Saturday, March 21, 2009

Obama, Palin and the Special Olympics

When President Barack Obama appeared on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, he made a verbal gaffe, which he has indicated he sincerely regrets and for which he has apologized.

About 3 minutes plus into the interview, Obama made a joke about his bowling skills referencing the Special Olympics.

The rightwingnuts have gone batshit crazy.

Oh well. They haven't a fresh idea in their brainfogged heads, so they have to create something to get airtime.

Arnold Schwarzenegger defended the president, saying that he knows Obama's heart is in the right place and that the president is a strong supporter and defender of the Special Olympics.

Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska, however, showing her desperate need to find the limelight and try to turn the conversation away from her ethical problems, pounced all over Obama claiming he was disparaging and insensitive, etc. I think Palin almost wept she was soooo upset.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is the same Governor Palin who dragged her special needs child all over the country into all kinds of crazy situations while campaigning with John "the cane" McCain! Only Palin didn't even bother to take care of the child most of the time; that was the job of her pregnant, unwed daughter, Bristol!

Talk about hypocrisy!

Is Sarah Gronert man or woman?

A tennis pro from Germany by name of Sarah Gronert was born with both male and female genitalia. What? Yup. She's now 22, and plays tennis as a woman.

The coach of an opposing team, Schlomo Tzoref, claims she serves too hard to be a woman. "This is not a woman," cried Schlomo, "it's a man."

The "official" arbiters of the sport don't seem to agree on what to do with Gronert or any players "who do not fit into the binary division of traditionally defined female and male ... "

I wonder what the wingnuts of the christianist right would say about this? Did God create Gronert with male and female sex organs? If God is the source of all created things, then the answer must be "yes."

What does that mean? How would God want Gronert to define him/herself? Does God want Gronert to be bisexual?

It's very confusing to a true Bible believer. Jesus never said a word about people born with male and female sex organs. Nor did Moses. Or Paul. Or Peter.

And if God created someone with dual sex organs, could he not just as easily have created homosexual people? Gronert didn't choose both types of sex organs. The majority of scientists are convinced that homosexuals do not choose their sexual preferences.

I guess I better study the Bible a little more closely. Or may John Hagee can help out. He claims to know God's word better than anyone. I'd check with Pat Robertson but I think he's out of favor with God at the moment. And Falwell's dead. Oh, Dobson's still around; he'll know what God wants!

Boca Raton Hospice bans "God" - Not!

Paula Alderson is the CEO of Hospice by the Sea in Boca Raton, Florida. This hospice has banned the words "God" or "Lord" from being used in "inspirational messages that chaplains deliver in staff meetings."

That immediately raises an important issue: Why, on God's green earth, would chaplains be delivering "inspirational" messages to the Hospice staff at staff meetings? Doesn't the staff have enough to do without listening to the blather of hired religious professionals? And doesn't that make the staff a captive audience? Yikes!

Anyway, this ban has upset the Rev. Mirta Signorelli terribly. Yup. According to the Palm Beach Post, Signorelli said "She would have to watch her language ... when leading a prayer in the hospice chapel, when meeting patients in the public setting of a nursing home and in weekly patient conferences with doctors, nurses and social workers."

But, it appears Ms. Signorelli is lying. Alderson says not so. Chaplains can talk about their god until their nose turns blue when "offering religious counsel to the dying and grieving." Alderson stressed, however, that "we don't impose religion on our staff, and ... it is not appropriate in the context of a staff meeting to use certain phrases or 'God' or 'Holy Father,' because some of our staff don't believe at all."

Signorelli resigned. Thank God!

Palin says new charges are "baseless"

Of course she does. According to the Anchorage Daily News, a new ethics complaint has been filed against the Guv of the State of Alaska which "accuses her of using state staff and resources for political purposes on two occasions, once this week and once during the presidential campaign."

She says nonsense; these allegations are "baseless."

Perhaps we should give her the benefit of the doubt; you know, "innocent until proven guilty"?

Nah. Let's not. She always say that. Even when she's proven guilty she claims the allegations were "baseless" and that she's innocent!

So, we know Palin the prevaricator is untrustworthy. Furthermore, she has lied on numerous occasions (Bridge to Nowhere, selling plane on e-Bay) and stretched the truth at other times.

We'll just have to wait and see how these play out. But such complaints are not, as Palin would have it, "frivolous." In fact, Palin has had to pay back to the state monies she received for pretending to run her office from her home, as well as for dragging her children to political or social events, even though she insisted at first she had done nothing wrong..

Sarah Palin seems to have a hard time understanding that she works for the people, not vice versa.

But then, most Repugnicans don't understand that!

Elephant writes book to teach fish to swim

Oops! I got the title of this post all wrong. It should be: "Polish Roman Catholic monk writes sex manual."

h/t to Cynical-C Blog.

Bush lies through his teeth, instigating hell on earth

Six years ago, Chimpy stood in front of the world and lied through his teeth, setting off a conflagration that has left well over 4,000 American soldiers dead, thousands more in physical and emotional tatters and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis dead and crippled.

Bush's adventure in imperialism not only failed to eliminate the major perpetrator of 9/11 but has left the entire world much more vulnerable to the crazed Islamists who see their mission as imposing their vision on the rest of us.

Thus, many of us want to know: When is Chimpy going to be held accountable?

Thanks to Mock, Paper, Scissors.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Shearing the sheep - again!

[Image from Magic_Foundry]

Station Charon had an excellent and thought-provoking post yesterday entitled "Inviting the Sheep for Another Shearing." Here are a couple of excerpts:

"In the ongoing madness of an America in terminal decline, the great Surge II is now underway. This one has nothing to do with mass brainwashing that all is well in Iraq and that we are indeed winning thanks to our shining medal festooned superstar quarterback otherwise known as General God (aka David Petraeus) to divert the flocks attention away from a doomed imperialist crusade. Nope, this one hits closer to home, it started last Monday with a sly piece of internal propaganda from Citigroup's CEO Vikram Pandit having its best quarter since 2007 which triggered a sucker rally in the Wall Street casinos that dictate to the inhabitants of chumpland. The pocket media once again did their job, selling this latest call for the sheep to come and be sheared with all the effectiveness that they pimped the murderous lies of George W. Bush, Karl Rove and Dick Cheney. Things - ARE getting better you see, the gloom-doomers, the glass is half-empty pessimists, the neurotic nervous nellies and the naysaying Eyores are all wrong, it's a disease, in their heads, the economy is rocketing its way back to robustide. The most incredible example of just how thoroughly corrupt that the corporatist media has become is the pernicious cover story of the latest edition of Newsweek magazine that has a picture of good ole Uncle Sam saying that he want YOU to START SPENDING!... YOU need to INVEST in America - before it's too late."

Station Charon continues by detailing the Newsweek story by Daniel Gross which suggests that at this frightful time, we need more spending, spending, spending and risk-taking! Or in Gross' own words:

"As consumers hibernate and investors hoard cash, the economy is withering. This new age of thrift is understandable. But for a recovery to take hold, Americans will need to start taking risks again."

Gross goes on to suggest that this is the time to invest your money - "the mountain of cash has to be put to work."

Station Charon has something to say about that:

"Great solution, just trust Wall Street with that money, think long term, be patriotic even if the malefactors of great wealth do not and are more than happy to wallow in international troughs and then come back to shit on America. Gross, a highly-paid, high profile stooge is just playing his part in the ongoing relaunch project to save Wall Street looters and protect their plunder. ..."

There's much more of substance and much more edible food for thought in Station Charon's article.

Read it all here. (Before you rush out to hand your money to the Wall Street thieves).

Republican Stimulus Plan

Borrowed, with thanks, from Walled-in-Pond.

Olbermann eviscerates corporate thieves

Nobody can wield a linguistic scalpel quite as well as Keith Olbermann when he rises feisty in the morning.

This is just too good to let pass.

Thanks to Video Cafe.

National Day of Prayer's 58th Anniversary

The christianists in this country are insane! That's the only way to describe their continuing insistence on conducting a National Day of Prayer, not only nationally, but also in the States and in churches everywhere. They are insane because not one of their previous 57 prayer efforts has worked! Their prayers have either gone into the ether, or God doesn't bother listening to them; but whatever the case, nothing has changed.

In fact, in spite of very earnest and ardent prayer, which multiplied greatly under the Bush/Cheney dictatorship, we sunk to new lows in just about every category you could imagine or dream up!

There is only one conclusion to be had: God doesn't want a National Day of Prayer!

That hasn't stopped morons like Governor Rick Perry of the great State of Texas from exercising his right to insanity. On May 5, the Texas version of the National Day of Prayer will be held at the Austin Doubletree Hotel. It's a prayer breakfast. For some reason these pray-ers can't pray without eating. I wonder why that is?

The guv, an ultra rightwingnut christianist, is going to "present his proclamation and call Texas to prayer."

Now, lest you think that these pray-ers are sincere when they say all faiths are invited to participate, consider the fact that it is only right wingnut christianist fundamentalist kooks who are involved. In Texas, for example, Gary Bauer, rightwingnut christianist fundamentalist kook president of a trashy organization called the Family Research Council, is gonna be the keynote speaker!

What's really funny is that "Colt McCoy, his mom, Mrs. Debra McCoy and others will lead in prayer for the seven centers of power." I had no freaking clue who was Colt McCoy, so I had to look up the name...he's the quarterback for the University of Texas football team!

Wow! Can you imagine? A real christianist quarterback leading the folks in Texas in prayer. That's almost better than drinking a couple of Lone Stars! What is it about football players these days? Maybe it's something in their Gatorade that points them to Jesus.

And, if you don't know what the "seven centers of power" are, well, that's a christianist wingnut phrase and refers to: Government, Military, Media, Business, Education, Church, and Family. Now, that's pretty funny, too. It tells you right off what these people really believe. If they really believed the christianist crap they spout, the most important and first "center of power" would be the church!

It's all baloney. None of it means anything. Nothing changes. The christianist, evangelical Repugnicans continue to use every means at their disposal to disrupt and derail honesty, integrity and open government. With the Rick Perrys of the world, the word, God, is simply a euphemism for their own wet dreams about how they can obtain, hold onto, and increase their power.

They also don't believe what Jesus' told them to do, which was go into their closets and pray to the Father in private. Jesus very specifically said people should not stand on the street corners or before a bunch of pious frauds at the Austin Doubletree and pray publicly!

In addition, they don't believe in our Constitution, which clearly states there shall be no official recognition of religion in this country. And, the National Day of Prayer is about as "official" a recognition of Christianity as it can be!

So, once again, in the christianist, evangelical, Repugnican camp, hypocrisy rules and stupid is the word of the day! This is evidenced by the fact, that Perry, like some other Repug governors, doesn't want money from the stimulus package to help needy Texas folks, either.

Liddy, AIG, hypocrisy and greed!

Here's the latest from BuzzFlash (in case you missed it):

When Edward Liddy, now the chief honcho at A.I.G., headed up Allstate Insurance, he had no qualms about firing 6,000 agents. What contracts? Who gives a damn about contracts?

Because Liddy has done a 180 and now cries that A.I.G. contracts are sacred, even though these "A.I.G. Execs ... Led American Into Losing Hundreds of Billions of Dollars" ...

"Liddy is the BuzzFlash GOP Hypocrite of the Week ... for this and so much more. He even called these 'retention' bonuses at A.I.G..., even though 11 of the multi-millionaire execs had already left the company. A.I.G. and Liddy exemplify the Reagan/Bush era of no responsibility for one's actions as long as one swears an oath to greed."

But there's more...unbelievably!

"A.I.G. Sues U.S. for Return of $306 Million in Tax Payments." Yup. A.I.G. "is quietly fighting the federal government for the return of $306 million in tax payments, some related to deals that were conducted through offshore tax havens."

A.I.G. is using taxpayer money in their suit.

The IRS denied A.I.G.'s initial claim last year.

Palin's pathetic pretense as governor - "Let 'em eat cake!"

Sarah Palin, Governor of Alaska, is looking toward 2012 and she's placating her base - which, of course, is comprised mainly of the unwashed and uneducated rabble who eschew intelligence and common sense.

What better to please the most moronic of Repugnicans than to hurt the children and poor people in Alaska? Evidently, she thinks that will help boost her chances of attaining the White House in less than four years, even though the latest polls indicate that those chances are synonymous with the Titanic at the moment.

So, here's her plan. Reject 45% of the stimulus money that is supposed to go the State of Alaska! Yup. The gal who's never in her life seen an earmark or a piece of Alaskan pork she didn't want to sink her teeth into, is planning to reject a whole ton of money which would help the people of Alaska.

Typical Repugnican, you say, and you'd be right.

According to the Anchorage Daily News, "The biggest single chunk of stimulus money that Palin is turning down is $160 million for education. There's also $17 million in Department of Labor funds (vocational rehabilitation services, unemployment services, etc.), about $9 million for Health and Social Services and about $7 million for Public Safety."

While, some members of the Alaska legistlature want the whole ball of wax, (and they may be able to get it), it must be discouraging for people of good will in Alaska to have such a dumb-ass governor.

Why is it, with Repugnicans, the common folk with real needs ALWAYS get the short end of the stick?

Damn Atheists!

Thanks to Atheist Cartoons.

Pat Condell discusses religion & insanity at the UN

Christopher Hitchens has a hard-hitting article on this UN resolution which "seeks to criminalize opinions that differ with the Islamic faith," here.

Condell and Hitchens lay out in no uncertain terms that we are in for the fight of our lives with these asshole Islamists.

Master of Science degree in "creationism" - only in Texas!

Shore enuf, pardner! Y'all might soon be able to git a Master's degree in creation science if'n State Rep. Leo Berman (R-Tyler) has his way.

Berman, a Republican wingnut, "proposed House Bill 2800 when he learned that The Institute for Creation Research (ICR), a private institution that specializes in the education and research of biblical creationism, was not able to receive a certificate of authority from Texas' Higher Education Coordinating Board to grant Master of Science degrees.

"Berman's bill would allow private, non-profit educational institutions to be exempt from the board's authority."

Heh. Heh. As they say, so often, "only in Texas!"

Berman provides another good reason why control of education and education standards should be removed from moronic dimwits who operate with pea-sized brains and somehow get elected to state legislatures!

Hemant Mehta had a few thoughts about this proposal:

1. There's nothing Scientific or "Masterful" about Creationism.

2. Get ready for three word Masters Theses: "God did it."

3. You thought your Bachelors degree in Communications was useless...?

4. At least the textbook cost would be low. You'd only need one book the whole time you're working on your degree.

The bill probably won't pass. Perhaps Berman could be recalled on the condition that he's too much of an idiot to serve in the legislature - even for Texas.

Once again: Creationism is not science; it is religious superstition! Anyone or any group teaching creationism should not be provided recognition, but should be scoffed at and scorned.

There's more from FOX News here.

h/t to Friendly Atheist

Roy Zimmerman explains "creation science"

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Creationism: A Cautionary Tale

With much thanks to Atheistic Cartoons. This is one of best videos I've seen in a long time!

Bernie's got a home

Maybe life in prison isn't good enough?

Thanks to Cat in the Bag.

Why hasn't Cheney been investigated?

The word is out - primarily by Seymour Hersh - that Dick Cheney ran a gang of assassins from his office in the White House; a gang which was accountable to no one but himself, and was engaged in taking out foreign leaders which Cheney (and Bush?) didn't approve of for one reason or another.

Why is there are further discussion? Why does it take one lonely Representative to try to get the ball rolling. Why hasn't Congress already set up an investigation? Dick Cheney is now a private citizen. And the fact that he was once the worst vice president in history cuts no ice at all. He was not and is not above the law!

Because no one is doing anything as of yet, Rep. Dennis Kucinich has written a letter to the chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform requesting that "the Full Committee immediately begin an investigation to determine the facts in this matter."

Kucinich reiterates Hersh's conclusion: "Under President Bush's authority, they've been going into countries, not talking to the ambassador or the CIA station chief, and finding people on a list and executing them and leaving."

He also notes that "If true, these operations violate longstanding U.S. policy regarding covert actions and illegally bypass Congressional oversight."

Hello, Congress! Anybody home?

Alternet article here. The story has been all over the Internet. Click here for more.

Don't let me die, I don't wanta go to heaven!

[Image of hell from]

One of the things that Christian believers tend to throw in the face of non-believers is their hope for heaven. Life is senseless, believers say, unless you believe in a place where the good will be rewarded and the bad punished.

That isn't what "Christian" believers really believe, of course, because they are convinced they're going to heaven by virtue of their "faith" in the notion that some ancient Jewish guy died on a cross as a sacrifice for their sins. So, ultimately, their salvation doesn't have anything to do with whether one is a good or a bad person.

You would think that, based on their "saved by faith" doctrine, and their trust in the goodness of their god, Christian believers would look forward to departing this life and entering eternal life where they will sit at the throne of their maker.

Not so, according to a new study reported by BuzzFlash. This study, to be published by the AMA today, "looked at the correlation between intense religious beliefs and coping methods. Researchers followed 345 patients diagnosed with terminal cancer until their deaths."

Patients with intense religious beliefs wanted to die and go to heaven. Right?

Nope! "The study found that patients who described themselves as very religious were significantly more likely than non-religious to try to prolong their lives through the aggressive use of external devices such as ventilators. Religious participants were less likely to prepare for impending death by signing do not resuscitate orders, living wills or power of attorney agreements. Even when adjusting for a host of other factors, the study reported that 'religious coping remained a significant predictor of receiving intensive life-prolonging care near death.'"

Actually, from my experience with "true" believers, none of this surprises me at all. True believers cling to absolutism and dogmatism because they are insecure and unsure. Thus, their religious faith is an attempt to claw their way into heaven, but in Christianist circles, you can never be sure that you've got enough faith or have lived a faithful enough life.

There is always that truly frightening question that lurks in the back of their brains: "Am I really saved, or will I spend eternity in hell?"

When push comes to shove, therefore, Christianists would much rather stay alive right here on earth than depart for a realm which, in spite of their protestations to the contrary, is unknown and uncertain.

Read the entire BuzzFlash article here.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Climate change in the Arctic or Melting Ice

[Image of Columbia glacier from]

The Anchorage Daily News has provided a fascinating, if frightful glimpse, of climate change in the Arctic.

I wonder if Governor Palin knows about this? Oh, that's right. God told her there was no such thing as "climate change."

From the ADN: James Balog, a nature photographer, trudged off to the Arctic lugging "26 time-lapse cameras, which he programmed to sheet a frame every daylight hour for three years. The resulting images - which make up Balog's 'Extreme Ice Survey' project - show ice sheets including Alaska's Mendenhall and Columbia glaciers breaking apart and disappearing."

You can read more here.

The Extreme Ice Survey is here.

Somebody should run and tell Michael Steele, RNC chairman, that the world is melting.

More on Malmo

Muslim riots in Malmo, Sweden

Here's more on the Muslim problem in Malmo, Sweden

While I can't vouch for the accuracy of this video, I have read other reports which indicate that the Jewish community in Malmo feels besieged and many Jews are afraid to be so identified; in fact they are afraid to walk the streets of the city with any clothing or jewelry which would indicate they are Jews.

The Pope speaks out on condom use

Now, if you wanted to know about condom use and its effectiveness or the lack thereof, especially in Africa which is rife with AIDS, where would you think to go for such information?

Of course! You would hike your bony little bottom right up to the Vatican, and there you would seek a private audience with his majesty, Pope Benedict XVI, known in a previous incarnation as "the Rat."

You would do this because you realize that only old, celibate men running around in dresses know about such things. So, ask God's vicar on earth. Go ahead. See what he says!

"Condoms are not the answer to AIDS on the African continent. You can't solve the problem with the distribution of condoms. In fact, it increases the problem."

There, from the mouth of God to the brain of the Pope to you! How exciting is that?

Except the Pope is WRONG! The Pope doesn't know what he's talking about! The Pope must have got his wires crossed and was talking with James Dobson instead of God.

Jimmer, at Gods4suckers, tells us what Rebecca Hodes of the Treatment Action Campaign in South Africa has to say about this misguided papal pronouncement:

"...his [Pope Benedict's] opposition to condoms conveys that religious dogma is more important to him than the lives of Africans."

Of course it does, but that should not be surprising for that is the way it has always been in the Roman Catholic Church, forever and ever, world without end, amen!

Jimmer points out that Hodes did note "that the pope is correct that condoms are not the sole solution to Africa's AIDS epidemic ... [but] they are one of the very few HIV prevention mechanisms proven to work."

That's misleading, though, for the Pope was not talking about condoms as being the "sole" solution. He was talking about any condom use.

Jimmer puts it rightly: The Pope's opposition "is part and parcel of the ideology of superstition and ignorance that we have been fighting since time began. The wilful disregard for actual life is a symptom of the need for the sociopaths to promote a belief that is only sustained by abject indifference to suffering which they have reframed as sacrifice.

"The Pope has in one sentence effectively sentenced thousands and perhaps millions of Africans to their slow painful deaths. Way to go Ratzi. You are the scum of the earth.

"Unfortunately, he is not alone. In the USA our fundies have the very same attitude and would have you 'believe' that abstinence is the answer. Many politicians agree and have voted to continue the Faith-based programs started by Bush. Our tax dollars [are] being spent on failure and ignorance."

Islamic imbeciles

I've read numerous articles in the past several years about the infusion of Muslims into the Scandinavian countries, in particular Sweden. In every case, where Muslims have reached a significant portion of the population, they have pressured the authorities for special privileges, and demanded these privileges be paid for by the state.

For example, in the public schools, they demand they be allowed to wear religious garb, be given time to participate in their prayers, and have special classes to study the Qur'an.

Malmo, in southern Sweden, has experienced tremendous difficulties from its growing Muslim community. That's a story in and of itself.

England is another case in point. Barry Duke, in an article entitled, "Who will rid us of this Islamic imbecile?" at The Freethinker, describes an Islamic fanatic, Anjem Choudary, who is insisting that Britain be placed under Sharia law.

"Anjem Choudary said he wanted the 'flag of Allah' flying over Downing Street, all women wearing burkhas and caning for drunkenness."

Duke relates that Choudary "is the leader of Ahlus Sunnah wal Jamaah, founded as a successor to the banned fundamentalist sect al-Mahajiroun, which was led by now-exiled preacher Omar Bakri Muhammad.

"Choudray, 41, who fancies himself a 'judge' in some pathetic outfit called the 'Sharia Court of the UK' admitted his followers had organised protests against British soldiers in Luton, waving placards which called them 'murderers' for their conduct in Iraq."

Here's Choudray notion of what he calls his "alternative morality":

"A pure Islamic state with Sharia law in Britain. Every woman, whether Muslim or non-Muslim, would have to wear a traditional burka and cover everything apart from her face and hands in public.

"In matters to do with the judicial system and the penal code, one male witness is sufficient to counter the testimony of two females. People who commit adultery would be stoned to death."

The fact that this asshole is able to actually make such comments and think he will be taken seriously is a demonstration of what happens when you give in to the least of Muslim fundamentalist demands.

We are having some of the same problems in communities in the United States. And this kind of bullshit is only going to grow in the future as more and more Muslims find their way to our country.

Just say "no." No to any special privileges based on their religion. Just say "Absolutely Not!" This is a country where there is no recognition of any religion! They can worship Allah or any other god in their mosques and in their homes. The cannot demand nor be given special privileges in our schools or other institutions. Our laws under the Constitution remain in play for all people!

And if they don't like it, point them to the nearest ship leaving for Saudi Arabia!

There's more on Choudary here. Another of my articles on the Muslim infection here.

Video from Times Online.

The surreal world of AIG

Edward M. Liddy is not to blame for AIG's pernicious affairs, but as CEO, he's gonna catch some hell when he sits down today before Congress to try to defend the multi-million dollar bonuses AIG paid out with taxpayer dollars.

AIG, like so many of its counterparts, lives in a surreal world that most of us cannot even begin to comprehend; not in our wildest dreams. It isn't any wonder that the people running such companies have no clue as to life in the real world.

AIG is so big and so convoluted and so intertwined and enmeshed in our financial system, that it simply could not be allowed to go under. Joe's Repair Shop, on the other hand, really doesn't matter, and when the Republicans were in charge they made it almost impossible for Joe to get out from under his crushing debt, while at the same time they cut taxes for the folks running AIG and similar examples of capitalism run amok.

Thus, AIG got $170 billion of your dollars and mine to stay afloat. There were no controls put on that money and no oversight. So, the first thing these corporate criminals did was spend $90 billion of those funds to "pay out to foreign and domestic banks, including some that had multibillion-dollar U.S. government bailouts of their own."

The second thing they did was spend $200 million in bonuses to the nogoodniks who created the mess in the first place. That's not a very big piece of the $170 BILLION pie, but as someone once said, "It's the principle of the thing."

Furthermore, when one steps down from the cloud of high finance, one is faced with the fact the the huge majority of people in this country will never come close to seeing $1 million dollars. With AIG, we're talking about BONUSES. They already got their regular pay!

What Liddy is going to tell Congress today is that AIG had no choice, that the bonuses were contractual obligations.

Congress, I hope, will laugh in his face and say "Return the goddamn money or we're gonna run all your asses in jail for defrauding the United States of America."

Congress won't do that, of course. But members of the august body are pissed, so there will be repercussions.

And isn't it interesting that corporations routinely use financial distress as a means of breaking or dismantling union contracts, but when executives are involved, contracts are sacrosant?

When the ship is sinking because the ones in charge of keeping it afloat failed to do their job, one does not pay them extra money merely because contracts were signed back when everything seemed to be hunky-dory!

Some Congressional types want to place an extra income tax of say 35% on all bonuses over $50,000. That's funny. Millions of people in our country don't make close to $50K in one year!

I'd say stop screwing around. Tell AIG and its executives, "Return the money now or go to jail for fraud."

The other alternative of course, is to put Cheney back in the While House and have him run a covert "Executive Assassination" squad like he did under Chimpy.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

How to drive politically

Thanks to Fergie's Dribble.

Palin the prevaricator to preach to Repugs - UPDATED!

[According to McClatchy, Palin's office indicates she has not agreed to be the keynote speaker at the Republican fundraiser in June; in fact, she has not decided to even attend the dinner. Somebody sure got their signals crossed. Repugnicans in Texas, of course, are so dumb they don't know signals from pigtails.]

On June 8, the annual Senate-House dinner will be held in Washington, D.C. This is a Republican fundraiser-type dinner. It is to raise funds to help Repugnicans get elected to Congress.

Sarah Palin has been invited to be the keynote speaker at this auspicious event, which will be attended by all the nogoodnik, backward, nasty, christianist Repugnicans in town. She has accepted.

What is Sarah going to talk about? Of course, this is a cheerleading job and she's already proven her worth in that position, but cheerleading only goes so far. I guess she could relate once again how she sold her jet on eBay, or how she reads all the newspapers, or how she can see Alaska from her house.

She could go into detail as to why she never released her medical records, and she could reveal the truth as to what the hell happened to those clothes that cost the RNC a ton of money, or she might further discuss how Levi was not supposed to be working in the oil field 'cause he didn't have a diploma, and she might explain what happened to that young couple--Redneck Levi and daughter Bristol--of whom she was so proud because they were going to raise their baby up right.

Palin could further relate once again how she is innocent of abusing her office even though she was deemed guilty of doing just that, and she might describe how she's so desperately against earmarks, except when they provide funds for Wasilla or when they help to build a bridge to nowhere.

Sarah might also tell us how she wasn't really a drag on the Repugnican ticket in 2008 because John McCain is plain lame and his controllers had too tight a control on her, and if she'd only been able to get out and talk to the press more theywould have probably won the election.

She could try to take credit for finding Sam or Joe the plumber.

Perhaps she could emphasize all the qualities that made her fit to be vice president and thus would have made her fit to step into the Oval Office had McCain won and then kicked the bucket; or she might indicate to the Repugnican clowns in attendance at this dinner how she has a PAC going and will no doubt be running for prezident in 2012 'cause she's so smart and has all these great ideas.

Oh, another thing: she might explain how she was opposed to the stimulus, but now can't wait to get her grubby little hands (tainted with gunpowder residue) on the money; and she might explain how Alaska's economy is going down the tubes; and that there really is no gas pipeline in sight; and how nobody in their right mind would drill in the ANWR, and how she doesn't give a shit about polar bears or melting ice or global warming, and how the Tanana school district is $200,000 in the red and now must decide either to pay the bills or pay the teachers, and she could further explain how through her financial genius-like mind she's going to help that school district, which is soon to be replicated by hundreds of school districts throughout her state.

But do not weep for Sarah. The Repugs think she's the Virgin Mary or the equivalent - even though most of them are Protestant rightwingnuts.

John Cornyn, who's from Texas, and one of the more notorious morons in the Senate, said this (try to control your laughter):

"Governor Palin has quickly emerged as one of the most popular and recognizable faces in the Republican Party, and we are honored to have her deliver the keynote address at the Senate-House dinner. [We've asked her not to wink, though! Nah, he didn't say that.] As a proven leader [note "proven"] in her home state of Alaska, Gov. Palin represents a breath of fresh air from the business-as-usual crowd in Washington, and is one of our party's up-and-coming young governors who will play a critical role in our re-building efforts in the years to come. [Omigod! Breath of fresh air? Please! She's G. W. Bush in a dress, only maybe dumber!] Last fall, she electrified and energized crowds across the country [that's true: millions of people voted for Obama because they were terrified of this wolf-killer from the north!] and we expect she will generate a similar amount of enthusiasm at this spring's dinner."

Heh. Heh. Maybe she will generate "enthusiasm." Unfortunately, what the Republican Party needs is a code of ethics, a concern for the people of the country instead of their corporate benefactors, and some real ideas - cutting taxes for the rich doesn't cut it.

If the Republican Party is putting its hopes on Sarah Palin, a Pentecostal theocrat who believes that this is a Christian country and should be ruled by the laws of the god of the Bible, and who's dumber than a sack of bricks, it is in deep ca-ca.

Of course, Palin would only be a figure-head anyway. She'd be taking orders from Rush Limbaargh!

Michael Steele - Up in flames

There is just no hope for the Repugnican Party.

Michael Steele, chair of the RNC, guest-hosted wingnut Bill Bennett's radio program on March 6. It was an exercise in self-destruction.

According to Sam Stein at the Huff Post, Steele committed such sins as comparing Barack Obama to Richard Nixon, suggesting that the present political situation was "Armageddon between conservatism and liberalism" among other things.

Perhaps the most interesting and idiotic of the "other things" Steele said, was that our planet is not warming but cooling! Yup. That's what he said!

It went down like this: Someone called into the program and made fun of the idea of global warming. Steele's come-back was:

"Thank you, thank you. We are cooling. We are not warming. The warming you see out there, the supposed warming, and I am using my finger quotation marks here, is part of the cooling process. Greenland, which is now covered in ice, it was once called Greenland for a reason, right? Iceland, which is now green. Oh I love this. Like we know what this planet is all about. How long have we been here? How long? No very long."

The man is a MORON! As Stein points out, "Greenland...likely had forestation some 450,000 to 800,000 years ago. But its name was derived ... from Erik the Red, who wanted to trick people into going to that island as opposed to the more hospitable Iceland."

There's much more and you can read all of Stein's article here.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Will the Canadians arrest G. W. Bush?

George W. is supposed to give a speech on St. Patrick's day (March 17) in Calgary, Alberta.

It appears that his dream of making "ridiculous" money out the former president lecture money trail is about to come true.

Or not.

There are certain lawyers and human rights folks in Canada working to persuade the Canadian government to bar him from entering the country, and if he should weasel his way in, have George arrested.

According to Ben Armbruster at Think Progress, "Vancouver Lawyer Gail Davidson said the government has an obligation under the law to ban Bush from entering Canada because of his role in supporting torture..."

It seems that Canada has a law restricting entry for those perps who have "committed war crimes or crimes against humanity, including torture." Davidson says, "The test isn't whether the person's been convicted but whether there's reasonable grounds to think that they have been involved."

Ooops. Seems that is the case with George W. He has, indeed, been "credibly accused" of being involved in torture.

Armbruster notes that last year, "Manfred Nowak, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture, urged the U.S. to pursue Bush and Donald Rumsfeld on charges that they authorized torture and other harsh interrogation techniques. Indeed, Bush himself said last year that he was aware of his advisers' discussion on torture and recently admitted that he personally authorized waterboarding Khalid Sheik Muhammad."

It shall be interesting to see how this plays out. Davidson's law firm does not intend to back down or quit: "...we want him to go back to the States, or we want him arrested, said an organizer for Canadian activists.

Sounds good to me.

Read Armbruster's entire article here.

Ann Coulter - the worst person in the world - ever?

Thanks to Video Cafe

Screw the people says SC Gov. Mark Sanford

Thanks to Video Cafe

The Obama's church membership

The church membership of the Obama family seems to be a major concern for a number of people.

McClatchy carried a long article on this "situation" yesterday, noting that the President and family "are considering joining several churches of various denominations in the nation's capital but have yet to settle on one, and aides say they're unlikely to decide before Easter."

You may recall earlier in the year, while still on the campaign trail, certain wingnuts were pissed off about candidate Obama because he often did not attend worship services on Sunday mornings, and sometimes, gasp!, he went to work out a gym instead.

The problem of church membership has gone from the sublime to the ridiculous...Obama and his aides are "vetting" churches. Heh. Heh.

If he has to join a church, I'd suggest the Episcopal Church. The Episcopalians are high on pomp and ceremony and not much else so no raggedy old clergy will crowd his mind with nonsense questions like WWJD (What would Jesus do?).

We've had enough of presidents trying to follow Jesus. That's what got us into Iraq, rendition, torture and illegal assassination squads run out of Cheney's office.

In fact, the problem could be easily solved. Don't join any church. Don't go to church. This is a secular country; be secular. There is nothing in any church that is going to help President Obama run the country. If he feels the need to discuss things with his god, he can do that in the privacy of the Oval Office or the Presidential bedroom.

Not joining a church would also send a hopeful message to the growing numbers of people who do not identify with a religious institution and as well as the growing number who have given up religious faith entirely to base their lives on common sense and reason.

Clergy types in Washington, of course, don't see it that way. Derrick Harkins, of Nineteenth Street Baptist pompously postulated that "It's a personal decision [the hell it is!], and it's a prayerful decision. They need to listen to God in terms of how that unfolds for them."


How does that work, exactly? Does the voice of God come down from heaven in the middle of the night booming out, "GO TO NEW YORK AVENUE PRESBYTERIAN!", or does Obama suddenly wake up in the middle of a speech by Joe Lieberman and realize that God wants him to attend the Episcopal Church of the Epiphany?

Heh. Heh.

Stay home Sunday mornings, President Obama. Spend quality time with your family away from the roar of the crowd and the aromas of the too-washed and heavily perfumed. Go bowling in the basement. Watch a little FOX News and laugh. I mean are there any bigger clowns in town than the Repugnicans?

Nobody really cares if you go to church or not except for the christianist wingnuts and you've lost them already! They're totally convinced you are a socialist, the most dangerous man ever, the anti-Christ, a communist, and a sleeper mole for the "international Jewish conspiracy." Furthermore, they know you weren't born in the USA! And they've got the Bible verses to prove it.


Special privileges for Muslims

It seems that wherever and whenever Muslim presence in a country/community gets to a certain density, they push for special privileges based upon their religion.

This has been true in France, the United Kingdom, Sweden and other countries, and we are seeing the same thing happen in the United States.

Case in point: Portland, Maine. "Maine's courts and the Cumberland County Jail are modifying their rules regarding head coverings in order to accommodate the practices of Muslims and people of other faiths." [What other faiths? Sikhs? Orthodox Jews? People who worship cows, known as the Faith of our Farmers?]

"Under the new policy, defendants, inmates and visitors will no longer be required to remove scarves or other head coverings that are required by religious custom. ...

"Since 2005, the jail has detained 538 declared Muslims who were arrested locally or held for federal authorities."

This is, quite frankly, bullshit. Since when does the religious law of one group of people trump the laws of our nation and communities? What if a member of a religion that required someone to carry a knife in a turban is arrested? Or what about those religions that require males to wear a sock on their cock? Or those religions that stuff grass up their ass?

Let's carry it further. Let's say one of these Muslims interprets the Qur'an as instructing him to beat his wife with a stick. He's arrested for assault with a deadly weapon. Shall we dismiss the case because assaulting his wife is part of his religious custom?

With a growing Muslim presence in many of our communities, this issue is not going to go away. Nor is it going to be solved by kowtowing to the demands of the Imams. They have proved over and over again that if you give an inch they'll take a mile and then want more!

The laws of our communities must apply equally to all people. They must not be changed to grant special privilege or accommodate the religious sensibilities of particular minorities. Discrimination is one thing; special privilege is another.

Muslims who demand special privileges relative to our educational system (and they do!) or legal system, should be denied.

This is a secular country and there is no establishment of religion.

If they don't like it, there's always Saudi Arabia.

h/t to God is for Suckers