cherokeeprogressive's Journal - Archives
in thinking that my President and my Congress wouldn't get it done.
I was fucking wrong, and at times unrealistic in my expectations.
Thank You Mr. President, and Thank You Congress!
Just a little lemon zest added during secondary fermentation. I'm hoping for something resembling Blue Moon, but lemony out of the bottle instead of orangy after having it added to your glass. I was going to do it today but had to work at the last minute. This will be my 20th brew, and my first all grain.
I'm also going to brew a batch of cannibis beer soon. Depending on how it turns out, I just may go into the cannibis beer business. I'm told good cannibeer goes for $15 or more per bottle at the pharmacies here in SoCal. I'm not really getting into it for the profit so I'm pretty sure I can get it done for $10.
My ultimate goal is to start my own microbrewery. I was going to call it "Three Sheets" but damn, that's been done already. I live in the mountains at 6700 feet, so there are lots of other possibilities as far as the name goes.
When I brew, I like to have a toke or two, and there is ALWAYS good music playing, usually Blues. I like to put the yeast on the subwoofer before I pitch it. I like my beer to be born happy and well-adjusted. Seems to have worked so far.
"You never loved Barack Obama anyway..." Oh yeah? Tell my fucking bank account that. I donated over a thousand dollars to his campaign, mostly because I found him to be the most likely person to stand up and DEMAND rights for ALL minorities. For me that was a no-brainer. Since then? I don't think I need to explain my position on DADT or DOMA, or any other instance where I feel like my GLBT friends/relatives/DAUGHTER have been sold short. I donated to, and voted for Barack Obama. If that's not love, tell me what is in the context of supporting political candidates.
There is ONE WORLD. Are people of all stripes considered equal in it? I guess some would see that as a rhetorical question. Let me ask it another way... Should human beings be treated as LEGAL EQUALS in every instance and every situation, no matter their age, weight, height, ethnicity, religion, race, or sexual orientation? If your answer is yes, then how would you interpret this: "I believe that marriage is the union between a man and a woman. Now, for me as a Christian ó for me ó for me as a Christian, it is also a sacred union. Godís in the mix..."
Those are Candidate Obama's words, and I'm pretty sure we were ALL watching when he spoke them. I've yet to see an acceptable explanation of how those words square with the notion that Barack Obama should be seen as a champion of EQUALITY FOR ALL other than they were words necessary to garner votes and we should be thankful they were spoken and that those votes helped Candidate Obama win the election (Would McCain/Palin have better suited your needs?).
We're told we need to believe that regardless of what he said as a candidate in response to Rick Warren's question; his words were not necessarily motivated by what he believed, but by the imperative that he be elected, lest we be subjected to the whims of John and Sarah. We're expected to believe that no matter WHAT he said before the election, his words were beneficial in that he prevented John and Sarah from being elected, thus guaranteeing that equality for our GLBT Brothers and Sisters would someday happen.
Candidate Barack Obama said that "marriage is the union between a man and a woman" leading me to think he doesn't believe gays should be treated as equal in a straight world, in the context of marriage. That's how I interpret those words. Separate but Equal. Talk me off of THAT ledge.
When does the equality come? Who among my DU friends could tell me when EQUALITY should be expected? It's not like it matters... I'll go on voting for Democrats, because I'm not stupid. I'll go on voting for Democrats, just like we say those humans of little intelligence will go on voting for rethugs.
In the meantime? My Daughter will continue to wonder if she'll ever be treated as an EQUAL in the eyes of the law... At this moment there is no guarantee.
My greatest sorrow is that her equality is continually sacrificed at the altar of what is "politically expedient".
She's 18, and Gay. We're waiting for the day when a President will stand up at the bully pulpit and DEMAND that Congress and the American public do the right thing and pass laws that GUARANTEE every American Citizen will be treated equally. She was too young to vote in the 2008 election but called me (she lives with her mom, my ex-wife) almost daily to make sure I was still voting for the person she saw as the one who could and WOULD put an end to the wickedness she saw as her lot on life under the Bush administration, or ANY republican administration. We're waiting for that person who will put on the line their political career and "legacy" in order to do what's right.
My disappointment with the Obama administration grows every day in that context. Few things are more important to me than knowing that after I'm dead and gone, my Daughter will have EXACTLY the same rights and privileges that EVERY other American citizen has. As a parent, it's natural that I would want for her the same life I've been blessed with. I don't think any person possessed of a normal intellect would argue otherwise.
President Obama had the chance to advance the notion that EVERY CITIZEN SHOULD HAVE THE SAME RIGHTS. I think he passed the buck in the context of DADT and DOMA because in his heart of hearts, he DOESN'T believe that GLBT rights are as important as the health of banks and corporations.
Putting off an END to DADT until after the mid-term elections cements that belief. He promised to be a "Fierce Advocate". He promised to put an end to DADT. Putting that decision in the hands of the military (by means of a fucking poll... WTF) was in my mind a calculated way of garnering even MORE of the Gay vote in 2008 than he otherwise would have gotten, while all the while knowing that the mid-term elections would give him political cover by saying that after losing control of Congress in 2010 his hands were tied in the matter.
Yeah, I know that's a very cynical way of looking at things, but I'm a father. I have skin in this game. Some day soon, I'll be gone, and my chance of giving my Daughter the same life I had will have passed. It's a pretty strong political motivation for me. I didn't vote for Barack Obama because of my political leanings, even though I've only ever voted for Democrats; I voted for him because I saw him as the ONE PERSON who would and could make my Daughter's life less of a struggle.
It seems that every passing day puts DADT and DOMA further and further from repeal. I see no one in his administration providing concrete evidence that it's a priority for every American Citizen to be treated equally under the law. Given that he's the FIRST African-American President in our nation's history, how could that be? How can he sleep at night knowing that ANY person in ANY minority is still being oppressed because they don't have equal protection under the law?
For the first time in my voting life, I'm presented with a choice that hurts either way. It's either "vote for US or risk being governed by THEM". At this moment, I feel like neither choice will benefit my Daughter, whose future is complicated and almost guaranteed to be a hard road. Knowing that I'll soon be unable to affect that future is one of the worst feelings I've ever had.
I'm forced to vote for the candidate that gives my daughter PROMISES in order to garner votes who then gives those promises lip-service and admonitions that I should be happy with what I've got. My motivation is supposed to be "imagine how bad it would be with X as your President."
That's not good enough for me folks. I'm about to give up on voting based on my ideology, because those people I thought had OUR best interests at heart were really just blowing smoke up my ass in order to get that vote. I thought only rethug candidates did that.
After all the bullshit I just posted, it's a safe bet that we'll both be voting straight Democratic tickets this November (she for the first time), and again in 2012. We won't hold our noses to do it though; we'll be wearing fucking gas masks, and we'll know in our hearts that it's not about whose rights might be codified by our vote, it'll be about "It's either US whose hands you put your life in, or THEIRS". We'll understand that AFTER the election, it won't be individuals whose lives are affected in the most positive of ways, it'll be corporations and bigots that benefit the most, because they have the most money.
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It's 2011 and unemployment is still above 9.5%. The economy is still stagnating. Sarah Palin announces her candidacy for President and is polling well above what conventional wisdom says she should.
Does Hillary Clinton stand on the sidelines and watch Sarah Palin possibly become this country's First Female President?
Does Hillary Clinton mount a primary challenge to Barack Obama?
Let's say that during the primary season, for some incredibly strange reason, Palin actually has a chance. Do you really think Hillary could stand by idly and watch this incredibly stupid woman win her party's nomination, and possibly become this country's First Female President?
I don't think it's too far out of bounds to believe that Hillary Clinton can taste the possibility of being the First Female President, considering how close she came to winning the nomination in 2008, and that there is NO WAY she could stand by idly and see the Democratic Party lose the White House to someone like Palin.
I believe that's a scenario which makes Woodward's claim she's going to be swapped for VP Biden tenable. Make HC VP and hopefully guarantee Barack Obama's second term, with the promise that the Obama Administration will stand solidly behind Hillary Clinton's 2016 run for the Presidency from the VP slot.
I post this because I think the ego of a politician is equal to that of the best Naval Aviator, which is probably 10,000 times as large as that of normal human beings. Hillary Clinton is no exception, and her ego would NOT allow her to stand idly by and see the likes of Sarah Palin be the first woman elected to lead the free world, seeing how close she herself came.
No matter whether that hypothetical comes to pass or not, I feel the need to state without hesitation that if it comes to a primary vote between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, I'll be voting for Obama just like I did the last time.
I will vote a straight Democratic ticket in the mid-term, and again in the general election. I used to think I was pragmatic in my approach to supporting a candidate. This time though I'm putting all my eggs in one basket and hoping for the best; the best being better than what I see happening at the moment.
That said; I consider President Barack Obama and EVERY elected official who represents me a public servant, and reserve the right to bitch, whine, complain, and generally hold their feet to my personal fire. I REFUSE to apologize for that. Not a single one of my elected representatives is above reproach or out of reach of my criticism and will ALWAYS be viewed with a bit of skepticism. I consider that to be a healthy philosophy in the context of voting for who will represent me.
Furthermore, here's a hearty FUCK YOU to anyone who thinks I'm out of line for bitching about the repeal of DADT, the fact that we still have troops in Iraq, the failure to close Gitmo, the unemployment rate, the value of the dollar, potholes on my dead-end street, or anything else I might choose to bitch about at any given time. It's my fucking right; they're my elected representatives. Fuck 'em. They are public servants and as such are NOT entitled to silent support, no matter their color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, or how many limbs they have.
Wake up and smell the coffee? I don't drink coffee, and I don't give a fuck how it smells. Gimme some bacon. I'll be voting straight Democratic tickets in '10 and in '12. If I don't get what I heard candidates for positions that represent me advocate during their campaign, it will be the last time I do. I'm tired of getting amped up over campaign slogans.
Keep your fucking ponies. I've never been a fan of horses anyway. Not an opponent, just not a fan. Do for me and mine what you said you'd do for me and mine. Do it post haste.
Want my vote? That's how you'll keep it.
But, and this is a BIG but, if he faces a primary challenge and hasn't lived up to the expectations I had when I voted for him in 2008, then I WILL vote for his challenger. I might add that if DADT isn't repealed by the time the California presidential primary is held, and there IS a challenger, then the challenger gets my vote. In the 2012 Presidential Primary, I will be a single-issue voter. If there is no primary challenge, then I will hold my nose, and vote for Barack Obama.
That's my fucking prerogative as a voter, as a Democrat, and as an American Citizen. Since promoting a Democrat for election is a DU requirement, I have that right as a member because I stated right here in this post that I will be supporting a Democratic Candidate for President.
I have violated NO RULES by stating this. I'll vote for the Democrat who wins the Democratic nomination of the party. I WON'T vote republican, nor will I stay home on Election Day. So take your "if you're not with us, you're against us" bullshit and pound it straight up your ass with a well lubed sledgehammer.
No person elected to the supreme office in this country has the right to expect re-election. That said, I believe that when Candidate Barack Obama said he WOULD see DADT repealed during his presidency; he meant IN HIS FIRST TERM. If that doesn't happen, then I will vote for another Democrat, plain and simple should there be one.
Fuck your purity tests and your "if you're not with us" attitude. I'll be voting for a Democrat for president; it just might not be Barack Obama. Only time will tell.
Fuck Sarah Palin. Fuck Glen Beck. Fuck the Tea Party. Fuck Billo. Fuck Rushbo. Fuck EVERYONE on the right. Fuck them 'til the cows come home. May they take a running fuck at a rolling doughnut and miss.
But please, please stop pretending that after President Obama's inauguration 18 months ago, things have suddenly taken on a rosy tone. His "unbelievable winning streak" has yet to put the millions of people who used to have jobs back to work. His "unbelievable winning streak" has yet to stem the tide of money leaving this country in the direction of those countries whose labor is cheaper than ours by a factor of tens. His "unbelievable winning streak" hasn't made it possible for my gay daughter to join the military, marry her lover, or consider herself a TOTALLY EQUAL PARTICIPANT IN AMERICAN STYLE DEMOCRACY. His "unbelievable winning streak" is bringing us NO CLOSER to a resolution in Iraq or Afghanistan. Fuck what he inherited... His "unbelievable winning streak" is like batting .360 two months into the baseball season; It means nothing unless your team wins the World Series.
Now, before you choke on your pinot, your stunningly expensive microbrewed beer, or whatever it is you might be partaking of at the moment, please let me put that statement in context.
I think that what we have here at DU are "growing pains". From DU's inception, all the way up to 1/20/2009, what we had was a common enemy. We were united in our dislike/hatred of the Bush administration, its players, and its policies. If you wanted your post to almost instantly be seen on The Greatest Page, all you had to do was post something like "FUCK BUSH! FUCK CHENEY! FUCK THEM ALL! AND PUT THEM IN JAIL!" Posts like that were a dime a dozen, and almost all on The Greatest Page within minutes. Any post seen as a dig at the previous administration was welcomed with open arms. Rightly so.
Times are different now. Expectations were high (and to me, it seems like those heady days happened SO long ago already). So high in fact, that anything less than perfection has come to be seen not necessarily as failure, but definitely short of success, and nowhere near living up to the expectation we all had on election night. In retrospect, expectations were so high that they probably could never have been lived up to. Not by any President, of either party.
Because of that, we've become fractured as a family. Those of us with the most emotional investment in Barack Obama's presidency have come to see those with the most at stake (i.e. gays like my daughter) as threats to a "successful" presidency simply because we refuse to take a back seat to anyone else's agenda, and vice versa. We've lost our focus.
I would point to a poll posted on DU today as evidence of my assertion. Some voted that Obama's grade should be A+. Please. Others voted that Obama's grade should be D or F. Please! First of all, A+ should be abolished, because it implies that someone is not only perfect, but more than perfect. As a Sailor, I was subjected to performance evaluations every quarter. On a scale of 1 to 4, some Sailors were evaluated as "Four Oh". Wouldn't that mean PERFECT? Is anyone perfect? Surely there's a piece of lint somewhere on that uniform, Sailor. Such was the scale that "Three Six" marked you as someone who didn't make the grade. Seriously? What a strange evaluation system. Me? Three Seven at best. Fuck the fact that I could troubleshoot a hydraulic system and tell you why the planes I worked on sometimes didn't do what the pilot intended if he hauled the stick hard a'starboard or stood on the port rudder pedal and suddenly the plane jerked to the right. I'd walk across the street to avoid saluting an officer I didn't respect. So, no matter how sharp my uniform, no matter how much I contributed to the mission capability of my squadron's aircraft, I was Three Seven at best. But, I digress.
President Obama is neither perfect, nor is he a failure. The results of the poll I mentioned point to the fact that DU'ers would either excuse him if he had a diet of newborn babies, or claim he couldn't swim if he walked on water. Strange days.
We're not that far apart, and by that I mean those of us who wish he would do better (by firing some of the people we think are part of the problem because of their longterm participation in the "Good Ol' Boys Club") and those who think he could do more (by being out there in the Gulf like we faulted Bush for NOT being) and those who think he's perfect. Our long-term goals are the same. Hear that? OUR LONG TERM GOALS ARE THE SAME.
Fuck lockstep. Fuck blind acceptance of policies I neither support or believe are effective just because they're policies "My President" or one of his political appointees espouses. Fuck anyone who thinks Barack Obama isn't CAPABLE of changing the system he asked us to vote him into leading.
Let's regain our focus, the focus we had BEFORE Barack Obama won his seat as the "Leader of the Free World". Let's cheer his successes, and jeer his failures. Let's stop pretending that just because he holds the seat of power, he can do no wrong, and conversely, let's stop calling him a failure for not living up to the demands of every single group of people who have an agenda and a demand.
This was hard for me to put out there, because of the fact that I have a gay daughter. Her concerns are first and foremost on my list of "necessary actions". It's Priority One for me. That won't change. It's a BIG WORLD though, and as such, it demands a wider focus than we seem to be exhibiting at DU lately.
Posted by cherokeeprogressive in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Tue May 18th 2010, 02:40 AM
Let's say we go after each and every business known to hire undocumented workers, either short term or long term. Let's say we hit them in the pocketbook and take a HUGE percentage of their bottom line. Let's say we send ICE after EVERY employer not randomly, but systematically, looking for any and every undocumented worker they might have in their employ, without regard to race or nationality. Leave no stone unturned.
Let's say we fine them depending on the percentage of undocumented workers they employ. Penalize them according to the percentage of undocumented workers they hire, without a cap. If an employer has a 50% undocumented workforce... the fine is 50% of the bottom line.
Is that an answer to the problem of illegal immigration? If not, why? I'll reiterate... EVERY employer, without regard to race or nationality. Forget SB1070.
Posted by cherokeeprogressive in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Mon May 17th 2010, 03:59 PM
For want of a nail (someone acceptable to DU) the shoe (the struggle to staunch the flow of oil) was lost.
For want of a shoe (the struggle to staunch the flow of oil) the horse (control over the size of the oil spill) was lost.
For want of a horse (control over the size of the oil spill) the rider (the health of the Gulf ecosystem) was lost.
For want of a rider (the health of the Gulf ecosystem) the battle (saving the livelihood of millions of people who depend on the Gulf economy) was lost.
For want of a battle (saving the livelihood of millions of people who depend on the Gulf economy) the kingdom (the economic well-being of all the Gulf states) was lost.
And all for the want of a horseshoe nail (someone acceptable to DU).
That's some forward thinking right there. As the father of a gay teenager, I say put the motherfucker to work. If he helps staunch the flow of oil, good. If he doesn't, fire his ass. What's most important to me is saving a truly humongous ecosystem from total disaster. Millions of lives and livelihoods depend on it. That is more important to me than his personal beliefs.
Posted by cherokeeprogressive in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Fri Mar 26th 2010, 02:57 AM
In my 48 years, I have NEVER seen the divide between left and right this bad, and having had two uncles in Vietnam, I was paying attention a lot earlier than most people my age. I was still a single digit midget when they left. I watched the news every day with my parents and grandparents and was subjected to the things they believed. My mom put a Nixon/Agnew button on my shirt one day for god's sake, and I was only in third grade. Needless to say, my teacher took it off. I didn't even know what it meant.
What I'm getting from BOTH sides is something like "We're angelic, and THEY'RE evil". Now I KNOW I'm not the brightest bulb on the board, sharpest knife in the drawer or tool in the shed, shiniest hubcap on the car, or however the fuck you choose to phrase it. What I am is concerned that sooner or later, there WILL be ideologically driven violence.
I think if one were able to put ideology aside, and look at both parties objectively, it would be evident that we're largely the same in a lot of ways. We decry what THEY do when they're in power, and in some strange way we feel justified in doing the same thing when WE'RE in power.
We wanted to march with torches and pitchforks when the rethugs instituted the Patriot Act. Yet, when OUR guy is in power, when OUR party is in power, and it gets extended? Well... it needed to be. When George Bush was President, I saw posts nearly every day about warrantless wiretapping. When OUR guy is President? Not so much. Daily posts about Guantanamo Bay. Now? Not so much. Escalation in Afghanistan? Needed. Killing 22 people with a missile from a drone in an attempt to kill ONE Taliban leader? Sucks, but hey, we got our guy. Today, their words are hate speech gone over the line of treason. Back then? Our words were reasoned and just when we were calling for George Bush's arrest if he travelled overseas.
It isn't going to be a "class war" when it starts. It's going to be an ideological one. WE have just as many millionaires/billionaires/gazillionaires as they do. We have people who are money/aires and profit from war just like they do. There are even stockholders in war driven stocks here at DU; I'd bet on it.
I'm sad, and I'm scared. Scared for what the future holds in a country where the only two viable parties who, ideology aside are so alike that their hatred of each other causes them to purposely widen the gap between right and left.
How many posts are there on rw sites where we're ridiculed and called traitors, practitioners of treason, America haters, or the like? I don't know, because I don't read RW hate sites, listen to Rush, Hannity, Beck, or other right wingers as often as some DU'ers. I'm betting though that at DU, we give as good as we get.
I don't know if there's a "happy medium". One day not long ago, I thought there might be. Now? The hatred from each side for the other makes me think that someday soon, there will be a regrettable period of violence pitting us against them.
I thought this country was better than that.
Posted by cherokeeprogressive in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Sun Mar 07th 2010, 07:38 PM
I'm afraid that when the news gets out, they'll trace the ip number to my house so I went out to a public place to post this...
I know the Oscar picks. My friend at Price Waterhouse Coopers is very unhappy with her supervisor and will soon be filing a harassment lawsuit. She sent me this yesterday and told me to sit on it. Well, she just called again this morning, and told me I could post these at my discretion:
Best Picture - The Blind Side
Best Director - Lee Daniels
Best Actor - Morgan Freeman
Best Acress - Gabourey Sidibe
Best Supporting Actor - Matt Damon
Best Supporting Acress - Mo'nique
Best Animated Feature - Up
Best Screenplay - Inglourious Basterds
These are the only winners she saw. I'm sorry if I've spoiled the telecast for those who care to watch but I just thought it was too funny!
Anyone in Vegas, I think there is still time to get your bets in! I want a cut!
Oh, I know times are different. Back then, men who had their very lives invested in demonizing and killing those on the other side used Christmas as a reason to come together across battlefields and shake hands, speak of home, trade small gifts, and even exchange addresses. They actually put down their guns, left their trenches, and trusted "the other" not to kill them as they approached with good intentions. To think that it all started with the Germans placing candles on trees, and singing Stille Nacht. At one point during the night, the Germans and Brits were signing the same carols in different languages. Each time I wrap my mind around that, I get misty. I swear I do.
Today we use Christmas to start wars, even though the only bullets and artillery we use on each other are hateful words and personal insults.
Come on DU. We claim to be on the same side. We claim to work toward the same goals. We claim to have the same core beliefs. If those things are true, let's put them aside for a short while. Just a short while. Do we have that within us? Soldiers with an extreme hatred for one another were able to do it for 2 days in two consecutive years at Christmas. Would that we could put our differences aside the same way, if even for three days.
We all know it's a given that the Senate version of HCR is going to pass before Christmas. No amount of argument is going to change that. No amount of chest pounding will change it. No amount of "We win, You lose" is going to make a single bit of difference. All those things do is harden hearts and close minds. Let's at least agree on this one thing: Good or bad, the Senate version of HCR will be voted on and passed before Christmas. So, I propose we stop arguing about that particular issue.
After Christmas, when the next thing we look forward to is getting the bill through conference, we can drag out the bullets, artillery, and poisonous gasses once again and go back to slaying each other with hateful words and insults.
There will be talk of President Obama's oratory skills, his dapperlicious manner, how cute the girls look (WOW, isn't BO getting big?), and OH MY GOD wasn't Michelle's dress awesome?
That day, DU'ers will put aside their differences and agree that without President Obama's exemplary leadership, none of this would have been possible.
A thread posted that day making the claim President Obama could beat ANY (the thread will be updated to claim any THREE) former President(s) in a pickup game of basketball will get 673 recs in its first week.
Some DU'ers will die before HCR's total implementation in 2014, though ALL DU'ers will start paying for it in 2010.
I don't understand the wailing, the gnashing of teeth, the hand wringing, or the rending of garments that has taken place in the last two days. President Obama will sit in the Rose Garden, and sign a bill somewhat related to HCR. Of that, DU can rest assured. DU'ers, some of them at least, will be happy.
Soon thereafter, DOMA and DADT will repeal themselves KNOWING that they don't stand a chance in the face of the juggernaut that is the Obama Administration, and the day after THAT happens, some DU'er will post a thread outlining the 408 things that have been accomplished by President Obama.
One doesn't need to be clairvoyant to see the future.