Saturday, December 18, 2010

Quote of the Day

And of course, there was Senator John McCain and his decade-long passion project that closely resembles Andres Serrano's "Piss Christ," except that the "Christ" is replaced by "everything McCain ever had that vaguely resembled a principle or something in which a human being would normally take pride." McCain moved goalposts and shifted standards and broke promises and basically demonstrated himself to be an implacable heel.
But, you know what, the less said about McCain, the better. Let's hang another "L" around his neck and move on.
~Jason Linkins' on John McCain during his observations of those opposed to the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell.

DADT Repealed!

The final vote was 65-31. Eight Republicans voted in favor of repeal.

More to follow.

Must Reads

Frank Rich: Gay Bashing at The Smithsonian

Ishmael Reed: What Progressives Don’t Understand About Obama

Matt Osborne: When Commitment to Jane Hamsher Supercedes Critical Thinking

Carlos A. Ball: Right-Wing Hypocrisy on "Judicial Activism"

Bob Cesca: Are Progressives Losing Touch With Reality?

Karoli: Recipe for Broken Government

Gail Collins: The Crying Game

The Rude Pundit: Kyl and DeMint: Baby Jesus Doesn't Want Us to Pass the START Treaty Right Now

Eric W. Dolan: Sen. Durbin blasts GOP horror at $1.1 trillion: ‘That’s exactly the amount they asked for’

Cowardice and Courage

Here are the 5 Democrats who voted to block the DREAM Act:

Max Baucus, Montana
Kay Hagan, North Carolina
Ben Nelson, Nebraska
Mark Pryor, Arkansas
Jon Tester, Montana

Credit where credit is due, Republicans voting in favor:

Bob Bennett, Utah
Dick Lugar, Indiana
Lisa Murkowski, Alaska

For those who don't know, the DREAM Act is "a bill that would create a path to citizenship for certain illegal immigrant students who came to the United States as children, completed two years of college or military service and met other requirements including passing a criminal background check."

So basically, they can fight and die for us, but let them earn citizenship? Nah.

President Obama's Weekly Address - December 18, 2010

National Security Over Politics on START

Friday, December 17, 2010

Actual Journalism... By a Comedian

ADDING... I love that Stewart called out guest Mike Huckabee on his bullshit when he at first tried to say that the Democrats shouldn't have added this legislation in with another bill (they didn't - it's a stand-alone bill) and then tried to sell the idea that the Democrats were politicizing the bill (they didn't - although they should have by pointing out that the G-9/11-O-9/11-P co-opts September 11th any chance they get). Watch the Huckabee interview here.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Boehner Bug is Catching

Bob Feller Dies at 92

NY Times: Bob Feller, who came off an Iowa farm with a dazzling fastball that made him a national celebrity at 17 and propelled him to the Hall of Fame as one of baseball’s greatest pitchers, died Wednesday at a hospice. He was 92.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Actual Work = War On Christmas

"It is impossible to do all of the things that the majority leader laid out without doing -- frankly, without disrespecting the institution and without disrespecting one of the two holiest of holidays for Christians and the families of all of the Senate, not just the senators themselves but all of the staff."
~ Republican Arizona Senator Jon Kyl on the possibility of working between Christmas and New Year's Day... like most Americans do.
Well, Senator Kyl, if you had been working all year long instead of sitting on your hands, holding your breath and saying no to every piece of legislation that has come down the pike (over 400 House bills already passed await the Senate), maybe you wouldn't find yourself in this predicament. Suck it up, jackass, and try doing the work you were elected to do. I don't remember you campaigning on your "do nothing" strategy.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Steele's Not Going Down Without A Fight

AP: Embattled Republican Party chairman Michael Steele announced Monday that he will seek a second term despite a rocky two years marked by allegations of financial mismanagement and frequent verbal gaffes.
This is going to get interesting.

Real Americans?


There are a thousand things I take issue with when it comes to Sarah Palin. Maybe a million. But what's got me thinking today is this "real Americans" crap she spews as if she somehow gets to define what that means. She never really comes right out and says what she thinks a "real American" is or what her declaration means. Is she defining the term in order to say some people don't belong here or something? I don't get it. I don't get the purpose of this other than to be divisive and arrogant and politicizing.

I hate that we are a country that actually fights over who is more patriotic, spiritual, moral. What? No single party loves the flag or Constitution more than an other (although it could be argued that the self-appointed Constitution defenders are trying to warp and misrepresent it but that's another post).

But it's this subtle thing Palin does that pits her view of what makes someone a "real American" versus the fact that the Constitution defines the true meaning rather well (although I think those who want to repeal the 14th amendment actually have a problem with section four, but again, that's another post). Forget that there are people in this country who are not yet legal citizens who care a great deal about this country and support it, defend it, etc., she is consistently calling into question actual Americans' place in this country.

Aside from her views on what liberty and freedom mean, let's just look at one theme she promotes:

Alaskans do things no other Americans do thus they are "real Americans". I watched her show the other night, it was actually a lot of fun for a Palin-despiser to watch. There were moments that people who know the truth about her could find telling and humorous. I am not sure how many times she contradicted herself right there on TV for the world to see. But the moments that irked me were the moments I may turn into a drinking game. I think I'll take a swig every time she implies that only Alaskans [insert hobby, skill, family value here]. You would think, after watching last week's camping episode, that ONLY Alaskans camp. Only Alaskans camp where bears are wild. Only Alaskans camp in the rain. The only difference between millions of Americans who have done any and/or all of those things is we don't choose to go camping somewhere that requires an air-taxi. But then again, I imagine most "real Alaskans" don't NEED to take an air-taxi to go camping. Looking at that state, reading about it, hell, even watching her show, I get the impression you can get to a camping site just by heading to the outskirts of town.

Apparently, only Alaskans (or maybe it's only Palins) treat camping as a family bonding experience. Apparently, people from other states have never learned the precious arts of pitching a tent, lighting a fire and roasting marshmallows while fishing along the bank of a river. You may want to tell companies like REI that they should pull up and relocate all their stores to Alaska because, according to Palin, that's an Alaska thing.

And don't get her started on New Yorkers. Boy, those New York elite don't know the first thing about family bonding or camping or cold weather. They are too wealthy, all of those New Yorkers, to know what it means to hunt for your food. Then again, neither does Palin -- there is a Super Target in Wasilla after all.

At the root of all this is a question I ask myself over and over. Shouldn't a "real American" value all of the states? Shouldn't there be more pride in America as a whole rather than pitting one state against another? Shouldn't we cherish what a vast and amazing country we live in? We have so much history and shared experiences. We also have so many opportunities to learn new things, share unfamiliar traditions, celebrate people's experiences that are different from ours.

Perhaps my view comes from the fact that I, like many Americans, have lived in more than one state. I have lived on the east coast, the west coast and the southwest. My experiences of this country have been formed in red states and blue states and purple states. I have known hunters and tree huggers, atheists and Christians, Hungarians and Brazilians, liberals and conservatives. My view of "real America" is one of many. You know, e pluribus unum. I believe in that.

As beautiful as Alaska is. As much as I think it has a lot to offer those of us who have never gone there, I think Palin is doing her home state a disservice. By pitting states against one another, she is insulting the precious things other states have to offer. While doing that, she also caricatures Alaskans based on her image (which by watching her show you can see is a false image at that). And in the meantime, she is dividing all Americans among some imaginary line that only she defines. Her dog whistles of creating others out of fellow Americans is one of her platforms. And as she continues down the path of wanting to play a significant role in this country, I hope more Americans get tired of her loyalty to one state at the disrespect of the others.

Sarah Palin has this idea that Alaskans are misunderstood or under-appreciated and she thinks she is on some mission to change that. But if she wants to be President of the United States, she needs to find some ounce of genuine curiosity in her and go on a LISTENING tour of all the states. She needs to stop trying to compare others as worse than Alaska or just like Alaska and start seeing other states, other Americans as valuable and real. But she won't. She will continue on book tours and self-promotion tours and anti-Obama tours and raising money tours. She wants to judge Americans as real or not real. But all she's doing is making a real problem.

Jon Stewart Responds to 9/11 Non-Responders

Monday, December 13, 2010


"[Palin would] have to show me a lot more than I've seen thus far, as far as an understanding of the depth and the complexity of the issues that we face. I mean I don't know her personally so I can't comment on that, I mean she was a governor, but the fact that she left office before even completing her first term, it's just not an attitude that I think is necessarily in the best interest of your constituents, rather what's in your own best interest."
~ Former New Jersey governor Christine Todd Whitman
Eagerly awaiting a Palin response via tweet or Facebook. ...Catfight?

Wikileaks SNL Style

Fluff Piece of the Year

What happened to 60 Minutes? Wasn't this supposed to be the upper echelon of investigative journalism? Isn't 60 Minutes where the hard questions are asked?  Well anyone watching last night's interview with the next Speaker of the House would think that they were watching a story on Inside Edition rather than anything worthy of a spot on the once intrepid investigative journalism show.

Through John Boehner's blubbering, we found out he was one of twelve children, he met his wife while working as a night janitor to pay his way through college, and he hates the word "compromise."  In fact, he rejects the word altogether because it sounds like you're selling out. "Finding common ground" is an acceptable phrase however. He wouldn't even say the word. Couldn't bring himself to do it.  Is this a serious man?

Where were the questions on the Republicans' opposition to DADT? Why, if they're serious about deficit reduction, did they insist on extending the tax cuts to the top two percent of income earners at the expense of holding up extended unemployment benefits in Obama's compromise, or better yet, letting all the tax cuts expire?  Boehner showed he was bothered by President Obama's use of the phrase "hostage takers" saying it showed a lack of respect. But where was Boehner's respect for Obama when they rejected an initial invitation to the White House to discuss the path forward after the November elections?

But no such questions in last night's fluff piece in where most of America gets to meet (probably for the first time) John Boehner. All they saw was an admirable, pull yourself up by the bootstraps guy with a penchant for sobbing. It's a shame that he doesn't remember the roots he fought so hard to climb out of when denying others help by blocking critical legislation.

Oh, and one more thing about the crying issue. I don't care that he cries. What I do care about is the double standard. If Nancy Pelosi had slobbered all over herself one tenth as much as this guy has, she would have been vilified as an overemotional, unstable woman. But Boehner? Well, shit, he's just a regular Joe who loves America and is living the American Dream! He's allowed a little leeway in the waterworks department.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Michael Steele Out

Failing to provide a gaffe per week over these last couple of months, RNC Chairman Michael Steele wasn't "feelin' it" anymore and it looks like he won't run for a second term.

Fare thee well, Michael. Fare thee well.