Posts Tagged ‘war


This President Works Harder Than the Last One Did

To all the people, most especially the GOP folks who criticize President Barack Obama even when he does things they traditionally support:

George W. Bush was the slacker.

I’m a little tired of the “Japan is in ruins and Libya is awash in blood and the president is giving parties, golfing, playing basketball and doing his March Madness picks?!”


Where were your complaints when Bush, in the midst of two Middle Eastern wars and a battle against terrorism (and against our civil rights), spent more time vacationing than any other president ever?

Got news for you…as much work as being U.S. President is, you can’t spend every minute of every day doing nothing but the job, or you will quite literally die. (Of course, that’s what most Republicans probably want…as long as Biden dies at the same time)

Parties are something presidents must do for a variety of reasons, many of them diplomatic. As for the golfing and basketball, exercise is good. And March Madness picks don’t take that long.

So, in a nutshell: Shut the fuck up.


Money Squandered

As oil continues to gush into the Gulf of Mexico, I can’t help but wonder how the world and our economy might be different if all the billions upon billions of dollars we’ve spent on military hardware in the past 15 to 20 years and on military actions that make the world safe for…well, mostly safe for Halliburton and the rest of the military-industrial complex and corporate America, apparently…well…

What if that money had been spent elsewhere?

No, I’m not talking about social programs (much as I like them) or on our children (who are our future) or on healthcare (which could keep our population strong and productive). I would have liked to see more funding of all those things.

But imagine, if instead of trying to police the entire world, we had spent only a modest amount on military issues, such that we could defend ourselves but not be such an aggressor. And what might we have spent those billions on instead?

How about freaking fusion research?

I mean, if we had spent as much money on truly cutting-edge, forward-thinking energy research, maybe we’d be close to clean, effective, fusion power. Maybe now, instead of relying on a swiftly vanishing petrochemical resource, we’d be the ones calling the shots and saying: “We have the energy. We have the good stuff, and now let’s see some money to provide it.”

Maybe we would be in the plum position that OPEC nations have held, as the holders of the future energy needs of the world, instead of slaves to oil.

And then maybe a pipe wouldn’t be leaking millions upon millions of gallons of black death into our waters.


Swords Into Plowshares, Please

I’m not some idealistic peacenik. I realize that sometimes, asses must be kicked for things to get done right in this world. For example, I’m all for sticking around to hunt down Al Queda in Afghanistan and trying to get that nation some stability. Why? Because that’s the source of a lot of the terrorism, both the support (hiding places and training camps) and the bodies to hurl at us. Also, Afghanistan is a hot mess, and partly because of what we did to get the Soviets out (and that came back to bite us on the ass, since the people we armed to fight them are now are enemies).

But Iraq I want us out of. Now. Because we only went there for a grudge match with one guy (Saddam Hussein) and by extension his lackeys, we did it for the oil and the chance for rebuilding contracts, and we lied about the reasons (weapons of mass destruction that never existed and that Saddam wasn’t likely to build since he was more about satisfying his desires than fighting us).

So, I don’t advocate that we strip away tons of military funding. World is dangerous. I get that. But we spend too much time using our military to enforce our will than to truly defend ourselves or punish the right people these days.

So, then I see a couple days ago that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is asking for a 20-something percent increase in the next federal budget to just over $4 billion to radically revamp food safety in this nation. Now, if you have any knowledge of the state of food safety and monitoring in this country (sadly, I do), you’d realize that’s a very minor request and that it probably will accomplish little.

And yet, the U.S. Department of Defense, at the same time, is asking for $700 billion.


That’s one-hundred and seventy-five damn times as much money.

Isn’t that around 17,500% the amount of money the FDA is asking for?

To wage war.

Rather than protect people here at home from unsafe food. To bolster an agency that is charged with the safety of all drugs and much of the food in this nation (the U.S. Department of Agriculture having some responsibilities there as well.)

Where are our priorities?

And the ones who most fight against FDA funding and for more funding of the military are the Republicans, who so often are the ones touting God and Jesus, too, and telling us we’re a Christian nation.

Got news for you, you hypocritical, shit-heeled bastards: Jesus fed people. He didn’t smack them around. Jesus healed. Jesus preached the importance of peace. Yes, he mentioned that sometimes, we need to take up swords.


But we always need to be there for people who are hungry, sick and hurting.

I’m going to say this bluntly: There is a higher percentage of Republicans who claim to be Christian who will have spaces waiting for them in hell than there are agnostic Democrats who will be.

Not a much higher percentage, mind you, because the damn Dems seem to forget about their human priorities too, in the midst of greed and power-mongering.

But if you’re going to claim Jesus, start acting more like him.


Election 2008: The Stakes – Our Troops

Normally, I try not to get too much into politics around here. But with this year’s presidential election and all that has been done wrong in the country for the past eight years, this is a pivotal time. Time once again for me to share with my Christian brothers and sisters (both those who agree with me, those who don’t and those who are on the fence), why the Republican ticket is not only bad for our country but not doing much to serve God’s will either.

See also:

Sept. 7 Post – Election 2008: The Stakes – Experience


God doesn’t sanction wars these days. Frankly, the ones he did sanction back in Old Testament days were part of a necessary process of showing that the Hebrews were his chosen people, and getting the path laid for Jesus to arrive and begin the real process of healing the breach between humanity and God.

Unfortunately, we’ve been reminded now, thanks to Sarah Palin’s comments and stories about the views some of her pastors hold (yes, they held a pastor against Obama; they deserve the same treatment), that there are actually people who think we’re fighting God’s war over there in Iraq and Afghanistan. Funny, I wasn’t aware that God needed protecting. Are the militantly radical Muslims going to blow up something in Heaven?

God’s assistance and directives to the Hebrews were about setting a place for them on the map, spiritually, physically, politically and otherwise. Even those wars didn’t do anything to help God; they were about advancing His plans and helping the Hebrews get started. The conservative Christian contingent in this country is right that we’re in a war related to God, but that’s a spiritual war against Satan. It has nothing to do with warring against other countries. Sure, we should defend ourselves, but our continued presence in Iraq in particular has nothing to do with defence and everything to do with powermongering and greed.

God wants us to wage a war against sin in our own lives and against ignorance and misinformation about Jesus as we reach out to people day-to-day and show the light and love of Christ. But that’s not what the GOP is ramming down our throats. And McCain has said if we’re in Iraq another 100 years, so be it! Yes, I know he was using hyperbole and that even he isn’t that crazy with unresolved anger issues. But the fact that he isn’t willing to see that we’ve already stayed too long and done too much damage is frightening. I’m not saying we have to pull out all at once and right away, but it’s time to stop acting like our huge presence there is a good thing.

I recall that one of the speakers on the night of the GOP convention when McCain accepted the nomination (I forget who it was) was ridiculing Barack Obama for wanting to get out of Iraq in the near future. He actually said that Obama was disrespecting the work of the troops by wanting to leave. He said that honoring the troops meant we had to stay until the job was done.

First, what job are we trying to finish? Making Iraq stable? That’s up to Iraqis. Eliminating terrorism? Anyone who thinks we as a country has the power to do that is insane. So, there is no goal anymore now that we’ve deposed Sadam Hussein. Instead, we’re making excuses to stick around and continue to plunge our nation farther into debt to finance the conflict.

Second, how is keeping troops there honoring them? Our armed forces are already stretched too thin and have been forced to serve too many tours of duty. Without a real plan and a real goal, we hurt them by continuing to be in Iraq and by people in the GOP saber-rattling to say that we need to target Iran next and maybe Russia, too. Our troops don’t want to be used up like old whores. They want to see their families.

Before you actively co-sign on to more war and military excess by shouting “hurrah!” at our current and possibly future forays, or before you passively do so by electing an angry man who still calls Asians gooks and his sidekick who is already showing no diplomatic ability in her words about Russia and Georgia, remember who they send overseas to fight these battles. Your sons and daughters. Your friends. People you care about or who matter to people you care about.

The folks in the military signed up to defend our nation, not to be used as pawns for political gamesmanship, international grandstanding and corporate interests.

And don’t talk to me about bringing back the draft. That will give more warm bodies to abuse, and more incentive to stay places we don’t belong and to go into new places and conflicts we shouldn’t be tackling. Moreover, remember that the politicians won’t be sending their kids off to war for the most part. Way, way more often than not, their kids and other close family will either be safely practicing law, business, medicine or politics—or if they are getting some military credentials they won’t be in harm’s way.

There is nothing respectful or loving in the way our country has used its troops over the past two presidential terms and nothing Christian about it. We are killing and psychologically damaging our own people for nonsense, and we need someone in office who at least wants to try to put an end to it, not someone who blithely wants to soldier on with the same-ole, same-old.


March ’em off to war

Today’s message is probably more suited for a Veteran’s Day weekend or Memorial Day weekend kind of post. But Miz Pink’s post yesterday somehow sparked something in my head, and I feel I simply have to talk about it. And what do I need to rant about?

Our proclivity in this country for marching our men and women in uniform off to their doom. If that sounds ominous, it’s only because even when you grant that most of them come home alive and even unwounded (physically) from our overseas conflicts, they bear a great emotional and psychological load, and that has been evident from our two-front war in Afghanistan and Iraq that has dragged out year after year after year.

Now, let me point something out right now: I am neither anti-military nor anti-war. I’m not some naive peacenik who thinks we can beat all the guns into plows and deal with lives full of puppies and flowers for the remaining days of this Earth. God Himself sent the ancient Hebrews off to war many times and for various reasons. The Bible tells us in various ways and various places that sometimes, peace is not an option, though certainly it is the path we are supposed to start with. There is, after all, a time for war and a time for peace.

Personally, I’m not in favor of anyone I love ever joining the armed forces. This isn’t some liberal wingnut stance but a practical one. I recognize the need to have a “standing army” (although really, that’s the navy, marines and air force, too) and I know that the people who choose to serve in the military are doing a great service to me, to mine and to the rest of the country. God bless them. But our government has a tendency to send them into places they have no business being, usually because of misplaced political bullshit or economic interests (often blind avarice), and not because of truth, peace, justice or any other noble reason.

I do have liberal tendencies on many political and social matters, I admit. But my belief that the death penalty has a valid place in the justice system, and a general strong queasiness about abortion (not enough to overturn Roe v. Wade, mind you), among other things—well those two alone will make me an unwelcome guest at most gatherings of true liberals. So, this isn’t about me being against war in all cases nor about me thinking the military creates a huge cadre of potential baby killers. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

But I was looking at a calendar on the wall of Mrs. Blue’s office today, and there are pictures of four Iraq War veterans and quotes from them. One of those quotes was something to the effect of “Refuse to fight this unjust and illegal war.”

Now, whether that comment was meant to be directed toward the U.S. citizens in general or the members of the armed forces specifically—or both perhaps—I just don’t know. I don’t know anything about the context of that quote. But it got me to thinking about something.

It’s not up the soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines to refuse to fight. To expect people who are trained to obey and trained to respect hierarchy for the sake of military discipline and peak effectiveness to do something like that is ludicrous. We cannot ask our soldiers to stand up en masse and say, “this is wrong” because that isn’t their place or their duty. Or their strength, frankly.

It’s up to us.

We, as a nation—and I speak in particular to my God-fearing and Jesus-loving brethren though also to everyone out there—we need to stand up and stop letting our government perpetuate bullshit. We have to stop signing off on military actions that do nothing but stir up animosity, weaken our economy (while enriching certain huge corporations and government contractors), and generally serve no pertinent interests of the American people. We have to stop believing our government when they say they are protecting us from terrorists/communists/religious extremists/etc. when it is clear that our government in on its own agenda and doesn’t give a shit about what’s good for us, the average American.

This is Independence Day weekend, for God’s sake, so let’s remember that people fought and died for our freedom. Yes, the country was fucked up and had slaves and shit when we declared independence and that’s nothing to be proud of but still there was a good fight in there—it just wasn’t fought on behalf of the slaves. In World War II at least, we were attacked and there was a madman leading a swath of destruction across Europe and murdering millions of innocent Jews for good measure. Even in the Cold War, where I had serious reservations about our motives at times, there was another superpower other than us (well, I’m not sure we’re a superpower anymore either, but that’s another discussion) and it was indeed often out to get us.

There have been good reasons to fight, but most of our conflicts have been pure nonsense and fought for bad reasons and often with horrible strategies. This isn’t a game. And my image above notwithstanding, this ain’t no damn comic book, either. This is real life and it needs to be taken more seriously.

What we Americans need to remember on this so-called patriotic weekend holiday (if we can drag ourselves out of the liquor and food long enough to do so) is that when we go to war, we generally don’t march off ourselves. No, we send our sons, daughters, husbands, wives, brothers, sisters and friends off to war. And if we are going to send them off to possibly die for us (or worse), we fucking well ought to make sure we’re doing it for a damn good reason.


What really separates us

*Sigh* Well, the Spirit moved me to find some images that might potentially be useful for running with my next post on speaking in tongues…but sadly, once again, I have been moved in a direction other than writing that post today.

Today, I want to get us clear of what I think is one of the most ignorant comments about any religion, Christianity included: Religion is responsible for most of the atrocities that have ever been committed.

You get a lot of variations on this theme. People say that religion has precipitated more wars than anything else. That abuses in society have often been justified with religion. Or they say that religion does more to divide us than to bring us together.

While this sounds really cathartic to say, especially if you’re an atheist or an agnostic who really, really dislikes organized religion (and hey, I have my own beefs with a lot of churches and denominations)…it really isn’t true.

Religion isn’t the problem.

People are the problem.

If we were to remove religion from the picture, do you seriously think we’d all just get along? That’s a very Pollyanna-ish and naive view of the world and of human nature. Sure, a lot of wars were waged around religious issues. But do you think the believers en masse wanted to go fight other religious believers? No, it was the people in charge, the leaders of society, who made that choice. And most of the time, the motivations are not to glorify God (or a god or goddess) but rather to achieve their own ends.

Power. Influence. Hoping to impress God for selfish reasons. Money. Land. Love. Lust.

Those are the motivators. Not religion.

Religion divides us no more than do race or culture. Eliminating religion won’t eliminate racism. People can use religious text (often out of context) to justify their racism, but they don’t feel racism because of their religious beliefs. Feelings of cultural or political superiority can be justified or bolstered with religion, but they don’t come from a religious source. They come from pride. From arrogance. From pettiness.

I would argue that democracy and capitalism have both been using as rallying cries for a lot of abuses against individuals, nations and the planet. For that matter, communist beliefs (being both political and economic) have been used the same way.

Six million Jews were slaughtered in the Holocaust not because of religion (not even over them practicing a religion that wasn’t in favor) but because they were scapegoats for an economic downturn and because Hitler thought his people were genetically superior.

The Crusades were not about lifting up God or even fighting for him, but about forming or expanding or maintaining power and/or empires. The Inquisition was not about religion but about control.

People can and will twist any philosophy, economic system or political movement when they think it is necessary to achieve their own agenda—whether it’s a personal agenda, societal agenda or both. Blaming religion for any ills of the world is wrong.

It’s a form of discrimination and a diseased form of elitism that is every bit as bad as that spouted by any pompous ass who waves around a cross or crescent or six-pointed star. Because you can just as easily replace that religious symbol with a flag.

(Miz Pink, where are you? I think I need you to post something soon so that I will get out of here for a day or so and finally finish talking about speaking in tongues…)


Notes from the battlefield

armor-of-god021.jpgThis blog is very young still…and while visits are growing, I’m still a pretty modestly visited destination compared to a lot of blogs. I think I’ve done better than most in getting traction early, but there’s still a long way to go. Still, while I’m early in this journey, I think I see signs of what is to come. I’ve hit a tipping point of sorts, with some folks who are atheist (or at least very seriously skeptical agnostics) having found me and presenting some very fine arguments for their side.

I don’t shy from this, and I don’t begrudge them being here. If you click through my blogroll and “other places I like to visit” links in the sidebar, you’ll see that I am encouraging people to go to all kinds of sites, some of them authored by people who are very critical of religious faith. I’ve never promoted ignorance or narrow-mindedness among the faithful or the unsaved. The people who have come to my blog so far to question my stands have been very articulate and interesting.

But it does remind me that however civil it may be, I am waging a battle here on a field that is littered with souls thanks to an ongoing battle on Satan’s part against God. To be more clear though, I am not in battle with atheists or people of other faiths though. While there may be discussion, debate and even arguments/fights around here, I am not at war with individuals. I may have to defend myself and my faith against some of them, but my fight is not with them. My biggest enemies are the world itself and the guy who still pulls a lot of the strings: Satan.

The simple fact is that the day-to-day world we live in is a creation of us flawed humans. Flawed out of the starting gate and born in the image of Satan. Few people think they are bad, but that’s because the “badness” isn’t something obvious. It isn’t evil so much as it is a desire to be totally a part of the world and not a part of God. It’s insidious and we can do good things while still being pretty dirty inside.

Now, I’m sure many atheists and agnostics would argue that with so many people who have religious beliefs in the world, I am obviously mistaken that the vast and overwhelming majority of people are of the world rather than being about religion. But how many people are seeking spiritual growth in those religious systems as opposed to simply doing what they were raised to do or doing what they are told to do or going through the motions because it looks good to be in church, or synagogue, or temple, or wherever?

Most people are derailed both from spiritual growth and evangelism because they get caught up in the world. And that’s the way Satan likes to keep things. And he stays in the background, doing very little directly, and letting people (including many Christians) believe that he either doesn’t exist or is a funny looking red guy with a pointy tail.

The early Christian church, the one the apostles were forming, did it right. What it stood for, what it taught and how it promoted a spiritual community was spot-on. But it existed in a world where people have agendas and desires. The Word of God became something that would ultimately be used to keep people in line or derive power and privilege, and it got misused. The religion of Christianity got tainted and while it still holds something powerful and good at its core, there is a constant desire by many folks to keep it in the realm of control and power instead of people gathering around it to become more godly and spiritual and useful to the world.

So too does the temporal and carnal world around us give us many reasons to be distracted and weak. We live in a world where generally speaking, you measure success by money or power or prestige or a combination of them. How many people are lifted up and held as a positive example because they spread the Word of God? Very few. How many religions start drifting from their core to begin preaching rewards instead of service and humility? Probably all of them eventually. Let’s take the virgins promised to Muslim men in the afterlife in certain strains of Islam or the prosperity ministries in the Christian faith as just two examples.

And then there is pressure from academia against religion. Even if you go back to more “god fearing” times like the 1800s or first half of the 20th century, you will see that scientists and researchers and teachers were rewarded for what they could bring to the world to advance it monetarily, technologically or in other material ways. Nothing wrong with that, of course; I like progress as much as the next guy. But how much encouragement was there, really, to focus on research or defense of things spiritual? Much less. And so, once again, the ways of the world helped to reduce religion.

People see Christianity as something in decline and say this is because “reality” is rendering it irrelevant. But I see it more as people who are focused on almost everything but God (a tragic element of the human condition) increasingly marginalizing spiritual matters and thus creating the illusion that it is nonsense…or misusing religion for their own ends and damaging its reputation.

And so, I stand with others in the faith who know that what we know is right, but who don’t have the ammunition that the temporal/carnal world has. I’m a guerrilla fighter, not a soldier in some organized army, and that’s a hard way to fight the good fight for God and win people’s hearts and souls over to His side.

People will no doubt continue to challenge my beliefs here in the comments, and that is a good thing. Keep it coming. But I will be honest up-front that I am not going to always be able to counter their deep research and logical theories with something that seems equally ironclad. In other words, my ass will get kicked sometimes. My recent blog suggesting that atheism was a religion had some good points, but even I have to concede that there were logical flaws in my arguments and some stretching of words’ meaning. I am a writer, and I like to think critically, and I have a lot of generalist knowledge…but I’m not an academic and I’m not a debater. I’m not even much of a fighter. But I will continue to do what I must to raise up the Lord Jesus Christ here. I hope that my heart and my love and my spirit will shine forth, because those are my key weapons in this war. Because it’s all about faith, and while I can spew out logical and scientific and historical evidence to back up some of what I talk about, there is only so much that such things can be applied to spiritual matters.

Anyway, back to the trenches, folks. War is hell…and the guy at the top of the heap in Hell no doubt would like to see me lay down my armor and weapons. My words may be crass at times and my weapons not always as sharp as they could be, but I didn’t come into Christianity with pollyanna beliefs and an expectation for things to be easy. Being on the right side isn’t always the comfortable thing. I don’t doubt people in general and Satan himself will get some good shots in at me, I don’t doubt that I will be wounded…but I’m not ready to give up.

(Image from Hellgate: London video game from Flagship Studios)


To arms

armor-of-god01.jpgWe’re at war. And I’m not talking about Iraq, folks.

Satan is alive and well and still pissing in God’s general direction, and he isn’t interested in taking prisoners.

If you don’t have Christ as your lord and savior, Satan wants you to stay that way and die that way and never find salvation. If you do have Christ, he wants to render you impotent to bring another single soul to God. Spiritual though it may be, it is war all the same.

I believe in seeking God’s blessings and graces. I believe in the fact that God comforts us and strengthens us. I believe many good things can come to us. But I worry when churches and individuals lead people to Jesus simply by talking about all the good stuff. They promise a bed of roses and tell people to roll around in it, but they forget to mention all the thorns.

My Shit List post ranted a bit about the Word of Faith movement and that should tell you how much I value ministries that focus only on prosperity or health.  The cool-sounding stuff. No ministry, either within the church walls or without, should ever get tunnel vision. And that means the other side of the debate needs to watch out, too. Preaching only salvation, for example, is nearly as bad as going the Word of Faith route because it means you may prepare people poorly to deal with the challenges of being born again. You may lose them before they accept Christ or you may get them to salvation only to have them go limping into Heaven.

Giving your soul to God pisses Satan off to no end. And he’s not going to let your ass get away with that and not hurt you for it. And he’ll hurt you not only out of revenge but to wear you down so that you either seem so pathetic that no one will want to give your path of Jesus a try or so that you are too damned tired to do anything for God.

As a Christian, if you know you are at war, though, you can prepare yourself. If you know you have an enemy who’s out to get you, you can keep an eye out for him. And if you’re going to be going into battle, you need to do so with intelligence. That means in prayer. Lean on God to give you strength and give you victory. You’ll have challenges, but you cannot be utterly torn down unless you leave God out of the equation.

Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints. Ephesians 6:10-18

So, what’s the message if you haven’t accepted Jesus as lord and savior?

Wake the hell up.

Look at this world and see what a mess we’ve made of it. Look inside yourselves and realize there is something more in there than viscera and bones. You have more even than a complex mind. You have a soul. You aren’t a random collection of atoms and molecules. You aren’t an accident.

There is a war on for your soul, and the sooner you realize it, the sooner you can decide to choose a side or simply give up and hope for the best. But wandering through the battleground and being ignorant of what is going on is even worse than accepting God’s way and thinking it will all be sunshine and good times.

War isn’t just hell, folks. Hell is at war with us.

(Image from Hellgate: London video game from Flagship Studios)

Deacon Blue is the blogging persona of editor and writer Jeffrey Bouley. The opinions of Jeff himself on this blog, and those expressed as Deacon Blue, in NO WAY should be construed as the opinions of anyone with whom he has worked, currently works, or will work with in the future. They are personal opinions and views, and are sometimes, frankly, expressed in more outrageous terms than I truly feel most days.

Jeff Bouley


Jeff Bouley

To find out more about me professionally, click here. To find out more about me generally, click here.



You can reach Deacon Blue/Jeff Bouley at



For my public profile, click here.


Tales of the Whethermen

My superhero fiction blog, click here


Raising the Goddess

My parenting blog, click here

Copyright Info and Images

For more about images used on this site, and copyrights regarding them, as well as usage/copyright information about my own writing as posted here, click here.

Deac Tweets


Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 833 other followers
October 2022

%d bloggers like this: