bigmacbear: Our Cairn terrier Brandy, wearing a pink bandanna, laying on a blanket with an Arizona pattern (Arizona)
First, check out this post from [ profile] badrobot68.

These are two comments I added to that post, combined and synthesized:

This KOSsack argues that the Obama Justice Department, unlike its predecessors, takes seriously its duty to defend the law as it stands, and is therefore just doing its job.

Rationally and legally speaking, he's right. Emotionally, the language used is infuriating and demeaning. And I think we have every right to feel betrayed and scream bloody murder about this betrayal. This administration sorely needs to do some damage control if we are to maintain our political gains from the last election.

But more importantly, we need to also focus our outrage on our Congresscritters (both House and Senate) and let them know that a law which forces such absurd interpretation of the Constitution and legal precedent is simply a bad law, and must be disposed of forthwith. It is in Congress's power alone to do so. And Congress needs to take this off the President's already crowded plate.

On the other hand... It turns out that the brief everyone is so p.o.'ed about was co-written by a Mormon Bush appointee, according to Americablog.

Now we have a true and proper target for outrage, methinks. We need to have Congress complete its investigation into the politicization of the Justice Department under Bush, because absent any evidence of wrongdoing on his predecessor's part, Obama won't be able to undo the damage done.

Thanks [ profile] gmjambear for the link and the suggestion to focus the blame where it belongs.

Oh, and I must confess, smelly briefs I don't ordinarily find that terribly objectionable, much like Brandy never did. But this one reeks to high heaven.
bigmacbear: Me in front of a bookcase, scowling and wagging a finger at the camera: how dare you! (how dare you)
I was listening to the Thom Hartmann show the other day and they had somebody on talking about how Monsanto and other agricultural firms are plotting to use the patent laws to acquire a monopoly on all food production worldwide, by making it illegal for farmers to engage in the time-honored practice of saving seed from their crops for next season. The person being interviewed mentioned his website, Seeds of Deception, so I thought I'd do some research.

It's worse than I thought. It appears there is a branch of the World Trade Organization that is tasked with forcing nations to enforce patents worldwide that conflict directly with their national security and sovereignty, that is spreading this virus of legal extortion globally. And it looks as though Monsanto is branching out from plants to animals by trying to patent the raising of pigs, so that in theory every pig farmer worldwide would be required to sign an onerous patent license for the privilege of raising pigs.

Taken to its logical conclusion, this legal fiction would give large agribusiness firms the ability to acquire and maintain absolute control of the global food supply for their own profit. And that cannot be allowed to happen. To do so is to squelch biodiversity, and one bad crop could risk global famine, starvation on a scale unseen in the history of the planet, and perhaps the end of the human race. If that isn't evil I defy you to tell me what is.

I now understand to some degree what motivated those hordes of people here in Seattle and elsewhere to such fits of angry destructive protest aimed at the WTO. This has got to stop before some nation (China, anyone?) interprets this legal movement as an act of war and nukes one of these firms' headquarters out of spite, thus launching Armageddon.

Bottom line: Some things should never be anyone's property; they belong to the planet and every living thing in it. No company should even for a moment consider that it has the right to a monopoly on the growing of food. And no organization, government, or individual has the power to grant such a monopoly. Lastly, the WTO has overstepped its authority and needs to be abolished.
bigmacbear: Me in a leather jacket and Hockey Night in Canada ball cap, on a ferry with Puget Sound in background (Default)
As I said in a comment in [ profile] thezzyzx's journal yesterday, it would be interesting to be a fly on the wall in George II's office the day he was briefed on the Haditha incident:

"Haditha? Wasn't she the little girl on Bewitched?"
"That was Tabitha, Mr. President."

(yes, I know it isn't pronounced that way...)

The more I hear about this the more I think we are reliving the dark days of the Vietnam war. Haditha is for today what My Lai was for that war, as I'm sure you will hear from many sources.

Rant. New and improved, with Strong Language! )
bigmacbear: Me in a leather jacket and Hockey Night in Canada ball cap, on a ferry with Puget Sound in background (Default)
This post from [ profile] elijoi links to a rant against the three "great religions" of the world -- Judaism, Christianity, and Islam -- and states that any follower of one of these religions is dangerously insane. Having been raised Catholic, my first reaction was to take offense. However, I managed to take a mental step back and realize there's a kernel of truth in what this commentator has to say.

The problem with organized religion as I see it, is that it is all too often aimed at people who either cannot or will not think for themselves. Conversely, those who are raised in an organized religion and yet retain the ability to think for themselves must somehow cope with the inconsistencies and hypocrisy that seems inherent in churches today.

And yet there is some use for faith even in the face of its illogic. It is often a source of comfort for those who are left behind when someone is taken from us or even chooses to depart this world before their time. But at the same time it is not necessary to believe in a specific deity to tap into this source of comfort, for as long as one remembers the person they will be present in some sense even after their physical presence is no more.

But my personal rant -- I find no comfort in the platitude "It was God's will" that someone has died, especially under tragic or violent circumstances. I have come to the conclusion that in the mind of the person who says this, that God must be the ultimate sadist -- and it makes the person saying this into somewhat of a sadist too, whether he or she intends to be such or not. If, God forbid, you ever think you have occasion to comfort me with this phrase, just don't. Thank you.

August 2017

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