Issues & Alibis

The Coronation of Emperor Smirkus Maximus.

An Introduction ...

Welcome to volume 1 # 1 of our new ezine "Issues & Alibis." Our goal is to present to you on a bi-monthly basis America's best writers and political cartoonists, so that you can cut through the political bullshit and past the spin-doctors to the heart and the truth of the matter.

On the 1st and 15th of every month no smoke and mirrors will stop us from bringing you your political reality no matter how horrible it actually is. You can always deal with the truth no matter how bad it is but you must know what it is. This is not an ezine for the weak of heart or for those who would rather have a sugar coating on the truth. We're going to tell it like it is and let the chips fall where they may! We hope you are ready for "Issues & Alibis."

The End Of The Democracy?
By Ernest Stewart

"If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier,
just so long as I'm the dictator." - George W. Bush

Some people have said that with the ascendancy of the Bushit regime, democracy in this country is dead. I beg to differ with those folks. If one has taken the time to study the situation, one comes to the conclusion that there was never democracy in the United States. There was a sort of Republic that lasted twelve years until the Thomas Jefferson/John Adams debacle of 1800. Since then, on at least four occasions, the powers that be have stepped in to throw an election. I refer, of course, to John Quincy Adams/Andrew Jackson of 1824, Rutherford B. Hayes/Samuel J. Tilden of 1876. Benjamin Harrison/Grover Cleveland of 1888, and, of course, our own George W. Bush/Al Gore of 2000. So, as you can see, election year treason is as old an American tradition as mom's good ole apple pie. This is not to say, of course, that other or all presidential elections aren't equally as treasonous; but they were at least able to hide the treason a little better than in these examples.

A quick glance at the founding fathers tells you all you need to know about the chances of actually forming a democracy. They were, to a man, the richest men in their area or were sent to the new Congress by the richest men in their areas. They were all white with the majority being slave owners or in sympathy of the slave owners. All were tired of bowing to a king and thought that those who were rich by their own deeds or perhaps their fathers deeds were the very ones to rule and exploit this new land. The Electoral College is a good example of this, and has been used in all the above examples to throw an election. In every case, it was the candidate of the very rich who, though losing the election, became the next president; funny how that works, eh? Of course, selling that to the sheep back at home wasn't always easy and so the spin-doctors were born. They'd say things like, "Well, you know, the average person isn't up to date on the election; and so, we'll help him out by disenfranchising him, er... helping him make the right choice. I mean, we have lands, freshly stolen from the natives; and, therefore, we are somehow better equiped and see the big picture." The big picture, of course, was them going to the bank to make a deposit every day!

Then, of course, we have the Senate and the Congress, neither of which is fair or equitable. Neither represents one man, one vote. The people in Rhode Island have the same say in the Senate as the folks in California, although there are more people in one average California town than in the entire state of Rhode Island. There are more folks in Los Angeles than in a half a dozen states combined. Yet, they all have two Senators. So much for one man one vote. And one man one vote is the very first principle of a Democracy. Majority rules; and whether or not this is a good thing really doesn't enter into it; you cannot have a democracy without it. Again, the Congress is limited by numbers so that no matter how large the country grows, only the few will have representation. Consider it was only in the last century that everybody got the vote -- with the Native Americans being the last to get the franchise in 1924. The native factor never came up at the Continental Congress, even though they outnumbered the white folk who were busily orchestrating a campaign of genocide against them. Although black men got the vote at the end of the second revolution, they really could only use it during reconstruction in the South; and as soon as Rutherford B stole the election, their voting days were over until the late 1960's. Black women, like white women, and Indians of every persuasion, had to wait until the 1920's for their franchise.

So, to those who say the treason of the Bushit family has ended democracy, I say guess again. How can you lose something that you never had? Others say that with the House as close as it is, and the 50/50 split in the Senate, though, try as he might the Emperor, won't be able to do very much damage -- just a couple of thoughts on that. Instead of worrying about what Smirky might do, we should be dragging that son-of-a bitch out of the 'Peoples House' to a quick trial, followed by a slow execution; and then, hang that traitorous bastard up high for the entire world to see. Instead, he'll no doubt spend the next four years, at least, being your Dictator and playing petty tyrant to the world. If you think the Democrats or Independents are going to stand up to him, I submit they already have their pants down around their ankles begging him not to stick it in too far. Remember the congressional black delegation that begged for just one Senator to stand up and be counted with them, in order to have a debate on the Florida election fraud during the Electoral College vote count? Remember how many Senators stood up for the people? The correct answer, of course, is zero. Don't count on your elected representatives doing anything about it except lining their own pockets and giving you double speak. So, I wonder, what will you do about it, Mr. and Mrs. America?
(c) 2001 Ernest Stewart

Author links Bush family to Nazis

The president of the Florida Holocaust Museum said Saturday that George W. Bush's grandfather derived a portion of his personal fortune through his affiliation with a Nazi-controlled bank.

John Loftus, a former prosecutor in the Justice Department's Nazi War Crimes Unit, said his research found that Bush's grandfather, Prescott Bush, was a principal in the Union Banking Corp. in Manhattan in the late 1930s and the 1940s.

Leading Nazi industrialists secretly owned the bank at that time, Loftus said, and were moving money into it through a second bank in Holland even after the United States declared war on Germany. The bank was liquidated in 1951, Loftus said, and Bush's grandfather and great-grandfather received $1.5 million from the bank as part of that dissolution.

"That's where the Bush family fortune came from: It came from the Third Reich," Loftus said. Loftus made his remarks during a speech as part of the Sarasota Reading Festival. The author of "Unholy Trinity: The Vatican, The Nazis and the Swiss Banks," Loftus documented the Swiss bank accounts that harbored funds confiscated from Holocaust victims and the participation of Italian priests in smuggling Nazi war criminals to safe haven in Canada, Central and South America and the United States after the war.

Although he said he had a file of paperwork linking the bank and Prescott Bush to Nazi money, Loftus did not provide that documentation Saturday.

Loftus pointed out that the Bush family would not be the only American political dynasty to have ties to the "wrong side of World War II." The Rockefellers had financial connections to Nazi Germany, he said. Loftus also reminded his audience that John F. Kennedy's father, an avowed isolationist and former ambassador to Great Britain, profited during the 1930s and '40s from Nazi stocks that he owned. "No one today blames the Democrats because Jack Kennedy's father bought Nazi stocks," Loftus said. Still, he said, it is important to understand these historical connections for what they tell us about politics today. The World War II experience points out how easy it was then -- and remains today -- to hide money in multinational funds.

That money flows into American politics today, he said, from "a series of multinational corporations behaving like pirates. They don't care about ideology; they care about money." Loftus' speech left many in tears. "I am absolutely shocked," said Nancy Krauss of Punta Gorda. "I wish this would have come out before the election. My husband voted for Bush. I don't think he would have voted for him if he would have known."
Sarasota Herald-Tribune 11-11-2000

Darth Nader And The Green Party
By Ernest Stewart

Once upon a time, in a mythical country called America, there lived a knight in a rumpled suit. This knight, who could've been safe and rich like others of his calling, seemed to go out of his way to take on the largest dragons in the land. Not only did this not pay very well, but it was also very dangerous. The people loved this knight in rusty armor; but the king and his court were determined to make life miserable for the questing knight. To inform the people, the knight wrote a book that told them how the King and his corporate pals deliberately separated the people from there lives by making and selling shoddy chariots. Chariots that couldn't stop or with wheels that fell off at high speeds, or by their very designs were hazardous to the people's health. These corporate dragons knew well that their chariots were no good; and they knew how to make them safe; but wouldn't do it because it'd cost them money. This rumpled knight in rusty armor showed these corporate dragons to the people for the villains they were; and there was a great disturbance in the land. The success of his deeds brought others of his calling to his side; and together they took on even more of these corporate dragons. The people were very happy, indeed. But, alas, this got old to the knight, this not being able to control those dragons from the back of his horse and this wearing that same old suit of armor year after year after year. And the knight got old. One evening, this knight was approached by some political wizards from far-off lands who whispered in his ear that he could be the king and call the shots. They whispered many things until he began to believe their magic. He could have all of the power that he lacked if only he would become one of them. They didn't tell the old crusading knight that he'd also have to join the dragons and would become just like them. So, he did as they asked, and lost his soul and became Darth Nader!

A simple fairy tale? Don't you only wish it were? No, the Greens had come to this mythical land just in time to hand the country over to the worst possible creature. For people who espouse love of nature, their fellow man and social justice, they couldn't have come at a worse time. The college students who saw only the charisma and the ecological types who voted Green failed to remember the #1 rule of politics: You may not know who to vote for, but you always know who to vote against. Perhaps the college kids didn't know this as the Greens certainly didn't bother to explain the ramifications of electing Bushit. However, an old crusader like Ralph surely knew. Yet, when he had made his point, a point with which I can agree, he didn't then admit that; since he couldn't win, or even get 5% of the vote, he wanted all of his supporters to vote for Gore. Don't get me wrong. I'm not a Democrat. I find they are as far from being the right political party as any other; however, they were the lesser of two evils. When it's Bushit as the other choice, the Democrats were, without a doubt, the only choice! Ralph, of course, knew this; and because he sucked just enough votes out of the liberals to elect Smirky, I have a bone to pick with him.

What the Greens have forgotten is that they are perceived as some kind of Communist Party out of Eastern Europe at the worst and Euro-trash at the best. The politics that work in the Old World won't cut it in America. The French, for example, are concerned about Iraqi babies dying. They blame it on U.N. sanctions in general, and the United States in particular. In reality, Iraqi babies are dying because Saddam won't spend the oil money to feed them or buy them medicine. He is busy rebuilding his palaces and tank brigades with the billions in oil dollars. The Greens pick up this chant and lay it on America, saying essentially, mom and dad, you're killing babies. Then they wonder why their party is going nowhere politically. I'm sure Smirky knows he owes his dictatorship not only to the treason of his brother and the Republican Party, but also to Ralph. Without Ralph, he could've never claimed a victory. Ralph provided the smoke and mirrors that George needed. Whether or not Ralph was paid to do so remains to be seen.

The Green Party says it stands for almost everything I think is important and believe in; but, by their own estimates, it'll take a lifetime or two just to be thought of as a regular party. The Greens say they are a local party without any real foreign connections; but they seem a lot more interested in what's going on around the world than around the corner. They say the various Green Parties throughout the world aren't connected; but all seem to rise as one for this or that perceived threat. This reporter is still convinced that somewhere a committee is pulling the strings of all the Green Parties throughout the world -- a little like one party, one world, Brother Earth! Maybe they'll turn the planet into a Star Trek world where no one wants, and there's plenty for all. I hope they can do that. However, I trust a politician about as far as I can comfortably spit out a rat. I suppose the Greens are no better or worse than other political parties; but that isn't saying a lot.
(c) 2001 Ernest Stewart

Dead letter office

Office of the Vice President
January 19, 2001

Mr. John Hinkley
St. Elizabeth Hospital
Washington D.C.

Dear John,

Tipper and I wanted to drop you a short note to tell you how pleased we are with the great strides you are making in your recovery.

In our country's new spirit of understanding and forgiveness we want you to know there is a bilateral consensus of compassion and forgiveness abroad throughout the land.

Tipper and I want you to know that no grudge is born against you for shooting President Reagan.

We, above all, are aware of how the mental stress and pain could have driven you to such an act of desperation. Tipper and I are confident that you will soon make a complete recovery and return to your family to join the world again as a healthy and productive young man.

Best wishes,
Al Gore

P.S. George W. Bush is banging Jodie Foster

A Modest Electoral Proposal

Recently Republicans have been suggesting that the uncounted Presidential ballots in Florida be sealed for the next eight years for the sake of national unity. This would, of course, give George W. Bush the Presidency, and remove the risk of exposure as a usurper from his re-election bid in 2004...but there's no reason to think that this is just a cynical political ploy. The Republicans would never place their own political power above the integrity of the American democratic system, after all! Rupert Murdoch's FOX news, Richard Mellon Scaife's Weekly Standard, and the Reverend Sun Myung Moon's Washington Times all assure us that the GOP has the country's highest welfare at heart - and we all know how liberal the media is. Those media jackals would have torn the noble George W. and his handlers apart at the slightest sign of veniality, so he MUST be purer than the driven snow!

Recognizing that the GOP has often been on the cutting (or even slashing!) edge of political ingenuity, I have a small proposal along similar lines. Rather than just sealing the current ballots, why not seal ALL ballots, permanently? After all, you don't need to be anal about counting EVERY vote in a Republic. As many wise and impartial pundits have been pointing out recently, this is NOT a democracy - how common that would be! The Founding Fathers always intended the ignorant masses to be ruled by enlightened masters, knowledgeable men of learning and property who would stand between the people and the dangerous power of self-governance.

But how could we determine the winner of an election, you ask? There are a number of practical options, all of which offer great improvements over tedious ballot-counting:

1. Voice vote! This time-honored electoral system probably dates back to our caveman ancestors - I beg your pardon, I meant to Adam and Eve. Well, to Adam, anyway, since Eve was doubtless obedient to his authority. Once every four years voters could gather in designated public areas outside the fortresses or palaces of their electors, and cheer for the candidate of their choice. Order could be maintained by a well-armed police force, supplemented by patriotic citizen militias. The police would also take care to remove unqualified voters from earshot. When the elector stepped out onto his balcony, the people would be encouraged to "shout out" in support of their candidate. NRA members could fire off their "hog-legs" to enhance their voting enthusiasm. Later, in a national meeting, electors would gather together to compare notes on the relative loudness of their voters and announce the winners for all national, state, and local elections.

2. Media vote. The media is the voice of the people, so why not take it all the way? Let reporters decide the winners of elections! I admit that this approach has some flaws; there is, after all, a terrible, terrible bias in the media towards wild-eyed liberalism, as was proved by the elections of Adlai Stevenson, George McGovern, Walter Mondale, and Michael Dukakis. If only the Murdochs, Scaifes, Moons, and other unknown billionaires and international corporations who own the media would allow right-wing pundits as well as left-wing nuts on the air, who knows what a paradise this country would be? But I digress. One advantage of a media vote is that rather than being represented by moral reprobates like Paul Wellstone and Morris Udall and John Kerry, we could proudly claim great reporters like Mike Barnicle and Tim Russert as our spokesmen. Just the thought gives me goosebumps.

3. Pollster vote. Science - that is, technology - marches on, and American polling technology is the envy of the civilized world. In fact, many countries are so ashamed of their inferior polls that they won't even allow them to be reported in the days preceding an election! But since we know without doubt that polls are far more accurate than mere counting, why not let the pollsters save us the work of voting altogether? An added advantage would be that we would know all election results months, even years (and, dare I dream it, decades?) before the elections would actually have been held.

4. Corporate vote. This one will no doubt bring liberals out of the woodwork, whining their old, old complaint about the influence of money and power. But why should we live with our heads in the clouds? This isn't 1776, after all! The fact is that large corporations and the men who own them are far more educated and capable than the general public will ever be. After all, since they own 90%+ (and growing) of the media, they have access to all the latest information - even the stuff that choose not to broadcast or publish. What's more, their vast wealth gives them the leisure time needed to study important issues of the day. That's time that the middle class and poor spend working extra hours so they can by more booze and cigarettes, or else waste on unnecessary luxuries like sleep and rearing their unpleasant-looking and noisy children (thank heaven for nannies!). When it comes to voters, why not the best?

5. Supreme vote. Time magazine recently called the Rehnquist Supreme Court awe-inspiring, and we can all understand why. The current Supreme Court of the United States may be the most qualified in history. Justice Rehnquist and the Federalist Society have done a heroic job of turning the court around, correcting the errors of past courts such as allowing death row prisoners the right to an appeal based on DNA evidence (has anyone ever SEEN one of these "genes", after all?), and anti-discrimination "rights" (did you know that the word "anti-discrimination" doesn't even APPEAR in the Constitution?). The Nine Wise Men will guide our country along its designated path safely and wisely, we may be sure. Plus, they'd be a LOT cheaper than the other methods, and Chief Justice Rehnquist would no doubt wear his snappy Gilbert and Sullivan smock to the election judgement!

6. Enhanced voice vote. This daring and visionary proposal is so far ahead of its time that some may accuse me of reading science fiction. But why not conduct the vote electronically, via the airwaves? Talk-radio hosts could divine the wishes of the population on their shows, and then at a national meeting of radio personalities could each cast a number of votes equal to their current ratings. In many cases, only Rush Limbaugh would need to be polled!

These are just a few meager ideas, and I'm sure that readers will have many more improvements to suggest - as will the Republican Party. Who knows what form will finally be chosen? But one thing is clear: America can no longer continue wasting time and money on the current flawed balloting procedure. It is time for a change, and George W. Bush and the GOP will make sure of that change. They say that a single stick can be snapped, but a bundle of sticks is unbreakable. Unity is the most sacred right guaranteed to our leaders under the Constitution. We must thank a kindly Deity for providing us with at least ONE political party that is willing to stand up and say "NO MORE VOTING!" - not for their sake, but for ours. We can only hope that history will give them the reward that they so richly deserve.

The Cartoon Corner

This edition we're proud to showcase the cartoons of
... Kevin Cunningham ...

In 1555, Nostradamus wrote...
In his 9th "Century," "Quatrain" numbers 79 & 80:

In the month before the millennium
Treason will reign in the high court
The village idiot who lost will be chosen
To destroy the great republic.

In the new millennium, month 1,
In the home of the greatest power,
the village idiot will come forth
To be acclaimed the leader.

To End On A Happy Note ...

We'd like to end our 1st edition with a song. The song all America was singing on Inauguration Day.

Bush Inaugural Theme Song

Sung to the tune of "What a Wonderful World"
With apologies to Sam Cooke

Don't know much about history.
Don't know much foreign policy.
I don't know the names of men I grill,
or implications of the seats I fill.
But I do know who paid my way.
For corporate interests and the NRA,
What a wonderful world this will be.

Don't know much about ecology.
cutting trees has always worked for me.
And I don't know much about the women's vote,
And I can't think of any bill I wrote.
But there's one thing that I know for sure,
If the rich stay rich and the poor stay poor
What a wonderful world this would be.

I never claimed to be an A student,
but I don't have to be.
If you have deep pockets and sell nuclear rockets
You're a friend of my family.

Don't know much about air pollution.
Don't know much about the Constitution.
Don't care much for solar energy.
There's nothing in it for my friends and me.
And if we can't find any on our soil
We can go to war and get more oil,
and What a wonderful world this would be.

Don't know much about the driving rules.
Don't know much about the public schools.
Don't know why the inner cities fail
Why can't folks get dad to pay for Yale?
And if the issues causing you to lose
Are never covered in the evening news,
What a wonderful world this would be.

I never claimed to be an A student,
but I don't have to be.
If you have a brother who's the Florida governor,
the result's no mystery.

Don't know much about history.
Don't know much foreign policy.
Don't know 'bout paying off a debt.
I never had to pay one off yet.
But I do know who has paid my way.
for special interests in the USA,
What a wonderful world this would be.
(c) 2001 New lyrics by Joel Landy


Parting Shots ...

WASHINGTON, DC--Mere days from assuming the presidency and closing the door on eight years of Bill Clinton, president-elect George W. Bush assured the nation in a televised address Tuesday that "our long national nightmare of peace and prosperity is finally over.

"My fellow Americans," Bush said, "at long last, we have reached the end of the dark period in American history that will come to be known as the Clinton Era, eight long years characterized by unprecedented economic expansion, a sharp decrease in crime, and sustained peace overseas. The time has come to put all of that behind us."

Bush swore to do "everything in [his] power" to undo the damage wrought by Clinton's two terms in office, including selling off the national parks to developers, going into massive debt to develop expensive and impractical weapons technologies, and passing sweeping budget cuts that drive the mentally ill out of hospitals and onto the street.

During the 40-minute speech, Bush also promised to bring an end to the severe war drought that plagued the nation under Clinton, assuring citizens that the U.S. will engage in at least one Gulf War-level armed conflict in the next four years.

"You better believe we're going to mix it up with somebody at some point during my administration," said Bush, who plans a 250 percent boost in military spending. "Unlike my predecessor, I am fully committed to putting soldiers in battle situations. Otherwise, what is the point of even having a military?"

On the economic side, Bush vowed to bring back economic stagnation by implementing substantial tax cuts, which would lead to a recession, which would necessitate a tax hike, which would lead to a drop in consumer spending, which would lead to layoffs, which would deepen the recession even further.

Wall Street responded strongly to the Bush speech, with the Dow Jones industrial fluctuating wildly before closing at an 18-month low. The NASDAQ composite index, rattled by a gloomy outlook for tech stocks in 2001, also fell sharply, losing 4.4 percent of its total value between 3 p.m. and the closing bell.

Asked for comment about the cooling technology sector, Bush said: "That's hardly my area of expertise."

Turning to the subject of the environment, Bush said he will do whatever it takes to undo the tremendous damage not done by the Clinton Administration to the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. He assured citizens that he will follow through on his campaign promise to open the 1.5 million acre refuge's coastal plain to oil drilling. As a sign of his commitment to bringing about a change in the environment, he pointed to his choice of Gale Norton for Secretary of the Interior. Norton, Bush noted, has "extensive experience" fighting environmental causes, working as a lobbyist for lead-paint manufacturers and as an attorney for loggers and miners, in addition to suing the EPA to overturn clean-air standards.

Bush had equally high praise for Attorney General nominee John Ashcroft, whom he praised as "a tireless champion in the battle to protect a woman's right to give birth."

"Soon, with John Ashcroft's help, we will move out of the Dark Ages and into a more enlightened time when a woman will be free to think long and hard before trying to fight her way past throngs of protesters blocking her entrance to an abortion clinic," Bush said. "We as a nation can look forward to lots and lots of babies."

Continued Bush: "John Ashcroft will be invaluable in healing the terrible wedge President Clinton drove between church and state."

The speech was met with overwhelming approval from Republican leaders.

"Finally, the horrific misrule of the Democrats has been brought to a close," House Majority Leader Dennis Hastert (R-IL) told reporters. "Under Bush, we can all look forward to military aggression, deregulation of dangerous, greedy industries, and the defunding of vital domestic social-service programs upon which millions depend. Mercifully, we can now say goodbye to the awful nightmare that was Clinton's America."

"For years, I tirelessly preached the message that Clinton must be stopped," conservative talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh said. "And yet, in 1996, the American public failed to heed my urgent warnings, re-electing Clinton despite the fact that the nation was prosperous and at peace under his regime. But now, thank God, that's all done with. Once again, we will enjoy mounting debt, jingoism, nuclear paranoia, mass deficit, and a massive military build-up."

An overwhelming 49.9 percent of Americans responded enthusiastically to the Bush speech.

"After eight years of relatively sane fiscal policy under the Democrats, we have reached a point where, just a few weeks ago, President Clinton said that the national debt could be paid off by as early as 2012," Rahway, NJ, machinist and father of three Bud Crandall said."That's not the kind of world I want my children to grow up in."

"You have no idea what it's like to be black and enfranchised," said Marlon Hastings, one of thousands of Miami-Dade County residents whose votes were not counted in the 2000 presidential election. "George W. Bush understands the pain of enfranchisement, and ever since Election Day, he has fought tirelessly to make sure it never happens to my people again."

Bush concluded his speech on a note of healing and redemption.

"We as a people must stand united, banding together to tear this nation in two," Bush said. "Much work lies ahead of us: The gap between the rich and the poor may be wide, be there's much more widening left to do. We must squander our nation's hard-won budget surplus on tax breaks for the wealthiest 15 percent. And, on the foreign front, we must find an enemy and defeat it."

"The insanity is over," Bush said. "After a long, dark night of peace and stability, the sun is finally rising again over America. We look forward to a bright new dawn not seen since the glory days of my dad."
(c) 2001 The Onion


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Issues & Alibis Vol 1 # 1 (c) 02/01/2001