Sunday, June 29, 2008

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Open Letter To The NRA

Dear National Rifle Association - Political Victory Fund:

Judging by the NRA’s recent communications and publications it’s becoming clear that NRA is conditioning its members to accept an NRA endorsement of “maverick” Senator John McCain. As a life member of the NRA, a gun owner and an American, I ask in the strongest terms that you do NOT endorse Senator McCain for president.

John McCain is NO friend of the Second Amendment, gun owners or the NRA. He stated in your recent puff piece interview, “While we have disagreed at times on some issues, I have never tried to hide my positions, or to say one thing and do another.” If John McCain’s biggest selling point is that he prefers to stab us in the front, rather than the back, why endorse him?

McCain has supported severe restrictions on gunshows (potentially shutting them down), has supported mandatory storage laws (so much for instant self-defense), and considered supporting the ban on so-called “assault weapons,” but his biggest slap in the NRA’s face was the McCain-Feingold “Incumbent Protection Act.” During the debates on this bill, the NRA was mentioned BY NAME as one of the groups that the bill sought to shut up. NRA`s own Wayne LaPierre called it "the most significant change in the First Amendment since the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798, which tried to make it a crime to criticize a member of Congress." In short, John McCain has not earned the NRA’s endorsement, even by being the (slightly) lesser of two evils.

Why should we trust McCain to stand up against the gun-control schemes of a Democrat Congress when he has conducteded all of his previous dealings with liberal Democrats with only slightly less zeal than Monica Lewinsky? John McCain will betray the NRA the first chance he gets, if he thinks it will win him an approving nod from the mainstream media.

Endorsement by the NRA should mean that a candidate is a committed friend of American gun owners. John McCain is not that. The NRA should not act as a rubberstamp committee for whomever has an “R” after their name on the ballot. There are third-party candidates that you could endorse, Libertarian Party nominee Bob Barr (who even sat on the NRA Board of Directors from 2001 to 2007) for instance. Even not endorsing a presidential candidate at all would be better than endorsing John McCain.

In conclusion, please do NOT endorse John McCain. He doesn’t deserve the support of such a fine organization as the National Rifle Association.

Sincerely,
Ben

Sunday, June 22, 2008

"Indiana Jones and the Weather From Hell" or "Whip it! Whip it Bad!"

Evil Nazis, bloodthirsty natives and scheming Soviets can't stop Indiana Jones, but an Iowa twister sure can. That's what my wife and I learned a few weeks ago.

Half-way through viewing the fourth Indiana Jones installment, subtitled "Kingdom of the Crystal Skull," the projector flickered to a stop and over the p.a. system they advised us that we were under a tornado warning. (For those of you outside tornado alley, a tornado watch means conditions are ripe for a tornado, a tornado warning means a tornado has been spotted in your area, duck and cover!)

So we had to spend the next 45 minutes huddled in a crowded interior hallway with a loud, sweaty gaggle of humanity. But then our luck took a turn for the worse: The tornado warning ended and we had to watch the rest of "Crystal Skull."

To be fair, I have always been a big Indiana Jones fan, so maybe my expectations were too high for the film, but I think mostly it sucked. This movie just didn't "flow" like the original trilogy did.

This one is set in 1957, so Indy has to fight naughty Soviets rather than the wicked Nazis that he used to. Indiana Jones flicks all have a metaphysical element to them and in this film they went in a very different direction with that element, which I didn't like. (Sorry to be vague here, but I don't want to spoil the movie for you in case you're ever faced with the choice of buying tickets to it or throwing your money in a storm drain.)

This is not the first time that genius-turned hack George Lucas has sullied the Indiana Jones name. In the 1990's he came out with a TV series called "The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles." Somehow he managed to make it B-O-R-I-N-G. Apparently Lucas is a history buff (normally a good thing in my book) because he had young Indy bump into every important person of the early 20th century. However, the audience doesn't want to see Indy sitting around having an enlightening conversation with Dr. Albert Schweitzer (as he did in one episode). We want to see Indy kick Albert Schweitzer in the head, then engage in a running gunfight on top of a zeppelin flying low over an active volcano, dammit!

If you're going to see "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull," at least see it on the big screen so you can ogle at all the "gee-whiz" visual effects provided by Lucas' Industrial Lights and Magic effects company in lieu of a plot.

Perhaps I'm too hard on this film. I think maybe Indiana Jones films are like pizza or sex: even bad Indiana Jones movies are better than no Indiana Jones at all. So go see it. If it turns out you can't stand it, pray for a tornado.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Dr. Paul Bows Out

From Ron Paul's campaign website:

THANK YOU

For 17 months we brought the message of peace, freedom, and prosperity to millions of Americans. The response overwhelmed me: more Americans believe in liberty and the Constitution than I ever imagined. I am deeply moved and honored by your hard work and sacrifice on behalf of our cause.

However, after much serious thought, I have decided to end my campaign for the Presidency of the United States. It is time now to take the energy this campaign has awakened and channel it into long-term efforts to take back our country. We have some exciting plans and projects to move the revolution forward that will come together in the next several months. Watch for them.

I will work until my last breath on behalf of this great message. That I promise you. We don’t have to live in the kind of America the two major parties have in store for us. Together, let us continue to lay the foundations for an America worthy of our Founding Fathers.

Ron Paul

[Ben and Bawb's Blog says: Thank YOU, Doctor Paul. We wish you well.]

Monday, June 09, 2008

CHANGE, CHANGE CHANGE...CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE...CHANGE FOR FOOLS




I keep being told that the messiah of modulation, Barack Hussein Obama, is all about change. Change, change, change. So I decided to look into Senator Obama’s brilliant career, Congressional record, and deeply-held Beliefs-of-the-Day to delve into his ingenious plans for all this wonderful “change”. You’re not going to find out his past record from the Mainstream Media, who continue to pelt Obama with tough, insightful questions like, “If you were a fluffy bunny, would you be utterly adorable or just very cuddly?”

First off, he’s a lawyer. Ohhh, big change there. We just don’t have enough lawyers in government. The first thing that struck me about Obama’s actual Congressional record was his steadfast devotion to duty…he only failed to vote on 166 of the issues that came before him during his tenure as Senator. That includes a record of 0 out of 4 votes on housing & property issues, and 0 out of 3 on indigenous peoples issues, and 1 out of 4 votes on abortion.

Mr. “It’s time to put an end to the say-anything-to-win politics” panders to Left Coast Big City Liberals by calling those of us here in Fly-Over Country bitter, racist gun-totin’ Jesus freaks one day, and the next he’s pandering to the Heartland on issues he has absolutely no clue about…family farms, agriculture, hunting and fishing, and gun ownership…even though he happened to miss 5 out of 6 votes on agriculture issues during his tenure in the Senate. In his campaign he vows to “shine the light” on Federal Contracts, yet the National Association of Government Contractors gives him 100% for supporting them with his actual voting record in Congress.

He vows to bring about tax relief for the middle class. What a great change! We’ve only heard that one from about every politician who’s lived in the past 40 years. Mr. “real change in Washington” received an “F” grade from the National Taxpayer’s Union and Americans for Tax Reform, and Citizens Against Government Waste says he supports their agenda a whopping 13% of the time.

The state of American education is a joke. His complaint with the “No Child Left Behind” act, which I have yet to hear one good word about from any actual teacher, is that it doesn’t go far enough. His obvious solution to our poor public indoctrination, er, I mean education system is to throw even more tax money at the problem. What a change! No one’s ever though of that before. Even though in some school districts, as much as $20,000 per year per student is being spent, with the average being around $12,000. Only more tax money can solve the problem.

Universal Health Care is a heavy club in his big ol’ golf bag of change. Even that’s not new. Remember Hillary in the Clintons' first term? Anyway, I can’t find any authority whatsoever in the Constitution for Fed.gov to provide health care in the first place, but we’ll put aside the Law of the Land for a moment. Government has hideously screwed up each and every mandate is has ever been given by our living, growing, morphing, ameba-like Constitution. Welfare? Ninety cents on the dollar goes right back to the government itself for “administration”. Disaster Relief? See FEMA. Health care? See the VA. Anyone who really wants Universal Health Care should be forced to go to a VA hospital to get treated for hemorrhoids. Two years later, when the treatment is finally given, if they survive, they would no doubt have a different opinion on this wonderful change.

Of course he's going to "save the planet", a fresh new change we never ever heard before from Al Gore.

Other changes include efforts to protect people too stupid to manage their own finances from credit card companies. Hey, if the government can’t be held responsible for putting us 9-1/2 trillion in debt, why should John Q. Public be required to spend less than he actually earns? Barack promises to “save Social Security”, a change no one has ever thought of or heard uttered ever before, well, at least no more than 100,000 times or so every campaign year. He’s going to make sure no one can “opt out” for privatization; you can’t be trusted with your own retirement money. Never mind the fact that the government itself, almost entirely under the Democrats, has stolen and pissed away all the Social Security money in the first place. If we give them more control of the money, and more of it, they will make it all better.

I’m still looking for the actual change. We have yet another lawyer, known for their integrity as judged by approximately 20,000 lawyer jokes. We have a regurgitation of Mario Cuomo in 1984 and Hillary Clinton in 1994. We have the same old tired clich├ęs, the same campaign promises that have been broken every election for as long as I’ve been alive. We have a vow to get rid of “say-anything-to-win politics”, while he says anything to win. We have a few pie-in-the-sky programs that are probably bad ideas to begin with and absolutely no way to pay for them.

Meanwhile, no real issues are even being addressed. The United States Constitution, the Law of the Land, is being completely ignored. We are universally despised around the globe. We are trillions in debt; the Comptroller General of the Government Accounting Office recently quit with an alarm call that we can no longer sustain our debt-based spending system. http://www.dennisrichardson.org/ComptrollerGeneral.htm Our monetary system is floundering and the dollar is on the verge of becoming worthless overseas, and here as well, so our “leaders” just print more un-backed paper money, just like the Weimar Republic. The economy is faltering as well, auto plants are closing down, jobs are going overseas. We are being over-run with people from Third World countries, and turning into one ourselves. We are sliding quickly down the slippery slope into an Orwellian socialist police state.

We have already pissed away our last real chance for change, as no one wanted to hear his message. This “new” Barack message of just repeating the word “change” over and over again does not actually equate to any real change no matter how many times you say it. Like Clara Peller in that old Wendy’s commercial (“Where’s the beef?”) I have to ask, “Where’s the change?”

Saturday, June 07, 2008

EVERYTHING OLD IS NEW AGAIN


I am not a big fan of Faux News. They had a chance to bring something actually “fair and balanced” into a media dominated by admitted liberals. Instead, they just became a fawning mouthpiece for the Neo-Cons, spouting the Party Line. Still, even a blind hog finds an acorn now and then, and they do report stories the Drive-By Media squirms to avoid.

Their latest “scoop” of Obama “plagiarizing” Mario Cuomo’s speeches doesn’t qualify to me as a “scandal”. However, it certainly does illustrate some great points. Senator Obama, Mr. Change himself, the fresh new voice in politics taking the untrodden and completely different path, the messiah of modulation, is just another Empty Suit re-hashing the same old tired Democratic mantras of class warfare, doom and gloom, and fear-mongering. The fact that the Dems can offer nothing more for this election than the same old crap they were spouting in 1984 (we really tried to meet the deadline, George Orwell) just goes to show there’s nothing new under the sun.

If Obama wins the Presidency…and it seems likely he will, with the Neo-Con RINOs seemingly pushing as hard for his success as the Democrats and the media…there will be much fanfare about the new administration and its lofty goals. Within six months, even the most rabid Obama worshippers will find, once again, what campaign promises are worth. I mean really. Did either the Clinton or Bush administrations stick to the planks that got them elected? As he tries to make deals to get what he wants, it will once more boil down to SSDD, Same Shit, Different Day. Or, in this particular case, Same Socialism, Different Dummy. Politics-as-Usual. Like the Bushies, it will take getting beaten over the head with this for a couple of years before the Obamanites catch on.

Not that the Republicans are offering any “change” either. A Juan McCain presidency could best be described as “A Bush Third Term, but with more pandering to the Left”. McCain is still trying to resurrect his odious Amnesty-for-Illegals bill, despite having seen repeatedly that the whole concept is about as popular as a turd in the punchbowl with the vast majority of the American public. Polls have recently shown that, for all his sucking up to Hispanics, they are swarming to the Obama camp in droves. That really paid off, didn’t it Juan? Now he’s jumping on the Greenhouse Gas…Ozone Hole…Global Warming…Climate Change…Disaster-of-the-Month Club Selection (doesn’t anyone else remember the doom and gloom of the Coming Ice Age on the cover of Time & Newsweek in the late 70’s, early 80’s?) bandwagon so the RINOs can pander to the Green vote. Another Empty Suit blowing in the winds of politics, devoid of any core values.

No matter which stale, platitude-spouting mindless Empty Suit who’s mortgaged his soul for power wins in November, I predict a coming crack-down on the “alternate media”, especially Talk Radio and the Internet. We can’t have the public getting ahold of information that’s not been approved by the Propaganda Ministry, now can we? This election cycle showed dangerous rumblings of discontent from the masses, which does not bode well for the whole vast scam of the Two-Party Oligarchy and Politics-as-Usual. Whoever wins, he and his party will do all they can to continue the brain-washing, squelch the voices of the peasants, and keep us in our place.

So much for the First Amendment. It would seem that the only thing old that can’t become new again is the United States Constitution.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Iowa GOP Fielding ACTUAL Conservative?

Wonders never cease. It appears that the Iowa GOP might actually send in a true conservative to take on liberal icon Tom Harkin for U.S. Senate. Christopher Reed (apparently a conservative) squeaked into the GOP nomination by about 400 votes over his nearest challenger. In the last go-round six years ago, GOP primary voters narrowly chose moderate Greg Ganske over conservative ex-Marine Bill Salier. Ganske now serves as a rug in Harkin's Bahama beach home.

Reed got my attention by earning the endorsement of Gun Owners of America. Since they don't endorse a candidate in every race, when they do it means the candidate is a true Second Amendment leader.

While I don't support the full conservative agenda, if Reed is 100% pro-gun, a strict constitutionalist, and willing to stand up to his own party to cut spending in DC, I could probably vote for him in November, rather than for my Libertarian Party candidate. If there's a chance to send that big-government, gun-banning, tax-and-spend liberal caricature Tom Harkin home, it would be worth it. Four term Senator Harkin has defeated more sitting members of Congress than anyone in office, so it won't be an easy task.

Responding to Tuesday's primary results, Harkin campaign manager Igor Lenin told reporters, "Excellent. Send de Reed boy to us. De Master has awakened, as he does every six years, and demands the blood of the living- NO! Bad Igor, bad! I meant to say, de Master looks forward to an honest and spirited debate with his honored opponent."

Reed and Gun Owners of America might not want to pop too many corks yet though. Second -place GOP finisher former state Rep. George Eichhorn may call for a recount. (I don't know anything about Eichhorn, so I'll just assume he's neo-con weenie.)

As of the Tuesday count, Reed had about 35.2% of the vote and Eichhorn had 34.65%. To get the nomination the candidate must get 35%. If the recount puts Reed below that magic number, then the nominee will be chosen at the GOP state convention. Given the history that the RNC and other party apparatus have with trying to torpedo conservative campaigns, in favor of "moderate" candidates that they feel are more "electable," that might not bode well for Reed. Stay tuned.