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August 17, 2006



I'm guessing that they'll tend to have a more bluestate perspective on things in the main

Well, I could have told you that based on the cover graphic alone. Hello, look at all that blue! :-D

J.R. Stoodley

In a way there's no such thing as a blue state. In a way all states are red with high-population blue cities. At least that is how it seems to me. You should see all the American flags and old Bush/Cheney bumber stickers in upstate New York, especially rural areas.

You occasionally see rebel flags but I think that us un-New Yorker of them.


I think we should put blue states on the table in the next "land for peace" negotiations, starting with Massachusetts. Giving Gaza back didn't work; maybe the problem is the zip code;)

Tim M.

I think the best idea I have heard on this was the failed State Proposition in Colorado in 2004(?).

If it had passed, it would have alloted delegates to the electoral college, not by the state vote, but by percentage - county by county.

I am so sick and tired of ALL of the forces in our lives that do all that they can to polarize us.

It would be much more wonderful to share what unites us than what divides us. This way, county by county and not state by state... we would appear as a more purple people - homogenous - than red or blue.

David B.

Tim M.,

"(T)he forces in our lives that do all that they can to polarize us" don't really add much to the divisions. In the 2004 election, most of the people who voted for Kerry supported mass murder of preborn humans, while most of those who voted for Bush did not. I don't see how these groups can unite on anything of importance. The whole world-view of a person is defined by where he stands on that one issue, and no amount of looking at the intangibles will unite him with the people on the opposing side.


How about just the blue counties? The county map is far more enlightening about where people live.

And then. Could they? Please? Leave? Join Canada or Mexico and let the Canadian West join us?


Actually, it would be nice just to have a real choice in an election for once. Here in New York state, I always seem to end up with either two pro-abortion candidates that differ very minorly from each other, or one of those and a far-right radical who wants to ensure that every American has an opportunity to own an AK-47, fund the IRA, farm the poor for food, and use the hides of the Palestinians to make winter coats.

J.R. Stoodley is right, though. The reason this happens is because the cities, and New York City in particular, account for about half of the votes in the entire state. So candidates try to shape their campaign around the city's values and ideals. Or they go to the other extreme and try to get 100% of the suburban and rural vote, but usually end up overplaying to conservative stereotypes instead of what the people actually hold near and dear.

I live in a rural area of eastern Long Island, and yep, we've got the Bush/Cheney stickers and rebel flags on the lawns, too. Then again, we've also got the rainbow flags, the cross-dressers, and the crude references to gay sex on bumper stickers, too, because we're also the gateway to Fire Island. :( It's a mix of extremes. I wish we might someday get just one candidate for office with some common sense, though. Just once! PLEASE!!


David B.,

I voted for John Kerry not because of his support for abortion, but in spite of it. What made the difference for me was that I felt that I could trust John Kerry, but not George W. Bush. John Kerry may be a baby killer, but at least he's honest about it. Bush surrounds himself with people who want to conquer the world, no matter what the cost. He's killing Arab children, but can't even come up with an honest justification for it. Then again, I enlisted in the Army in 2004, so I had a little more personally invested in the election than most voters.

I voted for Bush in 2000 largely for the same reasons as I voted against him in 2004. I used to like Al Gore when he was a conservative senator from Tennessee. He completely sold out all of his values and abused his office of Vice President to solicit illegal foreign campaign contributions.

Electing an anti-abortion president is not going to end abortion. It is a step in the right direction, but what would help more is advocacy for emergency shelters for pregnant women, streamlined adoption processes, increased welfare funding for young mothers, better abstinence education, and a campaign to teach the real facts about abortion, early human life, and the real origins and interests of the abortion lobby.

At the end of the day, I can't vote for an absolute tyrant just because he happens to be right on one issue (even though it is a tremendously important one). The impact of the president on abortion is going to be minimal if the people of this country are not converted, or at least properly educated, and demand an end to abortion! You have to change hearts before you will be successful in changing laws. Believe me, if 80% of Americans were adamantly opposed to abortion in any and all circumstances, no party would dare run a pro-abortion candidate. It would be political suicide! The change has to come from the bottom to be effective, not from the top. If you criminalize abortion, you will probably reduce the number of abortions, and that in and of itself is a worthy goal, but it will not eliminate abortions totally--only force them underground and make criminals of desperate and vulnerable people. This is not just a legal issue, but a moral one primarily. In a perfect world, we would have a government based on the sovereignty of God, but instead we have one based on the will of the people. Our nation in its infancy may have been populated by religious refugees, but its government was drafted by deists, unitarians, and freemasons. So it is the people that must change! Either that or we just replace the whole dang government with one that governs in the name of God!

Sean S.

Well, not many of us SFReader people (any? None of the board's frequent visitors) actually got into the book...my own story got a form rejection. It later got accepted by a webzine called The Sword Review and published in their first "Best of the Year" anthology, available here: http://www.lulu.com/content/276255 .

Jimmy helped me with some of the details about Texas and its folks, but all errors are my own.

David B.


Several points:

"I voted for John Kerry not because of his support for abortion, but in spite of it."

What the Heck does that mean?

Augustine, you can't be your own pope. If a Catholic votes for a pro-abort, he is cooperating in an extremely grave sin. Anyone who knowingly does that may have excommunicated himself.

"I felt that I could trust John Kerry"

The guy defended baby-killers. How can anyone trust someone like that?

"He's (Bush) killing Arab children" Why didn't I hear about this on ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC, FOX News, PBS, CNN, C-Span, or C-Span 2?

"Electing an anti-abortion president is not going to end abortion. It is a step in the right direction"

Very true. So what reason is there to vote against Bush? Oh, I forgot, He was "murdering Arab children".

"what would help more is advocacy for emergency shelters for pregnant women, streamlined adoption processes, increased welfare funding for young mothers, better abstinence education, and a campaign to teach the real facts about abortion, early human life, and the real origins and interests of the abortion lobby"

John Kerry opposed ALL of these.

"At the end of the day, I can't vote for an absolute tyrant just because he happens to be right on one issue"

But you can vote for a guy who is wrong on ALL of the issues?

"The impact of the president on abortion is going to be minimal"

Two more pro-life judges on the Supreme Court is "minimal"?.

"it is the people that must change"

YOU said it.


David B.:
Good points! I,myself, found this at ewtn.com in the frequently asked questions section:

"Those who are anti-life and anti-family manifest this darkening of conscience, a darkening which makes their other political decisions inherently untrustworthy. No Catholic can reasonable say "this candidate is anti-life and anti-family, but his social policies are in keeping with Catholic principles." Catholics should look carefully to discover what in his policy views manifests the same will to power over others manifested by his anti-life principles. More than one tyrant in history has used panem et circenses (bread and circuses) to mollify the masses. The mere appearance of social justice is not the same as social justice, which can only occur when everything in society is properly ordered, beginning with the most basic realities - life and the family."


J.R. and Augustine,

Exactly right!...in Minnesota our last three governers - red or independent; our state government - red; senators - one red, one blue; Fed. House of Representatives - four red, four blue...yet since I've been voting (last 20 years), Minnesota has always gone blue in the presidential election. MN votes demographically blue in our poor urban centers, and red everywhere else (interestingly, I believe religious lines break this way as well demographically - - apparently a lot of poor athiests and agnostics in our state). We are not a highly populated state except for our major cities, so when the poor come out to vote, we go blue.

We get the same types of choices in our state candidates...the abortion-miller, the angry veteran (I'm a first gulf war veteran but not angry), or Jesse Ventura (odd attraction of the week)...

We need a candidate in my view with the following platform...

anti-abortion, anti-death penalty, anti-globalist, pro-internationalist, anti-U.N, pro diplomacy, reasonable on immigration but hard on the bad folks that bring bad things into our country, pro-strong military, pro-peace, pro-education, pro-human rights, anti-ACLU (and vocal about it), anti-lobbyist, anti-political correctness/gender neutering, pro-church, pro-faith, anti-secular humanist, pro-social justice, pro-child, pro-American (and not afraid or embarassed to say so), pro-Israel, anti-terrorism/fundamental islamist (and not afraid to say so), pro-family, pro-Bible, pro-Ten Commandments in the courthouse type thing, pro-gun ownership/hunting/shooting sports, anti-assault weapon wacko, anti-racist, pro-culture, anti-protected class distinction and special treatment in most cases, pro-environment, pro-Al Gore movie (although get over the election dude!), pro-Christmas back in our public schools, pro-school uniforms, pro-legal system, anti-judicial activism, pro-Pope (you gotta love the Pope whether Catholic or not).....you get the picture...if you know of a candidate like this, please let me know...this person has my vote...until then it's back to the lesser of two evils...




The four ways you stop abortion are:

Judicial intervention

Legal, legislative action

Change of government type

Intervention by God

One baby lost is too many...Kerry's and his cronies, and their evil-politic, have cost humanity thousands, perhaps millions of lives...the Pope was right in considering denying Kerry the Eucharist.

Changing the composition of the Supremes is the only way to immediately save the lives of the unborn, and Bush, despite my lack of positive regard for many of his positions, has come through in this most important area. Now if we could just get him to back-off the death penalty thing...


David B.

"it's back to the lesser of two evils"

Or...the lesser of two weevils. :-)

Good night, all.

J.R. Stoodley

Yah John!

Looks like our views are pretty much identical, except I would have put pro-environment higher on the list, added pro-alternitive fuels and I'm wishy-washy enough on Israel to keep it off the list. Also I havn't seen Al Gore's movie so I can't comment on it and what I consider a reasonalbe position is anti-illegal immigration.

I think a lot of orthodox Catholics would make similar lists. The problem is they do not fit the America's current Conservative or or Liberal molds so they don't get endorsed by a party or get many votes, it there are any such politicians at all.

Here in New York, the evils you must generally choose between are often really evil.

Also it looks inevitable that Democrates are going to win all the major elections (Governor, Senator, Attorey General) and do well in the other elections. With Eliot Spitzer as governor I (and the newspapers) think it will not be long until the legislature passes a law allowing gay marriage. For all his faults (including being pro-abortion) at least or current Republican Governor prevented that from happening so far with his promise of a veto.


...if you know of a candidate like this, please let me know...this person has my vote..

Well, there's me...but I'm not running for anything, & I don't plan to. (My idea of how to stop a dogfight excludes joining the dogs in the fight...)


Exactly my point Lily and J.R. ...poll 100 Catholics (or for that matter any random 100 Americans) and the platform I've laid out, and you seem to agree with, will appeal to the vast majority of voters over the existing party platforms...I'm convinced of this...so why do we continue to be offered candidates whose resumes look good, but whose platforms are so skewed in one direction or another as to make that candidate unpalateable? It would seem obvious that a sort of "common-sense" party would sweep the elections if put into play. My point being, guys...perhaps you SHOULD be running for something...

The problem has been so far, that when a third party candidate wins, it's some oddity like our beloved Governor, Jesse Ventura...loved him in the ring as a kid, couldn't stand his antics as our Governor...third party's also seem to develop a sort of grass-rootsy feel to them that ends up smelling of liberalism, and is too far out of the mainstream for most middle-of-the-road voters to grab onto...so how to create a mainstream, moderate party with the right platform, that's digestable on a national level...

Paid for by the Lily and J.R. in '08 Committee?




President Bush is "an absolute tyrant"! Funny, Augustine.

Jamie Beu

Anyway... back to the subject of books.

I'm reading a book called http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0743272897/sr=8-1/qid=1155912918/ref=pd_bbs_1/104-7679924-8203162?ie=UTF8>Prayers for the Assassin, which is not exactly secessionist, but rather a "future history" in which half the U.S. converts/is conquered by Islam, with the other states "rebelling".

I'm not very far into it, but oddly enough, the Catholics in the U.S. live in the Islamic Republic of America, after brokering a "freedom of religion" agreement for Catholics. Christians in the Bible Belt, however, are the rebels. (Doesn't exactly jive with history, but then again, I guess that depends on how "Catholic" American Catholics really are...)

Anyway, I'd be interested in hearing from anybody else who's read it (or is reading it).

Al T

If you go to Orson Scott Card's website: http://www.hatrack.com you'll see that he's written a novel on this topic and posted his first 5 chapters online.

Brent Robbins

I really hope the blue states/counties succeed from the USA and all liberals move to them. Hopefully it will start a civil war, and allow the red states to clean up...since they own all the guns. Haha!


I never said that President Bush was an "absolute tyrant". I made a hypothetical remark that you wrongly connected to the President.

I actually do like President Bush, but I do not trust him. After his first term in office, it was clear to me that he is not in charge and that the people that he has chosen to surround himself with as advisors are bloodthirsty fascists who want to conquer the world in the name of "democracy" and profit. I actually felt cheated that I voted for a president that promised a renewed commitment to morality and building up communities and what we got was a lot of nice speeches, a few token stem cell vetoes, and a whole lot of bloodshed, rising oil prices, rising unemployment as more and more jobs are shipped overseas and more foreigners are imported to take the jobs that remain in this country, and now crime statistics are once again starting to creep up. There's a huge meth epidemic that has largely gone without Presidential notice as he focuses on securing a trans-caucasian pipeline, which requires the cooperation of Afghanistan, Iran, and Iraq (funny how those very countries are coincidentally the target of our "war on terror").

I absolutely detest John Kerry. But between him and another term of the Cheney-Rumsfeld-Wolfowitz-Rove presidency, I pick the devil that at least is up front about being a devil. And when I see our country turning into a crime-ridden cesspool where the only jobs available are in the military, and our military is being used to police the entire planet, I think I might want to pick the guy that's more worried about what's going on here than half way across the world. After all, he's supposed to be President of the United States, not President of Earth.

If you had to vote in an election where the only two viable candidates were Stalin and Hitler, which would you choose? True, it's probably better to just abstain from voting, but then you're leaving it up to others to mitigate the evil.


I get no better than a "D" in reading comprehension today. My apologies, Augustine. (And I already had 2 cups of coffee by that time!)

Tim J.

"...when I see our country turning into a crime-ridden cesspool where the only jobs available are in the military, and our military is being used to police the entire planet..."

Sorry, are we living in the same country? Or even the same DIMENSION?

David B.


You still haven't offered a good defense of your vote for John Kerry. You have called those who remain in the Church 'new-age Catholics', but you yourself are disobeying one of the basic teachings of the Church. namely, the serious obligation of Catholics to properly form their consciences about the candidates and their views, and to vote not for whom you like, but for the one who agrees more often with the Church's fundamental teachings on things like abortion and assisted suicide.


David B.,

So if Stalin opposed abortion and euthanasia, but otherwise was the same Joe Stalin we all know and love, and his only opponent in an election were Bill Clinton, who would you vote for?

It is one thing to deny John Kerry Communion. That is absolutely right. But like you said, we are to "form our consciences," and some of us might not come to the same conclusions. Last I checked, the Church taught that it was good to care for the poor and not to wage war for profit and fun. The very same Pope condemned the President's "war on terror." So does that mean that the Vatican says I should vote against Bush?

I am annoyed by knee-jerk neocon Catholics who cannot even develop a conscience of their own. So I look at the issues and decide that more good can be done in the political arena with regard to fighting poverty, joblessness, and unnecessary violence, while abortion is going to take a lot more to get something done about it politically and might be better attacked at the grass roots level. Somehow because two candidates are both out of step with Catholic teaching, I have to completely disregard the effectiveness of implementing the policies that do agree with Church teaching.

Bush appointed two Supreme Court justices, both Catholic. In fact, the Court has a Catholic majority. So where's the ban on abortion? It hasn't come yet. Wonder why? He vetoes federally funded stem cell research, and the Congress gets set to overturn his veto. Wonder why?

Yet, all the while, millions of Americans are without jobs, cannot feed their families, are saddled with drug addiction, increasingly turning to crime to support themselves, and our soldiers are fighting battles that make no sense and benefit nobody but oil barons and defense contractors and breeds enmity between us and the rest of the world.

I think John Kerry would have done a better job and had a greater impact in all of those areas where Bush has failed so miserably at. Pardon me, but I am not at all questioning whether abortion is a greater evil than poverty or war. These are real people (the unborn) with real souls that are dying mercilessly and needlessly.

But when voting for a candidate that opposes abortion has absolutely zero impact on the situation, why not consider the other issues at stake where the President will be able to make an impact for the better?

If there were a way to ban all abortions and enforce it and it could happen right now, I'm all for it! Tell me what needs to be done!

But I am convinced that abortion will never be banned in America as long as most Americans are not completely outraged by it, and I don't think we're there yet. There's a lot of work to be done at the bottom before we can have a real impact at the top.

And that is why I feel that a vote for Kerry has a greater chance at effecting change that is in harmony with Catholic teaching than George Bush. This latest episode in the Middle East is further evidence of this. Lebanese Catholics were being assaulted by the Israelis merely for living in the same country as some Islamic radicals, and Bush stood by and watched. The Israelis would not have even tried that if it were John Kerry in office and not Bush. The Israelis know they have the unconditional support of the United States as long as a Republican is in office because the Republican party has become the American wing of Likud.

I really don't care about "theory." I care about what has the greatest real impact on the world and for our country. When George Bush actually delivers something more than an argument with the Congress on a pro-life position, then we'll talk again.

Meanwhile, I will sit at home contemplating my medical discharge from the Army, my complete inability to find suitable work because all of the jobs in my field are occupied by foreigners or offshored, why my wife needs to work two jobs to supplement my own and we still can't afford day care for our son, and why some weeks I barely have enough money to put gas in the car so I can even go to work. Thanks, Mr. Bush, for everything. Really!


Before anyone gets cute and says "see, you have a job and your wife has two!".. The job I am working now is something I got through a temp agency and they kept me on full-time. I am making half of what I used to make as a computer programmer and network administrator. My wife works at Taco Bell for slightly more than minimum wage and has an on-and-off part-time job as a home health aide which pays $1/hr more than Taco Bell and the assignments are very sporadic and never long-lasting since most of the patients are terminal. We can't afford day-care or a sitter for my son, so one of us needs to be home whenever he is. It's probably better that way anyhow.

I have been looking for IT work for over 2 years now, and have had absolutely zero success. I had worked at a local Staples store for a few months until my pension money ran out and then I started temping.

This is the American Way in George Bush's America.



First things first...come to Minnesota...I am an attorney but the vast majority of my friends are quite a bit brighter than I am, and went into the I.T. fields...nearly all of them have been displaced in the last several years due to the dot.com bust, mini-recession, etc., but all have found good I.T. employment by staying home here in Mini...I'm not sure what state you're from, but there are good jobs here all over the state...furthermore, a $120,000 house here might go for $400,000 in Chicago, $700,000 in New York, and $900,000 in San Jose or San Francisco...You can live on service level wages here until you find something more to your expertise and liking. Also, I'm a first Gulf War vet, and people around here, whether blue or red, seem to be pretty partial to their vets...it's not a bad place to raise a family. Let me know what I can do to help you, and we'll figure something out...we're also very Catholic in my part of Minnesota, you'd be among family here...that said...

In my opinion, Bush didn't cause the Dot.Com bust, or the recession, or the I.T. bust, or the major outsourcing of jobs overseas...I was a stock broker in law school as the Clinton-Gore years were ending and Bush was coming in, and the damage had already been done...the corporation I was trading for laid more than half of my compatriots off, and I was just lucky to have a job...then 911 hit, and things arguably have never quite recovered, despite a major market improvement since immediate post-911 times...

I'm guessing that if you sat down and talked to Kerry man-to-man he'd tell you he was not in favor of abortion anymore than you or I, but he knows what side his bread's buttered on and how he needs to vote to keep his party happy. If Kerry had been elected President, you can be sure that party pressure would have put another couple of ACLU queens like Ginsburg on the Supremes bench, and good luck ever getting rid of abortion then...Bush in my opinion (and I need to say up front I really don't like the guy or his neocon handlers) made good sound decisions re his Court appointments, and you'll see...when new abortion cases come before the Court, the proper form of judicial activism will slowly whittle away at abortion...and again from my perspective, a baby saved is a baby saved...we need to save our unborn one at a time if necessary.

Good luck in your job search, and think about the midwest if you're not already here. There are jobs to be had for you and your family.

Best wishes,



John, I agree with what you wrote about what Kerry would probably say about abortion in private. A few years ago, I was playing golf with a guy who said he used to live next door to a former Democrat congressman who was pro-life. (If I mentioned the congressman's name, you all would recognize it). Then the congressman began to have national aspirations, and gave "pro-choice" speeches. The neighbor told him: "I know you don't believe this stuff you're saying." The congressman replied: "I have to get funding."

As St. Thomas More said to Richard Rich when he committed perjury at St. Thomas' trial, and was rewarded with an important post in Wales: "'What does it profit a man if he gain the whole world but lose his immortal soul?' But, Richie, Wales?"


I think alot of that sort of moral relativism stuff happens in politics...my father-in-law tells a story of an ex-patriot friend he met in Taiwan at the American Club, who is a former Marine-1 pilot during the Kennedy administration...this pilot told my father-in-law that apparently John Kennedy and his brother Bobby, when in California, used to spend the day out in public shaking hands and kissing babies (basically casting the public impressions that they were good Catholic family men), and at night this pilot would fly these guys up into the Hollywood hills and be met by naked and barely clad women at the mansions they'd land at...

I'm sure a good number of red state politicians could share similar tales...it seems the temptations available to men and women of power really can corrupt absolutely...



I actually thought of moving out to Eau Claire, Wisconsin a few years. It's a really hard sell for my wife though. She's a recent immigrant from Angola and can't stand the "cold weather" in New York. Trying to convince her to move someplace where snowfall is measured in feet instead of inches would be about as easy as getting Osama bin Laden to convert to Judaism. I have my sister out in Peoria keeping an eye on things, but she was out of work for about 2 years before she found something. Actually, she was temping too and stayed on with one of the companies she temped at.

I understand that the job situation is not entirely Bush's fault. In truth, Clinton started the ball rolling. But I'd really like to see a lot more attention paid to domestic issues. Even the immigration issue is not framed as a domestic one, but as a "war on terror" issue. It's not that we need to stem the tide of illegals because they're taking away our jobs and forcing down our wages, but because Osama bin Laden might sneak over the Mexican border.

Maybe I'm just getting a bit too cranky. I'm really sick of New York, sick of my diocese, sick of working at a job that I don't belong in, and sick of feeling helpless in a world that is obviously insane. I thank God for what I have, but I struggle to understand why things aren't different.

David B.


"I really don't care about "theory.""

When you voted for Kerry, weren't you theorizing that GWB wouldn't be able to do anything about abortion? Weren't you theorizing that Kerry wouldn't be able to do anything FOR abortion? You couldn't have predicted the future, and voting for Kerry would've enable him to pass even more pro-abortion bills. That would've been on YOUR head.

You said you don't think abortion and unjust wars are on the same footing, and then seem to say that the Pope's condemnation of the war freed you to vote for Kerry. The Pope never said that the war in Irag and abortion were on the same footing. If you don't have to obey the Pope concerning SSPX, then why do you pay attention to anything else he says?


Eau Claire is a great city, although the Twin Cities is a much better market for work, and if you live out of the cities a bit you can live rather cheaply. Good sized immigrant population, particularly from Africa, Laos, and Bosnia. A few years ago I might have warned you off because of the weather, but I've got to say that given the whole global warming thing, we've had a lot less cold weather than we used to. Come on out and take a look around Augustine. We're frequently voted as one of the best places to live...if not Minnesota there are a lot of great states around us...although I'm partial to Minnesota...lot's to do, and a great place to raise kids...also probably more modern/metropolitan than you might imagine...I'll shut up now, good luck!


J.R. Stoodley

Regarding global warming, it may actually make New York colder. Fresh water entering the North Atlantic from melting glaciers and permafrost will change the salinity and density of the water, which will cause the Gulf Stream to bend south, freezing Europe and perhaps the northeastern United States depending on how bad it is.

About President Bush, I was not happy about voting for him but his election brought two Justices who may well be pro-life to the bench and prevented the killing of who knows how many babies for embrionic stem cell research. With Kerry we would have had two liberal justices replacing two conservative ones, putting off any chance of Roe vs. Wade being overturned indefinitely, and we would have govenment-funded murder for scientific experimentation. Even if it would have prevented the war in Lebanon (which is not at all clear to me) I am glad the election did not go the other way.

J.R. Stoodley

To correct myself before someone else does, Kerry would have replaced one conservative Justice and one swing-voter with two liberals. Admitedly the Repubican controled Congress would have prevented openly extreme liberals from being confirmed, but I doubt the new justices would be likely to reverse Roe vs. Wade.

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