Showing posts from July, 2011

An All Too Likely Republican Scenario

Spelled out by Andrew Sullivan , at the Daily Beast: "Are They Aiming for Impeachment? They did the last Democratic president; and they feel even more strongly that this one is illegitimate, despite his thumping majority in the last election. Here's the scenario. The House GOP pushes for  completely unserious Boehner plan (including a balanced budget amendment) that they know will be vetoed; they then filibuster the Reid plan in the Senate, forcing Obama to invoke a 14th Amendment executive prerogative, which they will then turn around and impeach him for." I've been talking about this sort of scenario ever since Obama won in 2008.  The Republicans are like serial killers who got a taste for blood with Clinton, and now cannot control their urge to do it again.  They needed no pretext with Clinton, and they need none with Obama, just an excuse.  When, when will people face up to the traitorous pack of wolves gnawing away at the nation's vitals, while Am

The Truth about the Debt Crisis, in Very Nice Words...Someone Else's Words, Admittedly,

I am too disgusted with the Republican party, their rich masters and their tools in the "press" to come up with words to describe them any more, so I am just going to quote some excerpts from Hunter at Daily Kos, who says what every person with half a brain knows: "Just a reminder on why we're even in this mess tonight: it's self-inflicted. Entirely. It's entirely political, entirely partisan, entirely hard-right ideological, and it doesn't have a damn thing to do with the "debt ceiling," or even the deficit, except as proxy for the one and only thing that does matter to Republicans: cutting social programs. Fixing the tax structure? Forget it. Deficits? Hell, Republicans have voted for deficits for a fine long time now. Didn't bother them. They even said it "didn't matter"—remember that one? So why are we talking about "catastrophe" all of a sudden? Because they want to talk about it, and because they have

Lawsuits Going Nowhere- a New Chapter in Idiotic Futility

Remember Bradlee Dean?  He is the "minister" friend of Michelle Bachmann who was invited by Republicans to deliver the invocation one day a few months ago to the Minnesota House of Representatives, and who had to nearly be dragged off the podium in the middle of a vicious attack not only on gays but also on Barack Obama. Well, when Rachel Maddow reported on this sideshow, she quoted Mr. Dean as follows: "Muslims are calling for the executions of homosexuals in America. This just shows you they themselves are upholding the laws that are even in the Bible of the Judeo-Christian God, but they seem to be more moral than even the American Christians do, because these people are livid about enforcing their laws. They know homosexuality is an abomination ... If America won't enforce the laws, God will raise up a foreign enemy to do just that." Well, there you go.  Make of that statement what you want, but Mr. Dean has hooked up with Larry Klayman, the attorn

Boehner's "Failure"

Well, it is true that Boehner's Republican colleagues delivered him a massive humiliation yesterday.  Of course, it suits the entire mainstream "press" to present this as purely a personal failing of Boener's.  They are anxious to spread this myth, because, as usual, the truth is far worse. In fact, the Republican party is now reaping the fruit of the madness that they have deliberately sown since Reagan- the notion that any taxation is too much, the insane idea that multinational corporations will look out for our welfare far better than our elected representatives, the idea that anyone who really understands a subject is automatically less qualified to deal with it than, say, some ignorant, incompetent right wing demagogue from Alaska.  Now, the Republican party and their lapdogs in the press have succeeded in breeding just enough of these stupid, greed-maddened people that they are able to prevent any rational resolution of our national problems (which, of cour

Probably not an Improvement

From a review of the upcoming and massively anticipated RPG, Skyrim: "Everything you see a character do, you can do as well, Howard explains, as he stands beside a lumber mill in the town of Riverwood, where a man is busily piling logs. These professions are part of a simulated economy, too. Sabotage the lumber mill and wooden items, like arrows, will become scarce. The degree to which the player will be able to plunge the province into financial crisis is yet undetermined, however." Maybe they should consider letting your character become a Republican Congressman.

News of the (Sick) World

Mostly right here at home, of course.  We may not lead the world in much else anywhere, but we're still golden in self-destructive stupidity. Well, thanks to the New York Times, we still have to listen to this.   Get ready to feel sick: "Is the old John McCain back? The fiery, independent version of the Republican senator from Arizona took to the floor of the Senate Wednesday morning. Demanding “straight talk,” Mr. McCain accused conservatives of abandoning reason by opposing the House Republican leader’s plan to resolve the debt crisis...on Wednesday morning, it looked like the maverick had returned." God in heaven above, I thought that, with all that's going on in the country, we'd heard the last of this idiot. And now, let's move on to the latest big news about the mighty Tea Party, which truly represents the majority of our country's citizens, and therefore fully justifies the endless free promotion it gets from the mainstream press: &quo

A Hidden Republican Punishment of the Middle Class

Here is another way that the middle class is being forced to bear the costs of the economic disaster foisted on us by the greed of the rich.  I have been surprised to never hear this spelled out directly, so finally I'm going to try to do it myself. We constantly hear about people's responsibility to prepare for their own retirement.  In fact, a large part of Republican cant involve the constant claim that we should bear far more of that burden.  Let's consider what is happening to people who spent their lives following this advice: Imagine a working class couple who, responsibly, saved carefully for their retirement, and over their working lives managed to save $500,000. Before the Bush economic disaster, that money might have earned, say, 5% interest, or $25,000 a year.  That would be enough to more than double the money they get from Social Security, and if they don't have a mortgage, it would be a substantial contribution to their living an independent and rel

The New York Times Gets It Partly Right

When it published this comment today: "House Republicans have lost sight of the country’s welfare. It’s hard to conclude anything else from their latest actions, including the House speaker’s dismissal of President Obama’s plea for compromise Monday night. They have largely succeeded in their campaign to ransom America’s economy for the biggest spending cuts in a generation. They have warped an exercise in paying off current debt into an argument about future spending. Yet, when they win another concession, they walk away.  This increasingly reckless game has pushed the nation to the brink of ruinous default. The Republicans have dimmed the futures of millions of jobless Americans, whose hopes for work grow more out of reach as government job programs are cut and interest rates begin to rise. They have made the federal government a laughingstock around the globe.  " True, except for the part about the Republicans having lost sight of the country's

Wingnut Wrapup- Norway Edition

Well, you know that it wouldn't take long for the right, incapable as it is of accepting responsibility for anything, to start trying to lie away their close connection to the likes of  Anders Behring Breivik, the Norwegian Conservative fundamentalist Christian who murdered a hundred or so people recently. This is a painful post to write, very long and without a lot of the humor that makes it somewhat tolerable to stay aware of the evil that has taken over the American right.   I actually don't expect very many people to make it through this tripe, but I felt a need to get it down on the record.  So, read as much of it as you please- I know it isn't a pleasant task. Long time readers of Wingnut Wrapup will know that I exiled Pam Geller because her ugly, racist ranting was so sickening that there was no humor to be gotten from it.  However, Pammy has closely associated herself with the type of Scandinavian Muslim haters that this guy represents: "Killings in Nor

What Movie Could This Be From, I Wonder...

A little view into the box office numbers for this weekend: And just what blockbuster movie is on a pace to make $23,000 its second weekend?  Can you guess?  Because I'm not even going to give you a hint. Except this one:  I have been documenting, as long as I have had this blog, that the Tea Party is a manufactured illusion.  Here is just a little more proof.  No one wants to see this movie. I hope the moron who paid for it is pleased with the money he wasted.

Wingnut Wrapup

Let's just start out with a little Glenn Beck: "Beck is promising that (his upcoming Jerusalem) rally will be a "life-changing, life-altering event" that could "change the direction of the world" and open up "the very gates of Heaven." Glenn Beck is going to open up the gates of heaven...Don't put too much money on that one, Glenn.  You know you just lost your main job- not a time to be gambling. And now on to Jim Hoft, who wins the trifecta today, as only he can do, since we retired Pammy Geller: Jim Hoft, Gateway Pundit:  "NBC Host Ann Curry Asks Commie Dalai Lama to Advise Obama on ‘Fierce Struggle’ With Republicans ...Her question should have been, “Your commie Holiness, how do you deal with a big talker with no plan?” "Commie" Dalai Lama.  Isn't that sort of like calling Churchill a Nazi?  Isn't that sort of like calling Michelle Bachmann a brain-dead lunatic?  Oh, wait...Michelle Obama is a brain-dead lun

Get Ready to Be Depressed

Psychologically and economically:  The following is being reported this afternoon: "A Congressional aide briefed on ongoing negotiations between House Speaker John Boehner and President Obama says the two principals may be nearing a "grand bargain" on to raise the debt limit which would contain large, set-in-stone spending cuts but only the possibility of future revenue increases. "All cuts," the aide said. "Maybe revenues some time in the future." Yes, just as we feared, it appears that Obama may be about to strike a "grand bargain" in which Republicans get everything and he (and we also) get screwed. Can there be a single person on earth both stupid and ignorant enough to think that the "future" in which Republicans will agree to additional revenues will ever come?  Obama knows damned well that he is giving away our future, and getting nothing in return.   At this point, I cannot think of a single rationale for taking

Table Scraps

I want to quote a very perceptive comment from Americablog: "But right now Progressives are the Table Scraps Wing of the NeoLiberal Party , and a little conflicted about staying there. Or, as Sam Seder noted on his Majority Report program today (paraphrasing): It's odd how the Obama administration starts showing up on one of the progressive social issues, just when it's screwing them on an economic one. " This leads me to something that I have been thinking about, but am almost afraid to say out loud:  Gay marriage is our abortion.  There's a difference, of course- I support gay marriage, and don't support bans on abortion.  What I mean is that, like the recent flurry of State laws aimed at stopping abortion, gay marriage is the bone that our "leaders" throw us to get us to forgive them for not dealing honestly with the real issues facing all of us. Obama is selling down the river everything it is supposed to mean to be a Democrat, and ther

Too Blunt To Be a Politician

Via Americablog.   I'm not sure who this guy is, but I like his attitude.  Maybe we should elect him to something: Nah, he's too liberal.  No one would ever vote for him.  He couldn't get anything done, because he won't compromise with Repubicans.  Best to stick with Obama.

The Plot Thickens- A Lot

From the Guardian: "News of the World phone-hacking whistleblower found dead Death of Sean Hoare – who was first named journalist to allege Andy Coulson knew of hacking – not being treated as suspicious..." Not being treated as suspicious by whom?  Scotland Yard?  Oh, that's a big surprise. Now I'm getting interested in this story.  This is just what it needed to really take off- a suspicious death.  It's finally starting to sound like an episode of Law and Order.


The Hollywood Reporter tells us:  "Sarah Palin Documentary 'The Undefeated' Claims Victory in its Box Office Debut" Well, let's see: Domestic grosses for this weekend:Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2:  $168,550,000 Undefeated:  $70,000 Victory?  We report, you decide.

Another One Falls In England

The deputy mayor of London has just announced his resignation.  It is claimed at this point that this has nothing to do with Rupert Murdoch.  We'll see.  At this point, I'm beginning to expect that the entire English government is on the Murdoch payroll, one way or the other.  We're so much better off in this country- only one of our political parties is owned by Murdoch.

No Fury Like a Lover Scorned

From the New York Times: "LONDON — The British police on Sunday arrested Rebekah Brooks, the former head of Rupert Murdoch’s media operations in Britain, according to a former associate at News International, the newspaper group at the heart of a phone-hacking scandal convulsing the Murdoch empire, the British political elite and the police. " She must have missed her latest bribe payment.

Wingnut Wrapup

I thought I might start out with a little coverage of the right wing reaction to yesterday's White House meeting with Republicans over the budget: Ann Coulter, Town Hall:  "McConnell's deal cleanly takes the debt ceiling issue off the Republicans' back and puts it on the president's back. Either the Democrats tell us what they'll cut or they'll have to admit: "We will never cut anything. Everything Ann Coulter says about us is true!"  You mean, like when she called Democrats traitors and Communists who should be violently destroyed? Ben Howe, Red State:  "More Union Workers Smoking Pot on the Job...Meanwhile, President Obama would rather storm out of a meeting than cut spending that enables behavior like this." I see. It's government spending that causes people to smoke pot.  Who knew? Erick Erickson, Red State:  "Playing the role of Hollywood President, not the real President, the President said he didn’t care if this

Good Advice

"MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippines warned Friday against using geckos to treat AIDS and impotence" A very wise thing to avoid.  So few geckos have really completed medical school.

I Bet This Economic News Will Totally Surprise You

From Think Progress: "JP Morgan Investor Report: Huge Corporate Profits Resulted Directly From Reducing Wages And Benefits As ThinkProgress previously reported, since 2009, 88 percent of income growth has gone to corporate profits, and only 1 percent has gone to wages. Now, a July 11 edition of Eyes On The Market, a JP Morgan investor report, finds that S&P 500 corporate profit margins increased by about 1.3 percent from 2000 to 2007, with profit margins reaching levels “not seen in decades.” The JP Morgan analysis concludes that “reductions in wages and benefits explain the majority of the net improvement in margins. US labor compensation is now at a 50-year low relative to both company sales and US GDP.” That is how corporations are reaching record profits- not by making better products, or by marketing them more effectively.  No, their obscene profits during this time of economic stress result almost entirely from crushing their workers, with the ever present threa

So Sad

This: "Sarah Palin Movie Debuts to Empty Theater in Orange County "Why aren't you seeing Harry Potter?" an usher said to the reporter sitting alone in the audience" Update:   And while we're on the subject, this just in: "Organizers of the Freedom Jamboree announced Wednesday that they have canceled the tea party convention planned for this fall, citing low registration. They had hoped the event would serve as a stage for Republican presidential candidates to court the conservative movement, and two — Rep. Michelle Bachmann (Minn.) and former Sen. Rick Santorum (Pa.) — had already confirmed they would attend." And the "liberal media" has spent three years now, mesmerized by this synthetic phenomenon, while ignoring the country as it goes to hell on the fast road.

Krugman, Right As Usual

And as usual, almost alone among those with a real voice in stating the obvious truth: " A number of commentators seem shocked at how unreasonable Republicans are being. “Has the G.O.P. gone insane?” they ask. Why, yes, it has. But this isn’t something that just happened, it’s the culmination of a process that has been going on for decades. Anyone surprised by the extremism and irresponsibility now on display either hasn’t been paying attention, or has been deliberately turning a blind eye. Mr. Bush squandered the surplus of the late Clinton years, yet prominent pundits pretend that the two parties share equal blame for our debt problems...So there has been no pressure on the G.O.P. to show any kind of responsibility, or even rationality — and sure enough, it has gone off the deep end. If you’re surprised, that means that you were part of the problem. " The Republican party has spent three decades descending into lunacy, and what's worse, a deliberate lunacy in the

What Happened to Sarah's Jury Duty

Remember Sarah Palin quitting her egomaniacal, self-promoting bus tour of America a few weeks ago, and then claiming that she had to go back to Alaska for jury duty?  Of course, the press was far too busy with Casey Anthony etc. to follow up on the latest disappearing act by the Quitta from Wasilla.  So, I thought I would see what vital trial she served on.  Here is a story about Sarah's alleged jury duty, in case you care. The long and short of it?  The State of Alaska does not release the names of jurors, but there is certainly no evidence that she was ever called for jury duty, which in any event would have run out at the end of June, half a month ago.  No sign that she is resuming her bus tour. I don't know about Alaska, but jurors in California get months of notice of when they are called to serve.  How is it that Sarah Palin didn't hear about her jury duty until she was in the middle of her bus tour? This woman has as much respect for the truth as I do for the D

It's That Time Again

Crack a bottle of Echezeaux and kick back.

A Little Perspective on the Debt Ceiling

Here is a chart of the history of the debt ceiling which I think shows a lot.  Sorry, it's a little low resolution, but I'm sure you will get the idea: I've added the blue blocks showing the Presidencies of Reagan and the two Bushes.  Reading off the graph, I calculate that, of the total 14.3 trillion currently allowed, 12.3 trillion was added by Reagan and the Bushes.  This is fully 86% of the total national debt, piled up by these three cynical liars, while they constantly preached the gospel of fiscal responsibility to the American people. And let's remember, when Democrats spend money it's on things like Social Security and Medicare, and on clean water and air, on safe food and on some control on renegade corporations.  When Republicans spend money, it's largely on wars and giveaways to the rich. No Republican deserves a second of respect when they lecture us on a financial situation they deliberately, knowingly created.  Obama may be weak, but he is

Washington Post- Still At It

This oh so sage comment, from a Washington Post editorial this morning, about Mitch McConnell's "plan" to resolve the budget crisis which the Republican party deliberately created: "McConnell’s escape hatch: The best Washington can do?... The McConnell approach is convoluted because it is intended to allow Republicans to avoid bringing down the U.S. economy without having to cast politically unpopular votes to raise the debt ceiling...The McConnell plan offers political cover for cowardice and irresponsibility. If it is the best Washington can do, it is better than nothing. But it’s not much of an advertisement for what Washington can do." No, this plan is not "the best Washington can do."  That would be for the Republicans to get out of the way and let Democrats take serious steps to undo the damage which Conservative economics has done to the country. After stating perfectly clearly that this "plan" is nothing but a way for Republi

Real Versus Fox

Reuters headline: "Obama: Seniors Could Be Hurt Without Debt Deal" Fox headline: "Obama Threatens to Withhold Social Security Checks From Seniors and Vets"    Update:  Of course, there is no Fox mangling of the truth that Jim Hoft can't beat: "Shameless… Obama Threatens to Starve Seniors If He Doesn’t Get His Tax Hikes"


We've had truthiness for some time.  Now, a new concept, perhaps created today by the Washington Post: "Yes, Social Security in the past has not contributed to the nation’s debt. But it’s basically a meaningless fact...We are going to label this with that relatively rare rating: “true but false.” Yes, it is true that Social Security does not contribute one cent to the national debt.  But that fact doesn't fit with the Republican party line, so we will label it "true but false," i.e. really false, but sort of true in, uh, well, the real world, where Washington Post reporters spend as little time as possible, and which doesn't really count if it interferes with conservative economic cant. How can a country where this is what passes for top of the line journalism hope to survive?

False Equivalence, Once Again

From Politico: "Washington’s political mood darkened dramatically Tuesday, as the debt ceiling crisis showed signs of spinning out of control and Republicans began looking for an escape path from the default showdown they helped create. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) set the day’s tone early with a blast aimed at the president but implicitly undercutting House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s efforts to craft a $2 trillion deficit-reduction package with the administration." The Republicans "helped" to create this situation?  They created it all by themselves, and it is the height of partisan dishonesty to suggest otherwise.  And it is they, not the Democrats, who are really looking for an escape path, by aiming blasts at the President, right? But oh, no, it is the duty of the mainstream press to blame Democrats equally for every bit of the corrupt, destructive agenda that is all the Republican party has had to offer for decades.  Otherwise, no o

Wingnut Wrapup

After days of being boring beyond comprehension, our right wing brethren have apparently been poked by a sharp stick, or something- at least they've let out some painful yelps the last couple of days: Erika Johnson, Town Hall:  "China: You Know, You Guys Should Really Scale Back Your Military" Military Budgets, 2010: United States     687,105,000,000     People's Republic of China     114,300,000,000     China has a military budget one sixth the size of ours.  Maybe someone else should think about cutting their military budget.  Of course, that is not likely to happen as long as every Republican in the country is hiding under the bed whining for mama in the face of the evil Communist/Mooslim threat that faces us. Erika Johnson, Town Hall:  "Pawlenty: Bachmann's Congressional Accomplishments Are "Nonexistent" No they're not.  Michelle Bachmann has set a congressional record for ignorant stupidity. Neil Stevens, Red State:  "Net

Renew America Makes a Plea

This oh-so-sad story from anticommunist champion Renew America today: "Special message: Your prayers and support are needed If you have been inspired and informed by over the years, then now is the time to wholeheartedly hear the call and feel the need of the valiant and remarkable family that has tirelessly worked, suffered, and somehow endured to keep this vital website running — against all odds, through crisis after crisis, never asking for any benefit or compensation for their extraordinary work. RenewAmerica's president and editor, Stephen Stone, has been under immense pressure for quite some time — persecuted and betrayed by many persons and institutions he has served and trusted, in addition to the everyday challenges of running such a grand and excellent website, while trying to take care of his family. Even a true man of God, as Stephen is, can sometimes be overtaken by the enemy. Stephen was recently rushed to the hospital with a de

A Blog Problem?

I have been informed by a valued contributor that a couple of comments he left never appeared. With the single exception of the late, not lamented Derek, who some of you may remember, I have never deleted a comment. If this has happened to anyone else, please try to let me know, and I will see if I can figure out why.  I'm really hoping this explains why I haven't been getting 600 comments on every post, like Atrios.

The Most Pointless Speech Ever Made

This one: "Obama calls on both parties to work together for deficit reduction in weekly address" Unless what he is really calling for is for Democrats to cave in to corrupt Republican demands like he always does.  Then, the speech does have a point- a really bad one. Obama continues: " We agree that after a decade of racking up deficits and debt, we finally need to get our fiscal house in order. We agree that to do that, both sides are going to have to step outside their comfort zones and make some political sacrifices." No, Barack, we don't all agree with that.  There are lots of us (probably a majority) who believe that the people who caused this problem- big business, Wall Street and the politicians who do their bidding- should pay the price of this disaster.  That is not sacrifice, it is justice.  As a start, let's return the top tax rate to what it was under Bill Clinton, raise corporate taxes, and impose crippling tariffs on American compa

Slavery- The New Working Class

I repeat in its entirety a comment today by BuzzFlash editor Mark Karlin: "Truthout carries a report today that as a result of Scott Walker's assault on public employees, prisoners are now replacing union workers in Racine, Wisconsin. It might have been perceived as an hysterical exaggeration to predict that the GOP attack on the value of labor would lead to not just low-wage jobs, but to no-wage jobs. One commentator calls this the "new slavery." This is not the first use of what is, in essence, modern slave labor in the US. Some of the Pentagon's military contractors allegedly use prisoners to assemble military equipment at slave wages (e.g., 23 cents an hour). With the loss of illegal immigrants as farm workers, prison labor is soon to follow in the agricultural fields of the South. It was one of the great advances of modern civilization that workers were granted livable wages and that their labor was recognized as having inherent dignity. Now, we

Cut My Taxes

This story from Daily Kos today perfectly illustrates something that I have been saying for years: "Republicans reluctant on Obama's aggressive deficit reduction goal Now that President Obama is pushing a larger-than-expected $4 trillion deficit reduction package, guess what: Republicans are suddenly becoming less enthusiastic about debt reduction. While John Boehner supports Obama's goal, support from his GOP leadership colleagues range from lukewarm at best to nonexistent at worst. The New York Times reported Eric Cantor and Jon Kyl opposed the $4 trillion target:     "Representative Eric Cantor, the House majority leader, and Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona, the ranking Republican on      the Senate Finance Committee, favored the midrange $2 trillion, voicing doubts about how they could sell a $4      trillion deal to their rank and file, officials said, since it would involve tax increases." So, as always, the thing stopping Republicans from getting se

THIS Is A Democrat

Nancy Pelosi, I mean.  Maybe you should pay attention, Barack: "After a contentious White House meeting with President Obama and other Congressional leaders, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) returned to the Capitol and drew an important red line: Members of her caucus won't vote for a grand bargain to raise the debt limit and reduce future deficits if the final deal includes cuts to Medicare and Social Security benefits -- and that means it probably won't pass." That's what a real Democrat sounds like.  That's what the American people want to hear- someone sticking up for them for a change, instead of caving in to Republicans every time.  That is what wins elections.