Friday, September 30, 2011
I dug a little deeper and discovered that when controlled for political affiliation, the results are even more skewed, with more than half of registered Republicans reporting that they believe the Judeo-Christian God created humans in his own likeness sometime within the past 10,000 years.
Yes, you read that right. 10,000 years.
That got me to thinking about the current GOP front runners for the presidential nomination—candidates, like Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry, whom only weeks ago I was lambasting in this very column for being so vastly out of step with the beliefs and values of the overwhelming majority of Americans. Now here I was, being confronted with the possibility that a sizable minority of the American population subscribes to a similar, if not the very same, archaic belief system.
Then it occurred to me that these people vote, and I’ll admit I got a little weak-kneed. After taking a few deep breaths (and a swig of hooch to calm my nerves) I decided to do what I do best, get to the bottom of things by finding out what was happening to my country and how we had strayed so far from our founders’ vision on the role of religion in the national discourse. Read more...
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Friday, September 23, 2011
For context, the International Criminal Court classifies apartheid as one of 11 “crimes against humanity” and defines it as an act “committed in the context of an institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and domination by one racial group over any other racial group or groups and committed with the intention of maintaining that regime.”
In other words, it’s not an accusation to be made lightly. Read more...
Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Monday, September 19, 2011
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
Friday, September 9, 2011
Last Friday, as Americans geared up for a long weekend of potato salad and discount shopping, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released some somber news: The nation had netted not a single job in August. It was the first time that happened since 1945 (although there have been plenty of times since then that the nation lost jobs).
Nevertheless, by Monday the news had cast a pall over many Labor Day celebrations and injected others with a spirit of worker solidarity reminiscent of turn-of-the-century Progressivism. In Rochester, as in other municipalities, participants and spectators of the largest Labor Day parade in the city’s history took aim at union-busting Wisconsin governor Scott Walker, while in Detroit, Teamsters chief Jimmy Hoffa rallied a crowd waiting to hear from President Obama with what amounted to a declaration of war against the Tea Party.
But while Hoffa’s address may have been a warranted if crassly delivered expression of collective worker indignation, it was largely misdirected in its focus. Sure, the Tea Party makes an inviting target, but Washington has elevated undercutting American workers to the level of art form for years and under both parties. From lopsided trade agreements that pushed investment overseas to convoluted tax policies that keep it there, Washington has had its boot on the throat of the working class since the beginning of the end of American industry in the late 1970s. (There was still a boot left over for the middle class; but that’s another story altogether.) Read more.
Thursday, September 8, 2011
Friday, September 2, 2011
Thursday, September 1, 2011
A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation national poll released on Monday found that Rick Perry now leads the pack among GOP presidential hopefuls, with more than one in four Republican voters saying they would cast a ballot for the longtime Texas governor. I’m not sure what scares me more, the idea of a Perry presidency or the fact that one of my neighbors might be among those who would support it.
Rick Perry is not your average Republican, a fact that—taken at face value—may seem like a refreshing change to a GOP voting base fed up with politics as usual. But underneath the elephant suit, Perry is a far-right demagogue who supports repealing the Sixteenth and Seventeenth amendments (which authorize the collection of income taxes and the popular election of senators, respectively) and scrapping our 235-year tradition of checks and balances by giving the legislature the ability to overturn Supreme Court decisions.
Anyway you slice it the Texas governor is a fringe candidate; that he represents an extremely vocal minority can’t be denied (radicalism by its very nature is vocal), but Perry’s beliefs are obscenely out of step with the majority of voters from both parties, which makes his current popularity that much more confounding. The paradox would be intriguing if it weren’t so scary. Read More...