Mosque at Ground Zero – Stupidity At Its Best

August 17, 2010 at 4:51 pm (Barack Obama, News, Obama, Opinion, Politics, Terrorism) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Out of curiosity, where do you stand on the situation where the mosque is being built at Ground Zero?  For those living under a rock, Muslims wish to build a Muslim Community Center 2 blocks from Ground Zero.  This apparently creates 2 camps of thought, but there may actually be a third. Let’s talk about them and then let you decide which camp you belong to.

The Against It Camp
The first is that the construction of a mosque by Muslims so close to the location of the attack on the World Trade Center is a slap in the face. This side of the camp has been very closely tied to a right wing agenda, but the situation gets agitated when you have Islamic leaders like the co-founder of Hamas, Mahmoud al-Zahar telling the press that the mosque “must be built”.   To him, the construction of a mosque at Ground Zero is the equivalent of placing a Hamas flag at the site to indicate that they’ve conquered the area.  That may be his interpretation, but not for the purveyors of this mosque which is a project of the Cordoba Initiative whose sole existence is to improve relations between Islam and the U.S..  A point that Hannity will not inform you about.

But then you have even further agitation by right wing pundits like Hannity that have started playing the interview with imam Feisal Abdul Rauf where he said that America was an “accessory to the crimes of 9/11”.  All the while neglecting to inform people that the comments were made 2 weeks after the attacks. Like a decade old sticky note and one that’s played entirely out of context where Rauf simply tells it like it is in the eyes of Hamas and not indicating whether he believes it’s right or wrong, but simply explaining that it is what it is.

The FOR It Camp
The second school of thought is that it should be built and to hold them back is a denial of the freedom of religion. One could argue that all of the major religions at one point and time have tread on the liberties of other individuals and yes, even to the point of outright murder. But AM750 talk radio host Mark Arum in Atlanta provided an analogy that if the tables were turned would Christians be denied the right to build a church across from an abortion clinic?  Years of documented stories of angered Christians killing abortion doctors and burning down clinics.  Would the abortion center have the right to stop the church from being constructed across the street?  “Oh well, those were just crazy misguided Christians. That’s not what Christianity is about. Christians aren’t like that.”  And one could say the same about Muslims. Most Muslims aren’t like the terrorists that attacked the World Trade Center on 9/11.  Hamas is a crazy radical branch and not at all representative of the entire religion.   To put it in perspective, it’s like if Episcopalians did something crazy, it wouldn’t be a representation of all Christians.

The Hands Are Tied Camp
And the final and third school of thought is one of “your hands are tied”.  It’s the realization that they should be allowed to build the mosque simply because they have the right to do so.  Not because it’s right or wrong, but simply because it’s their constitutional right to do it and our hands are tied.  How you feel about or how I feel about it or how they feel about it is totally irrelevant.

This is where President Obama has to uncomfortably reside because it’s the law of the land and who is he to over rule it?  In any court of law, this is what everything would boil down to and that would be, “What does the law say?”. Very simply, what they are allowed to do by law.

What exactly do right wing Republicans expect Obama to do? Are they asking him to overrule the constitution of the United States? What precedent would that set for the future of things to come?  It would quickly become the most cited case of criminal attorneys everywhere.

And to be clear,  there were no contradictions in his statements that he said back to back this past week.  One statement at a dinner stated that they have the legal right to do so by constitutional law. The following day he stated that he did not comment on the “wisdom” to do so.  So, essentially, and eloquently, he has said, “Yes, they have the right to do it, but it’s not the wisest thing to do considering the circumstances.”

So what is the right answer here? For Obama, there is none. If he steps in to prevent the construction of the Mosque, he is putting himself in the position of stating that he is above constitutional law.  And once he does so, it unravels every law in the books by indicating that if there is enough opposition or presidential interference, any law can be overruled.  One has to wonder that if Republicans were for the mosque construction, they would be hollering at the top of their lungs that this President thinks he’s above the law.  But since he’s doing nothing, the Republicans have translated that as approval of the mosque and that he’s pro-terrorism, which is absurd.

As a card carrying Republican (who doesn’t always vote Republican), I find this activity very disturbing and it wreaks of desperation and shame.

So, which camp are you staked at?


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Sean Hannity’s Double Standards

August 17, 2010 at 2:40 pm (Barack Obama, Elections, Environment, Immigration, News, Obama, Opinion, Politics) (, , , , , , , , , , )

I decided long ago that I needed to stop listening to Sean Hannity’s radio show after I realized that I was listening to the same show repeatedly.  If it wasn’t the same show, it sure seemed like the same talking points over and over.  The first post I ever did for this blog was a couple years ago about his half truths and lies which still remains one of the most popular posts. Needless to say that he still comments on some things that I brought up in passing.  So I tuned back in after a long absence only to find that Sean is on to some new diatribes and all of which are just as asinine as the first. But now we’ve moved on to double standards which is almost as annoying.

Double Standard #1Holding Obama responsible for the oil spill.

To start, I already covered this in a post today that I too believe that Obama should show some accountability here. I’m not going to re-hash it here, but you can read my diatribe on the governments failure to handle this issue on my post BP Oil Spill – Katrina Part 2. The double standard here is that when Katrina disaster hit New Orleans, which was due to the same government regulatory failure to monitor a situation, Hannity was touting “What exactly is Bush supposed to do? He doesn’t have any control over the weather! It’s not even his department! “. Now here we are on the opposite side of coin and Hannity is being relentless in attacking Obama’s lack of response.  While I do agree, this is double standard #1.

Double Standard #2 – Drill, Drill Drill, Totally safe!

For those that recall, Hannity has been animate about drilling for oil in ANWR and touted drilling as completely safe and controllable and that those environmental nutjobs are crazy.  Along with those talking point he also frequently discussed offshore drilling as another safe alternative. Again, those granola eating windbags have no idea what they’re talking about. Anyone heard much talk about it anymore?

Double Standard #3 – Seal the borders!

Hannity regularly gets on Obama’s failure to secure the borders, but when Bush was in office the song was sung very differently. “Bush wants to put up a huge fence but no one will let him! What do you expect him to do?” For some reason Hannity is under the impression that Obama has the means to bypass those same opponents.

Double Standard #4 – Arizona’s “Misguided” Law

While I agree to Sean’s point that the law is designed to simply uphold an existing law and add an extra addendum to it, he will never understand the plight of being, um,…not white. Just like African Americans, Mexicans get pulled over for invalid reasons simply for officers of the law to investigate whether or not there’s something more that they can be booked or convicted of.  He doesn’t understand this aspect of society and that racism still exists.

We don’t care about your past and how your father worked his fingers to the bone from nothing.  All of us at one time or another faced similar adversities. It doesn’t make you the same as minorities. Illegal immigration needs to stop and if that’s what it takes, that’s fine, but don’t act as if there’s nothing maniacal here.  It simply takes what authorities are allowed to do to another level. Which is fine in my book, but annoying when you justify it as if there’s no potential problems.

And I’m sure that you have your own Double Standards of Hannity’s that have been eating away at you that you’re dying to yell, so I’ll leave space here for you.

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Sean Hannity Lies and Half Truths

October 29, 2008 at 5:47 pm (Barack Obama, Election 2008, Elections, John McCain, News, Obama, Opinion, Politics, Television, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

Before every Republican and right wing nut gets their panties in a bunch, let me clarify that I have voted Republican for many years, but I look at the facts and the truth and call it like I see it whether it be Republican or Democrat.  But it’s time to get the truth out regardless of the outcome and no, this is not pro-Obama rhetoric.  We’re here to talk about Sean Hannity and his radio and TV show that over the past 3 months has been like listening to a replay of the same broadcast over and over again.  The disturbing part of which is a bunch of lies and half-truths.  It’s bothersome to me that people don’t listen to what’s being said and just take is as fact, when some things are outright lies and distortions.

Distortion 1- Michelle Obama Hates Our Country

Hannity has been continuously playing the clip of Michelle Obama saying “for the first time in my adult lifetime, I am proud of my country.”  Hannity neglects to play the rest of the speech where she clarifies what she meant which essentially is that America has not been the land of hope and dreams that’s advertised.  Nobody believes for one moment that she meant that she has never been proud to be an American. It was a comment that there’s finally hope for a country that’s ready for change. To distort her comment and insinuate that she is some sort of rogue anti-American flag burner is an insult to our intelligence.

Distortion 2- The Democrats Are Weak

Hannity also loves to play the clip of Biden saying that Obama will be tested in the first 6 months of his presidency. Hannity translates that comment as him saying that his candidate is viewed as weak. Yet again another if you’re dumb you’ll believe this is what he meant. This is another example of Hannity cutting off the audio and taking things out of context.  The even more annoying part is that a ton of media outlets jumped on that bandwagon. If you listen to the rest of the audio, he says “and when they do, they’ll find that he has a spine of steel”.  ANYONE that gets into the presidential office for the first time is going to be tested.  Nations are going to want to see what they can get away with under new administration regardless of who it is.  This is another case of insulting your intelligence.

Distortion 3- Obama Wants to Open Up the Borders

Hannity loves to tout the quote from Obama where he said, “give the 12 million people who are here illegally, many of whom have been here for years, many of whom have US citizens for children to make sure that they’ve got a pathway to legalization.”  This ended up being yet another talking point during Hannity’s 10 Reasons To Not Vote For Obama show on Hannity’s America where he insinuated that Obama was refusing to “uphold the law of the land”.  To me, this was an honest and humanitarian answer from Obama.  Is Hannity saying that McCain has a better plan?  If so, let’s hear it.   Finish the fence! How quaint and then what happens to those 12 million already here?  I know, let’s throw them all in jail and leave their children without parents.  That makes much more sense.  At least Obama had a intelligent answer that wasn’t mired in absurdity.

Distortion 4- Spreading the Wealth

Out of all of the rhetoric that Hannity distorts and twists, this is the one that agitates me the most. By now, everyone has heard the cut of Obama telling Joe the Plumber that “when you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everyone.”.  The problem is the immediate insinuation you take away from this presentation is that he was saying that “we’re going to take the money from successful people and just give it to the less fortunate” in some sort of Robin Hoodian alternate reality.  That layman view has been one of the biggest talking points of Hannity’s rantings and they’re hoping that you’re stupid enough to believe it.  The point of that comment was to say, “I want to create opportunities for those less fortunate.  Open up doors that have been previously closed.”  Why in the world would a businessman want to do anything to punish fellow business owners?

Are people that make more money going to be taxed higher?  Of course!  Absolutely nothing new.  It’s been that way under the Republicans since the dawn of time.  That has always been the case no matter who is in office.  The difference?  Republicans have given businesses outrageous opportunities to write off absurd expenses.  Who pays for those write offs?  Everyone does.  Those vacations, spa treatments, lunches at expensive restaurants that crawl into the thousands.  This is not socialism.  It’s reality.  If you make more money, you will pay more taxes.  It’s nothing new. If you pay 30% on a 1000, you’ll pay $300. But if you make $100,000, your taxes are $30,000.  That’s how math works. I’m sure there will be more insane opportunities for businesses to write off the increase somewhere.

The point of all of this is that I don’t think it serves anyone justice and especially Hannity to keep on spouting these half truths and distortions.  For someone who claims to be unbiased and works on FoxNews which is supposedly fair and balanced, these types of attacks literally push people to Obama’s camp.  If you can ramble off things that people simply know aren’t true, why in the world would they believe anything else that comes out of your mouth?

I’ll be doing a follow up piece soon about why I simply can’t vote for Obama, but why McCain is just as disconcerting to me.  But I posted a very brief synopsis of these untruths in several different places and all of which were deleted by McCain supporters.  Now is the time for people to hear the truth and to try their best to make reasonable judgments about who they’re voting for.  That’s why I can only hope that somebody considers my rantings and stands up for themselves in refusing to be led by the ear without doing their research.  And in these cases, just simply being deceived.

I am NOT an Obama supporter or McCain.  I simply have no faith in either actually and feel as if this is a choice between the lesser of two evils, but I also can’t sit back and listen to lies realizing that most people are accepting it as truth without even questioning common sense.

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