Just my thoughts on things I think about. Music, politics, society, and unfortunately, religion.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Why the Dem's should oppose Miers

Maybe she's not qualified. Maybe her pick is more Bush cronyism, putting his unqualified friends into positions of power as insider policitical payoffs. While all that is more than enough reason for anyone to oppose Bush's Supreme Court Nominee Miers, more important is who else is backing Miers and why. Here is a short article from Robert Novak's column at http://townhall.com/opinion/column/robertnovak/2005/10/15/171467.html

" In choosing Kenneth Starr to vouch for the social conservative credentials of Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers, Dr. James Dobson picked a man who 24 years ago as a Justice Department official did the same for Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.

Former Whitewater prosecutor Starr, now law school dean of Pepperdine University, appeared on conservative activist Dobson's radio program Wednesday. Starr called Miers "a very, very strong Christian [who] should be a source of great comfort and assistance to people in the households of faith around the country." In 1981, Starr advised President Ronald Reagan of O'Connor's pro-life stance and ignored her pro-choice record in the Arizona Senate.

The talk with Starr on Wednesday's program was overshadowed by a long segment in which Dobson denied receiving inside information from the White House about where Miers stands on Roe v. Wade."

Dr. Dobson is a famous rascist, sexist, homophobe. His 'Christianity" is similar to the Taliban's view of Islam. It is extreme to say the least. He is the man who led the charge against a video featuring Big Bird and Sponge Bob promoting tolerance as promoting the 'Gay' agenda. He complains that the video supposedly teaching "tolerance and diversity" instead promoted "incomprehensible references to adult perverse sexuality"

This is a man who longs for the 'good old days' when women couldn't vote, our white children did not have to attend school or live near the 'colords' , interracial marriage was illegal, not to even mention 'gay' marriage. And of course, civil rights applied only as a strict constitutional constructionist would apply them - to white, land owning men. We are one step closer to returning to these days with Judge Roberts. Crony Miers will deliver us to that land of milktoast and honey. We need to stop her nomination now.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

New Study: Religion is bad for Society

This story seems to have slipped by the American press, as many do. As someone who grew up in a fundamentalist home, school and now lives in a country controlled by religious nuts, I think this story is interesting and should be out there as much as possible. According to a new study Regligious belief is actually damaging to society. Check out the full story here - http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-1798944,00.html

Some highlights:

"RELIGIOUS belief can cause damage to a society, contributing towards high murder rates, abortion, sexual promiscuity and suicide, according to research published today."

"Many liberal Christians and believers of other faiths hold that religious belief is socially beneficial, believing that it helps to lower rates of violent crime, murder, suicide, sexual promiscuity and abortion. The benefits of religious belief to a society have been described as its “spiritual capital”. But the study claims that the devotion of many in the US may actually contribute to its ills."

"The study concluded that the US was the world’s only prosperous democracy where murder rates were still high, and that the least devout nations were the least dysfunctional. Mr Paul said that rates of gonorrhoea in adolescents in the US were up to 300 times higher than in less devout democratic countries. The US also suffered from “ uniquely high” adolescent and adult syphilis infection rates, and adolescent abortion rates, the study suggested."

“The non-religious, proevolution democracies contradict the dictum that a society cannot enjoy good conditions unless most citizens ardently believe in a moral creator.

“The widely held fear that a Godless citizenry must experience societal disaster is therefore refuted.”

So there's the facts. Most religous folks will argue that Religion helps to regulate our conduct and behaviour in society by providing a set of morals and a value-system for human existence, without which humans would be morally ruddeless. Religion guides our actions in life, putting a check on criminal tendency in human nature.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Seattle is famous, and I am embarrased by our Mayor and City Council!

Seattle made news around the world today - over 301 papers. For what? Our progressive solutions to environmental issues, a new transportation system, some proposal that promotes our great music or arts scenes? NOPE. That would actually show leadership by our politicians, and might make us look like Portland, now the jewel of the Northwest - an up & coming city with a transportation plan and....yes, STRIP CLUBS.
Read all about us at the following link. Look, we're world famous!
I am embarrassed to be living in Seattle today. I thought our Mayor and Council were joking when they proposed amendments effectively banning strip clubs. I mean, it seems there are real issues to worry about. But no, let's take on STRIP CLUBS. Because, you know, the other cities people want to move to and live in don't have them right? Like Austin, Portland, San Francisco, New Orleans, New York, Paris, London, Amsterdam. Oh wait, that's right, we don't want to be like THOSE cities, my god, they have strip clubs! We are busy studying how the great cities like Fresno and Federal Way handle things.
Where is the freaking vision in the city?? Where is the political spine and will of our electeds?
To you politicians who support this ban - it SUCKS!! You should be embarrassed! We elected you to provide real solutions to real problems and make our lives better. I know all of you, and appreciate a lot of the good work you do, but what the hell!?!? What are you doing, spending your time banning dancers? Where are you going to stop? Are you going to ban drinking in Seattle? Bring back the Teen Dance Ordinance? Ban porn at 7-11? This law is right wing christian nannyism. You are acting like prudes, and not just prudes, but prudes who want to use the government to enforce your prudishness on everyone else. Move to Lynden already, it's more your speed!
This sucks, sucks, sucks. You could regulate strip clubs with all sorts of ordinances, create zones for such things, be a real city with real diversity. Are these things too difficult to think about?
The ghosts of Margaret Pageler, Mark Sidran and Pat Robertson live in Seattle's City Hall this week. I thought we elected smart progressives to do great things. Guess I missed something.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Stop the Smoking Ban

Initiative 901 SEEMS like a good thing - ban smoking inside of bars to protect the health of bartenders and wait staff. I don't smoke, don't like that other people do, and believe the science that says second hand smoke kills. And while I think the government has some reason to ban smoking inside, INITIATIVE 901 goes to far. It also bans smoking "within 25 feet from entrances, exits, windows that open, or ventilation intakes...".

So, bars like the War Room or Linda's will not be allowed to let people smoke on their deck. If you want to smoke outside the Baltic Room, you will have to walk up or down the block to make sure you get 25' away from any entrance or exit, window etc. That could mean across the street in the parking lot. If you work downtown and want to take a smoke break, better stand in the middle of the street because there is an entrance or exit about every 5'.

It is sad that the people who wrote 901 would have to be such extremists and ruin an otherwise good initiative. I'm afraid these people don't just want to do away with the annoying and unhealthy smoke inside bars and restaurants. They want to control every aspect of people's health wherever they are. This is more of the politics of fanatics and zealots.

The supporters of 901 should go back to the drawing board and craft this initiative without the 25' foot rule in section 6. They should hold back on their desire to use the government to enforce their health standards on everyone everywhere and be happy with just banning smoking inside all public places. From Iraq to the Monorail, from Rush Limbaugh to Louis Farrakhan, from smoking bans to pharmacists refusing to fill birth control prescriptions, I am tired with the politics of zealots. Time for moderate, reasonable laws and politics!

Please vote against initiative 901. Make the Anti-Smoking folks present us with a law that is reasonable.