It's alright to be conservative and care about the planet

Earth Day Network - Guest Blogger - Cheri Smith - Hockley, TX

Cross posted at the EDN blog

I am a 39 year old mother of 6 who believes you can and should care about your planet. You won't find me holding a picket sign in front of a corporation, chained to a tree or driving a battery-powered car. What you will find is someone who raises her own range fed chickens for the eggs that are safer for my children. I have a sheep that eats the weeds around my yard that is planted with local flora and thus needs less maintenance and watering. My husband and I drive cars that  are over 10 years old so that we get the most use of a product that is already in existence and won't add to manufacturing pollution or add to the auto junk pile, in fact we don't believe in buying new cars at all. We drive them and fix them until we wring every bit of use from them we can. I raise a lot of my own vegetables organically which is great exercise and therefore I don't have to drive to the local gym to work out. I shop at a local (2 miles away!) farmer's market for what I don't grow myself. We recycle aluminum cans because there is a recycling facility nearby and it's a great way for the kids to earn some money. 

There's more...

Conservative Talk Radio Is Dead (Limbaugh, Beck Ratings Dive)

The Young Turks/MSNBC host Cenk Uygur explains how new (more accurate) radio ratings measurements show that right wing talk radio shows are not doing well.

 

Myth Of The Fiscal Conservative Busted

Who was the last Republican president to balance the budget? Why does the GOP claim to be fiscally responsible? Cenk Uygur breaks it down.

 

Conservatives, What the Heck is Wrong With You?

Once upon a time, a day with earthquakes, nuclear meltdowns, government shutdowns, and wars sprouting like deadly nightshade would’ve been unthinkable. Today, it’s just another hum-drum, dog-bites-man day. That’s a whole lot of chaos and change going on and many of us react more profoundly to it.

Researchers at the College of London say conservatives and liberals have physically different brain structures and it’s not the first study to reach similar conclusions. Perhaps this is the reason – in a government designed around healthy debate – the two sides can’t agree on whether that smoke they see is from a damaged nuclear facility, greenhouse gasses, or fat CEO bonuses. Moderates just scream, “DO SOMETHING!” on commercial breaks during Dancing with the Stars – couch potato government by TV remote at its best.

Despite my usual rabidly left-wing screeds, my responses are generally calmer and more conciliatory in comments. I hunger for a day when I can express my opinion without being called a communist traitor, even though the traitor label is now worn like a Tea Bagger lapel pin among the conservative set. Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose, but on the whole everyone gets dumped on.

I’ve noticed my more rigid migration stage-left in response to attempts to roll the nation back to an idealized 1950s, some would say 1850s, because of unrelenting pressure to move right. Uber-Conservatives have taken the reigns of power as if they are the majority, becoming a juggernaut of fear, over-simplistic thinking, and downright political lunacy. Anyone who thinks Glen Beck is “fair and balanced” clearly has a conservative brain area the size of a pea – a pea that goes all Where’s Waldo? in a shell game.

It’s becoming increasingly difficult to avoid becoming  a total jackwad and attacking every conservative ideologue just on the basis that they breathe. There are more days I reach for the remote and find its dead batteries were made by unionized Chinese prison labor.

Conservatives have lost the ability to make a reasoned argument about anything. Their fantasy world is a place where gays marrying, gays in the military (in fact, just plain gays) are “jamming” something down their throats – pun intended. Despite living in states that make federal decisions look like products of reasonable compromises, their solution is to push everything to a local level populated by the world’s biggest cast of nincompoops and crooked grifters . Despite much experience with their personal checkbooks, their world is a place where one crawls out of a financial hole carried on tax rates like Namibia’s and shocking notions that the market cures all and corporations always make decisions in the nation’s interests.

At the risk of a different, uber-liberal ideology, what the hell is wrong with you people?

Cross posted at The Omnipotent Poobah Speaks!

 

When is a Nazi Not a Nazi?

When is a Nazi not a Nazi? Apparently after you parse your words closely enough to find a lame loophole to avoid what you said. Like Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Stupidville), for example.

It’s distressingly easy to find Democrats calling Republicans Nazis and Republicans calling Democrats both Nazis and socialists (Damn, I wish they’d get that straight). As expected, the recent calls for civility in the national discourse lasted about as long as it takes to call someone a Nazi or socialist.

Well, DUH.

I’m a believer in the George Carlin School of linguistics – they’re only words. If you’re a politician and you can’t overcome your rage at being called a name – which in this case are perfectly acceptable definitions of political ideology – then you shouldn’t be in politics.

How did these particular, common words end up being so offensive?

Because people use them with meaning that aren’t there. Obama is not a socialist. In fact, for a lot of people he isn’t even liberal. The Boehner Boys aren’t Nazis either (for one thing Nazis were efficient and took pride in being called Nazis). BTW, there are other code words  twisted into new meanings. “Liberal” is one of the worst epithets in the conservative insult arsenal. Dems prefer “tea baggers” with almost equal vigor.

It’s a basic tenet of communications theory that if you say something long enough, it becomes “true”. And boy, howdy these get tossed around like candy at a pedophile parade.

They’re almost always created as lies, or at least gross exaggerations of the truth. The problem is that people soak them up and begin to give the words their own off-topic narratives to “prove” their label fits. It’s a good political ploy – distract the great unwashed with some kernels of improperly named ideas and then step back and watch things roll. It’s one hell of a lot easier than actually offering alternatives or explaining your position when in fact, there isn’t one…you (insert epithet here).

It’d be useful if politicians didn’t do that and really great if the plebes called them out on it. But, I reckon that’s about as likely as the recent goofy “solutions” for preventing lunatics from shooting at people actually working.

America’s problem isn’t civility – it’s a willful refusal to own what you say.

First everyone buy a dictionary. It’s an invaluable tool here – that is if you can read.

Second, own what you say. If you proclaim someone a socialist, make sure Karl Marks would’ve used the word in the same way. And all you faux Nazi accusers, tell me Hitler wouldn’t have cheered on the continuance of his 1000-year Reich as the best thing since sliced brot.

But above all, stop parsing words to prove you didn’t say what you so obviously did. It’s unbecoming, divisive, and stupid.

Mr. Carlin, sorry we didn’t get your punchline. We’re a slow-learning bunch.

Cross posted at The Omnipotent Poobah Speaks!

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