Thursday, August 27, 2015

Huckabee and Huckster

On the left:  Mike Huckabee:  Baptist preacher.  Teevee personality.  Presidential wannabee.  Homophobe.  Anti-Choice.  Faux Christian.  Close friend of Josh Duggar.

On the right:  Josh Duggar:  Member of infamous family of gadzillion children.  Right wing Christian spokesperson.  Homophobe.  Anti-Choice.  Child molester.  Has addiction to violent sex.   Faux Christian.  Close friend of Mike Huckabee.

Is this a great country or what?  

[Photo from Americablog, and Tengrain at Mock, Paper, Scissors/Flickr]

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Martin Luther should be excommunicated

[Photo from Wikipedia]

Some years back a Lutheran pastor friend of mine presented me with a gift.  I expressed my gratitude in an appropriate manner and put it on a shelf.  The gift was a small statue of the one Lutherans consider their founder and the closest thing in Lutheranism to a saint.

While this is neither here nor there, the statue is very well done and may have accrued some value.  I'll keep it a little longer.

Ask most Lutherans what they know about Martin Luther (1483 - 1546) and if you get anything at all it will consist of a few pious phrases about the great piety of Pastor Luther and how he began this thing called Protestantism, posting 95 theses on a church door, and that the Lutheran churches are named after him.

Ask many Lutheran pastors what they know about Martin Luther and based upon my experiences from years past, I'd guess you'd get comments very similar to those expressed by the laity.  Luther is spoken of in reverential terms, as worthy of emulation and adoration, and if by chance his shortcomings are mentioned, they are hushed over with some fanciful mental gymnastics which usually involve phrases such as "Well, he was a man of his time, and a man of his culture," which is used to excuse the fact that not only was he a raging anti-Semite, but ignorant of the Bible in the most profound sense, and filled with bile and hatred for those who disagreed with him.  Luther had no scientific leanings, but abhorred the use of reason as a means of determining the truth.  He believed in magic, in witches, and in evil spirits.

Martin Luther is known best for his notion of "salvation by grace, through faith" which he had stumbled upon while reading the New Testament.  It resonated mightily with him because he had always felt unworthy before God; that he could never live up to what God demanded of him.

Aha!  Here was his answer.  He didn't need to worry anymore.  All he needed was faith and God would accept him.  His "works"  --  those things he did or neglected to do --  didn't matter so much relative to his salvation status.

Then there's the story of him nailing his 95 theses to the church door in Wittenburg (the story may be more legendary than real.)  He opposed the Roman Catholic practice of granting "indulgences" for the payment of money and his "theses" were arguments against the practice.   An indulgence was thought important for it could take years off a person's time in purgatory.  Luther thought this practice could not be supported by scripture.

Maybe he was just looking for an out.  He was headstrong and willful and didn't bow easily to authority.  There were many other practices current in the Roman church which could not be found in Scripture to which could also have objected.  The notions of "mortal" as opposed to "venial" sins is not found in the Bible.  The idea that a priest can forgive sin is not found in the Bible; nor was the doctrine of purgatory.

Whatever, it was his belief in salvation by grace through faith, that became the core of his "protesting" system.

Certainly, Luther was a man of his time.  We cannot expect him to know of Biblical criticism, historical criticism, literary criticism.  He would have no knowledge that Paul's letters are the earliest books in the New Testament and that the Gospels come much later.  He would not know that a number of the books or letters attributed to Paul were not from his hand at all, but from other, unknown writers.

Furthermore, Paul believed in seven heavens.  I've always been curious as to why that fact is supremely ignored by ancient and current theologians and religious historians.

What follows are some quotes which put into bold relief why it is correct to say Luther was a man of his time.  These were collected from his writings by the Freethought

Luther says:

"Idiots, the lame, the blind, the dumb, are men in whom the devils have established themselves: and all the physicians who heal these infirmities, as though they proceeded from natural causes, are ignorant blockheads."

"I myself saw and touched at Dessay, a child of this sort, which had no human parents, but had proceeded from the Devil.  He was twelve years old, and, in outward form, exactly resembled ordinary children."

"In Switzerland, on a high mountain, not far from Lucerne, there is a lake they call Pilate's Pond, which the Devil has fixed upon as one of the chief residences of his evil spirits...."

"The fool [Copernicus] wishes to reverse the entire science of astronomy.  But sacred scripture tells us that Joshua commanded the sun to stand still and not the earth."

"No gown worse becomes a woman that the desire to be wise."

"We may will lie with what seems to be a woman of flesh and blood, and yet all the time is only a devil in the shape of a woman."

"When I was a child there were many witches, and they bewitched both cattle and men, especially children."

"As to the common people, ... one has to be hard with them and see that they do their work and that under the threat of the sword and the law they comply with the observance of piety just as you chain up wild beasts."

"Some [demons] are also in the thick black clouds, which cause hail, lightning and thunder, and poison the air, the pastures and grounds."

"The winds are nothing else but good or bad spirits.  Hark! how the Devil is puffing and blowing..."

"A large number of deaf, crippled and blind people are afflicted solely through the malice of the demon.  And one must in no wise doubt that plagues, fevers and every sort of evil come from him."

"An earthly kingdom cannot exist without inequality of persons.  Some must be free, some serfs, some rulers, some subjects."

"I feel much freer now that I am certain the pope is the Antichrist."

Yes, Luther was a man of his time.  Not many today would agree with the sentiments expressed above (although there are some among us who probably agree too readily!).  For most of us, Luther speaks nonsense.  His words have no meaning.  We know that what he believes is simply not true in any sense.

So, when Luther speaks of deaf, crippled and blind people as if their afflictions were caused by a "demon" or the Devil, we cringe for we know he is full of shit.  (By the way, he was quite vulgar and often used the word, "shit," in his sermons).

So by what irrational strangulation of our mental faculties do we conclude on the one hand that his interpretation of the Bible is correct and should be a foundation stone of our faith (if we are Christians) but the rest of what he believed is pure shit?

If Luther's ideas about the world and the universe and people were full of shit, why does anyone give credence to his notion of "salvation by grace through faith."  What makes him "right" in this belief and not in his other beliefs, other than our wish that it is so?

If truth be told, this is a terrible doctrine that makes God into a horrible monster.  It means that a person who spends his or her life doing good, making the world a better place, saving lives, etc., but rejects Luther's notion of faith, will spend an eternity in torturous hell fire, whereas a Hitler, whose life is committed to killing many millions of people and destroying entire countries, can be welcomed at the Pearly Gates if, at his last breath, says "I believe.  I have faith in Luther's Christ."

What utter nonsense!

The title of this essay speaks of Luther being excommunicated.  That's nonsense, too.  The Christian church still reveres this corrupt and ignorant fool.  He belongs, he's one of them.

Termination of the Chosen People Contract

To:  Lord, our God, King of the Universe

From:  The Jews

Re:  Termination of Our Special Status as The Chosen People

As you are aware, the contract made between you (God) and Abraham is up for renewal, and this memorandum is to advise you that after, yes, those many millennia of consideration, we've decided not to renew.

We should point out immediately that there is nothing in writing, and contrary to popular beliefs, we have not really benefited too much from this arrangement.

If you go back to the early years of our arrangement, it definitely started off on the wrong footing.  Not only were Israel and Judea invaded almost every year, but we went to enormous expense to erect, not one but two Temples and they were both destroyed.  Of course, you know all this, but we feel it's a good thing to account for all the reasons we wish to terminate the contract.

After the Hittites, Assyrians, etc., not only were we beaten up almost daily, but then we were sold off as slaves to Egypt (of all countries), and really lost a few hundred years of development. 

Now we realize that you went to a great deal of trouble to send Moses to lead us out of Egypt; and those poor Egyptian buggers were smitten with all those plagues.  But, reflecting on those years, we are at a loss to understand why it took almost 40 years to make a trip that El Al now does in 45 minutes.

Also, while not appearing to be ungrateful, Moses did lead us to the left instead of to the right at Sinai:  To the only place in the Middle East without any oil, and with water that is controlled by Jordan and Syria.  Oy, if only he had stopped to ask directions.

OK, so mineral rights were not part of the deal, but then the Romans came and we were really up to our necks in dreck.  While it's true the Romans did give us water fit to drink, aqueducts, and baths, it was very disconcerting to walk down one of the vias, look up and see one of your friends or family nailed to a three-by-four looking for all the world like a sign post

Even one of our princes, Judah ben Hur, got caught up with Roman stuff and drove like a crazy man around the Coliseum!  It's a funny thing, but many people swore that Ben Hur had an uncanny resemblance to Moses -- go figure.

Then, of all things, one of our most up-and-coming carpenters (he did great work, real cheap) declared himself your son (there was nothing said like this about Abe) and before we knew what was what, a whole new religion sprang up.

To add insult to injury, we were dispersed all over the world two or three times while this new goy (oops, guy) really caught on.  We were truly sorry to hear that the Romans executed him like so many others, but -- and this will make you laugh -- once again we were blamed.

Couldn't someone else be chosen, maybe just once?

Now here's something we really don't understand.  That guy, Jesus Christ, really came into his own.  Millions of people revered and worshiped his name and scriptures - and still killed us by the millions.  They claimed we drank the blood of newborn infants, controlled the world banks, operated the world's media, etc.

Are we beginning to make our point here?

So let's fast forward a few hundred years to the Crusades.  Hoo boy!  Again, we were caught in the middle.  They, the lords and knights, came from all over Europe to smack the Arabs and open up the holy places, but before we knew what hit us, they were killing us along with everyone ese.

Every time a king or a pope was down in the opinion polls, they called for a Crusade or Holy War (today they're called a jihad), and went on a killing rampage in our land. 

So, you tested us a little here and there, but some bright cleric in Spain came up with the Inquisition.  We all thought it was a new game show, but once again we and quite a few others were used as firewood for a whole new street lighting arrangement in major Spanish cities. 

Alright, that ended after about a hundred years or so - in the great scheme of things not a long time.  But every time we settled down in one country or another, they kicked us out.  We wandered around a few hundred years or so but it never changed. 

Finally, we settled in a few countries but they insisted we all live in ghettos, while the Russians came up with progroms.  We all thought they made a spelling mistake and misspelled "programs," but we were dead wrong (very dead wrong).

Apparently, when there was nothing else to occupy their time, killing Jews was the thing to do. 

Now comes the really tough noogies.  We were doing quite well, thank you, in a small European county called Germany, when some house painter wrote a book, said a few things that caught on and became their leader!  Oh boy, what a bad day that was for us -- your Chosen People (by now, you must be getting the drift of this email?)

We really didn't know where you were in the earth years 1933 to 1945.  We know everyone needs a break now and then, even the Lord God Almighty needs some time off.

But when we needed you most, you were never around.  You are probably aware of this, but if you have forgotten, over six million of your Chosen People, along with millions unchosen others were murdered in cold blood.  They even made lampshades out of our skins!

Look, we don't want to dwell on the past, but it gets even worse.

Here we are, it's 1948, and millions of us are displaced again, when you really pull a fast one.  We finally get our own land back!  Yes, after all these years, you arrange for us to go back.

Then all the Arab countries immediately declare war on us.  We have to tell you that sometimes your sense of humour eludes us.

So, with all the wars, and we're now in a new century, but nothing's changed.  We keep getting blown up, hijacked and kidnapped.  We have no peace whatsoever.

Enough is enough!  We hope you understand that nothing's forever (except you, of course), and we respectfully would like to pull out of our verbal agreement vis a vis being your Chosen People.

Look, sometimes things work out, sometimes they don't.  Let's be friends over the next few eons and see what happens. 

Meanwhile, how about this idea?  We're sure you recall that Abraham had a whole other family from Ismael (the ones who got the oil).  How about making them your chosen people for a few thousand years?

Respectfully yours,

The Jews

[Author unknown.  Hat tip to Bob Poris.]

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Michele Bachmann, Ignorance, and the End Times

Why anyone would give a rat's ass what Michele Bachmann thinks about anything these days is a foul mystery.  Unfortunately, there are many people in the U.S. who are as screwed up as is Ms. Bachmann.  Steeped in ignorance and paganism, they tear the Bible to shreds as they attempt to give credence to their political religiosity.

Most all of these people despise President Obama.  These are the "birthers," the ones who call him a Muslim, a socialist, a Marxist, or worse.  But all of that is merely to disguise their racism.  They hate Obama because he is only half-Caucasian, or more importantly from their point of view, half-Black.

Bachmann's pronouncements become "news" because she is not alone.  The United States, during the years that I've been alive, has become a nation of pious, pompous ignoramuses - people who vote for the totally unqualified, George W. Bush for example; people who think Mr. Trump would be a good president; people who ignore Ben Carson's inane nonsense; people who would vote for Christy, or Santorum, or Jeb Bush, or Mario, or any other of the creepy-crawlies who have lined up to seek the golden ring.  There are millions of Bachmanns by other names!

Just recently, Bachmann did an interview on a Christian right-wing radio program.  Bachmann has a history of warning that Obama's actions are going to bring about the "end times."  If he plays a round of golf, takes a walk on the beach, or reads a book, Bachmann will find a reason (and a Biblical passage) to "prove" these actions are the catalyst for the "end times."

Ironically, scientists have recently concluded that there will, indeed, be an "end times."  But it has nothing to do with pagan prophecy or deluded ex-Congresspersons, or Israel, or the U.S., or Russia, or Slovakia.  Scientists have determined the universe is dying.  It won't happen for eons, but the death throes have begun!  

Bachmann and her minions, however, worry not about the universe for their world is encompassed by the small empty areas of their brains.  As reported by Right Wing Watch, in this radio interview, Bachmann proclaimed that the Iran nuclear agreement is "proof" that we're living in the "end times."  The vote by the United Nations Security Council was "the most important national security event of my lifetime" and a fulfillment of Zechariah 12:3 where the prophet sees the nations of the world uniting against Israel, says this moron.

She went on to say, proving again how dense she is, that God would use "heaven's armies," which includes "groups like AIPAC to defeat the deal in Congress and in doing so 'prove to the world His power and His strength.'"

If God's going to defeat the deal, then the "end times" must certainly be delayed or postponed.  So we won't be living in the "end times."  Consistency has never been one of Bachmann's strong suits. 

It's all nonsense, of course.  Bachmann is neither Jew nor Christian.  Maybe she's Paulinian.  Her religion is light years away from what Jesus taught.

Zechariah, along with Haggai and Malachi, constitute a triad - the last of Israel's prophets.  The book of Zechariah derives in part from "the early years of the reign of Darius I (522-486 BCE)."  It is concerned with "the restoration of community in the Persian period ... and legitimizes the rebuilding of the Temple."  It emphasizes repentance and urges the people to follow God's will so they can "avoid the fate of their ancestors."

It looks forward to an "ideal future in which the remnant of Israel will grow and prosper, Jerusalem will take its proper place, the Temple will become the focal point of worship for the entire world, and the kingship of the Lord [Yahweh, not Jesus] will be recognized by all nations."

Zechariah is not about the "end times" or the "Rapture."  It's about "future glory" for Zion.  The prophet sees much turmoil, a "cosmic upheaval" even, which will result in a new Jerusalem.

But there's more.  Many scholars are quite certain that originally, the book of Zechariah included only chapters 1-8, and that at a later time, the rest - chapters 9-14 - were added to give the book its current arrangement.  Each of these two sections are by different authors and the latter chapters derive from the Hellenistic period

While Christians early on interpreted certain messianic passages as applying to their Christ, they did so wrongly and do so wrongly today.  The writers of Zechariah knew not of Jesus or any other particular messianic figure.  And while many in the rabbinic community felt these texts may have referred to a messianic time of the future -a time when the Lord (Yahweh) would rule and Jerusalem would be the center of the world - this messianic time was not thought to be, in any sense, the "end times" but the beginning of a new time!

Zechariah chapter 12 begins with a poem which is a prophetic "word of the Lord":

"The utterance of the Lord,
Who stretched out the skies
And made firm the earth,
And created man's breath within him:

Behold, I will make Jerusalem a bowl of reeling for the peoples all around.  Judah shall be caught up in the siege upon Jerusalem... [verse 3] when all the nations of the earth gather against her."

But this again has nothing to do with the "end times" and in fact, will be a joyous time, for the Lord says, "I will make Jerusalem a stone for all the peoples to lift; all who lift it shall injure themselves."  There's more along those lines but the end result is that those who fight against Jerusalem will be "devoured" and "Jerusalem shall continue on its site, in Jerusalem."

None of this has anything whatsoever to do with current events, or the United States, or Iran, or Canada, or Turkey, or Iraq, or Syria, or Greece, or Obama, or the United Nations, or nuclear war or my cat, Cleopatra!

The UN Security Council vote does not fulfill "the prophecy of Zechariah."  

God and "heaven's armies" (e.g. AIPAC) will not be used by God to defeat the Iran deal in Congress.

Ignorant flakes like Bachmann and all the other non-Christian con artists - Mike Huckabee, Pat Robertson, Jim Bakker, Rick Perry, Jindal, Jeb, Santorum, etc. - are, well, full of crap!  They massacre the Bible and especially the prophets for their own misguided and sick political ideologies.

You may safely ignore anything and everything they have to say.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

It is impossible to be a Christian and a member of the Republican Party

 [Jesus and the rich young ruler]

Paul Krugman, the erstwhile economist, noted that during that so-called debate last week between the Republican wannabe pretenders to the throne, our economic problems were referred to 10 times while God was mentioned 19 times.

Many, if not most of these suits who wish to sit in the Oval Office, claim to be Christians and they're damn proud of it!  Mike Huckabee, maybe the least Christian of the bunch, is a Southern Baptist preacher, among other things.  Jeb! is a Roman Catholic.  Mario was a Catholic, then a Mormon, then a Baptist, and I think he's again given his fealty to the papacy.  Whatever religious garb they wear, they wear it with pride and often use their religion to bolster their political views.  Everyone of them is homophobic and can quote chapter and verse where the Bible says homosexuality is an "abomination."

The stories of Jesus that appear in the New Testament frequently call attention to his animosity toward the Pharisees.  Even if the story of Jesus is factual (there's no evidence to support such a claim), the men who cobbled together their stories from the first writer Mark, (who, in turn, cobbled his story from an unknown source), all make note of the difference between Jesus and the religious leaders of the time. 

This is suspect, because, in fact, the Pharisees were the good guys of the first century, doing the work of God to the best of their ability.  The priests were the ones who tended to climb over the common folk on their way to the temple.  Because the gospels were written many long years after Jesus was supposed to have walked the dusty trails of Palestine, the writers had some problems determining just what was the religious situation in Jesus' day.  And it is likely none of them were Jewish!  None of the gospel writers had met him or knew him but simply copied and modified material which had been put together in a rather shaky attempt to give a history to the Christ to which Paul and others referred. 

We don't know who wrote the gospel stories.  The names are fictitious.  Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, could just as well have been Samuel, Joseph, Nathan and David.  And by the 2nd Century, there had developed a good deal of animosity between the Christians and the Jews.  That animosity is reflected in many of the gospel tales.

It would be reasonable to conclude that if Jesus had been real he would not have been in conflict with the Pharisees.  They were devoted to keeping the law, as was he.  Jesus was a teacher (rabbi) as well as a healer and a prophet.  If Jesus had been real he would have worked with the Pharisees, not in opposition to them, as they mirrored his love for God and the Law.

Nevertheless, the gospels are adamant about a spiritual conflict between Jesus and the Pharisees.  Now the Pharisees were human beings, just like the rest of us.  I'm sure there were good ones, some not-so-good ones, and a few rascals.  The rascals are the ones that got Jesus' attention for they were often hypocritical, calling for obedience to God and his Law, while flouting it in their own lives.  Jesus said they liked to stand in the middle of the street and pray loudly believing that others would think more highly of them for their spirituality.  Jesus said they were hypocrites and his followers should not do that but should shut themselves in a closet when they pray!

Jesus said many other things, most of which, if not all of which, the Republican Party and its leaders pretend to believe but disavow in their principles and their actions.  One thing I've mentioned numerous times on this blog is the fact that Jesus had no use for riches or the wealthy and in fact said it would be almost impossible for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

And speaking of prayer:  The Republican Party continues to fight to force our public institutions to allow Christian prayer, in classrooms and public venues.  Rick Perry, the hypocritical former governor of Texas, was one of the leaders of a huge public prayer service in Houston a few years ago.   This was exactly the opposite of what Jesus taught!

The Republican Party is founded on greed and fed by the rich!  The Republican Party lives to make the rich richer and the poor poorer.  And they do this while claiming to be good Christians.  How can this be?  They invoke the old fears of "socialism" and "communism" and they wring their hands because so many of our problems are brought on by immigrants and the minorities.   Racism is always blatant in the Republican Party!

The Republican Party refuted the election of a black president.  This was purely racial.  We've not seen the likes of such hatred and non-cooperation.  The Republican Party, from the moment Mr. Obama was elected, swore to do everything in its power to bring him down, and welcomed into the Party all those teapot crackpots and other nuts who fearlessly proclaimed any lie about President Obama that came to their demented minds.  Even today, many in the Republican Party can't bring themselves to say Mr. Obama is a citizen of the United States!  Even today, many claim he is a Muslim!

The Republican Party in 2015 stands in open opposition to almost everything the Jesus of the Gospels taught.  Jesus taught us not to judge others, to turn the other cheek, to give our cloaks to those who are cold, to walk the extra mile, to feed the poor, to take care of the sick, to visit those who are in prison.  

The Republican Party in 2015 is a war party.  It is homophobic, judging homosexuals as deviants designed to hell.  It doesn't turn the other cheek, it puts on the gloves.  It doesn't take care of the poor, it figures out new ways every day to screw the poor and put more people in prison and then privatize the prisons so the rich can get richer!  Millions of Americans do not have health care.  The Republican Party has fought any attempt to provide health care for those without and continues to do so.  Today, Republican leaders are vowing to fight Obama's agreement with Iran, even if it leads to war and the deaths of millions of people!

It is impossible to be a Christian and a member of the Republican Party!

Note:  These thoughts were crystallized from an article in Daily Kos, "You Cannot be a Republican and a Christian."

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

1 Corinthians 13

So You Want a Day Off?

A Day Off

[This is an email response from the boss to an employee when the employee asked for a day off.]

So you want a day off?  Well, let's take a look at what's involved in such a request.

There are 365 days per year available for work.  There are 52 weeks per year in which you already have two days off per week, leaving 261 days available for work.  Since you spend 16 hours each day away from work, you have used up 170 days, leaving only 91 days available. 

You spend 30 minutes each day on coffee breaks that account for 23 days each year, leaving only 68 days available.  With a one-hour lunch break each day you have used up another 48 days, leaving only 22 days available for work.

You normally spend two days per year on sick leave.  This leaves you 20 days available for work.  We offer five holidays per year, so your available work time is down to 15 days.  We also generously give you 14 days vacation per year which leaves you only one day available for work and I'll be damned if you're going to take that day off!

[Source unknown]

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

The People Who Own and Run the United States

There are many rich people who have their hooks into the American people.  Two of the most important are the Koch Brothers who are brilliantly creating a new country in their own image through the use of a variety of front groups and paid hacks and organizations like ALEC.

Daily Kos has a most enlightening article on our new plutocracy.  Here's a piece of it:

These are the groups that own the Republican party. And let's be clear, in point of fact they are the Republican Party.  The McConnells, the Inhofes, the Tea Party ilk who vote in lockstep at their bidding are really nothing more than paid-off stand-ins. These organizations, ALEC in particular, are made up of industry lobbyists, executives and  corporate lawyers who will actively and eagerly sell us all down the river in a heartbeat if it means more profits. When you cut to the bone of what the Tea Party really is, it's this: a group of fat and irate fossil fuel corporations who will pay any price to stop the U.S. government from checking their endless thirst for increased profits, increased drilling, increased mining. More than anything else, this shows why the Supreme Court's Citizen's United decision was such an abomination: it allowed people just like this to take over our country by buying out our political system. This time, however, what they're doing has life-altering consequences for us all. And right now there is only one person stopping them from doing that--the guy in the Oval Office.
What is ALEC? This is ALEC:

ALEC is not a lobby; it is not a front group. It is much more powerful than that. Through the secretive meetings of the American Legislative Exchange Council, corporate lobbyists and state legislators vote as equals on ‘model bills’ to change our rights that often benefit the corporations’ bottom line at public expense. ALEC is a pay-to-play operation where corporations buy a seat and a vote on ‘task forces’ to advance their legislative wish lists and can get a tax break for donations, effectively passing these lobbying costs on to taxpayers. Along with legislators, corporations have membership in ALEC. Corporations sit on ALEC task forces and vote with legislators to approve “model” bills. They have their own corporate governing board which meets jointly with the legislative board. (ALEC says that corporations do not vote on the board.) Corporations fund almost all of ALEC's operations.

Participating legislators, overwhelmingly conservative Republicans, then bring those proposals home and introduce them in statehouses across the land as their own brilliant ideas and important public policy innovations—without disclosing that corporations crafted and voted on the bills
This is what Democracy has come to in the United States of America.  There are a lot of words for it, Oligarchy, Corporatocracy, Plutocracy. Whatever you want to call it, their already-organized response to the President's proposed EPA Rulemaking fits the bill:

Please read the rest of the article here.


Monday, August 3, 2015

Caitlyn Jenner - Republican Elitist Snob

It must be difficult to feel out of place in your own body, to feel that you've been screwed, gender-wise, and in Caitlyn's case to feel that you're not a male but a female even though by all outward appearances, you look male.

It must be even more difficult when you head into middle age with a wife and family and even more of a problem when you have become famous and rich as a male athlete and Reality Teevee star.

So, I have a certain amount of sympathy for the former Bruce Jenner, now known as Caitlyn, during this transition period.

I am, however, sick and tired of hearing about it.  I'm sick and tired of looking at her picture every single day when I turn on my computer.  [Note:  I see the hypocrisy in posting the photo above!]  But that's not necessarily her fault.

Now, it turns out there is reason to be frustrated and angry with Ms. Jenner.  She's a Republican.  That, in and of itself, isn't worthy of hell, but she's a right-wing Republican.

She doesn't like poor people; people who, she claims, game the system to get free government money so they don't have to work.  And like the typical Republican she has nothing to say about the huge amounts of corporate welfare expended by the government, or the fact that many of the rich pay little or no taxes, often avoiding their fair share by hiding their money in off-shore accounts. 

What is it with these wealthy Republicans?  They seem to have no capacity for either sympathy or empathy.  Anyone who isn't rich is obviously a slacker and not worthy of our attention or help.

So, Ms. Jenner, I don't give a damn whether you're a man, woman or frog.  But I do care that you're an elitist, selfish, uncaring human being.  Of course, these days, that qualifies you to run for president under the Republican flag!