Wednesday, February 27, 2008

William F Buckley dies at his desk....

What a fitting way to go. At his desk writing. His cook found the great man dead probably with characteristic red ball point in hand. The man who pretty much invented modern conservatism in America. The conservatism of small government, fiscal responsibility and big ideas.

Confidant of Reagan and Goldwater, founder of the National Review, author of over 40 books and host of Firing Line on PBS for 29 long seasons.

Buckley espoused the type of Conservatism that even a Liberal like me could respect (although not necessarily agree with). It was intellectually coherent and in the pages of his books beautifully argued (with really really big words). The prose was spectacular and the ideas were grand (albeit not always right - for example he was opposed to the US participating in WW II and to Civil Rights).

It was a conservatism that did not use the word Liberal as a slur because he implicitly understood that as a Conservativesthe essential principle he was conserving was Liberalism. Conservatives who read Thomas Paine and John Locke and the French "philosophes" with a world view informed by pragmatism and libretarianism. Elitist it may have been, although he famously quipped he would rather be governed by the first two thousand people listed in the Boston phone book rather than the Board of Harvard University.

A great teacher has left us. A man who through his writings made America think and inspired a movement is now gone.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Loving Bill Less

I didnt think there was anything that would cause me to like Bill Clinton less or have ill feelings towards him. But for me I think his "fantasy" comment on Obamas Iraq record and his dismissive "Jesse Jackson won South Carolina too" after Barack soundly trounced Hillary in SC did it for me. Such incredible hubris, such incredible arrogance. I am sure Hillary is not happy with his behavior either as she must realize that it is Clinton who has pushed many commited Liberals away from Hillary into the arms of Obama (well to be honest I was never going to choose Hillary over Barack but Bill made it a certainity with his boorish comments).

Go Barack Go Go Go!!!!

A spectacular run.....he is so close to clinching it. He seems relaxed but those of us who love him, are tense. A clean sweep since Super Tuesday with the exception of New Mexico where Hillary won by one point. She will win Ohio but Texas will be close. Either way she needs to win over 60% in Texas to beat him on the pledged delegates and that aint we may have our first black nominee of a major party in the 232 year history of this country. And barring a major national security event between now and November our first Black President.....About time.....

Sunday, February 03, 2008

The House that Reagan built

I for one am tired of the homilies the GOP candidates are making to the Gipper. Lets see RR is the greatest Republican President in the last 50 years but yet his governing record is anathema to numerous closely held GOP positions.

1. The GOP today hates Amnesty...well Reagan presided over the 1986 Amnesty that gave almost 2 million illegal aliens a path to citizenship

2. The GOP today will never cut and run from a fight.....well Reagan pulled the marines out of Lebanon as soon as 241 of them were killed in Beiruit

3. The GOP today believes in balanced budgets.....well we know Reagan was the second greatest spender in US history (Dubbya is number one) and left the largest deficit in US history when he left office

So on at least the three great pillars of GOP core values the Gipper comes up short.

So Reagans achievements are - Grenada and some great speeches. I cant give him sole credit for defeating Communism. He shares credit with John Paul and Gorby...both of whom played equal or greater roles in tipping over the rotting Soviet system

How much do they hate John McCain?

They hate him so much that Ann Coulter says she is going to vote for Hillary if McCain is the GOP nominee...(Dr James Dobson has already said that he will stay at hom if McCain is the nominee).....The GOP is losing it.

Why does the right hate Hillary so much?

It is an interesting question. She hasn’t really done anything that would justify the level of hate spewed by the Rush Limbaugh’s and the Faux News’ of the world. She tried to get universal healthcare through Congress in 94 (a noble effort) but it failed. She apparently fired some staff members during Travelgate and was supposedly high handed with staff in the White House when she was first lady. Either way even if these things are true there is nothing in her record that justifies the level of hatred for her from the Right. She has stood by Bill although he has been a cad. She has raised a fine daughter in Chelsea. She is a smart, caring woman. She has been one of the most moderate to right of center Democrats in the Senate. Ken Starr spent 80 million investigating her and Bill and found not one piece of evidence of questionable conduct during the Whitewater, Vince Fosters death etc. All he found was a stained blue dress. Could they just hate her because she is their worst nightmare come true….a SMART WOMAN who has the balls to stand up to their petty prejudices?

The Man that killed the GOP – “Macaca”

I am calling the current GOP mess and division the Maccaca / YouTube syndrome If it wasn’t for the George Allen comment referring to the young Indian American as “Macaca” (a North African racial slur meaning monkey) and for YouTube subsequently making the video ubiquitous all throughout 2006 then George Allen would likely have been the coalescing force that would have kept the Republican party whole. Instead we have this factitious mess where the front runner (McCain) is greatly disliked (almost hated) by the base (because of his perceived anti tax, and pro campaign finance and immigration stances).

So once again we Indo-Americans although small in number (2 million at last count) have had an influence that is not commensurate with our numbers in the country we have chosen as our home (I am being tongue in cheek so please no "delusions of grandeur" rebuttals)

Evolution and the Catholic Church - Celebrating the greatness of John Paul II

I have known for a few years now that John Paul II supported evolution as consistent with Gods divine plan ("Truth cannot contradict Truth") as outlined in his 1996 encyclical (below)

What I didnt know was that he was expounding on a position that Pius XII had taken as early as 1950. Essentially the Catholic Church for more than 50 years has supported the theory of evolution as long as certain conditions were met. The most important condition is that although the human body may have evolved from less complex predecessors through mutation and natural selection the "soul was implanted by God"

I think that this is a most reasonable belief (compromise). It is indeed surprising that American Protestantism (especially the Baptists and their ilk) cannot come to terms with this logic (and the indisputable scientific proof that man evolved from less complex creatures over millions of years). Rather they read Genesis literally and spend 25Mn on Creation Museums.

A friend of mine was recently challenged by one of her fellow doctors in the Bible belt that no division of Christianity supports Evolution. I guess she should inform this gentleman that at least two leaders (both staunch Conservatives) of the largest Christian
denomination in the world i.e. Roman Catholicism with 1 billion followers supported this theory.

This is another reason to love John Paul (besides defeating the evil of Communism and having the courage to journey to the wailing wall and ask forgiveness from the Jews for the lousy way Christians have treated them for 2000 years he also reconciled science and faith).

He really did make the world a better place.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Best Quote about Guilianis Implosion!

The small man in search of a balcony finally fell of it…..RIP Rudy. The country took a close look at you and realized what NYC always knew – you’re an asshole!!!

And also Guiliani will go down in history as the man who spent the most money to get exactly one delegate....$60 M. Makes Romneys 2m on the Ames straw poll a bargain by comparison

Is there something about Massachusetts that breeds fake people?

What is it about Massachusetts that makes people fake...Senator Kerry the Duck Hunter in the 2004 campaign (a man who conducted his entire first date with Tereza in French – nothing wrong with that but its not something a regular American guy – which is what Kerry was trying to paint himself as - would do) and Romney the NRA member who has been hunting twice in his entire life, figuratively “marched” with Dr King, broke down crying and praising God at the side of the road when Mormons belatedly allowed "negroes" into their church in 1979, a man who thinks Gitmo is too small and needs to be doubled, was always pro life in action but pro choice publically etc....what a crock....the only time Romney sounds half way sincere is when he speaks about money and business...Romney is a Rockefeller Republican trying to reinvent himself as a Bible thumping backwoods southerner . It just does not work and the American people are smarter than he gives them credit for