Monday, November 26, 2012

Why Are We Listening To This Guy?

John McCain is an aging bully granted a relevance he no longer deserves.  How much longer can he milk the whole prisoner of war/war hero thing?

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Egypt, Texas

Congratulations to the people of Egypt.  At least those who have taken to the streets in protest over President Mohamed Morsi's recent power grab.  Too many third world nations (And too many first world pundits.) equate democracy with an election.  While one can't have a democratic government without an election, an election does not a democracy make.  There also has to be the rule of law and the building of democratic institutions more important and more lasting than who ever happens to be in office.  I always cringe in embarrassment every time a fellow liberal praises Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.  Yes he was elected, and yes he gives money to the poor of his country.  But he also rules by decree and is nothing more than an elected dictator.

Meanwhile, the Texas secession movement grows.  And no, while it is unlikely to succeed, it's not a joke.  President Obama can no more allow Texas to leave the union than Abraham Lincoln could let the south leave more than a hundred years ago.  It's easy to make fun of Texans, but as the south left to protect slavery, some Texans want to leave because their state is becoming a majority minority state.  That is if it hasn't already become a state without a majority group.  Of course, many of the Hispanics in Texas aren't citizens (yet) and can't vote, but those who are citizens are growing.   Many (white) conservative Texans can't stand the idea of a black President,  and they hate the idea of  being a minority a whole lot more.  Funny thing is, lots of Mexicans supported the Texas revolution for the same reason that many Anglo Texans did.  Santa Ana was a dictator who ruled by decree.  Kind of what Mohamed Morsi wants to do in Egypt.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

The Biker Gang

My friend and I are at a bar.  We're watching football on the big screen.  A biker gang comes in and the leader shouts out, "Football.  We ain't watching no football.  We're watching ultimate fighting, and if anybody doesn't like it they can get their head kicked in."

My friend looks at me and says, "I'm going to walk over to that blowhard, call him a pussy and spit in his face."

Am I better friend if I tell him, "What ever you say.  I'll back your play to the end."  Or am I a better friend if I tell him, "What, are you nuts?"  and grab his arm and hustle him out of there before he gets himself, and a few others killed.?

It may not be fair, it may not be right, and the Israelis may not like it, but Israel's survival is dependent on them coming to some sort of accommodation with their neighbors.  If we, the United States, are true friends to Israel, it's time to tell Bibi Netanyahu and the other leaders of the Israeli right wing, that it's time to go to the table and make some concessions.  It's time to pull down the settlements,  time to tear down the walls, and end the economic blockades.  It's also time to make it clear that we will not follow Israel into a regional war in the Middle East, and we will not help start World War 3.

Any nation that lives in a state of perpetual war will eventually loose a war.  We did in Vietnam, and we're a whole lot tougher than Israel.  We survived our loss, Israel might not.

Friday, November 16, 2012


I may be naive, but I don' think there are many American military officers who can be blackmailed over an affair.  I don't care that former general and former CIA head David Petraeus was having an affair.  I do care that so many people have been worshiping top military commanders.  So in a strange way, it's a good thing that Patraeus was caught doing the deed with one and perhaps two women other than his wife.  In the 2008 election, John McCain invoked the general's name every chance he got.  He literally said, if elected, he'd do what ever Petraeus told him to do.  I want a president who can tell a general no, and that's a lot easier if the American public views top military commanders as flawed people who are prone to mistakes.