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Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

The responses to Obama’s victory

In Politics on November 23, 2008 at 5:43 pm

Obama being elected president was a big deal here in liberal Boston. I went to bed hearing hoots and hollers of celebration from Mass Ave. In the morning I went to work and my coworkers were all Obama supporters, and all abuzz with pride. Things like “I actually feel proud of my country now” were said, echoing a sentiment Michelle Obama was vilified for. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Legalization of Interracial Marriage

In Politics, Religion on November 8, 2008 at 7:41 pm

In 1963, Richard and Mildred Loving were arrested in Virginia for living together as an interracial couple. They had married in Washington D.C., where it was legal, and then moved back to Virginia, where it was not. The judge in their case gave the statement:

Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.

Read the rest of this entry »

Joe the Plumber and the Great Whore (Socialism)

In Politics on October 17, 2008 at 12:12 am

As all the pundits and commentators have already pointed out, the big winner of last night’s debate was Joe the Plumber, having dominated a good portion of the night. Joe Wurzelbacher asked Obama about his tax plan and how it would raise his taxes because he was planning on purchasing a business that makes more than $250,000. The entire exchange can be watched on YouTube, and it’s a good one.

What are the implications of the question and why was it so important in the debate?

Read the rest of this entry »

Please let it end

In Politics on September 25, 2008 at 9:24 pm

I’m tired of the presidential campaign. I’m tired of the hijinks, the ploys, the attacks, the lies, the stretches, the photo ops, the gaffes…everything that makes a presidential campaign a presidential campaign. Every week, every day it’s something new, and for the past year it’s what kept me hooked. But now I’m just over-stimulated. McCain’s stunts have been particularly outrageous, what with Palin and her pathetic interviews and press conference (singular), and now the suspension of his campaign. Apparently he single-handedly brought the parties of Congress together to agree on a plan for the bail-out (according to his spokesperson). Oh, and Bob Barr and Ralph Nader are offering to take McCain’s slot in this Friday’s debate should he choose not to show.

Of course Obama’s campaign isn’t innocent either. The NYtimes ran an article detailing how Biden and Obama had voted for a bill that specifically approved the “Bridge to Nowhere” that their campaigns had been ridiculing Palin for. On and on and on.

I’m a pretty strong Obama supporter, but I’m ready for this to be over with. Let’s see the debates and then hit the polls. I just need to hang on for six more weeks. What more can happen in six weeks?

Guatemala Part I

In Personal, Politics on August 6, 2008 at 5:57 pm

Some background on Guatemala: Civil War

In 1944, Guatemala’s military president was overthrown and a new president was elected. The new president advocated social and political reforms. At the time, 2.2% of the people controlled 70% of all productive land, and only 12% of that land was actually being utilized. The new president decided to do something about it. Much of that land was owned by the United Fruit Company (UFC), which held significant influence in the country because it owned so much land, controlled the Atlantic ports, and owned large shares in electricity utilities and railroads. The government expropriated some of that land from the UFC, monetarily compensating the UFC the legally listed amount.

The poor peasants welcomed the land reform, while the upper class and military accused the president of Communistic practices, bringing about some social unrest. The expropriations began in 1953 and the UFC went to the United States for help. The United States’ incessant fear of communism and the UFC’s lobbying led to US action against Guatemala. The State Department first approved cuts in economic aid and trade, violating the Non-intervention agreement. The CIA then began covertly supporting rebel groups and dissidents in Guatemala, working towards the overthrow of the president. Before the CIA-led coup, the US ran an anti-government propaganda campaign over the radio to influence those in the Guatemalan military.

The president was overthrown in a military coup in 1954, and replaced with a military leader. This new leader outlawed labor unions and leftist political parties, radicalizing the left. With the military controlling the government, guerilla groups began organizing and from the 1960s till 1995, Guatemala was engulfed in civil war. 13 years ago, a peace accord was signed.

200,000 people were killed, with all sorts of human rights abuses including “disappearances”, torture, and massacre. A UN commission concluded 93% of the human rights violations were committed by the government. The indigenous Mayans bore the brunt of the abuses.

In 1999 President Bill Clinton apologized for US involvement, saying

It is important that I state clearly that support for military forces or intelligence units which engaged in violent and widespread repression of the kind described in the report was wrong

Parque Central Xela

Gay marriage is like hetero marriage. And in other news, the sky is blue

In Politics on June 14, 2008 at 11:51 pm

While perusing NYtimes.com I came upon the headline Gay Couples Find Marriage a Mixed Bag.

I blink a couple of times before clicking the link. The headline is edging towards The Onion material, and the article itself is filled with likewise ridiculous statements and quotes.

Mr. Collins believes his partner is his ideal match because he “gets as excited about seeing me as I get about seeing him,” because “sometimes he’ll do my laundry and fold it the way I like it,” and because “he makes my coffee really well — one Equal with just a tablespoon of fat-free half-and-half.”

But their marriage chasm worries him. “Maybe I should move out and maybe that will make him appreciate me,” Mr. Collins said. “I’ve gone so far as looking for an apartment.”

Mr. Erbelding, a decorative painter in Boston, said: “I think men view sex very differently than women. Men are pigs, they know that each other are pigs, so they can operate accordingly. It doesn’t mean anything.”

Still, Mr. Erbelding said, most married gay couples he knows are “for the most part monogamous, but for maybe a casual three-way.”

So judging from this article, gay men are shallow and petty, pigs, and only have occasional threesomes. Right.

The rest of the article is filled with reports about gay marriage being…just like heterosexual marriage.

“It’s been a mixed bag,” said Jacob Venter, a 44-year-old child psychiatrist who married Billy Boney, a 36-year-old hairdresser, a month after it became legal to do so. They have disagreements over money, the in-laws and whether to adopt children or have their own.

“Lesbian and gay couples get divorced for the same reasons that heterosexual couples do,” Ms. Kauffman said. “Honestly the only thing that is different is that some people rushed to get married without thinking it through just because they could. It was an incredibly heady historical moment, and some people probably made the decision hastily.”

Mr. Bettencourt and his current partner, Chris Weaver, just bought a house, but he played down a ring he gave Mr. Weaver for Valentine’s Day, telling him, he says, “I don’t want you to get concerned that I’m pushing marriage or anything.”

“I just don’t really see the point in it,” said Michelle Smith, 51, of Truro, who has two children with Terri Humes, 51, her partner of 27 years. “I don’t need that paper for any type of validation. I know what her and I have.”

Mr. Boney and Mr. Venter remain committed to marriage despite their conflicts.

“It’s a hard commitment to make,” Mr. Venter said. But they try to settle their disagreements. “I’m more willing to figure it out,” he said. “In the past I might have just ended the relationship.”

Is anyone surprised by this? What a terribly stupid article. I would like to think the reporter is trying to convey to the public that yes, gay marriage is just like the marriage you have a love and hate relationship with, but the quoting of the juvenile man and the “men are pigs” kind of ruins that idea.