Sunday, June 29, 2008

March Of The French Cowboys

I have been on blogs that have certain regulars who write things which give the distinct impression, they feel French culture is superior to others. Certainly, they are entitled to their narrow views. But in the grand scheme of things, their folly sometimes doth precede them in the midst of their cavalier presentations.

I have read words like redneck, hick, and hilljack, as they present their arrogant and presumptuous opinions. With noses as high as Mt. Everest, they mock and ridicule Americans, especially those in rural and southern America. They perceive them as lacking in intelligence and class. And when visiting the US, they speak highly of the arts scene in NY, LA, or other high society cities that promote European art forms (over and above others that have no root, in the American continent).

Not all are this way of course, and to say so would come across as narrow-minded and bigoted. But many are and they know who they are.

These are they which prefer Achille-Claude Debussy, Guillaume de Machaut, and Pierre Boulez over Hank Williams (Sr. and Jr.), Willie Nelson, and Garth Brooks. They are also the ones that believe a classical waltz or ballet is far superior to a square dance or line dance, as meaningful expression of art. Personal preferences are a good thing to exercise, but not when one purposefully denigrates another to make their choice look better than it really is. (People do this, when their own self-esteem is low and need others to be in the tank with them.)

Why? You'd have to ask them, for I cannot speak for them. But I can say they will soon be forced to take a look at this attitude. I say this because, there is a new American import that appears to be gaining some serious popularity in the Republique.

They turn out in their hundreds in Stetsons and boots as hits such as the Crazy Foot Mambo and the Cowboy Strut echo around their village halls.

They are drawn by a love of American culture - although definitely not American politics - and a passion for line dancing, which enables them to swing but avoid all human contact.

Many of the people I write of claim that America has no endemic culture of their own. (And that which we do have have, has been borrowed from other countries.) They are partially right. But by the law of inference, this makes them partially wrong too. It is true that much of our culture is based on our European roots. But before the arrival of Europeans to this continent, there were a vast number of Indian tribes that had their own culture, independent of anything European. As time progressed, Americans of European ancestry witnessed an evolution of American culture, as well as the advent of other things that had no roots in European society at all.

This article points so distinctly points out that country music is becoming more popular than many would have us all believe, with line dancing now becoming more popular than they are willing to admit (publicly or privately). In Germany, C&W music has long been a favorite of many Germans.

But we can bet this story doesn't end here. Let's read on:

Now country and western has become so big in France that the country's bureaucrats have decided to bring the craze under state control.

The French administration has moved to create an official country dancing diploma as part of a drive to regulate the fad. Authorised instructors who have been on publicly funded training courses will be put in charge of line dancing lessons and balls.

We know it's serious in France, when the government feels the need to regulate something. In true French-style socialist fashion, we can see that government wants a piece of this action. Fees paid to sanctioning bodies are nothing new in a civilized society and many times they are good for the consuming public. It is highly understandable why we want healthcare professionals to be trained and licensed properly. But when people feel the necessity to regulate art, it would seem to be a bit of overkill.

This begs a few questions here. Can a position of Country Music and Line Dancing Minister be far behind? How about rodeos? Is this the end of Haute Couture as we know it?

My overall point to this post is not hard to grasp. These people (who will probably become slightly irritable when they read this) fail to see the value of anything that is different from their own narrow world. And yet, this is precisely what they accuse of many Americans of doing. So any healthy analysis of this man's opinion should not overlook one very important point, as one gives it a fair amount of thought:

This attitude has a name and it's called, hypocrisy.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Another Blast From The Past

After many years of concerts (most of them early in my adult life), I do not get to see them very often. But I have seen almost everyone I have wanted to see, with a few exceptions here and there. Some are dead, some bands have broken up and will never again perform. And yet, every now and then, an opportunity arises to see someone I have never seen comes along.

Tonight, I will be doing just that by taking the Aussies visiting us to see The Steve Miller Band, with Joe Cocker as the opening act. So for this weekend's ABFTP, here is a taste of what I hope I am in store for, this evening.

Joe Cocker made his mark redoing other people's songs and when I think about it, I am not altogether sure why. He doesn't have the best voice, he isn't particularly great looking. But in spite of these often perceived handicaps, his musical support has always seemed to carry him through to some pretty successful hit songs and albums.

Here are a couple of my favorites.

Written by former Traffic member Dave Mason, this song was also covered by Grand Funk Railroad. This one is entitled, Feelin' Alright:

Written by songwriter Wayne Carson Thompson and originally made a hit by a band called the Box Tops, this next one propelled Cocker into the number seven position on the US charts. You might recognize Leon Russell in this video as the keyboard player. (It also contains some outstanding brass arrangements.) Here is The Letter:

Steve Miller grew up with a lot of musical influences around him. Being taught his first chords by a man names Les Paul, his music evolved into part blues, part jazz, and part rock and roll. He is truly one of the most versatile rock artists, I have ever heard.

Since there is no possible way I could cover every possible hit song, so I am not going to try. But after much thought, time, and consideration, here are a few of my favorites.

First up is one of his earlier tunes that blended the late sixties sound with an excellent jazzy blues mix. This one is called Living In The USA:

Next up is a folksy little tune that shows his Texas roots. Even my good friend Mustang will like this one. Here is Dance, Dance, Dance:

His first big hit was a tune called The Joker, which was probably my least favorite. But his second #1 hit is a real rock favorite that still can be heard on classical rock stations everywhere. It's a very 70s kind of sound, here is Rockin Me:

Finally, one of my very favorite SMB songs was one that was included on the Fly Like An Eagle LP, but was greatly overlooked and overshadowed by the several other hits from that release. Here is Serenade:


Friday, June 27, 2008

Reaction To SCOTUS Handgun Ruling

Getting back late last evening caused me to be too exhausted to post anything on this topic. Spending what I consider to be an inordinate amount of time in traffic, I got to hear Chicago Mayor Richard Daley's reaction to the SCOTUS ruling on DC's hand gun ban, ad nauseum.

An “outraged” Mayor Daley this morning denounced a U.S. Supreme Court ruling overturning Washington D.C.’s handgun ban as a “frightening decision” and a “return to the days of the Wild West.”

Daley predicted that Chicago’s 1982 handgun freeze would be next in the crosshairs of the powerful gun lobby and that gun violence will surge if they’re successful.

Daley must be a prophet, because that is precisely what is happening. The Illinois State Rifle Association immediately filed a lawsuit seeking to overturn Chicago's now unconstitutional handgun law. And the NRA's action will be following there, and other places too.

The Illinois State Rifle Association filed a lawsuit with just that purpose in mind at 9:15 a.m.

"We want to overturn this ban. It's pretty onerous. It takes the right of self-defense away from every Chicago citizen," said Richard Pearson, director of the Illinois State Rifle Association.

The National Rifle Association also plans to file lawsuits in Chicago and several suburbs, as well as San Francisco, challenging handgun restrictions there based on Thursday's outcome.

John McCain stood with the court, while Barack Obama waffled, tap-danced, and otherwise straddled the fence. His inability to take a principled stand one way or the other may have something to do with his recently outed comments, about Pennsylvania citizens clinging to God and guns. At the same time, he must be careful not to upset the George Soros crowd that wants to disarm law-abiding citizens, leaving them unable to protect themselves.

As PYY regular Greg points out on the last thread, the frightening thing about this ruling is the 5-4 margin of the decision, This means that if BHO is elected President, he could appoint a liberal justice that will swing it back the other way should the anti-gun lobby become emboldened again And you know they will.

One thing about the anti-gun lobby's arguments you will never hear is their lack of proof that these bans reduce gun violence. Florida relaxed laws on carrying concealed weapons awhile back and a noticeable drop in gun violence has been noted. DC has had the ban for 32 years and it continues to rise.

Common sense should dictate to us that if a criminal does not know who is carrying and who is not, he/she may very well think twice about trying to attack or rob a person. Likewise, if a person does not know which homes have guns in them which do not, he/she may think twice about burglarizing or staging a home invasion. But I have never used the words common sense and anti-gun activism in the same sentence. And I am not about to start now.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Gun Rights On The Line With SCOTUS Decision

Not a lot of time to expostulate, but today we are looking for the US Supreme Court's decision that may impact gun rights for years to come.

The case, District of Columbia v. Heller, which was argued nearly four months ago, could settle the decades-old debate over whether the Second Amendment grants individuals the right to own firearms.

When I read the Constitution, I read this:

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Shall not be infringed seems pretty plain to me. Now we'll see how the Court sees it. Meanwhile, we will be touring the Chicago Stockyards, when the decision is likely to be announced.

Have a great day.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

League Of Women Voters Files Lawsuit Against Indiana Voter ID Law

From the Evansville Courier-Press comes this gem of a story:

The League of Women Voters of Indiana filed a lawsuit Friday challenging the state’s voter ID law as a violation of the state constitution.

The new challenge comes less than two months after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that upheld the Indiana law and found that states may require photo identification at the polls.

The United States Supreme Court has ruled, this law is constitutional. Yet, for some unknown reason, these people seem to want to re-invent the wheel at every possible turn. Instead of accepting the SCOTUS decision, they want to place more burden on the taxpayers of Indiana by filing another frivolous lawsuit from another angle.

The league’s challenge, naming Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita as defendant, is based on a section of the state constitution requiring changes in voting eligibility to be enacted only by amending the constitution, said the group’s president, Joanne Evers.

“The law hinders and discourages Indiana voters from participating in our representative government of checks and balances,” she said.

What a crock. Ms. Evers should get a real job somewhere, as she obviously has very little meaning or purpose in her life right now. The fact that she is using this same tired old argument of disenfranchising voters, tells me she has trouble accepting decisions, in which she cannot claim victory. Instead of accepting the fact that none of the many claims by opponents of this law have been upheld or otherwise validated, they press onward with an idiotic agenda.

Welcome to Indiana's version of "Ground Hog's Day".


Due technical difficulties beyond our control, the Chicago trip has been postponed.

Film at eleven.

(PS-Keep those cards and letters coming.)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The Aussies Are Coming, The Aussies Are Coming

No, it's not an Alan Arkin and Carl Reiner Movie, nor is it an invasion. Mrs. Sunsett has a friend, who is bringing a friend, both are on a world tour and they will be our guests for the rest of the week.

I am going to Louisville to pick them up today, and tomorrow we will be showing them Chicago. So, I will be quite active on the interstate system the next couple of days. And since I helped Mrs. Sunsett with a GI cleaning party in the living quarters last evening, I didn't get a post written. But I hope to get something up this evening, so keep your eyes peeled.

Meanwhile, any suggestions from those that have been to downtown Chicago? I haven't been to Chicago in over two decades. Ball games do not count, these are women, and baseball is not so popular in Australia. Historical sites, landmarks, and shopping will be what they want. (No directions to Trinity United Church of Christ either.)

Thanks for reading, have a good day.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Obama To Reintroduce Himself

They call it a reintroduction.

In the opening weeks of the general-election campaign, Sen. Barack Obama has moved aggressively to shape his campaign and offered a clear road map for the kind of candidate he is likely to become in the months ahead: an ambitious gamer of the electoral map, a ruthless fundraiser and a scrupulous manager of his own biography in the face of persistent concerns about how he is perceived.

But I call it damage control.

Sand down the rough edges, shine it up a bit. The Big Media conglomerates can only do so much, you know? Think of it as a "things didn't go so smooth the first go around, so we'll start this whole thing from scratch" kind of thing.

Here we have a man, with whom we have had every opportunity to get to know during the primary campaign. Here we have a man, who must re-invent the wheel, once again touting his superior skills as a leader. And yet, here we have a man that has but a paragraph (or two) for a resume, under the heading of experience.

Great isn't it? I am sure he'll slip the recurrent themes of hope, change, and vision in for good measure, as well. Well frankly, I have very little hope he can do what he says he will do. And I have this recurring vision that is almost constantly in front of me: The only change we will be seeing in an Obama presidency is, going from bad to worse.

So once again folks, without further adieu, let me introduce to you the man that taketh away the sin of the world, Barack Obama. He will save the American people from themselves.

George Carlin Dies At 71

The world lost a very funny guy, yesterday. George Carlin was a revolutionary in his field, he had the unusual ability to take everyday dull things and make them funny. One thing he did well was capture the mood of many people in this country, when it came to politics.

Here's a little piece that pretty much says it all:

(WARNING: Language alert. Do not get fired over this.)

All I can say is, this is truly a huge loss in the comedy profession. He will definitely be missed.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

PYY Guide To Vacation Hotspots.

For the first installment, we feature Indianapolis. If you are looking for a place to turn yourself in while fleeing on a murder charge, Indianapolis is always a tourist favorite.

Take this woman from Antioch California for instance.

A woman wanted for murder in California turned herself in to Indiana State Police in Indianapolis this afternoon.

Police in Antioch, Calif., had issued an arrest warrant for Mary Gaines, 53, Pittsburgh, Calif., in connection with the June 18 murder of a woman whose identity has not yet been released.

There are a lot of fine hotels downtown in Indianapolis. The Hyatt, Westin, and Conrad Hilton lead the way and are within walking distance of the NCAA Headquarters and Eiteljorg Museum of Western and Indian Art. And they are but a short drive from the Indianapolis Museum of Art and Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum, located at the world famous track.

If this isn't enough to satisfy the adventurist spirit, jail is always an option as a featured attraction. Here is a testimonial to the fine accommodations available to Mary Gaines and others, who choose to travel to Indy for a stay at our fine county facility.

A sheriff's deputy was fired and two others were punished because an inmate was inadvertently left in a court holding cell without food for two days, authorities said Monday.

The inmate, James Logan, was put into a holding cell at the City-County Building after being sentenced in court to two years of incarceration on drug charges, WRTV-TV in Indianapolis reported.

At the end of the day, deputies were supposed to return him to jail, but he was forgotten, police said.

"(A deputy) told me that he was going to come back and get me, but he never came back," Logan told reporters Monday evening.

Logan stayed in the cell alone and foodless until about 4 p.m. Sunday, when a deputy went to the building to retrieve something and noticed him, police said.

Logan was without food for about 50 hours, but he did have access to a toilet and a drinking fountain, authorities said.

"No blankets. It was cold," Logan said.

So, if you want a new experience or an old one with a Midwestern flair to it, want to live on the edge a little or just want to be left alone in a very private environment, think about making Indy your next travel stop.

Sponsored by the Indianapolis Board of Tourism. (Reservations not guaranteed. Taxes and licenses do not apply. Void where prohibited.)

The Trepidations Of And Reservations About An Obama Presidency

There are three things I use to base my opinions of the kind of President I think Obama will make. But I will warn you all now, race is not one of them. There are a lot of things I can list that will make me think, he will not be the kind of President we need right now. That much may be debatable to some, but it's what I think just the same.

My rationale for thinking this way is solely based on my personal political belief system, which is a hodge podge of views from all over the spectrum. These are views which have been developed from my own personal experiences and observations (over the many years I have been experiencing and observing), and nothing else.

Here are some conclusions I have drawn about Obama's candidacy, to date:

1. He is inexperienced.

The most notable characteristic that I see is, the fact he is a novice to world politics. He thinks he can BS the world, because he is currently BSing a fair amount of the American people, unchallenged. Well he can't. And I am not alone in this kind of thinking. Let's take a look at what some key Democrats that ran against him in the primary process have had to say about this particular issue, shall we?

I may not agree with their politics or where they stand on the issues; but Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, and (even to some degree) John Edwards, all have better qualifications and much more experience on the world stage. Yet, the Dems who have hijacked the party (and turned it even more leftward, than it already was) have looked past who the better candidate is and has determined that no experience is what the American people deserve. And you know what? If we (the people) vote him in, we deserve just that, a greenhorn who could screw things up much more than anyone could have ever imagined.

Folks, if I were a Democrat, I would have supported Joe Biden. It's not that I am this big fan of his, mind you. I think he's a jerk. But he's far closer to my politics and I would trust his experience in complex situations exponentially more, than I do Obama's.

2. The company he has kept, over the years that he has been forming his political worldview.

One cannot tell me that a man can sit with a circle of friends for a period of 20 years (or so) and not be under the same value systems as they are, or at very least be influenced by them. And it's not just those in his past (that impressed him and helped him evolve into the product he is today, who concern me). The people that have already announced their ardent support for him do so for very good reasons. (Mustang has some thoughts about some of these very people.)

Just who is supporting Obama?

There is a fairly well-referenced list of from whence cometh his support. Take a look and see which people and what groups have endorsed (officially and unofficially) him and all that he stands for in this world. A crackhead, a former rival that criticized his inexperience in the primaries, and Communist groups are just a sample of his not-so-secret admirers, all of which are fairly significant components of his base.

These are not the people I want favors being paid back to, while he sits in the Oval Office dealing with things like the fragile economy, jihadism, and the Iran situation. His support base is made up of some pretty unsavory characters who are corrupt thugs and have developed some erroneous conclusions, on how the country should be best run. And there is no margin for error, no room for faulty advice.

3. His political ideology and his stances on many of the important issues of this day are antithetical to my own.

Here are just a handful of items in which I do not agree with him:

-the way he would treat fighting terrorism. He likes it as a law-enforcement issue. Rather than be pro-active by using a military and intelligence approach, he wants to be reactive and respond to threats after they have been realized. He wants Miranda rights read to non-citizens that have sworn an oath of seeking the fall of western civilization.

-the way he wants to exit Iraq. If he is true to his word (and I have no doubt he will be), think of the mess an announced immediate withdrawal will create. If for some reason I am wrong and he doesn't live up to his word, the anti-war groups that are right now trying to touch the hem of his garments will hold him accountable in 2012. And thus, he will not re-elected without their support.

-the way he wants to punish the oil companies through a windfall tax that we the consumers would ultimately end up paying. All the while he wouldn't support nuclear power or offshore drilling to help with reducing our dependency on foreign oil supplies. His stance on this issue is enough to make me wonder if he really wants a solution, or wants a problem to campaign on.

-the way he wants to treat global warming. Instead of giving tax breaks to those who voluntarily cut back on energy consumption, he wants to create laws that force companies to buy expensive equipment and materials. In short, he wants to punish these companies too and make Al Gore's buddies rich in the process.

-the way he wants to deal with illegal immigration. McCain isn't much better and cannot challenge him on this, because of his past stances. But the thing that McCain can do is define himself as the polar opposite in the other areas, as he has already began to do. You cannot have everything, something must be sacrificed along the way. I'll take McCain's stances on the other topics, any old day of the week.

I could go on. Believe me, it wouldn't be too difficult. But most of the readers of this blog could easily guess the other stark differences I have with the Illinois senator.

The point is, I cannot be concerned with race. I can think of a lot of black people that would make a far greater President than he would. Trouble is, none of them are running and Obama is. Give me a Richard Steele, Lynn Swann, JC Watts, Herman Cain, even a Bill Cosby, and I wouldn't feel a bit uneasy about them ascending into the Oval Office to make critical decisions that would affect this nation (as well as the entire world). I may not agree with every one of those decisions these men would make, but I bet I could live with the lion's share of them.

I am deeply concerned to the point of trepidation at the kinds of choices Obama would make in crunch situations, where the future of the free world is at stake. I would not be comfortable with more social programs, more taxes, and more government regulation and mandates causing the loss of freedoms for individuals and groups who do not want more interference from a government that cannot even manage its own affairs, responsibly.

If anyone thinks that any of this makes me a racist, it shows how truly ignorant they really are and how badly they want to ride the race card to power. It is those individuals that have distorted truth to suit their own agendas and to empower themselves for corrupt and ingenuous purposes. They care nothing about America, they only want to use it as a means of enriching themselves with both money and influence.

Some Addenda:

1. Obama is already setting the tone for a race campaign. (Audio: Here) "Anyone that is against me, is racist", will be the underlying message
resonated throughout this campaign, when anyone "dares" to criticize him fairly.

2. Another reason I do not think Obama is (anywhere near) the best candidate for the job is, he is triangulating in some areas now that he has the nomination locked up. Here are a few of the things we have seen him back-pedal on. It's not that we aren't used to it (to some degree) from all pols, but the stakes in this race are way too high to be required to worry about which course he wants to take.

Did he lie to the left-wing when campaigning to get the nomination? Or is he lying now? Which is it Senator? These are fair questions to ask of a candidate for the highest office in the land.

3. It seems that Mr. Obama is embellishing his record (such as it exists) again. There's a discrepancy listed here and McCain is right to pounce on it.

4. Hugh Hewitt responds to the ridiculous claim by Obama, discussed in addendum #1.

5. Human Events has a piece
called The Changeling. It reinforces some of what has been often implied, along the way. That is to say, much of the American electorate is not very smart.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Another Blast From The Past

Today is the first full day of summer with the summer solstice occurring last evening. For this very occasion, I thought a few songs about summer would be appropriate for this weekend's installment of ABFTP.

Besides school being out for the summer, baseball parks are open for business and kids are staying up until 3 AM when they have a ball game at 8 AM the next morning. But as for me, I officially began my first round of vacation yesterday afternoon. So to start off this week's music is a tune that goes way back to the early days of rock and roll. Here is Connie Francis with her hit, Vacation:

One of the premier songs that still gets quite a bit of playing time on oldies stations everywhere at this time of year is a little tune by a band called the Lovin' Spoonful. When I hear it, I think of those long creeping traffic jams on a stretch of concrete, also known as a freeway. Here is Summer In The City:

Some great nostalgic photography comes with the video with this next song. It had some elements of rock and jazz fused together very well and was a hit back in the 60s. I still hear it now and then. Here is the long version of Billy Stewart's Summertime:

Lounging around a pool or beach somewhere in the blistering heat is what this next song calls back to remembrance. Here is Sly And The Family Stone's summertime hit, Hot Fun In The Summertime:

Happy Summer To All. Enjoy (and be safe).


AC at Fore Left has his own tribute to summer and it is quite worth a look.

Newsweek Poll Skewed

The political world is abuzz about the latest Newsweek poll that shows Obama with a 15 percentage point lead. (It's really a Princeton Survey Research Associates International poll, but what the hell? Right?)

Barack finally has his bounce. For weeks many political experts and pollsters have been wondering why the race between Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain had stayed so tight, even after the Illinois senator wrested the nomination from Hillary Clinton. With numbers consistently showing rock-bottom approval ratings for President Bush and a large majority of Americans unhappy with the country's direction, the opposing-party candidate should, in the normal course, have attracted more disaffected voters. Now it looks as if Obama is doing just that. A new NEWSWEEK Poll shows that he has a substantial double-digit lead, 51 percent to 36 percent, over McCain among registered voters nationwide.

The media must really be loving this. This will be the talk of the Sunday talk shows.

On the surface, it would appear that Obama is surging right now by saying very little (as he has from the beginning of his campaign). To the untrained eye, it looks to be a bad situation for McCain. But to the trained eye, it looks like more media manipulation of numbers to cast their favorite in a favorable light.

Newsweek (like may others) does not count on people reading the methodology of the reported poll. But at PYY, we do.

The red-flag in this one is the sample. Not only is it hard to get an accurate picture from the small sample sizes that these pollsters rely on to gather the information that media conglomerates love to run with, the sample demographic is very telling. The methodology shows the following numbers surveyed:

324 Democrats

307 Independents

231 Republicans

It looks like Republicans were represented by 93 less than Dems, and 76 less than Independents. Only 26% of the sample was Republican and the truth be known, not many will voting for Obama. By contrast, most Democrats have fallen in lockstep with the Deaniac party choice and will likely vote for him.

Like I said, it takes an inquisitive spirit to dig deeper than what the news outlets are running. One poll, does not a trend make.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Image Obama

From the IHT comes this report:

At a rally for Senator Barack Obama in Detroit on Monday, two Muslim women said they were prohibited from sitting behind the candidate because they were wearing head scarves and campaign volunteers did not want them to appear with him in news photographs or live television coverage.

The Obama campaign said it quickly called the women to apologize after learning of the incident. "It doesn't reflect the orientation of the campaign," said Anita Dunn, a senior adviser to Obama. "I do not believe that mistake will be made again."

But the incident, first reported Wednesday by, pointed to pitfalls the campaign faces as it moves into the general election and seeks to maintain control of Obama's image by tightly managing his public appearances.

With all of the talk of BHO being secretly raised as Muslim, it's understandable why this happened. But when you make the claim that you want to unite the country and be the leader for all of the people, you cannot make such decisions without inviting harsh criticism and blowback.

But this not the only area of image polishing. Let's read on:

The campaign on Monday barred cameras from a large gathering of African-American civic leaders Obama attended. It recently refused to provide names of religious figures with whom Obama met in Chicago and directed some of them to avoid reporters by using a special exit. And on Wednesday, the campaign orchestrated Michelle Obama's appearance on the friendly set of "The View" and a flattering spread in the pages of Us Weekly.

The goal here is two-fold. It's imperative to prevent another "clinging to God and guns" moment. And then, they want to paint an erroneous picture of a mainstream candidate, whose wife will sit down with the lovely ladies from the View and have a little chat.

The problems with this little game is also two-fold. One, it will eventually irritate the press, who has been so enthralled with him. Remember Chris Matthews' tingling down the leg comment? Much of the media has been very favorable to him and this can turn on him quickly, especially if there are more incidents like the fake out plane ride from DC to Chicago, earlier this month.

The second problem is the distance Obama creates between him and the people. "Don't look at me when I am addressing these radicals in private, there are things I need to say to them." Or, "this is off limits to the American people". This within itself isn't a big deal, except he's spent the biggest part of the primary campaign building a grass roots movement of the people for the people, one country for everyone kind of demagoguery.

Personally I think it makes him look like the arrogant candidate, in the mold of John Kerry. And in the end that may be his downfall, as it was Kerry's. People do not want a patrician, they want someone like them. They do not want a lord, they want a leader.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

New McCain Ad Shows How To Waste Resources

Here is the latest John McCain ad:

It's a well-made ad, but whoever is in charge of Sen. McCain's ad campaign needs to be fired for wasting campaign money. If we are going to rely on polls (and most politicians do), most of them show that only around 4% of the electorate consider global warming a major issue. The general issues that will be most important in November will be:

1. Economy

Sadly, most Americans are under the delusion that the President has the power to create jobs and regulate the economy. The only jobs that anyone in government can create are government jobs. And unless people want to revive the failed Soviet system of central planning, he doesn't have the power nor the authority to directly have any kind of impact in this area.

2. National Security

This includes Iraq, Afghanistan, and all other security issues that deal with Islamic extremism. Fragile is the word I would be most inclined to use, when touting the successes of the past few months. So, he must handle it with care. But he must handle it specifically and firmly. He has a clear edge over Obama in this area, this is what I would be concentrating on.

3. Energy

He has painted a stark picture of the differences between him and Obama on this issue. He must not let the windfall tax issue rest and should explain how horribly misguided Obama is in this area. He must continue to press for drilling anywhere there are deposits, advocate for the use of oil shale, and must camping for alternative sources.

There are many more issues, where McCain can smoke Obama in the public debate. This precisely is why Obama is afraid to accompany him on a townhall meeting tour. When the time for debates do come around, I look for Obama to have well-crafted and polished answers that will embrace emotions, but will be far short in the specific meaning and purpose department.

Wasting money trying to convince the Al Gore Church of Meteorology to vote for McCain is an enormous waste of time, money, and other resources. Bro. Al has already endorsed Obama and it is likely his sycophants will do it so also, in November. Plus, there is little doubt that Barry O. will have more money in the coffers for his empty "hope" and "change" ads, so it is very important to not pull a Hillary and blow money needlessly. But, this is precisely what McCain's campaign has just done. The only difference is, they didn't get to eat Dunkin Donuts.

Drill. No Ceremony

One of the issues Americans will carry into the voting booth this fall will be the high price of gasoline. The candidate that comes up with the most cogent solution stands a good chance of winning the White House.

On one hand, we have a significant pillar of Barack Obama's energy plan. He wants to punish the oil companies by creating a windfall profits tax.

Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama sought to tap into Americans' anxiety over high gasoline prices by pledging to seek a windfall profits tax on U.S. oil companies if elected.

"I'll make oil companies like Exxon pay a tax on their windfall profits, and we'll use the money to help families pay for their skyrocketing energy costs and other bills," the Illinois senator said on Monday according to Reuters.

This is consistent with traditional liberal ideology, in that they think they can tax their way out of a problem. Got a problem? Create a tax. But what Sen. Obama is not telling us is who ultimately will pay the tax. Anytime a tax is levied on a company, it is passed on to the consumer. Taxes are costs and built into the price, the consumer pays. So to solve the high gas price quandary, his solution is for us to pay more.

Note to Obama - This does not help. The Robin Hood approach will not solve the problem in the short term and will only create more problems for the long-term.

On the other hand, John McCain has unveiled his energy plan.

Sen. John McCain called yesterday for an end to the federal ban on offshore oil drilling, offering an aggressive response to high gasoline prices and immediately drawing the ire of environmental groups that the presumptive Republican presidential nominee has courted for months.

The move is aimed at easing voter anger over rising energy prices by freeing states to open vast stretches of the country's coastline to oil exploration. In a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, nearly 80 percent said soaring prices at the pump are causing them financial hardship, the highest in surveys this decade.

"We must embark on a national mission to eliminate our dependence on foreign oil," McCain told reporters yesterday. In a speech today, he plans to add that "we have untapped oil reserves of at least 21 billion barrels in the United States. But a broad federal moratorium stands in the way of energy exploration and production. . . . It is time for the federal government to lift these restrictions."

There is no magical solution to this problem. As long as we are dependent on oil for energy, the demand will be high. Add to this the surge in Chinese and Indian demand and you can clearly see that OPEC has the world in a bind. As long as it only costs OPEC a few dollars to pump a barrel of oil while charging $140, they will own the entire developed world. But while flooding the market with non-OPEC oil will certainly make an impact, drilling for new sources will only be part of the answer.

We need to develop new forms of energy. We've done this with ethanol, but silliness has prevailed in the form of using food sources to do it. Common sense tells intelligent people, don't mess with the food supply. And as I watch the floods in the Corn Belt destroy a significant portion of this year's corn crop, I can only surmise that we can expect more rises in the prices of food this year. This is because much of the corn futures are destined to become fuel, not feed for livestock or integral ingredients for many of the foods we eat. Supply down, prices up, this goes for both ethanol and food.

The greater the supply of anything leads to lower prices. Taxes do not. We need to take a good serious look at all forms of energy, not just bio-fuels. All measures that create more sound energy sources should be given a serious look, especially those that will not take food out of our mouths. This will create more choices, for consumers. More choices equals more supplies.

Despite McCain's plan not being a panacea, it is more far sound than Obama's. It is a step in the right direction. If nothing else, it certainly draws a marked distinction between him and his socialist opponent.

Speaking Blogs To Power

A U.S. blogger has been charged in Singapore for insulting a judge.

A US citizen was charged Monday with insulting a Singapore judge in his blog by saying she was "prostituting herself", a court document said.

In the blog, Gopalan Nair criticised a recent legal hearing at which Singapore founding father Lee Kuan Yew and his son, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, testified in a defamation case they filed against an opposition party.

Nair, 58, is charged with insulting Justice Belinda Ang Saw Ean by saying she was "prostituting herself during the entire proceedings, by being nothing more than an employee of Mr Lee Kuan Yew and his son and carrying out their orders," a court document said.

Mr. Nair is charged with being insulting, for saying the kinds of things that are said about politicians everyday here. This goes to show that pols in Singapore must be thin-skinned, which is not a quality that would I would recommend for anyone who is thinking about being a public figure, here or in any other country with a democratic process. Thankfully, as a U.S.-based blogger I have a certain freedom to express my opinions open, freely, and without fear of retribution - as long as they are done in a responsible manner and are not libelous.

But, wait a minute. Is this about to change?

The Associated Press, following criticism from bloggers over an AP assertion of copyright, plans to meet this week with a bloggers' group to help form guidelines under which AP news stories could be quoted online.

Read the rest of the story for the details. This isn't the first time news agencies and main-stream journalists have wanted to tighten the ropes around the blogging community. It is well-known how many mainstream journalists feel about the "average joe" blogger.

Journalists have called bloggers:
-- "Jumped-up dunces with PCs"
-- "Barroom loudmouths"
-- "Salivating morons"
-- And "the headless mob"

Interesting, when you consider how many mainstream journalists now have their own blogs. This indicates to me, many of these name-callers feel threatened and resent being held accountable by the citizens' media.

The issue at hand is freedom of speech. I may detest everything said on sites like the Daily Kos and others, but in the grand scheme of things I support their right to exist. If I do not like what a blogger has to say (about anything), I have the right to criticize the contents or just not visit that blog. Journalists and big media have those same rights.

If Joe Blow's blog says something about the NY Times that he feels is true, the NYT has the right to ignore it or take the accusations on publicly. With much greater readership and influence than Joe Blow has, they can get their message out with less effort. Of course once they choose to do this, Joe Blow's blog will get free publicity and he will have a greater audience than ever before. Therefore, many times a news outlet such as this will ignore a posting by Joe Blow, knowing that it will only be read by a hundred or so people.

The point I am making here is not that bloggers have free reign to slander, libel, or use copyrighted material unlawfully whenever they want. They must remain ever mindful of the laws and post their criticisms in a responsible manner. Satire and humor aside, PYY has tried to accomplish this in a meaningful way and it is my hope that I can continue to do this in the future. In fact, I hope all of us can.

Thanks to all that read PYY.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Lieberman Draws Democrats' Ire

From the AP comes this report:

Joe Lieberman is fast becoming the Democrats' public enemy No. 1.

The four-term Connecticut senator, who came tantalizingly close to being Al Gore's vice president in 2000, not only has been campaigning for his pal, presumed Republican nominee John McCain, now he's publicly criticizing the Democrats' standard-bearer, Barack Obama. Lieberman has strayed before, most notably switching from Democrat to independent in 2006 to hold onto his Senate seat after a Democratic primary loss.

But the latest betrayal has upset Democrats, who often answer in clipped but polite tones when asked about Lieberman. The reason: The independent still caucuses with the Democrats on most issues except the Iraq war, and he holds their slim political majority in his hands.

The last time I checked, it was the Democratic party that betrayed Joe Lieberman. Upset with Lieberman's support of Iraq, they picked a primary fight with him by propping up a multi-millionaire anti-war party hack, a Kossack that had support from the George Soros sycophants.

If anyone should be upset, it's Joe. All one has to do is look at his voting record and see that he is a good liberal that votes with his Democratic peers, most of the time. The exceptions are Iraq and national security issues.

Sen. Lieberman is now an independent and can support who ever he wants without owing his former party a damned thing. Equally, he can criticize whoever he wants, without having to explain himself to the Democratic leadership, or any other left-wing organization that aligns itself with the MoveOn.Org cult.

But at this point there isn't much the Dems can do to Joe, except one thing. According to the article, there is one last shot that the Dems can fire at Joe if he doesn't fall into lock-step with party line:

There is speculation that if Democrats bolster their Senate majority this fall, they could seek payback by stripping Lieberman of his Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee chairmanship.

I bet Joe is really scared.

The best thing the Dem hacks could do for themselves is remember the proverbial pendulum swings back hard. The same tide that rushed them into power can pull them back out. It's the nature of the beast we call politics.

Happy Father's Day

To all of my readers that are fathers, PYY wishes you a very happy Father's Day.

If your father is still alive, be sure to call or visit him today. Sometimes, just an acknowledgment and a thank you is enough for some dads, like myself. But this year, my son is taking me to lunch. I am not a high maintenance dad. So just the fact that he remembers and is willing to spend some time with me, is far greater than anything he could buy for me.

Have a great day.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Another Blast From The Past

Life, at times, is quite a dynamic conglomerate of emotions that occupy our psyches. There are myriad of emotions that some of us experience from time to time. I have this one that combines a reflective melancholy that sometimes borders on the cynical. This weekend's featured artist is a group that has many times provided me some valuable material for rumination and contemplation, some of it theological, some of it not.

Like Job of the Old Testament, everyone that truly believes in God has (at least at some point) had some questions for Him, when certain faith testing situations arise in their lives. When I first heard the band Jethro Tull, I heard some lyrics that questioned the conventional wisdom of the hows and whys of God's existence and His objectives for the human race.

Ian Anderson, lead singer and writer of the lion's share of Tull songs, must have been raised in the Church of England which has many similar rites and ceremonies similar to the Roman Catholic Church. From the prose in this first song, I can tell he wasn't impressed with the requirements he felt were unfairly placed on him by his church and is starkly evident that the faith of his fathers did not completely fulfill his needs. What follows is a description of the state of his church at the time of his childhood and hunger and thirst for truth and meaning,based on that unfilled need.
Here are the lyrics and here is the song (from the Aqualung album), My God:

After the question(s), later in this same album, it appeared Ian was able to reason out a great portion of the answer(s) he was seeking. Sometimes it comes suddenly as a revelation, other times it is a gradual evolution of thinking. In this next song, he shares the answer to the questions he poses in the previous song and those at the beginning of this one. Personally, I think this is the best Tull song ever. Here are the lyrics and here is the song, Wind Up:

Not all of Tull's music painted a dark cynical world. Much of it was well written and composed after Ian was able to use his internal theological conflicts to make some reasonable sense of his own life and the meaning that it contained. The music of the band always had an English style to it and nothing paints a more vivid imagery than that of a minstrel playing in a gallery. It is such a simple topic, but it tells me that simple is sometimes good and meaning can be found in the little things that go together to make up a life. Here is Minstrel in Gallery:

Sometimes you can find enough intrinsic meaning in life that you can learn to recognize both the fragility of life and still enjoy the little moments that come with it. This next tune is a very different one from the first one featured, in that it does just this. Here is a very pleasant sounding live version of Skating Away On The Thin Ice Of New Day:

Ian must have had some remarkable insight, as he demonstrates in the final tune. Most everyone is forced to come to grips with their own mortality, at some point in our lives (that is, if we live long enough). Some do it sooner than others, but as we do it, there is a certain peace that comes with accepting the inevitable. And being a baby boomer, my generation (if they are developing according to Erickson's model of growth and development) has had ample opportunity to pass this developmental task by now.

By taking this subject on head on, I have been able to learn that generativity is preferable to self-absorption, integrity is preferable to despair. With that knowledge comes an understanding of how to live longer, more prosperous, and happier. Here is Too Old To Rock And Roll:

Enjoy this, enjoy your lives. Be safe.

- I apologize if this comes across as a bit darker than most Another Blast From The Past posts. 30 years ago this past March, I came to grips with my own mortality when I came home on emergency leave from the Army, to attend my 16-year old brother's funeral. The sudden passing of people that I both know and know of, serves a reminder of that day and it gives me cause to think and be aware of the sadness that others feel when they lose someone. Tim Russert's passing has been that sometimes tripped trigger, for this time.

But that's not all. As I have come to my own personal conclusions and found my peace within them, I also remember the principle theory of living life to the fullest extent, each and every day. I remember and I am thankful to be here, thankful to have the opportunity to ponder these things and share them with you.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Tim Russert, Dead At 58

Tim Russert, host of NBC's Meet The Press, has died of what is being reported as a heart attack.

Politics is a strange animal. It is unlike any other discipline.

Criticisms about ideologies and issues are all able to be thrown aside, when someone as prolific as Russert dies so suddenly and so young. This was a man that I often disagreed with and criticized mercilessly when I thought he was wrong. But hearing this news truly saddens me, because in the end politics is just politics and humanity always takes precedence over the games that are produced in it.

He was a husband, father, and a son. He was a professional, a man that tried to do the best job he could do in the profession in which he was so successful. Meet The Press will never be the same again, without him.

He will be missed, greatly by those who watched him and even more by those that knew and loved him. For this reason, today, my prayers and thoughts are with his family and friends.

State Of The Mission: Afghanistan

I stumbled on a funny (but yet in some ways very sad) video dedicated to the "cut and run" from Iraq crowd.

But before you cut and run out on this blogpost to watch it, allow me to share something with you.

Much of the cut and run crowd has used the excuse that we have severely neglected our commitment in Afghanistan, for what has been termed "Bush's war for oil. They claim we are losing in Afghanistan because our resources are overly committed to Iraq away from where the "real threat of terrorism" exists. And if we would only begin withdrawing from Iraq after Obama is sworn in, things will miraculously go our way.

Well, here are the words of a commanding officer (a family member of the Sunsett household) of a sizable organizational unit assigned to Afghanistan for the specific purpose of weeding out Taliban and eliminating them:

"...I can tell you with complete honesty and all confidence that we are truly breaking the back of the Taliban and as long as we keep the operational pressure up and keep hitting them where it hurts them the most, we can start rebuilding this country in earnest by this time next year."

It's been a tough road, for sure. And we can make a good argument that the Administration didn't take into account some potential unintended and unforeseen consequences. As a result, it's taken longer than we were all led to believe. But progress is being made and to "cut and run" after all of this hard work would be the epitome of stupidity.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

SCOTUS Votes 5-4 To Allow Gitmo Detainees Access To Civilian Courts

From the AP comes the story of the day:

In a stinging rebuke to President Bush's anti-terror policies, a deeply divided Supreme Court ruled Thursday that foreign detainees held for years at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba have the right to appeal to U.S. civilian courts to challenge their indefinite imprisonment without charges.

I disagree with the decision. I think at some time, they must have hearings. But I think it's better served in the military courts, when the time comes. The time is not now, the time is not while conflicts are still going on.

But, let's be clear here. This does not mean the prisoners will automatically be released. It simply indicates that these thugs must be allowed access to the federal courts.

There are those that would love for us to release these people, so they could go right back to fighting and planning terror attacks against the U.S. and the entire West. There are those that want them in the civilian courts, so they can make lawyers rich. Some of these people will claim victory, others will say it doesn't go far enough for their likings.

But in all of their whinings, one thing has to be established as an immutable truth
in this issue. The ones who have complained loudest about this particular court, can no longer claim it is a Bush rubber stamp.

A PYY Public Service Message

Another mother has filed a false complaint of child abduction against the child's father.

Police say a mother who reported her young daughter missing fabricated the story.

The mother of Abif Pazos is being charged with false crime reporting. IMPD says it's the second time in the past two weeks that a report of an abducted child turned out to be untrue. The first incident involved an Amber Alert.

Allow me to help you young mothers that may stumble on to this site:

If you file a false report in Indiana, you will go to jail. And even though you feel you can claim poverty, they can hold you responsible for costs incurred. This means anytime in the future that you back your way into some money (possibly through no fault of your own), they will get it.

The woman that pulled this stunt a couple of weeks ago has learned the hard way. We all saw what happened. The story was carried in the news and despite this fact, many of you may be tempted to do this. Don't.

Take a moment and write this down if your memory is not so good. Then put it where you can see it on a daily basis. Put it in places like the mail box (where you might be looking for the government check), the refrigerator, the TV remote, or your cell phone. Any of the places where you spend much of your time is acceptable.

I hope this clears up any misconceptions some of you may have on this subject matter, as it appears to be a tough concept to grasp. I wish you all a happy life, good health, and peace. Be careful and stay safe. Don't drink and drive.

And above all, thank you for your support.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Obama. Change Of Hart?

Not from where I sit. You cannot tell me otherwise, because I lived through it. This is not the first campaign to hear the words change, new leadership, and hope for the future led by a new generation. The year of Orwell saw this very approach, and it failed miserably before our very eyes. Take a look at these Gary Hart ads from 1984:

Now compare the Hart ads with one of Obama's ads:

How about this one?

It's easy to see that Obama's campaign is better able to use modern technology, with much of the credit going to a larger bank account. But the message isn't any different. The proposals are just as weak, the rhetoric is just as emotional. The packaging may be better, but the substance is unchanged.

This isn't the kind of change I can believe in. If it were, I would have believed it 24 years ago.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Some Call Them Killers

Some call them murderous thugs that rape, pillage, and plunder; they have said the likes of such have "razed villages in a fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan". Others accuse people like these of killing innocent civilians in cold blood. They castigate them, assign blame to them without benefit of a trial, and many even refuse to allow them to have an office in their community.

Yet when the chips are down and the need is great, these brave men jump right in and help people that need help.

Residents near Indianapolis mopped up Monday in the wake of floods while the fight took on new intensity far downstream as walls of water coursed through East and West Forks of White River.

Downstream is where state disaster response officials -- surprised by the weekend flash flood -- tried to get ahead of the dangerous surge Monday, directing an assortment of felons and farmers, Amish and Mennonites, soldiers and Marines to sandbag sodden levees in southwestern Indiana.

Hard fighting for Elnora started at 4 a.m. when gray helicopters landed 90 troops of the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, a rapid response force training in Indiana. But by 5 p.m., the sandbagging was called off and the town of 736 was evacuated just ahead of the highest crest ever recorded on West Fork.

You read it correctly. The United States Marines are here in Indiana helping to save communities that are soon to be threatened by downstream flooding, caused by the recent torrential downpours Hoosiers have been experiencing over the past several days. They are here for urban warfare training in Indianapolis, yet they seem to have time to help Americans that desperately need it. Their job is to protect the nation, but none of them seemed to mind helping to protect a community, which most of them never heard of.

LTC Greg Ballard (Ret.), the current mayor of Indianapolis, invited them to use areas of the city for their training. But sadly, a handful of people have raised a stink about the exercise.

About a dozen people turned out today at the corner of 38th and Fall Creek Avenue to protest Marine plans to stage military exercises in Indianapolis.

The protest comes after an announcement that about 2,300 Marines from the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, based at Camp Lejeune, N.C., will conduct training from Wednesday through June 19 in and around Indianapolis.

In this instance, only a dozen or so had the audacity to show their faces in a pitiful rejection of the men that have volunteered to serve their nation. But in another instance, an elected official turned the Marines away from similar training in his city.

TOLEDO, OH -- Mayor Carty Finkbeiner on Friday ordered some 200 members of Company A, 1st Battalion, 24th Marines from Grand Rapids, Michigan, out of Toledo just before the unit was supposed to start a weekend of urban warfare training downtown.

Many thanks should go to Mayor Ballard for inviting this unit to train here, and many more should go to the men of the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit for pitching in. The original mission may be postponed or diverted, but the new mission has meaning for those that were privileged to work along side these men, and even more so to those that will (hopefully) reap the benefits.

A great big OOOH- RAH to all of them.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Spike Lee. Proud Member Of Race Baiters For Obama.

There is no reasonable or plausible explanation as to why Spike Lee feels the need to take on Clint Eastwood. But he does. The current row is over Spike's ridiculous claim that Clint dissed blacks in the making of his movie, Flag Of Our Fathers.

Mr. Lee said that black actors appeared in war films too infrequently.''Clint Eastwood made two films about Iwo Jima that ran for more than four hours total, and there was not one Negro actor on the screen,'' he said, adding, ''There's no way I know why he did that -- that was his vision, not mine.''

Translation: Clint Eastwood is a racist.

Not wanted to be characterized as a racist, Clint shot back:

In the interview with The Guardian, the British newspaper, Mr. Eastwood defended the historical accuracy of his movies, saying that black troops were not involved in raising the flag at Iwo Jima. “The story is ‘Flags of Our Fathers,’ the famous flag-raising picture, and they didn’t do that,” Mr. Eastwood said in the Friday interview. “If I go ahead and put an African American actor in there, they’d say, ‘This guy’s lost his mind.’ ”

Now, Spike is not content with looking foolish once. He wants to do it twice:

But after the remarks were reported around the world, Lee hit back, reminding the older man that they were not "on a plantation".

The reference to times when a white man could tell a black slave what to do came after Lee first issued a raft of fresh accusations against 78-year-old Eastwood, who has won five Oscars and boasts a string of celebrated gritty film roles, including "Dirty Harry" Callahan.

Translation: See, I told you Clint Eastwood is a racist.

Either Spike Lee is purposely trying to incite racial divisions in America, or he is sadly mistaken. The fact is, Clint's film was based on a book, written by William Broyles, Jr. and Paul Haggis. If anything at all, Lee should be complaining about these guys. Clint only put the story they wrote, on film, on the silver screen.

So, whether he's being purposeful here or is honestly mistaken, it makes no real difference here. He is wrong. But being foolish and wrong makes no difference to Spikey. The real reason he wants this exchange to continue is simple:

Lee however promised to draw a line under the bitter war of words, alluding to the tone of the bid for the White House of Barack Obama, who went to see Lee's Do The Right Thing on his first date with his wife Michelle. Lee said of Eastwood: "Even though he's trying to have a Dirty Harry flashback, I'm going to take the Obama high road and end it right here. Peace and love."

There you have it America.

Normally one would not expect anything less from Mr. Lee. After all, it's how he has made his living. But we now know that Spike wants to keep America divided along racial lines, to get Obama elected. Doing it by winning the debate on the issues will not work for the Dems, they must have racial tension to regain the White House.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Obamania Hits Europe

This story comes from the IHT:

According to Samuel Solvit, president of France's support committee for Barack Obama, the French have not been this excited about America since they shipped over the Statue of Liberty in 1885.

Obamania has gripped most of Europe. But the enthusiasm is particularly striking in France. This is where the disenchantment with U.S. foreign policy under the Bush administration has been the most vocal. And this is where the Continent's largest community of African immigrants and their descendants live.

I suppose it was only a matter of time before it happened. France is permeated with socialist ideologues, African immigrants, and saturated with multi-culturists, so it's only natural they love this guy. In fact, it's not only France that has adopted this view. The vast majority of the entire continent has become enamored with him, as well.

For years now, Europe has been wanting to promote this "all-inclusive" model as some atonement for past attitudes and actions that were a result of vehement nationalism, which directly resulted in two world wars that destroyed their continent and killed multiple millions of their own citizens. To the many that openly promote this ideology, Obama is a symbol of this spirit. They do not look at the whole of U.S. history, how it welcomed many of Europe's oppressed and persecuted over the years (to include those that came during the two world wars). They refuse to consider this nation afforded them much greater opportunities than could be had elsewhere at the time. Instead, they view Americans as hedonistic and materialistic.

After WWII, the European continent laid in ruins for a second time in less than half a century. Meanwhile, the U.S. prospered immediately afterward, with some of it a direct result of money made off of rebuilding. While Euros were struggling for basic necessities and repairing much needed and badly damaged infrastructure, Americans were getting used to commodities like television, rock & roll music, and hot rod cars. So naturally (as human nature often allows), America became a primary source of envy for many continentals.

Today, 63 years after the bloodbath created by Europeans, many of them are still envious.

But with this understanding of why Euros feel such jealousy towards Americans, comes something they fail to consider in their judgmental biases. Americans sacrificed much to help liberate Europe. Commodities like sugar, coffee, and gasoline were rationed. Many men went to lay down their lives while fighting for the cause, leaving women to operate the factories (many of which were converted to making armaments and supplies for the war effort to succeed).

Today, both Europe and America has embarked upon a new era. Many of that generation that made such sacrifices are dead and gone, or are so old they cannot participate fully in the realm of politics. And with the political scene being what it is today, they wouldn't want to even if they could. The generations that want Sen. Obama to be elected are primarily those that weren't alive in the days of blitzkrieg and genocide. Many, who were alive, are too young to understand the gravity of the situation. This goes for Americans and Europeans, alike.

These are those who see a world, where everything they do not like is unfair. Subsequently, someone must rise up and make it fair (SEE: 1930s Germany). In this world, we are taught that those who work hard for what they have are greedy and selfish. Those that choose not to work hard are disadvantaged and oppressed. And it is up to government to rectify this perceived disparity. Europeans have long felt this way. So when we look at Sen. Obama's website, read his proposals, and analyze his worldview, it should come as no surprise that the French (as well as the whole of Europe) are enamored with him.

Envy is a powerful thing. Planting the seeds of it will ensure its continued existence throughout the ages.