Monday, February 8, 2016

Destruction

I hope I can induce you to take a look at this short video showing the damage inflicted on the Syrian city of Homs by its government:


Drone footage over HomsAfter years of war, parts of Homs, Syria, are crumbling and deserted. New drone footage shows the extent of the devastation.
Posted by Channel 4 News on Tuesday, February 2, 2016


And Israel is regularly savaged for being the worst country on earth because they have knocked down houses belonging to suicide attackers.

Naturally, you only have to read down a little way in the comments on this video to find people blaming the destruction of Homs on Israel:

"West , USA , Isreal (sic) and Arabs states are responsible for all these in Syria" 

"constantly dying in Iraq and Syria due to the Government of the United States and Israel" 

" typical Zionism Christian blaming Muslim" 

"Typical Zionist responses everywhere. Let's blame Muslims and say that they typically blame Israel for all problems."

Ted Nugent Really Gets Down To It

Courtesy of Crooks and Liars, here is an image that appeared on Ted Nugent's facebook site:
The next time that someone tries to tell you that right wingers are the Jews' best friends, show them this.

Needless to say, Nugent will be able to get away with this without a shred of consequence, because his hatred is exactly what the right runs on.

And by the way, this sort of knocks a hole in the theory that there is no connection between attacking the state of Israel and anti-semitism.

Did Anyone Else Notice This?

Am I the only one (highly unlikely) or is the press up to its usual Repubican-coddling tricks?

Last month, the Democrats had two debates on the weekend.  This was immediately decried by Republicans as a sign of fatal weakness, hiding their agenda from the public, which would supposedly not watch a weekend debate and/or some sort of dirty trick by Debbie Wasserman-Schultz; a claim which was picked up by the Sunday morning talking heads and proclaimed far and wide among the mainstream meda.

Well, this week, the Republicans had a Saturday night debate.

Not a peep.

How strange.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Wingnut Wrapup

If you don't empty the garbage can, there won't be any room for more garbage, will there?  Of course, some of you may criticize Green Eagle here, bringing up the fact that jumping in the garbage can isn't the same as emptying it, but maybe the garbage will get crushed down so there will be room for more:

These days, they're scared of everything:

Justin Holcombe, Town Hall:  "Yikes: Iran Flew Drone Over US Aircraft Carrier"

Absolute proof, I guess, that Obama is a weak leader, since he didn't bomb the crap out of Iran, using this meaningless act as an excuse.

Bryan Crabtree, Town Hall:  "Think Trump’s Bankruptcies Make Him Unqualified? That's Foolish"

Proof of how much "success" in business really means to Republicans.  Because nothing makes a person more qualified to be President to today's right wing, than being totally incompetent.  You know, a lot of Republicans have been idiotically screaming for years that the country is about to go bankrupt.  So maybe Trump is the most qualified person to be President- he's the only one with the experience of doing that.

Cortney O'Brien, Town Hall:  "Santorum Upset With Media Who 'Never Put His Name' on Election Polls"

Green Eagle is upset about the same thing.  Who knows- at this point Green Eagle thinks he has a pretty good shot at outpolling Santorum.

John Bicknell, Town Hall:  "The Improper Campaign Against Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton...A bedrock principle of American justice is that every defendant is treated the same."

Ha ha.  Ha ha ha.  Every defendant is treated the same.  Ha ha.  Okay, let's just move on here.

Joe Cunningham, Red State:  "Hillary Clinton’s Campaign Has The Worst Idea Imaginable"

This has something to do with using snap chat, which is apparently a worse idea than, say, invading Iran or kicking twelve million people off of health insurance, or spending fifty or sixty billion dollars building and maintaining a wall on our southern border.  Glad you've got your priorities straight, Joe.

Streiff, Red State:  "LaVoy Finicum Was Shot Dead, But Will His Death Have Any Meaning?"

No.  Simple answers to simple questions.  Actually, I feel compelled to say that Streiff, who I've commented on before, has actually written a very sensible and fair article about this incident.  I just want to take this opportunity to protest anything that might compromise the totally negative role Finicum played in our nation's history.

I'll back up my statement by doing something I rarely do here: linking to Streiff's post.

Chris Guzman, PJ Media:  "'Bored' Hillary Clinton Tweets an Image from Her Benghazi Hearing to Mock the Iowa GOPDebate ...Trolling political enemies reaches a new low."

A new low.  Lower than calling your Democratic opponents Satanic anti-American Communist terror agents who are working to destroy the country.

Jim Hoft:  "BREAKING VIDEO=> LaVoy Finicum FBI Murder Footage – With His Hands Up"

I'm just going to let this remark, from the legendary Stupidest Man On The Internet (and also the most unapologetic liar, in a very crowded right wing field,) totally contradicting what anyone can see on the video, stand in for what you know is the inevitable wingnut response to this incident- "it never happened- who you going to trust, me or your lying eyes?"

And while we are on the subject of Jim Hoft, here's the Least Likely Incident To Turn Into a Scandal, of the year so far:

Jim Hoft, Gateway Pundit:  "Crazed Leftist Brings Kids With Him to Spray Pro-Lifers With Tomato Juice"

Crazed rightists, of course, hole up in a government building and threaten to kill Federal agents.  That's okay, I guess.  Tomato juice, not so much.  Jim continues:

"Though often under-reported in the mainstream media, pro-life advocates who protest outside of abortion centers often are targets of harassment and sometimes violence."

Tomato Juice- violence.  Actually killing women's clinic employees, not so much.

Clenard Childress, Renew America:  "I was naked and you clothed me"

And a good thing too.  Judging from the part of you we can still see, it would not have been a pretty sight.  It only took Clenard a few sentences to descend to this point:

"The insidious Planned Parenthood was exposed dismembering live children (abortion) and the selling of their body parts. We must conclude that the "slave block" is still alive and well in America when it was discovered whole infant cadavers were being sold on the black market, all graphically recorded for all of America to see...Those who are familiar with the bible and Jesus teachings have taken a deep breath and understand that the courageous efforts of David Daleiden and the Center For Medical Progress was unquestionably an orchestrated project of God Himself"

God is all for lying.

Jeremy Eger, American Thinker:  "Donald Trump Is Aaron Burr Reincarnated"

Well, he is someone reincarnated.  That's for sure:


Rick Moran, American Thinker:  "Outrage: Administration may have handed thousands of illegal alien kids over to human traffickers"

For all we know, they may have handed them over to lizard people from outer space.  It would have been far better, I guess, to have adopted the Republican plan of just busing them up to the border and shoving them across.

And now, time for some adult conversation from the right:

Doug Giles, Town Hall:  "Dear Male Cowards: Islam LOVES Your Political CorrectnessI don't know who started the politically correct pussification process of the male collective, but I'd like to find them and pistol whip them into next week with my S&W Model 29 for ruining our planet."

Ooh, we're running scared now, Doug.  You are a manly man- why, you even have memorized the model number of your gun.

Bruce Bialosky Town Hall:  "Hillary’s Dance with The Devil...Ms. Clinton has placed at the core of her campaign the fact that she is a woman and that it would be so nice to have a woman in the White House."

I really do understand, Bruce, how to that segment of males who have never been able to understand why women do not fall at their feet, just because those males are unappealing, self-absorbed jerks, that being a woman would be the next thing to being Satan himself.  Forgive us if understanding you doesn't make us agree with you.

Years ago, Bruce used to be a columnist for the Los Angeles Times. I think they replaced him with Jonah Goldberg- the only time in the history of the world where hiring Jonah Goldberg was a move in the right direction.

Steve Chapman, Town Hall:  "Is Rising Violence a 'Ferguson Effect'?"

Just in case you didn't understand that, what Steve is saying is that crime is caused by black people being upset that a white cop gunned down an unarmed black teenager.  If they were just fine with things like that happening every few days, crime would just disappear from our society.

Roger Kimball, PJ Media:  "How to Trim the Fat in the Ivy League...Are Ivy League institutions too rich?"

This article contains the helpful suggestion that we could cut those evil Ivies down to size by one simple step:  stealing all of their money.  Really.  That's his answer to the world's most respected institutions of higher learning- destroy them, presumably so the American people could become even more ignorant and savage (i.e. Republican) than they already are.  By the way, I don't remember Roger ever asking if the Koch brothers or the Waltons, who each have more money than any one of the ivies, are too rich.

And if crushing the most respected colleges in the country doesn't do the trick, how about trying this suggestion from one of Roger's commenters?

"Cut way back on student loans and see what happens."

Kick poor people out of school- that will solve the problem.

Jim Hoft, Gateway Pundit:  "Popular Conservative Liz Cheney to Run for Congress"

Giving a new meaning to the word "popular."  Something along the lines of "not hated by quite as many people as her father is."

John Hawkins, Town Hall:  "Dear American Muslims, Can We Have An Honest Talk?"

Not with someone like you, jerk.  John believes that all American Muslims need to come crawling to Christians on their knees, begging for forgiveness for ISIS.  No word about how Christians should feel about the Bundys, or Ted Cruz.

Bridget Johnson, PJ Media:  "Carson: 'Will There Be Any Consequences' for Cruz Camp's 'Dirty Tricks'?"

Yeah.  The day after there are any consequences for his attempt to sabotage the government and destroy the economy.  Or for him being fucking psychotic.

Matt Towery, Town Hall:  "Matt Towery: Messy Democrat Contest Might Result in a 'Putative' VP Choice"

Messy Democrat Contest.  Yup, that's what he said.  How do you make fun of a line like that, coming from a Republican?

Devon Herrick, Town Hall:  "Affordable Health Plans Have Gone Extinct; Obamacare Killed Them Off"

First of all, before Obamacare, there were no affordable health plans in the U.S.  Second, what about the 17 million mostly poor and moderate income people who now have medical care under Obamacare that didn't before?  Man, what's the use- it's just the same lies over and over again.

Ann Coulter, Town Hall:  "Any politician who claims to care about the drug overdose deaths sweeping the nation, but does not demand that we build a wall, deport illegal aliens and end the anchor baby scam, is a liar."

And cut taxes on the rich.  You forgot that one, Ann.  There's no such thing as a Republican plan for anything that doesn't include that.

Justin Holcomb, Town Hall:  "Watch: George W. Bush Finally Makes an Appearance for His Brother"

No thanks.  I'll just scroll back up and look at the picture of Curly for a little longer.

Michael Goldstein, American Thinker:  "Should We Destroy ISIS?  We certainly could, but would it be wise to destroy the foremost threat to Obama’s anointed hegemon, Iran, spilling more American blood and expending more of our borrowed treasure in the process?"

Well, here it is- a new low in Obama hatred.  Republicans scream bloody murder about how ISIS is going to come over here and murder all of us in our beds, but when it comes to choosing between ISIS and Obama, they still side with ISIS.  And remember when Democrats were called traitors for daring to criticize George W. Bush's three trillion dollar disaster in Iraq?

Anthony Bright-Paul, American Thinker:  "Why Skeptics are Losing the Climate Change Battle"

Because they are not "skeptics," they are paid corporate liars?

Shikha Dalmia, Reason:  "Critics Don't Want To Admit Flint's Water Crisis Is Due to Stimulus Plan Rather Than Austerity"

They don't want to admit it!  And just because it isn't true!  What a bunch of spoilsports!

Weasel Zippers:  "Russians Depict Obama As Murderous Devil Who Should Be Put On Trial At The Hague…"

Well, at last they have found common ground with the Republican party.

And that's where I get off the bus for today.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Really, What Is There To Say?

I haven't been posting much lately.  I took a look at a lot of liberal sites that I have bookmarked, and I noticed that many of their writers don't seem to be posting much either.  And I am sure it's not because they have lost interest; it is because there is so little point in saying the same obvious things over and over again, only to have them drowned out by the right wing noise machine and the stupid, corrupt mainstream media.

In the official Beltway pundit world these days, Bernie Sanders, a serious, life long liberal politician, with carefully thought out policies which also happen to be supported by a large majority of Americans, is just the same as the loudmouthed racist carnival barker Trump.  And Hillary Clinton, perhaps the most accomplished person to run for President in decades, is the same as the puerile, lying empty suit Marco Rubio.

And we know that the mainstream press is going to keep repeating these grotesque distortions of political reality a thousand times a day, every day until the election.  We also know that we have only begun to see the sewage pit of lies that the Republicans are going to hurl at the eventual Democratic nominee, which will go largely unquestioned by the talking heads who inhabit our journalistic world.

And all of this in the service of the nauseatingly rich owners of the press in this country, along with owning just about everything else, even though these Republican politicians and "reporters" know perfectly well that they are driving this country over a cliff, in order to make a few more billion dollars for the Koch brothers and the Waltons.

No wonder it is hard, when it actually comes down to it, to sit at a keyboard and try to write something that is true.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Repulsive

Can there be a person in the entire country who would support Ted Cruz after seeing this picture of him and his wife?
Really, he could be the second coming of Jesus (as he seems to think he is,) and still, who could stand the thought of having to look at things like this for the next four years?

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

How Little We Know

Here is an aerial view of a place called Amghirar, in the hills of Southern Morocco, from Google Earth.  I just sort of found it by accident:
From the air, it appears like we could be looking back through time to 2,000 or 3,000 BC.  What could people think about in a place like this?  What do they feel?  Are they pretty much like us, or are they so foreign that we can't really understand them at all?

Looking at this really makes me feel like I am an isolated, very unusual (and not particularly interesting) sort of person, living in the Hollywood Hills, without a clue of the forces swirling around us every day.  I feel a sort of hopelessness at the idea that I can really understand anything.

Well, this is probably the most useless post I have ever made.  Sorry if it caused you to think I'm a little deranged.  Nice picture though, huh?

A little more:  I mentioned Catal Huyuk in the comments.  Catal Huyuk, in Turkey, dates from about 7,000 BC, and is the earliest settlement of any size of which we can be fairly certain about its nature.  I thought that people might like to see a reconstruction of Catal Huyuk:
Of course, there were no streets in Catal Huyuk; access to the buildings was from the roofs.  Still, the degree that things have not changed in 9,000 years is pretty spectacular to me.  What do people whose lives have remained so unchanged in all those millennia think when electricity (and TV) come to their homes, and they see what life looks like in New York or Los Angeles?

The Iowa Caucuses

Who cares?

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Simple Facts That Are Still Too Complicated For Democrats

Daily Kos Edition:

"I don't know what it means, but Obama's job approval numbers are jumping...What could be driving the president’s numbers upward?  Ultimately, I have no idea. Feel free to offer to your own."

Okay, I will.  It's really pretty simple after all.  The Republcans have spent the last eight years and God only knows how many billion dollars on a campaign of smears, lies and outright sabotage directed solely at Obama.  Now, they have a new target, and the short-memoried, ignorant voters are already beginning to forget the endless attacks, as the Republican destruction machine focuses on Hillary.

That's it.  Do you have one shred of doubt that this is the explanation of this phenomenon?  How can seemingly intelligent people be so clueless?

Friday, January 29, 2016

A Primary Question

Here's something I've wondered about for a long time.  Why is is that we don't hear a little more Democratic protest over the fact that the three States that hold the first primaries, Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, which between them represent less than three percent of the American population, are among the most Conservative States in the country, and yet they effectively get the right to pick the issues on which the election will be fought?

This has always seemed to me to be just one more way the Republicans are allowed to game the system, to give themselves an advantage in elections that they could never win fairly.  Shouldn't some Democrats be coming up with a way to change this unfair arrangement?

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Trump's Gamble

I see even perceptive people like writers at Daily Kos falling for the press' wishful thinking that Donald Trump's dropping out of today's Republican debate because he was afraid to face that master interviewer, Megan Kelly.  What a pile of nonsense.  Here is what Trump is really up to:  He is making a bet that, without his presence, the voting public is basically going to ignore the other guys.  And it is a very good bet, too.  I've seen a poll indicating that over 80% of watchers of previous Republican debates have no interest in this one if Trump is not there.

Well, what would that show?  It would prove that, basically, no one cares about the Republican pack of losers, except for Trump.  If he wins his bet, it will leave him with a stranglehold on the entire Republican nominating procedure.

I am not even sure what it would take to make him "lose" the bet.  Even if the debate does okay, who thinks it will produce any real gains for the other guys?   And if he wins, he owns the Republican party, for whatever satisfaction that brings him.

This guy would challenge Reagan and W for the title of worst President of all time, but he may be the most manipulative campaigner the country has ever seen.  Shows what you can accomplish when your need for self-gratification is not tempered by a shred of concern for the consequences of your actions.

The Revolution Has Been Postponed

I think there is a really good lesson in the recent humiliating collapse of the great Malheur range war- and the people who should be learning this lesson are the mainstream press, who took these guys seriously in the first place.  The truth is that the great national call for "patriots" to join them in their uprising against Obama's Communist tyranny resulted in about three dozen people showing up; yet it was an excuse for the press to treat them as a serious force for weeks, and to pretend that something is going on here.  In fact, almost no one on earth (except people like the Koch Brothers, of course, who plan on ending up owning all of the land that these jackasses could pry away from the government) supported their efforts.  The whole thing was an egomaniacal Kabuki act, which the press, like a stupid trout, couldn't resist swallowing, hook line and sinker.

Longtime readers of this blog (both of you- thanks for the faithfulness, mother) will know that I have reported over and over again, on events that right wingers claimed were the start of a grand revolution, which turned out to be colossal, humiliating failures- marches whose organizers predicted millions,  would attend, forcing Obama right out of the White House, attracting a hundred or so followers, and uprisings that never got off the ground.  And yet the mainstream press falls for their shtick over and over again, legitimizing the Ted Cruzes and Donald Trumps who claim to speak for this nonexistent majority.

Here's another thing that we can learn from this most recent revolution:  These militia members, who claim to have spent so much time in military training, and to have so much military experience, may have learned what privates know- how to shoot straight and how to load your gun- but they don't seem to have learned a damned thing about what officers are supposed to know- tactics, logistics, how not to be lured into a totally predictable ambush which decapitated your movement, how to seize a property that is not totally indefensible, having reinforcements if your fighters are incapacitated; they don't seem to have understood even the notion of bringing along some food.  They are just about the most pathetic army in history.

But there are still so many who will insist that these losers represent a significant proportion of Americans, and that they have a rational cause to fight for.  So, decent, competent people like Hillary and Bernie have to duke it out with ignorant, vicious clowns like Trump and Cruz, to determine who gets to run our country.

And we wonder why the rest of the world looks at us with a mixture of derision and fear.