Archive for July, 2011

July 13, 2011

1875

Monumental legislation failed 233-193 today. Republicans failed to block new standards for light bulbs that will go into effect next year. The argument is two-fold, one, that the new twisty fluorescent bulbs are more expensive, cost prohibitive for the poor who Republicans have historically defended with great zeal and two, it’s another example of ‘big government’ Democrats taking away Americans freedom to buy bulbs that are the of same design as when invented in 1875.

Not too bright

The new bulbs cost more up front but are a significant cost saver in both the short and long term due to lower energy costs. Everyone knows this by now except maybe the people who aren’t concerned about their bills such as Rep. Barton (R) of Texas who introduced this legislation. Relax Rep. Barton, don’t lose any sleep. The poor will actually have more spending money and we all know how Republicans work tirelessly representing their interests.

Big government

The ‘big government’ charge is a bumper sticker slogan Republicans use when they have no argument. Let’s set aside the fact that a Republican president signed this into law and the hypocrisy involved. Republicans want big government too. They would tell us who we can marry, make reproductive decisions for women and substitute superstition for science in schools but draw the ‘big government’ line at light bulbs. That’s going too far.

Back to the past

Republicans would have us stay in 1875 and in more important ways than light bulbs. For example they would strip away union rights which would lead to reversing worker protection laws. State legislators of Maine and Wisconsin are leading in this endeavor. Both are waging a war on unions and both have introduced legislation to lower the minimum age to work. Without unions overtime, weekends and collective bargaining are non-existent just as it was in 1875. Republicans would swiftly do away with the minimum wage and OSHA if it weren’t political suicide.

A 99% minority

The middle class did not exist in 1875. The desperately poor slaved for the super rich. This is their ultimate goal along with forcing oppressive Victorian era religious ‘values’ upon this 21st Century society. Concentrate the wealth and allow it to trickle down to the other 99%. No matter how many times the hard lesson – that this does not work well for the 99% – is learned the same old song remains the same.

Many Republicans do advocate people carrying handguns and would be for public hangings similar to 1875. The energy saving bill is a solution to a problem, something Republicans can only seem to be against. Progress doses not fit into their 1875 utopia. Meanwhile the Republican controlled House of Reps has not submitted one jobs creation bill. Jobs must not have been on the 1875 agenda.

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July 7, 2011

“Casey” Verdict Illustrates a Larger Issue

Following the verdict some were angered believing justice for her deceased daughter Calee was not satisfied, that Casey got away with murder. The case is over and decided but the larger, more general and more important question remains unanswered, why the anger, where does this emotion come from? All are horrified by the senseless crime which is amplified given the age of the victim yet not all were passionately involved with the outcome. As the verdict was being read I had no preferences. I was curious but was not emotionally invested, those that were lost their composure.

The larger issue

Some make determinations based more on emotion rather than facts and reason. It’s these people that can be and often are persuaded to believe positions and concepts that are without merit and at times wildly untrue. Appealing to people’s base instincts such as anger, fear and revenge is effective but damaging for that person and ultimately to society as a whole.

The verdict was correct

The Anthony case was not proven beyond a reasonable doubt as any reasonable person can tell you. None of those angered by the decision can explain the circumstances of Calee’s demise, who killed her, if it were an accident or was pre-meditated. Did she actually drown in a pool and was disposed of by George, a person with zero credibility, or was she accidently killed by Casey using too much chloroform on her so she could party? No one knows which translates to reasonable doubt especially when considering a capital murder case.  The verdict was correct but those who were emotionally involved didn’t choose to understand why.

Where else does this apply?

Using the emotive button is handy for leaders, political and religious. Obamacare is socialism and if it passes Government agents will kill your Grandmother. Rolling back tax cuts for the rich will hurt job creation, Muslims want to kill you, gay marriage will destroy the sanctity of the institution, your religion is the right one and if you don’t believe it you’ll spend eternity in Hell. Michelle Obama is telling us what we can and can’t feed our kids.  All of those statements are myths and lies. But people buy into the bullshit because they fear and there is no shortage of those who make a living exploiting the base instinct of fear.

Why do people respond to raw emotions, fear and anger?

Ignorance, that’s why. Being ignorant is nothing to be ashamed of, we all are. I am ignorant of much more than I comprehend. However, being ignorant of issues you loudly espouse an opinion on must be embarrassing on some level yet so many continue to be proudly under-informed, of having a spectacular lack of intellectual curiosity. There is no excuse for intellectual laziness with answers to all questions a mere moments and a Google search away. People rely on their base instincts due to laziness. It’s a condition that is intellectually, spiritually and even physically damaging to that person and society as a whole.

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