Having seen the "Daisy" ad (a child playing with a flower, followed by a nuclear mushroom cloud) run once by the 1964 Johnson Campaign back in the day when it was current and I in my early 20s, I still recall the tensions and fear of the Cold War and how any talk of war with Russia (then known as the Soviet Union or the USSR) outside of the US just defending itself from an attack was unthinkable. Part of the regimen in the late 1940s through the early 1950s in what was called "grade" school – grades 1-6 – in Los Angeles, was to practice "drop" drills (dive under your desk and assume the fetal position) at the teacher’s call. This planted a an insidious nervousness in a lot of us kids that we would not necessarily survive to adulthood, and, in my belief, was behind a lot of the counterculture movement (can you say, Peace!) that began to emerge in 1965 and coupled itself to opposition to the Vietnam War.

When I heard Sarah Palin’s remarks implying possible war with Russia when she was questioned by "Charlie" Gibson about the recent Russia-Georgia conflict, I got that same chill I had all those years ago. In talking like that, she seemed blithely unaware that Russia is just about as heavily armed with nuclear weapons and their delivery systems as they were during the days prior to the disentegration of the Soviet Union, and for the need to respect that fact. The spectre of M.A.D. (mutually assured destruction) is still with us. (And, John McCain, that was and still is a military strategy, not a tactic.) The Russians, however haltingly, want to be part of a capitalistic world for the sake of a better life for their citizens, and they seem to realize that being seen as totalitarian bad guys isn’t particularly goof for "business," but they are a very tough people and are potentially very dangerous if backed into a corner.

If it were up to me, I’d have Senator Obama asking McCain directly about these comments of his VP selection, or I’d run some updated version of the Daisy ad that again reminds Americans that the stakes are high, even incomprehensible, when it comes to nuclear confrontation.

Governor Palin is by her own admission one of those Christians who seems to believe she will see the return of Christ in her own lifetime. I’ve long felt that this belief thrives in many who, for various reasons, fear facing their own death.* This is the single most dangerous mindset any potential President/Commander in Chief of the US (or for that fact Russia) could possibly have.

Imagine, again, the recklessness of a President with the nuclear button who thinks she will not have to face her own death because Christ will return in her own lifetime, or maybe even believes that she is "anointed" to be a part of bringing about Armageddon. Just think of the potential military options that gives a Commander-in-Chief who seems to think little of any perceived foes, overseas or even domestically.

Ironically, someone defining themself as anointed in this manner fits the description of the antiChrist, so I hope that the religious "base" chews thoughtfully on that fact for a while, assuming that any of them are capable of reflective thought in the first place.

Frankly, if I suddenly came across some large infusion of cash I’d start a 527 myself and run a "Daisy Ad 2008" highlighting the need for diplomacy over confrontation relations with what still is another nuclear superpower. Americans have been hearing that we are the only remaining superpower for so long that neophytes and non-students of history like Palin don’t appear to realize that when it comes to nuclear weapons, such is not the case. And I’d have a pic of an expanding mushroom cloud while Palin’s frightening response to Gibson’s question about Russia’s now seen to be somewhat provoked (evidently at least partially Bushies to help McCain – according to Vladimir Putin) attack on Georgia, ran in the background.

I do need to say that I am myself a practicing Christian, and having read the Gospels countless times I have never seen any hint that any person will ever be able to predict the timing of the return of Christ. For me, and many of the Faith, the Christian message rests on Jesus own definition of the "Greatest Commandment," wherein he said to "love God with all your heart, soul, and mind, and love your neighbor as yourself," and that "all the Law and the Prophets" depends on these two.Jesus also said, "you cannot love God and money," and "loving your friends is nothing, even the heathen do that, but love your enemies."

I sure don’t see much, if any, of that spirit emanating from the so-called "base" of the Republican Party, including the ambitious and seemingly hateful Sarah Palin.

*"For those who think death’s honesty, Won’t fall upon them naturally, Life sometimes must get lonely…"

-Dylan It’s Alright Ma, I’m Only Bleeding

paz3

paz3

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