Monday, January 31, 2011

The Checklist

Joints hurt - check
Back hurts - check
balls hurt - check

Hooray, the Flu has arrived!

Tiny American Flags for Others

Well, well, well, so much for that fallacious argument:

Having an abortion does not increase the risk of mental health problems, but having a baby does, one of the largest studies to compare the aftermath of both decisions suggests.

The research by Danish scientists further debunks the notion that terminating a pregnancy can trigger mental illness and shows postpartum depression to be much more of a factor.

As I was saying

It's bad enough that Mubarak has attempted to drive the press out of Egypt. What's worse is that he's still a hell of a lot more moral about the press than the Bush Administration and the never-repentant assholes of the Right.

From the movie "Control Room"

Sunday, January 30, 2011

"You are screwing with the forces of nature".

I'm watching Steve Kroft interview Julian Assange on "60 Minutes". By way of asking Assange if he's surprised that the U.S. government is gunning for him, Kroft tells Assange, "You are screwing with the forces of nature". Can someone please explain the source of the U.S. government's power to Steve Kroft? Even a nitwit Teabagger could do that. Sheesh. I was waiting for Assange to call him on that, but Assange let it go. I think Assange realizes that he's dealing with your basic Village Idiot.

And Gawker is spot-on with regard to Bill Keller's little hit-job on Assange. Keller's terror that Assange has showed the NYT for the has-been servant of power that it is comes through loud and clear.

This week

Is always the worst sports week in the world -- if you are a football fan. First, there's no football -- well, real "American" football, the Pro Bowl is the worst of all the all-star games.

Plus, this is the preview of what every weekend is like for the next several weeks of miserable cold weather.

On the other hand, I get more work done on Sunday.

...Yeah, I'm that dull.

Funny That

That one news agency that so many conservatives wanted to have bombed out of existence (including George Bush) when they were in Iraq and Afghanistan...and sort of got their wish...has become indispensable to pretty much the Western World over the last few days in Egypt.

So, naturally, the Egyptian Government is moving to shut Al Jazeera down.

It's what John Bolton would do.


"Over the last couple of months I was ill. I saw ahead of me a white light, calling my name. I survived because I decided it was "The Magical Unity Pony...the White"."

In case you were wondering

Like I was, Digby has a link to how antiquities are being protected in Egypt, bit always successfully, not just by soldiers but by ordinary citizens.

Something our Country didn't bother to do in Iraq...the other truly ancient civilization in the world.

Just another guy who totally isn't influence by a constant stream of invective

Or maybe he had an old dog-eared copy of the Communist Manifesto within 100 yards of him once?

Roger Stockham, a 63-year-old Army veteran from California who was reportedly angry at the U.S. government, was arrested by police in Michigan and charged with allegedly threatening to blow up a Mosque in Dearborn.

Dearborn police allegedly found Stockham inside his vehicle outside the Islamic Center of America with a load of M-80s in his trunk and other explosives, the Detroit News reported.

Congressman Peter King has yet to issue his official "La La La I can't hear you" press release.

Saturday, January 29, 2011


I'm not sure how much money and time the U.S. government and U.S. media conglomerates spent trying to discredit Al Jazeera back during the days when we were going to be greeted with flowers and chocolates, but it doesn't seem to have worked, because Al Jazeera seems to be all anyone is watching and/or listening to at this point.

Because their "authority" 'on the subject is at an all-time high

The Catholic Church is dictating the terms of the male orgasm.

...the sexual act has to be unitive and procreative and why some kinds of activity are not chaste,” the letter said. “Though pleasure may be present, some acts are a misuse of sex when they fall short of what God intended.”*

So married people, no compound worded sex acts for you.

Does this require the Palmfacial?

(by the way, that was among the most disgusting image searches ever to get the one listed...even with safe search on.)

They don't care, they've got a well stock mountain redoubt and an underwater city

And a ton of aqualungs. The Koch Brothers, (pronunced "Coke" like Boehner is pronounced "Bane-er") are having a gathering of their acolytes this weekend.

This secretive cabal includes media 'elite' like Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck, 'elite' politicians like Bob McDonnell and Jim DeMint, and non-partisan federal 'servants' like Supreme Court Justices Antonio Scalia and Clarence Thomas.

It's like Davos with especially creepy, foolish, and malevolent people. Remember Halle Berry, Natalie Portman and Hannah Storm, after the self-propagated apocalypse Rush Limbaugh has you to slotted for mating rituals.

Version comes also in more historically accurate german.

It's true

I really have no idea what Egypt will end up like if Mubarak falls...well it be improved, like saying under ElBaradai? Or will it have the Muslim Brotherhood call that shots?

Will it be more of a bloodbath?

Whatever it will be, it's the by-product of 50 years of support of repression over actually giving a shit about the people of a country -- which has been the calling card of Europe and then the United States since the dawn of the colonial period.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Just a reminder

The face of Nullification.

Talk about a guy who looks like he's wondering around looking for a good whipping to inflict...oh, and nice neckbeard.

Andrew Jackson had a few ideas about dealing with this fellow.

"If one drop of blood be shed in South Carolina in defiance of the laws of the U.S., I will hang the first of the nullifiers I can get my hands on."

Since we're on an Egyptian kick

For...well, sadly, the first time ever, a great link for updates is at the Guardian.

...oh, and wither that self-promoting Egyptian Antiquities guy?

Egypt, looking a lot like North Korea

Here purportedly is how much of Egypt's internet has been taken off-line just in the last few hours.

Get the feeling you could just cut and paste the names

And you'd have the same flat-footed response we're having in Egypt?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sarah Palin, Bachman can't out-stupid me

Sarah Palin says the Soviet Union fell because it spent so much money "winning the space race".

Now history will tell you that's 0 for 2. But maybe the view was different from the Palin porch.

Sputnik, of course, was launched in 1957...only 34 years before the fall of the Soviet Union.

...of course the fall of the USSR had nothing to do with its space program, as can be ascertained as one of the lasting and manageable government expenses of Russia and Kazakhstan.

The Soviets fell because they spent way too much on their military and had internal domestic rot -- against the rigors of maintaining an occupying empire.

Myself, I'd prefer "Apple Pie"

Someday when I finally get as much traffic as Daily Kos I'll come up with my own perfume that smells like a "CinnaBon" after all that shit smells a lot better than it tastes.

Lady Gaga's perfume will smell like "blood and semen"

Of course it will.

Should work well on Sharks and Pigs -- or the competing Dinner Theatre versions of West Side Story and Animal Farm?

Funny (and not at all "ha ha") how that works

The murder of a 9-year old girl by hate-fueled right-wingers gets no national the same county were Gabrielle Giffords was shot and another 9-year old girl (amongst others) lost her life.

But the victim was brown, and right-wing politics fueled it (just like it probably fueled the ignored dirty bomb at the MLK parade...or the guy who listened to Glenn Beck and headed out to shoot up the TIDES Foundation and the ACLU).

But Obama's a Socialist, don't forget that.

Your No. 1 Choice for Hypocrisy

In the wake of Tunisia, and events in Egypt, the President said this in his State of the Union message:
“We saw that same desire to be free in Tunisia, where the will of the people proved more powerful than the writ of a dictator. And tonight, let us be clear: the United States of America stands with the people of Tunisia, and supports the democratic aspirations of all people.”

Activists trying to oust Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak played cat-and-mouse with police on the streets into the early hours of Thursday, as unprecedented protests against his 30-year rule entered a third day.

Siun posted last night about what is happening in Egypt but to me the most poignant portion was this:
It is 12:50 AM CLT now and our friends in Al Tahrir square are currently under huge attack from the security forces that are firing cannons of tear gas...these tear gas grenades are made in the USA

Husni Mubarek is liked by American policy makers. He placates our fears about the alternative ("Scary Extremists Muslims") and he says the occasional non-hateful thing about Israel. Both Parties elites fall for it every time.

Of course, there's also the bit particularly attractive to Republicans. He's ruled by "emergency decree" for nearly thirty years after taking advantage of a national trauma and he's grooming his son to replace him. How could a Bush, a Cheney, a Romney, a Kristol, a Podhoretz, a Goldberg, a Forbes, or a McCain quit him?

If he falls, look for the entire GOP-media complex to roll out the 1949 game plan, "Who lost China Egypt?". After all a possible successor is the guy who said the Bush II Administration's drive for wars in Iraq and Iran were dubious. Might as well be Chairman Mao.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

It's like "The King's Speech" only more imaginary

If Colin Firth as George VI & Carrot Top mated and their offspring then mated with inert material and made a gollum that sort of resembled Sarah Palin it would produce this industrial video about how a woman is to perform a self-test for a hernia via their upper chest and shoulders.

And I think she means "cupcakes" like Captain Queeg mean "strawberries" at least I hope to all that is holy that is what she means.

And now America

You can see, in the dead, off-set eyes, of Michelle Bachmann the foresight of Minnesota's Founding Fathers in choosing the State Bird.

Ooh, let's call it "Trantor"!

I'm such a nerd.

China is planning to create the world's biggest mega city by merging nine cities to create a metropolis twice the size of Wales with a population of 42 million.

City planners in south China have laid out an ambitious plan to merge together the nine cities that lie around the Pearl River Delta.

The "Turn The Pearl River Delta Into One" scheme will create a 16,000 sq mile urban area that is 26 times larger geographically than Greater London, or twice the size of Wales.

The new mega-city will cover a large part of China's manufacturing heartland, stretching from Guangzhou to Shenzhen and including Foshan, Dongguan, Zhongshan, Zhuhai, Jiangmen, Huizhou and Zhaoqing. Together, they account for nearly a tenth of the Chinese economy.

Alert Preem Palvar (again, giant Nerd).

(Quick little known fact -- did you know Isaac Asimov has published 120 books since 1992? It tailed off a bit after he died.)

There are better rituals

You know I bet the only guy crying more than John Boehner in the District of Columbia right now is Paul Ryan. Poor Ryan, he spent all day lifting quotes from The Fountainhead and shellacking his hair to a Reagan-like density only to be undercut by some discount magic-mirror lady from Romper Room. Hey, Michelle, at least Obama can read a teleprompter. Someday perhaps, Ryan will have his revenge.

And there, in a nutshell, is why the actual presentation of SOTU's suck. Quick name a really memorable one? The best part is seeing which "promising" Republican is going to crash and burn like Jindal vs. the Volcano. This year, we got two. Bonus!

Here's this year's SOTU in summary, you may recognize it next year when the only thing that changes is who is sitting next to the First Lady.

"Here's something almost half-way decent for the base --- psych! And here's a little something for the Washington Post Editorial Page. Now to demonstrate I'm not as crazy or dangerous as the other side -- though I'm also not nearly as entertaining. Oh, and the State of the Union is strong. See ya' in 2012!"

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Give him a *rim shot*

An old Steve Martin routine:

You.. can be a millionaire.. and never pay taxes! You can be a millionaire.. and never pay taxes!

You say.. "Steve.. how can I be a millionaire.. and never pay taxes?"

First.. get a million dollars.

Now.. you say, "Steve.. what do I say to the tax man when he comes to my door and says, 'You.. have never paid taxes'?"

Two simple words. Two simple words in the English language:

"I forgot!"

Ladies and Gentlemen, Justice Clarence Thomas:

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has released newly corrected financial disclosure forms showing his wife's past employment, blaming a misunderstanding for years of omissions of Virginia "Ginni" Thomas' salary at a conservative think tank and other jobs.

Thomas was required to report the information on the annual disclosure forms all federal judges must file. The forms did not disclose how much money Mrs. Thomas was paid.

The updated records go back 13 years and confirm Mrs. Thomas has worked for the Heritage Foundation, the Republican leadership in the House and Hillsdale College in Michigan.

But where's the Fratricide Squad?

It's nice to have a blog that isn't too big sometimes. Every morning, as you readers know, I post at Firedoglake (and then fill up space here to satisfy my blog-OCD by cross-posting it here). It's tough to get up every morning early and literally get my brain working to write something (but not too long as that's my only real restriction...brevity).

And then I look at the comments and they degrade into the commentors commenting on who is a traitor to the cause now and writing America's suicide note on its behalf.

It's real inspiring I tell ya'.

But then again, if the left isn't turning on each other, it wouldn't be the left.

For example, over the weekend Jane Hamsher of FDL drove the one regular visitor Bradley Manning has had (at great personal sacrifice to himself) to visit Manning and was hassled by military officials at Quantico in the petty bullshit way they can. Depriving Manning of a visitor for the sake of their own agenda, as they have now essentially admitted.

And who's fault is that, according to other self-proclaimed leftists? Why Jane Hampsher of course via that classic of modern American rhetoric Mr. Ad and Ms. Hominem.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the most depressing thread in progressive blogging history (which is saying something as I always though my morning threads at FDL are up there sometimes). So sad that it was rebutted by another in the same blog, only to devolve into something that nearly tied it.

Quote of the Day

Bob Herbert:

When you see surveillance videos of some creep mugging an elderly person in an elevator or apartment lobby, the universal reaction is outrage. But when the fat cats and the ideologues want to hack away at the lifeline of Social Security, they are treated somehow as respectable, even enlightened members of the society.

We need a reality check. Attacking Social Security is both cruel and unnecessary. It needs to stop.

Of course, the overwhelming majority of the nation, including conservatives do not want to cut Social Security just isn't felt that way amongst the Republicans in Congress and in Think Tanks, nor amongst too many Democrats in the same places. Nor, of course, amongst the Villagers who party with them.

Too many rights

Scalia went down and played his usual brand of armpit music for Michelle Bachmann's little group of teabaggers.

And the big message was apparently...Read the Federalist Papers.

First of all, "reading" is a bit presumptive when it comes to Bachmann.

Second, "read the Federalist" papers is a big ol' bromide for conservatives, though as someone who has read them, once you get past #10 and #51 (written by Madison) the rest are not so meaningful.

Except for this fact, one of the reasons the Federalist Society is big on the Federalist Papers is that they argued not only for the passage of the Constitution, but they argue for a Constitution WITHOUT a Bill of Rights. See Hamilton's #84. See Clarence Thomas' statement that American's have too many rights ("there's a Publius' hair on my Constitution").

The Bill of Rights was included ONLY as a compromise to get the Constitution passed. A key demand of the long-forgotten Anti-Federalists. And, naturally the original Bill of Rights that became the first 10 Amendments was written by Madison (i.e. the Founder who wrote the most important of the Federalist Papers, that damn flip-flopper!).

The New Math

Well, now we know what sausage-casing in glasses Karl Rove meant when he said this:

October 31, 2006

Presidential adviser Karl Rove, an architect of Republican political strategy, says he's confident his party will hold both chambers of Congress. He says that despite public polls that show Democrats have a strong chance of winning. Why is Rove publicly confident?

Regardless of the outcome of the 2006 election, why was Rove confident?

Perhaps he knew just how Washington works, more than four years later:

A long-running federal investigation has found that White House political aides to President George W. Bush engaged in widespread violations of a federal law which limits partisan political activity by government employees during the 2006 midterm elections.

A 118-page report issued Monday by the little-known Office of Special Counsel cites numerous violations of the Hatch Act by the Bush-era White House Office of Political Affairs. The report concludes that federal taxpayers footed the bill for improper activities that were intended to advance Republican political candidates.

It helped, as Rove knew, that the Bush-era head of the Office of Special Counsel was about as unqualified for his job as you'd expect.

And just like Iraq, GITMO, and a wide variety of authorized tortures, there will be no further prosecutions, I'm sure.

Thank goodness for consequences.

(pic from KeninNY at Down with Tyranny)

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Monday, January 24, 2011

The uninterrupted string of cursing and gynocological terms spewing out at the Emanuel Residence right now

Must be impressive indeed, and that's just from his youngest children.

The Illinois Appellate Court has tossed mayoral frontrunner Rahm Emanuel off the ballot, reversing the decision of a lower court.

Now we know why they call him "Mittens"

A desperate need to give the far-right base an ironic reach-around, Mitt Romney has forced Marriott to deprive business travelers of their needed porn!

The hotel chain's lucrative porn sideline was an irritant to Romney during the 2008 campaign, when one social conservative referred to him as a "major pornographer." Now, he has a better story to tell. (I emailed his spokesman to ask whether he participate in the decision to end the service, and will update if I hear.)

And the reader who pointed this decision out notes that Marriott seems to be doing Romney a costly favor: The in-room porn business is in decline, but was still making them some $175 per room annually, according to the most recent figures available.

I have to admit, while I'm not prude (if nothing else it keeps the metaphor industry churning) individually I don't mind the idea of a hotel room being slightly less of a spank bank.

Disturbed genius

Amy Sidaris, like her brother is a somewhat appreciated genius.

This is damned disturbing

I don't care if you are left, right, down the middle -- this is a petty and assholish.

It takes The Village

It sure seems like a rare admirable idea on the part of some members of the Village to finally notice that Sarah Palin is addicted to attention and perhaps they should stop enabling it.

Not that it will work, just someone had the notion.

But even if they pay less attention to "Her Irrelevancy", they'll find someone else of similar ilk to cover.

Tea Party favorite and one of the leaders of the lunatic fringe, Michelle Bachmann is going to give her own response to President Obama's SOTU Tuesday night after Paul Ryan gives the GOP's sanctioned rebuttal.

FoxNews will be giving out two-rebuttals, one featuring Bachmann Wanker Overdrive, to go with four hours of Krauthammer and Dick Morris telling us we need to cut social security even more...uh, because that will create jobs.

Hey, at least the Democrats still have one news network that occasionally allows a liberal to speak.


(pic from here)

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Sunday, January 23, 2011

"Thanks Jay Cutler"

"Looks like I'm one more notch closer to the rabbit hole.


Steve Bartman"

Well except for one

In a rather damning op-ed on the activities of many Supreme Court justices, but particularly Scalia, these sentences stand out:

Justice Clarence Thomas, who is known for his utter silence during oral arguments. Outside the court, though, he has denounced our society's "focus on our rights" and the "proliferation of rights" protecting citizens.

Except for the "right" to own as many guns as you want of course, Thomas knows the value of fetishes.

Oh thank goodness

John McCain is back on the Sunday Chat Shows.

The Republic is saved.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

It's not like he's obligated to know the law or anything...

I suppose he can appeal it, eventually grant it cert, and sit in judgment over whether or not this is Constitutional because, after all, there'd be no "appearance" of impropriety -- it would simply be one.

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas failed over the course of at least five years to report his wife's income from a conservative think-tank on his financial disclosures, according to the watchdog group Common Cause.

Between 2003 and 2007, Virginia Thomas, a longtime conservative activist, was paid $686,589 by the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, according to a Common Cause review of IRS records. Thomas failed to note the income in his financial disclosure forms for those years, choosing instead to check a box titled "none" where "spousal non-investment income" would normally be disclosed.

If say, Sotomayor or Kagan had this problem, we'd have bill of impeachment filed by Monday.

More than $150,000 a year is pretty good compensation for drunk dialing.

Unleash your conspiracy theories

Because clearly the thought that Comcast, a day after the approval of their merger, may have pushed to get Olbermann off its family of programs having pretty much resurrected MSNBC and helming it's only broadcast drawing more than a million viewers couldn't be connected.

But the notion that Obama wasn't born in Hawaii is completely credible.

Friday, January 21, 2011

More Recommended Reading

It's not online, so go to your local newsstand or bookstore and pick up a copy of this week's New Yorker so you can read Dr. Atul Gawande's article on ways to give people better care and reduce medical costs by provoding more and better care to people with chronic serious conditions.

If you haven't read Dr. Gawande's Complications, you should check that out, too.

And don't forget Ryan Lizza's important piece on Darrell Issa's (R-CA) history of ongoing interactions with law enforcement.

Yet another thing he and Bill O'Reilly have in common

It's uncanny:

Bin Laden threatens France in new message

Must have left the snare drum at home that day

That Glenn Beck, he was only's totally the same as all those times Jon Stewart said to shoot somebody in the head.

‘You’re going to have to shoot them in the head,’ Beck said of Democratic leaders

By this logic, Glenn Beck must think this guy is America's greatest prop comedian:

Granted being America's greatest prop comic is not exactly a challenge.

Colbert brilliantly sums up Limbaugh's bigotry

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And this wasn't bad either.

Tallahassee Sams!

The Second Amendment fetish is strong in Florida as two Republican state legislators have managed to propose separate bills that truly compliment each other.

First, there's state Senator Greg Evers who has introduced a bill that would allow firearms, even concealed ones, to be carried on college and university campuses.

Because letting the monotony of periodic binge drinking be complimented with gunfire is truly a chance to teach the "benefits" not only of the Second Amendment but also the diminished capacity defense.

And this shall be complimented by the bill introduced by one put forth by Rep. Jason Brodeur to make it a felony...

...for a physician or staff member to ask patients or family members of patients if they own guns or store guns at home. If found guilty, the medical provider could be fined up to $5 million or face up to five years in jail.

Oh, sure it tries to turn the Second Amendment into a way to shoot the First Amendment to death; sure it would make, for example, counseling those with suicidal ideation impossible.

But this is Florida, these are Republicans, and the NRA's state lobbyist considers the latter the most important item in this years legislative session.


[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Be Sure to Read & Disseminate Widely

This New Yorker article about the longstanding inability of the new chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform -- Darrell Issa (R-CA) -- to conform his behavior to the law. The list of incidents is longer than I'd ever read before.

The article is a public service.

Finally a way to make some money off my "Facts of Life" fan fiction

I own an Amazon Kindle and apparently it is rather easy to self-publish and you get to keep 70% of the revenue.

I know there's a huge market for the continuing adventures of Natalie and Tootie, the College Experimentation Years.

(Note, in a genre that is somewhere between Furries & Bears there actually is Facts of Life Fan-Fiction....I know, it does take away one's will to live)

That's more than half!

The research of more than 2,300 undergraduates found 45 percent of students show no significant improvement in the key measures of critical thinking, complex reasoning and writing by the end of their sophomore years.

Why can't black people keep babies in a jar? It's the sane thing to do.

Ah, Rick Santorum, he's planning to run for President. That's quite the special needs contingent that are throwing their "hats in the ...ooh shiny" for 2012.

Time to get those therapy bills ready kids.

Great News everyone...

I've heard that Joe Lieberman and Matt Millen are planning on going into business another country.

Glenn Beck would recommend you buy more gold now

But I for one welcome our new giant crayfish overlords.

In Tennessee, reports recently surfaced of a gigantic crayfish that no one had ever seen before. Much to their surprise, researchers found one hiding under a rock.

[Insert Glenn Reynolds joke here]

This crayfish is twice as big as its relatives, and there's only one other previously known species that's even remotely similar.

...which makes it terrifying as they are still smaller than an average lobster.

We're doomed!

Privacy is for the Gated Community only

The long-standing fevered dreams of the right are ever coming true, and providing the propellant is the Supreme Court:

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously Wednesday to allow sweeping background checks of JPL scientists and other government contract workers, ruling that privacy rights do not prevent officials from digging into employees' medical, financial and sexual histories.

JPL's virtually exclusive mission is planetary exploration. So it's obvious why such intrusions are necessary. We cannot have someone who once declared bankruptcy or likes the occasional shocker selling research to Jupiter before it can be broadcast on Nova; or telling Saturnians, "we're going to enjoy probing your moons!". Science is clearly best served when it is performed only by the most politically sanitized of people, like Tycho.

But have no fear, just because the decision was unanimous doesn't mean it applies to fields filled by non-scientist types:

...the decision, which holds JPL researchers to the similar standards as government workers with access to classified information, Justice Samuel Alito wrote that the justices were not ruling on whether citizens had a constitutional right to informational privacy.

Oh, well, thank goodness...uh, what?

"We reject the argument that the government, when it requests job-related personal information in an employment background check, has a constitutional burden to demonstrate that its questions are 'necessary,'" Alito wrote.

Well, so much for being limited. Seeing as how the Constitutional Right-to-Privacy only applies to, you know, the government, that doesn't sound so limited at all.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Good to see such a high level of sophistication

Warner Oland would pronounce Limbaugh "Number One Asshole".

It just dawned on me...

Lieberman thinks he's going to replace Regis.

I'm not quite sure this is what some on the left had in mind...

Randall Terry will make quite a "scary" primary opponent for Obama.

It's almost as if he were being challenged by a less popular Bill Kristol.

Way to go Papacy

After all this time, of course, this is no surprise but the clarity and starkness of it all is still shocking:

A newly revealed 1997 letter from the Vatican warned Ireland's Catholic bishops not to report all suspected child-abuse cases to police...

...The letter undermines persistent Vatican claims, particularly when seeking to defend itself in U.S. lawsuits, that the church in Rome never instructed local bishops to withhold evidence or suspicion of crimes from police.

A letter attempting to make such allegations internal church matters only is pretty much the opposite of what the Church has been saying in lawsuits throughout the world, particularly in the U.S. on the matter.

In the Church's defense, "ass-covering" is not necessarily in the 10-commandments if you read them like Scalia reads the Constitution.

Save it for Broder

One of the true traditions of the Village is giving the the recently deceased or retiring cocktail party attendees an obsequious sendoff. An "art form" practiced since the Pierce Administration by David Broder. Broder's columns on Joe McCarthy and Theodore Bilbo likely focused on their mutual love of the then segregated Washington Redskins.

But Broder hasn't written a column in several weeks and somebody needs to get the hell into the breach and say something nice about Joe Lieberman as he departs for that seven figure FoxNews commenting deal.

Enter Ezra Klein, and whoever writes his headlines:

Joe Lieberman: Democratic hero?

Hey, thanks for the question mark at least.

Contained within the short prose, is the self-evident nature of Lieberman's regard for no one but himself and his donors:

Among other things, he skipped the meetings where Democrats were trying to work out a compromise on the public option, and then he killed the Medicare buy-in proposal they'd developed -- despite endorsing that exact proposal months before. In doing so, he doomed a great piece of policy, and by doing it at the last minute, endangered the rest of the bill, too.

But he ended up voting for the legislation he'd damage severely and made significantly worse for Americans but made better for the Hartford, AETNA, and Magellan. Oh, and he endorsed John McCain and Sarah Palin.

What a guy, what a Democrat.

Joe, you are the breaking-of-wind beneath our wings.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

America's Concern Troll

Poor Richard Cohen, a man so unappreciated for his self-proclaimed gifts.

He's a better "comedian" than Stephen Colbert.

He's a better "lover" than Bill Clinton.

And he's a better "speaker" than Barack Obama.

Good for that guy

Richard Lugar, invites a Teatard challenge by having the actual balls to do the right thing, as opposed to the right-thing.

Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) this weekend called on Congress to reinstate the assault weapons ban that expired in 2004.

Well . . . I'm not saying he's a dick from Wisconsin, but Brett Favre just texted me his picture.

The Daily Show bids adieu to Michael Steele:

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You’ve gone backwards a ways baby

Along with Martin Luther King Day, I remembered that yesterday was also the 50th anniversary of Eisenhower's farewell address.

Although, until Josh Marshall reminded me just before the first cup of coffee, I had forgotten that yesterday was also the 20th Anniversary of the beginning of the Gulf War (part one).

So then we went to war because it was argued, Iraq had invaded Kuwait and taken its oil. It was emphasized at the time that this was a sign of clear evil and Hitlerness to all 'Muricans.

Cut to modern America and Sean Hannity:

On his Friday show, Sean Hannity wondered why Iraq and Kuwait hadn't "[paid] for their own liberation" by the United States, and said that America has the right to "go in there...and take all their oil."

Isn't progress grand?

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Breathing

Many have posted about Palin's "breathing" only video.

I still prefer it in its original presentation, even with the mandated laugh-track:

More than just MLK Day

It's also the 50th Anniversary of this:

King emerged as a national figure while Eisenhower was President and, of course, was violently murdered about a year before Eisenhower expired in a more common fashion.

I never really thought of them as being terribly intertwined, but they'd probably both be rather disgusted in some ways how we have ignored much of what they said. Ike was certainly not the pacifist that King was, but he knew plenty of pacifists (his mother was a Quaker) but they'd both be radical left-wingers on the issue today.

Emission Accomplished

Sean Hannity, scheduled to appear tonight with Sarah Palin to discuss how awesome guns are and compare various shades of paper sacks on MLK Day, had a Friday that sums up his moral code perfectly.

On his Friday show, Sean Hannity wondered why Iraq and Kuwait hadn't "[paid] for their own liberation" by the United States, and said that America has the right to "go in there...and take all their oil."

For those of you who, for some reason, are wondering, that is pretty damn close to the reasons Saddam Hussein invaded the country to begin with.

Sean Hannity = Saddam Hussein.

You really have tempered the rhetoric over there Roger Aisles.

Oh look, a jackass

Good thing there's no incitement going on from the right anymore:

The remaining members of the Iowa Supreme Court have proven they are immoral and “open enemies of God” by choosing Mark Cady as chief justice, and thus, all deserve to be impeached, according to conservative radio host Steve Deace and Republican Party of Iowa central committee member Wes Enos.

"Enemies of God"? Thanks Osama bin Morons.

Quite the legal scholars these two are of the slightly better than G.E.D. set.

Miss America and Qaddafi Agree

This weekend the nation's first non-legal Miss America, future Gretchen Carlson replacement Terry Scanlon was crowned after playing "White Water Chopped Sticks" on piano and telling the audience that when it comes to the website Wikileaks, security should come before public access to government information.

...when it comes to the security of our nation, we have to focus on security first and then people's right to know

And she has good company in that regard, from governments everywhere. But notably in the form of Libyan strongman Muammar Qaddafi: ally of the ousted president, Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, said he was "pained" by the fall of the Tunisian government. He claimed protesters had been led astray by WikiLeaks disclosures detailing the corruption in Ben Ali's family and his repressive regime.

And now Qaddafi is worried about his own dictatorial ass over the same things.

Oh, what an awful international crime Wiki-leaks must be, giving people a reason to overthrow dictators on their own initiative instead of having an outside country bomb them into submission. Making dictators mad and frightened, clearly they are worse than Stalin.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Sunday, January 16, 2011

This has to be a joke

This cannot be a real event.

Sandbaggers will be shot.

Plus, in North Korea everyone's an amateur compared to Kim Jong-Il and his 11-holes-in-one in one round.

Closed Captioning for the Deaf, Audio for the Blind

Pajamas Media for the dumb.

Ed Driscoll also sucks at pinball.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

America's Concern Troll

Dear James Wolcott,

Love your blog, your column, your books, and that certain je ne sais quoi you bring to the table(t).

I was catching up on magazines the other day (I am forever catching up on magazines) when I came across your column, "One Cool Cat", in the September 2010 issue of Vanity Fair and I thought you might like to know that the term "America's Concern Troll" that is beloved by liberal bloggers was coined by none other than my liberal blogger benefactor, Dr. Atta J. Turk.

Keep telling it like it is. And, on behalf of Dr. Turk, thanks for the shout-out of January 10th.


How long before Glenn Beck

Encourages Americans to be more like Tunisia? Our newest "non-scary for the time being even though we propped up their own tyrannical regime and the people there know it" muslim country?

Seriously, good for you Tunisians...this is the most attention America's given to you since Malcolm Forbes flew all his beards over to party there and Morocco.

Now let's see how many Teaparties can find Tunisia on a map?

File Under: You Can't Spell "Twitter" without "TWIT"

Why is Andrew Sullivan even bothering to wonder, "Could Tunisia be the next Twitter revolution?" "Next" would imply that there was a previous "Twitter revolution" and as we know, there was not, so please, enough with the Twitter-as-Global-Change-Agent nonsense.

Best bit from the link:

Shirky ends the story of the lost Sidekick by asking, portentously, “What happens next?”—no doubt imagining future waves of digital protesters. But he has already answered the question. What happens next is more of the same. A networked, weak-tie world is good at things like helping Wall Streeters get phones back from teen-age girls. Viva la revoluciĆ³n.

Believe it or not

There are shows on TLC which are more jaw-droppingly offensive than 'Sarah Palin's Alaska'.

Several of them in fact.

But nothing is worse on TLC...indeed nothing worse has ever been on television, than this.


I'm the least gung-ho lawyer you'll ever encounter. I don't wander around yapping about "The Majesty of the Law" or "The sanctity of the courts" or the wisdom of of judges. But it irks me, as both a lawyer and a citizen, when people use the phrase, "He got off on a technicality." The word "technicality" usually refers to a mistrial being declared or a conviction being vacated or somesuch because there was a violation of procedural rules, a breach of judicial or attorney ethics, or a misapplication or subversion of a Constitutional protection. Those rules, norms, and protections exist for a reason: to protect the rights of the defendant and to uphold the integrity of the legal system. If you don't think those things are important, you're nuts, frankly, and I hope you're never at risk of losing your reputation, your livelihood, your liberty, or your life due to a flawed indictment, prosecution, or trial.

So in hindsight, I'm ashamed to admit that I giggled fiendishly when Ted Stevens was convicted and lost his senate seat back in 2008, and that I barely noticed when his conviction was vacated a little over a year later. But I stopped laughing and took notice when I read this New Yorker piece about Stevens' trial and the misconduct of the people who prosecuted him. There are people -- some of whom I call "friend" -- who will say that Stevens "got off on a technicality", but they are wrong for the aforementioned reasons.

Anyway, the piece isn't online, but if you've got old issues piled up (as I do, which is why I only got to the Stevens story yesterday), ferret out the January 3rd issue and read Jeffrey Toobin's story about the Stevens prosecution.

And now onto the December 13th issue and what promises to be a fun-filled story about a native American tribe that's going to build a casino in the Hamptons!

Friday, January 14, 2011


Michael Steele is leaving to that big FoxNews All-Star berth in the sky (or studio).

Now I won't get my malice in unintentionally humorous form.

Can we leave him out of this?

Defend, if you can, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq if you want, but really, I think we know pretty clearly Martin Luther King's position on such matters and it would not be an endorsement.


Oh nothing abhorrent in this

I imagine if the left-wing were truly as efficient as the right, it would have been screamed about as the top story the next morning with our empty headed Doocy, not-Doocy and Googling Fake-Airhead equivalents generalizing about how ALL people who are in that party are like this.

But we're not so it took two months to come out (oh, and it's true another difference).

Let's just say having your Republican Party opponent (and apparent Bond-villain) and his supporter bully you and scream "JEW" at you like something out of 1930s Munich is fucking scary and not sarcastic scary, but depressing scary.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Consider this logic

Leader of the Teaparty in Tucson says it is Giffords' fault she was shot for not having security. So I guess she was just asking for it (it's the O'Reilly rape defense).

Consider the implications of this idea by a guy who no doubt considers himself an awesome libertarian, which in spite of how he defines it is not confined solely to having a fetish about handguns?

FoxNews will show us how to Memorialize stuff -- you keep it tasteful and timely!

FoxNews fresh off telling us what is and isn't appropriate at Memorials because that's all they got, is going to show us all how remembrances are done.

Coming this Martin Luther King, Jr. Day they're doing the totally appropriate thing.

Bringing Civil Rights Pioneers Sean Hannity and Sarah Palin together to talk about how awesome both guns and metaphors about aiming them at their political opponents can be. How could King possibly have disapproved? Why, they're even going to do it LIVE without commercial breaks for Goldline and Brink's Home Security getting in the way.

Damn, I was sort of hoping they would, as usual, tastefully save all the blood libel talk for Passover...I guess we can still hope.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Glad to see

That Breitbart is now having "Big Hollywood" do the porn reviews that "Roger T. Pipe" can't get to (I just know things, okay?). Personally, I think it is some of Lisa Ann's weakest work (again, I just know stuff).

In addition to seeing what an incredible woman Sarah Palin is, we were introduced to some amazing characters. Her daughter Piper was a constant companion of Sarah’s in the show. She is beyond adorable, says all the things a smart-as-a-whip witty little girl would say, and makes lots of funny faces. We see a lot of her husband Todd who is a hunky, smart companion to Sarah Palin.

Batteries not included.

Sums it up

This came up a couple days ago, but I hadn't gotten to it. This idea of a Democratic representative is both unconstitutional and stupid.

Rep. Robert Brady, D-Pennsylvania, said he will introduce legislation making it a federal crime for a person to use language or symbols that could be perceived as threatening or inciting violence against a Member of Congress or federal official.

How many ways is this unconstitutional...well, it out and out violates the First Amendment, and could it be any more vague? Horrid.

But as usual, and dispiritedly so, for every stupid Democrat's idea there is a worse one by an order of several magnitudes coming from a Republican.

Texas Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert says his office is drafting a measure to allow members of Congress to carry guns in the District of Columbia, including in the Capitol and on the House floor.

If Louie Gohmert knew who the hell Preston Brooks was (or Herb Brooks, Foster Brooks, David Brooks or Brooks Brothers were for that matter) he'd be certain to add to his reasons why this is the dumbest idea he's ever had...which is really saying something.

(fez tip Digby)

And then there's this from "mental giant" Dan Burton -- put Congress behind a dome. I'm not kidding. Sadly, in the contest between intellectual dishonesty or rank stupidity no member of Congress out perform the depths of the Republican 4-horseman, Bachmann, Steve King, Gohmert and Burton.

Here's one thing that inflamatory igorant rhetoric

And irresponsibly absent media reporting has caused.

Idiocy and a people acting against their own interest.

Two in three Americans now favor defaulting on the U.S. debt and sending the global economy into a tailspin, throwing millions out of work. Reuters: "The U.S. public overwhelmingly opposes raising the country's debt limit even though failure to do so could hurt America's international standing and push up borrowing costs, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll released on Wednesday. Some 71 percent of those surveyed oppose increasing the borrowing authority, the focus of a brewing political battle over federal spending. Only 18 percent support an increase...

First off, I'm guessing the question wasn't couched with the additional information, "...even though failure to do so could hurt America's international standing and push up borrowing costs...".

But I'm guessing that little information nugget is the first time people have been informed that would be the result. Some things are so self-evident they are not discussed much by rational people, leaving only the irrational to drum up the noise.

Alert Captain Renault

The usual right-wing suspects seem to really have strong objections to any memorial service involving someone who isn't right-wing. From Paul Wellstone to Coretta Scott King to Ted Kennedy and so it shall be in regard to the service for the victims of the violence of Jared Lee Loughner (three name rule for all assassins).

Because THAT is the first thing you complain about after a service remembering victims...not the victims, but how the Memorial Service went. When is Bravo picking up that show, "Project Interment"?

Because after all this condemnation about others trying to stifle their First Amendment rights to put bullseyes on Democrats and encouraging expression via the Second Amendment, people need to be lectured about how to behave at a Memorial Service.

Apparently the proper decorum is to raise money...even better if you raise it at a party.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Just wondering

Is the "blood libel" right next to the "death panel"?

And while I'm at it, will Newt Gingrich...who literally called not yet Justice Sotomayor a "racist" while on a visit to fucking AUSCHWITZ take the time to support her proclamation?

Just need to know how much the ol' glass house of their egos need polishing.

Once his ox is gored

So to speak, Howard Kurtz finally has some cognizance of what it means to be a complete that Naschnook of the North has managed to use a buzzword he can identify with...and which is aimed directly at people like him:

Two days ago he was apologizing for her.

...By the way, how fucking CLASSY to use the term "blood libel" at any time when it comes to political discourse...BUT to roll it out there after a Jewish congressperson is shot, well that's of a whole new realm of crass.

Guess who claims she's the real victim here?

That's right, Sarah Palin.

She even trotted out the phrase "blood libel".

Naturally, the Washington Post has this story on the front page -- so how could I not put it up top on this blog?

Meanwhile, guess who gins up the love of which portion of this poll?

Do you think it is ever justified for citizens to take violent action against the government, or is it never justified?

Republican 28% yes, 64% no

Democrat 11% yes, 81% no

Independent 11% yes, 81% no

It's bad enough that 11% of anybody says it's justified, but the fact that it's another 250% higher amongst the GOP tells you what base is being appealed to with the Second Amendment fetish, birthers, and saying someone "hangs around with terrorists".

Sarah Palin would be on their proverbial wedding cake along with this asshole.


Double ouch:

Well, that's a lovely message

In the wake of the shooting of a congressperson, Joe "You Lie" Wilson gets a special machine gun, engraved with his intemperate statement upon it.

Sadly, his 2nd Amendment rights will be deprived and he will not be able to wield it during this years State of the Union.

And he'll get an ever fatter paycheck from CNN

Erick Erickson, well-compensated CNN anal-yst thinks Gabrielle Giffords shooting means only one thing.

That Jewish lady should come to Jesus.

I guess that beats his threatening to shoot people.

The summing up, sums it up

Two different posts or comments from sources I don't always rely upon for "trenchant" analysis (not everyone can be as intellectually sound as a Fark photoshop thread).

First someone at Gawker depressingly points out that FoxNews runs the world:

Those same people, who moved like buttered lightning to yank ACORN funding, won't even entertain the briefest possibility of thinking about maybe eventually, after consideration, applying the slightest restriction to the availability of guns.

But it will probably be even worse, per Dave Weigel:

Arizona's response—the most likely legislative response—is going to be expanded gun rights.

So remember ladies and gentlemen, enrolling voters bad, the occasional empowered spree killer "meh".

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Good Question

Do you have an answer?

There are two subjects we're simply not allowed to discuss. The first is guns. The second is ... guess.

The sudden shift

A few minutes of NBC News seemed to raise questions about Jared Lee Loughner's parents...oh, nothing really factual...just the usual "how could they not know he'd do this?" sort of thing.

I've never had children (in large part because I wouldn't want to be around someone so like me), but I was once a 22-year old boy -- and though not disturbed on the Loughner-scale by any means -- my parents did not know much about me at all. And I, like most 22-year olds, liked it that way.

Sean Hannity shall attempt to ban him from the planet!

Such extremist rhetoric!

Hours earlier, the nation observed a moment of silence for the victims of the rampage, from the South Lawn of the White House and the steps of the U.S. Capitol to legislature beyond Arizona and the International Space Station.

There, Giffords' brother-in-law, Scott, the commanding officer, spoke over the radio. Flight controllers in Houston fell silent.

"As I look out the window, I see a very beautiful planet that seems very inviting and peaceful," he said. "Unfortunately, it is not."

"These days, we are constantly reminded of the unspeakable acts of violence and damage we can inflict upon one another, not just with our actions, but also with our irresponsible words," he said.

"We're better than this," he said. "We must do better."

About sums it up

Tom Tomorrow:

At his blog, T. Tomorrow also reflects on "man of peace" Glenn Becks' general non-violent nature:

BECK: Hang on, let me just tell you what I’m thinking. I’m thinking about killing Michael Moore, and I’m wondering if I could kill him myself, or if I would need to hire somebody to do it. No, I think I could. I think he could be looking me in the eye, you know, and I could just be choking the life out — is this wrong? I stopped wearing my What Would Jesus — band — Do, and I’ve lost all sense of right and wrong now. I used to be able to say, “Yeah, I’d kill Michael Moore,” and then I’d see the little band: What Would Jesus Do? And then I’d realize, “Oh, you wouldn’t kill Michael Moore. Or at least you wouldn’t choke him to death.” And you know, well, I’m not sure.

I know it's so offensive that the left, like me, puts up the statements of those of the right.

It's so offensive.

Uh, what

Glenn Beck's webpage yesterday...

Apparently we must stand together against violence by hunting the potential offenders down.

I'll refrain from further comment until I get Rand Paul's diagnosis (my money is on glaucoma and narcissistic personality disorder)

I'm so old

I remember when improper psychological diagnosis were left to the inappropriately practicing conservative professionals like Charles Krauthammer, and not to self-licensed ophthalmologists like Rand Paul.

Just wondering

Are all the college bowl games FINALLY over?

Iowa's Shame

Steve King (R-Iowa), Iowa's primary congressional spokesperson for people who don't like Iowa, was live on television on Saturday fresh from being denied a long-prized committee chair on Immigration. At the same time, the news broke of the murderous rampage directed against Gabrielle Giffords and others.

Someone at this office put together a statement for his signature:

“We serve together and she is outgoing, personable and widely respected. It is inconceivable that anyone could harbor a vile, vindictive or malicious attitude towards her..."

Inconceivable where such attitudes come from?

February 22, 2010:

Rep. Steve King (R-IA) told a crowd at CPAC on Saturday that he could "empathize" with the suicide bomber who last week attacked an IRS office in Austin, and encouraged his listeners to "implode" other IRS offices, according to a witness.

Just inconceivable.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

Monday, January 10, 2011

Black PALM Face

Dude, really?

(I think, to be fair he might be trying to be the Heisman Trophy, but really fella, you've got to give more thought to that)

He's creepy and he's kooky

Jared Lee Loughner's mugshot. Hard to believe he wasn't popular.

That's an old 22.

(Must always give three names for assassins)