Madstork Blog: The Blog of Michael J "Mad Stork" Harding

March 6, 2008: Hillary the Fighter (Counter-Clinton Campaign Dialectic No. 1) - Hillary Clinton is indeed a fighter. Fighting is her best and only instinct when it comes to prevailing in her point of view. She is a shrewd, vicious, unscrupulous, amoral and, indeed,  truly dirty fighter. She would rather destroy the Democratic party than lose. The arts of consensus building, seductive persuasion, give-and-take, and compromise are anathema to her very existence. This is the body of her true experience: to slash and burn and fight to a stalemate: refusing to yield, but failing to prevail. Her secretive, parochial, my-way-or-the-highway style was the key to the humiliating failure of her healthcare initiative of the early nineties and will be the lynch pin of her domestic and international initiatives if elected president: in other words, she will fail on both fronts while subjecting us to yet another four years of petty squabbling, gotcha politics, and ineffective government: the only brand of government we have seen since 1992 when husband Bill slithered into the presidency. Barack needs to publicly state that will not get into the gutter with Hillary Clinton and be a party to the further demoralization of American voters. He should state that if this is what the American people want, more political knife-fighting, fear-mongering, and just plain ol' slime-slinging; then they should just vote for Hillary Clinton and get ready for another four years of trench warfare and political stalemate: giving up on anything approaching true change. Barack needs to publicly state that he still prefers making friends to making enemies, granting respect to adversaries rather than vilifying them, making piece over making war, and that he wants to return America to the powerful, peace-loving country it was and disavow the powerful, militaristic, threatening and war-mongering country we have become under the Bush Reich. (More dialectics to come)

Barack Obama has my permission to use any and all of the above statements, in whole or in part,  in any way he deems appropriate, or beneficial: He may credit them to me, the author; or use them as if from an anonymous source; or take them as his own granting no credit to anyone. The choice is his and his alone.

February 14, 2008: Give Us Liberty, or Get Out of Town - Dear House of Representatives of something, or someone, but not of me, or mine: No immunity for telecoms - No warrantless searches! No, Nay, Never! This is the last hill on the battlefield in the war to strip us of all personal liberty in this great country. Congress has lost, abandoned, or forfeited every promontory and redoubt up to this point. If you surrender this position, you will have left the field with your tails between your legs and once-and-for-all admitted to your constituents that you quaked at the threats of common school-yard bullies AND that you are nothing but cowardly, sniveling, instruments of multi-national corporations. Government of the PEOPLE, by the PEOPLE, and for the PEOPLE will be restored to this land: the cat has left the bag. All of you corporate-owned congresspersons are walking the precipice of grand treason and soon will be cast together into the darkest pit of American history. P.S. Thank you Senator Dodd for your unwavering and steadfast support in this fight. You are a true contemporary American hero.

February 14, 2008: I'm back after a period of understandable, but unforgivable and fruitless depression and political inactivity. Let's give'em hell Storky.

"Government of the corporation, by the corporation, and for the corporation must perish from this earth."  - Dr. Ichabod  Shoebilly - The "Grand Stork"

November 18, 2004: It's just two weeks following Mr. Bush's re-election and the chickens already are coming home to roost: we can only imagine what it will be like in the lame-duck weeks of the second administration. Yes, the chickens are coming home to roost, but they are finding that the weasels have long-since (almost four years now) captured the hen house and have totally renovated it to serve their purposes. What kind of mad raving and ranting is this? Well. let's take a closer look. The three big hooplas in Washington this week are: (1.) Arlen Specter made the stupid mistake of saying that Mr. Bush shouldn't nominate an anti-abortion judge to the supreme court...silly, silly man. He soon found that, although he's a senior Republican and next in line to chair the Judiciary Committee, he infuriated the "Not-See" Republicans (so called because they do NOT want to SEE any behavior in their ranks that falls outside of the official, Bush, Neo-Con party line) and soon (today) had to kiss their boots in public and make all-manner of amends. We can be sure that Mr. Specter was summarily reminded that they, not he, have the power and that 2006 will be the "Year of the Rino Purge and he should be very careful. 2004 was all about getting-rid of as many Democrats as possible by whatever means necessary. 2006 is the year that the Neo-Con Not-Sees intend to give-the-boot to the Rinos. (Republicans In Name Only - in other words, non-Not-See Republicans) If you're one of those who thought that a "Neo-Con" was just a new breed of political "con-man", like a George Bush for example, you better get it straight: it's much more than that. (2.) The vote to raise the record debt ceiling to a new record debt ceiling of three trillion ($3,000,000,000,000.00) dollars (How many Happy-Meals is that?) is causing a little weeping and gnashing of teeth on the hill. How many Americans realize we are borrowing a million dollars a minute? When that giant chicken comes home to roost, he WILL roost: He's one big bird. Even the weasels will have to bow to him. Remember those wonderful "Reagan" years when the Republicans slashed taxes (mostly on the wealthy) to promote "Trickle-Down Economics" where the rich would get richer and it would "trickle down" to the street-level slobs and everyone would be happy? George Bush Sr. called it Voodoo Economics, but he got shouted-down and lost. Anyone remember how that turned-out? It went something like this: Borrowed money (as opposed to real money) flowed like water; the rich did get richer; we raped our homeland for anything we could cut down or dig up and sell; we had a polluter's holiday; real-estate prices skyrocketed along with our property taxes; but then, the bubble popped, the stock market crashed, Savings and Loans Associations tanked in enormous numbers, the American people paid for the bail-out, the bottom fell out of real estate, mortgage-holders lost their homes in record numbers, and we found ourselves with a staggering level of debt. Then, the most amazing thing happened: Bill Clinton, a "tax and spend liberal" according to Republican propaganda, came along and reversed it. In eight years he turned a record deficit into a record surplus. (Duh!) He did this to give George Bush a fresh start with Voodoo II: a new, improved, bigger-and-better Voodoo Economics. Mr. Bush, it turns out, was more than up to the Reagan challenge: He started with a record surplus - blew that, and ran up a record deficit to make Mr. Reagan blush with envy, AND he did it in half the time. (So there!) AND he pillaged, and continues to pillage, all the surplus Social Security and Medicare money he can get his hands on. AND (This is the best part.) it doesn't even get counted in the debt...It's surplus, stupid. (Beat that!) (3.) So what's going on with the Vioxx thing and the FDA? Funny you should ask. Here we have a micro-cosmic, lab-plate slice of the Neo-Con pie. In other words, if you understand this scenario; then turn-around and look at the rest of the "business-friendly, Neo-Con, Republican pie, you will see it's all the same...right down to the "pinch of nutmeg": at which time you will know too much, and have to be shot. The American drug industry is one of those "friendly" businesses: a real big one; but there are lots of "real big ones". They are so friendly, in fact, we have decided not to dicker about prices: we're talking friends here...it's not about the money. The drug companies are so gracious, in fact, that they have consented to loan some of their best people to the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) to help oversee drug-safety issues. Makes perfect sense. Who knows more about drugs than they do, after all. It's been a great relationship: good for everybody. One little bump in the road, however: It seems that this drug, Vioxx has been killing too many people...too many to hide, unfortunately. Now, some cranky, Democrat types are trying to imply that the friend-filled FDA approved, and re-approved and refused to disapprove of Vioxx even though there were strong indications that it was killing too many people. How low is that: to try to come between friends like that? There ought to be a word for them...actually there will be by the end of the week: Frank's working on it. Remember Frank? Frank Bush Luntz?  - A.K.A. "Notso Frank", or just "Notso", as his friends like to call him. Anyway: A few years ago, the drug companies convinced a friendly, Republican Congress to allow "Direct Marketing" of prescription drugs. After all, it was business friendly and they were a friendly business: so friendly in fact, that it poured multiple millions of dollars into friendly mostly-Republican campaigns...just to keep the Congress friendly. It's only money, after all; We're talking friends here. The druggies did make it clear though that any congressman or senator that decided to be unfriendly would find his future campaign money in some one else's pocket...in other words, he would lose. (It needed to be said: friends should be "straight" with each other.) As great as direct marketing (Ask your Doctor about Vioxx, etc.) is, and it is...think about it: your a drug company; you develop a new, patented drug; you can charge exorbitant prices for it, no one else can make it, it's patented; but, here's the clincher...don't try to convince doctors how great it is...they ask too many questions: go right to the potential consumer and convince him or her; get it on the tube hour after hour, day after day, week after week, etc., etc., until they are convinced it will change their lives. They will tell their doctor they want it and he will prescribe it...after all, there's more than one doctor out there. Only two parts of the puzzle were now missing: most of the people who would use this drug can't afford it unless they have insurance; but it turns out they do...Medicare; but would George Bush be friendly enough let them charge anything they want? You bet he would! He believes in business. That just leaves one little piece to put in place before they can claim complete success: Those damn trial lawyers: the one obstacle to totally-unbridled profit. Here's where Vioxx is a good example...It seems that if you kill, maim, disfigure, or just severely harm, large amounts of people through willful negligence or omission, those piss ant little lawyers come out-of-the-woodwork to try to get compensation for them. It would be one thing if they just wanted enough money for a nice little box to be planted in; but no, they want way too much for a simple death or incapacitation. But wait! Can George Bush help his old friends out with this little problem? You bet he can! He and Notso are already working on it. They've devised a simple little ruse to convince the American people that Trial Lawyers and "Frivolous Law Suits" are the reason for the explosion in health care costs. (even though it really accounts for less than one per-cent) Well, then why ARE health care costs rising so rapidly, anyway? The truth is there are a few factors...all centered around greed; but the biggest one, by far is...(Are you ready?) It can be summed-up in one sentence: "Ask your doctor about Prevasid, Lipitor, Levitra, Zocor, Fosamax, Humira, Nexium, Ambien, Plavix, Imitrex, Ortho-Tricyclen, Cialis, Singulair, Procrit, Celebrex, Remecade, Detrol LA, Zelnorm, Lamisil, Crestor AND don't forget to tell your doctor if you have kidney or liver problems."   -  P.S. Don't ask your Doctor about Vioxx right now. You see, Merck, the manufacturer, decided to pull it from the market to limit liability; even though the FDA thought they were being too squeamish about it.

November 17, 2004: Does anyone get what's driving this anti-abortion thing? If it's a life-and-death thing, then why aren't these militantly vocal and determined crusaders screaming about capital punishment (especially of the innocent), or voluntary, neo-colonial wars of arrogance? If it's a morality thing, then why aren't they clamoring to feed the hungry children in their own country? If it's a justice thing, then why aren't they outraged at the incarceration rates, especially of African-Americans, in the "Land of the Free"? If they are so concerned about the life of the fetus, why aren't they screaming "Let me have your baby" instead of "murderer", "evil" and "devil"? Isn't the unspoken message here: You must bear your baby to term; so it may be born to hunger, poverty and abuse; until if, and when, it reaches maturity, we, the righteous, can imprison or execute it as we may see fit? The truth is... it could only be a "control" thing: all fundamentalists of any religion are obsessed with controlling the lives of others. They have all the answers and we don't. (Period) There is no law in this country that says that you, or any member of your family, must have an abortion: never will be. There is no law in this country that says you can't teach your children, or your Sunday-school class your position on this matter: never will be. There is no law against zero abortions: never will be. However, there is a "Bill of Rights" in our constitution with a clear presumption of freedom and liberty (or at least, there always was): Freedom to make personal life-choices, freedom to exercise our own moral values (as opposed to some one else's), freedom to talk directly to God, however we perceive him or her, and freedom to derive our own values as we see fit; as long as they don't directly infringe upon our neighbors. If you fundamentalists, and your values, are so correct, why can't you just "win us over"? Why do you need force, punishment, police, judges, jails? What would Jesus say: "Love your neighbor. If he borrows money from you, don't ask for it back. If he steals your coat, give him your shirt. If he slaps you in the face, turn the other cheek and let him slap you again. And if he still doesn't do what you want, beat him to death with a club?" Highly unlikely! In other words: Dear Fundamentalist Christians, We have read Mathew, Mark, Luke and John, but still can't find your Jesus. 

November 15, 2004: Does everyone appreciate the contributions of Frank "Bush Man" Luntz to the Bush administration and the RNC in general? He is the chief propagandist-in-residence. He, for example, is directly responsible for the phenomenon that a majority of Americans believe that the war in Iraq is part of the "War on Terror". Mr. Luntz is the talking-points word man. His main job is to change the definition, and or, title of any given topic. You will not here any Republican refer to the "Iraq War": it's the "War on Terror in Iraq." (Thanks, Frank) There are many redefinitions in the "Luntz Lexicon": Global Warming is Climate Change. (Sorry Inuits, Frogs and Venetians) Intact Dilation Extraction Abortion is Partial-Birth abortion. (Pretty clever, don't you think?) Resistance-fighters and insurgents are terrorists and thugs. (Who could root for a terrorist, or a thug?) Anti-Abortion is Pro-Life. (So anyone who believes that abortion is an issue best left to the woman and her doctor is "Pro-Death") Relaxing power plant emission standards is a "Clear Skies Initiative" . (Sometimes they get a little carried away) The Estate Tax is the Death Tax. (And it's killing the rich) Civilian Casualties (woman, children and non-combatants killed) are Collateral Damage. (Remember when collateral damage was bridges and stuff?) Block-Busters are Smart Bombs. (They only kill the evil) Vengeance is Justice. (You gotta love that one) But, the winner is: Fundamentalist-Christian Dogma is Moral Values. (Have you ever met a fundamentalist of any religion who was even remotely interested in morality? i.e. "love your neighbor" [even if he doesn't share your views, or is a different color, or religion]: Very rare indeed. If you disagree with a fundamentalist - Christian, Muslim, Jew: doesn't matter - he will "ordain" you as EVIL: If you're evil, morality doesn't apply to you: evil is to be destroyed: at any cost.) But anyway, back to Frank Luntz: He not only rewrites dictionaries: he is a master of "Narrow Casting" and "Reptilian Hot-Buttons". Don't know what these are? You better find out because these are the things that get Bush Men elected; as we have recently witnessed. So thanks, Frank; and a hearty "Hats Off". Mr. Bush clearly could not have won without you. (Frank, indeed!)

November 8, 2004: George Bush claims he has a mandate. (The first fifty-one per-cent mandate in history.) He has earned political capital and he intends to spent it. (And we will pay for it.) He has promised to reform the tax code. (More "tax relief" for corporations and the wealthy.) Over hall social security. (Privatize a good portion of it and create a huge revenue short fall: added to the huge revenue short fall he already created by spending all the money the Clinton administration put aside for it, and spending all the current overpayments as fast as he gets them. Not to worry though, he will find a way for the working class to pay for it.) He will step-up the "The War on Terror" (Invade and/or bomb more countries) and promote freedom in the rest of the world. (while curtailing more freedoms here at home: Watch for Patriot II, it promises to be a real piece of work.) Mr. Bush says he speaks and governs from the heart. (You would think, with all his power and influence, someone could find him one. Wouldn't you?)  

November 4, 2004: We all know that the constitution strictly prohibits mixing government and religion; but unfortunately, nobody knows why. The French know why; but we can't really ask them about it right now. Our founding fathers must have known why; but we don't really give a shit. But here's the good part: We're gonna find out why... pretty soon now. Here's a hint: It's not good for government and it's not good for religion. You can already see it in motion. The cost of living is rising, good-paying jobs are evaporating like the morning dew; we're bogged down in a stupid, ill-conceived, immoral, voluntary war of arrogance (We are waging war on Arabs, from whom we get the lion's share of our oil, which we desperately need...How stupid is that?); more children go to bed hungry every day; people don't have adequate health care; polluted air is killing trees, rivers, lakes, frogs and other amphibians at an alarming rate, climate change is disrupting all sorts of things; asthma, autism and cancer are proliferating; and the government is on a mad dash to bankruptcy. But we WILL get rid of abortions (I wonder if the republicans will go so far as to ban the passing-out of free coat hangers? Probably.); homosexuality will remain both sinful and shameful (an abomination, if you will...Because someone pretending to be St. Paul said so); and tolerance of opposing views will not be tolerated (You're either with us, or against us...So I'm a terrorist, I guess.). Why legislate money for bridges, healthcare, a safe environment, etc., etc. when we can legislate morality? Why argue about social programs, or the air we breath, or the debt we are leaving for our children, or the plight of the working class, or the Iraqi innocents we are killing by the thousands, when we can argue about abortion, or gay rights, or "under God", or the Ten Commandments in the courthouse? We are finally a good, Christian nation. Right? Oh, by the way: there is one potential little problem... There are well over two hundred denominations of Christians in this country. So, which one are we? Even George Bush has been three or four kinds of Christian. So, where did we end up? We can't be Episcopalians, because they have a gay Bishop. We can't be Quakers, because they don't really like killing people. We need to figure this out. Whatever we decide on, we will have to be some kind of, pro-capital-punishment, anti-abortion, pro-pre-emptive-invasion, anti-gay-and-lesbian, pro-sickness-and-hunger, anti-intellectual, pro-incarceration, anti-due-process, and, of course, totally-asexual Christians. (Sound like some kind of Presbyterian to me, but I'm not a good one to ask: I'm just a recovering Catholic; what do I know?) You know, Jesus said: "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's." How dumb is that? Let's just say that it's important to remember that Jesus was not an American, he was a Palestinian; and he wasn't a Christian, he was a Jew. Enough said.            P.S. No bridges for a while.

November 3, 2004: (2:30 a.m.) Going to bed. Looks like Bush is going to win. This is a great day for both democracy and western civilization: the world's fountainhead of modern democracy is poised to have it's first electoral victory due solely to lies, deception, misrepresentation, misinformation, disinformation, fear-mongering and outright manipulation. This is a banner day for the struggling corporocracies of the world. 

"First they came for the Arabs, but I was not an Arab; so I said nothing. Then they came for the Muslims, but I was not a Muslim; so I said nothing. Then they came for the dissenters, but I was not a dissenter; so I said nothing. Then they came for the political activists, but I was not a political activist; so I said nothing. Then they came for the people who were reading certain left-wing books, but I was not reading any of those books; so I said nothing. Now they are coming for me. I should have said something."  - Professor Shoebilly

October 29, 2004: The three biggest obstacles to world peace and harmony are: right-wing, Islamist fundamentalists, right-wing, Christian fundamentalists, and right-wing, Jewish fundamentalists. They are all anti-intellectual, self-righteous, full of pompous rectitude, confuse vengeance with justice, subscribe to false prophecies of doom and destruction; they are all belligerent, bellicose, tribalistic, consumed with hatred and hell-bent-for-war.  It is time for the reasonable and vast truly-moral majority to stand up and say: "Enough is enough. We ain't gonna study war no more. You are not Muslims, You are not Christians, You are not Jews... Islam, Christianity, and Judaism are great, moral, just, compassionate and non-exclusive religions: God has no message of hatred, persecution, war, and death. We don't believe you."

October 27, 2004: George Bush says that the terriststs (terrorists) are waging war on Americans. Actually, that's not exactly true: they are waging war on American business. Ironically, it's American business that's waging war on Americans. Here's the nut: If this is true, then, strictly speaking, all of our armed services personnel are mercenaries drawn from a vanquished population. Think about it.

October 21, 2004: The problem with the unemployment statistics is they are a thinly-veiled, gross deception: To be counted as unemployed in this country, you have to be collecting unemployment compensation. After thirty-nine weeks, the checks stop and you are now magically not unemployed anymore. We need unemployment data that includes the helpless, the hopeless, and the homeless.

"Evil is the face of hatred. Hatred is the face of rage. Rage is the face of oppression. Oppression is the face of authority. Authority is the face of religion. Religion is the face of control. Control is the face of power. And God can only cry."  - Professor Shoebilly

October 20, 2004: The problem with the right-wing, fundamentalist, Christian right (George Bush), and their so-called "Christian Values" is that they are full of religion, but totally devoid of morality: it is as if they have never heard one word that Jesus said. They are against abortion, but for execution, for personal, arbitrary, manufactured wars of vague ideology, for bombing an apartment building full of women and children in the hope of also killing a "suspected terrorist", for cruel, and (formerly)  unusual punishments, and on and on. Like all fundamentalists of any religion, they are in a constant state of war against evil; and they, and only they, get to say who is good and who is evil: they pretend to speak for God, they are full of pompous rectitude, and the end (their end) justifies any means whatever. When they finally get to meet their Jesus, he will say: "I know you not."   "An ounce of spirituality is worth a ton of religion." - Professor Shoebilly

October 19, 2004: Ran into some snags. Perseverance is the key to ultimate success, I guess. "If you're not prepared to go the distance, don't go at all." - Professor Shoebilly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you like this blog, please e-mail this link to your friends: www.madstork.com/blog

To comment on, or contribute to this blog, please e-mail blog@madstork.com. Please include your name, city or town, state or country, and e-mail address. If your statement is included on this page, you will be identified as Tom in New Orleans, Mary in Springfield, Marco in Italy, etc., unless you otherwise specify a handle.

_______________

Links to Blogs worth visiting:

(in no particular hierarchy)

The Huffington Post

Daily Kos

Bill Moyers Journal

Wonkette.com

Bloggermann - Keith Olbermann

The Daily Mis-Lead

The Smirking Chimp

The Daily Dish - Andrew Sullivan

AngryBlackBitch

News Sites Worth Your Time:

Truth Out

The Onion

Canada East

The Truth Will Set You Free