Sunday, November 12, 2006

Politics, Religion, And Honoring Our Veterans

Hi guys. We begin tonight with Anderson talking about the recent niceties at the White House and this intros into a Bill Schneider piece that for once isn't dominated by polls. Now that the democrats have more control they're going to have to pull together more on Iraq strategy and what stance they decide to take might be evident in who they chose next week to be majority leader. Right now it looks to be between Steny Hoyer and John Murtha, the latter being the bolder choice. He's also my choice. Rumor has it Hoyer and Pelosi don't get along, so I really don't want them spending all their time trying to undercut each other.

On now to a Brian Todd piece about how the GOP is really mad about the timing of Bush's Rumsfeld decision. Some believe that if he would have axed him weeks ago it would have saved their seat. Bush claims that he didn't get rid of Rumsfeld before the election because it would have sent the message that he was making a decision for political purposes. Um, as opposed to every other decision he's made? I don't think the man has ever made a decision that wasn't for a political purpose.

Moving on to an interview with CNN analyst Ron Brownstein and Time Congressional Correspondent Perry Bacon. Ron thinks getting rid of Rumsfeld before the elections would have helped the GOP, but Perry thinks they would have had to do it much earlier. Perry believes the democrats can do little on foreign policy anyway, but Ron believes the fact that they now have oversight power and are able to talk about alternatives is going to make a difference. Then Perry spouts the totally insane talking point that the democratic win is actually good for Bush because it will force them to show how they govern. Let me let you in on a little secret here Perry, the democrats may end up sucking, but the only way they can turn out worse than what we just had would be if they actively tried to be horrible.

Transitioning now to a Joe Johns piece related to Mark Foley. Oh, you thought that went away, didn't you? We now learn that democratic operative Lane Hudson was behind the outing, but before the righties get their panties in a twist, it should be noted that he actually met with a reporter about doing a story in July. However, that turned out to be a no go, so he created a blog called "Stop Sex Predators" and posted some of the emails. ABC then picked up the story from there. Hudson insists he was just doing what he thinks was right. I honestly don't care what his motives were because what he did was right and if a republican operative exposed a democratic predator I'd think what they did was right too.

Next up we have an Anderson piece on evangelicals, who are feeling a little bit blue these days. Homophobe James Dobson is accusing Washington of ignoring issues important to the values voter. Ugh, I hate that term. Everyone is a values voter. No one doesn't vote their values. It's just that some people's values are different than others and no, James Dobson's are not better. Conservative Christians gained a lot of momentum under Reagan because he latched onto the abortion issue, then they slinked from the public eye due to scandals, and lastly got manipulated again under Bush. How people can continue to be taken advantage of by politicians for decades and not realize it is beyond me. I'm a fairly religious Methodist and I'm sickened by the religious right and how Christianity is portrayed because of them.

Keeping on the topic we have an interview with "Tempting Faith" author David Kuo and Charmaine Yoest, vice president of the Family Research Council or NAMBLA. Anderson reads Dobson's recent statement and Kuo replies with, "When you whore yourself to politics you shouldn't be surprised to get treated like a whore." Daaayaaam! I like this guy. Anderson is equally suprised by the statement, but gives a more demure, "yikes." David thinks that the name of Jesus is being tarnished by politics. Amen brother! I've met lots of people who want nothing to do with religion because they think it's all about hate and what the Dobsons of the world preach. It makes it kind of hard to spread the Good News. Charmaine, being from the FRC, of course disagrees. In fact, she thinks religious people should actually get more involved with politics and she mentions the civil rights movement and woman's suffrage. Um, big difference there. Those people were working to progress the country, not move it backwards. Also, those people marched and worked on the ground giving their blood, sweat, and tears. They didn't sit comfortably on their butts doing their radio shows and sending out emails. And I don't recall Martin Luther King making millions and using his name to hawk things like a diet shake, as Pat Robertson does. The people of the past Charmaine talks about were the real deal, the people she follows are nothing more than Pharisees. She then tries to claim that the democrats just won because some of the candidates were pro life and the party is trying to move from a "radical leftist agenda." Oh yes, that radical agenda of a livable wage, civil liberties, accountability, energy independence, and a healthy environment. Thankfully Anderson shuts her up by noting that evangelicals actually voted in basically the same numbers they did in 2004 and David admits that how much power they have is actually overblown. As we leave the interview Charmaine states that the US has "always had religious people at the forefront of change for justice for people." Just not justice for gay people I guess.

On now to Michael Ware live to talk about a new Al Qaeda in Iraq tape that mentions Rumsfeld's sacking. He tells us the insurgents have become more sophisticated in their propaganda war. Anderson asks how big Al Qaeda in Iraq is and Michael replies that it's definitely in the thousands, but hard to say. From Michael we go to an Anderson piece on homeless Iraq vets in which Anderson actually went into the field for the interview. In the piece we meet Joe, who is now living out of his car. While in combat Joe suffered a traumatic brain injury and broke his back, which resulted in a fusion. He's now unable to lift more than 10 pounds and therefore couldn't go back to his auto mechanic job. He tried another job, but ended up landing in the hospital with back pain. Man, I feel for this guy. My back is fused in two places and I've got steel rods and screws and everything too. I know how hard it is for me to work and I imagine he's in worse shape. Joe has also recently been diagnsoed with PTSD. Some family has offered him help, but he's too proud and right now he just feels lost in the system. It's so sad how we treat our veterans. After CNN contacted the VA, Joes disability status was bumped up to 100%, meaning more money. Yay CNN! However, Joe won't believe it until he gets the check. Let's hope he does.

Next we have an Arwa Damon piece on Will Mock, a 23 year old soldier who served in Iraq. CNN actually spent what looks to be a lot of time with Mock and they have a lot of footage of him talking about his experiences and what it's like to be a soldier. He seems very honest, unassuming, and a general nice guy. I could see myself being friends with him. Unfortunately Will won't be making any more friends because he was killed by a roadside bomb on October 22. It doesn't seem fair. But that's war I guess. Wow, there's no good way to make this transition, so I'll just say that The Shot tonight is a video from youtube of an adorable baby laughing its head off. This Shot is in honor of Erica's last day before she goes on maternity leave. Congrats Erica! We'll miss you! Pretty good tonight. B+

Screencaps by stormi0611

So what are your views on the David Kuo/Charmaine Yoest interview?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm glad the two were not in the same room together, it might have gotten more heated.

I often wonder how hard it is for Anderson to report the stories on same sex marriage without injecting his own opions into the subject, whether he is for or against it. Not because of the rumors of him, but we all know that he has severl gay friends. There are so many topics I would like to discuss with him

9:30 AM  
Anonymous Sharla said...

I actually read this post last night at 3 am because I woke up. But, I didn't respond till now :)

I heard a great quote once from a pastor- "Christians are better known for what they are AGAINST than for what they actually stand for." YEAH, totallly. If I say "Christian" to most people, they will think of (a)people that bomb abortion clinics (b)pedofile clergy (c)gay bashers and (d)loud mouthed jerks that seem to hate everyone. I don't put my religious views anywhere but my own blog. I read other people's blogs (and I read all kinds) and never say anything there.

And that vet? PATHETIC. The system, not the vet. I'm a vet- a disabled one, too. And that's awful. It pisses me off that so many people need the help of the VA and don't know how to get it. And the VA is NOT helpful. I talk to vets getting shafted like that all the time. I tell them to go to their nearest DAV (Disabled American Veterans) to get a FREE advocate. That's what I did, and they were extremely helpful and got me where I am today. Granted, I don't LIKE being a disabled veteran mooching the system and that's why I'm working on going back to work again. But not everyone (like that poor guy) has that option. GEEZ. So many people go and get hurt while serving our country and then when they come back all broken no one tries to help them. Makes me furious.

11:17 AM  
Anonymous Liz said...

I too was surprised by the story of the vet that was homeless. I am glad CNN was able to help get him some results. Such a shame, our brave men and women have to suffer on the battlefield, and here at home too.

4:58 PM  
Blogger eliza said...

What's particularly frightening is that there are many more seriously wounded from this war than say Vietnam because better healthcare has allowed people to live that would have otherwise died. Now, that in itself is a great thing, but I just don't see how the system is going to handle all these wounded vets.

5:04 PM  
Anonymous Mathilde said...

The segment with Joe was excellent, this is really the kind of work Anderson does best. I hope this veteran gets the disability benefits he deserves. It's shameful to give a man with such severe injuries $300 a month.

5:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with you. I am actually an Evangelical Christian but lately, I have been increasingly disgusted by the self righteous attitudes that the religious right people have displayed. I agree with you totally. CHRIST came to this world to spread the message of love, not condemnation. I hate it that His good name is being tarnished by these radical people. Why are so called Christians spending so much time and energy on defending their positions on "moral issues"? As Christinas, isn't our energy better spent on helping the needy, the vulnerable, and raising people's awareness of social issues, such as poverty, AIDS, homelessness, women's rights, child welfare? Isn't that what Christianity should be all about? To make a difference in the world and let people see CHRIST through us. And I am also sick and tired of people praising Bush for being a born again Christian. Born again Christians don't start wars and ignore the plight of children and the needy. Sorry for my rant but I really would like to see more Christians get involved in issues that truly matter, and really make a difference and make this world a better place.

5:36 PM  
Anonymous Sharla said...


6:31 PM  
Blogger eliza said...

Good rant anon! Now are you the first poster too or was that someone different?

I love Christmas time, but I'm not looking forward to all the shrieking about the so-called War on Christmas. Who cares if the cashier wishes you Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays? Buying crap at a retail store has nothing to do with the true meaning of Christmas anyway. It's all so stupid.

7:27 PM  
Anonymous Sharla said...

I forgot to say what I thought about the David Kuo/Charmaine Yoest interview. Um- hate each other much?! It was like ping pong.

8:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am the 5:36 p.m. anon and I am not the first anon. I must say that I really enjoy this blog and please keep up the great work. Thank you for this blog.

I was at Church this morning and our pastor devoted his sermon on AIDS in Africa. This is pretty progressive for a Baptist Church. He talked about how important it is for Christians not to pass judgement on others and how wrong it is for us to think that we are above others. He stressed that CHRIST wanted us to love each other. As Christians, there is really so much we should do to help address these global social issues. In sum, I have just been extremely frustrated with these right winged Evangelicals.

9:45 PM  
Anonymous Sharla said...

You know, you could just put 'other' and make up a dumb name for yourself. It's much less confusing that way :)

9:54 PM  
Blogger eliza said...

Sounds like you have a great church, anon. I go to a pretty progressive church myself. I'm a Methodist.

12:10 AM  
Anonymous A teacher said...

I'm Assembly of God. I can't put up with any Gay issues at all at church. Like I leave the sermon. How about helping Darfur, New Orleans, Homeless Families,anyone less fortunate.

8:13 PM  

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