Tuesday, June 24, 2008

A Look at the Candidates

By Jonathan Bert
The Extreme Moderate

June 24, 2008

Now that it is clear who the presumptive candidates for U.S. President are for the two major parties, moderates and independents have a hard decision to make as they step toward the voting booth. Unless they decide to skip voting altogether.

John McCain had been a favorite of moderates for years, but his recent butt kissing of the right wing base of the Republican Party has ruined his image immensely. He steadfastly supports the Iraq War as a just cause, claims it is succeeding, and has no qualms at the thought of stationing American troops there indefinitely. This position appears to have little support from moderates. He also supports maintaining tax cuts for high-income earners. This is a cornerstone of the “Trickle Down” theory that has not been shown to work even though it has had the support of three of the past four administrations. Give it up already!

Another concern of McCain’s candidacy is whom is he going to be saddled with for Vice-President? There are not a lot of other Republican moderates, and their names do not seem to be appearing on any short lists I have heard of. This is important, not only because Vice-President is increasingly becoming a stronger, more influential position, but also realize McCain is 72 years old, and has already been treated for a particularly deadly form of Cancer.

An issue that hasn’t come up, to my knowledge, is that if someone from the Bush administration were to be indicted for crimes while in office, McCain would likely bow to pressure and issue a pardon.

Barack Obama is relatively unknown. The Great Republican Lie Machine, as usual, has labeled the Democratic candidate the Most Liberal Senator. This is not true. There are many Senators more liberal than Obama, but no rational person is going to call him a moderate. He will get us out of Iraq. But, will he do it carefully? Or, will he leave a dangerous vacuum? Democrats have earned the reputation for handling the economy better. The gap between rich and poor grows slower when a Democrat is in the White House, and prosperity was a reality when a Democrat was in office. We did well when Kennedy and Johnson were in, Carter pulled us out of the funk after Nixon and Ford, and Clinton oversaw a great economy after the disaster of the elder Bush. No “Trickle Down” there! Food for thought.

But, here again, Vice-President is important. I hate to say it, but I fear for Obama’s life. There are people that do not like the idea of a mixed-race President, and some of them are well-armed lunatics. ‘Nuff said. Hillary would be a decent choice, would likely bring us better health care, and might help Obama get out of the Middle East without disaster. I really like Bill Richardson of New Mexico. I wish he was the candidate, but being a rational man of sound mind, he got little support from mainstream Democrats.

The wild card in all of this, from a moderate point of view, is that the country runs better when there is split in power between the two parties. Congress appears likely to remain Democratic. Do we want a Democratic monopoly? Would that be as big of a disaster as when Ultra-Republican Bush had a Republican Congress to rubber-stamp his lunacy? Impossible, but it could be close. Gotta think about that.

The good news is that we will have a better President than the one we have now. George W. Bush will go down as one of the very worst Presidents in our nation’s history. Let us thank our lucky stars it’s almost over.

Get Rid of Chief Wahoo

By Jonathan Bert
The Mad Moderate

June 24, 2008

Sports team names and mascots based on Native American stereotypes are Un-American. I have a hard time believing that they still exist! No other minority is made to suffer this indignation; just imagine a team named the Japs, or the Jews, or any of the many nicknames given Americans of African decent. There would be an outrage from here to hell! What is going on here? Why is this being such a hard issue to resolve?

To me, the worst is Chief Wahoo of the Cleveland Indians professional baseball team. I am sorry, I am sure the players on this team are fine men, talented, and as deserving of a championship as any other players, but, I am happy to see them lose just because the logo on their caps and sleeves turn my stomach. Thank you, Red Socks, for eliminating them last fall.

Not all of the other nicknames and mascots are as bad, but all the same, Indians, Redskins, and even Sioux are all names given natives by European settlers, and not necessarily in a complimentary fashion. How about a team named the Fork-Tongues? With a big, white snake as a mascot? I wouldn’t like that, I don’t think a lot of people would.

Some of my closest friends are of native blood, and not all of them are in agreement as to what is an insult or what isn’t. One of them has no concern at all about an insulting caricature, he is still angry about his people receiving blankets infected with Smallpox. Some things are hard to let go.

I realize that there is a lot of tradition involved, and some very significant expenses would be incurred, changing everything from uniforms to school stationery, but come on people, get with the 21st century! Get rid of these insults.

Criminal Control, not Gun Control

By Jonathan Bert
The Extreme Moderate

June 24,2008

The congressional delegation from the planet Neptune is trying to sell us on the idea of controlling guns. I am not much into slogans, but the bumper stickers tell it all: “If Guns are Outlawed, only Outlaws will have Guns!” I cannot believe how naive these characters are. For one thing, there is no way we’re going to get all of the guns rounded up, it would be like getting pee out of a swimming pool! Guns are all over, and anyone that’s ever been within walking distance of a lathe or a milling machine knows that guns are very easy to make. Any decent high school machine shop has everything needed to make a pistol that would work at close range.

Gun training is what we need. Anybody with a legal right to carry a gun should be trained. It’s a fact that a gun in the house is more likely to kill an innocent member of the household than it is to kill an intruder. This is because too many guns are issued to idiots! A simple lesson in gun safety would reduce these sad statistics an appreciable amount.

A lot of the problem is from gang-bangers that are just bozos that can’t hit a barn, just spraying bullets in miscellaneous directions. They are better at hitting bystanders than their actual targets. Would this happen as much if these clowns knew that someone that knows what they’re doing might shoot back? I don’t think so. There is a misperception that criminals are anything but cowards. A well-armed and knowledgeable society will be safer in the long run.

The plan, put forward by left-wingers, of all people, is that the government and it’s agencies are the only ones that can be trusted with guns. These aren’t the left-wingers I knew in the 70’s. Remember Kent State? The National Guard shooting students armed with a couple of beer bottles? And killing nothing but bystanders? These are the guys you want to have all the guns? There is too much crack being smoked in Washington.

This country is never going to be taken over, not by a foreign power, or a despotic government (after the seven years we’ve just been through, you don’t think that can happen?), because we are too well armed. Let’s keep it that way. Keep guns away from felons, but anyone else that wants a gun should have the right to get one, and carry it for their protection. But they must be trained. I don’t care who they are, anyone with a gun or rifle, even Vice-Presidents, have to know what they are doing. And have respect for what their weapon can do.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Just Who is Against Gay Rights?

By Jonathan Bert
The Extreme Moderate

June 19, 2008

The concept that being gay is a choice is a load of crap. As a heterosexual I don’t see being gay as any sort of choice at all. Those that claim homosexuality is a choice do have a choice; between being gay, or pretending they aren’t gay, and hate themselves and other gays. These self loathing gays have a lot of internal struggles to battle, and occasionally the stress of this fight can lead to very aberrant behavior, much to the consternation of many an altar boy.

Why else do so many politicians that fight against the rights of gay people turn out to be gay themselves? They can’t face the truth about themselves. But once in while they give in to their true nature, and when they get caught they act like it was just a misunderstanding. They are the ones misunderstanding themselves.

Why on Earth would anyone choose to be gay? Disowned, despised, and how do they find each other when they are just a small percentage of the population? There are just so many airports with just so many restrooms. No, this is not a matter of choice. It is no more of a choice than being born with eleven toes. If the homosexual community would swallow some of their “Gay Pride” they might be able to avoid a lot of discrimination using the Americans With Disabilities Act.

Homophobia means being afraid of homosexuals. Why be afraid? Most of them are actually very nice people. Homophobes are afraid of gays because they’re afraid they themselves are gay!

Why fight gay marriage? If they want to be stupid and totally screw up their lives like straight people have been doing for centuries, why not? Why should gays be privileged and spared this torment? Some states give them “civil unions” while we’re stuck in very uncivil unions. What gives? I tried marriage once, and believe me, you alternative lifestyle folks don’t want it! Its not like I married a bad woman. She was bright, entertaining and attractive, and we had three bright, entertaining and attractive children, (good thing they took after her), but after time, even good things go sour, and the system for ending the contract causes the friction to get even worse! I’ve been in relationships that didn’t involve marriage (or children) too, and then it’s just a matter of booting her butt out and saying good-bye. That’s what gays have their whole life! That’s why bachelors were always called gay, even if they weren’t. They just didn’t have anybody to nag at them for not coming home in time, or not taking out the garbage, or for breathing, etc. I don’t know what we call bachelors that aren’t gay nowadays, besides happy and content.

So let gays get married, it’s a real learning experience. And if you know anyone that insists being gay is a choice, keep an eye out when they’re around children.

A Plan for Capital Punishment

By Jonathan Bert
The Extreme Moderate

June 19,2008

As a political moderate, I have mixed feelings about capital punishment. On one hand executing people shows a great disrespect for life, which is what we’re executing the guy for in the first place. Also, it actually ends up costing more to put someone to death than it does to house him for the rest of his life. On top of that, capital punishment makes the guy a martyr, with people, even movie stars, protesting his death, instead of just letting him rot in a cell, despised or forgotten. Not to mention that some times the system screws up and kills the wrong guy. But in some cases, we just have to make sure we keep these creeps off the street. Until judges are selected for good judgement, instead of for who they know, or their fundraising ability, etc., we can’t guarantee these scumbags won’t be released.

In some cases, like the Dru Sjodin murder in northern Minnesota, I would like to flip to switch myself. I would even pay money for the honor. Then it hit me, what if someone with actual money felt this way? We could offset the cost of appeals and other costs of the exercise! Put the job of finishing off a killer up for bid, and we could make money with our criminal justice system!

Too bad Florida got rid of the Electric Chair. The Carlie Brucia case would make them some cash! Show the video of the thug grabbing poor Carlie behind the car wash, then show the film clip of their electric chair setting some criminal’s head on fire, and the phones would ring off the hook! Or Utah, they used to have firing squads! What would you pay to lodge a bullet in the heart of a psycho killer? Multiply that by six and it would be a small fortune! And if someone chickens out, (no refunds), there would still be five other people happy to pull the trigger.

But Utah, like Florida, went to lethal injection. Speaking of lethal injection, why do they use a three-drug cocktail of questionable cruelty when there are plenty of other drugs that are deadly? If they want to show young, impressionable people the dangers of drugs, why don’t they just shoot the guy up with Heroin and let everybody know that yes, the stuff can kill you? I suppose murderers would be lining up for enough horse to kill a horse. Or shoot him up with a bunch of Methamphetamine and film his reaction, show the world what it looks like to have three strokes and a heart attack simultaneously? Let the world know the government isn’t filling us up with a load of crap when it says drugs are bad for your health! But however it’s done, even lethal injection could bring in some money.

The problem with this plan is some states might get a little overzealous about getting rid of people. Look at how many poor saps George W. had offed when he was governor of Texas. And he had to pay someone to do it! Just imagine if he could parlay it into a reason to give his buddies tax breaks. Even jaywalkers would be in danger.

We just have to face it; our criminal justice system is too incompetent and corrupt to be deciding who lives and who dies. Besides that, the worst psychos are just plain sick, sick people. Murder itself should be considered a sign of insanity. Just put these disturbed individuals in cages, and keep them there. And give them time, a lot of time, to think about how they screwed up. Wouldn’t that be the sweetest revenge?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Anti-Family Court

By Jonathan Bert
The Extreme Moderate

June 18, 2008

Last Sunday was Father's day, and the newspapers, as usual, were calling for fathers to be more involved with their children. If they were really that concerned, they would make a better effort to resolve what maybe the biggest roadblock to healthy father-child relationships.

Anyone that’s been involved with a Family Court knows that this system is set up for women. It is usually run by women, and it’s beneficiaries are women. There is no place in America where discrimination is so pervasive, and this discrimination is against men, and somehow that makes it okay.

Sociologists decry that fathers are not involved enough with their children. One thing that makes them hesitant to do so is the wife will suddenly decide she’s not happy, get a divorce, and the poor sap will hardly ever see his kids again. The system will search the four corners of the Earth to make sure they get the guy’s money, but he can search the four corners and not find anyone to help him receive his visitation rights. Just as the women want it. It’s not like he has much chance of getting custody; women get custody about eighty percent of the time. The women running the operation claim women are better parents. Women throwing their kids off bridges, drowning them in the bathtub, or hiding them by the freeway while she turns tricks. Excellent parenting.

The truth is that it is found that the parent with the better income is the best parent to gain custody. As men usually have the better income, this is seen as unfair to women. How about the children? Is it fair to them that their best shot at life isn’t even given a 50/50 chance? It doesn’t matter; the system is set up for women.

I was lucky. My ex-wife is a good mother, good enough to understand that her children needed their father in their life. I didn’t have any problem getting regular visitation with my kids. But that was due to the goodness of her heart, not any action of the Family Court. I’m speaking for all of the poor guys that made babies with self-centered “ladies” that use their children as tools to exact their revenge.

If anybody out there truly believes that fathers are valuable to their children, tell your Family Court.