Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Say You Want A Revolution?
Unless you’re a right-wing extremist voyeur or really peculiar in other ways you were probably completely unaware of the demonstration taking place in Lafayette Square across the street from the White House, today.
The demonstration/occupation/whatever is being led by a former Reagan administration DoJ prosecutor turned birther named Larry Klayman. The name might ring a bell because Klayman showed up at the World War II memorial for the “Million Vets March,” last month, to help the Republicans who shut the memorial down, reopen it.
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Posted by Bette Noir on 11/19/13 at 02:15 PM
Sunday, November 17, 2013
Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Creepers
[Note to Roasters: By the time this is published many of the links in this post may have 404d. The subject of the post is doing some pretty extensive damage control on his own links so I’ve tried to provide alternatives with clips from original.]
Every once in a while, on a Sunday, I’m moved to check up on what the God-botherers are up to, just for the hell it. It just so happens that this week the hot story along those lines has to do with one Justin Lookadoo (I know?) whose current “ministry” is as a motivational speaker for high-schoolers [and any other age group that can cough up his speaker’s fee].
From what I can tell, the cool thing about being a Christian motivational speaker is that you don’t need any qualifications outside of being a Christian to make a full-time job of it. Lookadoo couldn’t peddle his public speaking skills to bankers, for example, because he doesn’t know squat about high yield funds or T-Bonds.
But no-one has any problem signing him up to entertain 4th period hump-day assemblies because he, like his audience, was a teenager, attended high school and he’s Christian and that’ll do the kids some good, right?
Granted, in public schools, guys like Lookadoo have to “hide their light under a bushel” because . . . separation of church and state. But, Texas, which is different, in many ways, is sort of relaxed about such quibbles.
And, so it is that Justin Lookadoo found himself before an auditorium full of teenagers at a high school in Richardson, TX, this week, just like thousands of other school speaking engagements he’s done over the years.
Except that this one broke bad and went viral. The kids in the audience started critiquing Lookadoo on Twitter and to say that they “pwned” him is something of an understatement.
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Posted by Bette Noir on 11/17/13 at 01:00 PM
Friday, November 15, 2013
Blame It On Texas
It’s become close to a truism that if political events conspire to give Republicans any kind of unanticipated boon, they will immediately find a way to fk it up, usually to disastrously hilarious effect.
And, so it is that Rep. Pete Olson (R-TX), who assures us he does not take his new project lightly, has rounded up eight other steely-eyed Texan reps, plus a handful of House conspiracy experts, to draw up Articles of Impeachment charging Attorney General Eric Holder with high crimes and other stuff that really ticks Republicans off.
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Posted by Bette Noir on 11/15/13 at 10:57 AM
Thursday, November 14, 2013
Here There Be Trolls
Congressional Republicans—they are different, you know? Going back to the Truman Administration at least (no, actually, longer than that), pols have thought it might be kind of nice for Americans to have some kind of affordable access to medical coverage so they didn’t die of easily treatable maladies. It was just this thing, you know? We thought our fellow citizens were worthwhile human beings and that maybe they shouldn’t be bankrupted in the pursuit of bodily well-being and not being dead.
Maybe not everyone got the message that our fellow citizens are worthwhile human beings who shouldn’t be bankrupted in the pursuit of bodily well-being. What strikes me as exceptionally tasteless, though, are the folks who have decided that the decades-long work to cover most Americans’ health care was a source of amusement. Like the goofy galoot pictured above, who himself follows in the vein of Asclepius.
Well, sort of. He was a doctor, but somewhere along the way, he decided that science was Satan, and I guess the whole “taking care of the sick and suffering” thing became hilarious. You know he doesn’t really care because this is how he talks about Obamacare during an EPA hearing (I know, right? Like is global warming even a thing? So boring!):
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Posted by Vixen Strangely on 11/14/13 at 08:14 PM
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
I Am Woman. Hear Me Roar . . .
Well, it’s almost a year now since Willard Romney limped offstage and exactly nine months, almost to the day, that the Republican National Committee floated its 100-page manifesto for The Great Rebranding of 2013: The Growth and Opportunity Project (GOP—get it? how clever is that?).
The GOP was chock full of searing insights and smart advice for a titanic course adjustment and anyone unfamiliar with the actual Republican Party might have thought “by Jingo, I think they’ve got it!”
The Republican Party needs to stop talking to itself. We have become expert in how to provide ideological reinforcement to like-minded people, but devastatingly we have lost the ability to be persuasive with, or welcoming to, those who do not agree with us on every issue.
Instead of driving around in circles on an ideological cul-de-sac, we need . . . a route into our Party that a non-traditional Republican will want to travel. Our standard should not be universal purity; it should be a more welcoming conservatism.
The Republican Party must focus its efforts to earn new supporters and voters in the following demographic communities: Hispanic, Asian and Pacific Islanders, African Americans, Indian Americans, Native Americans, women, and youth. This priority needs to be a continual effort that affects every facet of our Party’s activities, including our messaging, strategy, outreach, and budget.
AMEN! Y’all . . . a regular Rainbow Coalition, feel me?
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Posted by Bette Noir on 11/13/13 at 10:08 AM
Monday, November 11, 2013
I’m a Man, Yes I Am
Here’s what happened when the Arlington, TX Low-T Support Group got wind that the Arlington chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America [which consists of four gun-grabbing “moms”] were “meeting” at the Blue Mesa Grill in a local shopping center, on Saturday . . .
Characterizing the lunch date as an “Anti-Gun Rally,” the local heroes of Open Carry Texas arrived on the scene “locked and loaded,” determined to turn their devotion to their 2nd Amendment rights into an awe-inspiring flash mob that would teach those subversive Moms a lesson.
So it is that 40 or so bored, mental midgets assembled outside the door of the Blue Mesa Grill to mug for the camera, compare magazine sizes, man-scratch, spit and scare the piss out of weekend shoppers because that’s what degenerate bullies do for entertainment.
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Posted by Bette Noir on 11/11/13 at 11:12 AM
Sunday, November 10, 2013
So Let Me Get This Straight, 60 Minutes…
The respected tv news show runs a story about Benghazi, which Lara Logan says she worked on for a year, which basically melted like a snowball in a saucepan in something like 48 hours, and the correction and apology takes up just a couple minutes at the end of the show, and that is that?
Okay. We have a story that seems to have consisted of one flawed source with no corroborating eyewitness, whose book has been recalled and will be pulped, I guess. And there must be some indignity, no doubt, in 60 Minutes now being fact-checked by WND. They point out that Dylan Davies, who went by a pseudonym “for his protection” in the piece and as a nom de plume, was mentioned as having left town in a Telegraph story a year ago. This is really rather embarrassing for them, you’d think?
Or maybe they’d simply prefer not to dwell on how they got this one wrong. I do not know that it’s true, as fired former 60 Minutes exec Mary Mapes speculates, that they did this story specifically to appeal to a right wing audience, but I agree with the lesson that this is “instructive”, in the sense that just because there are people pointing to something, doesn’t mean that something is really there. I also don’t know whether a former Fox News honcho now with CBS had much to do with green-lighting the piece, except to agree that it is fascinating how stories can seem to serve certain biases, hm?
The mea culpa here seems a bit insufficient in this case particularly, though, in that the ongoing appearance of a bigger story has been the basis for a certain senator holding up Obama administration nominees--not that the spoiling of this particular line of inquiry has any effect. But all the same—if the organization is interested in getting it right, and fails, maybe they should try caring about making it right?
(And as an aside, regarding Sen. Graham’s continued quest to appear relevant in the face of his primary challenges, would it be entirely possible for him to appear actively obstructive if not foolhardy if his stand continued to turn up nothing of note? After all, if the Administration’s position as of 9/12/12 was no different than what anyone else knew at the time, you’ve not really got evidence of a cover-up at all, so much as the Administration’s failure to be omniscient—a standard that most people would agree is mighty high to expect of mere humans. I dunno. Maybe Graham is a romantic at heart and has always been prone to the menacing of aerial turbines. But this is shall we say, a Quixotic act—not realpolitik.)
(X-posted at Strangely Blogged.)
Posted by Vixen Strangely on 11/10/13 at 11:24 PM
The Fever Swamp’s Not So Deep Anymore
The news that Rand Paul got a gig with Breitbart’s organization after the Moony Times cast him loose because of repeated instances of plagiarism made me nostalgic for some of the hilarious conspiracy-theorizing that the right-wing engaged in when Carroll O’Connor’s evil doppelgänger kicked the bucket. The sheer lunacy of those paranoid comments inspired me to check out Free Republic, one of the worst fever-swamps of the American right.
I was a bit taken aback when I checked out the site, which often featured thousand-post comment threads. The most recent threads didn’t break double digits, and many of them had less than ten comments. Apparently, the moderators at the site conduct purges (recounted more fully at this right-wing site). The purging of insufficiently right-wing members of the commentariat was common enough so that the community had it’s own term for a banning. A look at the site’s web traffic revealed a precipitous drop in late 2012 (I wonder why?) and in early 2013… it seems to be clawing its way back up to a decent traffic level, but the spirit of the community seems to be diminished.
Happily, I found the site Freeper Madness, so I don’t have to actually check out Free Republic to get a dose of right-wing lunacy. Yeah, I can give my traffic to a great site, not one of the worst sites out there. For added bonus content, I’m including some Freeper comments which perfectly illustrate the combination of paranoia and narcissism that infects even rank-and-file right wingers. Beneath the fold, there’s comedy gold…
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Posted by Big Bad Bald Bastard on 11/10/13 at 06:23 AM
Friday, November 08, 2013
El Cucuy Gonna Getcha, If You Don’t Watch Out
Apparently, Ted Cruz is feeling a little insecure these days what with his highly publicized catalog of freshman fiascoes and the fact that dear old Dad, Senor Crazypants, is upstaging him at every turn, lately.
The most recent sign that Cruz is making a course adjustment was news, last week, coming out of a closed-door Republican luncheon, that Cruz has promised to “not actively campaign against” his Senate colleagues or “help raise money for their primary opponents.”
What a guy!
So. What does a megalomaniac do when he’s not getting enough attention? well, this one goes out to his own backyard and barks at the president in a typically Cruz-ian display of tastelessness and deplorably bad timing.
Days away from the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination in Dallas, TX, Cruz decides that it would be appropriate to publicly warn President Obama against coming to Dallas:
President Obama should take his broken promises tour elsewhere so Texans can continue focusing on the solutions that have allowed our state to become and remain the nation’s economic and job creation powerhouse.
No wonder some Tejanos refer to Ted Cruz as El Cu-cuy—the boogeyman.
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Posted by Bette Noir on 11/08/13 at 12:45 PM
Thursday, November 07, 2013
Innocence Bludgeoned with a Candlestick in the Conservatory
Via Whiskey Fire, I found a link to a boring old harrumph from boring old Colonel Mustard (see DijonGate) expressing outrage at the prospect of highly educated artsy-fartsy types getting free health insurance under ObamaCare instead of pursuing a soul-crushing professoriate or dying a painful, lonely death from a preventable disease in a rundown artist garret. As God intended.
The Colonel manages to work Nancy Pelosi and struggling rock musicians into his plaint about being forced to subsidize shiftless painters and textile artists—pretty standard “are there no workhouses” fare. But the real fun begins in the comments section, which starts with a complaint about “low achievers” killing the work ethic, until a self-styled member of that demographic pipes up:
Hey now! I’m a low achiever (never had much ambition), but I’m SELF-RELIANT low achiever. I ask no one to support my lifestyle but myself.
The glory of it all, is that I am civil disobedient, not enrolling, even though I would probably qualify even more than those “artists”. I draw comic characters as a hobby, and I drink Lattes. OMG, How many liberal minds just burst from the fact that I’m a tea party conservative?
Dollars to donuts the layabout cartoonist is as independent of government largesse as a fellow tea partier on a Medicare-subsized mobility scooter. And while his words seemed calculated to endear him to Colonel Mustard’s audience, the ruffian blew it by supplying a link to one of his impure doodlings to support his bona fides as an artiste. Well! That prompted a passing preacher to involuntarily become engorged, and the offended shaman dressed the cartoonist down thusly:
I’m not trying to be a jerk, but when you put down a link to something, you may want to let people know that they are about to be linked to illustrations of naked women with erect nipples, simply out of courtesy. I’m a celibate clergyman, and I try very hard not to entertain thoughts or images of naked women, especially if they look like the one that greeted me upon linking. When one tries to quiet the mind for prayer, often the day’s most memorable events, images, sounds, etc., try to pry in and disrupt one’s focus. It also helps to avoid temptation, if such images are not before my eyes and in my head. I know that many other men try to keep their virtue intact, not just clergy. The less we see of naked women, the better.
For those of you who haven’t already scurried over to Casa de Mustard to check out the titillating cartoon for yourselves, allow me to assure you that it’s a pretty harmless Catwoman knock-off. Catwoman with high-beams, mind you, but hardly a buck-nekkid siren to lure the preacher man into the pits of hell. You’ll see more salacious ads at the mall. Duh, stay off the internet, Padre!
Anyhoo, there’s no real point to this post other than pointing and laughing, so feel free to treat it as an open thread. Or take the high road and discuss whether or not destitute PhDs who pursue a career in pottery should receive subsidized medical benefits up front or just go to the hospital as uninsured ER patients and jack up medical costs for us all on the back-end.
[X-posted at Balloon Juice]
Posted by Betty Cracker on 11/07/13 at 02:28 PM
Wednesday, November 06, 2013
Consider, if you will, the career of one Jonah Goldberg, a lumpen lout guaranteed a lifetime wingnut welfare sinecure by virtue of his relation to the woman who almost brought down the Big Dog back in the 90s. Jonah has had his status as a public idtellectual thrust upon him, and no matter how many of his bulk bought “bestsellers” moulder in warehouses at Cato Headquarters, he comes across as a guy who’d rather loaf around on the couch watching bad 80’s teen comedies on Blu-Ray while mainlining Cheetos. Hell, he even referenced the movie Meatballs in a recent column in the right’s most “prestigious” publication. While his “thug with a thesaurus” predecessor William F. Buckley, could at least fake erudition, Goldberg is more comfortable making allusions to bad movies than he is conducting actual research… or even relating anecdotes from his real life.
Even when Jonah references a book, it’s often a work of genre fiction. In one unfortunate column from 2011, Jonah referred to Frank Herbert’s epic sci-fi “Dune” series. In his column, Jonah refers to an anti-computer “jihad” that features in the back-story to Frank Herbert’s novels. He then decides that an anti-TSA “jihad” is in order:
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Posted by Big Bad Bald Bastard on 11/06/13 at 10:24 PM
Tuesday, November 05, 2013
A Tale of Two Gubernatorial Contests
In a night of few surprises, Terry McAuliffe (D) came out on top in his race against VA AG Ken Cuccinelli (R), and NJ Governor Chris Christie (R) easily defended against Democratic challenger Barbara Buono. A lot of ink, virtual and digital, can be spilled over these two contests, but I am going to cover the broad outlines as I see them—
We have one somewhat Democratic win in a state that isn’t necessarily that liberal, and a Republican winning re-election in a reliably blue state that just voted to send Cory Booker (D) to Washington. This is only two contests, and neither of them give us enough information to say there’s a “trend”. Some of the voting/exit polling breakdown fascinates me in VA.
If anything, I think Cuccinelli beat himself because he really is as insulated a conservative as can be found—case in point: the sodomy thing. Seriously? You actually can’t get more socially conservative and panty-sniffing than wanting to patrol bedroom behaviors. Astonishingly, in my book, he still did better than 50% in exit polling with white males. (My personal polling experience with white males has always been very pro-sodomy.) I note that the Libertarian candidate, Robert Sarvis, did pretty well with the young people—probably Republican-identified voters who are more fiscally conservative, but not interested in Old Testament morality. The Cuccinelli campaign blew it, figuratively speaking. The best nod to Libertarian thought his campaign mustered was having Sen. Rand (You Can Say That Again!) Paul talk to the students at Liberty University, although one has to note that “libertarians” is not the plural of “Liberty University student” and that Paul spoke about eugenics and abortion, managing to miss the libertarian note in favor of reinforcing the idea of Cooch as a reductive reproductive regulator.
I don’t really have much to say about the New Jersey contest, for a handful of reasons, but most probably because I’m not even especially sure there was one? I will note that although Gov. Christie won handily, the same voters also went for increasing the minimum wage—not one of his policies. In this case, I think personality has a lot to do with it, and Barbara Buono, whatever her merits as a politician, failed to land any telling blows to her opponent, possibly out of concern that she might go “too negative”. Christie’s recent blow-up at a teacher was too recent to make any dent in his popularity, although it should have reminded of some of his more prickly moments earlier in his term. Surely, more 2016 talk for Christie will come of this win.
(X-Posted at Strangely Blogged)
Posted by Vixen Strangely on 11/05/13 at 10:49 PM
Monday, November 04, 2013
Rand Paul: Taking a Page Out of Numerous Books
If the past four weeks are a barometer, it’s going to be a loooong four years for RandPaul/2016 because, obviously, he has not yet internalized even the basics of Presidential Campaigning for Dummies.
See, when one is considering a run in a high profile national election, it’s NEVER a good idea to take a minor blip on the oppo radar and escalate it into a days-long nuclear standoff. Neither is it advisable to refer to political pundits as “hacks and haters” “unfairly targeting” you for irrefutably pointing out your sloppy work habits and lapses in judgment. That’s their job—to investigate whether or not you’re up to the job you’d like to have [or even your current one]. And, BTW, it’s not unfair to call a plagiarist a plagiarist.
In such situations the political pundit almost always comes off looking composed and well-prepared and you, dear candidate, come off looking like a testy middle-schooler.
And, of course, that’s exactly what happened to Rand Paul, this week, culminating in a disastrously silly appearance opposite George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s This Week in which Sen. Paul seesawed between making light of the “footnote police” and yearning for the old days when he could have defended his honor with bullets and shot ne’er-do-wells like Rachel Maddow dead.
I take it as an insult and I will not lie down and say people can call me dishonest, misleading or misrepresenting. I have never intentionally done so. And like I say, if, you know, if dueling were legal in Kentucky, if they keep it up, you know, it would be a duel challenge. But I can’t do that, because I can’t hold office in Kentucky then.
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Posted by Bette Noir on 11/04/13 at 10:30 AM
Thursday, October 31, 2013
Papa Don’t Preach!
We’ve all recognized for some time now that Cruz et fils is a slightly creepy sideshow especially when both the senator and Papi share the same stage and the same awkward adoring glances.
It started out innocently enough, proud father sharing some triumphal moments around election time. And the occasional human interest backgrounder interview in which Cruz, Sr. shared a few memorable anecdotes from “daddy’s little prodigy’s” past.
Like how Cruz, Sr. introduced his precocious middle-schooler to Austrian School libertarian economics and ultraconservative interpretations of US history at the Free Enterprise Education Center (FEEC). And how Teddy and a few of his little friends from FEEC created a group known as the Constitutional Corroborators who toured local Rotary luncheons to dazzle diners with their compendious knowledge of free enterprise and the US Constitution.
We’re almost a year into Cruz Jr’s reign of terror in the US Senate, though, and Cruz, Sr seems to just be hitting his stride, warming up for the Big Push. If things go according to plan, Cruz & Cruz could get a whole lot creepier.
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Posted by Bette Noir on 10/31/13 at 12:37 PM
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
Bienvenue au Canada, Grand Dick
Now that Dick Cheney has a new heart, he’s ready to resume his role of international power-broker who leaps tall buildings in a single bound. As such, he’s taking his act on the road to renew old acquaintances with the global moneyed elite who might come in handy when La Lizzie starts campaigning hard in Wyoming.
It’s not easy, though, for a convicted war criminal to globe-trot. You are forgiven if you spend most of your time in America the Beautiful and that little-known factoid escaped your attention. But, actually yes, this all happened, last year.
Per Foreign Policy Journal:
In what is the first ever conviction of its kind anywhere in the world, the former US President and seven key members of his administration were yesterday (Fri) found guilty of war crimes.
Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and their legal advisers Alberto Gonzales, David Addington, William Haynes, Jay Bybee and John Yoo were tried in absentia in Malaysia.
The trial held in Kuala Lumpur heard harrowing witness accounts from victims of torture who suffered at the hands of US soldiers and contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan.
They included testimony from British man Moazzam Begg, an ex-Guantanamo detainee and Iraqi woman Jameelah Abbas Hameedi who was tortured in the notorious Abu Ghraib prison.
At the end of the week-long hearing, the five-panel tribunal unanimously delivered guilty verdicts against Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and their key legal advisors who were all convicted as war criminals for torture and cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment.
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Posted by Bette Noir on 10/30/13 at 11:07 AM