Closet Cases and the Politics of Self Hate

Well, another one bites the dust in Washington. Congressman Mark Foley, long known to have a preference for boys as sex partners, has resigned.

Foley got caught sending explicit email and instant messages to an under age former congressional page. He resigned after being outed by ABC News.

The bad part about this is that Congressional leaders of the House knew about the messages a year ago and actually confronted Foley about them. He promised to be a good boy and they hushed it up and let him off the hook.

Foley was outed several years ago when he contemplated running for Senator. At the time, the very conservative Rep. from Florida told his constituents it was a witch hunt by Democrats and that he really, really likes women.

Foley is another one who continually voted against his own self interest. He was constantly on the “anti” side of gay legislation during his six terms in office.

He more often than not followed the “do as I say, not as I do” policy that many closet cases follow. Like others he apparently thought that being part of the power structure protected him from the everyday perils of being gay.

He was a coward to the end, though. Rather than admit he was gay and resign like former New Jersey Governor Jim McGreevey, Foley quit with no mention of what caused his resignation. He simply wrote a letter to House leadership and disappeared.

No doubt, the next time we see him will be on the cover of The Advocate smiling hand in hand with his new boyfriend talking about how free he feels now that he’s out.

I just hope his boyfriend is over the age of consent. The boys he targeted with the illicit messages were not, which makes him a pedofile, too. That’s a double whammy when you’re one of the ones who takes it upon himself to police the morals of the rest of the population.

Karma...the universal law....what goes around...comes around....judge not...lest ye be judged....you listening....Coulter, Falwell, Dobson, Malkin, Pete, Robertson, Santorum, Frist,, Bauer, Reed, Keys, conservative black ministers....


Who’s the Coward?

Wasn’t it just about two weeks ago that Shrub (he’s shrunk a lot) was attempting to be conciliatory toward democrats as he used 9/11 for his political backdrop?

Now he’s out there on the money raising trail again accusing the dems of being cowards for wanting to get out Iraq.

I ask you, who’s the coward...the politician who dares to stand up and speak against failed foreign policy....the pol who dares to question the smarts, sincerity and intelligence of this fratboy turned political hack...or a president who hides from his people?

Since he’s been in office, Bush has refused to appear spontaneously at any event that isn’t prescreened and listed for republicans and their supporters, only. No one else need apply..you won’t get in guaranteed.

That’s cowardly.

He went AWOL for a year when he was in the Air Force Guard.

He’s been AWOL at the White House since his election.


So this is how freedom dies.....with thunderous applause from the masses blindly following an idiot.


Gutless Congress

So much for standing up to the President. Somewhere on the road to holding him accountable, Warner, McCain and Graham caved in and gave Dubya what he wanted. Thanks to this so called compromise, Dubya can say what parts of the articles of the Geneva Convention will be followed.

Dubya has the call the on what constitutes torture and what tactics can be used to extract information from detainees.

The House passed this bill last night, the Senate is expected to do the same today.

Now the door is open for other countries to interpret these rules when it comes to our POWs who may be taken captive.

Politics, politics, politics...using the lives and well being of our troops as a bargaining tool is unconscionable.

Meanwhile, a new poll out this morning says 92% of Iraqis want America out of Iraq. I’m okay with that....if they think they can handle their business without us....fine...let’s come home.

Believe me, we got enough trouble on the home front to keep the army busy.

It will be interesting to see how the White House interprets this number later today...


Unacceptable, Naive and Confused

We’re not allowed to think about it...and when we do we’re naive and confused...

News reports are wrong and biased...

Military leaders are speaking out of turn...

Military and Intelligence experts have no idea what’s going on...

All this from America’s fratboy president. The whole world is wrong, he, and his cronies, Rumsfeld, Cheney, and Rice are right about Iraq and the alleged war on terror, as well as how to get information out of terrorist suspects.

We used to joke, when I was in the news business by saying, “never let the facts get in the way of a good story.” We understood this to be a joke among colleagues and nothing more.

The Bush light White House has taken this joke to heart. Even when the facts are against them, they press on. They are stuck on going forward into the abyss despite the warning signs.

The scary part of this scenario is that they expect the American people to blindly follow them over the cliff. What scares me even more is that many, many people are indeed going to follow them, no matter what.

I really don’t understand how people can continually vote against their own well being because some rich guy tells them to.

Think about it.....

The future is screwed. We are in debt up to our eyeballs, China and other foreign countries are literally buying up American real estate...they even own some of our roads and highways....our workforce is non existent, outsourced to some third world country.....our technology is coming from India and Japan...we’re stuck in a war in the middle east because of failed foreign policy...and we have lost face with the rest of the universe.

41 days, until the next election....will the people change things or will it be more of the same....

I’m not gonna hold my breath, but I am going to vote my conscience.


Monday Musings.........

Dubya in town today to raise money for two disappearing Republicans. Both Chabot and DeWine say they are “independents” in their campaign ads. They’ve been running away from their records for awhile now. It’s no secret that they’ve both voted with Bush nearly one hundred percent.

But I guess they can’t wean themselves off the Bush tit for money.

McCain will be in town too, in a separate appearance. I don’t trust him either. He is sounding more and more like Bush everyday.

And he led the cave-in to the President on how to treat terror suspects. Can you spell sell out?


The Prez will undoubtedly be talking about how safe we are since he started the fight in Iraq. Well, there is a highly classified report circulating Washington, telling the White House that Iraq has become an incubator for terrorists.

The report put together by military and defense experts, says Iraq has made us less safe, rather than more safe since 9/11. The report accuses the White House of being too optimistic in its presentations about the war.

How about calling it what it is....... a lie...


The body count in Iraq....65 women, 2700 men, and 100 Iraqi citizens per day, The White House refuses to lets pics of the caskets coming home be seen in order to deny the truth about what is really happening to our young people there.


Elections officials are voicing fear that the bush–o-matic electronic voting machines may not perform as billed. I have previously talked about the fact that they have no paper back up and are no where near tamper proof. One Governor said he wanted to use something other than the touch screen machines because he didn’t want his state becoming another Florida or Ohio.

Not a peep out of Sec. of State/wannabe governor Ken Blackwell, the man who bought the bush-o-matic to Ohio....while owning Diebold stock when he signed the contract...shall we add conflict of interests to his many, many negatives?


Don’t breathe just yet, Congressional Republicans are going after social security once again. They’re still busy thinking up new ways to shaft middle America.


License to Braid

Stop! You need a license to braid hair in Ohio.

You heard me...you need a license to professionally braid hair in the Buckeye state. Since 2000 the state has offered a 450 hour course on how to braid hair at a cost of 3750-dollars. And the state mounties will come after you, if one of your customer decides to file a complaint.

To my knowledge, there is only one school in the whole state that teaches braiding.

The course, I’m told, teaches how not to braid so tight, how to recognize bacteria, and how to sanitize your instruments among other things. I guess that means hand washing, because braiders use their fingers.

Only 26 people and 11 salons statewide are licensed. Everybody else is illegal according to state records and that’s most people practicing the art.

The license is officially called a “natural hair styling license.”

Folks that I know who get their hair braided, tell me they look for African women, usually from Senegal, or Somalia who have emigrated to America.

A spokesperson for the NAACP says it’s not fair that the state makes people pay to continue working in a traditional industry that dates back to ancient times. The government is simply looking for another way to make money according to the civil rights group.

Eight other states require braiders to have specialized training and licensing. Nine other states require braiders to have a cosmetology license.

Just goes to show you that anything can be made political, especially if there is money to be made.


Hyperventilating Over Hugo

Hugo Chavez the President of Venezuela called Dubya a devil yesterday while addressing the UN. It was totally political. He merely expressed what the rest of the world is thinking. So why all the fuss?

Dubya’s caught up the mirage that is his version of reality and has been hurling insults and ultimatums for the past month at everyone who questions or disagrees with him. He said it’s his way or the highway last week during a news conference at the White House. Sounds like John Wayne talk to me.

He has been overwhelmingly arrogant, overwhelmingly petulant and downright nasty. Yet the talking heads on TV are upset when he gets some of his own back. Give me a break. He started this pissing contest. Now the other world cowboys are stepping up to the plate.

If you want respect, you have to give it, period. This White House hasn’t shown respect for anyone, not even former cabinet members.

Bush doesn’t respect the rest of the world and he sure as hell doesn’t respect, his own people. He’s lied to us. He threatens us. He uses fear in an attempt to coerce us, his own people.

Let the people answer in November.

Richer, Whiter and Middle Class

That, apparently, is the unspoken goal of House Republicans in the latest GOP attempt to keep control of the White House.

The House has approved a measure requiring that voters in the 2010 elections prove not only their identity, but their citizenship as well. House members want folks to display a passport or a special driver’s license id with a citizenship tag on it or barring that, a special id card with citizenship tag. A photo id is already required for 2008.

Most Americans, and particularly minorities, don’t own passports. The poor, who don’t own cars, usually don’t own a driver’s license. A lot of people also don’t have state ids either because you have to drive somewhere to get to an office in other to obtain one in the first place.

Statistics show that Americans who do have passports and these other types of identification also tend to be middle class, and white, with more money. The thinking goes that richer, whiter and middle class voters overwhelmingly turn out to be republican.

So much for compassionate conservative inclusiveness.

House members who support this blatantly racist plan say it will cut down on voter fraud. But stats show there has rarely if ever been this type of voter fraud even attempted.

The GOP has been working on stealing the next election since their success at gerrymandering voting districts for the past several years. They’ve already changed the voting districts in several states making it impossible for Democrats or others to even get elected on the state level.

They’ve packed the courts with judges sympathetic to the right wing conservative school of thought permeating this country making it nearly impossible to mount a legal challenge of any substance on any judicial level.

2000 saw the presidential election stolen and handed to Bush. In 2004, 119,000 votes for John Kerry disappeared right here in Ohio.

Governor wannabe Ken Blackwell, acting in his capacity as Secretary of State has already attempted to put the fix into this upcoming election in hopes of keeping GOP control of Ohio.

The new electronic voting machines that will come into play in a couple of months have already shown unreliability in both Florida and Ohio. There is no paper trail or back up to prevent fraud or foul ups.

Voting think tanks are predicting Chaos if these machines are put into mass use as is.

I would recommend that everyone go out and get a passport right now, but I also know that costs about hundred dollars per person.

Richer and whiter is what they want...it may be what they get if we don’t step up and stop this theft of America and our freedoms by the radical right.


Fear of Flying

The FAA, Federal Aviation Administration, wants to control this country’s air traffic controllers the way corporate America controls its workforce.

In other words, the FAA wants to use fewer people to work longer hours and handle more planes while paying them less money.

A report in today’s New York Times relates how the government wants to reduce air traffic controllers by ten percent and have those retaining their jobs work on screen longer. The current regulation mandates controllers work no longer than two hours without a break.

The FAA has also instituted a dress code...this for people who work at light levels that border on near darkness. Controllers who routinely work in dark windowless rooms are now prevented from wearing jeans, sneakers and t-shirts with big letters on them.

The rule changes went into effect on Sept 3rd, two days after the plane crash at Lexington’s Blue Grass Airport killing all on board but the copilot. The plane crashed after attempting take off from the wrong runway. First reports say the control tower was staffed by one person doing the work of two people, pulling a double shift, with only two hours of sleep between shifts.

I’ve had a fear of flying since Reagan fired the air traffic controllers in 1980 during a successful attempt to break the union.

Just call me John Madden or Aretha Franklin, cause I’m probably never going to set foot inside an airport again unless I’m picking up a relative with more guts or fewer smarts than me.


Presidential Temper Tantrum

I watched in amazement at the temper tantrum thrown by Dubya late last week. I actually had to back away and cool down after his most recent news conference at the White House.

He was angry and reacting to the letter written by Colin Powell questioning him about his recent demands that Congress rewrite the Geneva Conventions, specifically Article Three that deals with torture of captive prisoners.

As you probably know by now three GOP Senators have found some back bone and told the Prez he is full of it and should find another way.

Dubya huffed, and he puffed and he tried to blow down the house, but nobody backed off. So now it looks like he is changing his approach.

The thing that bothers me is the incredible arrogance that continues to emanate from this White House. It’s his way or the highway. There is only his view of the world, his view of reality and no need to compromise despite the fact that few others beside his “yes” men and woman agree with him.

We’re America...we don’t need to follow the rules. He even went so far as to tell the American people we don’t have the right to think anything different. We don’t have the right to have an opinion. We should just let him do our thinking and reacting for us.

Cheney, Bush, Rice and Rumsfeld now admit they lied to us on everything for the past couple of years, but apparently only for our own good. They can’t use the truth, so they use scare tactics to get us to go along with the program.

I am outraged. This group of incompetents is telling me how to think, how to react, how to be an American. I thought we had the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights to define our Americanism.

I am outraged that some to the manor born former frat party boy, reformed crack head, now born again Christian extremist is attempting to dictate my thought process.

Our differences is what makes us America. Our differences is what makes us strong.

Marching lock step with the Neocons and buying into their Orwellian view of the world is the true fascism of this century.

We’re not safer five years after 9/11 because this administration has bungled every opportunity to do the right thing. Their only allegiance is to the almighty dollar and how much they can stuff in their own pockets, the rest of us be damned.

As a people, we are deeply in debt for the next century. We are ridiculed around the world. We have no foreign policy. Our military has been abandoned by this administration in an unwinnable situation. Simply put, we are in trouble and all Dubya can think about is politics and how to salvage the midterm elections for the GOP.


Bevis and Butthead of Ohio

You read it today in the Cincinnati Enquirer...Burress backs Blackwell.

Phil Burress, the reformed porn addict turned christian extremist thinks Blackwell, the former Democrat...oops! the former charterite...oh my bad!...the former moderate republican....wow sorry!...compassionate conservative republican...man, still didn't get it right!...faith based leader in the moral wars in the once great state of Ohio, where if you want a job you gotta move to China...

Do we need any other reasons to vote Democratic this election?


Rats Deserting a Sinking Ship

Now, even his own party is questioning the morality of the Iraqi situation and alleged war on terrorism. The Bushies want to "interpret" the rules of the Geneva Convention to allow them to torture so called terrorists prisoners that they've been housing in secret jails around the world.

Dubya and company want to bring them to Gitmo and conduct secret tribunals and he wants Congress to sign off on this perverted situation.

Congress stood up to him today. Senators Warner, McCain and Graham said "no."

Colin Powell, in a letter to John McCain questioned the White House's morality for even making the request.

It is interesting to note that all who stood up were veterans or retired military who didn't hide behind draft deferrals, or their father's money to keep them out of harm's way. McCain, you will recall was a POW for five years. Bush went AWOL for a year, the rest of the axis of evil in the White House were nothing more than draft dodgers. It's funny they should end up running the Pentagon.

Powell said to change the Geneva Conventions would put our own soldiers at risk, or more risk. After all, if we decide to interpret the rules on treating prisoners, what's to stop any other country from doing the same to us?

155 nations have long abided by these rules of war. Now Bush and company want to change them.

I'm going to say it until it happens....IMPEACH THIS PRESIDENT!


20 Questions

1...Why can’t the White House go after Osama Bin Laden the way it went after Jack Murtha?

2...We’ve lost whole parts of Iraq to the insurgency, why can’t this administration admit that our troops are now stuck inside a civil war of their making?

3...Why is Ground Zero still a hole in the ground, five years after the attack?

4....Why hasn’t New Orleans been rebuilt?

5...Why is this country still beholden to the middle east for oil?

6...Why is getting a blow job in the oval office worse than lying to the American People?

7...Why hasn’t Bush light been impeached?

8.... Why do Americans hate its government but keep sending the same crooks back to the hill to screw us over again and again?

9...Why don’t Americans have health care, jobs, and pay raises to keep up with inflation?

10...Why don’t Democrats have the balls to have answers to these questions?

Talk amongst yourselves, I too ticked off to continue...........


9/11 Looking Back

It has always been my habit to turn on the news when I get up in the morning. I’m a former television news reporter. It was my way of catching up on what may have happened overnight as a way of preparing me for what I might have to deal with when I went to work.

I was no longer a reporter on Sept 11, 2001. I had retired in 1999. But old habits die hard. I got up about 8:30am and turned on CNN as always. I didn’t have to prepare for work, but I’m still a news junkie.

The first pictures that I saw were of a hole that looked like an airplane in the side of the World Trade Center tower. I called my sister. I needed a witness to what I was seeing. She turned on her TV and while we sat there, me in Cincinnati and she in Myrtle Beach, we watched the second plane crash.

We watched all day, talking to each other, clicking out to talk to other people and finally to sit there alone, stunned. I don’t remember moving, not to walk my dogs, go to the bathroom, or to get something to eat.

I felt helpless. Despite being retired, my first reaction was to respond, to go to work, to get the story. I felt the adrenalin rush. But I couldn’t do that anymore. I was on the sidelines for the first time in a very long time. I was a spectator in a game that I had previously played very well.

One of the things I know about myself, is that it is much easier for me to stand in the middle of chaos and crisis then it is to endure it from the outside, watching. I am emotionless in the eye of the storm. My emotional collapse always comes when story ends.

When I go home and shut the door, the processing of what I’d just seen and done begins. Sometimes, I get over it quickly. Other stories stay for years and manifest as memories when I least expect them. It usually happens when I write.

9/11 is a story that has never left. I and we, as a people are still processing this one. No matter where we were at the time of the incident, we were affected.

I told myself this morning, five years later, that I would not write about 9/11. I told myself I would not watch the rehashes that will go on all day on 24 hour cable news. I told myself I would not again watch the video of the planes into the tower, even though I know that some of it was shot by one of my closest friends in the whole world. He was on a roof top all day long.

But here I sit, watching and writing, going against my instincts that tell me I should turn this off and put down this computer. I should go do something else, work in my neglected gardens, take my dogs for a walk, cut the lawn. But I can’t.

I remember at one point, still sitting there and realizing that tears were streaming down my face. I don’t remember crying, I just remember the wetness on my face.

Five years later my face is wet again. The tears have not yet dried.


Isn't It Amazing!

How every time the White House needs to make a point about its bogus war on terrorism, a tape showing Osama Bin Laden comes to light?

Now we've got one that surfaced yesterday, showing OBL with the dead hijackers from five years ago, coming to light as this country gets ready to mark the anniversary of 9/11.

Who's been keeping this tape and why show it now?

Just asking

So Safe

The Mayor walks around with a bodyguard. A man gets gunned down in front of City Hall. Another man dies on his front porch, killed by a still on the loose murderer. Boys continue to die daily in the streets of my neighborhood and the police chief says we’re safe.

I don’t get it. What is it going to take to make this city wake up and smell the coffee? We are not safe and haven’t been safe in a long, long time.

The problems go deeper than just getting the guns off the streets and drug dealers off the corners.

More has to be done than finding money to build a new jail to warehouse people or putting up a bill board expecting criminals to read where to get help.

Parents need to step up. The schools need to get real about education instead of simply asking for more money.

This city needs to deal with the needs of all of its citizens, not just the young professionals who have decided to re-inhabit the downtown. What about the others being pushed out by gentrification?

Can’t blame the media. It reports what it sees.

It sees a city riddled with crime. It sees a city with a lousy school system. It sees a city that cares more about its sports teams then it does about its citizens. It sees a city that is losing out to Kentucky because it can’t get its bureaucratic act together.

It sees a city that is more focused on image rather than substance.

It sees a city that continues to live in the past rather than figure out a way to step into the future.


The Argument for Drinking Bottled Water

Word out of the Washington Post today reveals biologists are capturing large and small mouth bass from the Potomac River with sexual and hormonal abnormalities that call into question the safety of the water for humans.

Seems the scientists are seeing male fish carrying eggs and displaying female tendencies. At one fishing site, nearly 80 percent of the male fish pulled out of the water, either had eggs or some type of female sexual organ development. Seven out of thirteen female fish showed similar tendencies in reverse.

The intersex condition, as the biologists call it, doesn’t change the outward appearance of the fish, only internally.

Biologists actually began finding the fish back in 2003 and apparently didn’t think the problem was as wide spread as it now seems to be.

The question now arises for humans....should we drink the water? Millions do...their tap water is taken directly from the Potomac River, just like we, here in Ohio, get our tap water from the Ohio.

Scientists, if you trust them, say that drinking the water is different from spending your entire life submerged in it. Therefore humans probably need not fear any endocrinal disruptions in the way the fish have been affected. But officials readily admit they don’t know what is causing this or why. They do think it is pollution connected.

Scientists keep saying, “pay no attention to man behind the curtain” however, after Chernobyl, after love canal, after 9/11 and what’s happened to the health of the rescue workers, I’m not sure I trust scientists anymore.

Someone else, with more sense said, “if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, looks like a duck, guess what? It’s a duck.”

Don’t know about you, but I’m sticking to bottled water for drinking and will stop taking long luxurious soaking baths in favor of short, short showers.


Pondering Labor Day

Did you know that the average weekly salary in 1972 was $300.74? Did you know that translates into $277.00 in 21st century dollars?

Like you needed to be told that we are living on less money these days.

We are also taking fewer and shorter vacations while working about 20 hours more on the week.

I don’t get it. Why do we put up with this?

Today marks the official opening of campaign season....I can’t wait...I’m already so sick of campaign ads that I could just spit.

Republicans are claiming to be independents....willing to accept GOP money but not admit they supported Bush and his backward policies....now who’s in the closet..

And Democrats...want my vote...but don’t have the balls to ask for it...They figure I’m going to support them because I don’t have any choice.

They’re right, this time around.

We need a new party, new thought, new policies, new way of doing things...


Blackwell Voter Rules Thrown Out

A federal judge in Cleveland today threw out portions of the voter registration rules authored by wannabe governor Ken Blackwell.

The judge called the rules vague, stating the new laws were an attempt to criminalize traditional voter registration.

Opponents of the law who sued the Secretary of State as soon as he put the regulations into affect, claimed Blackwell was attempting to keep minorities from registering to vote in the upcoming elections.

A spokesperson for Blackwell said they would not appeal the Judge’s decision.

Today’s ruling means organizations like the League of Women Voters can conduct voter registration without fear of being hassled by the Secretary of State.