Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Hardly Recognizable Indeed

Boo Hoo the Hoot's Million Moron March last Saturday raised the specter of Boo Hoo as the new, self-anointed leader of the Christian Right. (Certainly, Boo Hoo is a legend in his own mind.) The day after the assembly, Preacher Boo Hoo was heard on Faux News Nutwork saying he thought most Americans "couldn't recognize" the Christianity practiced by President Obama.

Well, it seems some authentic leaders of the Christian Right are having qualms about Preacher Boo Hoo, whose Mormon faith is seen as a non-Christian sect by fundamentalists, leading their sheeple. Of course, lost in the stupid is Beck having the brass nuts to question Obama's Christianity when many not- just- fundamentalist Christians would wonder about Beck's adherence to an ostensibly Christian theology that denies the infallibility of the Bible, denies the Trinity, and holds the Book of Mormon as divine and of equal value to the Bible. Preacher Boo Hoo is always eager to cast stones, so watching him take a few to his fat, empty head (not literally, of course!) will be fun sport.

(Photo: maybe the Devil makes him do it)

More Dumbs

It's becoming more and more clear that the Rethugs are the Party of Know Nothing. The latest proof is a Newsweek poll showing that half of Rethugs suspect Obama wants to impose (Islamic) Sharia law in America. To believe that, it's necessary that your I.Q. be no higher than that of a cantaloupe. To think that this knuckle-dragging crowd will be flocking to the polls to elect the "Young Dumbs" and other know-nothings is beyond maddening. Well done, Faux News Nutwork and hate radio! Well done, despicable Rethug officeholders! Well done, "mainstream media" for allowing these toxic memes to fester. Well done, White House and Democratic Party for not pushing back - make that punching back - at this ongoing insanity coming from the other side.

Young Dumbs

Rethuglican hubris is reaching historic proportions, given their high expectations of victory at the polls in November. Three "stars" of the Rethug/New Confederate Party are Reps. Ryan, Cantor, and McCarthy, who are publishing a self-titled book about themselves, "Young Guns." Leaving aside the fact that all are in their 40s, these "young" guns are rehashing failed pablum that Saint Ronnie of Hollywood espoused three decades ago: Gummit is bad, don't tax the wealthy, privatize Social Security and Medicare, cut regulations, etc. Not much to see here.

The kids at Morning Joe had some fun with the egos behind "Young Guns" this morning. Hopefully it will be taken as the joke it is by everyone else.

(photo: Moe, Larry and Curly dress up as Rethuglican Congressmen)

Time To Fight Back

Or perhaps well past time. The latest Gallup Poll shows a Rethug lead of 51 to 41 percent over Dems for the mid-term elections. Rethugs have led Dems for five consecutive weeks, and the enthusiasm gap is even worse (50 to 25). Digby has the right idea for closing the enthusiasm gap for Dem politicians: pick some fights and show your base you believe in something other than self-preservation.

Another idea: keep reminding voters that the Rethugs caused the economic meltdown, and have no new ideas to get us out of the mess they created. Voters have a notoriously short-term memory, but to reward the Rethugs for creating the mess, and obstructing every action to get us out would be a sad commentary on the Dems' ineptness.

Monday, August 30, 2010

The Shizzle Embarks on a Campaign Tour

RNC chairclown Michael "The Shizzle" Steele has packed his bags and is journeying to the vote-rich destination of (wait for it)... Guam! Given The Shizzle's mad managerial and political skillz, Hackwhackers has learned that, following Guam, The Shizzle's itinerary is fully booked until after the November election. Next stops: New Guinea, The Seychelles, Botswana, Timbuktu, Patagonia, Spitsbergen, and Barrow, Alaska.

(Photo: The Shizzle in "native Guam tribal paint" -- or so his staff told him.)

Quote of the Day

"Consider Beck's claim that his speech marks "America" turning "back" to God, and the exhortation that we turn "back" to what made us great. The unbearably obvious implication of these quotes, and of the title of the rally itself, is that someone or something has tarnished our honor and turned America away from God and American greatness -- presumably two sides of the same coin."-- Greg Sargent, blogging at the Kaplan Daily site. He's picked up on key -- and loaded -- theme words that both Boo Hoo and Winky are pushing: turning back, returning, restoring, etc. What these radical right-wingers are yearning for is a return to the '50s, or earlier, when corporate deregulation, white supremacy and other fetishes of the right were accepted. No we won't.

"Witchhunt Season"

As the midterm elections approach, the prospect of a Rethug takeover of the House is becoming more and more a possibility. Paul Krugman tells us what to expect if that happens, and wonders why Obama isn't doing everything he can to avert that catastrophe.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

"Invisible Hands" and the Teabaggers

Our Sunday go-to guy, Frank Rich, tells us about the bankrollers of the "grassroots" tea bag/ affluent lily-white conservative "civil rights" movement and their loathsome, radical views. Not surprisingly, irony abounds.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

The Nightmare That Is Boo Hoo's "Dream"

Megalomaniac gasbag and Goldline shill Glenn "Boo Hoo the Hoot" Beck is appearing before his thousands, make that millions of sheeple at the Lincoln Memorial right now, accompanied by his distaff partner in ignorant hatemongering, Winky You Betcha. Putting Boo Hoo's ego trip in perspective this morning are Bob Herbert and Charles Blow.

In viewing the spectacle of Boo Hoo attempting to wrap himself in the glory of the civil rights movement, and being taken seriously by the "18%-ers", one is reminded of H.L Mencken's observation that nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people - at least this portion of it.

Saturday Song

"You can't find nothin' at all if there was nothin' there all along," according to Death Cab for Cutie's 2006 hit "Crooked Teeth." OK, we'll buy that. Enjoy your Saturday.

Friday, August 27, 2010

As The Wasilla World Turns, cont'd.

This should be good:

"Levi Johnston Takes Back His Apology To Palin"

Spill your guts, Levi! And pass the popcorn and moose jerky.

Quote of the Day

"He's the most coin-operated politician in Washington today." -- Dem candidate Justin Coussoule on The Ed Show, referring to his opponent, House Minority Leader John "Boner" Boehner, a.k.a. John of Orange.

(photo: Boner doing what he thought his constituents sent him to D.C. to do. Wonder who's paying his green fees?)

Economic Realism

The recent glum economic news points up the problems the Dems have going into the fall elections. While their actions in passing the 2009 stimulus were sufficient to stop what would have been a depression, it hasn't been sufficient to provide dramatic improvement in the economy. Of course, the Rethugs couldn't be happier with poor economic news; while most voters lay the blame for the bad economy on previous Rethug policies, most voters will also hold the Dems responsible for a continued weak economy.

Talking Points Memo has a brief blog on where we go from here. The Dems are too nervous to do much of anything; the Rethugs are sitting on their hands, as they have been for the past 18 months. That leaves the Federal Reserve, which has control over monetary policy. Since inflation is not a worry, the Fed could begin to loosen the money supply, and encourage more credit and lending to businesses. We'll see, but as we've noted before, the Dems missed an opportunity when they let Rethugs water down and reduce the original stimulus. Now it's out of their hands.

Thursday, August 26, 2010


Intel's Randian CEO Paul Otellini at Wednesday's Technology Policy Institute's Aspen Forum":

"I think this group [the Obama Administration] does not understand what it takes to create jobs. And I think they're flummoxed by their experiment in Keynesian economics not working." (emphasis added)

Otellini's preferred laissez faire approach would likely have led to Great Depression II. Our qualms about the Administration's Keynesian experiment are that it wasn't bold enough.

Turn Off Fox News!

Now this is something we can get behind! We've seen too much GOP-TV in public spaces like airports. Time to pull the plug!

McNasty's Victorious Defeat

As Stephen Colbert noted, the biggest loser in Tuesday's primaries was Arizona Rethug Sen. John McNasty who lost to. . . .Sen. John McNasty. The new McNasty was running against the old McNasty in a hard-fought test of principles, and the new McNasty won because he apparently has no principles except that of political survival. "Country First" indeed. He even ridiculously claimed during his primary race against the reptilian demagogue J.D. Hayworth that he never was a maverick. McNasty was counting on Rethug voters to have as bad a case of amnesia as he does.

So it's on to November, where McNasty should win another term and continue to sulk and stew in the bitter juice of his 2008 defeat at the hands of "that one." And monopolize Sunday morning talk shows, of course, where a grateful mainstream media will welcome the old/new McNasty back.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Mid Week Song Break

Here are not one, but two gems from Jimmy Jones (because we thought you might deserve a little extra)! The label is a nod to a certain nephew, too!

Mayor Bloomberg Shows Spine

Amid all of the political jockeying by Rethuglicans and some Dems alike on the "not at Ground Zero" Islamic center, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has shown courage in defending the construction of the facility. Up until this point, public opinion has been swayed by misinformation about the location and purpose of the center, and by attempts to bind the al Qaeda killers with Islam as a whole. Bloomberg is going against public opinion in his city because it's the right thing to do; as a leader, he's trying to set an example for how we respect the Constitution and the protection of minority rights. Key quote from his remarks at the annual Ramadan Iftar dinner at his official residence:
Islam did not attack the World Trade Center -- Al-Qaeda did. To implicate all of Islam for the actions of a few who twisted a great religion is unfair and un-American. Today we are not at war with Islam -- we are at war with Al-Qaeda and other extremists who hate freedom. . . .The members of our military are men and women at arms -- battling for hearts and minds. And their greatest weapon in that fight is the strength of our American values, which have always inspired people around the world. But if we do not practice here at home what we preach abroad -- if we do not lead by example - we undermine our soldiers. We undermine our foreign policy objectives. And we undermine our national security.
Why is that so hard for the majority of Rethugs and fearful Dems to say?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

40 Years Ago Today

Forty years ago today, the Hackwhackers were moving back into student housing in Madison, Wisconsin, when the report came over the radio that earlier in the morning a bomb had gone off at the University of Wisconsin's Sterling Hall, killing a 33-year old scientist. The target of the bombers was the Army Math Research Center and the scientist was Robert Fassnacht. The places and names of the people involved in the bombing (David Fine, Dwight Armstrong, Karl Armstrong and Leo Burt) are etched in the memory of what would be our last year at the UW. Only Leo Burt remains at large to this day (assuming he's still alive). The bombing cast a pall on the Wisconsin campus, as had the shootings at Kent State in May the same year.

It seems like such a long time ago, more than 40 years, more like a lifetime.

Ron Paul's Gutsy Stand

We're not big fans of libertarian Rep. Ron Paul. His social Darwinist economic philosophy calls for phasing out most beneficial government activities such as Medicare and Social Security. But Paul does stand for principles that the far right has long since abandoned. He issued a strong statement blasting the "sunshine patriots" that are trying to block the "not at Ground Zero" Islamic community center in Manhattan, and fingers the neocon/Likudnik cohort of the far right as the hatemongers:
"In my opinion it has come from the neo-conservatives who demand continual war in the Middle East and Central Asia and are compelled to constantly justify it.

They never miss a chance to use hatred toward Muslims to rally support for the ill conceived preventative wars. A select quote from soldiers from in Afghanistan and Iraq expressing concern over the mosque is pure propaganda and an affront to their bravery and sacrifice.

The claim is that we are in the Middle East to protect our liberties is misleading. To continue this charade, millions of Muslims are indicted and we are obligated to rescue them from their religious and political leaders. And, we’re supposed to believe that abusing our liberties here at home and pursuing unconstitutional wars overseas will solve our problems."
What's sad is not that this rebuke to the hatemongers came from a libertarian like Paul; what's sad is that so many progressive Dems are hiding in the corner while the bigots control the false message. (See also Richard Cohen's surprisingly good column on the same subject in the Kaplan Daily. As they say, occasionally even a blind squirrel finds a nut).

Number 8 Is 50

Happy birthday to one of the all-time great baseball players, Baltimore's Cal Ripken, Jr., who turns 50 today. Ripken holds what will probably be the unbreakable record of 2,632 straight games from May, 1982 to September, 1998. He eclipsed Lou Gehrig's record of 2,130 consecutive games in 1995, and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY on the first ballot in 2007.

Ripken played his entire career with the Baltimore Orioles, notable in this age of free agency and the grab-it-while-you-can sports business.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Some Fun Figures

One of the Rethuglican Party's objectives for the remainder of the year is to extend the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans beyond their expiration date of 2010. In his column today in the New York Times, Nobel Prize winner Dr. Paul Krugman explains that this would be equivalent to cutting $3 million checks for each of the 120,000 wealthiest Americans. Citing the Tax Policy Center, Krugman shares some other factoids:
-making all of the Bush tax cuts permanent, as opposed to following the Obama proposal, would cost the federal government $680 billion in revenue over the next 10 years.
-the majority of the tax cuts would go to the richest one-tenth of 1 percent.
-only a tiny fraction of small-business owners would receive any tax break at all.
Along with their attempted obstruction of the financial reform bill, the Rethuglicans are shamelessly demonstrating who they care most about: not the broad middle class, but the most affluent Americans, who have not been impacted by the economic downturn but who contribute generously to the Rethuglican cause.

The Choice in 2010

"What the current right has on offer is far worse than anything Bush put forward, which means that this election isn't even about whether we'll go back into the ditch. It's about whether a movement that's gone over a cliff will be rewarded for doing so. A victory for this style of conservatism will be a defeat for the kind of conservatism the country needs. And that's a worthy matter to put to the voters." -- E.J. Dionne in today's Kaplan Daily. Exactly. (Read the rest of his op/ed.)

What remains to be seen is to what extent ill-informed, angry voters will abet the crazies on the right and swarm the election booths in November to vote Dems out. What they will say by voting Rethuglican will be we're ok with the negativity, intellectual bankruptcy, crackpot conspiracies and misdirected rage of the Becks, Bachmanns, Gohmerts and other nihilists of the extreme right. Vote in haste, repent at leisure.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Another Frank Rich Sunday

This is becoming a routine: read Frank Rich in the New York Times, and marvel at his ability to destroy the latest right-wing canard. Today is no exception, where he goes after what he calls the "Rupert Murdoch axis of demagoguery" on the proposed Islamic center in the vicinity of "ground zero." Key quote:
"The ginned-up rage over the “ground zero mosque” was not motivated by a serious desire to protect America from the real threat of terrorists lurking at home and abroad — a threat this furor has in all likelihood exacerbated — but by the potential short-term rewards of winning votes by pandering to fear during an election season."
He also points up Murdoch's NewsCorp's shameless hypocrisy in fanning an anti-Muslim backlash in America, while pushing for nation building in Iraq and Afghanistan ostensibly to help their Muslim populations, all while having a significant share of their company owned by a Saudi royal prince. SOBs.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

"A Colossal Seven-Letter Word"

Some of the most offensive guilt-by-association demagoguery over the "not at Ground Zero" Islamic center "mosque" has come from the usual suspects: teatard favorites like former snowbilly half-Governor Winky and right-wing charlatan Poot Gingrich. It's time to add former New York mayor Rudy 9-11! to this rogue's gallery of demagogues using this issue for political gain.

Tim Heffernan has a hard-hitting piece in Esquire magazine's politics blog, in which he takes on Rudy 9-11!'s not-so-subtle message that the people wanting the Islamic center to be built are "warriors" who are stoking "those divisive issues." It sets up a win-win for the wingnuts, too: don't move the center's location and you're deliberately provoking "real Americans;" move the center, and you're admitting collective responsibility for 9-11. Neat bit of demagoguery.

It's striking to note the difference between the shameful Rudy 9-11! and the current mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg, who took a strong, principled public stand for the building of the center. Bloomberg walked away from an increasingly radical Rethuglican Party, while Rudy 9-11! walks deeper into its fevered swamps of lunacy.

(photo: The colossal one himself)

Quote of the Day

"Let's give credit where credit is due -- to George W. Bush. After all, if this man hadn't led us into war, it certainly wouldn't be over now!" -- Stephen Colbert on the end of combat operations in Iraq.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Summer Tune

One of the Hackwhackers team is heading for some hot fun in the summer at the beach, so here's a classic summer tune to get him started.

This Just In. . . .

Check the caption above. CNN plays this like there's a "on the one hand, on the other hand" validity to right-wing nuttery. Sad to say, the White House is a participant.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Aniston 1, O'Liely 0

The culture war that the right-wing noise machine is always pushing isn't the blunt instrument of Rethuglican politics that it once was. Take for instance Fux Channel's resident horse's ass Bill "F*ck It, Do It Live" O'Liely, who attacked Jennifer Aniston for implying that women don't "need a guy" or "a dad." Aniston fired back at O'Liely on Good Morning America:
"It was just an unfair statement that he made against me. And you know people say things about me all the time and you just kinda go oh whatever. But his was not just about me, it was also saying something, insulting women that are out there doing this on there own."
Let's remember that family guy O'Liely had to settle out of court with Andrea Mackris, a former staffer, for sexual harassment. Who'd want a dad like that?

100% of 18% of Americans Are Idiots

There's a new Pew Research Center poll out indicating that a "substantial and growing number" of Americans believes President Obama is a Muslim (or "muslin" in their terminology): fully 18 percent of Americans (up from 11% in March 2009). Since 2009, the belief grew most sharply among Rethugs -- up 14 points among Rethugs and 16% among conservative Rethugs. Without fear of contradiction, I can state that the primary "news" source for these numbnuts is hate radio and the Fux Nutwork.

(Image: Mr. 18 Percent)

Stewart Rips the Fuxers

The incomparable Jon Stewart, in his hilarious Boo Hoo the Hoot Beck imitation, skewers the Fux News parent company NewsCorp's $1 million contribution to the Rethuglican Governors Association. Featured line: "I really think, if anything, the Republicans should be paying FOX News millions and millions of dollars." How true, given all the work Fux has done gratis for the Rethugs.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Quote of the Day

"The tea party movement is not seeking a junior partnership with the Republican Party, but a hostile takeover of it." -- Corporate shill and teatard leader "Major" Dick Armey in the August 17 Wall Street Journal (no link).

Savor the lie in Major Dick's manifesto. Teatards are Rethuglicans, the most rabid, ideologically right-wing core of the Rethuglican / New Confederate Party to be sure, but still Rethuglicans. It's just that the Rethuglican brand is so damaged, they have to call themselves teabaggers. And they want us to believe they're going to take over the party that they already control? Shazam!!

Mid-Week Song

Heard this song from 1989 on the radio yesterday, and it stuck: Don Henley singing a song composed by the great Bruce Hornsby.

Spare The Rod

Disgraced buffoon Rod "Let's Make A Deal" Blagojevich was convicted on one of 24 counts, for lying to FBI agents. Apparently, his defense team was able to find a few numbskull contrarian jurors during the voir dire jury selection process. His conviction on the single count could mean up to 5 years in prison. Nonetheless, U.S. prosecutors will retry him on the other 23 counts, which include racketeering, extortion, wire fraud and bribery.

It's hard to imagine with the overwhelming evidence presented -- wiretaps, e-mails and testimony -- that some jurors were unable to reach a guilty verdict on more than one charge. Maybe in this era of conspiracy theories, courtroom movie drama, and anti-Government resentment, the lesson is that grifters like Blago can always count on low-information jurors/voters/suckers to spare them.

(photo: Blago expressing his thanks to the jury)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Fox and Friends

Today's reading assignment consists of two columns on the "Ground Zero mosque" and one on a prime organization that's fanning the flames.

On the "Ground Zero mosque" (of course, not at Ground Zero, and more of a community center than a mosque): Eugene Robinson on the Rethugs' despicable pandering; and Richard Cohen on pretty much the same thing, plus an obligatory jab at Obama for muddying the waters of the debate.

On the flame-fanners, it should come as no surprise to which party the parent company of Fux "News" is donating $1 million, but click on the link anyway just for giggles.

Monday, August 16, 2010

A Disaster, For Shizzle!

Rethug strategist Ed Rollins had some choice words to describe the tenure and leadership of Rethuglican National Committee Chairclown Michael "Shizzle" Steele. If only the average low-information voter would make the connection that "Steele=disaster=GOP." Watch it:

No Orly Arguments Will Be Heard

The Supreme Court has upheld the ruling by a lower Federal court that birther diva Orly "Taint" Taitz must pay $20,000 in costs for filing "frivolous" lawsuits aimed at denying President Obama's citizenship. The nutty Taint has been on her mission ever since the President was sworn in, trying to spread her delusion that Obama is a secret commie "Mooslim" Kenyan (notwithstanding his Hawaii Certificate of Live Birth, and the August 1961 birth announcement in the Honolulu daily newspaper -- d'oh!). Clearly, a time machine was used.

Apparently, Taint remains defiant, and vows to fight on (snicker snicker). We think her tinfoil hat needs to be adjusted.

Conservatives With a Conscience

Slowly, some principled conservatives are coming forward to denounce Rethuglican demagoguery surrounding the "Ground Zero mosque." Michael "Mushroom Cloud" Gerson, who has also taken issue with his party's stance on amending (or repealing) the 14th Amendment, does so in his Kaplan Daily op/ed today. Think Progress reports on the exchange between MSNBC's "Morning Joe" Scarborough and Rethug consultant Mark McKinnon, in which both express dismay at the direction of their party on the issue of religious tolerance, and how it plays into al Qaeda's message.

What a refreshing contrast to the rantings of Poot, Winky, Screwy Louie and all the American Taliban and New Confederate Party types who are constantly looking for wedge issues to divide Americans.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Social Security Turns 75

President Franklin Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act on this day in 1935. It's probably the most significant piece of legislation signed in the 20th century, along with the Civil Rights Act. It kept millions of elderly from falling into poverty at the end of their lives. Today, Social Security is seen as an unbreakable insurance contract by all but far right teatards, who want to "privatize" all or part of Social Security (see Sharron Angle, Rand Paul, Sarah Palin, etc.). Happy birthday, and many more to come.

Bonus: Here's the President's Weekly Address on the Social Security anniversary:

Friday, August 13, 2010

Screwy Louie's Flameout

One of the stranger nutbags among House Rethuglicans is Texas Congressman Louie "Screwy Louie" Gohmert, who has been on a "terror babies" kick for some time. Yesterday, he appeared on Anderson Cooper's "360" program and proceeded to perform a full wingnut meltdown. Pressed by Cooper to present evidence that a former FBI official told him that a plot was afoot to have babies of foreign nationals born in the U.S. return later to commit terror acts, Screwy Louie couldn't. He then ramped up the incoherence and volume, while Cooper patiently tried to get Screwy Louie to provide the evidence.

This is what the Rethuglican / New Confederate Party has become: a collection of wingnuts, bigots and kooks that a generation ago couldn't get face time on local cable access. Now, this delusional behavior has become mainstream among Rethugs.

Kaplan Daily Hearts GOP Whiz Kid -- Again

The Kaplan Daily has undergone a long journey from the days of Ben Bradlee and Woodward and Bernstein. Now its op/ed pages are littered with former Bush speechwriters (Gerson and Thiessen), former Quayle speechwriters (Wee Willie), sufferers of Obama Derangement Syndrome (Kraphammer and Diehl), would-be Tories (Quill Will), genteel Rethugs (Parker) and DINOs (Cohen and Marcus). It has a real hard-on for school vouchers and charter schools -- a little conflict of interest considering its main source of funding is... Kaplan Test Prep/ University. It hates public employee unions, especially teachers' unions (see Kaplan, above). It wants to accommodate every crank "news" story being flogged by the Drudges of the world (eg., the Sherrod affair, the New Black Panther Party "voter intimidation" non-scandal). Look for it to endorse washed-up Rethug former Gov. Robert Ehrlich in Maryland again this year.

Well, it's latest crackpot heartthrob is math-challenged whiz kid Rep. Paul Ryan (Rethug-WI) and his plan to "save Medicare" which the Kaplan Daily graciously gave valuable space to today. You see, the Kaplan Daily recently published Paul Krugman's puncturing of the whiz kid's balloon and his new math that doesn't add up (no link). This must've made Kaplan editors and their boy Ryan sad, so he was given today's make-up. Fortunately, Dean Baker at the Center for Economic Policy and Research has provided a multi-point correction for the young Ryan and anyone who still might care about truth and accuracy at the Kaplan Daily.

Music for a Sodden Soul

CCR asks the musical question the D.C. area would like answered, after 3-4 inches of rain in the last 36 hours...(btw, nice pix).

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Quote of the Day

"Obama allowed the hacks on the right to pivot immediately to pinning the entire deficit and debt on Obama - and, amplified by the FNC, they have somehow managed to turn the debate back into the exhausted big-government vs little-guy choice - rather than debating exactly what, if anything, we can do to rescue ourselves from the Bush-Cheney hangover. . . .Here's an alternative approach - aggressively blaming even future bleakness on the GOP, matching their refusal to take any responsibility for the worst period of governance in modern times with a no-holds-barred assault on their brand. It will soon be time for Obama to go on the offensive against these nihilists and amnesiacs and to remind people of the difference between the arsonist and the fire-fighter." -- The Atlantic's Andrew Sullivan. Sometimes Sully can make you forget that he was / is an admirer of St. Ronnie of Hollywood, father of the brood.

Reverse Robin Hood

Rethug deficit hawks alert! The Kaplan Daily has a good piece today on what the effect of the Rethuglican plan to keep the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy would do to the deficit: add $36 billion to it next year alone. The article is based on a Congressional analysis released yesterday. As the analysis points out, under the Rethug reverse-Robin Hood plan, the wealthiest 2% of taxpayers would get to keep a $36 billion tax break. Put another way, families making $1 million a year would get an average $100,000 tax break.

We already know how Rethuglicans are rationalizing this. Jon Stewart has the best summary, as usual (via HuffPo).

"Brock Landers" For Congress

Ben "I Was Raised Right" Quayle, son of former VP Dan "Potatoe" Quayle, is running for Congress in Arizona. Obviously a man of great intelligence, character and discernment, he posits -- unprompted -- that Obama is "the worst President in history" in his campaign video. As it turns out, I Was Raised Right may have some 'splainin' to do now that it's been revealed that he's a.k.a. "Brock Landers" (you know, the name of the male porn star in "Boogie Nights"), who blogged at the DirtyScottsdale.com site. Digby has the video, and links for more background.

That this arrogant little weenie, who has done nothing other than being born with the name Quayle, has the nerve to pass judgment on anyone, much less President Obama, speaks to the fact that, contrary to his assertion, he wasn't "raised right."

(Image: Ben "I Was Raised Right" Quayle, a.k.a. "Brock Landers," a.k.a. a horse's ass)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

They're Serving Mama Grizzly for Dinner in Georgia

Chalk up another one to the magic of Mama Grizzly herself, Winky You Betcha. Fellow Mama Grizzly Karen "The Messiah" Handel, who was endorsed by Winky and Mittens/Muff/Willard Romney, lost her Rethug gubernatorial bid to former congressman Nathan "Shady" Deal. (Half the fun is making up the nicknames, right?) Shady Deal, who was endorsed by Poot Gingrich and Mike "Huckleberry" Huckabee, accused The Messiah of being "too liberal" (OMG!). Following her loss, Handel endorsed Shady Deal, although some of the comments she made about him will live on into the general election. A sampling: Calling Shady Deal "a corrupt relic of Washington," she said he should stop "squealing" about negative ads and put on his "big boy pants."

Shady Deal now faces former governor Roy Barnes in November. Let's hope Mama Grizzly will endorse Deal and her magic touch will continue.

Quote of the Day

"By proposing to revoke the citizenship of the estimated 4 million U.S.-born children of undocumented immigrants -- and, presumably, the children's children and so on down the line -- Republicans are calling for more than the creation of a permanent noncitizen caste. They are endeavoring to solve what is probably their most crippling long-term political dilemma: the racial diversification of the electorate. Not to put too fine a point on it, they are trying to preserve their political prospects as a white folks' party in an increasingly multicolored land." -- Harold Meyerson, writing in today's Kaplan Daily. The Rethugs know that time is not on their side regarding Latino voters, so they've decided to try to move the goal posts in their dangerous chatter about the 14th Amendment.

Take This Job and Slide Off (With a Couple of Beers)

We imagine everyone, after an especially bad day at work, has fantasized quitting their job in dramatic fashion. A Jet Blue flight attendant, Steven Slater, raised the bar Monday when, after being abused by a nasty passenger, took the cabin mic, cursed the passenger, grabbed a couple of beers from the galley, activated the emergency slide, and slid down to the tarmac without so much as a final "buh bye." There's now an overnight cottage industry of tee shirt makers ("Free Steven Slater," etc.) and late night comics that are turning Mr. Slater into a hero of sorts. He has a fan page on Facebook that has 80,000 plus members and growing fast.

The funniest tribute to his dramatic exit came from Stephen Colbert, who awarded Slater the coveted "Alpha Dog of the Week" award. Fasten your seat belts.

BONUS: The term "Hit the slide" is destined to become the new "blow this popsicle stand," and is already defined in UrbanDictionary.com as "To quit one's job in a truly stunning fashion."

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Alpha Dog of the Week - Steven Slater
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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Quote of the Day

"The Republicans have a two step strategy. Step one is to try to block legislation that would improve [economic] conditions. Step two is to point out how bad conditions are." Rep. Barney Frank

How To Energize Your Base

Seems White House Press Secretary and professional hippie-basher Robert Gibbs was recently quoted in The Hill mocking "the professional left," saying it would never be satisfied until we had Canadian health care and the Pentagon had been eliminated. Gibbs, who with his boss Rahmbo, delights in bashing the base of the Democratic Party, was taken to task for his comments by Reps. Keith Ellison and Raul Grijalva, who's head of the Progressive Caucus in the House. Apparently Gibbs thinks progressives should shut their mouths and go along with everything the White House does, whether it's folding on the public option, watering down financial reform, or maintaining a position to the right of Bill O'Liely on gay marriage.

Gibbs has since "walked back" his comments, but once again the contempt with which certain of the President's key operatives view progressives is illuminating. I wonder who they think is going to stuff envelopes, canvass, contribute and vote for Democrats while this smug gasbag is free to take shots?

Former Sen. Stevens Dead in Air Crash

Former Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens died late yesterday in a plane crash in southern Alaska. He was 86. A favorite target of Hackwhackers, Stevens was most recently known for the "bridge to nowhere" and was considered one of the masters of pork barrel politics, delivering many millions of dollars to the State of Alaska over his long (40 years) career. Former NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe, who was also on the plane, is reported to have survived the crash.

Poot: Do As I Say, Not As I Do

We all know that former Rethuglican House Speaker Newt "Poot" Gingrich is an arrogant, elitist, cynical windbag who has a terrible record as a husband (3 times and counting), while yakking about traditional family values whenever he can. Recall that Poot discussed divorce proceedings with his first wife while she was recovering from uterine cancer surgery, and that he had an affair with and proposed to his third wife while still married to his second. A stand up guy, in other words.

But now, his second wife, Marianne, has given a lengthy interview to Esquire magazine, and Poot may have a problem on his pudgy hands. According to the article:
He asked her to just tolerate the affair, an offer she refused.

He'd just returned from Erie, Pennsylvania, where he'd given a speech full of high sentiments about compassion and family values.

The next night, they sat talking out on their back patio in Georgia. She said, "How do you give that speech and do what you're doing?"

"It doesn't matter what I do," he answered. "People need to hear what I have to say. There's no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn't matter what I live."
So "it doesn't matter what I live," huh Poot? Poot thinks he can be a stone-cold hypocrite as long as he can pull the wool over the sheeples' eyes. May this story be spread far and wide.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Is It Hot Enough For You?

A massive island of ice has broken off from Greenland, according to scientists at the University of Delaware. The island is reported to be 4 times the size of Manhattan, or some 100 square miles. Amazingly, the ice block contains enough fresh water to provide tap water for the U.S. for 120 days. So what are the conclusions being drawn?
"Environmentalists say ice melt is being caused by global warming with Arctic temperatures in the 1990s reaching their warmest level of any decade in at least 2,000 years, according to a study published in 2009.

Current trends could see the Arctic Ocean become ice free in summer months within decades, researchers predict."
We suspect global warming deniers like the porcine pontificator Pills Limballs and Oklahoma Rethug wingnut James "Head-In-Ass" Inhofe will see this simply as a sign that the Arctic is turning out more ice for us, much like a refrigerator's ice maker. Yeah, that's the ticket!

Ladies Man

Stories about Kentucky Rethug candidate for Senate Rand "The Sprinklerhead" Paul get more bizarre as time goes on. Now, in a profile in GQ Magazine, a woman told the interviewer that while she and The Sprinklerhead were students at Baylor University, she was abducted by the erstwhile "libertarian / conservative" who tried to force her to take bong hits. Apparently The Sprinklerhead and an accomplice had been smoking weed when they had this brilliant idea. Must have been real fun on a date. . .or maybe that was his problem. We'll see what this does in Kentucky among the "family values" Rethuglicans.

We're giving The Sprinklerhead the benefit of the doubt, since he undoubtedly was "going Galt" at the time, and therefore not in his right mind.

(photo: Smoking weed sometimes results in inappropriate dress)

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Sunday Morning With Frank Rich

It almost wouldn't be Sunday without a laser-directed salvo from the NY Times' Frank Rich. This morning, he discusses the political landscape for Democrats, their banking on the "bash Bush" strategy, and their lack of a strong plan and message for addressing continuing economic troubles. Weak knees, lack of conviction, and other forms of political malpractice will get you every time.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Saturday Song

Peter Townshend, of The Who, had this catchy, solo hit in 1980. Enjoy.

Friday, August 6, 2010

People's Republic of Madison

Balloon Juice's John Cole has some amusing observations in his visit to our old stomping grounds, Madison, Wisconsin. Good stuff here, here, here, and here.

(And, lastly, here. Hee hee. Be sure to file your report, John!)

A Lie Rectified

In a bit of unfinished business left over from the Nixon years, an Air Force General, John Lavelle, who was demoted for allegedly ordering bombing runs over North Vietnam, is being posthumously restored to his previous rank, after it was determined that President Richard "The Crook" Nixon actually ordered the bombings. The Crook not only failed to step forward and admit that Lavelle was following his orders, he lied in public when he called for Gen. Lavelle's resignation for disobeying orders. We're shocked, SHOCKED! at The Crook's behavior. So unlike him.

It seems that the Rethuglican / New Confederate Party embarked on a darker road beginning with The Crook and his crew. The Southern Strategy, campaigning with smears and personal attacks, the unholy alliance with the American Taliban / Moral Majority all happened from The Crook onward. This is just another reminder of the time when the Rethugs started to lose their way.

The "Right-Wing Gay's Judy Garland?"

Suspected (by me) transgendered wingnut harridan (M)Ann Coulter will be the headliner at "Homocon 2010," a conference of gay right-wingers being held in September. The conference will be held in the men's room at the Minneapolis airport (just kidding - but they likely could accommodate all the self-loathing gay wingnuts in there). More laughable is her being touted as the "homocon's Judy Garland!" One wonders how finely the acerbic Ms. Garland would have sliced and diced the homophobic Coulter had they ever met!

Now, I could have understood if they dubbed her the "homocon's Ru Paul."

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Kagan Confirmed

By a vote of 63 to 37, Elena Kagan was confirmed by the U.S. Senate today. She becomes the fourth female Supreme Court justice, and the second appointed by President Obama, following last year's appointment of Justice Sonya Sotomayor. Five Rethugs voted for confirmation (Lugar, Gregg, Collins, Graham, and Snowe), with one "Democrat," Nebraska's Ben "Dover" Nelson opposing her confirmation. Wish we could send Ben Dover packing.

Congrats to the new Justice, and to the White House for chalking up another victory.

Have You Noticed. . . .

. . .that there hasn't been much talk from the likes of hate radio's Pills Limpballs and Fux about global warming these hot, record-setting summer days? Hmmmm. Doesn't fit their science-free, mindless propaganda-based message to their ditto heads. We recall their wall-to-wall flapping about all of the snowfall this past winter demonstrating that global warming was a "hoax" (any Northerner will tell you that the coldest air is dry).

This should be a perfect storm of a year for getting climate change legislation enacted: the Gulf oil spill, record-setting temperatures (e.g., hottest June on record), el Nino revving up stronger than ever, etc. It's a shame that Congressional Dems, and to some extent the White House, are fearful of responding to Rethug lies about climate change, despite mounting evidence and a majority in both Houses. Again, the good guys are playing "defense" while the opposition is working the news cycle.

(photo: No Christmas in July for the Piggish Pillpopper)

Those Constitution Lovin' Rethugs

We've all heard Rethugs and their tea bagger component (i.e., their far right base) constantly yelling about the subversion of the U.S. Constitution by the "socialist" Obama Administration. Whether it's health insurance reform or the stimulus, the wingers would have us believe that they are the last line of defense for a Constitution that's under attack. Well, they have met the enemy, and they is them.

There are calls within the Rethuglican ranks for a repeal of parts of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, which guarantees equal protection under the law and establishes standards for citizenship. The glaring irony is that it was enacted following the Civil War by Republicans as part of post-Civil War amendments designed to reverse the effects of slavery. E. J. Dionne has the complete story, and it's well worth reading. It demonstrates just how radically right-wing the modern Rethug party has become.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Mid-Week Song

"I Saw Her Again Last Night" wasn't the biggest seller of theirs, but it has a nice upbeat, jangly/folky quality that represents the best of their tunes. Sadly, only Michelle Phillips survives from the original 4.

President Shizzle

We thought Rethuglican National Committee chairclown Michael "The Shizzle" Steele had met his gaffe-a-week limit on Monday, when he was punked into making disparaging comments about former Rethug Sen. Norm Coleman, who's rumored to be interested in The Shizzle's job. We were wrong.

There are reports that The Shizzle has sent a form e-mail out to the diplomatic community in Washington, seeking meetings with them. Rethuglican leaders and operatives are scratching their heads. We believe that the fundamental problem is that The Shizzle thinks he plays a role parallel to the President's, sort of a government-in-exile. He virtually said as much when he began his ill-fated term as chairclown. So The Shizzle thinks that he should be in touch with foreign governments, like the President is, because he thinks that's his role as the "out of office" President. Someone needs to stage an intervention, but please, for the Dems' sake, not before the elections.

(photo: Maybe The Shizzle will dazzle the diplomatic corps with his tap dancing)

Guess Who's 49 Today?

Our 44th President, that's who. Born August 4, 1961 in HONOLULU, HAWAII, USA. (Just watch, there will be a birther somewhere who will pop up today and play the fool).

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

As the Wasilla World Turns, Cont.

As we suspected a while ago, the engagement of Bristol Palin and Levi "Big Johnson" Johnston is toast. Saying "he played me," a tearful Bristol says she cut off Big Johnson (hee hee) on the same day they announced their engagement in a US Weekly cover story. Talk about a cover jinx!

Mama Grizzly/ Winky You Betcha issued a statement saying, "Without fear of refudiation, I have to say that girl is dumber than me!" No, actually, she said hopefully in the future Bristol will "know to trust but verify." Leave it to Mama Grizzly to drag St. Ronald Magnus Reaganus into the star-crossed couple's sordid little drama.

Put A Confederate Flag to Good Use

One of our favorite bloggers, "Gen. J.C. Christian" of the "Jesus' General" blog, tells Talking Points Memo that he's planning to burn a Confederate flag at an upcoming tea bagger rally on September 12. Teatards, and their philosopher/king Boo Hoo the Hoot Beck, have used the day after the anniversary of 9/11 to try to paint opposition to right wing fanaticism as "unpatriotic." Confederate flags have proliferated at tea bagger rallies ("but we're not racist!").

We hope this idea spreads like, er, wildfire. Outfits like the NAACP, MoveOn.org and other progressive organizations should get behind it. Who can object to burning a flag that stands for treason against the U.S. and for a system of slavery? We mean besides tea baggers. . .

Quote of the Day

"When you get in your car, when you go forward, what do you do? You put it in 'D.' When you want to go back, what do you do? You put it in 'R.' You don't want to go back in reverse back in the ditch. We want to go forward. We got to put it in 'D.'" -- President Obama, speaking yesterday at a fundraiser in Atlanta. This is a simple, yet very effective reminder of what the Rethugs would offer: more of the past policies that screwed up our economy and beyond. A sign that this message will draw blood was Joe Doucheborough's offended reaction on his show this morning. Good, it's long past time to remind voters of how we got into the messes that the Rethugs caused and refuse to clean up.

Monday, August 2, 2010

The Shizzle Is Punked

It's Monday, so it must be time for another political blooper from Rethuglican National Committee chairclown Michael "The Shizzle" Steele. This time the gaffe machine was interviewed by someone that he thought was a big donor, and proceeded to brag that he could beat former Sen. Norm Coleman for the RNC chairmanship if Coleman runs against him. The caller turned out to be a freelance reporter from New York.

Frankly, no one is betting that The Shizzle will last much beyond the 2010 mid-term elections, given his multiple monumental screw ups this past year, from the RNC's bondage-themed night out to the "get outa Afghanistan" debacle. Fundraising by the RNC has been a joke. But don't tell The Shizzle he's on the skids, he has more bloopers to produce before his time is up.

(illustration: The Shizzle's new business card)

Our Broken Media, Cont.

When veteran reporter Helen Thomas lost her job and coveted front-row seat at daily White House press briefings, the jostling was on as to which news organization would get the vacated seat. Would it be Bloomberg News? NPR? Well, it turns out no news organization ended up with the seat. Rather, GOP-TV -- a.k.a. Fox "News" -- was awarded the seat by vote of the White House Correspondents Association, a collection of useful idiots that somehow have concluded that Fox is a "news organization" rather than a 24/7 right-wing propaganda machine owned by a right-wing mogul and run by a right-wing political hack. Even Fox's complicity in the recent Sherrod affair wasn't enough proof for these numbnuts that whatever Fox is peddling, it ain't "news."