The SamuraiMarine

Thoughts, Philosophy, Life and Love

Category: Politics (Page 2 of 4)

Has the nation grown a pair?

Well… it might just be a flash in the pan, but this last week has shown an example of what happens when the voters decide to tell the system that they have had enough.

Here in California the voters, in what appears to be a landslide of votes more than the turnout, have shot down Props 1a through 1e.  The average on this was about 66% against to 33% for.  This tells me that in spite of the Liberal and some Conservative, effort to tell the masses that the “Tea Parties” were a waste of time and effort, that may not have been the case.

The key idea behind the Party that I attended was to not let them, Dem or Rep, have what they were asking for.  To say no on all the props and to leave them out in the cold.  We did just that.  We told them that patching up a failing system with loans against money that was not earned yet is not a way to run a state government.  The problem needs to be FIXED not covered up with yet another coat of paint and given a new name.  Crap is still crap, no matter how pretty you dress it up.

Then, yesterday, there was Citizen Obama’s slap across the face in the Senate.  I mean, if the vote had been something like 50 to 46 or something, then I could give him the possibility that he just did not sell the idea of closing Guantanamo to some people.  But when they return a 90 to 6 against closing it.  That is just an outright burn.  Citizen Obama walked out of the Senate chamber with his ass burning after that one.  Maybe walking like he just had a little involuntary “Brokeback Mountain” moment in the Senate chambers.

There is, however, another thought that crosses my mind about that vote, though.  With all the questions about where those prisoners where going to go, is it possible that the “Vote” was a sham, and CBO NEVER planned on closing GITMO in the first place?  Is it possible that that he, CBO, planned this as a “Planned Failure” to cover up the fact that maybe he never planned to close GITMO in the first place, but needed an “OUT”?   Could it be that he knew there was no way that he could close the facility without causing a major uproar with a large group of people, yet by NOT trying, cause another group, HIS voters, to be angry, so he set this up to make it look like he would try but then the mean, bad old Senate would not let him?

If that is true… are we sure that CBO is not actually a Clinton is disguise?

Let’s Play… USA!

There are probably not too many of you out there that will get the title of this post.  You have to have a strange taste in music like I do and have listened to those odd groups from the 80’s.

There was an artist by the name of Peter Schilling, a German singer, who’s only real popular hit in America was a song titled “Major Tom” of the album “Error in the System“.

The song, “Let’s Play, USA” was a commentary on how he saw American life.  In this song, there is a courus that keeps repeating:

Let’s play USA
Let’s play USA

How I love the life I lead
Cannot think and cannot read
Watch our values slip away
Play the game of USA

While Peter may have thought poorly of the government at the time, this statement is more true not than it ever was in the 1980’s.

Looking at the way the country is going… the direction that it is heading, there is no doubt in my mind that today, there is an error in the system here.  When the government shells out billions upon billions of dollars to companies like AIG, who then pay their executives bonus’ to the tune of $165mil, then there is a problem.  While it looks as though much of this money might be given back, it is still money that should not have been given to AIG to begin with.

Personally I would be interested in seeing if there are grounds for a Class Action case like “The American Tax-Payers vs. AIG”.  Granted, we would not get a lot of money, if any, but it would be on PRINCIPAL.

History show us that simply throwing money at a problem does not fix it.  Likewise, simply throwing money, as this new administration seems intent on doing, at the financial issues presently plaguing America is not going to help, not when in order to do so you are taking the money out in the form of a mortgage against the future of the nation.

I am not a financial expert… but I do understand on how to, and not to, stay solvent.  If I keep borrowing money to pay my bills, there will come a time that the interest and payments on the money I am borrowing will exceed that which I am able to pay back.  That is called Bankruptcy.  That is where we are heading if our administration is allowed to keep sending out these so called “Stimulus Packages.”

Thanks for your time.

What is Conservative? What is Liberal? What does it matter?

The other day a co-worker found out that I listen to Sean Hannity during the day while I am at work.  His first response was;  “You’re listening to Hannity all the time now, so now you’re not even going to pretend you’re an Independent anymore?”

First off, this is not the first time someone has said something like this, people assume that when you listen to a certain type of music or a certain type of talk radio, that you are automatically a certain class or political persuasion of people.  Yet through that train of thought, at least for those that ask and are serious about the question, they do not realize exactly how ignorant they sound.  No offense to the asker listed above, since he is a reader.

The best part of understanding anything, is to be able to, objectively, listen to both sides of an argument and make a determination based on what both sides have to say and compare it to your own research.  I do this with everything I hear on the stations that I listen to.  For the record, the stations that I listen to are as follows: Sirius – Patriot 144, Sirius – POTUS 110 and Sirius – Left 146.

To be honest, the hardest one to listen to is Left 146.  These people are fawning and cooing all over the Obama administration like he is the best thing since sliced white bread (you may take that however you want.)  This station is like one long continuous squishy ObamaGasm, I usually feel like I need to get tested for an STD after listening for too long… ironically this is something that CBO will cover in his new Universal Healthcare.

As if things are not bad enough on their own, we feel the need to divide ourselves further by creating these petty “Gangs” of political rivals whose only goal in life is to squabble over how to run the government instead of actually RUNNING the Government, like a poorly made remake of “West Side Story” with the rival gangs dancing up and down the streets getting nothing more done than producing their own CO2 atmosphere.

Look at the government the way it is now, and look at the achievements that have been made by it over the last several years, say about the last twenty years.  In fact, in my opinion, the last good president we had was Reagan… not to mention that he was my Boss for a short period of time.  There are many out there that will debate this fact, but look at the history and what he accomplished in the disastrous wake of the Carter administration.

I am not opening this post up for debate or argument on the effectiveness on presidents of the past, however I am going to bring into question the effectiveness of the current political parties that are in power.

If the next four year pass the way I expect them to, I feel that we are going to truly see what little value there is in a single party “running the show”, so to say.  If CBO and his team accomplish nothing ver the next four years, then who will they have to blame?  The Dems control the house and the senate, there will be no one to blame but themselves.

That being said, you might ask; “‘Samurai… are you saying that the Republicans would do better?”  And to that I would answer a resounding NO!!!  The Dems and the Reps have made a special point of demonstrating their uselessness over the last fifteen years or so.  If there has ever been a better time for a Third party to come in, like the proverbial knight in shinning armour on his (or her) white steed, then it is now.

There are unfortunately few “Third” parties that would even have a chance to do anything, and among these would be the two more powerful… the Libertarian and Independent parties.  Both of whom I respect a great deal, and the reason for which I abandon the sinking ship of the Republican party and boarded the smaller, but better staffed, Independent Party.

I would ask that anyone reading this, take the time to look at the reason they belong to the party that they chose and learn about it and why you are part of it.  Have they done everything that you think they should of or are you simply staying on with them because you think it is the right thing to do.  If you can look at the recent history of their ACCOMPLISHMENTS, not what they SAID they would do, but what they DID… and say that you are proud of them and what they stand for, then by all means… stay with them.  But if you cannot accept that they have made their decisions based on your desires, or if they do not stand for what you believe in, then for G-d’s sake, leave them behind!!!

You may think you are only one person, but every movement starts with one person.  Maybe if the Dems and the Reps see people leaving them in record numbers, then they will realize that they are making mistakes.  I feel that the only reason that they get away with half the stuff they get away with is because of the complacency of us, the people that put them in power in the first place.

Thank you for your time.

New Bailout Mascot

Credit for image to the site linked to this picture.

Credit for image to the site linked to this picture.

I saw this image on another site… Please follow the link for the main site that is hosting the picture, but this says it best.

The trials of a would-be Messiah

One of the greatest things that any potential messiah has to overcome is the ability to not be overshadowed by that which is expected of him.  In days of old, it was common for people that were not able to prove their divinity to be taken out and stoned… and no, I do not mean they were taken out and forced to drink great quantities of liquer or smoke dope.

These days, however, people are always touting themselves as divine.  Take your pick… Jim Jones, David koresh, etc… The problem is that now adays, no one buys it anyway.  Chances are that if there really is a “Second Coming”, the person will be commited and shortly thereafter put on a heavy prescription or lobotomized.

All that being said, I offer for your consideration this train of thought suggesting that Citizen Obama is some sort of Messiah or spiritual figure.  You can see such suggestions on sites like the following:

“Is Barack Obama the Messaiah”

Reading through this site, I am not sure if the writer is poking fun at the thought that CBO is being cast in this light, or if he seriously thinks that this is the case.

My point and the reason for my writing this piece, is not to defrock CBO, not to pop the bubbles of all those zealots out there that wish to follow in the wake of his (potential) Holiness Citizen Barack Obama to whatever cup of Kool Aid he may be serving them.  But to offer a warning to anyone, including Barack, who might actually start believing this tripe.

When people put someone on a pedistal the way they have CBO, something happens that it potentially very dangerous.  That is that there is a great deal of hope and expectation.  There is a lot riding on his ability to succeed here, and people are already casting him as some end-all-be-all for the woes and troubles of America.  What happens if he does not succeed, which I suspect will be the case?  Will CBO be able to live up to all the expectations that others have for him?  Will he be able to walk up to the sea of red tape that is our political system and raise his hands and part the two sides of the house and the senate and cause bills to be passed?  Can he envoke some modern version of the twelve plauges on those that defy his will?

OK… I digress.  The point is that he has a lot of things that are expected of him that he will, more than likely, not achieve.  If people out there truly feel this way about him, then for that I actually feel sorry for him, because he has no way to win… it is a no-win scenario.

As for if he is all that people expect him to be, I am not worrying about that either… because not being a Christian, I am screwed anyway.  But if Ted Kennedy is still drinking, then CBO is going to be his new best friend, never have to pay for another drink again as long as he brings the water.

Ten Questions…

I have just watched a program called “Ten Questions for the Dalai Lama” and all I can say is that you must watch this program.

I have, for the last nine years now, studied Buddhism.  Not for the sake of becoming a Buddhist, but because of all the religions and beliefs that I have encountered and studied, Buddhism has struck me as one of the most interesting, for reasons that I will go over later.

To listen to the Dalai Lama and to watch him speak and interact with others is truly a delight.  The film warns you in the beginning that he has a infectious laugh and smile, and that turns out to be no lie.  If you sit any watch this program, I dare you to NOT smile almost every time you see him smile, laugh or play to the camera.  He is most certainly a little bit of a ham when it comes the the camera.

In the face of all that has happened to his culture and his people, the tremendous loss of the histories and artifacts of his past and the past of Buddhism, he smiles.  He smiles and he dismisses it as so much water under the bridge.  Then, as if you do not think that he could do one better… he forgives the Chinese for their actions and destruction.

This is something that I, at this time, would not be able to bring myself to do, yet deep inside, I understand what his reasons were and why he, and most other monks, feel this way.  While I understand that carrying a hatred for a person or people is unhealthy and causes us more pain than it helps us, I am not able to follow in those steps… yet.

I also admire his, the Dalai Lama’s, ability to interact.  You can see in his eyes and his actions that he genuinely loves everyone.  He does not care what color you are, what you look like, what religion you are or how you dress.  His love is not swayed by what he can get from you or how much you can donate to his cause.  If you can help the Tibetan cause, then he will accept that help, but you can tell that he will only accept that help if it is offered freely and is not contingent on something in return, short of the love that he and his people offer to all.

Most surprising to me is that the Dalai Lama, in spite of what the Chinese have done, encourages us (meaning the world) to engage in favorable relations with them.  This is another thing that I find hard to talk myself into actively doing.  I know that it is impossible, as an American, to stop buying Chinese products.  Look at how much of what you and I buy, on a daily basis, that is made in China.  I bought a “Proud to be an American” t-shirt a couple weeks ago, and it has a “Made in China” label in it.  This in and of itself is enough to make a person question the direction that their country is going.

But he, and they, look above that.  They, somehow, are able to see beyond their own loss and need to understand the need for peace in the world.

This brings me to my final point.  I think that all the religions of the world could stand to benefit by studying Buddhism.  If even the “Big Three” (Judaism, Christendom and Islam), could incorporate the basics principles of Buddhism towards one another.  Accept the differences and embrace them for what they make us, not use them as dividing points and wedges to further separate us and make us fear one another.  Teach us to look at one another an laugh at the little things we bicker over.  After all… as Buddhism teaches us… everything is tranistory, nothing last forever.

What would my ten questions be?

They have all, already been asked, and the answers are there, but we, as a world, are not mature enough to understand them yet.  Hopefully we will mature enough to do so, before we destroy ourselves and the world that we are borrowing from our children.

While the term has become somewhat cliche these days and more a joke to those that do not understand, I do agree with the “Free Tibet” movement.  I do side with the Dalai Lama on the point that this should be done through peace, not through conflict.  People who are used to conflict and war are not intimidated by it.

Searching for Guy Fawkes.

I am not a radical.

I am not a revolutionary.

I am not a promoter of violence or chaos.

But there is a question I would like to ask, in general, to you, the readers.

Is there ever, in your opinion, a right time or reason to do something that might be considered the wrong thing?

There is a movie called “V for Vendetta” that is set in what I would call a “dystopian” future, in the UK.  A future where the UK has become a closed society and imposes strict rules on what you can read, listen to, say and do.  All TV is controlled and monitored by the government.  In short, it is a very Orwellian story.

The main character is a radical, who, while the story make him out to be a modern hero for that time, is performing acts of domestic terrorism in the city where the story is set.  All this in order to embolden the people, the citizenry, to stand up and take back their country and their freedoms.

So the question stands.  Is there a time when you can justify something that is obviously an act of terrorism, or the actions of what is basically a domestic terrorist, when the popular movement supports that person or group?

Watching this movie, I walk away with an odd feeling from it.  I do enjoy the movie, it is a powerful movie with a positive statement.  “V”, the main character in this movie said; “People should not fear their government, their government should fear the people.”  This statement alone is one that I think we have all forgotten, and this movie demonstrates that act carried, in my opinion, too far.

It is a movies that carries with it a mixed message.  Expressing the need for people to stand up and take their place in the path that their country takes.  It also carries a dangerous message, especially in these “Post 9/11″ years, when even the slightest act of sedition is enough to put you on the government’s watch list.

I watch the movie and I do see many similarities between the society that they show and the way we are becoming.  No… our government is not getting THAT oppressive yet, but the interpretation of the people, willing to sit back and watch as the government tells them how to live, work and love.  That I can see us doing, because face it… many of us Americans are becoming lazy and complacent.

If you have not seen the movie, then I would like to ask that you give it a whirl.  I hope that you will not only watch it for the entertainment factor, but also to take the time and examine it from a historic point of view.  I would like to know what others take from the movie and if that is anything along the lines of what I took from it.

Is there another Guy Fawkes out there, waiting in the wings, waiting for a cause to undertake?

[poll id=”3”]

What’s the worst that could happen?

OK… So this is an open question to any readers out there that stumle upon my site or those whom are regular readers of mine.

It looks like the Bail Out package is not fairing well…  So my question to you all is this:

Should the Bail-Out package NOT pass, what is the worst that could happen?  How bad could it really get?

I am not a financially minded person, so the question is a serious one and I would really like to see the answers that you might have.

In addition to your writen answer, please take the time to use my new polling feature.

[poll id=”2″]

VC 23123… Three months in…

My subtitle for this one is:

…Or, How California’s lawmakers prove they have a sense of humor.

So… I will start my post with a question.  What difference have we seen with on the roads with the new law banning the use of cell phones, without hands free devices?

Personally, I have noticed little or no difference in the number of people that I see on the phone.  I have even seen people sitting at a stop light, talking on the phone while a cop sits not even fifteen feet away.

Just for giggles I went ahead and sent an email to the California Highway Patrol to ask them for statistics on the numbers of citation issued to people for using their cell phones will driving, versus the number issued to people after VC23123 and VC23124 went into effect.

To be honest, I was not expecting a reply at all, but I did actually get one.  One that told me to contact a different section of their agency… by phone… whuch I did.  Only to be put on hold for about twenty minutes before I was advise by another person that I needed to contact yet another number.  At which point I stopped.

I know I should have taken this a little further, fought the good fight, and stayed on the trail to get this information.  Unfortunately I am not like the Michael Moore’s of this world where I can go off entirely half-cocked on a mission of little importance for the sole task of making myself look good.  Well… nevermind that, there are not enough plastic surgeons in the world to make Him look good.  My opinion…

No… I stopped there primarily because I was doing this research while on my lunches, and since there is only so much time and I am not independantly wealthy… well, you see my point.  However, if a representative from the Highway Patrol happens to come across this site and this article, and does have the information that I am looking for, then I will gladly post it.

The point that I think I am trying to make, just like the one I tried to make in July, is that this law it pointless.  It is one of those “warm fuzzies” that the law makers like to put out there to make the people think that they care.

I do support the principle that the law stands for, do not get me wrong on that.  I think that the idea is a good one, but instead of creating a brand new law that actually duplicated what is already out there, why not just enforce the laws that are already on the books?  To me, that would be more impressive than making a new law that reenforces another.

Oh well…

“Who am I? What am I doing here?” – Admiral James Stockdale – 1992

Chasing life, or running from death?

Disclaimer: The following is meant as a motivational and philosophical outlook.  If you interpret it as anything else, then this is your own doing.

In our pursuit to live fuller lives by taking chances and living to the “extreme”, I thought about what people do and how they do it in order to get more from their lives. It dawned on my through this that, maybe, instead of actually chasing or racing with life, they might actually be using that as a way to show that they are running from death.

I see shows and read stories about people that are contantly looking for ways to do “Death Defying” feats and acts.  Pushing the limits and challenging fate all the way.  Some of it looks fun, like sky diving and hang gliding, other things just look flat out stupid… like jumping twenty cars on a motorcycle or other silly acts that are nothing more than an attempt to see how close you can get to death without making the full introduction.

A majority of us do not really WANT to die and we dismiss it as so much forgotten future history that we would rather not deal with until the time comes, oblivious to the fact that we never really know when it will visit us.

Then there are those like myself, who accept death as a part of my life. I know it will visit one day, hopefully later than sooner and I respect it. As Billy Jack said in the movie The Trial of Billy Jack, “…only when Death is our constant companion can we truly live.”  This does not mean that I am wanting or inviting death, just that I know it is there.  You can either learn to accept it, or run and hide from it, in which case you live a closed and shallow life, always worried about what lies around the next corner.

Looking at my life, I am not sure which of the two I have been doing, running or chasing.  It seems like maybe a little of both.  In the end, I guess the important thing is that I am enjoying life and harming no one in the process.  If a person can go through life and accomplish this, then that is a life truly lived well.  It does not matter how much you accomplish, what mountains you have climbed, the goals you have achieved.  Only that you have lived a good life, loved much and in the end, left on good terms with yourself and those you left behind.

In the spirit of the philosophy of Billy Jack and Carlos Castenada, I leave you with this thought.  We all walk the same paths but on on separate journeys.  Until we learn that death is important to us as life and can walk along side it as a friend, then we will never truly live free, we will only exist and survive.

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