Republicans Twitter. Jindal Rebuttal; A Tweet

Bobby Jindal’s Rebuttal to President Barack Obama’s Address to Congress PT1

copyright © 2009 Betsy L. Angert.

The new President of the United States addressed a joint session of Congress for the first time, on February 24, 2009.  Republicans were all a twitter.  Grand Old Party Legislators, thumbs and fingers in flight, sent text messages to their constituents while Barack Obama stood before the nation and its leaders.  Senators and Representatives from the Right were careful not to have their hands seen on camera.  The persons elected to represent the people preferred to obfuscate the truth; they cared not what the Commander-In-Chief might say.  As they anxiously awaited the voice of Grand Old Party, Governor Bobby Jindal, the person who would offer the Republican rebuttal, those on the right of the aisle refused to listen.

Conservatives considered the speech as the regulations they lifted on bankers long ago, unnecessary.  Those on the right thought Barack Obama’s words as taxes.  Text messages stated the Republican sentiment, “Give us a break.”

We need to bring transparency to Washington, D.C., so we can rid our capital of corruption  . . . .

Indeed, a break is what Americans have.  The affluent have loopholes that enable them to break away from laws that require them to pay the tariff that supports society.  Big businesses have lobbyists to do their bidding.  Bankers have supplicants who regularly speak with members of Congress.  Petitioners helped convince policymakers corruption is but the culture of depositories.  Bailout will be beneficial.  In this country, without funds for the greater good, for schools, roads, bridges, research, and development, we have a fractured system.

Republicans and Democrats, at least in government, are also divided.  The people, each of whom is poorer by the day, yearn for help.  They will do the work, if only someone gives them a chance.  Common folk request few dollars.  They ask only for the cash they paid in taxes.  The money was meant to support society, to help provide jobs for the little people.  Average Americans only want to work.  No one welcomes a handout.  The people’s desire is to acquire the dollars they need to buy goods.  

Citizens understand that none of us is here alone.  United we will stand.  Divided we fall.  Americans experience, with Republicans unwilling to consider the greater good, the commonweal, the United States has become a weakened nation.  Yet, in the confutation to the President’s address, Governor Bobby Jindal, of Louisiana presented the traditional divisive wisdom.

We oppose the national Democratic view that says the way to strengthen our country is to increase dependence on government. We believe the way to strengthen our country is to restrain spending in Washington, to empower individuals and small businesses to grow our economy and create jobs.

If only that had been the way when the Republicans ruled.  However, instead of money doled out in moderation, mountains of cash were poured into protracted wars.  Bills that approved bridges to nowhere were popular and well-funded for districts represented by corrupt Conservative Congresspersons.  Then there is the issue of the train.  Bobby Jindal mentioned it again in his refutation of President Obama’s official oration.  This scandal is surely the Democrats doing . . . except it never was.

In recent days, Fox News hosts and contributors Steve Doocy, Brian Kilmeade, Newt Gingrich, Trace Gallagher, and Charles Krauthammer have advanced the false claim — pushed by Republican lawmakers — that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) included a provision in the economic recovery law directing that $8 billion in funds be spent on a high-speed rail line between Southern California and Las Vegas. In fact, the bill does not direct high-speed rail funds to any specific project, and any funding would be allocated by Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, a former Republican congressman.

The bill states that $8 billion shall remain available for the “Secretary of Transportation” for “projects that support the development of intercity high speed rail service” and that the secretary shall “submit to the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations a strategic plan that describes how the Secretary will use the funding provided under this heading to improve and deploy high speed passenger rail systems.” The Joint Explanatory Statement of the Conference Report on H.R. 1 further states of the high-speed rail program: “The conferees have provided the Secretary flexibility in allocating resources between the programs to advance the goal of deploying intercity high speed rail systems in the United States.”

Perhaps, this saga is as the story of Sheriff Harry Lee, the Jefferson Parish law officer who Jindal said is a friend of his.  In his address to Americans, Governor Jindal recounted the day he entered the Sheriff Harry Lee’s office.  The Republican lawmaker said to an expectant American television audience, “I had never seen him so angry. He was literally yelling into the phone.”

“Well, I’m the sheriff, and if you don’t like it, you can come and arrest me.” I asked him, “Sheriff, what’s got you so mad?” Jindal then explained Harry Lee had invited volunteers to come with their boats.  These persons were needed “to rescue people who were trapped on their rooftops by the floodwaters.”

Governor Jindal continued, “The boats were all lined up and ready to go. And then some bureaucrat showed up and told him they couldn’t go out in the water unless they had proof of insurance and registration.”

“Sheriff, that’s ridiculous,” said Bobby Jindal on that strange day not so long ago.  The lesson, the Governor shared, is the one Harry espoused during the emergency, “Ignore the bureaucrats.”  Perchance, the people of this country, a nation in crisis, would be better served if they paid no heed to the bureaucrat who told this tale.

The anecdote that the Governor shared, some say, never occurred.  No record that the two men met in person seems to exist.  The only other person, besides the Louisiana Governor, who might verify the narrative cannot speak. No one can inquire of the late Harry Lee, is the story true.  The “Democrat” known to rule “his vast domain in the suburbs for decades while proudly consorting with mobsters and infuriating the city at his doorstep with pronouncements about black criminality,” passed in October 2007.

Such is the state of a broken Union.  Republicans in Congress remain all a twitter.  Grand Old Party loyalists thought the Governor in Baton Rouge delivered a rebuttal speech that was but a tweet, The words of Barack Obama, well, we can only wonder, if those who wish to obstruct and obfuscate will be the obstacle to a genuine recovery.

Clues may come, or these may be apparent in the text, not seen on blackberry screens.  Please peruse the transcript of Bobby Jinal’s speech, in total.  One never knows what they may find hidden from the camera’s view.

Bobby Jindal’s Rebuttal to President Barack Obama’s Address to Congress. PT2

February 24, 2009


The New York Times

The Republican Response by Gov. Bobby Jindal

Following is a transcript of Gov. Bobby Jindal’s remarks on behalf of the Republican Party on Tuesday night, responding to President Obama’s address, as recorded by CQ Transcriptions:

Jindal: Good evening, and happy Mardi Gras. I’m Bobby Jindal, governor of Louisiana.

Tonight, we’ve witnessed a great moment in the history of our republic. In the very chamber where Congress once voted to abolish slavery, our first African-American president stepped forward to address the state of our union.

With his speech tonight, the president completed a redemptive journey that took our nation from Independence Hall to Gettysburg to the lunch counter and now finally the Oval Office.

Regardless of party, all Americans are moved by the president’s personal story, the son of an American mother and a Kenyan father who grew up to become leader of the free world.

Like the president’s father, my own parents came to this country from a distant land. When they arrived in Baton Rouge, my mother was already four-and-a-half-months pregnant. I was what folks in the insurance industry now call a pre-existing condition.

Jindal: To find work, my dad picked up the yellow pages and started calling local businesses. Even after landing a job, he still couldn’t afford to pay for my delivery, so he worked out an installment plan with the doctor. Fortunately for me, he never missed a payment.

As I grew up, my mom and dad taught me the values that attracted them to this country, and they instilled in me an immigrant’s wonder at the greatness of America.

As I — as a child, I remember going to the grocery store with my dad. Growing up in India, he had seen extreme poverty. As we walked through the aisles, looking at the endless variety on the shelves, he would tell me, “Bobby, Americans can do anything.”

I still believe that to this day: Americans can do anything. When we pull together, there’s no challenge we can’t overcome.

As the president made clear this evening, we’re now in a time of challenge. Many of you listening tonight have lost jobs; others have seen your college and your retirement savings dwindle. Many of you are worried about losing your health care and your homes. You’re looking to your elected leaders in Washington for solutions.

Republicans are ready to work with the new president to provide these solutions. Here in my state of Louisiana, we don’t care what party you belong to if you have good ideas to make life better for our people. We need more of that attitude from both Democrats and Republicans in our nation’s capital.

All of us want our economy to recover and our nation to prosper. So where we agree, Republicans must be the president’s strongest partners. And where we disagree, Republicans have a responsibility to be candid and offer better ideas for a path forward.

Today in Washington, some are promising that government will rescue us from the economic storms raging all around us. Those of us who lived through Hurricane Katrina, we have our doubts.

Let me tell you a story. During Katrina, I visited Sheriff Harry Lee, a Democrat and a good friend of mine. When I walk into his makeshift office, I had never seen him so angry. He was literally yelling into the phone. “Well, I’m the sheriff, and if you don’t like it, you can come and arrest me.” I asked him, “Sheriff, what’s got you so mad?” He told me that he put out a call for volunteers to come with their boats to rescue people who were trapped on their rooftops by the floodwaters. The boats were all lined up and ready to go. And then some bureaucrat showed up and told him they couldn’t go out in the water unless they had proof of insurance and registration.

And I told him, “Sheriff, that’s ridiculous.” Before I knew it, he was yelling in the phone. “Congressman Jindal’s here, and he says you can come and arrest him, too.” Well, Harry just told those boaters ignore the bureaucrats and go start rescuing people.

There’s a lesson in this experience: The strength of America is not found in our government. It is found in the compassionate hearts and the enterprising spirit of our citizens.

We’re grateful for the support we’ve received from across the nation for our ongoing recovery efforts. This spirit got Louisiana through the hurricanes, and this spirit will get our nation through the storms we face today.

To solve our current problems, Washington must lead. But the way to lead is not to raise taxes, not to just put more money and power in the hands of Washington politicians. The way to lead is by empowering you, the American people, because we believe that Americans can do anything.

That’s why Republicans put forward plans to create jobs by lowering income tax rates for working families, cutting taxes for small businesses, strengthening incentives for businesses to invest in new equipment and to hire new workers, and stabilizing home values by creating a new tax credit for homebuyers. These plans would cost less and create more jobs.

But Democratic leaders in Congress, they rejected this approach. Instead of trusting us to make decisions with our own money, they passed the largest government spending bill in history, with a price tag of more than $1 trillion with interest.

While some of the projects in the bill make sense, their legislation is larded with wasteful spending. It includes $300 million to buy new cars for the government, $8 billion for high-speed rail projects, such as a magnetic levitation line from Las Vegas to Disneyland (NYSE:DCQ) (NYSE:DIS) , and $140 million for something called volcano monitoring.

Instead of monitoring volcanoes, what Congress should be monitoring is the eruption of spending in Washington, D.C.

Democratic leaders say their legislation will grow the economy. What it will do is grow the government, increase our taxes down the line, and saddle future generations with debt.

Jindal: Who amongst us would ask our children for a loan so we could spend money we do not have on things we do — we do not need? That is precisely what the Democrats in Congress just did. It’s irresponsible. And it’s no way to strengthen our economy, create jobs, or build a prosperous future for our children.

In Louisiana, we took a different approach. Since I became governor, we cut more than 250 earmarks from our state budget. To create jobs for our citizens, we cut taxes six times, including the largest income tax cut in the history of our state. We passed those tax cuts with bipartisan majorities.

Republicans and Democrats put aside their differences. We worked together to make sure our people could keep more of what they earn. If it can be done in Baton Rouge, surely it can be done in Washington, D.C.

To strengthen our economy, we need urgent action to keep energy prices down. All of us remember what it felt like to pay $4 at the pump. And unless we act now, those prices will return.

To stop that from happening, we need to increase conservation, increase energy efficiency, increase the use of alternative and renewable fuels, increase our use of nuclear power, and increase drilling for oil and gas here at home.

We believe that Americans can do anything. And if we unleash the innovative spirit of our citizens, we can achieve energy independence.

To strengthen our economy, we also need to address the crisis in health care. Republicans believe in a simple principle: No American should have to worry about losing their health care coverage, period. We stand for universal access to affordable health care coverage.

What we oppose is universal government-run health care. Health care decisions should be made by doctors and patients, not by government bureaucrats.

We believe Americans can do anything. And if we put aside partisan politics and work together, we can make our system of private medicine affordable and accessible for every one of our citizens.

To strengthen our economy, we also need to make sure that every child in America gets the best possible education. After Hurricane Katrina, we reinvented the New Orleans school system, opening dozens of new charter schools and creating a new scholarship program that is giving parents the chance to send their children to private or parochial schools of their choice.

We believe that with the proper education the children of America can do anything. And it shouldn’t take a devastating storm to bring this kind of innovation to education in our country.

To strengthen our economy, we must promote confidence in America by ensuring ours is the most ethical and transparent system in the world. In my home state, there used to be saying: At any given time, half of Louisiana was said to be half underwater and the other half under indictment.

Nobody says that anymore. Last year, we passed some of the strongest ethics laws in the nation. And today, Louisiana has turned her back on the corruption of the past.

We need to bring transparency to Washington, D.C., so we can rid our capital of corruption and ensure that we never see the passage of another trillion-dollar spending bill that Congress hasn’t even read and the American people haven’t even seen.

As we take these steps, we must remember, for all of our troubles at home, dangerous enemies still seek our destruction. Now is no time to dismantle the defenses that have protected this country for hundreds of years or to make deep cuts in funding for our troops.

America’s fighting men and women can do anything. If we give them the resources they need, they will stay on the offensive, defeat our enemies, and protect us from harm.

In all these areas, Republicans want to work with President Obama. We appreciate his message of hope, but sometimes it seems like we look for hope in different places.

Democratic leaders in Washington, they place their hope in the federal government. We place our hope in you, the American people.

In the end, it comes down to an honest and fundamental disagreement about the proper role of government. We oppose the national Democratic view that says the way to strengthen our country is to increase dependence on government. We believe the way to strengthen our country is to restrain spending in Washington, to empower individuals and small businesses to grow our economy and create jobs.

In recent years, these distinctions in philosophy became less clear. Our party got away from its principles. You elected Republicans to champion limited government, fiscal discipline, and personal responsibility.

Instead, Republicans went along with earmarks and big government spending in Washington. Republicans lost your trust, and rightly so.

Tonight, on behalf of our leaders in Congress and my fellow Republican governors, I say this: Our party is determined to regain your trust. We will do so by standing up for the principles that we share, the principles you elected us to fight for, the principles that built this in the greatest, most prosperous country on Earth.

You know, a few weeks ago, the president warned that our country is facing a crisis that he said, in quotes, “we may not be able to reverse.” You know, our troubles are real, to be sure, but don’t let anyone tell you that we cannot recover. Don’t let anyone tell you that America’s best days are behind her.

This is the nation that cast off the scourge of slavery, overcame the Great Depression, prevailed in two World Wars, won the struggle for civil rights, defeated the Soviet menace, and responded with determined courage to the attacks of September 11, 2001.

The American spirit has triumphed over almost every form of adversity known to man, and the American spirit will triumph again.

We can have confidence in our future because, amid all of today’s challenges, we also count many blessings. We have the most innovative citizens, the most abundant resources, the most resilient economy, the most powerful military, and the freest political system in the history of the world.

My fellow citizens, never forget: We are Americans. And like my dad said years ago, Americans can do anything.

Thank you for listening. God bless you. God bless Louisiana. And God bless America.

Copyright 2009 The New York Times Company

References for a perceived reality . . .

Gore Vidal Speaks on the Lost American Republic

Henry Rollins Interviews Gore Vidal part 1 (IFC)

copyright © 2007 Betsy L. Angert

May I introduce Gore Vidal.  You may be familiar with the work of this “novelist, essayist, playwright, and provocateur whose career has spanned six decades,” or you may only recognize the name.  I invite you sit down for a moment, make yourself comfortable and absorb the words of this master.  Perhaps his words will inspire you, inflame your sensibility, or spur an interest.  It is unlikely the statement Gore Vidal shares will merely wash over you.  Mister Vidal speaks of the life we live as citizens of the United States of America.  He addresses our freedoms or lack of these and he question what we the people accept as our truth.

In recent years, he [Gore Vidal] has waged a continual war on those who would attempt to diminish freedom.  In “Shredding the Bill of Rights,” for example, he says: “It has always been a mark of American freedom that unlike countries under constant Napoleonic surveillance, we are not obliged to carry identification to show to curious officials and pushy police.  But now, due to Terrorism, every one of us is stopped at airports and obliged to show an ID which must include a mug shot (something, as Allah knows, no terrorist would ever dare fake).”  As usual, his ability to say what everyone secretly knows and to make it unsettling without worrying about the implications, for himself or his reputation, is a particular gift.  This habit has won him many admirers and numerous enemies over the years.

In this two part interview with Henry Rollins of the Independent Film Channel, you will hear of a bit of the Vidal flare.  Author and visionary, Gore Vidal expresses his concerns for the state of the union.  He muses the republic is lost.  Writer Vidal warns us there is a price to pay for the actions of George W. Bush.  Perchance, America understands this now.  The cost of a Bush Presidency is and has been quite high.

Some may say Mister Vidal is more cynical now than he was in an earlier dialogue in March 2003.  Others think for decades, Vidal has been a prophet.  It seems for years, he was certain, there was trouble in paradise.  Four years earlier, when Journalist Mark Davis asked the author to reflect on the foundations of freedom and liberty Mister Vidal offered a tale of woe.

Mark Davis: Over the past 40 years or so, you’ve written about the undermining of the foundations of the constitution –liberty, human rights, free speech.  Indeed, you’ve probably damned every administration throughout that period on that score.  Is George Bush really any worse?

Gore Vidal: No, he certainly is worse.  We’ve never had a kind of reckless one who may believe –and there’s a whole theory now that he’s inspired by love of Our Lord –that he is an apocalyptic Christian who’ll be going to Heaven while the rest of us go to blazes.  I hope that isn’t the case.  I hope that’s exaggeration.  No.  We’ve had…the problem began when we got the empire, which was brilliantly done, in the most Machiavellian –and I mean that in the best sense of the word –way by Franklin Roosevelt.

With the winning of World War II, we were everywhere on Earth our troops and our economy was number one.  Europe was ruined.  And from that, then in 1950, the great problem began when Harry Truman decided to militarise the economy, maintain a vast military establishment in every corner of the Earth.

Meanwhile, denying money to schools but really to the infrastructure of the nation.  So, we have been at war steadily since 1950.  I did a…one of my little pamphlets was ‘A Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace’ –how that worked.  I mean, we’ve gone everywhere –we have the Enemy of the Month Club.  One month, it’s Noriega –king of drugs.  Another one, it’s Gaddafi.  We hated his eyeliner or something and killed his daughter.  We moved from one enemy to another and the press, the media, has never been more disgusting.  I don’t know why, but there are very few voices that are speaking out publicly.

The censorship here is so tight in all of the newspapers and particularly in network television.  So, nobody’s getting the facts.  I mean, I spend part of the year in Italy and really, basically, what I find out I find out from European journalists who actually will go to Iraq, which our people cannot do or will not do, and are certainly not admired for doing so.  We are in a kind of bubble of ignorance about what is really going on.

In August 2007, Gore Vidal will do as he has always done; he will try to enlighten an expectant or perhaps, more accurately, an apathetic public.  As novelist, playwright, and essayist, Vidal does this in his writing, he speaks to us, or attempts to.

Throughout Vidal’s novels, certain themes recur: His belief that America is an imperial nation run by a small group of powerful corporate and political insiders; the loss of our ideal of a democratic Republic where the people actually have some influence on their government; his assertion that “homosexual” is an adjective that describes behavior and not a noun that describes a type of person because there is “no such thing as a homosexual,” the notion having been created by psychiatrists who wanted to demonize the naturalness of same-sex relations; and his virulent atheism and perpetual scorning of the “Sky God” of organized religions, which has led some to believe that Vidal is anti-Semitic. His rhetoric may sound that way if taken out of context, but his criticism of Christianity can often be just as harsh.

A narcissist is someone better looking than you are.
~ Gore Vidal

Decades ago, Vidal asserted that “the novel is dead,” meaning that the audience for the novel as a serious, influential art form is dead, replaced in post-war America by movies, television and the whole of popular culture.  That’s why he seems to have no interest in writing contemporary novels of introspection like so many of his peers whose works generally receive higher praise from the liteary establishment (which Vidal has called “the hacks of Academe”).  He prefers instead to explore history in his novels or to invent worlds of his own delight.

It is not enough to succeed.  Others must fail.
~ Gore Vidal

But perhaps the most Vidalian assertion that one can cite is a statement he made in a 1972 magazine interview.  “There is not one human problem that could not be solved,” said Vidal, “if people would simply do as I advise.”  So for more than 50 years now, he has advised us about politics, history, culture and the importance of separating the public from the private, leaving to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to freedom what is rightfully ours.

Gore Vidal may not be your chosen source for enlightenment; nonetheless, I think this man, a fellow some title “American’s last small-r republican” has much to say of import on many topics.  I offer these presentations for your review and thoughtful consideration.  I invite your analysis.  Please share what you believe and experience.

The Henry Rollins Show and the Independent Film Channel make this copyrighted material available in an efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, as well as all else that concerns Americans and other inhabitants of this planet.

Henry Rollins Interviews Gore Vidal part 2 (IFC)

Gore Vidal and His Visions . . .

  • Gore Vidal.  By Jay Parini.  Public Broadcasting Services.
  • The Erosion of the American Dream, It’s Time to Take Action Against Our Wars on the Rest of the World.  By Gore Vidal.  Transcript of Gore Vidal, March 12 interview on Dateline, SBS TV Australia.  Counter Punch. March 14, 2003
  • Gore Vidal Index.
  • Gore (Eugene Luther) Vidal (1925-)  Book and Writers.
  • The Last defender of the American Republic. LA Weekly. July 3, 2002
  • The Henry Rollins Show.
  • Independent Film Channel
  • Second-Grade Girl Attacked. “Where Were the Adults?” Everywhere! ©

    © copyright 2006 Betsy L. Angert

    Today the news is flooded with reports; a second grade girl was molested.  She is eight years of age.  Her attackers, twelve boys, were between the ages of six and eight.  Adults, nationwide, are in a tizzy.  Interviews are being conducted with the principal of Columbia Accelerated Community Educational Center.  Board members are being consulted publicly.  Parents are speaking out.  Neighbors are in an uproar.

    In this north-side St. Louis school, 400 students, pre-kindergarten through sixth grade, were exposed to an awful crime; aggressions of the most awful sort were inflicted upon a young girl.  There is much uproar and repeatedly the words are stated, “Where were the adults?”

    Once this transgression was discovered, two teachers were dismissed.  One instructor was easily eliminated for her status was only temporary.  Legally, s/he was not bound to the system; s/he was a long-term substitute teacher.  The other was asked to leave; s/he has been suspended.  Investigations are pending.

    The dynamics are feverously discussed.  A playground, by its nature is difficult to view in full from any given angle.  There are nooks, crannies, and blind spots.  Children are can hide or become invisible.  Buildings are barriers and there are other natural obstructions.  That matters not.  The clamor continues, “Where were the adults?”  Why were the teachers not more vigilant?  Why did the authorities not move about more quickly, carefully, or find a way to be in infinite places simultaneously.

    As of yet, I have heard no calls to increase playground personnel, not that I think this would have truly made much of a difference.  Yes, it would be nice if “adults” were more visible during playtimes.  However, if there were more elders, I do not believe the attack would have been any less likely.  Children can and do wait for a better time or for circumstances that are more amenable.  If I had heard a discussion proposing the possibility of more supervision, I would feel the same disgust and distress I am experiencing now.  It is the query that bothers me, “Where were the adults?”

    The sight of an older individual does not deter thoughts that are already born.  Our youth have seen elders all of their lives and it is the behavior of grown-ups, immature grown-ups, that stimulates aggressions such as these.  Nevertheless, society is surprised and appalled by this event; and I wonder why.

    For me the burgeoning question, “Where were the adults?” is a ridiculous one.  They were everywhere.  They are all about in a child’s life.  The wise, weary, and wrinkled ones have ample influence, more than they know or are willing to accept.  They, the elders teach the children through their actions and inaction.  Grown-ups, with their fully developed minds [ha!] and bodies, teach our youth well.  They model.

    Children of any and every age see what older persons do, say, feel, think, and are; they witness the foolishness, the fetishes, and the all too familiar fanaticism of mature minds and they mimic.  The young are well aware of seniors’ obsession with sex, violence, badgering, and bullying.  They observe indiscriminate wars; they experience verbal, physical, and mental battles.  They learn.

    Young persons witness the wounds and weapons wielded by their parents, guardians, protectors, and heroes.  They notice the pleasure adult people experience when inflicting pain.  We, the “adults,” mold the minds of our youth.  The precious brains of the naive absorb what they are exposed to.  They soak up what they are shown; they are little sponges.

    Each day, hour, and minute we teach the progeny what to do, say, feel, think, and be!  They watch as we perform.  I feel certain their dreams are filled with the follies of their elders.  Wow, what a nightmare.

    Children watch the boob tube.  For many it is their constant companion and baby-sitter.  They go to the movies, view music videos, play games, and are praised when they win.  They are taught to beat the clock, the rest, and the best of them.  Scores are being kept for what is tangible.  Honorable acts or behaviors receive little no recognition.

    Western civilized society instructs its youth to battle, belittle, besiege, at any opportunity.  Tease, taunt, and tell everyone you are right and they are wrong, then you will be noticed.  Children want to be noticed; so too do “adults.”

    Diplomacy is but a dream.  Empathy is a fleeting notion; evolution at present seems only a myth.  “Where were the adults?”  They were everywhere and nowhere to be found!

    I offer the following articles for your review.  Typically, I would incorporate them in the text.  However, I do not want to preach.  I long ago realized reflection, personal pondering is the best, if not the only way knowledge is acquired.  Wisdom comes when we are ready for it, open to it, and searching.

    I cannot force you to seek or discover; nor would I wish to.  I have my own learning to do.  I can only care, share, and hope that you will choose reflection and growth.  I know that is a challenge.  It has been mine.  Here are some interesting assessments in answer to the question, “Where were the adults?”  Read as you desire.

    Adult On Adult Aggressions With Sexual Overtones, Authority Figures Involved

  • Torture At Abu Ghraib By Seymour M. Hersh. The New Yorker. May 10, 2004

    A fifty-three-page report, written by Major General Antonio M. Taguba about Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse was not meant for public release.  Yet, The New Yorker magazine was able to obtain a copy.  The document was completed in late February 2004.  This study reveals what those “adults” in positions of authority can and did do.

    Breaking chemical lights and pouring the phosphoric liquid on detainees; pouring cold water on naked detainees; beating detainees with a broom handle and a chair; threatening male detainees with rape; allowing a military police guard to stitch the wound of a detainee who was injured after being slammed against the wall in his cell; sodomizing a detainee with a chemical light and perhaps a broom stick, and using military working dogs to frighten and intimidate detainees with threats of attack, and in one instance actually biting a detainee.

    Homeland Aide Faces Cyber-Sex Charges CBS News April 5, 2006

    A spokesman for the Homeland Security Department was put on unpaid leave Wednesday after being charged with preying on a child through online sexual conversations with an undercover detective who was posing as a 14-year-old girl.

  • Why Duke’s Response Was So Slow By PaulCuadros/Durham.  TIME Magazine

    Duke University officials were slow to respond to the rape allegations against members of the lacrosse team because Durham police officials doubted the accuser and grossly underestimated the seriousness of the allegations, according to a report released on Monday by a special committee formed to examine the administration’s role in the incident.

    Adult On Adult Aggressions . . .Waging, Wanting War

  • Bush Wanted War, By Richard Cohen.  Washington Post Thursday, March 30, 2006

    Bob Woodward says in his book, “Plan of Attack,” that not only was Bush fixated on Iraq, but by Thanksgiving of 2001, he already had told Don Rumsfeld to prepare a plan for the invasion of that country.  “Let’s get started on this,” the president said, cautioning the defense secretary not to tell anyone”

    . . . what was in Bush’s gut — not his head, mind you, but that elusive place where emotion resides.  It was there, in the moments after 9/11, that Bush truly decided on war, maybe because Saddam had once tried to kill George H.W. Bush, maybe because the neocons had convinced him that a brief war in Iraq would have long-term salutary consequences for the entire Middle East, maybe because he could not abide the thought that a monster like Saddam might die in his sleep — and maybe because he heard destiny calling.

  • The Coming Wars, By Seymour M. Hersh, January 24, 2005

    Bush has an aggressive and ambitious agenda for using that control?”against the mullahs in Iran and against targets in the ongoing war on terrorism?”during his second term.

    Adult On Adult Aggression . . . Bullying, Badgering, Belittling

  • U.S. policies toward immigrants unjust, By Shiva Bhaskar. Daily Bruin University of California-Los Angeles.  May 30, 2003
  • Police Sexual Abuse of Teenage Girls By Samuel Walker and Dawn Irlbeck June 2003

    Police sexual abuse of women includes a disturbing pattern of police officer exploitation of teenage girls. The majority of these cases, moreover, involve girls who are enrolled in police department-sponsored Explorers programs designed to give teens an understanding of police work.

  • Rodney King reluctant symbol of police brutality CNN News
  • Adult on Adult Aggression As Related To Competition, Cheating, Corruption

  • Pressure for good grades often leads to high stress, cheating, professors say By Barbara Palmer
    According to Denise Clark-Pope, a lecturer in the School of Education . . . “In every class where a test was administered, there was cheating.” Students feel as if their life success depends on getting the top SAT scores and the highest grades, she added. The students “know [cheating] is wrong; they tell me they wish they didn’t do it,” she said. “But they feel like the most important thing they do is get the grades, by hook or by crook.”

    Reality Television With Violent Tendencies

  • Survivor
  • Fear Factor
    Adults Influence on Child Development

  • The effect of adult influence on children’s preferences: compliance versus opposition. By Brehm
    The present study examined the effects of adult influence on the choice preferences of first and fifth grade girls and boys. It was found that when the adult directed the children as to which choice alternative to choose, all children (both grades and both sexes) preferred that alternative advocated by the adult. When however, the adult’s influence attempt was followed by another adult’s stating that the child should choose whatever he/she wanted, first graders displayed oppositional behavior (preferring the alternative not urged by the first adult), while fifth graders continued to comply with the first adult’s influence. These results suggested that oppositional behavior in first grade children may occur as a function of conflict between adults regarding adult control over the child.

    Care for your community . . .

  • The Effects of Electronic Media On A Developing Brain
  • Frontline Examines Impact of Television on Society in “Does TV Kill?”
  • Television, Violence, and Children
  • Children, sex, and the Internet By Heather Little -White, Ph.D., Jamaica Gleaner Sunday, May 7, 2006
  • The Influence Of Music and Music Videos American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry