Friday, July 26, 2013

Holder to Perry..."You Feelin' Lucky?"

I think they left out a word. Heh. The vid shows an old clip about how Repugs really feel about voting rights.

Published on Jul 26, 2013
Hilary Shelton, NAACP, joins Thom Hartmann. Eric Holder and the Justice Department are gearing up for a wild-west showdown in Texas. More on that showdown - and what it means for the future of voting rights in America

Thanks to TheBigPictureRT

Headline of the Day

George Zimmerman Trial Juror B29 Says He 'Got Away With Murder'
Thank you B29. We knew that.

Republican Health Care Panic

Paul Krugman via Seniors for a Democratic Society.

Yet even as Republican politicians seem ready to go on the offensive, there’s a palpable sense of anxiety, even despair, among conservative pundits and analysts. Better-informed people on the right seem, finally, to be facing up to a horrible truth: Health care reform, President Obama’s signature policy achievement, is probably going to work.

And the good news about Obamacare is, I’d argue, what’s driving the Republican Party’s intensified extremism. Successful health reform wouldn’t just be a victory for a president conservatives loathe, it would be an object demonstration of the falseness of right-wing ideology (my em). So Republicans are being driven into a last, desperate effort to head this thing off at the pass.

And the prospect that such a plan might succeed is anathema to a party whose whole philosophy is built around doing just the opposite, of taking from the “takers” and giving to the “job creators,” known to the rest of us as the “rich.” Hence the brinkmanship.

No, Republicans may be willing to risk economic and financial crisis solely in order to deny essential health care and financial security to millions of their fellow Americans. Let’s hear it for their noble cause!
Noble. Yeah. Yeesh. Lyinsackacrap assholes. But we knew that.

BTW, I am hereby decreeing that when referring to Repugs, "lyinsackacrap" is henceforth ONE WORD. Hey, English is a living language that evolves with the times, unlike Repugs.

Related Update:


Senate GOPer calls shutdown threat 'the dumbest idea I've ever heard'

The idea was first pushed by one guy. It was Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) who said two weeks ago that he and his party should shut down the entire federal government unless Democrats agree to block all funding of the Affordable Care Act, even if that denies health care coverage to millions of American families.

Then Rubio picked up some friends. The number of Republican senators endorsing this tactic grew, just over the course of two weeks, to 17 -- roughly a third of the Senate GOP caucus -- including members of the Republican leadership. Before long, Club for Growth, Heritage Action, and the Senate Conservatives Fund were all on board, too.

But a funny thing happened on the way to the shutdown: all of a sudden, a fair number of Republicans, including Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), started to realize their party's idea was blisteringly stupid.

On Wednesday, the number of Republican senators on record with the government-shutdown threat was 17. Yesterday, while the right tried to find new signatories, the number of backers actually dropped to 12 -- Sens. Ayotte, Boozman, Cornyn, Kirk, and Wicker all pulled their support without explanation.

It's like watching a balloon deflate, quietly and slowly.
More like "gasbag" than "balloon" but Rachel is very polite.

Second, if this plan implodes, and I suspect it will, it's going to make Sens. Rubio, Ted Cruz (R-Texas), and Mike Lee (R-Utah) -- the ringleaders of the gambit -- look awfully foolish. They pushed a ridiculous idea, got the base all worked up, received assistance from prominent right-wing activist groups, and even had Rush Limbaugh rallying support for the cause.

If, after all of this, the scheme falls apart, and even gets mocked by their own allies, it will reinforce the impression that these far-right senators are inept show-horses who aren't serious about governing and can't even execute their own bad ideas.
Shorter: we're winning.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Headline of the Day

Florida man shoots neighbor in the face and tells police ‘I only shot a ni**er’
Let's hope that's not enough of a valid defense any more. But it is Florida.

Response to A Coward's Threat

I tripped over this and I'm glad I did.

Published on Jul 24, 2013
Wayne LaPierre has deliberately mobilized an army of haters who seek to destroy the First Amendment to save their sick view of their rights under the Second. A frequent tool in their arsenal is the anonymous threat. This is about one such threat.

Thanks to Tom Diaz.

Unfortunately, this IS America to all too many. Luckily, when all is said and done, more's been said than done. One thing we have never done at the Brain is make threats and we never will. My motto, from Ross Perot of all places, is "Never threaten. Never warn."

Threats from a distance are hollow. They make the threatener a big man in his own eyes but they mean nothing. Threats to my face, stand the fuck by. I'm safe in saying that because cowards don't have the balls. Maybe the lack of common sense enough, but not quite stupid enough. Maybe someday I'll be lucky enough...

Threats don't have to be answered instantly either. They won't know where and they won't know when, but they'll know WHY. Heh.

More about Mr. Diaz here.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

101 ways not to raise your kid

If it's Wednesday it must be Morford on raising kids in Bali and Burning Man.

Met a great guy up at Wanderlust Tahoe this year, grizzled and sly, totally Burner-tastic, probably 50 but also sort of ageless, a dead ringer for Ted Nugent except not at all a monstrous libertarian bow-hunting idiot jackass you never want to be anywhere near.

Go read. I don't give a shit how parents raise their kids as long as they don't teach them to hate. Yeah, like that'll happen.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Good-Fucking-Grief Headline of the Day

King: For Every Valedictorian DREAMer, 100 Are ‘Hauling 75 Pounds Of Marijuana’
It's almost literally like shovelling shit against the tide, but until we get rid of idiot congresscritters like King there will be no forward progress whatsoever for our country.

Nadezhda Popova 1921-2013

I had heard of the "Night Witches" but this account of one's life and passing is fascinating. "AF weenie" NOT!

The Telegraph

Nadezhda Popova, who has died aged 91, was a member of an elite corps of Soviet women — known as the “Night Witches” — who fought as bomber pilots in the air war against Germany, and the only one to win three Orders of the Patriotic War for bravery....

In late 1941 Stalin signed an order to establish three all-women Air Force units to be grouped into separate fighter, dive bomber and night bomber regiments. Over the next four years these regiments flew a combined total of more than 30,000 combat sorties and dropped 23,000 tons of bombs. Nadezhda Popova, then aged 19, was one of the first to join the best-known of the three units, the 588th Night Bomber Regiment (later renamed the 46th Taman Guards Night Bomber Aviation Regiment).

The 588th was not well equipped. Wearing hand-me-down uniforms from male pilots, the women flew 1920s-vintage Polikarpov PO-2 two-seater biplanes, which consisted of fabric strung over a plywood frame, and lacked all but the most rudimentary instruments.

There was no radio; navigation was done with a stopwatch and a map. The planes carried no guns, no parachutes and had only enough weight allowance to take two bombs, forcing the pilots to make multiple sorties (Nadezhda Popova once flew 18 in a single night), returning to base each time to collect more bombs, which were released with a wire cable jury-rigged to the wings.

It was the cold that she recalled more than anything else: “When the wind was strong it would toss the plane. In winter when you’d look out to see your target better, you got frostbite, our feet froze in our boots, but we carried on flying.” There was no time for fear: “You had to focus on the target and think how you could hit it. There was no time to give way to emotions... Those who gave in were gunned down and they were burned alive in their craft as they had no parachutes.”

She decided to volunteer as a bomber pilot after her home was taken over by the invading Germans and her brother, Leonid, was killed at the front: “He was 20 and had never even kissed a girl,” she recalled. “My mother sobbed, 'That damn Hitler.’ I saw the German aircraft flying along our roads filled with people who were leaving their homes, firing at them with their machine guns... they blasted our school.”

After the war she returned to her work as a flying instructor.

In addition to her other decorations, she was awarded the Soviet Medal of Honour; the Order of Friendship; the Order of Lenin; and the Order of the Red Banner (three times).

She is survived by her son, now a general in the Belarussian Air Force.

From her Wikipedia page:

The regiment was called "Nachthexen" (Night Witches) by the Germans "because the whooshing noise their plywood and canvas airplanes made reminded the Germans of the sound of a witch’s broomstick."
Right before she flew it up their, er, heinies. Heh.

Fly on Nadezhda. The choice of flying machines is yours.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Yo, Fat Tony, time to go...

A tip o' the Brain to The Political Garbage Chute.

Scalia blames Holocaust on liberal judicial activism

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, an avowed conservative and self-styled “originalist” in his interpretations of the law, reportedly told the Utah State Bar Association on Saturday that he’s okay with discussing whether orgies relieve social tension and claimed that judicial activism in Germany was partially to blame for the rise of the Nazi regime and the Holocaust.

Word of Scalia’s claims comes by way of The Aspen Times, which reports that Scalia’s speech was titled, “Mullahs of the West: Judges as Moral Arbiters.”

The Aspen Times added that Scalia opened his speech with a clear analogy to Germany in the years before the Nazi Party — during a time Scalia believed Germany to be “the most advanced country in the world” much like the U.S. today. Judges then, he contended, were very open to new interpretations of the law, also like the U.S. today.
"Much like the US today" Inadvertently perceptive and for all the wrong reasons just like then.

Time for the rocking chair, Tony, before you fuck up much else around here.

Has the G.O.P. Gone Off the Deep End?

The short answer, of course, is "yup". The Gray Lady, many links:

Doherty, no liberal, is representative of the growing strength on the right of the view that the Republican Party has gone off the deep end.

“Their rigidity is killing them. It’s either holy purity, or you are anathema,” Tom Korologos, a premier Republican lobbyist and the ambassador to Belgium under George W. Bush, said in a phone interview. “Too many ideologues have come in. You don’t win by what they are doing.”
Good, but I wish they'd hurry up and lose. And shut up and go away.

The Republican Party is becoming less and less like a traditional political party in a representative democracy and becoming more like an apocalyptic cult, or one of the intensely ideological authoritarian parties of 20th century Europe.
Why do the names "Hitler" and "Mussolini" come to mind? Hmmmmm...

McInturff put his finger on the problem: House Republicans are invested in their own re-election and not in the long-term viability of their party. Those who put the lowest priority on presidential politics are those most worried about a primary challenge from the right, and it is this cohort that forms the backbone of the Tea Party faction in the House — the cohort most wedded to nativism, intolerance and hostility to the poor. These are the members nudging the Republican Party over the cliff.
Follow the lemmings...

There is a striking correlation between the rise of conservative talk radio and the difficulties of the Republican Party in presidential elections.
...and take Limpbaugh et al with you...

A part of the Republican problem lies in the party’s disproportionate dependence on white Southern voters. These voters are well to the right of the rest of the nation, and they elect the dominant block of hard-right conservatives in the House. Of the 234 Republican members of the House, 97 — two-fifths — come from the 11 Confederate states, and these 97 are almost uniformly opposed to negotiation of any kind with Democrats.

It is the Southern conservatives who, along with their Northern Tea Party colleagues, seek to kill immigration reform and who insisted on removing the food stamp program from the recently passed Farm Bill.

These members of the House are what Feehery describes as “nostalgia” Republicans who define conservatism as “the ability to fight progress.” They produce a flood of statements and declarations that Bobby Jindal, the governor of Louisiana, calls “offensive and bizarre” and that he claims are turning his party into “the stupid party.”
And a fine mess they've made of it too.

The Republican Party is struggling to resolve the conflict between its pragmatic establishment wing and its ideological-suicidal wing. Speaking right after President Obama’s re-election, Haley Barbour, a former governor of Mississippi and a former chairman of the Republican National Committee, summarized the party’s problem succinctly. At a meeting in Las Vegas of the Republican Governors Association, Barbour said: “We’ve got to give our political organizational activity a very serious proctology exam. We need to look everywhere.”
Heh. Sorry 'bout the visual. Shoulda warned ya! Good luck for them to find someone with a strong enough stomach to do that! I'll wait for the autopsy. Soon, I hope.

Oh, the irony...

Ironic Times

Obama: 35 Years Ago “Trayvon Martin Could Have Been Me”
“Woulda, coulda, shoulda,” says Fox News.

Proposed “Hyperloop” Will Whisk Passengers From NY to LA in 45 Minutes
Where your car will whisk you to your hotel in two and a half hours.

House Passes Farm Bill Without Funds for Food Stamps
Why should the government give hungry Americans food when it can give the money directly to farmers and cut out the middleman.
That's a perfect example of Repug "thinking".

Death Valley Park Rangers Implore Visitors Not to Fry Eggs on Pavement
After numerous complaints from Denny's, IHOP
Heh. It's a hundred miles from DV to either of those. At least.