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Mourning in DC

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The view from 4th and Penn; photo from ANSWER Spent a very cold day in the nation’s capital protesting today’s embarrassingly lavish Republican coronation. Don’t that idiot Bush and his de la Renta-clad missus realize that there’s a “war” on? Or that people are suffering in Asia, Africa, and Newark? Bad, bad show.

And how about this: On the day the country is supposed to celebrate its values and founding principles, we had law-enforcement types doing their level best to prevent people from exercising their inalienable rights. The amount of security was amazing — the Man was inescapable. Security checkpoints prevented a lot of dissenters from being able to reach Pennsylvania Avenue, snipers were on rooftops, and thuggish-looking cops were everywhere. What is their goal?, I wondered. Are they trying to protect us all from terrorists, or are they trying to protect Shrubbie from his subjects?

I turned out to be among the lucky peaceniks — I got to spend some time at the International Answer rally, where I ment a fab young lady named Anna who helped me land a choice spot at 4th and Pennsylvania. Others were not so fortunate — thousands of protestors were held up at Secret Service checkpoints and not allowed to get any closer to the parade route. Friggin’ typical: Shrubbie’s coronation address contained a pledge to stop tyranny, yet his goons spent the day being tyrannical. God bless the USA.

As you can imagine, I was not in a good mood. The mistreatment of my partners in peace was hard to take: A small number of people ended up in police custody, including some Code Pink for Peace representatives arrested for shouting during Bushie’s mouthing of empty rhetoric (since when is obedient silence mandated by law?). Other dissenters were actually pepper-sprayed by cops. And they call this America? There is no excuse. Get over yourself, Red Staters. It is a piece of friggin' cloth. Photo by Reuters' Jim Bourg Granted, a tiny minority of the protesters behaved badly: I heard that a small group of anti-Bushies allegedly threw snowballs and pieces of fruit at Bush’s and Cheney’s limousines and that another small group pushed down a fence near the Willard Hotel. (I understand and share their frustration, but violence is never the answer.) But on the whole, the demonstrators were peaceful. The police violence was unnecessary. Worse, it was a cruel contradiction: A presidential inauguration is supposed to be an event for the people. Well, anti-Bush people have the right to take part too, even if they want to shout, even if they want to burn a stupid piece of cloth, even if you don’t like their opinion. It is shameful and disgusting that many of them were not permitted to speak their piece about the human who is supposedly their president and employee too.

As the afternoon passed, the temperature dropped and my fury grew. I worked my way up Pennsylvania, getting as far as just below 14th Street. It wasn’t an easy trek: I was dragging a sign behind me and didn’t want to incite any confrontations with Shrub supporters or gestapo types looking to pummel a peacenik. So, attempting to be unobtrustive, I walked silently when possible — sometimes right wingers love to bait peaceniks with stupid questions, goddess bless ‘em. With each step, I watched the faces of the people along the route, the people many would cast as my enemies. Most were jubilant Red Staters cheering for their hero, political savior, what have you. The experience was surreal — it was like being part of an Ionesco scene. You should have seen these people as they awaited the second coming of Their Leader: The anticipatory smiles, the wide eyes, the puffed-out chests, the happy tears rolling down rosy Republican cheeks as they waved their flags and thanked their god. Made my stomach churn. I am sure that most of these people are fairly decent folks, but the experience didn’t do much to convince me of Americans’ intelligence. Today, I am sure. These people around me, despite our profound disagreements, are my sisters and brothers, as are people anywhere on this planet. But I am not American. And I am glad of it.

Despite my overall black mood, an occurrence did send me into a fit of raucous laughter. I finally found a small group of likeminded folks — safety in numbers, right? — holding anti-Bush signs; we were near the Willard. As the Residential motorcade made its way toward us, we began shouting and waving our posters. Well, the Shrub’s flotilla of cars picked up its pace. Sped up. Put the pedals to the metal. Hilarious! I suppose the Creep in Chief didn’t want to deal with seeing the “Worst President Ever” and “US Out of Iraq” signs. It absolutely made my day to see the chickenhawk terrorist fleeing peaceful protesters. Hey, if Dubya can’t take pacifists’ heat — if he is afraid of his own countrypeople — perhaps he should refrain from invading sovereign nations, where people fight back with bombs and guns.

I am safe at home now, and the anger of Black Thursday remains: The next four years will be hell and half the nation is downright thrilled about it. The big-bully regime in charge has shown itself to be arrogant and cowardly all at once. And it appears Bush and his henchpersons will do whatever they can to make life as difficult as possible for those who would dare dissent. But despite today’s horror show, I did find something positive on this day of mourning: Thousands and thousands of peaceful people stood up and showed that no matter what, we will not bend to the repugnant powers that be and we will not be silenced. Hallelujah.

Last thing: An anonymous correspondent has a most interesting sense of timing. When I retrieved my email, a link to a Liquid Generation quiz on patriotism awaited me. Of course I took the test. And of course, the result will not surprise you.

Ohhhh, Canada…

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About NR Davis

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    Yeah, you’re definitely not American, Natalie? So what are you still doing in this country?

    Renounce your citizenship already and go to Canada! Your Stalinist sensitivities are sure to be a real hit and friend-maker up there, that’s for damn sure.

    Leave already!

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Oh, believe me, Mr. Manning, if I could have, I would have hit the road after my experiences today. It frustrates me to no end that moving is impossible right now. But when I can, I will; that is a promise. And you intensify my need: How sad it is that you and yours need to crush, silence, or banish dissenting views.

    While discussing my DC trip over the phone this evening, my new friend Anna said something to me that is keeping me wide awake. In her opinion, the protesters — including me — are really more in line with true American values than those sucked in by Bush blather. In other words, she sees us as being more American — better, truer Americans — than many Red Staters. And she is angry about my plans to expatriate because she says the real anti-Americans don’t deserve the legacy of those who founded a nation intended to be based on justice and equality for all. Go figure.

    I am still processing her comments. Who knows? Anna may be on to something.

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    Ban, crush and banish dissenting views? Listen to yourself, Natalie! Do you know why your fellow “peace” protestors were so warded off by “the Man?” Because any one of them would put a bullet through the President’s head without thinking twice about it. The potential for extreme violence and mayhem lies with you and yours, not us!

    You disagree with the direction Bush is taking? Fine! I easily accept that some have as much distaste for Bush as I had for Clinton. But you didn’t see us “right-wing extremists” lining up to shoot him and cause mayhem over the course of eight years, did you?

    The Left, the side you shamefully wish to follow, doesn’t accept democracy as much as it claims to. And we conservatives are expected to reach out our hands to heal the rift with you? Please. We’d get them bitten off!

    Natalie, the ball is in your court and those whom you follow. Which direction do you choose to take – that of a mature citizen or an immature crybaby?

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    I want to add: You, yourself, are a good person, Natalie. I have no doubts about that. You mean well.

    But the position you’ve chosen to take against the country that fed you, clothed you and educated you is pretty horrible.

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    Lastly, but not leastly, if you think Canada is such a great hippie pie-in-the-sky, then you need to read my latest.

    Sealskin, Natalie? G’won, you know you want one! It’ll keep you warm up there!

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    some have as much distaste for Bush as I had for Clinton. But you didn’t see us “right-wing extremists” lining up to shoot him and cause mayhem over the course of eight years, did you?

    I’m not sure where the concept of ‘lining up to shoot him’ comes from. Did you read something in this report of peaceful protesting that I missed?

    As far as right-wing extremists causing mayhem over the course of 8 years, does the Kenneth Starr witchhunt count? Certainly the constant witchhunt from Whitewater to the Monica story, for something….anything….to bring down the duly elected President of the United States should count for something.

  • Antfreeze

    This is getting pathetic. You smug ass right-wingnuts need to shut the fuck up. She specifically makes the point that violence is never the answer and then you accuse her of trying to assasinate the president. You turds may currently wield all the power, but you have nothing to counter two powerful forces the left won’t relinquish. Those are compassion and tolerance. There’s more than one way to do things. There’s more than one religion. There’s more than one country. Your counter to compassion is fuck em if they can’t keep up. Your counter for tolerance is blow em up if they’re different. You’re greedy, know-it-all, pricks.

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com/ andy marsh

    So Natalie, because I don’t follow your beliefs I’m less of an American than you? I served my country for 20 years and I’m less than an American than you?

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com/ andy marsh

    Antifreeze – how can you call yourself compassionate and tolerant right after you told anyone that doesn’t agree with your point of view to shut the fuck up?

  • Antfreeze

    I’d love to get into a big thing about the semantics of “needing to shut up” vs “shut up” but I just don’t see the point. No one’s going to change anyone’s philosophy here so let’s not even pretend ok? I just wanted to point out the emptiness of your souls.

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com/ andy marsh

    Ah, I see…that must be more of that compassion you were talking about?

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    >>: The anticipatory smiles, the wide eyes, the puffed-out chests, the happy tears rolling down rosy Republican cheeks as they waved their flags and thanked their god. Made my stomach churn. I am sure that most of these people are fairly decent folks, but the experience didn’t do much to convince me of Americans’ intelligence.<<

    Do you read what you write?

    Maybe you should consider the possibility that if so many people who you admit are decent folk are supportive of the president, despite all the negative things they hear said about him, that just possibly they see something in the man and the office worth supporting?

    Maybe it’s time for you to stop pushing negativity and look for some positive solutions – that’s something the left is woefully short of these days – which is why they’ve lost sway with the American people. Don’t blame Bush for his success, blame yourselves for not being able to offer something better.

    Dave

  • NC

    Love the graphic but the joke’s on you. The woman pictured there as the embodiment of bleeding-heart values is Sabine Herold, a right-wing libertarian and self-professed big fan of Margaret Thatcher. She became famous a few years ago for leading protests against French labor unions.

    Ah, irony.

  • Dawn

    Gosh, when I took it, it said that I was the “Happy Horny American” – which is sort of right, except the horny part, which I am pretty sure Eric would disagree with that assertion – but “happy” hell yes I am happy – now shut the fuck up already.

  • Eric Olsen

    hey, I’m a Happy Horny American also, and proud of it

    I thought the picture above was the thin version of Gillian Anderson

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com/ andy marsh

    Here you go…That’s how American I am!

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com/ andy marsh

    Thanks for fixing that! What’s funny about it is the caption reads pretty much how I feel about the whole thing!

  • http://www.bhwblog.com bhw

    Based on you posts and comments, it does seem to fit!

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com/ andy marsh

    That’s why I am The Ugly American!

  • Eric Olsen

    man, you are a walking freedom fry!

  • http://www.mondoirlando.com Aaron, Duke De Mondo

    i gotta say, though, the idea that if you don’t like it, move someplace else, that right there is pretty ridiculous. If you don’t like it you strive to change it. That seems to be the most patriotic option to yours truly.

    Anyhow, great post Natalie.

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com/ andy marsh

    When I was in the USN, some of my friends would ask me, how can you stay in, the navy is so messed up…I would tell them that if everyone that thought the navy had problems got out, who was gonna fix it? I always tried to make my little piece of the USN a better piece.

  • MCH

    Great post, Natalie. Someday GW Bush will be brought to justice for his war crimes, we can only hope that the number of wasted American soldiers lives in Iraq doesn’t reach the tens-of-tousands before it happens…

  • http://wisdomandmurder.blogspot.com Distorted Angel

    And yet when people point out the things here that need fixing, they are labeled unpatriotic, or worse. Go figure…

  • Eric Olsen

    I think it’s all about babies and bathwater

  • http://wisdomandmurder.blogspot.com Distorted Angel

    That’s a tepid comment, E.

  • Eric Olsen

    good one! now you’re in the swim!

  • http://www.mondoirlando.com Aaron, Duke De Mondo

    oh come on, you’re just treading water now.

  • http://www.mondoirlando.com Aaron, Duke De Mondo

    pfft. sorry, that sucked heh

  • http://wisdomandmurder.blogspot.com Distorted Angel

    How about we meet up somewhere and drown our sorrows (or this thread)?

  • NC

    Someday GW Bush will be brought to justice for his war crimes

    No, he won’t. Even if you really believe he’s committed war crimes, you know goddamned well no one’s going to “bring him to justice.” Stop fucking whining and MoveOn.

  • Eric Olsen

    has there ever been a war where those opposed to it didn’t accuse those running it of war crimes, as in war=crimes?

  • http://www.bhwblog.com bhw

    And where those who supported it called those who opposed it traitors/anti-American/etc.?

  • Eric Olsen

    probably not to either

  • http://www.bhwblog.com bhw

    Really? It’s happening now. Speak out against the war = unpatriotic. It happens every time.

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com andy marsh

    so…basically we’re all a bunch of war criminals and traitors? America, what a country! I thought that’s how Australia got started?

  • Eric Olsen

    bhw, I was agreeing with you – the questions were posed in the negative.

  • http://www.bhwblog.com bhw

    Oh.

    Bad comprehension day.

  • NC

    Speak out against the war = unpatriotic. It happens every time.

    Yeah, I wonder why. Might the reason be that the same people who are most likely to speak out against the war tend also to hold other opinions that stray towards anti-Americanism? From Natalie’s post: “But I am not American. And I am glad of it.” That’s pretty much a textbook fucking definition of anti-Americanism, isn’t it? Or am I not allowed to say that since, after all, she’s expressing her dissent and we all know that dissent is always, always patriotic? I wonder, is there even a single anti-war patriot amongst us here who paused and gulped a bit when they read Natalie’s cheery account of joining a fucking International ANSWER rally?

    One more thing. Having lost the debate about whether to go to war in Iraq, shouldn’t anti-war patriots at least want us to succeed in our mission now that we’re there? It’s crazy, I know, but I get the funniest feeling sometimes that the anti-war crowd wants desperately for us to fail just so that Bush will receive his comeuppance — the consequences to America’s prestige, and to the future of the Middle East, be damned. Seems to me that people who would place partisanship above the success of their own country’s foreign policy are also a wee bit unpatriotic. Unless they’re dissenters, of course, which makes everything cool.

    I eagerly await the round of celebratory posts from all the patriotic, pro-democratic anti-war lefties at Blogcritics when the Iraqi elections are held nine days from now. Yay, democracy!

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    Perhaps what people do when they look at war protesters is question their motivations for protesting the war.

    While many of those protesters are out there because they don’t like the idea of the US imposing its will on other countries or because they just don’t like seeing anyone being killed, there’s a large contingent of the anti-war movement who are in the movement for purely ideological reasons which are at base anti-American, not anti-war.

    If you’re going to attend a rally sponsored by MoveOn, then you’re going to get tarred with the brush of international socialism and anti-Americanism. This is one of the problems the democrats ran into during the election. By being willing to accept support from groups like MoveOn, the entire party was perceived as moving unacceptably far left and undesirably radical even if that wasn’t the position of a lot of the individuals in the party.

    The old addage that “if you lie down with dogs you get up with fleas” is fundamentally true. However good your motives for opposing the war, if you’re marching next to someone in a Che Guevara T-Shirt carrying a sign that says “Death to America”, it’s the radical nut that gets noticed and you get lumped in with him.

    Dave

  • MCH

    Re comment #31;
    “…You know Goddamned well nobody’s gonna bring him to justice…”

    Yeah, I suppose you’re right. After all, this is the same guy who deserted the Guards – while brave men perished in combat in Vietnam – and 30 years later is considered a great patriot by most righties…

  • NC

    Well, you got me there. I remember watching that White House tsunami relief press conference a few weeks ago and wondering, “How can Bush look a war hero like Bill Clinton in the eye?” No shame, I guess.

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    I remember watching that White House tsunami relief press conference a few weeks ago and wondering, “How can Bush look a war hero like Bill Clinton in the eye?”

    That’s ironic. I was thinking “How can Bush look a war hero like John Kerry in the eye without wearing 9 inch platform shoes?”

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    Antifreeze: “You turds may currently wield all the power, but you have nothing to counter two powerful forces the left won’t relinquish. Those are compassion and tolerance.”

    LOL! Yeah, whatever …!

    Thank you for making me see the light. Yep, absolutely none of you on the terrorist-harboring/excusing Left definitely wouldn’t put a bullet through President Bush’s head if given half a chance? No, you wouldn’t.

    I stand corrected. Shame on me. I’m so chagrined.

    By the way, I’ve got a bridge in Brooklyn I want to sell you.

  • http://www.bhwblog.com bhw

    Might the reason be that the same people who are most likely to speak out against the war tend also to hold other opinions that stray towards anti-Americanism?

    Um, noooooooo.

    Having lost the debate about whether to go to war in Iraq, shouldn’t anti-war patriots at least want us to succeed in our mission now that we’re there?

    Um, yessssssss.

    The old addage that “if you lie down with dogs you get up with fleas” is fundamentally true.

    Indeed. But this is not unique to anti-war protesters or any one political group. The same can be said for middle of the road conservatives who stand next to those on the extreme.

  • NC

    I was thinking “How can Bush look a war hero like John Kerry in the eye without wearing 9 inch platform shoes?”

    Which explains why you voted for war hero Bob Dole over draft-dodgin’ Billy C. in ’96, right, Steve?

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    >>The old addage that “if you lie down with dogs you get up with fleas” is fundamentally true.

    Indeed. But this is not unique to anti-war protesters or any one political group. The same can be said for middle of the road conservatives who stand next to those on the extreme.<<

    No argument here, but fortunately the conservative dogs are just a tiny bit less infested than the liberal ones. In the sense that they’re less likely to do serious permanent harm to the country.

    Dave

  • http://www.bhwblog.com bhw

    In the sense that they’re less likely to do serious permanent harm to the country.

    I’ll have to just plain disagree with you there.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    >>In the sense that they’re less likely to do serious permanent harm to the country.

    I’ll have to just plain disagree with you there.<<

    Let’s see, I’m guessing you were born between 1970 and 1985 and are therefore too young to remember the disastrous Johnson administration and too young to remember the nightmare that was Jimmy Carter’s misadministration of the country. If the only Democrat you have to judge the party by is Bill Clinton they look an awful lot better than they really are. Imagine if some of the second-tier leaders – the Johnsons and Carters of our day – were to get into power. Like a Howard Dean, perhaps. It would be a nightmare.

    Dave

  • http://www.bhwblog.com bhw

    Let’s see, I’m guessing you were born between 1970 and 1985 and are therefore too young to remember the disastrous Johnson administration and too young to remember the nightmare that was Jimmy Carter’s misadministration of the country.

    Part right. Born in ’66 [see the Pt. Pleasant thread about the NJ beaches in the ’80s], but still too young to remember Johnson at all and Carter’s in real detail, although I did vote for Jimmy in my 5th grade mock vote. Very foretelling.

    But I’m not so much talking about individual presidents as the whole lot of uber conservatives. Their vision of America is pretty frightening to me: lots of religion and a lot less freedom than we have now.

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    >>But I’m not so much talking about individual presidents as the whole lot of uber conservatives. Their vision of America is pretty frightening to me: lots of religion and a lot less freedom than we have now.<<

    Those aren’t my conservatives. The ones I associate with believe in the right to be religious but not have others religion forced on you, and believe much more strongly in civil rights than typical liberals, who from what I’ve seen are the ones who have done the most damage to the Constitution.

    Dave

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    As usual Miss Natalie, your supposed noble big hearted compassion and concern for all mankind turns out to actually be hatred, bitter resentment, and allegedly righteous anger.

    You COULD have spent the day working a soup kitchen, feeding the hungry and alleviating human suffering. Instead, your idea of a good time was to try to be the turd in the punchbowl ruining the president’s inaugaration.

    Simply calling the president names does not prove that he’s wrong.

    Nor does the First Ammendment grant you an inalienable right to obstruct or shout down other people. You could bitch all you want at some pinko church down the block. You could make handbills to pass out everyday on those busy streetcorners. No, you have to exercise your “right” to disrupt Bush and his supporters TODAY in their expression of THEIR free speech and assembly rights.

    I note also how utterly ridiculous your cheap grasping at victimhood comes out. What violence did the police commit? I haven’t seen, nor did you even describe anyone getting beat. A few disorderlies got briefly detained.

    Damn, that’s too bad. What, wouldn’t they let you burn your flag directly in the path of the presidential motorcade? Did they deny your constitutional right to bum rush the podium and shout the president down?

    At least you got to bask in the glow of your moral superiority, warmed by your righteous anger.

  • http://dirtgrain.com/weblog Dirtgrain

    That is a slimy comment, Al. Are you always so cruel? Are you trying to sound like a weenie? Could you try to start comments without some “as usual” attempt to label and define whomever it is that you address?

  • http://www.foliage.com/~marks Mark Saleski

    Nor does the First Ammendment grant you an inalienable right to obstruct or shout down other people.

    we will now pause so that the entire blogcritics community may step aside so as to avoid the lightening-bolt-of-irony which will soon smoke mr. barger’s ass.

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Explain this irony to me, Mark. I don’t see it. Am I somehow suppressing someone’s free expression?

    Dirtgrain, yes I was harsh. But it needed to be said. I want to be a nice guy, but Miss Natalie had it coming.

    It’s interesting that you described my remarks as “cruel.” This seems to imply that you are conceding that they’re correct. Note that you made no attempt to actually refute my comments, or show that they are inaccurate.

    There’s nothing “slimy” about my comments that I can see, nothing underhanded or dishonest. “As usual” was exactly the right phrase to describe this. That is because this kind of cheap resentment and utterly unearned sense of moral superiority not just to the president but America in general (Al Barger certainly included) is in the practice unmistakably her stock in trade. Did I mention the constant grasping for claims of victimhood to use as a club? Look at her author archives, or go to her website.

    You know I’m right. How do you read this article or any of her regular stuff and come out saying that it’s ol’ Al who is “cruel” or “slimy”?

    Blogcritics is pretty much an open forum. She can say whatever she wants. But it is also MY home turf on the web, and I’ll damn well say what I want.

    Come up in here talking a lot of smug, self-righteous trash, and I will feel free to call you out.

  • http://www.foliage.com/~marks Mark Saleski

    al, nearly every time you strongly disagree with somebody, you come off spewing invective: “cheap”, “commie”, “pinko”, “foolish”, etc.

    sounds like shouting down other people to me.

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Perhaps this can be a teaching moment: No Mark, criticism does not automatically constitute “shouting down.” That would involve trying to prevent or interfere with someone saying their piece. I have no intent or desire to do so.

    See, the way this “free speech” thing works is that you get to say what you want, and then I get to respond- as we’re doing here.

    As to “spewing invective,” read the original post. The president is a “chickenhawk terrorist” with his “big bully regime.” He is “arrogant and cowardly” as well as “repugnant.”

    On the other hand, my main response (comment 52) was not “spewed,” but carefully considered and calmly delivered. For one thing, I’m not angry, as Miss Natalie obviously is.

    Also, “spewing invective” implies mere name calling. That would reasonably describe Miss Natalie’s diatribe here against the president. My response, however, made a considered analysis of what she was saying, responding to her specific words and statements.

    For example, you objected to my use of the word “cheap.” In context, she’s accusing the understandably extra vigilant security of being “violent” and “big bullies,” despite not even claiming any actual violence.

    “Cheap,” as in cheap shot seems to be exactly the accurate- and not particularly emotionally loaded- word to describe this. She was transparently looking for any half-assed excuse to villify them, and to cast her people as victims and martyrs- directly contrary to all facts on the ground.

    I’m just shining the disinfecting sunlight of reason on the darkness of the haters.

  • http://www.foliage.com/~marks Mark Saleski

    nice. smug AND condescending, all in just a few sentences.

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Took me a bit to check back here, and very little of it is surprising. A few replies:

    Mr. Manning, I am a pacifist; I don’t believe in bullets or guns for any purpose. All violence is immoral. And do you define maturity as agreeing with you? Please. “Citizen,” however, I consider a particularly heinous label. You gave me the creeps.

    Mr. Manning, your leader is in no danger from me or from those who think like me. I grant that there are violent leftists, which is painful and tragic (I consider Clinton as much a terrorist as your Shrub), but your side seems to glorify killing — war, invasion, capital punishment, nuking assorted bastards for retaliatory purposes, “kill ‘em if you can’t convert ‘em, ” et al. Your side — and I include the centrists who align with you — scares me to pieces.

    As for Canada, I agree — it needs to stop murdering seals. That happens to be a cause near to my heart and one of the issues I have been working on through my activist efforts. Canada is imperfect, to be sure. No place is perfect, for that matter. But Canada offers something your nation doesn’t — each of its citizens is equal under law while your mendacious country lies about being a land of justice and equality.

    Mr. Marsh, in Anna’s opinion, yes. And just as you are entitled to your POV, so is she. Personally, I find the concept of patriotism to any country to be a colossally stupid one. While I find Anna’s theory intriguing, I ultimately had to reject it.

    bhw and MCH, thank the goddess for you.

    NC, I am quite aware of Ms. Herold and found Liquid Generation’s use of her picture quite amusing (which is exactly why I affixed it to the end of the posting). And btw, I have never had soymilk wheatgrass cake in my life, I don’t drive an electric car, and I can see both sides of the globalization issue.

    Eric, your “baby/bathwater” bit connotes that I should have some pride or loyalty in the landmass you love. Call me a heretic or ungrateful or whatever, but I don’t buy nationalism. Doesn’t strike me as being at all logical. Canada is as much mine and my home as any part of this planet. And I would be happier elsewhere. What is wrong with that? All this “the country gave you this that or the other” stuff sounds really insane to me.

    Aaron, Duke de Mondo: Why is it silly to move to a place where one would be happy? Why stay in a place simply because one was born there? I had no choice in that. Patriotism? No. I am loyal to peace and justice and humanity, not to any place. And thank the goddess for you too.

    Mr. Nalle, I could lob that bit about dogs and fleas back at you. And you’re right, I don’t want your mission to succeed. I don’t want the violent Iraqis to succeed either. I want one thing: a planet of peace, justice, freedom, and equality. I don’t see either side — and I support neither — getting the world there.

    BTW, I don’t hate America at all: I don’t care about it any more or less than any other country; it is just another landmass and I would be happier on another one. If it’s not Canada, it will be somewhere else. Neither do I hate Bush, despite what right wingers say: I disapprove of what he preaches and practices. I do hate American policy, however. And I loathe much of the culture of the American mainstream, and I am grateful not to be a part of it.

    And regarding this:

    Maybe you should consider the possibility that if so many people who you admit are decent folk are supportive of the president, despite all the negative things they hear said about him, that just possibly they see something in the man and the office worth supporting?

    Well, of course they see something in Shrub. I do too — and our visions are completely different. Obviously. Why trust them? These seemingly decent folks oppose equality for all under law. Many of them would have a hard time with the idea of their child dating or marrying someone out of their financial or social or pigmentational sphere. Many of them support the draconian work of Michael Powell. And on and on and on. Bottom line, they support a man who, among many other sins, launched an invasion on a sovereign nation and presided over many murders in Texas. Just because they appear to be somewhat decent does not make them correct. I’ve done a lot of work covering the Religious Wrong and met some (at times) very nice people. Doesn’t mean I want to hang out with them. Same with the people I saw Thursday. Decent or not, part of me fears them — and with good reason.

    Oh — and I think those who support war criminals stain their own souls. Saddens me, but there it is.

    Mark S, my friend: Thanks for you. And here is a piece of advice: Ignore he-who-should-not-be-named. Let him display his ignorance for all the world to see, but skip right past it. Your time will be so much better spent and life will be so much brighter if you do.

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    Natalie: “No. I am loyal to peace and justice and humanity, not to any place.”

    So why all the loyalty to Canada? Canada was a place the last time I checked.

    Canada was also instrumental during World War II and helped out in Afghanistan. You may wish to remember this. I’m sure it violates your peace-uber-alles mindset.

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    Natalie: “I consider Clinton as much a terrorist as your Shrub.”

    Clinton, a “terrorist?” OMG, that is just as amusing (and pathetic) as calling Kerry a war criminal.

    And actually, I thought AL BARGER was right on, as he usually is.

    Natalie, go to Iraq and ask all the countless families that lost members to Saddam’s madness. See if they appreciate your alleged service to mankind through peace, love and whatever your sense of justice is (I’m sure it’s nowhere close to mine).

    By the way, he is not “my Shrub.” I didn’t even vote for Bush during the 2000 primaries. But, left with no choice, he is I support him, that much is true. He is better than anything the Democrats threw out there this year, though Joe Lieberman comes close. But not close enough.

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    Oops, italics again …

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Loyalty to Canada, Mr. Manning? Where do you come up with that ludicrous though? I plan on expatriating there — and my haven could end up being somewhere else — merely because it is the most convenient place that is preferable to your country. There won’t be a need to learn a new language, the distance from my mother and my brother won’t be as great, and I am quite familiar with Montreal already, among other reasons. But loyalty? Haven’t you read all I have written about the ridiculousness (IMO) of nationalism? I like many things about Canada: I appreciate that every citizen there is equal under law (more than you could possibly imagine) and that national health care is in place, but I also am quite aware of the country’s many flaws.

  • SFC SKI

    You should avoid the personal attacks on Natalie. I too am mystified by her viewpoint, and not because I like killing or think that war is the best pastime on the planet, but I try not to smack down an argument because of the mindset of the person making it.

    Natalie, I think if you really wanted to go to Canada, you could, lots of people have given up everything they had to get to someplace that they really wanted to go. I think the ost of living is slightly cheaper there, so you’d probably have an initially tight time of it, but it would probably even out later. Did you ever set up that dnation account for your emigration? If some 3rd worlder can round up the cash to get to Canada, I am sure you can. I don’t want you to leave the US, I just want to know how seriously you are working towards attaining your goal.

    You forgot to mention the brownshirts clubbing down protesters under the approving eye of the DC police, or the Secret Service dragging off the folks burning the flag, and how about the fusillade the Marines launched on those snowball throwers? The best part is knowing that the faces of everyone who turned their back on the President are now in some database and even now those rebels are being rounded up and sent to reeducation camps.

    Please, Natalie and the others who think they are trapped in some deranged theocracy in the US, go and visit the workers’ paradise in Cuba, the egalitarian Chinese nirvana, at least tour the hallowed remains of totalitarian Eastern Europe and then come back and tell me how much it sucks to be in America.

  • http://www.templestark.com/blog Temple Stark

    and italics should stop now.

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    Well, if you’re going to move to Canada I recommend waiting until after the endless snows stop.

    Dave

  • SFC SKI

    If the snows are endless, how long should she wait?

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    When you put it that way she should probably move to Belize.

    Dave

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    I think if you really wanted to go to Canada, you could

    Oh, could I, SFC SKI? Pray tell, Smart Human, how? How do I uproot two children — with no money — and walk all the way north? IF I were alone, that would be one thing. But I have two kids to consider. (Picture that — leave your stuff, kids, say goodbye to grandma and let’s get walking!)

    I did try the donation thing — no one donated. Which is fine; I am an adult. As soon as I have the funds, we’ll go.

    Also, are you familiar with the process of moving to Canada? Takes years to accomplish. Check it out and realize how stupid people sound when they insist that someone go *right now*.

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com andy marsh

    Mexico might be easier.

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    SFC Ski: “Please, Natalie and the others who think they are trapped in some deranged theocracy in the US, go and visit the workers’ paradise in Cuba, the egalitarian Chinese nirvana, at least tour the hallowed remains of totalitarian Eastern Europe and then come back and tell me how much it sucks to be in America.”

    Well said, SFC. Well said!

  • Dawn

    I personally wouldn’t want to live in a country where people who have views like Natalie’s all moved away. That wouldn’t be very American at all.

    Not only that, Natalie is really nice and I like her, I hope she stays, it helps to balance out the multitude of angry assholes who have infested this great nation.

  • http://www.foliage.com/~marks Mark Saleski

    Well said Dawn, Well said!

    ;-)

  • Dawn

    Nothing like baseless hostility to make me feel inspired.

    If Natalie goes, then slap my ass and call me a Canuck.

    Hey Jim C. can we room with you?!

  • http://nightdragon.diaryland.com Mark Edward Manning

    Dawn: “… it helps to balance out the multitude of angry assholes who have infested this great nation.” [Emphasis mine]

    Now there’s the best case of the pot calling the kettle black that I’ve read in a long time.

    And Mssr. Saleski? I know you think you’re being clever, but please, if you’re going to praise someone, be original about it, eh?

  • http://www.markiscranky.org Mark Saleski

    whatever you say sir.

    i keep forgettin that conservatives always know the OneTrueAndCorrectWay to express everything.

    i consider myself corrected.

    gawd bless america.

  • Eric Olsen

    I would agree that the great ongoing scrum of wildly divergent ideas and beliefs is a large part of what makes America great, including angry assholes

  • Shark

    Actually, if you ask most of our fellow planetary companions beyond the borders — they’d say America is one big angry asshole.

    (I wonder… does that make Bush and Cheney metaphorical hemorrhoids…?)

  • 4Q2

    Natalie-perhaps you should stop wasting your time surfing the internet and get a second job (assuming you have a job in the first place), so you can raise the necessary funds to leave this great country. Spc Ski was right! There is no greater nation on this earth than the USA. But hey please don’t take our words for it. Go find out for yourself!

  • http://jadedreality.blogspot.com spiderleaf

    hope she does…

    Natalie — Canada would be glad to have you… along with the 5000+ troops so far who have deserted.

    Vietnam Redux indeed.

  • Dawn

    Mark M – are you denying the existence of angry assholes in this country, or are you being paranoid and assuming that for some reason I was referring specifically to you?

    I wasn’t before I read your latest comment, but I will be sure to include you the next time I am making distinctions.

    Honestly the whole notion of telling people who are tax-paying law-abiding citizens of the U.S. to move to Canada because they don’t like the current direction or leadership is ludicrous and childish.

    I mean really, grow up already.

    Hey, if that philosophy is true, how about we ask all the Confederate flag toting numbskulls in the south to move to Antartica, where they can start their own colony, and simultaneously freeze their nuts off.

  • 4Q2

    Dawn wrote:Honestly the whole notion of telling people who are tax-paying law-abiding citizens of the U.S. to move to Canada because they don’t like the current direction or leadership is ludicrous and childish.

    Wake up Dawn. This is what she wants. To have her spend anymore time in the USA would amount to cruel and unusual punishment (in her mind anyways).

    I think she would fit in well with the deserters that spiderleaf mentioned…you know…birds of a feather….

  • Lightindeloafers

    OK, bashers: another few dozen of our boys and girls are dead today, in one fell swoop.

    The spinning is fast and furious: at least enemy gunfire didn’t bring that chopper down! (What a relief to know that ill maintenance or planning are more likely to blame).

    How does last week’s coronation feel, in hindsight? Still smug in the knowledge that all is going according to plan, and that your SUV’s gas tank will stay full?

    Remember: everything will work out fine, as long as none of YOUR relatives die or are maimed in combat, or get drafted as Bush eyes Iran. All’s well as long as YOU continue to be the ignorant, selfish pigs who last November reinforced what our great country has become.

    I’d say Natalie and her analysis are lookin’ pretty good today…

    LL

    (PS: Flame away, but be original. And above all don’t tell me to “get out” –I guarantee, you’ll do it first. As a black American, I would never consider leaving this country, which was built on the backs of way too many of my ancestors).

  • http://jadedreality.blogspot.com spiderleaf

    And above all don’t tell me to “get out” –I guarantee, you’ll do it first. As a black American, I would never consider leaving this country, which was built on the backs of way too many of my ancestors)

    LL, thank you for writing that. It really puts all this ridiculous talk about “get out if you don’t like it” into perspective.

  • 4Q2

    I only saw two protesters turn their backs when the presidential motorcade went past. I assume one of them was Natalie but who in the hell was the other person?

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com andy marsh

    God Bless America!

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com andy marsh

    and no offense, but what the fuck does the color of your skin have to do with any of this? Why’s it always gotta be a race thing?

  • http://jadedreality.blogspot.com spiderleaf

    I think it had to do with the stupid argument of ‘America, love it or leave it’ and LL was letting us know that he has no intention of leaving because he doesn’t share the same views, because of his history with this country… and the fact that in the South back in the day it literally meant death to disagree with the ruling opinion… and it was true patriots who stood up and said “I deserve just as many rights as a white man and I’m gonna stand here and fight for them.”

    (but I could be wrong about why he brought it up, but that was my take)

  • Dawn

    Why race?

    Why not, uncivilized discourse has to start somewhere.

    Really, if you think about it, this country was founded on the basis of ideological differences. If our forefathers didn’t take the time to be outraged by what they saw as an injustice we would all be talking with funny little accents singing “God Save The Queen.”

    And I am not talking about the Sex Pistols either, which is come to think of it a pretty cool song.

  • MCH

    Re…
    1) “If Natalie goes, than slap my ass and call me a Canuck.”

    and 2) “How about we ask all the Confederate flag toting numbskulls in the south to move to Antartica, where they can…simultaneously freeze their nuts off.”

    Dawn:
    1) I like Natalie, too, and don’t want her to leave. But if necessary, I’ll volunteer – only if I can leave a mark, ehe…

    and 2) Hehehehheee, yeah, am just picturing all the Red-Neck Rocky Mountain oysters frozen in the ice.

    Eric O:
    I realize you and I have our differences, but we do have at least one thing in common…we both have one hell of a woman!

  • http://www.kalyr.com/weblog Tim Hall

    If our forefathers didn’t take the time to be outraged by what they saw as an injustice we would all be talking with funny little accents singing “God Save The Queen.”

    Hey! You’re the guys that speak in the funny accents, and keep leaving out the ‘u’ in “Colour”. :)

  • SFC SKI

    I was not aware of Natalie’s donation request, I have been out of the net for awhile.

    As to the other question, Natalie could sell what little she has to get some money to leave with the kids, emigrate, live in some sort of shelter until she gets a job and can move out, or she can leave kids with family and send for them after she is stable, both courses of action are tough, but lots f immigrants, both legal and illegal, come to America and do just that.

  • Lightindeloafers

    Spiderleaf: speaking on behalf of someone you don’t even know is usually asking for it, but know what?

    I couldn’t have said it better myself! Thanks, and

    …PEACE!

  • http://jadedreality.blogspot.com spiderleaf

    Back at ya LL.

    Cheers!

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Right. Leave my kids motherless and burden my brother, who has four kids of his own. That would be really responsible of me.

    Also, to the person suggesting I get a second job: The one I have takes up about 80 hours per week (I get paid for 40) and the market in my field — journalism — is for crap (I sell articles every chance I get, though). I am doing my best during a horrible time and meanwhile I must have some time to spend with the kids — being a good parent is my number one priority. Sorry my departure isn’t happening fast enough for you. It isn’t happening fast enough for my liking either.

    Dawn, have I said you are a goddess lately? I should say that more often.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    >>and the fact that in the South back in the day it literally meant death to disagree with the ruling opinion<<

    Nothing could be further from thr truth. One of the things which killed the Confederacy was a Constitution which afforded so many rights to individuals and to states to not cooperate with the central government that the central government was too weak to effectively fight the war. Because Georgia didn’t agree with Pres. Davis’ strategy they decided to keep their entire military force of 40K men in Georgia and out of the fighting. VP Alexander Stephens regularly led legislative revolts in the CSA Senate to screw up legislation which would have helped move the war forward. From the very start of the war groups in Texas, Louisiana and Virginia wanted to free the slaves or transfer them into government controlled labor battalions. Desertion from the army was rampant and officers rarely did anything about it because of respect for the rights and needs of individual soldiers. The confederacy was a nation of chaos and uncontrolled individualism and there was no one at the top with sufficient power or authority to do anything about it.

    Dave

  • Dawn

    Can we shut up with the “move already” shit? I can’t think of anything more immature.

    Answer me this you erudite righties: how would Natalie moving help this country in any way?

    If you can give me a rationale, legitimate reason, then now is the time.

    Also, put your money where your mouth is, if you REALLY want her out so bad, help the poor woman out, otherwise, just shut it, cuz you are clogging up the otherwise interesting comments of this excellent blog with tired, cliched, labored rhetoric and it’s boring me.

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com/ andy marsh

    Hey Dawn, if you don’t like it you can….hehehehe…just kidding!

  • Eric Olsen

    I believe part of the intensity of response is people take such sentiments as the desire to leave the country personally, whether they realize it or not. They feel rejected and respond accordingly.

  • NC

    Answer me this you erudite righties: how would Natalie moving help this country in any way?

    How would it hurt? Let’s say for argument’s sake that it would hurt: should we force her to stay here and be miserable for the good of the country?

    Let’s say you have a woman who hates the neighborhood she lives in, bitches about it constantly, and wants desperately to move. Over time she scrapes together some cash and gets a new place across town. Does anyone care whether her departure “helps” or “hurts” the neighborhood? She didn’t want to be there and her neighbors were sick of listening to her whine about it. Now, thanks to the move, everyone’s happy — which, I would think, is a good thing. And chances are that someone who actually likes the neighborhood will be moving into our heroine’s old pad before long, which is also good.

    I believe part of the intensity of response is people take such sentiments as the desire to leave the country personally, whether they realize it or not. They feel rejected and respond accordingly.

    I think that has less to do with it than exasperation at the idiotic droning about “theocracy,” creeping fascism, and what have you. I credit Natalie for at least being willing to do something about her disaffection; my sense of most of the “fuck America” crowd is that if you actually called them on their bullshit and offered them a Canadian visa, their emigration fever would cool awfully quickly. Suddenly they’d have a change of heart and decide that working for revolution “from within” is a nobler goal — although what they actually plan to do to start a revolution, aside from cutesy-poo stunts like turning their backs on the Bushitler’s motorcade and posting self-congratulatory rants on Blogcritics, is beyond me.

  • NC

    Bad link in the last comment. Should be this one.

  • NC

    That didn’t work either. Why are there problems here consistently with using HTML in the comments?

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com/ andy marsh

    NC – I tried both links, they BOTH work and linked to the same page. Although, the link was to a story about Janets’ nipple ring! Damn pic is all fuzzy too!

  • NC

    The link is supposed to go to the article about the inauguration protests. I tried it twice and each time it’s redirecting to the Janet story. I think it has something to do with the fact that there’s an equals sign at the end of the URL and somehow BC is automatically reformatting it when the comment is posted.

  • http://adamantsun.blogspot.com Steve S

    It’s the ‘&n=2′ part of the URL that is getting cut off.

    From the nipple page, you can just type that into the end of the url and get the protest page

  • 4Q2

    NC got it right!

    We all want to see Natalie ‘self-actualize’ and achieve her life long dream. The soon, the better.

    4Q2

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    If one were anything less than totally generous in their interpretation, they might conclude that after years of complaining about it, Miss Natalie was not in fact really interested in leaving the country. Rather, they might think that she just likes posturing about how victimized and morally superior she is compared to the rest of us.

  • Shark

    Yah, Al, Natalie and few hundred thousand other disgruntled Americans.

    From a news report:

    “Canadian officials say they did note an uptick in interest among Americans seeking to relocate, as evidenced by tracking numbers on Canada’s immigration Web site.

    On Nov. 2, the site received 86,937 page visits, a hefty surge from the previous daily average of 20,000. The next day, Nov. 3, the number of inquiries from the United States alone skyrocketed to 115,628.”

    =======

    I’d move to Canada in a heartbeat, but I once swore:

    “As God as my witness, I shall nevah be cold again!”

    (Instead, I’ll be submitting my membership application for the Branch Davidians.)

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Ah, you’re just wanting to join up with Branch Davidians for the underage girls.