Saturday, January 12, 2013

Headline of the Day

Satanists organize rally in support of Florida governor Rick Scott
My sides, they hurt...

Saturday Emmylou Blogging

Check out the stage set!

Published on Jan 7, 2013
Artist: Emmylou Harris
Title: Together Again
Broadcast date: 13-3-1976
TV program: TopPop
Video rights: AVRO

Thanks to webportalavro, Netherlands.

Friday, January 11, 2013


Not much going on today. Same old, same old.

It's amusing to watch the guntards make the best case against themselves that crazy people shouldn't be allowed to own firearms. Heh. Keep digging, boys. Sharpen that shovel for ya?

The batcrap crazy wing of the Repugs continues to appear as if the real world around them really truly does NOT exist.

Things are going along OK. There's still the Friday document dump to look forward to!

Later. Wake me if anything interesting happens. Nah, don't.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

They do?!

Nothing much going on today, but it is kinda fun to watch all the wingnut guntards go, er, ballistic. Heh.

Of much greater import is the revelation that women actually shit. Via Raw Story. Cut to the chase:

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

"When they pry my gun from my..."

The gent in the video diplomatically fails to mention that two of the biggest perceived "threats" to the nation in those days were Indians and slave revolts.

I think President Obama needs to offer Alex Jones the privilege of being first in taking up arms against the government just to show the rest of the wannabe Rambos how it's going to go for them. They can pry his gun from his still-smoldering hand. My money's on that he'd drop it and run as fast as could with a nice warm pantload. Heh.

Here's how it would really go when the government comes for your guns and don't worry, it's not going to happen except in paranoid fantasies: when the government knocks gently on their door with a tank cannon, 99% of people will see the handwriting on the wall and cough up the heaters. The morons who do not will simply die on the spot. Ask David Koresh.

Whether the Waco deal was right or wrong or an FBI overstep or whatever is not the issue here. What is pertinent here is that the outcome was certain and final.

A Message To The Tea Party From A Guy Who Urinated On A Power Line

Heh. At Goblinbooks.

Believe me, I know what is about to happen to you. You're going to wake up in an ambulance, and they're going to be wrapping your junk in enough gauze to outfit a museum wing of mummies. And why? Because you pushed things too far. Because you thought it would be fun to take a risk. To look tough and fearless. Maybe you had some friends egg you on, you know? Those people at the rallies look like they want you to put on a good show. I get that. Trev wanted me to do eight Jager-stands and climb onto that pole. Trev was nowhere around when the ambulance came and the EMTs couldn't stop laughing.

Because after you become the guy who burned his genitals peeing on a high-voltage wire... you spend a life widely known as the guy who burned his genitals peeing on a high-voltage wire. And believe me, they'll know. If you force the country into some kind of economic death spin, the president will try to put all the blame on you people. Is that completely fair? Maybe, maybe not. The point is, he'll be out there making speeches and looking serious, and you'll be out there with 80 year-old freaks dressed like Paul Revere, waving automatic rifles and yammering about the gold standard. Folks will figure out who was the grownup and who was the crazy son of a bitch who needs to lose the next three election cycles.
That's all well and good and let's hope they flash-fry their junk pretty soon. People who will acknowledge they are or support the Teatards is down to about 8%, but the Dead End Quarter is still running at about 30%. The title may be diminishing but the medieval ignorance is not.

Headline of the Day

America’s White Male Republican Evangelical Magical “Thinking” Racist Problem Is ALL of Our Problem
And your point is...?

Moderation is for hippies

If it's Wednesday it must be Morford on how wretched excess has become barely enough.

Where do you want to look? Popular culture? ‘Here Comes Honey Boo-Boo’ just earned record ratings by going to new extremes of trashiness, mental incompetence and borderline child abuse. Sports? Extremes of machismo, scandal and homophobia abound. Violence? Please. A teenager massacres 22 elementary school children with a rifle he swiped from him mom, and what’s the response? Let’s arm up even more! Meanwhile, the top-selling video games are screamingly juvenile, ultra-violent first-person shooters for 10-year-old males who never go outside and twitch themselves to sleep.

Extreme postures, extreme politics, dogmas, piercings, sex, degradations, styles, sounds, wealth, resource annihilation, antagonism – for millions, the message is clear: radical positions and hardcore reactions are the only thing that “work” anymore, that shock or inspire feeling or action, that get you noticed, make you money or get you your own embarrassingly awful TV show.

But of course, that all pales in comparison to the grand champion of extreme, hostile posturing, the GOP, who shamelessly take untenable positions on everything from the economy to God, rape to calling the president a Nazi. Science is a hoax! Gays are repulsive in the eyes of God! Rich people should never be taxed! You win, GOP. No one is better at taking the messy, wondrous tapestry of the human experiment and stabbing it with the ice pick of monochromatic fear. Well done. You’ve changed the conversation. For the worse.

It begets the ancient equation: Extremism implies disconnection. And more extreme = more disconnection. But the good news is, it also begets the opposite: more compassion, education, distinction, discretion, patience, quiet, inner focus also equal calm, stability, peace. Does it make sense? The old gurus only smile at your panicked expression: Why are you so freaked out by stillness?
This old guru laughs out loud at the funny parts and rages out loud at the bad parts. As far as the GOP goes, the funny is starting to outnumber the bad, and that's good. Actually, they're pathetic but that's funny to me.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Paul Krugman for Treasury Secretary

A no-brainer, but it'll never happen because Wall St. wants no-brainers...


Some might raise issues about his personality or temperament. While it’s probably true that he can be abrasive, if personality was a critical issue then Larry Summers would be handing out fish parts to penguins in Antarctica rather than a leading contender to be the next chair of the Federal Reserve Board.

The major reason that Krugman is not on anyone’s short list is that he has been right about most of the important issues in economic policy over the last decade. The list where Krugman has been right and the Washington insiders have been wrong is a long one....

It is precisely this track record of being right on most of the key policy calls of the last decade that makes Krugman unacceptable as a candidate for Treasury Secretary. To be a serious candidate for this position it is necessary to have been wrong on most or all of these issues.

This should make the public very angry. Apart from what this says about the state of meritocracy in the United States -- we like to think that people advance for being right and get demoted or fired for being wrong -- there is the more important issue of what it says about the course of our economic policy.

If Krugman were Treasury Secretary we could envision a policy that was focused on creating jobs rather than reducing a deficit that exists almost entirely because of the downturn in the economy.We could also envision a policy that sought to tame the bloated financial sector with a speculation tax that would make much of the creative finance on Wall Street unprofitable. And, we would not have to worry that cutting Social Security and Medicare is the top priority for the Obama administration.

But, Krugman is not on the short list for Treasury Secretary. This list has the names of people who are much more acceptable to Wall Street who, by the way, have been wrong on almost everything important about the economy in the last decade. As a result, we should be very very afraid.
No worries. The government will continue to do all the wrong things for all the wrong reasons. Follow the money.

Hagel And The Neo-McCarthyites

The Daily Beast has an Open Zion blog. Who knew? An actual Israeli sounds off on Hagel as SecDef! Pretty good commentary on our right-leaning "special relationship" with "Israel" which is code for Bibi and Likud and warmongers and the "red heifer" crowd.

Which brings me to Sen. Hagel. I think it is time to acknowledge, bluntly, that certain major Jewish organizations, indeed, the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations—also, the ADL, AIPAC, the American Jewish Committee, political groups like the Republican Jewish Coalition, along with their various columnists, pundits, and list-serves—are among the most consistent purveyors of McCarthyite-style outrages in America today. Are there greater serial defamers of public officials in fake campaigns against defamation? Starting with Andrew Young and the late Charles Percy, and on to Chas Freeman and (now) Chuck Hagel, the game has been to keep Congresspeople and civil servants who might be skeptical of Israel's occupation and apologetics in a posture that can only be called exaggerated tact.

Fault Israel and you are accused of faulting Jews in our collective state, or, the same thing, overlooking the venality of our enemies—things only an anti-Semite would do and, of all times, in the wake of the Holocaust. This is not a charge anyone in public life wants to suffer or try to deny. My Israeli friends love that old Borsch-belt joke, that anti-Semitism means disliking Jews more than necessary. For American Jewish organizations, the very idea that dislike is ever warranted is proof of bigotry, like Philip Roth's early novels were proof of "self-hatred."

AIPAC et al know that if American politicians—and especially those fighting routinely for Florida, Pennsylvania and Ohio—are not cowed by the fear of being branded as anti-Semitic they may not be embarrassed into backing Israeli actions ritualistically. Where is the shame and who is our Murrow?

Suffice it to say that Hagel is a man of independent judgment whose views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict track pretty much exactly with those of Haaretz. He was distinguished guest at J Street's first national conference. Nothing he's said has not been said by leaders like Ehud Olmert and intelligence chief Ephraim Halevy. Hagel is also a man, like George McGovern, who having served with distinction in the military knows the unknown dangers of resorting to military force without a clear diplomatic strategy and except as a last resort. So he refuses to speak glibly about using force against Iran the same way he refused to endorse war with Iraq. A Vietnam purple heart, he would in retrospect have engaged with the Viet Cong. Should he not now endorse engagement with the Taliban or Hamas, for that matter?

Why should this stance be thought anathema to Jewish organizations? Let's get real. The latter throw their weight around, presumably on behalf of us Israelis, but really on behalf of the Israeli right, whose orthodoxy and pathos they relate to more readily than to Israeli peace advocates (my em). The weight they have derives from their being able to hold American politicians to endorsing a "special relationship" with Israel, where special means unconditional, so that (as James Baker and Howard Dean discovered) even the desire for "even-handedness" is treachery.

Hagel had the brass to call this grass green: Congresspeople will tell you openly that AIPAC has become one of the most feared, and secretly loathed, presences on Capitol Hill. Hagel spoke with thinly veiled contempt—which he came by honestly—of efforts by the Israeli lobby to intimidate dissenting diplomats and legislators. Ah, but he spoke of the power of the "Jewish Lobby"—not the Israeli lobby—which was the opening the lobby's hallelujah chorus needed to brand him a bigot.
More. You'll read, you'll enjoy...

In fairness, even though I hate to because I hate the right-wing bastards, AIPAC is sitting this one out. They know it's futile and don't want to piss him off because they need a good relationship with the Pentagon.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Why Hagel Matters

President Obama nominated Chuck Hagel for SecDef today. I'm down wid it. So is Andy Sullivan:

According to various reports, Obama will nominate Chuck Hagel for defense secretary. Beinart puts the nomination in context:

What makes Hagel so important, and so threatening to the Republican foreign-policy elite, is that he is one of the few prominent Republican-aligned politicians and commentators (George Will and Francis Fukuyama are others, but such voices are rare) who was intellectually changed by Iraq. And Hagel was changed, in large measure, because he bore within him intellectual (and physical) scar tissue from Vietnam. As my former colleague John Judis captured brilliantly in a 2007 New Republic profile, the Iraq War sparked something visceral in Hagel, as the former Vietnam rifleman realized that, once again, detached and self-interested elites were sending working-class kids like himself to die in a war they couldn’t honestly defend.

To my mind, this is his core qualification. Unlike so many of the lemmings and partisans of Washington DC, Hagel actually called out the catastrophe of the Iraq War as it happened. The neocons cannot forgive him for exposing what they wrought on the nation and the world. For good measure, he has a Purple Heart and has served in combat. Not easy to say about most of the Iraq War armchair warriors and war criminals.

Which is to say, as Chuck Todd said this morning, this nomination is about accountability for the Iraq War. All those ducking responsibility for the calamity - Abrams, Kristol, Stephens - are determined that those of us honest enough to resist, having supported in the first place, be erased from history. Or smeared as anti-Semites. Or given that epithet which impresses them but baffles me: "outside the mainstream". Rephrase that as - after initial support - being "outside the Iraq War mainstream" in DC - and you have a major reason to back him. [...]

Greenwald's view:

All of the Democratic alternatives to Hagel who have been seriously mentioned are nothing more than standard foreign policy technocrats, fully on-board with the DC consensus regarding war, militarism, Israel, Iran, and the Middle East. That's why Kristol, the Washington Post and other neocons were urging Obama to select them rather than Hagel: because those neocons know that, unlike Hagel, these Democratic technocrats pose no challenge whatsoever to their agenda of sustaining destructive US policy in the Middle East and commitment to endless war.

Kristol fumes:
You can go read what that pansy-ass non-serving neocon warmonger has to say if you want to.

The language! We're not talking about dislike of people. We're talking about dislike of the mindset that got us into the Iaq War. We're talking about dislike of those who refuse to take moral responsibility for anything and actually believe, with the blood of tens of thousands on their hands, they have some right to question a veteran with two Purple Hearts. They need a reality check: Obama won the election, not Romney. It says a huge amount about the Greater Israel lobby that they assume that national elections in no way should impede their usual control of Middle East policy in Washington. Just showing them that the battle to retrieve our democracy from lobby groups is worth something.

And Hagel is not anti-Israel. Kristol is anti-Israel, having fanatically supported this Israeli government's suicidal behavior, and the toxic, illegal social engineering on the West Bank that will render Israel either a non-democracy or a non-Jewish state. [...]

And that is the real opportunity of this nomination. At the hearings, we can see McCain's vision versus Hagel's, and see the difference between a man who refuses to adjust his global mindset after Iraq and a man who has had the strength and character to do so. So many Americans are likely to agree with Hagel over military restraint, diplomatic patience, and cutting defense bloat. The reason the Greater Israel lobby is in such a froth is that the weakness of their arguments could be publicly exposed - by a Republican. And there isn't enough AIPAC money and intimidation to stop that happening.
Please read the rest.

I like Hagel because he may be the man who can tell Israel to cool its jets or go down the memory hole.

Did I mention Hagel was an enlisted man? Enlisted men can tell the fucking Generals shit that someone who never served wouldn't have the balls to. And they fucking need it.

The word I am getting is that Hagel will be confirmed as SecDef pretty easily despite all the moaning and kvetching from the warmongers. Good.

Headline of the Day

The Guardian Wants Paul Krugman To Be The Next Treasury Secretary Of The United States
I'm down wid it!

Oh, the irony

Ironic Times

Conservative Mormon Senator Mike Crapo Arrested for Drunk Driving Makes Never Being Arrested Again for Drunk Driving His New Year’s Resolution
Gambling, whoring must wait until 2014.
Heh. Good resolution for a politician - do it, just don't get caught at it.

Confirmed: Asteroid Won't Hit Earth in 2040
Thirty-year mortgages once again available.

3D Printers Will Soon Be Capable of Printing Human Organs
Promising immortality, assuming you have the right ink cartridge.

Pot Vending Machines Coming Soon to Washington, Colorado
Look for them as soon as you've settled at your new address in either state.

From "New Laws For 2013":

Fast Food Order Time Limit Statute (Spokane): Stoned patrons of fast food restaurants must place their order in “a timely fashion” or relinquish their place in line.

Autonomous Vehicle Restrictions (San Jose): Driverless vehicles barred from drive-in movie theaters, outdoor churches, drag races.
Hmmmmm. There are implications for NASCAR there. Think of the money the France family and all the teams could save...then again, driverless cars might mean spectatorless grandstands. They'd still be OK on TV.