Saturday, March 22, 2008

Aww, the sweet smell of politics

I love politics. It was my college major. Ironically, theology and philosophy was my minor. Nowadays those disciplines all seem to play a crutial role in becoming president of the USA. Even more than politics, I love words.

In the past few months we've seen kitchen sinks thrown about for candidates who were accused of being full of nothing but words, and then a week later the same man was condemned because of someone else's words. It seems that the significance of words vary. According to the messages of some, good words are meaningless and bad combinations of words can hurt you.

I remember sitting in the congregation of Rev. Wright's church for the first time. It was packed and the choir all wore African garb but sang in the traditional black church gospel way. I was comforted by the others around me as they hugged me, grabbed my hands, and gave me warm greetings when they realized it was my first time. It is so easy to feel lost in a large congregation, but this church had a circular design and the pulpit was in the middle of the people.

Rev. Wright approached the pulpit and the very first words that came from his mouth relaxed me. In fact, they brought a smile to my face and immediately settled me. He used simple words and I felt the genuine nature of how he spoke them. It was his honesty in how he spoke that reached me. His words were simple, yes, and they were the first words from his mouth each time he came to the pulpit every Sunday morning.

I was alone in Chicago after being abandoned. It was the aftermath of a failed relationship that left me alone and grieving. I would forget my solitude on Sundays when I walked into the Trinity Church and I easily got lost in the news of the multitude of community programs and outreach spoken about and detailed in the booklet we received - our Sunday bulletin. It was a thick booklet. Half of it was filled with community outreach program information and activities. Reaching out to others was a guided focus and obligation of these Christians. The church is located in the black community, so naturally the outreach was to this community.

For the first time in my life, I was attending a church that actively and effectively served the community in which it resided.

But after a few minutes of flipping through the booklet, Rev Wright would appear at the pulpit with his million dollar smile. It looked warm. It felt warm. He then spoke his typical opening words that never grew old.

I don't know why we haven't had sound bites of that. I can still hear him as he looked around to greet us every Sunday morning. Looking around, smiling, he'd say and then pause with, "I love you."

And I believe him because the expansive church outreach confirms it. And so those simple opening words developed into a sermon of politics, government, God's plan and truths, and the people around me every week. I understood it, I embraced it, and I never lost love for all mankind while listening to it. He led me back to people and never separated me from anyone. He led me back to a community of all people and grounded my walk with the Jesus love concepts.

I miss that church. If you don't understand what he means and how he stands for God, then I offer his words to you, but from me: "I love you." If I had my way then I'd tell you not to ever let anyone tell you that good words are meaningless.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

If I have my way....

I was wondering how long I would have to shut this blog down if I have my way. After all, I imagine that I am among 10 million other Americans vying for a representative spot in the Democratic Party this year and if I make it, my snide remarks about another prominent party member would be viewed as inappropriate.

I have moved into the next phase as a party volunteer already. I'm required to sign a confidentiality statement this week. I snickered as I read that notice just after reading that 900,000 Americans are on the FBI watch list. I snickered as I wondered, "Who's watching the FBI? Is it Bush? Could it be McCarthy Jr.? What do we really know?"

To avoid a dive into the paranoia, I quickly decided not to care. I don't think I'm up for that free trip to a camp in Cuba yet. There's several there and even one for the little kids. I heard the water sports were great...something called waterboarding or something. That sounds like it kicks surfing in the butt big time.

At any rate, I will not set my sights too high. My best bet is to continue to try and sift thru the Texas ballots and make copies under heavily supervised conditions. Closer to home we're making a block club and having a block party to encourage interaction and ward off insecurities that some of our neighbors are beginning to feel.

In 2008, the new black is NIMFY, (Not in my front yard). I never thought about devoting myself as a community organizer, and I never knew there was such a career. I just knew that there were people who did local stuff here and there. I won't wait to be named anything. I live here. I pay taxes here. My son lives and plays here. We are who we say we are because we make it, believe it, and then live it.

Care to join us?

Obama '08 ... We are the people we've been waiting for.... hail yeah!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

In Crook county, Wyoming, the candidates both received 50% of the vote.

Here's the next-day online headline results after the BIG Obama Wyoming caucus win. Is someone cooking fish at MSNBC? Also, no story could be found at all after flipping through half of one the the largest newspapers in Texas even though months ago they endorsed Obama. Hmmmm.

MSNBC: What women want. Hillary clintons appeal to female baby boomers
and then underneath that story is Obama had star power but minor role in Senate

CNN: Obama takes Wyoming caucus

Fox News Obama Regains Momentum, Illinois senator trounces Clinton in Wyoming caucuses on the road to critical contests

• CAMPAIGN WIRE: Obama Says He Won't Be Clinton's VP
Obama told KTVQ in Billings, Mont., Friday: “You won’t see me as a vice presidential candidate.”

“I’m running for president,” he told the television station. “We have won twice as many states as Senator Clinton, and have a higher popular vote, and I think we can maintain our delegate count — but you know, what I’m really focused on right now, because all that stuff is premature, is winning this nomination and changing the country.”

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Fair play?

After Senator Clinton’s narrow win in the Texas primary, the headlines all screamed about her BIG WIN. I can hardly sleep tonight awaiting tomorrow’s big headlines for Obama’s comeback win in Wyoming. It’s a larger delegate spread than Clinton's in Texas by most reports.

And so the real issues at play here, those Which-Cannot-Be-Named, the emotions, the passionate supporters, and the media machine are all falling into historical patterns. Yes, I’ll call it now because it’s obvious.

Senator Clinton cannot beat Senator Obama in the remaining primaries or caucuses to take the nomination. Why doesn’t the press treat her like they did Huckabee? What is the race about? Are we really ready for this?

If the superdelegates side with the candidate with the fewer numbers, the Democratic Party will fold, or nearly fold. Or at least be severely damaged for years to come.

So when America’s Wonder Man vs. Cruella DeVille turned into America’s False Hopes vs. America’s Sweetheart on TV and in print, and it happened when the country realized that he really was going to win the nomination, it felt like a slap on many levels. The absence of headlines and coverage in the past two or three weeks feels like ‘more of the same’ kind of treatment. I know that I get vastly unpopular when I point to the obvious and it concerns those things Which-Cannot-Be-Named.

Senator Obama has chosen not to rush down this road about such things, and this is why he can win Wyoming and I cannot. I’d show up there and part-way thru this messy business I’d be shipped back to Texas to make more compost, or to find more pig tails to twist. At some point I just cannot read or watch anymore.

When congress people can say things such as, “The terrorists will dance in the streets” if Obama wins because of his middle name and there’s no backlash, but Obama’s advisor goes overseas off the record and calls Clinton a monster and he has to stop campaigning to handle the press, there’s a serious problem going on here.

When a candidate can consistently spread false and misleading information that has been proven to be false and misleading, especially caught in the lie live on TV during the Ohio debate [NAFTA], and still use the same platform to win that state’s primary then there’s a problem.

Mostly, for me, when a candidate moves to kill the spirit and involvement of America’s youth, a population who has never been so engaged in politics since the 1960’s, and uses middle-aged populous to bully them, there is a problem.

I don’t know how Senator Obama can continue to sit back and smile the way he does. I am certain that he anticipated this scenario. Unfortunately, I had hoped for a little more integrity from the American people and that few would buy into this historical game of how we divide people.

Well, the Presidential Race 2008 story isn’t finished yet but I’m not too enthused about these middle chapters. No one said it would be easy. It feels like the candidates are being pushed into a fight that they didn't want to have. I do lay more blame on the Clintons because they are running a campaign the way one would against someone from an opposing party.

Now, it's as if the entire country is sitting back waiting for Obama to drop a bomb on Clinton, and egging him to do so. Another day passes and he is simply smiling and moving forward. I see nothing weak about this man yet.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Fact checker

***WARNING: The end of this post contains a very disturbing link. I'd like to find a way to verify, and those who know me know that I don't let things like this die without digging into it.

Yesterday I erroneously posted a slam against Senator Clinton's statements concerning winning Ohio. I removed it. I watched more clips of her making assertions about winning Ohio, and she was referring to the primaries. And so now I can continue with my fact checking ways.

1.) Ohio is so far down the line during primaries that the nominee is usually already decided by the time they vote.

2.) She's still wrong. Maybe she meant as far as she can remember. Ohio primaries picked the loser in 1912, 1932, 1952, 1960, 1964, and 1968.

Other errors [lies?]

The Canadian Government now says that it was the Clinton campaign who contacted them to downplay NAFTA shootout. Whatever. Let's not turn this into a we said/they said debate between two governments.

Big questions on both sides

Hillary made a huge deal out of her 2000 New York opponent to release his tax returns. She hasn't released any of her own since. After going bankrupt during the Whitewater trial, people want to know where all of this money has come from to grant loans to her campaign.

What happened during travelgate? Google it. Hillary seems to have had a key figure and 7 staff fired in the White House travel office, bringing in the FBI and attempting to have a man who headed up the office for 7 presidents jailed. [He was aquitted by a jury in under 2 hours]. She replaced the folks who were given an hour notice to clear their desks with her own people.

Why, oh why did she bring up Rezko? Must we re-live the Whitewater mini series? Well, yes. Obama billed the non-profit 5-7 hours to file papers, but not for Rezko. Conversely, Clinton billed the Rose Law firm 60 hours and had significant input on the land deal that sent the McDougald's to jail, [James McDougald died in jail a few weeks before he was to be released]. It seems as if the kitchen sinks that she's chosen to throw at Obama ARE FULL OF HER OWN DIRTY DISHES.

As far as Obama goes, it seems as if both sides have talked to the Canadians about NAFTA. So what? Maybe.

Granted, I am currently a die-hard Obama supporter, and I love to know the truth. I want people to be who they say they are. I think that uniting the American people is a tougher job than getting our enemies to the bargaining table. There's probably a variety of reasons why masses of people are behind this man. To read and hear insipid remarks about why we support him is condenscending. I admire his stand on maintaining his integrity and never stooping to the low levels of traditional politicking. The big question I have is how will he get her off of him and still maintain his position without a serious counter-attack. How can he do it without crossing that fine line of not hitting a woman? I cannot figure this one out and I pose this question to the other smart people like Barack. In the meantime, those of lower intelligence like myself will continue to write scathing anti-Hillary blogs.

Downright disturbing

The Clintons seem to have a certain affinity to use the "N" word and negative references to Jews. See interview from a long-time personal bodyguard. Cut and paste until i figure out how to make this a clickable link.

The speech that changed America - Barack in NH

Derrick on Obama - inspirational

Barack in Dallas