Tag Archives: Donald Trump

America Is Not Dead

“The nightmare of ‘Obamacare’ has already begun.  Many small businesses have already said they will close down because of the added cost of the health-care provisions under ‘Obamacare’, while other businesses have stated that they will only hire future employees on a part-time basis.  […]  Businesses are panicking because of the extra financial burden this presidential plan creates.  I heard from another of our employees that her husband’s company is going to start charging him $40 extra a month for his family policy, because his wife (our employee) has access to other coverage.  Wages will stagnate or go down because of the added financial burden on the companies, so the employees will have less income to cover these rising costs.  In addition, President Obama has said that he will implement ‘green’ policies that he freely admits will cause the prices on electricity and gas to rise for the consumer.  So get ready for the ride.  It’s going to be tough on us all.  And I’m only mentioning a small piece of what is coming down the pike.  I grieve that you and your sisters will probably never know a better America.  Our country’s heyday as a world power and a true land of opportunity and freedom has passed.”

This was most of the final paragraph of an email my mother sent me just recently. Notice anything about it? It’s very… How shall we put this… Doom and gloomy. It waxes Poetic, insofar as it sounds like something Edgar Allen Poe would have written up.

After the election, the fox-for-hair wearing grumpypants pile of severely unimportant yet we still talk about him known as Donald Trump ranted on Twitter about how this was not a democracy (because I guess in democracies, Trump gets to put people in power) and how Americans should start a revolution. Useless has-been rocker and walking pile of anger Ted Nugent called all the people who voted for President Barack Obama pimps, whores and welfare brats as well as suggesting America had just committed spiritual and economic suicide. Former SNL cast member Victoria Jackson said thanks a lot to the Christians that didn’t show up to vote and that she couldn’t stop crying because America is now dead.

Well. I guess that’s it then. Let’s pack our bags and head to another country because this one’s all washed up. It’s over. Let’s not even give Obama a chance to do anything. The mere fact that we utilized our Constitutional rights to vote for a new leader of our country and over 50 percent of the nation chose to give Obama four more years means that this country is, quite simply, gone to pasture.

We’ve got over 20 different petitions on WhiteHouse.gov now, last I counted, for different states to secede from the union. One of those states, Texas, has now received the 25 thousand signatures necessary to have the petition officially reviewed and responded to by the White House. 25 thousand. Which is .1% of the entire state’s population.

When George W. Bush was reelected, many liberals were upset. Heck, a lot of the world was confused and upset. In their being upset, some liberals said silly things and said they’d leave the country. But, honestly… maybe it’s because back in 2004 Twitter and Facebook weren’t big on the scene, but it seems like the right wing has completely lost it. The hyperbole and hype of how this is the end of the world, not to mention all the rather abhorrent racism, is just disgusting. Seriously. It’s awful. And if you’re someone who thinks America is dead or our nation is ruined or whatever, then you are not a patriot.

Let me say that differently: If you think America died when Obama was reelected, you hate America.

The end.

See, America isn’t a nation about getting your way. It’s a nation about growth and competitive ideas working together and against one another to spawn greater, stronger ideas that will create a greater, stronger nation. Your guy didn’t get in. So what? Will things maybe be rough? It’s possible. It’s also possible that things will go better than you expected, that America will improve. But to those that say this is the worst thing that could ever happen to America, I kindly invite you to shut up.

The reason I get snippy and angry at people that act like this, the reason I will likely go off on my mother should she talk politics at Thanksgiving, is because it’s completely idiotic and disrespectful to our nation’s history. You know what some of the worst things to happen to America are?

The War of 1812, when the White House was set on fire.

The American Civil War, perhaps the bloodiest war America has ever fought, where brother fought brother and neighbor fought neighbor for five years.

The Great Depression, where our economy, and the world’s economy, crashed so thoroughly, people were eating ketchup and water for meals.

The bombing of Pearl Harbor, a shocking attack on our homeland that dragged us into the bloody Second World War.

The Vietnam War, a lengthy, pointless war that ended with atrocities and body counts too numerous to list.

September 11, 2001.

Seriously. Did Obama’s first four years lead to any event, even one event that comes REMOTELY close to anything on the list I just gave?

No.

Did Obama’s economic recovery, slow though it may be, resemble in ANY way the devastation of the 1930s?

No.

And did America ever even ONCE fail to rebound from each catastrophe and tragedy it faced, often times coming out on the other side even stronger than before?

No.

So, even if Obamacare is a disaster that will destroy small businesses, and even if taxing the wealthy at a higher rate will do nothing to stem the tide of our growing debt and massive deficit, and even if Obama’s social policies will change the face of America forever…

America will survive. And those of you that think otherwise? I hear Antarctica has some open space to start your own government.

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Time Marches Forward (Also, We Have A Funny President)

Ugh. I feel terrible not having talked about much of anything substantial in so long. I said I’d get back to talking about education soon, and the last lengthy, thoughtful thing I wrote was about the April tornado that hit Tuscaloosa. That was on Friday.

But it really has been a busy few days. Senior Guerrilla/Roasts, Subject to Change concert, “The Last 5 Years,” “Inside the Tornado” rehearsals…

Busy busy busy.

By the way, I believe there is a second showing of “The Last 5 Years” on Friday. If you missed the Sunday show, definitely go see it Friday. It’s wonderful. As are the performers.

Anyway, there’s not much for me to say at this late hour. There have been poignant things I could’ve talked about… I could have left another excerpt from my play, which I’m finally writing more of… I could talk about other theatre things… But I’ve kind of been talking non-stop about theatre lately. I love it, but I think constant yapping about Tuscaloosa theatre might not be something my non-Tuscaloosa readers give a hoot about.

…so, instead, I’ll talk about how I’m not talking about anything. …Yeah, that’s a good replacement.

Actually, I will go ahead and post a couple of links to some solid comedy. Which also has the benefit of having some political background. The White House Correspondents Dinner occurred recently, with Jimmy Kimmel as the main comic act. Now, this dinner and the comedy therein can actually have a political impact. Seth Meyers’ destruction of Donald Trump at the last dinner pretty much killed his chances of being president.

This time, President Barack Obama’s comedy routine, taking some of the issues dogging him for a while (including dogs) head on, may end up being a boon in his favor. It may mean nothing at all, but it was solid comedy that revealed a ridiculousness of some of the bickering in a way quite similar to “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report,” both influential among young voters. So, props to Obama for his humor chops. Of course, Kimmel is no pushover either. We’ll likely see over the next few days if there’s any political fallout for anyone thanks to this dinner.

…that’s all I’ve got for today. Sorry. Eventually, I’ll have something worthwhile. I swear.

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Can We Please Go Back To Ignoring Donald Trump?

Okay. Some of these posts may be a little bit dated at this point… but has anyone noticed how some in the media and in politics have been giving Donald Trump the time of day when he’s not on his (somehow still running) television show?

I get it. For some reason, we seem to think reality TV stars are people we should give a crap about when they say things. …I mean, I don’t get WHY we think that, but I get why Donald Trump is in that list. And he’s perhaps the more recognizably intelligent of most of the reality TV stars. I’m not saying he’s the brightest, but he did make his money somehow, and compared to people like Snooki and Kim Kardashian, it’s not exactly a difficult position to get to.

But, for some reason, we confused fame and possible competence with intelligence and political acumen. Remember, back in 2010, 2011, when people were actually considering him as a viable candidate for president? What the heck was that about?

Fortunately, Seth Meyers stepped in (part one to be found here) and reminded us all that Trump is kind of a joke as a political candidate. I mean, come on. His big talking point was the birther “scandal,” the “Where is Barack Obama’s birth certificate?” thing. Remember, his people found some totally shocking stuff… that never actually showed up because he was full of crap.

And, frankly, he’s not exactly become any more relevant or viable as a political commentator. And yet, people still pay attention to him. Mitt Romney still attended the press conference where Trump endorsed him, despite looking like a hostage while doing so.

More recently, he’s been a constant guest on various Fox News shows as a commentator for random discussions. …and it’s ridiculous. He makes no real sense. He says nothing of real value. He is filled with conjecture and wild mass guessing unseen since the days of “LOST” and the epileptic trees.

Recently, for example, on the “no real value” and kind of gross side of things, he decided to talk about his (according to him, impressive) endowment.

Why in God’s green earth that needs to be brought up, I’ll never understand.

But on the actual commentary side of things, he’s decided to make the claim that Obama will likely go to war with Iran before the election to boost his popularity.

…what.

Look. Generally speaking, it’s understood that people like the incumbent president during wartime. They don’t like swapping out the guy at the helm. But, also generally speaking, that tends to go for wars that we have reason to be in. George W. Bush’s popularity soared after 9/11 when we went after terrorists in Afghanistan because they attacked us. It was revenge. But unless Iran hits us first, Obama’s not going to say, “Oh, no, I need a boost in the polls! Let me go punch Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in the face.”

The very idea seems preposterous. Especially when Obama’s been about the only candidate who hasn’t seemed immensely gung-ho about going to war with Iran. Contain their ability to make nukes? Sure. But war? That bluster seems to be better left for the GOP presidential candidates.

The fact that we give these often ignorant, blustering personalities any attention is really a symptom of how rapidly we’re falling as a nation. We need national discourse that is intelligent and informed. Letting people like Trump use up all the air will get us nowhere but worse for wear.

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How Not To Use The Bible In Politics

I don’t know if you’ve noticed or forgotten amid all the terribly awkward exciting and fabulous news that Donald Trump has officially endorsed Mitt Romney for president, but there have been a whole lot of Biblical allusions in this election season. Of course, the focus is on the GOP right now, the group that supposedly prides itself on its moral, ethical, Christian standings. Except when it’s convenient.

Actually, the most recent example comes from a Democrat and doesn’t really fit within the realms of this blog because, well… He did it right.

This morning, at the National Prayer Breakfast, President Barack Obama made a connection between his vision for taxes and Biblical teachings. And not just Biblical teachings. He, in fact, refers to Judaism, Islam, Hinduism and even Plato.

Why does his example not fit? First, it was extremely inclusive. There was no suggestion that “My way is the Christian way, and is therefore right.” He said, “I’m Christian. These are my beliefs from the eyes of my Christianity. But, more importantly, as so many others of different faiths believe, this is the way things should be.” Inclusion, especially in this giant ethnic fondue we call the USA, is extremely important.

Second, he actually quotes Scripture. He didn’t say, “Well God thinks ______” with no citation. He said, “God said _________” and “Jesus said _______”. Citation is not something only needed for science papers and Wikipedia articles. [citation needed]

Third, it was all positive. There was no attempt to use religion, an often fracturing thing, to demonize, an inherently fracturing thing. Granted, some of the extremely wealthy may have seen Obama’s speech as a “continuation of the class warfare he’s been leading.” But, seriously. It wasn’t. It was a statement of why he feels the better off should help the less well off. It wasn’t pointing at any person or group of people and calling them evil or terrible, fracturing a nation that is supposed to be, according to our pledge, “one nation, under God, indivisible.” To divide using God makes a mockery of Christian principles so commonly espoused by politicians in America, as well as a mockery of what our nation claims to stand for some of the time.

…which brings me to the actual meat of the article. The part in which I point out some people doing it wrong.

First, let’s start somewhere close to home for me: My home state of Alabama.

Alabama State Senator Shadrack McGill has recently said that paying teachers more will produce worse teachers. Why? Because it will attract people God didn’t call to teach.

Isn’t that swell?

Here’s the problems bundled into this great ball of joy. First, there is nothing in the Bible that says anything about God calling people to educate others on secular knowledge. The teachers referred to in the Bible are teachers of Scripture. Which is something they aren’t supposed to teach in schools. Which may be why McGill doesn’t know what he’s talking about. So, no good citation from McGill on this one gets him a strike. Remember, don’t just reference… cite. (Of course, that would require reading…)

Second, this isn’t a defense of beliefs through faith AND politics. This is a defense of politics by faith. This is McGill saying, “We shouldn’t pay teachers more. Why? The Bible.” When Obama referenced the Bible, he said, “We should raise taxes. I believe this is true for a number of reasons, and my faith back me up.” Obama’s talked about other reasons to raise taxes amongst certain groups before. McGill, as far as I know, has only this misinformed suggestion of the Bible to back him up. He grounds himself fully in faith and doesn’t back himself up with logical explanation.

Third, it’s kind of a discriminatory and poor policy. Couldn’t God call someone to be a lawmaker? Why should they be paid so much? Clearly the profession is attracting unsavory folks. One of the main reasons we have a slowly failing basic education system is the terrible pay and benefits. No one wants the job, whether they’re called to it or not. Because, as the Bible teaches us via Jonah and even Jesus, people can be called to do something and run away from it or simply really not want to. And since none of my teachers were the Son of God or swallowed by large sea creatures…

Three strikes. Get out, and stop abusing my Bible.

But McGill isn’t the only example of how not to use the Bible. On a more national scale, GOP presidential hopeful Rick Santorum’s Florida campaign’s honorary chair Reverend O’Neal Dozier has recently made some rather spurious remarks, like gays make God want to vomit and God is not a socialist.

This guy’s a reverend and he still gets it all wrong.

First, to the remark about homosexuals… he contradicts himself a bit by talking about homosexuality making God want to vomit… so, you know, really sick… but the homosexual people being loved by God. It’s a bit of a contradiction simply by the extreme depiction of God’s distaste for the actions and the personification of God by making Him someone that vomits. But he really contradicts himself in ideology by being discriminatory about homosexual people in particular. Only one sin gets special status in the Bible, and that’s blasphemy of the Holy Spirit. God doesn’t look at things as “big sin, small sin,” Biblically speaking.

Which brings me to the second point: Dozier is theologically incorrect and inconsistent. Which is embarrassing as it’s his job to not be that way. Dozier talks about the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah basically being homosexuality. Yet in other areas of the Bible, like the book of Ezekiel, a whole bevy of sins are listed that aren’t homosexuality in any way. Furthermore, Dozier is inconsistent in his omission of mentioning God’s reference to certain animals as abominations. But enough on the homosexuality bit. He’s also incorrect and inconsistent when it comes to the whole socialism thing. If socialism is the redistribution of wealth and property to allow all to have a fair share and be as equals, what exactly does the first Christian church founded by Peter sound like? And what exactly happened to the people that attempted to hoard away their wealth? Further, the implication is that God supports democracy. And I have to point out, God is referred to as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Ignoring the part of the Bible where it basically says to obey your government, socialist or not, God sounds more like a monarch than anything else to me. So don’t suggest He’d go for the democracy thing.

But point number three, that final strike, is this: Dozier preached politics. An even worse offender than McGill, Dozier preached politics, and preached negative politics. He said, “God is against x & y, so stop doing them.” But he wasn’t in a church. He wasn’t preaching a sermon. He was acting in a political stance. There was no “I believe x & y.” There was no, “The Bible supports me in my following political stances.” It was “The Bible says the following things, which should be how our politics work.” Yes, people can vote based on religious reasoning. No stopping that. But to be divisive, point at people and call them wrong… to preach that the Bible should be the way people vote (and to get it all wrong in the process)… that’s the wrong way to do things.

The Bible can support you. It can bolster your beliefs. But if you have a political platform, make it a secular one that agrees with your faith. One that has reason and reality tempering it. Otherwise, let’s get it over with and make the 10 Commandments Law. Assuming you can name them. Oh, and assuming politicians would EVER let something like “Don’t adulterate” be passed into law.

If you’re going to use the Bible in politics: 1) get it right and cite it, don’t just suggest it; 2) don’t use it to divide, use it to unite; 3) let it support your reason-tempered secular ideas, as the government should be a secular body guided by God, not a body with people making laws based on their interpretations of what God thinks. Or do you want the Pharisees all over again?

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Politics Overload…

Herman Cain dropped out of the GOP race (and quoted Pokemon?) and the ever fabulous, ever a joke super-birther Donald Trump will be moderating a GOP debate that many are refusing to attend?

Can’t wait to hear what “The Daily Show” says about all that.

For me, I’m out for tonight. Sorry. I once again fail at making posts early. One day, I’ll fix that error.

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