Archive for November, 2007

Bush Library

From the “not ashamed to pass on funny e-mail” department:

Bush Library

There’s a show on C-SPAN about presidential libraries. Here’re what the draft plans for the George W. Bush Library now call for:

The Alberto Gonzales Room - Where you can’t remember any of the exhibits.

The Hurricane Katrina Room - It’s still under construction.

The Texas Air National Guard Room - Where you don’t have to even show up.

The Walter Reed Hospital Room - Where they don’t let you in.

The Guantanamo Bay Room - Where they don’t let you out.

The Weapons of Mass Destruction Room - Nobody has been able to find it.

The War in Iraq Room - After you complete your first tour, they can force you to go back for your second and third and fourth and fifth tours.

The K-Street Project Gift Shop - Where you can buy an election, or, if no one cares, steal one.

The Men’s Room - Where you could meet a Republican Senator (or two).

To be fair, the President has done some good things, and so the museum will have an electron microscope to help you locate them.

When asked, President Bush said that he didn’t care so much about the individual exhibits as long as his museum was better than his father’s.

DFA to Screen “Uncounted” Tonight

Lubbock Democracy for America We will screen the new film “Uncounted,” which documents problems with electronic voting machines around the country.

From the Lubbock DFA Event Details page:

Event Date: Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Event Time: 7:00 PM
Venue Name: Mahon Library
Address: 1306 9th St
City: Lubbock
State: TX
Zip Code: 79401
Handicapped Accessible: Y

Embrace What We Expect

Having watched the political process for the better part of my adult life…which hasn’t been that long, “I’m not old. I’m 37”, (for all the Monty Python fans out there) I have marveled at what the neo-cons have been able to pull off in the last decade.

The one thing that impresses me the most is how they have convinced people to vote against their best interest when it comes to their daily lives. From health care to the environment to the farm bill, people who should be consistently voting for the Democratic Party have instead rejected their best interest for false hopes.

Most of these hopes are based on one or two issues, primarily abortion. The GOP, in their wisdom, began to control the language of politics to trick the country into believing they could actually do something about these so called “family values”. Did you see the smoke and mirrors there? The party of “small government” is going to take control of “family values” and then regulate them for you! Wow, Copperfield would be proud.

But above it all, the thing that impressed me the most is that the neo-cons were so confident in what they were doing. They had a unified passion.

This is what we must embrace.

All the time I bump into fellow liberals who are uncomfortably happy but anxious when it comes to the upcoming Presidential election. An example of this would be Kurt. Proudly wearing my custom made Gabe “Senor Sack” Rivera Texas Tech jersey at a Longhorn tailgate, I mixed and mingled with the crowd talking about everything from girls in short skirts wearing cowboy boots to politics. Then I met Kurt. Kurt was this big, strong, successful man, proudly wearing his huge palm cowboy hat and a UT orange t-shirt with the slogan “GEORGE W. BUSH. WORST PRESIDENT EVER! “

I told him that I had never seen a shirt like that, especially living in
Lubbock. Our conversation quickly turned to the issues of the day. It was at that point I turned to him and said, “Aren’t you so happy that it’s about to happen! We are going to steam roll through those guys!” He winced. Not sure how to respond he simply whimpered, “I sure hope so….”

I say enough! For too long we have acted like prairie dogs in a
West Texas thunderstorm, afraid to stick our heads out of our holes in fear of being struck dead by a bolt of lightening. We need to have the confidence that will make everyone around us either cringe and hide or shout with pride. We must be the party of the slam dunk, not the air ball. We need to tell everyone around us this is what’s going to happen and this is why and there is no way to avoid it.

In short, here is why it’s going to happen.

1) History

The ominous reality for the GOP is that historically, the tide is about to turn. Only once since 1952 has a party had enough votes to win three consecutive presidential elections—1988 when GHW Bush won Reagan’s “third term”. The other four times when it would have been possible, the people rejected the party in power.

2) Hijinks

Defined as: Playful, often noisy and rowdy activity, usually involving mischievous pranks.

From how the GOP hijacked the good hearted religious people of this country to purposely leading this country into the most costly and avoidable conflict in
Iraq, the GOP has worn out their welcome. We won’t get fooled again…until the next time.

3) Home

The GOP has brought us the highest oil costs, a collapsing housing market, negligence in regards to the environment and the worst military conflict in recent history. Recession is looming and the corporate machine is laughing all the way to
Aruba. It’s time to take our home back.

We are the only party that can realistically lead this country back to the days of respect and honor in the world without the use of threatening words or preemptive attacks.

As my old football coach used to say, “Son, how do you expect to win if you don’t expect to win?”

No need to be anxious…just embrace what we expect!

Helmut

A
Lubbock Liberal

Happy Thanksgiving!

Whether you are pardoning a Turkey or carving one, have a safe, warm, and happy Thanksgiving!

Red Light Cameras: A European Perspective

Today I was chatting with a German friend who is in law enforcement, and our conversation found its way to the hottest topic in Lubbock: red light cameras. In Germany, they have had such cameras for a long time, especially along the autobahn to catch speeders.

According to my friend, all of the cameras here must take two pictures, or the ticket can be contested and thrown out when the request for the second picture yields nothing. Furthermore, the picture must include an identifiable picture of the driver of the car, who is the one that will receive the ticket. This is a very important point, because in the Lubbock system, the owner of the car is liable, not the person driving it.

Even better, if the person driving the car does not match the file photo of the person who owns the car, an officer will be sent to the home of the car’s owner to ask the owner if they know the person driving the car. If the owner does not recognize the driver (or does not admit to recognizing them), the matter is dropped.

The German traffic camera system is not perfect. There are still speed traps (which are successfully contested from time to time) along with red light cameras at intersections designed only to generate revenue. However, the extra effort made to identify the driver of the car and the extra contact with a human officer are both features of the German system that I like.

This business of a civil liability for the owner of the car “no matter what” in the Lubbock system is pretty ridiculous. If we are going to have these cameras, then we must guarantee that the process is equitable and just.

Mr. Conservative meets a Liberal Lubbockian

Recently, the A-J, via LubbockOnline, began hosting a political blog called Mr. Conservative, written by Dr. Donald May. I was quite frustrated when this blog launched, because it was the only non-staff blog at LubbockOnline and Dr. May is a staunch Republican. (And his letters to the editor are some of my least favorite of all time.)

Well, it turns out that the LubbockOnline folks were planning a political blog to balance Mr. Conservative, and it launched today. Lubbock, meet Freda McVay, a Liberal Lubbockian**.

I’ve known Freda for a few years now, and she’s great. She speaks well, writes well, and has done a lot of good for our community. She also did her part as a candidate against Mr. Carl Isett a few years ago.

I can’t wait to read more blog posts from her, and I relish the chance to do a side-by-side comparison of her blog with Dr. May’s blog.

** Yes, I know we’re “Lubbockites” here. After reading the first post, you’ll realize, as I did, that the title is meant as a Molly Ivins tribute. RIP, Molly.

Texas Tech Straw Poll Results

The results of a straw poll of Democratic presidential candidates conducted on the Texas Tech University campus are now available online. Go to lubbockstrawpoll.com to view the results.

I have to say that I’m pleased that Obama was the campus favorite!

(And I’m glad that Stephen Colbert was the favorite write-in candidate, too.)

Rick Noriega Gets DFA Endorsement

The grassroots effort to get 5,000 Democracy for America members to sign on in support of Rick Noriega has succeeded! Rick will be the first 2008 Senate candidate endorsed by the national DFA!

What does this endorsement mean? While Bush and Cheney will fly down to Texas to host invitation-only $1,000-a-plate fundraising dinners for Cornyn, Rick Noriega will get small donations from DFA members all across the nation. It means Rick Noriega has a chance to compete financially with Cornyn, which is most definitely a prerequisite for a serious statewide candidate.

Onward!

Election Day

It’s election day. You know what to do!

As a reminder, this election is NOT superprecincts — you will need to go to the polling place designated for your precinct. Call the Lubbock County Office of Elections at 806-775-1338 to get the information you need.

Get out and vote!

Democratic Presidential Candidate Straw Poll

A straw poll of 2008 Democratic Presidential candidates on the Texas Tech campus is underway. Volunteers from the Texas Tech Law Democrats and the Lubbock County Democratic Party will be at the West end of the Student Union Building (near the bookman statue) from 11AM-2PM Mon-Thurs to conduct the straw poll.

Results will be posted at www.lubbockstrawpoll.com.

It will be interesting to find out which candidate resonates the most with students here in Lubbock!


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