Posts Tagged ‘National Security’

GOP National Security Debate

November 23, 2011

Watched the entire GOP national security debate last evening. Analysts on today’s news shows wondered if Newt shot himself in the foot voicing his immigration policy.

Speaking about being kind to the “other” doesn’t go down well with the Christian, family values party … apparently. We’ll see.

I actually believe that anyone on the debate stage with whom I occasionally agree could be in big trouble with the GOP base. But you know what? Thoughtful comments spice up the debates.

High entertainment value

January 9, 2011

Saturday’s shootings in Arizona are certainly troubling, but not surprising. I’ve run into several people who apparently don’t realize that some of the biggest voices screaming from the fringe don’t worry at all about what they say, and even less about how they are heard.

But not realizing that three of those big names are little more than charlatans (or grifters) isn’t reserved for the mentally ill or poorly educated. Spewing hateful rhetoric and misinformation has high entertainment value and is very profitable. Why dial it back?

There is a ready audience of people who read narrowly and think even more narrowly. Is it the fault of a talk show host when listeners  don’t understand that they stir the pot of hate with a pack of lies, distortions, provocative slurs, and violent rhetoric? Couple all that with a meager understanding of the U.S. Constitution … in its entirety … and one has an explosive and polarized climate.

Ms. Palin and Messrs. Beck and Limbaugh certainly can’t be blamed for the shootings in Tuscon. But they can be blamed for using their voice to help create and maintain a political soil so toxic that distorted thinking finds much nourishment. They differ little from others who radicalize the easily influenced.

The rest of us see what they have to say for what it is.

I’m just asking …

March 18, 2010

As I reflect on all that is going on in our government, I’m trying to make sense of why only one party is on the playing field trying to get something done  while the other party jeers from the stands. Perhaps things can be explained:

If you don’t believe that such a person as Obama could/should ever reside in The White House, why would you want to help him be successful?

If your party controlled congress for 12 years (and The White House for 8 years) and nothing was done other than screw up the country’s foreign policy and economic health, why wouldn’t you be upset if the mess couldn’t be straightened out in year?

If a major piece of legislation (prescription drug plan) was completely unfunded and locked in a deficit-building entitlement for our children and grandchildren to pay for, doesn’t the party who introduced and passed such legislation have every right to block new legislation that is really needed and helps people? Especially if it reduces the deficit?

If you have a government health care plan for you and your family, isn’t it obvious that such an opportunity would be disastrous for the rest of the country? Wouldn’t that be socialism?

If your party successfully nominated and elected for two terms as president a candidate who was completely uniformed and could barely voice a coherent thought, wouldn’t such a candidate seem attractive again? Maybe the tea party folks are onto something.

If your party had a vice president who made little sense and was guilty of numerous wrong-headed, unpatriotic decisions and policies, shouldn’t he be the main critic of someone who actually thinks things through before acting?

If your party in congress has no ideas to help solve an ever-growing fiscal crisis, doesn’t it make sense to stand in the way of those who have ideas and are trying to respond to that crisis?

If your party’s administration fostered the rampant growth of terrorists world-wide through reckless and thoughtless foreign policy, shouldn’t the next administration who tries to be part of the global community through healing divisions and international cooperation be labeled as “soft” on terror?

I’m just asking …

What else might be going on?

December 31, 2009

2009 draws to a close, on to the next decade!


Does anyone wonder why two bumbling terrorists used the same m.o.? If our attention can be drawn elsewhere so easily, what else might be going on? We always seem to be protecting against the last attack. This most recent guy looks like another decoy, a setup. But body scanners it will be. Liquids, box cutters, shoes, are now joined by a peek into our undies.

I would put my money, instead, on luggage or an external airline attack such as a heat-seeking missile on takeoff  or a radicalized pilot on a private jet causing a mid-air collision.

It is an interesting strategy, however: keep us looking where the  threat won’t be.

Speaking of threats and decoys, isn’t that Sarah Palin something to behold? It still scares me that she and McCain could be sitting in Washington. Sure Obama could be doing a better job, but boy am I glad he’s in the White House when there was no apparent alternative.

It’s most bizarre

April 27, 2009


Should there be a commission? A special prosecutor? A nonpartisan investigation? Congressional hearings?

Torture? Our country is really talking about torture and the involvement and authorization of those uppermost in our nation’s leadership?

How quickly we become diverted into the “how” rather than the “what” or the “why.” The whole thing is absurd.

Why did we feel we had to scrap our values and trample on the Constitution when attacked on our soil? Was there no time for a sober breath, quiet reflection? Or did someone have a bone in his or her craw all along, and this was the chance to flex some young people’s (some other people’s)  muscle and show the world. Show them what? That we can’t take a punch?

I’m not an historian, but I do wonder if any other country has become so easily and quickly unhinged when attacked. I do wonder if any country in history has ever had such a disproportionate and misdirected response, the virtual destruction of an uninvolved sovereign nation, the displacement of millions, the deaths of hundreds of thousands.  And for what?

I thought I was done ranting on this. It’s most bizarre.

One tool in his toolbox

October 30, 2008

Here we are a couple of days from Election Day.

A few months ago, John McCain seemed to be someone I could live with for president even though I couldn’t see myself being included in anything he had to say.  But perhaps things would be OK. That was pre-Palin. Now my main concern about him is in regard to our national security.  I can’t see him as our Commander-in-chief. He demonstrated such a blatant disregard for our country when he chose his running mate. What a foolish display of bad judgment. Anything to win and the country be damned.

Then I read the cover story “Why War is His Answer,” The Atlantic …October, 2008 … and things became a little more clear. My not being at ease with the man appeared to have some merit. Just what we need: another president trying to outdo his father in the theater of war.  Couple that with impetuous behavior, an explosive temper, an apparent disregard for thoughtfulness,  a willingness to throw his principles and honor overboard when the going gets tough, and we would have a president resembling a golf ball hit in a tile shower room. Where will it hit next and who needs to duck? I can’t imagine a president with only one tool in his toolbox during these perilous times.  He says he abhors war. Where is the evidence?

During the last couple of years, I have observed in Senator McCain an inappropriate use of humor, sarcasm, a smile that doesn’t match anything he says. He is obviously uncomfortable in discussions requiring a fleshing out of issues. There is much greater comfort in  deflecting and distracting while trying to skewer and humiliate those with the audacity to bring up more reasoned arguments. He claims to be tested.  I don’t buy it. Wesley Clark had it right.

Then if he were to die after being sworn in? Oh, my!!!

So, who’s going to show up in greater numbers at the polls next Tuesday? The fearful and uninformed as in the last election? Those with a willful and selfish indifference to those in need as in the last two elections? Those who listen to the blizzard of misinformation dished out on some popular talk radio shows and a prominent cable news network? Those who believe lies woven out of threads so small and irrelevant that one wonders how they can be repeated over and over with a straight face?

A few blocks from where I live, an Obama sign has been shredded. Once again, the ones who are angry and fearful don’t understand the damage that has been done to our country. There is nothing to fear … unless we fail to seize the opportunity to change our course.