Wednesday, December 12, 2007

The Shame Of It All

by Jim Ridout

As a Chicago sports fan, I know what disappointment is all about. I have been let down over the years by my beloved White Sox, Da Bears, and of late Da Bulls. I never was a Cub fan but believe me, that sinking feeling in 1969 or the famous fan interference a couple years back, I know exactly what it felt like. But in sports unlike politics, come game time, the reality of who is and who is not becomes crystal clear.

A few weeks back, George Bush was promoting World War III, scaring us with more visions of mushroom clouds and tough talk and no diplomacy. He told us in no uncertain terms that Iran was building nuclear weapons and they were going to use them on us. Well along come the most recent National Intelligence Estimate and lo and behold Iran had stopped their pursuit of nuclear weapons in 2003. We know the President can read, because of his reading of "My Pet Goat" during the 9/11 attacks. But in his defense of just one more lie in a long string of lies, the President claimed he found out about this new intelligence when we did.

If you swallow that one, then the news of the torture tapes should go down easy. Torture as our President has said on several occasions is not something we do. "America does not torture." What the President didn't want to say was that he as "the decider" was deciding exactly what constituted torture. Abu Ghraib, they told us, was done by renegade soldiers, the stories out of GITMO were just that, stories. Along come photographs and now the messy tapes. Turns out Harriet Miers knew of the tapes and she was a legal counsel for the President. It occurs to me that George W. Bush may have promoted Harriet as a Supreme Court candidate to keep her loyalty. Harriet, after-all, knew Americans were torturing and there were tapes to prove it. And we all know that Harriet advised the President of the existence of those tapes. America does torture, George Bush knows America tortures, and therefore George Bush is a liar.

This comes as no surprise, but the Bush Bullshit has found plenty of takers. Mitt Romney doesn't know if waterboarding is torture. He is in fact organizing a Waterboarding party and has invited all Republican Presidential candidates; only John McCain and Ron Paul have declined. Waterboarding is described as simulating drowning. The description makes us think back to those Junior High days and that funny little prank of dunking someone's head in the toilet and flushing it. Gosh, Oh Golly, Oh Gee what fun, cruel yes but a harmless prank. Boy Oh Boy we were all in training to interrogate terrorists. Hmmmm not exactly. The reason George Bush and Mitt Romney along with the other Republican storm troopers don't consider it torture is because they bring you back to life, they revive you, just so they can pull that crazy prank on you all over again. In my book, and the way I was raised, and the America I know this is not only torture, but also murder and attempted murder.

I have come to expect this from him and them. But then you learn that Democrats, Democrats in position of power and leadership knew of these tapes, they were briefed on these tapes, and they sat silent. No wonder Nancy Pelosi has said from day one "Impeachment is off the table." No wonder Democrats talk tough and then cave in. They knew what had been doing and they said nothing. They did not stand up for America. They hid. The stench of their hypocrisy is nauseating. No wonder Feinstein and Schummer gave Mukasey support as our new Attorney General. They wanted and needed the vagueness of what is torture by America because they all knew and were all guilty of allowing such things to happen in our name. Do we have such cowards and mental midgets representing us, both Republican and Democrat alike that they have forgotten the courage that it takes to be America? "O" the shame of it all.

I have stopped supporting Democrats and will not support them until they start to act like Democrats. In my view, the Republican most likely to win the Presidential race is Hillary Clinton.

Oprah has thrown her support behind Mr. Obama. Oprah obviously is a well-respected and apparent decent person. She is someone who has lived the American dream, and knows all too well the American nightmare. I respect that very much. I admire her willingness to give back. Mr. Obama should feel proud to have gained the respect of such a spokesperson. She is right, we need change in America, we need leadership, and we don't need someone telling us to wait our turn.

However, Dennis Kucinich speaks of change, John Edwards speaks of change. Both have the courage to call Washington what it is. In that regard, I don't want Oprah choosing my President any more than I want Ann Coulter denying women the right to vote or Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Reilly deciding what direction America should go.

We can't be lazy. This is not about star power. This is about us. And this is about "O" -- the shame of it all. We must rid Washington of all of its hypocrites and liars. We must install leadership that has the courage to speak of who we are and what we believe in and avoid being swayed by the stars, the pundits, and the media. Let's put an end to the shame of it all.


Jim Ridout
Albuquerque, NM

(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. I.U. has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is I.U endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)

The Nazis, Fascists and Communists were political parties before they became enemies of liberty and mass murderers.

No comments: