Monday, December 21, 2009

Blu-Ray: thumbs down.

I watched a blu-ray film last night. I seriously couldn't get into the movie for one reason: I didn't feel like I was watching a movie. Watching blu-ray is too realistic for me. Apparently, some of my friends feel the same way, so it's good to know I'm not alone. When I was watching one of the scenes, they were panning out as a car burned. Normally, I would have just been watching a movie of a car burning. On the blu-ray though, I was simply watching a car burn and people scatter on a movie set. I got the sensation I was watching a directors cut with behind the scenes footage on how the movie was made, or something. So, as a result, I will be watching poor quality films now.

Chrismas is much different these days...

I hung out with my little brother Tim, the other day. As usual, he seemed pretty focused on lusting after things (his attention is usually focused on obtaining something, rather than enjoying the present moment). I was the same way when I was a kid. Being an only child, my parents spoiled the hell out of me. Back then, everything you could ever dream of was purchasable for under $100. My happiness, just like Tim's now, depended on wanting something, getting it, being entertained for awhile, then wanting something else. It was a vicious cycle that was eventually broken around sixteen when I realized my parents didn't have the pocketbooks for my desires.

I've been sober from that mode of happiness for quite sometime, and I'm trying to show Tim the light to obtaining all that "stuff". I've found peace and joy in just simply being alive. I don't need anything really to be happy, and content. As a result, this has changed my outlook on Christmas, compared to the typical American tradition of the holiday season, and when I was a child. Back then, it was all about waking the parents at 5:00 AM to open gifts. This year I'll be getting a truly awesome gift that can't be bought with cash. I'm going to see my only living grandparent for the first time in about eight years. :)

Monday, November 23, 2009

George Bush Should Kick Michael Moore's Fat Arse

Back in 2005, when I first became politically charged, I joined this facebook group (blog title). Somehow, just like the Republican Party of Pontotoc County, I managed to take it over without even trying. I was just going through my facebook groups, when I stumbled upon this old gem. Many of the people who were members then, are still in the group, so I sent the following message for some personal entertainment:


"Back when this group was created in 2005, the presidency of G.W. Bush was still fairly young. Now that the fat lady has sung, the George Bush Administration has successfully done as much damage to America as Bill O'Rilley and Glenn Beck are claiming the Obama Administration is currently doing.

I guess I was just scared at the time that America was due for another attack, so I supported him, but the Bush Administration weakened our currency by doubling the nation's debt, and took away more of our temporary privileges as citizens (i don't call them rights, because rights aren't rights if they can be taken away). None of those things are truly conservative. Another thing, the great pastor Ted Haggard who worked with the Bush Administration, and held weekly prayer meetings with them, told some friends of mine, personally, that Clinton Administration funded the evangelical Christian movement better than Bush Admin. ever did.

Not only did Bush break the law, he also broke many of our ultimate father's Ten Commandants. If you're wondering what some of them are, just go read the Ten Commandments and think about it for 10 minutes. It was a sad 8 years as a hardcore conservative. Really nothing besides transferring wealth to top was the only thing the Bush Administration stood for, Republican wise. You can't blame the man though. He tried, but simply just failed miserably. All the blame really can't go on his shoulders though, but should be equally dispersed to influential members of his unconstitutional and sometimes demon possessed administration.

Looking back, I can't believe I even thought McCain '08 had a chance. Bush had the lowest approval rating of any president in U.S. History; and McCain offered nothing different, as he voted in line with Bush 95% of the time. What will 2012 bring? Who knows, but hopefully some critical thinking from us Republicans.
"

Sincerely,

Ryan McMahan
Former Pontotoc County Chairman of the Republican Party during Bush's later years

Sunday, November 22, 2009

American Culture, Public Education, Politics, and its Relation: by George Carlin

George Carlin never claimed to have any solution for certain social and political issues, but he had no problem telling people how things were. This video is no exception. Carlin literally summed up books of information in this skit, tired it all together, and delivered it in less than five minutes. One of my favorite aspects of this rant is that it focuses attention beyond the left vs. right political paradigm, and towards the up vs. down spectrum. Carlin's words fail to paint a rosy picture, and it's not an optimistic way of viewing things - but it is the truth. Everything said in this skit can be factually proven at one level or another. Now there is a bright side to all of this. Once everyone wakes up, things might begin to change!



ps.

On a side note: I'm just posting this for people who may have never seen it that find it as interesting, and eye-opening as me. I'm trying to throw in the towel on posting political links, because even if I post a news article here and there - supporting a cause that I favor - it's still not going to change anything.

When there's something political going on that doesn't register with me, like the support of Billionaires for Wealthcare, I have to just sit back, remind myself what George said in this video, and just become a spectator.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Screw watching the Blue Moon

Everyone I know is out watching the new moon movie. Even friends that don't particularly care to watch it, have called and invited me to go watch it. I guess when there's enough hype about something, people want to check it out.

Anyways, I don't need to go waste $5 dollars on a movie when I can watch stuff like this on YouTube, for free. Also, I would like to post this on facebook, but since i've already posted something today, I don't really want to be a post whore.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

A Short Film

It's been awhile since I've posted anything. I came across this short film, and thought it was worthy of sharing.

Friday, November 6, 2009

First day at McDonalds

I think this is the first journal style entry blog I've ever typed, but here it goes. I just completed my first day at McDonalds, which is my first job after receiving my Bachelors Degree. I basically wanted to work there, just to experience a type of job clients of mine in the future will have experienced their entire lives. And honestly, I think if my options were to work at a job like McDonalds for 20 years, or be homeless, I would go with being homeless. Not that I would want to be homeless, but deep down inside, I have a strong feeling that's what I would choose. That, or live at my parents house as long as possible. Anyways, as far as how the job went. It lasted long, but it felt short. I was basically flipping burgers all day, but not really since the technology is so advanced these days you don't even have to flip them. Just set them down, press a button, and wait. It was actually pretty fun. I met some cool people working there. I also learned some Spanish. I learned how to say the words, "quarter pounder, my name is, thank you, and hamburger." The shift definitely went to a 90% hispanic crew towards the later hours. One guy was named Jesus, which I thought was pretty awesome. He kept saying I looked familiar. Then we made the connection that I had seen him at his previous job, La Fiesta about a thousand times, which is a super kick ass mexican food joint in Ada. I actually told Jesus, for every 5 dollars I spend at McDonalds, I probably spend 200 at La Fiesta. He thought that was funny. There was also another fella I hung out with the last few hours that has apparently worked nearly all the fast food joints in Ada. I'll just call him John Doe. He said he dropped out of high school, and he currently has a kid. He was giving me pointers on how to be a stud and attract the ladies. His tips were to, "keep it fresh," by keeping the hi-gene up, and the clothes looking sharp. Then you gotta spit the game, and act all interested in the lady, even if you're only interested in one thing, and even if you don't know her name. Apparently that's the sign of a true player. To fornicate with someone whos name you don't even know. Once I get to know this fella a little bit better I'm going to find out if he uses condoms. I doubt he does. Hopefully he doesn't have another kid because then he may have to work as much as Jesus. Jesus works 18 hours a day, and only sleeps 4 to 5 hours. He has two jobs. I asked him why all the work. He said he's saving up for an awesome sports car so he can bypass all of John Doe's romance tips, and attract the ladies with a big shiny fast chunk of metal. It's amazing how powerful testosterone is. I think so many people do things just for sex. Get certain jobs for sex, buy things they can't afford for sex, just all sorts of stuff. Personally, I'd rather sacrifice getting laid a bunch, than work 18 hours a day. To me, 18 hours of work for 2 minutes worth of pleasure ain't worth it! Anyways, My values are just so different from the average American consumer. I'd much rather do things I enjoy, then work my arse off at a job that feels like a job, just to buy something I don't need. Another thing I thought about was slavery. I think slavery still exists. It's just wrapped in the illusion of freedom, and minimum wadges. People get paid just enough to keep the system running, as well as just enough to be enslaved by debt. I'm getting so tired I can't go into detail with that thought, but I think this picture below sums it up well. I think it would be cool, if instead of raising people in society to be as rich as possible, at all costs, which is what our system pounds into our head from day one; maybe we should focus more on raising citizens with compassion for one another. I love capitalism, by the way. It's a great system, when people morally behave properly; but they don't. They become greedy, which cause the system to fail. Then government has to step in, and has to start running things. Take for example the health care bill. A lot of people are bitching about the word socialism. I hate to inform these people, but if the insurance companies weren't raking in billions of dollars while simultaneously screwing millions of people, we wouldn't be in this mess to begin with. Either way, I'm confident that whichever bill passes, it will be more geared towards the interests of wealth business interests, than the overall well being of American citizens. Also, one more thing. I saw on Fox news this morning that the psychic business in America is apparently booming. Even employment for psychics are rising, according to the training schools. Basically, people are giving other people in weird costumes loads of money to tell them about their finances. Well, guess what. I got a prediction right here, and I didn't even go to a training camp. I'm gonna predict that due to Americas overall ignorance, millions of Americans are going to lose thousands of dollars by handing over their money to psychics, just to ask a few simple questions. Maybe, instead of wondering about the future. These people should just observe the past.



Also, for my own amusement, my future plans are:


To tell the Mitch Hedberg Sesame Seed Bun joke.



And to sing somebody this song, and tell them I wrote it after my fictitious divorce, and multipal police encounters. Then tell them a great man by the name of Ronwell Quincy Dobbs wrote it.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Alaska

another original... the last half was pretty much improvised. I need to write it out to sheet music, and change a few things with the improvised part. My recording software is about to expire, so I got busy today.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

"Waves are Toys from God"

Today, while I was doing my grocery shopping, I looked through a BMX Plus magazine and saw two of my friends. It's a pretty weird feeling seeing people you know in a magazine. My first reaction is always excitement for the friend, followed by regret towards myself. Mostly because, I always wonder how far I could have gone had I actually pushed myself with my riding. When I was 14 years old I dreamed of being a professional, and by the time I was 18, I figured I'd just settle for some pictures in a magazine, or clips in a video. I always had a bunch of natural talent, more than most riders I believe, but I never did anything with it. I remember coming back from a contest in Austin, TX when I was 21. That place left me super motivated to learn a bunch of new tricks. I really wanted to push myself to that next level with my riding. So I could place well, in say, a national expert class, or enter a pro class more than once. That Texas motivation didn't last very long. Within a few weeks, I went back to the usual: Having fun riding bikes with my friends.

Before I went to the grocery store though, I watched a YouTube video via facebook of Clay Marzo, a professional surfer who has a form of autism, known as Asperger's Syndrome. I ended up getting pretty fascinated with the dude, and watched more videos on him. Due to his condition, he is somewhat of a jedi when it comes to surfing. He is apparently by far the best in the world for his age, and could easily make it as a professional, if he actually wanted to.

For some reason, I find an enormous amount of beauty in the fact he could care less about being a professional. Clay is the only person I've ever heard of who doesn't care to be transformed into something so many kids grow up dreaming of. To me it seems like a form of altruism. All he needs is the joy that comes from surfing, and nothing else. Because nothing else is apparently necessary to him. Just a wave and a surf board. It's a bit weird to think, but imagine a world where Michael Phelps set world records at the local YMCA; where Tiger Woods refused to compete on the PGA Tour; or Lance Armstrong just rode back and forth across America, like Forest Gump, simply for the hell of it. That's the world Clay Marzo lives in. I suppose I find it such a beautiful world because I sometimes think so many artists, musicians, writers, athletes, and people in general, including myself, often lose the main motive that gets us doing something, because we replace it with another one less pure. Clay Marzo, is my first, and only, 'favorite surfer'.

"Waves are toys from God." - Clay M.


Monday, October 19, 2009

2 wheels

Some people have to go visit the London Bridge, or the Eiffel Tower, or Grand Canyon, to experience the world's beauty. All I have to do is watch this youtube video, as ridiculous as it sounds:




I'm posting this video as a reminder to do this:

Sunday, October 11, 2009

New Piano Song; plus, random thoughts on music...

I recently downloaded (and will purchase once my 14-day trial nears an end) a music software program called --- something. So, that means I will be uploading some songs in the near future. The first song I decided to record (and post here) is a little piece I wrote this past summer. During that time period, I was reading a lot of online news articles for the first time in about eight months. Which as a result, inspired the name of the song that inspired this blog: A Founding Father Couldn't Get Elected Today. The title is obviously politically motivated, but really has no other connection to the song, besides that.

It is a very unique song. In general, and for me, personally, as someone who likes to screw around on a piano. I let my friend Dave listen to the song immediately after recording a decent take the other night. I described to him how it was a weird song, and that I honestly wouldn't know whether or not I would enjoy it if some stranger randomly approached me, and had me listen to it. That is currently not the case now, because I now realize the answer. I don't believe I would like the song, simply because I wouldn't be emotionally connected to it. I like it simply because I wrote it. I am emotionally connected to it, because my emotions and tiny 3 year-old neurological musical piano pathways made it. So it's just a no-brainer whether or not I would like it to some extent. But I have a feeling, that if this song were on youtube, uploaded by somebody else, I would probably listen to ten seconds of it - conclude that it sucks - then click on another video. Though possibly different scenarios, I think this happens a lot with music. And I don't mean to sloppy musicians like myself. I'm talking about really really good professional musicians who should be listened to! All because I, and so many others, never give ourselves the chance to connect emotionally with the music.

Now I believe there are two ways to be drawn to music. Not really, I'm sure there are millions of ways, but I've got to list two that are on my mind for this blog: 1st) By the "technical objective aspect," which basically includes everything heard in the objective world; and 2nd) The "emotional aspect." These are pretty simple explanations, so I'll let you think of some personal examples to figure out. I think it's hard to have one without the other, and I feel like my favorite musicians do a swell job of mixing the two ingredients together. However, I do think listening to a song, and not being on the same level emotionally with that song is like watching a comedy movie without possessing the ability to laugh (and just in case you can't imagine that, just imagine watching a comedy movie immediately after arriving home from a funeral). I think these two aspects of music explain why I listen to such few bands, and why I am totally in love with Radiohead. This obviously hinders me musically, in a way that I don't give other deserving bands, artists, composers, etc. enough of a chance for me to connect emotionally with their music. This also explains why I love Radiohead so much, not just because their technical objective ability is absolutely amazing, but because when I hear it, I can feel it in my bones (reference to one of their songs). And I don't only do that though, I feel it in my bone marrow (not a reference to one of their songs). But really, honestly, I just connect with it well, mushy feelings wise. As do millions of other fans world wide.

One of my good friends once said after we saw Radiohead live, that he loved their music so much, because of their ability to play the music he feels inside himself, that he himself, can never express musically. That didn't make much sense to me then, but it makes a tad bit of sense now. Just because I think he was confusing Radiohead's ability to play the "music he feels inside himself" with their ability to bring out the emotion inside of himself, due to his emotional connection with the music. So, I think this is why myself, and probably so many others sell ourselves short on other possible music obsessions. Even after the first several times I listened to Sigur Ros, I laid the CD on a shelf to collect dust for nearly a year, before stumbling over it again later, only to fall in love with it the second time. Maybe us sound vibration listeners just don't give ourselves enough time to connect with the music. Then again, everyone has their pet peeves; and no matter how long I am exposed to Kid Rock musical waterboarding, I will probably never connect with his music, or bang my head to Bawitdaba.


video


But anyways, to all those bored enough to actually read down this far, there you have it folks: An answer to why I don't believe I would enjoy this song as a person in your shoes. Why I sell myself short on indulging in many other great musicians. Why myself and Jace, are more than just blown away Radiohead. And finally, why some people in the music industry are making a fortune off nearly every musician out there who is forking over their paychecks in desperate attempts to make it big someday. Simply due to the fact those wealth providing musicians are so emotionally connected to their music, they are mentally incapable of hearing their music objectively. So here it is. Another song in the past. Maybe you can connect with it, maybe you can't. Either way, I'll still be screwing around on pianos at night - for me, myself, and I. Just don't listen to it 100 times trying to connect with it. I suggest spending that time wisely by indulging in some of history's musical greats that maybe you didn't allowed yourself to previously absorb. :)

Monday, September 28, 2009

50 miles on a BMX bike.

Yesterday, I entered the Oklahoma Baptist University Bison Classic, in Shawnee, Oklahoma, on my Fit Series 2.5 (equipped with a 44tooth sprocket).

I basically wanted to do the 50 mile ride as a personal challenge, but I also wanted to have some fun with people who take stuff a little too seriously; which is why i entered the race, instead of the ride. Nobody who I talked to on the line really seemed to mind, though I'm sure the vast majority of racers were probably confused as F-word.


An estimated thirty people entered the race. I'm not too sure about that number though, since I was too busy stretching on the front row during staging claiming the Butterfinger Holeshot. Once the announcer said, "GO!" I took off in a dead sprint laughing hysterically as if I were racing the ABA Grands. I gaped the pack by a good ways and lead the first mile.

A few miles later, I received a lot of mixed comments as I was being passed by the racers and just those doing the ride. Things eventually settled in to where I was riding with a group of road bikers who were riding my "bmx pace." I met a lot of interesting folks, including one guy that had to have been a 90 year old WW2 vet who was sporting an American Flag jersey. For some reason he kept telling me I needed a bigger bike.


10 minutes before the first pedal; preparing for the holeshot (first one into the first turn).



As far as the ride goes, I wish I would of put on a different rear cog to get more top end speed. I was actually passing a lot of people going up hills - mostly because they were either old, carrying their children in a wagon, or morbidly obese. Most of them were just doing the 25 mile ride, and the closer we got to that 25 mile mark, the more I passed, which must have been pretty demoralizing lol...

My chain ended up breaking at mile 27. I banged it back together with some rocks and kept going. From there on, it came apart several times in the next ten miles when I would crank hard up hills. Usually though, I would hear a few clicks, look down to see one of my sideplates coming off and then smash it back on with my lucky rock before the chain had a chance to fall off. Lucky Rock only stayed with me for a little while, as I accidentally dropped him while talking on the phone with my buddy.

During the last 13 miles I had a ton of chain problems! I probably had to beat that sucker back together on average 3 times a mile. I probably went two miles at the most with no problems. This actually forced me to lower my energy output, since there was no possible way I could push hard without my chain falling apart. Since I was riding as slow as the people who were struggling just to do the 15 mile ride, or 25 mile ride; I was out on the road alone the last 30 or so miles with nothing but my iPod (and Lucky Rock until we got separated). All the workers pretty much had to stay and wait on me, which I kept apologizing to them for. I soon realized those working the event didn't seem to mind, and in fact, towards the end of the ride I got the feeling they were rooting for me.

In true Hollywood fashion though, with half a mile to go my chain totally disintegrated off my baby blue rocket. I looked down and saw parts of the weak link that was giving me trouble tumbling down the road; so I did what anyone else in my shoes would have done, I said, "Fuck it," and just starting running towards the finish line!

When I rounded the last corner and saw the finish; pretty much everyone there working the event, all my friends, and a few road bikers still on hand were cheering me on. I pretty much did the thing as a personal challenge, but it felt good to get that kind of feedback, even if I finished the "race" in dead last by a few hours. Nearing the finish line though, I hopped on the pedals and vocally dedicated a chainless 180 to fakie rollback across the finish line, "To all the workers whom I made stay extra late."


Monday, September 21, 2009

Gladiators of the Current Millennium

Yesterday I opened up the latest Racer-X Illustrated magazine and saw one of the worst crash sequences ever! I was surprised, mostly because I never heard any news about this after it happened on any of the motorcross websites that I check. The rider, Cameron Sinclair, is one of 3 people in the world to ever land a double-backflip on a motorcycle, and the only one that's willing to throw this insane trick down more than once each year at the X-games. The crash sequence listed his injuries: Broken cheek bone, broken shoulder, and head trauma. Several frames from the sequence gave me a pretty good indication at which exact moment these injuries took place. It also made me weak at my stomach. His tests for mild brain damage came back positive, but he is expected to make a full recovery, thankfully. Especially considering Jeremy Lusk's fatal crash earlier this year in Mexico (2008 X-games gold medalist).

In my opinion, I seriously have no ****ing clue what drives these guys to do this. Sure you might score a California trophy wife out of the deal, (or 100 plus 'temporary wives' annually depending on your morals), but the divorce rate is around 95% when you're a paraplegic. Obviously, nobody is holding a gun to their head. I can understand hitting the jumps, and doing what were once progressive tricks that now couldn't even qualify you for a night program, which are relatively low risk. But the stuff these guys have been doing since 2003 puts them in ICU for weeks after one mistake. Ten years ago the worst injury was usually just a broken femur. The level of riding in competitions now requires them to literally risk their lives every time they throw a leg over a motorcycle.

To me, the risk would never be worth the glory in that sport. As a spectator I've always loved and admired watching what they are able to do on a 250lb beast. They are definitely some of the toughest athletes both mentally and physically on the planet, in my opinion. Which is why I believe they are the modern day gladiators - in contrast to those beefcakes you see on the television wearing red, white, and blue spandex whacking each other over the head...



Here is Cameron Sinclair’s double-flip crash from Madrid, Spain:




Here's some guys making art on a 90 foot long leap

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Ears or Eyes?

When I was a little kid I was scared to death of being blind. I use to prefer the though of not hearing anything forever, versus not seeing anything forever. I guess things have kind of shifted over the past several years. It would suck, don't get me wrong, but if I ever happen to put both of my eyes out with my Red Ryder B.B. gun, I feel I would adjust nicely thanks to the beauty of music. Hopefully something like that never happens, but if it did, I think I would just spend a lot of time in front of a piano. I love music, and I'm grateful my ears work.


Here are a few songs I've been digging lately:



Friday, September 11, 2009

Preaching Horse in Ada



This is Mr. Ed, the Preaching Horse. He will perform Sunday, Sept. 20, at Ada Baptist Temple, 2120 N. Broadway.

I plan on being there. I'm also going to bring my dog Max. That way he can get witnessed to by another animal. Max has only been alive 4 years, and I still don't think he understands English very well. So, hopefully, Mr. Ed the preaching horse will be able reach Max in a way that us humans can not understand.

Max is going to Heaven!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Hero Blog #1: Doug Henry




This is one of my hero's riding a dirt bike for the first time in several years. I had the opportunity to get his autograph at the AMA Supercross in Texas Stadium back in 1995. I don't know why I didn't, I was right next to him. Later that night he went on to win his very first 250cc Supercross main event - in the mud.





About 5 months later he was in the points lead for the AMA National Championship when this happened:





The result was two broken vertebrae. He returned to the same track two years later, only to break both of his arms. The following year though, in 1998, he came back to Budd's Creek (where both wrecks took place) and won both motos. Then followed it up by wrapping up the 1998 AMA Motocross Championship!

Doug raced a few more years, and then retired from motocross. He went on to race super-moto for a few years (super-moto is a hybrid form of motocross and road racing shown in the video below). I recall that he won the X-games in super-moto one year. I was so stoked for him! I had my second chance to meet him right before that. He was actually practicing in Norman, OK at the track right off of I-35. I remember thinking, "wow, that's the first time I've ever seen a super moto bike."

Later that day I got an email about Doug Henry being in Oklahoma, along with a few pics. I was pretty ticked off I didn't stop by to meet him, but at the time I had no idea it was him...

A few years after that (2007 I think?), Doug broke his back again in a super-moto event. This time it was much worse, and he has had trouble trying to walk ever since. I was pretty stoked to see him back on a bike though. But yeah, this guy has been one of my hero's and one of my favorite motocross riders of all time. Not only is his comeback story inspiring, but also his rise to the top story, in which Doug and his wife lived out of the back of a small truck during his early professional years.

Anyways, that is Doug Henry, and he is still a TOTAL BADASS!!! I've always thought that about him, which is why I decided to named my iguana after him, and put one of his Doug's posters in the iguana's aquarium when I was 11 years old.






Circa '98








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Friday, September 4, 2009

Top 10 Reasons: Why Republicans Should be Stoked on Barack Hussein Obama!

Lets face it folks. Our mainstream media system (rather an intentional aim or not) appears to rally Republican U.S. Citizens to hate and blame everything on the Democrats, and for the Democrat Citizens to hate and blame everything on the Republicans. Two political ideologies at constant war. When I logged in today my news feeds thankfully informed me that the war is still-a-raging. Friends of real life, and Facebook friends [pretending to be friends] from both the "left" and "right" appeared to have their panties all tied in a knot over the President talking to school children! It must be the topic of today to say the least. And I highly doubt millions of American's would have today's talking point if it wasn't for societies programmers. Who could be responsible for this? I'll place my bet on news organizations like Fox News and MSNBC.

As the old saying goes: Divide and Conquer. Call me crazy, but that's the way I see things. Once you turn off your television, and step back and look at the big picture you begin to notice there is a vast spectrum of overlapping similarities between our two ruling political parties, along with President Barack Obama and former President George W. Bush. That may sound like blasphemy to someone like Bill O'Reilly, or Keith Olberman - but it is the truth. Many similarities I chose not to even mention in this top 10 list. Similarities the media mostly ignores, and similarities left out of many political debates. Back on topic, I figured I would shed some light on a few these similarities. I felt the need to share with my fellow Bush/McCain Conservatives of America the similarities I've noticed that keep me feeling safe, and keep my stress levels low, while another president - this time a Democrat obviously - leads the White House in front of the all powerful, and all mighty, Wall Street franchise.



10: Barack Hussein Obama attends church. Now the media may have attacked his pastor for the unacceptable "out of the mainstream political spectrum views" he openly shared, but the fact is, even though President Obama has a Muslim middle name, he does claim to be a committed Christian. Just like George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush Sr., Ronald Reagan etc. etc... "I am a proud Christian who believes deeply in Jesus Christ." - Barack Obama

9: Barack Obama supported Bush's Wall Street bailouts, and started his very own bailout/stimulus package once he was in office. It may not sound very conservative, but it is! Not only did Bush Jr. do it, but the bailouts and stimulus packages are really just trickle down economics on steroids. Tax every citizen 7,000 dollars, give it to the richest sector of the United States. Then just wait for it to trickle down...

8: How about a "moral issue?" Both Obama and Bush agree that marriage is and should remain between one man and one woman. As far back as 2004, Obama said: "Gays ... should not marry." And in a 2007 Senate debate, he said: "I agree with most Americans, with Democrats and Republicans, with Vice President Cheney, with over 2,000 religious leaders of all different beliefs, that decisions about marriage, as they always have, should be left to the states. ... Personally, I do believe that marriage is between a man and a woman."

7: Obama has said the U.S. must "lead the global fight against the AIDS virus." And earlier this year, he encouraged lawmakers to "Use whatever works with AIDS, including teaching abstinence." Obama has given Bush kudos for his efforts to combat global AIDS and the record amount of funding ($15 billion over 5 years) the president has earmarked for the fight. Obama said in September, "I think President Bush -- and many of you here today -- have shown real leadership in the fight against HIV/AIDS."

6: Bush is well known for his commitment to the faith-based community -- with initiatives for the poor and on fatherhood -- and he expanded the ability to allow faith-based providers a seat at the funding table. Obama, who has railed against Bush's efforts, has still found a way to embrace them, saying he would "expand" faith-based initiatives. He used his Father's Day speech to echo the president's Fatherhood Initiative.

5: The administration has gone to court to quash challenges to domestic spying, renditions, and CIA torture. Point is, Obama is keeping America safe folks - Bush Style. So Conservative Republicians, it's time to turn those frowns upside down!

4: Obama’s health care “reform.” The centerpiece of his domestic policy has proven to be nothing but a plan, drawn up by the health care and insurance industry, to boost corporate profits by rationing and reducing medical coverage, and paving the way for the dismantling of employer-paid benefits and Medicare and Medicaid. Boosting profits, sound familiar? This is the foundation principle for trickle down economics - something very Republican'ish! Obama is also expected to renounce the “public option” of his health care plan, so don't sweat the nationalized health care. After all, even though the media may have had you convinced this was a decision in the hands of "we the people." It always been, and still is, something in the hands of big wealthy business interests to decide.

3: President Obama has handed over trillions of dollars to the Wall Street banks and is blocking the slightest restrictions on their speculative activities and massive pay packages (Someone can correct me on this if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure this is the same practice under G.W. Bush). Anyways, as a result, the share prices and profits of the banks have increased at the expense of tens of millions of workers. I'm no expert for Fox News or MSNBC, but I think this is exactly what would be happening if John McCain were in office.

2: Though no personal war experience, President Obama is keeping us safer (theoretically) than John McCain, by not only not only keeping U.S. Troops in Iraq, but also expanding military forces in Afghanistan, and Pakistan. During the campaign elections, foreign policy was split with two options: 1) Keep Troops in Iraq, McCain's pledge, and 2) Move forces into Afghanistan, Obama's pledge. Had McCain been elected, we would mostly have our military focus on Iraq. But thanks to President Obama's foreign policy we are currently keeping the homeland safer than ever with troops in Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. This is a G.W. Bush foreign policy slam dunk if you ask me!

1: President Obama is blocking any investigation or criminal charges for "supposed" war crimes and violation of international law pressed on members of the previous Bush Administration (damn foreigners). Seriously, can you imagine G.W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld being in some prison cell together right now? I sure can't! If it wasn't for Barack Obama, that very well could be the case! So, conservatives, please, be very thankful for President Obama and his ability to keep our former Republican President and Administration out of harms way, as I am, so they can continue living in the greatest and freest nation on earth - The United States of America!


So, there you have it, folks. A few similarities between the previous Bush Administration, and Obama Administration; along with a few protective measures thrown in as well. Keep in mind there are many more! Noticing that the cup is half full, or that the two ruling parties share many similarities, rather than always focusing on the differences has benefited my stress levels regarding politics. As a result, I hope this enlightenment will benefit your stress levels as well!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Carl Sagan: Pale Blue Dot





"We succeeded in taking that picture [from deep space], and if you look at it, you see a dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there — on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors, so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.

Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand. It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known." - Carl Sagan

Friday, July 24, 2009

This is my spot blog... A place for strangers to view my thoughts.