Friday, December 19, 2008

An Advent Weekend Open Thread on Blago, Caylee, the Auto Bailout and Faith.

Today was one of those days that thrills news junkies and makes persons of faith weep.

Within the span of a few hours a bailout of the auto industry was announced, the President elect held a press conference and addressed a failing US economy, embattled Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich promised to fight until the end, DNA tests confirmed that remains found near her grandparents' home belong to missing toddler Caylee Anthony and by the way, Hanukkah begins on Sunday and Christmas is less than a week away.

While all of this news is great for the 24 hours news organizations I can't help but wonder how all of this is impacting our psyche's and souls.

So what are your thoughts on these stories? Do you feel that all of the bad news is affecting people emotionally or has the public become numb?


  1. Pam, thanks for opening up this conversation. Honestly -don't laugh - I thought, I want a gag order on the MSM. lol I'm just feeling like they are driving so much news that isn't news, and not enough news that matters - news about action, news about people doing things that matter. But it could just be me - that's what I want to hear about. We knew Blago wasn't going to resign, we knew that poor child was going to be matched to that skull. What the news isn't doing is what you are doing - inviting us in to process this and figure out what it means and what we do with it - how do we impact one another's lives in such a way that such heinousness doesn't exist. Goodness, could you imagine what would be accomplished if the MSM turned itself to that goal?

  2. Jill,

    Sadly I'm sure that the corporately owned media doesn't want their audience to make sense of the news. It would interfere with their advertising stream from the pharmaceutical industry and health insurance industry. Someone has to buy all of those anti-depressants and ED aids.

    I agree that we all suspected that Blagojevich would probably be defiant and that Caylee Anthony would be found dead. The defiant "cowboy" politician and the mother who's done the unthinkable are becoming all too common stories in our society.

    Remember "I will not withdraw, even if Laura and Barney are the only ones supporting me." It's one thing to know that politicians have huge egos. But I wonder why we all (Democrat and Republican) keep electing so many characters with the same personality.

    I'm also curious to see if Casey Anthony's reason for killing her daughter will mirror Susan Smith, the South Carolina mother who claimed that she drowned her two sons "out of love". Why are so many young mothers seemingly devoid of maternal instinct?

    And on another note:

    One story that I didn't mention was the news that Goldman Sachs, the company that received $10B of the $700B bailout, is paying out $10B in bonuses and employee benefits and perks. How did we let this happen?

    It seems that something in the American psyche wants this thing called "change" but is afraid to take a real hard look at what we need to change in our attitudes and actions.

    I can only pray that maybe this weekends winter storms and the upcoming holidays will cause people to slow down and think about some of these things.

  3. Hey Pam, thanks for the invite. All of these topics are hot buttons for me, some more than others. The one topic that is upsetting me the most is the choice of Pastor Rick Warren to give the invocation at Barack Obama's inauguration, so I will start there.

    I know Obama has used his difference of opinion with Warren on GLBT civil rights as justification for choosing him. You know, it's the old 'trying to find common ground' thing. In spite of the fact that I voted for Obama, I very definitely have issues with some of his positions. Same-sex marriage is one of them.

    I have an issue with choosing Warren, who was a vocal supporter of Prop 8 in California -- which took civil rights away from one group of people. As a lesbian American, I cannot find common ground with a man who equates same-sex marriage with pedophilia and incest. There's absolutely no common ground to be had.

    In choosing Warren, you can bet Barack Obama looked carefully and weighed the political ramifications. Personally, I feel that Obama decided that we were the least important constituents he has. It angers me because the gays came out in force to put him in the White House. This is essentially what Bill Clinton did to us during his administration. We were good enough for the votes, but not for any other rights.

    Barack Obama can speak about the difference of opinion on gay rights between he and Warren, but he didn't invite Warren to HIS house. He invited Warren to OUR house. I am really angry about this one.

    As for Caylee Anthony, I knew it would end up this way and I feel so bad. Here are the issues I have over and over and over again, and I'm back on the same topic. My partner and I planned and had our children together. We are great parents and we have great kids. They go to school on the school bus. They have friends. They are the same in every way as anyone else's children. Yet, gay people are told they are abnormal and shouldn't be allowed to have children.

    In Arkansas (I know, not a very forward-thinking state, but...), they voted to prevent the GLBT community from adopting.
    Consequently, 400 children were removed from loving homes and put into halfway houses and orphanages. Yet, heterosexuals are allowed to reproduce at will, even though there are many who should not be allowed to have children at all. Casey Anthony is one of those women.

    As for Blagojevich, he's a clown. Yes, he should be removed from office, but his transgressions pale in comparison to those of the felon currently residing at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. George Bush has been allowed to finish out his term and he is doing so much damage it's unbelievable.

    I feel the opposite of most people. All we've been talking about is the reporter who threw boots at Bush. So what? The issue of Rick Warren's should be focused on in the media. There's too much on Blagojevich (don't forget, he's a Democrat; the crap has already begun), and not enough information about the damage George Bush is doing on his way out the door -- destroying the environment, making it easy for corporations to do business while ignoring the health and welfare of the American people, and putting womens' health in danger with this foolish rule allowing health care workers to refuse to utilize or provide information on techniques that may be morally repugnant to them. I thought you put all that aside when you decided to be a health care worker.

    Sorry for being so long-winded, Pam, but I am constantly amazed at the people charged with running this country. Have a great weekend!

  4. Deb, no need to apologize for expressing your thoughts. That's the purpose of this thread.

    What you're expressing is honest disappointment. And I think that the disappointment is greater because the high created by the Obama campaign was so great. And that's what I was afraid would happen.

    The past few weeks have reminded me of the post Christmas crash that I used to experience. I use to get so into creating the idyllic Christmas ... picking special gift, decorating, sending cards, etc., etc., Then Christmas would come and someone would not appreciate their gift, the decorations would fall down, a boyfriend wouldn't be able to fly in or something would burn in the oven and BAM! Christmas was ruined. Even when I made it to Christmas Day and everything went as planned, I would still emotionally crash afterwards.

    For the past few years I haven't invested so much in the success of the Day and believe it or not, I enjoy it more.

    That's how I feel about the Obama presidency. There is no way that he can ever live up to all of the hopes and dreams that people invested in his campaign. Somewhere down the line we'll all probably have something to bitch about. In fact, I was very disappointed when he voted in favor of Telecom immunity.

    In the long run he will probably be a good President put this country back on the right path. But it will only happen if we keep speaking out.

  5. Hi Pam,
    Since you opened the thread, I have reminded myself to make a comment. I have kept up with the posts, etc. but to tell you the truth, I've had to tune it out.
    I refuse to allow "stuff" to interfere with the joy that God asks us to partake in during the Christmas season. I felt that to incorporate those things into our home during the ever shorter (as well as less and less respected) Christmas holiday, would be disrespectful to myself and to my family.
    We have watched movies, been thankful to have precious friends and families and have prayed for those who have made themselves "newsworthy" of late.
    Although, as you know I was not an Obama supporter, I desperately want him to have a successful presidency. I hope Americans will behave most of all. The office of the presidency has been slammed and I disagree with that. ALL presidents have had skeletons in their closets. ALL presidents have disappointed the American public, but the mean-spiritedness has got to go. It's shameful and embarrassing. News agencies do not help and all the forums that pit party against party do not help at all. Everything feels so adversarial. So, that is why in this beautiful, magical time of year, I shut out the media and opened my arms and my heart to the joy of family, friends, love and the incredible meaning of "Christmas."
    And guess what? I haven't missed a thing! I knew it would all be waiting for me...and then some...when I decided to "check in" and get my news fix. What did I learn? Perhaps I'm not THE news junkie that I thought I was! You're a gem! :)


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