because] the advertising and marketing research people tell us to go where the low-hanging fruit is. In other words, we fish where the fish are."

Americans need to ask ourselves this question:
Is it an act of justice to offer those in poverty the option of money for college in return for service in the military? Or is it an act of exploitation?
Who owes an apology to the troops? I think it is our government, NOT John Kerry. Encouraging students to succeed academically in order to provide additional options for their future isn't insulting to the troops... it is only acknowledging the economic crisis faced by our young Americans and choices are available to them...

Read also: Military Recruitment, Communities of Color and Immigrants