A Dishonest Debate

September 27, 2008

Q: How do you know when a politician is lying?

A: When his lips are moving.

 

I feel lied to.

It irritates me when McCain takes a “cheap” shot at Obama and vice versa. It makes me feel that they think I am stupid and I don’t know the games they are playing.

Watching this debate reminds me of a recent experience that I had when Ashley and I went used car shopping. I’m telling you the similarities are very relevant. I was talking to the salesman about gas mileage, particularly what was the mileage that this van got in the city, and you know what he told me? 20-25mpg! “What are you kidding me?” was my response, and he told me again with a serious and straight face.

I was insulted because I knew that from previous research that was untrue. I told him what I learned from research and he blew me off explaining that it was because “they” don’t test it accurately for fuel efficiency.

In the same fashion, I feel that both of the candidates tried to sell me a bill of goods last night that I knew was wrong. And just when I try to object with reason and rational they hit me with another one.  Don’t get me wrong, they said some great things as well and got a good debate going on. But here is my problem, they love to distort and misrepresent each others policies and words.

I hate that, and it’s wrong. Now it so happens that tonight I found McCain doing more of this distasteful tactic than Obama, but that doesn’t give Obama a free pass because there have been similar times in the past where he was just as guilty.

Obama in the past has misrepresented McCain’s words that “we could be in Iraq for the next 100 years just as we are in Germany, Japan, South Korea, etc.” and turned that into “McCain wants to continue the Iraq war for the next 100 years” that is untrue and dishonest.

The past has also shown that Obama’s camp has jumped on McCain’s words about the “fundamentals” of our economy being good in poor economic times. But in reality, which is outside the “spin zone” McCain was communicating that the workforce, spirit, determination, etc. are going strong not that the housing market, gas prices, etc. are going well. So that’s my beef with Obama on “parsing” words or lying as I like to call it.

Now McCain at this debate was just as bad as Obama has been on the campaign trail. He distorted Obama’s vote on not funding the troops when McCain also did not vote to fund the troops just for a different reason. That is wrong and dishonest. The issue obviously was not funding the troops it was on a strategy or tactic for the war.

Lastly, when McCain attacked Obama on nuclear energy, he said that Obama was against it, that’s a distortion. Obama does want all forms of “alternative energy” he just has reservations on the safe handling of the waste.

Why do the politicians feel the need to dumb down the debate? I am offended that they think that I and others are just going to blindly take whatever they hand us, unfortunately for the majority its true. What we need is critical thinkers preferably clear thinking non-partisan ones, or non “kool aid drinkers” as I like to call them.    

Those who know me, will understand that I watched this debate very differently than the last Presidential Debate I watched which was in 2004. In this debate I found myself not rooting for either side, I was genuinely interested and sympatric to both arguments.

It is so weird to think that I can sit there and watch these debates and not have a major partisan bias, key word there is “major” I know it’s not possible to be totally “fair and balanced”.

What do you think? Am I fair or balanced or something that resembles it?


Guns and Why the Right Wingers are NOT the Party of Jesus

July 3, 2008
I have had a very enlightening past three months listening to all the media garbage that is out there and finding where I stand in today’s political spectrum. I keep this in mind as I try to find my place; I do this standing on the foundation of an apprentice following the Way of Jesus and His Kingdom first and foremost.

 

I am a recovering Republican and talk radio listener, but I would still consider myself politically conservative. There are many reasons why the Republican Party and the Democrat Party do not represent the party of Jesus Christ. I want to address one of my problems with the Republican Party today, followed by a critique of the Democrats to come.

 

I recently read a story in the news where a man in Texas was just acquitted of any wrong doing in the slaying of two individuals in November of 2007. This man saw two individuals breaking into his neighbor’s house while they were not home at the time. He felt it was his responsibility to intervene in this situation where there was no individual in harms way. This man was on the phone with a 911 dispatcher who was pleading with him not to get involved. This man had a shotgun in hand and kept saying “I can’t let them get away with this” as he was prepping the shotgun to go out and confront the men, the 911 dispatcher was voicing what I believe Jesus would have been saying:

 

“Stay inside the house and don’t go out there, OK? I know you’re pissed off, I know what you’re feeling, but it’s not worth shooting somebody over this, OK?”

The Man said “I don’t want to, but I mean if I go out there, you know, to see what the hell is going on, what choice am I gonna have?

The Dispatcher said this in response, “That’s alright, property’s not something worth killing someone over. OK? Don’t go out of the house, don’t be shooting nobody. I know you’re pissed and you’re frustrated but don’t do it.”

More dialogue followed but this was the last thing the man said before he went to kill the two individuals,

“Well, here it goes buddy, you hear the shotgun clicking and I’m going.”

He walks out to confront the men at this neighbor’s home and the following takes place.

“Boom! You’re dead!” he shouts. A loud bang is heard, then a shotgun being cocked and fired again, and then again.

The two men died there on the scene.

Wow. What goes through your mind reading that as a follower of Jesus? I read this story yesterday in the news and I heard the talk radio hosts talking about it today and the reaction was cold hearted and calloused. They were defending the actions of this man, as if he was a hero that saved a bunch of children from being killed by two monsters. Talk about detached from reality; this was extreme in my opinion.

What is my reaction to all this? I am whole heartedly against what Rush or Sean Hanity have to say about this, because my heart breaks. How can it not? I love Jesus with all I am and I pray for things like this to happen, not the shooting but my heart breaking over this event involving people I don’t even know. I feel overwhelmed. How can we have a State in our Union that acquits a man of any wrong doing in a case like this? He confronted and killed two men who were NOT HARMING any one!

I am as outraged at this almost as much as I am about what the Democrats do in defense of “women’s rights” that leads to 3,000+ deaths of unborn babies each day. Where are we going in America? If the above scenario is what it means to have “gun rights” in America today where we feel it is more important to protect property than to think twice before we go shooting off a shotgun then I don’t want anyone to have any “gun rights”! And if that makes me a wimpy weak liberal to the conservatives then I am guilty as charged because Jesus tells me this “Love your enemies and pray for them” and the Word of God says this in Col. 3:1-3 “If you have been raised with Jesus, seek what is above where Jesus is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on what is above, not what is on the earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Jesus in God.” Do you see what we are called to do here? Seek the things of the Kingdom, protecting life at all costs, even if that means letting two punks get away with some valuable property. But we don’t get that in America today and the Republican Party doesn’t get it when it comes to situations like this involving guns. By so fervently protecting the Second Amendment they have overlooked the devaluing of human life. Even if they break the law, these two men are still precious in the eyes of God and that life is still sacred to Jesus even if it is not sacred to those in the Republican Party.

A few scriptures come to mind in closing.

“Love your neighbor as your self”

“Seek first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness”

“Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.”

“For God so loved the (whole) World that He gave His one and only Son…”

“What you have done to the least of these you have done to ME”

Amen.