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Wither The Republican Party?

A hundred years ago, the Republican Party was led by Theodore Roosevelt whose progressive ideas today would undoubtedly lead to Republicans today castigating him as a “radical” or “socialist.” Theodore Roosevelt took on Big Business with his trust busting ideas, he originated the concept of conservation of our national resources, he believed in equal rights for Negroes and women, he supported labor unions, he urged transforming the Washington D.C. school system into a model for the nation, and he was the first president to actively seek to integrate immigrants into the American ethos. His famous Rough Riders was included immigrants from every ethnic group.

In the 1940s, the Republican party was led by Wendell Wilkie whose book, “One World” spoke of his desire for a world bound together. Thomas Dewey who twice ran for the presidency supported most New Deal laws and worked actively for equal rights for minorities. Senator Arthur Vandenberg led Senate Republicans in working with Roosevelt and Truman to become part of the United Nations. Even the great Republican Senator Robert Taft would today be branded by right wing kooks as a radical. During the 1950s, Dwight Eisenhower consolidated the New Deal and backed the Supreme Court in Brown vs. Board of Education. It was Eisenhower who warned about the “military/industrial complex” and was probably the only president in fifty years to cut the military budget.

Today, Senator Specter has left the party because the party has abandoned its conservative ideals and its concern for human rights. Its ongoing mantra is “cut taxes to help the wealthy.” Senator Vandenberg worked closely in a spirit of bipartisanship with Democrats as did Ronald Reagan on many international issues. But, today, the party of Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt is controlled by Rush Limbaugh mentalities of pettiness and vicious hatred toward anyone who disagrees with their belief that wealthy people are the chosen ones of God. By the way, Teddy Roosevelt violently opposed any mixing of church and state.

So, what has happened to the Republican party? It is led by men with limited vision, outdated economic ideas, and a narrowness in terms of encompassing divergent people within the framework of the American nation. Republicans, ye have tarried too long, begone and rest in the dustbin of history with other relics of lost ideas.

I am certain Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt and Dwight Eisenhower shed a tear every night as they gaze at the motley crew of ignorant hateful people who lead their party.

Israel President Hints At Action Toward Iran

Israel President Shimon Peres employed aggressive language in discussing the actions of Iran and how their challenge might be met. In an interview with Kot Hai Radio, he said the arrest over the weekend in Egypt of a Hizbullah cell was a blow to Iran which undoubtedly funds that organization. “Ahmadinejad recruits forces against us, but there are also forces against him.” He called for unifying Arab nations which are threatened by terrorism in order to defeat Iran’s aggressive behavior. He want on to note his hope Obama will be successful in being able to negotiate with Iran, but warned that if Iran continued fostering terrorism it might require Israel to undertake military action, “we’ll strike him.”

President Peres is correct in calling for Arab nations to unite with Israel against Iran, but until Israel refuses to accept a Palestinian state and withdraw from the West Bank, there will be no such coalition. Ahmadinejad is not the only obstacle to peace in the Middle East, the president only has to look at the current cabinet of Benjamin Netanyahu.

Sudan Rejects Arab Proposal For Trials

The Sudanese government rejected a proposal by the Arab League to establish a “hybrid court” to prosecute those suspected of participating in the murder of thousands of innocent people in Darfur. The Arab League suggestion was an attempt to circumvent the International Criminal Court indictment of Sudan leder Omar Hassan Al-Bashir who they charged was responsible for the deaths of over 300,000 in Darfur as well as rape and brutalization of thousands of women. The Arab League gave full support to Bashir in his refusal to acknowledge the jurisdiction of the ICC. There are reports Sudan diplomats are furious at the suggestion of a hybrid court which they claim gives credence to the ICC warrant.

Arab media claim Sudan has threatened to withdraw from the Arab League, but if they did so, there are few options in the rest of the world for friends. Sudan demands Arab nations completely reject the very suggestion that anything has gone wrong in Darfur. Most probably the 300,000 reputed dead people are really hiding out in Argentine or Israel.

Israel Threatens Action On Iran

News that Iran is progressing in its development of atomic energy has sent a shock wave of fear throughout the Israel military establishment. Defense Minister Ehud Barak warned that Israel could not by idly while Iran developed nuclear weapons. “Israel’s policy is clear: We are not ruling out any option regarding the Iranian nuclear program.” He sent a thinly clad warning to President Obama that “we recommend that others don’t rule out any option either.” Barak insisted that “time is running out” and there is need to act before time ran out and Iran had an atomic weapon.

Israeli leaders insist that something must “be done” to halt or to end the Iranian nuclear development program. Let’s assume that Israel did bomb Iranian nuclear facilities. The result, most probably, would be launching of dozens, if not hundreds of suicide bombers in Israel which would then end any hope for peace between Palestinians and Israel. Of course, Iran would continue developing nuclear energy and would hide their work and wait for time. Making threats about bombing Iran satisfies the emotional needs of Israelis, but does it also solve any problems?

Iran has indicated to Turkey it is ready to negotiate. Let the talks begin and put aside talk of war, war.

What Is Gordon Brown Hiding About Iraq??

Several British groups have asked the government to release Cabinet minutes for the meetings of March 13 and March 17, 2003 when discussions were held about the decision to support the Bush invasion of Iraq. Information Minister Richard Thomas ordered the release of the minutes arguing that their publication was in the public interest. His decision was supported by an independent tribunal last month. But, for the first time, the Brown government has decided to make use of “Section 53″ of the Freedom of Information Act which allows it to veto the release of documents. By drawing upon this section of the law it is impossible for challengers to take the case to court. According to a government spokesperson, the release of the documents would do “serious damage” to the frank discussions that took place on those two momentous days.

Members of parliament from every aspect of the political scene protested the decision. Many insisted the Brown decision showed disrespect for the people of Great Britain and their right to know why their nation got into a war. Of course, the men and women who died might complain of “serious damage” to their lives by the decision of Tony Blair and his associates.

Shoe Throwing Epidemic Hits Chinese Leader

Those who seek to protest against tyrants have discovered a new weapon that will pass through most metal detectors –shoes. Chinese Premier Wen Siabao was giving a presentation at Cambridge to a fairly attentive audience when suddenly a man stood up, took off his shoe, and threw it in the direction of the Chinese leader. The man’s arm apparently was not of major league caliber and the show flew off to the side. He shouted out “How can the university prostitute itself with this dictator?” and was then grabbed by security guards and hauled away. Wen took a deep breath and continued his speech by saying, “We came in peace. This is not going to obstruct China-UK friendship.”

At least shoe throwing does not result in deaths or the killing of innocent civilians so no one should be overly upset at this incident. Of course, only about 100 or so protestors were outside complaining about the Chinese premier whose government has killed hundreds. The other protestors no doubt were before the Israel embassy protesting Israeli killing. After all, there are no protestors complaining about the death of five million in the Congo.

Up the shoes!

Canada Halts Deportation Of US Deserter

A Canadian judge has put a hold on deportation orders that would have forced a deserter from the United States armed forces to be sent back across the border where he would have faced serious charges. A Federal Judge said immigration officials had made serious errors in failing to assess the hardships the deserter and his family would have confronted if sent back to the United States. Jeremy Hinzman’s lawyer, Alyssa Manning, had argued there was evidence that outspoken critics of the Bush invasion of Iraq had been subjected to much harsher punishment than ordinary deserters. The Hinzman case is supposedly the first of several that deal with Americans who have refused to serve in the military due to the war in Iraq.

Crown lawyer Stephen Gold argued it was not the responsibility of the Canadian government “to pass judgment on a military code in a foreign country.” Hinzman had deserted the 82nd Airborne division in 2004 when it was scheduled for deployment to Iraq. Two Canadian courts previously ruled Hinzman faces prosecution, not persecution if he returns to the States.

Judge Richard Mosley disagreed with the government’s contention that nothing unusual would occur and Hinzman would be treated fairly in America. “Based on the evidence and submissions before me,” said Mosley, “the applicant would suffer irreparable harm if a stay were not granted.” There is some evidence Canadian courts are reflecting the feeling of most Canadians.


Each week we present the rambling biased thoughts of a 77 year old American who is commenting on the human condition.

Nobody Asked Me But,

I was at a funeral. Why do people mumble when speaking about the dead. Shout what you have to say.

If the Chinese female gymnasts are 16 years old I am headed for China. I guess it’s the water that makes people look so young.

It was August 15 and children were entering a school. What ever happened to bringing in the harvest?

I spend an inordinate amount of my life worrying about which line to use at the checkout n a supermarket. I always select the wrong one.

At age 78 when attending a funeral there is always sadness mixed with a tinge of satisfaction I am not the one being discussed.

I prefer the dog days of summer to wintry blasts. Sweat is preferred over shivering.

There was a sign that said: “College Men Faculty Only.” A faculty that shits with students will not piss on them.

I always evaluate the effectiveness of a secretary by her offer of a cup of coffee.

After being away from a regular job for a year, I no not miss meetings but I miss schmoozing with people in the morning.

I am always fascinated by columnists who note George Bush is not making the same mistakes as he did years ago. Unfortunately, dead soldiers and civilians do not get another chance in life to correct mistakes.

I evaluate people on their sense of humor more than on intelligence.

In a parking lot, I spend a few extra minutes making certain I don’t have to back up to leave. I have absolutely no trust in the ability of anyone who is driving a vehicle.

There ought to be a law which requires trucks going up a hill to float on air and then rise skyward.

A meeting that goes past an hour will never solve any problem except for creating the problem of wasting people’s time.

I am always fascinated at the number of injuries to athletes during training seasons. What do these guys do when they are not playing– drink beer all day?

I wonder when I get to Heaven if I will be required to cover my head and face.

I have never seen an angel who is portrayed as vicious. Does this mean when we die we lose all our human qualities?

I sometimes think God spends his time as a stand up comic in some dingy nightclub. How else to explain the number of jokers who hold public office?

I have been wondering all day if there is a Starbucks in Heaven. I know McDonalds can’t get in because God worries about his stomach.

I saw this delightful little four year old walking around in a blue dress and feeling so proud. Who says there are no biological differences between the sexes?

I am amazed at the muscles on athletes at the Olympics. Heck, you could place my entire chest into one of their muscles.

Humanity got along for thousands of years without cell phones. Now that we have them does this mean we will now be able to communicate with one another?

I sometimes think young people today get a a frontal lobotomy when they enter school that removes all knowledge of their nation’s past.

One will never know exactly what was learned in life until after death.

John Edwards had an affair like about half this nation. The illness of a loved one can cause people to seek the warmth of love elsewhere because of fear. I never judge anyone who is seeking love, regardless of the reason for the love.

People in pizza places speak very loud. Is it something in the dough?

Brenda called to tell me she wanted to help me solve my financial problems. I asked for her phone number so I could call her back to give her advice about her children’s education. She hung up.

A college faculty person told me he only values what is told him by people who have advanced degrees. I prefer the knowledge of a plumber because at least he makes certain toilets in a school are working so they can get rid of the shit spoken by faculty that is coming out of classrooms.

Secretary Rice In Georgia As Sign Of Support

Secretary of State Condi Rice is in Georgia where she is dealing with the complex issues raised by events in that region of the world. On one hand, the United States is working to get Russia out of Georgia and restore conditions to what they were before fighting broke out in the area, but, on the other hand, Rice must deal with actions of the government of Georgia which created the present situation. The United States is assuring Georgia it will not be forced to accept any decisions which run counter to its self interests. However, there is a difference between what Georgia views what should be done in the region and what most Western nations are willing to accept.

President Saakashvili thundered to the world that “Russia’s invasion of Georgia strikes at the heart of western values” and to allow it sends a message that authoritarian government can exist anywhere. However, he initiated the war because of a desire to impose Georgia’s will upon South Ossetia. The West supports Kosovo’s decision to breakaway from Serbia which places it in a dilemma. Does South Ossetia have the right to breakaway from Georgia if that is the will of its people?

Patriotism-Last Refuge Of Scoundrels And Republicans

The summer season of politics is alive and well in America as citizens devour hot dogs and hamburgers and wave flags in parades to celebrate the nation’s birth. Senator Barack Obama, is making certain one and all recognize that he is a patriot just like Bush or McCain or Ron Paul or any other of the men and women who have spent the past several months attempting to seize the high ground on patriotism. Obama made certain he stopped in Independence, Missouri, home of Harry Truman where the senator expressed his deep love for America. Unfortunately, he really didn’t grasp the meaning of Harry Truman who was vilified and threatened with impeachment for defending American values and refusing to allow the military to dictate foreign policy.

In the 1950s, Republicans went after Adlai Stevenson, who twice ran for president. He made the outrageous comment that patriotism was about loving America, not hating Russians. In 2004, a genuine war hero experienced the Republican smear campaign which transformed one who fought into the coward while the coward in the White House came across as the all American boy wonder.

Senator Obama does not have to abandon his principles in the name of patriotism. Americans respect a man who stands up for his principles. Catering to the moral majority by espousing faith based initiatives not only will not gain votes, but will result in loss of enthusiasm among his supporters. The way to stand tall for America is fighting for policies that restore economic health, ending a disastrous war, and respecting the intelligence of American voters.