Wednesday, July 08, 2009

To Censure or Impeach

I noticed in South Carolina that Republicans have voted to “censure” Gov. Mark Sanford, rather than demand his resignation.
This, of course, is precisely what Democrats proposed to do with Bill Clinton after the Monica Lewinsky affair was exposed by the salacious, crusader Ken Starr. But back then, Republicans did not think that was good enough and they pushed forward with a bid to impeach the president (which was successful in the House and fell short in the Senate). One of those Republican House members who cast aside the censure option and voted to impeach was then-Congressman Mark Sanford of S.C.
Oh, the irony.
Well, I don’t ever want to hear anymore blather from Republicans about how they are the guardians of all that is moral and uprighteous in this country. Because it is clear that political expediency takes precedense on both sides of the poltical spectrum.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Symbolic Patriotism

So much good news during the past few days I don’t know if I can stand it. First Sen. John Ensign, R-Nev., and Gov. Mark Sanford, R-S.C., reveal themselves to be enormous, massive hypocrites and disqualify themselves from ever running for president in the future. Then former Sen. and Sore Loser Norm Coleman finally runs out of money and gives up his neverending legal battle to deny the people of Minnesota a second U.S. Senator, clearing the way for Sen. Al Franken to be sworn in and giving the Democrats a filibuster-proof 60 seats.
Now we learn that Sarah Palin is throwing in the towel on her political career in Alaska. Not only is she not going to run for a second term as governor next year, she isn’t even going to bother finishing out her first term and will resign from office later this month.
Why would she do such a thing? The most likely explanation is that her political troubles in Alaska (i.e. abusing her powers by firing the state’s top law officer over a personal family matter) were about to boil over leaving her no other option than to bail out before everything caved in around her. Or perhaps she just decided that it was time to get out on the right-wing lecture circuit and strike while the iron is still hot. I mean if Joe (Joe the Plumber) Wurzelbacher can make money going around the country denouncing the government on Independence Day (like he did here in San Antonio), then Palin should really be able to rake in the big bucks.
But any notion that Palin is stepping down before completing even a single term as governor to prepare for a future presidential bid is absolute nonsense. Dan Quayle had a better chance in 1996 than Palin does in 2012. Her future career lies in being a Fox News commentator and a wingnut celebrity at future “Tea Parties.”
Speaking of “Tea Parties”, the little shindig they held in San Antonio on July 4th really rubbed me the wrong way. I mean, where do they get off trying to co-opt a national holiday celebrating the founding of our government as a day to denounce and trash that very same government?
Oh sure, they have the perfect right to hold their anti-government rallies whenever they choose. But they should not be allowed to get away with this pretense of patriotism that they all pretend to have. There is nothing patriotic about this mindless, knee-jerk hatred for the government that inspires people like Timothy McVeigh to go out and blow up federal buildings.
How can these people claim to be patriotic Americans when the only thing they love about their country is the empty symbolism? Oh sure, they LOVE the flag and they LOVE all the Red, White and Blue imagery - the bald eagle, the patriotic music, hot dogs and apple pie. Oh, and the Troops! They LOVE the Troops!!
But paying the taxes that support the troops, pays their salaries and provides them with the armor, equipment, medical care, etc. that they need? They do everything they can to avoid that. They hate the government and everything that goes along with it. They LOVE our country, but they can’t stand most of the people who live here.
That just doesn’t make sense to me becayse we ARE the government. We have a government OF the people, BY the people and FOR the people. But they act like the government is some monolithic foreign entity that must be opposed at every turn. It is fine to be critical of the government, but even when it was being run roughshod by Republicans for the past eight years, I never harbored the degree of disdain and venom that these people have for the government all the time.
Last week, on the popular Glenn Beck show on the No. 1 rated Fox News Channel, Beck had a guest on who enthused about how what this country most needs is to be hit by another terrorist attack like on 9/11.

“The only chance we have as a country right now is for Osama Bin Laden to deploy and detonate a major weapon in the United States....”

Glenn Beck, of course, was the featured speaker at the last little “Tea Party” that they held in San Antonio. And there he was a few months later nodding approvingly while his guest advocated for a nuclear terrorist attack on our nation. This is outrageous to the extreme! I don’t know what pearls of wisdom “Joe the Plumber” had to say at the most recent tea party, but if his past history is any indication, I can only imagine it wasn’t too far off from what Glenn Beck was saying. For example, back in October, Wurzelbacher claimed we are being “taxed without representation” and suggested another revolution to overthrow the government would be necessary.

“You know a lot of the stuff that our government is doing right now is all about taxation without representation and you know the last time that happened a couple guys got together and threw the Brits out.”

Nice patriotic stuff, ain’t it? Maybe for the next “Tea Party” they can feature Sarah Palin and her secessionist husband Todd.