The other day, my Dad sent me the following e-mail:

Thought for the day:

In case we find ourselves starting to believe all the anti-American sentiment and negativity, we should remember England’s Prime Minister Tony Blair’s words during a recent interview. When asked by one of his Parliament members why he believes so much in America, he said:

“A simple way to take measure of a country is to look at how many want in… And how many want out.”

Only two defining forces have ever offered to die for you:

1. Jesus Christ
2. The American G. I.

One died for your soul, the other for your freedom. YOU MIGHT WANT TO PASS THIS ON, AS MANY SEEM TO FORGET BOTH OF THEM. AMEN!

This is the response I sent him… The last time I told him what I thought, I didn’t hear from him for about 6 to 9 months and I have yet to get a comment on it.

I was going to edit this before I sent it, but I think I’ll send it as is. You hit a nerve, not the one you might think. It really pisses me off with this idea that if one doesn’t support the battle plan being set forth by the Administration, you don’t support the troops. Since when did “difference of opinion” mean anti-American? I thought this country was finished with this stupidity during the McCarthy era, but I guess not.

So, I will ask these questions:

  1. What ever happened to Osama bin-Laden wanted dead or alive?
  2. What are we supposed to do with an Administration that in the worst case misrepresented to outright lied to get us into a war of choice, not necessity, and on the best case scenario was just 100% wrong on EVERY single assumption they made about Iraq?
  3. What to do when they say that no one could have predicted the outcome of the war in Iraq when poppa Bush listed a near identical list of consequences in his autobiography when explaining why he didn’t go to Bhagdad during the first Gulf War?
  4. As far as domestically, what to do about a leadership that lets 1000 people die due to lack of basic planning in New Orleans when everyone else knew what was coming and new the levies had breached nearly 24 hours before Brownie and Bush claim to have known

Sorry Dad, but where I started loosing respect for the Republican party during the 80’s, leaned to despise them in the 90’s, I wouldn’t be to upset to see many of them tarred and feathered while being run out of town on a rail for sheer incompetence. I’ll tell you what, if the people continue to sit on their apathetic butts and let Bush go into Iran, they deserve EVERYTHING that will come as the consequences of that act.

I’ll send you a longer reply some other time (never mind, this is long enough), but to put it succinctly, I will quote my favorite recent bumper-sticker:

Support the Troops
Question their boss,
it’s the American way.

It’s sad when we wrap ourselves in flags and questionable patriotism and then say that it is un-American to question the people who are supposedly working on the behalf of the people when the majority of those people just want some straight answers about the purpose and goals. Such as what specific goals are there? How many trained Iraqi troops and police? Specific answers, not ideological wish lists. Whenever asked, we get nebulous statements and non-answers. I don’t trust them anymore, and I am getting concerned about a nation that would rather sit on it’s butt and get it’s news from questionable sound bites than to actually look behind the curtain and see if the truth is what it is made out to be.

It’s funny that recently, on a completely unrelated matter, I came across an amazing quote from Upton Sinclair:

“It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.”

If ever their was a time that I wish every American had read “1984” and “Fahrenheit 451″ it is recently. Strange that when I was a kid, you taught me that the ends do not justify the means, this recent turn in this country has shown they don’t give a damn about the means as long as the ends are what they want. It amazes me that a guy as smart as you are would actually listen to the State of the Union and not say, “Huh?”

They spend nearly $2 Billion a week on a war the country doesn’t support. The strategy has shown little if any signs of working, but instead of sitting and rethinking it, we’ll just through a few more soldiers in the line of fire. Even the Generals don’t think it’s a good idea, except for those who are afraid of being reassigned or loosing their rank like everyone else who has voiced a questioning or dissenting opinion to this administration.

You are too smart to fall for this basic Fear 101 tactic that has been played since 9/11 and the misrepresentations of the facts by the administration and the media are just wrong. Now this is my opinion, and like it or not, as an American it is my RIGHT to ask and receive answers from the people in charge. I heard Rush Limbaugh the other day comment that he believes that Liberals are wanting us to loose this war and will do anything to make it happen. This coming from the guy who basically admitted to lying to his audience after the Nov elections to “carry the water” for the Republicans who didn’t deserve it. His tone has changed back to the party line, but I was listening when he said it. The fact is, I don’t know anyone who wants us to loose the war, but I am aware of millions of people who have seen no signs that a “throw more soldiers onto the heap” will help. They don’t want failure, but they do want someone to think about possible re-evaluating the strategy. Before you say that’s what the President did before announcing his “Surge”, I knew in November when he said he was going to “consult with the experts” what the outcome would be, he doesn’t listen to anyone or anything that doesn’t agree with him.

This administration has lost my respect and my trust over the last 6 years, and if the American people do not start to stand up and do something, this country is doomed to be controlled by corporate greed and special interests, lubed by the blood and sweat of the people who they are supposedly working for. This honestly seems right to you? Strange that you told me you couldn’t believe me because I had lied to you, how many times has this administration lied, or misrepresented the truth to serve their goals? You trust THEM?!?

God save America, because Washington sure won’t!

OK, enough rambling, I need to get a shower and go to work.

Written by R. A. Burgener

After finishing the 850 mile trek of self-rediscovery on California's El Camino Real from San Diego to Sonoma, California, Robert continued, via Greyhound, to Portland, Oregon, where he is becoming familiar with the concepts of weather and seasons after 30 years in Los Angeles.

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