Saturday, February 27, 2010

Nerds to the rescue -- again

Well here we go again. On the Florida Amateur Radio Emergency Service nets this morning, I learned that the Florida contingent of radio Amateurs is wrapping up operations in Haiti. Most phone service is still out on the island, with cell towers destroyed and lines cut and power out. The same goes for the internet. Of course the military has it's own communications, but nobody else does. Haiti is too poor to have a resident base of radio operators, so volunteers from the US have been living there in squalid conditions without any pay.

Hams have been using techniques like Winlink2000, a digital PACTOR III based system which allows users in Haiti to send e-mail and data to a remote internet node elsewhere in the world and High Frequency voice communications using SSB are carrying the rest. Somehow the press thinks this is hilarious and despite the cutting edge technology none of them can understand, "low-tech." Yes, we've been sending text messages for a hundred years and making phone calls from our cars for nearly 40 years.

I'm sure the Chile earthquake this morning will have severely disrupted communications in that country and perhaps the inevitable tsunami will have terrible effects all over the pacific rim and islands. I'm listening to the SATERN net, run by the Salvation Army - now on alert condition 2, and the Intercontinental Traffic Net this morning, but so far I'm not hearing anything coming out of Chile. I'm sure that will change as the day goes on and I'll be listening in. If you have a radio that can receive 14,300 MHz and 14,255 MHz Upper Side Band, those are the primary US frequencies at the moment.

Yes, we're just funny old nerdy dinosaurs with our expensive microprocessor controlled digital equipment, our Amateur satellites and our Echolink internet radio protocols, but in 2004, my local friends were handling all the communications in West Central Florida after hurricane Charlie. It took a month for phone and internet communications to be restored in my county after Francis that same year. Guess who filled in. After Katrina, President Bush had to rely on Hams to send a message to the Governor of Louisiana because those cellphones you think work anywhere didn't work anywhere. No, you didn't hear that on CNN, but you should have.

When everything else fails, as it so often does, it's hams to the rescue.

Friday, February 26, 2010

You will recite after me. . . . or else

The pledge of Allegiance has come a long way from a short declaration appearing in a Christian Socialist Children's magazine in 1892 to its current status as a somewhat longer treasured icon of patriotic sentiment and theological affirmation recited by young and old in all sorts of settings. That was back when Socialism and Christianity were seen as allied ideas and back when our country was pumping itself up and cheering on its urge to empire and celebrating it's chauvinistic urges.

It's hard to overestimate the fanatical insistence of Americans that all must swear an oath that calls this secular Republic a "Nation under God," hard as that may be to define, and calls upon us to be an eternal ally of a piece of cloth. A few years ago , when someone in California filed suit against a school district claiming forced recitation of a religious oath was unconstitutional (it is) half the cars on my local roads, thousands of miles away had "Under God" painted on their windows by irate owners who were clearly in opposition to a citizen's right not to have official religious beliefs forced upon them and their children. The kind of people who hold an annual claim to victimhood and insist that no one impede their right to force religious observance on others. Freedom and justice for all? What are you, a damned Liberal?

67 years ago, or three score and 7 if you prefer, the Supreme Court ruled that forced recitation was a violation of the first amendment and that was a decade before the "Under God" was added by President Eisenhower to help make the USSR look more satanic at the expense of Americans who don't believe in disembodied spirits living in the sky.

You have to ask yourself; if it's unconstitutional to force a citizen to declare a political position, how much more unlawful is it to insist he declare religious feelings not his own?

Not lawful enough to dissuade a Maryland school teacher from shouting at, demanding recitation and finally having a student taken into custody by the police amidst a chorus of mockery for exercising the rights we love to flaunt in front of the world as "Our Freedoms."

In the American madhouse, where asking children to listen to an introduction by the President is compared with Pol Pot and the slaughter of millions, where government administered health insurance is compared with Hitler and Fascism and the very idea of progress is "Marxist," what should we say about people who are not only comfortable with forcing their political and religious views down the throats of other people's children? Well, we've run out of outrageous hyperbole, thanks to Fox and the Republicans. Most of us aren't quite smart or even sane enough to understand a careful explanation of how we have given away our birthright and become the same kind of oppressors our forefathers tried to escape by coming here and that we' don't have a hell of a lot to brag about in the freedom department that most other countries have more of.
Do yourself a favor - support the ACLU, because freedom can't protect itself and all the guns and bombs and battleships can't bring it back once Americans throw it away.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Obama Code

What's black and white and red all over? What about proof that Barack Obama has a Muslim agenda?

The "Conservative blogosphere" as Raw Story calls that big ball of slime, is "abuzz" with much sound and fury now that the "Conservative" Drudge Report has identified the new logo of the Missile Defense Agency as a secretly coded message that Barack Obama is going to make the USA a Muslim country through the use of anti-ballistic lasers and missiles.

This fits in with my theory that because the US flag has red stripes and stars, Betsy Ross was a Chinese Communist.
"New Missile Defense Agency Logo Causes Online Commotion,"
says the Drudge Report. I'm sure he'd like that to be true and perhaps he will be able to create commotion amongst the large proportion of his readers with fewer working synapses than a jar of mayonnaise. Perhaps there are other mental midgets so terribly desperate for more absurd calumny to be flung at the White House they'll willfully suspend the kind of disbelief that would inhibit a normal person, but we'll see just how far the "conservatives" can pull that anti-American bandwagon before the clowns themselves jump off and the mules run away giggling.

Yes, it's red, white and blue and looks, if you're astigmatic, vaguely like the President's campaign logo based on the US flag. It has some curved lines perhaps to suggest missile trajectories and orbiting satellites. There's a point of light indicating a missile hit with a laser, which if you're trying hard might suggest a star and as everyone knows, the flag of Turkey, a predominantly Muslim secular democracy has a crescent moon, a red background and a star, and so does the American based Nation of Islam which has had known terrorist members like Mohammad Ali and Michael Jackson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and John Coltrane, so how can we avoid that hidden message shouting at us? Thorazine or some heavy anti-psychotic drugs perhaps?

Drudge packer Frank Gaffney, writing at, a Web site run by the well known "conservative" blogger Andrew Breitbart, says the new logo may be a sign that the Obama administration has "nefarious" plans for US defense. No, really. You couldn't make this up or at least you couldn't try to sell it while keeping a straignt face, even to an idiot -- or to American "conservatives" whichever is stupider and more demented.

Hey, have you ever noticed that the Capitol building has a dome? Like the Dome of the Rock maybe? And the Washington monument looks a lot like a minaret - and don't you hear those voices?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Yoo's a viper

John Yoo called it a "Witch hunt" but he's lucky it wasn't. I have a feeling he'd have fared far worse had he been tried by a cross section of the American public who would have been more disgusted by his maintaining the legality of crushing an innocent child's testicles or murdering an unlimited of innocent bystanders by Presidential fiat in order to "keep America safe" than the actual jury of his peers -- other lawyers.

He hardly even seems grateful for having avoided the tar and feathers and the pillory, considering that he's upbraiding President Obama for not recognizing his efforts to allow a president to "keep America Safe" by exercising unlimited executive power under the aegis of a war he has the power to start for no other reason than to give him that power. Did any of our fabled founding fathers really envision such a thing except as the perfect opposite of an American President?

Yoo's image of an American president as unlimited by law, treaty or moral scruple to a degree not unfamiliar to Attila or Tamarlane or Ghengis Khan should be producing more widespread disgust than it is, but that no doubt shows the immense power of the massive, corporate sponsored, Republican organized eruption of noxious gas and poisonous accusations: a smokescreen the likes of which hasn't been seen since the close of the Permian.

No, Professor Yoo is claiming that even though the proceedings against him were initiated under the Republicans and he was let go by Democrats, he's a victim -- Obama's victim. That ungrateful man of sorrows who apparently is all things contemptible because with the power to do evil, we would surely be overwhelmed and conquered by a few dozen guys with explosive jockey shorts. He's a victim and it's because he loves keeping America "safe."
"an entirely false narrative of his own victimization." says Joe Mathis at the Philadephia Weekly. "Get this straight, the so-called 'smear job' came under the Republican president. The so-called 'vindication' came under the Democratic president."
Preposterous by the strictest definition of the word; the same problem with cause and effect that makes Obama guilty of Bush's economic train wreck.

Guilty of professional misconduct and poor judgment is a slap on the wrist considering that his support of giving the President the power to break constitutional law ad libidem as long as "there's a war on" might at one time have been punished quite severely. You'd think he'd just thank his luck and the corruption of justice that's become institutionalized in the US, but no, he has to be a victim, he has to vilify the administration that let him go free and he gets to keep his tenured job, his law license and most likely will have a great number of books bought up by CPAC and distributed for free to contributors so that he can be on the NewYork Times best-seller list and gloat about Democratic "Royalists."

There's a lot of money, there's a lot of safety in evil.

What's in a name?

After listening to the self-contradictory, incoherent, quasi-literate and massively hate-packed rhetoric emanating from CPAC, where we were told that the concept of progress was a Marxist idea, that Progressives wanted to progress toward Communism. Liberals were the enemy of freedom and most insane of all: "Royalists" It's hard to hold on to any hope that what's left of the American Right retains even a rudimentary grasp on reality or any commitment to any ideal in any way related to Democracy and the Rights of Man. Taxes are Communism, protection of the rights of minorities is Communism, secular democracy is communism, but collusion between corporations and government isn't, as Mussolini Defined it, Fascism -- it's freedom.

A party that won a solid majority in a free election is an "insurgency." Teddy Roosevelt, his opponent Woodrow Wilson and Adam Smith are all Communists who tried to destroy us and Glenn Beck got what he calls a "free" education, not by attending any private school, but by using taxpayer funded, government owned resources at the public library. Yes those of us who have pushed through legislation that finally allowed women and minorities to vote or own property or live like free men and women are simultaneously Nazis, Bolsheviks, Trotskyites, Maoists, and yes -- Royalists. Those of us who think vast sums of corporate money are corrupting the system are any wildly preposterous political epithet that comes to mind, but also Communists, Marxists, Trotskyites and the kinky sex partners of the Taliban. That they're not calling non-Republicans Irridentists or Scrooby Separatists is only the result of their neglected education, but of course those things are only another form of Marxist Islamofascism and Trotskyite lesbo-Feminism with a bit of royalism thrown in for flavour.

"Protect our precious Medicare?" Well that's not communism even tough it and Social Security were until the country voted for health care reform. Why? because Obama is a Fascist follower of Pol Pot, trying to corrupt our youth and a Communist, Muslim, illegal alien, soft-on-terrorism, cannibal none the less - and because any hateful insanity must be true if it vilifies Obama - he's a Royalist.

No accusation is too ludicrous whether it contradicts all the other accusations or not. It' s not important to make sense or to tell the truth; it's only important to pump up the accusations, pump up the hate.

After listening to John Yoo describe a Republican justice department according to which, an American president like the one he served has more power than any European Monarch did in the age before Democracy, including the right to wage wars, internal and foreign, suspend civil rights, amend laws, refuse to obey laws, to lie, misrepresent and fabricate and to justify any action by Presidential fiat, it's hard to believe we're not simply listening to cross talk between parallel but vastly different universes. Is it legal for the President to order that the testicles of an innocent child be crushed to make his parent talk? But of course says Professor Yoo! Do as the President says shall be the law -- but we're Royalists all the same.

It's not so much that the Republicans seem to have defined conservative values as Marxist and indeed almost everything including evil itself as its opposite, they're inventing their own paranoid psychotic reality permeated by gibbering, drooling and incoherent rage, it's that we're not in open revolt against them; that they have a huge, armed and vastly wealthy base of support.

And we just sit and listen.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

God retarded my baby

Giving birth to a disabled child is God's way of punishing women for having had a prior abortion, says Virginia Representative Bob Marshall, R-13th.
“In the Old Testament, the first born of every being, animal and man, was dedicated to the Lord. There’s a special punishment Christians would suggest.”

Yes it's redundant to mention that he's a Republican; a raging mob which for the last few decades has been the party of and a party to promoting such shameless indecencies. Of course some biblical scholars tell us that the story of Abraham and Isaac was a priestly way of moving away from a prior and very ancient practice of sacrificial infanticide, but indeed, the first born male lamb in the flock of a Hebrew shepherd was to be sacrificed and the first born son was at one, very pre-Christian time, dedicated to service in the Temple.

Of course there hasn't been a Temple since the 9th of Av in the year 70 CE, and Christians really don't hold with more than 9 or 10 of the 613 commandments and none of the Rabbinical laws, but that doesn't stop the kind of shoot-from-the-hip theology prevalent in these days of the senescence of American Christianity. Christians might suggest anything in truth, but if they're suggesting any such thing, it's a suggestion with no roots in the teachings of Jesus.

One might be tempted to ask Bob why, according to antique Jewish law largely set aside by Jesus and his followers, Christians who don't force their first born to become priests aren't subject to the same punishment, but his answer isn't very likely to enlighten us.

Surely anyone who still believes in a God with some tenuous attachment to decency if not actual justice will have trouble with the bloody Saturnine entity who condemns a child to a lifetime of pain and deformity because of something his mother did. But not Bob Marshall.

Some will have difficulty reconciling the position that it's indecent to mention that someone may be mentally retarded unless the mention is made by some pasquillant Republican creep like Limbaugh; but not Bob Marshall and probably not a large number of morally retarded, power hungry and profoundly ignorant Republican Theocrats who haven't bothered to consider that the enormously vast majority of children with deformities and defects and abnormalities are not born to mothers who aborted their first pregnancies.

Down Syndrome for one, seems more likely to affect children of older mothers. Conjoined twins, anencephalic babies, Spina Bifida, heart defects -- can anyone show any statistical correlation with sin? Of course not and anyone promising that virtuous people are less likely to give birth to lives affected by diseases and afflictions and deficiencies is likely to be a liar and an idiot, willing to use other people's tragedies to gain political power -- like Bob Marshall.

I await Sarah Palin's response to what could, amongst people who can actually reason consistently, be taken as an accusation of having had an abortion. I'm sure she'll choose to ignore it however, for fear of damaging the fabric of the alternate universe in which the ultra-right lives: where right and wrong, left and right, up and down are nebulous and interchangeable concepts and useful only to defame the enemies of these Insaneocrats and to yoke Jesus to their bandwagon like an ox.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Toxic Tea

It's the "liberals" and the "lefties" that have destroyed the black family, says the absurdly right-wing man of color. The resident blogger agrees, as he always does when anyone ascribes yet another evil to his shooting gallery of straw targets -- or Commies, Marxists, far-left Liberals, "pussies" or Homosexuals as he terms them interchangeably.

They're both educated people, if you can grant any credibility to what passes for education in the United States, but of course these are Tea Party people, proclaiming articles of faith to one another and in protected sanctuaries where the comments of the reasonable, the informed, the sincere are not permitted to be heard and the vilification of the more or less innocent is the flesh and blood in their Psychotic sacrament. Only in America can someone long for a future of miraculous anarchy, concentration camps, forced deportations and even mass murder -- and insist he's not only speaking for everyone, but is a conservative.

No, Godot will arrive, spend his two week vacation at my house and depart before anyone can explain how the emancipation of slaves, the restoration of civil rights and integration of the schools was an insidious Liberal plot against "black families" regardless of the length of time it took, in part because of the political and sometimes the armed resistance from conservatives. The question of why the end of race-based housing and employment discrimination broke up families; why the end of restricted hotels, separate but unequal restaurants, swimming pools, beaches, bathrooms, drinking fountains and public transportation was a vicious act designed to harm African American families, can only be explained by people who can't tell a tax cut from an increase when seen through a tea bag.

No, I won't link to that blog, since I've had long experience with rabid death threats to me and my family. I've had many long tirades threatening Liberals with deportation to North Korea at gunpoint or even extermination after "the producer class" stages their armed revolution when I've attempted reasonable, respectful and sincere communication with people like the college professor who runs the place, and I don't want to attract any more threats and hysteria to this blog. But be aware, they're out there in both senses of the phrase. You may not know of them, you probably don't read them and odds are ten to one you don't agree with them, but from such ugly sores, horrible diseases grow - and they're out there believing that 2012 marks the end of our world and the beginning of theirs.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Nationalizing Wal-Mart

So let me get this straight, President Obama, or if you're a Republican, just plain Obama, is a dangerous leader because when someone tried to blow up a plane he took hours before mentioning the magic word "War." That was bad. Never ever talk of criminal activity when you can describe it as an act of war, unless of course it's our criminal activity. The non-sequitur correlate of this principle is that no rules apply when the words are coming from on official right wing spokesman, like Rush or Sarah. So it's OK for him to call people "retards" on the air, but just disgusting for Rahm to use it in private. Likewise it's OK for Rush to insist there's no war on while all the rest of his party continue to justify each and every crime, transgression. Actually no rules apply to Rush at all, since he can get away with such statements as insisting that the President has already dealt the US a more devastating blow than we suffered in World War II without being called a liar, an ignoramus or the worst enemy Truth ever had by his party.

But let's start at the beginning, Rush claimed yesterday that Wal-mart was lobbying heavily to keep "Obama" from nationalizing the company. Lord knows they have lobbyists, but it takes a certain kind of person to broadcast that there is any likelihood of such an action and a really special kind of person to believe it. Now why would that be something awful you might ask Rush? Because there's no war on, says he, driving home the point that whether there is or isn't is situational and specific to any particular argument he's trying to make. There's a war when you can attack the President with it and there isn't when you can attack the President with it and both times Rush will be right.
"The last time this happened was World War II, but that was because there was a war on and it made sense"
The last time what happened, Rush? It may make sense to him, but not only are we losing men and women in Iraq and Afghanistan, we did not nationalize Wal-Mart then or ever, nor is anyone contemplating it but Rush.
"Country is under assault, more so than we were during World War II, other than the Japanese. But the Germans never attacked us, the Japanese did."
he continued and I'll leave it to you to figure out what alternate universe these "facts" come from. I suspect there are numbers of people who will simply accept that the current administration is more dangerous to our national security than what in the late 1930's was the most powerful military on Earth, will simply nod and accept that Germany didn't declare war on us and didn't over-run Europe and attack England and that we didn't lose almost half a million troops or that untold tens of millions of people didn't die -- Obama is dangerous and has already done us more harm than the Axis powers and without a doubt is going to nationalize Wal-Mart.

Does anyone reading this believe that Rush Limbaugh isn't stark raving mad with power, thinking he can invent alternate histories, create alternate realities and use them to attack the government and the people of the United States of America? There are millions who do and it may be that one or two of them will take it upon themselves to do Rush's bidding and rid us of the man who has already ruined everything for everyone.

Of course it's a United States of America where the president's imaginary "gun grab" has already taken place, where people who just got a tax cut are protesting an imaginary increase, where people who can't afford a check-up much less treatment for a serious illness are screaming about "Obama" taking away their ideal situation and somewhere, somebody is plotting acts of violence because after all, "Obama" is not only a Nazi, but a more dangerous one than Hitler. Thus spake Limbaugh.

Monday, February 15, 2010

You have the right to remain silent

Why is it that when Republicans only become creative when they run out of factual support? Lies, distortions, evasions, calumnies, falsehoods, fabrications, disinformation, distortions, propaganda, tall tales and slander; defamation, deceit, prevarications and mendacity: all kinds of colors in the "conservative" crayon box.

One lie I've heard far too much of from the Fox-poisoned Right, is how that lily livered, limp wristed, far-left Liberal and soft-on-crime Obama all but let Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab off the hook with his damned un-American insistence on justice and due process because he, having been read his Miranda Rights, immediately "clammed up." As is almost invariably true, the facts say otherwise.

The administration's timeline just released shows that the would-be murderer was removed to a hospital shortly after being arrested. There, he apparently began spilling the beans like a bratty one year old in a high chair until his medical condition deteriorated sharply - undoubtedly from having his genitals nearly burned off. The Miranda litany was recited only 9 hours after capture and after his condition was stabilized by four hours of surgery and questioning resumed but without response. How can you tell when the Republicans are lying? You don't need to, they always are.

Why is it that when Republicans only become creative when they run out of factual support? Sometimes they're so hard up for things to use to undermine our government, they just make them up from scratch or expand some minute and irrelevant mote into a universe of slime. If you haven't seen the latest chapter of Teleprompter Wars in your in-box yet, I'm sure you soon will. It's the one showing the President using two teleprompters to address a group of small children under the rubric of:
"Apparently there is no venue too small to require multiple teleprompters. I saw these pictures and first thought they were photo shopped, but it ends up they are actual pictures from Obama talking to an elementary school classroom. And they made fun of Bush's communication skills."

Well, no you didn't, the picture of the kids in the classroom and the President at a subsequent news conference in a different room do not show him using a teleprompter to address them and of course you know that. He was giving a speech to reporters who would be willing to use any misplaced word to attack him.

You know that he writes well, speaks well and is very much more able to communicate than his babbling, blathering predecessor and that looks bad for you -- and so you butter it over with lies and serve it up to your dogs for breakfast.

What do they hope to accomplish with such clumsy calumnies? Why are Republicans so desperate to believe anything that will make their visceral hatred of Democracy and uppity people of African descent seem to be less than the demented evil that it is? Why are they willing to sacrifice our country on some pagan altar of some bellicose god of war and conquest? Why do we sit by and let them do it?

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Dying for the Gold

I never had much sympathy with the guy who decided that Hurricane Wilma was just the ticket for kite surfing fun in Ft. Lauderdale a few years ago, or even the guy who went paddle boarding last week off Palm Beach during an annual shark migration, but as dangerous as the luge is at any time, Nodar Kumaritashvili, the 21-year-old luger from Georgia deserved better.

Kumaritashvili's practice runs showed he was not quite up to snuff. He didn't finish one practice run and his speeds were significantly lower than other athletes', but the safety of this very fast course has been questioned and critics may have been right. He was killed in a crash yesterday, the second one in practice for the Vancouver games. Of all the things not worth dying for, "going for the gold" and for ephemeral national glory have to be amongst the least valuable.

I don't know if it's too late to correct the design, but let's hope nothing else like this happens.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Under my skin

It's strange to find myself on the same side of any fence with the Book of Revelation Literalists, a group for which my loathing is nearly boundless. None the less, the disturbingly Orwellian prospect of having RFID devices implanted in people so that their employers can track their movements scares hell out of them as much as it does me.

A Radio Frequency Identification Device is small enough to be placed under the skin with a hypodermic needle and it's a great thing for keeping tabs on cattle or identifying lost dogs. They can also contain data, medical or otherwise that can be read by a scanner. Most humans object to being forced to having one inserted however particularly as a substitute for a key or ID badge.

Civil Libertarians -- indeed any kind of libertarians -- tend to be militantly opposed to allowing this to be done to people but it's of course for reasons of privacy and the protection thereof, not because they give credit to what may be the looniest book to worm it's way into the Christian canon. There are many such people in places like Virginia and it seems to be they who are behind a bill designed to prevent such implants. Why? because John of Patmos almost 2000 years ago had RFID capsules in mind when he talked about the Mark of the Beast.

He didn't and the Beast is most likely Nero, but even if the enemy of my enemy is not really my friend, these things are the mark of some kind of beast, corporate or governmental and I'm as much against it as they are.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Hopey Changey

Can you believe there's a website called The local trailer parks echo with teleprompter jokes, there are more teleprompter jokes clogging up blog comments than there are clumps of fat in Rush Limbaugh's arteries and that chattering little chipmunk Palin just can't let go of that chewy chestnut. I wonder was Abe Lincoln only a charismatic guy with some scrap paper? Yes, he was to be sure, but not only and the Small Government Conservatives slandered and murdered him anyway.

But of course the mini-skirt Moose Mom doesn't know, and doesn't care that you might know that the first time the electric note cards were used was at the 1952 Republican Convention by former President Herbert Hoover. It was the first one ever televised of course and he did it again in 1956. Whether he was charismatic or not I will leave to you and to Sarah Snickers, but Eisenhower used one from 1952 and virtually every other president, candidate and TV talking head pundit has used one too at various levels of charisma.

That's right, George W. Bush used a Teleprompter, there he is in the picture, although I'm told "that's different" by the snarksters and flim-flam bloggers and if you remember the TV Debates, Bush even wore some kind of device worn on his back. So it's hard to know what Governor Barbie had in mind, but it's clear she doesn't feel threatened by anyone who knows more than she does -- which is most of us -- because like most irresponsible pseudo-conservative snarko-terrorists, she's always surrounded by the like-mindless who think she's a genius.

Maybe if George had used one more often or had been able to read along with the moving words, he wouldn't have given us such delights as "the childrens is learning" but we'd be so much poorer without such things as part of our culture, or whatever remains of one.

So, yes The president is a charismatic man, which of course is required for political success in the age of Television, but that's a bit like saying he's a man who wears shoes. Compared to the most educated of recent Republican candidates he's a bit more than Charismatic and of course note cards or not , when he speaks he says something -- and in respectable English as well.

But when one really can't be described as anything more than political junk food, and that's the kindest thing I can say about Sarah Palin the human Twinkie; when you're a tasteless confection of sugar, oil and starch with no ability to do anyone any good, the best you can do is just what she does. Well never mind about the hope and change -- you're hopeless and intransigent. You abandoned Alaska leaving them with record debt and some incoherent story, but it was all about a better offer, wasn't it? So isn't that all you are -- a mendacious mediocrity and charismatic candidate for What Not To Wear -- with notes scribbled on your palm?

So hows that wiggly giggly thing working out for ya, Sarah?

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Sarah Palin is a lying sack of shit

Why pull any punches? Ms. Hopey - Changey may have the IQ of a Barbie doll, but is just bright enough to know, if she bothered to think at all, that she's lying like the devil about her portrayal of the year old Obama presidency and the letter and spirit of constitutional law.

Why fool around, why worry about any one's "sensitivities?" She's a damned malicious liar and it's made no more palatable by her giggling, faux-adolescent presentation. Addressing the Tea Party Rebellion Saturday, she insisted that the administration has unconstitutionally given the right to a fair trial to a "terrorist" because apparently the presumption of innocence doesn't apply to any one of a group Sarah selects. The supreme court disagrees with Palin however, and with the Bush administration and I'll bet some of them have actually read the damned thing.

In 2008, the court ruled that you can't arbitrarily deprive anyone of a trial, dispense with the presumption of innocence and remove Habeas Corpus by crying War over and over and of course Sarah, in denial of the truth accused the president of "politicizing" the Christmas attempt by not crying war nearly enough -- which by the logic of stupidity means not politicizing an act is politicizing it. Don't worry, if that doesn't make sense you're probably not stupid.

Prattling on in full lying sack of shit mode, that "Paliney" thing on the podium continued to prevaricate by criticizing the treatment of Christmas bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, who according to her wasn't properly questioned because he "lawyered up" and wasn't cooperating. The facts are quite dramatically otherwise of course. Umar has been gushing facts and giving up names like an open faucet and without any unlawful means of interrogation, but worse than being a damned liar, Sarah Palin is actively engaged in undermining the foundations of American justice by promoting the idea that justice can be waived by using the magic word "war" and that a fair trial gets in the way of justice.

How, in the name of God is there anyone left anywhere who doesn't see the horns and cloven hooves and smell the sulphur? What's to prevent someone from characterizing her assault on truth, justice and due process, her campaign against the government and against the Constitution as a war? What's to prevent her or us from torture, rendition, secret and indefinite imprisonment if some ambitious president declares he an enemy combatant?

Even Fox is showing signs that they're becoming frightened by the monster they've produced and should we be any less fearful of the beast?

Monday, February 08, 2010

Gagging a Fox

A friend at the Field Museum in Chicago once attributed the phrase "rotten enough to gag a maggot" to a staff taxidermist presented with a reeking and putrefying elephant hide. I can't confirm or deny it, but it's a useful concept and it came to mind when Fox News Host Brian Kilmeade dared this morning to say that Sarah Palin had gone beyond the snark limit in dismissing President Obama as a "charismatic guy with a teleprompter." Of course saying that while reading from notes written on her palm and bellowing to a snarling crowd seemingly taken right out of some medieval painting of Jesus in torment might just be expected to make even a Foxman gag at her unrestrained roguery. Was his stomach already upset at her dishonest hypocrisy evident in damning Rahm Emanuel and Excusing Rush Limbaugh for using the word "retard" as a noun?

Kilmeade evoked the Fox of the previous administration in saying
"The only thing I was uncomfortable with [was] when she said it is bigger than any guy with charisma and a teleprompter. That guy is still president. I think you got to -- you got to -- you're no longer the candidate. He's not the guy you're running against. I think you got to give that title its due even if you don't respect the policies."
Indeed, although the Fox of today isn't noted for recognizing the similarity or often the identity of Bush Vs. Obama policies, the Fox of the previous administration was fond of criticizing Bush's critics for questioning his wars, questioning his unconstitutional acts and policies, or the state of the economy or anything else for that matter. Remember when the FOX theme of the day was that the economy was robust and "Liberals" were only pretending otherwise? Well we won't get an apology for that one, but it seems at least one Foxer remembers the idea of respecting the President at some basic level, remembers their taunts that disrespecting the president was "hating America."

Can it be that Palin has become an embarrassment to Fox as well as to the human race or is this just the view of one talking head whose gag reflex has been triggered? It will be interesting to watch this develop.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Das Unbehagen in der Kultur

I've had enough of American TEA to be able to say with confidence that it has noting to do with any tax burden, real or imagined. What it seems to be is a collection of people searching for some rationalization for angers they don't full understand: anger about the demands of civilization, anger about the need for tolerance, being forced to live in a heterogeneous culture, a changing culture, a culture demanding more understanding and more education and more responsibility than they feel capable of. Not all of them are stupid or ignorant, but without the stupid and ignorant, they'd hardly make enough noise to be heard, even with the complicity and amplification provided by Fox News. They're much like the discontents Freud discussed, like the bomb bearing discontents abroad we tell ourselves hate us for "our freedoms."

Tom Tancredo has latched on to the Tea Party movement after being ousted from office by his constituents, in part because he needs to believe he wasn't rejected by his real constituents, but by an undesirable element who shouldn't be allowed to vote. That this disjointed movement contains many people who believe this is a Protestant white man's country and that others should feel grateful just to be allowed here and should not vote or be otherwise uppity is obvious. Hence when Tancredo told the Tea Party Thursday that President Obama was elected only because
"we do not have a civics, literacy test before people can vote in this country,"
it fell on grateful ears.

Mr. Obama's educational and intellectual capabilities and achievements are an obvious irritation to the sort of people Tancredo hopes to ingratiate himself with and when Tancredo allows them to feel warmly supported in their belief that the Harvard Scholar is stupid (he's black after all) and his success due to the stupidity of voters, their inhibitions melt away. They can tell themselves that they've been right all along for opposing civil rights for anyone but true (WASP) Americans and that the success of the civil rights movement has meant disaster for America. Not of course, the disaster of insidious economic policy, corruption, contrived and unnecessary wars and upside down tax structure, but the disaster of having a black president.

Ironically, so far only the darkness of Mr. Obama's complexion and the ability to speak clearly make him stand out among the presidents of the last century, but it's progress -- the idea of progress itself that motivates the snarling in the street. The golden era of laissez faire, white man's paradise they long for exists only in that nebulous Disneyland of the Conservative mind, where we didn't have wild, whipsaw boom-bust cycles, 40% poverty levels, massive social injustice, violence and all the rest of the real world long since buried under snowdrifts of revisionist rhetoric. In that world, black men don't vote, black people can't be trusted to vote, because they're stupider than the crackers and red-necks and bigots and reactionaries who carry signs and dream about a world that is friendly to their sociopathology and acknowledges their privilege and entitlement.

Does it say anything important about Tancredo's argument that the election was swayed by a host of illiterates if in the real world, Obama was heavily favored by educated people? Does it say anything about the real agenda of the Tancredo conservatives if he isn't hooted off the stage for wanting to bring back a shameful era? Sure it does, and that's why one should be forced to flunk a civics and literacy examination if not an IQ test in order to join the party.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Same old, same old

Seems "the most liberal Senator in all of American History" is even more of a hide bound conservative than I imagined, if it's true that he intends to beef up the misbegotten War on Drugs rather than admit that the 73 year old enterprise has succeeded on doing to drug use, to organized crime and public safety what the Volstead act did when it made private alcohol sales and consumption a crime.

President Barack Obama's new drug czar, former Seattle police chief Gil Kerlikowske told us just 8 months ago that the idiocy was over, that "We're not at war with people in this country" but action speaks louder than words.

The new budget for fiscal 2011's war on drugs is increased and the emphasis is still on "enforcement" which means more spitting on constitutional rights, more interference with private matters, more clogging up of courts, more disrupted families, more crime, more prisons training more harmless people to be criminals and more ruining the lives of innocent people. In fact it's more of George W. Bush and it's more of what has only made things worse and worse. Even so, that 15.5 billion dollar budget vastly understates the cost to the nation as much as that of our former administration because it ignores the huge cost of incarceration and due process.

From "the war on drugs is over" to
"In a time of tight budgets and fiscal restraint, these new investments are targeted at reducing Americans' drug use and the substantial costs associated with the health and social consequences of drug abuse"
took us only 8 months and a return to doing what always fails; a return to pseudomoralistic prohibitions, fraudulent medical data and a continuation of being the biggest jailer in the world makes liars out of the idiots shouting "Liberal" as much as it makes liars of our administration.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Rogue Vogue

Was the huge vogue for Going Rogue helped along by having SarahPAC purchase thousands of copies of the best seller? Campaign contributors' money and funds from right-wing publications were used to produce and promote the book by giving out free copies while she got royalty checks.

"Irregardless" as a Sarah fan might say, it did help her legally transmute PAC money into a royalty check and since she walked off the job and isn't running for another position of public trust, the conversion apparently wasn't illegal. For those of us still interested in why she quit the Governorship, perhaps the ability to pocket all that PAC cash and avoid going to jail for it might help us to understand.

Perhaps some will remember that before she donned the robes of roguery, it wasn't a particularly nice way to describe anyone. Certainly not as nice or as honorable as Maverick, the title she was forced to relinquish after threats from the descendants of the eponymous cattleman, but who can doubt that the robes fit?

Meanwhile, back at that rogues' paradise called Facebook, Sarah has been channeling the wolves she used to strafe from various aircraft and attempting to sink her teeth into the Obama administration by going after Rahm Emanuel for using the word "retarded" in an internal strategy session -- as though it had been directed at Down's syndrome children and the Special Olympics and not at the stupidity of a co-worker. No, Sarah, retarded is not like the "N word" and although you'd love it to be, and although Mr. Emanuel has already been put in the position of having to apologize to the Special Olympics organization, you haven't said much about the "witches" you've praised your beloved pastor for persecuting. There are no Witches, only innocent people who don't share your religion -- there are people whose cognitive skills fall behind the norm no matter what euphemism you prefer. There are people who are stupid and there are people who are inexcusably and viciously retarding the progress of our country toward Liberty and Justice for all.