Tuesday, 07 December 2010
I was feeling a little peaked yesterday. Overnight that turned into a raging cold that is pretty much on its way to eliminating my voice. Add onto that the fact that I have to drive 3 hours to St. Louis today to debate the most capable opponent I've ever faced, and you have a recipe for a very long day. Ugh.
So here are a couple news stories that caught my attention this morning. You probably won't hear from me again until Thursday.
Obama has decided to bargain the extension of the Bush tax cuts saying, “The American people didn’t send us here to wage symbolic battles or win symbolic victories.” Yes I did. I sent you there to stand up for something and to fix the mess Bush got us into, not to extend it. I sent you there with the hope that you would break the political mold, that you would be transparent and fight for my values. I sent you there because the tax burden is squarely on the shoulders of the middle class, and you promised to fix that. You have failed all of this.
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange turned himself in to British authorities this morning. I feel as though the Swedish charges against him for rape are trumped up (they occurred directly after he became one of the most wanted men by a myriad of governments, including our own). I suspect he has done this for a couple reasons: he believes drawing more scrutinizing attention to the claims will reveal they were the product of political tactics, and also to show the United States he's not fucking around. Last month Wikileaks released a series of cables from the Defense Department, some of which implicated Hillary Clinton in illegally attempting to procure information about UN diplomats. However, Assange has asserted that he has not released all of the information he has and has constructed a dead man's switch by distributing that information to over 100,000 locations (including the Guardian and the NY Times) in an encrypted format, with promises that the decryption key will be released if he ever feels he is in danger. He may have turned himself in to show the US that he's not fucking around.
Freedom of the press was enshrined in our founding documents as a means to keep the government accountable to its employers - namely us. What Assange is doing is necessary for democracy, which is why Assange has massive amounts of public support even as he is pursued by various governments. Assange could have remained in hiding indefinitely with the massive public support he has been receiving, which is why I believe his surrender is a strategical move. It also says something when the citizenry, who pays the government to look after their well-being, are hiding our one of our government's most wanted men for the crime of keeping them accountable. It makes you wonder whose interests are being looked after by the government.
Whenever I hear of a creationist-laden school board use the line that lawsuits cost their school district money and thereby harm education, I always smirk at the transparent shift of blame. Had the creationists not broken the law, there would be no lawsuit. The fault for costing their district money belongs with the liars for Jesus. Similarly, when the United States says that the November Wikileaks release of their classified documents harms our diplomatic and hinders national security, I have to think that Hillary's breaking of international law has hurt those efforts, not the people who caught her. You can argue that the people who demand honesty from our leaders are making them look like buffoons, but if they hadn't lied and cheated in the first place it wouldn't be an issue. It seems the real problem, in their eyes, is not that they broke the law, but that they got caught, and that's a problem.
The Kentucky government is also diverting tax dollars to the creationism theme park. Government money being used to keep children stupid. Yee-haw!
And lastly, here's John McCain being an utter gomer on the issue of gay rights.
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