Friday, March 24, 2006

 

Life?: Part 1

When I was twelve Life seemed like an inverted box. It’s purpose was to selectively keep things out rather than in. And I felt left out. Up to that point, more than anything, I think, school had affected my way of thinking. The various subjects were taught to me in a similar way: my future rested purely on the degree to which I learned that which I was taught. I was taught that what I was taught is, was and always be the Truth. Subjects as different as mathematics and history were taught in the same objective manner: Two plus two equals four. The president is and always has been, and always will be a great and respectable man (Afterall, how could a majority of American voters ever be wrong?). To me, aspiring to be as big and important as the president was my duty; my only path to success; my right as an American. These were lofty goals, but they didn’t seem out of reach. Afterall, someone has to be the president, right?
So Life, to me, became something you earned over time through great financial and personal successes. At home I was taught that to be successful I had to get a college education and a job paying me six figures a year. Then it was easy street from there on out. As a twelve-year-old child, whose food was paid for largely by foodstamps, Life seemed a long way off. Foodstamps were a dirty secret, were dirty money. I, my mother and my sisters were damaged goods and a social burden on the good taxpaying citizens who didn’t rely on public funds. I was doomed to live a less-than-ordinary life since I never had a dad. To be fair, teachers don’t say these straight to your face, but teachers aren’t the only people I learned from at school. Fortunately, I had an expensive pair of pants and nice shoes and I wasn’t black or Hispanic, so no one ever suspected that my family and I were low-lives. And in spite of all the social hurdles in my path I wasn’t hopeless, since I could still earn my Life through an education.

Friday, February 24, 2006

 

Port Schmort

Honestly, I'm not terribly worried about the security of the 6 U.S. ports under question with the sale of operations to a U.A.E. firm. The Security will still be run by U.S. Customs and Coast Guard like it always has. It does worry me a little that the company wouldn't be held to some of the standards that others are, like keeping business records on U.S. soil that are subject to U.S. courts. Maybe even more worrisome is that the Bush administration had worked on the deal for three months, but Mr. Bush himself apparently didn't know about it until it was already decided upon. Is he simply a figurehead that rubber-stamps memos and spins on his chair while the grown-ups do the work? Oh and yay! The company has hired lobbyists to convince congress that its a great deal. Just what Americans want, more lobbyists who are just so concerned about what's best for us.

Karl Rove said, "I think the more information that people get about this proposed transaction and the more they come to understand that the security of America's port terminals remains under the direction of the United States Coast Guard and Customs, the more comfortable people are becoming with it." The problem is that Americans didn't have the information in the first place. Once again we got the standard, "It's classified." "Don't worry." "Trust us." Trust what? Secrecy? An administration that has launched us 25 years into the past into another cold war? Trust that our actions in Iraq were the best possible even though the country is ripping itself apart? That government contracts to companies like Halliburton get the job done and don't waste any precious government funds? Trust that the world is a much safer place and not at all coming closer and closer to a nuclear attack ala WWIII? Personally I'm about ready to soil myself.

One last little bit here. Why the absencese of the need for the firm to have business records in the U.S.? What is going on that the administration doesn't want Americans to know about? I wonder if there is some kind of special cargo that will be going through these ports. I guess to sum things up...once again the Bush administration has seen fit to do whatever it wants without real regards to the people that they represent. To some it seems like the administration is "politically tone deaf" this implies a sense of innocencese and naivete, but I think that this administration is anything but.

Friday, February 10, 2006

 

Our Reps

Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. How do you know if your representatives have been corrupted? Well, for me the refusal to leave office has always been suspicious. No matter how old and out of touch some of our representatives may seem, they still cling to their cushy jobs in Washington, collecting a pretty nice salary and complaining that they won't be getting as many freebees now that the jig is up.

I believe we should challenge those in office to answer to the people - to the masses. Certainly there are special interest groups out there that do represent valid constituencies. And some of them even advocate causes that are relevant to those people. But it shouldn't be the job of a public official to bow down to those who forked over the most money to their campaign. They should weigh the needs and wishes of their constituencies as a whole and use the best information possible to find the best solution to issues impacting them. Just remember, public officials work for those who they represent, not some large national party or agenda.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

 

What are we really doing here?

First I'd like to post a few snippets from a recent Newsweek article.

A CIA-guided Predator drone fired missiles at houses in the village of Damadola, aiming to kill Zawahiri. At least 18 people were obliterated, though probably not Zawahiri. "We are still not sure who they were," said a senior official in Islamabad who spoke only on condition of anonymity. "We are still in the process of establishing their identity." Still, U.S. counterterrorism officials say they may never completely confirm the identities of terrorists who were blown up.
The Predator killed several women and children, provoking demonstrations in the tribal region. "The message to them is, 'You have to take a new measure now: your families are not safe if you protect the terrorists'," says one senior Pentagon official.

Wow. What else can I say? Apparently we want to kill certain people so badly that we are willing to blatantly obliterate (good word) innocent women and children. And if we're still not sure who all those people are, what made us so confident that we should just go and blow them up in the first place?

I wonder why it is then that we haven't gotten to Osama bin Laden? Maybe we could tell who we are killing if we went about it a little more carefully. What if we did get Osama? Would we even know it? I'm sure there are people out there that would just love to have a phantom menace to perpetually strike fear into the hearts of others. After all, what better way to keep the masses obedient?

And let's not forget about backlash. Oh, oops...apparently everyone in the Middle East will now fear for their lives and those of their families. It's a good thing that the U.S. wouldn't stoop to using terroristic threats. I doubt anyone would want to exact revenge for such just actions anyway. I mean that's the way it has worked in Israel, right?

I just gotta scratch my head and wonder sometimes. I just hope something more important doesn't come along like more steroids in baseball or another private matter between family members. Keep up the good work!

 

And I thought financial institutions were our friends

Haha, basically big business in America does not care about you. This should not come as a surprise. Now I'm not advocating a Fight Club solution here, just mind your P's & Q's when it comes to your finances. Check out a couple of starter articles and let those search engines have it!

http://moneycentral.msn.com/content/Savinganddebt/Managedebt/P125779.asp?GT1=7623 http://moneycentral.msn.com/content/Banking/creditcardsmarts/P98888.asp http://moneycentral.msn.com/content/Banking/creditcardsmarts/P41957.asp

I'm lucky enough to have a built in loathing for the owing of money, but admittedly owe a couple hundred on one of my credit cards right now. But there is something bigger nipping at my heals - my student loan. Currently sitting at around $10,000 its not that bad comparatively, but for me its like having a zombie chasing after me and not having any weapons to use against it. And I won't even go into the way our personal information is not personal. I still haven't bought into that false American dream (maybe because I still don't have a real job). Sure I went to college and racked up a nice little bit of debt - creditors 1, consumer 0. Here's where I start to get a little defiant.

I've diverged a little from the standard path which is
1) Go to college, amass student loan debt
2) Graduate from college, get a job, be a good little worker bee
3) Save up a little bit of money and buy a new car = student loan + car loan
4) Continue being a good little worker bee, maybe get a promotion and some kids
5) Save up a little more money and buy a house = student loan + car loan + home loan
6) Congratulations! You are now in debt for the rest of your life. Let's just hope that there will be some kind of social security programs out there when you retire to help maintain a standard of living...any standard.

I don't have a real job (which also means no savings, no retirement plans, generally not much), I still drive the car that my dad pulled out of a salvage yard and fixed up 7 years ago, and as for buying a house? Maybe if people would stop throwing money around like there will never be another house for sale again, I'll think about it...after I get my wings. Buzz buzz.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

 

Sorry to our fan

I apologize to our sole reader about the lack of blogging activity. We will promise to maybe be a little more active in our postings...possibly.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

 

Cosmic Recycling


What really happens to us when we die? Well, we cease to exist altogether. Perhaps some of us ascend into Heaven and others descend into Hell. Maybe we are reincarnated into another form of life or if we are worthy we may end up in the halls of Valhalla. There are just too many beliefs out there, some of them similar and some very different.

What if our souls are recycled? I was born on October 9. John Lennon was born on October 9 and so were a lot of other people throughout history. What if our souls are reserved for one specific day? Maybe our creation is a set occurrence, maybe our deaths are too.

Thinking like this also lead me along the lines of human knowledge. It seems remarkable that over the course of human history we have accomplished so much and have come so far. Sometimes it seems hard to believe that all human knowledge is simply passed down from one person to the next orally, written, or now in audio/visual media. This is kind of where my little thought bubble bursts in. Maybe with every new birth, human potential grows.

I guess this still allows for a Heaven and Hell or maybe just a limbo where souls wait patiently in line for their number to be called. Haven't you ever wondered why astrology seems to be so eerily right on? I know that when I see info. about Libras there seems to be too many "coincidences" to just be some random crap. And isn't it strange that children seem to "grow up faster" these days?

Sunday, December 25, 2005

 

Practice what you preach



If you've asked yourself this question: "If we are truly living in a free, democratic society, then why do I feel powerless when it comes to politics?", you are not alone. In America, our great political power as citizens is embodied by filling in a bubble on a sheet of paper, so they say at least. Actually, I think our real power lies in our ability to speak. I am talking to you now, and often, about our role as citizens in the political sense. I am participating in politics. I post articles on a forum that has less than 30 members, yet I am participating in politics. I read articles about what our government, as well as other governments, are doing all around the world. I am participating in politics. I take responsibility for what our government does, like it or not. So I AM participating in politics. I bought a passport and got a visa to live in another country. I am participating in politics. I pay taxes in two countries. I am participating in politics. You can't escape it, but you can ignore it if you try really hard. I suggest you don't ignore it, since it won't go away. You can either own politics, or be owned by it. That's what is great about living in a free country: the ability to choose.

 

So this is Christmas

I like the idea of Christmas despite the fact that I’m agnostic. In fact, I think any occasion when people are given the day off just so they can spend time with their family is a good one. For me, this is the most important thing that Christmas offers since any Christian-based meanings are lost on me. I can’t rejoice in the fact that Jesus was born on Christmas, and not only because there is no evidence that he actually was. And unfortunately I will not be with my family this Christmas, but thanks to technology and science I will be able to talk to them.

I think that many of the ideas and words that are attributed to Jesus are worthy of considerable thought. I have studied the bible fairly extensively on my own, and also in some of my classes at university. Unfortunately I end up with more questions than answers; mostly because I can’t rely on blind faith alone. However, I think that if the people of the world lived by the teachings of Jesus, this would be a better world. I think that people who say they are Christian and still start a war are the worst kind of hypocrites and cynics. I hope that someday good Christians will take the not so good ones to task. I hope that someday we will realize that killing and war can never lead to justice OR peace. And I didn’t need Christianity to come to that realization.

Merry Christmas, whatever that means to you!

Saturday, December 24, 2005

 

the price is right


Flying high above the devastation in air force one...
An arial view of the damage
Unspeakable horror, let's talk about it
This could be good for business
Pushing an ambitious agenda
The stench is overwhelming
Back-up generators faltering
Just another straw on our already broken backs

Smiling poses in infamous photos
The face of scandal, international furor
One more example of holding people accountable

An ideal place to store radioactive waste
I can't wait for the day when the banks collapse
I can tell by your clueless expression
You have no idea what I'm talking about
Do YOU think you know real?

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

 

Something for little biggots

It's so nice I'll post it twice.

You've got to be taught
To hate and fear
You've got to be taught
From year to Year
It's got to be drummed
In your dear little ear
You've got to be carefully taught

You've got to be taught
To be Afraid
Of people whose eyes
Are oddly made
And people whose skin
Is a different shade
You've got to be carefully taught

You've got to be taught
Before it's too late
Before you are 6 or 7 or 8
To hate all the people
Your relatives hate
You've got to be carefully taught

-from South Pacific by Rodgers and Hammerstein

Saturday, December 10, 2005

 

NCPA

Alright people, it's high time we started the NCPA (National Cell Phone Association). Why? Because cell phones don't make bad drivers, people make bad drivers. More to the point, stupid people make bad drivers (cell phones just make it easier to be a bad driver).

I've been thinking about this for a while now, but 2 events last night really pushed me over the edge. On the way to pick up a friend I was slowly passing a Chevy Impala while in the lane to their right. This person was talking on their cell phone and had a passenger in the car. While I was moving through their blind spot they began to merge into me. Luckily they saw me waving at them as I sped up and drove past without incident. Lucky, not really a close call, just lucky.

Later on the very same night we were going to the midnight movie. On the way to the theatre I was passing a Ford Explorer in the right lane when the person (again on the cell phone, again with a passenger) began turning into me. I hit the breaks, but it was icy out and I didn't do too much stopping (thank god for anti-lock breaks). I did my best to steer away from the SUV without crashing into the snowbank. My passenger was good enough to reach over without interfering with my steering and honk my horn. This wasn't lucky, this was a damn close call.

Personally I remember from drivers training that before you change lanes you are supposed to 1) signal, 2) check your mirrors, 3) turn your f*cking head and check your god damned blind spot, and 4) safely change lanes. I know this is a lot of steps and can be very difficult to do. After all, it takes a great deal of effort to move your finger two f*cking inches to activate your turn signal and even more effort to turn your obesely fat head to the left or right to check for traffic. Kids that have played Parappa the Rapper know this crap.

I think this stems in part from Americans' general selfishness. It seems to me that once people get into their cars, the outside world only exists in a 3 foot circle around it. People do not pay attention to what they are doing in relation to the world around them. I remember driving for 35+ hours straight with Mike and still feeling that we were more aware than a lot of the drivers on the road...because we didn't cause/nearly cause any accidents.

This is where the NCPA comes in. I'm sure you've heard of laws or proposed laws limiting or banning cell phone use while driving. Well, I think that this is a right that we need to fight to keep. Cell phone use isn't in the constitution, but I think that our right to communicate freely should not be infringed upon. I don't think it's fair that us responsible users should suffer and miss important calls, or even be denied the right to talk about some trivial matter because a few bad apples have spoiled the bunch. We need to band together and stop our intrusive government from invading our lives and limiting our freedoms. Especially when those freedoms put others at risk. And remember, cell phones don't make bad drivers, people make bad drivers.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

 

Restless in Fargo

What else is there to say? It's freezing cold, roads are icy and I'm still in frickin Fargo. I seem to grow more complacent every day and wonder what I'm doing with myself. If I keep this up will I even have a future or will I be doomed to mediocrity in a meaningless existence?

If only I wasn't so damned easily distracted. I wish I didn't get so excited over the next big thing and move on before finishing the task at hand. It's kind of strange to have so many different things on your mind and wonder if you will ever come close to finishing them. So many dreams unrealized, so many plans scrapped.

If only I was better at making decisions. Why must I sit in the middle and endlessly debate which choice is the best? I do this at the expense of both options, leaving myself in a state of limbo. There's just so many things to do in the world it seems like a shame to focus on just one or two.

Maybe I lack passion. I don't know if there is anything that I am truly passionate about. Maybe I just lack the will to succeed. Am I afraid of actually doing well in life? Am I constantly setting myself up for failure?

Where am I going with this again? I guess I need to grow up, make some tough choices, and stick to them. Easier said than done. Fargo may be the death of me yet.

Monday, November 28, 2005

 

Flip Flop and Turn Hoes Like Flap Jacks

John Kerry is a "flip flopper" and so are many other opponents to the republican right. So what?! I personally don't see the problem with someone who makes the best decision they can with the information given - and then changes their mind when better or more accurate information is evident. To me that shows a sign of intelligence and growth...or dare I say progress. Unfortunately it seems like the hard right is only concerned with the progress of industry and lining their pockets with as much money as they can before their time is up. I only hope that the American public is tired of The 80's Strikes Back and decides to move forward.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

 

I am shocked and/or outraged!


I found this article at the New York Daily Post website. enjoy!

Gatorade announces it’s Gaytorade

After years of intense speculation and amid other recent scandals, Gatorade outed itself late Monday night and officially changed its name to Gaytorade. It is believed to be the first time a major soft drink has admitted its preference for homosexual rather than heterosexual relations.

Basketball superstar/legend and long-time Gatorade spokesperson Michael Jordan had this to say at a press conference, “Although I have had a very close working relationship with Gaytorade for over 20 years, I honestly had no idea that Gaytorade was actually gay. I can’t tell you how many times I left my kids at home alone with Gaytorade. I feel sick, as well as shocked and/or outraged. That’s all I have to say.” After a brief pause, Mr. Jordan shouted several obscenities in direct reference to Gaytorade and had to be restrained as he charged towards and began stomping on a nearby Gaytorade thermos. No Gaytorade was injured in the attack.

PowerAde, Gaytorade’s main competitor in the sports soft-drink market, released a statement as well saying, “I always thought Gaytorade was a little fruity. But I had no idea it preferred the company of other male sports soft drinks. I truly am shocked and/or outraged.” Pepsi product and failed competitor All Sport also released a statement. “Gatorade...I mean Gaytorade, isn’t even carbonated. I never could understand why it was so popular. And all those fruity flavors...I’ll never understand what people saw in it. I am truly shocked and/or outraged that I was actually bested by a homosexual soft drink. I mean, c’mon, it’s gay for Christ’s sake!”

Speaking of ( and for) Christ, Pat Robertson, 700 Club founder and the most important spokesperson for God on earth since the pope, released his, and God’s, statement early Tuesday morning through his mega-popular television program. “ I and God are shocked and/or outraged. I want all of God’s children, as does God, to stop drinking Gaytorade immediately. In fact I, and God, call for a Christian-worldwide boycott of any drink that is homosexual. In fact, any Christian found to be in any kind of relationship with Gaytorade most certainly will burn in the fires of hell for the rest of eternity. Trust me; my word is as good as His. That’s why I had no problem calling for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. You see, even murders, assassinations and mass executions, like those going on in Iraq, are okay in God’s eyes as long as America or one of its many allies is carrying out such acts, for George “Dubya” Bush is the hand of God on Earth and I am His voice!”

Economic analysts all agreed that Gaytorade creator Coca-Cola would be quick to distance itself from one of its most popular products. Lawers for Coca-Cola confirmed such sentiments in the following statement, “We are all shocked and/or outraged. So in light of recent events, we have decided to disown our Gaytorade franchise. Gaytorade is no longer allowed stay in any of our storehouses. After all, we don’t want to offend one of our biggest and most important customer bases, homophobic sports competitors all over the world, by openly supporting an openly homosexual soft drink. We at Coca-Cola believe that public opinion is much more important than any parent-child type of relationship that may or may not have been real over the years.”

On a related note, unmitigated rumors have been circulating all over the sports and entertainment world of a possible relationship between HIV/AIDS infected basketball superstar Magic Johnson and Gaytorade during the early 1990s. And indeed Magic Johnson was seen on and off the court with Gaytorade on several occasions during that time period in question.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

 

this is your life

pestilence
we drop bombs for peace
we send our soldiers
when justice is what we seek
we know what`s right for you and me
so follow the leader
in this time of great danger
you don`t have to think
your ignorance is strength
so follow dear leader
our war is for peace
so follow your leader
the hand of God guides me
so follow the leader
your freedom is slavery

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