Saturday, July 6, 2013

A Self-Confessed Liberal Democrat

As a self-confessed liberal Democrat, I have often been criticized for only picking on conservatives and Republicans. I consider myself an independent thinker and can document plenty of criticism to some who allegedly fit in the liberal class. First among them is the so-called consumer crusader, Ralph Nader, who I found to be a phoney when we had Senate hearings on the infant safety seat bill. When invited to testify on a bill to save hundreds of infant lives in Texas, Mr. Nader quickly volunteered to testify for the paltry sum of $10,000.

Along the same lines, where I find fault with some of my fellow progressives, is the current flap about whether or not Mr. Snowden, the champion leaker of classified information, has done a good deed for citizens or not. Ostensibly, Mr. Snowden chose to violate his oaths and publish state secrets in violation of the law on the grounds that Americans needed to know the government might be snooping on some of their activities by keeping a record of foreign phone transmissions. My question for my liberal friends, who agree with Mr. Snowden, is “If Mr. Snowden was only concerned with the unconstitutional invasion of privacy for Americans, why did he feel compelled to give a Chinese newspaper the information that American intelligence had been snooping on Chinese activities?” That, along with the fact that he chose to seek refuge in a Chinese controlled environment, I find deeply suspicious. 

Even more suspicous is the fact this young man so concerned with American democracy and freedom chose Russia as a jumping off place on his way to Ecuador via Cuba. Can one really doubt that Rusian agents would pass up an opportunity to debrief someone with so many American secrets?

And in order to give a balanced column, I still have plenty of criticism for my conservative friends.  I am absolutely convinced too many conservatives are influenced by propaganda paid for and delivered by mega-buck corporations and right-wing billionaires such as the Koch brothers. The degradation of our atmosphere is a prime case in point.  It appears conservatives would rather have us all poisoned a little than inconvenienced a little.

There is no doubt the ozone layer of this world is diminishing.  There is also little doubt, based on scientific information, that greenhouse gases are contributing greatly to what could ultimately be the destruction of this planet. Republican House Speaker John Boehner is lamenting the fact that the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal would cause companies reaping millions of dollars of profits from power plants throughout the United States to spend a little of their money to stop polluting the atmosphere so greatly.  It has been estimated that 40% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions are attributable to the energy industry. Voters, when considering such political posturing, should ask themselves whether or not you’d rather die of cancer, or pay a little more for your power.

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