Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Raising Issue with a Statement frequently Illustrates the Point

Have you ever noticed that people tend to prove the point, when they take issue with someone's observation on a particular topic? I think one of the most compelling examples in the news, these days would be the reaction by Muslims to the Pope's comment. And the Pope's excuse and apology regarding the comment. Then there was the comment to my blog the other day in which I must share my appreciation for the comments that simply proved the status of our police state. I'm sure the "trigger happy" ones would feel better, if they only had more control. Now back to the Muslims that were so distraught with the Pope's reference to a violent religion, that they were making threats. How did their reaction prove the Pope wrong? And I don't agree with the Pope on too many topics, but they really gave illustration to his comment. And we cannot forget all that happened over a cartoon a few months ago. The posters and mayhem was not peaceable at all. If, in fact their Quran teaches peace, then they need to live it. If they are living what it teaches, then quit telling the world that the threat of jihad is peace. I consider our President to be a fairly aggressive man, but he takes cartoons in stride. He must, there is a new one every day somewhere that certainly doesn't portray him to be a reasonably intelligent human being, and he's being a very good sport, there are only two US led wars. Another individual I don't agree with frequently, but he takes this on the chin, pretty well. What about the Pope backing down? What kind of leadership is this to let another religion intimidate the Vatican? I think it's commendable that he is trying to resolve things peaceably, but there are many, many people that simply don't want to kowtow and walk on eggshells about everything. If he's going to back down from a statement, say it wasn't really his anyway, and then put the pressure on everyone else, he's proving the same point the protestants claimed 500 years ago. If the message changes or waffles, don't expect the rest of us to consider the speaker to be the infalible leader or spokesperson of an entire religion or culture.
If Muslims really want to be perceived as peaceable, maybe they should tell the suicidal grandma bombers to knock it off. She really didn't help the cause . . . If the Pope wants to be seen as a voice of reason and authority, then he needs to stand on what he says, or check his sources better before he says it. And as an American, I would love it, even though I'm not a republican and not in the Bush camp, I would love for a day to go by that didn't inspire a political cartoonist.
Abstain from all appearance of evil.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Where's A Cop When You Need One?

I read about the 92 year old woman in Atlanta that was killed by three narcotics officers and when I read the first article, it mentioned something about a warrant that gave immediate access to the premises without requiring them to announce their presence. Of course, now I can't find that article and there has been ample time to coordinate the information, and the only person that could disagree with the present version, is dead. So, I'm guessing the present story will be the one that stands on record. Where was a cop when a 92 year old woman was getting her door kicked in, in a rough neighborhood in Atlanta? Could she have called and gotten help? How did shooting first become proper procedure? This story reminded me of a personal incident that I experienced about a month and half after 9/11, although, thank G~d, it did not end so tragically. The Patriot Act had just been implemented and "the police state" now had foundation. I was on my way home from synagogue on a Friday evening. I was attending one that was about 70 miles from where I lived, so I was on my way home on the highway, when I saw red lights in my rear view mirror. I pulled over and then realized I was blocking a major exit and remembered something about the latest law to protect those that are supposed to protect and serve us. The law had something to do with enough room for traffic to leave a lane clear when drivers come upon an officer pulling someone over. I don't know what it was, but it crossed my mind and I attempted to at least pull on up out of the exit lane. At that same split second, another patrol car appeared on the scene, spinning through all the lanes and coming to a screeching halt right in front of my vehicle. This "Barney Bad Asterisk" jumped out of his cruiser and pulled his gun on me. Now the officer that had originally put his lights on, was now at my window, as I had been ordered at gun point to put my keys on top of my car and of course keep my hands visible. The reasonable officer at my window just stood there and said, "Ma'm you changed lanes without signalling." I immediately said, "I'm sorry." He asked me what I was doing, where I was going. I told him and he looked at the "other officer" and just shook his head. He asked me for my driver's license so I got it out and gave it to him. The other officer still had me at gunpoint, except I had permission to get in my purse. Which if I was going to be a danger, that would be where I could obtain something, I would think . . . But, I'm just a citizen, what do I know. Anyway, did I mention I had two bumperstickers? One said "Jesus, changing the world, one life at a time." And the other, "Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem," and a "Clergy" sticker in the window. I obviously gave every indication of a potential combatant. The officer asked me why I had moved my car after I started to stop. I told him about the exit lane and that new law. The goofball that still had a bead on me, asked what new law? [I wish I could type his tone.] I told him, I didn't know exactly, but it had something to do with keeping him safe in traffic while he took aim. The original officer, who was very nice and very much just wanting to resolve the entire situation, gave me my license back and told me he wasn't writing a ticket, but warned me about signalling a lane change. I said, "Thank you." As I put my license away, he noticed my badge and asked. I told him I was a police chaplain. I asked him to please be careful, as the behavior that I had witnessed tonight was really frightening and could result in panicked reactions. He indicated, he was well aware of that fact and then realized the other officer still had his gun out. He told him to put it away. By the time, I got back into traffic and on my way home, I saw that the "Barney BA" had already pulled over some other car and was reading them his riot act. I surmised frustration from the last incident.
Then, this week after reading about the 92 year old and remembering my own experience, I heard another situation. A woman was taking her elderly grandma to the hospital and was speeding on a low traffic road. A police officer saw her when she was on the hospital road and turned on his lights and "followed her" to the hospital, to give her a ticket. That's right! When he did see where she was going, he simply followed her, rather than escort her. He then got rude, belligerent, and wrote her the ticket, because that was proper procedure. What happened to the days, when there was an emergency, you tried to get a policeman's attention, so he would provide an escort? Since we keep hearing about a shortage of manpower in law enforcement, what crimes are going on while they are keeping the world safe from "old ladies" and middle aged women drivers? What happened to the days when a "policeman was our friend?" We've all realized and come to accept, when we feel victimized or violated or fearful, it is very difficult to get a quick response from law enforcement agencies, but when did they become the entity that makes us feel victimized, violated and fearful?
The wicked walk on every side, when the vilest men are exalted.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

American Problem Solving 101

Our method of resolution is becoming alarming. By "our method," I am referring to the American way of managing problems and resolving issues. As our President traveled through Asia last week, he made more than one interesting comment that just made me shake my head and say, "he is entitled to free speech, he is an American." An interesting comment regarding Israel and Iran made me rethink many of the things that have gone on in the name of spreading democracy. Well, we are spreading something, but . . . When President Bush said, he wouldn't blame Israel for going to war with Iran, there was something fundamentally flawed in that statement. We are the ones that have been challenging Iran and apparently now by his statement, knowingly placing Israel in the line of fire. I hope Mr. Olmert remembers that America is just bluster and won't actually be available for any ally duty, if he decides or feels threatened to have some sort of altercation with the leader of Iran. Mr. Olmert needs to remember, as he builds his monument to the American President, that for now, America has a very unique problem solving method. When our allies need military support, we're busy. When our military takes photographs of prisoner abuse, cameras are forbidden in the war zone. We started this problem solving method, some time ago. You see, we're not just exporting this method of problem solving. We've been utilizing it in our country for some time now. The Institute of Medicine gave the statistics that 98,000 people die annually from medical errors, so we solved that problem. We now have tort reform and cap limits for medical malpractice suits. When there is a problem, American leaders know how to limit the evidence or distance the accountability.
When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Help Me Follow the Logic, Here, Please . . .

My topic has changed by this Friday. Wednesday, I had planned to write about the International Court and the FDA, by Thursday, Donald Rumsfeld and Robert Gates, but this morning all that had to change as our President truly deserves blog focus on his war strategy. And here we thought he didn't have one. He gave us just a glimmer of what he has in mind while speaking in Hanoi. That's right, Hanoi, reminding all of us that Iraq is not the first quagmire in American history, and by the report this morning, sounds like they're doing all right, even though they didn't embrace the American way of life. Listening to President Bush discuss what went wrong in Viet Nam, while in Viet Nam was disconcerting enough, but his summation regarding Iraq, was mind boggling. "We'll succeed, unless we quit!" Now he's telling other countries, "we're going to stay the course." I still remember the conservative radio call-in show, in which the broadcaster hung up on me, because I noted the comparison between Iraq and Viet Nam, in 2003. Now our President is discussing Iraq in Viet Nam.
"For decades, you had been torn apart by war," Bush said later at a state banquet. "And today, the Vietnamese people are at peace and seeing the benefits of reform." He said that, apparently, as if these people didn't know the years of war didn't bring the reform. Well, maybe all the things I remember reading about Viet Nam and hearing in school while he was in the Air Guard, happened those days he was absent.
While we're discussing military, we're sending 57,000 more troops to Iraq in January. This lame duck Congress is going to legislate like crazy. Maybe we could reduce the troops if we could just get the new Iraqi government to legislate their own Patriot Act and Military Commissions Act of 2006, or better yet, adopt ours. You know, if those Iraqi citizens just had the same healthy fear of their new democratic government, that has been legislated here, our troops could come home. Say did you hear about the Marine Reserves Toys for Tots deal? We're all familiar with this program that goes on every year to give Christmas toys to underprivileged children. This year, a toy company offered them 4000 talking Jesus dolls. From what I can tell, it's about the size of Ken or GI Joe, only no Barbie and no guns, and he speaks Scripture. Anyway, at first they turned the generous offer down. Now, I don't celebrate Christmas, but I thought it was a very kind gesture. They have since announced that they would accept this generous gift from the toy company, but their reason for originally refusing was just priceless. The spokesman Wednesday stated in the CNN report: As a government entity, Marines "don't profess one religion over another," Grein said Tuesday. "We can't take a chance on sending a talking Jesus doll to a Jewish family or a Muslim family." My question would be . . . just how many Jewish families or Muslim families that might be offended by a Jesus doll, celebrate Christmas?
Come now, and let us reason together . . .

Friday, November 10, 2006

Timing, More than Coincidence

Usually we have so much nonsense going on in American news that I refrain from commentary on incidents in other countries, but this one takes the cake. Israel, what's the deal? You will declare war over one kidnapped soldier and then back down and agree to a release of 1000 for one? And you want support in this thinking? What you are thinking? If that isn't enough, and your plate of unpopularity isn't already full enough, what's with the gay parade? It is getting obvious to me by now, that the gay promoters really have the same mind set as Fred Phelps. Intolerant behavior in our face in the name of Tolerance and Free Speech. Fred, you're just a mean cranky old man. You gay paraders, your approach was no different than the terrorists. It was mentioned that if the government agreed to same sex unions, the parade would be cancelled, so it really is about control, now isn't it? I personally have acquaintances that are gay men, and a few woman that I have my doubts about, but we have a line no one crosses. They know where I stand and I know where they stand and we both know, we don't agree. Insisting upon a protest at a funeral is no different than me showing up to Westboro Baptist and insisting that Fred give me time to have my say. Which would be to inform them that they are all nuts. A gay parade in Jerusalem is no different than me going into gay bars to tell them they are committing sodomy, and what G~d says about it. I don't even argue that people can be born with a tendency toward being gay. Scripture says we are all born into sin. We all have certain areas of temptation. I don't have a problem with men that don't like women, for the most part, I don't like women either, and that isn't so G~dly on my part. Why Jerusalem and why this week? I don't know how many around the world outside of Judaism know that this week's Torah reading is the account of Sodom and Gomorrah. Torah reading for this week is Genesis 18: 1 - 22: 24. I hardly think this is coincidence, but I don't know why Jerusalem has accepted this ultimatum from the Gay Pride movement. Gay folks, if your lifestyle is so wonderful and so few of us have the sophistication to accept and embrace, why don't you just establish your little exclusionary group like every one else? What if we decided all heterosexual men that don't take viagra should have a parade? I can assure you, men that don't need viagra have a better way to spend their time than in a parade. Why not a menopause parade? Menopause is perfectly natural and the world just doesn't understand what we women go through when we realize we are no longer young and the nest is empty. People are mean about it, they are just down right cruel about it. Ask me, I can tell you. Hey, how about a PMS Parade? Well, never mind, that sounds more like a scary march than a parade. But you see my point. If the gay community cannot see what we see in the opposite sex, why do they insist upon making us view their perspective. If it's so good, live it, and quit acting like Fred Phelps. And Israel, if you don't stand your ground on something, no one is going to take your statements seriously.
because the cry of them is waxen great before the face of YHVH;

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

When It's All Said and Done

Well, I guess the nation is supposed to be headed in a new direction, now. I'm thinking Nancy Pelosi is just experiencing some sort of euphoric power rush. This nation is headed in the exact same direction it was headed before the elections. Just to clarify, the Democrats took the house, the Senate was still up for grabs over Virginia, Donald Rumsfeld is resigning, and according to CNN, President Bush acknowledges responsibility for the election results. I'm thinking the democrats will have their hands full, as I don't really expect gridlock. President Bush seems to know how to deal with dissatisfied voters and outspoken politicians. He appears to do what he chooses and then just say, Yeah, I did it, I'm the President. My thoughts on this matter are this. While Nancy Pelosi is consumed by being the first woman speaker of the house, and the Virginia Senate race gets counted, and President Bush says, "I dun it" or "Mission Accomplished" or 'Let's Talk Texan,' I'm thinking something else is going on. What did he mean by taking responsibility for the election results? Didn't his party know how detrimental it was to be in his party, at this point? Donald Rumsfeld's resignation is just interesting. Now the president says, it's been in the works for awhile, but he didn't want to make this resignation an issue before the election. Why? Since the Iraq war was a major issue in this mid-term election, why wouldn't the Republican President allow a resignation by Mr. Rumsfeld before the elections, to garner votes for a change? Since CHANGE was every plank of every democrat's 2006 platform! What was he really thinking, since this fact either escaped him or wouldn't suit his purpose? Donald Rumsfeld has quite a history in American politics. He held this same position in President Ford's administration. He had a political position through the Reagan years and the years of George the First, H. W. I've been wondering something about his "tenure" though. If Mr. Rumsfeld was around through the Iran / Iraq conflict and then on into the first Gulf War era, why didn't somebody recommend that we move on into Baghdad in 1991? According to US history and the recent trial of Saddam Hussein, all of these atrocities had already been committed and were known to have been committed by 1988, so why didn't we do something through the first Gulf War? When Mr. Reagan answered to a shocked nation through the Iran / Contra hearings, was the focus on Oliver North just a distraction? Mr. Reagan very clearly stated that the Vice President knew about this Iran deal and Iran and Iraq were in a conflict from 1980 to 1988. So why now? Why a mockery of a trial in the new "democracy" of Iraq? Why another war? Why a resignation "the day after" because we need change, when change might have retained the party's power? Does Mr. Rumsfeld have a position on the board of some techno-power company, awaiting him, like so many of the rest of the 'resignees' of the Bush administration?
And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass . . .

Monday, November 06, 2006

A Parable for Election Day

I felt so stupid when this dawned on me, this morning. Now I realize why Messiah used agricultural parables. We can learn so much watching the behavior of animals. We live out in the country and this time of the year, mice are seeking shelter. I don't mind if they "camp out in the barn" but they become fair game when they enter the house. This morning, my husband checked traps. Before any PETA people get ugly about our use of mouse traps, just send me your address and I will be happy to try to catch them alive and send all these little creatures to you. Now, on to the real point. We respect the life cycle with the catch of the day by allowing the cat and the poultry access to this treat. It was in watching this, that the truth just unfolded before my very eyes. The cat could care less, since he didn't get to enjoy the hunt and the kill. The chickens on the other hand . . . This must be the inspiration behind the politics of fear. First you have to get everybody thinking like a chicken. And fear is the best way to do that. Then when everyone is thinking like a chicken, just toss out a harmless, dead issue and watch what happens. The chickens will just come running and fluttering and gather round. Then one will grab up that dead topic, run with it for a moment, until another takes it and runs, and all the while the flock is watching all this just scrambling, clucking, and carrying on. Then another runs up and takes this issue and pecks it and scratches some dirt around it, and then when it is so enthralled in it's endeavor, another chicken just grabs it and runs, and this continues and continues and continues . . . Meanwhile, the real issues can be tended to without the chickens in the way. As I listened to the ballot issues, I realized, it's the chicken and mouse game. See, while everyone is thinking cat and mouse, the cat isn't even involved. Have you heard all the nonsense about Ammendment 2? I think it's amazing that the religious right seem to actually believe man creates life in a Petri dish. What happened to G~d? Ammendment 2 isn't about making anyone well, it's about money, power, and playing god, as always. There will still be Dr. Frankenstein experiements with or without passage of this ammendment, but if NO wins, at least we don't have to fund the experiments directly, and the government won't have the control over cloning, at least for now, and the religious right will think they've won. WIN/ WIN / WIN. The last thing our nation needs is the federally funded, potential ability to clone politicians! I haven't heard so much about gay issues on the ballot this week. It seems when President Bush brought it up in Iowa, it really backfired in Colorado, so back to the topic of terror. What about the verdict for Hussein? Now, I see why we had to play the chicken mouse game over international courts a couple of years ago. I remember all the clucking that went on. America has so much more power over this new Iraqi court than it would the International Court. The International Court wouldn't have even entertained the idea of the death penalty, and I've read how strongly that would offend so many Americans. I think American Christians and Mulsim extremists are about the only ones that believe in the death penalty, so not only was the US sponsored court in Iraq, the obvious choice, it was the only option. Maybe it accomplished the mid-term election rally that was so desperately needed. Well, tomorrow is election day. I have no idea what anyone stands for or believes in, or even promised . . . Wow! Politicians don't even make empty promises anymore, they just tell you how bad the other choice is. Maybe next time, while the chickens are all clucking and squawking and fighting over the dead mouse, I should watch and see what the cat is up to.
. . . fear not little flock . . .

Friday, November 03, 2006

The SPIN Cycle

Can you believe the news this week? I was really aggravated that Senator Kerry gave into the ridiculous demand, to apologize. Most people have the intelligence to know what he meant. I heard Bill Bennett, the first morning of the big hullabaloo talking about asking Mother Bush to reconfirm G.W.'s high SAT scores and starting that diatribe from the old campaign. And then, later that same day, or maybe the next morning . . . he just knew Senator Kerry was bashing the troops. So, Bill . . . do you need to make your program a little later in the day, so you have time to think about such matters? Then I heard that Rush Limbaugh felt that had to waste his time addressing Kerry's blunder. I thought trashing democrats was how he spends his time! Did he have other candidates with more to target, if so . . . Rush, was this a wise use of time? I really can't believe that the conservatives can be so consumed by a mispoken sentence. But maybe it was enough to get a few more republicans out to vote. Again, nice job Mr. Senator. I understand Saddam Hussein is scheduled to hear the verdict Nov. 5, right before our election. So, will this verdict have any bearing on the election outcome? I'm guessing a guilty verdict just might rally the Bush camp. Say, he was in my state today. That's right, he made two stops. I live in Blunt country, and the land of Talent. Now, on to the Rev. Ted Haggard's situation. Ted or Art, what were you thinking? You had to know as famous as you are, this would make the news. What is this statement about meth? You bought it, but you didn't use it. Do you remember what your people had to say when Bill Clinton said he didn't inhale? And we won't even address, yet, the potential comparison to Bill and Monica's little situation, because frankly the homosexual aspect really does make it a different issue, conservatively speaking. Of course, it's all about which side of the fence one is, on when it comes to matters of indiscretion, now doesn't it Art? James Dobson went way out on a limb for you, buddy, I hope his favorable comments weren't made erroneously. And Mr. Jones, unusual name, so your conscience got to you and you had to do the moral thing? You had to go public about your drugs and homosexuality, four months after you realized that Ted Haggard was Art, and just days before a big ballot issue? So is your the reference to doing 'the moral thing,' what caused the reported discrepency in your polygraph? Well, it looks like you've got yourself an interesting claim to fame! Just think, by next Wednesday, the accusations and comments should be aiming at 2008. Are we a nation with vision for the future or what?
To every thing there is a season . . .a time to refrain . . .and a time to lose . . .

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

G.W., John, You're Not Helping!

Every morning, for the past few days, I have awakened to the same tired discussion, by some wanna be that gives the term political pundit new definition in the negative direction. I'm sure the man has a good reputation amongst his followers, don't they all? But really, it was one line that has become as tired as "mission accomplished." I really am disgusted by both parties right now and have resigned myself to this for one more week, unless . . . or until the votes are all settled, and then the whining and complaining will at least change topics, I hope. Now, on to the two boys that are disrupting the parties! We all know that Iraq is the mid-term election issue for Congress and Senate. But please hear this, both of you, with all due respect. You both had your turns in 2004, and Iraq was the election issue then, too.
Mr. President,
We know you think we should all want to fight all the time, but we don't. And I do pray for our troups and I know there are many young men and women with intelligence and degrees in Iraq right now, but according to the news of the past 3 1/2 years, there are also people over there that don't know how to play by the rules of the Geneva Convention and then have the stupidity to take pictures. And in the news there are military personnel brought home, regularly, to face courts martial charges. I've personally cleaned up and repaired damages to an apartment in rental arrears left by a young man that was "all signed up and going to Iraq." I am related by marriage to a recruiter, and I don't know if his recruiting office is by the college or the video arcade, but I know where the recruiting office was in the town where I lived when the war started. Now, your fear, fear, fear and fight, fight, fight is getting tiring to the people who are on your team. The rest of us have really had more than enough!
Mr. Senator,
What were you thinking? Whose side are you on? All your party had to do was change name plaques on doors and parking places and you pull this stunt. I do believe you were "taking a shot" at the President, [can I say that in a blog without upsetting Homeland Security?] but it wasn't necessary to say anything. Your party was ahead. The democrats were winning! There was even talk of you thinking about '08. Now it's 2004, all over again, and I think we know how that turned out for the Dems. Good thing you didn't give up your day job. Listen, John, you're a nice guy, but you're not a comedian, and you do seem to have difficulty staying on topic or at least the same side of the topic, so maybe you shouldn't put yourself out on that limb. Stay with your strengths. I don't like the war in Iraq, either, but I was never in favor of it, I didn't change my mind after we got there.
So, now you two, it's not your party, quit making everybody cry! I remember when Clinton started schmoozing the Republicans in 1994 and now he's fund raising and spending more time with Daddy Bush than G.W. is. Mr. Kerry, you gave the Republicans a much needed boost, and that raises questions in my mind. Mr. President, if the Republicans manage to retain Congress or Senate, it will not be because of you. As a matter of fact, you've left several republican candidates whistling in the wind without endorsement, and I don't know why, but I have my ideas. What 2006 has made me realize and just may cause the entire nation to realize is the fact that we just didn't really have much of a choice in 2004, at all. Thank you both for giving us this election deja vu of 2004, it momentarily distracts from the fact that we are really living George Orwell's 1984?
From which some have been turned away, giving themselves to foolish talking;

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