NC Media Watch

A quest for reason and accuracy in letters to the editor, guest editorials and other issues of interest to the citizens of Western Nevada County.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Whining will never make America great!

Pat Butler’s on "Why whining makes America great," revels more about the editor than I wanted to know. He thinks whining is a virtue.

There was a lot in Pat’s editorial that upset me, but for now let’s stick to the whining part. Let us start with a definition of whining :
1. To utter a plaintive, high-pitched, protracted sound, as in pain, fear, supplication, or complaint.
2. To complain or protest in a childish fashion.
3. To produce a sustained noise of relatively high pitch: jet engines whining.

Pat Writes:
It does concern me, however, when we characterize people with different points of view as whiners or unpatriotic, especially on matters involving national defense and the freedom of speech.
Yes, we have heard, a lot of high-pitched, protracted complaints in a childish fashion in the Union letters to the editor complaining about national defense and freedom of speech. The letter writers do not get it. The Republicans won the Presidency, the Senate, and the House of Representative. They quit whining back in the 1990s and took action, to reclaim the government. Now all we hear from the losers is whining! If they want to be in charge, and make decisions, then they have to come up with an ACTION program to reclaim the government. Whining will not do it! Attacking President Bush will not do it! "Were is the beef!"
It especially startles me when people who oppose a government action, in this case an unprecedented pre-emptive invasion of another country on grounds that we now know did not exist, are considered anti-American.
Basing their whining on Monday morning quarterbacking and attacking the character of the President when at war ( yes a war on terrorism) is truly anti-America. If the complainers would like to come up with some alternatives in their letters, offer an alternative winning strategy (not cut and run) , or present some facts for our consideration, support the opponents political platform, that’s fine. Childish attacks on the Presidents character is just anti-American whining!
What is more American than complaining? Is there a single one of us who goes through a single day without hearing a complaint? In fact, we have a constitutional right to whine. It's right there in the First Amendment: "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

My grandmother would not allow whining in her house. “Russell, if you are bored, I need the chicken house cleaned. If your sick, I have some castor oil. If your tired, I'll put you down for a nap.” In grandmas house, action was the cure for whining.
It seems that this says it's OK to voice our concerns about government, do our best to hold it accountable and even challenge its policies. And when you consider that the federal government is now largely controlled by political parties that are at best only influenced by special interests and corporations, it's especially important that we find ways to make our voices heard.
When my letters to the editor went missing, or were published long after the issue was forgotten by the public, I did not start whining, I created this blog. I took action!
You can argue that the Founding Fathers were whiners as well as traitors. They certainly complained about life under the British government, which was our governing body at the time.
Well our traitorous founding fathers were not whiners. They took action! If they had been whiners we would be saluting the Union Jack, and bending over for the Queen.

A protest against the government is hardly anti-American; it's the essence of America.
A reasoned protest is one thing. The childish attacks on the President of the United States, the Commander of Chief of our Armed Forces is just anti-American whining.

Whining will not make America great, taking action is what makes America great. It was time for action in the Middle East, following eight years of whining after we were attacked time and time again, and nothing was done, except lob some cruise missiles, after telling the target they were coming. It was time to clean up the swamp, and time to stop whining about the critters that live there!

Click here for a private e-mail comment. For public comment select comments below.


Blogger Sherry said...

I considered ignoring this diatribe, then, I realized you were whining about what Pat wrote. :-) Don't we all know that "to the victor go the spoils", that it includes the "right" to refer to the other side as "whiners"?

Anyway, YOU can whine about the whiners whining, it's your blog, but to express that THE PEOPLE are not to question, are not to draw attention to ISSUES concerning LEADERSHIP is, well, in a word, "fascist", and I'm pretty sure that's NOT how you intended to sound.

Instead of being "upset" at Pat's taking up valuable space in the paper with his endorsement of whining, (which, because he WORKS for the paper is likely a pardonable sin), you sort of got carried away bellowing that "the other side" is anti-american, Which, if "the other side" was in power MIGHT be considered "whining" from your side.

I'm not sure how ANYONE benefits when name-calling, (whether it's attacking people for their zero confidence in Bush or referring to other human beings as "swamp critters),or one-upmanship, ("we won, get over it") or any number of "games" WE play to the delight of "leadership". You say, "come up with a solution", to these "antiamerican masses" KNOWING that WHO WE ELECT IS SUPPOSED TO REPRESENT US, yet, in reality, MANAGES to, year after year---er---election after election, LEAD us to losing a little more "credibility" with THE WORLD. It's NOT anti americanism creating the rift, it is WE THE PEOPLE being pulled in TOO MANY DIRECTIONS regarding "who we are". WHAT IS THE SOLUTION FOR THAT? Isn't it about time we found some things TO AGREE ON? How the RICH GET RICHER through public office, personally or as they PUT there, MIGHT be something that BOTH sides, (in the interest of PREVENTING AMERICA from becoming just another EMPIRE), might join forces on and seriously consider. Hmmm, could I be considered anti-imperialistic without a reversal of "power" and how bad a thing might that be? Trust, as I'M being fitted for a stake, I'll be WHINING at the top of my lungs. :>}

Sat Oct 01, 07:46:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Frederic Christie said...

Wait a second. Attacking your political opponent won't let you win back your government? Never mind that Bush didn't "win" in 2000 or 2004. Never mind that, if he won, that would indicate a lot about American democracy, as either a majority or a substantial plurality did not vote, and those who did vote frequently opposed Bush's proposals (for example: the majority was opposed to the war in Iraq before the war, according to Time and CCFR polls, and those same CCFR polls discovered, as per usual, that the vast majority of Americans want more international involvement and treaties). In any respect, it is the nature of democracy, not "whining", to express your political opinions and offer arguments. Is your position about global warming, despite the vast consensus of scientists (and your USSR-like proposals for more Congressional "oversight"), "whining?" Or is it just rational argumentation? Hmm.

"Anti-American?" What does that even mean? That term has no impact or meaning outside of societies with totalitarian cultures. But let's take this critique first. If liberal critics are right, Bush is not fighting a war on terror, he is fighting a war for oil and fighting a war that is boosting terror. Ergo, he is anti-American and guilty of treason. I hope you see how nonsensical this is.

Someone doesn't need an alternative to insanity. The Hippocratic Oath, Russ: first, do no harm. But in fact, despite the pretenses of conservatives (hint: the louder conservatives are, the more likely they're yelling "Hey, look over there!"), liberals and leftists do have numerous alternatives. One that small lights in the movement such as Noam have presented is: take criminals to justice (including our own), undermine their longterm success by adopting their legitimate proposals. Sounds easy. Sounds sensible. Sounds legal. Sounds moral.

So, in your view, someone who is revolutionary is not a whiner? Great. We're in agreement. I am a revolutionary against capitalism, statism, racism and sexism. I will replace those corporations you think (and I think) run the political system; in fact, I would append your argument and replace it with "are the political system". You are anti-revolutionary. Are you a whiner?

Wed Oct 05, 12:05:00 AM PDT  

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