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Why I can't be a Republican Anymore (Warning Long)

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Oneliest Donating Member (25 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:43 PM
Original message
Why I can't be a Republican Anymore (Warning Long)
Now with Coherency!

I am not certain that I will call it an epiphany. To me it seems to have been a more gradual process. My history and upbringing conspired to form a conservative person (little c), and like my father before me I gravitated towards the Republican Party.

I am veteran who is the son of a veteran who is the son of a veteran. If one looked long enough you could probably find an unbroken chain of millitary service going back to the time 3-cavemen got together with sticks and pushed other cave people out of the cave they wanted. Neothilic Imperialism?

For most of my childhood I lived in rural North Carolina towns. After my father completed his millitary service we settled down on a plot of land adjacent to my Grandfather, where amongst other things I grew strawberries, and did farm boy things complete with small caliber fire arms.

My father was contemplatively religious though non-denominational, and my mother was ferverent though kind hearted. We were members of a Southern Baptist congregation. We attended church somewhat regularly , and I even assisted my mother with children's church as a pupetter. I was a cub scout, briefly and regretfully a "weblow", though never a boy-scout. Farm boys I suppose gain less of the adventurer spirit from participating in Boy Scouts when the woods is right out the back door.

As a young man I managed a local theater, and attended the community college in our county. Around my 21st birthday , life began to have a somewhat lack of excitement and I decided to enlist in the Army. My father having served in some capacity in intelligence got a good chuckle when I informed him I was joining the Infantry. The recruiters were delighted as I had maxxed all the entrance examinations and they were frothing at the mouth to get credit for shipping me off to Basic Training.

For approximately the next 8-years I served my country willingly , spending long periods in Bosnia and Egypt (Sinai). There I saw the U.S. Army can be used intelligently to make peoples lives better. We were able to ease suffering and act as a deterrent to conflict. We built things, and made things better, and empowered the local police to maintain order in their communities.

After the Army, my wife and I joined the family business as Environmental Consultants. I find it meaningful work, I frequently manage the removal of lead paint, asbestos, do safety planning, investigate environmental impacts, and for the most part leave people and things better than when I found them.

So all these things tend to lead towards somewhat of a conservative mindset, and its somewhat easy to see why I remained a Republican for so long.

However, I began to notice cracks in the dike. My party was not making good decisions or taking care of people. New Orleans---pathetic. Iraq? I am not sure I am for or against the war, I am against endangering soldiers with no obvious plan. Really Sadam obviously was a bad person, but are Iraqis better off? How many did we kill to save them. If someone could scientifically show me our actions saved more lives than were lost through "collateral damage" then maybe maybe I would buy off on it.

Finally the Republicans seem adverse to protecting us right here at home! We can award billions of dollars in no-bid contracts to questionable defense contractors,s but we can't find a few hundred million for meaningful Homeland Security? I have become convinced that security is this cow-bell the Republicans ring when they want us to mosey up to the feeding trough at elections. Once they get the vote though, its back to the next scam to enrich themselves and their buddies, or figuring out how to justify taking a lobbyist sponsored flight down to Barbados.

It are these things that begin to add up after time, and while most people are somewhat instinctually loyal, the glasses have to come off sometime. I took a good look around and really was repulsed by what I saw. I knew then that my stated political affiliation no longer represented me. I knew I couldn't be a Republican any more.

(More later this post seems to becoming somewhat on the longish side)

http://lonelyistheoneliestnumber.blogspot.com /
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KyndCulture Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:45 PM
Response to Original message
1. Welcome to DU!!
:toast:
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eleny Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:45 PM
Response to Original message
2. Welcome to DU!
"How many did we kill to save them." I'm with you.
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electropop Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:28 PM
Response to Reply #2
38. Some of your values were always librul.
You mention the kind attitudes of your parents (kindness is librul).

You mention that the family business is environmental remediation. Hello? That's librul work. ;-)

Welcome to DU!

Great essay.
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mimitabby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 06:32 PM
Response to Reply #38
60. shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh don't tell him that!
;)
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WestHoustonDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:47 PM
Response to Original message
3. Welcome back from the dark side and welcome to DU Oneliest!
It must have been very difficult for you to go through the changes that led to your making this post. With more people like yourself, we can find our way back to representative government.
:yourock:
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hang a left Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:48 PM
Response to Original message
4. Welcome to DU
Good first post.

I don't know how long you have lurked here but, your in for some more disenchantment with your party, I promise.
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Neil Lisst Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:48 PM
Response to Original message
5. what one thing drove you away from the Republican party most?
and welcome
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Oneliest Donating Member (25 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:59 PM
Response to Reply #5
15. Iraq, FEMA, and Homeland Security
I'm not sure which weighed the heaviest.

The most personal impact came from speaking to some of the soldiers I trained, or lead when I was still in the Army. Some of the ways they are being used there or deployed are just criminally stupid. I can't be more explicit about that for obvious reasons.

Homeland Security, seems an exercise in wasteful spending, particually when meaningful steps could be taken but aren't.

FEMA and Katrina, really if we the Federal Government can't mobilize a task force in our own country to alleviate the suffering of citizens, why are we trying it overseas! Planning for Emergencies isn't that tough:
1) Identify the worst case scenario
2) Allocated resources for materials, communications, and training
3) Train and practice
4) Stockpile and stage response resources
5) Respond

The Federal Govt's response to that was beyond pathetic, they need to contract out for planner, or form a disaster Division in the Army to quickly mobolize to sites. The Army and other branches typically have units on call to deploy around the world on 24-hour notice and be on the ground fighting! The idea that we can't have something similar for disaster response for our own citizens is ridiculous.

http://lonelyistheoneliestnumber.blogspot.com/
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insane_cratic_gal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:03 PM
Response to Reply #15
21. you don't sound like you were ever a republican to me
you sound like a closet democrat.

They way you speak about people with compassion, and wanting to help those less fortunate sounds like a bleeding heart liberal(not my term for us but freepers).

Anyway I'm not sure if your converting but you certainly sound like you've been in the wrong club for a long time.

Welcome
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Oneliest Donating Member (25 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:24 PM
Response to Reply #21
37. Compassion
If I have any demonstrable compassion (deeds over words) it's from my mother. She is genuinely religious and conservative, but seems genuinely committed to caring and helping people above all other things (she's a children's librarian.
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moc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 07:37 PM
Response to Reply #37
65. I'm sure your mother is very proud of you.
She raised a thoughtful, compassionate man.

Welcome!
:hi:
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EVDebs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 05:02 PM
Response to Reply #15
55. You'll be interested in the Ptech/GoAgile scandal along with
Nixon's original plans to seize Saudi oil fields in '73.

Ptech / GoAgile stuff:

FBI shuts down investigation into Saudi terror cell in Boston
http://www.madcowprod.com/mc4512004.html

Dollars of Terror
http://www.frontpagemagazine.com/Articles/ReadArticle.a...

Britain Says U.S. Planned to Seize Oil in '73 Crisis
by Lizette Alvarez
JANUARY 2, 2004 ~ THE NEW YORK TIMES
http://www.publicexposure.tv/oil_1973.html

You start reading between the lines and things get a lot clearer.
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Blue_In_AK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:49 PM
Response to Original message
6. Welcome to DU, Oneliest.
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ourbluenation Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:51 PM
Response to Original message
7. K anR! Welcome!!!
:toast:
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Redstone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:51 PM
Response to Original message
8. Well, hey, there's a place for you here. You write well, by the way.
Redstone
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Oneliest Donating Member (25 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:29 PM
Response to Reply #8
40. That's debatable but thank you:)
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Arugula Latte Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:52 PM
Response to Original message
9. Glad to have you!
:toast:
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radfringe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:53 PM
Response to Original message
10. welcome
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myrna minx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:55 PM
Response to Original message
11. Welcome to DU, Oneliest.
Edited on Fri Mar-17-06 02:59 PM by myrna minx
:hi: You are a very eloquent writer. I look forward to your future posts. You'll find that a great many Duers are recovering Republicans, who have become disenchanted and disenfranchised from their party. Welcome to the big tent, my friend and thank you for your service to our wonderful country.
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Uncle Joe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:56 PM
Response to Original message
12. Welcome to D.U. Oneliest,
sit down and stay a while.

:hi:

Kicked and recommended.

:kick:
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Nutmegger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:58 PM
Response to Original message
13. Welcome to Democratic Underground!


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Dr Ron Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 02:58 PM
Response to Original message
14. Along these lines
This is from a blog post I wrote regarding idenfification with Democrats as opposed to being an independent as in the past:

This has changed as the Republican Party has descended into support for extremism. They have left the Democratic Party, for the moment at least, as the only party in a two-party system for those who support individual liberty over authoritarianism, capitalism versus use of the power of the state to accumulate wealth in the hands of a few, reason over deciding public policy based upon religious dogma, and Constitutional limits upon the power of the state versus a dangerous concentration of power in the hands of a few.
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Just Me Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:00 PM
Response to Original message
16. Trust me, it's not just Republicans who discovered those "cracks in,...
,...the dike". I was an independent for twenty years, a professed apolitical being, until I noticed those "cracks" and aimed to examine them. My world view completely changed.

Welcome to DU. :hi: Hope you don't feel lonely here. :hug:
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C_U_L8R Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:01 PM
Response to Original message
17. So glad you've joined in !!!
the conversation's lively
and the comraderie.. inspiring
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tabasco Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:02 PM
Response to Original message
18. Welcome to DU from another 11B.
Or were you 11C? Whatever.

I supported military action in Afghanistan. But what we got was a joke of an operation, with the Pakistanis "guarding the border." It would be laughable if it wasn't so tragic. The neocons already had plans to go into Iraq, so they could not spare troops to go after the people who attacked New York City. Every American should be outraged by the unjustified invasion and occupation of Iraq and the ineffective operations in Afghanistan as a result.

Well, hooah bro. Lots of vets here at DU. Glad to see another grunt. You sound like a good person with the moral courage to accept new facts. I have a former republican friend. The last straw for him was when Bush made jokes looking for WMDs in his office. That was sick and pathetic.
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Oneliest Donating Member (25 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #18
23. 11B
Right on!
2/87 BN 10th Mountain Division (LI) 94-01
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tabasco Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:24 PM
Response to Reply #23
36. Are you kidding me?!
I was in 1-87 from 90-94. I was attached to 2-87 for a couple deployments! I liked 2-87 a hell of a lot better than 1-87.

Good ol' Fort Drum. I sure don't miss Dinosaur Land. :hi:
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Oneliest Donating Member (25 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:28 PM
Response to Reply #36
39. Dinosaur land
Lol the first time I went to that training area I dint have knee pads. The next time I went I think I packed two extra sets. Just so it isn't an inside joke, "Dinosaur Land" was this god-forsaken area of Fort Drum where the Infantry would go to train. More people injured themselves just walking from that point A to B in that area, than we had injuries in real world deployments. I remember seeing one kid tangled up in old concerntina wire and it caught up in his lip!

Dinosaur land was just plain evil.
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NVMojo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:03 PM
Response to Original message
19. Welcome to living outside of the neocon regime ...
I left a few years ago for similar reasons. My conscience couldn't stomach the lies and cruel behavior I saw developing ...

hang in there!
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Doctor_J Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #19
26. Hopefully you and the OP realize
that the Smirk reign is NOT an anomaly, that the GOP stands for fascism. You are welcome here, I hope you won't go scurrying back when the GOP puts a new face on its rotting, evil soul.
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Oneliest Donating Member (25 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:03 PM
Response to Original message
20. Wow, that was a pretty overwhelming welcome!
Thanks, it actually feels good to say, I am not a republican. Perhaps one of you could write up a 10-step program for wavering republicans to bring them out of the dark :)

http://lonelyistheoneliestnumber.blogspot.com /
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SoCalDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:08 PM
Response to Reply #20
30. Welcome... Here's one you can pass around
My dear Republican friends,
Posted by SoCalDem
Sun Aug 15th 2004, 06:52 PM
Updated and reposted , upon request...


My dear Republican friends,


So, are you done being "played"??.... Have you "seen the light"??

Right about now, some of you must have noticed that your "boy" is tap dancing as fast as he can, yet he seems to be getting boos instead of rose garlands..

For over 30 years, you have been "played". The people to whom you have trusted your futures, and your children's, have let you down...again..

....These fat-cats at the top of your "party" know full well that some of you don't like "dark people", so they have carefully crafted language that you lap up with a "wink, wink, nod, nod". They have no intention of carrying through with their carefully couched plans to re-segregate and return to the "good ole days" that they pretend to long for.. They like the days NOW.. They are making tons of money by rotating in and out of industry and government.

....The republican-masters at the top of the heap, got that way because THEY control the taxes that they pay. They throw the peons a bone now and then, and let them think that they too are getting a tax break...finally.. But Look at those utility bills, your insurance co-pay, that college tuition bill, the grocery bill...look at the latest rent increase or the increase in property taxes.. That $10 extra every week in your paycheck doesn't BEGIN to cover the increases in the things you pay "hidden" taxes on. Roads are not free, power plants are not free,bridges are not free, city government is not free.. Taxes pay for these things, and when the revenues go down, the COSTS of those public services go UP. It's a fact of life.The extra money you were supposed to have , to help boost the economy, just ends up in another rich man's pocket...along with the hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of tax cuts HE got.

....They know that some of you are truly religious, so they came up with a "bone" for you all too.. They ooze "faith" from each and every pore when they are talking to you all and asking for votes, but behind closed doors, they continue to cheat on their wives, abuse their kids, and do all the things that they profess to hate. True faith is more than carrying a Bible around, or saying "God Bless Anerica every time a microphone and camera are near. Faith is what you have in your heart, your soul...not what dangles from a shirt sleeve or drips off a lying tongue.


....They know how you all loathe the "welfare queens" ..Ronald Reagan told you all about them.. The ones with the fur coats and Cadillacs, out to collect their food stamps..She was a made up myth.. The real welfare queens are visible when the fat cats look in the mirror. They "rent" public land for pennies to graze their cattle...they take kickback subsidies for their corporations, and then they lay you and your friends off.. They tell you about all the wonderfully diabolical things they have in store for those "damned immigrants" , but they are the ones who offer jobs to them.. Why?? Because they know that the immigrants will be too afraid to dare ask for a raise, or bathrooms or decent wages, or health insurance..These workers get hurt on the job, and then have to go to emergency rooms. which raises the cost for all of us.. The reason they get hurt is because these same fat cats have bribed our legislators to "ease" the safety requirements on the job.. If they end up blind in one eye, it's no biggie to the bosses.. immigrants have TWO eyes..

....These same politicians know that if you ever got some truth , you might see through their lies, so they have made sure that the airwaves are chocked full of people who "sound reasonable", yet seem to always agree with only their ideas.. Didn't it ever strike you as odd, that no matter what time of day you turned on the radio for all those years, you rarely (if ever) heard an opposing opinion? These fat cats at the top, have tons of money, but they still needed to "push your buttons" and "ring your bells" to get you out to vote for them. They had to have a perpetual way to get your attention..and they needed to keep you "upset and angry" enough to turn out on election day.

About those buttons and bells:

....Abortion is always a bell they can ring, and their Pavlovian supporters start salivating. Whether your unknown-to-you neighbor has an abortion, or does not, should be of little consequence to you, but over the years, they and their preacher friends have somehow convinced a lot of you, that by inserting yourselves into the crotches of all women, you are endearing yourselves to God Almighty. Do you really think that you are getting "extra credit" for screeching epithets at women who may be entering a clinic for a pap smear, or that God will praise you for encouraging "physicicide"?
Ask yourselves , truthfully, if you would welcome the child of YOUR 13 year old who was raped..or would you just quietly call a doctor-friend, who would "help" in such a situation?

....Guns are always a fun issue for them too. They know that a lot of their supporters are gun aficionados, so they try to scare you into thinking that the next knock on your door will be Ted Kennedy coming to collect all your guns.. Cars are registered, and yet, unless you miss payments,no one is coming to take your car away from you. In case you haven't noticed, there are democrats who like guns too.

....School vouchers are another interesting wedge issue, since it hits on several of their "issues". "Upper-Crusty" Private schools probably see the government vouchers as valuable as toilet paper for their little scions who attend, but for the storefront Bible oriented schools, these are manna from heaven.Vouchers themselves are not the problem, as much as they are a clever way to funnel public tax money into private enterprises, while weakening the public schools that most people choose for their kids.. This should be an issue for you to be on the "other" side. Taking public money for private use seems like something that fiscal conservatives would be against. Somehow, they have managed to convince a bunch of you that with that $3,000 voucher in your hand, it's "next-stop-Exeter" for little Jim Bob , jr... What that voucher will do for you is allow other fat cats like Bill (the Gambler) Bennett to sell some of his software so he can hit Vegas in style..Neil (Asian girls have sex with him for free) Bush also is into the private school scams, so your vouchers help him pay his alimony and child support.

....School prayer is always good for a few hoots too. Every religious kid on earth has prayed in school, but organized prayer in school (unless it's a religious school) is NOT OK. This does not mean that God has no place in school. God can be in each student's heart and soul. Teacher-led or school sanctioned public prayer is NOT for public school, and deep down you know it. It's an interesting issue to drag out of the closet every election year.

The flip side of "your" issue is this... If Susie Jones can lead the Lord's Prayer, and all are expected to chime in, how will YOUR child feel when Mohamed leads the prayer from the Koran, or a Jewish child leads the prayer, or a Hindu child, or a Sikh child, or a Buddhist child? Will your child behave respectfully, or will they come home and after telling you, will YOU run to complain to the school board?? Like it or not, we ARE a pluralistic society, and the "new people" who have come here with their faith and customs, are allowed to have the same rights as you have.

....What if you found out that the two elderly "sisters" who have lived in your neighborhood for 30 years, are really not sisters? What if they had babysat for your kids, and you had invited them to Thanksgiving Dinner? What if you had liked them for all those years, and THEN you found out that they were gay? Does that make you a bad judge of character? Does that mean that somehow your children will "turn gay" because you found out about them? Will your marriage suddenly crumble to dust because someone you thought was an old maid, turned out to be a lesbian? Will they now expect you to "join them"?? or will they just be what they have always been...your neighbors. Ask yourself about your own children.. What would you really do if your own child was gay? Would you disown a 12 year old who told you he thought he liked boys "in that way"?? Does that make you a bad parent for raising him "wrong"??

....That brings us to the "wacky environmentalists" and their "junk science". Have you ever wondered why so much energy , money and attention is paid to discredit scientists who have spent their lifetimes trying to figure out how to save lives and make our health better? Why WOULD that be?? Hmmmm ..Maybe it's because the tale they are telling us contradicts the corporate masters of your politicians who allow these same companies to pollute your water, air and soil. Is it OK for your baby to get "a little" mercury, arsenic,plutonium, or any other toxins out there?? Do you know what your baby's "upper limit" is regarding tolerance of toxins.?? The "slow" child at 5, may have been poisoned as a baby, and you will NEVER EVER get an answer.. Isn't it better to try whatever it takes, to eliminate ALL toxins from our food chain, and from our air and water?? How is that a BAD thing?? To hear Rush & the gang, one would think that people who legislate for money and corporations who are in it for the money, actually do have your best interests at heart.. Do they?? Is it worth your health or the lives of your children, if they are wrong?? If the environmentalists are wrong, all you get out of it is cleaner air, cleaner water, safer food.. That's a BAD thing??

....Last but not least , we have that "icky" war thing.. I know that most of you wrapped yourselves in the flag-cocoon with him, and probably thought that we did "need" to attack Iraq, but isn't it a shame that nothing has turned out the way he said they would.. Flag worship is NOT the same as Patriotism..True Patriotism is a mature love of country.. Patriots love their country, but they are grown up enough to support their country with full knowledge, that their country can make mistakes. Flag worshippers love their country like a jealous lover, ready always for vengeance and spite.

Soldiers keep dying, and we are no closer to the Iraqi Dream that they told you all about.. You know the one.. The one where they race alongside the Humvee, throwing kisses and flowers.. Here are a few facts.. There never were WMDs..(well there were, but those were the ones that his Daddy gave Saddam, and Clinton destroyed 99% of them, and the rest were rusted pieces of junk).. The only things thrown at the humvees were rocks and bombs.

Bush KNEW there were no WMDs.. He LIED.. You all jumped for joy when Clinton was coerced into a lie about sex, yet can so easily ignore a BIG FAT UGLY LIE that has gotten almost 1,000 soldiers, and untold Iraqis killed..Shame on you !..There were ZERO Iraqis on the planes that crashed into our buildings..ZERO..ZERO..

Do you really believe, deep down in your bones, that George W cares one iota about the welfare of the Iraqi people?? Of course he does not. It's about enriching his contractor friends, and his daddy, and of course, himself..when he leaves office. It's about the "Grand Plan"..the one where the US controls the world.. It's almost a James Bond-like fantasy, only it's NOT A MOVIE.. Real people are spilling real blood,thousands of them, and the end game is not one that he could have predicted. He failed to plan for what happens after the tanks, and choppers, and Humvees "won the war"..

The Iraqi people have been a civilization for thousands of years, and they are very capable of handling their own affairs. Lots of people around the world feel that OUR leader is a dangerous man. Should their feelings count for nothing?? If they had the military strength, what would happen if they decided to "remove" our leader? Would you take up arms against them?? Of course you would. This mis-adventure is turning out badly because it was unnecessary from the beginning.He was hell-bent to have his "war", even though he had a perfectly appropriate opportunity many years ago, but was too scared to go. He needed to be the wartime hunky president in a padded flight suit.. It's always about the photo-ops.

....If you sit down and play a game of "pretend" you will see the light.. Here's how you play.. Read any article and every time the word "Bush" appears, substitute "Clinton".. Do a "gut-check"..Tight, uneasy, angry, conflicted?..

You have been "played", but it's not hopeless. Imagine YOUR job out-sourced.. Imagine YOUR insurance gone... Imagine yourself homeless.. Imagine your own child stricken with a preventable cancer.. Imagine your own freedom ...gone.. It's almost there.. But there is still time..

No one is telling you that you MUST vote for Kerry, just that you take the time to think for yourself..analyze what you read.. Read foreign papers.. There is actually "news" in other places, and things that happen here DO affect them too.. They have a stake in what happens here..

It's called empathy.. Look it up.. It's helpful and it really does not cost that much.. The returns far outweigh the cost.
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Nite Owl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:04 PM
Response to Original message
22. Welcome to DU
Oneliest!

It must have been a huge decision to turn away from a party that you have identified with all your life. Remember though they left you first. They weren't always the way that they are now. We need lots of good people on the left, in the middle and the right to do what we need to bring the America we grew up with back again. If you have been lurking here lately it may seem that we argue an awful lot but it's the vibrant discussion that we need to bring about a consensus and I hope that you will help us all along the way to better understand the conservative side of issues as many will help you understand what the liberal side is about. We are all united in one thing if we put the labels aside, we truly love our country and want the best for its citizens and the world.

Peace
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Toots Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:05 PM
Response to Original message
24. I only hope and pray that you are leading the charge
I find it difficult to see how anyone that isn't filthy rich could want to be a Republican today. At one time they had a message that resonated but now it is but a hollow echo that is filled with corruption and greed. Welcome Home...
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blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:05 PM
Response to Original message
25. I look forward to the rest - you had me at Why I can't be a Republican
;)
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johnnie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:06 PM
Response to Original message
27. Welcome
It's a big place here and there are a lot of things to read. Enjoy and welcome to DU.
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Roland99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:07 PM
Response to Original message
28. Glad you woke up! I did it over 2 years ago. And welcome to DU!
:hi:

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LibDemAlways Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:08 PM
Response to Original message
29. Welcome to DU.
If you aren't familiar with the Project For a New American Century, PNAC, I hope you will take the time to do some research. The Iraq war was planned long before 9/11 by a group of neocons including Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, and Bolton. 9/11 was the excuse they needed to invade - (the "new pearl harbor" as a PNAC document puts it). Here's a link to a letter these guys wrote to Clinton back in 1998 urging him to invade Iraq then.

http://www.newamericancentury.org/iraqclintonletter.htm


This is only one of many stories that has been ignored by the corporate media but common knowledge to those here on DU. This is a great cyber community. We're glad you're here.
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Greeby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:08 PM
Response to Original message
31. And another one takes the red pill
:bounce:
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PBass Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:15 PM
Response to Reply #31
33. Stick around, it's a big tent. Something for everyone.
There's a saying: "I do not belong to an organized political party. I'm a Democrat".

Keep that in the back of your mind, as you sift through the issues. I think the Dems allow themselves more latitude in their beliefs, than those on the right... sometimes at our own detriment.
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EC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:13 PM
Response to Original message
32. This seems more in line with liberal issues than Republican
After the Army, my wife and I joined the family business as Environmental Consultants. I find it meaningful work, I frequently manage the removal of lead paint, asbestos, do safety planning, investigate environmental impacts, and for the most part leave people and things better than when I found them.


The Republicans really think that industry will moniter themselves when it is obvious that it's not gonna happen.....

Welcome to DU
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Gregorian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:18 PM
Response to Original message
34. You are SO BRAVE!
We tend to cling to the things we were taught as we grew up. To make a stand and do what you really feel is the right thing, logically, is highly commendable and very brave. I salute you.

We are very similar in a lot of ways. But we took different turns in our lives. I also maxxed out on the Navy tests. But decided not to continue on and enlist.

Now you know there is a group of kind and considerate people with their arms open for you. Welcome.
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deadparrot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:24 PM
Response to Original message
35. Welcome, Oneliest!
:hi:

Hope you find a happy home here. Don't be too overwhelmed...at times, we're an intimidating bunch, but hang in there. Glad to have you. :toast:
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Marnieworld Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:31 PM
Response to Original message
41. Welcome to DU!
You are not oneliest anymore! Great post reflecting a great mind. Bravo. :applause:
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Ino Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:41 PM
Response to Original message
42. Welcome Oneliest!
SoCalDem... awesome post!
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OnionPatch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:43 PM
Response to Original message
43. Welcome!
I grew up in a very similar kind of situation. What usually kept me from voting Republican, though, was a strong union job and later, environmental issues. The GOP just didn't seem to care a bit about protecting the environment if some money was to be made by trashing it. More recently there are a whole lot more issues, including the things you talked about.

Wish I knew what that ten-step plan was, we sure could put it to work on a lot of people, huh?

Oh, by the way, I spent some time in Egypt for my work and we loved going to Sinai on the weekends. We always stopped and talked to the troops when we saw them. :hi:
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B Calm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:45 PM
Response to Original message
44. Most people are too ashamed to admit they voted for republicans.
It took guts!


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EOTE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 03:58 PM
Response to Original message
45. It seems as if you get it.
Welcome to DU. The world would be a much better place if more in this country thought about things so cogently and logically. I think most people want to help others less fortunate even if their voting patterns don't reflect it. Unfortunately, lack of critical thinking often leads people to vote against their best interests and others. Like you, I support military intervention when it's decided that the benefits (of the people, not the corporations) outweigh the risks and casualties.

You seem to have a lot of progressive views. I know you can't be a republican anymore, I hope you find a home with the Democrats. We're not perfect, but I think we're the best we've got right now.
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in_cog_ni_to Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 04:00 PM
Response to Original message
46. You certainly have the repub party figured out!
That is spot on. They don't care about Homeland Security. That was made obvious when they wanted to give Dubai control over our ports. They also don't care about people, unless they're wealthyand they are destroying the environment. I am thrilled you have seen them for what they are.

Welcome to DU. It's nice to have you here! :hi:
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Oneliest Donating Member (25 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 04:06 PM
Response to Original message
47. Reenlistment photo (1997)


I am the soldier on the left, with the generous endowment of ears :)

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FrenchieCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 04:19 PM
Response to Reply #47
49. Welcome!
We Need you.....and it is a good thing that you realize that voting Republican is voting against the interest of most in the United States.

:headbang:
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Laurab Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 11:38 PM
Response to Reply #47
68. Welcome to DU - intelligence, and a sense of humor, too!
nice to have you here! :hi:
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sellitman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 04:16 PM
Response to Original message
48. A refreshing post! Welcome to DU.
I don't know if I could do what you have done had the tables been reversed. I am not so brave. I do believe there is a difference between a true Conservative and a "neo-Con" though, as many on DU have stated in the past. Being a Neo-Con is evil....being a Conservative isn't in my book. Welcome to DU, glad you posted!
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rockymountaindem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 04:24 PM
Response to Original message
50. Welcome to DU!
Don't be scared off by the hard-liners here. This place ain't for the squeamish (politically).
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stillrockin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 04:34 PM
Response to Original message
51. Welcolme to DU, Oneliest!
I enjoyed reading your post. It takes courage to change. I admire you.

:patriot:
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understandinglife Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 04:38 PM
Response to Original message
52. Welcome to DU!
Be The Bu$h Opposition - 24/7
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Raksha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 04:44 PM
Response to Original message
53. What an articulate and heartwarming post...welcome to DU!
:toast:
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OPERATIONMINDCRIME Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 04:45 PM
Response to Original message
54. Welcome Oneliest! Great Twist On A Great Three Dog Night Song By The Way!
Very insightful post and very well put. I hope you will find that the democratic party, though not perfect, has all the core values and commitment you desire and that you grow to be a proud member of it.

I wish you well in your journey and look forward to hearing more from you as it seems you are quite objective, open-minded and reasonable.

Welcome to DU! :hi:
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Canuckistanian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 05:16 PM
Response to Original message
56. Thanks for that...
And welcome to DU! :hi:
:toast:
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Oneliest Donating Member (25 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 06:00 PM
Response to Original message
57. Going to Registar soon to change my registered affiliation
I told my wife that last night, and she was like "you can do that?". It makes me wonder though how many might think that once you are affiliated you are permanently affiliated?

http://lonelyistheoneliestnumber.blogspot.com/
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nookiemonster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 06:14 PM
Response to Original message
58. Welcome to DU, Oneliest!!
C'mon in.....the water's fine.

:)

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Libby2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 06:24 PM
Response to Original message
59. Welcome !! Great Post
and we are glad to have you.
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maveric Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 06:35 PM
Response to Original message
61. This might be the worst I've ever heard from the RW.
Save the fetuses from abortion to turn them into slave laborers and cannon fodder?
Thats so moral and Christ-like! :sarcasm:.
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cally Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 06:48 PM
Response to Original message
62. Welcome to our party
And be prepared to be frustrated by the lack of cohesion and spuabbling. We fight and disagree constantly in this party. Some of us are dogmatic, some just cranky, some brilliant, and some just kind. Some of us like me are all of those at times. Just remember, the cantankerous debate that happens online doesn't completely reflect the party as a whole. We're friendlier in person. :hi:
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SeattleGirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 06:57 PM
Response to Original message
63. Welcome, Oneliest!
Today's Republican Party is definitely not the Republican Party of old. I've never been a Republican, but thought they had some good ideas, and did some good things. But now? The Republican Party of today seems hell-bent on ruining the country, and dosen't seem to care about anything but lining their own pockets.

Kudos to you for questioning what is going on, and for realizing that the party no longer fit with your values. Perhaps someday it will return to be more of what it used to be. But in the meantime, welcome. And thank you for the suggestions you made to me in response to my post in the thread about talking to Republicans (I made the post about talking to my brother).
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degreesofgray Donating Member (226 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 07:15 PM
Response to Original message
64. I can't stand the GOP
and find their agenda despicable, yet even so I find it sad what's happened to that party once the religious wackos and neocon wolves were left in charge. I mean, what are right honorable geezers in golf pants to do?
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Liberty Belle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 10:45 PM
Response to Original message
66. Congratulations on your courage in coming forward, and your wisdom
for seeing the light.

I must say, though, that many of your core values are actually liberal.

Democrats and other liberals have always been strong on environmentalism, winning passage of the environmental laws that protect our health and safety. The current Republican party, by contrast, is dismantling environmental protections, from the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts to the Endangered Species Act. Republicans in Congress have also been more interested in protecting corporate polluters than victims of asbestos, to name just one example.

Taking care of people is also a liberal value. Our safety net programs, such as Social Security and Medi-Care, were created by liberal Democrats. Before Social Security came along under FDR's administration, 50% of seniors in America lived in poverty. Today it's 10%. Democrats have always been concerned with protecting the rights of the poor, the sick, the elderly, women and minorities, too.

Conservatives give lip service to protecting national security, but many are more interested in protecting the interests of defense contractors than the safety of the American people. So this Republican controlled Congress failed to provide funds to repair levees despite dire warnings about New Orleans before the storm hit, killed a bill last week that would have provided funds for port security, and failed to heed warnings of intelligence and military experts who said invading Iraq would enrage Muslims, increase terrorism and lead to civil war. Democrats seek peaceful solutions where possible, but do support military force when needed, such as in Bosnia and Afghanistan.

In short, your values have always been correct -- but like many Americans, you were deceived by rhetoric from the right and slurs against liberals.
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Rainscents Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 10:59 PM
Response to Original message
67. Hi Oneliest and Welcome to DU!!!
May I ask, how did you find DU? Your post is excellent reading!

:hi:
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kestrel91316 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 11:51 PM
Response to Original message
69. Welcome to your TRUE home! You HAD to eventually become
one of us - you have already got the "right livelihood" thing, what with your work in environmental cleanup and your desire to leave the place better than you found it. You really were a liberal all along and just didn't realize it, lol.
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Vektor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 11:54 PM
Response to Original message
70. Welcome to DU, Oneliest! You sound like a very enlightened man.
Edited on Sat Mar-18-06 12:06 AM by Vektor
You'll find MANY veterans here, and many others of a similar mindset to yours. What surprises a lot of (recovering) Republicans is just how many Democrats are veterans, or are currently serving. The Republicans like to claim that they are the party of "patriotism", but many, such as yourself are beginning to see that many Dems are walking the walk, often in uniform, while a lot of Republicans are only talking the talk. The Democrats are the pro-soldier party. We care about the men and women wearing the uniform, not just the concept of war. While the Bush administration is beating the war drums, the Democrats are scrambling to get proper benefits and health care for military families, and wounded soldiers returning from war. The Bush administration asks "How many troops can we get on the ground in Iraq?" The Democrats ask "How much body armor can we get for them, and what sort of services will be available to them when they return home, maimed and traumatized, or for their widows and children when they come home in a box?"

My father's story sounds very similar to yours, except he was in the Air Force, and has always been a lifelong Democrat. Thank you for sharing your story and for being here.

Welcome! :hug:
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Sgent Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 11:56 PM
Response to Original message
71. Welcome to DU
Just to let you know, your not the only converted R on the board!

In addition, DU tends to be the most liberal of the libs, so some of what you see may seem extreme (and some probably is). That being said, you are welcome, and know that not everyone here feels that way.
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blue cat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 11:56 PM
Response to Original message
72. Welcome
Edited on Fri Mar-17-06 11:58 PM by blue cat
What do you think about the laws regarding abestos passed by the republicans?
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kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-17-06 11:59 PM
Response to Original message
73. I would say you are courageous...
:) to post on DU... Welcome.
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upi402 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-18-06 12:09 AM
Response to Reply #73
74. To face truth, amend character upon examination
Now that is courage.
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democrank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-18-06 05:51 AM
Response to Original message
75. Glad to have you here with us, Oneliest. Welcome.
What a thoughtful post. Glad your "gradual process" brought you here. You`ll agree with some of us and disagree with others. That`s the beauty of our party. We don`t march in lockstep just because someone tells us we must. One thing is certain. Lots of myths you`ve heard about Democrats will be debunked.

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BR_Parkway Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-18-06 09:19 AM
Response to Original message
76. Welcome to DU, that is pretty much my story also - glad to see
others coming to the same conclusions.
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xultar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-18-06 09:25 AM
Response to Original message
77. Welcome!
:hi:
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sonias Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-18-06 09:49 AM
Response to Original message
78. Welcome to DU Oneliest!
I'm so glad you came out of your fog. I commend you for your honest story.

Sonia
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fooj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-18-06 09:51 AM
Response to Original message
79. Welcome!
:hi:

Peace.
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twenty4blackbirds Donating Member (418 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-18-06 12:29 PM
Response to Original message
80. hi
:hi: welcome to DU
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Gronk Groks Donating Member (582 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-18-06 02:03 PM
Response to Original message
81. From one veteran to another: Welcome Onelist.
Though I admit that I prefer ships to ground pounding.

Family sounds familiar, but the American vets only go back to WWI. With Scottish blood, I suspect we have been bloodthirsty barbarians much longer. Father was a Republican until he died and I believe my brother would consider himself a "lapsed" Republican.

Was a Republican and voted for Reagan the first time. After he broke the Air Traffic Control Union, I went independent/Libertarian.

Shrub finally pushed me over the edge into the Progressives when he invaded Iraq without finishing Afghanistan. He cemented the change when he started to destroy our civil liberties. If he isn't trying to create a fascist state, it sure looks like he is.

Good luck and good night.
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Cha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-18-06 02:49 PM
Response to Original message
82. Aloha, Oneliest!!
This is so poignant..thank you so very much for writing down and sharing all your experience and perspective.

I see you live on Oahu..I'm going to move to the Big Island in approximately 3 years. Cannot wait!
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