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Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Senate's "Dr. No"

The Senate has some truly quixotic rules. One of them is that any Senator can put a hold on any piece of legislation. Sen. Tom Coburn (R) of Oklahoma, who ironically is a doctor doesn't like any legislation that doesn't help corporations or rich people. He's using that rule to prove it over and over.

Soon after the devastating earthquake in Haiti the U.S. passed legislation donating $1.25 billion to aid Haiti. None of the money has been spent yet because Coburn objects to $1 million of the amount being spent to administer the funding. He has also put a hold on compensation awarded by the courts to black farmers for discrimination by the Agriculture Department in the 1950's and 60's. Ironically he is being supported by Michelle Bachmann who's family farm received $250,000 in subsidies from the same department.

An award to American Indians for mismanagement of trust funds by the Department of the Interior is also receiving the same treatment despite the Department receiving a lambasting from the courts. A much needed Food Safety bill is receiving the same treatment from "Dr. No".

Today, Coburn received a "worst person in the world" award from Keith Olberman for his action on the Haitian relief bill. This will no doubt only spur him to do the same more often.

Meg Whitman doesn't believe in buying an election.

After dropping well over $100 million to trying to become California's next Governor she claimed she doesn't believe in 'buying' an election in her debate with Jerry Brown a couple of days ago. Unfortunately, for the former E-Bay CEO, the governorship doesn't come with a 'buy it now' option.

It looks like her entire fortune isn't going to be enough after claiming that she was unaware her housekeeper was an illegal immigrant. For two days she claimed she never received a letter from the Social Security Administration questioning the housekeeper's residential status. Too bad for her a letter has surfaced showing that the letter was received and that the writing on it was possibly her husband's.

There is no truth to the rumor that she is about to deny that she has a husband.

With God on her side

Christine O'Donnell, Tea Party Senate Candidate for Delaware believes she is doing God's work which allows her to makev up shit with impunity. This isn't about her anti-crusade or her rejection of evolution but her lies about her resume. When her Linkedin bio claimed she studied at Oxford University in England she cried foul and claimed an imposter posted the information. When the same info surfaced surfaced on Zoominfo she again cried foul.

it turns out this 'imposter' must be O'Donnell herself. She was a Lincoln Fellowat the Claremont Institute in Southern California in 2002 the resume she provided the school claimed she attended Oxford. Normally something like this would cause a major act of contrition by a candidate but not O'Donnell. As yet, there has been no comment from the O'Donnell campaign.

In a related story, her pro-abstinence non-profit organization, SALT (Saviors Alliance for Lifting the Truth) is on an IRS list of deadbeat organizations hasn't filed tax returns in three years. Who has the time for that when you're so busy trying to stamp out masturbation and not attending Universities at the same time.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Believe what I say, not what I do.

GOP hypocrisy at work.

Sharron Angle, Senare candidate for Nevada want to repeal Obamacare and privatize all health care, except her own. Both she and her husband have government health care.

The US Chamber of Commerce and Senate Republicans beat back an effort by Democrats Tuesday to end tax breaks for companies who send jobs offshore only to import products back into the United States.

Creating and perpetuating a lie - Fox News style

I watched Fox News for about five minutes tonight. It was more than enough. Greta Van Susteren, one of the less doctrinaire hosts (if such a thing is even possible), was interviewing Rep. Darrel Issa of California.

The subject was the Bush tax cuts and the usual GOP claim that raising the top marginal rate will hurt job creation etc etc. He claimed this would even punish people earning less than $250K a year if they were to sell a business or property that would push their income over the threshold they would then pay the higher rate.

Issa, more than most politicians should know that such income is considered capital gains and would be taxed at 15%, considering the sale of his interest in his car alarm company after he was elected to Congress. Van Susteren, naturally didn't challenge Issa's clear as daylight lie.

No wonder Fox news listeners are repeatedly shown to be the least informed segment of the population in poll after poll.

Monday, September 27, 2010

The effect of the Supreme Court campaign finance decision

Republicans have been able to outspend Democrats 6-1 this election season.

Corporations rule the world.

The Abused Wife Syndrome in action

I recently compared the Democrats cowardice to an abused wife thinking, "If I'm good this time I won't get beaten". They didn't force a vote on extending the Bush cuts, fearing the GOP would accuse them of hurting small businesses. Instead, GOP candidates are now running ads accusing Democrats of raising taxes on the middle class.

Will they ever learn.

And the problem is.........

Polls consistently show that at least 60% of Americans support ending the Bush tax cuts for the richest Americans and yet the Democrats can't even get it together to bring it to a vote.

Truly pathetic.

More class warfare

From Bill Maher

Another of my favorites, Congresswoman Michele Bachmann said, "I don't know where they're going to get all this money, because we're running out of rich people in this country." Actually, we have more billionaires here in the U.S. than all the other countries in the top ten combined, and their wealth grew 27% in the last year. Did yours? Truth is, there are only two things that the United States is not running out of: Rich people and bullshit. Here's the truth: When you raise taxes slightly on the wealthy, it obviously doesn't destroy the economy -- we know this, because we just did it -- remember the '90's? It wasn't that long ago. You were probably listening to grunge music, or dabbling in witchcraft. Clinton moved the top marginal rate from 36 to 39% -- and far from tanking, the economy did so well he had time to get his dick washed.

Even 39% isn't high by historical standards. Under Eisenhower, the top tax rate was 91%. Under Nixon, it was 70%. Obama just wants to kick it back to 39 -- just three more points for the very rich. Not back to 91, or 70. Three points. And they go insane. Steve Forbes said that Obama, quote "believes from his inner core that people... above a certain income have more than they should have and that many probably have gotten it from ill-gotten ways." Which they have. Steve Forbes, of course, came by his fortune honestly: he inherited it from his gay egg-collecting, Elizabeth Taylor fag-hagging father, who inherited it from his father. Of course then they moan about the inheritance tax, how the government took 55% percent when Daddy died -- which means you still got 45% for doing nothing more than starting out life as your father's pecker-snot.

We don't hate rich people, but have a little humility about how you got it and stop complaining. Maybe the worst whiner of all: Stephen Schwarzman, #69 on Forbes' list of richest Americans, compared Obama's tax hike to "when Hitler invaded Poland in 1939." Wow. If Obama were Hitler, Mr. Schwarzman, I think your tax rate would be the least of your worries.

I don't begrudge the rich their wealth. Just stop fucking whining about how unfair paying 4% more on your earnings over $250,000 is.

The sad state of affairs

Democratic Congressman Earl Pomeroy of conservative North Dakota is running ads trumpeting his support of George Bush, specifically the Medicare prescription drug plan claiming he put seniors before party.

To refresh memories the Medicare plan symbolized everything rotten about the GOP. While it did help seniors the entire cost was passed on to the taxpayer to the tune of approximately $60 billion a year. The bill banned the import of foreign manufactured drugs even if the same brand was available at a higher price than in the U.S. It also forbade the government from negotiating better pricing with the Pharmaceutical industry.

It also turned out that the Bush administration lied about the real cost of the program. Many Republicans said they would only vote for the bill if the cost was $400 billion or less for the initial 10 years and.....voila, that turned out to ve the cost. Except that the real cost, about $600 was hidden by the Bush administration until after the bill passed.

The biggest beneficiary of the bill was the Pharma industry that was guaranteed huge sales and profits at inflated and protected costs. The bill was written by Pharma industry lobbyists and ushered in by then Congressman, Billy Tauzin, head of the Energy & Commerce committee which oversees the Pharmaceutical industry. A few months later Tauzin retired to head the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America at an annual salary of $2.5 million.

The sad part of the story is that less than 2 years after departing the White House, a Democrat sees his best chance of being re-elected is linking himself to George Bush,

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Something to clear the brain on a hot Sunday afternoon.

Tell us something we don't know. Boehner

John Boehner was on Fox News this morning talking about the Pledge to America. Needless to say, it was completely lacking in substance. Even the normally supine Chris Wallace was having a hard time figuring out just what;s going on beneath the fake orange tan of Boehner's visage.

WALLACE: Congressman Boehner, as Willie Sutton said about banks, entitlements are where the money is. More than 40% of the budget. Yet, I’ve looked through this pledge and there is not one single proposal to cut social security, medicare, medicaid.

BOEHNER: Chris, we make it clear in there that we’re going to lay out a plan to work toward a balanced budget and deal with the entitlement crisis. Chris, it’s time for us as Americans to have an adult conversation with each other about the serious challenges our country faces. And we can’t have that serious conversation until we lay out the size of the problem. Once Americans understand how big the problem is, then we can begin to talk about potential solutions. [...]

WALLACE: Forgive me, sir, isn’t the right time to have the adult conversation now before the election when you have this document? Why not make a single proposal to cut social security, medicare and medicaid?

BOEHNER: Chris, this is what happens here in Washington. When you start down that path, you just invite all kind of problems. I know. I’ve been there. I think we need to do this in a more systemic way and have this conversation first. Let’s not get to the potential solutions. Let’s make sure Americans understand how big the problem is. Then we can talk about possible solutions and then work ourselves into those solutions that are doable.

No shit, Sherlock. I think the average American has long since figured out that we have a huge problem, John Boehner and his ilk are part of the problem.

The GOP's war on arithmetic.

Paul Krugman lays out the case.

Banana republic, here we come.

On Thursday, House Republicans released their “Pledge to America,” supposedly outlining their policy agenda. In essence, what they say is, “Deficits are a terrible thing. Let’s make them much bigger.” The document repeatedly condemns federal debt — 16 times, by my count. But the main substantive policy proposal is to make the Bush tax cuts permanent, which independent estimates say would add about $3.7 trillion to the debt over the next decade —

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Christine O'Donnell - millenial atavist

Most conservatives today want to turn the clock back a couple of hundred years. Christine O'Donnell wants to go back to biblical times.

Bill Maher has promised to show one clip a week of O'Donnell when she was a regular on his show in the laye 90's until she agrees to come on his show. She should probably do it after last night's clip. She might as well get it over with in one nationally telivised political death swoon than suffer a slow death, clip by clip.

Last wee's clip showed O'Donnell admitting she dabbled in witchcraft in college. We all did dumb things in college, no big deal. Last night she offered proof that evolution is a myth. Her brilliant observation:

"Why aren't monkeys still evolving?"

As if you could pull up a chair at the zoo outside the monkey enclosure, settle in with a thermos of coffee and see a monkey turn into a human in a weekend. If O'Donnell is evidence, we have peaked and are starting to devolve a lot faster than we evolved.

We pledge to do.............the same old shit. - GOP

Postcards From the Pledge
The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorTea Party

Tea Party candidates hate Federal handouts except when they get them.

Michelle Bachmann (R-Minn) received over $250,000 in Federal farm subsidies between 1995 and 2006.

Ron Johnson, the Tea Party backed Wisconsin Senate candidate who might well unseat Sen. Russ Feingold started his company with the help of a $1 million government development bond.

Joe Miller, Senate candidate in Alaska received farm subsidies when he lived in Kansas.

The above are just a few examples of endemic hypocrisy. So many GOP politicians claimed credit for stimulus funded programs in their home districts ssepite voting and railing against it. Most notably, Bob McDonnell took credit for turning a $1,8 billion deficit into a $400 million surplus by using a very conservative fiscal approach to the budget. That and $2.2 billion in stimulus money that he neglected to mention during his self-congratulatory interview on Fox News.

The senate battle in California

Polls are uncomfortably close for incumbent Barbara Boxer in her race against former Hewlett Packard CEO, Carly Fiorina who was chosen by Portfolio Magazine in their list of the top 20 incompetent CEO's of all time.

Hopefully ad's like this will hit home - class warfare I can support.

The naive atavism of the right

The further right mainstream conservatism lurches the more enamored they become with the idea that 'things' were so much better one or two hundred years ago. For a brief time that might have seemed so after the Declaration of Independence and what was the founding of a democracy unparalleled at the time.

Men were free, as long as they weren't slaves and women know where they belonged. Everyone did just fine with minimal government intrusion and the opportunities in a barely exploited land were bountiful.

The right looks back with reverence, quite happy to skip over the realities of what the founding fathers actually believed as well as the realities of life back then.

Walter Raese, the GOP Senate candidate for the seat left vacant by Sen. Robert Byrd's death is one such 'Atavist'. Raese is a wealthy businessman who says, somewhat jokingly, that he made his money the old fashioned way, he inherited it. His grandmother started the company he now runs about one hundred years ago.

He wants to bring back capitalism the way it was back then. Here is part of an interview he did with Laura Ingraham recently.

RAESE: My grandmother. It is what she created and what she did at the turn of the century, it still resonates today, if we would have the opportunity in this country to bring back capitalism in the way my grandmother had those fruits and really enjoyed it. … [C]apitalism the way it should be. [...]

INGRAHAM: Could you grandmother start her business empire today, in this climate?

RAESE: Well, it would be a long long time to do it, and a lot of expensive permits to do it, but knowing my grandmother, she could do it. But it would take a lot more effort that it would at the turn of the century.

Naturally it was far easier back then, There were no child labor laws, in fact there were no labor laws at all. There were no workplace safety rules and manufacturers could dump any effluents they produced into the river to poison people living downstream. There was no health insurance but business owners didn't particularly care. If an employee got sick and couldn't work, there was always another poor, desparate soul to step in.

In a sstate with one of the highests unemployment and poverty rates in America, all Raese cares about is making life as easy as possible for himself and his fellow busness owners. In a state where coal mines have routinely skirted regulations and caused the largest inland environment disaster in American history and where 29 miners lost their lives earlier this year, Raese wants to abolish those irksome regulations so that the mine operators don't have to be troubled by figure out how to get around them.

As the polls get tighter, we can only hope that the odious Raese doesn't become the next Senator from West Virginia.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Pledge to America

On the same day the Democrats revealed themselves to be gutless ditherers the GOP put out their "Pledge to America" in a sense reviving the "Contract to America" from the mid nineties Gingrich era. The document is actually relatively mild compared to the Tea Party mood of the party these days, It barely mentions medicare, social security and social issues but is long on rehashing the same economic ideas that got us into this mess in 2008. Low taxes, cut spending and little regulation of businesses.

You need look no further than the author of the pledge to understand its platform. Brian Wild, who works in House Minority Speaker John Boehner's office is listed as the writer of the pledge. Previously he had worked as a lobbyist for Exxon, AIG, Pfizer and the right wing US Chamber of Commerce. No guesses as to whose interests the pledge serves.

earlier this year, the GOP had an 'America speaking out' web site for citizens to voice their suggestions for the Pledge platform. The second most popular suggestion that tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas be ended somehow didn't make it on the list.

Obviously, Republicans will only listen to their supporters when it suits their pro-corporate agenda.

The Democrats have a much simpler platform, "surrender".

Democrats cave on voting on tax cuts.

Chickenshit cowards. There is nothing else to say. Most Americans support their position. The GOP will continue to obfuscate and lie about the 'small business' canard.

Instead, win or lose the vote, the Democrats could have got the GOP on record as voting against middle class tax cuts. Let the GOP filibuster. Force them st stay in the Senate filibustering until the election if needs be. It was the perfect opportunity to show the country just who the GOP really cares about.

They say they will being it up for a vote after the elections in the lame duck session. How pathetic is that?

Liz Cheney, do remember Dick Cheney? He is your father after all

Bob Woodward has a new book coming out in which he reveals quite a bit about the infighting and struggles to map out a coherent Afghanistan policy. In a Woodward interview with Obama earlier this year, Obama said, “We can absorb a terrorist attack. We’ll do everything we can to prevent it, but even a 9/11, even the biggest attack ever. … We absorbed it and we are stronger.”

Liz Cheney pounced on this as just another example of Obama;s 'Kenyan anti-colonial' mindset.

This comment suggests an alarming fatalism on the part of President Obama and his administration. Once again the President seems either unwilling or unable to do what it takes to keep this nation safe. The President owes the American people an explanation.

Here is an excerpt from an interview in 2002 with someone else sharing the same mindset, according to Liz.

VICE PRESIDENT DICK CHENEY: The prospect of another attack against the United States is very, very real. It’s just as real, in my opinion, as it was September 12.

TIM RUSSERT, NBC News: Not a matter of if, but when?

VICE PRESIDENT DICK CHENEY: Not a matter of if, but when.

A Bush administration document went even further.

we must collectively work to ensure the ability of power, communications, and other life sustaining systems to survive an attack by terrorists, a natural disaster, and other assessed risks or hazards. In the past, investments in redundant and duplicative infrastructure were used to achieve this objective. We must now focus on the resilience of the system as a whole – an approach that centers on investments that make the system better able to absorb the impact of an event without losing the capacity to function.

Selective memory is such a wonderfully useful thing. Especially when your father is Dick Cheney.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Screw children, profits rule

Several important parts of Health Care reform come into effect on September 23rd. One of them is that insurance companies can no longer reject policies that include children with pre-existing conditions.

In anticipation, several health insurers have dropped 'children only' policies for all children, The health care industry couldn't win in Congress so instead they circumvent the law in the marketplace.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Another reason to loathe Republicans

Last week Harry Reid announced that he will insert the DREAM Act into a defense authorization bill, granting permanent residency to young undocumented immigrants who honorably serve in the armed forces for two years. This infuriated Republicans, including John McCain, who called it "onerous" and "a pure political act" despite co-sponsoring the same bill in 2005, 2006, and 2007.

I seem to recall McCain had principles at one time but obviously no longer. As a former member of the military he should be ashamed. This is not about amnesty for all illegals but only for those who risked their lives for this country, something most Americans citizens are loathe to do.

Paul Krugman on 'The Angry Rich'

These are terrible times for many people in this country. Poverty, especially acute poverty, has soared in the economic slump; millions of people have lost their homes. Young people can’t find jobs; laid-off 50-somethings fear that they’ll never work again.

Yet if you want to find real political rage — the kind of rage that makes people compare President Obama to Hitler, or accuse him of treason — you won’t find it among these suffering Americans. You’ll find it instead among the very privileged, people who don’t have to worry about losing their jobs, their homes, or their health insurance, but who are outraged, outraged, at the thought of paying modestly higher taxes.


Republicans/Conservatives are supposed to be self reliant, hard working, non complaining, get the job done sort of people and they ever do is whine and whine. I always thought it was Liberal who were supposed to conplain all the time.

Then again, rich white males have never had it so bad as they do these days in America.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Obama is a small business owner according to the GOP

The main argument that the Republicans are using to keep the Bush tax cuts for people earning over $250,000 is that it will hurt small businesses. To make this argument Mitch McConnell, Senate minority leader, claimed that this affects half the small business income in the country. How did he come to this conclusion? By broadening the definition of "small business" to include everyone making over the threshold who does not work for a large corporation.

President Obama, who earned over $5 million last year, mainly from book sales falls into McConnell's definition. So does LeBron James, Paris Hilton, Lady Gaga, Hedge Fund managers who earn over a billion a year, partners at large law firms and investors in Hedge Funds. Even the evil (according to the GOP) billionaire George Soros would be included in his definition. Nevermind that Hedge Fund managers already have a loophole that allows them to pay just 15%, a far lower rate than even their wage earning secretaries.

In reality, the tax would affect just 2-3% of small business owners. When we think of small business owners we think of someone employing anywhere from a few to 20 employees. According to government definitions, a small business is any business with 500 or less employees.

Another misconception in this whole debate is the actual effect of the potential 4% tax hike. Tax rates in the U.S. are marginal, so anyone, no matter how much they make, pays the lower rate until they reach the highest threshold. For example, a married couple making $500,000 will still only pay 10% on their first $16,750 of income, 15% of their income from $16,750 to $68,000 and 25% to $137,300.

Under Obama's proposal the additional 4% will only start at $250,000. Assuming a married couple earn $500,000 a year, their tax bill will go up by a maximum of $10,000 or 2% of their entire earnings in the unlikely assumption that they have no mortgage or any other writeoffs.

As it is, for the truly wealthy, there are so many write-offs and much of their income is often derived from capital gains that their effective tax rates are often lower than middle income wage earners. In 2006, for example the 400 biggest earners according to the IRS paid effective tax rates of about 17% on average.

Frank McCourt, the carpetbagger owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, for example, reported income of $108 million from 2004 to 2009. Because he could claim enormous potential carry forward losses from his commercial real estate holdings of $109 million during that period he paid no taxes on that income. Unless that real estate is sold at a profit, he can roll over potential losses in perpituity and virtually never pay taxes.

Republicans are somehow more cocerned that a marginal increase in taxes for the richest Americans will derail the economy but have no problem that the very top echelon of earners have so many legal ways not to pay taxes in a time where Federal deficits are a real problem.

Let's not forget the $700 billion in earnings of America's largesst corporations that were passed through offshore entities. The tax paid on that $700 billion amounted to an average of 3%. That's at least $200 billion in lost Federal revenue. Think of the overal benefits if that $200 billion were spent on education and infrastructure each year instead of sitting in the coffers of America's largest corporations.

This reminds me of the old line about how true scandal lies not in what's illegal, but what's legal.


More on the 'what is a small business" question. According to the Tax Policy Center 1.9% of legitimate small business owners fall into the top two earning categories which are the ones in question. What skews the numbers are large private companies who avoid corporate income taxes by passing earnings through to partners and managers. Companies such as Bechtel, PriceWaterhouse, the Tribune Company and even the largest law firms use this method of income reporting.

The full explanation here.

What is class warfare according to Republicans

Not class warfare

GOP strategist Jack Burkman on Fox News:

"Many in the American quote-unquote middle, like postal workers, are really unskilled labor, WHO SHOULD HAVE BEEN PUSHED DOWN, for market reasons, but because of union and government pressures, we import labor at the bottom and we keep these people here..."

Class warfare

House Minority Whip Eric Cantor writes today that Republicans oppose extending the Bush-era tax cuts for only the middle class because they fear Democrats have allowed the U.S. to "slide" into becoming "a stagnant European-style welfare state with limited individual opportunity and entrepreneurship." He also accusing Democrats of wanting class warfare. Cantor (R-VA) says letting the Bush tax cuts expire for the wealthy "is just one more step along the way to creating an anticompetitive new norm in this country. More

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Wonder goal by Dimitar Berbatov of Manchester United.

Manchester Utd 2-0 Liverpool

Simão | MySpace Video

Sorry to my friends who are Liverpool fans for posting this highlight.

Colin Powell doesn't belong in the Republican Party any longer.

He is far too rational.   Here is what he said on Meet The Press today in response to a quetion about Newt Gingrich's comment that Obama has a 'Kenyan anti-colonial' mindset.

POWELL: I would just tell my fellow Americans, think carefully about what was just said. Think carefully about some of the stuff that is coming across the blogs and airwaves. Let’s make a couple of points. One, the President was born in the United States of America. Let’s get rid of that one, let’s get rid of the birther thing. Let’s attack him on policy, not nonsense. Next, he is a Christian, he is not a Muslim…And I think we have to be careful when we take things like Dinesh D’Souza’s book, which is the source of all of this, and suggest that somehow the President of the United States is channeling his dead father through some Kenyan spirits. This doesn’t make any sense. Mr. Gingrich does these things from time to time with a big, bold statement. He did it with Sotomayor, she is a “reverse racist.” He did it with Elena Kagan, she ought to be taken off the nomination for Supreme Court justice. And he does it occasionally to make news and also to stir up dust.
 He also suggested “it might be good for the President to have the Republicans owning one of the two bodies of our Congress, because then they have responsibility.” “You can’t just say ‘no’ to everything. You can’t just sit around beating up the President,” he added.

Sensible works from a sensible person but it will fall on deaf ears and the former 'lunatic' fringe and now the mainstream of the GOP will continue to spout its absurd rhetoric unhindered by reality.   

Memories of Jimi Hendrix from a far away land.

Jimi Hendrix died tragically 40 years and one day ago, a true rock genius taken from us when he was only 27 yet the body of his music has endured like few others. (excuse the 'one day late' memorial but Yom Kippur and fasting yesterday is the reason)

His music touched me, even living in far off oppressive Apartheid era South Africa where I grew up. I was a rock n' roller long before I graduated high school in 1969. From pre Beatles days I lapped it up despite limited exposure on the two government owned radio stations and the ban on television. I lapped up music in every way I could, listening to the BBC World Service on short wave radio at night to hear the latest top 20 hits from London back when the hits of the day really mattered.

By the time I went into the army in 1970, for my year of compulsory military service I owned most of Jimi Hendrix's records. He died when I was at the tail end of my service in far away Namibia, (the called South-West Africa). I forget when or how I heard but it affected me in much the same way John Lennon's death did later.

The following year I was a student at the all-white but liberal University of the Witwatersrand at a time when Apartheid dominated and when black protest and the ANC were almost completely stifled. What little voice of opposition came from the
English speaking white universities. I immediately immersed myself in a world of protest, rock n' roll, drugs and sex with academics little more than an afterthought.

Despite censorship that banned Rolling Stone magazine, Playboy and Karl Marx among other things there were anomalies. Das Kapital, a turgid polemic against the capitalist systems was banned but 'Steal This Book' by Abbie Hoffman, slipped by the censors. It influenced our radicalism far more than an economic polemic ever could. Guerrilla theater became a tool we used to stir up complacent white South Africans.

When film director Costa Garvas's "Z", a political drama set in a fictional Mediterranean dictatorship slipped by the censors we were outside the theater handing out fliers to moviegoers comparing the film to life in South Africa. Suddenly a car pulled up in the front of the theater and two men, dressed in black suits, white shirts, black ties and sunglasses, the classic outfit worn by BOSS (Bureau of State Security) agents, ran up to the doors and dragged two of the students handing out fliers into the the car and took off. Living proof South Africa was the fascist state we claimed it to be. The moviegoers were stunned; we weren't. It was all a set-up, guerrilla theater at it's best. Not that BOSS agents didn't come to haul people off at any time.

What did all this this have to do with Jimi Hendrix? Not much on one hand and everything on the other. Rock music was our fuel, our way of expressing our rejection of the staid norms that governed white South African society. Jimi Hendrix encapsulated that feeling better than most. He was black, he was cool and his fingers created pure magic on guitar. He broke all conventions. To us he was a prophet. We were inspired by the student revolutions in America and Europe in latter half of the sixties, fueled by the war in Vietnam and the counterculture in general. It took a little while to reach South Africa but it took root in the early seventies.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

GOP strategist Jack Burkman on Fox News:

"Many in the American quote-unquote middle, like postal workers, are really unskilled labor, WHO SHOULD HAVE BEEN PUSHED DOWN, for market reasons, but because of union and government pressures, we import labor at the bottom and we keep these people here..."

When it comes to defending tax cuts for the richest 2%, Republicans argue that in America today a $250,000 income does not qualify as "rich" but they are outraged when a public employee makes $100,000 a year.

Classic Jethro Tull

It doesn't add up

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) wants to permanently extend all of the Bush-era tax cuts. He’s also rejected even modest efforts by President Obama to restrain the growth of Medicare. He is opposed to efforts by Defense Secretary Robert Gates to control future Pentagon spending. And he favors a constitutional amendment that would require a balanced budget. It all got me wondering: What would such a McConnell government look like?

What would be left other than medicare, defense and social security? Nothing. No Homeland security, no medicare, no export subsidies, no national parks, no congress, no higways, nada.

The full article is worth reading.

Friday, September 17, 2010

The war on smoking pot

This graph illustrates the complete idiocy of our drug policy.  While there has been a slight increase in the amount of people smoking pot, arrests have skyrocketed.  

America has more people in prison (about 2.1 million) than any other nation including China that has about 5 times as many people.   About 25% of people in jail in America are imprisoned for non-violent drug offenses.   The racial disparity is enormous in drug sentencing as well. The Sentencing Project reports that while blacks constitute 14 percent of regular drug users in the US, they make up 37 percent of those arrested for drug offenses and 56 percent of those held in state prison for drugs.

Mike Huckabee - anyone with a pre-existing condition should be denied health care

"It sounds so good, and it's such a warm message to say we're not gonna deny anyone from a preexisting condition," Huckabee explained at the Value Voters Summit today. "Look, I think that sounds terrific, but I want to ask you something from a common sense perspective. Suppose we applied that principle [to] our property insurance. And you can call your insurance agent and say, "I'd like to buy some insurance for my house." He'd say, "Tell me about your house." "Well sir, it burned down yesterday, but I'd like to insure it today." And he'll say "I'm sorry, but we can't insure it after it's already burned." Well, no preexisting conditions."

I used to have a grudging respect for Huckabee. While I don't agree with him on almost everything he seemed personally quite affable and he tended to avoid sounding like a blithering idiot. The false equivalency of his statement above is ridiculous. His comparison to insuring a house that had already burned down would be the same as trying to buy life insurance for someone who had already died.

Many people are turned down for pre-existing conditions which are non-lethal or from which they have completely recovered. That is the crux of the problem and his comparison to the already burned down house proves he is just another Republican with the intelligence of a lobotomized newt.

Kate Wolf, one of the great singer/songwriters who left us far too soon.

With Democrats like this, who needs Republicans

A recent study shows that 1 in 7 Americans now live below the poverty level and the median income for all Americans has dropped by 5% in the past decade.

While that concerns Sen. Evan Bayh (D-IN) he has other priorities.

Here is part of an interview with Chuck Todd of MSNBC he did today

TODD: Yesterday, the Census came out and said one in seven Americans are living below the poverty line. Do you look at that story today — you know, you open up your USA Today, right, and you see that story — and you see Washington is debating the tax rates for the wealthy, and you sit there and say, isn’t that a disconnect in America right now?

BAYH: It is a disconnect, Chuck. What we need to be focused on is growth, how do we create jobs, how do we expand businesses. That needs to be job one right now. And all these other issues involving, oh, fairness and things like that can wait.

Forget that income inequality is at its highest level since 1928 (and we know what happened then) and let's also ignore the $830 billion that will be tagged on to the deficit if taxes for the top 2% aren't raised.

More importantly, let's forget the myth that lower taxes for the richest is the best way of creating new jobs. It has becme the perceived reality, not just got the right but for many in the mainstream center.

Econominsts have calculated that lowering taxes fvor the richest earners has a multiplier effect of 0.31 which means that for every dollar of additional income a mere 31 cents of economic activity are created. Unemployment insurance payments by contrast have a multiplier effect of 1.77 in generated economic activity.

Jobs on any positive scale will only be created when demand is stimulated and demand will only be stimulated when we get maximum bang for our money and tax cuts for the rich is the last place that will happen.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Rate hikes for repairs by PG&E not used to fix gas pipeline that exploded

Pacific Gas & Electric used repairs to high risk pipelines to justify rate hikes in 2007 and 2009 of $5 million each. Part of the 'repairs' included the section of high risk pipeline that blew up last week. None of the work was ever done.

They did, however spend millions in support of Proposition 16, slickly worded to look as though it would give local governments more freedom to set up their own utilities. The small print actually raised the bar for local governments to make it far harder to do just that which would have guaranteed PG&E a virtual monopoly.

Fortunately the California voters smelled a rat when almost all the pro 16 funding came from large utility companies and voted it down.

The Tea Party/GOP crowd want to deregulate everything. This is what you get when that happens.

Have Democrats finally come to their senses?

Nancy Pelosi is pushing the Democrats to table a bill to extend the Bush tax cuts for all but those making over $250,000 before the November elections. Polls show this is a winning issue and although the chances of the bill passing first time are near zero it will allow Democrats to charge Republicans with voting against tax cuts before the election.
Republicans, in supporting extending the Bush tax cuts for those earning over $250,000 are not really rich but they are outraged over the idea that a public employee might be earing $100,000 a year.

McConnnelll - the richest Americans have been hit hardest by the recession

That's what he said on rhe Senate floor yesterday. I guess rich white Christian men are the new black in America.

(ChattahBox Political News)—Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) knows which side his bread is buttered on. Yesterday the Minority Leader delivered an impassioned speech on the senate floor, supporting tax cuts for the richest Americans. He reminded his colleagues that our country has been hit hard from a deep recession. And who in America has been suffering the most? The rich. What about the poor and middle class who have lost their homes, lost their jobs and are now making weekly trips to food banks to feed their families? You know, the same people who Republicans have attacked as lazy hobos. No, sorry. According to McConnell, people making over $250,000 a year are “the people who’ve been hit hardest by this recession.”

The Democrats should be pounding on this 24/7 from now until the elections. It encapsulates the entire GOP establishment mindset. The Tea Party may think otherwise but they are little other than mindless foot soldiers for the GOP who have convinced them that the Bizarro economic theory that tax cuts, budget cuts, privatization and deregulation of everything will somehow balance the budget and make us all wealthy, healthy and wise.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Divinyls - I touch myself

For Christine O'Donnell, the newest Tea Party candidate who equates masturbation with the sin of adultery.

More on the "Kenyan anti-colonial" mindset of Obama

Culled from the Glen Beck show in a conversation with Dinesh D'Souza who first came up with the phrase.

D'Souza: Obama "did not set foot" on the mainland until he was 17; He's "unknown" and not an "all-American" guy

Beck: D'Souza's article on Obama isn't "theory," "it's just fact"
Beck adds, "You don't reject the name Barry and go for Barack as a way to embrace the culture that you're in. That's not embracing America"

D'Souza: Obama has sold to the American people a "foreign, strange ideology" from his "Luo tribesman" father

D'Souza: Obama's "rage" is rooted in his "personal history" and comparable to "the guy in the Schwarzenegger movie" who wants revenge

Words fail me.

The GOP candidate for Governor of New York has a wicked sense of humor

But he's not a racist, or so he claims.
Faces of Debt
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Let's add another 44 trillion to the deficit

Mitch McConnell has a plan to do just that. He wants to extend the Bush tax cuts for all income groups permanently. Republican continue to insist that tax cuts actually increase tax revenue and don't add to the deficit despite evidence to the contrary from both the Reagan and Bush tax cuts.

The neutral CBO has already calculated that a similar proposal to the one McConnell has will add 43.9 trillion to the deficit over the next decade.

Despite their avowed opposition to deficits remember that both Karl Rove and Dick Cheney both said "deficits don't matter', especially when they are created by Republican economic fantasies.

Full story here.

Congratulations to the majority of Delware Republicans

They picked the nutty even by Tea Party standards, Christine O'Donnell over the sensible and electable Mike Castle to contest VP Joe Niden's Senate seat. Last night even Karl Rove called ber 'nuts' much to the dismay of Sean Hannity.

Castle was the long time Republican lone Congressman from Delaware who beat his Democratic opponent by 23 percentage points despite Obama taking the state by 24 points. Castle is one of the most moderate GOP Congressman and actually believes that global warming is (a) a problem and (b) is man made. That was enough to doom him among the new GOP faithful.

Sen. John McCain garnered 155,000 votes in the 2008 election in Delaware. O'Donnell only needed the votes of 30,000 hardcore Republicans/Tea Partiers to win the primary.

Sarah Palin and others have already turned on Karl Rove and Mike Castle will not endorse O'Donnell.

O'Donnell might have a more polished TV presence than Sharron Angle in Nevada but this won't hide the fact that she is out there, far out there. She believes in complete sexual abstinence including masturnation, believes far too much money is being spent on finding a cure for aids, believes in creationism and is so paranoid she pokes around the bushes surrounding her house every night.

The Tea Party is making a lot of noice but they are still a small minority.

Here is video of rove and Hannity.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Obama Derangement Syndrome- part 3

Newt Gingrich serial adulterer and still regarded as one of the 'serious' thinkers on the right referred to Obama has being engaged in 'Kenyan, anti-colonial behavior'.

Citing a recent Forbes article by Dinesh D'Souza, former House speaker Newt Gingrich tells National Review Online that President Obama may follow a "Kenyan, anti-colonial" worldview.

Gingrich says that D'Souza has made a "stunning insight" into Obama's behavior -- the "most profound insight I have read in the last six years about Barack Obama."

"What if [Obama] is so outside our comprehension, that only if you understand Kenyan, anti-colonial behavior, can you begin to piece together [his actions]?" Gingrich asks. "That is the most accurate, predictive model for his behavior."

"This is a person who is fundamentally out of touch with how the world works, who happened to have played a wonderful con, as a result of which he is now president," Gingrich tells us.

"I think he worked very hard at being a person who is normal, reasonable, moderate, bipartisan, transparent, accommodating -- none of which was true," Gingrich continues. "In the Alinksy tradition, he was being the person he needed to be in order to achieve the position he needed to achieve . . . He was authentically dishonest."

Dinesh D'Souza himself gained notoriety when he wrote soon after 9/11 that Osama Bin Laden was right in that America's behavior brought 9/11 on them, thoush he singled out Liberals and their degenerate behavior as the root cause of this.

I have no idea what Gingrich means or is trying to say but his memory has obviously been wiped out bu ODS (Obama Derangement Syndrome) because the our founding fathers, so revered by the right fought the original anti-colonial war. Maybe it's okay to be anti-colonial as long as those victims of colonialism are white.

Obama Derangement Syndrome- part 2

At a 9/11 rally in Louisiana on Saturday, Sen. David Vitter compared President Obama's domestic policies to the threat of terrorism, and charged that those same policies are "killing Americans."

Vitter, as you may recall, has had his own problems, prticularly frequenting brothels in both Washington DC and New Orleans. He was also recently under fire for keeping on a staffer who had been arrested for assaulting his girlfriend with a knife and was still wanted on an open warrant for drunk driving as well numerous brushes with the law in the 1990's. Vitter knew about the knife attack yet kept the aide on his staff. The aide's duty was handling women's issues.

Obama Derangement Syndrome- part 1

First there was Clinton Derangement Syndrome. The idea that a Southern white Democratic President from a less than stellar family background could not only become President but more often than not, outwit and outmaneuver Republicans drove the right to distraction. Every suspicious death in Arkansas was somehow connected to him while being accused of masterminding a massive cocaine smuggling operation.

Eventually they massaged to impeach for lying about a blow job implying he had committed perjury. Never mind that the lie Clinton told about his relationship with Monica Lewinsky didn't fit the legal definition of perjury. For a lie to be perjury, the lie has to be central to the case. In the Paula Jones case, the judge ruled that Clinton's dalliance with Lewinsky was not pertinent to the Jones' suit therefore it could not be defined as perjury.

Obama Derangement Syndrome has exceeded anything we saw in the Clinton era. Part of it is due the rightward shift of the GOP, something I thought wasn't possible during the Clinton era. Part of it is, I believe, also due to Obama's race and "dubious" background according to many on the right.

In the aftermath of 9/11 I have to credit President Bush with tamping down on any generic anti-Muslim rhetoric in the U.S. It showed in that there was a minimum of anti-Muslim rhetoric and acts and those that did occur, came from fringe elements. Since Obama was elected that level of rhetoric has risen, especially in the past few months, leading up to this November's elections and much of it comes from mainstream conservative politicians and commentators.

Consider the example of Laura Ingraham whose right wing credentials are unquestioned. originally supported the Park51 project in an interview with Daisy Khan the wife of Imam Rauf, the face of the project. (can anyone even imagine a jihadist of any flavor with the first name 'Daisy'). Since then she has jumped on the bandwagon in the not actually a Mosque not actually at Ground Zero movement.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The war on bloodshot eyes

This story is beyond insane.

TROPHY CLUB, Texas - Administrators at Byron Nelson High School in Trophy Club suspended a 16-year-old boy on Tuesday because his eyes were bloodshot and they thought he might have been smoking marijuana.

The teen said he was not high. Instead his eyes were red because he had been grieving the loss of his murdered father.

Kyler Robertson’s father was stabbed to death on Sunday. His mother honored his wishes and let him go to school on Tuesday to be with his friends.

So much for BP's assurances

BP confidently claimed that almost all the oil spilled in the Gulf of Mexico has dissolved or has been cleaned up. Wrong again.

Scientists on a research vessel in the Gulf of Mexico are finding a substantial layer of oily sediment stretching for dozens of miles in all directions. Their discovery suggests that a lot of oil from the Deepwater Horizon didn't simply evaporate or dissipate into the water — it has settled to the seafloor.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Friday, September 10, 2010

Republican bullshit

The GOP insists that extending the Bush tax cuts for the top tax bracket ($200,000 for individuals and $250,000 for couples)is the only solution to stimulating more investment and creating more jobs. This would raise their marginal rate to 39% from 35%. Most Republicans have no idea how a marginal tax rate even works. The dreaded 4% increase would only be on additional income over the above thresholds. A couple earning 4250,000 would thus only pay an additional $12,O00 in taxes were there income to be $500,000 a year. Hardly enough to affect either their spending habits or their lifestyle.

Republicans argue that not extending these Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest will stifle investment, kill job creation and any chance of an econimic recovery. Never mind that this will cost add an additional 483 billion to the deficit every year these cuts are extended.

If the Republican theory holds true that higher taxes deter innovation and investment how can they explain the fact that in the 1950's and 60's which saw the economy;s longest expansion occur when the top marginal tax rates averaged about 70%, double what it is today.

The bottom line is quite simple. Businesses invest when demand and economic conditions make it desirable, not when taxes are low. Currently, amidst slack demand, the tip 500 non financial corporations are sitting on a record 41.8 trillion in cash or cash equivalenets but for the most case, they aren't invewting it and creating jobs because on average, the are currently only utilizing about 80% of their capacity .

Our crumbling infrastructure

As part of his new economic package President Obama has proposed setting up an infrastructure bank that could reform the way the federal government spends money for transportation projects and upgrading bridges, rail transit and airport runways. The U.S. has fallen behind the rest of the developed world in many of these areas. Localized "pork" projects have received the lion's share of such funding without any coherent overall plan.

Instead of funneling infrastructure money to those states and districts represented by members of Congress with the most political clout, this plan would create a panel of experts to approve projects on the basis of merit. Experts say this would spur innovation and provide the biggest bang for the buck. It would put money where it makes the most economic sense, not where political influence dictates.

Republicans,predicatbly came out in force to condemn the idea.

In a somewhat related story a gas pipe explosion in a San Francisco suburb yesterday killed at least 4 people, critically injured another 7 and destroyed 37 houses. The gas pipe that exploded was installed in 1948 and has not been upgraded since then. There are almost 300,000 miles of gas pipelines in the U.S. and 60% of them are over 40 years old and lack anti-corrosion coatings that are in current use. In the past two decades there have been almost 3,000 serious gas pipeline incidents resulting in 323 fatalities.

While gas lines are owned and operated by private companies thev same benign neglect is endemic in government owned and run systems. The political will to do something about it is virtually nonexistent.

And less than a decade later - the incomparable Dusty Springfield

For those too young to remember

Rock n' Roll has been around a lot longer than you might think. From 1957, 'The Killer' Jerry Lee Lewis.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Beck/Palin event for profit just a co-incidence it's on 9/11

Yea right.

Event promoter Christopher Cox says the 9/11 date is a coincidence. Cox originally eyed Sept. 4, but didn’t want to compete with the Alaska State Fair.

Because people who have built their careers around the paranoia, fear and xenophobia of 9/11 and it's aftermath believe the Alaska State Fair is so much more important.

Republican economic policy in a nutshell

If we make rich people even richer and if we stop regulating businesses everyone will have a job as long as we also unemployment benefits so those lazy people who don't want to work can go work for rich people.

Sounds reasonable to me.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

How to commemorate 9/11

President Obama will be laying a wreath at the Pentagon.
Vice President Biden will be participating in services at Ground Zero.
Glenn Beck will be appearing with Sarah Palin in Achorage, Alaska. Tickets are available for $225.00 each.

Just a thought

The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have added more to the Federal deficit than the total Federal deficit from the founding of America to the election of Ronald Reagan.

Since then the deficit has gone from a little under 1$ trillion to over $12 trillion, almost 80% of which occurred under Republican administrations and they accuse Democrats of being the spendthrifts.

Jon Stewart on Gov Jan Brewer - nails it as usual

Indecision 2010 - Are You Ready for Some Midterms?
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The GOP doesn't care about anyone except themselves

Obama has proposed a tax cut for small businesses, something the GOP has continually called for. Guess what. Now they oppose it merely because Obama has proposed it. They don't give a shit about the problems the country faces as long as they can thwart the Democrats. If the Democrats want to save their asses in November they should be calling the GOP out on this 24/7. I'm not holding my breath.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

President Obama wasn't the first famous black person to use the phrase, "They talk about me like a dog". Listen closely.

The Republicans wan't to repeal helth care reform

Because there's nothing wrong with the current system which they still claim is the best in the world despite all evidence to the contrary despite this

California regulators are seeking fines of up to $9.9 billion from health insurer PacifiCare over allegations that it repeatedly mismanaged medical claims, lost thousands of patient documents, failed to pay doctors what they were owed and ignored calls to fix the problems.

In court filings and other documents, the California Department of Insurance says PacifiCare violated state law nearly 1 million times from 2006 to 2008 after it was purchased by UnitedHealth Group Inc., the nation's largest health insurance company by revenue.

The full story here:

Income inequality in America

This is a topic I've blogged about fairly often. This article from Slate explains and illustrates it better than anything else I have come across.

They talk about me like a dog.

More from Obama's speech today

Obama:"If I Said The Sky Was Blue,They Would Say No"

More of this please. If the Democrats are going to save anything from the mid-term elections they need to keep repeating this over and over.

Joan Baez performing the Bob Dylan classic.

Monday, September 6, 2010

The great jobs depression worsens

Robert Reich on target as usual.

The number of Americans willing and able to work but who cannot find a job hasn’t stopped growing since the start of 2008. All told, about 22 million Americans are now jobless. Add in those who are working part-time who’d rather be working full time, and we’re up to 25 million.

And because most families depend on two paychecks, the practical impact is almost double.

All this has a negative multiplier on the economy. If families can’t pay their bills, their mortgages become delinquent (that’s why mortgage delinquencies keep rising), their credit card bills go unpaid (we’re seeing a notable rise in credit card defaults), and they can’t afford to buy anything other than necessities (hence auto sales have plummeted, new homes sales are down, and retail sales are in the pits).

Full article here.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

To honor Labor Day

'Trade Union' has become a dirty expression in American politics. Unions are blamed for everything from vote rigging to ruining companies. Unionized government employees are reviled for earning a decent living with health care and a pension by those who earn far more.

America grew and prospered because trade unions fought and died for safe working conditions and decent pay so that workers could be part of the American Dream. They earned enough and were secure enough to own their own homes, to have access to health care, to send their children to college, to enjoy vacations and to retire with a pension

Today that dream is threatened as incomes for the majority of Americans have stagnated, not merely since the recent economic downturn but for the past two decades while incomes for the wealthiest have soared.

Capitalism does best when everyone has a stake. That has changed for the worse and the prospects of this trend reversing are becoming less likely.

Friday, September 3, 2010

The insanity starts

The end of the Labor Day weekend marks the end of summer and the beginning of election season.   With the rise of the Tea Party and the accompanying disconnect from the real world this election season should be a doozie.

Here is  short rundown of what to expect just from today.

Sharron Angle GOP candidate for Harry Reid' Senate seat in Nevada says that paying unemployment benefits help no-one. Tell that to people who have lost their jobs, another 472,000 this past week alone.  

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, in supporting the Arizona immigration law, claimed that headless bodies, no doubt the work of illegal immigrants had been turning up all over Arizona. Law enforcement claimed no such thing has or had happened. refusing to retract her false claim.

Dick Armey, former House Majority leader from Texas and one of the leading lights in the launching of the Tea Party claimed that 3 percent of Democrats are dead peoplewhich is why they win elections. Actually most Tea party members are brain dead but that hasn't stopped them from either expressing their opinions or voting. Watch this video from last week's 'I am Glen Beck and I am the new Messiah' rally in Washington. Notice that when presented with Beck's statement that Obama is a racist (something he has said more than once on TV) not one person believes it to be true.

GOP Senate candidate for Colorado, Ken Buck claims high school education in the 1950's was far better than it is todaybecause of the advent of the Department of Education. He should probably check his facts before proving just how dumb he is. In 1957 less than 50% of white high schoolgoers graduated and less than 20% of blacks graduated. Perhaps he has also forgotten that schools were almost totally segregated in the 1950's. By comparion, in 2002 over 90% of white and over 80% of black children graduated high school. During the same period college graduation rates have tripled for both races.

And all this on a quiet pre-long weekend Friday. It will only get worse and the mainstream media, with a few exceptions, will sit idly by, or in the case of Fox, will actively enable the dissemination of what can only be called 'bullshit'. There is no other apt description.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Maximum Rock N' Roll

Few could match The Clash in full flight.  

How lies become the truth

One of the GOP strategies for the November elections is to go after Nancy Pelosi who is, after all the devil incarnate.   The Wisconsin GOP has gone one better than most in the Pelosi demonization race claiming that she had a 'super secret fundraiser' for the Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tom Barrett.   They claim no cameras were allowed at the fundraiser so this is their depiction of the meeting. 

Trouble is no such meeting or fundraiser ever happened.   Despite that, Fox News is aleady all over the story and the rest of the media are too lazy or disinterested to report the truth and so another lie becomes 'the truth' in the eyes of those who are inclined to believe everything the right wing propoganda echo chamber tells them.

Gov. Jan Brewer of Arizona has an epic debate fail

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Meanwhile in Ohio

The GOP are lucky the Tea Party candidate chose to run for the Constitution Party instead of the GOP.  The Constitution Party candidate Eric W. Deaton was charged with unlawful sex with a minor on numerous occasions.  Deaton, who was in charge of a childre's program at a local church is being investigated for possuble additional underage dalliances.

He claims the charges are politically based and have o merit.   His fallback argument, should the evidence against him be a little more compelling that the law against sex with a minor is unconstitutional because it isn't directly mentioned anywhere in the Constitution.    He will then o doubr accuse the judge as an 'activist judge' trying to subvert the origial intet of the document. 

The Alaska Senate Race gets interesting.

Alaska was considered a safe seat for the Republicans with Sen, Lisa Murkowski the incumbent running in the Primary against Joe Miller, a Tea Partier in the Sharon Angle vein.   That was until Sarah Palin weighed in and threw her support behid Miller. 

Miller won the primary by the slimmest of margins and will now face Democratic nominee Sitka Mayor Scott McAdams. 

Miller supports the usual Tea Party wish list.  Among his views: He wants to eliminate the Department of Education, believes the government shouldn't pay for unemployment insurance and says of climate change on his campaign site that it "may not even exist." Among the more mainstream GOP positions he's taken: Miller would cut welfare; eliminate health care for the poor by scrapping Medicaid; and the Anchorage Daily News reported that he has has called for sweeping cuts to Medicare and Social Security with a goal of phasing them out entirely in favor of total privatization which would mean handing over all of Social Security to Wall Street.  If the average Joe actually realized that, the idea, floated by the Bush admistration for a while might now seem like such a good idea.

Most pundits still expect Miller to win in a state that is relatively reliably Republican but in an election where Kentucky and Nevada, both seats that were expected to be easy GOP wins, tea Party candidates have caused the races to tighten considerably.