304 results for author: Phil Anderson


Honest Debate vs Political Spin

As I have pointed out in prior articles, Rep. Tom Tiffany's positions on most issues are misguided and not in the best interests of most of his constituents. Tiffany's positions on the environment are especially harmful. His thinking is founded in partisan talking points and not good science, knowledge, and the history or what is actually happening to the environment. I am not being partisan in making these statements. When one examines Tiffany's own words, and compares them with the facts from reliable sources, it becomes very clear he is either misinformed, ignorant or deliberately distorting the truth for political advantage. Below are just two ...

Everybody wants to use God…

“You can safely assume you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.” Anne Lamott, American contemporary author. “The will of God (or Allah) is the passing off of the responsibility of mankind.” Unknown source “Religious freedom exists to safeguard the right to practice religion free from persecution... Practicing religion is about what you do or don’t do, not about controlling what others do.” Dale Richter, writing in the blog host website Medium.com Recent national and world events demonstrate the dangers of mixing religious dogma and public policies. The continuing massacre ...

We Share the Blame…

“Is it for freedom or our comfort and convenience? Is it to profit for big business we pledge our allegiance? Are we prisoners in the land of the brave and the bold? Held by indifference, our hearts grown hard and cold?   From Sara Thomsen's song “Is It For Freedom.”   As a nation, our hearts have become hard and cold to the killing of innocent people all over the world. We are so accustomed to our government constantly bombing someone, somewhere that we can not see the humanity of the victims. Claiming to be defending freedom, democracy or protecting “national security” we have become prisoners of militarism. We ...

Spiritual Fruit Not Religious Nuts

“Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they're sure trying to do so, it's going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can't and won't compromise. I know, I've tried to deal with them.” Barry Goldwater, former Republican Senator (1909 – 1998). Mixing religion, politics and government is bad. This has been proven many times, in many places, over the history of the world. One need look no further than the current situation in the Middle East to understand that ...

Tiffany’s Foreign Policy Foolishness

“... when confronted by small men doing big and stupid things, we need to resist with all the wit and creativity we can muster...” Bill McKibben, environmentalist and author “Although it is not true that all conservatives are stupid people, it is true that most stupid people are conservative.” John Stuart Mill (1806 – 1873), an influential British political and economic thinker. It would be impolite for me to suggest that Wisconsin Rep. Tom Tiffany, being extremely conservative, might fit J.S. Mills famous maxim. It would not be inappropriate, however, to point out how Tiffany's own statements exemplify a small town, small minded, small ...

Say Their Names…Tell Their Stories

“'I hope that we’ll stay alive, not because I want life, but because I want to tell our stories, the stories of our people,' says 21-year-old Tala Herzallah, a student in Gaza.” From the Time magazine article listed below. The death toll in Gaza is now over 22,000. One in every 100 residents has been killed. In November the United Nations said two thirds of the dead were women and children. Other sources say about 9000 of the deaths have been children. Who are the dead in Gaza? Were they terrorists? Did they hate Jews or want to destroy Israel? Or are they just people – people like us – “hoping to stay alive...” To answer ...

Ruminations On A Happy New Year

“They say a person needs just three things to be truly happy in this world: someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for.” Tom Bodett, author and NPR personality. “Christmas is just around the corner and what better way to celebrate a religious holiday than with a month of frenzied consumerism.” Calvin, a cartoon character from Calvin and Hobbs “Happy New Year” is one of the meaningless Hallmark platitudes of the season. You hear the greeting from friends and strangers. It is in the shopping mall Christmas music tape loop. The cards you get from the power company or your dentist wish you happiness. For a few weeks ...

Headline News

It is not a revelation that quality journalism is on the decline. Online “news” feeds are full of gossip, speculation, fake news and inaccurate crap. We are misinformed by the 24/7 mainstream and social media. So, staying informed can be a challenge. In this article I share news stories that recently caught my attention. These may seem insignificant, but they illustrate larger issues. I begin with a story from National Public Radio. Even this reputable news source can be misleading with incomplete reporting. The story was about Venezuela, their dire economic situation and how the oil industry is in shambles. The story implied that politics, ...

Questions to Ask Yourself on Gaza

“What does Israel, or the world community, expect? How can you trap 2.3 million people in Gaza, half of whom are unemployed, in one of the most densely populated spots on the planet for 16 years; reduce the lives of its residents, half of whom are children, to a subsistence level; deprive them of basic medical supplies, food, water, and electricity; use attack aircraft, artillery, mechanized units, missiles, naval guns, and infantry units to randomly slaughter unarmed civilians and not expect a violent response?” Chris Hedges, journalist (“What Does Israel Expect?” Common Dreams, October 10, 2023). In prior articles I have discussed the ...

Immigration: Reality vs Demagoguery

A recent news headline from National Public Radio reads, “Despite efforts of 3 U.S. administrations, migrant families keep crossing the border.” Migration from Mexico and Central America has increased over the past several years. In contrast to the past, this increase in migrants is being fueled by families. In August alone about 91,000 family groups were detained at the border. Clearly efforts to seal the border to prevent, deter, or otherwise frighten immigrants away are not working. Yet, as the NPR headline indicates, for decades we have continued the same, failed, get-tough-law-enforcement approach to the immigration problem. Albert ...