Wednesday, July 29, 2009

“Soylent Green is made of people! Really OLD people….”

Is there a bottom in the well of insanity that is the Republican Party these days? This is really incredible. I knew that much of the Wingnut Nation would blow a gasket when a Democrat, and a black man to boot, became President. I mean, that goes against their view that it is the God given right of the Republican Party to be in control. Anything else is sacriledge. But I never really expected elected officials to follow their core supporters off the deep end.

We are still engaged in two wars that we still don’t seem to know what to do with (although we do seem to be finally beginning to get out of Iraq). Our country’s economy is still on life support. We have a health care crisis going on. Global climate change isn’t going away. And what do Republicans want to talk about? Whether or not Obama was born in Hawaii, even though that is what his birth certificate says. They want to demand that Obama apologize to the Cambridge police dept. over his “acted stupidly” comment, even though the PD in question has already pretty much accepted Obama’s follow up statements. And now, the latest thing is that they want to go into fainting spells about the Democrats health plan because it will kill senior citizens. No, really. From HuffPo:

Virginia Foxx of North Carolina … claimed that the Republican approach would be more pro-life because it, "would not put seniors in the position of being put to death by their government!"

And she is not alone in such nonsense.

You know, demogogary is one thing. Complete insanity is quite another.

Update: John Boehner gets into the act.

A provision of the House bill would provide Medicare coverage for the work of doctors who advise patients on life-sustaining treatment and "end-of-life services," including hospice care.

Conservative groups have seized on this provision as evidence that the bill could encourage the rationing of health care.... The House Republican leader, Representative John A. Boehner of Ohio, said, "This provision may start us down a treacherous path toward government-encouraged euthanasia."

I keep remembering how patriotic we all felt when we cheered and clapped whenever George W. Bush wiped his butt with the Constitution. Anything and everything was not only allowed but was absolutely a necessity when it came to "defending this country." However, in today's world, trying to fix up a completely broken down healthcare system is now somehow equal to Democrats wanting to kill people.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Jake and Willie debate healthcare reform on Fox News.

Jake: Have you heard the latest, Willie? Obama is going to sign the death warrants for old people. They won’t be able to get life saving operations when they need them because they are too old!

Willie: That’s right, Jake. That’s exactly what I heard too.

Jake: And Obamacare won’t let doctors prescribe any treatments without first getting approval from the government!

Willie: Yep. Uh, huh. Exactly.

Jake: We cannot have a situation where the government rations healthcare! We must put that decision back in the hands of the people it rightfully belongs to!

Willie: Patients and their doctors?

Jake: The insurance companies! They are trustworthy and compassionate.

Willie: They are? I mean, certainly. That’s what I think too.

Jake: Government can’t administer anything! Leave it to the professionals! They are good at what they do.

Willie: Making money?

Jake: NO! Of course not! Well, yes. That’s what private enterprise does. That’s the reason our economy exists. The government should not be allowed to interfere.

Willie: Oh, right. Yes. I forgot.

Jake: Besides, if every American had access to healthcare, that would bog down the system and prevent those who really need healthcare from getting it.

Willie: Those who are really sick?

Jake: Rich, white people! We can’t have our healthcare system bogged down by giving access to the best doctors in the world to illegal aliens, welfare queens and terrorists.

Willie: Terrorists?

Jake: Yes! And abortions on demand! Don’t forget about that!!

Willie: Perhaps if you breathe into a paper bag, your face wouldn’t turn bright red like that.

Jake: And did you know that Obama isn’t really a citizen?

Willie: But didn’t the governor of Hawaii, a Republican, actually say that Barack Obama’s birth certificate was genuine?

Jake: It’s a forgery! He’s a witchdoctor from Kenya!! I’ve seen pictures! He’s got a bone through his nose and everything!

Willie: Yes, there certainly a lot of questions out there that Obama needs to address.

Jake: I bet Obama wants to give healthcare to gay people, too! How dare he!!

Willie: Thank you for your time, Senator. I am glad we could set the record straight on this vitally important issue. Time for a short break, and we will be right back with another informative segment on how the Jews caused the bridge to collapse in Minneapolis a few years ago, right here on Fox and Friends.

Photo still from Humaniods from the Deep, courtesy of the B Movie Graveyard.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I wish Barack Obama would make up his mind about what he is.

Is he:
• A radical pro-terrorist?
• The most liberal member of Congress?
• The anti-Christ?
• A concealed Muslim?
• The convert of a radical/crazy Christian pastor?
• Not really black?
• A Manchurian candidate plotting to destroy America from within?
• An citizen of Kenya without a true U.S. birth certificate?

I’m getting whiplash trying to keep up with all of this, and he has only been in office for six months. You would think the guy would have the courtesy, since we elected him, to decide what the hell he is, so the “loyal opposition” can settle on something and stick with it for more than several weeks!!

I am wondering how soon Barack Obama is going to decide he is actually William Shatner in disquise, a reincarnation of Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China or a visitor from the fourth planet orbiting the star Regulus.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

THIS is one reason that many think our current policy on guns is insane.

(I have the distinct feeling that I am going to annoy a number of people with this post. Talking about guns and gun control is about as risky as talking about religion, if you don’t know your audience. There are some very strong feelings on all sides of this discussion. However, I guess the point of writing on a blog is to say what you think. And, of course, having a blog means never having to say you’re sorry.)

From the Seattle PI:

Sound engineer fatally shot outside motel room


TWISP, Wash. -- A sound engineer who worked on live performances by the likes of B.B. King, Nirvana and Alice Cooper has been shot to death at a motel in Twisp, Wash.

Tom Pfaeffle, 49, staying with his wife on vacation at the Blue Spruce Motel, apparently put his room key into the wrong door Friday night and was hit in the upper chest by a bullet fired through the closed door, Police Chief Rick Balam told KING Television of Seattle.

Pfaeffle died two hours later at Mid-Valley Hospital in Omak.

A second shot went through a wall into another room and landed harmlessly on a guest who was doing a crossword puzzle in bed, motel owner Randy Martin told The Wenatchee World newspaper.

A 57-year-old man surrendered without further incident and was jailed for investigation of second-degree murder and assault, Balam said.

I've been to Twisp. It's a very small town and it is very frightening to see this.

It seems to me that, by arguing greater and more lenient access to guns, gun rights advocates never make the concession that their some (not “all”, by any means and not even “most”, but certainly “some”) of gun rights advocates are also trigger-happy hotheads that support open ownership of guns because of the feelings of power and control it gives them. “Don’t screw with me! I’m armed!”

I have seen this up close and personal. I usually don’t go into too many personal details in this blog. That isn’t its purpose. But I think this time, I have some relevant personal information. When I was in my early 20’s, I guess it was, my younger brother and I were confronted by my stepfather, who was always angry and blamed everyone else for his supposed problems. He was very drunk, as usual, but this time he had a loaded pistol, which was decidedly unusual, that he kept waving in our direction. He would check that it was loaded every so often, either to reassure himself or to intimidate us, which is more likely. He kept waving this gun at us and demanding that we “love him!” Yeah, threatening someone with a loaded gun is a sure fire way to get someone’s love and admiration. We just kept him talking until he eventually passed out on the kitchen floor. We then hid the gun somewhere. During this episode, I really couldn’t believe it was happening. Thinking about it afterwards, I felt decidedly fortunate for my brother and me to have come out of the episode uninjured and alive.

That’s the mindset I see out there. Those are the people who desire that the entire population be armed; the kind of people who think the problem with our society is that we don’t have enough threats of violence and intimidation and general, overall high levels of testosterone. I would guess, but am not certain, of course, that this is the kind of guy who fired his gun through his locked door of his motel room at someone who was mistakenly trying to open the wrong door. I have done that myself. I guess I should count myself as being lucky I survived.

I have absolutely no hope that anything will change here in the U.S. Too much money, too much intimidation, too many people thinking about themselves and not about what else is really going on in the country, for anything to really change. “Those damn Democrats better not try to take my guns!” That’s the mindset, and no politician is going to pick that fight. It’s better to coddle up to the gun lobby and gun ownership supporters than try to perhaps do something intelligent.

I suppose the only lesson learned from this story is that you better be very sure what hotel room you are in before you start trying to open the door.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Ya say you want a giant rabbit? Waal, why didn’t ya say so? Got one right here.

His name is Herman, if you are interested. I am imagining rabbit droppings the size of ping pong balls.

Photo and story from here.

I want to say a word about Kindle, Amazon’s electronic book viewer.

I know that Americans are usually obsessed with owning the newest and hippest thing available. It doesn’t matter that the older thing is still quite functional. It becomes obsolete because it is deemed to be obsolete by the industry and the consumers.

On some occasions, this is warranted. No one really wants 8 track or even cassette tapes anymore. I keep hearing that the death of musical CD’s is imminent, although I have a feeling those are going to hang on for quite a while. I am still quite annoyed that my perfectly good printer/scanner/copier is obsolete and not supported and I can’t use the scanner feature anymore because HP decided they weren’t going to make a new application software for Windows XP and beyond. So, just because we upgraded our computer, we are now without a scanner. I find that infuriating.

All right, that was a bit of an unnecessary diversion. I wanted to talk about why Kindle is even a product available for sale. The base models cost about $300. Even with that outlay, you still have to buy the e-books, unless you are into the free classics. The hardware will, no doubt, need to have upgrades every once in a while. It will probably also do all sorts of cool stuff like be able to surf the internet and such, which a person’s cell phone or blackberry already does if that person is inclined to have the coolest thing.

My point being, this is rather a pricey proposition. Plus, we now need the manufacturing and support capabilities necessary to build and maintain these things. More toxic waste will be generated by the manufacture and disposal of these things. So, what the heck is wrong with just buying the damn book? Yeah, O.K., new hardcover books are expensive and they are printed on paper, which requires dead trees. But still, is just the fact that you have a Kindle, that you are among those who have the newest and hippest thing available, really that much of a rush that we have to have an entirely new and expensive electronics gadget to replace something, in this case, printed books, really necessary?

I admit, I am a book person. I have a nice little library where my shelves are full of books (and DVD’s), many of which are rather old. I didn’t buy them new. I would love to know the history behind some of the books I have. I have a number that were printed in the late 1890’s. I find that fascinating all by itself, much less the subject of the book itself. I just think we are losing something with this move. I frankly, just don't see the point.

Sure, printed books will always be with us. Hopefully, in the future, they won’t be looked upon as anachronistic antiques.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

R.I.P. Walter Cronkite

Walter Cronkite has died at 92. This man lived an extraordinary life and was a journalist in every sense of the word. We do not have anyone comparable today in broadcast journalism. I am old enough to remember watching him on television giving us the bad news about John F Kennedy and the Vietnam War. However, my most vivid memory is watching the coverage of Apollo 11, which was just 40 years ago this past week. I just remember the thrill in his voice during the liftoff. I can't remember his exact words, but they were something to the effect of "Man is on the way to the moon!" HIs excitement was very real and was immediately transmitted to his viewing audience. He was held in such esteem that LBJ said something like "If we have lost Cronkite, then we have lost the country" when speaking about support for the Vietnam War.

This guy was a giant. It's too much to wish that we had some Cronkites around today. I would be satisfied with some of today's journalists stopping and reflecting on how journalists should go about their job.

Photo credit: CBS via Huffington Post.


I wrote this original post immediately after seeing the sad news of Cronkite’s passing on HuffPo. I have seen, since that time, there are many posts about Cronkite on blogs large and small. Mad Mike’s America has a very good one. So does Glenn Greenwald, although the majority of the post is not so much about Cronkite but about the passing of true journalism. Here are a few samplings.

"The Vietcong did not win by a knockout [in the Tet Offensive], but neither did we. The referees of history may make it a draw. . . . We have been too often disappointed by the optimism of the American leaders, both in Vietnam and Washington, to have faith any longer in the silver linings they find in the darkest clouds. . . .

"For it seems now more certain than ever that the bloody experience of Vietnam is to end in a stalemate. . . . To say that we are closer to victory today is to believe, in the face of the evidence, the optimists who have been wrong in the past"
-- Walter Cronkite, CBS Evening News, February 27, 1968.

"I think there are a lot of critics who think that [in the run-up to the Iraq War] . . . . if we did not stand up and say this is bogus, and you're a liar, and why are you doing this, that we didn't do our job. I respectfully disagree. It's not our role" -- David Gregory, MSNBC, May 28, 2008.

When Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Halberstam died, media stars everywhere commemorated his death as though he were one of them -- as though they do what he did -- even though he had nothing but bottomless, intense disdain for everything they do. As he put it in a 2005 speech to students at the Columbia School of Journalism: "the better you do your job, often going against conventional mores, the less popular you are likely to be . . . . By and large, the more famous you are, the less of a journalist you are."

In that same speech, Halberstam cited as the "proudest moment" of his career a bitter argument he had in 1963 with U.S. Generals in Vietnam, by which point, as a young reporter, he was already considered an "enemy" of the Kennedy White House for routinely contradicting the White House's claims about the war (the President himself asked his editor to pull Halberstam from reporting on Vietnam). During that conflict, he stood up to a General in a Press Conference in Saigon who was attempting to intimidate him for having actively doubted and aggressively investigated military claims, rather than taking and repeating them at face value:

Picture if you will rather small room, about the size of a classroom, with about 10 or 12 reporters there in the center of the room. And in the back, and outside, some 40 military officers, all of them big time brass. It was clearly an attempt to intimidate us.

General Stilwell tried to take the intimidation a step further. He began by saying that Neil and I had bothered General Harkins and Ambassador Lodge and other VIPs, and we were not to do it again. Period.

And I stood up, my heart beating wildly -- and told him that we were not his corporals or privates, that we worked for The New York Times and UP and AP and Newsweek, not for the Department of Defense.

I said that we knew that 30 American helicopters and perhaps 150 American soldiers had gone into battle, and the American people had a right to know what happened. I went on to say that we would continue to press to go on missions and call Ambassador Lodge and General Harkins, but he could, if he chose, write to our editors telling them that we were being too aggressive, and were pushing much too hard to go into battle. That was certainly his right.

Can anyone imagine any big media stars -- who swoon in reverence both to political power and especially military authority -- defying military instructions that way, let alone being proud of it? Halberstam certainly couldn't imagine any of them doing it, which is why, in 1999, he wrote:

Obviously, it should be a brilliant moment in American journalism, a time of a genuine flowering of a journalistic culture . . .

But the reverse is true. Those to whom the most is given, the executives of our three networks, have steadily moved away from their greatest responsibilities, which is using their news departments to tell the American people complicated truths, not only about their own country, but about the world around us. . . .

Somewhere in there, gradually, but systematically, there has been an abdication of responsibility within the profession, most particularly in the networks. . . . So, if we look at the media today, we ought to be aware not just of what we are getting, but what we are not getting; the difference between what is authentic and what is inauthentic in contemporary American life and in the world, with a warning that in this celebrity culture, the forces of the inauthentic are becoming more powerful all the time

Glenn also spends some time about how the current crop of media stars fawned over Tim Russert when he passed away. Pfft. I’m sorry the guy had a heart attack and died. But Russert was no journalist. He was a compliant tool of the rich and powerful, which usually meant the Bush Adminstration and the Republican Party. If he had done his job and pushed back when he was obviously being fed a lot of horse hockey, maybe the country wouldn’t be in the position it is. And make no mistake about this. I don’t think the press should be a sycophant of ANY administration, Republican or Democratic. I have no illusions about the Democratic Party. It’s just that I think they have a little bit more in the way of principles and are looking out for the country far more than the Republican Party. But I also know this isn’t always going to be the case.

Bottom line, the press needs to do its damn job. However, with big money controlling pretty much every facet of mass media, I don’t really see this happening without a huge upheaval somewhere. Perhaps the internet and independent bloggers are the beginnings of this upheaval. I know that many people either already believe it is so or fervently hope that it is so.

Friday, July 17, 2009

How conspiracy theories really work.

"See! I was right all along! You can't see them because they are INVISIBLE! The aliens have technology that is far advanced from ours. Not being able to see them PROVES that UFO's are real!"

(In case anyone missed the connection, I am talking about the emerging "conspiracy" that, somehow, President Obama is not really a U.S. citizen and therefore cannot be president. The momentum this is gaining in the mainstream (e.g., Lou Dobbs) is insane.)

Photo still from Invisible Invaders, courtesy of the B Movie Graveyard.

The U.S. Air Force takes a more active role in seeking out possible terrorist sleeper cells.

Photo and story from here

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

O.K., this is just wrong.

Just like there are people in the world who should not be allowed to be parents, there are also people out there who should not be allowed to have pets.

Monday, July 13, 2009

The Minutemen vigilantly guard our borders.

“Stop asking me if I want some cocoa! I don’t want any cocoa! Look, miss, I don’t care if you ARE from Switzerland. If you can’t produce a visa, I’m afraid I am going to have to shoot you!”

Photo still of Journey to the 7th Planet, from B Movie Graveyard.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

We are going to spend a long, LONG time coming to grips with the Bush presidency.

There are just so many things that are oozing out from underneath the carpet that they are very difficult to ignore. Many people, including Bush/Cheney apologists, neo-cons, conservatives, and the well connected (both politically and powerfully) who are doing their utmost to keep all this crap that the Bushies swept under the rug from ever seeing the light of day. That includes, most unfortunately, many people within the Obama administration, including President Obama himself. The big question is, will we ever find out everything that happened during the Bush years?

I, personally, doubt it very much. There are too many people conspiring to keep everything hidden. I don’t know if Obama’s reasons are deeper than his professed position of “moving forward and not looking backward.” If that’s really it, then this is certainly an example of when obstinate pragmatism may serve the person well in the short term, but that might be a disastrous position to have in the long term.

So Dick Cheney lied again. He ordered people at the CIA to not Congress, which has, if I am not mistaken, a Constittuional obligation to oversee the CIA and to reign them in if they get too out of control. From HuffPo:

Former Vice President Dick Cheney directed the CIA eight years ago not to inform Congress about a nascent counterterrorism program that CIA Director Leon Panetta terminated in June, officials with direct knowledge of the matter said Saturday.

Subsequent CIA directors did not inform Congress because the intelligence-gathering effort had not developed to the point that they believed merited a congressional briefing, said a former intelligence official and another government official familiar with Panetta's June 24 briefing to the House and Senate Intelligence committees.

Panetta did not agree.

Upon learning of the program June 23 from within the CIA, Panetta terminated it and the next day called an emergency meeting with the House and Senate Intelligence committees to inform them of the program and that it was canceled.

Cheney played a central role in overseeing the Bush administration's surveillance program that was the subject of an inspectors general report this past week. That report noted that Cheney's chief of staff, David Addington, personally decided who in Bush's inner circle could even know about the secret program.

But revelations about Cheney's role in making decisions for the CIA on whether to notify Congress came as a surprise to some on the committees, said another government official. All spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the program publicly.

Wow, what a surprise. Dick Cheney in charge, and was being secretive. I really wonder if George really know what his VP was doing...

Photo from here.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Amazing astronomical photo

This is today's Astronomical Photo of the Day from NASA. Isn't that absolutely incredible?

And here is the explanation given:

The Pillars of Eagle Castle

Credit & Copyright: Emanuele Colognato & Jim Wood (Backyard Skies)

Explanation: What lights up this castle of star formation? The familiar Eagle Nebula glows bright in many colors at once. The above image is a composite of three of these glowing gas colors. Pillars of dark dust nicely outline some of the denser towers of star formation. Energetic light from young massive stars causes the gas to glow and effectively boils away part of the dust and gas from its birth pillar. Many of these stars will explode after several million years, returning most of their elements back to the nebula which formed them. This process is forming an open cluster of stars known as M16.

O.K., yes. This photo is under copyright. I am thinking it will be O.K. if I give them attribution and a link. Please go visit their home page.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Sarah Palin = Chance the Gardener?

See, this is a scary thought.

These two characters, Sarah and Chance, one fictional and one apparently very real, have quite a few things in common. Apparently neither read very much, but do watch television. Neither of them really have much on the ball upstairs, if you know what I mean. In fact, both have a tendency to say really strange and silly sounding things that other people who should really know better, amazingly enough, take as deeply insightful and full of wisdom. Both of them REALLY like to be on television. Both are plucked from relative obscurity by a stroke of fate involving very powerful and influential people. And both end up, due to this amazing stroke of fate, on the pathway to possibly becoming the President of the United States.

That's really scary.

Yet ANOTHER reason to hate the New York Yankees.

They have security people who won’t let you go pee during the singing of “God Bless America.” From Whiskeyfire:

Two uniformed cops who ejected a Red Sox fan from Yankee Stadium last summer when he tried to use the bathroom during "God Bless America" have cost NYC taxpayers some $20,000 in settlement money. But the good news is that Yankee Stadium will now allow attendees relieve themselves during the Seventh Inning stretch! You'll recall that last August, one Brad Campeau-Laurion refused to obey an NYPD officer who ordered him back to his seat when he tried to use the bathroom as "God Bless America" played. According to Campeau-Laurion, two officers then forcefully threw him out, with one of the officers telling him to "leave the country if he didn’t like it." In the wake of 9/11, Yankee stadium began requiring spectators to remain in their seats during patriotic songs, in some cases extending chains to block the ends of the aisles. But after a lawsuit filed by the NYCLU over "enforced patriotism," a settlement was reached yesterday whereby Campeau-Laurion gets $10,001 from the city, the NYCLU gets $12,000 for legal fees, and baseball fans are granted the liberty to micturate at will.

“Extending chains to block the ends of the aisles”?!? You have to be sh*ttin me.

Enforced patriotism = fascism, in my mind. No one is going to make me sing a crappy, simpering song if I don’t want to, just as no one is going to force me to say the Pledge of Allegiance if I don’t feel like it. And for some reason, I find it even more upsetting that this wasn’t a government entity trying to enforce this, it is a professional sports team!

Photo from here.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

"I was going to clean this up, but I decided that NOT cleaning it up was the best for everyone!"

I absolutely refuse to continue to be the target of unfair media people who keep pointing to all these beer bottles in the road. Oh, and good point guards keep their head up for lame ducks that don't chase dead fish... You betcha!

I wonder if we can get Joe the Plumber to quit, too.

I mean, we would all have to figure out exactly what he IS that we want him to quit from first... I suppose he could just shut up and disappear, that would be good enough for me. Maybe Sarah Palin could give him some inspirational thoughts about quitting, stuff like dead fish and lame ducks, and how quitting from something you started and aren't done with is really a GOOD thing. More Americans should quit... whatever it is they are doing that they haven't completed yet.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

So, Sarah Palin quits as governor 1 ½ years early and “bloggers and activists” are the reason?

There is lots and lots of speculation out there about Sarah Palin’s real motivations for calling it quits. She’s freeing herself up for a presidential run in 2012. No, she’s sick of politics, dislikes her life and wants to spend more time with her family. But she really wants to travel around the country, helping out Republican candidates. Which may be really difficult to do while spending more time with her family.

Here is one reason, as noted by Nick Ayers, the executive director of the Republicans Governor’s Assocation, in HuffPo.

While Ayers may have had a direct heads up as to Palin's intentions, he wasn't entirely on cue with the Governor's talking points. Asked why Palin was stepping down as opposed to finishing her term (which ends in 2010), the RGA header cited pesky bloggers and activists as the reason. Palin had insisted she didn't want to put Alaskans through two years of a lame-duck governorship.

"I don't think this is buckling to pressure," said Ayers. "I think this is her coming to the realization that the legislature in Alaska and that some bloggers and activists in Alaska are going to do everything they can to stymie her progress. This is a governor who didn't run for the office because she wanted a title. She wanted to make significant change in the state. She realized that that was no longer going to be able to happen, because things had become so partisan there."

She can’t do her job as governor of a relatively small state (in terms of population) because bloggers and activists are giving her such a hard time, but she wanted to be Vice President of the United States? Does she not think that might be a little bit more visible position than governor? And as for the compliant that “things had become so partisan”, does she not remember her contribution to the entire “partisan” thing? Obama “pals around with terrorists” and such? People in the crowd at her rallies were recorded yelling, “terrorist” and “kill him!” That’s not partisan? By engaging in such tactics, does she not open herself up to criticism? By getting into a high profile dust up with David Letterman, after Letterman apologized several times for the rather nasty joke about one of Palin’s daughters, doesn’t she just add fuel to the fire? She’s the one who made her family into a campaign issue, after all.

I also think her use of the term “lame duck” is really unusual. I have never heard of an official call himself or herself a “lame duck” after only 2 ½ years on the job. That term is normally applied to someone in their last term in office and can’t run anymore, and everyone knows it so there is no real reason to go along with that person because everyone knows there will be someone new coming along very soon. She’s the one who said she wasn’t going to seek a second term, so that automatically qualifies her as a lame duck after 2 ½ years? That’s really weird logic.

I have no doubt that some “bloggers and activists” go beyond the pale when it comes to Sarah and her family, and they have the ability to make Sarah Palin’s life difficult, but only if she lets them. Myself, I have real doubts that someone as narcissistic as Sarah Palin appears to be would just step down voluntarily from the office to which she was elected, just because bloggers are saying nasty things about her. She said some pretty nasty things about others. I guess this means that if someone has particularly thin skin, then they shouldn’t be in politics. I couldn’t do it, for instance. But unless Sarah Palin goes into seclusion and stays there, I can’t see the scrutiny by all those pesky bloggers diminishing any time soon.

One way of looking at this is the old saying, “If you can’t stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen.” A slightly different way of looking at that is this. If you are going to say and do things on a national stage that makes you look like a moron, but don’t like the negative publicity, then maybe you should either stop looking like a moron or else get out of the game entirely.

Friday, July 03, 2009

More thoughts on conservative desires for another terrorist attack in the U.S.

(This was originally an update of my earlier post on this subject. However, it turned out to be more angry and full of content than I had originally intended, so I decided to make this into its own entry.)

You know, after a day mulling this over, I am still unable to grasp the enormity of just how insane these people are. Sadly, No! posted some comments from some right wing site about this. There really are people out there hoping and praying that the U.S. gets hit again with another terrorist attack. One lady (I assume it was a female, by the name) said something like, "If it can't be Washington D.C., then I pray that it is San Francisco."

The psychological makeup of these people is incredibly scary. They are so lost, so upset that they are no longer in control and the world is not conforming to their very odd view of reality that they hope for a repeat, or even worse, of the absolute worst day in America since Pearl Harbor. Their emotional state is that fragile. They cannot cope with the fact that they are not "correct", so they wish for more mass casualties in the U.S., for the sole purpose of being able to have that feeling of self righteous anger, the kinds that burns in the breast that requires we go destroy someone or something. Last time, it was Iraq. Bombing the shit out of Iraq was cathartic to these people. It was just unfortunate that Iraq had absolutely nothing to do with the terrible events of 9/11. However, justifications could come later. All that was really necessary was that we go destroy something. It felt good to these people. They got their rocks off by watching the nightly pyrotechnics in the safety of their living rooms. "Yeah, we showed them terrorists!!"

Now that a Democrat, and a black man to boot, is in the White House and the Dems control both the Senate and the House, the coping mechanism of these lunatics is obviously on life support. They cannot deal with reality. They want to return to the safety of their constructed reality, where the United States of America (Fuck, yeah!) is the always the victor over ultimate evil. We smite the infidels with our righteous sword, because God is on our side! That is what they want. That is why insane people like William Kristol kept agitating to bomb Iran, after our "adventures" in Iraq were shown to be an unmitigated disaster. They needed that fix of self righteous anger. The same thing is going on now. A terrorist attack, and preferably a nuclear one (according to Michael Scheuer above), will make things simple again and put everything back in the correct order. Republicans will once again be in charge, Democrats will hide, whimpering in fear, in their closets, and the U.S. will show the world, friends and enemies alike, that NO ONE messes with us! If you do, the consequences will be terrible.

This is the same exact mentality of the schoolyard bully. He can't deal with his classmates on normal terms. He has to terrorize them in order to feel good about himself.

I tell you, if God DID create humans in His own image, then God must really have some deep issues that he needs to resolve.

Sorry for this early morning session in amateur pop psychology, but I am just incensed that these kind of people call liberals "anti-American" and being "for the terrorists." Man, if rooting for Osama bin Laden to detonate a nuclear bomb in a major U.S. city is not "rooting for the terrorists", I don't know what is. I am just astounded that these people can't even see how crazy they are. Which, now that I think about it, is the very definition of "crazy."

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Well, it’s official. Conservatives hate Obama so much that they hope Al Queda attacks the U.S. again.

This is not some mindless ravings of a basement blogger. (I’m actually in my library on the second floor, and I am not wearing pajamas either.) No, this is actually what one Michael Scheuer said on Glenn Beck’s show on Fox “News.” From Crooks and Liars:

Scheuer: The only chance we have as a country right now is for Osama bin Laden to deploy and detonate a major weapon in the United States. Because it's going to take a grass-roots, bottom-up pressure. Because these politicians prize their office, prize the praise of the media and the Europeans. It's an absurd situation again. Only Osama can execute an attack which will force Americans to demand that their government protect them effectively, consistently, and with as much violence as necessary.

Did you get that? This guy is saying, on what is purported to be a mainstream media outlet, says that he hopes Osama bin Laden attacks the U.S. again so that true conservatives like himself can immediately start blaming Obama. Please note that Glenn Beck did not immediately jump in and tell this guy he was a lunatic. He actually agreed with him! They want another 3000+ innocent men, women and children, along with the heroic police and firefighters, to die just because they don’t like what President Obama is doing.

Besides sounding like the ravings of someone who should be in an insane asylum, this guy’s statement doesn’t make logical sense. Look at that last sentence. He is saying that Osama bin Laden should attack the U.S., which would no doubt result in mass casualties, because that is, after all, the point of such a terrorist attack, so that people will demand that the U.S. government protect them! That’s like burning down your house to get the fire department’s attention that they should protect your house from burning down! I mean, this is absolutely insane stuff. This is not anti-American? They are actively rooting for the epitome of a terrorist, those people for whom the U.S. must shred the Constitution and give up the very things that make this country free, to successfully murder 100's if not 1000's of American citizens!

I have said before, I know that every society has its fringe movements and individual lunatics. But how did this country ever come to the point where we have so many people who appear to be stark raving mad, and why are they now offered such a prominent soapbox as national television?

UPDATE: This story is starting to make the rounds in the blogosphere. Here is Steve Benen's take at Washington Monthly.

I was trying to think of how best to describe how spectacularly offensive this lunacy really is, but it looks like Adam Serwer beat me to it: "[U]nderstand, this is not unpatriotic. You can wish all manner of horrors on this country, but as long as these horrors might serve a specific political agenda, you're not being unpatriotic. Unpatriotic is a public health care plan. Unpatriotic is a judge modifying subprime mortgage loans to keep a roof over someone's head. Unpatriotic is phosphate free detergent. Patriotic is wishing for a terrorist attack on the United States."

I'd just add that there will almost certainly be no consequences for this. Two nutty conservatives can talk about the advantages of another terrorist attack on U.S. soil -- indeed, they can long for it -- without facing any real pushback at all. There won't be any suspensions or boycotts. No sponsors will withdraw. None of Beck's or Scheuer's allies will distance themselves, and neither one will be excluded from polite company.

Yep. That's totally true.

UPDATE II: From Sadly, No!

I can’t think of one other country in the entire history of the world where right-wing pundits go on TV and pine for a devastating nuclear attack on their own country just so they can say they were right all along. Not even Iranian government officials, crazy as they are, sit around saying, “Y’know, I hope the infidels bomb the hell out of us just so we can expose the Reformists as a bunch of wimps.”