invincible summers

in the middle of winter I at last discovered that there was in me an invincible summer. (albert camus)

now is the time to act April 5, 2009

Now is the time. It was a phrase President Obama used frequently that inspired me, gave me hope.

If you google “Obama now is the time” you will find:

Obama: Now Is The Time For Iraq Withdrawal

Now is the time to protect our planet: Obama

Obama: “Now Is The Time For Congress To Act”

and this speech truly inspired me:

Today I must wonder-was it just a speech? Smoke and mirrors? I am beginning to question the man I voted for. A man who I believed wanted to unite Americans, end the war, fix the economy, create a transparent government and on and on. Now, believe me, I know that our current President has one hell of a mess to clean up. I wouldn’t want his job in a million years but…

Right now this is what I’m seeing: questionable cabinet appointments like Tim Geithner. Focusing on a war in Afghanistan when we need to focus on our country and get out of Iraq and Afghanistan. Obama is a man who once said, “I don’t oppose all wars. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war.” Well, during these incredibly tough economic times I do not see how moving troops (slowly) out of Iraq and sending them to Afghanistan is smart. I personally feel it is dumb. Our troops are exhausted. They need to come home. We are not going to end the “war on terrorism” by moving into another country-those that do hate our country and want to attack us will just move somewhere else. We can’t hunt them down in this manner. It is absolutely absurd. No wonder we are hated by so many countries-we keep attacking them! The fact of the matter is: war is a money-making business and it seems our President is going back on his word. sad. And then there was the 62% federal cigarette tax increase effective on, of all days, April Fool’s Day. This is what his administration had to say:

“Cigarette smoking is the leading preventable cause of death in the United States and is a contributing factor to scores of diseases and conditions inflicting misery upon millions of our citizens,” the administration statement said. “Further, tobacco use is a major factor driving the increasing costs of health care in the U.S. and accounts for over a hundred billion dollars annually in financial costs to the economy.”

So, I have to ask-how is taxing the poor going to help this economy? Lets be honest here, the majority of smokers are poor. The very people Obama promised to protect. I know people that smoke (myself included) because it’s the only thing (at times) saving them from a complete breakdown. I should also note that it is estimated that only 20% of Americans smoke. Smokers have become lepers in our country and others. We can no longer smoke in public places and even our rental homes in some cases. Look, I don’t smoke around children, I’m not going to light up in a hospital but it’s my right to smoke and it’s slowly being taken away from me. If the president really wants to do something drastic, try increasing the tax on alcohol. Um, more people drink than smoke. period. People from all backgrounds, rich and poor.

Alcohol is blamed for 100,000 deaths each year:

* 5% of all deaths from diseases of the circulatory system are attributed to alcohol.
* 15% of all deaths from diseases of the respiratory system are attributed to alcohol.
* 30% of all deaths from accidents caused by fire and flames are attributed to alcohol.
* 30% of all accidental drownings are attributed to alcohol.
* 30% of all suicides are attributed to alcohol.
* 40% of all deaths due to accidental falls are attributed to alcohol.
* 45% of all deaths in automobile accidents are attributed to alcohol.
* 60% of all homicides are attributed to alcohol

With the already dwindling amount of smokers in America-these are not the people who need to be taxed right now. I find it simply cruel and would even if I didn’t smoke.

Or even better. Legalize and tax marijuana-no, I don’t smoke it but plenty of Americans do and they would gladly pay taxes on it. Trust me, I wish I could smoke it but it makes me sleepy. Marijuana has been known to help a number of illnesses. It has been shown to be effective in reducing the nausea induced by cancer chemotherapy, stimulating appetite in AIDS patients, and reducing intraocular pressure in people with glaucoma. There is also appreciable evidence that marijuana reduces muscle spasticity in patients with neurological disorders. Oh, but wait…tens of thousands of people are now in prison or have marijuana offenses because they got caught with it. Yet another money-making war, on drugs that is.

I’m getting somewhere with this, I promise I am. So, it’s okay that Big Pharma (with the help of greedy doctors, lobbyists and some government officials) can pump millions of nasty drugs into our bodies? That is okay? Bullshit. It’s not okay. We have no idea what the damage from these newer psychiatric meds will be for another 5-15 years. We’re already seeing deaths, diabetes, etc. How is that okay???

I subscribe to pharmagossip at Twitter. Today they posted a letter FDA staffers wrote to our President. Click here to download the letter in a pdf file. It’s an interesting letter and I encourage you to download it and read it. Obama clearly stated this election belongs to us, the American people. And I believe, NOW IS THE TIME for the American people to email our President and let our voices be heard. If some brave FDA staffers are doing it, there is no excuse why we shouldn’t.

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7 Responses to “now is the time to act”

  1. Van Says:

    Well…

    Hmmm..

    You are picking up on what a lot of people in Chicago have known for a long time. President Obama is a great politician but a poor executor. Putting any and all partisanship aside, what we are seeing is a problem with the entire political system.

    One cannot truly be a force of “change” because of the fact that
    they have to call in so many favors – they have to keep the large donors (say, big pharma) happy, they have to make other in their party happy in order to have legislation passed, and they have to find a way to pay for all their initiatives.

    As you pointed out – Obama clearly stated this election belongs to us, the American people. Very little thus far has pointed to that actually being the case.

  2. Stan Says:

    Wasn’t going to touch this one; but what the heck!

    In leadership your track record and experience speaks louder than any speech you can give. He was an ineffective Senator, and now this is what I expected.

    Your Non Democrat Pal,
    Stan

  3. clementine Says:

    Van,

    not to get all political here but…well, I’m going to! Early on I was a fan of Mike Gravel (bought the t-shirt/pins, donated, etc.) and Kucinich and then…when the corporations and media decided who the top three Democrats were-I chose Edwards (ha!) So, actually, Obama was not my first choice or even third. I always thought there was something off about him. The bottom line is they are all politicians and it’s incredibly difficult to find an honest one who is looking out for the people’s best interests. Instead, yes, they are tied to lobbyists, favors, blah. blah. I am tired. anyway, just really sad…but I would like to see something change and I am not going to remain silent. I will send emails to my local congressmen and the President until the day I die. I just hope that someday my voice and our voices will be heard!

    Stan,
    Hello my non Democrat Pal !
    you are right on! I bought into the message of hope because I was feeling so hopeless and well, look where we are. It’s the same old thing. sigh.

  4. Van Says:

    See, I’m of mixed political views – both republican and democrat – I had truly hoped to see a Paul/Kucinich ticket. Two people who really say it the way it is.

    I’m going to send you an email in a second….

  5. D Bunker Says:

    The Increased Cigarette Tax is a Major FAIL.

    See Patrick Fleenor on NY city’s 50 year obsession with cutting its revenues off to spite its smokers. Higher taxes yield higher unemployment, which yields higher crime, more depression, and a perceived Need, …. for More taxes, to fund More ‘depression’ research and services.

    At cleanairquality.blogspot.com you can view Govt/Industry colluding economic damage (from a Non-Smoker) which social engineering smoking bans and their funders occasion, strictly to benefit RWJF: J&J/Janssen Risperdal’s ‘man behind the curtain’.

    Both Industry Owned Political Parties are non-starters today. I’ll be voting 3rd party from now on as whichever party Loses to votes gone Libertarian or Green, .. they will be Forced back in the direction Of those 3rd parties next time, and perhaps we’ll then see our current Uniparty once again become 2 parties which each actually stand for something besides lobbyist interests.

    I’ve had it with voting Against the other guy, because they’re virtually impossible to differentiate between anymore.

  6. clementine Says:

    “I’ve had it with voting Against the other guy, because they’re virtually impossible to differentiate between anymore.”

    I wholeheartedly agree!!! and thanks for the links…

  7. Stephany Says:

    i saw him speak in june 07 in seattle.. purposely to hear the so-called ‘rock star’ and see what he would say to get a 40something to vote/believe in what he says like me. amidst the 20somethings(one of my daughters) we both looked at each other and felt the doom, as he spoke he said the worst simple canned answer speech:

    1. when i am president the war WILL END
    2. when i am president all ppl will have health ins
    3. when i am president teachers will get paid more

    that was it and the crowd went wild. i was shocked. i knew then, he was just a slick campaigner, and when i read Pfizer had million dollar seats at the DNC i was disgusted and alarmed. i think i was the only blog author to write about that piece of news. people were too caught up in that fake “have hope” crap.

    I didn’t vote for him. i wanted to believe in that hope and i just couldn’t do it. and i’m a registered democrat!


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