Tag Archives: Rant

America: A Nation of I

I, the simplest way to sum up a single individual in the first person. I, the roman numeral for one. It is the most self centered and exclusive word in the English language, and it sums up the average American perfectly.
As a fellow citizen to this massive collection of singular view points, it pains me to see our country in the state that it’s in. We’re better than this. Inclusion is the foundation of our nation, not exclusion. When times are tough, all the I’s band together to form a We. We the people, not I the person and these other guys too.
Americans are to blame for the state of the union. Not Bin Laden, not Wall Street, Not Washington, and certainly not anyone else in the world. Americans turned a blind eye to finance and let it run amok. Americans let greed over come common sense and allowed our debt to balloon. Americans allowed our freedoms to be sacrificed in the name of security. Why? Let’s start with 9/11.
As a nation, we did not react so well to this tragedy. In fact, we lost our shit. Cries for revenge and “Never Forget!” rang out from across the land. That’s all fine and dandy, I’m a fan of vengeance myself. However, what was eventually accomplished with a small covert force, started with a massive military misadventure. I’m still not sure why nuking the region never came up, but I’m pretty sure the idea was floated at some point.
Then there’s the public violations required to participate in the privilege of flying over priced (and mismanaged) airlines. Listen, I’d prefer not to get blown up while flying, but if I have surrender even one of the freedoms I live for to do it, I’d rather die. At that point the terrorists win. Crotch grabbing for safety is not the sort of rational things non-terrified people engage in.
Speaking of rational, how much sense does it make to spend TRILLIONS!!!! (this should always be how this word is written) on tracking down and killing a few dozen guys who barely graduated to the 20th century, let alone the 21st. We have virtually bankrupted ourselves chasing down a bunch of guys who want to live in caves. They actually prefer a 19th century lifestyle.
And Speaking of cave dwellers, I’m looking at you tea party, let’s talk about the upsurge in fundamentalist ideology in this country. It’s hard to justify hating an all inclusive and diverse multi-cultural society. It is however quite easy to hate a xenophobic bunch of gun totting bible thumpers who have no respect for other religions, and are constantly being provided with the public eye they so desperately crave.
God told them this minor earthquake was a warning about the debt. He also told them a blown out hurricane was punishment for legalizing gay marriage. These are things said not by people who hope to hold an office someday, buy people who are already elected. Curiously, God has been silent on the matter of a hell like firestorm rampaging across a state known to be intolerant, racist, and hotbed for Christian fanaticism.
Let’s check the score. Floods, droughts, and fires in places that refuse to accept global warming on religious principle and a freak earthquake that knocked the steeple off the national cathedral. A not unheard of yet mercifully weakened monster storm to a place that recognizes love between two people regardless of design specifications. It seems to me that God isn’t getting his point across and really don’t want to hear him shout.
Faultcode, you say, these people only represent a small portion of this great and mighty land. This is true. The problem gets back to “I”. That small portion of I’s has formed a We. They are divisive and deceptive. They are manipulative and prey on fear and uncertainty.
Those of us I’s who choose discourse over volume need to form our own band of We. We need cease being individual Americans and become America.
America, home of the brave, we must stand up a face our fear and conquer it. America, land of the free, we must preserve our freedoms in the face of terror and despite of it. We must become a nation, not just a notion. We defy those who would hold our nation hostage with fear, especially those who we trust to run it.


Actually, the brick wall was more receptive…

My fellow Americans, we need to talk. You, collectively and individually, are not the center of the universe. Most of you voted for change, but when the price of that change was clear you balked. Logic, reason, and understanding have fallen out of fashion. Now I must be stern with you, so here are some facts.

Your have been robbed. You are still being robbed. The people who wrecked our economy still have their jobs. They work on Wall St. and they will wreck it again.
The government helped them rob you through decades of policy. Nothing much has changed there either.
Health care is broken. It is expensive, exclusive, and unreliable.
Death panels are already here. They are the Insurance companies and their practices are called it recision. Look it up.
Socialized medicine is a good thing. It means everyone gets health care.
Socialism isn’t a four letter word. S-O-C-I-A-L-I-S-M. See it has nine letters.
Yes socialized medicine might raise your taxes. But then you won’t be paying premiums or co-pays.
Church leaders are not objective. Stop getting your information from them. I’m looking at you Evangelists/Fundamentalists.
News organizations are not objective. You should get your news from a variety of sources.
Just because it’s on tv, a website, or in print doesn’t make it true. Do some research before you make decisions.
Scare tactics are there to scare you into a certain point of view. Do not fall for it. Again… research.
Fear is the mind killer.
The squeaky wheel gets the grease. Squeaky wheels are usually broken in some way. Don’t trust them. Replace them.
The environment is being ruined. We are doing it.
The planet is in no way in danger. We are. Once we destroy our habitats and die, it’ll get along just fine without us.
Our president deserves at least as much respect as the last one. Tomorrow I’ll read about some idiot with no sense of history calling our president a Nazi. Again.
This will accomplish nothing. All of about three people read this blog.
Change is coming. Good or bad, it’s on it’s way. The status quo in our nation is unsustainable. We can make positive changes now, while we still have a choice. That option will not be around forever. Your choice America.

With your head in the sand, it sounds like you’re talking out of your ass…

For a long time now, I’ve harbored a simmering dissent with my political ideology. At 32, I’ve spent much of my life on the conservative side of issues. I registered independent to keep my options open, but historically I’ve leaned to the right. Until recently this hasn’t really been an issue. However, since the election I’ve become increasingly unhappy with that side of the coin.
My anger stems from the attitude of the Republican party. Instead of being a gracious in defeat, they have taken the most immature stance I can imagine. Fellow conservatives have openly admitted to me that they hope this country falls flat on it’s face under our new president, just so they can say they were right. They stubbornly oppose any ideas from the left, just because they lost. They refuse to adapt to a changing nation. They have lost their way.
I can understand being reluctant about new ideas during years of prosperity. I firmly believe that if it’s not broke, don’t fix it. Unfortunately it is broke. When the staus quo fails, it’s time to try something new. That’s just good trouble shooting.
What we need from them right now is for them to bring their best ideas to the table. Not cling to party rhetoric, but to be innovative. Instead we get slander and childish temper tantrums. We need them to play nice with the other side of the aisle. Sorry, but you can’t say the other side is not being bipartisan if you resolutely show no interest in working with them.
My former conservative colleagues, it’s time to look to the future. It’s time to find a place in this new century for us. The world is changing and if you don’t keep up, you get left behind. I’m not saying change everything, or that run away liberalism is the answer. I’m saying be open to new ideas and embrace the change you cannot stop.
The cold war is over. It’s been more than two decades since Reagan was president. It’s time to let go of the past and move on. A house divided against itself cannot stand. A republican said that. You may have heard of him, Abraham Lincoln. He was president once and saw first hand the horros of a house divided.

Sour apples…

Dear Cult of Mac,

Thank you for reading. You seem to have read only one sentence though in the previous offering. There are many fine sentences on this blog, some of them joining forces to make a paragraph. I encourage you to enjoy them all. I realize that my inflammatory remarks about your clicking option was insensitive. In the wake of this scandalous choice of words, I will endeavor to be more tolerant and understanding of your hardware. Macs really are very pretty, and they come in lots of fun colors. No doubt this feature alone has afforded you many hours of enjoyment. I hope we can still be friends. I shall now consider this matter closed. The penguin will show you to the door.

Very sincerely yours,

Glass houses, a peeping tom’s best friend…

Previously on Faultcode113’s Blog:

” The resurgent Spanish Inquisition has taken control Cheyenne Wyoming. Citizens are fleeing by the pairs.” White house chief of staff said as he stormed in.
” The weapon was on a train there. If they get a hold of it…” Started the secretary of defense.
” We played right into their hands.” Said the president.
” Mr. President, those buffalo are armed religious fundamentalists, and now they may have access to the most powerful weapon on earth.” Said the Secretary of defense.
” Get me Faultcode113!” Ordered the president.

And now, Faultcode113’s blog…

Back in the world after a brief absence. The taste of buffalo leads me to understand why the Native Americans were so angry about us nearly wiping them out. But I digress, today we’ll be discussing our ever expanding digital presence in the world and why privacy is a relative term. Outrage you say? Scandal? Tool of oppression for the man? Ha!
We use the internet to communicate on a scale that would shock a person mere decades ago. With a few clicks I can post my entire vacation online, check up on everyone I know (and some I don’t), and check a celeb’s twitter. Let’s face it, twitter is passive stalking. I can communicate via email, twitter, IM, or text message to anyone on earth in seconds. Kind of neat, but know that the world is watching.
You who have a picture of yourself wildly drunk in a gay pose with your “best” friend as you profile picture. You who tweeted about how much pot you smoked over your long weekend. You who blogged about how much of an asshole your boss is. You who have built your glass house and complained about government looking in. To all of you who complained about someone finding the electronic skeletons in your closet, I say this. You put them on display. The things we dare not say, we post.
Do you see any pictures on this blog? Are there any names mentioned here? I have taken care to omit those little facts for one reason, privacy. Not mine, but theirs. Does that mean that the details of my life aren’t available to a committed cyber sleuth? Not at all.
Terrorists use the internet. Shocking, but it’s not just for porn anymore. The government, acting in your best interests (their own included), monitors the net for key words that may flag terrorism. When you blog about wanting to blow up (flag) your office. They might find that interesting. Is the FBI going to bust down your door? Probably not.
Does this give them the right to spy? Who’s spying? You sent that blog out to the world. They didn’t hack your computer. You gave them that information. All they had to do was read. Here’s another thing, terrorists use code. The government knows a lot of this code, so they monitor lots of seemingly innocent content for intel.
What about your employer, does he get to spy on you? Again, just reading what you willingly put out there. Calling them assholes online, isn’t any better that doing it in the office. In my day job, they have to trust me with the lives of others. If I write about smoking up on the job (I don’t for the record, boss), then they have every right to fire me. Then again, if you’re an inconsequential employee, the probably don’t care.
Hypocrite you say. Did you not post a blog about someone constantly on your digital trail? I did indeed, and in this case you would be 100% correct. However, nothing said on this blogs has not been said to those who would read it. Still, I hate busybodies, and I have nothing to hide.
At one time our privacy extended as far as our garden walls. Then it went only as far as the drapes over our windows. As technology adds more transparency to our lives, we need to accept responsibility for some of the things it reveals. The internet is a nosy and untrustworthy friend. They will absolutely tell all of your dirty details to anyone who asks. At least they share the other gossip with you.


Amendments to the commandments

Those of the Christian faith are celebrating around the world this weekend with family gatherings, ham, Charleton Heston movies, and (if there’s time) church. Our Savior died for our sins (thankfully), and then returned from the dead only to go directly back to heaven (for the record I’m Catholic and actually believe some of this). Miracles abound and all are saved. 2000 years later, there is still a contentious debate about those events as told in our holy text. Even amongst those who believe in them. I’m not here to debate happenings that occurred two millenia before I was born.
Lost in the contradictions and minutia of these debates are the meanings behind that text. God laid down 10 simple rules to follow. A reasonable number, and far simpler than the thousands of laws we have to deal with in society. They’re worded in an almost legal sense, so as not to be confusing to us his children. They’re short, to the point, and unarguable.
What happened? Mortal man got into the mix. We’re faulty by nature and we felt that 10 hard and fast rules should be 10 rule with exceptions and conditions. It’s been a while, but I don’t recall and chapter in the bible where we sat down with God and hashed this out. However, they were amended. Examples:
Thou shall not kill, unless they disagree with you or have something you want (ie- land, gold, animals, or different religion, scientist, free thinker)
Thou shall not steal, unless the person who has what you want is not of your faith or not sufficiently pious. In which case they obviously don’t deserve it and it’s yours by divine will.
Worship the one true God, however money, power, and a certain mouse are also acceptable.
The rest of the bible got it even worse. There are hundreds of versions out there that should say the same thing. I saw a passage in one that said it was a sin to eat my steak rare. Seriously? I’m still waiting on a ruling about how dark my toast should be.
I believe God loves us and wants us to be happy. I love God like a parent and understand when I need a little tough love. The rules are simple and can be boiled down to this. Don’t be an asshole and show some respect to your creators (heavenly and local).
Love your neighbor applies to all of them (actual and metaphorical), no matter what religion, age, color, or sex (assigned or preferred). It’s a universal truth. It’s in every religion, though there always seems to be someone who chooses to ignore that part. The disagreements over God’s name, who Jesus actually was, and how well done a non blasphemous steak should be, are unimportant. We’ll all find out the truth in the end.


By the way, who picks the holiday mascots? Was he on vacation when Easter needed assigning? He did a bang up job with St. Patrick’s day and New Years, but a bunny and eggs? I hope there was a memo generated somewhere about this little slip up.

Entitlement- The Myth that you are owed something.

So, you were born. Welcome to Earth. Feel free to use our complimentary oxygen around the clock, and our complimentary sunshine during prearranged hours. All other amenities will require an additional fee. We do hope you enjoy your stay with us.
Whether you remember that welcome or not, it’s something that certainly should be part of every young human’s upbringing. It’s also something we as Americans have lost sight of. We get caught up in our “certain inalienable rights”, but we’re not clear on how they are provided. We confuse wants with needs, and needs with rights. In our society, what we perceive as something that is owed to us, is in fact something we have to pay for in some manner.
We are promised the pursuit of happiness, but we are by no means guaranteed that we will achieve it. We have lost sight of this fact. The American people have lost something in the last century. I believe it to be a sense of common purpose. A common goal which not only bound together our people, but enchanted other to come form far away lands to participate in it.
At first it was the cause of freedom. Freedom we thought we were entitled to, freedom we gladly paid for in blood, and do to this day. Next we became divided over who was entitled to that freedom, and more blood was spilled until it paid for everyone’s freedom. We then expanded to the other coast. Our cost was some more blood, and some of our soul. The 20th century brought two global wars in which our unity was our strength. We made the necessary sacrifices in blood, but also in our isolation. Never again would we be able to simple look the other way, not when the world looked to us for leadership.
Since then, we’ve had precious little to unite us. Technology has made the world smaller, more convenient, and more accessible. Nationality is lost in the face of international corporations, and our varied lineages. We take for granted things like food, shelter, and clean water. After all, those things are within a twenty minutes drive.
Now we have a recession. The result of people taking more than their fair share, taking what they thought they were entitled to. Well, you are not entitled to a six bedroom house, or a hummer, or a flat panel TV, or broadband internet, or and iPod, or cable , or seeing the latest blockbuster movie. You are entitled to pursue these things. You are entitled to work for them, to earn them, to pay the extra fee.
Our climate is changing because we thought we could pollute without end. Now our clean water, clean air, and fertile lands are going to start chipping away at things we thought we were entitled to. Food, drink, and breathing. We Americans could have lead the way to change the course of this ten years ago, but we thought we were entitled to our cars, cheap electricity, and a wasteful culture. We take advantage of and literally throw away that which we feel we’re entitled to.
This entitlement extends to everything in our lives. Promotions, raises, significant others, green lights, are all things we feel we’re owed. I learned one thing in my life, and that’s nobody is going to give you anything just because you think you deserve it. You have to work for it, you have to earn it, and you have to pay for it one way or another. I don’t know how to fix the economy, or the environment, but I’m pretty sure losing our sense of entitlement will be a great start.