Saturday, August 31, 2013

I'm Glad It Is Not My Decision ~ Ruth Ann Satchfield

Ruth Ann Satchfield:

"Except for those directly involved, there is no one who despises war more than I. However, whatever the President's decision about Syria, I will do my best to support it. It was not always that way, because it was my generation who fought the Vietnam War. That war was like Iraq, one in which we should have not been involved."
"I remember quite well the day my grandmother told me about coming to Texas in a covered wagon. It was 1962, and I was in high school. She was a child when she came, and it was a wagon train of friends and relatives. She told me then that a young couple traveling with them were Lyndon Johnson's parents, her cousins. Grandmother was a Bains/Bayne. I disliked him so much at the time, I didn't tell anyone for years. It was not his other politics that bothered me; I agreed with most of them. It was the war! After high school, I dated many young men from the helicopter-rescue training group in Mineral Wells. Many of those brave young men did not come back from Vietnam. What they had chosen to become was one of the most dangerous positions a man could choose. They knew their slim odds of making it back, but still chose to fight for the country they loved. Then the people who volunteered and those who were drafted came home and the country they loved treated them like dirt. It broke my heart." "This country has a love/hate relationship with war. In my youth, we watched Roy Rogers, The Lone Ranger, and other American westerns, and were led to believe the "good guys" always won. I have grown up, but there are still those in this country that have not. It seems they enjoy taking military personnel as if they were toy figures and moving them to fight in different theaters around the world. The problem is that they are not plastic figures but real, living human beings. Some of these people are the ones advising the president, and I can only hope that they are more compassionate and better-informed than Cheney and the rest who took us into Iraq. I feel that anyone who advises the president on military campaigns should have participated in war themselves, not gotten deferments like Cheney." "There are people who lie this country into war for their own benefit. The Gulf of Tonkin Incident was more fiction than fact, and 50,000 of our service people died for that bit of fiction; more veterans are dying today from cancer, diabetes, and other diseases caused by that war. In Iraq, we lost 4488 people as of August 27, 2013, and are still counting. Iraq was based on lies about weapons of mass destruction. Right-wing politicians and pundits have made much of the fact that President Obama is taking his time checking everything out instead of closing his eyes and jumping into war with both feet, like President Bush. I, for one, appreciate the time and care he is taking in making this all-important decision." "I do not know upon what information President Obama will be making his decision, and neither do the majority of the people of this country. We are each entitled to our own opinions, just like I was when I disliked President Lyndon Johnson. I was wrong, and many of our uninformed decisions will be wrong now! I do know that if it were my children and grandchildren who were being killed with chemical weapons, I would not care who made them stop, just that someone did. It is too easy to place myself in their shoes. If you think of it that way, what would you do then? We are either a good compassionate nation or we are not."
"For those on the "right" who are so sure that war is the answer, and for those on the "left" who are so sure that it is not, the one thing I am sure of is that I am glad it is not my decision. Would you be so confident if it was yours?"

Don't Waste Your Vote ~ Ruth Ann Satchfield

Ruth Ann Satchfield:

"Most of you know that I vote Democratic now, but that was not always the case. I was an Independent before the Republicans got George Bush elected twice. The damage those elections did will take many years to repair, and this country may never recover. He would never have become president if many of us had not voted for other parties that did not have a chance of winning. Several of my friends and others I interact with on a regular basis keep insisting that one party is as bad as the other.
First, that is not even near true, but even if it was, and we all got together and elected Jill Stein President of the United States, how would that work? President Obama had to work to get some of the needed votes from the red-state Democrats to defeat the Republicans. Jill Stein is further left, and does not have the credentials or the power to pull in the votes of all the Democrats. Those red-state Democrats would vote with the Republicans, and she would not get anything done. If Bernie Sanders was running, he would have a better chance of accomplishing more, but in states like Texas, Georgia, Oklahoma, Kansas, Arizona, and others he is known as a socialist, so it would be a difficult choice for those Democrats to vote with him. He would still be a better choice because of the connections he has. We do not have a Teddy Roosevelt, and unless we did, it cannot work."
"Understanding the need for the help of the Congress to get anything accomplished in Washington, what do we really think the Green Party can do? President Obama’s agenda has been harmed by the Tea Party, and he has had to go around the people who hate government of all types. The Tea Party seems to have some members of the Republican Party bullied, and might have a better chance of getting something done if they got someone elected. That would depend on them actually wanting to accomplish anything; except for the destruction of the United States government, they seem to have no other goals. I want to believe that when push comes to shove, the old-time Republicans will vote for what is good for this country, and they know that is not the Tea Party."
"I am sure that you have lots of legislation you would like passed if you are a Green Party member, and I am pretty sure I would agree with most of it. If you cannot see a pathway to getting that legislation passed, you must make one. The best way to do that is to start on the local level and work up. When it is a choice between the Republicans and Green, I choose Green, and I’ll bet others do, too. In the meantime, to vote into office a presidential candidate with hands tied tighter than President Obama’s would be a waste of power. The Democratic Party works for the people of our country. They support unions, public education, public health care, seniors, clean air, clean water, regulating corporations (including banks), and most of all, they respect the middle class and the poor. The Republicans support the richest 1%: corporations that pay no taxes and move jobs overseas, support education for only a few, and sell our water to corporations, not regulating those corporations and letting them poison both water and air. They do not support regulations for the banks. If you cannot see a difference in these two parties, I cannot help beyond these facts. It is time to unite the people of this country against the corporations that are destroying the American dream and the country itself. The only way we can do that is to work within the Democratic party, and pull it back left. Just like the Tea Party pulled some to the right, the Green Party could be instrumental in pulling many back to the left. Instead of being destructive and without a clear path to power, we could actually accomplish something by pushing our goals within the Democratic Party. It is politics, so no one gets everything he or she wants, but the way things are presently working, we are not getting anything accomplished and we make it easier for a Republican to get elected."
"Please give this some thought: accomplishing something or accomplishing nothing. Seems like a simple choice to me."

Ideology Purity ~ Eric Smith

"Do you want to know who is ultimately responsible for President Reagan and the two presidents named Bush? Do you want to know who bears a huge chunk of responsibility for that disaster known as supply side economics? Do you want to know who really gave us the Iraq war and the Great Recession that went with it? It wasn't Republicans and it wasn't Conservatives. It was us and by us I mean we Democrats/Liberals/Progressives or more specifically those who call themselves these things who were insistent on our presidential candidates being ideologically pure. We did to President Carter, presidential candidates Mondale, Dukakis, Gore, and Kerry much of which many of us are doing to President Obama today. Because these individuals did not do things our way and only our way, we called them weak, and not up to the challenge of being president."

"The only Democratic candidates we had who won the presidency in the past thirty seven years were those Democratic presidential candidates named Clinton and Obama who did not allow their base bully them into being the slaves of ideology and that was no accident because by appealing to the center they tapped into the source of this nation's greatest strength; its center. If Clinton or Obama had caved to the demands of their base like Carter did when he ran for reelection, and Mondale, Dukakis, Kerry, and Gore did when they ran for the presidency, the White House would have been under continuous Republican control since 1976 and if that had happened what type of country would we have today or would we still even have a country at all?"

"Ideology purity is a recipe for political defeat; whether one is Republican or Democrat and so if we are about continuing to win elections and governing then we need to stop this nonsense with this president. We need to recognize that President Obama is the president of all the people; not just us Democrats/Liberals/Progressives, and if anyone is dumb enough to think that he is even remotely like the two Presidents Bush or even Reagan himself then I suggest you bone up on your history and read what actually happened under those administrations. I know because I lived through all of it and I'm telling you straight up that it was a bitch! It was nothing, nothing at all like it is now, and anyone who thinks otherwise either did not live back then, or is too damn lazy to read up on the history of those times and grasp just how terrible they really were."

On Syria ~ By Blaine Coleman

Blaine Coleman: "If I recall, a majority of the public was against the Iraq war, not only because it was based on lies, but mainly because the attackers came from Afghanistan! Bush managed to damage our reputation with most of our allies and that's, unfortunately, bleeding over onto Obama. Last week a US satellite recorded and transmitted to the military, chemical weapons being moved, rockets being fired to strike civilian areas in Damascus. Just how much proof does anyone need that Assad is gassing and poisoning his own citizens, napalming schools, hospitals, etc.? This is not 2001 and Bush is not the President. He fooled Congress- Republican-controlled- into supporting his personal vendetta against Saddam. Well, Obama has no personal vendetta and he knows that Russia is supplying plane loads of weapons to Assad every week. As much as I detest war in any form, I do believe that a strong and successful strike on Syria is the only way to prove to countries such as Iran that they can't blatantly flout international law and get away with it. I have to ask: If not us, who? If not now, when?"