entp2007: (Default)
Where to start? It's been a while since, I posted a HTPYO. I know some will say it's a thinly veiled attack on Republicans. I don't know where anyone would get that idea.

Republicans Gutted Pandemic Preparedness Spending From Stimulus Bill
http://www.balloon-juice.com/?p=20479

Swine Flu outbreak
http://www.reuters.com/article/latestCrisis/idUSN27523217

Republicans Decry Volcano Monitoring
http://www.seattlepi.com/connelly/404216_joel25ww.html?source=mypi

Volcano in Alaska erupts
http://newsminer.com/news/2009/apr/25/eruptions-alaskas-redoubt-volcano-spark-lightning-/

Republican Pundits upset DHS report targets right wing extremists
http://crooksandliars.com/david-neiwert/conservatives-indict-themselves-shri

Right wing extremist kills two deputies in Florida
http://www.nwfdailynews.com/news/cartwright_16963___article.html/elizabeth_deputies.html

Right wing extremist kills three cops in Pittsburg
http://crooksandliars.com/david-neiwert/emerging-portrait-richard-poplawski-<

Oklahoma Man Arrested for Twittering Tea Party Death Threats
http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2009/04/twitterraid/

Those whacky teabaggers. Won't they ever learn? (dialog NSFW)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eGNWCwCrUKk

The GOP: divorced from reality
The Republican base is behaving like a guy who just got dumped by his wife.
http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/la-oe-maher24-2009apr24,0,927819.story


Look, I get it, "real America." After an eight-year run of controlling the White House, Congress and the Supreme Court, this latest election has you feeling like a rejected husband. You've come home to find your things out on the front lawn -- or at least more things than you usually keep out on the front lawn. You're not ready to let go, but the country you love is moving on. And now you want to call it a whore and key its car.

That's what you are, the bitter divorced guy whose country has left him -- obsessing over it, haranguing it, blubbering one minute about how much you love it and vowing the next that if you cannot have it, nobody will.

But it's been almost 100 days, and your country is not coming back to you. She's found somebody new. And it's a black guy.
entp2007: (mumra)
As a former resident of the Great State of Oklahoma I thought we had the most embarrassing politicians in the nation in our Senators, James Inhofe and Tom Coburn. The only way you could tell which one was more embarrassing depended on which one was speaking. Then along came Michele Bachmann from the Great State of Minnesota. I really feel for you guys up there. She does have an Oklahoma connection. She got her JD from Oral Roberts University when they had a law school. They sold it to Pat Robertson's Regent University, the one the Bush administration hired a lot of law grads from. The craziness of these politicians and googling them will turn up numerous examples of their nuttiness.

Now the entire state of Texas has gone bonkers with the probable exception of Austin. Yeah, I know it is the capital but the rest of the city is sane. The Governor of Texas has just out-crazied Sarah Palin and Bobby "We don't need no steenkin' volcano monitoring" Jindal combined. Rick Perry is making secessionist noises. He's complaining the Federal government is becoming oppressive. Hey Rick, where were you the last eight years of the Bush administration, with their secret prisons, torture, spying on American citizens, imposing draconian travel restrictions and putting in place an onerous airport security and screening process? Seriously, what the fuck are you complaining about? Letting Bush's tax cuts lapse on the top 1% of income earners.

It's only been three months, folks, since the Republicans were out of power, and they are just going bugnuts, with their teabagging, and Glenn Beck lunatic ravings, and Sean Hannity lying, and Rush Limbaugh's oxycontin addled screeds. Not to mention the largest gun buy spree in history when Obama won. How many of those gun buyers have lost their homes? How many of those gun buyers have lost their jobs? How many of those gun buyers are sitting idly in their pick up trucks listening to Hannity, Beck, and Rush on the radio? Let's hope today all they are doing is teabagging.

We may have to contact the International Red Cross to send care packages to our friends and loved ones in Texas and to keep in contact with them if Perry's Texas sized bullshit keeps up. We may have to have a Berlin airlift for Austin to help keep them free from the wingnuts. The Republicans continue to double down. I really feel for you guys in Wingnutistan. I hope the good people of Texas can recall him the way the Californians recalled their governor. Even if they did it for the wrong reasons. Texas, your governor is a total jackass.
entp2007: (Default)
Now if you think I have it in for Republicans, you'd be right. There are some Democrats I'm none too pleased with either. "Harry 'n Nancy, you got some splainin to do.' Don't even get me started on Lieberman. I was never a big fan of the Clinton's though I have a much higher opinion of them now that I did eight years ago. Until Sarah Palin came along, I still had a negative opinion of Hillary. She did after all do what McCain did to become a Senator. Each moved to a state that required almost no residency requirements to run. John "Get-off-my-lawn" McCain became the carpetbagger Senator from Arizona, and Hillary "I dodged bullets in Tuzla" Clinton became the carpetbagger Senator from New York. Should we blame them for taking advantage of a state? Or should we blame the state for allowing that to happen? Both I think, but more blame on the states.

I am willing to give Hillary a chance to prove herself as Secretary of State. I know she'll do a heckuva lot better job than Condi. I know. The bar's been set pretty low. Anyway, back to the Republicans. Phil Gramm was instrumental in helping to destroy our economy by deregulating the futures market. Not only did he make it possible for Enron to do what they did. But he made it possible for corporations to Enron the whole country. Sadly, this law was passed under Clinton and not Bush. There are few Republicans lower in my opinion than him. Dick Cheney is one of them.

You might be wondering why I am a Democrat now. They are less evil, but more importantly progressives are taking over in the same way as the evangelicals co-opted the Republicans. we are pushing the Democrats to do the rights thing for America. However, instead of a force for evil, we are a force for good. I know that sounds hokey, but I didn't have time for something more nuanced.

Where's the headline? I'm getting there. In fact I have only one:

Leahy Calls for Truth Commission...Why?
(It should really titled 101 ways Republicans screwed America)
http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2009/2/9/17620/73749/286/695360

Here's seven reasons:

Republicans started spying on American Citizens before 9/11. And as recent revelations confirm, spied on ALL Americans. The Republicans did this with no due process, no probable cause and no warrants. The Republicans established Gitmo. The Republicans thus dissolved Habeas Corpus, the basis of all law in Western Civilization, and began to torture the detainees. Many of which have been proven to be innocent...and in the process established the number one recruiting cause of an entire generation of new terrorists. Number one anyway, until the Republicans transported their torture techniques and regimen from Gitmo....to Abu Ghraib.  Which brings us to...the Republicans invaded Iraq. Widely viewed as the greatest foreign policy blunder in American history, the Republicans are directly responsible for the deaths of up to a million Iraqis...and over 4000 dead American soldiers and tens of thousands of wounded ones.


That's not the America I grew up in. Yes, America has had many dark chapters in it's history (e.g. Trail of Tears, Japanese internment), but it's always pushed forward with the ideas of liberty, equality and justice for all. It's got a long way to go to live up to them, but let's not let the Republicans destroy it.
entp2007: (Default)
About that Great Depression 2.0 on its way. We have people. We have resources. What we don't have is a sound financial system. In fact it's still collapsing. Is it time to develop a barter economy? Is it time to plant a vegetable garden? Is it time to learn canning? Is it time to learn how to sew? Is it time to learn how to conserve?

Biggest job loss ever for retail sector Retailing may never recover fully as consumers begin to save again
http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/Retail-jobs-disappearing-fast-wont/story.aspx?guid={046149FE-E120-4037-A89B-7F75D76A19DB}&dist=SecMostCommented&print=true&dist=printMidSection

Bankrupt
http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/2009/02/on_friday_we_interviewed_nobel.php

Republicans tell us that the Earth is flat, black is white, and wrong is right.

Republicans’ Latest Talking Point: The New Deal Failed
(I hope the AARP sends commando walker squads of Depression survivors to give them what for.)
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/12/opinion/12mon4.html?_r=2

Summers: Mitch not in "strong position" to lecture Dems
http://www.politico.com/blogs/glennthrush/0209/Summers_Mitch_not_in_strong_position_to_lecture_Dems_.html

Conditions at Gitmo are worsening? Could be one of three possibilities. 1) Disinformation by Republican operatives. 2) Gitmo operators deliberately making things worse (even through negligence) 3) I don't know but Obama needs to tell them he's tired of their motherfucking shit.

Gitmo: Conditions worsening since election
http://rawstory.com/news/2008/Gitmo_Conditions_worsening_since_Obamas_election_0208.html

I cannot believe we re-elected Inhofe. I cannot believe my fellow Okies were that goddamned stupid. I don't understand why some people enjoy being willfully ignorant.

Right-Wing Senators Praised ‘Humane’ Conditions At Gitmo During 50-Detainee ‘Mass Hunger Strike’
http://thinkprogress.org/2009/02/08/guantanamo-torture-inhofe/

Bipartisan to Republicans means, 'My way or the highway'.

Uncompromising Conservatives Blast Obama For Failure To Act In Bipartisan Fashion»
http://thinkprogress.org/2009/02/09/gop-failure-to-compromise/

And if you aren't still pissed off about the Dec. 22, 2008 coal slurry spill in Tennessee, you should be. It's 48x larger than the Exxon Valdez spill.

America Realizes: ‘Coal Makes No Sense In This Day And Age’
http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2009/02/04/coal-isnt-clean/
entp2007: (mumra)
You can skip to the bottom for the headlines if you are ready to be pissed off. I didn't always think that Republicans were bad. In the 1990's, I listened to Rush Limbaugh and G. Gordon Liddy. I thought Clinton was a bad president. The main reason why I leaned towards the Republicans they were closer to the Libertarians. I held libertarian beliefs and read Ayn Rand. I even believed that Liberals were closet socialists and that big government was bad. I even voted for George W. Bush in 2000.

Here I am today a progressive and a registered Democrat. I voted for Obama in 2008. I'm not going to regale you with the details of my political transformation, but I will say the main reason I changed had more to do with my core philosophy of how I look at the world. Political belief is unscientific.

When a scientist observes the world and comes up with theories he tests it to see if his theory is sound. A good scientist knows when his theories have failed and moves on. He's always changing and revising his understanding of the world. And so I have applied that principle to my view on politics. I try to pick a system that works best for people. Right now, progressive politics, seems to be the most effective. That could change in the future. In fact, it must. I'm beginning to suspect our choice of politics may be tied to our personality type.

I didn't wake up one morning and decide that Republicans were evil and that Democrats were good. There are plenty of Democrats that I don't have much faith in, Reid and Pelosi, come to mind. I'm not a liberal. I am a progressive. The term is used interchangeably and confuses the issue. It's not a relabeling. I know I need to expand on that so you'll understand where I'm coming from and how I got here. On to the headlines.

To understand the bullshit shenanigans the Republicans are pulling on this stimulus bill I thought I'd give you two examples:

Bike Paths=Green Pork?
http://www.treehugger.com/files/2009/02/bike-paths-equal-green-pork.php

Katie Couric Disses Energy-Saving Weatherization As Embarrassing
http://www.treehugger.com/files/2009/02/katie-couric-disses-weatherization.php

That's right. Senator DeMint wants to ban any funding for bike routes and paths, and Senator Mitch McConnell wants to get rid of funding for weatherization. Both of these Senators want to prevent America from even baby steps to wean us off of dependence of fossil fuels, foreign and domestic.

So what are the benefits, As Obama said, it's a threefer. You put people to work building bike paths and weatherizing homes. You save money on your energy bills. You reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. Actually you get a fourfer. You help the environment upon which we all depend.

The problems that face us as individuals, as a community, as a nation, and as the world are immense and daunting. The Republicans, and I sure a few Democrats, but mostly Republicans, cannot see any further than the next election and protecting the interests of corporations at the expense of everyone else. In their own bubble, with their own set of limited facts, they believe they are doing the right thing. I'm sure some of them do know better.

It would be far better to convince the Republicans that it is in their best interest, not to mention, the best interest of America, to do the right thing, to lead us towards a more sustainable way of living. But if they don't, then they must be voted out of office. Democrats aren't perfect. They too have some problems, but the progressives have an in and are working to dominate the party. Progressives aren't always Democrats. Teddy Roosevelt did a number of progressive things.

Next time I plan to have more links and less soapbox.

Oh, and one more thing, while I'm on my soapboax, the Republicans have been trying to get people to visualize how much money is being spent for "pork" by stacking it end to end. X billion dollars would reach from New Jersey to El Paso, or four times around the globe, or some other such bullshit visualization. It's a distraction. Think how many homes could be saved from foreclosure with that. How many families that would help. Think how many people could have health insurance coverage. A stack of money benefits no one. You can show a benefit by how it's spent. For example I could say the money spent on the Iraq war would stretch from here to the Moon or around the globe five times. I don't know how big a stack it is, nor do I care, but you get the idea. I could say that for the money we spent on the Iraq war would have paid for universal health care for every man woman and child in America. That has actual payoffs for America as a whole.

What payoff has invading Iraq given us? Certainly not cheaper oil. A devastated country, thousand and thousands dead, thousand of wounded vets. You say it's made the world a safer place. Has it? Dick Cheney was saying that we could expect a major terrorist attack on America because of Obama. That to me says Cheney's people didn't do a very good job of reducing terrorism in the world. At best, they merely contained it. And I don't think they really did that.
entp2007: (Default)
Why it's almost time to tell Republicans to go **expletive deleted** themselves. I'm really getting tired of their **expletive deleted**. I'm really close to wishing that they and their supporters will be miserable for the next eight years. There have been a few things the Obama administration is doing that haven't pleased me, but I'm willing to give them time to sort things out.

Gregg Confirmation Flashpoint Emerges as GOPers Decry White House Census Move
http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2009/02/gregg-confirmation-flashpoint-emerges-as-gopers-decry-white-house-census-move.php

GOP Leaders Continue Opposing Stimulus Bill
http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2009/02/leader_mcconnell_wont_work.html

Cheney The 'Dick' hopes for a major terrorist attack on America.
http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2009/2/4/163342/4589/454/693142

Edging towards a depression (a very scary and depressing graph).
http://thinkprogress.org/2009/02/07/edging-towards-a-depression/


I know there are decent Republicans out there. I know there are honest conservatives out there. You guys need to take your party back. You need to get rid of these ass clowns and douche nozzles who are trying score political brownie points at the expense of the country. If you don't think Boehner and Graham and Coburn fall into that category, I pity you.

We are going to know how bad a shape the Bush/Cheney/Gramm cabal left the country in in a few months. The Obama administration is still doing damage assessment. Democrats had the last two years to put the slow down the destruction, but they didn't have the guts to do anything. I hope the price of winning the last election was worth and that it's not too late. We are heading for a depression. We just don't know how bad it's going to be yet. We have the leadership and the people to help us get through it, but it remains to be seen if they can convince the Republicans to stop their obstructionist crap.

Update

Found another anger inducing headline.

What the centrists have wrought
http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/02/07/what-the-centrists-have-wrought/
entp2007: (Default)
Do I want to get off my political kick? Yes and no. I'd certainly like to move on to other things, but politics still dominates my thinking. I'd prefer to think about things like science fiction or bikini car washes. I am overjoyed that Obama has won and that Democrats have picked up a lot more seats, but I am under no illusion, that things will be tough.

The Democrats really didn't make that much progress when they took over Congress in 2006. They decided that their one victory on defeating FISA wasn't good enough, so they went and undefeated it. Obama voted for the new FISA bill. The old FISA was perfectly adequate. It's just that Bush didn't want to be bothered with following the rule of law. All those companies to be granted retroactive immunity could have gotten it in the first place, if Bush had been following the law. Again something he seems to be allergic to. And the absolute worst decision any Speaker of the House ever made was to take impeachment off the table. I'm not sure I could ever forgive Nancy Pelosi for that.

There were many things that the Democrats did that helped to enable the Bush administration and perhaps their reasoning was as simple as covering up their own complicity, or some tortured strategy for winning bigger in 2008. If it's the latter and those responsible for administrative malfeasance are held accountable and the major damage by this administration will be healed, then I can forgive that.

The Democrats need to govern well. They will have to keep the Republicans from being even more obstructionist than they are now. This means there will have be a reconciliation and a real reaching out to the Republicans. They should only compromise when the compromise achieves real progress. I fear the Republicans and their willing accomplices in the media (e.g.- Fox News, Limbaugh, Drudge) will be assholes. Winning the primary was hard for Obama, winning the election was harder, governing well will be the hardest. I think he's up to the challenge. Time will tell.

I live in the reddest of red states. No other state gave a higher percentage of the vote to McCain, 66%. We beat Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Louisiana, Alabama, and Alaska. Not only that for the first time in Oklahoma history has the Republicans gained control of both houses of the state legislature.

I though Oklahoma had finally joined the 20th century when it banned cockfighting in 2002 (Even though 30 out of 77 counties filed challenges to the ban. Thankfully the Oklahoma Supreme Court upheld it.) Apparently, not. I am deeply ashamed that my home state has decided to be so willfully ignorant in this election. It really should come as no surprise as we keep re-electing perhaps the most reviled Republican Senator remaining in office, Jim Inhofe.

I suppose it's a good thing that I'm moving to Tucson. Arizona is pretty red, but I've been told that Pima county is the most liberal county in Arizona. I've checked the election map and that seems to hold up.

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