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I debated on whether or not I should write anything about this article, considering the interesting and informative points made in Wednesday's Open Thread for Night Owls: "First, Don't Attack Weak Arguments." I thought it was really informative, including the Chait article and saved it in my favorites folder. Considering the amount of stupid that has been going on, illustrated by jpmassar's collection of the front page headlines... and considering that I'm kinda cranky today for a variety of reasons, I've decided to bring up this article by Salon: Ridiculous Fox News Claim of the Day: Reason Caused the Holocaust.

Instead of attacking this weak argument, I think I'm just going to mock it. Right Wing Watch has Penny Nance in their archives. I didn't know what "Concerned Women for America" actually was, though could take a guess. It was created by Beverly LeHaye, wife of "Left Behind" (ironic title is ironic) series author Tim LeHaye. It's a conservative Christian group gallantly fighting against everything that isn't it - thus comes to the crux of my reasons for writing a diary.

For serious reasons, I've had somewhat of an argument/discussion with my best friend about religion in general. The difficulty I am running into is whether or not I think doing without religion entirely is a good thing or not. She argues it is not. She is incredibly intelligent. She's a Presbyterian, but from the "liberal" branch of the church. I grew up in the painfully extreme conservative branch of the church and it has made me whatever it is I am today: an atheist? Certainly a skeptic at the least. It feels like every time we turn around something is being said to this extent or something equally stupid. I hear it from my dad all the time; regurgitation of Fox News and Rush Limbaugh talking points. What I never fully realized is that the church I belonged to, essentially, is a cult. I'm thankful I got out of it. As an aside, she told me that her church in general pretty much "chuckles" at churches like the one I belonged to and my family still belongs to. That made me angry, but I'm digressing.

"Chuckling" at this stuff is probably the best thing to do in terms of mental health. As for trying to get anything meaningful done - reasonable legislation (gasp!) and whatnot, it probably doesn't help, but I'm not sure ignoring it helps either. Part of me wonders what would have happened if the liberal branch of the church didn't chuckle and ignore this conservative side when it started fearmongering and spewing incredibly regressive things.

But in any case, for the sake of our mental health and to get the cobwebs out of my brain while trying to remember my Elizabethan English... in special tribute to Michele Bachmann's Shakespeare quote blunder, I will respond in Elizabethan English to this article in full mockery because I think it's a layered appropriate response. Read with appropriate British accent as you see fit.

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An argument I had with my father in the car while he was being kind enough to drive me to Media where I was meeting with friends to surprise my best friend with a graduation dinner has been weighing on my mind. My father is 64 years old and with me turning 31 in May, it should come as no surprise to me that we've had the same argument as we always have had since I stopped going to church, went out into the real world, and found that things I'd heard at home and church didn't jive with my experiences. Still, the argument has been bugging me and I think it's time to write it all out in hopes it will make some kind of sense, that I'll glean some kind of wisdom in hopes of either avoiding more of the same in the future, though I'm not hopeful.

To start, having a "serious discussion" is like reading a James Joyce novel. He's completely stream-of-consciousness and full of non sequiturs. You can imagine this inherent quality about my dad makes "serious discussions" difficult. My brother has had better success, mostly because he's proven to be more patient than I am, though similar political and religious points of view also aid him in those conversations. I'm the black sheep. The "evil liberal". Makes me want to buy a black cowboy hat and wear it at family functions. Heh.

Somehow, we came to the issue of climate change. I don't remember how or why and really it's not all that important as to how the discussion came about, but that it did. Before I jump down the rabbit hole again, I'll say that my usual tactic of telling him "I don't want to discuss politics" line has not been working. He'll continue to talk, even if I don't answer. Lately, though, he's found a new and very passive aggressive line or two that really gets me. If he were at least trolling me, I would be able to laugh it off, but he's not. He's serious. His response to my "don't wanna talk about it, dad" is either a variant of "You'll see" or "I guess we can't have serious discussions."

No, I won't "see" and no, we can't have serious discussions.

Why? Because in the course of this "discussion" about climate change, he revealed that he thinks global warming is a giant conspiracy by evil liberals who only want to tax everyone and take their money (because "look at Cypus")... to, I guess, do evil liberal things. Not anything new for people here, I'm sure, but just listening to it come from my father was surreal. The insanity continues to become more surreal to me. It's one thing to read it on a page while at work, it's another to experience it in person, much less from a loved one.

(Continued under the squiggle.)

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For the past couple of months, I've watched because it's all I could do was watch. I don't mean simply that I'm one person and not a fat cat in Washington. I mean because I have to work nine to five to pay bills and still with money running out. I'll probably have to get a second job. So I've watched and one thing after another has happened.

And now they put a Republican in place of Ted Kennedy - a man that I grew up thinking was some kind of monster in Washington because of my parents' beliefs. How wrong I was.

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Sun Sep 28, 2008 at 10:24 AM PDT

The GOP Wants You Back!

by Raven in Philly

When I turned 18, I registered Republican and remained as a Republican until this election. I switched from Republican to Democrat so that I could vote for Barack Obama in the closed Pennsylvania Primaries. It's not news that I'm not alone in this party jumping in order to vote for a Democrat in the primary and perhaps remain as a Democrat because of what the Republican Party has become.

So, with that, I give you the letter I received from Senator Arlen Specter. I don't have a scanner, so I will have it typed out under the fold.

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Are we really surprised? I'm not.

Bright and early here in Philadelphia, though it’s actually pretty cloudy out and humid. Coming up from SEPTA this morning, front page news on the free daily METRO announces that "Young GOP leader is ousted for racist rant." Subheading: "Head of Pa. group resigns after Facebook comments on Obama."

Thanks to thepennslyvaniaprogressive, this kid's racist statements were what got him put on the front page of the METRO, which is handed out to everyone that rides public transportation here in Philadelphia and surrounding counties.

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Regarding kos' current story on O'RLY's latest book... I wonder if that's what my mother was trying to buy last night.

Funny anecdote below the fold.

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Okay, I'm a bit confused on why a lot of people (namely the Right and the Media, I guess) are making a huge deal about Obama saying he would speak to guys like Ahmadinejad without conditions. We've seen people get all riled up over this, especially concerning the appeasement issue.

I'm confused. Why is the statement of meeting with them with no conditions or meeting with them at all a bad thing? And by "bad thing," mean from the point of view of those out there calling Obama naive for wanting to meet with these leaders. The only thing I could think of is that since we're Israel's allies, we can't talk to anyone that is Israel's enemies. Futhermore, if Obama does this, then he must be some kind of terrorist sympathizer and secret Muslim. Those are really the only explanations I can think of, but I really would like to be sent in the right direction on this because there's a current debate about it on a forum I attend... (More under the fold.)

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Seriously? What is it? I've been flipping around on the new stations after his kick ass speech and they're all asking talking heads, "Is Obama damaged goods after this campaign?"

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Raven in Philly here with some thoughts on the whole issue of Clinton stealing the candidacy from Obama. I was reading around in different diaries and people's comments, discussing anger and frustration towards Clinton. I'm not going to argue either way if she's a Republican in disguise or if she's stealing the election, etc. However, she (and this whole controversy) is reminding me why I originally came up with this analogy when I was in college and feeling very pessimistic about the whole political system. It's apathetic in a way, but also injects a bit of humor because I think laughing at ourselves is probably the healthiest thing we can do.

In the office I work in, there is an ongoing amusing battle between Coke and Pepsi lovers. We fight over what product to buy for lunches or meetings in a jovial matter. Lines are drawn where cubicles would be. Hilarity ensues. I'm sure many of you have bared witness to such feuds or have taken part, so it's why I think comparing the two major political parties, Democrats and Republicans, to these two soda company giants works.

Poll

Which are you?

47%40 votes
35%30 votes
3%3 votes
1%1 votes
0%0 votes
8%7 votes
4%4 votes

| 85 votes | Vote | Results

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Raven in Philly here finding myself in agreement with Hunter today:

The guy who changed his stance on tax cuts, Roe v. Wade, immigration, gun control, the confederate flag, torture, public financing, and his own anti-earmark rhetoric is the "straight talker".

Apparently, not only is he a "straight talker," but is also honest. When the bit about his apparent confusion on contraceptives came out, I seriously just could not wrap my brain around it. I knew he had been Pro-Choice and so, one would think, that he knew something about the reproductive system, but it's becoming clearer and clearer by the second that the "one would think" scenario is not the case... ever.

P.S. Snark Alert.

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Fri Apr 25, 2008 at 05:59 PM PDT

Elitism: A Specious Argument

by Raven in Philly

Raven in Philly here to give a little bit of personal insight on the whole "Elitism" issue with Barack Obama. It will be a cathartic exercise because I really am simply tired of seeing this argument everywhere. I couldn't even make a comment in a good friend's LiveJournal without some wingnut jumping on me about how I'm "wrong" - and this isn't the first time.

My simple opinion is reflected in the title: it's a specious argument and it exists only because the media is failing at it's job and Obama's opponents are worried.

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Raven in Philly here to give a bit of a testimony on my experience of this quagmire of a campaign.

I've been a lurker here on DailyKos.com and formerly a registered Republican that, unfortunately, blindly voted for King George twice. After making that disgusting mistake, I was apathetic for the next four years while working on my bachelor's degree. Finally, 2008 rolled around and I became one of those 20-something voters that jumped ship to vote in the Democratic primary here in PA, not to sabotage, but because I wanted to be a part of something meaningful - something positive - and my views had changed dramatically. I voted for Barack Obama.

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