Friday, June 14, 2013

You are known by the company you keep ... ideology without compromise.

I, TEApublican, do solemnly swear to uphold the principles of a socialism-free society and heretofore pledge my word that I shall strictly adhere to the following:

I will complain about the destruction of 1st Amendment Rights in this country, while I am duly being allowed to exercise my 1st Amendment Rights.

I will complain about the destruction of my 2nd Amendment Rights in this country, while I am duly being allowed to exercise my 2nd Amendment rights by legally but brazenly brandishing unconcealed firearms in public.

I will foreswear the time-honored principles of fairness, decency, and respect by screaming unintelligible platitudes regarding tyranny, Nazi-ism, and socialism at public town halls. Also.

I pledge to eliminate all government intervention in my life. I will abstain from the use of and participation in any socialist goods and services including but not limited to the following:

Social Security
Medicare/Medicaid
State Children’s Health Insurance Programs (SCHIP)
Police, Fire, and Emergency Services
US Postal Service
Roads and Highways
Air Travel (regulated by the socialist FAA)
The US Railway System
Public Subways and Metro Systems
Public Bus and Light Rail Systems
Rest Areas on Highways
Sidewalks
All Government-Funded Local/State Projects
Public Water and Sewer Services (goodbye socialist toilet, shower, dishwasher, kitchen sink, outdoor hose!)
Public and State Universities and Colleges
Public Primary and Secondary Schools
Sesame Street
Publicly Funded Anti-Drug Use Education for Children
Public Museums
Libraries
Public Parks and Beaches
State and National Parks
Public Zoos
Unemployment Insurance
Municipal Garbage and Recycling Services
Treatment at Any Hospital or Clinic That Ever Received Funding From Local, State or Federal Government (pretty much all of them)
Medical Services and Medications That Were Created or Derived From Any Government Grant or Research Funding (again, pretty much all of them)
Socialist Byproducts of Government Investment Such as Duct Tape and Velcro (Nazi-NASA Inventions)
Use of the Internets, email, and networked computers, as the DoD’s ARPANET was the basis for subsequent computer networking
Foodstuffs, Meats, Produce and Crops That Were Grown With, Fed With, Raised With or That Contain Inputs From Crops Grown With Government Subsidies
Clothing Made from Crops (e.g. cotton) That Were Grown With or That Contain Inputs From Government Subsidies

If a veteran of the government-run socialist US military, I will forgo my VA benefits and insist on paying for my own medical care

I will not tour socialist government buildings like the Capitol in Washington, D.C.

I pledge to never take myself, my family, or my children on a tour of the following types of socialist locations, including but not limited to:

Smithsonian Museums such as the Air and Space Museum or Museum of American History
The socialist Washington, Lincoln, and Jefferson Monuments
The government-operated Statue of Liberty
The Grand Canyon
The socialist World War II and Vietnam Veterans Memorials
The government-run socialist-propaganda location known as Arlington National Cemetery
All other public-funded socialist sites, whether it be in my state or in Washington, DC

I will urge my Member of Congress and Senators to forgo their government salary and government-provided healthcare.

I will oppose and condemn the government-funded and therefore socialist military of the United States of America.

I will boycott the products of socialist defense contractors such as GE, Lockheed-Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman, General Dynamics, Raytheon, Humana, FedEx, General Motors, Honeywell, and hundreds of others that are paid by our socialist government to produce goods for our socialist army.

I will protest socialist security departments such as the Pentagon, FBI, CIA, Department of Homeland Security, TSA, Department of Justice and their socialist employees.

Upon reaching eligible retirement age, I will tear up my socialist Social Security checks.
Upon reaching age 65, I will forgo Medicare and pay for my own private health insurance until I die.

SWORN ON A BIBLE
AND SIGNED THIS DAY OF __________ IN THE YEAR ___.
_____________ _________________________
Signed Printed Name/Town and State

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

If we discovered that another country was doing this to our children, we would declare war

Last night we were invited to view a disturbing film and participate in a discussion of what we as a congregation might do in response to a national problem that is quite naturally repeated locally in both urban and rural settings.
A Place at the Table as reported by NPR
Excerpt:
“One nation underfed. Really?
Many of us don't think of the U.S. as the land of the underfed.
In this era of the expanding waistlines, we hear far more concern about obesity than we do about hunger. But the two are more closely connected that many of us realize.
A new documentary, A Place at the Table, peels back the curtain on the problem of food insecurity, weaving together the stories of low-income Americans who struggle to put healthy food on the table, despite the fact that they have jobs.”



Became aware of this group which goes back to the 1980’s
Our nation has the food and programs in place to end childhood hunger, but consider what we are up against – the stigmas and embarrassment that surround hunger, the challenges presented by acess to healthy food, and the struggle to connect children with the resources they need to thrive.
“If we discovered that another country was doing this to our children, we would declare war.” ‒ Jeff Bridges
It’s as if many Americans of the youngest parenting generations have never learned to cook. And have you noticed that the sections of food markets that offer processed, pre-cooked or tear-them-open-and- throw-them-in-the-microwave-or-in-a-saucepan-on-the-stove-top are so much larger and contain more inadequately nourishing foods … foods one has to have at least some measure of knowing how to cook from scratch?
The hunger problem is about much more than the deluge of processed easy-to-prepare junk meals.

It’s also about an economic and democratic system locked in the hands of agri-business corporations who price and unreasonably market junk food, processed or otherwise, at costs that offer convenience but not relief from many family earners who have far too many economic problems and inadequate income circumstances that are not their fault.

Our mega-monsters worship profit at the expense of the common good. They see ideas of social justice as hostile to the corporate-lobbied and incredibly bass-ackward way of providing for the general good.
We can and do produce more than enough food but then mangle access to food which as a commodity has greater corporate-driven profit motive than that of food as a basic human right based on actual biological need.
We did that. We have allowed businesses in many sectors of our lives and allowed them to profitize at exorbitant price levels that have no justifiable basis determined by the  actual cost of production. 
As much as we can blame corporations which are by definition precisely compared to the amoral function of sharks, we more so must hold accountable our current and past elected government stewards in both parties.
There is nothing noteworthy in pissing all over each other in public displays of political righteousness about a correct point of view and the way America ought to be governed when our politicians themselves - paid and supported by corporate lobbies - have become the biggest perpetrators of child cruelty and actual economic abuse in this country.

They really do this and they know they do. They make decisions that give with one hand and take with the other which causes the people they are elected to serve to stand helpless and watch their own children go hungry.

This because pious political self-styled civic heroes are too busy talking about much less important things. When it comes to feeding the hungry, “How are you going to pay for it?” is not the first question a panel of legislators should ask.

Rather, as shown in the film as spoken honestly, the real first responders should fund their real first priorities rather than the priorities of those who have the most money.



Saturday, June 8, 2013

What does it mean to be Christian in America? Or what it shouldn't mean?

The Not-So-Lofty Origins of the Evangelical Pro-Life Movement


[W]hat galvanized the Christian community was not abortion, school prayer, or the ERA [Equal Rights Amendment]. I am living witness to that because I was trying to get those people interested in those issues and I utterly failed. What changed their minds was Jimmy Carter’s intervention against the Christian schools, trying to deny them tax-exempt status on the basis of so-called de facto segregation.
In other words, as Randall Balmer has succinctly put it: “the religious right of the late twentieth century organized to perpetuate racial discrimination.”
As I write this we citizens of the United States of America live in a country that has nurtured and sheltered the growth of religion within its borders. We have done so - despite the lies coming out of social conservative noise-makers - with what has become a constitutional mandate to keep state and religion separated; to keep both out of each other's way.

As I write this I’m aware that many religious politicians have spoken about tearing down the traditional wall of separation of church and state. Such a movement of itself is constitutionally part of the rights of citizens who desire to advocate for legal and governmental change.

Advocating for change and reform is part of what it means to be American, like baseball, apple pie and Mom.

Seriously considering change and reform must include a sense of what “being American” really means.

In the absence of civic passion, do we not passively allow our society to slide toward being told by others the correct answer to “What does it mean to be Christian in America?”

For me being an American Christian equates to believing in Jesus as the founder of a global religion that has become the predominant spiritual philosophy in this country.

Furthermore, Christianity as a global religion is essentially the consequence a historical religious imperialism that proved to be - much more than philosophical conversion - the most successful force behind its growth.

We then are either spectators of or participants in a conflict in this country about what a Holy (or Wholly) American Christian identity really means to its citizens.

What being Christian in America ought to mean …

If we follow Jesus do we not follow the ultimate portrayer of human goodness? Ought we not follow Him who taught love of God and each other and who taught that compassion and understanding are the highest spiritual virtues to be sought?

Jesus tells us to love and be concerned about the poor, the suffering, and the weary. Jesus encourages us to learn and practice compassion.

However, in America, conservative Christian celebrities seem to be telling us that such is not as important as other things:

-Being seriously frightened by the threat of having our children indoctrinated in the homosexual agenda and lifestyle by human beings who are different from us and are "evil" while we are "good."

-Being more concerned about a plot by judges to assault our right to publicly acknowledge God.

-Being outraged by media slander of Christians which is in reality a media slander falsely portrayed and exaggerated by slanderous and agitating right wing celebrities.

-Being disgusted by Hollywood attacks on Judeo-Christian ethics which are supposedly distinctly separate from common sense ethics, personal morality and sense of goodness - thereby inferior to conservative Christian values for the rest of us.

-Being very worried that America is experiencing the imaginary lifting of God’s hand of protection and the imposing of His judgment on the nation most responsible for endangering the land and people of Israel.

Conservative Christian political activists express this in a form that assumes that we all - like they - have glibly accepted the notion that America is special above all other peoples;

- that God has maintained some sort of holy curtain of protection from natural and man-made disasters and attacks in our less recent history because of our supposed holiness;

- that America has enjoyed some vague status in the eyes of God as an especially chosen people and nation more worthy than the rest of the world.

-Being “fearful” of God in a way that recognizes God’s capacity for wrath and punishment to those who stray, backslide and slip into immorality. The God of the Christian political conservatives is perfectly capable of destroying the innocent with the guilty as evidenced during the 9/11 attacks and the godly fist of Katrina where God expressed His displeasure with an entire city that has supposedly mocked Him for too long.

This is the stuff of which an American Christian separation from global Christianity is made.

You tell me, gentle readers. What does it mean to you to be Christian in America at this time in our history?

Although many Christians are not actively and outwardly religious except perhaps on rare Sundays, special holidays or family events, there are millions who sit in congregations and outwardly celebrate their religion in a spirit of worship and fellowship every week. Yet many of these do not cross the line into the politics-and-religion discourse.

They are content in their lives but are they content with what they are told from the pulpit or see and hear on television and radio?

The citizens of this country hold the power to impact the political and spiritual direction in the U.S. and the time is coming when it will be unavoidably necessary to willfully and powerfully express themselves as to what being Christian in America really means.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Would you want these folks teaching in our schools?

The failed Republican civic behavior is only worsened and made more complicated with the pitiful public relations failures of Flush Limbaugh and Fox News with its stupor stars, Squawk Hannity and The Fracture O' Reilly.

They have all now childishly teamed up to become a significant part of the problem with no relationship to the solution.

The absence of any sense of civic responsibility is overwhelmingly louder than any party or broadcast rhetoric itself.

How would you like it if these kinds of Kindergarten Konservatives were teaching your children civic values?

(1)
Fighting the war on terror while remaining strictly stuck with the Republican Tax Cut Experiment.

(2)
Fighting a war on terror that no longer has logic, common sense or any kind of national success story that can be attached to Republican methods.

(3)
Fighting a war on terror with an eye single to how to incorporate strategy and tactics in such a way as to create exceedingly lucrative opportunities that are awarded to favorite corporate supporters.

(4)
Lack of health care access for millions and opposition to universal health care is part and parcel of the conservative myth about a free-market system going back to the stubborn in-denial theorizing of failed capitalists of the 1920's.

Then, post -WWII - it was assumed that capitalism and American employers could shoulder the responsibility for health coverage for all American workers and prove to the world the wholesome power of unrestricted free-markets where capitalist employers would willingly include health care and other well-being benefits in the "cost of doing business" prior to making claim on net profit.

That assumption has proven to be a disaster. Corporate America - primarily a Republican sponsor that rewards political sacrifice of personal ethics with money -  has been left at a competitive disadvantage globally and unable to resist the temptation to become competitive by robbing workers of both job and health security.

This circumstance involved both parties going back to 1946, but most recently, those who finally managed to purchase political influence have moved the problem to its extreme absurdity.

(5)
The Medicare Prescription Drug problem as resolved by blind, stubborn and foolish Republican politicians is a disaster and can be unequivocally laid at the feet of every politician claiming to be formally Republican.

Medicare D which is so unwise, one-sided and profit-driven is PRECISELY what being a Republican stands for.

Republicans no longer have a sensible alternative to what Americans are demanding now. "Conservative" is a word that even self-styled conservatives can no longer accurately define. Self-describing one's self as "conservative" is at this moment not much more than calling one's self a bootstrap American or  some other heroic self image that implies deep thinking.

There is little deep thinking at this point to the current dominant "conservatism."

We are not hearing serious, deep or well-reasoned conservative ideas from the Boehners, Kantors, Ryans, & Gingrichs or even those already fired, like Allen West.

The out-of-office disaster who labeled himself the "education President" but who, despite the compassionate self-label, left children behind, imposed terrible burdens on public schools, and failed to provide the necessaries to make his compassionate promises come true.

(6)
Prime Republican bread and butter is the distraction of the pseudo Christian morality that makes political mountains out of molehills at the expense of that with which any religious believer ought to be most focused: Compassion, justice and equality.

Any Republican blowhard who throws up one of the pseudo "moral" issues needs to be immediately confronted with a question about torture, injustice and inequality inside America and globally.
That's nice, Mr. Republican, but what does your personal morality prompt in you regarding torture, injustice, inequality and the lack of compassion your party and your radical religious right supporters ignore so pointedly?"
We can knock down the entire facade of the Republican party's pretended patriotism, conservatism and regard for humanity in general because it was built on bull, bluff, personal political chicanery and deliberately contrived inflammatory lies.

Would you want such jokers teaching high school government and civics classes?

Hell no!

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