Saturday, September 1, 2012

Must Reads

Dana Milbank: Isaac brushes past an obsolete convention

Eugene Robinson: Republicans steal Medicare from the Democrats

Joan Walsh: Rick Santorum’s dirty hands

Ari Melber: Paul Ryan needs to rebrand himself

Harold Meyerson: In modern GOP, the old South returns

Charles P. Pierce: The Manufacturing of Willard Romney, Human, Is Here

John Nichols: Paul Ryan's Labor Day Promise to American Workers: Candy and a Sports Schedule

What's Wrong with Ron Christie?

I watched Real Time with Bill Maher last night. After taking a break from Maher for most of last year because I felt he was always 10 days to 2 weeks behind on facts and perhaps had gotten a little lazy on preparation for his show, I figured I had to watch immediately after the GOP Convention just for a couple of laughs. I wasn't disappointed.

He obliterated Dinesh D'Souza while interviewing him and called him out for every bullshit meme that douchebag put in his anti-Obama movie. Catch a repeat if you can. But the main thing that caught my attention was the panel discussion: Jason Alexander, Soledad O'Brien and one of my favorite people to hate, Ron Christie.

When Christie was front and center a few years ago, it would me my blood boil. And he seemed to be on every fucking taking head show there was. He's such a hard line Republican that there was no use debating/arguing with him on any point, regardless of facts. If Darth Cheney came out and said the sky was green, Christie would deny his lying eyes and argue green skies to the death.
I just came to the conclusion that this was the role he was being paid for and that he couldn't possibly believe the bullshit pouring out of his mouth. Just like it's an act for Sean Hannity, I felt the same about Ron Christie. And for me personally, that makes me despise that person even more; there's no conviction or honesty in what they say. It's just a little game, being a paid shill for the GOP.

But watching Christie tonight, after not seeing him for so long, perhaps because his 15 minutes were up or he had a moment of clarity on the air and was subsequently fired as a GOP surrogate (but I doubt that) I tried to give him a fresh start. And wouldn't you know it, that little fucker is still the towing the GOP line always was- but this time I felt differently.

I used to think he was a paid shill, but now I truly think he actually believes what he says. ...I know right?! I was shocked too! The $716 billion Medicare story came up and Christie denounced President Obama's awful $716 billion Medicare "cut" but defended Paul Ryan's $716 billion Medicare "savings," and no amount of explanation that the savings were the same was going to change Christie's mind. Nope. Obama's cut bad. Ryan's savings good.
Bill Maher: So let me ask this panel, do you think we’ve ever seen lies like this [from politicians like Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney]? Because it’s one thing to slant things, all politicians do that, but to just pull out of your ass…I mean Mitt Romney went through…Obama ‘s apologizing around the world — Fact checkers: no — Raising taxes on the middle class — Not true — Cutting defense — He’s only raised it. — Uh, you know, wrecked our credit rating — Welfare work requirement…he got rid of that — No, he didn’t do that — Robbing Medicare… Just a series of total lies. Have we seen this before? 
Soledad O’Brien: I don’t know if we’ve seen it before, but what I think you are seeing is people trying to get control of the message, that sort of the veracity doesn’t matter, right? If you can just say it and say it often, say it enough, and say it loud enough, and just keep repeating it and have everyone around you repeating it, then eventually it becomes true. I think that we’ve seen that a lot in this campaign. 
Bill Maher: Well now you’re describing what Hitler did. I’m not saying the Republicans are Hitler, but Hitler famously said the big lie works and the little lie doesn’t. 
Ron Christie: Well I think the big lie here is we need to fact check the fact checkers. The fact of the matter is the media has been running around – audience disapproval – the media has been running around saying Paul Ryan has been lying. The fact of the matter is this: President Obama and his plan Obamacare took $716 billion out under Medicare Advantage, he took it out of hospitals, and he took it out of the insurance program, and he programmed that into Obamacare. That’s true.
While this is technically true, what's misleading is that it's a cost savings over future spending curbing the increasing costs, not a cut in current spending. The part of Christie's sentence "took $716 billion out under Medicare Advantage" is purposely misleading. You know, it's that fiscal responsibility Republicans constantly beat their chests about but never really put into practice. But I'm done with this. Unlike Republicans, I'm not going to beat a dead horse while simultaneously beating my head against the wall.

When the issue of climate change came up, Christie wondered why it was such a cudgel on both sides, and wished we could just "agree to disagree." The science is not still out on this! And the English scientist email conspiracy theory has been thoroughly debunked as Christie was reminded by Maher when he tried to make that an issue. But at this point I wasn't so much angry as I was dumbfounded.

How does a seemingly intelligent person like Ron Christie deny global warming? How is it that one can be so ingrained in their ideology that solid, scientific facts are nothing but a conspiracy theory in their eyes? How did his brain develop to the point that if he and others like him in his party, which looks like a vast majority of them at this point, don't believe or understand something, then they outright just refuse it? Or that they are so willing to believe a lie from someone they respect, but when confronted with the truth, with facts staring them in the face even by nonpartisan entities, it just doesn't sink in?

No matter how many times they are confronted with pure fact, it's dismissed which makes trying to have a conversation or debate with Republicans, teabaggrs and Obama haters so frustrating. Paraphrasing Maher, how can you have a debate when you can't agree on the facts?

Ron Christie believes Paul Ryan because he wants to believe Paul Ryan. But all those reporters actually doing their jobs for a change and reporting the lies? Nu-uh. He said someone should "fact check the fact checkers." ...What? Well, then who's going to fact check the fact checkers checking the fact checkers when you still don't get the result you want?! It's all talking in circles. It's birtherism at the next level. Insist on a birth certificate, but when it's provided, insist it's a forgery. Ask for the long form and when it's provided, insist it's a forgery. They will never be satisfied.

It must be nice to live in your own little bubble, blissfully unaware that maybe, just maybe you might be wrong.

 (Cross-posted on ABLC)

President Obama's Weekly Address - September 1, 2012

Honoring Our Nation’s Service Members and Military Families

Friday, August 31, 2012

Remember When McCain's Campaign was Erratic


I remember when the Obama campaign (and several newspapers) called the McCain Campaign erratic. Those were the good ol' days. Now we are watching Romney run a half-assed campaign. Or maybe it's amateur campaign. Or maybe it's a taking-too-much-for-granted campaign. I don't even know how to label what it is they are doing. My brain is wiggly like Jell-o trying to articulate the lack of energy, clarity, cohesiveness and any sense of forethought. It's as if the Romney campaign is ADHD and lazy at the same time. They make decisions on the fly while lounging like a couch potato. I just don't get what the fuck they are doing.

At the convention, they had Ann Romney say it's all about love then Christie came out and said SCREW love. That was like totally awkward.

Then last night I watched the convention bio piece about Romney and actually thought it accomplished a lot in telling the Romney story. It had touching and funny and interesting moments. 
THEN I learned that the Romney campaign decided to have the networks air Clint Eastwood rather than Romney's bio piece. A) Clint Eastwood isn't the one running for POTUS. B) EVERYONE knows that Romney has been running for 6 years and Americans STILL have no idea what he's about. C) The GOP mocks celebrities yet chose to prioritize a celebrity over their candidate. D) Clint came off like a man entering dementia. 

E) What they fuck are they thinking!?!?!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Paul Ryan the Liar

Man... and I thought Mitt Romney was bad.

By now you've heard all the fact checkers debunk the misleading claims and flat out lies in the Ryan speech last night at the GOP Convention's Meet the Shiny New VP Nominee segment, for the majority who haven't been paying attention. But you have to hand it to the Obama camp to put out a video like this so soon.


(Cross-posted at ABLC)

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Still Doth Protest Too Much


Remember when Sarah Palin said Game Change was full of lies and distortions and also and too so she wouldn't watch it? Well, I've seen that movie a couple of times now and I'm confused. Because either it was spot-on on or she has seen it and come close to plagiarism. You see, tonight Fox News canceled her appearances and she ain't too happy about it. She took to Facebook tonight to express her disappointment.

I’m sorry Fox cancelled all my scheduled interviews tonight because I sure wanted to take the opportunity on the air to highlight Senator John McCain’s positive contributions to America, to honor him, and to reflect on what a biased media unfairly put him through four years ago tonight. Granted, our honored and esteemed war hero has gone through much more than the liberal media can ever do to him in their efforts to harm this patriot. I look forward to hearing his words to his fellow Americans tonight more than any of the other convention speeches. God bless John McCain. Thank you for everything. And happy birthday, my friend.

- Sarah Palin

 And this is from the movie, Game Change
Schmidt: I understand you've prepared a speech. Is that correct?
Palin: Yes I have. I want to salute John for everything he's done for this country.
Schmidt: That's not gonna happen. You're not giving the speech.
Palin: I can't wait to get out there and thank you. I have a speech written that is a real tribute to ya.
McCain: No, I think these guys have that covered. Right, Steve?
Schmidt: Yes, sir, we have it covered.
Palin: I just want people to know what a great man you are.
I dunno. Seems to me she pulls the same stunt over and over again. Or she got the idea from the movie about her she says wasn't true and that she didn't watch.

It's Official: Rush Limbaugh Is Back On Drugs

He HAS to be, otherwise how can these batshit crazy comments be taken even remotely seriously?

So... Obama was in cahoots with the National Weather Service to falsify the track of Hurricane Isaac in order to fuck over the first day of the GOP Convention in Tampa, and the people who really WERE in harms way were basically shrugged off and considered collateral damage just to ruin some delegation fun in Florida.

And millions of people take this asshole seriously for three hours on a daily basis.

Obama DOES Get the American Dream


I am a small business owner -- well in the least income-generating sense of the word. I work all by myself in my house and have yet to make a profit. But I collect state sales taxes, fulfill orders and have customers. So, technically, I am a small business owner who created one job -- my own.

But before that I was a stay-at-home mom and before that I worked as a teacher's aide in special education and before that I worked in advertising and before that I worked temp jobs and before that I worked in escrow and before that I worked at a video store.

Do you see a trend? My trend is most likely your trend. Very few Americans actually create a business or jobs. Only something like 18% of Americans have their own business (every link I found states the overall rate but all the reports are about segments compared to the overall).

So why is it President Obama is being made out to be someone who doesn't understand the American Dream when more than 80% of us understand him far better than we understand Mitt Romney? (Obviously, that is a TOTALLY rhetorical question.)

As a business owner I am getting REALLY tired of hearing implications that Barack Obama is worthless because he never created anything. Because if that's the case, my husband is worthless. And my parents. And my grandparents. And my aunts and uncles. I have a cousin who started her own business -- but ironically she's a speech therapist who services kiddos on MEDICAID. Even her business wouldn't be possible without that help President Obama was talking about when he said no one builds a business solely on their own. She proudly acknowledges that she couldn't be a business owner without social services. So she calls bullshit on the GOP talking points aka distortions aka lies about what Obama said about who built what.

Guess what? Obama didn't say people don't create their own businesses. He just said they all have some government resources that help. And since not that many people actually start a business in the first place, I'd say President Obama has a pretty good handle on the reality of starting one. I'm pretty sure he gets the American Dream!

But It's Not About Racism (The GOP Convention Edition)

Isn't it great to live in the land of post-racial sentiment after we've elected a black man into the Oval Office? Anyone screaming 'racism' is obviously not in touch with the pulse of the American electorate and is simply using the race card as an instrument of division and hate... wait, what?
"...Zoraida Fonalledas, the chairwoman of the Committee on Permanent Organization—took her turn at the main-stage lectern [at the GOP Convention in Tampa Bay]. As she began speaking in her accented English, some in the crowd started shouting “U.S.A.! U.S.A.!” 
The chanting carried on for nearly a minute while most of the other delegates and the media stood by in stunned silence. The Puerto Rican correspondent turned to me and asked, “Is this happening?”... None of us could quite believe what we were seeing: A sea of twentysomething bowties and cowboy hats morphing into frat bros apparently shrieking over (or at) a Latina."
But surely they were chanting because they were proud of their "big tent" and cheering, not jeering the Republican latina woman at their own convention, right? ...Right?

But the Republicans keep telling me that it was Obama who has done absolutely nothing for immigrants (even though the woman was Puerto Rican and therefore an American citizen) in this country, except to throw them a bone with his obvious politicization of young immigrants who are here through no fault of their own, at least according to Romney surrogate John Sununu.
During the GOP primary, Romney vowed to veto the DREAM Act, which would implement a stronger version of what Obama did through executive order, but since winning the nomination, he’s tacked to the middle and avoided striking the hard-line tone on immigration that made him one of the most conservative candidates on the issue in the GOP field. 
Kris Kobach, the Kansas secretary of state and an immigration adviser to Romney, is the author of Arizona’s of infamous immigration law and took up a suit brought by 10 immigration enforcement agents against the new Obama policy last week.
Hold on. Do you mean to tell me that, try as they might, the Republican Party really isn't that into people of color? I find that hard to believe.
CNN reported that multiple witnesses saw it happen, and police immediately removed the two people from the premises.
Oh, come on! What's next?! Is some frothy guy going to step behind the convention podium and blatantly lie about the Presdient in a clear attempt to rile up the fringiest of the fringe with some dumbass welfare claim even though a large number of white people are help by that program as well?
"This summer he showed us once again he believes in government handouts and dependency by waiving the work requirement for welfare," Santorum said Tuesday in a speech at the Republican National Convention in Tampa. "I helped write the welfare reform bill; we made the law crystal clear -- no president can waive the work requirement. But as with his refusal to enforce our immigration laws, President Obama rules like he is above the law." 
PolitiFact checked a Romney campaign ad's claim that Obama ended welfare work requirements earlier this month, rating it Pants On Fire. In reality, the Obama administration has said it will consider proposals from states that are aimed at finding better ways of getting welfare recipients into jobs. and the Washington Post Fact Checker have also said the claim is false.
Fuck. Me.

If you haven't noticed, it's been all dog whistles, all the time. Accusations of "gutting welfare requirements" taking a play out of the welfare queen Reagan playbook. Romney making a little "joke" about not having to show his birth certificate - yet the reaction wasn't laughter, but cheers. Delegates at the GOP convention booing and chanting "USA" when an Hispanic woman speaks. Other conventioneers thrown out after assaulting a black CNN cameraperson and calling her an "animal." And yet when it's brought up, it's the DEMOCRATS who are accused of using the RACE CARD?! If it acts like a racist and it smells like a racist...

ADDING... And let's not forget that scumbag South Carolina state representative Alan Clemmons responding positively to a racially tinged email regarding their bullshit voter ID law.  But hey, it's those Democrats playing that damned race card because you know, black man in the White House, new era of enlightenment, post racial land of the free, home of blah, blah, blah...

(Cross-posted at ABLC)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Reince Gets Reamed

This was a thing of beauty.

Chris Matthews chomped down on RNC Chairman Reince Priebus' head like a crocodile this morning on Morning Joke™, calling out Mitt Romney for his birth certificate comment, which Mitt later characterized as a "joke," and the rest of the GOP and their dog whistles. Watch and be amazed.

Priebus was a deer caught in the headlights, having no clue he was about to get his ass reamed by Matthews, probably because he expected to be in friendly confines on Joe Scarborough's sorry excuse for show.

Just a few things.

Notice how Scarborough tried to come to Reince's rescue, failing miserably I might add, by throwing himself into Matthews' barrage and challenging his claims that the welfare lie and the birth certificate "joke" was not racially tinged.

And a big fuck you to Mika Brzezinski attempting to play the mommy role to two grown men when things get a little heated. And an even bigger fuck you to Tom "I'm Making Shitloads of Money with the Greatest Generation Enterprise" Brokaw for even suggesting the "both sides" meme. Give me the examples, Tom! Don't give example after example of GOP racist shenanigans, come up with nothing from the other side and then say, "but both sides do it" you fucking hack.

Regardless of these asides, it's awfully nice to see someone finally take Priebus down and call him out as the not ready for prime time douchebag that he is. Watching him stammer and sweat and meekly try to take the high road when he saw that he was backed into a corner with no way out warmed the cockles of my heart.  Yeah, that's right, I said cockles, baby!

(Cross-posted on ABLC)

Sunday, August 26, 2012

I'm Back From Vacation!

So... uh... what did I miss?

Man! What a week to be away. Let's just bullet point it:

 Todd Akin's crazy week

 GOP leaders going apeshit over Akin's comments and urging him to quit his Missouri Senate race.

 Mitt Romney deciding to courageously voice his opinion that Akin should drop out of his Senate race a convenient 15 minutes after Rush Limbaugh suggested the same.

 Mitt Romney's ridiculous suggestion that he doesn't want to release his taxes because he wants how much he tithes to the LDS to remain private. HA!

 Mitt Romney going Birther at an event in Michigan.

 Another shooting, this time by the Empire State Building

 Phyllis Diller died.

 Neil Armstrong died.

I'll be back to comment on a more regular basis starting tomorrow, but in the meantime, enjoy this picture of the Grand Canyon... yes, I vacationed in Arizona and actually brought my passport... just in case.

President Obama's Weekly Address - August 25, 2012

A day late, but never a dollar short.

Preserving and Strengthening Medicare

Yet Another Way To Tell That You're Vacationing in a Red State