Saturday, August 31, 2013

Wang Dang Fool

The sad spouse of has-been, third-tier headbanger Ted "Crap My Pants" Nugent -- who bravely avoided the draft during the Vietnam War by defecating in his pants for days -- was arrested at the Dallas/Ft. Worth Airport for carrying a handgun in her carry-on luggage (!!).  Shemane "She-Man" Nugent had a loaded .38 with several rounds in a gym bag that she was planning to take on a flight to Ft. Lauderdale.  Wow, brains aren't plentiful in the Nugent household, are they?

(photo:  Mugshot of She-Man Nugent.  And we thought Crap My Pants was only into underage teens)

With "Friends" Like These...

With the return of Russian leader Vladimir "The Little Czar" Putin, relations between the Russian Federation and the U.S. have taken a turn for the worse.  The former KGB colonel is still bitter over the implosion of the Soviet Union and resentful of the U.S.'s prominence.  His sheltering of NSA leaker Edward "Shoot My Balls" Snowden, his crackdown on dissidents, his homophobic policies,  and his support for the brutal Assad regime in Syria are evidence of a return to an authoritarian Soviet mentality on the part of The Little Czar.

Now, in a show of defiance, he's asserting that Assad's forces didn't use chemical weapons against his own people (weapons which almost certainly originated in Russia), calling it "nonsense."  U.S. and European intelligence, and U.N. observers might disagree.

As there should be some price to be paid by an illegitimate regime for using chemical weapons against its people, there should be a price for those covering for that regime, say something involving their participation in the G8 economic group.

How Right-Wingers Celebrate The End Of Racism

At a tea bagger conference sponsored by the billionaire Koch brothers' "Americans for Prosperity Foundation," the headline generated was "GOP activists heckle [Sen. Marco "Glug Glug"] Rubio" (hahaha).  But we found this from frothing loon David Horowitz quite revealing:
The strongest rhetoric of the day came from conservative writer David Horowitz, who called the president “the most brazen and compulsive liar to ever occupy the White House,” drawing loud whoops and cheers from the audience.  [Ed. note: =cough= Richard Nixon =cough]
“The reason we don’t attack him is obvious, but no one will say it out loud. I will: It’s because the color of his skin is black,” Horowitz told the crowd, which was predominantly white. “It is because Obama is a minority that nobody will hold him to a standard or confront him with what he has done.”  (our emphasis)
"The reason we don't attack him..."  One has to wonder, in surveying the past 5 years, under what moss-covered rock Horowitz has been living to suggest right-wing nut sacks have held off on attacking President Obama.  Also, see Horowitz' judgement immediately preceding the bolded quote.  No matter.

As for Horowitz' "blackity- black- black Obama" comments, the tea baggers would like you to remember:  it's racist to suggest a white person's being racist when they cast something in offensive racial terms.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Being On The Wrong Side Of History Has Its Costs

Dumbya's speechwriter Michael "Mushroom Cloud" Gerson, in today's once great Washington Post Bezos Bugle, clutches his pearls and wanks about the President's speech on the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington this past Wednesday, especially the President's mention of income inequality, health care, unemployment, and those arrayed to obstruct progress:
What possessed the president, in the midst of a fine speech, to employ language appropriate to the Democratic National Convention? However accurate or inaccurate you regard these charges, it is not a good sign when polarization seeps into ceremonial celebrations.

The BooMan today:
In some abstract way, mainstream Republicans wanted to honor Dr. King's most magnificent speech, even to the point of falsely claiming King as a member of their party. But, confronted with people who sounded a lot like the speakers who appeared that day fifty years ago, they felt that the whole thing was being politicized. Well, if you don't like the politics of the Civil Rights Era and it's leaders and proponents, then why commemorate them? Why not condemn them?
But to ask people to take the politics of social justice out of the commemoration is to try to appropriate to yourself something that doesn't belong to you.  (our emphasis)
Yeah, that about sums it up.

Weekend Holiday Song -- Safe Travels

For any of you traveling on Labor Day in the U.S., please travel safely.  We and Irish chanteuse Lisa Hannigan would want it that way.

The Circular Firing Squad Continues, Cont'd.

After Rethuglican Senators John "Grumpypants" McCain, Lindsey "Huckleberry Closetcase" Graham, and Mitch "Missy" McConnell have been labeled as traitors by the far far right-wing teabagger movement, we wondered who was next?  Our question was answered when rabid teabaggers turned on uber-conservative Sen. John "All Hat, No Cattle" Cornyn (Secessionist-TX) for removing his name from a pledge to bring the Government down if "Obamacare" wasn't de-funded.  Of course,  All Hat knows that the Senate wouldn't vote for any measure defunding the Affordable Care Act, and even if that happened, President Obama would veto it.  But don't tell that to an unhinged teabagger.

Let's enjoy the show.  Popcorn, anyone?

Image:  Sen. Cornyn (visual approximation).

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Your Typical Republican Asshat, Ralph Hudgens

Here's Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens, speaking to a meeting of fellow Republicans:
“Let me tell you what we’re doing (about ObamaCare)[:] … Everything in our power to be an obstructionist.”
After pausing to let applause roll over him, a grinning Hudgens went on to give an example of that obstructionist behavior, this one involving so-called “navigators” who are being hired to guide customers through the process of buying health insurance on marketplaces, or exchanges, set up under the federal program.
“We have passed a law that says that a navigator, which is a position in that exchange, has to be licensed by our Department of Insurance,” Hudgens said. “The ObamaCare law says that we cannot require them to be an insurance agent, so we said fine, we’ll just require them to be a licensed navigator. So we’re going to make up the test, and basically you take the insurance agent test, you erase the name, you write ‘navigator test’ on it.”
Hudgens clearly thought that was a pretty cute way for state officials to obstruct and delay implementation of the program and to ensure that it doesn’t work well for Georgians. Judging from their reaction, his audience thought so too.
Just one of many Republican obstructionists.  Servin' the public, that's good ol' boy Ralph! 

(Photo:  Your typical Republican asshat)

Cartoon Three-fer: Republican Voter Suppression Edition

Notice a pattern?  Good.

(click to enlarge)

(Ben Sargent, Austin American-Statesman, via

(Stuart Carlson, Universal, via

(Drew Sheneman, The Star-Ledger (Newark), via

Fire, Ready, Aim!

Rethug legislators eager to please their employer, the National Rifle Rampage Association, have been pushing for the insane idea of arming school teachers.  We see that in Arkansas, Rethuglican state senator and creepy costume player Jeremy Hutchinson accidentally shot a school teacher with a rubber bullet in a training session.  Well done, Deadeye.  You are now an honorary member of the Dick "The Dick" Cheney Marksman Club.

Here's the thing:  while the NRA says that "the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun," we don't think bad guys should have guns in the first place -- or Rethug state senators, for that matter.

(photo:  Sen. Hutchinson.  Your superhero has arrived, kids ....DUCK!!)

Let's Do This

This has to be one of the best videos that we've seen in a long time.  Name the hurricanes after climate change-denying political hacks.  Brilliant.

There's a petition at to lend your support.  Hat tip to Charles P. Pierce at for flagging it.

De Blasio Well Ahead In NYC Race

New polls out show New York City public advocate Bill de Blasio leading in the city's Democratic primary race for mayor with 36 percent.  If any candidate gets 40 percent or more on election day (less than 2 weeks away), a runoff election will not be required.  Following de Blasio in the Quinnipiac poll is City Council Speaker Christine Quinn at 21 percent, and Bill Thompson at 20 percent.  Cyber flasher Carlos Danger Anthony Weiner continues to deflate (sorry) with only 8 percent support.

Given the party makeup of the electorate in New York City, the Dem candidate will be a very strong favorite to win the general election in November.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Off Their Rockers

Dana Milbank, blind squirrel (d)emeritus at the once great Washington Post  Bezos Bugle, writes about the bizarre conspiracy theories and just plain dumbassery that the Rethuglican base is awash in, and detects a linkage:
Obama conspiracy theories have flourished in the Deep South, where wealth and educational levels are both low. This makes sense: Where voters are least informed, they are most susceptible to misinformation peddled by talk-radio hosts and the like.

For this reason, voters in reliably Republican states, which tend to be poorer, with lower test scores, are more vulnerable to misinformation. To use one measure, the 2011 National Assessment of Educational Progress test of eighth-grade reading, all but one of the top 10 states were in Obama’s column in 2012. Of the 19 doing worse than average, 14 were red states.
 Of course, as Milbank also reports, the many Rethuglican sufferers of Obama Derangement Syndrome are more than willing to say something stupid, even if they know better,
... as a chance to register their displeasure with the president. Obama has driven a large number of Republican voters — [Public Policy Polling's Tom] Jensen puts it at 15 to 20 percent of the overall electorate — right off their rockers.
Another variation on the theme of "Why we can't have nice things in this country."

Rectal Vision Quote of the Day

“I think Martin Luther King’s dream has been fulfilled.  All men and women in this country are now treated equally. Legal discrimination has been outlawed.”  --  former Preznit Dumbya coat carrier and Rethuglican Negro-conservative-for-hire Ron Christie, on the state of African-Americans today.  Hat tip to Daily Kos.

"Problem solved" and trying to co-opt Dr. King's vision are tactics of the right-wing today.  During Dr. King's time, of course, they were virulently opposed to everything he stood for, calling him a "Communist" among other slurs and opposing every piece of civil rights legislation that he championed.  Perhaps in 50 years, they and their successors will be touting "Obamacare" as something they supported, too.

The Day The Tide Turned

With today's marking of the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, we also mark a turning point in this nation's history.  Prior to August 28, 1963, the civil rights movement hadn't gained the nation's full attention, although that year's vicious response to non-violent civil rights marchers in Birmingham, AL had turned the nation's stomach and paved the way for the March.  It was from Birmingham that Dr. Martin Luther King wrote his historic "Letter from Birmingham Jail," in which he defended non-violent protest against segregation.  The 300,000 strong march focused the nation's attention on the goals of the civil rights movement, so memorably and clearly stated by Dr. King's "I Have A Dream" address.  The dream hasn't been fully achieved -- and perhaps never will be as long as haters hate -- but hopefully with each new generation, we'll put more distance between ourselves and the evil of discrimination.

The March on Washington featured a variety of talent, including Mahalia Jackson, Bob Dylan, and this folk trio, who had a top ten hit with "If I Had A Hammer."

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

At Least The War On The Middle Class Is Going Well

In today's once great Washington Post  Bezos Bugle, Jia Lynn Yang traces the change in corporate culture and the "social contract", and the changes wrought in one of America's great companies, IBM, and a town in New York -- Endicott:
This town in the hills of Upstate New York is best known as the birthplace of IBM, one of the country’s most iconic companies. But there remain only hints of that storied past.
The main street, once swarming with International Business Machines employees in their signature white shirts and dark suits, is dotted with empty storefronts. During the 1980s, there were 10,000 IBM workers in Endicott. Now, after years of layoffs and jobs shipped overseas, about 700 employees are left.
Why are employees doing so badly while the company is surviving?
It used to be a given that the interests of corporations and communities such as Endicott were closely aligned. But no more. Across the United States, as companies continue posting record profits, workers face high unemployment and stagnant wages.

Driving this change is a deep-seated belief that took hold in corporate America a few decades ago and has come to define today’s economy — that a company’s primary purpose is to maximize shareholder value.
It wasn't always so, of course:
In the decades after World War II, as the U.S. economy boomed, the interests of companies, shareholders, society and workers appeared to be in tune. Towns such as Endicott flourished.
Even until 1981, the Business Roundtable trade group understood the need to balance these different stakeholders.

“Corporations have a responsibility, first of all, to make available to the public quality goods and services at fair prices, thereby earning a profit that attracts ­investment to continue and enhance the enterprise, provide jobs, and build the economy,” the group said at the time, in a document cited this year in an article in the publication Daedalus.
There must have been a shift in corporate philosophy, and not just at IBM, right?
In 1970, Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman wrote an article in the New York Times Magazine in which he famously argued that the only “social responsibility of business is to increase its profits.”
Then in 1976, economists Michael Jensen and William Meckling published a paper saying that shareholders were “principals” who hired executives and board members as “agents.” In other words, when you are an executive or corporate director, you work for the shareholders.
Stout said these legal theories appealed to the media — the idea that shareholders were king simplified the confusing debate over the purpose of a corporation.
What the article goes on to show is that not only are people losing good middle class jobs,  but pensions have been disappearing, and customer satisfaction is suffering.  In their mania to please the shareholders (and Wall Street), executives don't concern themselves with anything other than setting ambitious Earnings Per Share targets, and sitting on record corporate profits.  Not product, certainly not any "social contract" that might lead them to do what's right for the people who are the company, or their country.

So, who comes out ahead? The shareholders (many of them fellow boomers and retirees) and the short-sighted executives.  And the vicious cycle will continue until there is no more middle class to buy their products or services:
But as sales flatten, questions have emerged about how the company will hit its ambitious target, aside from slashing jobs.
“This is a horrible business model,” said Lee Conrad, a coordinator for Alliance@IBM, a group that advocates for company employees. “It’s all about the EPS [earnings per share] and not about growing the business. The customers are being impacted by this when good employees are being cut. It’s just a mess.”
Such is the "I, Me, Mine" world in which these corporate myopes and their precious/ feared shareholders are living.

The Circular Firing Squad Continues

There are new signs of warfare breaking out within the Rethuglican / Stupid Party over what to do with the Affordable Care Act, i.e. Obamacare.  After deciding to primary Senate Rethuglican leader and human-turtle hybrid Mitch "Missy" McConnell with a teahadist candidate, the far far right is going after another Rethug Senator, this time Jeff "The" Flake of Arizona,  with ads running in Arizona demanding that he vote with Rethug extremists to "defund" Obamacare even if it means shutting the Government or defaulting on the debt.

What's amusing is that both Missy and The Flake are dedicated right-wingers themselves, but apparently there are those teahadists that won't settle for anything but impeachment / default / secession when it comes to the Obama Administration.  We're loving it, of course, because it improves the chances of Dems capturing seats and exposes, once again, the insanity of the teahadist base of the Rethuglican / Stupid Party.

Dreams Vs. Schemes Cartoon of the Day

(click to enlarge)

When right-wing Rethugs say they want to "take our country back," they mean decades back, and they're willing to gut landmark voting rights legislation and shape the electorate to their liking.  The Justice Department needs to stay on them for as long as it takes to defeat their despicable efforts.

(cartoon:  Matt Wuerker, via

Strike on Syria Imminent

Reports are indicating that a limited missile strike against selected targets in Syria could occur by Thursday.  Responding to the Assad regime's apparent use of chemical weapons against its people, the Obama Administration has been coordinating with our allies and governments in the region, in addition to the United Nations.  However, China and Russia have blocked U.S. attempts to take the issue up at the U.N.

With the opposition to the Assad regime containing significant numbers of al Qaeda or affiliated groups, there is no desire to take the regime down, but rather to force it to stop using chemical weapons in violation of international norms.  As with many Middle Eastern struggles, there are no good options, only the lesser of two evils.

Monday, August 26, 2013

The Silicon Valley's New Right-Wing Players

Salon's RJ Eskow has 6 examples of offensive actions or statements  by some of America's new "titans" of industry, including Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and Google's Marissa Mayer.  We're highlighting these two in particular because they're leaders in a cutting-edge industry (information technology for lack of a better term) that one supposes would be led by forward-thinking, progressive people, right?  Um, not necessarily.

On Krispy Kreme Christie bud (and baby libertarian?) Mark Zuckerberg's super-PAC:
The super-PAC’s first initiative is supposed to be immigration reform. But the group’s been running ads and making other efforts to support a hard-right political agenda, directly and through subsidiaries called Americans for Conservative Action and Council for American Job Growth. One ad features conservative Republican Marco Rubio. Others oppose Obamacare and promote the environmentally destructive Keystone XL pipeline.
On Marissa Mayer's participation on the Walmart board of directors and Google's involvement in far-right causes:
Mayer had the chance to meet with Walmart workers who were unjustly fired after protesting the corporation’s policies, but she refused to speak with them. She had them arrested instead.

Mayer’s public silence doesn’t just extend to mistreated Walmart workers. She prefers to let others do her political talking, too. Yahoo! is part of Zuckerberg’s right-wing super-PAC. It also reportedly remained in the Koch brothers far-right American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), even after many other corporations publicly left the group over its extremist policies.
Apparently, Silicon Valley is in some danger of turning into Galt's Gulch.

Edumacayshun, Rump Style

Orangutan-human hybrid and unrepentant birther (excepting Ted "Calgary" Cruz) Donald "Rump" Trump is being sued by the State of New York for $40 million for consumer deception in connection with his "Trump University" grift.  Thousands of people paid millions of dollars for courses offered by "Trump University" which turned out to be virtually useless, for promising career opportunities that never materialized, and other shell games, according to the suit.  For example, instead of a promised meet-and-greet with Rump, "graduates" were photographed with a cutout figure of the narcissistic tycoon.

Rump wants the world to think he's a self-made tycoon, when in fact his father was a multi-millionaire developer who put his son in charge of the business.  After Rump Sr. died leaving a fortune of some $400 million,  Rump Jr. had to declare bankruptcy four times, using bankruptcy laws to reduce his debt liability.  If anyone thought that Rump wanted to educate them, rather than just take their money, they ended up getting their degree at the School of Hard Knocks.

UPDATE:  We'd love to see a bowl matchup between the Trump University Orangemen and the Glenn Beck University Fightin' Suckers...

(photos:  Can we see your birth certificate?)

Shhh, Don't Tell Anyone Quote of the Day

"The reduction in the number of days allowed for early voting is particularly important because early voting plays a major role in Obama's ground game. The Democrats carried most states that allow many days of early voting, and Obama's national field director admitted, shortly before last year's election, that 'early voting is giving us a solid lead in the battleground states that will decide this election.'" -- long time right-wing activist and Queen of God-Bothering Prudes Phyllis "Like Sex With Sandpaper" Schlafly, giving away the game in wingnut media.  Hat tip to Steve Benen.

Portraying the voter suppression activities in states with Rethuglican legislatures and Governors as necessary to stop non-existent "voter fraud" has been a Rethug talking point for years.  Like Sex With Sandpaper apparently doesn't know her words carry beyond the wingnut bubble, not that anyone with a functioning brain wouldn't already know what they're up to.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Sunday Cartoon

(click to enlarge)

Meanwhile, Colin Powell warns fellow Republicans today that voter id laws will "backfire" on them.  (And they'll deserve it.)

(Mike Luckovich, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, via

More Cognitive Dissonance, Republican Style

Nearing the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, Leonard Pitts takes note of the legacy and today's moral cowards and would-be usurpers of that legacy:
King would see that for all the progress we have made, we live in a time of proud ignorance and moral cowardice wherein some white people — not all — smugly but incorrectly pronounce all racial problems solved. More galling, it is an era of such cognitive incoherence that conservatives — acolytes of the ideology against which King struggled all his life — now routinely claim ownership of his movement and kinship with his cause.
When he was under fire for questioning the constitutionality of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, for instance, Sen. Rand Paul wanted it known that he’d have marched with King had he been of age. And he probably believes that.  (our emphasis)
Speaking of moral cowards, we see South Carolinia distaff peckerwood Kathleen Parker missing the point, entirely (spoiler alert:  it's racist to point out racism, and it's all Obama's fault).  Wrong side of history --  again.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Clueless Cognitive Dissonance, Republican Style

From HuffPo:
A middle-aged man in a red golf shirt shuffles up to a small folding table with gold trim, in a booth adorned with a flotilla of helium balloons, where government workers at the Kentucky State Fair are hawking the virtues of Kynect, the state’s health benefit exchange established by Obamacare.

The man is impressed. "This beats Obamacare I hope," he mutters to one of the workers.
We're guessing the man was Simple Simon.

Photo of the Day

Someone's not impressed!

The President talks with students, graduates and educators at Magnolia's Deli and Cafe in Rochester, NY, on August 22, during his college affordability tour, although one little patron had a different agenda.

TBogg, We Hardly Knew Ye

The great, irreplaceable TBogg calls it a day... for now?

(Photo:  If you read him, you'd understand.)

Today's Dispatches From The Stupid Party

Another day, another dumbass.  Or two.  Or three.

Let's see what Rep. David Joyce (Rethug-OHmygod) has to say about why all those jobs remain unfilled.  Is it lack of training?  Lack of education?  Are they part-time jobs/ jobs that don't offer a living wage?  Oh no:
"There's 3 million jobs every month in this country that go unfilled," said Joyce in his remarks to the Stow-Munroe Falls Chamber of Commerce. "Believe me, the [Cleveland] Plain Dealer already fact-checked me on it because they couldn't believe me. They thought I was lying, and they actually came up with a higher number than 3 million."
"And the trouble is, it's because they either can't find people to come to work sober, daily, drug-free and want to learn the necessary skills going forward to be able to do those jobs," he added.  (our emphasis)
Translation:  If it weren't for the lazy, drug-addled moochers -- the 47% that vote Demoncrat -- we'd have a smooth-running plantation economic system.

Speaking of plantations the poors "those people," Colorado Rethuglican State Sen. Vicki Marble(head) is concerned that what "the black race" and the Messicans are putting into their fried chicken taco pie holes might be keeping them back:
"When you look at life expectancy, there are problems in the black race," Marble said during a meeting of the legislature's Economic Opportunity Poverty Reduction Task Force. "Sickle-cell anemia is something that comes up. Diabetes is something that's prevalent in the genetic makeup, and you just can't help it. Although I've got to say, I've never had better barbecue and better chicken and ate better in my life than when you go down South and you, I mean, I love it. Everybody loves it."

Marble continued, "The Mexican diet in Mexico with all of the fresh vegetables, and you go down there and they are much thinner than they are up here. They’ve changed their diet. I’ve read studies on that." (our emphasis)
What, you couldn't drop a mention of watermelon into your thoughtful analysis? 

We can't forget (though we'd like to) Rep. Tom "Not Dan" Marino's (Dimbulb-PAthetic) 'splanation for why 'Bammer's a Kenyan Socialist (link includes more examples of "The Stupid, It Burns" than we have the inclination to cop):
Pennsylvania congresscritter Tom Marino said Thursday that there’s a simple reason that Barack Obama is such a big darn socialist all the time: Obama, you see, was “raised by the federal government his entire life and he wants to implement his socialist programs and that’s all he knows.” This is just logic, people. Congressman Marino has been a fulltime state or federal government employee since 1992, except for the period between the end of his term as U.S. Attorney in 2007 and his election to the House in 2010.
Examples 437, 438 and 439 of why there's a putrid cloud of "fail" around the notion of Republican/ New Confederate/ Stupid Party "rebranding."

Friday, August 23, 2013

Today's Cartoon - Tailgunner Ted Cruz Edition

(click to enlarge, eh?)

(Jack Ohman, Sacramento Bee, via

Weekend Song -- Take 2

We played this song a few years back, performed by its composer Jackie DeShannon.  But we love this 1964 English beat, ringing guitar version by Liverpool's The Searchers, so we're offering a take 2.  Enjoy your weekend.


We noticed this report from NBC News of a plot in Las Vegas to abduct and murder police officers by members of the lunatic "sovereign citizens" movement.  The movement doesn't recognize the authority of police officers or of government, and actively plans and executes killings of law enforcement officials.  Adherents to this crackpot movement have killed police in shootouts in Louisiana and Arkansas.  The Southern Poverty Law Center categorizes the movement as engaged in domestic terrorism.

Charles P. Pierce, writing in, connects the dots of this dangerous movement with the far-right:
"It has an audience because an audience has been created for it, in dozens of books, hundreds of hours of radio programs, and an entire Internet universe. It has an audience because its more polite adherents have found politicians to pander to it, politicians who should know better, but who would rather not. It has an audience because the NRA has told that audience that it is a besieged remnant of the America that once was free. People are making a buck on it. People are achieving power behind it. I don't really know how they sleep at night."

Tea Party Funders Won't Be Buying Newspapers

The Koch brothers, funders of tea party astroturf groups,  won't be putting a bid in to buy the Tribune Company newspapers after all.  A significant victory, as long as another far-right operation doesn't manage to buy into all or part of this large chunk of the newspaper business.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Messing With Texas, Cont.

The Justice Department formally announced today what we expected would occur:  it's joining lawsuits challenging Texas' voter photo id/ suppression law and it's Rethuglican-gerrymandered redistricting plan:
“Today’s action marks another step forward in the Justice Department’s continuing effort to protect the voting rights of all eligible Americans,” said Attorney General Eric Holder. “We will not allow the Supreme Court’s recent decision to be interpreted as open season for states to pursue measures that suppress voting rights.  The Department will take action against jurisdictions that attempt to hinder access to the ballot box, no matter where it occurs.  We will keep fighting aggressively to prevent voter disenfranchisement. We are determined to use all available authorities, including remaining sections of the Voting Rights Act, to guard against discrimination and, where appropriate, to ask federal courts to require preclearance of new voting changes.  This represents the Department’s latest action to protect voting rights, but it will not be our last.”
We certainly hope it won't be the last action by the Justice Department to halt Rethuglican voter suppression efforts, most recently green-lighted by the Shelby County v. Holder decision gutting the Voting Rights Act.  Keep suing their peckerwood asses.

(Photo:  Texas Gov. Rick "Oops" Perry -  yahoo, dimbulb, genital compensator, would-be vote suppressor)

Your Poll of the Day - Shutting Down Government Over Obamacare Edition

 Not the most popular thing out there:
A new poll done for Republican members of Congress has found huge public opposition, and solid opposition among Republicans, to the idea of shutting down the government over the issue of funding Obamacare.

In a national survey of 1,000 registered voters done July 31 and August 1, the question, from pollster David Winston, said, “Some members of Congress have proposed shutting down the government as a way to defund the president’s health care law” and asked respondents whether they favored or opposed that plan.
Overall, 71 percent of those surveyed opposed a shutdown, while 23 percent favored a shutdown. Among Republicans, 53 percent opposed, versus 37 percent who favored. (our emphasis)
Unfortunately, we suspect the 37 percent of Republicans that favored a shutdown over Obamacare are overwhelmingly the ones most likely to vote in a primary and who, therefore, must be obeyed!

Fortunately, former crackpot Rethuglican Sen. Jim "Demented" DeMint, who now is polluting politics over at the Heritage Foundation, has an alternative to Obamacare!

Smack-Down of the Day

Colin Powell today at a CEO Forum in Raleigh, North Carolina:
"I want to see policies that encourage every American to vote, not make it more difficult to vote.  It immediately turns off a voting block the Republican Party needs.  These kinds of actions do not build on the base. It just turns people away."
Weasel North Carolina Rethug Gov. Pat McCrory, who recently signed a voter suppression law that's being challenged in court, was in the audience for Powell's remarks. 

Farewell, Feelie

San Diego's hands-on mayor Bob "Feelie" Filner has opted to resign his position after multiple (the latest tally: 18) women have accused him of inappropriate behavior and sexual harassment on the job.  In return for resigning, the City of San Diego will cover some of the legal costs associated with the lawsuits that have been filed against him for sexual harassment by current and former employees.  Feelie has already cleaned out his office and said goodbye to his staff (hopefully not involving touching or kissing his female staff).

Farewell, Feelie.  You may have a future in massage therapy, if not politics.

Cartoon of the Day

(click to enlarge)

Since their "message" of greed and discrimination isn't winning them elections, the Rethugs are pulling out all the stops to suppress voting among Democratic constituencies. What they can't win at the ballot box, they hope to win by grabbing power through rigging the game.

Now, there're new rumblings among wingnut House members about impeaching the President -- just elected by a healthy majority -- on any pretext whatever, no matter how bogus or crazy.

Along with their hostage taking methods regarding a Government shutdown and raising the debt ceiling, the rabid right-wing Rethugs have placed their ideology and party above their country time and again.  It's no surprise that there's crazy talk of impeachment coming from them.

(cartoon:  Mike Luckovich, via

Hooked By A Whopper

Liz "Lizard" Cheney, Rethuglican Senate hopeful and nepotistic spawn of former (Vice) President Dick "The Dick" Cheney, wants to run in the Wyoming primary against incumbent Rethug Sen. Mike Enzi for their party's Senate nomination.  Much of the criticism aimed at Lizard from Wyoming Rethugs is that she's lived most of her life in the Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C.  Lizard didn't help that issue when she lied on a fishing license application about how long she'd been a resident of Wyoming. For a fishing license in Wyoming, the applicant needs to have been a continuous resident of the state for a minimum of one year;  Lizard lied on the application, since at the time she'd been a resident for a little over 2 months.  Yesterday, Lizard paid a $220 bond for making a false application for the license.

Of course her father, The Dick, lied repeatedly in order to muster public support for the disastrous war of choice in Iraq.  It appears the poop doesn't fall far from the pooper.

(photo: via Casper Star-Tribune)

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Today's Dispatches From The Stupid Party

Item:  Louisiana Rethuglicans aren't sure whether the poor response to 2005's Hurricane Katrina was the fault of Preznit Dumbya or President Obama.  Some 29% blame Obama (natch), despite the fact that the hurricane was 3 1/2 years before Obama took office.  Forty-four percent say they're not sure who was to blame (riiiight!).

The next poll should ask them whether they believe President Obama was responsible for the Iran-Contra scamdal.

Ewww, Not Again

Virginia's Rethuglican candidate for Lieutenant Gov. and crackpot extremist E. W. (Ewww) Jackson has announced that he's fine with his running mate's plan to undermine public schools in Virginia by privatizing them and promoting education in private institutions, including churches, through tax-subsidized vouchers.   Eww's running mate, gubernatorial candidate Ken "Cooch" Cuccinelli has long supported the unconstitutional mix of Church and State, which would currently violate Virginia's own constitution not to mention the U.S. Constitution.  However, as the linked article notes, Cooch might want to reexamine his proposed education policy, now that Ewww has endorsed it:
"If crackpot poster child E.W. Jackson is for something, you probably want to be against it. If E.W. Jackson says your plan for changing how education works is good, you should probably assume that it is bad. If E.W. Jackson says you should jump off a particular bridge because the water is fine, you should probably assume that it is not fine. And if E.W. Jackson says all the fine young children of his state should come get in his van because he has got some free education in there, you should probably not let your child do that."
Ewww says not to laugh at him, therefore....Bwahahaha.

UPDATE: The latest polling is encouraging:
Democrat Terry McAuliffe has a 48 - 42 percent lead over Republican State Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli in the race to become Virginia's next governor, according to today's Quinnipiac University poll, the first survey in this race among voters likely to vote in the November election.

Mid-Week Changed Song

Two of our favorites -- Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran -- combine on this sweet song, "Everything Has Changed."  Enjoy.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Photo of the Day

The First Family's new dog, Sunny, a  new companion for their dog Bo.  Both are Portuguese Water dogs and are very playful.

(White House photo by Pete Souza)

Creepy Quote of the Day

"... several fellow classmates who asked that their names not be used described the young [Ted] Cruz with words like 'abrasive,' 'intense,' 'strident,' “crank,' and 'arrogant.' Four independently offered the word 'creepy,' with some pointing to Cruz’s habit of donning a paisley bathrobe and walking to the opposite end of their dorm’s hallway where the female students lived." -- Patricia Murphy, writing in The Daily Beast, about Tailgunner Ted's days as a Princeton undergraduate student.

Beyond his creepy behavior with women, Tailgunner Ted had extreme right-wing views that never changed in four years at Princeton, and remain constant to this day.  His college freshman roommate is also concerned about the prospect of Tailgunner Ted becoming President: "I would rather have anyone else be President of the United States.  Anyone."

Monday, August 19, 2013

Chris Christie, Man of Principle

One of the pols fighting for what passes for a "soul" of the Republican/ New Confederate/ Stupid Party is New Jersey Gov. Chris "King of Bacon" Christie.  But first, Charles P. Pierce would like to offer one recent example why the King of Bacon (ed. note: "oink?") isn't really the "moderate" of Obama- bro- hugging fame: 
Earlier that evening, a Friday night, so as few people as possible would notice, big, rough, tough Chris Christie, the governor of New Jersey, and a guy some delusional souls believe is something more than a run of the mill conservative, vetoed a bill that would have banned a deadly sniper rifle that fires rounds big enough to bring down, among other things, police helicopters. (That it was Christie's bill in the first place is merely an extraneous layer of chicken shit on the whole proceedings.) Chris Christie wants the presidential nomination of a demented political party, so Chris Christie had to veto his own bill and make sure that New Jersey residents can keep their personal anti-aircraft arsenals. I know I'll feel safer flying into Newark now. And, that night, in Newtown, all was dark. All was quiet. All was normal again. Another teachable moment in which the country learned nothing.
At his core, Christie is a bully and, as this episode reflects, most bullies are actually cowards at heart. Remember this.  And this.  And this.

He has 2016 in his (.50 cal.?) sights, so any amount of hypocritical flip-flopping that he deems necessary to advance his fortunes will be undertaken with relish and lots of loud, in- your- face chutzpah.

"Tailgunner Ted" Cruz, Canuck

It's amusing to us that radical Rethuglican right-winger Sen. "Tailgunner Ted" Cruz (Secessionville-TX), while being born in Canada to a mother who was a U.S. citizen, isn't facing the nativist, racist outcry of the teabagger community that President Obama (his mother a U.S. citizen) faced. Indeed, to date, Tailgunner Ted hasn't renounced his Canadian citizenship (by virtue of his birthplace).

So, if Tailgunner Ted is a bona fide U.S. citizen by virtue of his mother's citizenship, then wouldn't President Obama also be a U.S. citizen, no matter if he was born in Honolulu, Nairobi or Kathmandu?  Of course he would.  But don't tell that to the racist, delusional wingnuts that continue to believe that the President is a "foreigner."

(photo:  Tailgunner Ted and Tailgunner Joe McCarthy: more than physical similarities there)

More Lies From Rethugs on Obamacare

On CNN yesterday, Candy Crowley was interviewing Rethuglican Rep. and bad liar Justin "The Fibber" Amash about the provision of the Affordable Care Act that prevents health insurance companies from denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions like diabetes or heart disease.  Perhaps The Fibber thought he was talking to his Party base of gullible mouthbreathers when he claimed that "some" insurance companies already allow people with pre-existing conditions to get coverage.  As the linked article notes, roughly 25 percent of people under 65 said that they or a family member have been denied coverage or had their premiums jacked up due to a pre-existing condition, according to a study earlier this year. (Fortunately, Obamacare covers burns from having your pants on fire).

Rethuglican Congresscritters are doing everything to undermine "Obamacare" because they know that once all of its provisions take effect -- with some important ones taking effect in October -- the public will embrace the program as they did Social Security and Medicare in the past.  That will be yet another major quality of life improvement that the Rethugs not only can't claim credit for, but one that they fought bitterly.

BONUS:  Read Paul Krugman's piece on the inevitability of Obamacare, and the price Rethugs will pay for obstructing it.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Why We Can't Have Nice Things In This Country, Cont.

 Here's your Republican base, right here:
A Tennessee tea party Republican congressman told a frightened little girl at a town hall meeting on Thursday in Murfreesboro, TN that laws are laws and that her undocumented father is going to have to be deported. According to, 11-year-old Josie Molina told Rep. Scott DesJarlais (R) that she has papers but her father does not.

During a question and answer session at the meeting, Molina stepped up to the microphone and, with a quavering voice, asked, “Mr. DesJarlais, I have papers, but I have a dad who’s undocumented. What can I do to have him stay with me?”

Rather than make any attempt to assuage the girl’s fears, DesJarlais said, “Thank you for being here and thank you for coming forward and speaking,” but “the answer still kind of remains the same, that we have laws and we need to follow those laws and that’s where we’re at.”

The tea party crowd whooped and applauded wildly as the little girl took her seat, head down. Progressive Populist reported that Josie Molina’s father is currently in the process of being deported and that the girl is seeing a child psychologist in order to cope with the stress and anxiety.

What sweet people.  Oh, you may remember Rep. DesJarlais as the serial adulterer who was elected in 2010 and re-elected in 2012 by his tea bagger constituency.  He's says he's gotten himself right with Jesus though, so move along.

Strange Headfellows

In an interview with Campus Reform, fugitive from Swedish justice and Wikileaks indiscriminate leaker Julian "Ass Is Part of Who I Am" Assange revealed his American political preferences (via LGF):
College-aged support for libertarians and Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) represents the United States’ “only hope” in politics, Wikileaks founder Julian Assange told Campus Reform early Friday morning.
“The only hope as far as electoral politics… presently, is the libertarian section of the Republican party,” said Assange, in response to a question about the recent swell of college-aged and youth-based support for libertarianism.
“The libertarian aspect of the Republican Party is presently the only useful political voice really in the U.S. Congress,” said Assange. “[I] am a big admirer of Ron Paul and Rand Paul for their very principled positions in the U.S. Congress on a number of issues.” [snip]
Assange, who was speaking in an online video forum, hosted by the transparency organization, also praised American Journalist Matt Drudge saying he is responsible for breaking down the “self-censorship” of the American mainstream media.
Matt Drudge is a news media innovator… It is as a result of the self-censorship of the establishment press in the United States that gave Matt Drudge such a platform and so of course he should be applauded for breaking a lot of that censorship,” said Assange.  (our emphasis)
This, along with fellow Paultard and Putin houseguest Edward "Shoot My Balls" Snowden's drama, illustrates why some progressives need to be very careful in picking their "heroes."  In our view, both Assange and Snowden veer onto the "anarcho-libertarian" nihilist edge of politics, wherein a sense of "ethical egoism" and unfocused action always trumps collective judgement.  =cough= AynRand =cough= To name-check far-right conspiracy fluffer Matt Drudge (!) as a media exemplar kinda gives Assange's game away, too. 

But Gary Norton sums it up best, first on the link to Paul and the Republican Party, then on Drudge:
Yup. An anti-government, anti-Social Security, anti-Medicare and Medicaid, anti-civil rights, anti-choice, anti-LGBT, pro-business, anti-minimum wage, anti-40 hour work week, anti-union, basically anti-every piece of Democratic and progressive legislation that has ever been passed in this country Political Party and its nihilistic leaders are the only hope for America.

And Matt Drudge, a guy who has never found a right wing lie that he wasn't eager to spread, is Assange's idea of a "news reporter." Wonder if Assange has a tricorn hat, breeches and wig in his suitcase?
BONUSAlso, Tomasky.

Sunday Funnies

(click to enlarge)

The Rethuglican / Stupid Party is undergoing some significant schisms, none the more important than the tension between the tea bagger base and the corporate establishment.  With Government shutdown over Obamacare and another round of debt ceiling hostage-taking, the Rethugs are primed to place themselves in a very bad place soon.

(top, Jim Morin, Miami Herald; bottom, Mike Lukovich, Atlanta Journal-Constitution.  Via

Saturday, August 17, 2013

President Obama on Republican Obstruction of Obamacare Implementation

Keep hitting them hard, Mr. President!

Today's Cartoon

(click to enlarge)

See also post below...

(Chan Lowe, South Florida Sun Sentinel, via

When You Lose Politico, You've Lost... The Morning?

The co-founders of Politico (a.k.a., "Tiger Beat on the Potomac" - bless you Charles Pierce!),  dynamic duo Mike Allen and Jim VandeHei,  penned an atypically critical piece , "Eve of Destruction" (paging Barry McGuire!), on the current state of their the Republican Party.  The establishment-Republican-wired duo had this to say about the problems besetting the Republicans as the party has attempted to "re-brand" itself, while the crackpots run the asylum:
 It is almost impossible to find an establishment Republican in town who's not downright morose about the 2013 that has been and is about to be.  Most dance around it in public, but they see this year as a disaster in the making, even if most elected Republicans don't know it or admit it.
Welcome to the (Stupid) party, fellas!  As prime bookmakers of Republican-wired Beltway odds, it's no surprise the dynamic duo is sounding the alarm bell.  While they and others have been busy uncritically "reporting" on every faux scandal, non-issue, and RNC fabrication, the party they treasure has been incorporated lock, stock and barrel by the racists, talibangelists, homophobes, know-nothings and charlatans of the right.  It's been the political story of the last 40 years, and the dynamic duo and their "win the morning" competition in the Beltway and beyond have been sleepwalking right through it, up to the point where it darkens the prospects of a Republican restoration.

(Image:  Half of the dynamic duo.)

Letters We Wish We'd Written Dept.

From this morning's once great Washington Post  Bezos Bugle:
The Post’s characterization of Mitt Romney’s 47 percent remark is a great example of how toothless and boring political reporting has become [“Gansler said rival relies on his race in Md. contest,” front page, Aug. 13].
The Post said, “In the 2012 presidential race, GOP nominee Mitt Romney had to defend his ‘47 percent’ comments, which critics said disparaged nearly half the electorate.”
No, “critics” didn’t say that. Romney flatly disparaged nearly half the electorate. The Post’s phrasing suggested that there is an alternative construal. Did Romney launch a counteroffensive saying he was actually praising the 47 percent? No. He apologized for the remarks. The Post reported it.
This is a great example validating Paul Krugman’s quip that if someone said the Earth is flat, the media would headline the story “Views differ on shape of planet.
Daniel Heim, Durham, N.C.
Ladies and gentlemen, your pusillanimous press. 

Friday, August 16, 2013

Weekend Song

Seattle folk rock/ indie group Fleet Foxes has a sound that, at times, reminds us of the 60's British duo The Incredible String Band (check them out on You Tube).  This is a purely instrumental selection called "The Cascades," no doubt referencing the beautiful coastal mountains in their neck of the woods.  Enjoy the song and your weekend.

With Enemies Like These....

As speculation grows about whether (or when) Hillary Clinton will formally announce her candidacy for President (the election's more than 3 years away, for goodness sake), the usual Clinton-haters are unsheathing their knives and sharpening them for the smear assault.  We know that the right-wing will be ginning up new and old conspiracy theories (Benghazi!, BENGHAZI !!) to try to smear Clinton, but we also have to take note, as the very-readable Michael Tomasky observes, of the Boomer "liberals" exemplified by Maureen "MoDo" Dowd and Richard "The Adulterer" Cohen.  Their often snotty, self-righteous pieces on both Clintons reflect a certain segment of the Boomer generation's purist view of how nobly members of that generation (including Hackwhackers) should behave.

Tomasky's piece is well worth a read, if only to understand how some Boomer journalists continue to downplay the, if you will, elephant in the room:  the lunacy of the Rethuglican / Stupid Party and what it's doing to the country.

The "Fat Man" Passes Away

We lost one of our great political reporters this week when Jack Germond died at the age of 85.  Germond wrote for the defunct Washington Star and the Baltimore Sun for years, with a career spanning 50 years.  He was perhaps best known as a fixture on the shout-fest "The McLaughlin Group," where he often provided the only voice of reason and frequently mocked host John McLaughlin's transparent Rethuglican boosterism.

Germond was one of the reporters appearing in Timothy Crouse's classic "The Boys on the Bus" book about covering the 1972 Presidential election campaign of Richard Nixon.  He later wrote his own memoir, "Fat Man In A Middle Seat," which recounts tales of life as a political journalist.  Tributes to Germond's wit and reputation are numerous;'s Charles P. Pierce wrote this:
"I have never met anyone who loved what he did for a living more than Germond did. He was funny and generous, and he put up with my stumbling attempts to figure out how a process this fundamentally insane ever managed to produce a president of the United States. One anecdote from Crouse's book sums him up perfectly. Germond is covering a media event that the fake Nixon campaign was staging in New York City. (The actual Nixon campaign, as we came to learn, was being conducted elsewhere, with surgical gloves, laundered Mexican cash, and lock-picks.)
'Jack Germond was pacing the pavement at the back of the park. "Jesus," he said, ''this is the ultimate media event. Nixon at the Statue Of Liberty! It's a piece of fiction. I just hope we get to the OTB parlor before five o'clock. I got a good horse in the eighth."'"
We hope his horse won that day. RIP.

Smug Thug Mugged

There are continued reports that right-wing hate radio pustule Sean "Heil" Hannity is being dropped from the Cumulus radio network, the second-largest in the country.  This follows Cumulus' decision to bid farewell to that other sack of crap Rush "Pills" Limpballs, and the Fux Channel's decision to replace Heil Hannity in his prime time cable slot with Megyn "How's My Hair?" Kelly.

This development brought one of Heil's right-wing competitors out of the woodwork, namely Michael Weiner, who goes by the name "Michael Savage," hoping to capitalize on Heil's exit.  Savage Weiner's gloating that he'll take over Heil's audience of mouthbreathers by year's end.  Nothing better to see than this internecine hate-fest.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Republicans Aren't Racist, Cont'd.

Reactionary bigot Rep. Steve "Out of Stock" Stockman (Klanville-TX) apparently can't get enough of hatin' on the Muslim Kenyan usurper that the sane world recognizes as President Obama.  Now, he's inviting the rodeo clown (in more ways than one) from the Missouri State Fair to Texas, you know, the one that dressed up as President Obama and stood in the center ring of the rodeo encouraging the bull to run him over (the clown was banned for life from the Missouri State Fair, btw).

As Out of Stock has proven, not all rodeo clowns are in the rodeo.  He just needs a white hood and sheet to complete his outfit.

BONUS:  Far-right Rethug Rep. Steve "Lying" King -- of the infamous Latino-immigrants-have-calves-like-cantaloupes fame, says this incident "isn't about race."  Well, that settles it IS.

(photos: AP, click to enlarge)

Empty Bottle Quote of the Day

"It has been amusing to watch Marco Rubio, The Future Of The Rebranded GOP, try to struggle free of the shrink wrap while half his party flings poo at him. He was going to be the guy who led his party out of its increasingly tiny, and largely melanin-free, wilderness. He was the party's voice of reason on Immigration Reform. Christ above, did he back the wrong horse. He discovered to his horror that his party likes being in the wilderness. You can eat with your fingers, run around shoeless, and pee behind trees. By the time he figured all of this out, the party had found Ted Cruz, who is completely nuts, but who is as Cuban as Rubio. Right now, Marco Rubio looks as relevant to Republican politics going forward as Robert Taft does."  -- Esquire's Charles P. Pierce, pointing out that Sen. Marco "Glug Glug" Rubio's national ambitions won't allow him to break free of the Stupid Party base's bigotry, whereas Sen. "Tailgunner Ted" Cruz will ride the teabagger nativist train right off the cliff.  Much to our delight.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Moocher Alert: Get Your Government Hands Off My Food Stamps!

From Bloomberg News (via Daily Kos):
Among the 254 counties where food stamp recipients doubled between 2007 and 2011, Republican Mitt Romney won 213 of them in last year’s presidential election, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture data compiled by Bloomberg. Kentucky’s Owsley County, which backed Romney with 81 percent of its vote, has the largest proportion of food stamp recipients among those that he carried. [...]
The Bloomberg review of 2,049 counties where the data was available included the 250 with the highest concentration of food stamp recipients. Among that group, 227 are wholly within one congressional district, with 160 represented by Republicans and 67 by Democrats.
Of course, unlike food stamp recipients that are moochers Democrats, these good moochers folks earned their food stamps!