May 17th, 2008


Please Appease Me

bethje, Dorothea, Alyssa, and I spent some time in Wildwood recently. The boardwalk there has some crazy arcades with claw machines containing high-ticket items like iPods and PlayStations. I have to wonder if anyone has ever actually won any of these things. I'd need some documented proof before actually putting any money into them. And even if I had the proof, I don't think I would play, because I'm terrible with even the regular claw machines. Also on the boardwalk are a lot of stores selling T-shirts with crude slogans on them, mostly related to alcohol. The weird thing is that these are often interspersed with the occasional religious shirt, like one I noticed the other day bemoaning how public schools can no longer force prayer upon their students. Maybe they're trying to appeal to the crowd that thinks the answer to "What would Jesus do?" is "play beer pong and stare at slutty women's boobs." The sad thing is that I think I've met some of these people before.

There's been a lot of talk on the televisions recently about Bush's comparison of Obama's desire for negotiation to the appeasement of the Nazis in the late thirties. I saw Chris Matthews address this last night, and he said pretty much what I thought about it. Appeasement wasn't about talking and negotiating with Hitler, but about giving him countries. It's not at all comparable, and it invokes Godwin's Law in the process. But I think it's just part of the whole picture the Republicans have been painting for years, which is that Democrats are Weak On Defense. Granted, the Democrats haven't been doing that much recently to counteract the wussy image that their opponents have given them, but where's the actual PROOF that Republicans are better are defending the country? It's a very popular myth, though, and probably largely perpetuated by the Republicans' tough talk. Hunt down and kill the terrorists! Bomb their home countries back to the stone age! Never try anything wimpy like talking to your enemies, because "negotiation" is just a fancy word for "surrender."

On a more positive note, California allowing gay marriage is definitely a step in the right direction for this country. The homophobes have run things long enough. So have the chickenhawks, but I don't know of any recent victories against them.