Thursday, February 24, 2011

Radicals, Fascism & The FCC

It definitely has been an interesting political world that past 10 years.  Depending on what informational sources you watch, listen to or read, our politicians/leaders have been labeled.  George Bush is a Fascist.  Dick Cheney is Darth Vader.  Barack Obama is a Radical and a Socialist.  Joe Biden is the smartest guy in the room.  I like to observe trends and "game plans" in politics (no big shocker to those who see my facebook page).  Oddly enough, I have found what I think are interesting similarities. 

The author Naomi Wolf wrote, The End of America:  Letter of Warning To A Young Patriot.  In it, she discusses the 10 steps to Fascism.  Ms. Wolf argues that George Bush is secretly moving America towards Fascism in 10 steps.

1)  Invoke a terrifying internal and external enemy.
2)  Create a gulag.
3)  Develop a thug caste.
4)  Set up an internal surveillance system.
5)  Harass citizens' groups.
6)  Engage in arbitrary detention and release.
7)  Target key individuals.
8)  Control the press.
9)  Dissent equals treason.
10)  Suspend the rule of law.

Anyone can take these ten steps and probably find some policy or act by the Bush administration that fits neatly into the concept.  Some even believe that 9/11 was planned by our own government in order for President Bush to do just what step 1 describes.

Oddly enough, our political left in this country uses the book, Rules For Radicals by Saul Alinsky almost as their political play book.  Hillary Clinton, and many other politicians rave about how this book inspired them.  Even President Barack Obama uses Alinsky as an example when he hit the streets of Chicago as a community organizer.  Let's look at these rules.

1)  Power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have.
2)  Never go outside the experience of your people.
3)  Whenever possible, go outside the experience of your enemy.
4)  Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.
5)  Ridicule is man's most potent weapon.
6)  A good tactic is one that your people enjoy.
7)  A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.
8)  Keep the pressure on, with different tactics and actions, and utlize all events of the period for your purpose.
9)  The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.
10)  The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition.
11)  If you push a negative hard, and deep enough it will break through into its counterside; this is based on the principle that every positive has its negative.
12)  The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.
13)  Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.

One could also probably find an odd similarity and event(s) to fit all of these.  Looking back to the 2008 Presidentail campaign, the DNC did a very nice job polarizing American against Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee and yes, love her or hate her, Sarah Palin. 

Let's look at a snapshot of the political landscape of today (not including the Middle East...just yet).  Most of the policies that President Obama railed against under Bush, he enjoys the power of them today.  One example is The Patriot Act.  Another would be GITMO.  Obama signed an Executive Order to close GITMO, yet it remains open (and according to the administration will for quite some time).  The Bush Administration was demonized for having closed door meetings with energy executives.  It has recently come to light that the leadership of the SEIU and AFLCIO meets rather regulary with the Obama Administration.  Did I miss something, or has this not caused as much of an uproar with ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, MSNBC, etc.?

FOX News this...Media Matters that.  Limbaugh said what?  Matthews has a what running down his leg?  It is almost too much stimulation.  Although, the truth is out there somewhere, and does not have an agenda.

"Obama learned his lesson well. I am proud to see that my father's model for organizing is being applied successfully beyond local community organizing to affect the Democratic campaign in 2008. It is a fine tribute to Saul Alinsky as we approach his 100th birthday." --Letter from L. DAVID ALINSKY, son of Neo-Marxist Saul Alinsky
"Because Barack Obama is the only person in this race who understands that. That before we can work on the problems we have to fix our souls. Our souls are broken in this nation.... Barack Obama will require you to work. He is going to demand that you shed your cynicism. That you put down your divisions. That you come out of your isolation, that you move out of your comfort zone. That you push yourselves to be better. And that you engage. Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed."-Michelle Obama

So, just who is going to inform me?  This takes me down my thoughts on the FCC.  It used to be that the FCC was only heard of when George Carlin opened his mouth, or Justin Timberlake caused Janet Jackson's wardrobe malfunction.  The current buzz is "Net Neutrality".  Isn't that what we have already?  If I want a liberal opinion, I can go to a liberal website.  If I want a conservative view, I can go to a conversative website.  To be as simplistic as possible, "Net Neutrality" would give you an alternate link to any story to you looked up.  Really?  Are we that ill-informed?  Is the government really the all knowing power to inform us?

During the riots in 2009 Iran, the internet was cut off by their dictator.  Just a few weeks ago in Egypt something similar happened.  Past Presidents and President Obama have commented that when governments start shutting down communications, they are in essence, a dictator.  Would that ever happen here?  No, not in America!  Then why is our government trying to give the President a "Kill Switch" for the internet?  It would be at the discretion of the President when an "Emergency" happened.  Interesting...

"Never let a crisis go to waste." -Rahm Emanuel

The group(s) pushing the Obama Administration for Net Neutrality are linked to Marxist groups.  The Internet Czar is linked to this effort.  Czars have been around since Nixon and I do not like the lack of accountability or confirmation hearing regardless of political affiliation).  Can you see where there should be some concern about just how much power we give our government?

The path we could be on reminds me of this scene from "V for Vendetta".


Mark Lloyd of the FCC praises Hugo Chavez for how he handled the media in Venezuela.  Chavez is a dictator!  Dont' take my word for it, review my references and do your own research.  Afterall, I don't have a book dedicated to Lucifer.

"Lest we not forget at least an over-the-shoulder acknowledgement to the very first radical:  from all our legends, mythology, and history (and who is to know where mythology leaves off and history begins-or which is which), the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom-Lucifer." -Saul Alinsky

"The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judicary, in the same hands...is the definition of tyranny."-James Madison

Thank you for reading.



Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Buried Under Snow & Research

Yes, it has been awhile since I last posted anything here.  We survived the blizzard of January of 2011.  It is amazing just how much stuff can pile up when you are stuck at home for three days while the kids are home from school.

Anyway, I am getting caught up on my to-do lists.  My big project in the basement is complete, so know I can focus on other things around the house.  I have been continuing my employment search and have had several good leads, but nothing firm.  That is okay.  Carol and I had a nice talk this weekend while we were on "Date Night" this past Saturday.  I will still be looking for jobs in the health care arena, but I may even go back to school or try to break back into broadcasting.  Believe it or not, I was a DJ in college.  WJMU 89.5fm was host to "Elbert In The Afternoon", "The Brad, Chris & Troy Show" and many others.  Granted, it has been 20 years, but you never know!

Well, I really need to get back to things around here.  I did want to let you know that I am almost finished researching my first political blog.  The title will be, "Radicals, Fascism & The FCC".  Stay tuned...

Monday, January 24, 2011

Comic Book Heroes, Comic Book Movies & The 42 Year Old Junkie

You would have to be living under a rock not to have noticed the resurgence of comic book hero movies the last several years.  DC is back with Batman (and better in my opinion).  Superman is getting retooled again, and the light of the Green Lantern is to shine on us for the first time this year.
Marvel has been on fire!  Spiderman, X-Men, Fantastic Four, Hulk, Ironman (my favorite) have all hit the big screen and entertained millions.  This year alone, Captain America and Thor will debut, along with a X-Men prequel.  DC has chosen not to have their heroes exist together on the big screen (Justice League still cannot get off the ground), while Marvel has been setting the stage for The Avengers in 2012.  If you have seen The Incredible Hulk and Ironman 1 & 2, then you now what I am talking about.

As a kid,  my brother and I enjoyed mass quantities of these heroes (mostly Marvel).  I am sure that Mom and Dad worried about what this was doing to our imagination.  Granted, one day we did both fight over who was the better Captain America.  I won the battle, but Andy lost a tooth.  We both decided to lie about it, and as a result, had our football helmets (that we got for Christmas) thrown away, but that is another story.

I guess where I am going with this, is that I have been (and continue to be) excited with Hollywood continuing the genre.  As kids, our generation had Superman, Batman, Spiderman, Ironman, Thor, Captain America (and many others) fighting crime and keeping us safe.  They did this in book form and I am confident, that in no small part, kept Andy, others and myself reading.  By putting these childhood heroes on the big screen, our children's generation is introduced to the heroes of our youth.  They have Harry Potter along with Teams Edward and Jacob.  Between you and me, I would love to see the "Twilight Boys" try to get the best of Wolverine.  After all, we have had Alien vs. Predator!

Recently, my brother was cleaning out his office and discovered a gold mine.  A good portion of the comics that he and I collected had made the trip to Germany.  Luckily for me, some of them made the trip back across the pond.  As my children get older, I would like to introduce them to these heroes.  Granted, if Jessica and TJ want to read them (okay, and Carol too), it would be great! 

All last year, the four kids and Carol had to watch me drop everything with every preview of Ironman 2 that came on the TV.  It even got to the point that when a preview would come on, Parker and Emerson would scream, "Ironman, Daddy!"  For my birthday (the day it was released in theatres), Carol took half the day off to take me to see it.  We came home, got the four kids, had dinner and then I opened my gift.  I "had to go to Best Buy" per the terms of the gift and purchase two things.  The first, was a BluRay player.  The second, Ironman in BluRay.  When we got home, my job was to put everything together so that we could compare standard format Ironman to BluRay Ironman.  Gee...tough call!

The Ironman franchise has gone with AC/DC for the soundtracks.  Just like the movie is introducing my childhood heroes to a younger generation, it is introducing bands from my youth to them too.  For me, (and Marvel) is it a win-win.  I find it hard to believe that in twenty years, any Britney Spears music will end up on any superhero soundtrack.  Although, Madonna did end up with a 007 title song.

Well, that is it for now.  Thank you for reading.  Enjoy this video link!
Ironman 2-Shoot To Thrill (AC/DC)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Little Things

Those of you who know me probably thought my first real blog would be about politics.  Relax, those are coming.  You can always dialogue with me about those on Facebook.  I enjoy a good, honest debate, so dive in.  For the first full blog entry, I have chosen to be more reflective.  Thank you in advance for reading.

Just who are "they"?  "They" have been saying for years that it is THE LITTLE THINGS that make the difference.  In my 42 years on this planet, that statement hits home more than anything as of late.  Tomorrow marks the 9th week since I joined the ranks of 1 out of every 10 Americans.  Sure, there was the roller coaster of emotion, thought and motivation, but once the dust settled, those little things became more clear.

The holiday season is stressful enough when you have a job.  This year, I was determined NOT to let my situation dictate the precious time shared with family and friends.  I chose to cherish things like: lazy-pajama day, no set schedule day, playing silly Wii games all day with the 4 kids, and impromptu cocktail time with friends and most of all, my beautiful wife, Carol. 

We had to purchase a vehicle to replace my company car.  Of the past 9 weeks, it was in the shop for 4 weeks.  I became more appreciative of the friendships with our neighbors.  Whenever possible, they would let me borrow a vehicle to run errands, or pick up the kids, while we waited on getting a loaner/rental vehicle.  We also help each other out with snow removal, house and pet sitting.  It is not uncommon for an impromptu "driveway libations" on the weekend, or just because a celebration is needed.  We are truly blessed with a wonder set of neighbors, that have become good friends over the past 7-1/2 years.  There are friends from the past that we miss too, and maybe someday will be able to reconnect with them.  Hey, there's always FACEBOOK!  ;-))

We were fortunate enough to get Jessica and TJ for not only the entire Thanksgiving break, but also from Christmas Morning until January 4th.  These are the things that make one reflect on just how lucky they truly are.  TJ and I started watching all the James Bond movies (in order).  We only were able to view the first four, but that time was nice.  Several years ago we started a tradition that on December 26th, we go to Steak-N-Shake for lunch.  There is only one rule.  YOU HAVE TO ORDER AND EAT YOUR DESSERT FIRST AND IT IS OKAY NOT TO FINISH YOUR MAIN MEAL!  Jessica and TJ look forward to this all year and now that Parker and Emerson are getting older, they do too!

One of my favorite things to do on the weekend is to spend Friday night (after the little ones are asleep) watching Comedy Central and enjoying an adult beverage (or 2) with Carol.  On Saturday nights (when we are not enjoying the company of friends), we stay up late and watch SNL together.  Granted, we sometimes sit sans conversation, but I truly enjoy listening to her laugh at either what is on TV or at my reaction to it.  Again, the little things like her laughter and a smile are important. 

Sure, I am looking for work, have "to-do lists" to keep me busy, run errands, etc.  I get extra time with Parker and Emerson that I missed out on with Jessica and TJ when they were that age.  I enjoy making chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast when all 4 kids are with us.  Carol was sick last week and this past weekend, Jessica was sick.  I enjoyed checking on them, getting them a drink or something to eat.  Even though Jessica was asleep most of Friday and Saturday, I am confident that she smiled when she woke up to a fresh glass of Powerade, or to see that she was covered up.  I know that I cannot make ammends for the past, but I am embracing the present with hopes for a better future as a husband, father and friend.

On Monday, I chose to have Parker stay home with me.  After we took Emerson to day-care, he and I returned home to make our list of errands.  I have attached the terms of agreement between the two of us for his help.
It is nice to see how he is growing into his own person, even at 5!  We ate lunch at McDonald's.  In the middle of his meal, he leaned over and said, "Dad, I love you." and went right back to eating.  Again, it is the little things that are what is important.
Embracing the little things helps me remember just how much fun life can be.  I think the Queen song "These Are The Days Of Our Lives" is important enough to post a link to it.  You can interpret the lyrics anyway you want, but I choose to look back and forward at those "little things" and remember them with a smile, while making more memories in the future.


Thanks for reading.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Break The Ice

Well, I finally did it.  I created a blog.  Now what?  Just kidding.  I will spend some time thinking and then spend some time writing.  About what?  Stay tuned!