Thursday, October 21, 2004

The Stuff They Never Teach in Sunday School

It's true! It's biblical! And it's creepy! It's the wrath o' God!

When I was growing up, I was taught that God was a kind and loving deity (so long as you weren't gay and didn't listen to rock music). However, having actually read the Bible, I've come to realize that there wasn't a lot that was warm and fuzzy about good ol' Yahweh. In fact, He was quite cruel and vindictive, opening a can of divine whup-ass over the least little transgression.

So how well do YOU know the mind of God? Try to answer the next ten questions. And then I suggest you get your ass to church. I know where I'LL be next Sunday...

What punishment did God say is mandatory for an unruly child?

Answer: Stoning to death.

And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard. And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die. (Deuteronomy 21:20-21)

For Moses said, Honour thy father and thy mother; and, Whosoever curseth father or mother, let him die the death. (Mark 7:10)

And he that smiteth his father, or his mother, shall be surely put to death. (Exodus 21:15)

And he that curseth his father, or his mother, shall surely be put to death. (Exodus 21:17)

What are God's three punishments for women who wear showy jewelry and clothing?

Answer: Ugliness, misery and death.

In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of their tinkling ornaments about their feet, and their cauls, and their round tires like the moon. The chains, and the bracelets, and the mufflers, The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the earrings, The rings, and nose jewels. The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping pins, The glasses, and the fine linen, and the hoods, and the veils. And it shall come to pass, that instead of sweet smell there shall be stink; and instead of a girdle a rent; and instead of well set hair baldness; and instead of a stomacher a girding of sackcloth; and burning instead of beauty. Thy men shall fall by the sword, and thy might in the war. And her gates shall lament and mourn: and she being desolate shall sit upon the ground. (Isaiah 3:17-26)

What is God's punishment of those who overeat?

Answer: Death by plague.

And the people stood up all that day, and all that night, and all the next day, and they gathered the quails: he that gathered least gathered ten homers: and they spread them all abroad for themselves round about the camp. And while the flesh was yet between their teeth, ere it was chewed, the wrath of the Lord was kindled against the people, and the Lord smote the people with a very great plague. (Numbers 11:32-33)

The wrath of God came upon them, and slew the fattest of them, and smote down the chosen men of Israel. (Psalms 78:31)

What did Jesus say happens to those who have premarital sex?

Answer: They cannot enter Heaven.

Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-10)

What is the punishment for a single mother having a child out of wedlock?

Answer: The woman may not be punished but the child and his descendants will go straight to Hell.

A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord: even to his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the Lord. (Deuteronomy 23:2)

What punishment did God visit on children for making fun of bald people?

Answer: He sent bears to maul the children to death.

And he went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head. And he turned back, and looked on them, and cursed them in the name of the Lord. And there came forth two she bears out of the wood, and tare forty and two children of them. (2 Kings 2:23-24)

What punishment did God promise for promiscuous women?

Answer: His followers will cut off their noses and ears, burn them in fire, take away their children and strip them naked.

And I will set my jealousy against thee, and they shall deal furiously with thee: they shall take away thy nose and thine ears; and thy remnant shall fall by the sword: they shall take thy sons and thy daughters; and thy residue shall be devoured by the fire. They shall also strip thee out of thy clothes, and take away thy fair jewels. Thus will I make thy lewdness to cease from thee, and thy whoredom brought from the land of Egypt: so that thou shalt not lift up thine eyes unto them, nor remember Egypt any more. (Ezekiel 23:25-27)

And the daughter of any priest, if she profane herself by playing the whore, she profaneth her father: she shall be burnt with fire. (Leviticus 21:9)

What does God demand happen to those couples who have sex during the woman's time of the month?

Answer: They are to be banished from society and not permitted to interact with civilized people.

And if a man shall lie with a woman having her sickness, and shall uncover her nakedness; he hath discovered her fountain, and she hath uncovered the fountain of her blood: and both of them shall be cut off from among their people.
(Leviticus 20:18)

What punishment does God mandate for a man who rapes a virgin?

Answer: The rapist and his victim shall be married.

If a man finds a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; Then the man that lay with her
shall give unto the damsel's father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife; because he hath humbled her, he may not put her away all his days.
(Deuteronomy 22:28-29)

What did God do to those who failed to sell all their possessions and give every dime to Him?

Answer: Struck them dead.

But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles' feet. But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of
the price of the land? . . . And Ananias hearing these words fell down, and gave
up the ghost: and great fear came on all them that heard these things. . . .
Then fell [Sapphira] straightway at [Peter's] feet, and yielded up the ghost:
and the young men came in, and found her dead, and, carrying her forth, buried
her by her husband. (Acts 5:1-10)

Saturday, October 16, 2004

Quote of the Day

"The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."

-Hermann Goering, at the Nuremberg trials


Can't take credit for this, but it made me giggle.

How many Republicans does it take to change a light bulb?

The answer is TEN:
  1. One to deny that a light bulb needs to be changed.
  2. One to attack the patriotism of anyone who says the light bulb needs changing.
  3. One to blame Clinton for burning out the light bulb.
  4. One to tell the nations of the world that they are either for changing the light bulb, or for Darkness.
  5. One to give a billion dollar no-bid contract to Halliburton for the new light bulb.
  6. One to arrange a photograph of Bush, dressed as a janitor, standing on a step ladder under a banner reading "Mission Accomplished!"
  7. One administration insider to resign and write a book documenting in detail how Bush is literally "in the dark."
  8. One to viciously smear #7.
  9. One surrogate to campaign on TV and at rallies how George Bush has had a strong light-bulb-changing policy all along.
  10. And finally, one to confuse Americans about the difference between screwing a light bulb and screwing the country.

I Loves Me Some Goddamn Motivational Kitty Art!

Kitty image shamelessly lifted from

The Gospel According to Christopher

When my nephew Christopher was three-years-old (back in 2001), he started getting into action figures. Star Wars, superheroes, Disney characters... he loved them all! And as his occasional babysitter, I must say I was grateful. Playing with Star Wars figures was a hell of a lot more fun than playing with stuffed Elmo and those Lego blocks the size of your fist.

My mom was keeping Christopher one weekend in December, but she wanted to scoot off for a couple of hours of Keno with the ladies, so she asked me to come over and keep an eye on him. I showed up, and Christopher came bounding to the door with his hands behind his back.

"Bubba!" he exclaimed. "Guess what figures I got!"

(At this point, I should probably point out that he calls me Bubba. He does this because he heard my sister do it, and it was easier to say than "Uncle Chris." I don't mind it from either of them, but I'm glad it hasn't really caught on as a nickname. It's just too bait-shop for my tastes.)

Anyway, "Bubba! Guess what figures I got!"

I shrugged. "Um, Monsters Incorporated?"

"No, silly! Not Monsters Incorporated!" He held out his hands, in which he was clutching several plastic Nativity scene dolls. "I got Jesus figures!"

My mom chuckled and explained that he had been wanting to play with her porcelain Nativity set, so she had taken him to the dollar store and bought him a plastic set of his own. Unfortunately, the Nativity set lacked any decent villains, so he had done away with the Three Wise Men and redubbed them Judas, Herod, and Pontious Pilate.

Once mom was gone, Christopher turned to me and asked, "Bubba? Do you wanna play Jesus with me?"

So I got down in the floor and we set up the figures. Christopher then explained to me the story of what was going on.

You see, Mary and Joseph found the baby Jesus and took him back to their house where he'd be safe. But then Herod was trying to kill Jesus, so Mary and Joseph called the shepherds to babysit, and then they set out for Herod's palace.

Once there, Joseph confronted King Herod. And attacked him with a lightsaber.

Christopher reenacted the duel as he knocked the two figures against each other in mortal combat. "I'm going to kill you, Herod!" *bzzzzzt* *bzzzzzt* "No! No! Don't kill me!" *bzzzzzt* "Die, Herod!" And at this point, Joseph struck Herod with his lightsaber. And with one final *bzzzzzt*, Herod was knocked off of a cliff. And then a lion ate him.

I've got to hand it to that kid. This may very well be The Greatest Story Ever Told...

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Funnier than Rush? Really?

Yes, he's a stinkin' conservative. But he's really funny, and how often does that happen? Check out cracker's blog, Uncivil Rights. And while you're there, be sure to post and explain to him the error of his misguided political ideology. He likes that.

Master Debaters - The Final Cut

Most of the online polls are showing Kerry as the winner last night, but I understand those figures might be a little skewed since many Republicans don't have access to the Internets. But Bush has said time and again that he doesn't place much stock in polls. Not that I can blame him. If I were a dumb guy who ran against the former vice-president, got fewer votes, and still won the election, I wouldn't care about polls either.

Last night's debate focused on domestic issues, which meant Bush had to find something else to steer his answers towards besides the war on terror. For some reason, he picked education. So almost every response went like this:

Mr. President, what would you say to someone in this country that
has lost his job to someone overseas?

Well, I've got the policies to create jobs and grow the economy and help
people go to community college, because education is the answer. Pell
Grants. No Child Left Behind. Education. Um, anybody want some
wood? Heh heh heh.

Mr. President, will we ever feel safe and secure again as a nation?

Well, we certainly learned a lot from 9/11. You know, like people
learn in community college, because education is the answer. Pell
Grants. No Child Left Behind. Education. Um, anybody want some
wood? Heh heh heh.

Mr. President. Do you believe in a higher power?

When I make decisions, I stand on principle... priciples... hey, high
school principals! Because education is the answer. Pell
Grants. No Child Left Behind. Education.

You still have 90 seconds, Mr. President.

Oh. Um, anybody want some wood? Heh heh heh.

As for Kerry, I have to say I was disappointed by his tepid performance. I know this is the third debate, and we're not going to hear a lot of new stuff, but Bush left himself wide open so many times, and Kerry just lobbed creampuffs at him.

But there were a few high points:

  • Kerry reminds everybody about Bush's comments regarding bin Laden, "I really don't think about him that much. I'm not concerned." Bush claims he never said it, and calls the statement "kind of one of those exaggerations." Well, funny story. He did say it, during a 2002 news conference. But of course, while the Republicans have no problem remembering how Kerry voted on a minor issue in 1993, they have utter amnesia when it comes to Bush.
  • Bush is asked about the flu vaccine shortage, and blames the contaminated supplies from Great Britain. He says we're counting on Canada to help us make up the difference. Oops!
  • Kerry busts the president on Boeing. "He discovered Boeing during the course of this campaign after I'd been talking about it for months."
  • Kerry's zinger: "Being lectured by the president on fiscal responsibility is a little bit like Tony Soprano talking to me about law and order in this country." The crowd laughs.
  • Bush's zinger: "In all due respect, I'm not so sure it's credible to quote leading news organizations about..." The sound of crickets can be heard. "Oh, never mind."
  • Bush actually brags that the borders of Texas are more secure now than they were when he was governor. Um... what?
  • Kerry announces that he is a gun owner, a hunter, and a former law-enforcement officer. What a bad ass! Kind of puts Bush's fake cowboy machismo to shame, doesn't it?
  • Kerry fumbles the ball by claiming Bush never met with the NAACP, the Black Congressional Caucus, or civil rights leaders. The Democrats hold their breath. Could Bush scoop it up and run it back for a touchdown? Bush claims, rather peevishly, that he DID meet with the Black Congressional Caucus, and then he starts talking about education again. Pell Grants. No Child Left Behind. Education. Um, anybody want some wood? Heh heh heh.
  • Bush's zinger redux: When asked what he has learned from his wife and daughters, Bush responds "To listen to them. To stand up straight and not scowl." Everyone laughs, myself included.
  • Kerry's zinger redux: On the same question, Kerry comments that he, Bush and the moderator (Bob Schieffer) are "three examples of lucky people who married up." Everyone laughs except for Bush. I guess he didn't get it. "And some would say maybe me moreso than others." More laughter. "But I can take it." Even more laughter.

So who won? Well, frankly I was quite impressed with Bush's performance last night. His arguments were well reasoned, and his logic was impeccable. For the first time ever, I understand the conservative point of view, and I actually find myself leaning in that direction. Who knows? I may even wind up voting for Bush in November!


Just kidding, dumbass. It was Kerry, all the way! Final score: Kerry 3, Bush 0.

If you disagree, please feel free to write me a long, rambling e-mail explaining just how much you think I suck. And for God's sake, don't waste any time on capitalization, punctuation, or spelling out long words like "you" when a single letter will work. For more helpful hints on effective correspondence, contact your local community college. Pell Grants. No Child Left Behind. Education.

Um, anybody want some wood? Heh heh heh.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Master Debaters - St. Louis Blues (Part 3)

Holy Christ! Aren't we done yet?

Question #17: Senator Kerry is asked to assure Pro-Life voters that their tax dollars would not support abortion. Kerry starts off by mentioning his Catholic upbringing and how much he respects the belief about life and when it begins. However, he feels it is wrong for him to legislate an article of his faith. He then wanders off into a discussion about family planning, and how it will prevent AIDS, unwanted children and unwanted pregnancies. Sort of all over the board there, Kerry.

And of course, Bush can't let it pass. He takes a shot at Kerry for his long-winded answer, then starts listing all of the Pro-Life legislation that he has signed and supported, including the ban on partial-birth abortions. He says Kerry was opposed to the ban. He also mentions parental notification laws, which Kerry voted against.

Kerry scolds Bush for once again oversimplifying, and explains that he was opposed to the partial-abortion ban because there was no exception with regards to the life or health of the mother. Kerry says he voted against parental notification laws because he doesn't want to require a girl who was raped and made pregnant by her father to have to notify her father.

Bush pretty much ignores what Kerry said and just restates that Kerry was against the ban on parital-birth abortions. And once again, he tells Kerry he can run, but he can't hide. I don't know why he keeps saying this. Maybe he's picking up an old John Wayne movie on his hidden earpiece.

Question #18: President Bush is asked to give three instances when he made a wrong decision, and explain what he did to correct it. And Bush totally evades the question by claiming he makes decisions that are unpopular, but not necessarily wrong. He then goes into his usual diatribe defending his decision to go into Iraq and his tax cut. He does admit he made some mistakes in appointing people, but he doesn't want to hurt their feelings by naming them.

Kerry goes for the throat and starts ticking off the president's mistakes with regard to Iraq. We didn't build a global coaltion. We didn't give the inspectors time to finish their job. We didn't go through the UN process. We didn't use war as a last resort. We rushed into war without a plan to win the peace. We didn't guard 850,000 tons of ammo, which is now being used against us. We didn't give our soldiers the armor they required.

Bush lashes out at Kerry for voting against the $87 billion supplemental he sent to congress, claiming that's why the soldiers are so inadequately equipped. He insists that Saddam Hussein was a risk to our country.

And Kerry once again explains that he voted against Bush's proposal because it was financially irresponsible. He wanted Bush to pay for the supplemental by repealing his tax cut, so the burden wouldn't be passed on to the next generation. Plus, he didn't want to create a slush fund for Halliburton. Not that anything he says matters. Apparently the Republicans quit listening when Bush stops talking.

Closing Statements: Kerry outlines his plans to basically fix everything Bush fucked up so that America will be safer and stronger.

Bush brags about farm income and house ownership during his term, reminds everybody that we're at war and somehow his three days of active service in the National Guard make him uniquely qualified to lead us. He mentions 9/11 and weapons of mass destruction a few times, then a whole bunch of stuff about freedom and liberty. Then he closes by asking if anybody wants any wood. (Not really.)


If you've read this far, you may have noticed a slight bias in my writing. What can I say? I'm a Kerry supporter. So by the power vested in me by the Vic Tayback Fan Club (Local #1832) and the Universal Life Church in Modesto, California, I do hereby proclaim John Kerry the winner of the second debate! And there's nothing you can do about it, you whiny little bitch, so just buck up and wipe your nose! Muahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!

For those scoring at home, it's currently Kerry 2, Bush 0. If you disagree, please feel free to contact me on the Internets and let me know.

Master Debaters - St. Louis Blues (Part 2)

Question #9: Senator Kerry is asked to reconcile choosing a running mate who has made millions by suing medical professionals with his concerns of rising health care. Kerry claims that John Edwards is an advocate of patients' rights, and that they both support tort reform. He glazes over the details of his plans, inviting people to read it for themselves at (You know. On the Internets.) He then points out that, while Bush and his team claim that lawsuits are responsible for driving up health care costs, they only actually represent 1% of the total cost. Kerry says he has a plan to provide affordable health care for everybody, and he'll be able to fund this by rolling back Bush's tax cut for people making more than $200,000 a year.

I'm not sure what happens to Bush at this point. He refers to Kerry as "Senator Kennedy" and starts blathering on about how the National Journal named him the most liberal senator of all. He disputes Kerry's claim of 1%, and accuses Kerry of trying to create government-sponsored health care because "that's what liberals do."

Kerry accuses Bush of trying to use the "liberal" label to frighten voters, and then tears into Bush's supposed "compassionate conservativism." Claims labels don't matter. What matters is whether or not you have a plan.

Bush responds by attacking Kerry's attendance record in the Senate over the previous year. You know, while he was campaigning.

Question #10: President Bush is asked to explain why his spending plans are superior to Kerry's. Bush starts off on the defensive by claiming that he inherited a recession from Clinton, which caused the deficit. And he is worried about the deficit, but he's going to keep spending whatever it takes to win the war in Iraq. And he's not going to run up taxes, because that will cost this economy jobs.

Kerry detours to debunk the president's assertion that his plan for medical care is, in effect, a government takeover. He then attacks Bush's claims that he inherited a recession, reminding everybody that Bush managed to turn a $5.6 trillion surplus into a $2.6 trillion deficit. He also mentions that Bush is the first president in 72 years to lose jobs, and the first EVER to cut taxes while at war. On a roll, Kerry invokes the names of Roosevelt and Truman as good wartime presidents.

Gibson asks both candidates to elaborate on just how they plan to cut the deficit in half over the next four years. Bush starts to answer the question by saying something about keeping Congress from overspending, but then wanders off and starts trying to defend his tax cut again.

Kerry doesn't answer the question either, but once again attacks Bush's tax cut. Reminds everybody that Bush promised his second tax cut would create 5.6 million jobs, but it actually lost 1.6 million. He refers to Bush's plan as "a $25 billion giveaway to the biggest corporations in America, including a $254 million refund check to Enron."

Question #11: Senator Kerry is asked to look directly into the camera and swear that he will not raise taxes on families making less than $200,000 during his first term. Kerry does this, and uses the time left to elaborate on his plans to issue child-care credits, tuition tax credits, and provide affordable health care.

Bush accuses Kerry of voting to break the spending caps over 200 times, and yet now claiming to be a fiscal conservative. And he insists that Kerry will raise taxes, no matter what he claims. Which is an understandable point of view, considering what happened to Bush's dad ("Read my lips!"). Bush eats up a few seconds off of the clock by asking if his time is up yet, then repeats his plan to keep taxes low, to have an energy plan, and to reform litigation.

Gibson apparently realizes that neither candidate answered his previous question about cutting the deficit in half, so he once again poses it to them. Kerry starts off accusing the president of using "fuzzy math" instead of actual figures. He then describes a joint proposal he has with John McCain to close the corporate giveaway loopholes. He closes by reminding everybody that in 1985, he was one of the first Democrats to move to balance the budget, and that he voted for the balanced budget in '93 and '97.

Bush evades the question and simply attacks Kerry. He cites spurious figures about how Kerry voted 98 times to raise taxes (and then, ironically, claims that the numbers aren't made up). He then starts blathering about liberals again.

Question #12: President Bush is asked how he rates himself as an environmentalist. Bush cites his questionable environmental policies, including his plan to destroy large portions of forest to prevent fires. He refers to it as "good, common-sense policy." He then, somehow with a straight face, refers to himself as a good steward of the land. Somewhere, a Native American is crying.

Kerry comes out swinging, claiming the president isn't living in a world of reality. Once again, he chides the president for resorting to labels, and then he digs into Bush's attrocious environmental record. He refers to the Clear Skies bill as Orwellian, and claims it was a step backwards from the pre-existing Clean Air Act. He condemns the president's backwards views on air quality, water quality, and global warming.

Bush claims he pulled out of the Kyoto treaty because it would have cost America a lot of jobs, and he continues to insist, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, that the quality of the air is cleaner since he's been president of the United States.

Kerry admits that the Kyoto treaty was flawed, but is appalled that the president simply declared it a dead issue rather than try to fix it. He simply abandoned the work of 160 nations over 10 years. And people wonder why America is unpopular in some parts of the world...

Question #13: Senator Kerry is asked how the U.S. can be competitive in manufacturing and still pay comfortable wages to the American workers. Kerry reiterates his plan to shut the tax loopholes that encourage companies to relocate overseas, and instead give a tax benefit to companies that stay in America. He also restates his plan to lower the costs of health care, which then allows him to segue back into his rehearsed health care speech. Bad form, Kerry. But he eventually wanders back on track and talks about the "great entrepreneurial spirit of this country," and how we will eventually free ourselves from dependency on oil from the Middle East.

Bush goes even further off track by rambling about medical liability reform and his energy plan, which is stuck in the Senate. And Kerry and Edwards didn't show up to vote for it. And Kerry's plan to tax the rich won't work. And HOLY SHIT, MR. PRESIDENT! DID YOU EVEN HEAR THE QUESTION? Bush then makes the claim that Kerry's plan will tax 900,000 small businesses.

Gibson asks Kerry to elaborate on how tax credits will stop outsourcing, and Kerry claims that stopping all outsourcing would be pandering. What he intends to do is level the playing field. He cites an article in the Wall Street Journal that said 96% of small businesses would not be affected by his plan. He then claims that Bush's figure of 900,000 comes from a very loose definition of "small business." By those criteria, Bush is a small business because he got $84 from a timber company that he owns.

Bush cracks a few jokes about the fact that he doesn't own a timber company, but really doesn't say much else.

Question #14: President Bush is asked to justify weakening the rights of Americans with the Patriot Act. Bush claims the Patriot Act is a necessary tool for fighting terrorists, and it in no way erodes the rights of Americans.

Kerry claims the Patriot Act was misapplied, and that people's rights have been abridged as a result. He explains he voted for the Patriot Act along with 98 other senators, and that he still believes it contains vital elements necessary to coordinate the FBI and the CIA. But he disagrees with the way the current administration has abused the act with regards to civil liberties.

Question #15: Senator Kerry is asked about using stem cells obtained without destroying an embryo. Kerry starts off plucking the heart strings, mentioning Michael J. Fox and Christopher Reeve. He then mentions his plan to obtain embryonic stem-cell material from embryos frozen in nitrogen by fertility clinics. These embryos are either going to be destroyed or left frozen, so why not put them to a more noble of potentially curing Parkinson's, curing diabetes, or curing spinal cord injuries.

Bush responds by claiming embryonic stem-cell research requires the destruction of life to create a stem-cell, and he reminds everybody that he was the first president to ever allow federal funding for it (although everybody knows Rutherford B. Hayes was a huge proponent of it as well). But he wants to limit it, because destroying life to save life is "one of the real ethical dilemmas that we face."

Kerry accuses Bush of waffling. He calls Bush's numbers into question, and claims every scientist in the country will claim the lines of stem-cells currently available are "not adequate." Kerry promises that, if elected, he will open up the possibilities of stem-cell research, instead of limiting it.

Bush claims he made his decision to "destroy more life" in an effort to "balance science and ethics."

Question #16: President Bush is asked about his next choice for the Supreme Court. He says he wants somebody who will strictly interpret the Constitution of the United States. Then, as an odd example, he says he would never pick a judge who felt it was wrong to include the words "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance. So apparently, strictly interpreting the First Amendment isn't job one. He also takes a bold stand against slavery, and then makes it clear he's not quite sure WHAT the Constitution actually says.

Kerry reminds everybody that Bush once said he favored appointing conservative judges. He claims we don't need good conservative judges or good liberal judges. We just need good judges.

Master Debaters - St. Louis Blues (Part 1)

Last week, he was defensive and peevish. This week, he was angry and he shouted a lot. It's obvious Bush's guys are working hard to get his medication right. Here's hoping they find the right dosage of Paxil before the showdown in Tempe on Wednesday.

Is it just me, or didn't the EXACT SAME THING happen to Al Gore back in 2000?

Anyway, here's a blow-by-blow of the whole damn thing.

Question #1: Senator Kerry is asked if he is too wishy-washy. Kerry comes out swinging with a brilliant line about how the Republicans are trying to distract from their own failures by making up stories about his flip-flopping. He refers to Bush's campaign as a "weapon of mass deception."

Bush responds with the same tired Republican rhetoric about how Kerry changed his position on the war in Iraq. Anybody who gets their news from a source other than Rush or FOX knows this isn't true, but as always, the Republicans are counting on the laziness and stupidity of their supporters to sweep Bush into office.

Question #2: President Bush is asked if he was justified in invading Iraq. Bush yammers on and on about 9/11 and al Qaeda for a while before finally wandering back on topic. Finally gets around to saying that everybody thought Hussein posed a threat, so we were justified in invading. Once again, works in a reference to Kerry flip-flopping, because if he went five minutes without saying it, magic fairies would eat his children.

Kerry again defends his position, explaining that he never changed his mind, and the only reason the president keeps insisting otherwise is to distract the voters from his own abysmal failures on domestic issues. Once again, just in case any Republicans are actually listening to him, Kerry explains that he didn't vote to go to war. He voted to give the president that authority to make his bargaining position with Hussein that much stronger. But as soon as Bush got the authority, he rushed to war.

In his rebuttal, Bush claims that Kerry was naive to think UN sanctions would work to remove Hussien from power.

Kerry reminds Bush that the sanctions were not intended to remove Hussein from power, but to remove the WMDs. And they worked. And if Bush had just allowed the UN inspectors to do their job instead of rushing to war, we could have focused on bin Laden instead of letting ourselves be distracted by Iraq.

Question #3: Senator Kerry is asked if he would use the same plan in Iraq as Bush. Kerry responds with an emphatic no, and goes on to list some prominent Republicans who have described Bush's handling of Iraq as incompetent, pitiful, embarrassing, and dangerous. He criticizes the way Bush alienated potential allies and eschewed diplomacy. Insists his plan is to speed up the training of Iraqis, and to get our allies back to the table.

In a bold and slightly odd move, Bush takes credit for Kerry's plan and claims it's exactly what he has been doing. Once again claims that Kerry will never be able to enlist support for a war that he feels was a mistake. We get to hear "wrong war, wrong place, wrong time" again.

Kerry insists the right war was with Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan, and that Bush dropped the ball by turning his attention to Iraq.

Bush retorts that we didn't know there were no WMDs until we invaded Iraq and found out. Which for some reason he thinks justifies the invasion. He also insists that the war on terror isn't just about Osama bin Laden, but is about anybody who could provide nuclear weapons to terrorists. Which, ironically, appears to be everybody in the Middle East except for Iraq.

Question #4: President Bush is asked what he intends to do to repair diplomatic relations with other nations. Bush sort of sidesteps the question by talking about how, as president, he's forced to make decisions that make us unpopular with other nations. He invokes the name of Ronald Reagan, slams on the International Criminal Court, and then finally gets around to an answer by saying "we'll continue to reach out."

Kerry brings up the president's promise that he wouldn't take us to war without a viable exit strategy and enough forces to get the job done. He mentions General Shinseki, who told Bush they were going to need more troops, and claims the general was forced to retire as a result.

(Turns out this isn't entirely true. Shinseki did testify that they needed a lot more men to get the job done in Iraq, but he was already slated to retire. Kerry apparently got his facts from a story in the Washington Post, which was retracted immediately after this debate.)

Bush claims he looked each and every one of his generals in the eye and asked them if they had enough men to win the war, and each one of them told him, "Yes sir, Mr. President." I guess he wasn't listening when General Shinseki spoke...

Kerry reminds Bush that it's the army's job to win the war, but the president's job to win the peace. And Bush has failed miserably.

Question #5: Senator Kerry is asked what he'll do about Iran if the UN fails to take action. Kerry takes the opportunity to slam on Bush, mentioning that Iran (and North Korea) have become more dangerous in the past few years, while our nation was focused on Iraq. He mentions his plan to contain the loose nuclear material in the former Soviet Union, and denounces the president's plan to develop new and more devastating weapons.

Bush claims Kerry's answer almost made him want to scowl, which draws nervous laughter from the crowd. Once again, he claims that trusting inspectors to do their job is a mistake, because Saddam Hussein was deceiving the inspectors. Except he really didn't have any WMDs. Or something. I don't know. I'm getting a headache. Something about the Axis of Evil.

Question #6: President Bush is asked how he will maintain the strength of our military without instituting a draft. Bush responds by mentioning rumors he has read "on the Internets." Christ, Mr. President! There's a fine line between folksy and retarded, and I think you blew past it a long time ago. In fact, the light leaving that line won't reach you for several thousand years!

But I digress...

Bush claims that we're gradually replacing our troops with more effective weapons and with enhanced technology. We're also going to outsource our military, replacing 80% of our soldiers with contract workers from India. (Okay, I made that up.)

Kerry begins his retort by listing approximately 7,000 generals who support his presidential campaign. He compares Bush's military stop-loss policies to a backdoor draft, and complains that our soldiers are underpaid. He announces a vague plan to increase the rolls by making people feel good about being in the military. He sees Bush's former invocation of Reagan and raises him an Eisenhower. And finally, insists that building alliances will ease the burden on our military.

At this point, Bush loses his mind and starts shouting over moderator Charles Gibson. He ignores Gibson's question and shouts at Kerry, daring him to tell our current allies that we're going it alone in Iraq. Starts naming countries in the Coalition, including Poland (who recently announced their intention to withdraw).

Kerry tells Bush that nations are leaving the Coaltion, not joining. Mentions that if the state of Missouri were to join the Coalition, they'd be the third largest member (right after the U.S. and Great Britain). Zing.

Question #7: Senator Kerry is asked why he thinks we haven't been attacked since 9/11, and what he plans to do to ensure our safety. Kerry says he agrees with the president that we have to go after the terrorists, instead of sitting around and waiting for an attack. However, he feels intelligence and cooperation are vital and the current administration has come up short on both counts. He then mentions that Bush chose to give a tax cut to the wealthiest Americans, when that money could have been better used to make our nation more secure.

Bush defends himself, claiming he tripled the homeland security budget to $30 billion. He also attacks Kerry for voting to cut the intelligence budget back in 1993. Because we all know that if you change your mind about something over the course of 11 years, it makes you a flip-flopper. And then, flailing wildly, Bush brings up Iraq again and mentions "wrong war, wrong place, wrong time."

Kerry says he agrees with the president's assessment that another terrorist attack is inevitable. It's not just enough to add money; the president is supposed to do everything within his power to make America secure. But Bush instead chose a tax cut.

Bush claims we're fighting an enemy with an ideology of hate, and the only way to defeat them is to spread freedom, as we've done in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Question #8: President Bush is asked why he blocked the importation of drugs from Canada. Bush claims he didn't block them yet. He just wants to make sure that they're safe. He then launches into his rehearsed speech about Medicare reform.

Kerry accuses Bush of being disingenuous. Four years ago, Bush said he thought importing drugs from Canada was a good idea. But now he's blocking it, despite the fact that it has passed in the Senate. Kerry then goes on to pick apart Bush's claims of Medicare reform, and accuses him of siding with the big drug companies rather than the American people.

Bush insists he'll allow the Canadian drugs if they're safe. He claims Bill Clinton made the same decision. He then attacks Kerry, claiming he has never done a thing with regards to Medicare.

Kerry claims, "In 1997, we fixed Medicare, and I was one of the people involved in it." He then goes on to brag about how they balanced the budget, paid down the debt, and created 23 million new jobs. And now, all of that hard work has been undone by the current administration.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004


The following are actual quotes from George W. Bush. Really! I mean, why would I make this crap up? It would be a colossal waste of everybody's time!

"Wow! This bus is a lot bigger than the one I used to ride to school!"

"God is on our side. I know it because He told me so. Of course, that might have just been the cocaine talking."

"I am opposed to same-sex marriage, not only because I think it underminds the moralitude of our nation, but because I really, really hate fags."

"Education was my highest priority when I was governor of Texas. No, wait. Not education. Executing retarded people! THAT was my highest priority!"

"By stripping the forests, we're actually preventing forest fires. You see, sometimes in order to save something, you have to kill a big part of it. Sort of like Iraq."

"I think a president should be able to express himself concisively and coherentical, so that… oops, I crapped my pants again."

"Me am rocket ship zoom ice cream FAAART!!!"

Master Debaters - Veep Smackdown

The VP debates were on last night, and if you're like me, you discovered this when you switched on the TV and thought to yourself, "Holy crap! Sipowitz has really let himself go!"

Actually, I will say this for Cheney. He came across as human and, well, almost likeable. And in the greater scheme of lowered Republican expectations, the mere fact that he made it through the debate without flatlining is being seen as a win by his supporters.

As for Edwards, he was poised and smiley and oh, so charismatic. For some reason, every time Edwards smiles, I get the feeling he's about to tell me about the difference that Christ has made in his life. I don't know why. Chalk it up to a Baptist upbringing, if you must.

(And is it just me, or does Edwards look a lot like John Ritter? Before he died, I mean. For some reason, I keep imagining a scenario where Edwards is discussing the Republican Whips, but Mr. Furley overhears him and thinks he's talking about sex. And then Suzanne Somers shows up in a tight sweater and starts jumping up and down and up and... and... and... COME AND KNOCK ON OUR DOOOOOOOR!)

During the debate itself, both guys played a little fast and loose with the facts. But people more meticulous and less lazy than me have already done the legwork on this one. For an excellent breakdown of truth vs. rhetoric, check out this article at, a website that Cheney himself cited during the debate (well, sort of). Somehow, I doubt he'll be mentioning them again after this.

Typical exchanges went something like this. Edwards would claim that 90% of the losses among Coalition forces in Iraq had been American. Cheney would counter by telling him that he forgot about the Iraqis themselves, who accounted for nearly 50% of the losses. Edwards would reiterate that he said Coalition forces. Cheney would begin wailing with remorse over how little the Democratic party really cared about the Iraqis. And then moderator Gwen Ifill would interrupt them both to remind them that the question had been about tax cuts.

I can't imagine the debate changed anybody's mind. Most polls are showing that Edwards won by a narrow margin, but we all know that's just the Jewish-run liberal media skewing the numbers as a part of their vast anti-Christian, anti-Bush agenda. So I'm willing to split the difference and call it a tie.

If you feel differently, fuck off and get your own damn blog.

Friday, October 01, 2004

Master Debaters - "Here Is Your Ass, Mr. President."

There seems to be a bit of division regarding the outcome of last night's debate. On one side, you've got the people who think Kerry was the clear winner. On the other side, you've got Karl Rove.

Okay, just kidding. Most Democrats are calling Kerry the victor. What's sort of ironic is that most Republicans, ever defiant, are calling last night's debate a tie. After all, Kerry did score high points for being poised, prepared, and concise (by Kerry standards). But Bush managed to make it through the evening without soiling himself, and his supporters strongly feel that should be worth a point or two.

Oh, and then you've got that tiny bunch of conservative zealots who still maintain that Bush trounced Kerry, which just goes to show you how powerful blind faith and denial can be. But you can't blame these people for supporting Bush. After all, they live in a world where America is safer, the economy is getting better, and homeless people are actually piƱatas filled with tasty candy. Hell, if I lived there, I'd be all for Bush too!

You've just got to love how hard Bush's posse is working to spin last night's performance into some kind of victory. Karl Rove claims it was Bush's best debate ever, and Kerry's worst. He also claims that Bush's long, painful pauses were simply "pauses for effect." Well, if he was going for the effect of a deer caught in the headlights of an oncoming car, then MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

So for those scoring at home, it's currently Kerry 1, Bush 0. With a +/-1 margin of error, I suppose.