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MannyGoldstein

Profile Information

Name: Manny Goldstein
Gender: Male
Hometown: Greater Boston
Home country: USA
Current location: Remulak, as far as I can tell
Member since: Tue Aug 30, 2005, 09:44 AM
Number of posts: 31,272

Journal Archives

A Rededication to the United States of America

The United States of America was never a sure thing, and it still isn’t.

A little epiphany for me today, on Veteran’s Day. Actually, not so little: too damned long! But here goes...

240 or so years ago, British colonists in America rebelled against their mother country over an idea. An idea! An idea that had been much talked about but little acted on in that era, which is stated succinctly in our wonderful Declaration of Independance:

“Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed”

(We don’t need no stinkin’ monarchy! We pick our own leaders, dammit!)

At that time, America’s colonials enjoyed perhaps the highest standard of living in the entire world, and British subjects enjoyed political freedom that was unique among citizens of major powers. Benjamin Franklin, no lover of the British monarchy, thought that rebellion was @#$%^ing nuts to give up such a good thing, and it took him quite some time to fully buy into the idea of splitting off. But despite having much to lose, our country’s first army came together and took up arms for the right to turn that idea into practice. There was great hardship and suffering, ambivalence and antagonism from many fellow colonials, but in the end they earned what they asked for.

Today, we thank those brave soldiers and their families for their suffering in the service of creating a noble experiment in government of, by, and for the people.

80 years later, brave Americans were again at war, this time over the question of whether the young country was a country; were we The United States of America, with laws that applied to all inhabitants? Or were we simply a confederation of smaller states that banded together when convenient to each state? Were we one, or many? The proximal cause of this war was the ghastly insistence by some states that man has an unalienable right to own another human being, and to use that human being in whatever manner they wished, and that this terrible practice should expand in contravention of our Constitution.

Would the Constitution hold? There is no more perfect description of that struggle than President Lincoln’s opening address at the dedication of a vast cemetery filled with the dead from one battle in that war. It begins:

“Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure.”

and ends:

“It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us… that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

The noble idea again prevailed, through the blood, sweat, and tears of soldiers under arms, and today we thank them and their families for their suffering in this service.

After another span of about 80 years, our founding principle was again under attack, by oligarchs at home and fascism abroad:

“They had begun to consider the government of the United States as a mere appendage to their own affairs and we know now that a government by organized money is just as bad as a government by organized mob. – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Taking back our own government was effected virtually without bloodshed thanks to the revolutionary weapon given to us by our Founders: the vote. We got our act together, voted for good and smart leaders, and government of, by, and for the people was restored.

Our votes won the war.

But the situation abroad was another matter, and Americans again took to arms, in a brutal global struggle against monstrous tyranny. And again, those Americans were successful, and today we thank them and their families for their suffering in this service.

Once again eighty years have passed, and again we find ourselves in a familiar predicament: government of, by, and for the people has been replaced by government of, by, and for organized money. America’s 99%, indeed our planet’s 99%, have become the the food, the pawns, and the playthings of a small group of people, many of them deeply depraved predators, more interested in filling the gaps in their wine collections than in feeding the hungry. They have purchased the majority of those who make and enforce our laws, and have spent vast amounts to divide and weaken the populace so that we have become unable to leash their depredations.

I have been watching our inexorable decline for decades, and it has been frustrating beyond words, so very, very sad. At first I tried to do what I could to stop the slide, but the thing was too large, and it was obvious that my efforts were but a flea fart in a hurricane. So I stopped trying.

And now we spiral the drain.

Month by month, things grow worse for the 99%, better for the 1%. We see the homelessness, the despair. The American Dream is now just a distant dream for most Americans. We once were a great country where each year brought greater prosperity for most, where there were wrongs, but these were righted with time. We are now the Hunger Games, the prey and the preyed-upon.

Sometimes I just want to walk away. To pick up stakes, to take my family and go to another place, to one of the few remaining countries which are organized around the collective good of all of their residents. I’ve thought about this a lot recently: today’s United States of America is no good place for our teenaged son to enter adulthood. Perhaps it’s time to seek better conditions elsewhere, as my ancestors did, and as did their ancestors before them.

But here’s what I realized today, on Veteran’s Day: I am surrounded by people, some alive and some as spirits, who went out there and fought the good fight. Some gave there lives, some returned with grievous wounds to body or mind, and some served at a desk. But they served. They got up off their asses, joined the cause, and they got the job done. It was never a sure thing, but they fought through the uncertainty and got it done.

What kind of a person am I if I quit the fight now? Not much of one!

And so, I will give it another shot. Instead of slinking off, I will try to live up to the ideals of our veterans.

I will fight. I’m not sure of what to do yet, but I will damned well fight.

And I hope that you will fight, too!

It will be tough, but we can win. We must win. We owe this to our posterity, to our future, and to the future of our children.

Excelsior!

----------------------

A little note: I did something dumb and started a blog as an experiment. I'll give it three months and see how it goes. I love DU, but sometimes I worry that the Stark Fist of Removal is in my future, so I'd like to have another record elsewhere.

(Feel free to not check the blog out yet. Almost nothing's on it, and it's ugly.)

Everything I write on it will be freely shareable under the Creative Commons license, and will be marked:

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Posted by MannyGoldstein | Tue Nov 11, 2014, 11:38 PM (21 replies)

To all the right-wing anti-Purgies

We have a problem.

For 20 years, y'all have exchanged favors to Wall Street for cash to you, to your families, and to fabulous war chests used to destroy any politicians that hold traditional Democratic values.

That's worked out great for your bank accounts and those of your relatives, and America's wealthy have never done better. But it ain't all rosy: for typical Americans, by-and-large, it's been a catastrophe. Utter disaster. Record numbers of homeless children, that sort of thing. (Fortunately for you, the police state you've created keeps the unsightly urchins from view as you walk from your limo to your fabulous dinner parties, but they're out there, cold and hungry.)

Now things have finally gotten so bad that even the base that you keep mooning and screaming "who the #%^* else ya gonna vote for, schmucks?" at has finally said "not you!".

You suck, and you're destroying our country.

So perhaps you can understand why people want you to go away. If we FDR Democrats (i.e., those of us with "#%^*ing retarded" ideas) do finally get our act together and reconstitute the party of working families, you're certainly welcome to vote for us. But do stay the hell away from the levers of government: you people have wrought, and/or been complicit in, enough destruction to last a century.

Go the #%^* away.
Posted by MannyGoldstein | Sat Nov 8, 2014, 05:41 PM (277 replies)

"Who the #%^+ else ya gonna vote for, chumps?"

They keep mooning the electorate and screaming "who the #%^* else ya gonna vote for, suckers?"

Surprise!

Obviously, their solution is to moon the electorate a few more times per day. Perhaps waggle their junk at us on special bipartisan occasions.

Incredible.

How these nitwits remember to breathe each day, let alone that they make bajillions on Wall Street in their respites between government "service", is beyond me.

Dear Lord: yes, it's kinda funny. We get it. You are, indeed, the greatest prankster of all. Now stop.

Sincerely yours,

Banged-Up Manny

Posted by MannyGoldstein | Fri Nov 7, 2014, 07:59 PM (50 replies)

We need a new Democratic Party, that much is clear

The current one sucks so terribly that we got our asses flambéed and handed back to us by a confederation obviously composed of lunatics, idiots, and rogues.

Lincoln fired his losing generals until he got some that got the job done. When will we rank-and-file Democrats do the same?

This is war.
Posted by MannyGoldstein | Wed Nov 5, 2014, 07:37 AM (342 replies)

This could actually be good. Stop laughing and hear me out...

Remember back in 2006 when Democrats were somehow able to overcome Howard Dean's leadership of the DNC to take over both houses of Congress?

When that happened, Democrats could have stomped Republicans like bugs, but instead they adopted a new spirit of amity and comity, never lording their position over the opposition. Do we have any reason to believe that Republicans will be any less gracious come January? That a new spirit of cooperation and putting Americans ahead of partisanship won't take root in Congress?

Anyone? No?

OK, well then maybe we can focus on president Obama's able and willing veto pen? He can stop the GOP cold if they try to do bad things. Right?

#%^*

Well, gotta go, need to change my underwear and get very, very, very drunk.

Goddamned Liberals.

Posted by MannyGoldstein | Wed Nov 5, 2014, 12:04 AM (1 replies)

Just think of how much worse tonight would have been if

Howard Dean had been running the DNC. We might have won many more races, but there'd doubtless have been partisanship, competent campaigning, and unhelpful vocalizations played over and over by the news media.

Ewww.

I believe we all owe a debt of gratitude to one Debbie Wasserman Schultz (and her photogenic doggies) for keeping this from being a bad night. This campaign season was clean, fair, and I dare say it's begun to move the domestic animal Overton Window from cats back to dogs.

Huzzah!

Regards,

Third-Way Manny
Posted by MannyGoldstein | Tue Nov 4, 2014, 10:39 PM (37 replies)

Scott Brown's next state?

NY's been known to vote carpetbaggers into the Senate, but an admitted Republican might have a tough time there.

Thoughts?
Posted by MannyGoldstein | Tue Nov 4, 2014, 08:45 PM (27 replies)

Did any other "Liberals" vote today?

After much reflection I changed my mind and voted for Democrats for the first time in... jeez... three months or so.

Any other "Liberals" have a change of heart and vote?
Posted by MannyGoldstein | Tue Nov 4, 2014, 05:09 PM (145 replies)

Here Teddy, let me fix that for you:

"To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public just stopping the ratfuckers."

Regards,

Third-Way Teddy Roosevelt
Posted by MannyGoldstein | Mon Nov 3, 2014, 03:36 PM (8 replies)

Agitprop.

Got me.
Posted by MannyGoldstein | Sat Nov 1, 2014, 10:37 PM (0 replies)
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