From the Atomic Archives: 11-08-2004

Posted: November 4th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Election | 1 Comment »

I recently came across an old entry that I had written following the outcome of the 2004 election. Since we are currently closing in on the final hours of what could very well be one of the most important decisions our generation will make regarding our future and the future of our nation, I thought that this might be worth sharing. It certainly reflects the mood that I’m sure many of us were feeling during that week for those of us who remember it all so well – facing up to the cold reality of a second Bush term.

Scavenging The Remnants of A Free World 11/08/2004

The first signs of a long-overdue autumn have hit Tallahassee. The chill feels very different this year. In past autumns, there was always this organic crispness that would seem to reawaken my realization of life and emotions drained from months of bearing Florida’s droning swamp-like humidity. At the moment it feels as if autumn has decided to bypass this place completely. That familiar feeling in the autumn air is missing altogether, murdered by the biting chill of bitter winter wind. It might as well just be winter. It feels like winter. And not the kind of winter that brings together friends and family and good food and breaks between semesters and holiday cheer and all the other stereotypical bullshit that you would normally associate with this time of the year. At the moment it feels as if none of us could be any further divided than we are right now. The air says nothing; stiff dead silence eavesdrops on a public far too disengaged to do little more than go about their lives, or silently brood. I can hear the echoes from the past week’s tension still reverberating at dusk as I stare down the dash panel at an intersection…

Late Saturday night… I’m sitting on the rocks at the edge of Lake Ella as I write this. Under the nearby gazebo, an acoustic guitar is being strummed while another guy attempts to sing. I’m wondering whether or not they are also reflecting on the overall feeling of alienation that this week has brought on. Probably not, as I can tell by the words it’s some shitty rendition of a Christian love song. Apparently they have no sympathy… their half-assed attempts to uplift my spirits seem to mock the solitude I was seeking when I came out here. I really don’t think I can stick around if that’s the case… You know, what’s even more ironic about Lake Ella is how some people can overlook the aura of this place. My friend always describes the ocean as the place you go when you need to cast off bad thoughts and emotions. I guess that goes for any body of water, except that on a lake all negative thoughts are confined within that space and will only wash ashore and remain on the water’s edge. I always get a dark feeling of despair when I’m out here at night. Several years back during a bleak period of my life I would usually come out here around 3am and just smoke and walk around. It wouldn’t surprise me if those memories are still floating around in there somewhere. Strangely enough the ducks never seem to be aware of it. Everybody else out here who sits alone late at night seems heavily absorbed in it…

Earlier tonight I hit up Borders as usual, trying to collect my thoughts from the week’s recent events. I finished up a book on the life of cult anti-hero Jim Goad, a self-proclaimed white-trash social deviant with a hint of intellect and a history of abusive behavior. Normally there isn’t any way I could see eye to eye with someone who tries to justify violence, but in the end it does seem that he has been unfairly demonized. He has a very keen understanding of society’s failures in depicting what is ‘good’ and what is ‘evil’, and the long line of unfortunate events that have plagued his life accurately put his case into perspective. Sadly, his intelligence can be easily discredited by his bad reputation, so it can be conflicting whether or not to assume him guilty of the same crimes he accuses society of. Either way, Mr. Goad suffers for his unacceptable behavior, and everyone else walks home happy. Anyway, the point that he successfully gets across is how a progressively corrupt justice system continues to redefine crime and punishment to its own benefit while the prison population continues to skyrocket. His observations are not unlike a modern-day Clockwork Orange, only he refuses to give into the treatment. You know, as a nation we are so fickle when it comes to accepting what is defined as a “crime”. The boundaries between justice and injustice are constantly being redefined. We are a nation of amnesiacs. We are living in period where almost anything can be passed off as justifiable, as long as it’s done under the pretense of “national security”. Just this past week, we somehow found justification in the reelection of an incompetent failure whose four years of mistakes were no secret; in fact they were all laid out right in FRONT of us. Maybe we have a long way to go before American society starts making decisions based on rational thought and not recklessly based on fear and uncertainty. Maybe I just have too much faith in people. I swear, collective amnesia is going to be the death of this country. By the way… I have come to accept the fact over the past week that he might have been elected legitimately this time… But he is still NOT my president, nor will he EVER be.


Man, where have the last four years gone?

Apologies for my extended absence, by the way (if anyone actually noticed)


RNC Channel on Youtube…dun dun DUUUUUUUNNNNNNNNN

Posted: October 30th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Election | No Comments »

listen to the music. these are some melodramatic motherfuckers.

http://www.youtube.com/user/rnc

Watch the ‘protect america alert.’ oh yes, that illegal wiretapping was apparently totally legal. ‘Keep the change’ is also amazing.

FEAR FEAR FEAR

that is the message i’m getting here.

AND THEN LOOK AT THE COMMENTS. Can you tell if these people are robots? Because I cannot tell. No one dissents! I thought for sure people would write how crazy retarded these things are…can they erase dissenting comments? And they are all from two weeks ago.

Creepy.


HAHAH

Posted: October 28th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Government | 1 Comment »

http://media.tumblr.com/jgWRGzmqQemerjb15iVRgAoRo1_500.jpg

bitch


Never Again, genocide that is, by Christina

Posted: October 22nd, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Government | No Comments »

Never Again
“Advancing the Cause of Human Rights: The Need for Justice and Accountability” by Richard J. Goldstone
Summary: After the Holocaust it was perhaps easy for some to think it was an isolated occurrence and would never happen again. International leaders even promised it would never happen again. Nationalism and civil war contribute to circumstances that give rise to ethnic cleansing (196). Sovereignty and lack of enforcement challenge human rights innovations. Justice is necessary for lasting peace; the international law of human rights is our best chance. What occurs within a state’s borders is not just the state’s business. Postwar trials helped show that crimes of war are crimes against humanity as a whole. The implementation of universal jurisdiction is imperative in the fight for human rights. Human rights violators need to be held accountable; there is justice in truth commissions. Crimes against humanity are a threat to international peace. Lies can exploit people while dividing them. Justice is not just punishment and can be felt through truth commissions and international prosecutions (203). Humans need to feel secure knowing that “the age of impunity is over” (206).
Author’s Argument: History will repeat itself if we keep making the same mistakes. Promises mean nothing without enforcement. Conditions that support war and strife can be prevented through awareness. Truth can bring about justice and lasting peace. Prior to WWII international law focused more in the rights of nations rather than the individual (197). Postwar realizations that certain crimes are crimes against humanity as whole aided future development of human rights. Universal jurisdiction needs political will to enforce international human rights laws. Limited geographical genocide threatens international peace and security (199). The Security Council’s establishment of the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia, and similar decisions regarding Rwanda, promote justice and truth to bring about peace. Truth helps victims cope while bringing humiliation and justice to criminals. Healing is necessary lest future rulers exploit the resentment of the people. Sensitivity and compassion derived from victim testimonials can prevent future violations. Government leaders unable or unwilling to bring justice and peace can no longer be protected by the sovereignty of state due to the ICC.
Critical Analysis: The horror that was the holocaust was thought to be an isolated deviation from human progression which would never be repeated (195). This was completely false; what happened in Rwanda was equally horrific and despite promises genocide and ethnic cleaning still went unchecked. Ethnic nationalism created division in Rwanda that lead to crimes against humanity. The Rwanda genocide could have been earlier halted if it was not for the lack of enforcement of international policy. The United Nations and the United States of America should have stepped in to aid victims but they did not. In order for peace to pursue there must be justice and accountability; individual rights should never be held inferior to the rights of nations (197). International organizations must have the political will to respond to genocide properly. Truth and accountability must eradicate threats to international peace; the murders and those who did nothing need equally to be held accountable. Failed aid to Rwanda shows the need for international aid, urgency, and awareness. Nearly half of the Tutsi populace in Rwanda being murdered could have been prevented. Human security must be relentlessly sought after. Militant leaders should have never been able to take advantage of fear and competition between ethnic groups in Rwanda, “Regimes intent on grabbing resources or achieving ethnic exclusivity can employ propaganda in order to capitalize on these old scores and to instill fear and hate” (203). Enforcement of universal jurisdiction could have prevented this genocide if preventative measures were taken. Justice, truth, and the individualization of guilt can bring about lasting peace. If more people knew about the suffering in Rwanda it would be less likely to happen again. If there is not international pressure to stop violations of human rights, “…these institutions retain their organized culture of unaccountability and may be relied on by the successor regime” (205); this is why accountability and truth are so important. No leader should be immune from prosecution for violations of human rights. International tribunals help where a government is unable or unwilling to take responsibility for crimes against humanity (207). Goldstone said it best with, “The protection of human rights at an international level is a collective responsibility and will succeed only as a collaborative effort” (218). If we are to have peace universal human rights must be internationally enforced.

By Christina!


Political Responsibility by christina

Posted: October 22nd, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Government | No Comments »

Political Responsibility
“Human Rights: Not Merely an Internal Affair” by Wei Jingsheng
Summary: He first talks about how began to better understand human rights during his travels to northwestern China. He felt that the entire party must have gone bad and he wanted to investigate it further. He did not like the notion of “bad class elements”; he states, “…In order to discern a society’s true respect for human rights…it was not enough to know conditions in the cities and among the upper echelons; one had to investigate conditions in the lowest levels as well” (40). Deceptive propaganda can lead citizens to not understand true human rights. He explains but opposes the notion that it is unnatural to have uniform human rights requirements. A social institution is required to promote and enforce human rights policies. Governments that use violence to promote social injustice are fascist. Counties cannot justify violating human rights because of culture. Countries that hold law supreme to human rights are fascist. International pressure is needed to protect human rights. A “policy of appeasement” among countries is not acceptable; if we look away we are just as much responsible for crimes on mankind. Commercial interests should not be held higher than human rights interests.
Author’s Argument: One must view how a country treats the lower levels of society. Under deceptive propaganda citizens can have distorted perception regarding human rights, “… [Chinese citizens] regarded human rights as a favor bestowed on them by their rulers (41). Human rights are fundamental and cannot be changed by law. China’s leaders were wrong in saying that human rights conditions in China were “the consequence of cultural traditions, the social system, and historical changes” (42). There is no excuse available for the violation of human rights. It is wrong to oppress the individual for any state reason. International pressure is a necessary option. Reform is more effective than violence; violence results in setbacks and unnecessary deaths. Jingsheng clearly states that because the international community followed a “policy of appeasement” they are also to blame for the outbreak of WWII (45). China’s friends need to hold China’s leaders accountable otherwise violations of human rights will proceed longer than otherwise. China will suffer along with the whole world from crimes against humanity. Human interests should come before commercial interests. Decision makers need to understand political responsibility.
Critical Analysis: Some would have praised Hitler for his promoting the privileges of the Arian race and thus promoting human rights. The truth of the matter is one must also look at how a leaders treats the lower levels within a society. He used deceptive propaganda and words to perpetuate his violations of human rights. He took advantage of a people that were in need of leadership; he manipulated the people into acting out his horrifying dreams of ethnic cleansing and genocide. Cultural traditions, social systems, and historical changes can in no way justify the atrocities Hitler desired and acted out. Human rights are above every law naturally and anyone trying to evade human responsibility for personal or state gain should be held accountable. Many counties looked the other way while Hitler and those who followed him desecrated people due to religion, race, and sexual orientation. Leaders like Hitler should not be trusted to make decisions; he lacked a sense of political and human responsibility. The longer the international community does not try to stop crimes on humanity the more individuals and groups are going to think they can get away with. Lack of international pressure sets a bad example to the rest of the world and potential violent rulers. Among victims, neglect of international pressure can create resentment of those who could have helped but instead withheld aid for selfish reasons. Hitler could have been stopped earlier if all countries acknowledged human rights for what they are, “They concern the destiny and future of humankind, and no national borders or customs checkpoints can stop their impact” (46). International awareness of human rights is a great proponent for the prevention of future human rights violations. With an understanding of human rights it would have been a greater difficulty for Hitler to convince and manipulate people into committing atrocities against mankind. Had those people more knowledge and less desperation, which can be supplied by international organizations to spread awareness and peace, they would have been less susceptible to deceptive propagation and evil motives.

by me,christina


Progress Florida explains tricky amendments

Posted: October 21st, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Election | No Comments »

why do they make the language so difficult? I remember Cody and all of the Popheads accidently voted in favor of parental notification a few years ago! Anyway.

http://progressflorida.org/page/s/08ballot

VOTE NO ON 2!!

I saw my first vote yes on 2 sign yesterday. my car screeched to a halt. its_not_progressive.jpg


Alternet’s Progressive Voter Guides

Posted: October 20th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Election | No Comments »

Issue by issue :) good talking points for those of you getting out the vote, as they say :)!

http://www.alternet.org/voterguides/


A decent family man

Posted: October 20th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Election | No Comments »

Mr. Powell also told reporters on Sunday that he was troubled that a number of Americans believe that Mr. Obama is a Muslim, although he did not directly link that supposition to the McCain campaign. At a recent town-hall style meeting, Mr. McCain told an audience member who said she thought that Mr. Obama was an "Arab," "no, ma’am, he’s a decent family man."

what.

From this article about Colin Powell endorsing Obama. Poor Colin, can you imagine being the only smart person in the Bush War Machine?


Betty White on McCain and Obama (lol)

Posted: October 14th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Election | No Comments »

sorry, didn’t want to put this in the humor section and mess up my red state blue state letter. :)

betty white can give ME some experience!

http://perezhilton.com/2008-10-10-betty-white-sarah-palin-is-one-crazy-bitch

posting videos here is hard so that’s the link. don’t be afraid of the perez hilton. well, a little.


Clean Water Restoration Act

Posted: October 1st, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: Petitions | No Comments »

The Bush administration has sided with corporate polluters and stripped vital protections from the Clean Water Act. As a result, the water supply of over 110 million Americans could be tainted with dangerous pollutants that harm our health. The Clean Water Restoration Act would ensure that waterways and wetlands are kept free of contaminants. The League of Conservation Voters is giving you the opportunity to express your opinion – ask your Member of Congress to support the Clean Water Restoration Act today.

http://action.lcv.org/campaign/cleanwater_a