Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Fox News Killing off it's own Pet Party

the Republican Establishment all but ceded control of the party, or at least the public face of the party, to Fox News (and Rush Limbaugh) in January, 2009.

How Fox News is Destroying the Republican Party

Still, it's becoming increasingly clear that Fox's programming and the radical, fear-based agenda it's setting for Republicans is now doing lasting damage to the Grand Old Party.
That's because Fox News isn't simply offering a rightward take on the day's events, or innocently providing Republican-friendly commentary, of course.  It's leading an exhausting, day-in, day-out attack campaign against Obama, Democrats and all their liberal allies. (Real or imagined.) 
Its relentless, paranoid crusade falls well outside the mainstream of American politics, which is why the Republican primary season, so proudly sponsored by Fox News, is shaping up to be such an  embarrassment.

and this ...

With Fox News at the irresponsible helm, the conservative movement in America, including the emerging Tea Party, became first and foremost a media movement, and one that gleefully cut ties with common sense and decency.  (See: Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh.) 
As blogger Andrew Sullivan noted this week: 
The Republican Establishment is Rush Limbaugh, Roger Ailes, Karl Rove, and their mainfold products, from Hannity to Levin. They rule on the talk radio airwaves and on the GOP's own "news" channel, Fox.
With media outlets setting the conservative agenda, as well as raising campaign funds and boosting GOP candidates, it was Fox News that quickly transformed itself into the Opposition Party.  

My one recommended reading about when shallow politicians speak shallowly ... and shame all of us.

Speaking with a Palestinian-American Republican Who Confronted the GOP at the debate.

"It’s one thing to hate, and another thing to do so in such close proximity to the hated—especially when that person demands to be identified alongside you. Now what would you expect the candidates to say?"

Sunday, January 29, 2012

I understand this is old stuff for folks better read than I. But for the rest of us, I think it quite timely, informative and maybe perhaps required reading.
The Paranoid Style in American Politics, Richard Hofstadter- 1964

Friday, January 27, 2012

the sugar lobby is the one lying about high fructose corn syrup in those TV ads.

Let's learn about where sugar comes from ... and while we're on that path ... remind ourselves that the sugar lobby is the one lying about high fructose corn syrup in those TV ads.

Sugar High: The Dark History and Nasty Methods Used to Feed Our Sweet Tooth

While I do not fool myself that sugar is "healthy," if I am going to satisfy my sweet tooth, I prefer cane sugar, maple syrup, agave nectar, or honey over the other choices: beet sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial sweeteners. Of the bunch, most Americans can find only honey and perhaps maple syrup sustainably and locally produced, but cane sugar is often the most versatile product for baking. 
As a major consumer of cane sugar, I was disturbed to learn the realities of cane sugar production when I visited a sugarcane-producing area in Bolivia.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

the most significant "free market" products money can buy are usually historically the product of government-funded R&D.

A little boring unless you are a curious type who can recognize a good one about hired mind-slingers who won't tell you that the most significant "free market" products money can buy are usually historically the product of government-funded R&D.

Conservative Fantasies about the miracles of the Market.

A central doctrine of evangelicals for the “free market” is its capacity for innovation: New ideas, new technologies, new gadgets -- all flow not from governments but from individuals and businesses allowed to flourish in the market, we are told. 
That’s the claim made in a recent op/ed in our local paper by policy analyst Josiah Neeley of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, a conservative think-tank in Austin. His conclusion: “Throughout history, technological advances have been driven by private investment, not by government fiat. There is no reason to expect that to change anytime soon.” 
Cheap Energy Comes When Market Rules
As is often the case in faith-based systems, reconciling doctrine to the facts of history can be tricky. When I read Neeley’s piece, I immediately thought of the long list of modern technological innovations that came directly from government-directed and -financed projects, most notably containerization, satellites, computers, and the Internet. The initial research-and-development for all these projects so central to the modern economy came from the government, often through the military, long before they were commercially viable. It’s true that individuals and businesses often used those innovations to create products and services for the market, but without the foundational research funded by government, none of those products and services could exist.

And this opinion too: Free-Market Socialism 

And Five Republican Lies About Income Inequality.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Heavy ... an anthem to Wounded Knee and the Trail of Tears? Read the lyrics

Come out come out 
No use in hiding 
Come now come now 
Can you not see? 

There's no place here 
What were you expecting 
Not room for both 
Just room for me 
So you will lay your arms down 
Yes I will call this home 

Away away 
You have been banished 
Your land is gone 
And given me 

And here I will spread my wings 
Yes I will call this home 
What's this you say 
You feel a right to remain 
Then stay and I will bury you 

What's that you say 
Your father's spirit still lives in this place 
I will silence you 

Here's the hitch 
Your horse is leaving 
Don't miss your boat 
It's leaving now 

And as you go I will spread my wings 
Yes I will call this home 
I have no time to justify to you 
Fool you're blind, move aside for me 
All I can say to you my new neighbor 
Is you must move on or I will bury you 

Now as I rest my feet by this fire 
Those hands once warmed here 
I have retired them 
I can breathe my own air 
I can sleep more soundly 

Upon these poor souls 
I'll build heaven and call it home 
'Cause you're all dead now 
I live with my justice 
I live with my greedy need 
I live with no mercy 
I live with my frenzied feeding 
I live with my hatred 
I live with my jealousy 
I live with the notion 

That I don't need anyone but me 
Don't drink the water 
There's blood in the water
January 23 at 9:09pm · Like

"No such thing as global warning"-Reflublicans, dingbats, corporate lobbyists. Then how come ...

No such thing as global warming. Reflublicans, dingbats and their corporate lobbyists have solemnly declared this truth. Then how come ...among other things ... well hell read on.

Clean Start

As the Arctic melts, a huge pool of fresh water in the Arctic Ocean is expanding and could lower the temperature of Europe by causing an ocean current to slow down, British scientists said Sunday. [Reuters]
Deforestation and climate change are having a profound effect on the Amazon basin, shifting it from a carbon sink to a carbon emitter. [TG Daily]
Two people have died in the Birmingham area as storms pounded the South and Midwest, prompting tornado warnings in a handful of states early Monday. [AP] 
Rising human carbon dioxide emissions may be affecting the brains and central nervous system of sea fishes with serious consequences for their survival, an international scientific team has found. [Science Daily] 
Leading climate scientists have given their support to a Freedom of Information request seeking to disclose who is funding the Global Warming Policy Foundation, a London-based climate sceptic thinktank chaired by the former Conservative chancellor Lord Lawson. [Guardian] 
The head of pipeline company Enbridge Inc said on Wednesday that the Obama administration’s rejection of the Keystone XL line may be a threat to other new pipeline projects, including its planned $5.45 billion Northern Gateway line, because it “will embolden those opposed to Gateway and other new project developments.” [Reuters] 
TransCanada today said it may build U.S.-only pipeline segments, which don’t require federal approval, and apply later for permission to connect the pipeline to Canadian oil sands and complete Keystone XL as originally proposed. [Bloomberg] 
Gabrielle Giffords‘ announcement Sunday that she would step down from Congress doesn’t just leave a hole in southern Arizona’s representation, but in the state’s solar community as well. [Phoenix Business Journal] 
Oil rose as the European Union announced a phased-in embargo of Iranian crude in an effort to contain the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program. [Bloomberg] 
The flooding of the Mississippi River in 2011 has caused long-lasting, if not permanent, agricultural damage to hundreds of acres of land. [Farm Journal] 
Perth is expected to go through a seven-day heat wave, with temperatures set to rise to a maximum of 104 degrees on Australia Day and Friday. [Sydney Morning Herald]

And this Illustrated Guide to Climate Change 

Uh oh ... British Parliament now coming out against corporate welfare assistance ...

British Members Of Parliament Call For Closure Of Romney’s Cayman Islands Tax Haven

"The motion states that the House is “alarmed” by reports that Romney and others are using the Caymans to 'avoid paying the same tax rate as other US citizens' and 'concerned about the continued use of tax havens by the top 1% in the US and UK to avoid paying the correct tax in their own country.'
... The United States loses $100 billion a year in tax revenue to offshore tax havens like the Caymans, according to the U.S. Public Interest Research Group."
... The United States loses $100 billion a year in tax revenue to offshore tax havens like the Caymans, according to the U.S. Public Interest Research Group." 

“As a former member of the Treasury select committee, I think it is a disgrace that the Cayman Islands, a tax haven, can enable wealthy corporations and individuals such as Mitt Romney and others in the wealthiest 1% to avoid tax and still be cloaked in secrecy. 
Meanwhile all across the western world, hard-working people are seeing their living standards and take-home pay stagnate or reduced.
It reminds me of President Kennedy’s comment in his inaugural speech, ‘pay any price, bear any burden’. Except it’s hard-working, modestly paid majority who are bearing that burden.”

What kind of flock in my home state supports this Christian bigot?

By the way, Washington State has one of the superstar silly section standouts, Rev. Hutcherson, former substitute for the Seahawks:

Anti-Gay Pastor Compares Washington Governor To Lincoln’s Assassin For Supporting Marriage Equality

I can't imagine what this self-styled servant of the master would do to a robbery victim on the Road to Jericho ... specially if that victim walked funny or had a high lilt in his voice. But the very last of the following statements give us a picture.

More from the Silly Seahawk former Substitute:
Hutcherson — who famously officiated at Rush Limbaugh’s wedding

— has previously claimed that “the behavior of gays ought to be regulated by the government for health reasons,”

and warned that God would unleash his judgment upon this nation unless it banned the promotion of homosexuality.

“God hates soft men,” he proclaimed in 2008,

and “God hates effeminate men.”

Hutcherson went on to say,
“If I was in a drugstore and some guy opened the door for me, I’d rip his arm off and beat him with the wet end.”

Activist Judges ... Heck I'd be satisfied just with smart ones.

 I've said it before, for those of you who think Supreme Court Justice Scalia is smart ... he ain't and he never was. It has been his arrogant and egotistical pretending.

Today's Silly Section

Tennessee Tea Party: Slavery? What slavery?

To whitewash one of the darkest practices in America history, conservatives proposed that textbooks refer to the slave trade as the “Atlantic triangular trade.”
Now Tennessee Tea Party members are taking their efforts a step further and trying to eliminate references to slavery in American history textbooks. Salon reports that Tea Partiers who fetishize America’s founders are “demanding” that students not be taught that many of them owned slaves: 
For a bunch of people who worship the Founders and like to play dress-up American Revolutionary War, Tea Partyers sure hate knowing anything remotely reality-based about the Founding FathersTennessee Tea Party groups have introduced a proposal to take what few minorities there are in American history textbooks out of American history textbooks, along with any negative portrayals of the wealthy white men who led this young nation in its infancy.
At a press conference, two dozen activists presented their proposals — I’m sorry, their “demands” — for the new state legislative session. Among them are sweeping changes to school materials that they probably have not actually read. [...]
Fayette County attorney Hal Rounds, the group’s lead spokesman during the news conference, said the group wants to address “an awful lot of made-up criticism about, for instance, the founders intruding on the Indians or having slaves or being hypocrites in one way or another.”

And this which of course dis-identifies innocent children in the name of bigtory. 

IOWA CONSERVATIVES OPPOSE BILL TO LIST SAME-SEX PARENTS ON BIRTH CERTIFICATESRepublican lawmakers in Iowa are opposing a bill that would require “state health officials to list both members of same-sex marriages on their children’s birth certificates” because Iowans did not vote on the right of gay and lesbian people to get married, the Des Moines Register reports. Openly gay state Sen. Matt McCoy (D) introduced the measure after officials failed “to correctly interpret older Iowa law in light of the Iowa Supreme Court ruling” and list the names of two same-sex parents in at least one incident

Quality, Not Quantity

Hollywood stars dissing their own industry. Clooney, Craig and co.

I like this for the same reason I've never liked reality shows. However, if the audience itself is shallow, easily entertained and susceptible to capture by special effects ... well, we get what we pay for.

Friday, January 13, 2012

The clown car party and its clown car candidates

A new Democracy Corps poll revealed a nightmare scenario for Republicans where not only does Obama get reelected but Democrats regain total control of Congress.
The Democratic Party has taken the lead on the generic congressional ballot, 47%-44%. 
Independents have shifted back to the Democratic Party. Democrats have taken a two point lead.
The behavior of Republicans in Congress has turned off voters. 53% of respondents said the more they watched the Republicans in Congress, the less they like what they are offering. Approval of Republicans in Congress has dropped to a new low of 28%, and 8% strongly approve of the Republican caucus.
The party’s 2012 presidential candidate clown car is making things even worse. 53% of Republican  respondents said the more they watch the GOP nomination, the less they like what the Republican Party has to offer. Mitt Romney is not personally popular with Republicans or Independents. 31% of Republicans and 27% of Independents had warm feelings for Romney. 
Obama leads Romney by one point (47%-46%). If Paul gets in as a 3rd party candidate, Romney loses 12 points and falls to 34%. Obama only loses three points if Paul runs as an Independent. Paul draws the support of 18% of the electorate. (A third party candidacy by Ron Paul would split the Republican vote, and hand the election to Obama).
An unpopular Republican congress, an unpopular nominee, and 3rd party dissonance could add up to a perfect storm of defeat for the GOP. 
Looks like that the more people get to know the Republican Party, the less likely they are to support their candidates.
It is possible that Democrats could take back the House, keep the Senate, and win the White House.
With that kind of majority, maybe more of the original hopes of those who voted for Obama in 2008 could be realized.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Stay Focused on your job

The state legislature has been asked by the Governor to pass a law legalizing gay marriage in Washington State. Something this state should do in the interest of social justice and against the interest of party politics. I agree with Governor Gregoire. You can do it brothers and sisters in Olympia.

To my Facebook friend, State Rep. Brian Blake: Stay focused on your job.
When you're up to your ass in alligators, remember that your main objective was to drain the swamp!-  Buck Smith (another FB friend)
 And if you're running in the same arena as the cows, don't forget the pies.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

They're everywhere, they're everywhere ... behind every bush ... around every corner ... lurking ...

Americans Drastically Overestimate Number Of Undocumented Immigrants In The Country

Americans vastly overestimate the number of undocumented immigrants in the country, according to a recent study. The Wall Street Journal reports that citizens overestimate the percentage of fellow residents who are undocumented by a factor of six or seven. More disturbingly, political scientists John Sides and Jack Citrin found that Americans clung to their false impressions even after being given the correct numbers. In fact, “getting the right number reinforced their views, and even increased their support for letting fewer immigrants into the U.S.”
And while we're on the subject ...

From cuentame.com who obviously knows more about immigration than all the candidates combined.
Mitt Romney and his off-again on-again immigrant attitude. 

Following his win in the New Hampshire presidential primary, Mitt Romney announced today that Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach(R) endorsed his campaign. Kobach is the anti-immigrant official who drafted Arizona and Alabama’s harmful immigration laws, and who once wrote a book opposing the anti-Apartheid boycott of South Africa. 
“With Kris on the team, I look forward to working with him to take forceful steps to curtail illegal immigration and to support states like South Carolina and Arizona that are stepping forward to address this problem,”Romney said in press release. 
Earlier in the campaign, Romney had sought the endorsement of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who eventually endorsed Texas Gov. Rick Perry. With Kobach’s support, Romney reinforces his anti-immigrant stances heading into South Carolina, where officials are facing court challenges to the state’s own anti-immigrant law. Kobach praised Romney in a press release:

Quite a reputable cadre of social justice immigration experts ...

Morality Sheriff Posse needs to saddle up in Washington State

 Led and prompted by outgoing governor Christine Gregoire, Washington is going to approve gay marriage.

Both party politicians are talking approval 

and the biblical stiff-necks can't stop it.

It would be a good thing for the state and the country.

Are you weary yet of people who publicly proclaim and parade their personal morality - not as a costume - but more like a uniform everyone should admire and to which all should defer?

Doofusness; The incumbent sitting Lame Duck American President

It's a vanity issue. For Mr. Trump that means he must satisfy Mr. Hannity, Ms. Coulter and these kind folks: On Networks and ...

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