Tuesday, November 30, 2010

People Who Don't Get the Concept

Michael Givens, Commander in Chief of the Sons of the Confederacy:

"While there were many causes of the war, he said, “our people were only fighting to protect themselves from an invasion..."

Michael, I don't quite know how this fact escaped your notice, but if they hadn't seceded, they couldn't have been invaded.  Think about it.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Wingnut Wrapup

These guys have really been getting on my nerves lately, but we can't afford to just ignore them, sad to say.  Here's a sample of their hate-filled lunacy from the last couple of weeks:

World Net Daily Exclusive:  "Are Americans playing around with the end of civilization?    For a long time it was an article of faith among Christians, conservatives and other traditionalists: They believed that when homosexuality becomes widely accepted and even celebrated in a society, that society starts to die.
But such a notion, at least according to today's secular progressive culture, is worse than a bad joke. It's bigoted. It's paranoid. It's insane.

Or is it?"

Well, yes it is.  On to the next nonsense:

World Net Daily Obama Watch Special:  "Is Obama unhinged?  On the flight home from the European Summit today, Barack Obama stopped in the press cabin of Air Force 1 and joked that he was stopping the plane in South America to see Hugo Chavez.  Quip about landing Air Force 1 in Chavez backyard stuns press "

He's crazy!  He told a joke!  Oh my God, he's off his rocker!

"Pundits and talk-show hosts, including Rush Limbaugh and top-rated Sean Hannity, have cited White House sources as saying the president is "unhinged," "detached," "bored," "losing it" and obsessed with critics. "

Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity, huh?  I bet they have really great White House "sources."  And they certainly couldn't be distorting what they heard, right?  I mean, they are so truthful.

Monte Kugliowski, American Thinker:  "Why Obama Should Lead the Charge to Repeal ObamaCare...if Obama wishes to revive his agenda and have any chance of reelection, his top priority ought to be the repeal of government-controlled health care."

Go ahead, Barack, why not take advice from wingnuts?  They have nothing but your best interests at heart.

Robert Eugene Simmons, American Thinker:  "When it comes to violating the separation of powers and seizing executive power, no president has done more since FDR than Obama"

Well, maybe except for Nixon, Reagan and the two Bushes.

Joseph Lipana, American Thinker:  "It's amazing how the far Left author of the piece, John Nichols, just took it for granted that...it was a widely accepted fact that a 91 percent tax rate was a great policy."

Yeah, particularly considering that the only pathetic evidence for that notion is the fact that the period when the top tax rate was 91% coincided with the greatest economic growth and stablility in the last eighty years.

Phil Boehnke, American Thinker:  "Taking advantage of a loophole which allows weekend schools to operate without government oversight, the Saudi Students Clubs and Schools in the UK and Ireland have established a network of over 40 schools which are teaching children age 6-18 Sharia law"

The brutal monsters! This is nothing like the tens of thousands of  "weekend schools" operating  without government oversight in this country, also teaching religious orthodoxy, otherwise known as Sunday School.  But no, that's just fine, because the kids who go to Sunday School are being taught to hate in the name of Jeeeesus!

Mychael Massie, Pajamas Media:  "Censure: How the Other Half Punishes"

Re-election of the guilty: how your side punishes.

Jonah Goldberg, Town Hall:  "From what my dad could tell, he liked Pope Benedict XVI, explaining, "We need more rocks in the river"

Hey, Jonah, how about loaning him some from out of your head?

Kevin Fobbs, Renew America:  "Liberals who threatened Bristol Palin's life are cowards"

And they might be, too, if they existed.  Unfortunately, we will never know, because Mr. Fobbs was unable, in his article, to cite a single incident in which this happened.  He was angry at a man in Wisconsin, who claimed to have shot his TV with a shotgun, to stop Bristol's nauseating spectacle.  I do not believe that shooting your TV constitutes a death threat, but you never know what might happen if the case came to the corrupt Republican Supreme Court, so I'm witholding final judgement.

Michael Filozof, American Thinker:  "Has U.S. Foreign Policy Ever Been This Screwed Up?"

Remember when we attacked the wrong country, Michael, and then lost?  Now, that's what I call screwed up Foreign policy.

Town Hall:  "CBO: Bailout Clipped Taxpayers For $25B"

The horror!  But wait, there's more...

"Congress' independent budget agency says the cost to taxpayers of the contentious $700 billion financial rescue has dwindled down to $25 billion."

Oh, I see.  Obama got back all but 4 percent of the money Bush gave away to the banks.  Still, he "clipped" the taxpayers.  Democrats can't do anything right.

Jim Hoft, Gateway Pundit:  "It begins… A Florida school not only banned Christmas but banned everything associated with Christmas including Christmas colors…Because someone might be offended."

Just what begins, Jim?  The lying?  Because of course this story is a total lie.  Just right for the Gateway Pundit, huh?

World Net Daily Breaking News:  "Is Harry Potter in cahoots with hell?  Hit movie renews concerns that children are being lured to Satan"

 Listen, guys...Harry Potter is a fictional character, so he's not in cahoots with anyone.  Still, keep on top of this story.  It may not show who is in cahoots with anyone, but it still tells us something about who has way too much time on their hands.

Enough, already.

Our Worthless President, In Action Again

This sickening story from the New York Times:

"President Obama announced a two-year pay freeze for civilian federal workers on Monday as he sought to address concerns over sky-high deficit spending and appeal to Republican leaders to find a common approach to restoring the nation’s economic and fiscal health.

The president’s proposed pay freeze would wipe out plans for a 1.4 percent across-the-board raise in 2011 for 2.1 million federal civilian employees, including those working at the Defense Department. But the freeze would not affect the nation’s uniformed military personnel. It would also mean no raise in 2012 for civilian employees.

The pay freeze will save $2 billion in the current fiscal year that ends in September 2011..."

Two billion out of the $1.7 trillion deficit that Bush and the Republicans left behind.  That is a really substantial move, paid for on the back of federal workers.  After all, Republicans have been screaming the last couple of years about the salaries of government employees, compared to private wages, which have been stagnant since the 1970's.  The obvious answer is to see to it that government workers earn less, since raising private sector wages for the first time since Ronald Reagan set our country on the road to economic oblivion, is obviously  a lunatic, socialist suggestion.

"Union leaders said Mr. Obama was playing politics at workers’ expense. “It’s a panic reaction,” John Gage, president of the American Federation of Government Employees, said in an interview. “It’s superficial. People in this country voted for jobs and income. Sticking it to a V.A. nurse and a Social Security worker is not the way to go.” 

Damned right, Mr. Gage.  Well, that's all we can expect any more from this spineless loser of a president, I am afraid.  The Times article continues:

"...by doing it now, the president also effectively gets ahead of Republicans who have been talking about making such a move once they assume greater power in January. Some Republicans have gone further, proposing to slash federal worker salaries."

Listen, Barack, you stupid jerk, why don't you get ahead of Republicans by outlawing abortion and having creationism taught in the schools?  Why don't you get ahead of them by doing away with all taxes on the rich, privatizing  Social Security and ending the minimum wage?  Why not just sign on to all of their filthy, greed maddened policies, and destroy the country once and for all?  And I'm not kidding with these questions.  That's just where you are voluntarily heading, isn't it?

But Wait- There's More:  This story today, from the Washington Post:

"In the name of job creation and clean energy, the Obama administration has doled out about $2 billion in stimulus money to some of the nation's biggest polluters while granting them exemptions from a basic form of environmental oversight, a Center for Public Integrity investigation has found. "

There's your two billion dollars, Barack.  How about getting it from polluters instead of government workers?  But no, that wouldn't be getting ahead of Republicans.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Well, Who Could Have Known This?

From Reuters:

"(Wikileaks) documents show Saudi donors remain chief financiers of militant groups like al Qaeda"

Who knew?  Now why on earth did the last guy in the White House attack the wrong country in response to 9-11?  I guess we'll never know, huh?

Annihilation, Republican Style

Here's an excellent article about the current batch of Republican traitors which our oh-so-wise electorate has seen fit to send to Washington, via a link at Daily Kos:

"The Republican Party that Honest Abe helped to found - that is, in its current Limbaughian form -- does not give a hoot about American global security.  All it wants to do is remove Barack Obama from the White House, and it does not care if its actions - that is, its inactions - wreck the painstakingly constructed goodwill between the U.S. and Russia and push the entire world back toward the shadow of possible nuclear annihilation."

Unfortunately, they also do not care if they push the country into economic annihilation either.  We are facing a real test here in this country, which we have never faced before- whether we can survive a major political party which is willing to destroy us all so they can claim ownership of the shattered remains.  Republicans have entitled themselves to engage in the most grotesque anti-American behavior, all the time screaming at the top of their voices about the Democrats' supposed lack of loyalty to the country.  If their efforts, bankrolled by billions from international corporations, made "legal" by five corrupt Republican appointed Supreme Court justices, succeed,  we will soon be living in a third world dictatorship no different from those in El Salvador or Myanmar.

Welcome to Republican world.

Billions of Years

Carl Sagan:

"Billions of years from now, there will be a last perfect day on Earth. Thereafter the Sun will slowly become red and distended, presiding over an Earth sweltering even at the poles. ... Eventually the oceans will boil, the atmosphere will evaporate away to space, and catastrophe of the most immense proportions imaginable will overtake our planet."

A catastrophe of the most immense proportions imaginable?  What, Sarah Palin will finally be elected president?

By the way, Carl didn't have to worry about waiting billions of years for the Earth to be sweltering at the poles.  With Republicans back in the driver's seat, our grandchildren may live to see that.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Losing Faith in Obama

I have given up on Obama.  I no longer have faith that he has any intention of doing the right thing, and am beginning to strongly suspect that he is a tool of Wall Street and the rich, who got us to vote for him by using a more sophisticated version of the lies and distortions about himself that people like Sarah Palin and Ron Paul use to delude right wingers.

Have I reached this point due to his refusal to advocate real financial reform?  His caving to the Republicans, and coming up with a health care bill that, whatever its good points, still was a huge reward to the criminals in the insurance business?  His unconscionable failure to close Guantanamo, stop illegal detentions and get us the hell out of Iraq and Afghanistan?

These are all gigantic failures which, with his large majorities in Congress (now lost because of his squandering of his power) he could have avoided if he had been willing to use a quarter of the insistence and force that Bush or Reagan used to get our country into its current mess, but they are not the reason why I have no more faith in him.  That would be a single remark that Obama made recently, and here it is:

"This notion that somehow I could have gone and made the case around the country for a far bigger stimulus because of the magnitude of the crisis, well, we understood the magnitude of the crisis. We didn’t actually, I think, do what Franklin Delano Roosevelt did, which was basically wait for six months until the thing had gotten so bad that it became an easier sell politically because we thought that was irresponsible. We had to act quickly."

Let me lay out how inexcusable this remark is, from someone who supposedly admires Roosevelt greatly and claims to pattern himself after Roosevelt.

This notion that Roosevelt deliberately let the depression get worse is a right wing fantasy (one of many) designed to prove that Roosevelt was a villain of the depression, not its hero.

Until 1933, presidents were not inaugurated until the March following election day.  This is the six months of which this smear refers.  Note first of all, that Roosevelt is being blamed here for not doing things when he was not even President. Obama is justifying his inaction as President by citing something Roosevelt did when he had no national position at all.

After the election, Hoover invited Roosevelt to the White House to work out a "bipartisan" strategy to deal with the depression in that six month period. Roosevelt found Hoover to be deeply suspicious of him (Hoover reportedly refused to even look at Roosevelt during the meeting.)  Hoover's proposals, in the tradition of Republican bipartisanship, consisted essentially of a demand that Roosevelt publically sign on to the whole of Hoover's economic plans- the very plans that had driven the economy to total ruin, and which Roosevelt had specifically run against.   You can pretty well guess what they were- balancing the budget, cutting the debt, help for the banks and the rich, and nothing for anyone else.  Roosevelt felt that any attempt to compromise with Hoover was only going to end up entangling his administration in these patently destructive proposals, handcuffing him before he even took office.  Unable to accept this, and deeply disturbed by Hoover's refusal to treat him as an equal,*  Roosevelt determined that nothing could be gained in concert with the obstinate, and grossly deluded Hoover, and decided to wait until he was in charge to carry on.

Well, there is the six months of which Obama talked.  Here is an evaluation of this remark, by Thomas Ferguson, of the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute:

"The President was repeating a canard that goes back to the circle of die hards around President Herbert Hoover as he exited the White House in a cloud of bitterness in 1933. In recent years, as a vast campaign against the memory of the New Deal has gathered steam, such claims have gone mainstream."

The most well known current retailer of this lie is Amity Schlaes, a supposed scholar who has devoted her life to spreading a propagandistic right wing rewriting of the twenties and thirties, designed to make people utterly dismiss Roosevelt's massive success.  Here's a typical remark from Schlaes:

 “But Roosevelt was not interested in cooperation. We will never know all his motives, but it was clear that a crisis now could only strengthen his mandate for action come inauguration in March.”

Now, here is why Obama's remark is so decisive to me:  Roosevelt saved the country by refusing to capitulate and accept the standard Republican economic solutions to every problem.  Obama must know this, yet here he is, claiming the exact opposite, seeking to create a phony Rooseveltian precedent to justify his endless collapses in the face of his manifest duty to stand up to the banks and Wall Street.  Obama calls Roosevelt's refusal to give up on the economic principles that caused people to elect him, "irresponsible."  Yet Roosevelt saved the country by sticking to his intentions.  What is really irresponsible is for a president to be so weak that he continually collapses and gives the Republicans and the bankers what they want, even though we all know it is wrong.  I now see Obama as an empty suit, so lacking in principle and so lacking in strength, that he is ready to sell us to the very people who destroyed our economy, if it is easier than standing up for the truth.

I now see Obama as the opposite of Roosevelt, and if he doesn't change his ways, he is going to give us the opposite result.


*Here is a passage from Arthur Schlesinger:  "Hoover, passionately certain that he alone knew how to solve the crisis, could not make out his successor.  "He did not get it at all," Hoover was heard to lament; they had spent their time, he later told Stimson, in educating a very ignorant...young man."

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Who Could Have Guessed?

Headline in the Los Angeles Times this morning:

"Insiders Suspected of Rigging Wall Street"

Now what could ever make a person think a thing like that?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Sarah's Ratings Plunge Lower than Her IQ

From the Hollywood Reporter:

"Sarah Palin's Alaska fell 40% on Sunday night...

Not many were in the key adult demo either. Only 885,000 viewers were ages 18-49, dropping 44% from last week.

In fact, the median age of the show is 57 -- that's 15 years older than TLC's average."

I had a suspicion this would happen.  After all, most of us enjoy a visit to the zoo every decade or so, to see the silly animals, but not that many of us go every week.

I wonder if the press, which reported her first week's high ratings as proof that she is the Most Awesome Politician Ever, will have anything to say about this.

Monday, November 22, 2010

How Republican Economic Cant Causes Depressions

 This is going to be a long post, and I hope some people will have the patience to read it, as it is by far the most important thing I have ever written.  It is going to consist largely of quotations, as I wouldn't expect anyone to take my word for what I am going to conclude.  The quotations below are from Arthur Schlesinger's The Crisis of the Old Order, which I heartily recommend, in conjunction with John Kenneth Galbraith's short book, The Great Crash, which lays out a similar scenario.  As you read this, I beg you to think about what has gone on in this country since the days of Reagan.

I will begin with a comment by Schlesinger about Andrew Mellon, Coolidge's Secretary of the Treasury, and one of the richest men in America:

 "The government is just a business," said Mellon, "and can and should be run on business principles."  The first necessity, accordingly, was to balance the budget, and the second to pay off the debt.  But Mellon's greater interest, it soon developed, was somewhat inconsistently in the reduction of tax rates, especially in the highest brackets...Mellon, ever tenacious, kept chipping away each year at rates in the upper brackets."

In fact, during the 1920's Republican administrations managed to cut the top tax bracket by 75 percent, at the same time endlessly whining about the budget deficit and the national debt.

"Mr. Mellon Homself," as George W. Norris of Nebraska observed of the Mellon bill of 1925, "gets a larger personal reduction than the aggregate of practially all the taxpayers in the state of Nebraska."

And what was the consequence of this largesse to the richest among us?  An increase in business development?  More jobs created by benevolent tycoons with their gigantic profits?

"...the Mellon penchant for tax reduction served to make more money available for speculation.  "A decrease of taxes," as Mellon said, "causes an inspiration to trade and commerce."   With this he injected a few more billion dollars into a boom which hardly needed to be further inspired."

And, of course, what would be the fun of a massive giveaway to the rich, without a gutting of the Federal regulatory structure?

"President Coolidge was prepared further to attest his trust in business leadership by weakening the instrumentalities through which past national governments had sought to regulate business.  The regulatory commissions, inherited from more suspicious days, were quickly infused with the new spirit of unity.  To the Tariff Commission, for example, were sent men who acted almost as open representatives of protected industries.  When the Commission's minority...began to object...Coolidge upbraided them for raising prudish scruples."

Schlesinger has this to say about W. T. Humphrey, appointed by Coolidge to the Federal Trade Commission:  

"...no longer, he said, would the Commission serve as a "publicity bureau to spread socialistic propaganda.  Where the FTC had been set up to discourage monopoly, it now espoused the cause of the self regulation of business..."

Overt forms of concentration thrived...Holding companies moved into the utility and transportation fields, chain stores into retail distribution; in all areas big firms swallowed small firms and merged wth other big ones.  By 1930, the two hundred largest nonbanking corporations controlled half the total corporate wealth of the country."

Does any of this sound familiar to you?

"The output per man-hour rose about 40 percent during the decade.  The central economic challenge was to distribute the gains of productivity in a manner that would maintain employment and prosperity.

By the rules of orthodox economics, the reduction in production costs should have brought about either a reduction in prices or a rise in wages, or both...Denied outlet in lower prices because of accumulating rigidities, the gains of technological efficiency were equally denied outlet in higher wages...because of the bargaining feebleness of the labor movement...As a result these gains were captured by the businessmen themselves in the form of profits.  Through the decade, profits rose 80 percent as a whole, or twice as much as productivity; the profits of financial institutions rose a fantastic 150 percent."

The increase in profits naturally pushed up the prices of corporate securities...As the twenties proceeded, the stock market sucked off an increasing share of the undistributed gains of industrial efficiency...the diversion of the gains of efficiency into profits was bound to result in a falling off of the capacity of the people as a whole to buy."

An exact parallel to the last few years.  I find it so painful to read things like this and realize how absolutely clear it was to anyone who cared, what the result of Reaganomics and of Bush corruption were inevitably going to be.

"The Mellon tax policy, placing its emphasis on relief for millionaires rather than for consumers, made the maldistibution of income and oversaving even worse. By 1929, the 2.3 percent of the population with incomes over $10,000 were responsible for two thirds of the 15 billion dollars in savings."

And now, to me, the worst of all:

"Yet Wall Street and Washington had few qualms...The torrent of excess money pouring into the market, swept stock prices ever upward.  And the leaders of the business community, now heedless of caution in their passion for gain, promoted new investment trusts, devised new holding companies and manipulated new pools, always with the aim of floating new securities for the apparently insatiable market...

In time it would appear that even the leaders of business could not decipher the intricate financial structures they were erecting.   But for the moment everyone understood that here was an endless source of money and power, a roulette wheel at which no one lost...

Government officials meanwhile watched the speculative boom with affable approval."

(emphasis mine)  Yes, at every step of the way, the Republicans of the Reagan and Bush administrations deliberately recreated the exact conditions which caused the economy to spiral out of control and crash in 1929.  And there can be no claim that anyone was unaware of this.  The circumstances of Republican mishandling of the country in service to the rich, which caused the Great Depression, were clearly known to anyone with a basic knowledge of our country's economic history.  Yet Reagan and Bush, Gingrich, Armey, Delay, McConnell, Boehner and a hundred more Republican servants of the wealthy drove the economy over the same cliff again.

This is not mismanagement.  It constitutes the most massive deliberate crime ever committed against the American people, for which we will pay for decades; and it at the same time constitutes the worst subversion and betrayal of our country that we have ever seen.

And yet, being rich, they seem to be walking scot free.

A Little Right Wing Lunacy/Racism to Start Your Day

From the anything-but "Astute Bloggers:"

"Once Kosovo, stolen from Serbia and given to muslims, is joined with Albania, what next?

The EU will allow the muslims to annex Bosnia, so that will create an islamic block in south east Europe. There will only be Macedonia and Greece between them and Turkey.

If Turkey becomes a member of the EU, that will be the end of Europe."

How many racist lies can one person tell?  Let me count the ways:

First, Kosovo was not "stolen" from Serbia.  It was taken from Serbia because the Serbs (or as the Astute Bloggers would probably have it, the Christians) were engaged in genocide against the population of Kosovo, many of whom were, it must be admitted, Muslims, and therefore apparently not entitled to remain alive.

Second, being as how countries, not religions, annex other countries, "the muslims" will not be annexing Bosnia or anywhere else. 

Third, being as how Bosnia occupies approximately 1.3% of the land area of Europe, it doesn't really amount to much of an Islamic "block" (sic).

As an aside, notice the deliberate failure to capitalize the word "Muslim."  Make of that what you will.

Fourth, as to the comment about there only being Macedonia and Greece between Bosnia and Turkey:  I guess they are implying that Bosnia and Turkey are going to attack Greece.  Fat chance.  Good paranoid lunacy, though.

And fifth, about Turkey joining the EU:  I don't know what kind of degraded racist thoughts are swirling around in the Astute Bloggers' heads, but Europe has existed alongside Turkey for 1500 years or so, and if all those centuries of hostilities haven't caused it to drop into the sea, a little peace won't either.

What a pack of hate-filled liars we have in our country these days.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pope OKs Condom Use For Male Hookers

They always take care of their own.

Oops, The Weather's Bad

This story in the New York Times today, about the Very Republican State of South Dakota:

"South Dakota is nearing the end of an unusually punishing year of weather.

The year began as residents were still digging out of a record-setting statewide dump of 15.4 inches of snow, and the ensuing months have delivered a parade of ice storms, tornadoes, floods and, with a climactic thud, the nation’s largest hailstone.

The seven presidential disaster declarations issued here — part of a record 78 nationwide so far this year — more than doubled the number in any previous year, naming all but 10 of the 66 counties as a disaster area; some many times over...The disaster declarations allow the state and local governments to recoup up to 75 percent of the costs for uninsured losses from the federal government."

Yes, this would be the same State of South Dakota whose Republican elected officials have worked happily to see that not a cent is spent on you-know-what, but are perfectly happy to have the evil Federal government pick up the tab when their weather goes crazy.

"Gov. Michael Rounds, with typical understatement, said, “We just happened to have a run of bad weather.”


 Just a run of bad weather.  A run of bad weather that has been going on for decades now, and seems to be getting worse all the time.  That remark would be, of course,  from Republican governor Michael Rounds.  Here's a funny tidbit about his family, from Wikipedia:

"His father, Don Rounds (was) executive director of the South Dakota Petroleum Council."

Surprised?  No, I didn't think you would be.  Well, guess what was almost not mentioned at all in this article, at least until paragraph 21 of a 23 paragraph story?  Here's the remark:

"“The flooding is increasingly getting worse,” said (South Dakota farmer Gary) Knock, who lost 160 acres of corn to the river that parallels his property. “People are getting disgusted with it. Because it’s not just some years and it’s not just once a year. It’s three times or four times a year. Extreme is normal — that sounds crazy, but that is how it is.”

He said that he does not believe in global warming but that there is no missing the changes that have occurred here. He blames natural weather cycles."

Yes, global warming is not even worth consideration in this article, except to let some ignorant farmer claim that it doesn't exist.  So, the whole nation can end up being a disaster area, rather than make politicians with family connections to the oil industry admit what is right before their eyes.

You know what we should do for these asses that don't want to do a thing to protect the nation from a monumental, looming disaster, but are perfectly happy to have the rest of us bail them out?

Nothing.  We should do nothing.  Let them rot.  Why should we rescue them from the consequences of their own stupidity and greed?  Let them pay the price tag for their self-serving behavior.  A few more years, and we'll see who is still laughing about global warming.

Friday, November 19, 2010

At Least There Are Some Things You Can Still Count On

From the L.A. Times:

"Cold hard numbers hardly are the best way to tell the story of a season slipping quickly into the abyss."

The Clippers- an unchanging presence in a world of uncertainty.

The Sound of Music

This news just in:  Fox news broadcasters, thinking they are off camera, call Sarah Palin's TV show "like The Sound of Music without Nazis."

Wrong as usual, Fox News.  Sarah Palin's new show is like The Sound of Music starring the Nazis.

WE Should Be So Lucky

I always start the day with Atrios, who mainly covers economic news.  Boy, his blog was depressing today, featuring a number of stories about mortgage crookedness by banks.  But none of it hit me as hard as this item:

"Ambac Assurance, whose parent company filed for bankruptcy earlier this month, said Thursday that banks that assembled a dozen poor performing mortgage bonds that it insured must pay for some of those losses.

Ambac said it was reviewing loans in residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) issued by the Countrywide unit of Bank of America [and affiliates of Citigroup among others.

The company may be riding the growing momentum of mortgage "putbacks" - forcing banks to buy back mortgage securities - driven by Pacific Investment Management and other big investors.

Those investors have forged alliances to fight banks they claim shoveled faulty loans into mortgage bonds."

Boy, don't you wish that, if you made a stupid investment, you could force the person you bought it from to pay you back?  That's the rule for insurance companies, apparently.  Maybe all those people who got conned by their banks into buying houses they couldn't afford should try the same thing.  But then, I guess the rule is different for people that can afford to give millions to the Republicans to get them to do what they want.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Repubican Betrayal Continues

Richard Burt, Ronald Reagan's chief arms control negotiator, about the Obama START treaty with Russia:

“there are only two governments in the world that wouldn’t like to see this treaty ratified, the government in Tehran and the government in North Korea.”

Well, three countries, actually.  Iran, North Korea, and the one the Republican party intends to give us as soon as possible.

In the last few weeks, we have seen the Republican party sell out the economic interests of the United States in order to collaborate with the Chinese Communists.  Now, after years of accusing the Democrats of not taking the supposed nuclear threat from Iran and North Korea seriously, the Republicans are collaborating to make it easier for these two countries to get nuclear materials and technology.

We are dealing with massive subversion and treason from within our country, being carried out by one of the two major political parties.  Anyone who can't see that at this point is really living in a fantasy world.

Get Ready for a Right Wing Tantrum

Over this:

"White House to put up to 5,000 salad bars in schools"

The bastards!  One more step toward Communism!

Lost Their Moxie

Fox News head Roger Ailes:

"(The staff of NPR) are, of course, Nazis," Ailes said. "They have a kind of Nazi attitude. They are the left wing of Nazism."

Boy, they sure don't make Nazis like they used to.

Your Press In Action

What made it onto the front page of the Los Angeles Times today:

"Furor over Palin- Bristol that is...'Dancing with the Stars' viewers vote her into the finals.  Critics contend it's a 'tea party' conspiracy."

What wasn't important enough to make it into the Los Angeles Times today:

Republicans block major strategic arms control treaty for partisan political gain.

Keep your eyes on the ball, guys.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Traitors

The Republican party voted today to allow the unregulated proliferation of nuclear material and weapons around the world.  This, to them, is preferable to allowing Obama to have any victory of any kind.

They are willing to risk the lives of every person on earth in order to seize power.  They are traitors of the worst kind and there are millions of them.

That is the truth we live with today, and we are all going to see our way of life destroyed if Barack Obama and the Democrats do not start openly acknowledging this reality and act accordingly.

It is time that these people are destroyed. 

Wingnut Wrapup

Well, the sickness never ends. Here's today's dose:

Caroline Glick, Town Hall:  "What the Palestinians Buy with American Money"

Let me guess...whatever it was, it was made in China.

Roger Chapin, Town Hall:  "A Political Grand Bargain to Save America"

I love this one.  Mr. Chapin suggests that Obama go along with the Republicans in bombing Iran, in return for which Republicans would go along with him in "collaborating on substantial reductions in spending and the size of the deficits."  There's the bargain- doing two insane things that the Republicans want instead of one. 

Bipartisanship, Repubican style.

Town Hall says:  "Roger Chapin has had a distinguished and varied career in both the nonprofit and entrepreneurial worlds."

Apparently he also has a distinguished career as a Republican liar.

Laura Hollis, Town Hall:  "We Need an Entrepreneur President"

Laura, we just had one.  How did that work out?

Rush Limbaugh:  "This guy is an utter wrecking ball all by himself on the world stage to the point now of getting embarrassing."

Just one more attempt to accuse Obama of being what their sainted George Bush really was.  At some point, these people all agreed that the only way to erase the American people's memories of the worst president in history was by spreading any lie they could think of to make it seem as if Obama was worse.  Sad to say, they have raised a generation of people who seem ready to buy into any falsity as long as it is accompanied by (phony, of course) promises of tax cuts.

Michelle Malkin, Town Hall:  "More than one million Americans have escaped the clutches of the Democrats' destructive federal health care law. Lucky them."

Because nothing says you're lucky like being sick and broke.

Chris Salcedo, Pajamas Media:  "Liberty-Loving Latinos Outshine Loud-Mouthed Leftist Latinos"

Unfortunately for you, Chris, they may outshine them, but they don't outnumber them.  Not by a long shot.  And thanks to people like you, they never will.

One more piece of evidence to support my growing conviction that whites are the dumbest people on earth.
   
John Hinderaker, Instapundit: “In the Telegraph, Ambrose Evans-Pritchard wonders whether the current monetary crisis will bring down the European Union. I rather hope so.”

Because nothing would be as much fun as a world wide depression.  After all, it worked out great for you-know-who over there in Germany.

Matt C. Abbot, Renew America:  "When a murderer (Justin Boulay) goes free"

Who?  How about writing this article, Matt:  "When a murderer (George W. Bush) goes free."  After all, Justin Boulay only murdered one person, and spent twelve years in prison for it.  George W. Bush murdered a million people, and so far he's gone scot free.

Terence P. Jeffrey, Renew America:  "(Virginia) Attorney Gen. Ken Cuccinelli, who has filed a federal lawsuit seeking to overturn the health-care law signed by President Barack Obama last March, says Obama and the Congress that enacted that law--which mandates that individuals must buy government-approved health insurance plans--are seeking a power over the lives of Americans that even King George III did not claim to possess.

“We now have a Congress and a president who believe they can order you to buy a product when King George III and the Parliament of Great Britain, whom we rebelled against, acknowledged that they could not,” Cuccinelli said in a video interview with CNSNews.com."

Terence, here's something I learned in under forty five seconds by using teh Google.  Maybe you've heard about that.  You and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli should give it a try some time:

"The first insurance plans began during the Civil War (1861-1865).  The earliest ones only offered coverage against accidents related from travel by rail or steamboat. The plans did, however, pave the way more comprehensive plans covering all illnesses and injuries...Insurance companies issued the first individual disability and illness policies in about 1890."

George III died in 1820.

So, you're right, Terence. King George never did force people to have health coverage.  He also never sent them on airplane trips or gave them all flat screen TV's for Christmas.

Knowledge, Terence.  Something else you might consider trying one of these days.

Michael Geer, American Thinker:  "First Health Care, Next the Food Supply"

What?  Now he's going to make people eat too?  The bastard.

Astute Bloggers:  "EVEN THE NYTIMES NOW ADMITS IT: "the single best way to cut the deficit is to ... lift growth."

Because no one ever thought of that before.  Listen, the question is whether the way to lift growth is to steal everything in the country and give it to the rich. That's your plan.  Real good idea, there O Astute Ones.  That's an idea that's sure to work.

What does someone do for people like you to make you betray your country every day?  Some time, I'd really like you to write a blog post about that.

Well, I'm not holding my breath.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Brilliant Special Comment

From Crooks and Liars, which has a transcript and a link to the video, here is an absolutely brilliant special comment from Keith Olbermann about the wretched state of American journalism today.

Besides smashing the claims of objectivity that we hear from the likes of Ted Koppel (whose remarks prodded Keith to make this comment) this is a magnificent example of why, ex-sportscaster though he may be, he now stands head and shoulders above any other broadcast news professional, and if permitted to continue by MSNBC's new owners, may very well enshrine himself in the company of two figures whose reporting features prominently in his remarks- Walter Cronkite and Edward R. Murrow.

TV news channel or not, this is real reporting.  And that is something we have just about forgotten about in this country.  Please take the time to read or watch what he has to say.

You Got That One Right, Paul

Paul Krugman:

"For once, I’m being outdone in the cynicism department here: Stan Collender predicted all this back in August, on the grounds that Republicans would oppose anything that might help the economy on Obama’s watch. That is, they’re opposing QE not on the grounds that it won’t work, but because they’re afraid that it will."

I want to repeat this in the terms it deserves.  The Republican party and their adherents have determined that it is perfectly acceptable for them to engage in a years-long campaign of subversion and treason against our government, with the intent of replacing it with a plutocratic dictatorship.

And, Mr. Barack Obama, it's about time that you admitted that to yourself and began to act accordingly.

Some Data on Federal Tax Burdens by State

I have written occasionally about the foolish right wing cant that claims that Democratic States are supported by Republican States.  This is, of course a lie.  However, the data I have relied upon were a couple of years old.

Here, and here are two sites with more current information, the second one illustrated with some very nice maps.  Nothing new, really, to report, but further evidence if you need any that virtually every Democratic State contributes to the support of virtually every Republican State.

Monday, November 15, 2010

A Word About Olbermann

This interesting information, from Crooks and Liars:

"Keith Olbermann seems to be the guy everyone at NBC News loves to hate. Stories about his suspension from MSNBC are beginning to emerge that paint an ugly picture of power plays and alignments in anticipation of the pending Comcast merger.

...the incoming bosses at Comcast, which will soon close a deal to buy NBC from General Electric, are a more buttoned-down crowd, and people at the network expect less tolerance for Olbermann than Zucker has shown over the years."

I don't want to spend too much time saying "I told you so," but at the time, I am the only person I remember coming out and saying that this was all about the Comcast buyout.   Well, it was.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Wingnut Wrapup

I've given Wingnut Wrapup a little rest, while the worst of the teabaggers' crowing about their wonderful victory in having voted to sink themselves further into third-world poverty dies down.  But now, it's time for mighty Green Eagle to sink his beak in again.  I hope you're ready.  The fate of the whole free world may depend on one lonely, but very angry parrot.  Wherever that free world is these days:

Let's start off with the Conservative Quote of the Day, from Renew America:

"I have often been accused of putting my foot in my mouth, but I will never put my hand in your pocket." — Spiro Agnew"

No, he'll never put his hand in our pockets.  This would be, in case you have forgotten, convicted extortionist and bribe taker Spiro Agnew.

Guy Benson, Town Hall:  "Is There a Battle Brewing for the Soul of the GOP?"

Come on, get serious...What soul?

Ken Connor, Town Hall:  "Hell No, She Won't Go...Since (with the exception of the President) no one represents the face of the Left more than Nancy Pelosi, a sizable cadre of Democrats have  made it clear that they'd like to see her step aside as the top Democrat in the House.  Much to their chagrin, however, Ms. Pelosi is  unwilling to cooperate."

The "sizable cadre" coming from a Fox News story which couldn't produce a name of a single Democrat taking that position.  But still, it's Nancy Pelosi's responsibility to do what the Republicans want her to.  The Republicans, and the imaginary Democrats who get "quoted" on Fox News.

And now, today's trophy for the most smears in one blog post:

Oliver North, Town Hall:  "The world's most famous teleprompter reader ...the most expensive foreign junket ever taken by an American head of state...Obama is incapable of shaping events...he still panders to every audience...his obsequious bows to foreign potentates and apologies for America's misdeeds...he continued to whine about trade imbalances and currency manipulation...ignored American troops in harm's way by treating Iraq and Afghanistan like flyover country..."

Did he manage to get them all in there?  Nope, not quite.  He forgot the witch doctor thing. Listen, Ollie, the next time we need advice from a drug dealing traitor, we'll get right back to you.  Until then, please, STFU.

Bob Owens, Confederate Yankee:  "Soros also has no regrets about collaborating with the Nazis, so that tells you something about his moral character."

Listen, Mr. Yankee, do you think that could be because he didn't collaborate with Nazis, having been 14 years old at the time?  But, of course, no antisemitic lie is too debased for the American right, so keep shouting out your hatred.  This is what things are coming to, folks.  Take notice, any of you out there that foolishly thought that there is anything the Nazis did that is too contemptible to be adopted by the American right.  Fascism seems to be the same, whenever and wherever it crops up, and unfortunately, the manifest fact that we are the Greatest, Most Noble, Wonderful and Heroic Country in the History of the Universe and Everywhere Else Too, doesn't seem to be protecting us from fascism's worst degradations, for some reason.  Maybe like Christine O'Donnell says, it's God's plan.

Confederate Yankee:  "Criminals are the Reason to Buy Handguns To Protect Your Family. Totalitarian Liberals are the Reason You Buy Battle Rifles"

And these are the people that we are supposed to regard as our bipartisan partners.  We're supposed to treat them like our best friends while they are threatening to kill us.  No thanks.  By the way, Confederate Yankee, the real reason why people like you buy battle rifles is usually because they have very small penises.

Charlie Martin, Pajamas Media:  "Goldfinger’s Law: Obama Claims He’s Not Anti-Business, But His Policies Give Him Away"

The policies that resulted in this:  "U.S. corporations are on track for the biggest earnings growth in 22 years and the stock market is headed for its best back-to- back annual gains since 2004."  But no, George and Dick did so much more for business.  They really left the business world in great shape.

Jim Hoft, Gateway Pundit: "They Cut Off My Beard and Forced Me to Eat It"

Whatever.

Henry Lamb, Renew America:  "Repeal Obamacare -- and then the 17th Amendment"

Yeah, and then that stupid thing about no slaves, and then the evil part about no establishment of religion and then....In fact, let's repeal all of it except the part where it says we are allowed to shoot liberals, and replace it with something sensible, like no taxes on the rich.  That's the world that wingnuts want to live in.  You know, the ones that want to return to the Constitution.

And here's today's Story That You Just Know is a Crock, Before You Even Begin to Read it:

World Net Daily: "High Court considers barring Christian foster parents"

Sure, sure.  Man, these people will believe anything.

Astute Bloggers:  "Obama as Arafat...I can go with that; ugly, corrupt, a liar, a muslim!"

Projecting a little, huh, guys.  Except the Muslim part.  I mean, you guys would never join a religion that thinks it's okay to go halfway around the world to kill people of another faith.

Astute Bloggers:  "BARBARA BUSH: DUBYA WAS FIRST JEWISH PRESIDENT"

Pardon my French, but fuck you, bitch.  Hope I'm clear there.  Well, that just about brought an end to my appetite for wingnuts today.  Bye all.

Truth 101 Sums It Up

In so few words:

"REPUBLICANS LOVE LIMITED GOVERNMENT. YOU KNOW, LIKE YEMEN AND AFGHANISTAN."

As Close To Fascism...

In case you haven't noticed (lucky you) Glenn Beck has been engaged in a week long contemptible attack on George Soros, accusing him of having collaborated with the Nazis (when he was a child) and indulging himself in a host of other classic antisemitic attacks on Soros.

If you are interested, here is an excellent article from Media Matters about the subject, by Simon Malloy.  A couple of remarks from the article:

"As close as I've heard on mainstream television to fascism...This isn't a country where people go on TV and national radio and talk up bigots who blame Jews for collapsing economies or fomenting communism in the United States....Nothing like it has ever been on American television before." 

Well, that's America, 2010 style.  If the rich can't get the right to loot the entire economy through fair means, then I guess this is an acceptable alternate strategy.  And of course, the "liberal" press is content to just look the other way while things like this go on.  Who ever thought we would have to deal with this sort of thing in the United States?

I want to reiterate (though I shouldn't have to) that the accusations against Soros are complete fabrications, invented by the lifelong liar Lyndon LaRouche, and given no credence by anyone until they became a useful weapon in the right wing arsenal.  These people have no bottom line, and they will do anything to get what they want.  And if you want to know what "anything" means, I suggest you read a couple of books about Germany in the twenties and thirties.  The similarities between what happened there and what the Republican party is endeavoring to unleash here and now grow more obvious every day.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Translating Barack

Obama yesterday:

"On extending Bush-era tax cuts at home, he said, "I want to make sure that taxes don't go up for middle-income families on January 1. That's my top priority." He reiterated that he opposes a permanent extension of those tax breaks for the wealthy."

Kos takes this as good news.  Sorry, I don't.  I've learned the hard way that he is signaling to the Republicans that if more tax giveaways to the rich are the price of keeping the middle class tax cuts, he's ready to do it.

Get ready for another sellout, any day now.  And then get ready for Obama's spokesmen to beat up on the left for not loving his gutless betrayal of them.  That's been his pattern all along.  Why should we expect anything different now?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Obama Insists He's Not Caving on Tax Cuts For the Rich

We'll see.  As far as I can tell, he's acting the same way he always acts before he caves.

And just to keep things on a positive note, here's a little tidbit from Paul Krugman about Obama's shreikingly horrible "deficit commission:"

"Matters become clearer once you reach the section on tax reform. The goals of reform, as Mr. Bowles and Mr. Simpson see them, are presented in the form of seven bullet points. “Lower Rates” is the first point; “Reduce the Deficit” is the seventh.

So how, exactly, did a deficit-cutting commission become a commission whose first priority is cutting tax rates, with deficit reduction literally at the bottom of the list?"

Paul, Paul, Paul, since when does a "government commission" have any other goal than cutting taxes for the rich?

"this proposal clearly represents a major transfer of income upward, from the middle class to a small minority of wealthy Americans. And what does any of this have to do with deficit reduction?"

What else is government for, except to steal from us and give everything to the rich?  And what, apparently was Obama for except to delude us into thinking things could ever be different?

More Backward Republican Thinking

Wisdom from paid Republican liar Alex Castellanos:

"We are in a connected society now. Can you tax just the rich people's side of the water bucket? Can you take money out of that? We've just seen Wall Street melt down and everybody's homes lose value."

Let me remind you of something, Alex:  The meltdown you are talking about happened after Republicans managed to lower taxes on the rich to their lowest point since...1929, the last time we had a meltdown after Republicans slashed taxes on the rich.

No meltdowns under Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Clinton, when taxes on the rich were far higher.  (I leave Reagan out because he is significantly responsible for recreating the same economic environment that caused the Depression.)  Meltdowns just seem to happen whenever Republicans succeed in absolving the rich of their tax burden.  Maybe there is a lesson to be learned there.

Not one our leaders are likely to learn, unfortunately.  They've now been held back and had to repeat that class twice, and they don't seem to have figured it out yet.

Republican Lies Continue to Destroy Hope of Progress

From Bloomberg:

"Pessimism about the impact of Obama’s policies on the investment climate is common to respondents everywhere, the latest Bloomberg Global Poll shows. At the same time, those outside the U.S. have favorable views of the president himself, while U.S. investors overwhelmingly have an unfavorable view

Investors around the world say President Barack Obama is bad for the bottom line, even though U.S. corporations are on track for the biggest earnings growth in 22 years and the stock market is headed for its best back-to- back annual gains since 2004."

We all know that Democrats are bad for business and Republicans are good for business, because Republicans and the press tell us so every single day, as they have been doing for the last hundred years, even though it's Republicans who sent the world into depression twice in that period, even though Republicans just destroyed half the value of American stocks, which Democrats promptly restored, even though once again Democrats had to save the economy from Republican destruction.

In fact, whether it's the economy, defense, or any other thing they talk about, everything negative Republicans say about Democrats is true of themselves, and everything positive Republicans say about themselves is true of Democrats.  Republicans do nothing but smash, destroy and steal, and then leave Democrats to pick up the pieces.

But of course, the American people cannot be allowed to know that, or the sacred order of nature, in which Republicans get to rule regardless of the damage they do, might be upended.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

How About a Big Swallow of Republican Hypocrisy?

Senator James Inhofe:

"The problem is the public has been brainwashed into thinking — and a lot of these are the very liberal, uh, members of Congress — into thinking that earmarks are somehow all bad."

Yes indeed, it is the liberals in Congress who spend their time railing against earmarks, which, let me remind you, make up less than 1% of the budget, and whose total elimination would do almost nothing to help our financial situation.  Yes. of course, this is a liberal issue.

The Republicans are predictably announcing, less than two weeks after the election, their intent to betray their teabagging supporters on this issue, which ten days ago was vital to budgetary discipline.  Now, of course, it turns out that eliminating earmarks was nothing but a cynical left-wing trick.

How willfully blind will Republican voters prove to be?  I suspect that they will take this, and the long, sordid campaign of betrayal that is to follow, without a thought, as an acceptable alternative to the dismal prospect of being forced to accept better health care.  We'll see.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Note to our Conservative Friends

For ninety years now, we have had to listen to people like you shouting about how Democrats and Liberals are nothing but dupes and collaborators with Communism- claims that played a large part in your campaign strategy this year.

Well, what have we come to in the United States now?  The Fed is proposing injecting $600 billion into our economy.  This plan is approved of by a wide range of economists (many of whom don't think it goes far enough) and our government.  Who is strongly against it?  The Communist government of China.

We are now being treated to the spectacle of Republican politicians, who, as we know, just took large sums of laundered Chinese money to use in their campaign, siding en masse with the Communists, and against our own government, not even waiting until they are sworn in to begin their capitulation to the Communists.

Now we know who the real fellow travelers are.  I hope you are proud of yourselves for working so hard to turn our government over to tools of the Communists.  I can't wait to see how that works out for you.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Outrage in Iraq

That great American Pat Buchanan, preaching to his very evil choir over at Town Hall:

"The Murderers of Christianity

Sunday, on the eve of All Saints' Day, Nov. 1, 2010, the faithful gathered at the Assyrian Catholic Church of Our Lady of Salvation in Baghdad.

As Father Wassim Sabih finished the mass, eight al-Qaida stormed in, began shooting and forced him to the floor. As the priest pleaded that his parishioners be spared, they executed him and began their mission of mass murder.

When security forces broke in, the killers threw grenades to finish off the surviving Christians and detonated explosive-laden vests to kill the police. The toll was 46 parishioners and two priests killed, 78 others wounded

Where is the outrage?"

I don't know, Pat, maybe the outrage died when Christian invaders, with your support every step of the way, killed a million innocent Muslims in Iraq.  Sort of makes 46 dead seem like pretty small potatoes, but I don't remember you showing any outrage over the Muslim dead, so I just can't get too worked up over your outrage today.  Christians lived in safety in Iraq until we invaded their country and left them with a government of religious fanatics.  The evil Saddam Hussein even had them at high levels in his government (foreign minister Tariq Aziz was a Christian.)

So if you want to be outraged at the deaths of these 46 Christians, direct the outrage at yourself.

Today's Award Winner in the "Religious People are Idiots" Contest

From Yahoo:

"Indonesia's pious information minister, Tifatul Sembiring, is in hot water for touching the hand of First Lady Michelle Obama, in what he describes as forced contact. The politician flaunts his conservatism as a Muslim and claims to avoid touching women who aren't family members...Indonesia -- which has the world's largest Islamic population, the vast majority moderate -- had been debating how to handle encounters between the first lady and observant Muslim officials far in advance of the Obamas' arrival in the country Monday."

Although, in all fairness, I must say that he just barely beat out the Christian loon in the post below.

Under a Curse

Prominent right wing Christian Bryan Fischer, zooming right to the heart of our real problem here in America, from Talking Points Memo:

"...there is no number of live grizzlies worth one dead human being. If it's a choice between grizzlies and humans, the grizzlies have to go. And it's time.  Of course there is a simple answer: shoot these man-eaters on sight.

"God makes it clear in Scripture that deaths of people and livestock at the hands of savage beasts is a sign that the land is under a curse. The tragic thing here is that we are bringing this curse upon ourselves."

Yes, the fact that two people were killed by bears is a sign that our land is under a curse.  Listen, you ignorant idiot, if you want a sign that our land is under a curse, how about the fact that our economy has been destroyed by the depredation of rich Republicans, or the fact that supposedly religious people like you cheered when our last president sent our army to kill a million innocent people, or that there are packs of lunatics roaming the country fighting as hard as they can to turn it over to people who will destroy their lives as fast as possible?  No, two people killed by bears means a lot more than that.

God, how is our country supposed to survive people like Bryan Fischer?

Monday, November 8, 2010

Budget Deficits- Not Just for Liberals Any More

News from the Lone Star State:

"Legislature likely to cut deep to meet possible $25 billion budget gap

AUSTIN – Texas faces a budget crisis of truly daunting proportions, with lawmakers likely to cut sacrosanct programs such as education for the first time in memory and to lay off hundreds if not thousands of state workers and public university employees.

The gap is now proportionately larger than the deficit California recently closed with cuts and fee increases"

When I recently reported on this fact, of course one of our right wing commentators was quick to deny the whole thing.  Well, sorry, guy, it's true.

Of course, unlike California, the legislators of the Republican State of Texas have a simple way to deal with this problem.  They are going to simply refuse to fund the things that they as a State are responsible for.  Screw everyone else- see how easy it is to balance the budget?

That Was Then. This Is Now

Courtesy of Daily Kos, this little tidbit:

Rand Paul before the election:

"Rand Paul has made a ban on wasteful earmark spending in Washington D.C. one of the key points of his campaign ..."

Rand Paul now, days after the people of Kentucky elected him:
"In a bigger shift from his campaign pledge to end earmarks, he tells me that they are a bad “symbol” of easy spending but that he will fight for Kentucky’s share of earmarks and federal pork"

A "shift from his campaign pledge."  That's a nice way of saying that he lied, and the teabaggers lapped it up like a pack of thirsty dogs. Boy, are the you guys in for some surprises in the next few months.

The only thing that remains to be seen is what argument you are going to buy into so you can blame it all on the Democrats.

Don't Tread on Whom?

Anyone who has paid any attention to the teabag tantrums has noticed the many "don't tread on me" flags that they like to wave.  I'm sure that the great majority of us just assume that this is a reference to the "don't tread on me" banners that were displayed during the American Revolution, and that the display of these flags is simply one more pathetic attempt by the teabaggers to claim nonsensically that ther racism and greed make them just like the people who fought in the Revolution.

I certainly assumed that to be the case.  Well, never underestimate the ability of these miserable people to engage in "dog whistle" politics, where things that seem benign to the rest of us have a totally different meaning to them.

Here is something I found a couple of days ago.  It is described in the engraving as ""The first Flag of Independence raised in the South, by the Citizens of Savannah, Ga. November 8th 1860"

 Sort of gives a whole new meaning to the "don't tread on me" thing.  Any of you teabaggers out there want to explain to me again how you are not a pack of pathetic, racist white supremacists?

New Rules for Democrats

We learn from World Net Daily:

"The man chosen to replace Keith Olbermann during the host's suspension from MSNBC for unapproved political contributions has now been struck from the network's lineup, following disclosure that he, too, made political donations to Democrats.  MSNBC had chosen Chris Hayes, editor of the Nation, to host the network's prime-time political show "Countdown," the Wall Street Journal reports.  But Hayes also made a series of donations to Democrats, to former Alabama candidate for the U.S. House Josh Segall and former Illinois primary candidate Thomas Geoghegan."

Do you get what is going on here?  Chris Hayes made these donations when he was not an employee of MSNBC.  Now the rule, created by Republicans, and apparently accepted by the "liberal" press, is that no one who has ever made a donation to a Democratic candidate can host a show on a news network.  In the meantime, it is perfectly okay for the Republicans to have an entire network devoted to nothing else but putting them in control of the country.

That's right- you can't be a national commentator if you support Democrats.  As the Democratic party continues to allow abominations like this to take place, they are abetting the clear Republican plans to turn this country into a third world fascist dictatorship.  That's the simple truth, and it's about time Democrats are open about what is going on in this country.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Some Things I've Learned Since Tuesday

When the Republicans win the House of Representatives, it represents a total mandate to do whatever they want, without a thought to what anyone else thinks, but when the Democrats win the House, the Senate and the White House, it means absolutely nothing.

The Republicans are allowed to have a multibillion dollar foreign owned cable "news" channel devoted to 24 hour a day lying propaganda on their behalf, but if a liberal commentator gives a political contribution to a Democrat, he has to be banished from TV forever.

Republican leaders can, one after another, announce that they intend to pursue their goals ruthlessly without a concern for Democratic ideas and positions; in the face of which, the appropriate response from our "liberal" press is to write several hundred opinion pieces savaging the Democrats for not doing enough to be bipartisan.

If someone saves you from a depression, the right thing to do is to throw him out and replace him with leaders that have been bought lock stock and barrel by the people who almost caused the depression.

And finally, if you are president and are having a hard time, the appropriate response is to start a war of aggression against some third world country halfway around the world, which can't possibly strike back at us.  This proves that we are manly, even when it results in nothing but disaster.  Solving problems by addressing them directly and taking meaningful action is nothing but a sign of limp-wristed girly weakness, even if it works.

Well, there you go.  That's what I've learned.  How about you?

Friday, November 5, 2010

No Deals With Aliens!

I've been giving the wingnuts a rest for a few days, but I thought you would like to see this petition that I found online today:

"To:  U.S. Congress
As Constitution loving God fearing citizens of the Unites States of America we demand an end to the collaboration and secret agreements being made between our government and alien beings from outer space and subterranean hollow earth. We declare these agreements are HIGH TREASON against the Constitution and the people of the United States.

We demand that ALL joint human and alien underground bases such as Dulce Base in Dulce, New Mexico be destroyed and the thousands of innocent people being held as prisoners in them be set free.

We demand a thorough congressional investigation of these underground bases by honest legitimate constitution loving elected officials (the few that there are) and we demand an end to the conspiring to replace our constitution with a New World Order.

We declare our nation "one nation under God" and that that God is the Most High God and not the one served by the New World Order.

We demand an end to the New World Order presence in our country and the nullification of all those congressional leaders who support it. We declare they also are committing HIGH TREASON against our constitution and country for refusing to defend it and trying to replace it.

We demand our republic and constitution be restored and the Luciferians to be arrested for their HIGH TREASON against our country.

As God fearing citizens of the United States of America we demand our Constitution be restored and our country returned to the original intent of our forefathers.

Sincerely, 
The Undersigned"

Just thought you'd like to see where all of the followers of Sarah Palin, Ron Paul, Christine O'Donnell are going to be in another ten or twenty years, as they find their current fantasies are not leading to a perfect world.   On the other hand, I am sure we can all agree that we don't really want our government making secret deals with aliens from outer space.

Well, There Goes That

Keith Olbermann has been "suspended indefinitely" from MSNBC, allegedly for giving a couple of contributions to political candidates.

I can guarantee you that this has absolutely nothing to do with contributions.  MSNBC has done nothing to Joe Scarborough or Pat Buchanan for the same "offense."   Here's what I am absolutely positive is happening:  Comcast intends to get rid of Olbermann for good, as soon as they take over, and bring an end to any TV news in the country that is not totally made up of right wing lies.  Comcast made it a condition of completing the sale that MSNBC do its dirty work and get rid of Olbermann (MSNBC's highest rated host) before they would go through with the deal, and so out he goes, on the most pathetic of excuses.

This is a clear sign of what to expect from MSNBC in the future.  Rachel and Ed, you're next.

But Wait, There's More:  Randi Rhodes was knocked off the air today due to a bomb threat. The worst result of the midterm elections may be that the right seems to have entitled itself to act worse than ever.

High Point of the Clippers' Season

This thought from the L. A. Times:  There are now two teams in the NBA that haven't won a game this season, and the Clippers aren't one of them.

Take it from me: it's all downhill from here.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Just a note...

...on blue dogs and the election.  21 of the 34 house Democrats who opposed the health care bill lost on Tuesday.

Of course, the lesson that people in Washington are going to take from things like this is that Democrats need to listen more to Republicans, and do what Republicans tell them to do, which is to collapse and support Republican positions.

November 2

The Republicans win

November 3

The Clippers Win

Every Dog Has His Day.

The Dean, Stupid or In the Tank- You Decide...

David Broder just can't stop this sort of thing.  What in God's name is wrong with people like this?

"Somewhere along the way, Obama lost sight of his campaign pledge to enlist Republican ideas and votes. Maybe they were never there to be had, but he never truly tested it."

And it's Obama's fault that Republicans never came up with an idea that didn't involve pandering to the rich?   The Republicans had no ideas to offer, but it's still Obama's failure that he didn't run with them?  Don't the Republicans bear any responsibility at all for not having any ideas, except let's steal some more from the American people?  Apparently not in David Broder's world.

At least David Broder will not be accusing the Republicans of the same thing- their campaign pledge was to totally ignore the Democrats and do whatever the hell they want.  And that's just the sort of manly behavior that serious people like David Broder love.

The Republican party has totally abandoned their responsibility to participate in governing this county, and it's all the Democrats' fault.  Welcome to America.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Having Trouble Getting Through The Day?

Try this

Life's Tough Everywhere

"MOUNT MERAPI, Indonesia – A deadly Indonesian volcano spewing lava and smoke for more than a week erupted Wednesday with its biggest blast yet...carcasses of incinerated cattle littered the scorched slopes."

Just like in the House of Representatives.

"Women screamed"

Well, at least we didn't have to deal with any of that, except maybe at Meg Whitman,s house, when it occurred to her what else she might have done with that $140 million dollars.

How Bad a Midterm Loss?

The Democrats seem to have lost 57 seats in the House, and 6 in the Senate.  You know that the Republicans and the mainstream press are going to characterize this as the worst, most complete electoral defeat in the history of the Human Race.  So I thought I would look at the numbers from some previous midterm elections:

FDR, 1938:  -71 in the House, -6 in the Senate
Harry Truman, 1945:  -45 in the House, -12 in the Senate
Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1958:  -45 in the House, -13 in the Senate
Lyndon Johnson, 1966:  -47 in the House, -4 in the Senate
Gerald Ford, 1974: -48 in the House, -5 in the Senate
Bill Clinton, 1994:  -52 in the House, -8 in the Senate


So, all things considered, Obama's losses were not all that out of line, particularly for a nation in economic distress (that accounts, for example, for the losses Eisenhower suffered in 1958, or the disastrous election of 1938, which resulted from the severe economic downturn the economy experienced in 1937, when Roosevelt started listening to Conservative economic siren songs.)

And remember that all of these elections happened before five blatantly corrupt Supreme Court justices made it possible for corporations and foreign countries to buy our legislators.  It may take a long time before we understand how much that factor alone preserved the party of the rich from oblivion.

Who Really Lost in the Election

29 blue dogs in the house will be gone in January, leaving only 25 left.

Four progressive house members lost their seats, out of 79 in the progressive caucus.

In case you wondered, that means 53% of blue dog house members lost their seats.  5% of progressives lost.  So, what kind of Democrat do the people of this country want to see in Washington?

Obama is out there today, still blabbing about compromise with the Republicans. You know we are going to hear ten thousand times over in the coming weeks that Democrats need to move to the center.

Remember these numbers when you hear things like this.  Democrats who act like Democrats win elections.  Democrats who act like weak little pussycats lose.

The Most Preposterous Republican Lie of All Time?

From an interview with George W. Bush:

"MATT LAUER:
Not everybody thought you should go to war, though. There were dissenters.

PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH:
Of course there were...I was a dissenting voice. I didn't want to use force. I mean force is the last option for a President. And I think it's clear in the book that I gave diplomacy every chance to work."

What in the name of God is wrong with these people?  And why are they out flogging their lies instead of spending the rest of their lives in prison?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

It Could Be Worse...I Think

Well, the Dems were slaughtered in the house.  If you want my opinion (okay, I know you don't, but I'm dishing it out anyway) there are two reasons for this.  First, the Republicans had the collaboration of the press and the Supreme Court- the first in convincing the American people to buy into a total lie about who is responsible for the mess we're in now, and the second in perhaps fatally corrupting the American electoral process, so that the Republicans, who have been screaming about Communism for seventy years, were able to let the Communists finance their overthrow of the government.  I guess the "Chicoms" can turn out to be pretty good friends when they're dishing out the money.

But there is another side to this story.  The (as usual) pathetic Democrats should have spent every day of the last two years reminding us that it was REPUBLICANS and their bogus economics that, as usual, got us into a near depression, and DEMOCRATS who, as usual, got us out.  Instead, they ran for cover like the cowards they are, and spent the time begging the Republicans to cooperate with them, thereby doing everything they could to help the Republicans make people forget who just caused their economy to collapse.  If the Democrats had just spent the last two years telling the truth to the American people, things would be a lot different today.  But since being scared out of their wits by Reagan, that's the one thing they cannot bring themselves to do, as simple as it seems.  And now, we are going to pay the price.

Well, now a little good news.  First of all, we're still sane in California. We did not sell our governor's office or one of our Senate seats to the highest bidder.  Also, we need to thank Connecticut voters, who also rejected another unqualified, self-financed rich person with more money than was good for them.  This is a real ray of sunshine in a cloudy sky...maybe we still live in a country where it isn't automatically possible to buy the government.  Let's hope people on our side take a lesson from this, and realize that we can beat the Republicans' juggernaut of cash when we try hard enough, because the numbers are, and will always be, on our side.

Also, even though the self-appointed eye doctor and all around loon Rand Paul suckered the apparently very stupid people in his state into electing him, Sharon Angle and Christine O'Donnell both lost pretty big, so maybe there is still some level of stupidity that makes teabagging jackasses unacceptable to the voters.

I have to note, however, that all five of the losing candidates I just mentioned are women.  Maybe along with being a pack of racists, Republicans are still too sexist to really support female candidates.  It sure seems to be a lot easier to con right wingers into sending you to Washington if you are a male wacko.

Finally, one sort of sad thing about Harry Reid beating Sharon Angle.  Yeah, he helped us keep control of the Senate, but the price is that he is still there.  Harry is a horrible majority leader, and it's a shame that we couldn't have replaced him.

Well, life goes on.  How many months do you think it will be before the impeachment hearings start?  Meanwhile, catch up on your sleep.  It's good for you.

Attacking Obama to Rehabilitate Bush

From Henry Makow (no, I don't link to his sort) a perfect example of  the phenomenon of Republicans endlessly launching attacks on Obama which have nothing to do with Obama himself, and are totally designed to convince people that the behavior of their hero in a flightsuit, the worst president in history, was normal:

"In a series of interviews with someone called "Ulsterman", a former White House Insider confirms what I have been saying about Barack Obama since before his election in 2008.

Obama is a light weight, a front man, an impostor, unfit to be President. "Everything was handed to him."  He doesn't like to govern. He's lazy and prefers to watch sports. He's not that smart. He doesn't have the gravitas to be President."

Could you think of a more perfect description of George W. Bush, or a worse one of Obama? And of course, it comes from an unidentified "former White House insider" who has chosen to tell his explosive story not to the New York Times or MSNBC, but to an unnamed blogger who writes for a Lyndon LaRouche website.

I've Got Nothing

I have nothing to say about the election today.  We've heard it all a million times in the last few months, and there's no one left that might have any interest in hearing any more about it.

If the American people are going to sell themselves into slavery to the rich, there's not much we can do about it now.  We'll just have to live with it.

I'm moving on to keeping my eyes open for our country's next stab in the back from the Repubicans.  Don't worry- we won't have to wait long.

The Shape of Things to Come

Foreshadowed in this exchange:

"PALIN: At this point in time --
O'REILLY: Yes.
PALIN: With the state of the union, no.
O'REILLY: Yes. You can't be too far right.
PALIN: A far right bent would be a healthy."

You can't be too far right.














No, I guess not.  You can't be too far right for some people, I guess.  I just never knew that many of them lived in the U.S.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Well, That Sure Makes Me Feel Better

From the New York Yimes, in 2002:

"Vice President Dick Cheney flew to Yemen today amid extraordinary security to press for joint efforts against remnants of the organization called Al Qaeda.

A senior American official said Mr. Cheney had used his meeting with Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh primarily to discuss assistance to prevent Yemen from becoming a haven for terrorists" 

Well, I'm sure glad that worked out so well.  Dick Cheney, the king of fighting terrorism, saving the country once again.

Who Said This?

Try to guess who said the following, found by a website called The Mystery of the Haunted Vampire:

“As for the Republicans—how can one regard seriously a frightened, greedy, nostalgic huddle of tradesmen and lucky idlers who shut their eyes to history and science, steel their emotions against decent human sympathy, cling to sordid and provincial ideals exalting sheer acquisitiveness and condoning artificial hardship for the non-materially-shrewd, dwell smugly and sentimentally in a distorted dream-cosmos of outmoded phrases and principles and attitudes based on the bygone agricultural-handicraft world, and revel in (consciously or unconsciously) mendacious assumptions (such as the notion that real liberty is synonymous with the single detail of unrestricted economic license or that a rational planning of resource-distribution would contravene some vague and mystical ‘American heritage’…) utterly contrary to fact and without the slightest foundation in human experience? Intellectually, the Republican idea deserves the tolerance and respect one gives to the dead.”

Give up?  You might as well, because you'll never guess in a million years, unless you are brilliant enough to have zoned in on the phrase "distorted dream-cosmos."  Yes, this is an excerpt from a letter written in 1936 by Howard Phillips Lovecraft.  And who knew more about ultimate horror?