Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Clinton/Lewinsky 2016!

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Will my world never be free of Cheney’s?  Every time one of them goes under the knife, starts a family feud or drops out of a Senate race, I think, there now! perhaps they’ll finally retire from public life.  But, alas no, they somehow just keep Cheney-ing on down the road.

I have to admit that when Monica Lewinsky popped up this week, my very first thought was “Now, that’s curious!?” 

But then she explained why:

It’s time to burn the beret and bury the blue dress.

I think I’d have done that about 19 years ago, but that’s just me.

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Posted by Bette Noir on 05/07/14 at 02:18 PM
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Categories: PoliticsElection '16Hillary ClintonNutters

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

“Out, damned spot! Out, I say!”

Has a sitting governor ever taken it upon herself to absolve her constituents of murder most foul? Maybe, but I don’t recall it.

Here’s a remarkable statement by Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin (R-Edrum) in a column published yesterday that addressed the recent botched execution:

“Justice was served. The people of Oklahoma do not have blood on their hands.”

If you say so, Lady MacBeth. Fucking sociopath. I wish I thought the horror and absurdity of this would make a damn bit of difference.

[X-posted at Balloon Juice]

Posted by Betty Cracker on 05/06/14 at 10:48 AM
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Categories: NewsPoliticsNuttersTeabaggeryRelijun

Sunday, May 04, 2014

The Lord Is My Campaign Manager

Frequently, on Sundays, I get the urge to take a peek at what the religionists are getting up to.  I’m not sure why, it just feels kind of right.

Sure enough, it took no time at all, to come across this guy—Richard Darrell Trigg of Tennessee who is very busy, right now, starting up the Christian Party PLUS setting up a presidential campaign. 

That may seem, to some, to be a particularly ambitious agenda but, Mr Trigg has no doubt that he will succeed because The Lord directed him to do these things.

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Posted by Bette Noir on 05/04/14 at 12:38 PM
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Categories: PoliticsElection '16NuttersRelijun

Saturday, May 03, 2014

How Special Is This?

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Well, it appears that conservatives have a new lease on life now that Mister Speaker has finally caved and decided to let the Daydream Believers Caucus play Special Committee to re-investigate Benghazi! Benghazi! BENGHAZI!! 

Playing the part of Matthew McConaughey will be Rep. Harold Watson Gowdy III . . . but you can call him Trey.

Someday, I’m sure, the various House investigations into the Benghazi attack will go down in the annals as the Congressional investigation uncovering more smoking unloaded guns than any other [excepting, perhaps, the illustrious efforts of Sen. Joseph McCarthy who may, ultimately, have the Benghazi crowd beat, but they’re not done yet, so we’ll have to wait for the final tally]. 

The White House has turned over 25,000+ pages of documents and five different House Committees (Armed Services, Foreign Affairs, Intelligence, Judiciary, and Oversight and Government Reform) have burned through millions of dollars and collected hundreds of hours of testimony, to no particular avail.

Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) has resisted pressure to convene a “Watergate-like special investigative committee” for over a year and a half but recent events have evidently changed his mind.

The smoking gun, this time around, happens to be an email that, if you’re Republican, proves that the White House is directly responsible for covering up something about the Benghazi attack because a White House media consultant was discovered consulting with the WH on media. 

Just you never mind that the smoking-hot! email evidence dovetails nicely into the timeline of Things We Already Know About Benghazi and supports the conclusions that were drawn from exhaustively poring over the same for a year and a half.

The thing that appears to excite Republicans the most about this latest “find” is that it did not turn up before this, with the other 25,000 docs, ergo it must have been “vanished” by WH spooks.  [That’s the logical equivalent of Terri Lynn Land telling us there’s no Republican War on Women because she’s a Republican woman.] 

Evidently these folks have never made FOIA requests of bureaucrats, in the past, or their expectations might have been a little lower.  Or, perhaps they are as half-assed about filling out FOIA requests as they are about other things? or GIGO, we used to say.

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Posted by Bette Noir on 05/03/14 at 11:19 AM
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Categories: PoliticsElection '14Election '16Hillary ClintonNutters

Thursday, May 01, 2014

Tennessee Snags War On Drugs/War On Women Twofer

A few weeks ago, I posted an article about a state bill that had landed on Tennessee governor Bill Haslam’s (R) desk to be either vetoed or signed into law.  That bill was SB 1391 which made it a crime, specifically assault, to be a pregnant illegal drug user.  Most states don’t prosecute drug users, only traffickers.  That’s because the law sees drug use as a medical issue, rather than a criminal one.  And oceans of data confirm that treatment has a far more beneficial effect, than incarceration, on drug addiction.  But that’s all about to change, in Tennessee, for female addicts who become pregnant.

In a giant leap backward, Gov. Haslam signed SB 1391, a horribly ill-conceived piece of retrograde legislation, into law, and it will go into effect on July 1, 2014.  According to his signing statement, Gov. Haslam judiciously considered copious amounts of expert opinion and signed SB 1391 into law anyway:

. . . after “extensive conversations with experts including substance abuse, mental health, health and law enforcement officials.  The intent of this bill is to give law enforcement and district attorneys a tool to address illicit drug use among pregnant women through treatment programs.

It would be interesting to know who those experts were, exactly, because they certainly weren’t experts from . . .

The American Medical Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and other major medical associations — joined by local doctors and addiction specialists — [who] have warned that measures criminalizing pregnant women will only discourage them from seeking prenatal care and drug treatment. These concerns were made expressly clear to the governor by groups like SisterReach, a Tennessee-based reproductive justice group and Healthy & Free Tennessee, a state-wide reproductive health coalition.

“Despite our advocacy attempts and regardless of the impact this law will have on marginalized families; despite the danger that medical professionals have noted a law of this magnitude will cause, our governor chose his party over the experts,” SisterReach founder and CEO Cherisse A. Scott said in a statement. ”This law separates mothers from their children and is not patient-centered.  Tennessee families who are already being hit the hardest by policies such as the failure to expand Medicaid, poverty and a lack of available drug treatment facilities will be most deeply impacted by this bill. Mothers struggling with drug addiction in Shelby County, rural communities throughout Tennessee and poor mothers and their families will be the ones who suffer the effects of this dangerous legislation the most.”

. . . must have been some other, better experts.

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Posted by Bette Noir on 05/01/14 at 09:50 AM
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Categories: PoliticsWar On WomenRelijun

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

God Tells Me Stuff, Too

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Sometimes, “when the world’s too full of weeping for [me] to understand,” (WB Yeats) I go, like Carole King, “up on the roof” and and make like Sister Boogeywoman, to have a convo with my kinka-licious goddess for all seasons. 

My goddess is an old hippie lesbian who smokes and drinks and loves her children enough to break ribs no matter what awful shit they get up to.  Her belly laugh can, and sometimes does, rock the Casbah and, when I ask real nice, she sends me waves of comic relief.

And, yes! I get to have this awesome goddess because . . . AMERICA!!  ‘nuff said?

At any rate, whatever I said to YumYum (my god’s name) this last session, she has sent me a sidesplitting cosmic extravaganza of mirth in those areas where I needed it most.  And, at the risk of sounding like a stoner evangelista, I’m going to share some.

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Posted by Bette Noir on 04/30/14 at 11:15 AM
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Categories: PoliticsElection '16Nutters

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Game of Drones:  Paranoid Patriots About To Scare Themselves To Death

What happens when you put a bunch of unemployed conspiracy theorists, low-info vigilantes and well-armed paranoiacs out in the desert sun to dry-roast for a couple of weeks?

SHIT! happens!  that’s what.

The Fantasy Justice League members that have #occupiedcowtown this month to protect Cliven Bundy’s inalienable right to suck the government teat dry, are starting to show obvious signs of PTSD following the anticlimactic Battle of Bundy Ranch.

The Battle itself took place a few weeks ago, without a shot being fired, but militia-types from all over these great United States were having so much fun on maneuvers, using soldier lingo and walkie-talkies, that they decided to hang out with the Bundy family indefinitely, to make sure that Bunkerville, NV is rendered safe for democracy.

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Posted by Bette Noir on 04/29/14 at 12:29 PM
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Categories: PoliticsBedwettersNuttersSports

Monday, April 28, 2014

Rupture, Not Rapture

Via Tengrain, we have the tale of Alex Jones calling out Glenn Beck for insufficiently supporting deadbeat rancher Cliven Bundy.  Jones believes that Beck is working for the Kenyan Usurper, setting up the right-wing loons up for the jackbooted thuggery of the latte-sippin’ lefties:

“They’re positioning him as a Judas goat to lead the liberty movement. It all just clicked. He is actually Benedict Arnold, he actually works for Obama. And I’m sorry I have to say that. He really does!”

Poor Beck, he steals Alex Jones’ schtick, then backpedals in one instance, and now he’s Benedict Arnold.  On his end, perhaps because he sees the coming backlash and his getting drummed out of the loonbertarian fringe, Beck is seeking the refuge of religious whackaloonery... because religion is the last good refuge for an utter scoundrel.  Addressing the commencement of Liberty University’s graduating class, he’s gone full-on “Rapture Ready” fundagelical millennialist, claiming that God is coming back “to settle scores”.

One could chalk up Glenn’s latest “Road to Dumbasscus” moment as an example of Jerusalem syndrome, but I have a more cynical view.  I suspect that Beck sees the coming Rupture among the far-righties, so he’s going to switch gears and talk about the Rapture to reinvent himself as a religious figure, having failed as a political pundit.  Unluckily for him, Glenn is a couple of horsemen short of an apocalypse.

Cross-posted at my eponymous blog.

Posted by Big Bad Bald Bastard on 04/28/14 at 11:05 PM
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Categories: PoliticsNuttersTeabaggeryRelijun

Hey Bro, Your Cunning Disguise is Slipping

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I remember the day that it dawned on my nine-year-old self that yelling “I’m rubber, you’re glue” was a pretty ineffective defense.  And it was somewhere around the tenth grade that I realized that turning an argument inside out, while a good trick, wasn’t the same as winning it.  That probably explains America’s recent impatience with the “both sides do it” school of partisan political debate.

At 64, I have lived through some of America’s most fraught historical decades, I won’t get into listing milestones—everyone here can count backward and figure that out.  Suffice it to say that I have lived through enough to develop some amount of perspective regarding what counts and what fades away.

There are times when I despair that our national discourse has become so thoroughly dumbed-down that it’s barely worth participating.  Maybe sending men to the moon, and technological advances that we never dreamed of, and a few that we did, have exhausted us and resulted in the current backlash against science, history and facts. 

We are now in the process of banning books that mention masturbation, in high schools, [maybe they won’t find out?], teaching children that evolution is debatable, that history isn’t true and, more seriously, denying that our actions are destroying the environment that we depend on.

We are slipping inexorably into a slough of silliness, while life is still just as seriously life-or-death as it ever was for some.  But, the most disturbing trend, in my opinion, is the tendency to disown our reality.

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Posted by Bette Noir on 04/28/14 at 10:56 AM
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Saturday, April 26, 2014

And Let Me Tell You One More Thing About The Wingnut, Mr Spicer

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Sean Spicer is pissed, PISSED!! I tell you, that, somehow or other, the public have identified racist old right-wing desert moocher, Cliven Bundy, with The Party of Lincoln-Inside-the-Beltway.  Sacré Bleu!

In his own words:

The issue with Cliven Bundy has absolutely nothing to do with his party, zero.  He is a Nevada rancher that had a beef with the federal government’s continued overreach and suddenly this became a question when he made some inappropriate comments about what every Republican needs to answer for. That’s absolutely ridiculous. [Full video rant here]

Now, I truly don’t believe that all Republicans are racists, homophobes, conspiracy theorists, junk-scientists, theocrats, revisionists or misogynists.  They just pander to those groups for votes.  And those groups vote for Republicans because a) Republicans pander to them and b) Republican policies more closely comport with said groups’ respective ideologies than other parties.

Additionally, Fox News has carved out a media niche specializing in dog-whistling for conservative votes based on the neuroses listed above.  For their part, Republican Party leadership say nary a discouraging word no matter how Fox News skews and screws with news events to keep their far-right audience in a “let-me-at-that-ballot” lather.

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Posted by Bette Noir on 04/26/14 at 10:28 AM
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Categories: PoliticsNuttersOur Stupid Media

Friday, April 25, 2014

Mad Scientists of the Laboratories of Democracy: “Cincy” Seitz Edition

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Meet State Senator Bill “Cincy” Seitz who is fighting the good fight to save Ohioans from being crushed under the jackboots of what he calls “enviro-socialist rent-seekers” pushing renewable power sources. [rent-seekers??]

Five years ago, Cincy Seitz, and just about every other man-Jack in the Ohio legislature, voted to approve a forward-looking, long-term clean air standard for the state of Ohio.  That was probably a very good idea since Ohio, at that time, was fourth largest emitter of greenhouse gases in the nation.

The enacted standard requires that utility companies institute energy efficiency measures including drawing at least 12.5 percent of energy from renewable sources by 2025.  And, oh what a success story that clean air implementation has been in Ohio. 

According to a Union of Concerned Scientists study:

. . . the state’s clean energy standards are driving job creation and investment, reducing air pollutant emissions and setting a foundation for Ohio’s transition to cheaper, cleaner, and more stable energy sources.

According to Ohio Public Utilities Commission documents, more than 1,000 renewable energy projects have been built so far to meet Ohio’s renewable energy standard. This represents hundreds of millions of dollars invested in Ohio communities. Wind and solar companies alone comprise more than 300 businesses that employ almost 8,000 people, according to industry reporting. At the same time, utilities’ energy efficiency programs have generated almost $1 billion in net savings for Ohio ratepayers – almost three dollars in savings for every dollar invested.

These projects create real, well-paying jobs that contribute to the economic growth of communities across the state.  Together, Ohio’s clean energy standards are doing what they were intended to do – spur investment, create jobs and begin transitioning Ohio to a cleaner energy future.

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Posted by Bette Noir on 04/25/14 at 10:58 AM
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Categories: PoliticsBqhatevwrNuttersTeabaggery

Thursday, April 24, 2014

ALEC:  A Legislator for Every Corporation

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Ever notice how when something particularly butt-headed, laughable or creepy happens out in the state “laboratories of democracy,” it is usually accompanied by the unsettling sound of ALEC flapping its leathery wings overhead?

For those of you who are blissfully ignorant of ALEC and its doings, ALEC is a corporate-sponsored lobby shop and “bill mill” dressed up as a non-profit charitable organization.  Corporations pay huge annual dues to sit on ALEC task forces, in each state, and hold state legislators hands throughout the law-making process.  So, it is far from surprising that the resulting state laws are exceedingly corporate-friendly.

And the reason this happens on a state level rather than the federal level? because it CAN.  Here’s a good explanation of how this works from progressivestates.org:

Even as state legislatures make spending decisions of the same order as federal legislators, they generally lack any comparable staffing or support. Most state legislatures are made up of poorly paid, part-time lawmakers with few if any staff to research or evaluate the laws they are asked to approve.

So when ALEC delivers “model legislation” to its legislative allies to promote, there are few staff members in the legislature to challenge the expertise presented or uncover the hidden payoffs for corporate interests contained in the legislation.

Moderate legislators appreciate the attention to their needs served by ALEC, so in times of political crisis (“crises” often created by the drumbeat of local media stories generated by ALEC corporate allies), they often feel they need to sign onto some legislation to solve the crisis.

And if there is no alternative legislation available, ALEC can create majority support for its legislation just by being the only serious legislation being discussed on the matter. Since states have little or no public reporting requirements that would require disclosure of junkets and gifts awarded to legislators, ALEC can spirit key state legislators off to luxury “conferences” to win them over to their legislation. And the lack in most states of public disclosure laws for lobbying means that ALEC and its allies can usually operate under the radar of any serious media or political scrutiny.

SWEET!

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Posted by Bette Noir on 04/24/14 at 12:16 PM
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Categories: PoliticsBqhatevwrOur Stupid Media

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Don’t Fence Me In

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Looks like the jig might be just about up for Cliven Bundy.  As it turns out, rather than a Noble Patriot deserving a place of honor in the How The West Was Won Hall of Fame, old Cliven is just a pretty pathetic garden variety liar.  Or, if you prefer, a high plains grifter . . .  in keeping with the western motif.

A local Nevada TV station was inspired by Bundy’s stirring personal history to do a little digging into his background and found that the details differ significantly from the King James Version elicited by BundyBooster, Sean Hannity, et al.

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Posted by Bette Noir on 04/23/14 at 10:27 AM
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Categories: PoliticsBqhatevwrNuttersTeabaggeryOur Stupid Media

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Burning Man Walking

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Americans just seem to have a soft spot for cranks, especially if they wear cowboy hats, sidearms and talk reeeaaaal sloooooow, like Mitch McConnell. 

And, for a certain cross-section of American society, it’s even more attractive if that crank is ignorantly eloquent about flouting any and all authority, from crossing guards to POTUS, because . . . . U.S.A. RUGGED INDIVIDUALISM, Yo? seasoned with a dash of arrested development.

Cliven Bundy is one such “Give Me Liberty or I’ll Take It,” kind of guy.  It takes a special kind of man to raise cattle in the desert and it “takes a village” to feed those suckers.  Our village.  That our taxes pay for.  But, unless you show up combat-ready, Cliven’s going to take whatever he can get his hands on.  Because he’s pretty convinced that that kind of behavior is what made America exceptional.  Plus he has a fairly unregulated militia to cover his back while he’s stealing . . . think Prairie Mafia.

Those are the makings for some tense stand-offs because no one really wants to shoot the old bugger, they just want him to pay his grazing fees . . . maybe out of the farm subsidies he collects
from the federal government that he refuses to recognize?

Still at an impasse, though, along comes creative life-affirming genius, and old hippie Sean Shealy, of Burning Man fame to offer a workshop in radical, yet peaceful land management practices that he calls—BUNDYFEST!

And since he’s so good at marketing these things and so passionate about celebrating Cliven Bundy’s contribution to our understanding of our fine American selves, let’s let Sean pitch it:

Last year’s Burning Man attendance was 61,000.  And, so, how big is Bundy’s Army, again?  And how likely are they to open fire on unarmed, naked stoners dancing in the mud?  Or the Los Angeles Gay Men’s Choir? 

As Farmer Bundy would say, sometimes you just have to face ‘em down.

Posted by Bette Noir on 04/22/14 at 11:28 AM
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Monday, April 21, 2014

Meet The Press Hosts Panel of Dicks To Discuss Presidential Low-T

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David Brooks must be pining for his lost youth now that he’s a newly-single balding, middle-aged guy tending toward paunch.  That’s the only good explanation for the sophomoric little round-robin that took place on Meet the Press yesterday, during which Brooks questioned President Obama’s testosterone levels, while the rest of the bobbleheads nodded and grinned:

Basically since Yalta we’ve had an assumption that borders are basically going to be borders, and once that comes into question, if in Ukraine or in Crimea or anywhere else, then all over the world … all bets are off . . .

… And let’s face it, Obama, whether deservedly or not, does have a — I’ll say it crudely — but a manhood problem in the Middle East. Is he tough enough to stand up to somebody like Assad or somebody like Putin? I think a lot of the rap is unfair, but certainly in the Middle East there is an assumption that he’s not tough enough.

How insipid is that?  Let me count the ways . . .

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Posted by Bette Noir on 04/21/14 at 08:19 AM
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Categories: PoliticsBarack ObamaBedwettersOur Stupid Media

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