Friday, October 26, 2012


        Before discovering this newer video, I posted a link to a 2008 video, which I felt was still relevant and inspiring. It's still worth watching!
        In that post, which I have just cancelled. I suggested that as you listen to the stirring song from Les Miserables, imagine they were singing "one more term" instead of "one more day"! In this  newer version, featuring Broadway stars, they are doing just that, with contemporary lyrics and a powerful political message!
       The 2012 presidential election is just as important as the historic 2008 election, even more so, for it is a test of our American values. Truth itself is on the line. We can't let the dream die! There's too much at stake. We've come too far, accomplished too much.
        Click on this LINK, turn up the volume, click on your full screen, and be inspired!

Thursday, October 25, 2012


        Do you remember the 2008 video? It's still relevant and inspiring!

        As you listen to this stirring song from Les Miserables, just imagine they are singing
"one more term" instead of "one more day"!

       The 2012 presidential election is just as important as the historic 2008 election, even
more so, for it is a test of our American values. Truth itself is on the line. We can't let the
dream die! There's too much at stake. We've come too far, accomplished too much.

        Click on this LINK, turn up your volume, and click on full screen.


On whose side is the Lord?  Do not answer too soon,
lest your destiny force you to alter your tune
to a more humble melody, taught by the fact
that your enemies also may claim to be backed
by the same God you pridefully say is your friend,
until things do not turn out so well in the end.

When your faith is wrapped up in a neat little box,
then you need to be taught in the School of Hard Knocks!
If you want to be faithful, you'd best understand
that you can't have the Lord in the palm of your hand.
So the question to ask is not, What are the odds
that the Lord is on my side? but, Am I on God's?


Wednesday, October 24, 2012


Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images
        President Obama was the clear winner of the third “debate,” both in substance and in style.
Governor Romney was obviously trying to appear knowledgeable with his geographical name-dropping, but he was clearly limited to his memorized lines. That is undoubtedly why he chose not to debate but to reverse his previously stated positions and agree with the President on almost every for foreign policy issue. As was to be expected, Mr. Romney turned his every answer into an attack on the President’s economic record.
        The strategy did not work, however, for the President called attention to his opponent’s inconsistencies (“You’re all over the map, Governor!”), challenged his misstatements, and corrected his mistakes. It was abundantly clear which of the two candidates was more qualified to be Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces!
        The President was sharp, articulate, factual, and firm. His opponent seemed nervous and defensive. He was sweating. He spoke too fast and too long. The Fox News crowd complained that Bob Schieffer cut him off. He should have, but he couldn’t. He tried to, but Romney rudely ignored him and went on and on, never on the question, and it appeared at times that the President couldn’t get a word in edgewise.
        Today the President released three and a half million copies of his detailed plan for his second term. It is a far more factual, detailed, and explicit agenda than Romney’s vague generalities and platitudes.  It will be interesting to see how the Romney/Ryan team react, now that the rug has been pulled out from under their main criticism of the President!

Monday, October 22, 2012


        When it comes to foreign policy, how can there be a real debate tonight, when one candidate's foreign policy experience is limited to his investments in foreign companies and shipping jobs overseas? As the President put it very bluntly in the second debate, Governor Romney is the last person that should be talking about getting tough on China. His preparation for tonight's debate has been to memorize what he has been told by his neocon advisers. Since he has nothing to offer, all he can do is attack, attack, attack. He is good at that!
        During his overseas trip a few weeks ago Mr. Romney revealed his propensity for putting his foot in his mouth, and time and again he has displayed his dangerous tendency to shoot from the hip, as revealed by his totally inappropriate and premature criticism of the President immediately upon hearing the news of the killing of four Americans during the attack on the Benghasi consulate..
        We don't need a belligerent hawk in the White House. America's allies are dreading that possibility. The last thing we need is another war! What a tragedy it would be to destroy the good will and unity that has been established under President Obama's leadership! He has restored America's respect and role in the world community.
        Foreign policy has been one of the President's greatest strengths. Vice President Biden has had many years of foreign policy experience. Their opponents have had little or none. Voters should not be misled by Romney's rhetoric. If you need a reminder, take a look at this video.  

Sunday, October 21, 2012


The villainies of villains are evil;
they devise wicked devices
to ruin the poor with lying words,
even when the plea of the needy is right. 
But those who are noble plan noble things,
and by noble things they stand  (Isaiah 32:7-8, N).


From the knave come evil deeds.
        Well, what would you expect?
Bad trees cannot bear good fruit,
        for deeds the heart reflect.

Noble deeds from noble minds
        will follow, as they should.
By their fruits, then, you will know
        if they are bad or good.                                


"Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord" (Isaiah 1:18a, RSV).

You said, "Come, let us reason." Does that mean I'm assured
        that with me you will always be reasonable, Lord?

Somehow I don't think that is exactly what you meant.
        I'd like to know the reason why reason's your intent.      

If, Lord, I may speak frankly, I think it's rather odd, 
        unreasonable even, to reason with one's God.

But hold on just a minute! A thought occurs to me:
        Is that what I am doing with you right now?

                                                    I see!

Thursday, October 18, 2012


       What a contrast between the Republicans’ reaction to the second debate and the Democrats’ reaction to the first debate!
        Whereas Democratic sympathizers were the first to acknowledge the President’s disappointing performance and to concede that Mitt Romney was the winner that night, the Republicans are looking for all kinds of excuses to deny President Obama’s clear victory in Tuesday night’s heated debate.
Photo by Michael Phillips-
Pool/Getty Images
        As expected they heaped much of the blame on the moderator, Candy Crowley, for correcting Mr. Romney’s misrepresentation of the President’s remarks in the Rose Garden on the day following the Benghazi attacks. Instead they should be relieved that she didn’t call attention to all the other misstatements by the Governor. Ms. Crowley moderated what for me was the most spirited televised presidential debate, and the most lively exchange of views ever.
        The Republicans and some of the commentators have faulted President Obama for not laying out his plans for the next four years. I disagree completely with that criticism, because his plans were inferred over and over again in his responses to the various questions.  He will work for the passage of the legislative acts that Republicans have blocked, such as the Dream Act, the American Jobs Act, the Farm Bill, the Paycheck Fairness Act, the Veterans’ Jobs Bill, the cost of living adjustment for veterans, continuation of the Bush tax cuts for those earning under $250,000 a year, the winding down of our involvement in Afghanistan, and continuing to push his policies regarding energy, education, rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure, and the prevention of the outsourcing of American jobs. These are just a few of his most obvious commitments.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


AP photo/Charlie Neibergall
        President Obama was himself tonight. He was forceful, factual, articulate, confident, and above all presidential in his bearing.
        Governor Romney seemed to get more and more uncomfortable and desperate as the debate proceeded.  He said almost exactly the same things he said in the first debate, again short on facts and substance. He must have known that President Obama would not sit idly by and not question his statements, yet he seemed totally unprepared to deal with President’s pointed objections.
        It was almost ludicrous to hear the Republican spin doctors try to argue that their candidate had won the debate. Romney’s expression was anything but confident. His usual tactic of responding to a question by attacking his opponent was obviously not working tonight, and the Governor was clearly on the defensive, while the President was cool, calm, and collected.
        Tonight’s debate was a totally different scenario. The President had many strong moments, but he was especially good in summarizing his accomplishments, and I liked the way he pointed out the differences between Romney and George W. Bush, after Romney had fielded the same question from the moderator.

Monday, October 15, 2012


In the conflict re our language
        there's a point on which I'm shady.
It pertains to the distinction
        'twixt a woman and a lady.
If you call someone the latter,
        all the feminists will bristle,
and no matter what you're saying
        they will quickly blow the whistle.
Now, it may be quite old-fashioned,
        but I think of my own mother
as a lady, yet a woman
        just as free as any other.
And to state it rather bluntly,
        for those folks who are not "fraidies":
Every lady is a woman,
        but all women are not ladies!
That is not a sexist statement,
        for the same is true of men:
While all gentlemen are males, hey,
        not all males are gentlemen!

(from If I Do Say So Myself)

Thursday, October 11, 2012


        Governor Romney’s boost in the polls following the first debate is an indictment of the intelligence of anyone who switched his or her allegiance to the Republican candidate. Granted President Obama  gave a lackluster performance, and he disappointed his followers by failing to challenge his opponent’s misrepresentations. But he was true to his convictions and his words matched his record. You know where he stands and what he stands for.
        The same cannot not be said for Mitt Romney, who completely reinvented himself,  contradicting his previous positions on issues and saying things that were totally false. If people couldn’t trust him before, how in the world could they trust him after his totally hypocritical performance in that debate?
        He took his etch-a-sketch strategy to a new extreme, proving once again that he will say anything he thinks will help him to get elected, often to the embarrassment even of his surrogates who are continually having to reinterpret their fearless leader’s remarks. “What he meant to say was. . .”

Friday, October 5, 2012


        The first debate usually goes to the challenger, and the initial response of most commentators, Democratic and Republican alike, was that Mitt Romney won the opening round. The general consensus was that he was energetic, aggressive, confident, and well scripted.  Many expected him to be the attack dog, and he did not disappoint his followers.
        Though he sounded specific with his one-two-three point style, he was no more detailed than he has been throughout his campaign. The President’s supporters were disappointed and frustrated that the President let his opponent off the hook time and again. They felt that the President was not forceful enough in his responses, and that he missed or ignored opportunity after opportunity to call out his opponent on his misstatements and contradictions.
        But hold on. The President did not say anything wrong. He is being faulted not for what he said but for what he didn’t say, not for being too aggressive but for not being aggressive enough. Maybe restraint was the wise course to take, at least in this first debate.
         To those who have been so quick to hand the debate over to Romney, I want to say, “Wait a minute! Have you forgotten Mr. Etch-a-Sketch? We didn’t hear the real Mitt. We heard the well rehearsed Mitt! Romney scored on style, not on substance. A non-observer might have a difficult time picking a winner from a written transcript of the debate, especially if the non-observer was informed enough to recognized Romney’s complete reversals of many of his campaign positions, as well as his departures from the Republican Party platform.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012


        The first Presidential debate takes places tonight. Governor Romney and President Obama have been practicing hard for it. The political pundits have been discussing the importance of this long-awaited confrontation between the two opponents and opining about each candidate’s strengths and weaknesses and what each one has to do to “win” the debate.
        Viewers at home will be watching to see how the two men comport themselves, and how they interact with each other and with the moderator, former PBS News Hour anchor Jim Lehrer. We’re told that the format will be different from that of previous debates, but regardless of the changes, it will still not be a real debate.
        Nevertheless, I hope the moderator will ask questions that draw out the two candidates in a way that enables onlookers to see the differences in their views on key issues. Mr. Romney will surely be attacking the President on the economy and jobs. The President will be making the case that “we’re moving in the right direction,” and that he has a better plan for moving forward, and pressing his opponent for specifies on his plans, specifics that have been missing to date.
        As I wrote in an earlier post, the President has one great advantage in this debate: the truth! Because Mr. Romney has been flip-flopping all over the place and consistently misrepresenting the facts, it will be much more difficult for him to avoid being challenged on almost anything he says. It will be interesting to see how the President exploits his opponent’s inconsistencies.
        There have been rumors that Romney will come well stocked with memorized “zingers,” and he will be inserting them cleverly and seemingly spontaneously. But as much as the media reps like to focus, disproportionally in my view, on these kinds of sound bites, I don’t think I’m alone in my feeling that what is more important is people’s overall impression of the character, personal values, and goals of the two candidates.
        Tonight they will have to talk to each other, not about each other. Despite the limitations of the format, as we listen to their exchange, we shall have an opportunity to compare and contrast them apart from their attack ads and superPAC commercials. At the end of the debate the spin-doctors and supporters of each candidate will be claiming victory for their man.
        But you and I don’t need anyone else to tell us what we’ve seen and heard. We can decide for ourselves which one seems more “presidential,” or more confident, or more in command of the facts, and we will make up our own minds, if we haven’t already, which of these two very different individuals we are more willing to entrust with the leadership of our nation for the next four years.
        For me that decision has everything to do with the personal integrity of the candidates, as reflected in the degree of consistency between their rhetoric and their record, between their stated positions and their personal practices, between their public affirmations and their privately expressed attitudes.
        I hope the debates will help us to make that assessment.