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911: Looking Back
What is the American Way of Life

By Jimmy2K^

I am constantly hearing people talk about defending the American way of life, and it leads me to wonder what exactly is the American way of life? I used to think I knew what it was but I never realized how it could be twisted and used to defend our actions in a time of trouble.

In the post 9-11 era, lots of things have changed in America. But really nothing has changed if you really look at it. The only thing that has changed is that the leadership of this nation now feels it has the licentiousness to impose the American way of life on other nations, in both a pre-emptive and unilateral matter. Suddenly going down the road to Baghdad has become necessary to defend the American way of life.

Now I consider myself a middle-income earner. I own two vehicles - one economical car that is more then adequate for our needs, as well as a truck that has a large engine in it and uses plenty of fuel. I bought the truck because I use it to pull my travel trailer. We enjoy getting out and seeing the country. This to us is part of the American way of life - to see others - to experience this fine country - to enrich our children's lives.

We also have satellite television because we enjoy access to a variety of news, entertainment, and learning, as well as a computer that is connected to the Internet providing us with access to any information we need. From these devices we have a window into the world to show us about other people's way of life. We have a comfortable home with all the things inside it to make it a home. It's not a castle, but it's paid for.

But I have noticed a disturbing trend via the medium of television and data bytes on the Internet that suddenly make me wonder if I even know what the American way of life is. I see a lot of commercials for gas guzzling SUV's that cost upwards of a small house - things that consume a lot of energy and leave us at the mercy of the oil producing nations because this is supposedly our way of life. I see a lot of advertising for elite products like $4000 flat screen TV's, Lexus cars with big bows under the Christmas tree, a barrage of infomercials promising me riches of the American dream if I only buy internet access terminals or credit card point of sale machines that let the cash roll in. Then I can take my cash, buy a cruise ship, head over to Las Vegas, and invite my friends over for a $3000 spa party where the decorations cost more then the cost of re-carpeting my entire house. It is wonderful they say - to look like Martha Stewart and have every kitchen gadget, infinite time to build infinite crafts and accessories to entertain and enjoy. If only I would manicure my yard with this pesticide and fertilizer, buy this special growing agent - I can grow roses and tomatoes better then anything I have ever seen. And I have to have that new line of platinum appliances for my kitchen that Bob Villa renovates for me with specially cut marble countertops, custom cabinets, and materials that cost more then the average recording studio. I better run out and get a Home Depot card.

And I need that huge tax cut because my credit cards are so far to the limit I am financing my future away and consolidating credit debts using the equity in my home to do it. After all we are only here a short period of time, and I just needed that ski weekend in Aspen. I better not forget to take my Metamucil if I want to be as regular as Old Faithful when I grow old so I can live long enough to pay for it all. And I had better not be overweight because nobody likes overweight people.

I don't know if you catch my drift here, but as we prepare to send average working class men and women away from their spouses, children, parents, friends and co-workers over to the deserts of Arabia to defend our American way of life - we had better be sure we know what it is, and who will be over there on the front lines to protect the privileged class in America that owns much of this. And we had better make sure why we are there - to ensure an unending supply of oil to America - top producer of emissions in the world - over 30% but who needs Kyoto - so that we can railroad all this stuff across our highways from producer to consumer because we can never seem to get enough. While we are gassing up our SUV's, we can tune into our monotonic media and hear constantly about weapons of mass destruction and smoking guns, all while fully knowing we did little to contain weapons of mass destruction after the Soviet Union caved in and prevent these things from becoming valuable in the first place, and that we put this "smoking gun" in Baghdad and supplied him with weapons back when Iran was giving us trouble in the late 70's.

I used to think the American way of life was not about consumption or collection, but rather about having a quality education, good schools, safe streets, and the family. I used to think that the American way of life was about having a can-do attitude when faced with challenges, be they inventions in technology, medicine and science - or looking after others in the world to make them realize that life should be lived in freedom with democracy. I used to think that America was about a large middle class where people earned a living wage. Well NAFTA sold the farm on that one - and forget about farming - it's all going public if the SEC can be sure to bury my accounting deep enough to hire a CEO at your expense.

I never thought it was my God-given right to control the world's resources and use as much of them as possible because after all - who gives a damn about the debt, the next generation, or even the rest of the world; I am an American. I don't have to care. To me, that is not what America is all about. But I see it a lot - and the worst part is when they call you unpatriotic because you refuse to believe that this is the proper course for the nation. Why? Because politically you refuse to believe that the Republican way of life is the American way of life? Oh shame on you.

I know very little about this because while I have all of that - I have none of the other stuff that makes me believe that I am living the American way of life in that sense. I am not bitter - I am just confused. And I forgot to add - debt free. I spend four times as much per month insuring my vehicles then re-fueling them, but I don't see us invading State Farm anytime soon.

January 27, 2003

America Is Under Siege

By Jimmy2K^

A silent coup is transforming America. You will not see it unless you are conscious of its impact, but it is an eerie reality. You will be uncertain of completion until it is finalized in revelation. You will be connived at every step in the process of its development if you fail to see the signs. You will definitely feel its impact in the years to come.

When the Supreme Court handed down its decision to award George W. Bush the Presidency of the United States of America, it did so amid a polarized nation in the most partisan of ways. It absolved forever the rights of the state to determine its own rule of law and allow state supreme courts to determine election results in one state. And it failed to recognize that leaders are elected, not appointed. It is over - that cannot be changed, but it is worth noting because it was an important step.

With the coronation process complete, the changes came almost immediately. It suddenly became necessary for the US to adopt a policy of international isolationism and alliance destruction. Treaties were rejected, notably the Kyoto protocol, as well as the ABM treaty. It became necessary to adopt policies defined by the private sector, notably that industry would determine energy policy through backroom dealings with the likes of Ken Lay, and the lumber industry was tossed a huge bonus with a get soft policy on public forestlands.

The middle class continues to be eroded as people lose jobs on a daily basis due to industry slowdowns. And then the big one hit - 4 airplanes were hijacked and 3 were used as weapons amid one of the most ineffective military responses in modern history. The most powerful armed forces in the world failed to intercept weapons of terror amid many intelligence breakdowns - and now with the appointment of Henry Kissinger - the truth of that fateful day will be forever sealed in the giant vault of lies being forced on the American sheep. Our shepherd will pull this off without a single shot being fired in the process.

Using fear as a weapon to enrage and engage a populace has been a popular strategy used for thousands of years, and it is being used here in America today. America has remained a polarized nation both within as well as outside. Many traditional allies simply hold their breath and wait for the day when the country once again begins to see that the world does not begin and end within their borders - that alliances are what make the world strong - that no one man was chosen by a single nation to lead the world into following it over a cliff - that oil is the demise of mankind.

No single regime poses a greater threat to democracy and world stability then the republican trifecta in DC today. Over the course of the next two years, you will see changes that will affect your retirement goals, health care services, personal privacy, and your children and grandchildren's destiny. Much of this will be done under the disguise of war, be it necessary (why debate) or irrelevant. They will point and say "3000 lives" and you will be scared. You will continue to surrender personal liberty for a belief of safety - your media will continue to ensure that you are kept scared for they have a personal interest in this power structure. They have personally benefited from all of these transformations. Many have much to gain - but the middle class will be all but gone when it is complete. Some would even say that democracy itself is already gone in America and the elections are irrelevant especially when you can fix the results electronically.

People will look back 10 years from now and wonder why this was allowed to happen. They will see how they have been duped. They will know that this absolute power has absolutely corrupted, and they will see that their priorities lead them there. They will often wonder how different life would have been had they thought more about the issues of the times and they will regret having squandered the opportunity before them today. As the baby boomers age, the crisis will grow epidemic as millions of people not only cannot retire, they cannot afford to even get ill. We will see the gross abuses of the war's impact on our debt and future as a nation. Yes - war - the eternal chess game played from bunkers with well-crafted patriotic puppets prepared to die for some cause they had little in crafting.

When major organizations generate cause and concern for the USA's direction, and the USA fails to acknowledge them, be they UN, Amnesty International, fellow NATO allies, or whomever - I genuinely do not believe they do so because they dislike America. And when American foreign policy is dictated by the energy sector amid some kind of a holy crisis and we fail to act responsibly, we will have nobody to blame for this but ourselves.

It is foretold in the book of Ezekiel Chapter 33 - verse 6 - But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman's hand. Now I do not claim to be a preacher, however there is a lot of common sense here. If I may borrow a line used often and modify it slightly, this nation is either "under God", or it has separated itself from enslaved religious doctrine - we cannot have it two ways simultaneously. And amid all that is going on, this issue promises to rear its head many times over the course of the next few years in a battle of us versus them.

And as America comes under siege from all of this - just what will you do with this opportunity? Will you think about what it looks like today and wonder what it should be like tomorrow? Will you deny that these things even exist? Will it force you to think about how this country came to be? Will it make you question how decisions are made?

December 3, 2002

Ozzy Osbourne - American Idol
By Jimmy2K^

After watching 5 hours of the Osbourne marathon on MTV last Sunday I have concluded that Ozzy Osbourne is an American legend.

I think the reason we are attracted to these reality shows is that our lives are so filled with hopelessness that we need them to re-define our own standards. Here is a guy with little education and way too much money who is dealing with average family issues and is so messed up he can't even run a microwave oven to pop popcorn. He has to deal with taking out the trash and having idiots for neighbors like everyone else.

Yet he fits right into American pop culture as well. People can identify with having to escape to the bathroom just to read, with being too stupid to figure out how to work with technology to watch TV, to trying to have a normal Christmas, to having kids flop out in the house, and having to keep kids from fighting.

Most men have to deal with wives who love to shop too much, to whine about having to work all the time to pay the bills created, or even to planning a surprise birthday party.

Ozzy Osbourne is an ideal role model for this sick twisted stupid world of cave men with too little knowledge, too much money, and too little time. From what I have been able to figure out, there is not a lot of difference between the way that white trailer trash in Kentucky lives compared to upper class Beverly Hills - in fact given the choice, most would probably prefer to avoid Beverly Hills when they see what that life of excess brings. The more I learn about the price of success the less important money has become.

The problem in America is not just a lack of money, but also a lack of quality in life for the things that really matter - people. Most people are out there working like slaves to pay for their coffins - and before they realize what really matters in life they are too old to enjoy it anyways.

This is why I say Ozzy Osbourne is an American hero because he reflects all that is both wrong with this world and all that should be made right.


Thomas Jefferson and Ann Coulter - Comparison and Contrast
By Jimmy2K^

OK just for fun I decided to sift through some online archives and try to draw some comparisons about how much or how little the world has changed in 200 years. The internet is an amazing research tool - no longer do I have to sift through tons and tons of books to find what I am looking for - I can merely pop a term into a search engine and it pops up all the bile and hatred I need instantly so that I may live in Ann Coulter's world of convenience where we no longer think before reacting.

I managed to dig up a few articles from each thinker - of whom you must know by now are both republicans. Well not quite - it seems that the definition of republican has changed somewhat over the past years. In his first inaugural address Jefferson reminded us that "having banished from our land that religious intolerance under which mankind so long bled and suffered, we have yet gained little if countenance a political intolerance as despotic, as wicked, and capable of as bitter and bloody persecutions." Now Ann Coulter is not quite that patient it seems. She rails on in her article titled Why We Hate Them that "Americans don't want to make Islamic fanatics love us. We want to make them die." Pretty strong words considering the first came from an elected official and the second came from an opportunistic press reporter cashing in big time on the fears of Americans. Of course that is just part of being politically correct today isn't it?

But it seems the demonizing liberals is nothing new. In his second inaugural address, Jefferson refers that "During the course of this administration, and in order to disturb it, the artillery of the press has been leveled against us, charged with whatsoever its licentiousness could devise or dare. The abuses of an institution so important to freedom and science are deeply to be regretted, inasmuch as they tend to lessen its usefulness and to sap its safety." I suppose this is why Ann Coulter finds it so necessary to make statements like "Al Gore wants to put the war on terrorism in a lock box" after Gore's comments referring to the fact that enemy number one - Osama Bin Laden has not yet been caught. Ann further refers to using the press to make a statement like "Japanese kamikaze pilots hated us once too. A couple of well-aimed nuclear weapons and now they are gentle little lambs."

She further refers that Gore is completely wrong with his belief that "America will only create more enemies if "what we represent to the world is an empire." I am trying hard to understand what makes this woman tick besides the smell of money. Does she really think that the world will love us more if we act like the class clown who could care less if he ever finishes school? Do all girls find bullies attractive? I think its further proof of the lack of success of the right wing agenda when we are witnessing first hand the collapse of any reasonable discourse, demonization of tolerant policy, and rationalization before rejection.

I anticipate therefore that Thomas Jefferson would be surprised that the union managed to stay together despite the fact that the same things he spoke against almost 200 years ago have now become the modus operandi and we will re-learn all the lessons that a little history could have taught us.


Why We Hate Them can be found among the Ann Coulter archives
Jefferson's First Inaugural can be found here
Jefferson's Second Inaugural can be found here


Please send any responses, comments or questions you wish posted to Alllie.

Some Thoughts on American Media
By Jimmy2K^

I got to thinking the other day as I was watching television just how much it has changed for the worse over the past 20 years. It has become downright embarrassing to watch prime time TV, and although I have almost 100 channels to choose from, the quality of the programming is not there. Have you noticed the suggestive language, explicit sexual content, extreme violence and tasteless program designing that have come about? When was the last time you were able to watch anything political without a shouting match breaking out?

And then my satellite provider has the gall to take PBS off the air. The time to fight back has begun. This was the final cheap shot for me.

In the 80's under the Reagan revolution to destroy anything and everything that was government, a golden bone was tossed to the broadcasters of America. The Communications Act of 1934 had codified that the airways belong to the public and that broadcasters must earn a license to use them by serving the "interest, convenience, and necessity" of the American public. The FCC was set up to look after the public interest. The public had the right to intervene in the renewal of a broadcaster's license and the Fairness Doctrine required broadcasters to air alternative viewpoints. Then the era of deregulation under Reagan delivered broadcasting corporations to the "promised land." Reagan's FCC chairman, Mark Fowler, declared that "market forces" would define "public interests." The Fairness Doctrine was scrapped and license renewal became a pro-forma process.
Which explains why we have this kind of trash on TV. It's all about money and what sells - society be damned. If explicit sexuality and people eating worms in prime time TV is good for the market, it will be on your TV tonight. The scary thing is that media in America is 99% owned today by about 10 major corporations, and they are defining the perceived society that we live in. If kids grow up watching this - just what kind of a world will we be living in 20 years hence?

The time to take action is now. I would like to encourage people to write to their congressmen and express their concerns about the direction that the FCC has taken. It's easier to get a gun in America then it is to apply for a broadcast license to even offer alternative media. These corporations have a stranglehold on our politicians, and most of them are the end recipients of the millions of campaign dollars that each party must raise. I would urge you to ask the politicians to reconsider the fairness doctrine, and mandate a code of ethics for broadcasters once again, and include a mandate for alternative viewpoints because we live in a democracy, not an elitist nation where money comes before people. I would further urge you to complain about media monopolization - and I am not just speaking about television either.

If anyone would like more information or links to various websites to learn more, they can email me or contact me, and I would be more then happy to supply them.

Nov 12, 2002

Some Thoughts On Addiction
By Jimmy2K^

Since I have struggled with addiction most of my life and know that this is not a laughing matter - I thought that I would share with all of you some thoughts on addiction.

First let me begin by saying that I do not believe addiction is a moral weakness. All my experience with booze has shown me that others who suffer from alcoholism are not morally weak individuals. Most of them are great people. All of them are insane when under the influence and all of them are quite normal when you get them away. Alcohol is the most dangerous legal drug in this country. More people die of alcohol related tragedies then any other addiction. Most of the people who engage in alcohol related driving situations are alcoholics. Most of them were not even aware they were driving when it happened.

Alcohol may react differently to a non-alcoholic then to an alcoholic. For one thing - an alcoholic has a much higher tolerance level than a social drinker. The buzz you get after 2 drinks might take a daily drinker anywhere from 10-15 drinks to achieve. I believe that this is related to differences in brain chemistry. Non-alcoholics seem to have less problem with dopamine levels. Although we are only beginning to study the workings of the brain, we now know miracle drugs like Prozac can alter brain chemistry to regulate neuron-transmitters. We still have a lot to learn about the complex chemistry that makes it all work.

Most alcoholics are normal in every way except for their drinking. Most hold good jobs, and the ones who have been able to quit ingesting alcohol turn out to be very dedicated employees and family people. I can understand these type of people because I see a little of me in all of them. There is a definite pattern to the addict.

But alcoholism is also a personal issue. I think the more an alcoholic is told they are bad, the less chance they have to recover. I find a disturbing pattern about alcoholics that seems to underlie each of them. Most of them have been socially isolated for years before they became alcoholics. Alcohol became a coping tool for their social isolation - it allowed them to come out of their isolation and experience things that they otherwise may not have experienced. Social factors definitely play a role in addiction.

Now you can apply this to any chemical addiction - the person who is a heroin addict is no different than the cocaine addict, the marijuana chronic, or the oxycontin user. Some how their bodies crave that adjustment needed to let them feel normal. I think the answer to all of these lies in genetic therapy and brain chemistry, and it's also why I think it is insane to even think that by merely locking them up the problem will go away. Our system of justice has been ineffective in dealing with addiction from a supply side concept. But the extremists continue to flog it as the dead horse that it is.

If you have the answers I'd like to read them. I don't think this is funny at all.


What Color is the Sky?

By Jimmy2K^

Well another week has come and gone and things never seem to get any better. I turn on the news and there is a sniper on the loose, North Korea has two nuclear weapons and the attitude in America appears to be "love it or leave it." Religious leaders are still preaching their hatred and intolerance and another bombing has occurred that has taken nearly 200 lives. Yet the country we live in remains defiantly unwilling to believe that it bears a part of the responsibility for the mess that it is in today.

Years of our foreign policy have led to this mess and now Americans are hated over the globe. Between self-interest driven politics and its propaganda machine the American people have been kept foolish enough to believe that we are protecting the world when in reality we are protecting ourselves from the world and doing a lousy job of it despite high powered weapons and in-your-face diplomacy. You can't even talk to a group of Americans without getting the attitude from them about "We're number one". Yeah, we are number one in prisoners, number one in executions, number one in pollution, number one in oil consumption, number one in deforestation, and number one in influence peddling in politics. Should we be proud to be Americans with all these number ones?

Yet we still continue to call people traitors if they speak out against war, speak out against a foreign policy that resembles 19th century imperialism, or speak out against intolerance and racial profiling. We want everyone in the world to think like us. Perhaps they too should have movie theatres filled with R-rated violence, laws that make guns freely available, and politics where corporations call the shots. Perhaps they can also have McGarbage littering their ditches.

This country has never been more divided than it is now. There is no longer any middle ground. We have become a nation of intolerant bigots who don't mind bombing people into submission, but please don't put it on TV if its going to interfere with our seeing the latest Friends episode. It's my right to be intolerant - then again maybe it shouldn't be. Maybe Americans need to think long and hard about the WHY instead of the WHO and the HOW and the WHEN of all this mess. But they just don't see it.

So what color is the sky today?

Oct 25, 2002

The End is Near - And Other Truths

By Jimmy2K^

America is quickly becoming the most fascist nation on Earth.

If you don't believe me - then you are not paying attention to the danger signs that show this today. Last evening I watched two shows that spoke about issues in the USA. One was the 60 Minutes interview with Reverend Jerry Falwell's comments about Mohammed. It seems that the Christian right is now dictating American foreign policy in Israel and would love to lead us on a holy war as predicted by scripture.

Now I respect your right and opinions when it comes to religion, but my opinion on religion is that it is all total crap. Christians in America have twisted and used the bible for everything from abortion to Zionism. I have no love for their ways of imposing so-called values that involve suffrage, war, or deliberate misperception. They are weak-minded people looking to hang on to something. But they don't follow the model of Jesus in any way - they simply use it to lie and deny.

Lunatics like Falwell are more a danger to our future then terrorists with their hidden hate-filled agendas because they prey on stupid people and spread fear under the guise of a power higher then themselves that they cannot prove exists. What if the universe just was? I mean at least with the Hubble, I can see how insignificant I am in this universe. And if I am that insignificant am I to believe that one entity built this?

And these same right wing religious whackos came up later in the second show I watched on CNN Presents - the one about Texas executions. Did you know that the United States executes more people then any other nation on Earth? Supposedly we do it in a more humane way then the Taliban, but it's still as primitive no matter what. Death is death and when man makes decisions to take the life of another, man is playing God. Christian lunatics love a good blood sport like Texas style execution. The same so-called moralists who use the phrase "kill em all and let God sort em out."

I am glad that I never fell prey to ignorance and become trapped by this mind poison. I am glad that I grew up in a country where diversity was respected, where guns were not looked at as weapons of protection, and where we keep these religious whackos in check. Canada may not be perfect but we do not allow any one vocal minority to buy its way into the power structure and impose its values on others - and that is fundamentally where the problem is coming from in America. Maybe its time for the USA to get its head out of its ass and face reality - before we can no longer wake up.

Oct 7, 2002


Please send any comments or questions to Alllie.

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