Archive | October, 2006

Saddening, but it’s spot on

30 Oct

Bill Maher has a good rant on why we Americans need to wake up and realize we have some work to do.

View his commentary. It’s hard to argue with the guy.

Here are the Rs we want to see lose

29 Oct

–AZ-Sen: Jon Kyl
–AZ-01: Rick Renzi
–AZ-05: J.D. Hayworth
–CA-04: John Doolittle
–CA-11: Richard Pombo
–CA-50: Brian Bilbray
–CO-04: Marilyn Musgrave
–CO-05: Doug Lamborn
–CO-07: Rick O’Donnell
–CT-04: Christopher Shays
–FL-13: Vernon Buchanan
–FL-16: Joe Negron
–FL-22: Clay Shaw
–ID-01: Bill Sali
–IL-06: Peter Roskam
–IL-10: Mark Kirk
–IL-14: Dennis Hastert
–IN-02: Chris Chocola
–IN-08: John Hostettler
–IA-01: Mike Whalen
–KS-02: Jim Ryun
–KY-03: Anne Northup
–KY-04: Geoff Davis
–MD-Sen: Michael Steele
–MN-01: Gil Gutknecht
–MN-06: Michele Bachmann
–MO-Sen: Jim Talent
–MT-Sen: Conrad Burns
–NV-03: Jon Porter
–NH-02: Charlie Bass
–NJ-07: Mike Ferguson
–NM-01: Heather Wilson
–NY-03: Peter King
–NY-20: John Sweeney
–NY-26: Tom Reynolds
–NY-29: Randy Kuhl
–NC-08: Robin Hayes
–NC-11: Charles Taylor
–OH-01: Steve Chabot
–OH-02: Jean Schmidt
–OH-15: Deborah Pryce
–OH-18: Joy Padgett
–PA-04: Melissa Hart
–PA-07: Curt Weldon
–PA-08: Mike Fitzpatrick
–PA-10: Don Sherwood
–RI-Sen: Lincoln Chafee
–TN-Sen: Bob Corker
–VA-Sen: George Allen
–VA-10: Frank Wolf
–WA-Sen: Mike McGavick
–WA-08: Dave Reichert
The links will take you to news stories that explain why we need to defeat these incumbents.

Want to help the Dems win on election day?

29 Oct

No pitch for money here, just a little bit of your time.

Having worked on a few election campaigns, one thing I’ve learned is that getting people to actually go out and vote is very important. While you or I might be itching for election day to get here, many people do not take voting very seriously. They’ll vote if they can, but they don’t make it a priority.

MoveOn.org is coordinating a huge get out the vote (GOTV) project, asking volunteers to make a few calls to likely Democratic voters between now and election day. I’ve volunteered, and while I thought the idea of calling up strangers to ask them to vote is invasive, kind of rude, and the last thing I’d want to be doing, it’s actually not too bad. Most of the people seem to appreciate the reminder to go out and vote on election day.

Please join in this effort. The Republicans are making a huge push to turn out their base of voters, and we can’t assume that many of their supporters are going to stay home. The Republican base may be unhappy with their office holders, but they know they need to keep the Democrats from winning. So they’re working hard, and the GOP chairman seems to be very pleased with how that effort is going. We need to outwork the Republicans, and every little bit helps.

So, even if you can make only a couple of calls, it takes just a little time and you can make a big difference. Click on this picture here to sign up and get started. We can’t take anything for granted, and the voters you call will make a difference.

Call For Change

Traditional marriage must be defended–against what???

27 Oct

In the wake of the New Jersey Supreme Court’s ruling that its state constitution requires that gay or lesbian couples be treated the same as straight couples, and that the state legislature must figure out how, the right wing has gone berserk.

First, let’s ignore that some of these right-wing folks have their own marriage problems. Bad things can happen to marriages that are irrelevant to politics.

But can someone finally explain to me what the real threat is?

I could understand the uproar if the New Jersey supreme court had said that straight couples cannot marry unless gay or lesbian couples can marry too, but that’s not what the court said.

I could understand the uproar if every time a gay or lesbian couple wed, we required a married straight couple to divorce.

Or, as Lewis Black says, I could understand the “threat” if there was a group of gays driving around in suburbia, breaking into homes at dinner time and having sex in front of the parents and kids.

But none of this stuff is going on. What we have here, folks, is a good old-fashioned monster-under-the-bed terror campaign by people who need to raise money for their political causes. They know that many people in the country aren’t entirely comfortable with notions of gay or lesbian sexual relationships, and they tap into that discomfort by creating fictitious bogeymen to scare the poor folks.

Since the only communists left in the world are either in North Korea and Cuba or are our trading partners in China, the right wing needs an enemy. For a while it was communists. For a while it was “uppity blacks” who dared to want to have the right to vote and go to the same schools as everyone else. The Jews have always been quietly on this list, although lately the right wing has realized that it gets bonus points by being feverishly pro-Israel. (Can someone explain why it’s not possible to be pro-Israel and pro-Palestine at the same time? A topic for another day…)

Bill Maher summed it up well on his show last week. So many people say they love Jesus while spewing their prejudice against people who are different, but they’ve got it backwards. The real question is whether Jesus (or his more rigid Father) would love their behavior.

Methinks not.

Buy a book, read it, and take action

6 Oct

LiberalOasis.com’s editor, Bill Scher, has written a great book: Wait! Don’t Move to Canada! (Not an Amazon.com link–I’ve heard that Amazon.com has some rather unfriendly employee policies, so I need to do some digging into that.)

What I like about this book is you can get through it in a couple of evenings. It’s well written, packed with good information, and tells you how to actually start making a difference rather than merely trying to motivate you. As an example, this blog here that you’re reading has been inspired, in part, by the book (even though I started it before the book came out–the book has inspired me to keep going).

Folks, our country needs us. We can’t let ourselves get discouraged. Even if the Democrats don’t fare too well in the 2006 election, we have to look at the long range goal. We need to build a liberal-minded majority and move the center towards our side. That will take a long time, but it must be done. Heck, the arch conservatives who are running this country today started their planning back after Goldwater lost in 1964. Patience is indeed a virtue, even in politics.

A quick read

6 Oct

Barack Obama delivered a dynamite speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, but in this speech he tells us what we need to do with our nation’s energy policy. The facts he shares are disturbing, but he offers some real solutions. Give it a quick read.

Required viewing

6 Oct

I rarely recommend anyone watch television. I find there’s a few well-written shows on the damn thing, but there are days I could go without even turning it on. Weeks even.

But Keith Olbermann and his show Countdown on MSNBC are threatening to turn me into a daily viewer. This crew is also making me thankful for Tivo.

You can get the flavor of Olbermann here, here and here. The videos aren’t short, but since when should we conduct public discourse by sound bite?