Wednesday, September 30, 2009

That's F***ing Enough!

Newsmax posts, then deletes and distances itself from an article promoting a military coup against President Obama:
Newsmax appears to have taken down its article endorsing a potential military coup as the only way to solve the "Obama problem". But here's the full text of the article as it originally appeared.

As noted previously, the article not only endorsed the idea but seemed to suggest that top military brass were also planning or actively considering such an option.

That's it: I've had it with the wingnuts and teabaggers pissing & moaning because they lost the election. GET OVER IT. A small minority of far-right idiots are parroting Fox Noise and GOP talking points, acting like spoiled children because their party is out of power, parading themselves in front of a content-starved media, and we're supposed to believe that 1) they represent anything other than an insignificant minority of fools, traitors, racists, and the terminally stupid; and 2) that they even know and understand anything about the issues they're protesting. Meanwhile, the so-called "responsible" GOP politicians are kowtowing to these mindless fools, because their base is all they have left for support, and we're supposed to believe that they represent the "loyal opposition", and respect them and their opinions?

And now we've got a wingnut actively promoting the overthrown of our legitimate, democratically elected government?

That's fucking enough.

It's time to play hardball with these bastards. Pass the needed health care legislation with 51 votes in the Senate, and let them howl. Push through Congress all the reforms and repairs needed to reverse the last thirty years of Republican-led destruction of our institutions, government, and society. Stop pretending that the GOP is interested in the welfare of our country, and ignore them in the House and the Senate; realize that all they're interested in is power. Arrest these right-wing anarchists who advocate the overthrow of the government, or the assassination of the President. And fer shitssake, stop showing these fools on cable news programs!

I know that President Obama came into office with a deep and honest commitment to bipartisan government, but when the opposition is only interested in kicking you in the balls, it's time to start kicking back. Mr. President, please remember that we elected you to repair, revive, and reform our country, that you swore an oath to "preserve, protect, and defend" the Constitution, not to spare the feelings of a small group of power-hungry bastards and their mindless drones. You know what's needed to be done, so let's do it.

To paraphrase Bill Maher, the time for the "audacity of hope" has passed; it's time for some audacity itself.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Ouch! Stabenow Puts Down Jon Kyl

Jon Kyl is an asshole, there's no doubt about that. He'll say anything and do anything to oppose any Democratic initiatives. But today he went too far for Sen Debbie Stabenow!


Just before the Senate Finance Committee wrapped up for the long weekend, members debated one of Sen. Jon Kyl's (R-AZ) amendments, which would strike language defining which benefits employers are required to cover. 

Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) argued that insurers must be required to cover basic maternity care. (In several states there are no such requirements.) 

"I don't need maternity care," Kyl said.

[...]Stabenow interrupted: "I think your mom probably did."

Catching Up

Been a tough few weeks for me: busy with my start-up, my fibro has been flaring up badly, friends and family have been in & out of the hospital, and other such stuff. So, I've missed a lot of recent foolishness: Bacus obeying his masters and delivering a health care "reform" bill that lacks a public option; the continued antics of Beck, Limbaugh, and Steele; the Rockfeller-Schumer insurgency in the Senate in support of the public option; the death of a Census Bureau worker in Kentucky, found hung with a "Fed" sign around his neck; and ACORN being punked.

However, reader Rising Sun- L brought this to my attention, and I just HAD to comment on it. Looks like ole Rush is finally displaying his white hood & robes openly:

Recently, there has been a video surfacing on the internet of a white student being beat up by a black student on a school bus. Despite the fact that both black students and white students have been beat up on buses and at other places, Rush Limbaugh believes that the beating is due to Obama. Reports say that the fight was due to a disagreement over seating and was not racially motivated.

Here’s what Limbaugh said:
“I think the guy’s wrong. I think not only it was racism, it was justifiable racism. I mean, that’s the lesson we’re being taught here today. Kid shouldn’t have been on the bus anyway. We need segregated buses — it was invading space and stuff. This is Obama’s America.”
You put your kids on a school bus you expect safety but in Obama’s America the white kids now get beat up with the black kids cheering ‘yeah, right on, right on, right on.’ Of course everybody said the white kid deserved it he was born a racist, he’s white.

Hey Rush, what was it when the lynching of black men was both epidemic, and a spectator sport? Was that "Hoover's America" then? And what are you people in Florida doing? Don't you know that Rush broadcasts from there, from an open studio? Do you need some tar, or feathers?

ALSO: go see Michael Moore's latest film, "Capitalism: A Love Story" when it opens October 2.  Highly recommended!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Why Am I Surprised? I Know That Snakes Bite

Ta-Nehisi Coates via DailyKos:

I got a note from a good friend yesterday expressing shock, and anger, about Drudge and Malkin's usage of that alleged racial beat-down on a school-bus. On some level, I wonder if something's wrong with me. I'm neither shocked, nor angry. This is exactly how I expected these fools to respond to a black president.

If anything, I'm a little giddy. For black people, the clear benefit of Obama is that he is quietly exposing an ancient hatred that has simmered in this country for decades. Rightly or wrongly, a lot of us grew tired of Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, mostly because they presented easy foils for Limbaugh-land. Moreover, again rightly or wrongly, they were used to define all of us.

It's intensely grating to live say, in Atlanta, and have some dude in Harlem crowned as your unelected leader. It's even more grating if said dude's agenda seems, in large measure, come down to standing in front of cameras and tweaking his opponents. It's no mistake that O'Reilly and Sharpton would break bread together at Sylvia's--they feed each other.

But Barack Obama, bourgeois in every way that bourgeois is right and just, will not dance.He tells kids to study--and they seethe. He accepts an apology for an immature act of rudeness--and they go hysterical. He takes his wife out for a date--and their veins bulge. His humanity, his ordinary blackness, is killing them. Dig the audio of his response to Kanye West--the way he says, "He's a jackass." He sounds like one of my brothers. And that's the point, because that's what he is. Barack Obama refuses to be their nigger. And it's driving them crazy.

It's about time.

It's gotten to the point where I have to keep a cleaning cloth next to my computer, because I spit every time I see or hear Limbaugh's name. Never mind Malkin, she's an even bigger waste of skin. I deeply loathe the way the far-right wingnuts want to resume the culture wars. The dinosaurs on the right refuse to admit that the country changed underneath their feet; notice the number of town hall disrupters and "9/12 Project" marchers who say they "want their country back." What they don't understand is that they're asking for an imaginary country to return.

I've been hearing this shit for a long time, now. What they really want is a return to a time when old white men ran everything, and people like me "knew their place." Pat Buchanan insisted on MSNBC a few weeks ago that "this country was founded and built by white men for white men." Oh. yeah? Then who worked in the fields, built the railroads, and manned the factories? Who raised the children, nursed the sick, and took up the slack in the factory when the men went off to war? Who had their land stolen from them to make this country in the first place? How's that again, Pat?

The wingnuts aren't getting "their country" back, first of all, because it wasn't just their country to begin with; second, because the rest of us aren't giving it up; and third, because even those idiots with the "Obama=Hitler" signs are better off than they would have been under the previous status quo. I worry, though, about the level of virulent hatred and fear--and the sheer stupidity!-- that I'm seeing in these great unwashed masses. The anger and violence of the 1960s is not something I want to see happen again. I don't ever want to become accustomed again, as I did in the 1960s and 1970s, to reacting to every breaking news flash with the thought, "who's been shot this time?" I don't want to see homeless people on every corner again because a heartless government tossed them out on the streets, as happened in the 1980s. And I don't want to see vital, necessary changes in our government and society thwarted because some people want to hold on to their power, like the way health care reform was killed in the 1990s.

Limbaugh and his ilk are playing a dangerous game. It doesn't take much to push an already unstable person over the edge into violence, and I really worry about this trend of bringing firearms to political meetings. President Obama, so far, has refused to play their game and not responded to their race baiting and provocation, taking the power away from their demagoguery. But take a deep recession, two wars, multiple crisises in the financial, manufacturing , and health care industries, and you get a volatile mix that can go up with just a spark. Do these fools really want a race riot?

It's very difficult to do, but I think we should start ignoring them. Let Beck and Limbaugh and Malkin piss & moan about what we progressives do; let's do everything that needs to be done, and piss them off even more!

When Will They Start Calling Him "Uppity"?

GOP wingnuts are now pushing the talking point that's it's all Pres. Obama's fault for Joe Wilson losing his fucking mind last week:

After the vote was taken, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) declared on the House floor that Obama had insulted Congress, by saying that his opponents were lying about his health care proposals. "He comes in here talking about a lie ... He says we're making wild claims," said Gohmert. "That's no way to act when you're invited into somebody else's house."

These must be the same guys who tell their battered wives that they made them hit them, too.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Thank You, President Carter!

President Jimmy Carter once again displayed his courage, wisdom, and moral clarity, saying that Rep. Joe Wilson's (R-SC) despicable heckling of President Obama during a Joint Session of Congress "was based on racism."

In an interview with NBC's Brian Williams, Carter said:

"I think an overwhelming portion of the intensely demonstrated animosity toward President Barack Obama is based on the fact that he is a black man," Carter said. "I live in the South, and I've seen the South come a long way, and I've seen the rest of the country that share the South's attitude toward minority groups at that time, particularly African Americans."

Thank you, President Carter, for saying in public what many of us said in private, bringing your personal credibility to the discussion. Thank you, sir, for being an honest son of the South, and a great American.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Domestic Violence Is A "Pre-existing Condition"?

From Pandagon, via DailyKos:

Thanks to blogger spork_incident for bringing this to my attention. According to a press release for SEIU, 9 states allow insurance companies to consider domestic violence a pre-existing condition, and use that to deny insurance claims. Eight of the 16 major insurance companies have used this right to deny coverage to victims of domestic violence.

Perversely, if you understand domestic violence, it’s easier for you to see why insurance companies would do this than it might be for someone who doesn’t realize that it’s about more than just hitting, but that it involves the abuser pulling his victim into a cycle of dependence and stalking in order to control her. Once a man has hit a woman, the odds of him doing it again are astronomical, and the odds are that he will escalate the level of violence as well, because part of being an abuser is testing your boundaries and seeing how much you can get away with before she leaves. For those of us in the humane world, the fact that a woman who has been slapped today is in grave danger of receiving a massive beatdown in the next few months or years is a tragedy that we should seek to prevent. From the insurance company’s perspective, however, a woman who is slapped today is likely someone who will incur a massive hospital bill in the future, and that’s all they need to know.

Just lovely. President Obama may well have been wrong; some insurance executives are evil. How any human being, possessed of enough reason, education, and thinking ability to even be an insurance executive, could justify a decision like this is monstrous. "Putting profits ahead of people" becomes more than a mere catchphrase when you visualize the real world impact of domestic violence upon its victims, the bruises, broken bones, and psychological trauma. A woman is beaten by her partner, beaten severely enough to require medical attention, and her insurance company refuses to pay for that treatment?

From the SEUI blog:

Words cannot describe the sheer inhumanity of this claim. It serves as yet further proof that our insurance system is broken, destroyed by the profit-mongering of the very companies who's sole purpose should be to provide Americans with access to care when they need it most.

But it's people who make these policies, not faceless corporations. Individual humans who decide that covering injuries caused by domestic violence represent an excessive risk to their insurance company's profits; therefore, health insurance coverage for these individuals should be limited or denied. How do they sleep at night?

But it doesn't end there. Pandagon again:

Besides the immediately obvious bad effects of this---particularly since a woman who has been abused before is in serious danger of getting severely hurt by the abuser, especially if she tries to leave---there are a number of unintended consequences. Obviously, the major one is that the fear of losing insurance coverage might drive victims to avoid reaching out for help, and it may even mean that they don’t get treatment for their injuries after an abusive incident. And of course, the less a woman reaches out for help, the less likely she is to get out of the situation. In addition, one form of control that abusers use over their victims is financial dependence, and impoverishing a woman by denying her health care coverage will only make her more dependent on the abuser.

At the end of the day, we are presented with yet another urgent need for health care reform, one that should be of immediate, personal concern to at least 51% of those 60,000 angry teabaggers parading around D.C. yesterday. But I'm sure Fox will tell them it's nothing to worry about, that the "liebruls" have you all worked up over nothing, Joe Bob bellows for another beer "NOW, WOMAN!", right after halftime. No, nothing about this problem is as bad as creeping socialism, how the president is no different than Stalin or Hitler, and worries that granny will be put before a government death panel staffed by ACORN revolutionaries.

The problems of health care reform are too various and complicated to address in a single blog post, or even a single blog. But I believe that the overarching drive for profit above all else leads otherwise rational and moral people to make inhumane decisions, and allows the avaricious to release their gluttonous drives fully, without reproach. In other words, greed is not good. Not for the individual, not for the society at large, and not for the soul.

What Do You Call 60,000 Racist Fools, All In One Place?

Why, a teabagger rally, of course!

Thousands of conservative protesters from across the country converged on the Capitol Saturday morning to demonstrate against President Obama's proposals for health care reform and voicing opposition to big government, what they say is over-the-top spending.

Carrying signs depicting President Obama as Adolf Hitler and the Joker, and chanting slogans such as "'No big government" and "Obamacare makes me sick," approximately 60,000 to 70,000 people flooded Pennsylvania Ave, according to the Washington DC Fire Department.

Oh yes, and signs like this one:

...and this one:

and this one:

really make me think that health care reform is all that's on their minds. And oh yeah, 9/11. And taxes. And losing their freedoms, and and....

What, you may ask, does overt racism, Nazi accusations, and the perpetuation of outrageously false accusations against the President have to do with health care reform, much less 9/11?

Well, Maureen Dowd finally gets it, at least:
(Joe) Wilson’s shocking disrespect for the office of the president — no Democrat ever shouted “liar” at W. when he was hawking a fake case for war in Iraq — convinced me: Some people just can’t believe a black man is president and will never accept it.
Let's say that again: some people will never accept a black president. It's not that they've been duped into thinking that health care reform is a bad idea, and will get with the program once it's explained to them how they'll benefit from it. It's not basic ideological differences, unless you admit that their ideology is based upon racism and wholly devoted to opposing an African-American president in everything he does. It's not simple political opposition, the same species of rightwing looniness that FDR, Kennedy, and Clinton had to endure, because none of them were ever accused of being a foreign national, an animal in the zoo, or called a liar in a Joint Session of Congress.

No, nothing could draw together crowds of overweight, Confederate flag-waving, historically ignorant (here's a hint, idiots: Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union fought each other in World War II!), sexist, uninformed, uneducated, and unwashed people--spouting off a fool's mishmash of wingnut ideas, attempting to join together the tragedy of 9/11, tax protests, the bank bailout, anti-choice agitation, and opposition to health care reform--and all of them white, unless it's all really about race. Let us not forget, lynching were a family affair not too long ago; people would bring their children and picnic baskets to the events.

Bill Clinton was excoriated nightly by the media, and daily by the man or woman on the street, but no one ever repeatedly asked to see his birth certificate, and refused to believe it valid when produced. FDR was called a traitor to his class, accused of all manner of evil things, and his wife reviled constantly, but no one ever said that his or his wife's ancestors were in the monkey cage at the zoo. No one ever heckled George W. Bush when he lied his way into war with Iraq, called him a liar to his face and before the nation.

No, all of this hatred, vilification, and disrespect has been reserved for America's first African-American president.

Sometimes, I wish Texas and some other parts of the Deep South really would secede--SEE YA! Just leave those ignorant, backwards fools behind. Unfortunately, we're stuck with them, and the president is stuck with a 21st Century version of Kipling's famous poem. President Obama now has the Black Man's Burden, and what has he gotten for it so far? Not much more than "the blame of those ye better, the hate of those ye guard." Let us hope that at least some of our own "half-devil and half-child" citizens wake up soon, and realize that we're all in this together.

Friday, September 11, 2009

The Health Care Speech, with added Comments

I haven't written about President Obama's health care speech, nor the shockingly rude behavior of Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC), because I've frankly been trying to calm down. After Wilson's outrageous, disrespectful, and patently false lie against the President, what I wanted to do was to visit harsh punishments with fire, knife, and tongs upon Wilson and his various body parts, while recording it for YouTube. Ever since Wilson had the goddamned nerve to publicly insult my president--and the honor of the House of Representatives and the entire U.S. Congress, for that matter!--during an address to a joint session of Congress, I've been asking myself, "who the hell does he think he is?!"

Well, I already knew the answer to that question. And luckily for Joe Wilson, I had other things keeping me busy this week. But I might be free after next Tuesday....

Wilson's descent into bleacher-bum behavior was, in truth, a minor scar upon an-otherwise masterful address by Pres. Obama. Thank all gods and spirits that the real grownups are back in charge! While House and Senate Republicans acted like stupid frat boys waving blank pieces of paper (the Republican health care "plan"), while hypocrites like Eric Cantor texted away on his Blackberry during the President's speech, while we got an idea of what John Boehner's "I have to eat this shit and smile?" face looks like, and while ignorant tools like Wilson mistakenly thought that they were at Wrigley Field instead of the Capitol Dome and heckled the President--President Obama gave one of the most masterful, dramatic, and inspirational speeches of his career.

The key phrase for me was "no more pre-existing conditions." That's the takeaway for me, and, I suspect, many, many others. Along with the President's proposals forbidding insurance companies from dropping your coverage when you're sick, getting rid of caps on lifetime health care expenses, and placing a limit on out-of-pocket expenses, I think that a plan that was admittedly murky last month, came into sharp focus for many, many Americans Wednesday night. I know that for myself and many close to me, these changes alone could literally make the difference between life and death, as well as the difference between solvency and bankruptcy.

We're in for a helluva fight over this health care bill. I'm thankful that my congressman, Keith Ellison, is one of the House progressives who stand foursquare for a public option; I'm thankful that my new senator, Al Franken, is a total policy wonk with extensive knowledge and deep support for the public option. (Note to Sen. Amy Klobuchar: get with it, willya?!) I intend to be outspoken, intelligent, bold, and unrelenting in this fight. This is the fight of our lifetime, people. This is the big one. We all need to do whatever we can to make this reform a reality.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Guess What the President DIDN'T Say?

Honest to God, I don't know whether to laugh, cry, or get insanely angry at the week-long outcry over President Obama's speech to America's schoolchildren earlier today. The President of the United States of America wants to give a pep talk to returning students at the start of the school year, and some idiots have a problem with that?? Hmmm, could it be that it's not just, as they claim, their fears of what he might say, but of who's saying it?


Bill in Portland Maine @ DailyKos:

[...]some parents, sensing something was amiss, kept their children away from this president and his "innocent message" on that day. No, they hadn't bothered to read his words. They didn’t have to. They were protecting their brood out of raw animal instinct; the way a mother sea turtle gathers its younglings under her shell and pre-emptively sets up a mortar emplacement when she senses danger.

Despite the mockery towards them---the taunts and eye-rolls and grocery baggers deliberately putting gallon milk jugs on top of their egg cartons at Piggly Wiggly---these moms and dads stuck to their guns and kept their children home. And they turned out to be wise indeed. For the president did have a nefarious trick up his sleeve, which he revealed suddenly and without warning at the end of his speech:

So I expect you to get serious this year. I expect you to put your best effort into everything you do. I expect great things from each of you. So don’t let us down – don’t let your family or your country or yourself down. Make us all proud. I know you can do it. Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America.

Now, when I snap my fingers, you will immediately begin operation America Belongs To Kenya Now, Beeyotch. Activation code: six six niner delta roger omega fluffy tango niner eighter later gator. [SNAP!] Go! Go!! Go!!!


I know some of the wingnuts were expecting Pres. Obama to say exactly that, but they were disappointed. Instead, he told kids to work hard, be responsible, stay in school, be persistent, work hard to succeed, and not grow up to be ignorant, inbred mouthbreathers like some of their parents. But, once again demonstrating that a license is not required to breed, these morons made their children stay at home, and denied them the inspiring opportunity to hear the President address them directly.

We can also thank FAUX News for blowing this issue up far out of proportion, as they have so many other worries of the ignorant and small-minded this summer.

The Rude Pundit:

But the parents are the best. Between the weeping tools (watch the video and see if you can pinpoint the moment the husband realizes what a horrible mistake he's made) and the almost-open racists (like the woman on Fox "news" who admitted that she just "trusted" Ronald Reagan more and would have let her daughter hear him speak), it was a parade of ignorance expressed as reasonable discourse, like listening to a particularly talented chimp try to jabber a manifesto of shit throwing.

C'mon, this is the Leader of the Free World we're talking about! Whatever happened to that line about "if you don't support the President, you're a traitor"? Oh, yeah, that only applied to old, neoconservative white men. If instead the President doesn't look like the guys on the currency, he's a secret Muslim Kenyan socialist fascist racist dictator, you're suddenly upset about a war that started eight years ago, and they want their America back--and we're not talking about Native Americans here, either.

Free-Spirited Ruminations:

When I was a kid I would have been really honored that the President of the United States would even think to speak to me and other kids. I'm getting really irritated at the fact that no matter what our president does, he is disrespected and looked at in a negative light by these people. Education is important for all kids' futures. To have the leader of our country emphasize that can only be good - and this is true whether you agree with him on other subjects or not.

Let's hope that those kids who were kept home today manage to see and hear the president online tonight or over the next few days, despite what their wingnut parents might want. And I'd make a bet that those parents won't even know how to stop them from doing that on the intertubes!


In 1988, what President did use his address to schoolchildren to promote "his anti-government, low-tax ideology, adding that he had supported 'Negro' educational institutions"?

Monday, September 7, 2009

Labor Day Edition: The Party of No

Watch this video, and then try to tell me that the Repugs are serious about "bipartisan health care reform":

80% of the American people support a public option, yet these fatcats--every one of whom is currently receiving government-run health care--is against a public option. The final bill will have a public option, or there will be no bill--and thank the spirits that Nancy Pelosi, Keith Ellison, and others will see to that. The Repugs don't care about reform, they want to kill the idea of health care reform, just like they did in 1994. They want to see Pres. Obama fail, and the Democrats lose their majority. They don't care about reform, about the will of the electorate, about choosing the morally or fiscally responsible thing to do; they don't care about life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, or the general welfare of the people. They don't care about anything except power.

A pox on all their houses. 

And hey, Pawlenty: if you want to run for president so badly, give up your day job. You suck at it, anyway.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Give 'Em Hell, Al!

Appearing the Minnesota State Fair, Sen. Al Franken shows how to deal with idiot teabaggers:

Now that's how you deal with these fools--dazzle 'em with the facts, display far-ranging powers of logical reasoning, and don't give in to their delusions. Franken isn't just a "comedian," as the MSM would have you believe--he's a Harvard-educated policy wonk with several best-selling books to his credit. His grasp of the subject and breadth of knowledge is impressive, and far surpasses that last guy (what was his name, anyway? Coleslaw? Headcold? something like that...), who was a joke. That's my senator!

Another First in the Annals of African-American History


Barack Obama (is) definitely the first black man to get attacked by the right for telling kids to work hard and stay in school.

I swear, if he gave away free ice cream to everyone in the country, the wingnuts would find fault with that, too.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Bachmann to Wingnuts: Slit Our Wrists, Be "Blood Brothers" Against Health Care Reform, Or

Michelle Bachmann Is a Stupid & Crazy Bitch, Part 1,981

The wingnuttiest wingnut of them all rides again! Congresscritter Michele Bachmann (R-Cloud Cuckoo Land) was in Colorado yesterday telling fellow reactionaries to give their all to oppose health care reform:

"What we have to do today is make a covenant, to slit our wrists, be blood brothers on this thing," said Bachmann. "This will not pass. We will do whatever it takes to make sure this doesn't pass."

[...]Bachmann also denounced a system under which some Americans pay half their income in taxes: "It's nothing more than slavery."

Notwithstanding the offensiveness of Bachmann's comparison of tax rates on the richest Americans with slavery, I have only this to say about her "slit our wrists" comment:

PLEASE!--I'll even lend you a knife.

Thanks also to TPM.