Saturday, October 4, 2008

The Most Psychological Projection Ever! Quote of the Day

Early this morning John McCain's spokespeople were on the TV decrying all of Obama's "questionable" associations. One of them pointed to the article in today's NYT regarding Obama's "relationship" with Bill Ayers.

I dutifully went to to see what kind of relationship was portrayed. Obviously, the article says that there was no relationship, no friendship, no association other than the fact that they both cared about improving education. (OMG what a terrible person that Obama is!!)

What is most hillarious (or terrifying) about the article in the Times, is this quote from John McCain:

“How can you countenance someone who was engaged in bombings that could have or did kill innocent people?”

Seriously, John, are you fucking kidding me? What was it that you were doing in Vietnam all those many years ago? You dick. See a therapist, now John. Then drop out of the race and save the country from your craziness.

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Vacation for Seven of Six and Family

Folks, I'll be heading out for a week long vacation in Mexico. It's the family's annual fall trek for sun, fun, sandy beaches, fresh shrimp, margaritas and wrestling with lounge chairs poolside. Not to mention the wife's shopping for nice cheap clothes and Mexican ceramics (nice flower pots are on order). I'm sure you'll be in safe capable hands with all the other fine bloggers at the helm. Hasta la bye-bye!

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Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Two For The Money

No more confessions from me - I've done bared ma soul. But to make up for the lack of intellectual substance in my Palin-phobia, here's two good perspectives on Why Sarah?:
There can be no doubt that they picked Palin strictly as a stick to drum up the victimhood narrative--small town, hunters, big families and most importantly, women. Had Barack Obama picked Hillary Clinton, there simply is no way they would have picked Sarah Palin. To the McCain camp, Palin isn't important as a politician, or even as a person. Her moose-hunting, her sprawling fam, her hockey momdom, her impending grandmother status are a symbol of some vague, possibly endangered American thing, one last chance to yell from the rafters "We wuz robbed."

. . In election season, there is a price for being turned into a symbol. When actual journalists, with a rep to protect, show up, they are going to do their job. Which brings me to the sexism of John McCain. He knew full well what Sarah Palin was going to face if he nominated her. He knew that reporters would go through her past, that they'd quizz her on the present, that she would need to be ready, and he shunted concern aside, and tossed her to the wolves. Think on that for a mement. For one last run at the White House, he risked a future star of the party he claims to call home. How do you do that?"

So I understood Palin, from the outset, as basically the latest installment in a generation-long project of bird-flipping from the right. Beginning with Reagan, the GOP has come to understand that when it runs with amiable dunces—even putatively amiable dunces—at the top of the ticket (Reagan, Bush II), it kicks butt and (as Atrios succinctly puts it) pisses off liberals; when it runs old-school government-and-civics types who understand things like parliamentary procedure and know the names of furren leaders (Bush I, Dole), it doesn’t fare so well (Bush I won but quickly squandered the party’s Reagan Dividend; meanwhile, Quayle kept alive the attack-on-eloquence-and-arugula). The idea, of course, is to run “ordinary people” (even if they hail from families who have been among America’s political and economic elite for generations) against us Volvo-driving liberal elitists. You know that already. McCain/ Palin merely seemed the most outrageous gambit on this culture-war front, the most deliberate and direct assault on the idea that being reasonably informed about shit should be some kind of prerequisite for the presidency.

. . too many liberals and progressives continue to think it’s all a matter of being the smartest person in the room. There are plenty of Republican-voting people out there, I said, who are resentful and (guess what) bitter . . . because they truly believe they are being governed by high and mighty muck-a-mucks who sneer at their pastimes and their cherished local traditions, and they don’t see Obama (or Hillary either!) as someone who’ll give them the time of day. If this election gets framed as Ordinary People against Mr. Extra Extra Smart, I thought, the Democrats are going down in flames.

. . But then a non-imaginary interlocutor said a most interesting thing. (It was a dinner for twelve people, and I didn’t catch his name, or I’d tell you.) He pointed out that the right-wing culture war against pointy-headed intellectuals does not extend to the judiciary. On the contrary, he said, it’s as if they’re willing to run a cephalopod and a bag of hammers for the executive branch (I don’t think these were his exact words), but they actually recruit and train all their intellectual firepower for the courts (those were pretty much his exact words). And, of course, he’s right: Scalia, Alito, Roberts—these are all graduates from Pointyheaded Liberal Elite Law School, Evil Genius Division, and the glaring exception, Clarence Thomas, was a Palinesque conservative-affirmative-action fuck-you payback for the rejection of Elitist Evil Genius Robert Bork.

And the right-wing noise machine got the memo, too: witness the fact that everyone on the right, even down to bottom-feeding shriekers like Michelle Malkin, duly took up their torches and pitchforks when Bush nominated Harriet Miers. I was wrong, I realize now, to have called Palin Harriet Miers 2.0. Because Harriet Miers was ridden out of town on a rail, in a matter of days, by many of the same people who are now digging in, doubling down, and rooting hard for Palin against the mocking liberal elites. When it comes to the highest court in the land, these right-wing hacks don’t put up with no second- and third-stringers.

By the way, the second quote, Bérubé, linked to the first, Ta-Nehisi Coates, as part of his argument. If I ever get linked by the second-best blogger on earth (next to Billmon), I'd explode, so I don't know how Coates is handling it. Probably by swilling something appropriately elitist.

End of the argument is that This Shit Plays, and plays with some substantial part of the electorate. The part that feels justified in being outraged over one red cent being taxed from their paycheck, the manger scene being moved from City Hall to the Baptist Church, the minorities demanding more than what JoeBlow thinks he gets, the flaming queers, and any ban against weapons designed for more than shooting lower animals.

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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Wherin My Anxiety Reaches Out And Throttles Me Just For Fun.

We all know who this woman is, of course.

One of the things I haven't let on to you yet is how much Gov. Sarah Palin just creeps me out.

It's not her policies or stands, nor her woefully unprepared skill set. All of those on their own would cause me to loath her politically. But personally I'd wish her no evil.

It's how much she reminds me of my ex. Look, body shape, attitude, mannerisms, & atonal nasal voice. Also the fundamentalist evangelical faith, absolutism (except when it concerns her), and hopping colleges. Throw in a mane of red hair to die for, an unbelievable number of freckles, and you have my ex.

The only thing Palin's short on in my personal ex comparison is a ridiculously short and hot temper. But guess her running mate brings that to the table, huh?

That's why I fear Sarah Palin. Been there, still paying the child support.

Aiggggghhhhhhh! I wanna crawl under a desk and sob. The ex said almost this same exactly thing to me once.
"Andrew, I watch you at these debates with no notes, no papers and yet when asked questions you spout off facts, figures and policies and I'm amazed. But then I look out into the audience and I ask myself, 'Does any of this really matter?' " Palin said.

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The Next Hail Mary?!

Everyone is wondering what John McCain will do next to get some attention on his floundering campaign. Why he would want attention, when getting people to actually pay attention to his idiocy always seems to backfire, is beyond me; but he wants it nonetheless.

Remember, a while ago, when the conventional wisdom was "if the election is about Obama, then he'll lose - If it is about McCain, then Obama will win." Remember that? I guess John McCain does not.

There has been a lot of talk about dropping Palin. The linked article talks about Palin's debate prep strategy, but there is a little gem buried in it:

For his part, Mr. Palin has worried about the frequent separation of his wife from her family, friends and Alaska staff, an adviser said. Accordingly, her family will be with her in Sedona during this week. Also, a key Alaska staffer joined the Palin operation Sunday.
(h/t to Mudflats for pointing this out.)

So, they might be laying the groundwork for Palin to drop out, due to "family considerations." This was the recommendation of the conservative pundit, Kathleen Parker, last week, who called for her to quit.

Pulling an Eagleton with Palin just does not seem risky enough for McCain. He seems to like those really big, really bizarre moves, or the really slimy ones.

I have a hard time believing that even the McCain/Palin campaign would be so horrible as to force a 17 year old girl into such a disgusting ploy for media attention, but, who knows anymore. I just can't imagine that they would do that to her. That quote though, supposedly from the McCain adviser, is just too much:

“It would be fantastic,” said a McCain insider. “You would have every TV camera there. The entire country would be watching. It would shut down the race for a week.”

Gross. It is just too hard to believe.

So, my question is, what do you think will be McCain's next big move?

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Monday, September 29, 2008

Infuriating Dickheads!

We are finely starting to get some cool mornings here in Arizona, we can open up our windows and get some fresh air. Get my "cup of Joe", sit down and read my paper, relax, turn on the tube... what do I see reported from CNN... a 2 minute segment being done on an article I just read about from the Christian Science Monitor.

What a dickhead John Roberts... reporting the story on conservative preacher dickheads who support dickhead, John McCain!

Pulpit politics: Pastors to defy IRS
Some plan to endorse a candidate Sunday, challenging federal rules that limit partisan activity by tax-exempt groups.

During sermons this Sunday, some 35 pastors across the country will tell their congregations which presidential candidate they should vote for, "

Their endorsements represent a direct challenge to federal tax law, which prohibits tax-exempt organizations from engaging in partisan political activity.

The clergy have embraced that risk, hoping their actions will trigger an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service, which would then enable a Christian legal advocacy group to take the IRS to court and challenge the constitutionality of the ban.

The Alliance Defense Fund (ADF), a conservative legal group based in Arizona, recruited the pastors for "Pulpit Freedom Sunday" to press their claim that the IRS tax code violates the free speech of religious leaders.

"I have a First Amendment right to say whatever I want to say, and I've never thought it was appropriate that as a pastor I could not share my political concerns with the congregation," says the Rev. Gus Booth, pastor at Warroad Community Church in Warroad, Minn.

Mr. Booth will endorse Sen. John McCain on Sunday, and has already told his congregation that as Christians, they could not vote for Sen. Barack Obama due to his position on abortion.


For other clergy – and legal experts – this is not a question of free speech, but an act contrary to the law that could also be dangerous for religion, potentially dividing and politicizing congregations.

"This is not a free speech issue," says the Rev. Eric Williams, pastor of North Congregational United Church of Christ in Columbus, Ohio. "Any person, including a pastor, can endorse a candidate as a private individual. And if a church wants to do it, it can give up its tax-exempt status."

He and another Ohio pastor held a press conference Sept. 8 inviting clergy to preach against such partisan activity, and more than 100 pastors in several states did so on Sept. 21, says Mr. Williams.

The Ohio pastors also sent a complaint to the IRS requesting an investigation of the ADF and whether its initiative violated its charity status. They had the support of three former IRS officials who criticized the ADF for encouraging clergy to violate the law by endorsing political candidates.

According to the ADF, this is not about endorsing candidates, but about protecting religious expression and about who regulates what is said from the pulpit.

"We believe the decision about whether to address candidates should rest with the pastor and congregation, not the government," says Erik Stanley, the ADF's senior legal counsel.

This is religious speech, not political speech, because the pastors evaluate candidates in light of the Scripture, he says.

The prohibition against partisan activity by charitable groups was enacted by Congress in 1954, and the statute has been upheld in the courts. In three cases, courts have concluded it does not violate the Constitution's free speech clause, according to Robert Tuttle, professor of law and religion at George Washington University in Washington.

In a national poll released in August, two-thirds of American adults say that churches should not come out in favor of one political candidate over another. The Pew poll shows widespread agreement, including among Republicans and white Evangelicals (both at 64 percent).

Also, under the IRS rules, clergy are free to discuss any issues of public concern in their sermons, and houses of worship can engage in nonpartisan voter-registration and civic education.


At various times, bills have been introduced in Congress attempting to change or repeal the rule limiting partisan activity – most recently in 2004 – but they have not passed.

The Rev. C. Welton Gaddy, president of the Interfaith Alliance (IA) in Washington, D.C., sees the current initiative as part of a political strategy.

"It is not accidental that the people who want the church to take on a political identity are the people who argue there's no separation of church and state in the Constitution and that there's been a misinterpretation of religious liberty all along," he says.

In response to the ADF's initiative, the IA launched a campaign to have clergy sign a six-point pledge to uphold standards of nonpartisanship during the election campaign. Several hundred of them have done so.

"As a minister, I want religion in this nation to have the credibility, integrity, and authority to be a force for reconciliation and healing, for bringing a divided nation together, not contributing to further divisiveness," Dr. Gaddy says.

If houses of worship became "bastions of political partisanship, that would be a blow to the positive power of religion."

Mr. Booth disagrees, saying that "absolutely" churches should be able to engage in political activity, since the Bible calls for taking the gospel into every aspect of life.

Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, which mails letters to churches alerting them to the IRS rules and has reported alleged violators to the IRS, issued a warning that, "Taking part in this reckless stunt is a one-way ticket to loss of tax exemption."

The IRS says its first goal has always been education on the issue. It plans to "monitor the situation and take action as appropriate."

These shitbirds want their congregation to vote for John McCain, fine, put your money where your mouth is. Doesn't matter that McCain's running mate believes dinosaurs and man walked the earth together 6,000 years ago. Pay the fucking piper... in these days of current financial crisis we need the federal coffers filled from law breaking souls.

I couldn't agree more with Rev. Eric Williams, say what you want, just be willing to give up your "tax exempt status". And a big shout out to Rev. C. Welton Gaddy for pointing out it's "political strategy" and "As a minister, I want religion in this nation to have the credibility, integrity, and authority to be a force for reconciliation and healing, for bringing a divided nation together, not contributing to further divisiveness..." YA THINK!

OK, now that I have it out of my system... I'm going back to enjoying my pleasant morning, my "cup of Joe", read the paper in peace, probably go outside and enjoy the cool breeze (70's), turn off the boob tube and ignore the infuriating dickheads!

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