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Tuesday, September 12, 2006

defending the flag, occasionally

from the white house website, a photo essay, entitled “standing for the flag” includes this quote for the first image:

One day after terrorists used commercial airplanes to destroy the World Trade Center Towers and attack the Pentagon, firefighters take a moment to unfurl the flag over the scarred stone as inspiration for fellow rescue workers searching through the debris Sept. 12.

five years later in a ceremony commemorating 9/11, president george w. bush takes a moment to step on the american flag on september 11, 2006:

nineeleven11090600.jpg

[via reuters

Statement on Flag Desecration Vote [white house, 2006.06.27

Today a bipartisan majority of United States Senators voted to protect our Nation’s most important symbol through a Constitutional amendment to authorize Congress to prohibit the desecration of the American Flag. Unfortunately, the final count fell short of the votes needed to send this important proposed amendment to the states for ratification.

By showing respect for our flag, we show reverence for the ideals that guide our Nation. And we show appreciation for the men and women who have served in defense of those ideals.

I commend the Senators from both parties who voted to allow the amendment ratification process to protect our flag to go forward, and continue to believe that the American people deserve the opportunity to express their views on this important issue.

a few others got here too.

posted by roj at 4:45 am  

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

bush abandons weapons development

with war building in the middle east once again, it’s time to discuss president bush’s new policy on war-fighting technology. bush has abandoned science that will destroy life, and in this perpetual war on terror, which is, as we are often reminded, all about keeping us safer (meaning “save our lives”), the united states just isn’t going to spend the money any more.

“I have made very clear to the Congress that the use of taxpayer money to promote science that destroys life in order to save life, I am against that,”

this is not a new policy, in fact, it’s been in place at least a year –

Taxpayer Money Should Not Promote Research That Destroys Life.

even better, there’s evidence to support this interpretation of this quote from defensetech.org.

posted by roj at 7:21 am  

Friday, February 3, 2006

presidential off-the-cuff remark, or bold lie?

today’s example of “it sounds good when he says it” comes to you from the state of the union address…

One day after President Bush vowed to reduce America’s dependence on Middle East oil by cutting imports from there 75 percent by 2025, his energy secretary and national economic adviser said Wednesday that the president didn’t mean it literally.

we can apparently either believe that the president was merely riffing on a theme, and the state of the union address was not a prepared speech… or we can believe that he said what he said while the public was paying attention, with the full intent and instruction to staff to “take it back” once the public went back to their lives.

then again, it seems not many people were really paying attention to the state of the union address this time around, so… maybe i’m just being cynical.

if a promise is made in the congress, and nobody hears it, is it a promise? not so much a promise… but a “goal”:

Breakthroughs on this and other new technologies will help us reach another great goal: to replace more than 75 percent of our oil imports from the Middle East by 2025.

posted by roj at 10:19 pm  

Thursday, September 1, 2005

reflecting on priorities

things are quiet here, but i had to sneak in and put this on the record for my own sanity.

Schiavo Case Goes To Federal Judge [washington post, 2005.03.21]

The law that Bush flew back to Washington from his Texas ranch to sign at 1:11 a.m. Monday shifted jurisdiction of the Schiavo case from the Florida courts, where the Schindlers have been rebuffed for the past seven years, to the federal courts.

so we know that when something really, really important happens, our president can make it back to washington even in the middle of the night.

Vacation Ends, and Crisis Management Begins [washington post, 2005.08.31]

After a month-long retreat at his Texas ranch, Bush returned to Washington on Wednesday in crisis-management mode, where his administration is likely to remain indefinitely.

we also know what’s not really, really important to this president.

i also heard, in passing, that the comfort would be headed to the gulf coast in the next few days. seems to me that decision is a bit late too.

in the meantime, there’s a classic photo of the president playing fiddling while rome burns….err. i mean… playing guitar while nawlins sinks.

posted by roj at 4:02 am  

Thursday, May 26, 2005

let’s all catapult the propoganda

this is a phrase i’ve never heard before, and something just doesn’t seem right about it…

See, in my line of work you got to keep repeating things over and over and over again for the truth to sink in, to kind of catapult the propaganda.

for some values of “propoganda” and, of course, some version of reality.

Main Entry: 2catapult
Function: verb
transitive senses : to throw or launch by or as if by a catapult
intransitive senses : to become catapulted

Main Entry: pro·pa·gan·da
Function: noun
Etymology: New Latin, from Congregatio de propaganda fide Congregation for propagating the faith, organization established by Pope Gregory XV died 1623
1 capitalized : a congregation of the Roman curia having jurisdiction over missionary territories and related institutions
2 : the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person
3 : ideas, facts, or allegations spread deliberately to further one’s cause or to damage an opposing cause; also : a public action having such an effect.

posted by roj at 4:31 am  

Friday, May 20, 2005

bush takes a clear position on science and life

let us be perfectly clear.

Bush Vows to Veto Stem Cell Legislation [ap via abc news, 2005.05.20]

“I’m very concerned about cloning,” Bush told reporters in the Oval Office. “I worry about a world in which cloning becomes acceptable.”

“I made it very clear to the Congress that the use of federal money, taxpayers’ money to promote science which destroys life in order to save life is I’m against that. And therefore, if the bill does that, I will veto it.”

oh, really?

i’m not sure i understand precisely [pdf] what the president means.

one newspeak version: Report: Mini Nukes May Save Lives [cbs/ap 2003.11.10].

let’s read that one more time…

use of federal money, taxpayers’ money to promote science which destroys life in order to save life is I’m against that

posted by roj at 9:00 pm  

Thursday, November 4, 2004

god and politics

this is one way to put it…

God has no place in politics and should not have been used by churches in the United States to influence the presidential election, a council representing 342 Christian groups around the world said.

The World Council of Churches (WCC) told U.S. member churches in a letter that they should not ask whose side God was on in an election but only offer “a moral and spiritual compass for their community, their nation and the world.”

and this guy has another…. (nsfw)

[mp4/video]

[mov/video]

[mp3]

(you gotta give me credit for putting eric schwartz and the world council of churches on the same side of an issue…)

posted by roj at 9:08 am  

Wednesday, November 3, 2004

counter-spinning the mandate

i’ve heard the “bush was elected with more votes than any president in history” line just a few too many times today. nice statistic. nice spin to try to establish mandate from a 51% return. nice try. so i’m going to spin that top the other way.

in the 2000 race:
bush: 50,461,092
gore: 50,994,086
nader: 2,882,728
other: 1,039,754
gore + nader + other: 54,916,568

in the 2004 race:
bush: 59,056,036
kerry: 55,464,322
nader: 394,840
kerry + nader: 55,859,162

so, the counter-spin is….? bush was voted against by more people than any elected president in history too.

posted by roj at 7:16 pm  

Wednesday, November 3, 2004

you are here

Alexander Taylor, 1778

A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves money from the public treasure. From that moment on the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most money from the public treasury, with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy followed by a dictatorship.

The average age of the world’s great civilizations has been two hundred years.

These nations have progressed through the following sequence: from bondage to spiritual faith, from spiritual faith to great courage, from courage to liberty, from liberty to abundance, from abundance to selfishness, from selfishness to complacency from complacency to apathy, from apathy to dependency, from dependency back to bondage.

update: auf deutsch

posted by roj at 7:25 am  

Wednesday, November 3, 2004

i was wrong

betting on stupid and dishonesty do work in american politics.

bummer.

posted by roj at 4:47 am  
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