The past century has seen a struggle toward the light. Inch by inch, mankind has been climbing out of a deep, dark pit of ignorance, intolerance, injustice and cruelty toward the promise of a better, kinder tomorrow. Throughout the world, people have been turning away from brutish practices and governments have, by and large, been turning away from oppressive policies.
This is what we call progress.
The way I see it, people who applaud this struggle are known as progressives, and those who prefer to remain unenlightened are conservatives.
In America, extreme radicals in the conservative movement have gained control of one of the two major political parties. These Luddites decry science, scoff at preventative medicine, laud ignorance and heap abuse on the bowed heads of society’s most defenseless members – poor children, single mothers, the aged, the sick and the unlucky.
The media lump the radicals together under the “Tea Party” title, but they are more numerous than that. There are enough of these mean spirited people to be dangerous. And they are in a fighting mood as the U.S. heads into an election year. Progressives cannot let them win.
If they win, much of the last century’s progress will be lost. Their domestic targets include:
- Social Security and Medicare
- Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, and other health care programs
- All federal education programs
- All federal antipoverty programs
- Federal disaster relief
- Federal food safety inspections and other food safety programs
- Child labor laws, the minimum wage, overtime, and other labor protections
- Federal civil rights laws
Internationally, their main goal is military domination of the earth. Brooding over the imagined threat of a Muslim invasion that would impose Shariah Law on Americans, they favor unlimited “defense” spending and preemptive strikes against real and imagined enemies.
And they hate the idea of the United Nations. To them, peacekeeping and humanitarian aid are at best a waste of money, at worst a surrender of American “sovereignty.”
For reasons that I can’t figure out, these latter-day Crusaders embrace right-wing elements in Israel and support the unjust treatment of Palestinians.
For example, Foreign Affairs Committee Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (a Republican from Florida) has just introduced a bill in the House of Representatives that would slash U.S. contributions to the United Nations to punish the organization for its expected vote in favor of Palestinian statehood.
(Palestinian statehood is a remote possibility anyway, as the United States would surely veto the move in the Security Council.)
Ros-Lehtinen’s bill would also withhold funding for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, which aids Palestinian refugees, and pull the United States out of the U.N. Human Rights Council, which has been critical of Israel.
The bill would also halt new U.S. contributions to U.N. peacekeeping missions until “reforms” are implemented.
I am aghast at the brutishness of the radicals’ agenda at home and abroad. And I am furious at the blasphemy inherent in the pretense that they are Christians doing God’s work.
Yes the Republicans took oil money but so did Barac Obama during the election. The oil companies aren’t fools, they stack both sides of the deck. If that was not so, President Obama would have come out a month eariler swinging but he didn’t and we all know why.
The conservatives believe that it is in the best interest of business to do what is right for their company, stockholders and employees. After all safety and good workplace environments will help the company grow. Why would anyone do anything else, so big bad government stay out of my business, we don’t need you to make us do the right thing. How innocent they are, how wrong they have been proven over and over again. Look at the cost of greed to BP.
It is a shame (and should be against the law) that politicians take money from corporations and then most of them feel obligated to protect the interests of those corporations. Republicans are the most guilty as they are deep in the pockets of the huge corporations that support their campaigns. Case in point is the incredibly insensitive Republican member of Congress who “apologized” to BP, a company that has callously spoiled and wrecked havoc on hallowed ground. One cannot imagine such a man. Was the fear of losing his corporate funding so great that he would show the world what his heart looks like? I can’t understand it. If a group decides to support a candidate and sends money, that does not entitle that group to expect anything from the candidate. Politicians should do what is right for the people at all times. And that is what President Obama is doing in his efforts to stop the killing flow of oil. His overriding commitment, his night and day thoughts and actions are to restore the Gulf waters: its suffering wildlife, wetlands, nesting grounds, and way of life for so many. Add this catastrophe to an already desperate economy with so many losing their jobs or not finding any jobs available, and who wants to stop unemployment benefits: the Republicans. One wonders what these people think about, what image do they have of themselves and those with whom they inhabit this earth. At a time like this, when so many people are out of work and have no resources, our Congress should stand tall and vote to extend benefits to our mothers, fathers, and our children as long as they need it. And George, as you said so eloquently, “not only the unemployed but also the oil-soaked wildlife and ravaged wetlands plead silently for your vote.”
The status quo sucks.
Sent from my Android phone