It is relevant to ask if George W. flaunts his version of Christianity to win support end votes. At least many fundamentalists and others were won over by his "morals, values and faith" posture and promotion of the same-sex-marriage non-issue.
Considering that Christ emphasized care and support for the poor, peacekeeping and peacekeepers, one must ask whether or not Bush is really Christian. The Bible makes 3,000 references to concern for the poor.
Bush blocks a necessary increase in the minimum wage for the working poor, aims to increase restrictions on welfare recipients, slashed taxes for the wealthy as the rich grow richer, the poor poorer. He undermines health care for the most needy, intends to weaken Social Security for the aged-to-be, underfunded "No Child Left Behind" affecting underprivileged kids, approved cuts in overtime for many workers and refused stem-cell funding which could aid the afflicted.
Would Christ wage a contrived, needless and immoral war on Iraq which had nothing to do with 9/11? It has taken 1,700 American lives and as many as 100,000 Iraqi lives. Christ, not Bush, would provide peacekeepers for the thousands of peasants suffering and dying in Darfur. Would Jesus intervene in the affairs of the Ukraine, Haiti, Pakistan and elsewhere, withdraw support from UN activities or from worldwide AIDS programs because they believe in condom use?
The editor of The Progressive reminds us that "Nowhere in the Bible does it say to give alms to the rich and bread to the gluttons. Nowhere does it say to beat ploughshares into swords." Sophisticated theologians regard Christ and his views as liberal. Unfortunately many fail to recognize that reality.
Would Jesus trash our environments, hence our health? Bush does at every turn.
Would Christ have refused to support an assault weapons ban renewal or ruled that Abu Ghraib prisoners should no longer be legally protected from torture? Bush, not Christ, permitted the flu vaccine shortage to occur, threatening many thousands of lives. Maybe yours.
Bush, not Christ, supports the death penalty. Bush refused but Christ would have commuted death penalty sentences for many of the 160 Texan victims who did not receive fair trials while he was governor. Christ and the Pope would have not laughed at or allowed the young Texas murderess to be executed after becoming Christian.
Real and responsible Christians never boastfully flaunt their belief. Bush does! His unChristian record leaves us with a self-promoted Christian in words, not deeds; an arrogant fake. How many of those votes were given in error or ignorance?
What has Bush done for the American people?! 1) 30,000 Americans and 100,000 children, women and men have been slaughtered and maimed in 2 futile wars that his gang of lying, traitorous conspirators had started.
2) The criminally irresponsible handling of US domestic and foreign affairs that have resulted in a $3 trillion deficit that will destroy America's economy.
3) Bush will destroy the Social Security program by handing over trillions in this fund to the bankers and investment corporations of America because Bush loves his wealthy friends and hates the American people.
4) Bush alienated most of the world's nations because of his arrogant, ignorant and counter productive foreign policies that resulted in creating thousands of more terrorists and the increasing hate of the Muslim world.
5) Passed bills like the pharmaceutical bill that was written by the pharmaceutical corporations so that his corrupt corporate masters would make billions more in profits each year on increasingly costly drugs and made it illegal for the poor to get the same drugs at a lower cost from other countries which proves beyond a doubt that our government has become a Plutocracy.
6) Bush appointed guys like Gonzales, a incompetent, corrupt Nazi, to be US attorney general so the guy could protect Bush's corrupt corporate buddies from lawsuits.
7) Caused incredible human suffering by preventing birth control pills and the morning after pills to be sold and will not allow reproductive education and the use of condoms in an age of increasing sexually transmitted diseases and stopped stem cell research.
8) Bush is spending 270 million tax dollars a day to dump into that bottomless pit called Iraq and to pay for this insane war by cutting billions each year from desperately needed programs in America and this will result in costing at least a million American jobs.
In America today, unless you are a corrupt corporation or you are incredibly wealthy, Bush's policies both foreign and domestic have proven disastrous for the majority of Americans.
Hal Crowther's cogently angry attack on the current American political climate, as contained in his "Shame is for Sissies" [6/15/05 TPP] is most timely and is directly on target! Most American punditry and even the "other" political party seem to be afraid to tell it like it really is and, thank God, Mr. Crowther has the courage to ask us to face the ugly facts of where we are in the scheme of things.
My own suspicions are that the powers now in control of our government, our economy, and our national ethic are deliberately bringing our former democracy to ruin. This they are now doing in order to have the unelected economic plutocracy, (which I would label as "Fascists") running our country and a large segment of the western world, ridding us of any semblance of a government for all of the people. Instead the extremely wealthy corporations and the scions of greed and control are directing the undemocratic government to make the working person a serf to the rich and to keep the worker subjugated to the wiles of the megacorporations.
For me, the obvious answer is for the working person and those of us who recognize the unswerving path to destruction we are now on, is to rise up and to take back our government for ALL of us.
Karl G. Sorg
Amen to Robert Parry's "The Answer is Fear" and Geov Parrish's "Waiting for a Scandal" columns [7/1/05 TPP]. Impeachable offenses by the incumbent president and his administration are becoming a list as long as that against another King George in the "Declaration of Independence." The media need to regain the courage to be Americans. Admiral Hyman G. Rickover, known as the "Father of the Nuclear Navy" ... and the "Mr. Education" of his time, said: "When there are questions involving the welfare or survival of the nation, it is singularly unfitting to remain evasive. It is not only possible, but in fact the duty of everyone to state precisely what his knowledge and conscience compel him to say. A certain measure of courage in the private citizen is necessary to the good conduct of the state; otherwise men who have power through riches, intrigue or office will administer the state at will and ultimately to their private advantage." [Missile, Lockheed Martin Missiles and Space Management Association, Bay Area Chapter newsletter, June 1992.]
TPP should keep up the good work in documenting the violations of our US Constitution. Molly Ivins said [6/15/05 TPP] that we are the board of directors of our country. Eventually, God willing, we will wise up and replace its management.
Joseph J. Kuciejczyk
St. Louis, Mo.
I'm glad John Conyers is opening an investigation into the Downing Street memo. Too many people have died, there has been too much pain and destruction. I believed President Bush when he said he had no plans for war, it was the last resort.
Rumsfeld said he knew where the WMD were. Colin Powell showed us pictures, actual pictures of mobile labs. Rice warned of mushroom clouds on the horizon.
It turns out Bush was lying all along. He and his underlings lied and deceived us for a year before the war started.
If President Bush was CEO, he would be fired and, more than likely, criminally prosecuted. As president, the only thing that comes to mind is impeachment.
The Republican Party claims to be fiscally conservative yet they display characteristics of an ignorant spendthrift:
According to the Globe and Mail of Canada, our trade deficit for April was $56 billion, up 12% from last year at this time, up 8% with Canada.
An antithesis of GOP core values.
Running our national debt (according to Tampa Bay, Fla. news) to $7.5 trillion after receiving a $500 billion surplus.
An antithesis of GOP core values.
Illegally invading Iraq for reasons supported by lies and deception. Amnesty International makes the argument that Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld are war criminals.
An antithesis of American values.
The unctuous Bush cabal is trying to consolidate power. They must be stopped.
Whether you are an Independent, Democrat, Green or Republican, we must come together to defeat this corporate-government power structure. Our government works best when neither party has complete control.
I pray we can come together as Americans in 2006 and return our country to the path of peace and prosperity through shared power in the government.
This week the Supreme Court dealt a blow to individual freedom by ruling that federal agents may arrest and prosecute people who grow or use marijuana for medical purposes.
The fundamental issue at stake is not federal law vs. state law, but personal freedom versus government coercion. The Constitution and the Bill of Rights exist to protect every individual's right to life and liberty. An individual who grows or consumes marijuana violates no one's rights while legitimately exercising his own. Just as government has no right to determine what food we eat or what books we read, it should have no right to determine what drugs we take. As long as we don't violate the rights of others, we should have the right to do with our lives -- and our bodies -- whatever we think is best.
Ayn Rand Institute
I doubt most Americans are dumb enough to think machine-readable drivers' licenses would make us safer. After all, Timothy McVeigh would have had one, or John Allen Mohammed. They were homegrown terrorists.
They were also both Gulf War vets, deeply alienated, who used the thought processes taught them by the military; slaughtered kids in daycare were just collateral damage to McVeigh.
Our country is even now creating thousands more deeply alienated veterans, who have been taught to hate, perhaps to torture, to shoot first and ask questions later, and who are being treated shamefully on their return, given inadequate medical and psychiatric help and in some cases willfully limited contact with potential support groups like the VFW (which reportedly said some months ago that it had never before been excluded from Walter Reed Medical Center), and left to shift for themselves. Too many of these people will join the psychotics and substance abusers who drift on our streets. Some of them will look more normal but may be more dangerous in the long term, like McVeigh. And most of them will have no trouble getting high-tech drivers' licenses.
We owe it to the vets to see they have better help when they come home, and we owe it to ourselves to have a more rational approach to security than a costly and intrusive ID system.
Katharine W. Rylaarsdam
Like Tom Tomorrow's Sparky T. Penguin, I am also wondering what one (or a few) can do to stop "George the Mob Boss" and his cronies from ravaging Miss Liberty. I am heartened by your willingness to publish Thurman L. Query's call ["Letters," 6/1/05 TPP] for less "statesmen" and more pit bulls, and by Howard Dean's apparent realization that you cannot reason with those who are mentally ill behind money and power. Good beginnings all.
May I make a modest proposal? I believe that demonstrations and writing/email campaigns to our representatives have some purgative value, but are unlikely to effect any significant change in the status quo. Only real economic pain has any chance of getting their attention. To that end, I am proposing that all who have large credit card debts and minimal assets be encouraged to file for bankruptcy before the new law takes effect in August. If the stock market panics, so be it. The only time our society ever acts like a civilization is in times of economic crisis. During the last Depression, we paid artists to make art, we paid writers to write, and we created the social safety net Bush and his friends are working so hard to dismantle.
Some other benefits: No more nonsense about privatizing Social Security and a whole lot of ill-gotten wealth turned into toilet paper. Just imagine some of these greedy CEO's selling apples on the corner. Kind of warms the heart, doesn't it?
Shorey H. Chapman
San Francisco, Calif.
Isn't it strange that the Religious Right votes for a political philosophy that goes "ape" over a few women voiding man-instilled intrusions in their bodies but ignores the thousands of deaths caused by the denial of aid to poor children and aged adults.
I guess you might call that a spiritual oxymoron.
Everett L Williams