Wednesday, March 31, 2010

ZOMG - IRS Will Need 16,500 ARMED Agents to Enforce Health Insurance Mandate!!!

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Or . . . not.

Good lord, Ron Paul is claiming 16,500 armed IRS agents will be needed to enforce the the new health care mandates.  Check it out at the 3:35 mark.  Naturally the freepers and bedwetters are picking this up and claiming that we are on the road to slavery and armed thugs patrolling the, what?, H & R Block offices?  Who knows.

But fortunately Fact Check is on the case.  The Repubs are trying to make a case, first of all, that 16,500 new IRS agents would be needed to enforce the new law.  This appears to be pure speculation born of the fact that the IRS will incur some expenses related to the tax provisions.

Is this a big deal?  It shouldn’t be - it happens EVERY TIME Congress changes the tax code.  Forms and software all have to be updated and tax preparers and the public have to be informed of the changes.  A lot of the cost goes into this kind of thing, not hiring new agents.

And Ron Paul appears to have pulled the “armed agents” claim purely out of his ass.  IRS agents aren’t armed .  Why would they be?  I’ve dealt with plenty of agents in my career and none of them, at least to this point, have been packing heat.  IRS “special agents”, who conduct actual criminal investigations, are armed but they are a very small percentage of total IRS workers.  The majority of them are clerks and pencil pushers like me.

But leave it to the bedwetters out there to concoct even more outrageous claims about a bill that will finally provide a health care safety net for millions and millions of Americans.

Posted by marindenver on 03/31/10 at 06:30 PM
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Categories: PoliticsBarack ObamaBedwettersHealth CareOur Stupid Media

How’s that wrongy, predicty thing workin’ out for ya?

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It’s too commonplace to be surprising anymore:

1) Prominent author / pundit makes unequivocal statement about important topic of the day
2) Subsequent events prove him / her not merely wrong but spectacularly, undeniably and comprehensively wrong
3) Prominent author / pundit retains status as expert on the topic in question and continues to receive giant megaphone for wholly suspect views

The above summarizes the careers of William Kristol, Marc Thiessen, Charles Krauthammer, David Brooks, Fred Barnes, Tom Friedman and many others, all of whom were 100% wrong on the Iraq war and yet are still taken seriously as “experts” on the topic.

The same is true of Shelby Steele, the African American conservative who wrote A Bound Man: Why We Are Excited About Obama and Why He Can’t Win. In that hilarious-in-retrospect 2007 tome, Steele explained that it was absolutely impossible for Obama to win the presidency because he’s “mired in an ideology of racial victimhood and separatism.”

Since ensuing events have proved Steele massively wrong, he naturally receives a prominent perch at the Wall Street Journal to declaim further on the topic about which he was so profoundly uninsightful.

read the whole post »

Posted by Betty Cracker on 03/31/10 at 04:41 PM
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Don’t Retreat, RE-AIR!

Ha ha. First LL Cool J called bullshit on Sarah Palin’s horrible, horrible new Fox News show and now Toby Keith is putting a boot in her ass:

Like LL Cool J, Toby Keith is slated to appear on “Real American Stories,” a Fox News show hosted by Sarah Palin. Unlike LL Cool J, Keith is still slated to be on the program, but his inclusion was news to him.

We just talked to Toby Keith’s representative. Keith, who says he’s a registered Democrat,  was not told about the usage of a past interview for Palin’s program. “We were never contacted by Fox,” his rep tells Hitfix.“I have no idea what interview it’s taken from.They’re promoting this like it’s a brand new interview. He never sat down with Sarah Palin.”

And from The Insider:

It appears that Sarah and her new show have a bit of a controversy going on.  The show is set to have profiles of everyday Americans who have led extraordinary lives, bu the celebrity appearances that are getting the attention.  Only problem is they’re using old interview clips and not asking for the stars approval.  Heck, they’re not even notifying the stars that they’re taking part in the show at all. Needless to say, Toby Keith, LL Cool J, and others are a bit surprised that they’re the ones being touted as guests.

Too. Fucking. Funny.

[hat tip YAFB and The Political Carnival]

Posted by Kevin K. on 03/31/10 at 03:24 PM
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Categories: MusicNewsPoliticsNuttersSarah PalinOur Stupid MediaSkull HampersTelevision

Chill, Baby, Chill: Obama Lifts Ceremonial Ban on Hypothetical Oil Reserves

Mark Ambinder at The Atlantic has a pretty good take on the President’s “stunning turnaround” on offshore drilling.

Just like the fuss about the utterly unspectacular ANWR reserves, the controversy over access to America’s remaining offshore oil fields has everything to do with political optics, and almost zero relevance to “energy self-sufficiency,” which is currently only feasible if the US—the world’s third-largest oil producer—suddenly triples its oil production overnight, discovers a practical pocket-sized fusion technology or starts burning coal at a rate that would make Mars look habitable. Even natural gas—which the US is literally drowning in—doesn’t solve the problem unless we massively invest in new infrastructure and technologies (such as fuel cells for cars) to enable more practical, widespread and economically competitive utilization. 

In any event, I agree with Ambinder that Obama has—at virtually no political cost—blunted (if not mooted) the whole Wingnut/Palin “Drill, Baby, Drill!” canard, and effectively called their bluff. Certainly, the Right will be able to attack the plan for being selective in scope and for blocking some planned Alaska drills. But, even if there’s more oil in America’s coastal waters than the relatively paltry amounts that have been estimated in the past, we are many years of costly exploration and qualification away from quantifying—let alone extracting—it. And until the price of a barrel of crude rises above the $90-$100/barrel level again, the sound you hear is unlikely to be the rush of American oil companies anxious to spend billions of dollars to find out what, exactly, is down there.

Posted by StrangeAppar8us on 03/31/10 at 12:12 PM
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Categories: PoliticsBarack Obama

Wednesday Afternoon Music: Wait What’s “Juicy-R” (The Notorious B.I.G. & the xx Mashup)

I told you a couple of months ago that the xx‘s song “VCR” was one of my favorite earwigs ever and that their self-titled debut album was one of the best of last year.  A San Fran-based DJ who goes by the moniker of Wait What has released a tremendous mashup album (the best since The Grey Album) of the xx’s first effort in its entirety and the vocals of the Notorious B.I.G.. Below you’ll find the video for Wait What’s melding of “VCR” and Biggie’s “Juicy.”  You can download the whole shebang for free and read more about the project at Wait What’s site here. Enjoy. [via FREEwilly]

read the whole post »

Posted by Kevin K. on 03/31/10 at 11:38 AM
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Categories: MusicMP3/Music DownloadsMusic VideosYouTubidity

One more time!

Zandar on the Chris Hedges piece that we spotlighted yesterday:

If you honestly believe that the Teabaggers are hurling epithets at black and gay members of Congress because the Democrats aren’t liberal enough, there’s literally nothing I can do for you.  That’s stupidity bordering willful ignorance right there.  But to then blame the Democrats for these nutjobs and then justify their actions in any way makes you more than stupid, it makes you flat out evil.  It’s the same idiotic, hyper-cynical “logic” we’ve seen from the Right in the last week or so, that the Dems brought this on themselves for daring pass this legislation…any legislation.

If we had passed single-payer health care, the teabaggers really would be taking to the streets en masse to “get them some tyrant blood for the Tree of Liberty” or whatever.  And you’re blaming Dems for this lunacy?

How does this guy function with that block of cement on his head?

Posted by Kevin K. on 03/31/10 at 09:49 AM
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Categories: PoliticsNuttersTeabaggeryPoliblogsPolisnarkSkull Hampers

LL Cool J: Mama Bear Palin Said Knock You Out

When I first heard that LL Cool J was going to be one of the first guests on Sarah Palin’s new FOX News show Real American Stories (love the headline), I was wondering why he agreed to do it. Well—surprise!he didn’t...

LL Cool J on Twitter about Palin and FOX

EVERYTHING SARAH PALIN DOES IS A BIG FAT LIE!

Here’s the spot:

I can hardly wait for her interviews with Eazy-E and Ol’ Dirty Bastard.

Posted by Kevin K. on 03/31/10 at 09:00 AM
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GoDaddy Hosting is a Steaming Pile of Suck

Just needed to get that off my chest. GoDaddy is the absolute worst web hosting company in the world.

FYI, they don’t host Rumproast.  I’ve been dealing with GoDaddy all day and night trying to get a simple web hosting account set up for one of their existing customers who was moving off of their horrible, horrible WebSite Tonight WYSIWYG platform. Fourteen plus hours later and the new hosting environment still hasn’t been set up and the guy I’m helping has been without email, which he uses for his business, the entire time. Their tech support has no way of telling how long it will take before you will stop seeing the maddening “pending setup” in the admin panel and they can only tell if the account setup failed after a full 24 hours when they receive a notification from the automated system. AAAAARRRRRGGGGGGHHHHH!

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Posted by Kevin K. on 03/31/10 at 12:49 AM
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Categories: Geek SpeakSkull Hampers

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Obama to Karzai: “Remember That Magic Trick With the Pencil in ‘Dark Knight’”?

Karzai’s the one who digs Green Furry cosplay, but it was Obama who showed up at the door in the middle of the night to say “Trick or treat!”

Just a reminder that that guy who signed Health Care Reform, revived the START treaty and stuck Bibi in a high-chair still had the energy to kick some recalcitrant puppet-ruler ass over the weekend. TPM has a slideshow of shots you probably haven’t seen, including a couple of images of his visit with the troops at Bagram, who didn’t seem all that unhappy to see him. Even Glenn Reynolds emitted grudging praise, so you know it didn’t suck.

Posted by StrangeAppar8us on 03/30/10 at 02:25 PM
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Categories: PoliticsBarack Obama

Chris Hedges lives in a magical world where Lee Atwater and Rush Limbaugh never existed

The naively empathetic Chris Hedges, writing about the poor, put-upon teabaggers and their childlike “yearning for fascism,” ends his recent article at Truthdig with this ‘graph:

Left unchecked, the hatred for radical Islam will transform itself into a hatred for Muslims. The hatred for undocumented workers will become a hatred for Mexicans and Central Americans. The hatred for those not defined by this largely white movement as American patriots will become a hatred for African-Americans. The hatred for liberals will morph into a hatred for all democratic institutions, from universities to government agencies to the press. Our continued impotence and cowardice, our refusal to articulate this anger and stand up in open defiance to the Democrats and the Republicans, will see us swept aside for an age of terror and blood.

Honestly, does Hedges believe that these “transformations” are impending? We’re already there. We’ve been there for a long time.  “The hatred for liberals will morph into a hatred for all democratic institutions, from universities to government agencies to the press.” I mean, yeah, how terrible would it be IF THAT EVER HAPPENED? Good christ, really?

I’ve been seeing this “we’ve gotta find common ground with the rightwing activists” bullshit bubbling up in the leftosphere for months now and it is maddeningly wrong-headed and an acute example of wishful thinking (and they claim the “Obama/liberal apologists” are the pony-wishers). The common notions being floated by Our Progressive Betters or the Firebaggers or the Tribal Thumpers (or whatever you want to call them) is that both of the parties are pretty much exactly the same (we must rise against them together!), Rachel Maddow is just as dangerous of a propagandist and as untruthful as Glenn Beck, and—here’s the best part—wingnuts/teabaggers will TOTALLY GET ON BOARD WITH TRUE BLUE PROGRESSIVES as soon as hardcore financial reform (a nationalized banking system?), a single payer healthcare system, and a massive stimulus package are all put into place.  Oh ... and pull the troops out of everywhere NOW. I’ll give you a few minutes to stop laughing your ass off about how the teabaggers would react to all of that by passing on an earlier passage from Hedge’s piece making essentially that case:

We are bound to a party that has betrayed every principle we claim to espouse, from universal health care to an end to our permanent war economy, to a demand for quality and affordable public education, to a concern for the jobs of the working class. And the hatred expressed within right-wing movements for the college-educated elite, who created or at least did nothing to halt the financial debacle, is not misplaced. Our educated elite, wallowing in self-righteousness, wasted its time in the boutique activism of political correctness as tens of millions of workers lost their jobs. The shouting of racist and bigoted words at black and gay members of Congress, the spitting on a black member of the House, the tossing of bricks through the windows of legislators’ offices, are part of the language of rebellion. It is as much a revolt against the educated elite as it is against the government. The blame lies with us. We created the monster.

You see how easy it is? If the college-educated, self-righteous “progressive” elitists had only forcefully pushed through every lefty agenda item that the illiterate wingnut hobo people HATE MORE THAN CANCER, AL-QAEDA and MICHAEL MOORE, the teabaggers wouldn’t be forced by the liberal creative class, who fucked up everythingby focusing on their “boutique activism of political correctness,” to run around calling people niggers and faggots (aka “the language of rebellion”).  It would totally work, man. They’d come around. And if we get it done soon enough (IT’S DOABLE! HOPE! CHANGE!) we could be looking at a David Sirota/Amy Goodman 3rd party ticket waltzing its way into the White House by as early as 2012.

read the whole post »

Posted by Kevin K. on 03/30/10 at 10:20 AM
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Categories: PoliticsEditorialsNuttersTeabaggerySkull Hampers

Breitbart Beat-Down: The Sorrow and the Pity

The first reports of the atrocity began to trickle in this weekend: BigHo founding blogger Andrew Breitbart had a real-life “Showdown in Searchlight” while on his way to the Sarah Palin Screech-a-Thon and Monster RV Rally in the desert. A video of Breitbart’s harrowing encounter with “unhinged” Harry Reid supporters has finally emerged.

WARNING: If you have small children or sensitive pets within a 10-meter radius of your computer, please remove them from the vicinity before you click “play.” And then steel yourselves before watching, for what follows is so hideous, so vile and so repugnant that it may instantly strip away your faith in humanity and even sap your will to live. Don’t bother sending your therapy bills to me—you have been warned:

Talk about man’s inhumanity to man. It kind of puts that Katyn Forest kerfluffle into perspective, doesn’t it? Weep for your country, and then pick up the threads of your lives and go on. If you can.

UPDATE BELOW THE FOLD!!11!!

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Posted by Betty Cracker on 03/30/10 at 05:35 AM
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Tuesday Morning Music: Dave Rawlings Machine’s “To Be Young (Is To Be Sad, Is To Be High)”

Co-written by Ryan Adams and co-starring Rawlings’ immensely talented, longtime partner Gillian Welch:

Posted by Kevin K. on 03/30/10 at 04:30 AM
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Categories: MusicMusic VideosYouTubidity

Monday, March 29, 2010

Department of “Uh, Thanks”

According to Reuters, Israeli PM Netanyahu denies that US President Obama is Israel’s “great disaster.”

In response, President Obama* denied that PM Netanyahu is an “obstinate douchebag.”

[*Well, not really. But he probably would deny it if asked that question.]

Posted by Betty Cracker on 03/29/10 at 01:22 PM
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Categories: NewsPoliticsOur Stupid Media

The New RNC: Steele Chafes at Spending Restraints, While Seeking Tighter Bonds With Topless Voters

In a fairly anodyne post of the “some people are starting to wonder” variety, Tucker Carlson Jonathan Strong at Tucker Carlson’s Daily Caller site reports on big-donor grumblings about RNC Chairman Michael Steele’s apparent knack for burning through Committee cash reserves. 

Raw Story, on the other hand, goes straight for the naughty bits:

The report cites figures from a new Federal Election Commission filing. According to the records, Steele dropped $1,946.25 at topless bar Voyeur West Hollywood, which the article notes is a “bondage-themed nightclub featuring topless women dancers imitating lesbian sex.”

“Tolerance training” or “voter outreach”? Neither excuse is likely to fly with disenchanted GOPers who never quite grokked Steele’s “hepcat” inclusivity sell, and can’t steer him to the exit door fast enough. 

NOTE: Raw Story’s post includes a lurid description of the goings-on at Voyeur West, for the anthropologically inclined.

UPDATE: I’ve corrected the authorship citation above. It’s Carlson’s site, but Jonathan Strong was the actual writer.

Also, the RNC says Steele wasn’t involved, and they’ve asked the RNC member who expensed the Voyeur West outing to return the money…so everything’s OK now. Just one of those wacky misunderstandings.

LATER UPDATE: And comes now Tucker himself, to defend the Daily Caller‘s original story.

...and the culprit is identified as Erik Brown, a direct marketing consultant working for the CA Gubernatorial campaign of Steve Poizner.

...and the money will be returned. Case closed. Move along, citizen.

Posted by StrangeAppar8us on 03/29/10 at 12:28 PM
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Categories: PoliticsElection '10

Jason Mattera Is Very Concerned About Breastfeeding and Jungle Gyms and Low Comment Totals

The “Senator Smalley” jab directed at Al Franken was a nice touch. Civil discourse!

I’m a little confused as to how this new “act like a fucking dick in random hallways” strategy is supposed to revitalize the conservative movement, but folks like Andy Breitbart, Jesse Watters and Mattera are exceptionally skilled at their craft. I mean, they really seem like fucking dicks, don’t they? Job well done.

p.s. Mattera seems a little surprised that his super provocative Franken stalking didn’t elicit one comment in the eight days it’s been up on YouTube:

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Help the lil’ ankle biter out if you have a minute or two.

MORE: Here’s his latest video with Tom Harkin. “Geniuses like you.” *cough* dick *cough*  Simon & Schuster should be very, very proud.

Posted by Kevin K. on 03/29/10 at 08:04 AM
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Categories: PoliticsHealth CareNuttersSkull HampersYouTubidity

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