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"The price of freedom is eternal vigilance."

...............................................................Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Not Scared

Earlier Sunday on the Fareed Zakaria GPS show on CNN [am I the only one who has noticed that this show is so far and away superior to the usual talking points/spin/counterpunch faux machismo of the rest of the Sunday morning talking heads shows...and oh, go ahead, count in most all the during-the-week drivel—yes, I'm lookin' at you Sit! Wolfie and Papa Bear and 'annity the 'orrible—that is supposed to pass for news or conversation or M$M opinionizing or whatever....]

Zakaria was interviewing the owner of the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel in Mumbai. Ratan Tata, chairman of the Tata Group, spoke with resolve about plans to rebuild the historic structure built by his great-grandfather.

But he said something else that sticks with me. And says a lot about him. And a lot about US.
"We will not let this event take us down...
"We were indignant, but we're not scared."
Here Stateside, we've been scared since 9/11. Scared of everything including our own shadows. It's been the meta-modus operandi of America. Keep everyone good and scared.

Until November 4.

We're a country ready—more than—not to be scared again. And for all the mega-military might of the good ol' US of A, being not scared is coming to us, not courtesy the establishment white-faced leaders of government and media and business.

But from faces treating us as grownups, talking intelligently, with thought and clarity. Faces like Obama. And Zakaria. And Ratan Tata.

And we are the better for it.
(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Bush Values

Hmmmm, let's see. George Bush tells his kid sister [yep, the same sister who back in 2000 was out in the streets in front of the Naval Observatory yellin' at Al and Tipper to get outa da house] that:

"I came to Washington with a set of values, and I'm leaving with the same set of values. And I darn sure wasn't going to sacrifice those values...."
It's almost too damned easy, isn't it? Okay, I'll play. What do you think are Dubya's values?
(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Salute to the Kids

Not sitting on their duffs playing videogames, these.

Fago-Moorhead area students from kindergarten through high school participated in the second annual Fill the Dome food drive, gathering canned goods and cash to benefit the food pantry which serves 240 locations across North Dakota and northern Minnesota.

The kids raised over $57,000 in cash and enough food to spread across the entire floor of the Fargodome.

Good on ya, kids!

The holiday season is just getting underway, the need will go on long after the turkey bones and even New Year's glitter becomes tomorrow's trash.

Give a thought today to what a difference a determined group of people can make, what a difference one person can make. And then put it into play....

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!
(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Hannity Logic

Now that Sean Hannity will be the sole anchor of Hannity and that other guy, he'll have nanoseconds more air time than before, and I've got just the story for him to dig into.

According to U.S. government reporting, Paraguay is the largest producer of marijuana in Latin America. Wow! Who knew....

Hmmmm, maybe this guy knew.

Now, using the well-known skills of connecting the dots that we've seen from Hannity, I expect it's only a matter of time before he begins talking about Bush's new "business" venture....

Or if not, at least we're marginally secure in the knowledge that everything Bush touches turns to scheiss.... why not marijuana farming?

Oh, wait.
(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Brother, Can You Spare a Can o'Peas?

This holiday season, fear that hits home is touching too many people And you have but to look at the news rolling out...day after day...dire reports of layoffs and big money bailouts and numbers so big, with so many commas and zeroes, you almost can't conceive 'em.

50,000 layoffs here, 50,000 layoffs there, and...well, it makes you want to smack the faces of the people who treat 'em as numbers...when these are real people's lives. The whole culture of GASP--greedy and selfish people--is getting a smack in the face these days with reality. If only they will listen.

Food pantries and homeless shelters are in greater need these days. And there's other things we might not usually think about. Blood services facing shortages when bad weather forces cancellations of drives in places where we're pretty sprawled out…like the Dakotas. It just takes a little looking around your own neighborhood.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if we did things a little different this holiday season?

Wouldn't it be wonderful if every family who's hosting a Thanksgiving this year would ask the guests to bring canned goods and then they take 'em to a local shelter or food pantry or church or charity? A way to make Thanksgiving dinner last a little longer for everyone.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if every company hosting a holiday/Christmas party, every Symphony Ball, every church supper, every Christmas program in the schools would ask that attendees bring along packaged foods for local charities and food pantries.

Wouldn't it

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Saxby Strikes Again...Snakes Always Do

You'd like to believe there would be some tiny kernel of decency and humanity lurking deep inside even the most craven of Rovian Rethuglican political types. You would be wrong.

On the ropes in his reelection campaign, Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss is bringing out the big guns. Nope, not the recent loser in the presidential sweepstakes. Although John McCain has been there, campaigning for Chambliss. The same John McCain who decried the tactics Chambliss used when he ran against then-Senator Max Cleland, a triple amputee, against whom Chambliss' cronies used advertising so vile--linking war hero Cleland with bin Laden--that McCain cried foul.

But that was then, and this is now. And the Chambliss campaign cronies are using the same vile tactics he used against Cleland to try to defeat Jim Martin. This time, Chambliss fellow-travelers like the NRSC and Ari Fleischer's Freedom's Watch are calling out Martin for being soft on crime against children.

Despite the fact that Martin's own daughter was kidnapped when she was eight years old.

Yeah, I believe that's a coincidence. Rigggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhtttt.

If we learned anything this election season, it's that the serpents never change. They prize their politics over honor, over integrity. They sting over and over and over....until they are completely, totally, finally voted out of office. One by one.

And we must be ever vigilant lest they coil and raise their heads again to strike...out.
(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Eating the Komodo Dragon

In his never-ending quest to totally trash the entire planet before he leaves office, now George "Wrecker" Bush puts the endangered species act in his sights.

One wonders if Josh Brolin was the right actor to portray Bush in the Oliver Stone pic. Maybe it should have been Matthew Broderick.

After all, he had the prep in The Freshman.
(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Backstabber Joe's First Test...


Will it be Disingenuous Joe? Self-Righteous Joe? Self-Pitying Joe? Or soon-to-revert-to-old-tactics Joe? "Democrat" Joe? Or, a Joe-to-be-named-later?

Lie-berman's set to be interviewed by Katie Couric. One hopes he gets the full Sarah Palin treatment.

Joe's first test of the Obama Era begins now.

And meanwhile, the House shows the Senate how it's done....


(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Obama Picks Daschle

Breaking news reported at CNN that Tom Daschle has been picked as Health and Human Services Secretary...with the additional honorific-plus of some sort of White House "health czar" label that will mean health care legislation will come from Daschle's shop.

This is refreshing on its face. Health Care and Human Services based on human needs, not political ideology to satisfy a rabid right wing.

Now that's change you can hope to believe in.
(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Second Wind

News that Barack Obama intends to reverse Dubya's ban on stem cell research as one of his first orders of business is welcome indeed.

And if you need a reason why...if you or one of your loved ones isn't one of the people who just might benefit from this vital research...then consider this: in Europe, stem cell surgery has given a new lease on life to a woman who needed a new windpipe. And without the risks of rejection and infection that too often have been the traditional dangers of such surgery.

We're getting our economic as well as medical butts kicked.

Just think, if the self-anointed moralists who posture and pontificate—and let's be blunt, profit—from screeding in the name of "pro-life" really took the time to think about what their obstruction and distortion/spin and irrational exuberance to protest and prevent such medical advancements means to the, you know, living...

Maybe then the "pro-life" movement would get a second wind.

Because striving to responsibly use the brains we are blessed with for to good of all, rather than as a way to connive and divide and abandon the living who need medical and scientific advancements, now that's a pro-life movement we could all get behind.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

That fat kid? He's starving to death.

This is the season of bounty. Of farmers harvesting crops, produce arriving in the stores from all over the hemisphere. The papers are chock full of coupons...for cranberries, and pumpkin pie mix, and turkey, and..... Thanksgiving is just around the corner.

But for too many kids, there is no thanks-giving. These are the kids who go to school with empty bellies, or who eat foods empty of nutrition, so that even if they look overweight, inside, their bodies are dying. Deficiencies of essential minerals will stunt their growth, trigger diabetes, slow their metabolisms.

The statistics on hunger are shocking in their growth. But every statistic is a child, a single mom, struggling to stretch too few groceries to last not long enough. A food pantry trying to provide food with too few supplies on their shelves. Christy has more at firedoglake.

Charities are already appealing for help, more help this year than ever. So many to choose among, how can we possibly supply them all? It seems so daunting. Yet who can turn a blind eye to the need?

Next time, every time you go to the grocery store, look for the collection bin or cart for your local food pantry. Next time, every time you get an envelope in the mail, send back a check. Next time, every time you walk past a red kettle, drop in some coin.

Who me, you think? What difference can I make, just one person. And then you remember...one person built a presidential campaign. Because so many pitched in that even when amounts were small, they added up to a mountain.

Can we do any less for one hungry child?
When I launched this blog nearly a year ago, one of the earliest posts I wrote was about the dire state of hunger in Haiti, "Let Them Eat Mud Cookies." 'tis a sorrowful thing indeed that instead of progress, things have gotten worse even here at home.

We've a chance now for a fresh start. Start today...help your hometown hungry as well as those far away. And you'll enjoy your own Thanksgiving turkey a whole lot more.
(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Prairie Sunshine, Independent

Monday, November 17, 2008

Lie-berman or Sunshine

If the Democrats knuckle under to whiny Joe Lie-berman's extortion to stay DHS Chair, then there is no place for me in the Democratic Party.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Rather on the Story


Dan Rather's decision to sue CBS may have been dismissed as Quixotic, but he's getting results. As this update story in the New York Times recounts, Rather is putting his money where his heart is, pursuing the story.

In this case, the story is his own. And as discovery proceeds, yet another tawdry example of the BushCo Republican style of iron-fisted and self-serving rule...with the knowing complicity of top media executives...begins to emerge.

It's simple enough...report a story that shows George W. Bush in a less than favorable light and you will be destroyed. And what message does that send? One that makes other reporters hesitate to follow controversial stories? Or how about, give a wink and a nod and dance backup, eh, Dave?

There will be many legacies of the Bush era. The meta-legacy for George Bush and Karl Rove and their political minions is a litany of examples of coercion and intimidation. That is their thuggish hallmark, one seen in the common threads of the imprisonment of Alabama Governor Siegelman and the end of Dan Rather's career at CBS.

And a cozy crony of the meta-legacy of Dick Cheney, Don Rumsfeld and their ilk.

Damn them all.


(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Survivor: Democratic Caucus


Tuesday, Joe Lie-berman will make his presentation before the Democratic Caucus on why he should retain his chairmanship of the Dept. of Homeland Security. There's a Survivor quality to all this. Who are the alliances? Who will vote the opposite of what's expected? What will the final vote be?

There have been public statements on both sides airing in the media, and enormous conversation in the blogosphere. But the ultimate decision will be made behind closed doors. It's not just that we won't hear the presentation. (Yeah, I'm bettin' it'll be one of those non-apology apologies, too.) It's that we won't hear each Senator's comments. But there'll likely be much posturing and venting and "unacceptables" and "Joe's a good friend of mine..." back and forth.

But what it really comes down to is, if the cronies trump the accountability, then how can the American people ever trust you again, Senators? Because it's gone beyond whether the Democratic Caucus can trust one that they profess is really, scratch the surface campaign sins, one of their own...

While the caucus will decide, it's not for the caucus or for the ego of Joe Lie-berman or for the netroots or for the good of the Senate or for Cokie and the punditocracy or whatever that this decision will be made.

It's for the integrity of representative democracy...and whether one Senator can set himself above all the other Senators, above the voters, above his own word...whether he can play God. And in the doing, flout ethics, flout responsibility to his oath of office, flout honor and trustworthiness. Whether he can obstruct and subvert the oversight responsibilities of the chair and then blithely expect to sit in it again.

The voters have spoken on that. And now, the Democratic Caucus must speak.


Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Grind


"Confronting opposition by the Bush Administration...."

Just think, on January 20 we'll never have to hear that phrase again.

Meanwhile, we have opposing Presidential video views to contemplate. The first of YouTube weekly addresses from almost-president Barack Obama [see twolf's diary link at Oxdown Gazette].

And the grinding down of the Bush Administration.

What could be a more apt picture this morning than Bush, herding the G20 leaders off the photo-op stage for a meaningless show meeting whose prime objective is to make him look good in legacy.

Sorry, Bush. That boat has sailed.

Seeing Bush grinding his teeth as the group had to regroup so the photo could include the tardy Argentinian representative kinda summed up the day for all of us.

And I hope somebody gets this moment I saw on MSNBC up on youtube soon, because it's good to reflect that while Bush is so no longer relevant and we're all just grindin' down our teeth wantin' him to go away, he will soon no longer be obstructive, too.

(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Friday, November 14, 2008

The Magic 60


In the smackdown that is the current contention over Lieberman's hold on the chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee, the latest wrinkle I've run across is Evan Bayh's proffer that this must not drag out because poor widdle Pal Joey might get bitter.

Well, he's already gotten hypocritical, self-serving, nasty and bald-faced lying. Oh yeah, and there is that whole Katrina thing. So bitter?

Spare me the incestuous coziness of the Incumbent Class.

The backstage maneuverings by Dodd [and thanks, Iowa, you did us a favor], Bayh and others to grease the skids of the return of Lie-berman may achieve their end of the restoration—but not the rehabilitation—of the whiny Independent Joe.

But I'm still holding out for Lieberman--caucus of one. When Joe turns out to be the backstabbing, self-serving scorpion once again, don't tell me "who could have anticipated..." I got enough of that Condi-esque crap from the Senate Democratic voters for the Iraq War Resolution. And the $700 Billion bait-n-switch bailout.

Delude yourselves, Senators. 'tain't foolin' me.

And as for that magic number 60, has anybody thought of lookin' at who on the Republican side is vulnerable in 2010? Or 2012? Why can't we reach 60 the old-fashioned way? Flip a senator....

(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Hometown Hate...Meet the Gilby Effect


Elementary schoolkids chanting "assassinate Obama" on a bus in ultra-conservative Madison County, Idaho.

It's not the only pocket of ignorance and racism exposed in the aftermath of the election of Barack Obama....

There's also that football bimbo down at the U of Texas. And a certain northern governor whose fifteen minutes of fame ran out days ago. And a swath of voters in the Ozarks-Appalachian region....

And scatterings wherever ignorance and fearmongering from pulpit or email and extremist hate building from the likes of the NRA and Hannity and Limbaugh and Lieberman terrorized the sheep.

So I thought today might be a good day to tell you that things do change.

Growing up in North Dakota, one of the ground zeroes for ultra-right and John Bircher politics was a tiny town called Gilby.

And in 2008, when all the votes were counted, John McCain had 137.

And Barack Obama, 138.

Call it the Gilby Effect, or voting your conscience even if you won't admit it, or backlash against Gov. Gypsy-Grifter that even the Republicans couldn't accept, or whatever.

North Dakota was still a red state this year overall. But the Red River Valley of the North was decidedly blue--and that included a tiny speck on the map named Gilby.

(Crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

One of the Family

One of the stark lessons of Stefan Forbes’ riveting documentary of the life of Lee Atwater, Boogie Man, which aired last night in Fargo on PBS' Frontline, was that the era of the Cliff Notes-loving media didn't begin with George W. Bush and Karl Rove and the Dancin' Daves [“backup dancer” David Gregory—the iconic statement of everything that is the incestuous life of the Village].

Watching the rise and demise of the master of Republican dirty tricks as he built his resume on lie after lie was demoralizing indeed. Spokesperson after spokesperson—folks like Sam Donaldson, Tucker Eskew, Mary Matalin, Ed Rollins, Robert Novak—rationalized those lies in an tone of “politics ain’t beanbag,” as if the fact that he could sweet-talk the media into not checking into his audacious b.s. was something to be lauded.

It says a lot about Atwater that he got away with it. It says even more about the sorry state of the media that they let him. Hell, they enabled him.

They're still doing it.

Seeing younger versions of Karl Rove and Grover Norquist hovering in the wings of the stage Atwater played on, we're warned that the vipers known as College Republicans are still goin' strong. They may have lost this round, but they're regrouping and preparing for the next election. It's a testament to the political skills of Barack Obama and his team and the organizational skills of Howard Dean and his 50-State Strategy that Democrats prevailed against the Republicans and their enablers in the media.

It comes of this: when you merely sit and serve as a vessel for a politician to spout off "factiness" without correcting the record then you are in fact serving as a tool/pawn/shill of a politician or a political agenda.

Yep, Sit! Wolfie, today I'm talkin' about you and that "interview" with Sarah Palin—the hockey mom turned governor who is fit neither to govern nor to parent. Earlier this week, Matt Lauer provided yet another opportunity to pimp Piper by Gypsy Mom who apparently didn't think that thar book-larnin' was any more important for her kids than herself while she was off gallivantin' with John and Cindy and giving pfffft to her children's education. Not to be outdone, Greta Van Susteren added her own Foxy-loxy love fest to the mix.

A role model to lead the Republican Party? Anjelica Huston's Grifters mom more like.

But the media like process, we're told. They liked seein' Atwater slam Dukakis with race-bating strokes...hey if he didn't like that Willie Horton/weekend passes smear campaign, he shoulda fought back.

Yeah, he shoulda.

Shoulda said the weekend passes were modeled on another state, another governor. Name o'Reagan. And now the adopted son of Ronald Reagan, Michael, adopts the Atwater School, right along with the likes of Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity and Bill O'Reilly and lets the hate times roll.... Because the Republicans can't govern, can't win on policy, so they play divide and conquer...only not this year.

But that doesn't mean they won't come right back again, hoping for a weaker opponent next time. And they know they can count on the media to go along to get along, 'cause you gotta get the story, even if it's a lie, doncha know.

And the biggest lie of all was the life of Lee Atwater. This hyper Southern skell was all surface and show and no soul. Even his protestation at the end that he was going to go with any religion just in case was as phony as the man. The Bush family retainer who was never really going to be part of the family was himself a useful tool...and that's the denial the folks who remain don't ever want to face.

Matalin, Rove, the other political operatives, willingly compliant Cliff Notes journalists, you've all been useful tools to advance the Bush family agenda. You just haven't been one of the family.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Never Forget....

Amid all the pomp and fluffery of the changing of administrations post-Election Day and the all-important conversation of whether or not Sarah Palin's underwear will be returned to the RNC, there is a sobering fact this day:

We are adding a fresh wave of soldiers and Navy and Marines and National Guard to those we'll owe a debt we can never repay.

On this first Veterans Day of the Obama Era, a look back at where we have been. And a question still unanswered: How Many More Years?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Lieberman's Nature

A short reminder:

A scorpion wanted to cross a river but could not swim, so he asked a fox to carry him across. The fox, demurred: You'll sting me. Not I, said the scorpion, for that would mean the death of me, too. Very well, hop on, said the fox.

Halfway across the river, the scorpion stung the fox with a mortal wound. As the river sucked them both down, the fox said, you promised! Why did you sting me?

I know, said the scorpion. But it is my nature.


Crossposted, with comments, at firedoglake's Oxdown Express.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

To Be Resolved


The ongoing saga of the Judas Senator trying to keep his cadaverous fingers tightly clutched around the Homeland Security Committee chairmanship continues this weekend, thanks to articles like the homestate Hartford Courant piece which has stirred up more ire among those who wonder why there is even any question about Joe-the-Backstabber retaining any chairmanship or seniority in the Democratic caucus. Politico and Josh both have discussion worth reading.

The collegiality of the good ol' incumbent-cy boys seems to rear its head in Dodd's comments. Sorry, Chris, not buyin' it.

And then there's the Lieberman aide attributed with the insistence that national security depends on his Senator holding on to "his" chairmanship. Yeah, 'cause he did such a great job of it already, eh?

It took a commenter in the Politico thread to remind me, though, that Lieberman didn't just fail--deliberately, some say--to perform the oversight responsibilities of Homeland Security. Lieberman didn't just run against the Democratic-endorsed candidate for US Senate in Connecticut with strong Republican help in '06. Lieberman didn't just endorse and support McCain.

Not only did Lieberman actively, aggressively, gleefully, enthusiastically, scurrilously campaign against Barack Obama for the office of President.

He also campaigned for Minnesota Republican Norm Coleman over Democratic candidate Al Franken for the Wellstone seat in the U.S. Senate. Did he campaign in other Senate races, too?

The square is complete...the four sides enclosing one politician who eagerly embraced the opposition as he broke his word and campaigned in both Presidential and Senate races against the party he now thinks should bow and scrape before his Lieberliness.

Give me a frackin' break. Now more than ever, Joe Must Go.
(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Gazette).

Saturday, November 8, 2008

The Understated Symmetry of Harry

The word leaking out that Harry Reid offered Joe Lieberman the chairmanship of Veterans Affairs has generated a lot of heat. Mine included.

Lots of us are signing the online petition saying that Joe Must Go. For three prime reasons that can be summed up "The Kiss," Katrina, and the Kampaign....

And while I for one have no room in heart or mind for any accommodation for Joe the Backstabber and Breaker of Pledges, I do see a certain stark beauty in Reid's offer to Lieberman of the chairmanship of Veterans Affairs.

Let him see what he has wrought. Let him deal with the families of the dead and the wounded. Let him tour the hospitals and rehab centers. Let him walk side by side with the soldier learning to walk on steel and computer technology instead of a leg. Let him see the face of the man blinded and burned by an IED.

Let him face himself. If he has the courage.

(crossposted at firedoglake's Oxdown Express)

Friday, November 7, 2008

Quote of the Day

"Mutts like me..."

Hey, the Sunshine family, all German-Irish-Norwegian-Swedish-Scots of us, we're mutts, too.

Lieberman the Extortionist

how him the door, Senate Dems...
enough's enough.

If the Republicans think having a double-dealing, self-aggrandizing, egomaniacal traitor in their midst is a plus, well, that's just more seats for Dems to pick off in 2010 and 2012.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Joe The Quisling

Today Joe Lieberman met with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, and word is, Lieberman was told: no chairmanships for you.

Lieberman is now trying to play a public game of you can't touch me, you need me, you really really need me.

Except we don't.

America has spoken loudly and clearly in this election, and all the Republican obstructionism in the world won't change that fact for the next four years.

Could he be the magic 60th? Well, yeah, but that doesn't mean he's needed.

Because right now what's really needed is to send a message that the same ol' same ol' doesn't work any more and the Democratic Senate will not be a pushover.

Lieberman crossed the line time after time when he went beyond supporting McCain and actively, even giddily, collaborated in the assault on Barack Obama with tactics of fear and smear and lies.

Now the man who bore those lies, who collaborated in their spreading, who smirked and grinned his way through scurrilous betrayal of his own pledges of conduct, that man must be called to account. Because a line was irretrievably crossed by Lieberman in this election.

And he must know that cannot stand. And those who would contemplate doing likewise must know that cannot stand. As betrayers down through history and fiction have known. Brutus, Judas, Benedict Arnold, Tessio...Quisling.

This cannot stand.
You'll find a posting to the online petition, Strip Joe, over at Jane's Firedoglake

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

An Open Letter to Malia and Sasha

Dear Malia and Sasha --

Congratulations to you and all your family. We are looking forward to your family becoming the First Family of the United States.

We know this will mean a lot of changes for you and your family. A big move from Chicago to Washington, D.C. New friends to make, a new school to attend.

And there is that new puppy. Now we're pretty partial to cocker spaniels. [psst, if you want one just as cute as ours, you can email me for the breeder's contact address at prairiesunrising at gmail dot com]

We hope that you both enjoy the grand adventure you are beginning, and we thank you for sharing your Dad with all of us.

We'll do our best not to be too demanding on his time, and we'll do our best to help him lead all of us forward to better times.

With love from the Sunshine Family.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Grant Park Revisited

Obama Wins!

hose of us who remember the other Grant Park, the Grant Park of 1968 and all the pain of that era look at Grant Park now, at the faces with tears of streaming joy, and we say yes, 40 years in the wilderness has brought us to this time.

Now, let's roll up our sleeves... the hard work begins.

Fired Up, Ready to Go

From a "crowd" of 20, building month by month, state by state, to a nomination and crowd after crowd of tens of thousands, Barack Obama has led by one simple chant...Fired up? Ready to go!

Didja Vote Yet?

Have you voted? How 'bout your kids? Your Mom and Dad? Your buddies? Your neighbors? Your siblings?

Maybe you have to set aside your campaign signs or tee shirt or button, but there's one more thing you can do....

After you've voted Obama, go ahead, put that thumb and forefinger together in one big happy circle and show off your "O".

Then get out there. Get busy.

GOTOV. Get Out The Obama Vote.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Rest in Peace

Barack Obama's grandmother, Madelyn Dunham, one of the foundations of his life, died early today. Huffington Post has more, including his video tribute.

We simply offer condolences and solace to the Obama and Dunham families that we see in her grandson the excellence of her life's work.

Krugman's Question

This morning the punditocracy are all huffin-puffin about what it could mean to have a Democratic White House and Congress. I won't belabor the spin--if you know who was talkin', you can fill in what their spin was. Right now, it's all the same ol' same ol'.

Even the last-ditch piss-in-our-bed Rethuglican airing of the Rev. Wright attack ad has a tired, worn quality to it. Sure it'll gin up the base and GOTRV, but let's face it, that segment of rightwing screeddom is getting smaller and smaller by the hour.

Just look at the Republican--former Republican or temporary independent--endorsements Obama has picked up. Iconic Republican names: [Susan] Eisenhower, [Ron] Reagan, [CC] Goldwater, Hagel's wife, Senator Pressler, Governor Carlson....

So instead of handwringing with faux concern over what the Democrats may do, perhaps it's time to consider what the Republican Rump will do. Krugman certainly thinks it's more than time.

This is the core Rethuglicanism -- and like a bloated, rotting corpse with maggots feeding in its belly, there is nothing right now that would appeal to any but the most ideological...or willfully ignorant.

Or as Krugman puts it:

But the G.O.P.’s long transformation into the party of the unreasonable right, a haven for racists and reactionaries, seems likely to accelerate as a result of the impending defeat.

This will pose a dilemma for moderate conservatives. Many of them spent the Bush years in denial, closing their eyes to the administration’s dishonesty and contempt for the rule of law. Some of them have tried to maintain that denial through this year’s election season, even as the McCain-Palin campaign’s tactics have grown ever uglier. But one of these days they’re going to have to realize that the G.O.P. has become the party of intolerance.

Win or lose, will new life emerge from that fetid corpse? I guess that would depend on whether the Greedy Ol' Party is capable of evolution...or cutting off the mutated cancer that is the GOP today.

Time will tell.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

One Last Grand Truly Maverick Gesture

I confess. Watching John McCain last night on Saturday Night Live, exhibiting more warmth and comfort in his own skin and self-deprecating humor than we've seen all this long campaign season...well, I had a brief flash of thought that if that had been the John McCain...and the McCain campaign we'd seen all these months...well, that John McCain could've swept the election. Fair and square.

Right now, of course, we're still in the twilight zone of pre-election worrying over Diebold and flippin' voter screens and voter suppression and all those other dirty tricks the extremists in the Republican party have become known for...and some we don't even know about.

And then there's the last hour unveiling of the Rev. Wright commercials by 527s. Maybe knowing those were coming and expecting those would tip the election to him were what made McCain so relaxed on SNL.

I hope not. I hope he's as appalled as the rest of us are by the blatant appeal to fear and racism that is the only thing the Rethuglican wing of the Republican Party has to offer. I hope at long last he decides enough's enough. That this is one last step he will not take.

That John McCain will stand up and renounce these sleazy, pandering, cynical commercials and email and leaflets and whatever other tactics the Rethugs are using and take back his honor.

Yes, I hope, nay expect, that John McCain will stand up and in one last grand truly maverick gesture...endorse Barack Obama.