Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Orson Scott Card : Democrat

Now here is a Democrat who tells it like it is.  Orson Scott Card, I salute you, sir.  Better than I could have ever said it, this is the bare-knuckled truth that needs to be told.

Has anybody been paying attention to what Biden has been saying lately, predicting an international crisis specifically because Obama will be president?  Hillary supporters are questioning whether or not Biden is hinting at a potential Obama-instituted military draft.  Palin is starting to look like a genius.  

Here is a conservative argument against Obama as president.  Is he really going to take down missile defense systems?  When Obama says cut spending does he really mean to scale back on defense spending?  Naive to say the least, and very dangerous.


Jada's Gigi said...

Wow! thanks so much for compiling all this info in one place. I have emailed the link to the HotAir Blog out to a bunch of my friends!

magnetbabe said...

Interesting choice of links. But for every democrat that boldly takes on Barack OBama in a Mormon magazine column, there are countless conservatives getting on the O-train. Of course you must have heard about Colin Powell's endorsement. But there is also Christopher Buckley and the latest, CC Goldwater. Just thought I'd point out the other side of the coin.

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

Over here in the UK, gambling establishments are already cashing bets on Obama as winner.

And they don't do that very often.

Scott said...

Cheryl - I'm glad you liked the links!

Natalie - I did hear about Colin Powell's endorsement, and I'll follow your links (I only read your email and didn't see that you linked anything). It's not that I think Orson Scott Card is bold, it's that I think he has a point, and that further coming from his political persuasion, and that he echoes my thoughts to the T, it came as a shock and relief that someone from that perspective could be so objective. By the way, that article was not written for Meridian Magazine, but for a Greensboro, NC newspaper; it was reprinted by permission.

Toast - Good to see you, man! I'll put down five hundred on Obama. I might not want him in office, but I might as well make some money on it.

Alan said...

And I like Orson Scott Card, too. I'm reading the comicbook version of Ender's Game and being reminded how awesome of a writer he is.

So yeah, I'm not surprised that Obama is a politician. I am thankful that Card's major indictment is against the press, and not so much against Obama. He wants Obama identified as an ally with the cause of the financial crisis. Except I thought the financial crisis happened because places like Lehman Brothers screwed up at the same time that banks lost their ability to make money? Fannie and Freddie are not the sole reason wall St. is in turmoil. I've read, in fact, that no one seems to be able to put a definite finger on it.

But Democrats did what Democrats do. Fight for the underclass. They said Fannie and Freddie ought to give low income people a chance at owning homes. It was risky, it didn't work? People are losing those homes. Yeah. I accept that. I still think the chance should have been given. Follow up would have been nice. Some education on how to maintain the gift of a chance at the American Dream. But to ignore the underclass, never try anything for their sakes, and just keep perpetuating the same ol' same ol' "screw them if they can't make a three-digit salary?" No. I say make more mistakes.

Make mistakes until they get it right. We can't keep tolerating an elitist society. At one time, Card must have thought the same, being a Democrat, an' all. I wonder when the Hugo and Nebula award-winning successful author's values changed?

Scott said...

Alan - There is no excuse for giving people loans they can't hope to pay back. Card makes the point in his article. It leaves them worse off than they were before -- bankruptcy ruins your credit for years to come. Life is hard and that's the reality. Politicians aren't gods. The focus should be on economic prosperity to so that opportunity is out there for everyone to work for and enjoy.

Scott said...

Natalie - I read the links you posted. I think they are persuasive and well-thought out. I don't think they have the meat that Card had in his article, who speaks to the basic dishonesty and lack of integrity the media has in covering the news and their obvious bias towards Obama. Shouldn't both candidates and their party's behavior be investigated with the same alacrity? Isn't that what's best for America? To be presented with the facts so that we can make informed decisions? That goes for any politically leaning network, including Fox (in case you think I'm only thinking the Big Three). I want to hear the news, not have it suppressed because it doesn't favor their preferred candidate.

I've read a lot about McCain's negative ads. I don't like that much either. I don't like Palin's stance on women's rights either. I'm not as worried as everyone else is by her lack of experience, but it would be a shot in the arm if she were suddenly president. In two years she'll be better prepared than Obama is today. It's not so much that I love the Republican ticket. Obama is dead wrong on national defense, and I'm suspicious of his tax policies. I could be wrong, but it hardly matters. For better or for worse, he's likely to get in. I would be happy to be wrong about him. Overjoyed.

Alan said...

What does it mean "can't hope to pay back"? They didn't pick homeless people off the street to give these loans to. They picked people who had jobs. Those people had the hope of getting raises, or bettering themselves in their job/profession, just like we all do. And they were paying their mortgages all along. Especially if they got their loans when Clinton was in office. They've been paying for their homes for 8-10 years now! They've been doing right by their loans, just like everyone else has. But now Wall St. has a hiccup, Johnny Lehman screwed over his stockholders, and the banks shot the interest rate up past what these Fannie/Freddie low incomers could pay. That's the reason they're losing their homes now. If they couldn't EVER have afforded to pay for the homes, they would have lost them 8-10 years ago already.

And let me confess something. I've heard you, Ned, and My Hero all say that these people should never have been given homes they couldn't afford. What all three of you have in common is that you guys can afford the homes you've bought. And all three of you are affected by neighbors who may be losing their homes now because of this. And all three of you have pointed fingers at the people losing their homes as if it is their fault. And I just think that's unfair.

I know a guy in this situation, and both he and his wife are hardworking, beautiful people. They deserved the chance to own a home, and they still do.

So on this point I think I will always disagree. To sum up, if they couldn't afford to own these homes, they never would have gotten the loans. They've been making the payments for years already. The interest rates changed.

Fortunately there are people in Congress now who see an answer to let them keep the homes. I don't know or care if they are Republicans or Democrats. I say give the average-income American a break.

Scott said...

Alan - I'm not judging the people who have loans that are more than they can chew! They're not bad people. Hell, I'm probably one of those people. There is a threshold of income that you must generate vs how much credit outstanding you already have in order to qualify for a loan. But people who didn't qualify were given loans anyway. They should have been told no, or find something cheaper--consider the midwest or whatever. People will borrow any amount that is offered. It's not a question of deserve, but of financial capability. I don't judge people like that, Alan.

Scott said...

And by the way, getting an adjustable rate loan looked like a real winner in those days, and I had the choice and chose the more expensive fixed rate. Turns out that wasn't such a bad idea. I'm truly sorry for anyone that got screwed by that deal. Mr. Schprock is one of them, but he managed to pull out of it. Thank God!

Alan said...

I'll confess to being ever so slightly sensitive when it comes to the under-earning citizen, mainly because I am one. And if I keep going at this rate, I won't ever, ever, ever, EVER own a home again. (I'm glad to say I didn't lose my home to foreclosure--I just sold it to move away from Missouri).

Which, yeah, I see that you aren't judging them. My Hero and Ned also didn't judge them. Not the characters of these people, anyway. But it's an implicit judgment in the way loans are set up to begin with. "Make X amount, have Y amount of debt, have A+B+C work history, and do not have D-E-F in your credit history, and then we'll deem you worthy of our loan." If you suggest to me that these criteria are arbitrary mathematical equations to qualify a person to receive a loans, then I can only pray that you're right. But I rather think that someone made these rules to force the applicant to conform to their idea of what a "good citizen" is. Anyone falling short of their idea is by inference a "bad citizen" and therefore undeserving of a loan.

That's just how it feels. And you know my credit is crap, so clearly I must be getting this impression and probably this whole viewpoint from my own personal experiences and from the way the whole financial structure makes me feel. Credit card companies don't care what I make now, and what I pay out, and what debt I've paid off. They only read my credit history and judge me as a bad person. It's not a great feeling.

Maybe the normal thing to do is have your viewpoint. Clearly you and other people I admire share it. I trust you guys in worlds of other topics. So maybe I should re-examine my own reactions, and trust you in this.

But I also want you to keep your compassion flowing. Don't let it dry up. Yeah we are financial retards, but we can be helped if anyone cared to help us. Not helped by just giving us a pile of money, but like these Fannie/Freddie people, given a chance. But then, being then supported would've helped prevent this too. Maybe it would have been better to make it mandatory for the people given the loans to go to some kind of adult education so that they'd learn how to manage their finances well enough to prepare for this interest surge. So again, I'm thinking communally rather than survival of the fittest. I can't abide the thought of the strongest caveman gets to stand on top of a pile of corpses because he has the biggest muscles and welds the biggest jawbone. I've just never been that guy and I do not want to be a corpse.

Scott said...

Alan - There is certainly a negative connotation to the qualification process. Failing to qualify feels like a failure and I can understand the disappointment. I don't have to imagine it. I started off by defaulting on my student loan and had to pay off a substantial amount more by the time I called them and set up a payment plan. Then I got a credit card that was secured by a bank account to create the illusion that I was extending myself for credit and paying it back month after month. Then you have to pay bills on time and do it for a while. It's a lot of discipline. I'm pretty lucky to be in the career I'm in, but then again I'm not. I worked really hard to get here. I got loans (and ran away from the obligation--doh!), then collected unemployment for a semester of school, and took advantage of some other programs as well. I became a big fan of programs that encouraged education. Alaska was really awesome about that. If you were willing to come back to Alaska and work there they would have forgiven me half my loan amount. The carpenters union had a fund that grew for every hour I worked that I cashed in for education. There are grants if you can qualify, and a host of options. These could be considered handouts I suppose, but I saw them as investments in the country. And believe me it has paid off.

But to your point, I suppose you could look at the guys on top as bad guys, which is sometimes the case. What has Bill Gates done with his money? A quick and unscientific google search threw an amount at me: over 39 thousand employees. Those aren't corpses I'm talking about. IBM, over 300 thousand. Are the CEOs insanely rich, yes! You could argue though that they perform a somewhat valuable service to a lot of people, and to the country as well--not to mention the means by which we communicate. If you want to take a million dollars away from Bill Gates and spread it equally around the company, that roughly comes to 25 dollars, but you could round up to 26. Take a billion away and you can give everyone a 25K raise.

I think I went on a tangent.

magnetbabe said...

There are grants if you can qualify, and a host of options. These could be considered handouts I suppose, but I saw them as investments in the country. And believe me it has paid off.

How is this philosophy different than the point I was trying to make earlier about Obama's economic plan?

I'm not an expert on the economy and the mortgage meltdown (being a transient academic has its advantages I guess) but This American Life did a great job explaining it a few months back. (http://www.thislife.org/Radio_Archive.aspx May 9, 2008, "The Giant Pool of Money")

I apologize, I didn't see that the column was cross posted in someplace without an obvious religious affiliation.

Since you brought up the Palin-Obama experience argument, I have to throw my opinion out there that I could care less about experience than what you do with it. Gov. Palin was in executive office for 2 years where she was found by a bipartisan panel to be abusive of her power. I take that seriously. She also tried to have books banned in the library and the majority of her cabinet was composed of her high school friends. I know what kind of experience I don't want, and that is it. Given the lengthy resumes of the Bush administration, I'll pass on experience in that regard too. You have to admit that Obama has for two years run an outstanding campaign (in regards to beating Hillary and likely McCain, not especially keeping it clean) and proven his leadership in that respect. Remember, Jesus was a community organizer. ;)

Lastly, as for Obama's stance on defense issues, we disagree. I'm siding with Gen. Powell. Sorry.

And in the words of the great Stephen Colbert, "reality has a liberal bias."

Scott said...

Does Powell support dismantelling our missile defenses? I'll look it up, but I am wondering what his opinion of that is.

Scott said...

I love the idea of investing in education and treating people as the future that they are. The difference is that I got that money from Alaska because it was revenues from oil, not from excessive taxation.

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

Heh! You're just like the money men behind the candidates. Except they choose the pawns they play.