A Rebuttal

I didn’t jump into the fray in my comments section on my political post because, well, because I almost never jump into a conversation on any post in my comments section or any other comments section.  It eats up too much time.  I leave comments and then, generally, move on.  The down side to this is that people frequently ask questions in the comments section, and I always mean to answer them either via email or in a post, but I usually forget to do it (yes, Tank Boy is still big for his age, though not gargantuan, and as far as the book goes . . . once I get all the ideas nailed down in my head in some coherent fashion maybe I will share).

Anyway, there were a few comments that I would like to address, so that is what this post is all about.  I debated just dropping it, just as I had been avoiding it, because I know I’m not going to change anybody’s mind; but then there are still a few purple people, a few undecided people, so I thought, “What the heck?”

McCain sees the world as a scary place, full of people waiting to attack us & Obama’s approach is to see the rest of the world as neighbors, people we can find common ground with.

While I, too, would like to give the world a Coke and teach it harmony, our world is not one in which this is good foreign policy.  The problem is, some people are Pepsi drinkers with an incompatible melody, so, no matter how hard you try, they just aren’t going to want to drink your Coke and learn your harmony.  Some will even plot to attack and attempt to destroy you for no other reason than the fact that you drink Coke.  Is the world full of people waiting to attack us?  No, not full, but I believe it is naive to think we can merely sit down and find common ground with people who think their highest and holiest calling is to sacrifice their lives in order to destroy our nation and the freedom for which it stands.  And, yes, those people do exist.  I would rather have a president who is willing to face this truth and is prepared to deal with it.

As French resistance leader Jacques Lusseyran said:

War!  There really were men who loved it.  Already I knew that for sure.  As for death, there were men who were killing for pleasure.  So history was all true, all the slaveries, all the punishments, all the battles, all the massacres.  And it was about to start all over again in our time.  It was only a matter of weeks or months.  In the summer of 1938, if there were still politicians in Europe who doubted it, they should have consulted the thirteen-year-old schoolboy, for there was no hesitation left in him.

Jacques Lusseyran And There Was Light

Why is it that so many Americans are willing to believe that George W. Bush is a man who loves war and hates diplomacy, but those same people are convinced that the likes of Kim Jung Il, Muammar al-Qaddafi, and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad are more than amenable to sitting down with Obama and magically making nice?

The problem with those videos is that they are filled with totally debunked myths, inaccuracies, flat out lies and distortions all in the name of an “educated electorate”.

I’m trying to remember all the videos Christina posted (since I mostly linked to her post for videos and only posted one myself, I think.  Oh, and I linked to one that neither one of us actually posted.  Whatever.  Here goes:

The video about Obama’s voting record on the Born Alive Infant Protection Act:  Not a myth, not debunked, not inaccurate, not a lie.  Can’t be debunked because it is a matter of public record.  In fact, even the beloved, left-leaning Fact Check does not dispute this voting record.  In fact, though you can tell they are trying to bury it in all the, “but this doesn’t mean,” and “whether this means,” and “however . . .” Factcheck.org even confirms that Obama said he would have voted for the legislation had it been worded as the federal legislation is worded, but when it was presented to him again with that wording, he still voted against it.  In fact, in the video, he is bragging about defeating legislation similar to the federal legislation.

The Video of the Kids Singing:  Umm, well, there they are, singing the praises of Obama.  I don’t see how that is a myth or can be debunked.  Nobody ever claimed the video was produced by the Obama camp.  I never said that, and, in fact, linked to Christina’s blog where she explained that it wasn’t a product of his machine; but still?  Myth?  Debunked?  Lie?  Distortion?  No.  Scary?  I think so.  I understand people want to support their candidate, and I support their right do so.  That doesn’t mean it isn’t creepy-scary that people would have their children singing songs of worship to a political candidate.

The Civilian Police Force:  Again, umm . . . there was Obama, right there, on camera, saying he thinks we need a civilian police force.  How is that myth?  How can it be debunked?  I went to the factcheck.org mecca and couldn’t find anything anywhere on that site about this issue.  Maybe that’s because they only saw the written transcript of that speech which didn’t contain those words?  As far as I’ve been able to find, all of the released written transcripts of that speech didn’t contain that bit about the civilian police force.  That doesn’t however, change the fact that he said it.  Wasn’t that the job of Winston in George Orwell’s 1984?  He spent all day in his office omitting words, phrases and lines from books and speeches that the government no longer wanted in its history?  Yes, in fact, yes it was.  So, no, this video is not a myth.  It is the Chosen One proposing we have a national civilian police force equal in funding and force to our military.  Why?  Why do we need this when we already have a federal military, and state, county and city/town police?  Why would we need another layer of police force?  Why would a candidate even suggest this in passing?  And from where would all this additional funding come?  And, be honest with yourselves, if McCain had said this you would have hit the roof.

The Glen Beck Video in which he talks about the Obamas’ view of redistribution of wealth:  Again, no rebuttal for that one on factcheck.org or anywhere else that I can find.  Michelle Obama said what she said, and Glenn Beck called her on it.  Those on the left may disagree that what she is talking about is redistribution of wealth, or a form of Marxism, but you know what they say, “A rose by any other name is still a rose.”  So is a socialist.  Or a Marxist, if you prefer that term.  Of course, the actual quote is, “That which we call a rose by any other word would smell as sweet,” but my point is still the same.  If one were to go back and reread The Communist Manifesto, assuming of course that one has already read it (if not then, if one were to go read The Communist Manifesto) one would see that it reads largely, though not in totality, like an Obama campaign speech:  Poor, poor working class; evil, evil rich.  Though, of course, the speeches are dumbed down ever so slightly.

If people are concerned with a Presidential candidate who has next to no experience, then they should not consider McCain, since his running mate, Sarah Palin, is about as inexperienced as they come. If this 72 year old man dies in office, Palin becomes our next President.

That is like throwing an apple at an orange to make a point.  Let me elucidate:  If McCain is elected, Palin, who admittedly doesn’t have a lot of experience, though she does have more executive office experience than Obama, could become president if McCain dies.  However, if Obama, who is also very inexperienced, is elected, then we’ve got that fruit in the oval office, plain and simple.

I also find the Republicans’ urgent desire to deprive people of some of the most private and sensitive freedoms, such as reproductive rights, to be as frightening as what you describe as fearsome in the Democratic position.

No republican that I know of is trying to deny anybody of their right to have sex.  Nor are they trying to say you can’t take measures to prevent the natural consequence of sex, which is pregnancy.  So, saying they are trying to deprive anyone of their reproductive rights is ludicrous.  If you are talking about abortion, which is not preventing a pregnancy nor is it a reproductive right since, at the point somebody would be considering an abortion, reproduction has already taken place (though admittedly the process is not complete in the early stages of the pregnancy, there is still a living, beating heart, and oh my word!  I do not want to debate this on my blog!), then be brave enough to say what you mean and don’t hide behind politically correct platitudes.  If you are not talking about abortion, then I really am curious what it is you are talking about.

I think comparing the kid’s video to Naziism was way over the top.

Also, I have to note that I am troubled when anything or anyone is compared to Hitler or the Nazi regime. Those are not terms to be thrown around lightly, and I don’t see how anything in the current election can be likened to one of the darkest and most brutal periods in world history. No one is out to exterminate millions of innocent people or rule by way of a totalitarian regime, so the comparison is false and, in fact, deeply hurtful.

I saved this one for last because I know it is going to be my longest response. 

Nobody ever said Hitler (or Stalin, for that matter, you forgot Stalin) comparisons are things to be thrown around lightly, which is why I didn’t do that.  It was not light.  It was not for purposes of being funny or flip.  It was a serious, albeit cursory, comparison of how some of the darkest, most brutal periods in our world history came to be, and what one of our current presidential candidates is currently suggesting.  While I think Christina’s comparison of the little Obama Disciples singing their song to the (fictional though historically accurate) Hitler Youth singing his song is quite fair, my primary reason for comparison was the proposed national security force.  Just as I don’t know or claim to know Obama is suggesting such a thing in the hopes of establishing a totalitarian regime, you don’t know, nor can you claim to know that he isn’t.

While I understand there is a difference between proposing a new government run police force (umm . . . civilian, sure, but funded by the government, so obviously government run) and abusing the power of such in the manner that Hitler and Stalin did, I think it is significant that other national leaders who had such police forces were people like Hitler and Stalin.  When I hear of a superfluous, new police force being proposed by a presidential candidate (who, by the way, also has at least one Truth Squad involving local law enforcement officials – make sure you click on the link to the original newscast as well), my thoughts automatically turn to the words of others who have lived through the horrors wrought by the misuse of such organizations.  History has shown us that this is a dangerous proposition, and if we refuse not only to believe its stories, but even to listen to them, if we ignore history and the possibility that it could be trying to repeat itself, we will be unprepared should similar horrors present themselves to us.

They called him Moshe the Beadle, as though he had never had a surname in his life.  He was a man of all work at a Hasidic synagogue . . .

Then one day they expelled all the foreign Jews from Sighet.  And Moshe the Beadle was a foreigner. . .

One day, as I was just going into the synagogue, I saw, sitting on a bench near the door, Moshe the Beadle.

He told his story and that of his companions.  The train full of deportees . . . had been taken in charge by the Gestapo . . . The Jews were made to get out.  They were made to dig huge graves.  And when they had finished their work, the Gestapo began theirs.  Without passion, without haste, they slaughtered their prisoners.  Each one had to go up to the hole and present his neck.  Babies were thrown into the air and the machine gunners used them as targets . . . How had Moshe the Beadle escaped?  Miraculously . . .

Moshe had changed.  There was no longer any joy in his eyes.  he no longer sang.  He no longer talked to me of God or of the cabbala, but only of what he had seen.  People refused not only to believe his stories, but even to listen to them.

Night by Elie Wiesel, who was himself later herded onto a train and taken to Auschwitz.

For several decades political arrests were distinguished in our country precisely by the fact that people were arrested who were guilty of nothing and were therefore unprepared to put up any resistance whatsoever.  There was a general feeling of being destined for destruction, a sense of having nowhere to escape from the GPU-NKVD (which, incidentally, given our internal passport system, was quite accurate).  And even in the fever of epidemic arrests, when people leaving for work said farewell to their families every day, because they could not be certain they would return at night, even then almost no one tried to run away and only in rare cases did people commit suicide.  And that was exactly what was required.  A submissive sheep is a find for a wolf.

The submissiveness was also due to ignorance of the mechanics of epidemic arrests.  By and large, the Organs had no profound reasons for their choice of whom to arrest and whom not to arrest.

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn The Gulag Archipelago

 

The true horror of occupation came over us only slowly . . .

Worst were the disappearances.  A watch, repaired and ready, hanging on its hook in the back of the shop, month after month.  A house in Nollie’s block mysteriously deserted, grass growing in the rose garden.  One day Mr. Kan’s shop up the street did not open.  Father knocked on his door as we passed that noon, to see if someone were ill, but there was no answer.  The shop remained shuttered, the windows above dark and silent for several weeks.  Then, although the shop stayed closed, an NSB family moved into the apartment above.

We never knew whether these people had been spirited away by the Gestapo or gone into hiding before this could happen.  Certainly public arrests, with no attempt to conceal what was happening, were becoming more frequent.  One day as Father and I were returning from our walk we found the Grote Markt cordoned off by a double ring of police and soldiers.  A truck was parked in front of the fish mart; into the back were climbing men, women, and children, all wearing the yellow star.  There was no reason we could see why this particular place at this particular time had been chosen.

Corrie Ten Boom The Hiding Place

What these quotes can’t convey without me quoting even more extensively from these and other works is the gradual nature in which this all happened.  Even when presented with evidence, such as the first hand account from Moshe the Beadle, people never want to believe this kind of thing is happening.  By the time they are forced to accept it, it is too late.

That is why I question Obama’s proposed socialist policies now.  That is why I question a proposed “civilian police force” now.  That is why I think people need to be questioning Obama now

I make no apologies for recognizing echoes of the past in something that was advocated for our near future; and I make no apologies for recognizing the possible dangers inherent in such a proposition, especially in the context of things like law enforcement run Truth Squads and Universal Voluntary Public Service.

On a concluding note, I find it interesting that none of the comments (that I recall, anyway) on my last political post addressed my question about Obama’s proposed Universal Voluntary Public Service.  How can it be both universal and voluntary?

Anyway, this concludes our little dip in to the muddy waters of politics here at Looking For George.  I am leaving the comments off this time, not because I am afraid of them, but because if I read them I will feel compelled to respond again, and politics just isn’t what I want my blog to be about.