I swore I would not write about politics, but I can't resist this one.
THE WIRETAPPING BILL was passed by Congress: 69 to 28. (97 out of 100 Senators!)
More individual rights have been stripped from American citizens.
Senator Obama said he was against it. VOTED FOR IT.
Senator Hillary Clinton said she was against it. VOTED AGAINST IT.
Senator McCain said he was for it. DID NOT SHOW UP TO VOTE.
This vote is indicative of who these people are, and have been from the very beginning. At the end of the day, it's not even that it's one issue. Every thing we do, every move we make, every word we speak indicates who we are.
I'm quite isolated watching U.S. politics from half way around the world because for the most part Kiwis just don't like Americans and American politics. (However, their own National Party, Brash and Key are allied with Bush, and they are in the lead for this year's election.)
Living in New Zealand I feel obligated to read about US politics. There are many websites including: nyt, bbc, guardian, and numerous 'alt' websites. The local papers here publish stories about the U.S. every day, mostly about celebrities. But how reliable they are on world events, I'm not sure, in 2006 they said -- after Katrina destroyed New Orleans -- that sharks from the ocean were swimming down Bourbon Street.
The passing of the wiretapping bill is shocking. The two year debate around it was based on fear. It includes immunity for those who cooperated with the government in illegal wire taping after 9/11. These would be AT&T, Verizon and anyone else the White House asked to conduct illegal spying.
My friend Olivia has a friend who just returned to New York after a trip to New Zealand and she says that if the Republicans win, she's moving to NZ. I got news for Olivia's friend, when you visit here they love you, when you move here it's a little different, like the one Kiwi who said to me, "You're not moving here are you? There are enough of you bloody Americans here already."
Why do Americans move to NZ?
P.S. To Olivia's friend, you can't move here if you are over the age of 54. They don't want oldies retiring here -- unless you invest 5 million -- then age is not a factor. Sigh.