Wednesday, October 31, 2012

No Longer Undecided?

A cheering message from Daily Kos today:

"Obama's crazy good polling day

I'd hate to be Mitt Romney, because I'd hate to be that kind of dick. But I'd also hate to be him because of today's numbers in key battleground states...This is it, the stretch run, and Romney is losing ground almost everywhere...Romney has given back a huge chunk of his post-first debate gains. Florida, New Hampshire and Virginia, in particular, show massive movement back to the president..."

And why is that, do you think?

I am going to steal a page from the sort of election analysis that we expect from Republicans:  I would say that God has decided who he would rather have in the White House.

That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

Hurricane Relief- Romney/Ryan Style

You've got to love this story from Buzzfeed:

"Ryan 'Packs' Hurricane Relief Donations In During Wisconsin Photo-Op

Campaign operatives slowed down the packing to leave some for Republican Vice Presidential candidate to pose with... "Start Packing."

The order was given by a campaign staffer about 20 minutes before PaulRyan entered the GOP victory office here. Two dozen campaign staffers and volunteers pulled boxes from under six tables laden canned food and dry goods to be shipped to New Jersey for storm relief.

Just across the tables were an equal number of reporters, videographers and photographers.

...the packing was proceeding too quickly, and the supporters wearing red "Team Wisconsin" t-shirts were given the order to slow down and then to stop to be sure there were still goods to be packed when Ryan entered.  One by one the boxes were filled and loaded into a waiting U-Haul, and then they stopped to wait for the candidate."

Not is there no mendacity so big that they are ashamed of it, there is no mendacity so small that they are above it.  There have always been lying politicians.  Not all of them- Obama has been so truthful in general that the Republicans have been reduced to claiming that campaign promises he couldn't keep due to their own intransigence are lies.  But many politicians lie; just never on the breathtaking a-lie-is-always-preferable-to-the-truth scale that we have seen with Romney and Ryan.

The press has even been a little better than normal at pointing this out.  But that is all meaningless.  Romney and Ryan know perfectly well that anyone who is so ignorant that they still are capable of being persuaded, will see hundreds of their lying commercials on TV, and will never be paying enough attention to hear the rebuttals.  That is what they are betting on at this point- that they can sell a total lie to the American people, or at least to keep things close enough that they can go the rest of the way by cheating.  And it looks like their plan has a pretty good chance of working.

But, God, There's More.  I didn't have this post up for ten minutes before I discovered that Romney had been indulging himself in the same sort of sham.  Here's a Buzzfeed story about Romney's much-covered "hurricane relief" effort in Ohio:

"The plan was for supporters to bring hurricane relief supplies to the event and then deliver the bags of canned goods, packages of diapers, and cases of water bottles to the candidate, who would be perched behind a table along with a slew of volunteers and his Ohio right-hand man, Senator Rob Portman. To complete the project and photo op, Romney would lead his crew in carrying the goods out of the gymnasium and into the Penske rental truck parked outside. 

But the last-minute nature of the call for donations left some in the campaign concerned that they would end up with an empty truck. So the night before the event, campaign aides went to a local Wal-Mart and spent $5,000 on granola bars, canned food, and diapers to put on display while they waited for donations to come in, according to one staffer."

Because, of course, Romney supporters are too damned greedy to actually show up with donations for someone they don't even know.  So much for the Republican notion of private charity solving all problems. 

There is just no lie too petty for them to tell.  And, come January 20th, these guys could be running the country.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

A Big Fat Rat

Jumping a sinking ship?

Chris Christie in New Jersey yesterday:

"I spoke to the president three times yesterday. He called me for the last time at midnight last night asking what he could do. I said, if you can expedite designating New Jersey as a major disaster area that that would help us to get federal money and resources in here as quickly as possible to help clean up the damage here.

The president was great last night.  He said he would get it done. At 2 a.m., I got a call from FEMA to answer a couple of final questions and then he signed the declaration this morning. So I have to give the president great credit. He's been on the phone with me three times in the last 24 hours. He's been very attentive, and anything that I've asked for, he's gotten to me. So, I thank the president publicly for that. He's done -- as far as I'm concerned -- a great job for New Jersey."

And on Fox News, responding to Steve Doocy:

"Over the last couple of months, you have appeared throughout the country, Governor, on behalf of Mitt Romney," Doocy remarked to Christie. "[W]e hear that perhaps Mr. Romney may do some storm-related events. Is there any possibility that Gov. Romney may go to New Jersey to tour some of the damage with you?"

"I have no idea, nor am I the least bit concerned or interested..."

Now, despite all their concern trolling, do you think there is a Republican in the country, let alone the ever-nasty Chris Christie, who would say something like this if he thought Romney was going to win the election?

Republican "leaders" never do a thing that they don't see as in their own best interest.  This is an absolutely clear sign of who one Republican 2016 Presidential hopeful thinks is going to be President between now and then.  Christie needs national attention, and you can see from this behavior where he thinks he is going to get it.

UPDATE: God, is Green Eagle naive, and it took Maureen Dowd to set him right.  How could he have ever thought for one second that a Republican would act in anything but the most despicable, self-serving manner?  How could he forget every belief he has ever held sacred?

Christie is not betting on Obama, he is stabbing Romney in the back.  He knows perfectly well that if Romney wins next week, Christie is through in 2016.  So, he's doing what he can to see that doesn't happen, and apparently God is on his side.  Obama is heading to New Jersey soon, and the next few days promise to provide a magnificent spectacle.  We may end up really sad, but at least we will always have New Jersey.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Balanced Reporting

From CNN today:

"DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: In 2011, during the Republican primary, Mitt Romney said flat out that he thinks that FEMA should abolished, and should be privatized. Really?  At this moment in time, I think that’s the kind of thing, that’s the kind of comment, that could come back to haunt somebody like Mitt Romney.
GOP STRATEGIST RON BONJEAN: I have to say that I don’t think anyone, most people don’t have a positive impression of FEMA, and I think Mitt Romney is right on the button.  I don’t think anybody cares about that right now."

Of course, why do a lot of people have a negative impression of FEMA?  Because under George W. Bush, the upper echelons of FEMA were deliberatedly packed with incompetents and cronies, who totally muffed the response to Hurricane Katrina.  This is the standard Republican strategy: see to it that government does a terrible job and then use the incompetent response to make people hate government.  They have done this sort of thing over and over again, most importantly in managing the economy and the Bush-started Mideast wars.  They then use their massive financial advantage to produce propaganda to convince as many people as possible that their failures are the result of government in general, and Democrats in particular. 

It is stunning that, within four years, so many people seem to have been convinced that the Republican destruction of our economy was the fault of a President who wasn't in office when the collapse happened.  So there it is: Republican lying and the stupidity and greed of many Americans- a perfect storm.

Disaster Relief- Immoral!

Here are a couple of images, the first one almost unbelievable, of Hurricane Sandy striking Cuba.  Sandy is now officially the biggest Atlantic hurricane ever seen:

That first picture looks like something out of a disaster film, but it is apparently real.  And we're next.

Well, needless to say, Green Eagle doesn't bring something like this up without having it in mind to take a hit at Republicans.  In this case, I think it is a good idea to review some of what Mitt Romney has had to say about Federal disaster relief. Here's Mitt, in the primaries:

"We should take all of what we’re doing at the federal level and say, what are the things we’re doing that we don’t have to do? And those things we’ve got to stop doing, because we’re borrowing $1.6 trillion more this year than we’re taking in. We cannot…

KING: Including disaster relief, though?

ROMNEY: We cannot—we cannot afford to do those things without jeopardizing the future for our kids. It is simply immoral, in my view..."

Immoral.  Immoral to come together to help each other when some of us are in dire need.  And what is Romney's answer?  Well, his first thought is to slough off the Federal responsibility onto the individual States, most all of which are in such financial trouble that they could never muster the resources to deal with something like this; i.e. to just let the unlucky victims suffer.  But his real answer is a very predictable one: to privatize FEMA.

And what does that mean?  Is the private sector going to cough up the money to repair this sort of damage, out of the goodness of its heart?  Of course not.  In fact, what Romney is talking about is having taxpayers cough up the money for disaster relief, and then passing it along to private companies to take whatever profit they can, and then pass the dead minimum left on to disaster victims.  Because disaster relief is not a matter of our responsibility to our fellow Americans; no, like medical care, education, infrastructure and everything else these days, it is just one more opportunity for the rich people who own these companies to thieve whatever they can from the rest of us.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

A Truly Frightening Story on the Scale of Republican Vote Stealing

I feel almost apologetic at bringing this article from the English publication The Progressive to your attention, but of every political thing I have seen in the last few months, it may be the most important, and most sad:

"NSA Analyst Proves GOP Is Stealing Elections

Why is Mitt Romney so confident?

In states where the winner will be decided by less than 10%, of the vote he already knows he will win. This is no tinfoil hat conspiracy. It’s a maths problem. And mathematics showed changes in actual raw voting data that had no statistical correlation other than programmable computer fraud. This computer fraud resulted in votes being flipped from Democrat to Republican in every federal, senatorial, congressional and gubernatorial election since 2008 (thus far) and in the 2012 primary contests from other Republicans to Mitt Romney."

The article goes on at some length to demonstrate the truth of these claims, and is enough to send any decent person into a state of profound depression, at least if they care about the survival of democracy in this country.

Funny, isn't it, that we have to read this in a publication from another country.  You know that no one from the in-the-tank mainstream press here at home will get within miles of this story, no matter how well documented it is.  If this guy is right, we are finished here.  Please take the time to read at least some of the evidence behind these claims, as if this is true, nothing we do can make a difference, and we are one step away from becoming a third world dictatorship.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Your Mainstream Press- CNN Edition

I couldn't resist stealing this screen shot from Daily Kos. It says so much about the mainstream press' collaboration with the Repubicans in pushing their narrative:

I have insisted for years that the press' endless adoption of the Republican position was not, as most other left-of-center commenters insist, some sort of psychological phenomenon, or the result of right wing intimidation, but was the logical result of Ronald Reagan's deregulation of the industry, which allowed the great majority of press outlets to be owned by the very wealthy. 

Here, by the way, is how CNN justifies their claim:  The true uncertainty of both figures, they argue, is about two percent, so if Romney got the absolute maximum possible and Obama got the absolute minimum, they would be just barely tied.  Of course, what CNN and others fail to tell you is that it is not equally likely for, say, Romney to get 44% or 46% or 48%; the farther from the centerpoint you get the less likely it is to be the correct figure.  There is a very, very small possibility that Romney and Obama could both be getting 48% and therefore be tied, but it is enough for CNN and the execrable former Pat Robertson employee Wolf Blitzer to hang their hats on.  They're not worried about ruining their reputations; those have been in tatters for years among those who care about the truth.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

How Soon They Forget

All anyone wants to talk about are the debates.  To listen to people from one end of the political spectrum to the other, the debates are the only thing affecting people's opinions.  Here's a sample, from Daily Kos, which I normally think is as good as it gets when you want the truth:

"On one level, that is potentially problematic news for the Obama camp. That is another day of post-debate interviews being fed into these polls (with the notable exception of the AP poll, which was almost entirely conducted pre-debate), and the movement thus far seems to be comprised primarily of float and noise within the margins of error. While that is not devastating news for the president, it is an (early) sign that another decisive debate win has come and gone without any apparent "bounce" in the head-to-head polling."

But is that really true?  Here's some data of polling results:

It's a little hard to see the months marked at the bottom of this graph, but it is clear that Romney's surge began in late September, before the first debate.  And it's sort of hard to explain how Romney could have gotten such a basically unprecedented boost from a debate win, while Obama failed to get much of anything from an equally convincing win.  I am going to be so self promoting as to point out that I predicted this on the day of the last debate.

Well, here's what everyone seems to have forgotten:  Citizens United.  People saw that first debate once, if they saw it at all, but they are now being bombarded with hundreds of misleading Republican campaign ads every day on radio and TV.  And, sad to say, it is having an effect.  Americans have come one step closer to an electoral process that can be bought and sold, and no one seems to be interested in talking about it. Fifty years of unrelenting effort on the part of Republicans to pack the Supreme Court with corrupt Justices have paid off.  As the country's demographics lean inexorably toward the Democrats, nothing can save the antediluvian Republican party except rigging the vote.  They have been working on this for a long, long time, and they may have finally crafted a way to succeed at destroying democracy.

Another Chart

Here is an interesting chart of total U.S. debt load, from Felix Salmon at Reuters, which I found via the ever-pertinent Digby.  This is all debt, not just government debt:

As you can see, since the Republican destruction of the economy, debt has been falling fast- for the first time in a half century.

Salmon comments:

"There are lots of serious threats out there to the economic well-being and security of the United States, and the national debt is simply not one of them. Nor is it US debt to GDP was rising alarmingly until the crisis, but it has been falling impressively since then...

Money is cheaper now than it has been in living memory: the markets are telling corporate America that they are more than willing to fund investments at unbelievably low rates. And yet the CEOs are saying no. That’s a serious threat to the economic well-being of the United States: it’s companies are refusing to invest for the future, even when the markets are begging them to."

As usual, these entitled people demand a solution to problems that they create, by having everyone else pay the price.  How long will the American people and the mainstream press be suckered in by this self-serving, avaricious behavior?

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


I saw this little chart at Media Matters today:

I thought I would do some tampering with it, just to make a point:

I don't think this needs much comment.  Boy oh boy, aren't you thrilled to death at the prospect of a Bush II redux Romney Presidency?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Wingnut Wrapup

Well...finally those damned debates are over.  I thought I might get a whole Wingnut Wrapup from the debates, but when I went trolling around the slime pools of the right, there was so much idiocy today, that I had to, as they say, abandon all hope of that.  Here's the result, pulled from the endless cesspool of right wing cant:

Thomas Sowell, Town Hall:  "It was a little much when President Barack Obama said that he was "offended" by the suggestion that his administration would try to deceive the public about what happened in Benghazi."

What right does he have to be offended by Republican lies about him, spoken right in his face?  He hasn't complained about it for the last four years, so that proves he's okay with being lied about.  Besides, how else can Romney win- I mean, fair's fair, right?

Chuck Norris, Town Hall:  "Have you noticed how the Obama campaign has stepped up its class warfare rhetoric as we draw closer to Election Day?"

No, Chuck, I haven't. Sorry.

John Ransom, Town Hall:  "If it’s October, Surprise! Obama Wants to Nuke Arm Iran to Get Elected"

Yes indeed, folks, Obama WANTS Iran to have nuclear weapons, because somehow that will help him win the election.  That makes sense.  And where did John learn about this dastardly betrayal?

"Obama, desperate for a diplomatic coup to cover for fading polls, fading policy and a fading public, is thought to have written a letter to Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei offering to lift some sanctions in return for a show of compliance with requirements to suspend uranium enrichment, according to Dick Morris.

“Citing an Internet report on WorldNetDaily, a conservative website,” writes the Washington Times, “Mr. Morris said a deal between the White House and the Iranian regime is in the works to ease sanctions on Iran in return for concessions on the Iranian nuclear program.”

Dick Morris!  World Net Daily! Well, that certainly relieves Green Eagle, given as how neither has ever been right about anything.  By the way, the sanctions were imposed to get concessions out of Iran about their nuclear program.  That's the whole point of them.  If we get concessions, it only makes sense that we will ease the sanctions, right?  But that would deprive right wingers of their best chance for the next glorious war, in which we could pound another essentially impotent Islamic country with a couple of trillion dollars worth of weapons, and prove what tough men we are.

Town Hall:  "Debate Recap: Romney Passes Commander-in-Chief Eye Test"

The "Commander-in-chief-eye-test."  That's a new one on me.  Too bad he flunked the Commander-in-chief-ear-test.

Mona Charen, Town Hall:  "Neville Obama"

I don't think I need to explain what this one was about. Hint: it wasn't the guy with the pet rat in Harry Potter.  This seems to be a theme today, in the wake of Romney's ludicrous performance last night- that somehow by not deciding here and now to attack Iran, Obama is acting like Neville Chamberlain.  Mona goes on a long an childish account of Chamberlain's meetings with Hitler, forgetting to mention that Chamberlain was a Conservative, whose main concern, as far as I can tell, was to not lose the Conservative party's grip on power by starting an expensive expansion of the British Military, and who, in the end, found it more convenient to claim to believe the blandishments of his fellow right winger Hitler than to risk the ire of British voters.

Michael Medved, Town Hall:  "Perhaps the most significant if unspoken argument for voters to settle on November sixth involves the bitter dispute over which candidate has lived the more virtuous, worthwhile, constructive life: Barack Obama or Mitt Romney?"

Ha.  Admitting you've lost on all of the pertinent issues, huh?  So I guess it is down to the voters to decide if Romney's serving Thanksgiving dinner to a few members of his cult balances out his having destroyed thousands of people's jobs in order to make himself obscenely rich. On second thought, Michael, maybe you should go back to lying about the apology tour.

Pat Buchanan, Town Hall:  "Negotiations -- or War With Iran? "

Spoiler alert!  Pat says war. Bet that surprised you.

Phyllis Schlafly, Town Hall:  "Political pundits have been warning about an October surprise that could affect the outcome of the presidential election. But this year's October surprise may have been the 9/11 murder of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens, along with three other Americans, and President Obama's deceitful, cowardly response.

The fallout is the collapse of the false narrative that the assassination of bin Laden brought finality to Muslim threats, the proof of the failure of President Obama's Middle East policy, and the cover-up. A cover-up is a bad act or false statement followed by an effort to conceal or mislead public knowledge."

Well, thanks, Phyllis, we never knew what the term "cover-up" meant.  Of course, no one ever said that " the assassination of bin Laden brought finality to Muslim threats."  And even if Obama's Middle East policy had been a failure, at least it didn't cost us a couple of trillion dollars and five thousand American lives.  And as for the President's "deceitful, cowardly response," does it never occur to you that lying day in and day out for decades might also be considered deceitful and cowardly?

Speaking of deceitful, here's the picture of the now three or four hundred year old Phyllis that accompanies this article:

Either this was taken during the Coolidge administration, or Phyllis needs to be investigated for terminal misuse of Photoshop.

Rich Galen, Town Hall:  "The Third and FINAL Debate: Romney Won"

Because as we learned in the first debate, whoever lies the most gets the prize.

Rachel Marsden, Town Hall:  "How the Election Could Go Wrong for Romney"

American voters could turn out to be sane?  Nice thought, but I wouldn't count on it.

Erick Erickson, Red State:  "The whole time during the last Presidential debate, Mitt Romney looked like the incumbent and Barack Obama looked like a challenger trying to keep it together."

Erick, maybe you've forgotten, but only God can make something true just by saying it is.

Moe Lane, Town Hall:  "Speaking of Bayonets… this is the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, MISTER President."

The guard in front of the tomb of the unknown soldier has a bayonet on his rifle.  Boy, that really proves a lot about the Navy.  And don't you just love the "MISTER President" thing?  Moe, why not just call him "boy" and get it over with.

John Gizzi, Human Events:  "House Foreign Affairs Republicans call Romney ‘Reaganesque’"

House foreign affairs Republicans.  Well, that was sure convincing.  Here's one of them:

“I think Mitt Romney won because he showed President Obama has had a policy of appeasement and not pursuing peace through strength,” (Idiot congressperson Iliana)Ros-Lehtinen told us shortly after the debate concluded."

Iliana, what world do you live on?  All Romney showed (once again) is that he is the biggest liar on earth.  Want some more?  Here's another Republican:

"The veteran lawmaker also said that the spokesman for the Human Rights Institute “which is a liberal organization, described the failure of the administration to unify the opponents of the Assad regime in Syria..."

The Obama administration also failed to cure cancer and get the Cubs into the world series. And being a "Chicago politician," you'd think he could have at least done something about the Cubs. Damn that bunch of incompetents. 

Roger Simon, PJ Media:  "Should Barack Obama Resign Tonight?  If Obama doesn't resign on Monday, his reputation will be destroyed forever."

Roger, who the hell do you think you are?  Dick Morris?  I am going to violate my normal policy here and link to Roger's article, because it is such a masterwork of hatred and lying that it perfectly represents Conservative thinking in the country today.  Read it if you dare.

Bob Owens, PJ Media:  "Why Romney's Right: Many Cheap Ships Safer Than Few Expensive Ones"

An opinion by someone who does not have a clue about the conduct of naval warfare since the Battle of Midway.  Carriers are not cheap, Jackass, and since 1943, virtually all ship sinkings in warfare have been the result of air attack from carriers.  A fleet of non-aircraft carrying ships, no matter how huge, would be devastated by a carrier battle group, with very little loss to the attackers. Read up on it, sometime, Mr. Know-it-all.

Larry Klayman, Renew America:  "Enough talk. It's time to act. For the "Muslim in chief," President Barack Hussein Obama, and his equally criminally minded vice president, Joe Biden, the jig is up. As set forth in an excerpted version of an indictment I intend to present to a Citizens' Grand Jury in Ocala, Fla., Oct. 29-31, 2012, both men will be held to account for the treasonous crimes they have perpetrated against the United States — endangering our national security and resulting in the deaths of brave Americans."

The "Citizens' Grand Jury."  Uh huh.  Yes sir.  The Citizens' Grand Jury.  Well, Mr. Smartypants Larry Klayman, just for your information, you have just been charged with the crime of Treason by Way of Extreme Stupidity, in front of the Green Eagle Grand Jury, AND YOU WOULD HAVE BEEN CONVICTED TOO, if Green Eagle hadn't accidentally chewed up the indictment.

World Net Daily:  "President slammed for vicious 'Obamastare'...'The media can't sell the Obama they saw last night'

Ooh, the vicious Obamastare!  That really means we should all vote for Romney. 

Now, How You Know You Lost The Debate:

Karen McQuillan, American Thinker:  "Voters Decide on President by Body Language: Romney Won the Presidency Last Night"

Body language.  Well I guess that's what you claim when you got the crap beaten out of you with actual language language.

Janice Shaw Crouse, American Thinker:  "Romney Won by Focusing on the Big Picture...His strategy worked: he focused on the big picture and avoided getting bogged down into meaningless spats over obvious distortions and misrepresentations."

"Meaningless spats" over Romney's endless lies.  No account from Janice, of course, of what the "big picture" is.  Apparently, it consists of having no details to talk about.

Rosslyn Smith, American Thinker:  "Horse Laughs for Obama ...President Obama embarrassed himself last night on horses, bayonets and submarines."

Of course, it was just about everyone's favorite moment in the debate.  But forget that- it was a huge mistake.  Who you going to believe, Rosslyn Smith or your own ears?

Leo DeCovnick, American Thinker:  "Lit with the bright flash of summer lightening, three words showed America why B.H. Obama is so spectacularly unsuited to hold the office of the Presidency...tired and frustrated, Obama let the mask slip, and the true visage of our despotic narcissist was revealed.

Leo quotes the President: 

"So across the board, we are engaging them in building capacity in these countries and we have stood on the side of democracy. One thing I think Americans should be proud of - when Tunisians began to protest, this nation, me, my administration stood with them earlier than just about any other country."

Apparently, Obama's use of the word "me," in reference to something that he helped accomplish is an unforgivable sin. Leo continues:

"Let's review some of those who have succumbed to the allure of absolute power and then conflated it with a state sponsored cult of personality; Stalin, Castro, Hugo Chavez, Mao Tse-Tung and Mussolini.  Did I miss anyone?"

There's Obama's crime!  See, when a Democrat takes any credit for anything he ever did, that's just the same as Stalin and Mussolini.  That was a convincing argument, huh?

Rick Moran, American Thinker:  "Obama Doesn't Act Like a President...Do presidents treat their opponents as imbeciles?"

The real question is whether presidents treat their opponents as congenital liars.  The answer?  Only when they are, like Romney.  And believe me, Obama has been far too nice to him.

Enough!  More soon, sad to say.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Conservative Cant Explained

Most of us have been pretty stunned by the unapologetic lying which has been the main characteristic of the Republican Presidential campaign this year.  We've seen it written large in the three debates, where Romney, confident that the remaining undecided voters know nothing about the positions he has taken for the last year and a half, could be fooled by a completely different, centrist, bipartisan (and, of course, nonexistent) Romney- a character that the other 90% of us, on both sides of the political divide, know doesn't exist.

I want to take a stab at explaining this phenomenon, which I think very few people on the left understand.  As some of my readers may know, I have spent a long time following the right.  I can remember the birth of right wing talk radio, back in the sixties, as the main voice of American Conservatism, and I want to say something about that now.

There has been a lot of talk about the connection between Republican politics and the Christian right.  The analyses of this phenomenon generally assume that Republican politicians saw a large number of low-information, and coincidentally religious, voters in the South and Midwest, and set out to systematically exploit them.  I believe this is not true. 

In fact, I believe that things happened the other way around.  The early history of right wing talk radio took place mainly on religious stations like the one I listened to- KXLU in Waterloo Iowa; and quite a number of early political broadcasters came from a religious background.  This goes back as far as the infamous Nazi supporter, Father Coughlin, and Gerald L. K. Smith, the two big names of early right wing radio.  These guys were before my time, but I remember the reverends Carl McIntyre and Stuart McBirnie, from the sixties, both characters who started out as Christian broadcasters and then moved into hard core right wing politics.

Well, what I believe people like this learned from Evangelical Christians, and later transmitted to the right wing political world in general, was apologetics.  Apologetics is the Christian art of one-way argument.  In brief, it is a form of discussion where a person starts with the a priori assumption that what he believes is absolutely the truth, with no possibility of contradiction.  Consequently, this person is only interested in manipulating people to adopt his belief, and has armored himself against any possibility of seeing any other argument.  Evangelical Christians justify any tactic to accomplish their objective, of course, by the claim that their listener's eternal soul is in jeopardy, and therefore whatever they do is in that person's interest. 

Now, on to my main point.  We on the left are accustomed to automatically expect that, when a person expresses a political view, it is because the person believes what he is saying.  It is hard for us to understand why anyone would do anything else, bu that is not what Conservatives are doing at all when they say things.

For Conservatives, political positions they take are nothing more than a way to get what they want, however irrational and indefensible that might be. 

What else could explain their willingness to completely contradict what they have said before, without apparent shame or self-awareness?  They know that what they are saying is not what they believe, but only a way to manipulate people.  What else can explain how a person like Romney can totally abandon all of the Conservative positions that he has ever taken, three weeks before the election, and not have a single Conservative object?   This is because Conservatives understant what the rest of us don't- that Romney is just saying what he has to in order to be elected, and none of it means anything.  They are confident that they know exactly what he means, even though no one else may be able to figure it out.  What else could explain their clinging, year after year, to ludicrous, long discredited claims like those about Obama's birth certificate, or his "apology tour," or the nonsense insisting that global warming doesn't exist?  Their supposed positions are nothing but ways to get what they want (which generally consist in lower taxes, at someone else's expense, or No Negroes in the White House) and have nothing to do with reality.

This is a harsh view of the right, amounting to a claim that about a third of the country live in a state of near-sociopathy.  But I believe that, unlike the assumption that right wingers give a damn about the truth, it easily explains their behavior.  I've watched this sort of thing becoming ever more open as the decades have gone by, and I am positive that this alien way of thinking is what we are struggling with today.  Unfortunately, I know of no way to deal with it other than ridicule and open contradiction, which may have an effect on some people but will never reach those who are lost in this swamp of right wing delusion.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

A Thought About Romney's Poll Surge

It seems a little strange to me that everyone, from Fox News to Daily Kos, has bought into the narrative that Romney's surge in the polls was due to his performance in the first Presidential debate.

It's like everyone has forgotten about Citizens United, and the avalanche of dirty campaigning that is now engulfing large parts of the country.  I know it is easy for people in New York or Los Angeles, say, who are only seeing a tiny share of this disgusting phenomenon, to lose track of it, but it is important to remember that debates have never had the kind of effect on polls that this one seems to have produced.

I suggested long ago that, following historical precedent, the bulk of the Republican smears and lies would be unleashed on the American people only in the last few weeks of the campaign, when it would be impossible for Democrats to counteract them.  And I believe (though admittedly I don't have clear proof) that this is what is happening now.  Endless repetition of Republican lies about Obama's apology tour, which never happened, about his stealing money from Medicare, about everything including his mother being a whore, are being dumped on the electorate in large parts of the country, and sad to say, those lies are having their effect.

It seemed impossible that the American people could have been stupid enough to elect someone as grossly unqualified to be President as Reagan or Bush; and yet they did (well, sort of, in Bush's case) and the result was a vast tipping of the economic playing field in favor of the rich, and the consequent near depression.  Now, Obama's efforts, which averted that depression, are being presented as failure, and the American people could very well fall for the lies, and give power back to the Republicans, so that they can finish the job of destroying this country.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

A Noted Academic Takes a Fall

So, Dinesh D'Souza, the conservative religious authority, frequent Fox guest, and person behind one of the right wing's current smear movies about Barack Obama,  has lost his job as "president" of some miserable place called "King's College," for which he was paid the handsome renumeration of one million dollars a year, because he seems to have had a wife and a "fiancee" at the same time, while passing himself off as a paragon of Christian virtue.

Suspecting strongly that the "King's College" they were talking about here was not King's College Cambridge, founded in 1441 by Henry VI, and just down the street from Green Eagle's former school, Corpus Christi College, I thought I would find out what this particular "King's College" really amounted to.
 Above- the real King's College.  Unfortunately, I was able to find not a single
 picture of the "King's College" we are talking about here, which seems, as far
                                       as I can tell, to occupy some office space somewhere in lower Manhattan.

Well, on to this "King's College."  It apparently was founded not in 1441, but way back in 1938, by a fundamentalist evangelist, radio minister and gospel singer named Percy Crawford, in that epicenter of education, Belmar, New Jersey.  I was never able to determine what justified the name "King's College," although, unlike the one in Cambridge, it certainly was not because it was actually founded by a king.  Go figure. 

In 1994, after having moved twice, "King's College" went bankrupt and closed down.  However, the college's charter, for some reason, still remained valid, so it was subsequently bought by the Campus Crusade for Christ, one of the most malicious Christian propaganda factories in the country.  Campus Crusade for Christ still owns the place, lock stock and barrel, where they offer degrees in the following: "Business management," "Politics, philosophy and economics" and "Media, culture and the arts."  Nothing in, say, divinity or theology, which indicates, I think, something about the real commitment to Christ to be found in the Campus Crusade for Christ.

The latest figure I could find for the enrollment at "King's College" is 258 students, which means that Mr. D'Souza was being paid $3876.00 per student.  Wikipedia reports that "students sign an honor code pledging not to “lie, cheat, steal, or turn a blind eye to those who do."  Apparently, it is just fine for Mr. D'Souza to steal from and cheat them.  By way of reference, the president of Harvard University, often listed as the highest paid university president in the country (behind Mr. D'Souza, of course, at least until today- he must be so happy to have regained first place) is paid approximately $44.00 per student.

This story provides a perfect example of how people of weak or nonexistent moral fiber are enticed by ridiculous salaries to prostitute themselves to the rich by accepting phony positions at supposedly learned institutions, and then parroting Republican cant.  This is true for all of the bogus "think tanks" right wingers run, like the Heritage Foundation, the American Enterprise Institute or the Cato Institute, and it is equally true for miserable excuses for colleges like this.  Being unable to induce real academics to lie for them, it has proven easier for the right to just create fake ones of its own, which the pathetic mainstream press continues to pretend are legitimate sources of opinion, and then pay people obscene amounts of money to spread their vicious fictions.  And thus we get "controversy" over such long-decided subjects as global warming, whether cutting taxes on the rich helps anyone except them, whether women have a right to contraception, or whether we have a right to slaughter the people of any country of our choice because we are blessed by God, and on and on. 

As a famous movie character once said, "what a world."

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Real Scandal of the Debate

From our darling little Katie Pavlich over there at Town Hall, who is the only one I've seen to uncover this abominable outrage:

Katie Pavlich, Town Hall:  "Michelle Obama Breaks Debate Rules, Claps Loudly For Husband"

The horror!!!!  This was actually going to be the start of a Wingnut Wrapup, but the comments to Katie's historic revelation were so great that I am going to focus on them for the rest of this post. Among them, was this all-time great:

"I gather Marie Antoinette was equally indifferent to the plight of the peasants. However, this is closer to the murder of General Gordon at Khartoum, or perhaps the Archduke Ferdinand? Either way, I hope they're out even if we can't send them in a tumbril."

Yes, Michelle Obama's clapping for her husband is the equivalent of the massacre of British troops by religious fanatics, or the assassination that started World War I.  As an aside, let's not forget that General Gordon would have not been in the Sudan, and might very well have lived to old age if Britain hadn't decided that it had the right to run a foreign country for its own profit.

For the crime of having applauded her husband, what is the appropriate punishment?  "Send them in a tumbril," i.e. cut their heads off.  Man, that's law and order for you.

On to more:

"Shoot, I've long recognize Michelle and the girls to be nothing more than a rent-a-family, for which a whole faux history and background was invented, just like so much else about Obutthole as been manufactured to get him elected.

Only thing they were unable to do with their, "Dancing Chicken" Obutthole.....Teach him how to emulate a real American, and a leader. Both completely foreign to his mind."

Yes, Barack Obama doesn't have a real wife and two daughters- it's all some sort of gigantic fake.  Those Democrats- nothing is too low for them.

Now, this thoughtful analysis:

"Cut her a break. She was just so happy her lil man got through it without wee-weeing his pants."

Tasteful, yes. Because Obama looked so frightened by the mighty Mitt Romney.

Well, this is so much fun!  Here's some more:

"Moochelle is nothing but a spoiled BlTCH!  She is down right sickening as heII and has to be one of the WORSTE first ladies we have ever had!  Ugly fat @ss lying BlTCH who does not give a SHlT about any one butt herself!  FUMO!!!"

Unlike Ann Romney, who cares about herself, and her dancing horse.

And the hits keep on coming:

"She wasn't clapping. She was batting at the flies that constantly infest her airspace."

"Typical of the wookie, the beast is ghetto trash!"

"some creatures you just can't train to behave "

"communst pigs don't just always lie, they ALWAYS cheat too........... "

"looking at her some people shouldn't be allowed to breed "

"the classless ghetto loser is more afraid of losing her access to the govt teat then in in comrade hussein losing the election and we noticed that after the town hall was over how the hussein's embraced with both patting each other on the back, more akin to methods used to calm an infant "

and finally,

"was moochelle put back in her cage?"

All of this, in response to one remark about Michelle applauding her husband.  The 27% of this country that have utterly surrendered themselves to the greed and hatred that drive the Republican party are, I am afraid, lost to us forever, and they will live out the rest of their lives voluntarily eating away at the greatness that once distinguished this country, until nothing is left but a pathetic, poverty stricken, third world oligarchy.  And after forty years of observing this sort of thing, I do not believe there is any way to ever get them to see the miserable evil to which they have voluntarily surrendered themselves.

Have a nice day!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

A Pessimistic Response from Green Eagle

Well, everyone on MSNBC, etc, is so excited about Obama's debate performance tonight.

I don't believe that this is going to turn around the surge for Romney, and here's why:

This is a guess on my part, but remember that, never in history, has a Presidential debate had the effect on polls that this one is alleged to have had.  I think something else is happening, and I predicted this some time ago.  We are now in the month before the election, when there is not enough time for Democrats to refute Republican lies and smears.  Now, the avalanche of corporate financed sludge in favor of Romney is pouring forth.  On the coasts, we don't see it so much, but now is their chance to buy the Presidency, and as far as I can tell, they are having pretty good luck at it.  Will it work in the end? I don't know, but they are sure in the process of giving it the billion dollar try.

I hope I'm wrong, but I never am when it comes to overestimating the Republicans' evil when it comes to their lust to control this country.  Whatever you can think of, what they are up to is always worse.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Nothing Too Low

Here is the latest disgusting smear of Obama circulating on the Right today: 

"Obama wears a ring that says in Arabic, "There is no God but Allah." According to Glenn Beck's, he has confirmed through a Duke professor that the Arabic on Obama's ring says the first part of "Shahada": "There is only one God, Allah." This is the same president who will not salute the flag, and says our "Star-Spangled Banner" is too violent for him."

That, from Laurie Roth, one of the lunatic commentators at Renew America.  The story seems (surprise, surprise) to have started with the ever-nauseating Jerome Corsi at World Net Daily, who publishes the following picture:

Here's another photo showing an alleged view of the ring, which is circulating among the wingnuts:
Of course, within a day, this story has spread to numerous other right wing websites; Prison Planet, Free Republic, Conservativebyte, and on and on. 

Now, here is a clear picture of the ring, from Snopes:

Well, there you go.  I am going to make a declaration here:  As a motion picture art director, I am involved with the use of Photoshop on an almost daily basis, normally for the purpose of creating fake documents- magazine covers, driver's licenses, photographs, you name it- that appear on screen.  The "original" picture which right wingers are now screaming about was clearly modified using the clone tool, to give it a vague resemblance to some Arabic characters; a blur filter was then applied to hide the tampering. 

What a way to spend your time and effort.  Once again, there is nothing, not a single thing, that is too low for the right to propagate and then claim to believe.

Worse than a Demagogue

It is now beginning to seem like Paul Ryan is a pathological liar.  We've seen his miserable lies about his marathon and mountain climbing "feats."  Now, here is something that really shows what a hollow, empty man he is.

Many of you may have seen some of the pictures of Ryan supposedly washing dishes at a soup kitchen in Ohio a few days ago:

We've already discovered that these dishes weren't even dirty- meal service and cleanup had ended before Ryan even got there.  But the miserable disingenuousness of this photo op doesn't, apparently end there.  We now learn, from the Washington Post, that:

"The head of a northeast Ohio charity says that the Romney campaign last week “ramrodded their way” into the group’s Youngstown soup kitchen so that GOP vice-presidential nominee Paul Ryan could get his picture taken washing dishes in the dining hall.

Brian J. Antal, president of the Mahoning County St. Vincent De Paul Society, said that he was not contacted by the Romney campaign ahead of the Saturday morning visit by Ryan, who stopped by  the soup kitchen after a town hall at Youngstown State University.

...He added: “The photo-op they did wasn’t even accurate. He did nothing. He just came in here to get his picture taken at the dining hall.”...By the time he arrived, the food had already been served, the patrons had left and the hall had been cleaned.

Upon entering the soup kitchen, Ryan, his wife and three young children greeted and thanked several volunteers, then donned white aprons and offered to clean some dishes. Photographers snapped photos and TV cameras shot footage of Ryan and his family washing pots and pans that did not appear to be dirty."

Well, at least Ryan has provided us with a perfect example of the hollowness of his and Romney's claims to give a damn about anyone but the rich.   And yet, as has become acceptable "journalism" in American campaigns, the mainstream press utterly avoids examining the unfitness of Republican candidates to lead this country, and the lies and smears that are their perpetual campaign tools.  Thus, the press gave us Reagan and Bush, and did its best to help them ruin this country.  Remember these two guys before you assume that Romney won't end up levering himself into the White House.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Wingnut Wrapup- Laughing Old Guy Edition

Man, it didn't take the wingnuts (i.e. the Republican party, now clearly certifiable as a group) long to start pouring out the garbage about last night's debate, in an attempt to utterly distract people from the substance of the discussion, where Joe Biden's reality-based approach crushed Ryan's standard mix of lies and talking points.  No, we have endless attacks on Biden for having reacted to Ryan with the mix of derision and contempt that Ryan totally deserved.

Before I get to the lunacy, let's start out with a comment from the editors of the New York Times, to give a little perspective to what follows:

"Vice President Joseph Biden Jr. would not sit still for a parade of misleading and often blatantly untruthful descriptions of the state of the economy and the Republican prescriptions for it...Mr. Ryan, as always, refused to acknowledge the improvement in the economy...Mr. Ryan’s performance on foreign affairs and military issues was at best disingenuous and at worst bumbling... on Iran, he simply repeated Republican talking points about Mr. Obama’s “weakness” but did not say what Mr. Romney would do differently that would actually affect Iran’s nuclear program, apart from starting a war."

If you would like to see a lot more along these lines, you might like to look at today's pundit digest at Daily Kos.

Well, now on to the lunacy:

Guy Benson, Town Hall:  "Reviews: Laughing Joe Biden Was Condescending, Disrespectful, Arrogant...Reaction is pouring in from last night's Vice Presidential debate, which quickly descended into a one man shout-fest:  The RNC produced a rapid response video showing a split-screen of Joe Biden laughing as Paul Ryan discussed serious issues."

Well, laughing as Paul Ryan lied about serious issues.  The alternative was to simply punch the guy in the face.  Now that would have really stirred up the base.

Guy Benson, Town Hall:  "Blustering Biden, Serene Ryan Exchange Barbs in Fiery 90-Minute Debate...Ryan excelled on economic issues, gave a fabulous answer on abortion and closed strong.  He also held his own on foreign policy."

As usual, Ryan excelled on lying about what he and Romney would do if they got elected.  And why shouldn't he excel?  He's had so much practice, and the mainstream press has spent the last three years pretending that his lies are sage policy analysis.

Katie Pavlich, Town Hall:  "Biden Interrupted Ryan 82 Times During VP Debate... according to the RNC's Joe Pounder."

Yeah, but according to the RNC, Obama is a Kenyan Muslim Communist.  Like I said above, it probably would have been better if Biden had just interrupted Ryan once, with a left hook to the face, but then I'm just a liberal dreamer wishing for a utopian outcome that I know I will never see.

Tom Brokaw:  "I just don’t think you should be laughing during a discussion about thermonuclear war with Iran. … It’s a very serious issue and however amused you are, it’s about tone as well as content. … It wasn’t about being overbearing. I thought that, in terms of content, he was very effective on Iran. It was the demeanor that he showed, and these are always a combination of the two. People are impressionistic when they look at these debates, and I don’t know how this is going to play out eventually, but sometimes you have to dial that down."

Tom, how are you supposed to react to a person who is lying in your face on national TV?  Well, I know how you and the rest of the mainstream press do it- you just let them lie to you.  Well, of course, that is if they are Republicans.  Then you pretend that the Democrats do the same thing, just to further muddy the waters.  Well, I, for one, would have loved to see Biden grab Ryan by the lapels, start shaking him violently, and scream "shut your fucking mouth, you lying traitor."  I guess that's why Green Eagle is not a highly placed White House policy advisor.

Daniel Horowitz, Red State:  "The Petulant Circus Clown Drowns Out any Substance...Biden’s appalling petulant behavior, in conjunction with the moderator’s refusal to moderate the debate instead of debate the debate, allowed Biden to get out of control and make a clown of himself.  That is all anyone will remember."

That's all anyone will remember...well, that's all they will remember if people like Daniel have their way.  They will forget the part where Biden didn't let Ryan get away with his standard act of serial lying to the American people.  No, it's far more important that Biden laughed. And here's Daniel, continuing with one of the great acts of Republican projection this year:

"Lies: Nobody in politics spews as many lies in such little time with such conviction as Joe Biden.  It’s hard to dominate in a debate where someone is not following the format and uses his time to lie on verifiable facts while making up other narratives that can never be verified"

"It’s hard to dominate in a debate where someone is not following the format and uses his time to lie on verifiable facts while making up other narratives that can never be verified..."  The entire Romney campaign strategy laid out in public for all to see- only the names have been changed to protect the Republicans.

Repair Man Jack, Red State:  " Joe Biden...looked like a jerk, an ignoramus and a garrulous, intoxicated blowhard"

What, like you guys?  "Ignorant jerk" is kind of your middle name, isn't it?  Or maybe it's your first and last names, as in "Ignorant Repair Man Jerk."  There.  That sounds better, doesn't it?

Roger Kimball, PJ Media:  " Yes, he had clearly taken an extra dose of Geritol before stepping on to the stage. But he apparently chased it with a snort of laughing gas. The resulting rictus of contempt was not just ungentlemanly, it was unhinged, disturbing. This is how the vice president of the United States reacts in a serious discussion about grave national security issues.  Joe Biden is laughing. Are you?"

No, this is not how the Vice President of the United States reacts in a serious discussion.  It's how he reacts to a lying little shit whose only goal in life is to serve his corporate masters well enough to someday get a big payout, and who doesn't give a damn about the fate of the United States.

Richard Fernandez, PJ Media:  "The Democratic debate strategy was apparently to put on a show in which Biden would visually dominate Ryan. This will have two effects. The first is it will convince the Democrats that they “won” the debate. But it will probably not convince anyone else."

No, but Biden may have convinced people that Ryan is an ignorant, intellectually lacking, serial liar.  I hope that was his debate strategy, because it's the truth.

Ron Capshaw, PJ Tatler:  "Biden came across as a tired old vaudevillian engaging in some banter with an invisible straight man."

You mean like this?

Chris Wallace, Fox News:   “I’ve Never Seen a Debate Where one Candidate Was So Disrespectful”

Perhaps you've never seen a debate where one candidate deserved so much disrespect.

Jim Hoft, Gateway Pundit:  "US Catholic Bishops Dispute Joe Biden’s Fraudulent Claims on HHS Mandate...Last night at the vice presidential debate Joe Biden argued,  “No religious institution—Catholic or otherwise has to pay for contraception, none has to be a vehicle to get contraception in any insurance policy.”  Paul Ryan correctly pointed out that if this were true then why is the Catholic Church suing the Obama Administration on religious freedom?"

Maybe, because in addition to being serial child molesters, Catholic priests are manipulative liars?

Senator Rand Paul:  “I think the vice president looked a little arrogant with his Cheshire Cat arrogant smile. You know, every time Ryan responded. Almost in a condescending way as if he was so important that he knew more than on these issues than anyone else.”

No, he smiled because anyone else knows more on these issues than Paul Ryan.  Or else Ryan is just an unapologetic serial liar, like his running mate.  We report, you decide.

And this serious analysis from one of our most respected Republicans:

Mike Huckabee:  "“I thought Joe Biden came across like a guy that you meet at a cocktail party for some political event, an obnoxious drunk who’s loud and boisterous and iterrupts every conversation. He’s just the kind of guy you want to get away from as quickly as you can and go find someone else to talk to."

Well, you wanted to get away from him, Mike.  That's because he was making your guy look like a dishonest, ignorant jerk.

And now, here's the view of our debate that one of Green Eagle's favorite wingnut blogs, Renew America, presented to its readers:

Karen Pittman, Renew America:  "Hey Joe — Smilin' Joe ... Grinnin' Joe ... Simperin' Joe ... Sniggerin' Joe — what up with the dents, gent? They kept snappin' like a pair o' bitin' teeth. I mean, I know it's almost Halloween, but it was no treat to watch, I gotta tell ya: I kept thinkin' my eyes were playin' tricks. That whole time you were up there a-yakkin' I was terrified they were gonna chomp Raddatz's head off — that is, if yer pointer finger didn't poke her eye out first.  And don't even get me started on the tan...And really, I'm startin' to wonder about ya, Joe. Is there somethin' you're not tellin' me? I mean, have ya had some sort of cerebral ... accident, er whut?"

Adult analysis or what?

Michael Gaynor, Renew America:  "Ryan, 42, is a gentleman from the Midwest, where good manners are expected.  Biden, 69, took full advantage of his age. He constantly interrupted. His grinning, smirking and mugging were unpresidential and both of his much younger juniors on the stage tolerated his crotchety ways."

Apparently, it is the behavior of a gentleman to lie to the American middle class about your clear intention to destroy Medicare and Social Security, and harp away on one more of the endless phony foreign policy scandals that you people make up by the hour.

Now, believe me, this is just a small sample of the sort of thing I found online today.  But really, enough's enough.  Let's just go out with one last comment, representative of a standard resort of someone who got crushed in a debate- blame the moderator.  Believe me, there was plenty more of this, too:

Erick Erickson, Red State:  "Martha Raddatz Was Horrible...Journalists are, unsurprisingly, rallying around Martha Raddatz’s awesome performance as a moderator last night. I think Paul Ryan won the debate last night, assisted by Joe Biden’s braying jackass routine, but I think Raddatz was a terrible moderator."

Unlike, say, Jim Lehrer, who didn't seem to care a bit when the Republican candidate lied in his face over and over again.  Now, that's fair moderating- helping a Republican lie his way into the White House so he can finish the destruction of the country so masterfully begun by the last Republican administration.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

A Sad Announcement

I am very distressed to announce the untimely death of  Guy Garner, aka Mastercynic.

Guy was a frequent commenter on Green Eagle, and had been a true friend to my wife and myself for almost thirty years.

Well, I don't want to spend too long subjecting you to my sadness, but I thought I should say something.  We'll really miss him.

The Truth Shall Set You Free

There is only one thing that I have asked of Democrats, as the years and administrations pass by, and it is apparently far too much to ask.  It is simply to tell the truth to the American people. 

The Republican party, of course, has not a shred of instance in the truth.  Today's case in point and poster child for Republican dishonesty:

"WASHINGTON -- A pro-life, family-values congressman who worked as a doctor before winning election as a Tea Party-backed Republican had an affair with a patient and later pressured her to get an abortion, according to a phone call transcript obtained by The Huffington Post.

The congressman, Rep. Scott DesJarlais of Tennessee, was trying to save his marriage at the time, according to his remarks on the call, made in September of 2000. And, according to three independent sources familiar with the call and the recording, he made the tape himself."

So, here is the truth that I am talking about:  The leaders of the Republican party do not care a damn about the welfare of this country.  They don't care about a balanced budget, the welfare of our troops, American jobs, the destruction of all of us through climate change, a fair voting system, or any other damned thing they claim to champion, let alone such jackass issues as abortion or teaching idiotic myths in place of science in the public schools.  And they are willing to say anything that pops into their heads at the moment to get what they want. 

For Republicans, debate and discussion are not ways to arrive at the truth, or at a common consensus.  They are simply one more way to manipulate people into giving them what they want.  And what they want is nothing more nor less than diverting more and more of our national wealth and power into the hands of the couple of thousand richest people in the world, people like the Koch Brothers and Sheldon Adelson, who will personally pay to keep Republicans in power, as long as their only concern is making these few people richer and richer, at the expense of everyone else.

Adopting this agenda involves utterly turning your back on the truth.  It involves, at its very core, a willingness to deceive the entire rest of the American population about what they are really up to.  And once you have made your peace with dishonesty of that magnitude, a few thousand lesser lies along the way mean nothing.

This fact is the essential truth of American politics today.  Without acknowledging it, Obama can never make real progress against our greatest enemy- the forces of greed and hatred that threaten to destroy us, not in some distant future, but in the next few years, if Romney is elected President.

Well, here lies the utter failure of Obama in the debate the other night.  He preposterously treated Mitt as a fair debate partner, instead of the serial liar that he has always been, willing to say anything to anyone to get what he wants, like any good Republican. 

The really disturbing thing about this is that Obama did not do this out of diffidence or politeness, or an attempt to appear Presidential.  As far as I can tell, after four years of being savaged and betrayed by Republican, he still cannot give up the massive delusion that they are legitimate negotiating partners, who care about the welfare of all of us, instead of what they really are- rapacious predators with no more concern for their victims than a tiger or a shark, utterly sociopathic criminals who know the damage they are doing, and just don't care.

Yet, Obama reserves for himself the right to go on living in his fantasy world, in his own way as out of touch with reality as the teabaggers and birthers who hate him so much.

Continuing to put your faith in a fantasy is far worse than having a bad night on national TV.  With the latter, we can expect some adjustment next time; with the former, we can expect nothing except the destruction of any hope of avoiding a Presidency that will cause the destruction of this country.

It is long past time to for Democrats to point out the seditious, treasonous program of the Republican party.  It is long past time for Democrats to begin calling out Republican lies, big and small.  If Democrats had stood up to the Republican lie machine (and this includes major parts of the "mainstream press,") back in the days of Reagan, we would not be in the situation we are today.  But we are here, and as far as speaking the truth is concerned, better late than never.  We all need to demand this of our leaders- after all, the truth is the least we deserve.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Well, That is Certainly a Comfort to Us All

Where would we be without my hometown paper, the Los Angeles Times, to keep us abreast on world news?

"JERUSALEM — If the Messiah descends from the Mount of Olives as foretold in the Bible, America's two biggest Christian broadcasters are well-positioned to cover it live thanks to recent acquisitions of adjacent Jerusalem studios on a hill overlooking the Old City.

Texas-based Daystar Television Network already beams a 24-hour-a-day live webcam from its terrace. Not to be outdone, Costa Mesa-based Trinity Broadcasting Network last month bought the building next door."

Live coverage of the second coming.  Well, I just hope no one is stupid enough to prepay for advertising on the special broadcast.

Just In Case You Didn't Have Enough to Worry About

While we were fixated on our idiotic Presidential debate, Turkey and Syria moved closer to all out war.  Here's a picture of a Turkish city being shelled by Syria, from the Christian Science Monitor:

You might also like to read  this, from the Guardian.

Oy Vay.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

A Very Poor Performance

Well, Obama totally wasted a chance to put Romney away tonight.

I didn't want to join the endless people pontificating about what Obama needed to do in the debate, but if I could have said something to him, it was this:  Romney is going to lie in your face, over and over again.  If you hadn't figured that out already, he gave it away when he spent the last couple of weeks talking about how you were going to lie to him.  The sole thing you need to figure out is how to call him on his endless lies and dodges without seeming angry or belligerent.

Instead, Obama let Romney walk all over him and the pathetic moderator.  He's damned lucky that Romney is such a worthless candidate, or the election would have been over tonight.

Now, here is what disturbs me and makes me a little angry too.  What I saw there was not a weak debate performance.  It was the old Obama- a man who, after enduring savage attacks by Republicans for four years, refuses to let himself accept the fact that they are not acting in good faith.

In his own way, Obama is hanging on to a delusion every bit as great as the birthers.  The intransigence and dishonesty of the Republican party in the last couple of decades has inflicted a thousand times as much damage on the country as Al Qaida.  It is the greatest threat to our continued survival as a decent place for ordinary people, and we cannot have a President who is living in such a dream world that he cannot admit that to himself.

Update: just to rub it in:  In the CBS News post debate poll, 56% say their opinion of Romney has changed for the better. Just 13% say that about the President.  I cannot imagine a worse result for Obama than letting this entitled jerk rehabilitate himself with the American people.  That's just what his people wanted out of this debate, and they got it.  I am afraid that polls by Sunday or Monday will show that Obama, through his intransigent refusal to accept who he is fighting and what the stakes are, will have frittered away his entire lead, and possibly all of our futures.