1-17-2006 God, Liberals, Walter & "The Fuzz"


"I want to remind you that the current president of Iran has announced that the destruction of Israel is an important part of their agenda. And that's unacceptable. And the development of a nuclear weapon, it seems like to me, would make them a step closer to achieving that objective."--Dubya speaking at a joint press conference in Washington, D.C. with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

I was not invited to participate, but I followed a trail of links to admittedly liberal bloggers who explored how their faith colors their political views.

This is where the trail started.

Dems are too often labeled as anti-religion and anti-family values, but we know the truth... that many of us have strong family units, go to church, volunteer in religious communities and hold very strong beliefs of religion and society.

If you feel comfortable in writing about this, please do. If you don't feel comfortable, perhaps you can write about why you don't feel comfortable. How does faith influence your view on issues?

Anywho, I followed the links to the others who dared to broach the subject and found all of it to be an interesting read. Believe me, the very last thing I want to do is to get to arguing about religion, but I thought I'd throw my two-cents worth into the mix.

Let's start with the intelligent design brouhaha. While I suspect that some intelligent design went into creating all of this muckity-muck that we think is so damned important, I'm really not sure enough to follow Pat Robertson into battle. And while I suspect that Blue Oyster Cult and Socker Boppers probably would have never come to being without a big nudge from on high, I'm not at all religious. Like I said, I'm really not sure what to think on most days.

One of the biggest things that shakes any faith I might have buried deep inside of me is when some loser, some loner decides to rape a ten-year-old girl and then bury her alive after he's gotten the last of his rocks off. Sure, being that I lean to the right when we're talking about the justice system and whatnot, I'm all for a speedy trial and a lynching in the village square. And something along the lines of the Pittston tomato wars would be cool right before the trap door opens. But instead of tossing rotted tomatoes, maybe we could use up some rotting stones. I know, I know...What would Jesus do? Well, when it comes to child rapists, I really don't care what he thinks.

Oops! If there is good and evil, if there is a Hell, it looks like I just made my reservation for a ramshackle timeshare on the south side of a massive burning pit. Too late now. Ah, it can't be much worse that living in New Jersey. Or can it?

Anyway, bad things do happen to innocents, and the scenario listed above actually happened down south. But all too often, the child killers make me less crazy than the ordained folks who must preside over the murdered child's big sendoff in the great unknown. They usually give us some sick spiel about how God needed this child more than we do, so he called her up to Heaven. Now, I'm not some politically correct Darwinist who thinks the killer killed only because the Big Bang set all of this in motion many moons ago, but if God is so all-powerful, why wouldn't he be able to hold the fort without the assistance of raped and murdered little girls?

Have no fear Mr. Smith. Little Betsy is with the lord now. She's a gwine up to hebbin!!! Now drop a twenty in the basket.

At that point, if I'm Mr. Smith, I'm beatin' the wife for stashing my handgun somewhere totally unbeknownst to me. If God really needs my lil' princess so badly, I'll see to it that her murderer follows her into the after-whatever. If Hell has toilets, somebody has to scrub them for eternity.

Another thing that shakes whatever faith my ma and gramma instilled in me is the constant strife and hatred that is, and has always been our way of doing things. If war, genocide, racism and suspicion is the best we can do, why wouldn't God have corrected some of his glaring errors along the way? Why not some fine-tuning somewhere along the bumpy road that has been man's existance since Adam and Eve first invented the nasty? Sure, we're still waitin' on the long-promised Rapture, but why the billions of violent deaths program before the eventual makeover? Because we didn't display enough faith?

I kind of liken it to an ant farm. If the Earth is but one of God's ant farms, why not fill it with ants only and then watch the silly little creatures toil away in near complete harmony? Why introduce so many disparate ant and termite colonies into the farm and then watch them wage war after war until the very last of the secondary reproductives are killed-off sealing everyone's fate? Is that how you'd go about things with your ant farm? If so, would I be completely out of line by calling you a sick fu>ker?

Then we've got THE CHURCH--organized religions. Trust me, I do respect authority, but I will not blindly follow the word of any man who claims to speak for God. More wars have been fought in the name of God than the wars waged to gain land, water or oil. My God sez this, your's sez that and those other goofs over there have a God of their own who sez even weirder things. So, what to do about it? How 'bout if start swinging swords at each other? That'll work.

Once upon a time, when I was even goofier than I am now, I got my girlfreind pregnant. Trust me, I was working full-time and attending college courses full-time, so the very last thing I needed was a baby and all of the other peripherals that accompany such an undertaking. How did this goof react? Well, I belatedly upped and got us some health insurance, told my employer that I wanted to climb that ladder I used to mock, and capitulated to my gramma's demand that we go and get ourselves married, like, yesterday.

Then I had to deal with wifey's mom. As fate would have it (Urrghh!), wifey's mom used to be a nun. I'm not sure why she became an ex-nun, but needless to say, she looked for excuses to haul us off to church about as often as I take in a Jint's playoff game--always. Whatever, man.

So we did the right thing and very quickly found ourselves sitting in some Priest's office. And right from the get-go he treated the two of us as if we were the biggest heathens ever to grace God's great Earth. You see, we conceived a child before being wed, and the good book sez in lieu of confession, we should be banished to the trailer parks with the rest of the lowlife sinners. Looking back, I can't help but to wonder if this guy ever got to playing Brokeback Mountain with any of his altar boys. Ooops! Sorry. We have a directive from the Thought Police (Marxists. Commonly referred to as libs.) on that. Let's try that again, shall we? Looking back, I can't help but to wonder if this guy ever got to playing Brokeback Mountain with any of his altar servers.

A child conceived out of wedlock? Oh, woe is me. I'm so embarrassed, I can't take it no more. I'll change my heathen ways. I have seen the light. And I promise to give more than my fair share so my priest can upgrade from the Volvo coupe to the new BMW. Praise the Lord!

Let's be fu>king serious. If it wasn't for alcohol, very few of us would have been conceived.

Long story short, the man of the cloth treated us to a rather lengthy verbal beating. It made Mr. Sallitt's psycho-babble-laced tirades back at Coughlin High pale in comparison. And being a tremendous goof at the time, I could feel an F-Bomb building somewhere in side of me. Sure, I had extremely long hair and ripped jeans. Maybe a jean jacket wasn't the best thing to wear to a meeting with the local priest. And that swelling belly wasn't proof that we paid attention to anything we had been taught in those annoying CCD classes so many years before. But at the same time, we were but kids in some rather tall bodies. Was even the slightest of breaks totally out of the question? Does the church always paint with such a broad brush? Long hair, a KISS logo and a baby on the way equals a worthless teenager gone awry and not worthy of God's love? Did we cause harm to anyone besides ourselves? We were not even old enough to purchase a six-pack, but we were already well beyond redemption? As it turned out, we were well beyond any hope of redemption, and we were not worthy of joining his church. He said, and I quote: I do not marry pregnant teenagers. And with that, the F-bomb rumbled forth, we were out of there in a flash and wifey's mom was mortified.

Being that we were not worthy of joining that exclusive sect, we were married by Justice Collins without a clue as to where we were headed. We did the best we could for our soon-to-be baby, which amounted to renting an apartment at Pregnant (Sherman) Hills right after my grandma paid the first months rent and the security. We marched down to McCroary's on Public Square and bought us some of those horrible-looking braided, striped rugs that appealed to the aforementioned trailer park crowd, signed up for WIC and were content cuddling in front of our 13-inch black-and-white television. We had our baby, I got myself promoted and we were not long for Pregnant Hills.

Lo-and-behold, now that we seemed like your typical nuclear family all of a sudden, that very same priest offered to allow us to join his exclusive flock for a nominal fee--$100. You see, our "marriage" had to be blessed. And I promptly told wifey's mom to tell that puke to go and get himself fu>ked real quick like. Sorry, but I'm a stubborn bastard, and I don't take kindly to being told that I'm an undesirable. We tried to do what we thought was the right thing. We tried to join THE CHURCH. But THE CHURCH sent us packing faster than the Pope can exit his personal Leer jet.

It's obvious that I'll never be nominated for sainthood, but I truly do not care, and I got no time for, nor any need for any organized religions. I've got enough people telling me what I should do on any given day and what I should think on any given issue. If there is a God, I'm sure he's gonna settle up with me as soon as the Zappa tune ends and they clamp the lid on my casket.

I do not marry pregnant teenagers.

Yeah, well, he didn't marry pregnant teenagers. But I think it's safe to say that you cannot determine someone's character during a 30-minute tongue-lashing wherein the recipients of said lashing find it next to impossible to get a word in edge-wise. I was a goof then and I'm a goof now. But I'm not as a big a goof as I used to be. I grew up. Well, sort of. A little bit. But I've tried to do the right things on most days, and I try not to kill, steal or covet anyone's wife. The cursing thing is a whole other subject. Pregnant teenagers can grow up and be productive members of society, and I think my example proves that it can be done without any spiritual guidance.

These two formerly pregnant teenagers are zeroing in on their 27th anniversary. We've got three great kids, and a score of interesting grandrodents runnin' all over the place. I would have been perfectly fine with throwing on a jacket, tossing a twenty into the collection basket and pretending to be holier-than-thou. But it didn't work out that way and neither of us are on death row. Plainly stated, I'm glad we were spared all of that formal religion. If it works for you, by all means, drop to your knees and beg for forgiveness for whatever horrible thing you may have done to the family cat when you were 12-years-old. Just don't come preaching anywhere near me.

And as for the liberal bloggers out there, there's no need to go explaining your faith (or lack thereof) to the likes of me. Let's just stick to arguing about it. It's much more fun that way. So long as we don't cause a murder or anything, bashing each other over the head by way of a keyboard is acceptable. The polarization of the electorate can be a freakin' hoot provided it doesn't result in a Jihad. No?

You freakin' sinners!

One of my favorite philosophical tenets is that people will agree with you only if they already agree with you. You do not change people's minds.--Francis Vincent Zappa


From Progressive Democrats of America (pdamerica.com):

Actor Sean Penn added to the enthusiasm of the day by stressing that all of the nation's anti-war activism was taking hold and was starting to work—while admitting that the stress of living under the current administration was making it tough for him to quit smoking. Stating that he "was not a pacifist on the inside", he was moved to be one on the outside for the sake of his children and grandchildren's future. He said we have to fight for everything we have.

Wow!!! This one takes the lunatic fringe acid-laced cake for sure. Dubya is now being blamed for the lack of willpower of others. Your lack of intestinal fortitude can now be blamed on Bush. He's made victims out of us all...er, victims out of the lefties that promote victimhood at every turn. Dubya ruined my New Year's resolution?

Suck the purple Kool-Aid, baby!

The following science fiction novella was published in yesterday's Times Leader:

Posted on Sun, Jan. 15, 2006

Mayor paints unrealistic picture of progress in Wilkes-BarreI am writing this letter in response to a letter from the Wilkes Barre mayor that appeared in your paper on Jan. 9.

I would like to respond to the mayor’s constant picture-painting of a city that believes in his administration’s ability to get the city back on the path to a bright future.

The letter said that the administration has experienced great milestones in 2005 and that the city is moving forward through cooperation from the city council.

I would like residents to take a close look at the administration and its whitewash tactics.

The city is boasting about the theater that is under construction. But the city fails to acknowledge that this project is not going to generate a dime for the city’s tax base because it is in a KOZ. The city has also told taxpayers that it has miraculously solved the $14 million debt obligation by selling the call center to a university that pays no taxes to the city.

The city has also stated that it has restructured its debt, which will save the taxpayers money, when I believe all it does is put taxpayers deeper in debt for a longer period of time.

The city has also stated that it has passed a rental ordinance that will make the city a safer and cleaner place to live. At the same time, there are buildings that are collapsing and unsafe while the taxpayers that keep their properties safe are penalized by a new fee that will give the mayor the chance to hire more friends.

The city also has instituted a “Beautify your Neighborhood” program so the taxpayers can work hard to make their properties look great while the city allows their property to be in disrepair and our streets to be littered.

I feel that this administration has in fact not made progress in our neighborhoods but has spent a great deal of time and money to convince taxpayers that the city is moving forward by concentrating on the downtown.

I believe the taxpayers should have streets that are able to be traveled on without fear of ruining our vehicles. I believe our streets should be cleaned by our public works employees so that debris will not clog our sewers and we won’t get flooding during heavy rains.

I believe the city police department should not be so overworked, because of understaffing, that they cannot patrol our neighborhoods. I believe that the fire department should have sufficient manpower and buildings to house the equipment.

I believe that this year, the city should have a Web page editor place important information on our city Web page so it will benefit the taxpayers and attract people to come to Wilkes Barre. The city Web site should not be a cheerleader page for the mayor.

I believe that in 2006, city council should address health care plans and pension plans for city employees and change the city charter to stop the mayor from negotiating his own paycheck and pension. I believe city council should pass legislation to open the closed firehouses. City council should hire more police, fire and public works employees.

As a city taxpayer, I don’t believe that our tax dollars are being used efficiently to make our city a better and safer place to live. Crime is on the increase and the streets are dirty and pothole-ridden. Our residents are in fear of their lives in the Heights because firehouses have been closed that are very much needed in that section of the city.

Walter L. Griffith Jr. Wilkes-Barre

The city is boasting about the theater that is under construction. But the city fails to acknowledge that this project is not going to generate a dime for the city’s tax base because it is in a KOZ.

The theater complex is being built in a KOZ zone. So what? I guess tax-exempt incentives are supposed to be a bad thing when your retail landscape resembles that of the Moon.

It "is not going to generate a dime for the city’s tax base?" Wrong!!!

The folks setting up shop in a KOZ do not have to pay state, property, or employment taxes. But they do have to pay mercantile taxes. Plus, you cannot predict the intangibles such as how much those businesses might contibute to the Diamond City Partnership's street cleaning program. Then there's how much they might contribute to the Chamber. There's possible future property enhancements, or expansions. There's stipends that might be donated to special events.

The city has also told taxpayers that it has miraculously solved the $14 million debt obligation by selling the call center to a university that pays no taxes to the city.

Miraculously??? The debt service for that albatross was in excess of $1,000,000 per fiscal year. What should we have done? Paid that fee year after year while holding out hope that some nationally known concern would one day buy it? Or should we have put an end to the bleeding of red ink?

And the ridiculous claim that Wilkes University pays no taxes to the city is just that--ridiculous. In fact, they pay more than they are required to. Don't take my word for it. Check it out. And with Wilkes taking ownership of that strategically-placed building, it will never, ever fall into a state of disrepair or become vacant again. And...the Wilkes security office is moving to S. Main Street. Can you say win-win?

The city has also stated that it has restructured its debt, which will save the taxpayers money, when I believe all it does is put taxpayers deeper in debt for a longer period of time.

Restructuring outstanding debts does stretch those debts out over a longer period of time and increases the interest payments over time, but when the operating budget does not include enough available cash to make much-needed infrastructure improvements, the restructuring of those suffocating debts makes perfect sense. Sounds like Walt wants to bang heads with the financial planning professionals that are advising this administration. Based on what?

I feel that this administration has in fact not made progress in our neighborhoods but has spent a great deal of time and money to convince taxpayers that the city is moving forward by concentrating on the downtown.

Blah, blah, fu>king blah. You say tomato, I say you're full of sh*t. If the major focus was on our neighborhoods, our republican attack dog, I'm sorry, our citizen activist would be whining on cue that the mayor is ignoring the downtown. Wanna generate some income over time without a bustling downtown? Yeah? Tell us how to do it? By patching a few potholes? DUH!!!

I believe the taxpayers should have streets that are able to be traveled on without fear of ruining our vehicles. I believe our streets should be cleaned by our public works employees so that debris will not clog our sewers and we won’t get flooding during heavy rains.

Excuse me, but exactly which streets are "ruining our vehicles?" Name one and I'll point out just how bad Walter is exaggerating a problem that every municipality in this county faces. Walt can't remove a few leaves from atop the storm sewers? Fine. Let's hire 10 more DPW employees and then have Walter explain how we'll pay their salaries without raising taxes.

I believe the city police department should not be so overworked, because of understaffing, that they cannot patrol our neighborhoods. I believe that the fire department should have sufficient manpower and buildings to house the equipment.

I believe that's fairly easy to follow. According to know-it-all, we need more cops, more firefighters and more firehouses. All rightee then!!! Take it away, Walt! How would you suggest we pay for all of that?

I believe that this year, the city should have a Web page editor place important information on our city Web page so it will benefit the taxpayers and attract people to come to Wilkes Barre. The city Web site should not be a cheerleader page for the mayor.

That's just fu>king childish. Our city web site offers as much municipal info as any other municipal web site in this entire area.

I believe that in 2006, city council should address health care plans and pension plans for city employees and change the city charter to stop the mayor from negotiating his own paycheck and pension. I believe city council should pass legislation to open the closed firehouses. City council should hire more police, fire and public works employees.

RUTRO!!! Here we go redesigning the political wheel again! Sign my petition..please. Oh, and then vote for me. Some ought to stick to greasing wheel bearings and leave the important stuff to others.

As a city taxpayer, I don’t believe that our tax dollars are being used efficiently to make our city a better and safer place to live. Crime is on the increase and the streets are dirty and pothole-ridden. Our residents are in fear of their lives in the Heights because firehouses have been closed that are very much needed in that section of the city.

That's gettin' fu>kin' old. He calls WILK every other week and repeats that tiresome rant. Our tax dollars are not being used efficiently? Compared to what? The inept performance of the city's previous administration? Crime is on the increase? Wrong! That's not what the Uniform Crime Statistics are telling us. The folks in the Heights are living in fear? Wow! How dramatic. Wow! What bullspit. Depends on who you talk to, Walt. The actual residents, or the few residents with the political axes to grind?

Walter, at least you're consistent. You're consistently wrong on every issue, but you are consistent. While most of us are filling with cautious optimism, you have limited yourself to seeking out the negative no matter how positive the current developments seem. You have invested all of your political stock in Wilkes-Barre's failure. The only way you'll end up sounding smart is if Wilkes-Barre all but implodes upon itself. You're rooting against progress. The only way you win is if Wilkes-Barre fails. It must suck to be you.

Is this the best the Republicans in this county have to offer?


From the e-mail inbox Mark,

You are without doubt this areas foremost expert on what our police do. If I didnt know better I would think you were on patrol long before you got to telling us to chill out with the donut jokes.

If I had to guess, I'd say most cops that die in the line of duty do so only because they hesitate rather than making a mistake. And in doing so, they make the mistake of getting themselves killed. The drunk gets to live for another day, but then the cop's wife has to explain to the kiddies why daddy won't ever be coming home again.

I never thought of it in those terms.

A reformed donut joker from Kingston Township

From the e-mail inbox Officer Mark

The WBPD has no greater friend than you.

CXXX, Pittston

From the e-mail inbox I am a retired NYPD "Copper Dude" living in your neck of the woods and I must pass along my belief that you were a police officer in a previous life.

But for a cop, there is probably no tougher decision they will face than whether or not to fire their guns. It's not something to be taken lightly when you consider that immediately after doing so they wll be subjected to intense internal, media and public strutiny. And if they make a bad decision, their career might be over because of that muzzle flash.

Outstanding. Or as you might say, Out-f@#Zing-standing!

From the e-mail inbox NOBODY IS RIGHT ALL THE TIME BUT YOU SEEM TO HIT THE NAIL ON THE HEAD WHEN IT COMES TO US..

IT'S AMAZING THAT ALL WEEK THE REPORTERS AND OTHERS WERE TALKING ABOUT HOW THE WBPD BOTCHED THE DRUG BUY AND AS USUAL THEY ARE WRONG ON ALL PARTS.... IT WAS THE TASK FORCE MAKING THE BUY NOT WBPD. SECOND AND MOST IMPORTANTLY IT WAS NOT BOTCHED BUT HANDLED BY THE BOOK.... ON ALL PHASES.... IT IS FRUSTRATING EVEN READING OR WATCHING THE NEWS WHEN THEY DON'T UNDERSTAND WHAT THE JOB TAKES FOR YOU TO DO IT... THE PRESS FELT THERE WAS A COVER UP BECAUSE THEY WERE NOT GETTING INFORMATION FAST ENOUGH... WELL WE HAD A RUTHLESS SCUM BAG OUT THERE THAT WE HAD TO IDENTIFY .... SORRY PRESS BUT WE ARE BUSY TRYING TO CATCH A BUTCHER....PERIOD... WHEN WE ARE DONE YOU CAN HAVE YOUR STORY...BUT ONLY BECAUSE WE HAVE TO... IF IT WAS MY CHOICE THE PRESS RELEASE WOULD SAY... JOHN DOE KILLED BY JOHN DOE II.. THE END

IF YOU DON'T KNOW THE JOB... DON'T WORK THE JOB... OR DON'T HAVE AN OPEN MIND ABOUT IT THEN THEY SHOULD SHUT THEIR HOLE..OR THEY SHOULD TALK TO YOU BEFORE THEY GET ON THEIR SOAP BOXES AND PLAY MONDAY MORNING QUARTERBACK.... ASK K LYNN IF HE EVER HAD TO CARRY A GUN TO GO TO WORK.... I WOULDN'T MIND TAKING HIM FOR A RIDE ALONG.... HE COULD BE NUMBER 1 IN THE DOOR.... IT WIOULD BE THE FIRST TIME THAT I WOULD HOPE THAT THE BALLISTIC SHIELD WOULD FAIL.


“When you look at the way the House of Representatives has been run, it has been run like a plantation and you know what I'm talking about..."--Hillary Clinton

What a crock. I thought MLK day was supposed to be about King's legacy and whatnot. Not a day on which politicos play race cards up and down the lecture circuit.

From the e-mail inbox Mark:

Great post! Man, I would sell the farm to get a month on the river at the time Standing Stone slid down the mountain.

One quick note, just in case someone writes in to bust your ya-ya's. Standing Stone is between the rock cut and French Azilum, not after. Tell 'em you were just testing.And you are correct, the scenery is better in the summer, best in the fall.

I swapped e-mails with LXXXXXXX. Will try to do a brain dump and bring him up to speed.

Later.

KD

Yeah, you're right. It's hard to recount every inch of these trips when you guys are bombarding me with so much information. I also forgot to mention that we passed by Wyalusing Rocks. It's no biggie, other than the fact that some folks have a 1,000-foot vertical drop onto some railroad tracks waiting for them just out past the end of their property lines. Enforced sobriety makes perfect sense in that neighborhood. Heyna?

USS DUDE

Later, kiddies.

CYA


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