Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Free Will? Nah...

What's disturbing about many so-called experts is how fragile their reasoning is. There are people out there proclaiming their theories, ideas, plans are firm as concrete when they're as weak as the minds of the people who swallow the audio excrement pumped out by the so-called leaders.

"Well, it SOUNDS good!"

Here's an example.

How weak is the argument, "God won't let the Earth burn up?" It's so frakkin' weak that it's an old joke!

This completely ignores the whole free will deal - if we're Hell bent and determined to destroy the Earth, God isn't preempting The Sopranos/C.S.I. and Grey's Anatomy with An Inconvenient Truth. He/She isn't going to change the litter we throw away into roses and trees in a sweet-smelling puff of smoke, Ip isn't going to make a giant thermometer emblazoned with WWJD? (and if there is ever a Second Coming, Jesus is gonna sue someone for copyright infringement) pop up in the sky showing just how much we've overheated the Earth. Ain't gonna happen.

Keeping in the religious vein, it's almost miraculous in a negative sense just how craven and egotistic that "reason" is.

At one and the same time, it states "We are so important to God that we will be saved from our mistakes!" and "God will save us since we can't do it ourselves." We're so stupid in our importance God will HAVE to save us!

I've seen better arguments floating in alphabet soup.

Though it DOES say a lot about some religious righties out there. They've been Chosen - and they are unanimous in this.

Back, for now...

Yes, yes, it's been a while. But see, the check got lost in the mail after the dog ate my homework, and the car ran out of gas just as the train went by and the tires went flat, and it was Daylight Savings Time but there was a power outage so I missed the alarm while rushing my son to the doctor...

Hell, pick an excuse, okay? All I can say is I'm suffering from a form of blogger burnout. It's hard to get motivated to write for several reasons:

I'm a little lazy.
Many of the other blogs over there on my blogroll say things better and more intelligently than I, so I feel like the guy in the back of the room chanting "hear hear!" and not having anything much to add.
Real life intrusions.
Too many books to read.
Mental exhaustion - I mean, what else can I say about Fred Phelps and his psychologically incestuous Lonely Brain Cell band?
Defending the indefensible: the abovementioned Phelps still has the right to protest, and I don't support various acts to ban his forms. The 1st Amendment had no exception for Leviticus groupies. But damn, defending him is like having to cultivate a huge mountain of cowflop in the midst of a beautiful garden. (then again, isn't that a form of nobility, defending something you personally oppose allowed under something you personally favor? 'cause, frik, I think I deserve some form of a legal-ese Purple Heart here.)
Bush. Do I need to say more?

So I've been exhausted, physically and mentally...not that there's much there to be exhausted with in either case, really. But it's the truth.

So, here I am for now. Enjoy!

Thursday, May 04, 2006

After 5 years, why is this still an emergency?

From The Moderate Voice, this quote:

"Why are we funding Iraq, one of the longest wars in American history—by Nov. 25, 2006, it will be 1,347 days old, the number of days between Pearl Harbor and VJ Day—with 'emergency' bills? To hide, or at least obscure, the costs. Funding the war in dribs and drabs—as if the fact that the war costs money is a recurring surprise—spares Congress from confronting the huge cost and having to make room for it in the budget by shedding lower-priority spending."

It's a damn good question, isn't it? Couldn't be that Bush and co. are following a usual pattern of hiding the true costs of things, so as to pretend we're doing fine?

Bush says he's a Baptist, but he sure as Hell governs as a Christian Scientist, or maybe a Scientologist. To admit something's wrong shows something's wrong with you. Better to act like a drunken dorm roomer, throwing up last night's tequila shots while missing a test and swearing to the parents at home footing the bill that you're doing just fine and studying hard.

Even better for the responsibilityilty-phobic, when these bills come due, he'll be out of office and can pretend that the President who inherited these problems is the person to blame, and Bush continuetine skipping merrily along in his miasma of no blame.

Damn, at least Urkel asked, "Did I do that?"

Here's Something Else

While writing about the signing statements, I made a big deal that Bush was circumventing the law by simply claiming he didn't have to follow it. This is still true, of course, but there's another angle I had missed. Unclaimed Territory brings that up.

When Bush signs a law (sometimes with great, camera-clicking, back-patting, sycophantic press coverage) he's saying "I agree, this should be law." No problem.

Let's say he doesn't think it should be law, for whatever reasons. He could veto it, explain his problems with it, and send it back to Congress for them to work it out, agree or disagree, and either send it back or kill it. This would expose Bush's thinking, his ideas, and his theories.

Or he could pretend to agree with said bill, and then later in the secrecy of the Oval Office, wielding a Signing Statement pen fast running out of ink, he could quietly and sneakily decide he doesn't want to follow it. Then no one knows why he disagrees with it, or even for the most part THAT he disagreed with it. I certainly wasn't aware he had issued over 750 statements.

But all this plays to Bush's mindset. Why be honest? Elide the truth, make slippery claims and loaded statistics, use unclear and vague language, never say anything for certain, always have an excuse ready, and whatever you do, never ever tell the truth, because then you're held to it and can be shown to be wrong.

See, if he announced when he got the bill that, say, he didn't feel obliged to report to Congress on warrantless wiretappings, that would be a statement he could be measured by, argued about, debated with. It would be in public, out there. People could see how he thinks. So instead, he pretends to agree with the bill and then in the darkness says, "Except for this, so I won't follow it."

There is a method he could have used. I feel sure he knows about it, even though he never uses the veto. But he chose to lie about following the bill while in public and secretly say why he wouldn't.

When the Hell are people going to realize that Bush's honesty is about as valid as Clinton's fidelity? How long will it take before people understand that Bush has secretly and sneakily tried to expand Presidential powers at the expense of Congress and the courts, and is doing so in the most underhanded, snake slithery, lawyerly say-one-thing-and-mean-another fashion it's possible to do outside a broad satire?