Category Archives: Politics

Dear Mexicans

We would say we’re sorry, but we’re not. We have our country, and you have yours. It’s not our fault that your country sucks. So nice try – trying to take our country away from us — but it’s not going to work. We’re going to beat you back across the border, whatever it takes, so you might as well get moving along now and make things easier for yourself.

Naturally, there are bleeding hearts here that constantly stick up for you. These are the same people that are determined to ruin our great country with tolerance, consideration, empathy, compassion, and a bunch of other stuff that can only lead to communism. These are the same people that say things like “this country was built by immigrants”, and “doesn’t the constitution say that all men are created equal and that we all have a right to pursue happiness?”

That’s just stupid. Everyone knows that what they meant was that all citizens are created equal. And even though it says “all”, they really meant all white citizens. That’s what they meant, but they didn’t feel that they had to spell it out because at the time America was all white, and they couldn’t imagine that it would ever become the way it is now.

The founding fathers never meant to include Mexicans, or blacks, or communists, gays, atheists, Muslims, or any of the other people that want nothing more than to destroy our country. These are the same people that elected Obama, and after we’ve run you out of the country, we’re going to run them out too. Read More →

Spill, baby, spill

So now we’re awash in pictures of oil-slicked wildlife, and the satellite images of a massive plume of toxic sludge swirling around the Gulf of Mexico. It’s depressing for the obvious reasons — that it’s a crime against nature — that it’s a devastating blow to both wildlife and to humans. There are no winners in this situation.

But it’s also depressing to read reactions and rationales. From Rush Limbaugh opining that the explosion on the oil rig was sabotage by liberals for political gain, to Newt Gingrich blathering about how it is unfortunate, but it shouldn’t stop us from expanding off-shore drilling. To Rand Paul, who apparently feels that being critical of a company that is responsible for the largest oil spill in US history is “Un-American.” Read More →

With bleeding eyes

I have a friend with whom I disagree on virtually all matters political. We worked together at Microsoft during most of the Bush W. years, and had a number of interesting debates about Islam, Iraq, etc. It’s been over four years since I’ve seem him, but we keep in touch, and disapprove of each other politically more than ever.

Recently he posted this on his blog, the gist of which is that the new heath-care measure (“Obamacare”) is unconstitutional because it forces citizens to buy a product. Here is my retort:

You’re right – it’s a sad shame. But conservatives have to take blame here. Conservatives opposed this legislation with such hysterical vitriol that a number of unsavory deals had to be made and corners had to be cut. And now you’re complaining about those deals, which is like organizing a massive strike and then complaining that the busses aren’t running.

Read More →

The End is coming

Art installation near Bella Center

Starting tomorrow, 100 heads of state from countries around the world will meet in Bella Center, the largest conference center in Scandinavia. There will be about 15,000 participants and the Copenhagen police are expecting as many as 50,000 protesters — and as a result, over half of Denmark’s police force is in Copenhagen for this event.

Apparently every hotel in the greater Copenhagen area has been booked for months, and many people are hosting participants in their homes. Obama will make an appearance at the conference. It’ll be brief, but this is the second time in three months that Obama has been to Copenhagen, so the Danes aren’t unhappy about that. (He was here for the Olympic committee meeting in early October, which also took place at Bella Center.)

Art installation near Bella CenterWe live across the street from Bella Center. We’ve watched over the last few months as the preprations have intensified. Every entrance is heavily guarded. We’re sure to see many a protester, many a cop, and — mostly likely — some trouble. Last week we got a note form the building management announcing that extra insurance has been taken out on the building, and advising residents to make sure their private policies are up-to-date. Read More →

Oprah drops in

Denmark was recently featured on Oprah, partly because of the buzz it’s gotten as the happiest country on earth, and partly because she was here anyway in order to push for Chicago’s olympic bid.

In the first clip Oprah tours an apartment that is portrayed as being fairly typical. But it’s not even close to being typical. There are some typical things about it, like the extremely compact refrigerator (by American standards), but most of it is not at all typical. The “cave” where the kids live is quite strange. Sure, Danish bedrooms are often small, but that’s more of a closet than a room. And the parent’s bed and bedroom is extremely unusual — it’s in the freakin kitchen! I’ve been in dozens of Danish homes and never seen anything like this apartment.

Oprah visits a “typical” Danish home

The second clip is more interesting. Read More →

Adams

Adams is a very short and clever story by George Saunders, whose work I really admire. It’s a good story on its own (and in typical Saunders fashion, delightfully strange), but it’s also quite a political. The only thing I don’t like about it is that I didn’t write it.

The audacity of ignorance

When we arrived in the US for vacation last month, we stayed in a hotel in Albuquerque the first night. It had been a rough night, and Ellen was especially tired and jet-lagged. She was fussing at breakfast, so I took her for a little walk.

I was walking past the pool area when a man in his late fifties approached me and said, “That was me — twenty seven years ago, I was walking around with my infant son at this very hotel.” We chatted a bit about being parents and such, and I mentioned that we were jet-lagged. He asked where we came in from. I told him we were visiting from Denmark.

“Denmark! Wow, they’re having big problems there!”

I didn’t know what he meant. I wondered if something terrible has happened since we left. I tried to think. There’s the economic crisis, but that’s not just in Denmark… maybe he was talking about the Mohammed cartoon crisis… but… that was almost four years ago… but that is typically the only thing Americans actually know about Denmark. So I said, “Yeah… I guess…” Read More →

On “Obamacare”

Americans don’t have any experience or perspective on socialized medicine. That’s abundantly clear from the horror stories that are currently circulating among opponents. There are many reasons given for the opposition. So many, in fact, that it’s hard to summarize what the objections are. The most famous, of course is the “death panels“.  But another objection is that it will further stifle the economy — that it’s socialistic and therefore bad business.

In my experience it’s the opposite. The system that America has currently is what’s bad for business. Costs are too high, and millions are uninsured — we all know that much. But it’s worse than that. Americans often stay in jobs they hate or don’t take jobs they might like better because they don’t want to risk losing their medical coverage. Now that is bad for business.

Read More →

Reagan Did It

Paul Krugman wrote this piece in The New York Times yesterday. I couldn’t agree more. In fact I wrote a very similar entry back in October called Regan’s Revenge. Amazing, considering that the GOP is allegedly the party of fiscal responsibility.

Doomed to repeat it

“Practices of the unscrupulous money changers stand indicted in the court of public opinion, rejected by the hearts and minds of men. True they have tried, but their efforts have been cast in the pattern of an outworn tradition. Faced by failure of credit they have proposed only the lending of more money. Stripped of the lure of profit by which to induce our people to follow their false leadership, they have resorted to exhortations, pleading tearfully for restored confidence….The money changers have fled from their high seats in the temple of our civilization. We may now restore that temple to the ancient truths. The measure of the restoration lies in the extent to which we apply social values more noble than mere monetary profit.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1933, in the midst of the Great Depression