America’s Obsession with Extramarital Affairs Are Used As Distractions to the War


Tiger Woods, Tiger Woods, Tiger Woods-What have you done?  Word of his sordid affairs is all anyone can talk about. From coast to coast  on every single local and national newscast, squeaky clean Tiger Woods cheating on his wife is the lead story. Sadly,we’ve seen this film way too many times. Whether it’s South Carolina governor  Mark Sanford, basketball great Kobe Bryant, former president Bill Clinton or Civil Rights leader Jesse Jackson, such sagas more often than not have me asking,  ‘What are ‘they’ trying to hide from us?’

All this Tiger Woods talk has me suspicious. Something is up.  

It was just two days ago, that we had a sobering conversation with Congressman and former Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich about what he anticipated President Obama would say in his speech about increasing troops to Afghanistan. A very impassioned Kucinich noted that the anti-war’s collective upset to Obama’s proposal was a few steps too late. He reminded us that key hurdles were cleared a month ago in early October around the 8th anniversary of the Afghan War. According to Kucinich, on October 8th, the House  approved a bill that authorized the expenditure of $130 billion dollars for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.  He noted that the democratic dominated Congress had already taken a pro-War stance and many in the anti-war peace Movement were quiet.

David Letterman's extramaritial affairs were big distractions from war issues

Folks may not recall this particular bill because back in early October while our government was pouring all this money into the war effort, the rest of the nation was besieged with endless news stories and punditry analysis about another sordid extramarital affair and its accompanying baggage including attempted extortion. This of course involved late night TV host David Letterman. 

 Instead of hearing from an enraged Kucinich, Barbara Lee or Texas Republican Ron Paul, we were subjected to all sorts experts taking up valuable airtime debating whether or not Letterman having sex with another consenting adult was appropriate.

 Adding to this distraction was Barack Obama being awarded  the Noble Peace Prize the day after the October 8th date Kucinich referenced.  Ron Paul took some time out and expressed his concerns about the Noble Prize sitaution. he talked about it being a waste of time and distraction and that it awarding Obama such a prestigous award would not move him toward peace.

But getting back to this country’s obsession with cheating spouses. They’ve long served as perfect covers for serious discussions about issues that have far-reaching impact on our lives. Last month it was Letterman, this month its Woods. The Woods story is now eclipsing important news coverage of the dozen or so anti-war protests yesterday from around the country. Instead of seeing or hearing man-on-the-street reports soliciting the opinions of young people about the escalation, we’re hearing them weigh in on Woods. Instead of hearing from celebrities like actor Danny Glover talking about his oppposition to the war, we’re hearing basketball great Charles Barkely‘s take on Tiger.

And don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting a conversation about Tiger Woods is an indication that one is un-intelligent or un-interested in more serious subjects. What I am cautioning us to keep in mind, that all this news coverage may be a distraction  to keep our eyes off some important balls. We have to ask ourselves; ‘What are we not talking about today?  Is it the President’s Job/Economic Summit being held today? Is it the debate to re-appoint Fed Chair Ben Bernacke? Is it the latest developments surrounding the Oscar Grant trial? Is it the controversy surrounding the conclusion of the mayoral election in Atlanta or the upcoming hotly contested run off mayoral election in Houston? As I’m typing this the Today Show is tripping all over itself to report how yet another woman is coming out to hold a press conference with famed lawyer Gloria Allred to possibly admit she had an affair. Her press conference comes at the heels of two other press conferences including one the other day where several law enforcement officials announced that they are not going to be further investigating Woods.

I’m thinking to myself, if such stories are being  done because the American public is hungry for salacious and intriguing reports, why not bring on journalist Jeremy Scahill of to talk about how the worlds largest and most notorious private army Blackwater has been waging a secret War in Pakistan where they been assassinating and kidnapping people. If you wanna get heads turning and tongues wagging make note that this is happening on the watch of a President who promised rto abandon all those disturbing George Bush-Dick Cheney type tactics  that painted America in a bad light.  Secret war in Pakistan vs Tiger Woods being an undercover player? You decide what’s more important.

Ron Paul Kicked up dust around the escalation of the War in Afghanistan

Another glaring omission I see missing from national news coverage is yesterday’s Senate Armed Services Committee and the House Foreign Affairs Committee discussion on Afghanistan It was there that Congressional Black Caucus chair Barbara Lee and Progressive Caucus co-chair Lynn Woolsey were not allowed to speak  and express their staunch opposition to the Obama’s escalation. Fortunately Ron Paul got a chance to speak and really went in on the committee hitting them pretty hard, but that was barely covered. You can peep Paul weighing in on the C-Span video. He starts his round of questioning at 88.17 minutes into the hearing.

It’s interesting to note that it was just 3 weeks ago that Pittsburgh rapper Jasiri X hit us off with a song and video that raised similar concerns. He asked the question about whether or not we are staying up on the news. His video is a good note to end on and reflect.

written by Davey D

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Michael Moore: An Open Letter to President Obama About Afghanistan


Dear President Obama,

Do you really want to be the new “war president”? If you go to West Point tomorrow night (Tuesday, 8pm) and announce that you are increasing, rather than withdrawing, the troops in Afghanistan, you are the new war president. Pure and simple. And with that you will do the worst possible thing you could do — destroy the hopes and dreams so many millions have placed in you. With just one speech tomorrow night you will turn a multitude of young people who were the backbone of your campaign into disillusioned cynics. You will teach them what they’ve always heard is true — that all politicians are alike. I simply can’t believe you’re about to do what they say you are going to do. Please say it isn’t so.

It is not your job to do what the generals tell you to do. We are a civilian-run government. WE tell the Joint Chiefs what to do, not the other way around. That’s the way General Washington insisted it must be. That’s what President Truman told General MacArthur when MacArthur wanted to invade China. “You’re fired!,” said Truman, and that was that. And you should have fired Gen. McChrystal when he went to the press to preempt you, telling the press what YOU had to do. Let me be blunt: We love our kids in the armed services, but we f*#&in’ hate these generals, from Westmoreland in Vietnam to, yes, even Colin Powell for lying to the UN with his made-up drawings of WMD (he has since sought redemption).

So now you feel backed into a corner. 30 years ago this past Thursday (Thanksgiving) the Soviet generals had a cool idea — “Let’s invade Afghanistan!” Well, that turned out to be the final nail in the USSR coffin.

There’s a reason they don’t call Afghanistan the “Garden State” (though they probably should, seeing how the corrupt President Karzai, whom we back, has his brother in the heroin trade raising poppies). Afghanistan’s nickname is the “Graveyard of Empires.” If you don’t believe it, give the British a call. I’d have you call Genghis Khan but I lost his number. I do have Gorbachev’s number though. It’s + 41 22 789 1662. I’m sure he could give you an earful about the historic blunder you’re about to commit.

With our economic collapse still in full swing and our precious young men and women being sacrificed on the altar of arrogance and greed, the breakdown of this great civilization we call America will head, full throttle, into oblivion if you become the “war president.” Empires never think the end is near, until the end is here. Empires think that more evil will force the heathens to toe the line — and yet it never works. The heathens usually tear them to shreds.

Choose carefully, President Obama. You of all people know that it doesn’t have to be this way. You still have a few hours to listen to your heart, and your own clear thinking. You know that nothing good can come from sending more troops halfway around the world to a place neither you nor they understand, to achieve an objective that neither you nor they understand, in a country that does not want us there. You can feel it in your bones.

I know you know that there are LESS than a hundred al-Qaeda left in Afghanistan! A hundred thousand troops trying to crush a hundred guys living in caves? Are you serious? Have you drunk Bush’s Kool-Aid? I refuse to believe it.

Your potential decision to expand the war (while saying that you’re doing it so you can “end the war”) will do more to set your legacy in stone than any of the great things you’ve said and done in your first year. One more throwing a bone from you to the Republicans and the coalition of the hopeful and the hopeless may be gone — and this nation will be back in the hands of the haters quicker than you can shout “tea bag!”

Choose carefully, Mr. President. Your corporate backers are going to abandon you as soon as it is clear you are a one-term president and that the nation will be safely back in the hands of the usual idiots who do their bidding. That could be Wednesday morning.

We the people still love you. We the people still have a sliver of hope. But we the people can’t take it anymore. We can’t take your caving in, over and over, when we elected you by a big, wide margin of millions to get in there and get the job done. What part of “landslide victory” don’t you understand?

Don’t be deceived into thinking that sending a few more troops into Afghanistan will make a difference, or earn you the respect of the haters. They will not stop until this country is torn asunder and every last dollar is extracted from the poor and soon-to-be poor. You could send a million troops over there and the crazy Right still wouldn’t be happy. You would still be the victim of their incessant venom on hate radio and television because no matter what you do, you can’t change the one thing about yourself that sends them over the edge.

The haters were not the ones who elected you, and they can’t be won over by abandoning the rest of us.

President Obama, it’s time to come home. Ask your neighbors in Chicago and the parents of the young men and women doing the fighting and dying if they want more billions and more troops sent to Afghanistan. Do you think they will say, “No, we don’t need health care, we don’t need jobs, we don’t need homes. You go on ahead, Mr. President, and send our wealth and our sons and daughters overseas, ’cause we don’t need them, either.”

What would Martin Luther King, Jr. do? What would your grandmother do? Not send more poor people to kill other poor people who pose no threat to them, that’s what they’d do. Not spend billions and trillions to wage war while American children are sleeping on the streets and standing in bread lines.

All of us that voted and prayed for you and cried the night of your victory have endured an Orwellian hell of eight years of crimes committed in our name: torture, rendition, suspension of the bill of rights, invading nations who had not attacked us, blowing up neighborhoods that Saddam “might” be in (but never was), slaughtering wedding parties in Afghanistan. We watched as hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians were slaughtered and tens of thousands of our brave young men and women were killed, maimed, or endured mental anguish — the full terror of which we scarcely know.

When we elected you we didn’t expect miracles. We didn’t even expect much change. But we expected some. We thought you would stop the madness. Stop the killing. Stop the insane idea that men with guns can reorganize a nation that doesn’t even function as a nation and never, ever has.

Stop, stop, stop! For the sake of the lives of young Americans and Afghan civilians, stop. For the sake of your presidency, hope, and the future of our nation, stop. For God’s sake, stop.

Tonight we still have hope.

Tomorrow, we shall see. The ball is in your court. You DON’T have to do this. You can be a profile in courage. You can be your mother’s son.

We’re counting on you

-Michael Moore-

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Obama’s Moment of Truth-Are We Ready to Support or Oppose Him?


As the Thanksgiving holiday ends, the nation is perched to hear what is being described as President Obama‘s most important speech to date. He will stand before Army cadets at West Point military academy and lay out his plans for increasing troops to Afghanistan to the tune of 30 thousand. He is likely to note that we must go to Afghanistan to defeat a grouped Taliban. He is likely to say we must go to Afghanistan to ‘finish the job’ of subduing Al Qaeda and capturing Osama Bin Laden. Obama is also likely to note that throughout his campaign he had promised that he would withdraw troops from Iraq and direct all attention to America’s ‘forgotten war’ in Afghanistan.

However 8 years after we first entered Afghanistan in response to the 9-11 terrorist attacks, many of the folks who enthusiastically voted for Obama are divided and troubled. Many of the people who came out and voted for Obama were the same people eager for change who had organized or showed up at large anti-war demonstrations when George Bush was in office. They’re looking at a man who was just awarded the Noble Peace Prize and saw this as a symbolic gesture that would give him a good excuse to find a more diplomatic approach to resolving the conflict and abandon the pro-war position they felt he had to take during the 08 campaign.

If folks recall during the 08 campaign Obama was saw his momentum halted when than rival Hillary Clinton sprung the infamous ‘Its 3am Who Do You want answering Phone commercial‘. Inexperience and too weak to stomach the hard decisions around war and conflict is what Obama was slimed with. His response was to come across as more hawkish. After all, it was the ‘weak on terror’ allegations that helped George Bush win his last election and push through all types of legislation and policies that gave him and the military lots of resources, leeway and power. Obama in his response not only promised to bring the war back to Afghanistan, but he even asserted that he would be willing to bomb a country without warning if it meant the US could get the ever so elusive Osama.

While many who voted for Obama understood him taking pro-war stances, what’s troubling is that with a democratic majorities in both the house and Senate and recent polls showing that majority of Americans not wanting us to continue in Afghanistan, why are building up troops? Is the country really in grave danger? Is this about saving face? Is this about political appeasement? According to recent USA Today Gallup Poll numbers 57% of Democrats want Obama to withdraw. Those numbers are being underscored by the recent bill introduced by an early supporter California Congresswoman Barbara Lee who introduced a bill H.R. 3699 that would prohibit funds for any escalation to Afghanistan. Estimates note that it would cost on average 1 million dollars per year per soldier in this new troop surge. Lee thus far has gotten 23 co-sponsors including former Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich and Houston congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee who earlier last week bestowed a Purple Heart and Bronze star on a Vietnam Vet who still suffers from Post Traumatic stress.

Standing in stark opposition of this are 72% of republicans want Obama to build up the troops and follow the recommendations of General Stanley McChrystal who actually requested and then ‘campaigned’ to get 40 thousand. That republican support or agitation has been amplified by right-wing pundits and talk show hosts who feel that America should be in Afghanistan kicking ass even though everyone from Genghis Khan to the Soviet Union has failed miserably in their attempts to tame this unconquered region.

Perhaps President Obama should challenge those who are eager for this fight to continue in Afghanistan, to stop eating the drums of war and step it up and volunteer their time. That would include talk show hosts like Sean Hannity who are quick to talk this talk but won’t volunteer his time to serve..even as a radio host ala actor Robin Williams in the movie Good Morning Vietnam. At the same time President Obama should let those opposed to the troop build up to not let up the pressure. They should call their representatives and get them to co-sponsor Barbara Lee’s bill.

Lastly Obama should re-emphasize one of his most important campaign points about this his Presidency being for the people by the people-hence all this crazy talk about Obama being in office for only one year and we should give him some time needs to cease once and for all. In matters of war every citizen should be weighing in. After all, what takes place in Afghanistan is being done in our name and with our tax dollars. People should also be reminded that george Bush was only in office for 9 months before he was faced with the 9-11 tragedy and declared his War on Terror. President Obama has been in office for 11 months. His presidency is in full swing.

It’s sad state of affairs, but the War in Afghanistan appears to be war of political posturing and not about war to end terror. How it all unfolds will have a lot to do with the political pressure applied to the President.

-Davey D-

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