Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Coming Soon To A Kingdom Near You
Something truly hinky happened in The Heartland yesterday. Not that we weren’t forewarned . . . there was that little media dust-devil that arose, back in April, when Gov. Terry Branstad (R) released an official gubernatorial proclamation entreating Iowans to pray, fast and repent for the good of Iowa and the nation . . .
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Terry E Branstad, as Governor of the State of Iowa, do hereby invite all Iowans who choose to join in the thoughtful prayer and humble repentance according to II Chronicles 7:14 in favor of our state and nation to come together on July 14, 2014.
[read the whole freaking thing, which sounds David Barton-ish, here].
Well, July 14th arrived and, suddenly, the separation between church and state on the Capitol grounds of the Hawkeye State was only the thickness of a revival tent-flap where hundreds of Children of the Corn gathered for 11 hours of “non-denominational” prayer and repentance of a King James nature—from 7:14 am to 7:14 pm.
You see this was never meant to be your garden-variety non-denominational feel-good praying—it’s specifically prescribed to be according to II Chronicles 7:14, a favorite bible verse of Bob Vander Plaats, who has written a book entitled If 7:14. If the name Vander Plaats sounds vaguely familiar that might be because when Vd-P isn’t writing religious manifestos, he likes to run for governor of Iowa. At least in the Republican primaries for governor, he’s never quite made it beyond there in 2002, 2006 or 2010.
You also might remember Vd-P as the guy with the pitchfork at the head of the mob who successfully ran off the three justices on the Iowa Supreme Court who voted to overturn Iowa’s Defense of Marriage Act in Varnum v. Brien.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 07/15/14 at 02:59 PM
Monday, July 14, 2014
Sen. Rubio’s Ready To Be President, Bless His Heart!
Sen. Marco Rubio has been clamoring for our attention, lately, so I’ve decided to give him some. That shouldn’t take long because the man has only been a senator for two less-than-illustrious years. Prior to that he served in the Florida House of Representatives for eight years, including two as Speaker, but he’d probably just as soon we don’t delve too deeply into that period and the events that very likely rendered him unsuitable for the Romney veep job in 2012.
Nevertheless, TIME magazine went ahead and anointed him The Republican Savior in early 2013, not so much for his leadership skills or actual achievements. Apparently, it was just because they liked the “cut of his jib” i.e., telegenic, young, Christian Latino. Rubio had a bit of a rough year after that, though, when he allowed his heart to rule his GOP lizard brain, and figured out a way to give 12 million immigrants false hope of a bipartisan nature. The House of Representatives cured him of that fever dream.
Young Rubio has recently resurfaced, though, and evidently still believes the Republican Savior hype. As a result he has declared that he’s ready for the Oval Office and is confident he’d eat Hillary Clinton’s lunch . . . if she runs. If he runs . . .
And, in the process, Rubio proves Josh Karp‘s point that:
No one looks less presidential than the guy trying to look presidential.
Karp, is communications director for the Florida Democratic Party.
Al Cardenas, chairman of the American Conservative Union and a former chairman of the Florida Republican Party, said
. . . it is unfair to judge Mr. Rubio’s every move through the prism of presidential politics. Instead of being seen as an effective senator, Mr. Cardenas said, Mr. Rubio is often gauged as whether he can be the “savior of the Republican Party,” as Time magazine dubbed him last year.
It’s not been his performance that we’ve been judging; it’s the impossible set of expectations that were thrust upon him.
So, I guess it’s only fair to take a look at Sen. Rubio’s half-time record in the Senate . . .
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 07/14/14 at 03:04 PM
Friday, July 11, 2014
GOP Case Against Obama: A Few Charges Short Of An Indictment
Late yesterday afternoon House Speaker John Boehner announced to the White House, and any American with an IQ above room temperature, that his lawsuit decrying the lawless “king-like” presidency of Barack Obama is, indeed, a nothingburger. And that’s a nothinburger “hold the bun, cheese and special sauce, please.”
Boehner opened this particular gambit with the rather unorthodox legal maneuver of announcing that he intended to sue the President for numerous constitutional abuses . . . TBD:
. . . [o]n matters ranging from health care and energy to foreign policy and education, President Obama has repeatedly run an end-around on the American people and their elected legislators, straining the boundaries of the solemn oath he took on Inauguration Day.
That’s clear as mud . . . Imagine your co-worker puts a Post-it on your desk that says “Planning to sue you, just not sure what about yet . . . stay tuned.”
Nevertheless, Mr Boehner floated the idea to his caucus in a memo, leaked it to the press, and defended it in a CNN Op-Ed, all within about 2 weeks time which, these days, is warp speed for anything House-related. He’s under time pressure, you see, because he wants to draft a resolution and vote on it before the end of July recess, because . . . the Constitution can’t wait!
After months of feverish Right-eous rhetoric over the tyrannical lawlessness and over-reach of Obama, and days of media speculation over how sweeping the lawsuit might be, we now have a “Draft” resolution.
And, from the looks of it, Republicans were able to boil down the huge laundry list of Obama’s five years of historically egregious assaults on the Constitution to one slightly ink-stained white button-down shirt with French cuffs worn for the signing of the Affordable Care Act.
Something tells me this isn’t going to sit well with the torches and pitchforks set and judging by Boehner’s uncharacteristic tetchiness this week, I suspect he knows that. His mission, since he chose to accept it, was to satisfy the bloodlust of the Crazy Caucus without committing political hara-kiri—a balancing act which is getting nearly impossible to pull off.
And, I don’t suppose that the deliriously good news about Obamacare, breaking at the same time, made Boehner feel particularly confident in his options.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 07/11/14 at 12:07 PM
Wednesday, July 09, 2014
GOP Shooting Blanks In The War On Poverty
Today, Rep. Todd Rokita (R-IN) submitted a post to RealClearPolitics.com entitled “Why the War on Poverty Failed & How We Can Win It.” Let me spare you any undue excitement—he never really got around to detailing either.
Evidently. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) has stepped away from his somewhat embarrassing stint as front-man for the GOP’s “50 Years of Fail” concern trolling over the fact that, despite the War On Poverty program there are still poor people. That leaves the position open for some newbie back-benchers to cut their teeth on.
Whatever . . . Rokita has picked up the torch but appears to be having a little trouble keeping it lit. As we know from past encounters, Rep. Rokita is a bit of a wag—you might remember him as the chauvinist swashbuckler who reprimanded CNN journalist Carol Costello about her barbed questions during last Fall’s government shutdown, saying “Carol, you’re beautiful, but you have to be honest as well.”
Or that time, in 2007, when, while encouraging Republicans to appeal to more African-American voters, Rokita cited the statistic that 90% of African-Americans vote Democratic then asked:
How can that be? Ninety to ten. Who’s the master and who’s the slave in that relationship? How can that be healthy?
You get the picture . . . so Todd starts out waggish:
Fine, I admit it, you caught us red-handed—the Republican Party is the party of the “rich.”
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 07/09/14 at 01:48 PM
Monday, July 07, 2014
House of Representatives: Special Victims Unit
What today’s GOP lacks in strategic success it more than makes up for with chutzpah and an apparent imperviousness to embarrassment.
Allow me to explain . . .
Make Obama a one-term president. FAIL
Repeal Obamacare. FAIL
Rehab the GOP for future electoral success. FAIL
Create JOBS!JOBS!JOBS! FAIL
Sabotage economic recovery. FAIL
Maintain Perma-War status. FAIL
Prove that the White House covered up its role in Benghazi. FAIL
Prove that the White House unfairly targeted conservatives via IRS. FAIL
Defend DOMA and prevent Marriage Equality. FAIL
See what I mean? These people are like the Eveready Bunnies of headbanging.
Their latest cry for attention is to sue the president for going about the business of presidenting in the hope that some justice-challenged judge will try to send President Obama to time-out . . . or something.
Right before the July 4th break, Speaker Boehner announced this fiendishly clever plan so that representatives of the fringier fringe could go home without being pelted with rotten tomatoes by the IMPEACH!!!OBUMMER!! faction. You see, unfortunately, far too many clueless “Washington outsiders” were sent to the Capitol, in 2010, based on wild-eyed promises to repeal Obamacare and/or impeach the president for assorted crimes against TEA Party sensibilities.
Now the natives are getting restless and wondering what the hell is taking so loooooong? USA?
So it is that the GOP is feeding this new Impeachment Lite meme to distract the hordes from their now maggoty dead horse issues—OBAMACARE! IRS! BENGHAZI!—which will soon have to be buried for public health reasons.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 07/07/14 at 10:09 AM
Saturday, July 05, 2014
Immigration - Texas Two-Step Style
Normally, Texas governor “Crotch” Perry doesn’t venture too far off the reservation. Texans apparently “get him,” the rest of us, not so much. But this week his buddies on the House Homeland Security Committee transported themselves to Texas for something they call a “field hearing” titled “Crisis on the Texas Border: Surge of Unaccompanied Minors.”
The Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families recently announced that the U.S. had apprehended 24,668 unattended youths at the border in fiscal 2013, and officials expect the annual number to reach nearly 60,000 by the end of 2014.
House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Mike McCaul (R-Texas) said this week that more than 50,000 unaccompanied children have crossed into the U.S. from Mexico, with nearly two-thirds of them traveling through the Rio Grande Valley in Texas.
The discussion comes days after Obama signaled he has lost all hope of Congress overhauling the nation’s immigration laws this year. He announced Monday that he will redirect more resources to the border for enforcement efforts, adding that he would use executive actions to “fix as much of our immigration system as we can.”
The governor, of course, was invited to testify during this “field hearing” and plunged right into the deep end without his swimmies.
Currently Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is leading the government’s response to the influx of unattended children, with housing, medical treatment, transportation and other forms of assistance.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 07/05/14 at 10:54 AM
Friday, July 04, 2014
Mittmentum or Tilting At Oval Offices
My dream, for this Independence Day 2014, is a dream of sweet freedom from the Republican Party in its current psychopathic incarnation. And, for once, it looks like maybe dreams do come true!
Anyone who doubts that the 21st Century GOP is lumbering inexorably toward the tarpits of history should go, posthaste, to DraftMitt.org and savor the sweet reek of FAIL.
In an era of frantic Republican rejiggering, nothing quite says political desperation like the notion of trotting out Willard M Romney’s empty suit for yet another rackety run at the Oval Office. To me, this move says more about the dearth of talent in the Republican party and its donors’ apparent reluctance to throw good money after bad, than it does about any flimsy case that could be made regarding Mr Romney’s presidential qualifications.
One month after it’s debut, DraftMitt.org has racked up just under 29K supporters—short of a groundswell, as they say in politics. So far, no one is actually taking credit for this swell idea. The website prominently displays a disclaimer that Romney has not bankrolled it—actually it’s such a nondescript little canned site that my paperboy could have funded it. There are no RNC or other traces of GOP branding, just Mitt and Ronnie Reagan playing bookends.
Also, too, there’s the banner link using the 2012 campaign coinage retread “Mittmentum.” Ask Karl Rove about “mittmentum.” At any rate, that link takes us to the now notorious Washington Times poll that proves, at least in the echo chamber, that: “Hands down, Obama is the worst president since WWII” and that most Americans now regret not having voted for Romney in 2012.
Really? who recycles embarrassing reminders of a failed attempt? Even #DraftMitt is a recycled Twitter tag that takes one to a 2013 page tagged with “Because MA needs Mitt Romney in the Senate” with 3 tweets and 10 followers.
I could be wrong but I’m starting to get a sense of Tagg Romney, Campaign Manager, behind the scenes, here.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 07/04/14 at 10:31 AM
Thursday, July 03, 2014
Scariest Animal Wears A Gold Cross
If you don’t already know something about Laura Ingraham, you’re on your own. I’m not going to do the dirty work of introducing you to her. The Google has more than enough material for you to familiarize yourself with Laura Ingraham’s overflowing fountain of hate.
Feel the hate . . .
Laura is a hater of such epic proportions that Bill O’Reilly was forced to describe her most recent flight of immigration policy fancy as—wait for it!—draconian. And if BillO thinks it’s draconian, I’d say that Laura’s skating dangerously close to Nazi-caliber social engineering.
But Laura’s hate is not reserved for uninvited guests from south of the border. Laura Ingraham is an equal opportunity hater—she hates gays-who-aren’t-her-brother, African-Americans, Muslims, “illegal aliens,” feminists, The Left, Hillary Clinton and, basically, anyone who isn’t a young, Aryan-American, Dartmouth-educated lawyer.
Besides, what would Laura Ingraham do for a living if she suddenly stopped hating everyone? How would she support her three adopted immigrant children? Oh, you didn’t know? Why yes, Laura adopted a Guatemalan girl, who, I’m assuming is far superior to the generic Guatemalan children streaming across our borders to flee extreme violence in their homeland,
Ingraham also adopted two Russian boys. I’m assuming that she will want all of her children to be classified as US citizens, however much she doesn’t want to allow any more birthright citizenship to take place. Which is an interesting perspective for someone whose maternal grandparents were newly-arrived Polish immigrants—and, later, naturalized Americans. Doing away with birthright citizenship would have left Laura’s mother and millions of other “American” offspring of immigrant parents in a bit of a pickle.
I’m also assuming that Ingraham was, for some reason, not interested in adopting American orphans despite the fact that she doesn’t hesitate to urge young American women to eschew abortion under any circumstance.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 07/03/14 at 02:25 PM
Wednesday, July 02, 2014
The Upstaging of Judge Gowdy
(h/t Democratic Underground)
I have to tell you, Roasters, that I am more than a little sad that Judge Gowdy’s Benghazi! BENGHAZI!! Select Committee is shaping up to be one of this season’s more spectacular entertainment duds.
Since early May, I have been looking forward to a summer of popcorn and microbrews by the pool and daily doses of Judge Gowdy on the YouTube; but now it looks like I’m going to be stuck with Speaker Boehner’s Impeachment Tort or reruns of the McCarthy Hearings.
So much has happened since those heady days in May—Speaker Boehner’s bold announcement that he was appointing a Select Committee to re-re-re-re-reinvestigate the tragedy at Benghazi; Nancy Pelosi’s tough decision to boycott the committee or not; the formation of the Benghazi Truth Pac . . .
That last item—The Benghazi Truth PAC—was just the kind of Republican sideshow that suckered me into believing that we were about to witness the Greatest Show on Earth with a ringside seat in Judge Gowdy’s Kangaroo Kourt.
The BT PAC was the brainchild of Buzz Jacobs, a Bush White House operative and 2008 McCain Campaign manager currently realizing the American Dream of small business ownership. Buzz’s biz, which is essentially raising-money-for-republicans, is something called Strategic Storytelling Company.
And Mr Jacobs has selflessly appointed himself to protect Judge Gowdy and his select committee colleagues from the inevitable smear campaigns that Liberals are bound to launch because . . . Libruls!
We are preparing to help defend them from unfair and untrue attacks.
There will be teams of people looking into their backgrounds and pulling things out of context and making major issues out of them and there needs to be some balance to that.
Jacobs said he fears Democrats loyal to former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will try and “smear” the Republicans on the committee in order to protect Clinton.
He said he bases his concern on critical comments from Democrats after the special committee was created, and historically, how independent counsel Kenneth Starr was criticized during his investigation of former President Bill Clinton’s administration.
Jacobs fears that:
When we find out how disconnected the government was . . . it will not reflect well on Hillary Clinton. The left will try to distract from it and attack the messenger.
Gowdy, the object of Jacobs “strategic storytelling” said:
This investigation isn’t about my political career or anyone else’s. I do not approve of this PAC’s involvement nor do I desire to have their help in defending against attacks.
Oh DC! it isn’t really pretty what a town without pity can do. Nevertheless, Jacobs, unbowed by adversity and politically resilient said he respects Gowdy’s view on the super PAC.
If I was in his position, I would approach my job in the same way.
However, as a private citizen with White House-level national security experience, I am interested in doing what I can, within the law, to educate people about the truth and to defend those seeking the truth.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 07/02/14 at 11:53 AM
Friday, June 27, 2014
I Do Not Like This Mr Cruz
Looks like impeachment is the GOP’s meme du jour. Earlier this week we had Speaker Boehner teeing up his Impeachment Lite suit [details TBD] and yesterday Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) dusted off his hurdy-gurdy and took it out for a spin in an encore performance of his widely-ignored Impeach Eric Holder street show.
Hard to tell if it’s professional jealousy or just plain cussedness but Cruz has called for Holder to either resign or be impeached on numerous occasions during his brief but gaudy tenure in the US Senate.
Cruz certainly didn’t disappoint while introducing his most recent Impeach Holder resolution:
When an attorney general refuses to enforce the law, when an attorney general mocks the rule of law, when an attorney general corrupts the Department of Justice by conducting a nakedly partisan investigation to cover up political wrongdoing, that conduct by any reasonable measure constitutes high crimes and misdemeanors.
Sounds a little like an audition for Brother Love’s Travelling Salvation Show, eh?
However, this was the Senate, which is happy to give credit for showmanship but, nevertheless, still requires unanimous consent to move forward with such a resolution.
Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR), the chairman of the Financial Services Committee, refused, calling Cruz’s call for impeachment a “waste of taxpayers’ money” citing that:
. . . besides the three other probes being conducted by congressional committees, he and the top Republican on the finance committee, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UH), were nearly done with their own bipartisan investigation into the matter.
Wyden also questioned the need for a special prosecutor when, after multiple investigations over 13 months, there is no evidence that any crime was committed.
Many of us can remember special prosecutors abusing their power, spending millions of dollars of taxpayer money and going on for years and years without concluding their investigations. Too often, special prosecutors have turned into a lawyer’s full employment program. They ought to be reserved for where there is evidence of criminal wrongdoing inside the government.
Something tells me that Ted Cruz won’t be particularly moved by that argument since he had no qualms about shutting down the government to the tune of $24 billion.
So. Let’s see where we stand here—no criminal evidence and no victims, as Mr Todd recently pointed out, for the rest of us who have been shrieking this for a year, thank you very much:
Posted by Bette Noir on 06/27/14 at 09:27 AM
Thursday, June 26, 2014
Impeachment Lite: More Drama, Less Binding
What to do, what to do? Four more months until the mid-term rapture . . . we already said we won’t be legislating, Benghaz-IRS-Gate is getting old . . . ??? Must be time for IMPEACHMENT!! Yep, that’s the ticket!
Apparently the untimely ouster of Rep. Cantor (R-VA) has breathed new life into the Speaker’s career and put a spring in his shuffle. Suddenly there’s still time for carpe diem-ish legacy-making gambits of historical proportions, moves that will etch the name “Boehner” into American History books. At least the ones in Texas . . .
And so it is that Speaker Boehner, with George Will whispering sweet nothings about becoming the “legislature’s vindicator” in his ear, is preparing to go down as “the empty suit who files an empty suit” in the ever perspicacious words of Mr. Pierce.
Michael Steel spox-splains it to us:
The President has a clear record of ignoring the American people’s elected representatives and exceeding his constitutional authority, which has dangerous implications for both our system of government and our economy, The House has passed legislation to address this, but it has gone nowhere in the Democratic-controlled Senate, so we are examining other options.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 06/26/14 at 10:37 AM
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
It’s All Over But The Cryin’ in Mississippi
Is there anything quite as pathetic as the bleating of a dirty trickster who falls prey to a dirty trick? It’s all over but the cryin’ in Mississippi but it may be some time before the cryin’ ends.
Despite the fact that TEA Party Chris McDaniel failed to win his party’s primary, outright, and was forced into a run-off election, he was very certain that he had incumbent Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MISS) beat. His defeat last night in the runoff caught McDaniel flat-footed and, in the grand old tradition of sore losers everywhere, he refused to concede the race.
McDaniel is now telling Breitbart.com that he will challenge the results. The charge? Un-Republicanism!:
McDaniel said Cochran’s decision to seek Democrats to vote for him in the Republican primary runoff was “un-Republican” which, to the best of my knowledge is not a legal term. Yet.
Nevertheless, in his best talk-radio voice, McDaniel said:
In the most conservative state in the republic this happened and if it can happen here, it can happen anywhere—and that’s why we will never stop fighting.
As you know today, folks, there were literally dozens of irregularities reported all across this state. You know why. You read the stories. You’re familiar with the problems that we have. Now it’s our job to make sure that the sanctity of the vote is upheld. Before this race ends, we have to be absolutely certain that the Republican primary was won by Republican voters. We will stand with courage, we will stand with judgment, we will stand with integrity. This is our fight conservatives. This is necessary. We are not prone to surrender, we Mississippians. A strong and sturdy people we are, a brave people we are, a people that can still lead the conservative revival in this country. We will lead the resurgence. That begins right here in Mississippi.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 06/25/14 at 12:18 PM
Monday, June 23, 2014
Happy Chemtrails To You
Sometimes it’s just so hard to decide whether or not science is a friend or foe of mankind. For example, when science tells us that we are damaging our planet because we are greedy capitalists squandering resources like spoiled children? Totally Foe. But if science or pseudoscience can be tortured into supporting our weakness for magical-thinking and political chicanery, well then! better living through chemistry, yo!
So it is that when certain denizens of Arizona tired of puzzling over the mysteries of the Sedona Vortex, or searching the Superstition Mountains for the treasure of the Lost Dutchman Mine, they cast their eyes to the skies to scan for UFOs . . . and Chemtrails!
We are all used to seeing the condensation trails or “contrails” exhausted from jet airplane engines. Then, one fine day, someone with a lot of imagination and not enough to do made the startling discovery that contrails don’t disappear as fast as they used to back in the day. I suspect that, somewhere on theplanet, some specimen of Homo sapiens has dedicated him/herself to timing the vanishing point of contrails because . . . intellectual curiosity?
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 06/23/14 at 01:42 PM
Sunday, June 22, 2014
No Country For Grumpy Old Men
One of my favorite people, George Carlin, once said:
Scratch any cynic and you will find a disappointed idealist.
Which, I believe, aptly describes one of my least favorite people, George Will.
George Will and I are of the same generation so I have been around for every captivating moment of Will’s philosopher-newsman journalistic career and I’m afraid that I am in total agreement with Frank Moraes of Frankly Curious on the merits of George Will:
I have a visceral hatred for George Will, because he is so much just William Buckley: the Next Generation. Although just like with Star Trek, the next generation has none of the spark of the original.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 06/22/14 at 11:35 AM
Saturday, June 21, 2014
“Lyin’ Ryan” Accuses IRS Commissioner of . . . Lying.
Well, it’s been a rather surreal week what with every neocon zombie rising from the crypt to dance on the graves of the hundreds of thousands whose lives they destroyed playing their chickenhawk war games. And the media rushing to capture their every demented word on the matter as if it had anything to do with reality. Or truth. Or integrity.
The whole business seemed to blindside a fair number of Americans who registered a collective STFU you squirrelly nutjobs—we got rid of you for a reason.
I think the most galling thing about this hallucinatory political theater is that most sane, average Americans expect that when people in high places are exposed as liars, traitors, cheats and troublemakers they will somehow have the good grace to shuffle away from the limelight and lead lives of quiet desperation, grateful that their fellow citizens have not punished them as severely as they deserve.
But, as we learned this week, some people are simply not “wired” like the rest of us. They don’t play by the same rules and they are obviously not burdened by conscience. Mental health experts might diagnose such people as victims of antisocial personality disorders.
A few of the characteristics of antisocial personality disorder are:
Superficial charm and good intelligence
Absence of delusions and other signs of irrational thinking
Untruthfulness and insincerity
Lack of remorse and shame
Poor judgment and failure to learn by experience
Pathological egocentricity and incapacity for love
We all know a few—these people blend. They are not disturbed enough to commit but they are certainly disturbed enough to wreak havoc in the lives of those they touch.
read the whole post »
Posted by Bette Noir on 06/21/14 at 12:35 PM