Friday, September 05, 2008

Fear, Spin and Lies: The Fuel Of The Republican Crap Machine

Anyone who watched both the Democratic and Republican conventions must be stunned by the difference in tone. With the exception of John McCain, who actually acknowledged that many of the troubles of the past eight years fall squarely on the shoulders of his party, the convention was bitter, snarky, deceitful and meant to induce fear. With the shape the United States is in, I guess the tried and true is all they have to go with.

Before I continue, hats off to John McCain for speaking against the grain of his party! You are an honourable man.

However, your party, at least in its current incarnation, is not honourable. Sarah Palin talked much about alternative energy, so let's take a moment and explore the fuel of the Republican Crap Machine.


As if all of the rhetoric about "radical Islamic fascists" hasn't been enough, they reached a new pinnacle in bad taste with their 9/11 Tribute film. Showing images of Osama bin Ladin firing weapons, the Iran hostages and the World Trade Center crumbling, this was no tribute. This was an attempt to fan the flames of religious fear. It was crass, it was manipulative and it was exploitative of the many who died on that day. How dare they!


The Republican convention talked a good deal about reforming Washington, how "insiders" would be shaking in their boots at the prospect of reformer Sarah Palin coming down from Alaska to clean up town. What they conveniently forgot to mention was that they have held Congress for ten of the last twelve years, and the Presidency for the last eight. Their convention championed the ideas and themes of the last eight years, while they professed that their candidates would enact a culture of change. How exactly will that work?


Heard at the convention (and found on the RNC webpage) . . .

Rudy Guiliani: A few years later — a few years later, he ran for the U.S. Senate. He spent most of his time as a celebrity senator: no leadership, no legislation to really speak of.

Sarah Palin: But listening to him speak, it's easy to forget that this is a man who has authored two memoirs but not a single major law or reform - not even in the state senate.

The core fuel of the modern day Republican party is full out blatant lies. Maybe their base doesn't check the facts, but I assure you, I do. Their most egregious lies cluster around their allegations that Senator Obama hasn't done anything in Congress. What they fail to mention is that any bill in Congress needs to be supported by their members and signed into law by their President. So here's the record:

  • Senator Obama has sponsored 136 bills.

  • He has co-sponsored 653 bills.

    Hardly a case of not doing anything. Now let's look at what some of those bills were:

    S. 2590 : Coburn-Obama Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 to ensure transparency in government spending.

    S.117 : A bill to amend titles 10 and 38, United States Code, to improve benefits and services for members of the Armed Forces, veterans of the Global War on Terrorism, and other veterans, to require reports on the effects of the Global War on Terrorism, and for other purposes.

    S.692 : A bill to amend title 38, United States Code, to establish a Hospital Quality Report Card Initiative to report on health care quality in Veterans Affairs hospitals.

    S.713 : A bill to ensure dignity in care for members of the Armed Forces recovering from injuries.

    S.114 : A bill to authorize resources for a grant program for local educational agencies to create innovation districts.

    S.116 : A bill to authorize resources to provide students with opportunities for summer learning through summer learning grants.

    S.133 : A bill to promote the national security and stability of the economy of the United States by reducing the dependence of the United States on oil through the use of alternative fuels and new technology, and for other purposes.

    S.453 : A bill to prohibit deceptive practices in Federal elections.

    S.737 : A bill to amend the Help America Vote Act of 2002 in order to measure, compare, and improve the quality of voter access to polls and voter services in the administration of Federal elections in the States.

    S.823 : A bill to amend the Public Health Service Act with respect to facilitating the development of microbicides for preventing transmission of HIV/AIDS and other diseases, and for other purposes.

    S.1084 : A bill to provide housing assistance for very low-income veterans.

    S.1151 : A bill to provide incentives to the auto industry to accelerate efforts to develop more energy-efficient vehicles to lessen dependence on oil.

    S.1222 : A bill to stop mortgage transactions which operate to promote fraud, risk, abuse, and under-development, and for other purposes.

    S.1271 : A bill to provide for a comprehensive national research effort on the physical and mental health and other readjustment needs of the members of the Armed Forces and veterans who served in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom and their families.

    S.1324 : A bill to amend the Clean Air Act to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from transportation fuel sold in the United States.

    S.1790 : A bill to make grants to carry out activities to prevent the incidence of unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections among teens in racial or ethnic minority or immigrant communities, and for other purposes.

    Conclusion: Sarah Palin, Rudy Guiliani, Lindsay Graham can say whatever they want about Mr. Obama's record and they can make sarcastic statements about community organizers, but that doesn't mean that they're right or being honest. The truth is the truth and it's available for anyone to check up on. Senator Obama's legislative efforts have been focused on helping returning military personnel, education, health and the environment.

    Can the Republicans say the same?

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