Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Disgusting Moments from the Bush Presidency - None Involving Kanye West

So apparently, George W. Bush thinks that one of the most disgusting moment of his presidency was when Kanye West called him a racist. Really? Are you kidding me? Here is a short list of way more disgusting moments of the nightmare of an eight years spent under Bush:

Hurricane Katrina
Stories of conditions at the Superdome and images of the devastation are still seared in my memory.

September 11, 2001
The worst terrorist attack on our soil took place under George Bush's watch. How about the images of people who jumped to their death from the World Trade Center rather than face the fiery destruction? How about seeing people holding photos of their loved one, hoping to find out what happened to them? How about the sight of the Twin Towers crumbling to dust? What the terrorists did to us on that day was devastating and disgusting.

Abu Ghraib
Disgusting is the perfect word to describe what was going on in this Iraqi prison, where our soldiers were torturing and humiliating Iraqi prisoners. It was embarrassment to this country, tarnished our reputation, and endangered us even more as jihadists leveraged the photos as a perfect recruiting tool.

Wall Street greed
The unfettered greed and accumulation of wealth that took place under the Bush presidency and ultimately led to the financial collapse of 2008 and the need to pour billions and billions of taxpayer money into the banks to stabilize the markets and prevent another Great Depression was indeed disgusting. The fact that these bankers continued to make literally billions of dollars in bonuses following the bailout? Reprehensible.

The Unjustified Iraqi War
Let's not forget that the Bush Administration lied in order to lead this country into war against Iraq, a country that had nothing to do with 9/11 and did not have any weapons of mass destruction. This war has resulted in over 4,000 U.S. deaths and 30,000 U.S. injuries. The number of Iraqi civilian casualties is a disputed figure that ranges from the thousands to over a million, but it definitely dwarfs the number people who died on 9/11.

The Outing of Valerie Plame
For Dick Cheney and Co to actually put politics above the safety of a CIA agent and the success of her work is absolutely disgusting.

America as Torturers
The fact that America began using waterboarding, a technique of torture that we executed Japanese soldiers for, is abhorrent. This authorization of torture came all the way from the top, as we now know from Bush's book and his talk show rounds. We lost the moral high ground under Bush and Cheney.

Yes, George, there were a quite a number of disgusting moments in your presidency. The fact that a celebrity went on TV -- after seeing horrifying image after image of his fellow African-Americans in a great American city being left to fend for themselves for days on end after a natural disaster -- and said something mean about you? That's not one of them.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Election 2010: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

The midterm elections of 2010 are for the most part over. There are a few races still outstanding, most notably the Senate race in Alaska. Here are the good, the bad and the ugly of the election results.

The Good

  • California. I love California. We stood as a beacon of hope in this sea of misery. Jerry Brown won. Carly Fiorina lost. We voted against rolling back our progressive global warming legislation. Thank you, California. I am proud to be a Californian today. And don't take that to mean I wasn't proud to be a Californian before, OK? I have always been proud to be a Californian. And I am always proud to be an American. OK, moving on.
  • Several teabaggers lost, including Sharron "some of you look a little more Asian to me" Angle, Christine "I Am Not a Witch" O'Donnell, and Carl "Let's Teach the Poor Personal Hygiene" Paladino.
  • The Democrats retained the Senate with some key wins in Colorado, Nevada, and West Virginia.
The Bad
  • Some teabaggers did win, most notably Marco Rubio in Florida and Rand Paul in Kentucky.
The Ugly
  • The Republicans took back the House or Representatives, raising the prospect of a gridlocked government for the next two years.
  • Also ugly is the fact that the media is falling all over itself to proclaim the influence of the Tea Party when in reality, only a small percentage of the House and Senate will actually be teabaggers. Yes, the election reflects an angry, disappointed electorate. However, the anger and disappointment have been mistakenly channeled at the Democrats, because they have had the House, the Senate and the White House. The Republican strategy was to block progress at the expense of this country and then blame the President when things didn't get a lot better. Unfortunately, it worked. The American people have basically voted against their own self-interest by giving power to the party that wants to get rid of Social Security, Medicare and public education.
So now, we will see what the Republicans actually want to do for this country. If repealing health care reform, privatizing social security, and giving tax cuts to the wealthy are at the top of their agenda, they may face the same fate as today's Democrats in two years.