Saturday, May 28, 2016

Blizzard of Lies

his Memorial Day it's appropriate to ponder the endless blizzard of lies Uncle Sam has used to wage perpetual war through the centuries of the American Story:

  • Spanish American War 1898 - Remember the Maine that wasn't

  • WWI 1917 - Make the world safe for democracy that wasn't 

  • Hiroshima & Nagasaki 1945 - the million man invasion that wasn't

  • Viet Nam War 1964 - Golf of Tonkin incident that wasn't 

  • Iraq War 2003 - WMD that wasn't 

  • Libya Regime Change 2011 - The Qaddafi genocide that wasn't

  • Syrian civil war 2013 - The Assad sarin gas attack that wasn't 

  • Ukraine 2014 - The Russian downing of MK-17 that wasn't 

Friday, May 27, 2016

The pause that doesn't refresh

Some advice for political and educational leaders in 11 states suing the Obama Administration over federal directive forbidding discrimination against transgenders over bathroom use. 

Try taking a leak in a transgender's shoes. 

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Is Peter Breen the Ted Cruz of Illinois?

"Today's 80% super majority vote reaffirmed that Republicans stand for children and families, along with limited government and economic opportunity for all."
That cringe worthy doublespeak from my state representative Peter Breen reminds me of the equally cringe worthy doublespeak from failed presidential candidate Ted Cruz. Without context, Breen's statement sounds fairly sensible, but it's underlying mendacity is given away by his reference to 'limited government', the standard GOP dog whistle to cut taxes on the wealthy. Breen's remarks trumpet his victory in overturning the 10-7 platform committee vote for a plank at the Illinois GOP state convention which urges that "non-traditional families are worthy of the same respect and legal protections as traditional families.” That vague, innocuous statement was the platform's committee's feeble attempt to get GOP state delegates to accept that gay marriage is the law of the land. But Breen, like his mentor and soulmate Senator Cruz, sees an inclusive attempt by our secular democracy to uplift society, as an evil attempt to end bigotry and exclusion. Breen rode to the rescue, marshaling 783 votes, 80% of the delegates, to, well, "stand for children and families" long as they're not gay. Breen's linking a vote for bigotry and fear to standing for "economic opportunity for all" is both illogical and cruel. When he isn't championing homophobia, Rep. Breen is firing endless emails to me and fellow District 48 constituents how proud he is helping Gov. Rauner cut state services to people in need, reduce MAP grants to struggling students, and stiffing state vendors for their goods and services. What a peculiar way to expand economic opportunity!
Before turning a six term moderate Republican from office by damning her efforts to cooperate in bi-partisan efforts to improve the state, Breen was Senior Counsel for the Thomas More Society. His big three issues there were preventing 10 million Americans from enjoying marriage, forcing women to bear their rapist's baby, and desecrating the public square with religious symbols. That agenda comes straight from the Ted Cruz playbook. That may play well in the Lone Star State. It has no place in the Land of Lincoln.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Duke's words on goodness don't apply to Trump

I have to laugh when 'Trumpeters' explain why they support Trump. "He sounds like he knows what will make America great again." "He's refreshing." "He's a truth teller." "He's telling it like it is."
When asked what makes good music, Edward 'Duke' Ellington simply said: "If it sounds is good." That apt description by Ellington about music does not apply to The Donald.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Dinosaur sightings at IL GOP Convention

The Illinois GOP social dinosaurs are in full battle against the forces of modernity trying to salvage the GOP brand at the state convention in Peoria. My congressman Peter Roskam (IL-6) and my state rep Peter Breen (IL 48) are leading the charge to roll back gay marriage, appalled that the platform committee would deign to recognize, by a 10-7 vote, that "non-traditional families are worthy of the same respect and legal protections as traditional families.” It's 'dis-respect or nothing' to GOP deadenders like Roskam and Breen trying to breathe life into the dead dinosaur of homophobia. "Today's action by a narrow majority of the platform committee to redefine marriage followed a flawed, closed-door process that excluded and marginalized the deeply held beliefs of a majority of Illinois Republicans" charged Breen, who moonlights as Chief Counsel for the Thomas More Society, reeling from the collapse of its decades long campaign to keep gays marginalized.
On the abortion front the social dinosaurs were more successful, beating back a plank that would allow for abortion in cases of rape or incest. Still roaming the north suburban 9th Congressional District, committee member Dave Carrabotta bellowed “You give an eighth of an inch...the game is over.” Apparently, forcing women to bear their molester's child is just a game to social dinosaur Carrabotta.
Maybe to facilitate their work the IL GOP should hang the following sign on the platform committee room door:

Sunday, May 22, 2016

It's 4 or 8 for next US prez

It won't be trumpeted among the accomplishments when the Obama library opens on Chicago's South Side in a few years...but it should be. And the accomplished is most assuredly dubious. It is, of course, that President Obama will have presided over the US at war longer than any president in US history, all 2.922 days of his presidency when completed on January 20, 2017. Only FDR, who served 4,421 days, had a chance to eclipse Obama, and his war tenure was the paltry 1,305 days of WWII. And unlike Obama's wars, FDR's was declared, worthwhile and successful. Obama's are undeclared, pointless and failed.
That's perpetual war in 21st century America. And it guarantees that the next president will steer America at war over a full four or eight years, depending on whether or not he or she gets re-elected. That's not a campaign promise. It's built into the job description.