Dr. Forbush Thinks

Look at the world through the eyes of Dr. Forbush. He leads you through politics, religion and science asking questions and attempting to answer them....

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Location: California, United States

Friday, June 24, 2005

Gone Fishing

In simpler times the Barber, Baker or Candlestick Maker would close up shop, put a sign on the door and go fishing. Maybe you would loose some business for that day, but people would come back and purchase what they wanted when you got back. It was just a nice peaceful time when you could cast your line into the water and wait for the fish to bite. It really didn’t matter if the fish did bite, because you could sit there and be amazed at the wonders of nature. Being amazed by the wonders of nature evokes all of those philosophical questions that we all have when we take the time to listen to our inner voice.

This is my last post before my family does the modern version of going fishing. We are going to load up the minivan with the kids and drive around the Western United States. We’re not going to bring our computer or laptop, so I’ll be cut off from the world in that way. However, I am going to be out in the national parks, small towns and other tourist attractions that we stumble onto during our travels. So, I will be cut off in one way, but I will be united to the world in a completely different way. And, I hope to write about some of these experiences when I get back.

I am reminded of Thoreau going off to Walden Pond and giving up the modern conveniences of his time to live on that piece of land near Concord. But, instead of trying to live off the land independently for a year our family will collect together and venture off to visit some of the most amazing natural wonders of our country. Some of us have been to some of these places before and we are anxious to share them with the other members of our family. But, no matter if we have been there before or we will see the sights for the first time I am certain that we will be amazed at the beauty of nature and remain in awe of what God has created for us to enjoy.

So, the main point of this post is to let my entire cadre of regular readers know that I have not fallen off the edge of the earth and I will be back sometime in the middle of July. I would recommend that you read my archives if you want to get a dose of Dr. Forbush. If you found this blog and you are disappointed in the currency of the post, then I would recommend that you read some posts from my archives to get a flavor of my writing. You could even listen to my voice in the podcasts that I have created.

So, this is not “Goodbye,” but only “Until We Meet Again.”

Auf Weidersehen.

Patriotic Decorum

I find it interesting that those who opposed the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s pointed their finger at Abby Hoffman when he wore his famous flag shirt. Surely Bush and the neo-cons remember this. Then on Memorial Day we have the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Air Force General Richard Myers sporting a flag shirt at a memorial service where we would expect some extra level of decorum.

Across the Mall the US Congress is debating whether burning the flag should be made into a crime that should be considered bad enough to be written into the US constitution. The reason burning is even being talked about is because burning the flag is a form of desecration. But, the President of the United States should recognize that writing on a flag is also a form of desecration when his Party is in favor of the protection of the flag.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Dr. Forbush Thinks - Joe Wilson - Audio

Audio: (click here to download the mp3 file) Joe Wilson

These are the opening remarks of Joe Wilson at the Downing Street Memo hearings on June 16, 2005. Diplomat Wilson points out how the Bush administration has deceived the American people.

What Should We Do About Iraq?

Let’s forget about the incompressible stupidity of getting involved in Iraq in the first place. Let’s forget about the Lies that were told to influence the opinion of the American people. For a few minutes lets imagine the we have 140,000 soldiers in Iraq and no one is responsible for how they got there. Let’s forget about any old mission ideas and lets look at the reality of the situation.

So, what do we have?

First of all we have a group of people in Iraq that hate the US and the secular ideals that America stands for. Some of these people are religious zealots that have an agenda to make their particular branch of Islam the main religion in Iraq. Does any one believe that killing these guys will make them less persistent in their religious fervor? If you are having a problem trying to imagine this them step back and imagine that you are a Christian with strong faith in your religion. A Muslim country with Muslim soldiers attacks your neighborhood and they set up a new city government. They begin to tell you how you should run your city. Are you going to feel happy about this?

Stop telling me that this can’t happen and use you r imagination for one minute.

Now, imagine that they did not only invade your city, but they took over your entire state. They captured your governor and they put him in a jail. They got a group of Muslims and non-Christians that live in live in your state and they put them in charge of your state. Are you happy about this? Are you angry enough to fight them?

What if they see that you are angry about this occupation? They see that there is a resistance and they kill a bunch of your friends and relatives who are just a little bit angrier than you are. Does the killing of these friends and relatives make you more angry or less angry? Will you stop being upset with this occupation because they killed your friends? Do you think that more or less of your friends will become upset and fight the occupation? Would you take up a weapon and defend your state? And when this occupation lasts for three or four years will you be happier that they are here in your state?

Well, if you actually read through this and you actually did the exercise them you may have some feeling for the situation on the Iraqi side of the gun. Do you think that the American soldiers are making peace in Iraq, or are they making these people angrier?

So, what should we do in Iraq to make the world safe for Americans? Should we send more troops to Iraq? Will that finally make the point?

Today in a speech Donald Rumsfeld was trying to put a bright light on the progress that we are making in Iraq. He told the American people that we only have 140,000 soldiers in Iraq today compared to the 160,000 troops that were there during the Iraqi elections in January. Why do you think he said this? He is trying to say that we are bringing our troops home without actually saying those words. He is trying to make people believe in something that is not actually happening. This administration is taking advantage of a fluctuation of troop strength in order to allude to these numbers in order to make it appear as though the American troops are coming home. Why would he do this? Does he know that he has to lie to make people happy because the truth won’t make them happy? Why else would he make such a big deal out of us having less troops in Iraq than in January? He is trying to tell us that the number of troops are going down with out having to commit to the fact that they are not really going to go down. Chances are that there are troops on there way to Iraq and they haven’t actually gotten there yet. Chances are that there are troops that have just left Iraq. If Rumsfeld actually wanted to subdue the insurgents, do you think that he would hint at the fact that there are less soldiers in Iraq now than there were in January?

Obviously Rumsfeld has lost his mind and he can not be consistent any more. Iraq needs a political solution, because brute force will not work. Rumsfeld alludes to this but he doesn’t have the guts to say it.


Wednesday, June 22, 2005

North Korea Wants Food and Bush Complies

OK, don’t you think that we could recognize a lie when we see one? But, the media is writing what the Bush administration is telling them without questioning it and the American people will begin to believe that it is true again.

What am I talking about? (Read the story here.)

I am talking about how the Bush administration told us that they would not buy off the North Korean government buy giving them food, like the Clinton administration did. The Bush administration just wanted the North Koreans to stop making nuclear weapons without any strings attached. The Bush administration cut off food to North Korean to make them stop making nuclear weapons. When that didn’t work, and in fact it just made North Korean more angry they upped the anti and demanded that bilateral talks should not be held but instead six nation talks would create the pressure needed to make North Korean stop building nuclear weapons.

Now, the Bush administration reports that it is going to send food to North Korean. But, don’t worry the food has nothing to do with the efforts to get North Korean to stop building nuclear weapons. No, of course not since that is the main reason that North Korea started building them in the first place. Why can’t the media jump on this and hold the Bush administration’s feet to the fire?

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Why is the Downing Street Memo Different?

When the Downing Street Memo was published in the London Times at the beginning of May many journalists ignored it. Five weeks later the blogosphere was teeming with activity pertaining to this memo, but the journalists just sat on it.

Since then the mainstream media has finally caught onto the importance of this memo. But what makes this memo different? Why were the journalists so skittish with discussing this important revelation? Why weren’t the basic facts of the story reported in the US?

In order to understand the problem here we need to understand a bit of history. Through out the 2004 election campaign the possibility that the Bush administration fixed the intelligence came up continually. When the Weapons of Mass Destruction weren’t found the media questioned the administration. When the threat of Saddam Hussein being linked to terrorist groups didn’t pan out the media questioned the administration. For every mistake that the administration did during the run up, attack and occupation of Iraq the media questioned the administration. The standard answer was, “the Intelligence was flawed.” This statement seemed to fit every need and it was used over and over again. The American public was deceived into identifying with a poor hapless crew in the White House doing their best with “poor” intelligence. Playing up the stupidity of the President played into their plan, so they didn’t fight it. Playing up the arguments between Condi Rice and Colon Powell played into their image, so they didn’t fight it. The deception was greater than the ego of any one player, including the President.

So, when the Downing Street Memo was published the US media was already primed with the expected stonewall of the administration. The US media didn’t realize that this document and subsequent documents were different.

Up to this point the evidence that the Bush administration was fixing the intelligence around their policy was mainly circumstantial evidence. One could look at the facts that were know and assume that the administration was either a bunch of dunderheads, or the CIA was a bunch of dunderheads or the administration was working with the CIA to create evidence to take the country into war. Well, many Americans would much rather believe the first two options rather than the third. Americans are a fair people in most cases and they would like to give the President and the CIA the benefit of the doubt. The American people can imagine a group of really smart people trying their best for the good of the country. It is much more difficult to imagine a collusion of the CIA and the White House to come up for a reason to go into Iraq. So, when the administration says that the invasion was based on faulty intelligence the American people are willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. After all, people can make mistakes.

But, the Bush administration can not just decide that they want to go and invade another country. There are international laws and federal laws that tell the President when he can take the country into war. The most important thing to keep in mind is that the President can only take the country into war when the country is in imminent danger. So, the President would need to create the illusion of imminent danger if he wanted to invade Iraq. The two reasons the President formally stated when he signed the statement for the Iraq War was that Iraq possessed Weapons of Mass Destruction and Iraq had ties to terrorism. We know now that these reasons are false and if the President knew that they were false he would be guilty of lying to the American People about taking the country into war. He would also be guilty of lying to Congress in an effort to elevate the level of risk Iraq posed to the US. If he knew the threat of Iraq were minimal he would be guilty of deceiving Congress and this lie would rise to a level of a high crime which is an Impeachable Offense. Up to this point the White House has denied knowing anything except that Iraq posed a threat and they claim that the CIA intelligence was flawed.

The three days before the Congress voted on going to war George W Bush, and Condi Rice each made the famous statement, “We don’t want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.” They were referring to Iraq’s capability to build a nuclear weapon and supposedly have a terrorist group explode it in the US. These words were designed to frighten Congress into voting for the Iraq War. Many of the Republicans were already on board, but the larger the margin the stronger the mandate, so the President wanted the largest margin possible. We know that this was a fear tactic, because this statement wasn’t used after the vote. The statement was clearly designed to get some of the Democrats to vote for the bill so the President could brag that the Iraq War was a bipartisan decision. Lawmakers assume some level trust in what they are told by their leaders. And, when one hears ones leader tell the country that we need to go to war or a nuclear weapon could go off in our country one is bound to vote for the safety and national security of our country. Based on what Joe Wilson has told us the CIA had told the President that Iraq had not bought uranium from Niger and Iraq didn’t have this capability. But, the administration writes Joe Wilson off as a disgruntled government employee with an axe to grind.

And this is how the picture was up until the Downing Street memo was published in the London Times.

The Downing Street memo is a secret memo written in July 2002, well before the invasion of Iraq. It was information about a meeting where a British diplomat traveled to Washington in order to find out what the Bush administration was going to do about the Iraq situation. This British diplomat told the Prime Minister that the Bush administration was fixing the intelligence in order to justify the war. This is known as documented evidence. It is much more valuable than all the circumstantial evidence that has accumulated so far. This memo was written, as a private document for the British government, so there is no reason to believe any politics were involved in this memo. In addition to this memo there are at least six more supporting documents that authenticate the memo. Based on this memo we have reason to believe that option three, the President and the Bush administration deceived Congress in order to go to war in Iraq. This is an Impeachable Offense. We own it to the integrity of our country to investigate this at the very least, and the American public should be made aware that the White House and the CIA isn’t full of bumbling idiots, but instead they cooked the evidence to support the policy they wanted to pursue. And, this action was illegal in both international law and federal law.

Fortunately the media is beginning to understand this and they are beginning to ask questions. Hopefully the American people will ask questions too.


Monday, June 20, 2005

Dr. Forbush Thinks - Rush Lies - Audio File

Editorial Opinion: (click here to download the mp3 file) Rush Lies

As I said last week I am posting an audio file that points out three specific lies that Rush Limbaugh clearly makes. The point here is not only that Rush lies. The point here is that a large portion of the American public has gotten their news from Rush’s distorted view of the world. How can any one use Rush Limbaugh as a reliable news source? If they continue to use Limbaugh, O’Reilly, Hannity or any of these other extremists as news sources then America has little hope of survival as a Democracy. Just look at what lies have done for our country in regard to the Iraq War…

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Friday, June 17, 2005

Al and Rush

I haven’t listened to Air America for quite some time. I listened to the streaming audio when it first came out last year. It was funny and it exposed the lies of the Bush administration, but I already knew much of this. I would much rather listen to Rush Limbaugh and learn what the next issue the conservatives would start blogging about. I could get a head start with the poorly researched facts that he would tell to his conservative audience. When I got tired of Rush then I would listen to Bill O’Reilly and see what spin he could put on the administration’s Gospel teachings.

Well, the AM radio failed on my car and I couldn’t pick up AM radio inside my office building. So, I was stuck listening to NPR for the longest time. I tried to listen to Rush and Bill online, but they wanted me to pay for it. Hey, I thought they were lucky enough to get me to listen to their commercials for crap that I’d never buy why would I pay to hear them?

Yesterday I realized that I could listen to Air America for free on the Internet. And, it was a good thing that I did. I found out that Rush Limbaugh is telling his listeners outright lies. It used to be that he would just leave out the details that he didn’t want his listeners to know. This could be argued and the opposition to him could point out the facts that he forgot to include.

But, leaving out information is no longer good enough. He has now resorted to outright lying.

Al Franken gave us three examples of outright lies with the actual audio from his program. Al also had a dittohead there to tell us how Rush’s comment could actually be the truth. For those of you who don’t know the lingo, a dittohead is a Rush Limbaugh fan.

Rush Lied on June 9 Rush was on the radio complaining that John Kerry didn’t sign his Navy180 document releasing it to the public. He actually had done this on May 20. Rush obviously just chose to mislead his audience to give them the impression that this controversy was still going on. These little things drive up the ratings. If there isn’t anything to complain about Rush is just boring. So he chose to complain about old news implying that the complaint had not been resolved. Of course the dittohead asked the question: “Why didn’t Kerry release these documents during the campaign?” Well, it turned out that there wasn’t anything damaging revelation in the documents that it was just because the independent John Kerry didn’t want to give in to the radical right. And, it probably wouldn’t have made any difference because only the radical right was calling for these documents and they would still vote for Bush anyway.

Rush lied about the introduction of the Geneva Convention. He claimed that the Geneva Convention was drawn up in response to the Nazi abuse of POWs during WW II. This is just flat out wrong. The Geneva Convention rules about POWs was created in 1929, even before the Nazis came to power in Europe. The dittohead claimed that Al was pointing out boring history that no one really cares about anyway.

Rush also lied about Amnesty International. He told his listeners that Amnesty International is just a left wing organization because they wrote a report about the prison abuse and torture the American military has used on it’s prisoners, while they ignored North Korea and the African nations that were worse than the US. But the truth was that Amnesty International released a report that included issues with 143 nations, including North Korea and many African nations. The dittohead said that we only heard about the US violations, and he would be right. But that is an issue with the media who covered the story. The media covers stories that are unusual, and the Bush administration’s abuse of prisoners is unusual. So, the media should cover the Amnesty International report of American abuse of prisoners in more detail than the regular violator’s abuses. But, even the regular media did cover these countries in the newspapers, just not on TV where the news stories are abbreviated to the point of almost no information.

When I get a chance I’ll post this audio file.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Republicans Do Not Question Their Leaders

The current leadership of the Republican Party has created a whole group of people who believe the lies that have been spread by talk radio and conservative pundits. This is because the majority of the followers are from the Conservative Christians who follow their preachers blindly and shunned for asking questions that don’t conform to the traditional beliefs. Republicans Politics is just an extension of these beliefs and the sheep follow the leaders of the party in unison asking no questions in fear of being shunned by the leadership.

These people say things like this:

"There must be a point somewhere before exiting the womb that an embryo gains a status as human being. It is clear that birth is NOT that point."

I have attempted in a short blog to question this statement and statements like this. Obviously these arguments generally fall on deaf ears and rhetoric of all sorts is contributed to my comments section. These posts drive the traffic up, but the footsteps don’t offer any insight into the political dilemma that our country faces.

I receive questions like: “When does life begin?” which I have commented on extensively. But, taking the assumed answer to it’s logical ends results in absurd conclusions. Some of these are:

The sperm that you ejaculate is alive.

Should we prosecute those who masturbate unless they save their ejaculation product?

The eggs that women ovulate are alive.

Should we save the menstrual blood of women and keep these eggs alive?

The DNA would suggest that these are also human.

Your skin cells are alive. Your blood cells are alive.

Are they suggesting that if you cut yourself and bleed we should collect the blood and skin and save it in a petri dish? We can keep these cell cultures alive you should know.

When you argue that a clump of cells is a human you need to accept the conclusion of your argument.

But conservative tradition disallows these conclusions with statements like: “That’s ridiculous,” and “How could anyone come to that conclusion?” But the truth is, why should one mass of living cells be treated differently than another mass of living cells? The fact is that all life should be treated with respect. And this continues to be the weakness in the Republican rhetoric “Culture of Life.” The Republicans support the lives of the Rich White Capitalists and whoever else supports the goal of making these people more wealthy and powerful.

Obviously abortion is an issue that brings the Christians to the polls, but the wealthy donors to the Republican Party really don't care one way or the other about this issue. In fact they are for making as little progress on this issue as possible. Republicans have the majority in both houses and they could pass good valid anti-abortion laws right now, but they are choosing not to, because the issue brings Christians to the polls to keep them in office and in power.

But these Christians obviously don’t care about ALL LIFE when they say things like:

" I don't see the celebration of "Earth Day" as a celebration of life."

Obviously the wealthy Republican donors have been able to pollute the minds of the Republican voters to the point that they believe that pollution is the price we pay for progress. Living in scum is OK for the poor who can't get out of the slum, but if you earn your money the American way you can develop a mountain top to put your mansion on it and have the government pay you when it slides down the hill.

And, in an effort to support the idea that the rich should get richer the Wealthy leaders of the Republican Party have polluted the minds of those who claim to be Republican supporters with ideas like this:

"If we actually evolved, don't we have a instinctive duty to promote our own species?"

Then you should be for choice. Mothers know when they can afford to raise a child. This means that having the child with lower risk results in a stronger society- less crime. This has been demonstrated with statistics from the time since Roe v. Wade crime has gone down in the inner cities because mothers are not forced to have unwanted children. Our current culture allows or even expects men to pressure women into having sex. The men are not punished when women give in, even if it is reluctantly. Women however are punished with life sentences of raising their children. The punishment is worse the more unwanted the child is. This is a failure of society, and if this were fixed abortion rates would go down without making abortion illegal.

But, logic isn’t the Republican strong suit. Instead they pick preferred issues with preferred arguments that end up giving the wealthy more power and money with arguments that don’t hold water but are convoluted enough that they average person is to confused to understand them. The result is more power and money for the wealthy and less for the rest of us. And, the Republican followers continue to say: “And we like it that way.”

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Dr. Forbush Thinks - How Many Wives? - Podcast

Editorial Opinion: (click here to download the mp3 file) How Many Wives?

Even though Christians have harped on “Liberals” for having relative morality they have not come down on this president for dealing with relative truth. Where I come from truth is not relative to your objective. The truth is the reality of the situation and the way things really happened. They use the Bible to proclaim truth, as long as they agree with it. On the other hand we don't much mention of they Bible's praise of men taking more than one wife.

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Dr. Forbush Thinks - Global Warming - Podcast

Dr. Forbush Thinks - Global Warming - Podcast

Editorial Opinion: (click here to download the mp3 file) Global Warming

We know at least one cause of global warming, and it is human activity. We also know that global warming is happening. Now we finally have a consensus among scientists that are willing to come forward and tell us that humans are causing global warming. Now we just need the idiots in Washington to listen. Global Warming is happening!

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Inconsistency and hypocrisy are the hallmark of the radical right.

I received the typical question from the anti-abortion crowd yesterday. One commenter wrote asking me when I believed that life began. I thought about the question for a minute and I already knew where the questioner wanted to go with the argument. But, of course suggesting that life begins with conception isn’t the only criteria needed to judge that abortion should be illegal. We kill living things every day. We kill things in order to make our lives better. And, we kill things to survive. The fact that we have a fertilized egg in a womb, and even if we agree that the embryo is alive doesn’t mean that preventing the further development of that embryo should be made illegal.

The fact is that life is all around us and the left has been pro-life for a while longer that the right. In April 1970 the left started Earth Day in order to celebrate life. At the time the right looked at Earth Day as a Hippie movement without substance. However, the basis of Earth Day was the celebration of all life, not just human life.

From this movement people began to think about where their food came from. Obviously all of our food comes from living things. We justify the killing of these living things in order to eat them because we need to eat to survive. Many people found themselves with a moral dilemma. Can we justify taking another life in order to feed ourselves? The answer is that we have to take a life to feed ourselves. Even plants are alive and even vegetarians need to kill plants to live. Vegetarians have struck a deal with their moral dilemma by giving higher status to animal life than plant life. But, we must remember that plant cells are not much different in function than animal cells. Plant cells take in food and water grow and reproduce as animal cells do. At the level of cells it is hard to argue that animals are more important than plants. In fact the leftist environmentalists have pointed out that life does not exist alone. It’s the ecosystem stupid!

Maybe you don’t value animals more than plants and you feel justified in eating equally from both sources. This is fine but you must realize that this decision results in placing lower values on animal life than the extreme left does. Making the argument that the left doesn’t respect life just doesn’t hold water.

But, not all leftists are vegetarians. And, not all leftists are environmentalists. (There are a good number though.) But leftists also respect the lives of the poor and downtrodden to a higher degree than the tax cutting radical right who wants to cut all these programs that try to nurture the growth of the poor.

Let’s get back to the question of when life begins. I still believe that life began 3.5 billion years ago and the first cells managed to reproduce and pass life down to the next generation. Backing up and looking at this huge span of time we see a tree of life that spans those 3.5 billion years. There are ends to those branches where a species goes extinct, but there are long branches that reach all the way back to the early pool of life. When you look at life this way you can see that life never begins it only continues. Parent pass life down to their children and those children pass life down to their children. At any moment in time we have an ecosystem of all life living with each other and the goal is the continuation of life.

What makes humans different than all the other forms of life in this huge tree of life that spans the last 3.5 billion years? Maybe some religions would suggest that humans are more special because God made them special. Maybe some religions would claim that the purpose of human life is to fulfill God’s will. Of course there is no evidence that any of these religious justifications of humans being superior to the rest of life. This is similar to the religious idea that the Earth must be the center of the Universe and everything revolves around the Earth. The idea was based on the assumption that God made the Earth for the humans that lived on the Earth and everything in the Universe was for the humans living on the Earth. Some people may still believe this, but most people realize that this is not the case.

Of course we do not have to depend on religion in order to justify humans being superior to other life forms. If we do this we could use the level of self-awareness, reasoning, communication and ability to plan as some criteria for placing increased value on human life.

But, using these arguments do not work for those who want to argue that humans are better than other forms of life from conception to death, unless the state decides that they shouldn’t live and the state can decrease the value of the life so it can be taken. This is because life that has low level of self-awareness, reasoning communication and ability to plan would also pertain to the value of a fetus or embryo in a womb. So, then we get into the argument of the potential value of a human life.

The anti-abortion crowd argues that the fertilized egg has potential to be a contributing human with all the value of an adult human. The interesting thing about this argument is that there are many adults in the poor areas of our country that may even have more potential to contribute to our society. The radical right doesn’t have the same fervor to save these people from the plight that they were born into as they do to save the aborted fetuses.

I could go on, but I won’t. Instead I want to leave you with the image of the typical hypocrisy of the Radical Right. The conservative who argues against Stem Cell research because these cells came from a fetus that could become a potential person. However, full-grown poor people and convicts don’t deserve the opportunity to change their status and be given the opportunity to become contributing citizens. These same people find value in a mass of cells, but they would just as soon kill bugs with DDT which would have even larger repercussions for the environment. These same conservatives mock the concern that the left has for the plight of farm animals raised to be our food as they eat their steak dinners. They laugh at the leftists who hate the furriers who raise animals to be slaughtered for the wealthy to have fur jackets. All of this has to do with LIFE, but somehow they have adopted the tagline: Pro-Life.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Dr. Forbush Thinks - Understanding Stem Cells - Podcast

Editorial Opinion: (click here to download the mp3 file) Understanding Stem Cells

Stem Cells, Embryos, Abortion, RU486, Cloning, and Artificial Insemination, In Vitro Fertilization. What do these things have in common? Most likely the general public doesn’t understand the definitions of these terms and they attribute ideas of what they think they are to these terms. If someone doesn’t understand a term then it is quite easy to scare them. This is what the Radical Right does every day with these terms.

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Mothers vs. Fathers

I was listening to a political analysis on the radio yesterday and one of the speakers offered another analogy of the Left vs. Right political conflict our country faces today. The speaker told us that the Right represents paternal family values while the left represents maternal family values. So, both parties actually do represent family values, but the radical right would have you believe that the only family values worth anything were paternal family values.

Of course this whole analogy depends on your vision of what paternal and maternal family values are anyway. Traditionally paternal family values have been associated with creating rules and enforcing them. The father should preach the need to follow the rules and insist on pointing out the reward for following the rules. Traditional maternal family values are more nurturing. The mother should recognize when someone in the family has problems and assist them to get them back up to speed.

Of course a traditional family operates with both types of family values. Extremes in either direction lead family members to psychological problems that leave devastating damage to the children that have lived through these one-sided family arrangements. In reality parents don’t parent exclusively with a traditional paternal or maternal model to guide them. Instead most parents use rules and nurturing to run a family.

For example, imagine your young daughter learning how to ride her two-wheeler. The paternal model may suggest that you tell her to go out get on the bike and peddle. You tell her not to worry about falling, because that’s how you learn not to fall. You can tell her the recommended way to hop on the bike and pedal, because those are the rules for learning how to ride a bike.

The maternal model for this same project may entail holding your daughter’s bike and walking next to her. She won’t fall, because you won’t let it happen. Maybe you won’t even let go at all even to let her try, because that could be too dangerous.

Obviously the middle ground, taking some paternal traits and some maternal traits is actually the most productive avenue to success. Imagine holding her up on her bike and walking next to her holding her for a few moments, then letting her go once she is up to speed. After doing this a few times, then you hold the bike up while she mounts it, then you just push her forward and she pedals to get up to speed. Finally she learns the trick to push herself forward and begin to pedal to get herself up to speed.

The government should be thought of in the same way. The government should not hold the hand of every citizen for his or her entire life. If the government actually did this no citizen could become independent. Similarly if the government did nothing but list the laws and punish those who broke the laws citizens would soon find life pointless and not even try to do anything.

It is funny that the Republican Party, the home of the wealthy conservatives claim that the government should not help its citizens. But, when these wealthy conservatives have children they would pay anything to raise their children in only the best of circumstances. If the wealthy conservatives actually applied their philosophy to their own families they would raise their children in poverty and force them to earn everything by hard work and following the rules. Could you imagine a wealthy family in which the father ran the family the way that they would expect the government to govern its people?

We could imagine children that were born with talents being treated to special privileges while the children with fewer talents being forced to live out in the guesthouse. As children grew and performed better they would earn car privileges, but the children who hadn’t shown their special talents yet would be forced to walk or take the bus. I could go on, but I hope you see the hypocrisy with conservative philosophy.

Hopefully the general public will begin to question the purpose of government, because only an active discussion of these issues will result in a better society, not just a different society.

Monday, June 13, 2005

World Naked Bike Ride

This concept is just a little bit beyond my comprehension. I assume that the point of this bike ride is to attract attention to a cause. But, the cause is not clear to me. I saw body paint with different messages proclaiming an end to the Iraq War, Reducing Demand for Oil and drawing attention to Global Warming. But, I am disappointed that someone can’t just look at pictures from this event and say, “Ah Ha!” that makes sense.

I would really like someone to explain this to me, because if I understood how this was supposed to work then I could think about how it could be done better.

I look at the event and I say “So what!?” Maybe I am supposed to be upset about the nudity. But those who are upset about the nudity will look away won’t they. Isn’t the objective to get people to look at the message and say, “Yes I understand what needs to be done!”

Most of the people who are standing in the way of the problems are conservatives who don’t really care any way. They appreciate the form of the human body. They would not like to look at naked people because they find looking at naked people to be a sin. So, the people that are trying to be reached will be turned away.

Well, I guess it really doesn’t matter and the people who want to see the “World Naked Bike Ride” can look at pictures here, here and here.


Writing a blog sometimes feels like a fruitless labor. But, I really can’t stop myself from writing. I write, therefore I am. I wrote before the Internet existed, and those thoughts are mainly stuck in a stack of dusty notebooks in my attic. So, an audience is not what this is all about.

However, an audience is a plus. People read what I write and they form opinions of me. But since I mainly write the truth about what I think and feel I would say that those impressions are largely justified no matter what people think. But, readers also have the opportunity to comment on what I write.

For the most part I love to hear from readers and I read and think about every comment that I get. Some comments are very insightful and point out things that I haven’t thought about. Some comments are just rhetoric from the right that is a stretch to even imagine how they relate to the entry in question. Some comments don’t make much sense and reading them takes some skills in mind reading in order to understand what the writer was actually trying to say.

But, I have noticed that there are comments that I suspect are not honest. When I say honest I mean that people are leaving them who have commented before, with different usernames. I believe that this has been happening since the beginning of blogging and it doesn’t really surprise me. What it does do however is to make the discussion dishonest.

I should mention that the blog in which this entry is posted is not the only blog I post in, therefore I am not necessarily referring to any particular comment, just a general trend that I have seen over the last year or so of blogging. I have seen this from both the left and the right, so I am not picking out particular side of the political argument.

However, I have seen a phenomenon once or twice where a person posts a comment that seems to have been written very poorly. The grammar and spelling could be so poor that I would suspect that only someone with a proper understanding of grammar could have written the comment. The interesting thing that seems to happen is once I reply to the person a third person who is “better educated” in writing style takes up the gauntlet and begins to copy replies from their arsenal of set responses.

Of course this all is circumstantial and it happens rarely. But when it this does happen it only makes the discussion of the issues on the Internet less rather than more important. At some point I believe that credibility will become more important on the web. When this happens bloggers that use their real name on the web with earn more credibility and those who hide the truth of who they really are will gradually loose their credibility. I suppose that that issue will need to wait for a future blog.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Loving the Bible

I have no contempt for the Bible because I understand what the authors of the various books of the Bible are trying to teach. I hold disdain for those who read the Bible and come to their own conclusions. And I hold those who use the Bible for their own personal gain in contempt.

So, with my religious writings I believe that I have tried to shed light on those whom I believe to have corrupted the true teachings of the Bible.

This must of course begin with the Conservative Christian movement, which has misread the Bible and determined that Jesus was a Pharisee. This of course was not the case, but if Jesus were alive today he would have the same contempt for the Conservative Christian movement as he had for the Pharisees.

The Republican political party has co-opted the Conservative Christian movement for their own ends. So, if there is any hatred for Republicans in my soul it is for these people who have taken Jesus' word and turned it on it's head to serve their own purpose.

And, the leader of this party of course stands to the front of the line in my dislike. But, it is not just his use of Jesus' words for his own cause that concerns me, but his use of death and destruction in the name of God is even worse. Then his continued lies and deception in order to kill more people should make every Christian who supported him cringe with disgust.

But, no I actually like the Bible and what it really teaches about peace and loving your neighbor. It is too bad that other Christians haven't learned this yet.


Thursday, June 09, 2005

Understanding Stem Cells

The Radical Right thinks that stem cells and abortion have something
in common. In fact they think that these two things have everything in

From a legal point of view the definition of when life begins is at
stake. If the definition would allow the destruction of a few cells
just after conception, then the issue of outlawing abortion would be
hopeless. From the legal point of view one can not have different
definitions for life depending on different processes.

A couple of years ago I said that this all has to do with legal definitions.

For example, one could take a skin cell and put the DNA from it into
an empty human egg. The DNA would start to multiply and create a mass
of embryonic stem cells. Imagine a brilliant scientist who creates an
artificial human egg to hold the DNA. He names it a "skin cell holder."
And, he renames the cells created from the skin cell procedure
"replacement cells."

Now, a scientist could take a skin cell and put it into a skin cell
holder and create replacement cells. Who could argue with that?

But in reality the process required cloning and embryonic stem cells
the two naughty buzzwords.

So, I stand here today with hope for the pro-choice movement.

It doesn't have anything to do with justice or rights for women. Those issues
would not rise high enough in priority for the Republicans with the
money and power to be able to sway the political machine. It doesn't
really have anything to do with the life of the mother or the life of
the fetus. No, it has to do with the life of the sixty-some year old
wealthy Republican donors that actually control the direction of the Republican

Yes, the wealthy Republican donors are selfish.

What that means for this issue is that that is finally a crack in the
wall that was put up with Roe v. Wade. The wealthy Republican donors
are seeing the light through that crack. The wealthy Republican donors
don't want to suffer from life threatening and debilitating diseases.
This means that the wealthy Republican donors are beginning to put
pressure on politicians to do something about stem cell research. The
vote in the House of Representatives a few weeks ago illustrated the
pressure that is beginning to build. And, as more wealthy Republican
donors begin to realize that this is about their life they will put
more pressure on the politicians to fix this problem. And, the
definition of when life begins will be put off for a few months.

You see, the wealthy Republican donors never cared about the abortion
issue. This is because the chances that a 60-some year old wealthy Republican donor
is going to have an unplanned pregnancy was very small. And, if the
issue doesn't effect one then one doesn't really care to much about
it. But, the Christian vote meant power to the wealthy Republican
donors, so they were willing to concede some on this issue. But, now
that it means life and death the issue has come to roost and the
wealthy Republican donors that drive the action in the Republican
Party are begin to wake up and smell the stem cells.


Wednesday, June 08, 2005

The World As They Want You to See It

The Bush administration has taken deception in politics to new levels. They have learned that ignoring the facts and denying the truth will get them everywhere. Denial gives the supporters one thread to cling onto, and they continue to no matter what the truth is.

The truth about the build up to the Iraq War has been exposed by the Downing Street Memo, but the Bush administration and the Blair administration deny it. In their world papers are not really facts. Whistle blowers have come forward and testified to the reality, and the administration calls these people disgruntled or worse. If you already believe the president what could rise to the level of giving you doubt? We have learned that the truth is relative.

Even though Christians have harped on “Liberals” for having relative morality they have not come down on this president for dealing with relative truth. Where I come from truth is not relative to your objective. The truth is the reality of the situation and the way things really happened. This president does not believe that at all. Instead the truth in the Bush administration has more to do with the objective of a statement and not the reality of the situation.

So, today when the New York Times published the story about Philip A. Cooney fixing scientific data to show the administration’s policy in a better light I wasn’t surprised. This is just more of the same. Why should the Bush administration care what the scientific evidence is when they can just manufacture its own?

However, the problem with this strategy is that our children will suffer. The current administration talks a good game when they talk about the family and family values. But George W Bush only cares about immediate satisfaction in reality. This is sad, because George W Bush claims that he wants a better world for families, but he is ruining the world for future generations. But this is a blatant lie. Instead, he cares about a few families that have their family fortunes invested in energy companies. These families will make the maximum money off of their investments because of the Bush administration’s policy. The rest of us will suffer.

The reality of global warming is becoming clearer and clearer every day. But, the Bush administration wanted to hold on to dreams of soaring energy profits. One way of doing this is to delay doing anything about global warming until the very last minute. In that last minute the few families that George W Bush cares about will take their profits and spend them on better air conditioning for their 10,000 square foot cottages in Alaska, while our children have to figure out how to live in the new deserts.

Scientific data should not be left to the politicians to debate. This is an age-old problem. We know that Socrates had trouble with the Sophists over this very issue. Socrates believed in absolute truth. He knew that he didn’t know what that truth might be, but he believed that there was one. The Sophists on the other hand believed that you could argue both sides of any issue and there most likely wasn’t one truth. Taking the Sophists idea to personal advantage lead many to argue for personal benefits. This is what George W Bush is doing. He is looking at old, outdated, or made up scientific data to support his own personal beliefs to benefit his own personal needs. This is the Sophist argument. And our children will pay if we don’t look for the absolute truth.


Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Dr. Forbush Thinks - Deception - Podcast

Editorial Opinion: (click here to download the mp3 file) Deception

What ever happened to honesty? Shouldn't the radical right be insisting on moral reform? It seems strange that the radical right is leading the charge to moral deformation through deception...

Scientists Finally Agree That Humans Have Caused Global Warming

Traditionally scientists are skeptical until the evidence mounts well beyond the level that most people would take action. For example, water from rain may begin to rise in your sump pump. Your pump may not start and the water continues to rise. A scientific study may continue to consider the possibility that the pump hasn’t turned on because the water hadn’t risen high enough yet. Most people would take action before the water begins to flood the basement, but some skeptical scientists may continue to believe that the water hadn’t risen high enough until the basement begins to flood.

This isn’t to say that scientists would suggest that action shouldn’t be taken. Instead a scientist may begin to take action while he continues to suggest that the water may not have risen high enough to turn the pump on.

This is exactly what has happen with the Global Warming issue. Scientists were able to tell us several things twenty years ago. They told us that temperatures were rising. And, they told us that additional green house gasses would make the atmosphere trap more heat and cause the temperature to rise. Some scientists said things like, “this could be a natural fluctuation in temperatures.” However, that statement didn’t change the fact that excessive greenhouse gasses cause the temperature to rise and the fact that the temperatures were rising.

Well, the rate of the temperature rise has increased. in the early 1900s greenhouse gas production increased because humans began to burn coal and oil. At the same time global temperatures began to increase. This seemed to point the finger at a human cause for climate change. But some scientists continued to express traditional scientific skepticism. The skepticism never meant that that the scientists recommended taking no action, but no action is a cheaper solution. Politicians like cheap solutions, therefore politicians who don’t like to think have continually adopted a wait and see attitude.They used scientific skepicism to support their decision to do nothing.

Today we see that world scientists say humans are causing global warming. There are several publications in peer reviewed scientific publications that remove much of this scientific skepicism. This is a major step for scientists to drop their skepticism. Essentially the water is coming up the sump and the pump isn’t starting. We need to act quickly now or the basement will be flooded.

Should the Government protect us from ourselves?

I think that most of us agree that one provision of government is to protect us from others. The government establishes a military to protect us from outside forces in the form of aggressive countries. The government also establishes laws that protect us from other citizens by making it illegal for others to steal from us, cause us harm, or even kill us.

Each of these laws takes some freedom away from one person in order to protect another person. A person is no longer free to steal and the reward is that less of us have things stolen in general. A person is no longer free to kill someone, but our society in general is freer to live our lives in safety.

Yesterday when the Supreme Court ruled that the federal government could prosecute medical marijuana users even if a state made medical marijuana legal I tried to wrap my mind around the decision. It really doesn’t make a whole lot of sense in the traditional left - right debate. The right traditionally argues for states rights, but in this case the right is traditionally against drug use. Marijuana is cloaked in the guise of a recreational drug instead of a medical drug, so stereotypes come into the debate. The right traditionally argues for personal freedoms and less government control, but with recreational drugs they argue for protecting the public as a moral issue.

The argument from the progressives is to improve society by looking at things in a new light. The traditional progressive argument would be to protect the public from harmful substances. Many lawyers have prosecuted pharmaceutical companies for selling drugs that have not been thoroughly tested and users suffer from side effects. The progressive argument here however seems to contradict this stance. Marijuana use has anecdotal evidence to make life better for sick patients and some side effects could be dangerous.

Unfortunately one can’t use the stance on medical marijuana to point out the hypocrisy of the other side in another argument. If one could it would force both sides to be more consistent and argue about what the government should and should not do to maintain balance in the personal freedom verses societal protection discussion. This would be where the public interest would certainly be best served.

I must have heard Calvina Fay, the executive director of Drug Free America Foundation and Save Our Society From Drugs (S.O.S.) support the decision and argue for federal enforcement to be increased as soon as possible. She told us how she knew that there were people out there who were using medical marijuana to treat their athletes foot problem. Heaven forbid there could be people out there who are smoking pot recreationally!

When she said this I cringed. “Why the hell does she care?” I thought. I don’t get it. Does she have a secret need to smoke pot and she is jealous that someone else gets to smoke pot and she doesn’t. She sounds like she has a southern accent, and there are no southern states that have established a medical marijuana policy, so it isn’t going to effect her state. Study after study has shown that marijuana isn’t even a gateway drug to more dangerous drugs as people once thought. I can honestly say that hearing Calvina Fay make these arguments only makes me want to legalize marijuana. And I don’t even smoke pot.

Who is going to get hurt from smoking marijuana? Maybe the smoker him/herself will be hurt. In this free society of America we don’t want to limit freedoms unless there is some benefit to society. Shouldn’t the recreational use of marijuana be considered similar to alcohol or tobacco? Obviously it is possible to abuse these substances, but should the government take the freedom of choice away from us? Even God himself has given everyone free will. Shouldn’t man be free to test his free will? The point however is that we are only arguing for the medical use of marijuana. If some people slip through the cracks and is authorized to buy marijuana by mistake, what is the harm to society? And, is it worth the cost of our freedom?

The Bible Condones Husbands Taking More than One Wife

Hypocrisy of the radical right knows no bounds. Every time I write about some type of hypocrisy I feel that I have gotten it out of my system and I can write about something joyful instead. But then I turn around and realize there is more hypocrisy than anyone can comprehend.

The homosexual issue is low lying fruit in this issue of radical right hypocrisy. For example, one argument that these so-called Christians claim is that the Bible tells us that homosexual relationships go against the will of God. The quotes from the Bible that condemn this behavior center around Paul harsh judgement of sex in general and a quote from Leviticus that says that a man should not lie with a man like a woman. These quotes are repeated over and over again in order to prove their point This argument is much like the school yard argument where one kid says “nah-uh” and the other kid responds “uh-huh” and they never resolve the argument.

In another tactic the radical right also claims that once homosexual rights are recognized then what’s next? Would we allow marriages with more than two people?

The funny thing is that the Bible actually condones marriages of men with multiple wives. These marriages are littered throughout the Bible and they are taken for granted. It is modern secular laws that have taken that practice out of the public realm. Albeit Paul’s anti-sexual writing had influenced these laws.

In fact, one of the most obvious examples of the extreme positions the Bible claims to teach has to do with sexuality. In 2nd Chronicles Solomon’s son is being bragged on because he had 18 wives and 60 concubines. In contrast to this extreme machoism we read in Paul’s First letter to the Corinthians that those who have wives should live as though they had none.

How can the thinking person NOT question this book? Pulling a quote out of a book that expresses these extreme points of view in order to support a position is certainly dangerous. I could argue that Christians should take multiple wives and live as though they have none. How does this serve society? According to the Radical Right, it doesn’t matter if it serves society; it is God’s will.

And, once again we come down to the fact that every Christian religion has the right to interpret the Bible the way they choose to. But that choice should not effect those who interpret it in another way. Perhaps the Fundamentalist Mormons who take multiple wives will actually make way for homosexual marriages. They could find more support for their position in the Bible in order to bring their case to the overly religious judges that will be appointed by George W Bush. They will surely hear the case and judicial activism of these religious judges will surely approve these marriages. Once these multiple partner marriages become approved homosexual marriages will become law in much easier arguments. The argument would be that since the court ruled that non-traditional marriages were OK how can we select a special class of non-traditional marriages to discriminate against?

Of course this would only be true in a logical society. Unfortunately the American education system is falling apart before our eyes and logic surely will not prevail. Instead personal interpretation of folk stories will make our illogical laws for the future.


Dr. Forbush Thinks - Worse than Oil for Food - Podcast

Dr. Forbush Thinks - Worse than Oil for Food - Podcast

Editorial Opinion: (click here to download the mp3 file) Worse than Oil for Food

Worse than Oil for Food the US congress passed laws in secret that allowed Iraq to sell oil to Turkey and Syria before the 2003 invasion. In fact, these dealings were almost three times as much as the oil for food scandal, and no one is talking about this. Why?

Sunday, June 05, 2005



When I was at the end of a contract a few years ago and I was looking for my next job I met a man who told me that he had a very lucrative offer. He told me that I should meet him at a coffee house and talk to him about this opportunity. I was young and naïve at the time, so I wasn’t tipped off by his vagueness. Today I would certainly ask more questions before I would agree to meet with him.

Well, the day came and I went to the coffee shop and met with him. Some of you may have guessed already - he wanted me to sell Amway for him. So, this man’s idea was to get a perfect stranger’s hopes up to find some very nice job, but in reality he was hoping to find someone who would settle for selling Amway in a pyramid scheme. I am sure that there are some people who believe that this man was being resourceful in his approach. Telling the truth or being straight forward certainly were not productive approaches, or he would have used them. So, instead he wasted my time telling me how I could make millions selling products I wouldn’t use myself.

It seems that Americans take for granted the fact that people will use deception as a “creative” marketing technique. This is being resourceful or clever. Americans believe resourcefulness and cleverness should be held in high esteem and should be praised. People who are not wise to these deceptions are “suckers.” The “good” person is the one who is deceptive and the “bad” person is the one who falls for the deception. We should identify with the “wise” deceiver and shun the “sucker.” In fact, marketing is evaluated on the number of people who are persuaded to buy a product based on a marketing campaign. The number of people persuaded per number of dollars spent adds to the company’s bottom line.

One should understand that no one considers the needs of the customers in the marketing discussion, only the customer’s motivation to buy the product. If you can get people who don’t need your product to buy it then you still get the cash added to your bottom line. In the real world there are people who buy books and never read them because the marketing campaign made people want to buy the books. There are people who buy exercise equipment with the hopes of getting in shape, but they rarely if ever use it. There are people who buy diet food with the hopes of loosing weight, but they supplement their diet with potato chips, soda and beer that are also cleverly marketed.

Some questions we should ask are: Does the deception of marketing benefit society? Should potential customers be made aware of the truth? And, from the moral perspective we should ask, is this deception sinful?

Just because Americans except marketing deception as a part of life in America should we say that deceptive marketing is moral?

We all know that Americans believe that morals are relative to religion you belong to. Some religions are more strict than other religions. However, most religions that accept the Ten Commandments or similar teachings as major moral imperatives should conclude that deception falls under the “Thou shall not bare false witness commandment.” Of course our secular society does not demand that everyone obey the letter of the Ten Commandments, because not every person is compelled to hold these laws in high esteem.

But Saturday I read an article in the San Jose Mercury News that tells us that Christian churches across America now condone the practice of deception. They have begun the practice of renaming their churches with clever names like “New Life,” "HighWay Community," "Harbor Light" and "Great Exchange" Some of these churches were traditional Baptist or Assembly of God churches that have chosen to name themselves something else, because the Baptist and Assembly of God names have taken on a negative connotation.

Where I come from the effort to conceal the truth would be considered deception. So, instead of fixing the problem of emphasizing Paul’s teachings over Jesus’ teachings these preachers have decided to deceive potential members of the church. How could a member feel that the truth has been taught to them once they discover this deception? How could they trust the preacher to tell them the truth if they can’t even be honest about the flavor of Christianity they intend to teach?

The preachers will never be called on the carpet for these deceptions. This is because Americans accept marketing as a part of American Life. Members of the church want their church attendance to grow. Growth in their church validates their decision to join the church in the first place. What’s the harm in deceptive marketing, when the followers will eventually be convinced in the truth of Jesus? A potential follower may question the church who professes the truth, but once they get past that first hurdle they won’t question it again. The church is only interested in those who will accept everything as truth anyway. Doubters will only weaken the community and they should come back only after they accept the truth.

The whole idea and acceptance of deception should be troubling to the entire American society. But sadly these things are not troubling to enough of us. When people are raised in this environment where deception is encouraged to produce a desired result our leaders will use this technique on us.

This must be why the deception of George W Bush and his administration to take us into an illegal and unjust war in Iraq was accepted by more than half the American people. It was good marketing - these people must be thinking. There isn’t any reason why marketing is bad, is there? After all, this is the US President and if he wants us to believe something it must for our own good even if it isn’t true. Churches do this all the time to get us on the right track. George W Bush just lied to us to get us on the right track. After all, if he told us the truth how many of us would support the Iraq War. He did that to get us into the war. He knew that once we were in the war we couldn’t leave. So, if we learned the truth afterward, then we wouldn’t be able to do anything about it. The truth would be known and the deception would no longer be a sin, right?

I truly believe that there are people who rationalize this way. But, the difference is that most people don’t put these things all in one place where they can see that the rationalization doesn’t make a lot of sense. There are also people who refuse to believe that the president could stoop to the level of deception, but with Ronald Reagan’s Iran Contra deception, and Richard Nixon’s Watergate deception and even Bill Clinton’s Monica deception only the most naïve person would think that a president would not try to deceive the public.

At one time US Presidents would rarely deceive the public, and they certainly feared being caught in the deception. And, once they were caught the public would become outraged and vote the president out of office. Today however, a president can deceive the public and deny the deception and the public will naïvely accept the deception as a clever and resourceful way to market their ideas to the people. And the American people like it that way.


Friday, June 03, 2005


I heard a story from a soldier that was in Iraq in the first days of the invasion and occupation. The story seems a bit bizarre, but I thought it might be worth sharing. Maybe there is a God and he works in strange ways. Maybe God uses psychological warfare just to get people to understand what he wants us to do or how he wants us to live. I don’t have any evidence that this story is true or that any of these things actually happened, but in war we all know that things get out of control and you just never know. We also know that embarrassing things are always covered up by the authority in an effort to maintain moral.

So, this soldier tells me that he was in a small village out in the middle of no where. His group was on a mission to quickly establish that villages were safe and Saddam’s soldiers were not hanging around. The idea that terrorists might attack was still considered possible, but this group of soldiers was under the assumption that once the Americans came into the towns and villages the people would rejoice because they were freed from Saddam’s rule. These soldiers didn’t understand that some of the Iraqis just didn’t want to be occupied.

Men in the military will be the first to tell you that under these times of extreme stress very close bonds are formed with the men in a unit. The commander and one of his men were walking through the village when a sniper shot the soldier right in the head. The commander who was standing right next to him was shocked and very upset. In fact, he wanted the culprit apprehended. The soldiers in his unit went through the village and questioned everyone through a fairly poor translator. The commander wasn’t sure whether it was the translator or villagers that were causing the problem. So, he thought that he would force the villagers to talk by gathering them together in the center of the village. He had his solders collect 10 women from the crowd and he brought then to the center where he was trying to communicate to the villagers.

He told the translator to tell the people that he would kill the women one by one if they didn’t tell him who killed his friend. Since everyone in his group were equally upset by the lose of their colleague and they thought that someone would give up the sniper they went along with the plan. The commander threatened the village and the woman but no one would talk. These people had been through worse under Saddam Hussein, so they were not afraid and they had resolved to stand tough against the Americans.

Well, the commander was not making any progress with the crowd. He knew that if he backed down he would look weak to these villagers. The commander lifted the veil to look into the face of the woman, and she smiled back at him. The smile made him angry because he felt that she was being insolent. In the end he shot the woman and pushed her body into the crowd. The people were upset, but they weren’t about to give up the name of the sniper. The commander became more upset and he asked for the next woman to be brought forward. The commander told the crowd that he would kill her as well if they didn’t give up the sniper. Well, the crowd seeing the first woman killed felt assured that the Americans truly were as evil as they thought and they would not give up this man who was beginning to take on the aura of a hero.

Once again the commander didn’t get anywhere with the crowd, and once again he threatened to kill the woman. Once again when he went to kill the woman he lifted her veil and saw her face. She looked just like the other woman who had just been shot. She smiled at him just as the other woman had. Then she spoke in perfect English; “You want justice? You will see justice,” she said just before he shot her as well.

This must have spooked the commander, because he called quickly for the next woman. He tried to get a reaction from the crowd. Surely they would give up the sniper if they were forced to watch all ten women killed. This would demonstrate the authority of the Americans in this town. Maybe if the village were to see her suffer a bit more. This time the commander decided he would stab the woman in the stomach first to let her suffer before he killed her. Surely the crowd would see the suffering and give up the sniper.

The commander lifted the veil of the woman and once again this woman looked just like the other two. Perhaps they were sisters he thought. Once again the woman looked the commander straight in the face and smiled at him. Then she said, “You think that you have brought us freedom, but look at how much pain you are causing here. You want justice and revenge for the death of your colleague. You have already killed two of us and I will gladly die for my way of life. Don’t you think that you have your revenge already?”

With that the commander took his gun and shot himself in the head before anyone could stop him.

It was sad that four people had to loose their lives on that day and every one of them believed that they were fighting for the right side of justice.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Dr. Forbush Thinks – George Galloway - Audio

Dr. Forbush Thinks – George Galloway - Audio

Audio: (click here to download the mp3 file) George Galloway

These are the opening remarks of George Galloway.

Dr. Forbush Thinks - The Counter Culture - Podcast

Dr. Forbush Thinks - The Counter Culture - Podcast

Editorial Opinion: (click here to download the mp3 file) The Counter Culture

What was the Counter Culture and what was their legacy? Will the Radical Right succeed in taking away the legacy of the counter culture? Life was changed by the counter culture, but culture is fragile...

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Why the 2005 Deep Throat Will Never Exist

The Bush administration is paranoid of leaks and has done everything imaginable to shield itself from anyone who may be “disloyal” in the family tradition. This White House does not believe that the people have any right to know and understand what their government is doing.

If you look at what the Republicans did to the Clinton White House you can understand their paranoia. Instead of becoming more forthright and honest to avoid scandal they have decided to become more secretive to avoid scandal. The lack of scandal in the Bush White House doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist. Instead the leaks have been tightened and people fear the repercussions of information getting out.

There is always hope that one disillusioned White House insider will give journalists the facts needed bring this administration to face honesty.

Wait a minute, didn’t Richard Clark come forward? And, weren’t there some soldiers at the Pentagon that told us about the pre-planning of the Iraq invasion? And, Paul O'Neill wrote a book which told us about the inner non-workings of the White House. But for some reason the majority of Americans didn’t believe these things. I heard Judith Miller give a talk telling us that the US congress actually signed laws that gave Saddam Hussein 8 of the 11 billion dollars questioned in the food-for-oil program. But the news seems to be centered on the other 3 billion.

It seems to me that we have people outright telling us what is happening and no one believes them or cares to. If we add to this the radical right’s continual accusation of journalists in general the public begins to doubt every news story that is out whether it has evidence to back it up or not. It certainly would subtract from any credible anonymous source today. In today’s environment anyone one can claim anything and deny everything and the people just go along for the ride.

Is there any doubt that our Democracy is headed for hard times?

Dr. Forbush Thinks – The Homeless - Podcast

Dr. Forbush Thinks – The Homeless - Podcast

Editorial Opinion: (click here to download the mp3 file) The Homeless

Why are people homeless? Do they choose to be homeless? Is it a mental disease?