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Congress’ Marching Orders from Rushter

5:13 am in Uncategorized by Ruth Calvo

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Rush gives marching orders

There was always something really strange about the President following a formerly unexciting procedure of asking to address a Joint Session of Congress, being sure enough it was on to announce it, and then have the carpet snatched out from under him.

Watching the Ed Show last night, it appeared that the High Priest of the right, Rush Limbaugh, issued the orders.

Having determined that the elected president that the right wing does not like would be issuing a rational and much needed call for legislators to act in the interest of the public they’ve sworn to serve, the High Priest screamed that it must not be so.   The uppity president must not get this opportunity to show any meritorious service, and must be stopped. Read the rest of this entry →

Right Wing Way of Dealing With Debt

4:55 am in Uncategorized by Ruth Calvo

Going all out for ...?

(Picture courtesy of flickr.com.)

‘Right wing concepts’ seems oxymoronic, as watching the officeholders brought in by 2010′s intense advertising of a nonexistent jobs program gives a whole new meaning to negotiation.   In the winger viewpoint, it seems that incivility and outright hurling of insults is the appropriate way to run the U.S.

The encounter with Rep. Joe Walsh that Martin Bashir hosted on his show at MSNBC yesterday has been styled as a triumph of the right by several wingnut sites.   That’s amusing to some one who actually watched it, and circles around Walsh’s refusal to back off his accusation that the president lied.   The ‘Liar’ charge the right likes to hurl out seems particularly inappropriate as they change stances daily on what faces this country if their threats to end U.S. financial stability creep toward accomplishment.

The teaGOP congressman from Illinois joined Bachmann in denying that right wing refusal to act now in order to avoid U.S. default on its debts in any way threatens the financial stability of the country.

“President Obama, quit lying,” said Congressman Walsh. “You know darn well that if August 2nd comes and goes there is plenty of money to pay off our debt and cover all social security obligations. And you also know that you and only you have the discretion to make those payments.”“I know you have a willing media that protects everything you say and do, but have you no shame sir? In three short years you have bankrupted this country and destroyed job creation. You are either in over your head, don’t understand what makes this country great, or are hell-bent in turning us into some European big government wasteland.”

Like other words from the right of the former GOP, Walsh’s statements draw on a large and dependable reservoir of ignorance among voters that was plumbed to great effect last November.   The right’s huge victory in 2010 was brought about by massive claims that it would bring jobs to voters, and indeed it did bring jobs, but only to newly elected officials who now are destroying the workers’ rights.

Calling the president a liar is yet another evidence of the new tactic of incivility that seems to thrill followers while obscuring bases of actual fact.   As Bashir pointed out, earlier statements – about President Obama’s winning because he is black, and of pushing ‘that magic button’ as an articulate black man – by Walsh indicate that nothing the president says will convince him, not because of being wrong, but because it comes from the man that the right is determined to beat by any means it can.

The present right wing officeholders are following a pattern we saw not long ago, in Tom DeLay, whose behavior lowered standards to a point that the then Speaker could feel comfortable with.  I have watched CSpan covering floor fights in the House that were remarkably reminiscent of barroom brawls, with name calling and defiance of behavior standards flaunted as if they did credit to the brawlers.

When decorum is ignored, the country loses dignity.

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The tactic of refusing normal manners when dealing with the person in office that they’re determined to remove is one that, regrettably, I’ve seen before.  Senator Ralph Yarborough, progressive Democrat from Texas, was refused seating with the Democratic contingent at the 1960 presidential nominating convention that put John F. Kennedy into the candidacy for, then the office of, President of the U.S.   (Lyndon Johnson was Texas’ preferred candidate, while Yarborough supported JFK,)  When he physically pushed himself into the seated area, he was encountered by pushing and shoving to keep him out.  When I went to work for Yarborough a fellow Texan scorned the choice, on the grounds that he behaved deplorably in public.   It was impossible to explain then, as it is now, that countering deplorable behavior towards him sometimes made scenes.

No, I don’t expect to see the president shoving anyone back.   Sen. Yarborough grew up in a household that included eight brothers.

 

 

Your Kids’ Lives Are Fodder For Ideology

3:17 am in banality of evil by Ruth Calvo

Shoot-em-ups for the classroom

(Picture courtesy of flickr.com.)

Sometimes the wingers get downright funny with their attempts to override good sense.  This particular time, they’re dangerous.   In several states, concealed weapons in the classroom is the latest image the crazees are promoting.   That ignores the fact that kids’ lives are at stake.

In another outbreak of the criminal conspiracy to endanger kids, an amendment was shoved into Texas Democratic State Senator Judith Zaffirini’s educational bill that would have imposed concealed carry weapons on classrooms in the state.

To her great credit, Zaffirini withdrew the bill even though it denied educational benefits to our kids, in order to make their lives safer.

Texas senators voted Tuesday for an amendment to a higher education bill that would allow concealed-handgun-license holders to carry their weapons into public university classrooms, but the angry sponsor of the bill stopped the measure from getting a final vote.

The 19-12 vote in favor of the concealed-guns amendment was significant because it was the first by either the full Senate or House on an issue that has become a flash point of controversy in the 2011 session.

But minutes later, Sen. Judith Zaffirini, D-Laredo, pulled the full bill from further consideration and vowed to let it die, fulfilling a promise she made last week when Sen. Jeff Wentworth, R-San Antonio, first tried the maneuver.

(snip)

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Son of Hope, Arkansas; Huckabee, That Other Son

3:59 am in Elections, Uncategorized by Ruth Calvo

Brother Huckabee Peddling His Book

Finding that yesterday was a day Brother Mike Huckabee would be signing books in the area, I decided it might be a good time to ask a question of the candidate in person.   With all the flap about his despicable remarks to the effect that our president grew up in Kenya and was raised with MauMau influences, it seemed appropriate to ask about the influences that formed this kind of viewpoint.

I had an obstacle in that first I needed to buy the book he’s promoting, but since my elderly mother turned into a wingnut at the same time that she became unstable/senile, I had an object .   Better that she listen to the recorded ideology of the Huckster than other drivel she could listen to from the Palins and O’Reilly’s out there.  And there are worse, that come over her local ‘telephone tree’.

The clerks at the store where he was to appear were being inundated with calls about the signing, which the local news in typical fashion had announced on the wrong day and time.   The clerks also were steaming because a long list of the candidate’s needs had been sent to them, which they were expected to accommodate.    The worst nuisance to their mind was that they were told to get out and get him his favorite beverage at the time he would be there, as his staff couldn’t handle that themselves.

I have been to a few book signings before and this one was rather typical.   We had been given numbers previously, and at a time before the candidate arrived we were lined up in order of the number given.  Standing in the line, I got regaled by a nearby fellow sufferer with his views on presidential candidates, which included that the Huckster isn’t bright enough for the office; the book is for his wife.

Then the candidate’s bus arrived, and sat for about a quarter hour outside before Brother Huckabee breezed in with his entourage.   A few local celebrities took up about five minutes, then we began to be ushered through at a fast clip, as the signing went really quickly.   My number being over 60, I had thought it might take as much as an hour if more than a minute was alloted to each purchaser.   Silly me.
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The Political Front: It’s on Their Bumpers

7:40 am in Conservatism, Culture, Politics, Republican Party, Tea Party by Ruth Calvo

When I hear people on the left talk about the political dialogue on the right, I am talking about something different from the context most of us envision.   When I drive around out here in flyover land, I don’t listen to hate radio, and I haven’t been taking in Faux News latest talking points.   What I see is the talking points around me, the sort they choose to decorate their bumpers.

Since you probably don’t read the same material I do, I’m giving you a little peepshow into the ‘hearts and minds’ that the right wing is putting out there as its own.

This material is all courtesy of CafePress.com.   There are many much worse places with worse message, but I’m taking a conservative path (pun intended).

Idealistic view of extremism.

Of course, this view is for the wingers who think of themselves as inheriting a tradition of rising up against government.  In order to see guns as proper means of governing, it’s necessary to see the government as an enemy.   That takes some pretzel schematics, but those are also available.  See below.

The "We Work and You Don't" motif.

"Sharing is Theft" theme.

The essential view of government that creates a right wing is the theme of some one else getting the benefits of our hard work.   In times when jobs are scarce, a natural conclusion would be that the corporate sector is failing us.   For the wingnuts, it’s necessary to accuse some other force of failing us, and that has to be the one that actually represents public interest.   When a progressive government is in office, the theme of social supports’ being at fault has to substitute for corporate welfare.    Commies are the folks who practice that sort of belief of the Beatitudes;  blessed are the poor, the weak, the hungry, those who are suffering.   This kind of politics is anathema to the wingnut.  . . . Read the rest of this entry →

That Ol’ Red Button

7:15 am in Uncategorized by Ruth Calvo

Growing up in the past decades that were the fifties/sixties, the well known mantra of that Red Button was that the president of the U.S. had access at all times to a superweapon he could deploy if suddenly we were attacked.    There was a fear of the Soviet Union in early days, that spread to other superpowers as the numbers of them grew.  It’s been awhile since that particular spectre was raised, as we have so much more immediate threats our demagogues can use since 911.

Fun times are back.   Now it appears the powers of the president have been examined and found potentially disrupting by the ever vigilant elements that want to find some threats to rattle.  The president has the power to turn off the Net!   No, really.

Under a World War II-era law, the US president appears to have authority to disconnect computer systems and servers from the internet in the event of a national emergency. But the next US Congress is poised to change that.

(snip)

Legislation backed by Senators Susan Collins, a Maine Republican, and Joseph Lieberman, an independent from Connecticut, would allow the president to declare a “national cyber emergency” and permit the administration to direct a threatened system’s operators to take action. The government would have to ensure the mandatory emergency measures were “the least disruptive means feasible”.

Needless to say, this discussion will provide rich ground for the recent campaign against the president’s authority and his constitutionality.     The red button issue can grow ever so crucial to the same tribe that put up a billboard in Waco, TX;  “Where’s The Birth Certificate?”

As a serious matter, it well may be true that the world has progressed a few inches from a state in which an attack could suddenly wipe out life as we know it.  That the defense of the red button would only add to the mayhem may even have crept into the conscious realm of our own security apparatus.

Such a rich opportunity to demonize our elected president will no doubt be irresistible to such opponents as have turned against their own agenda when the president supported it.   However, there are serious issues of any one official’s having the ability to determine what an attack actually is, or when it’s occurring.

Should the president turn off the internet if it’s turned into a malevolent force?   What are your thoughts.

Xenophobia Is The New Superpower Heroin(e)

1:00 am in Uncategorized by Ruth Calvo


Xena appeals to warrior imaginings.

The attraction of anti-immigrant rhetoric has become a new outgrowth of the economic crisis. Seeing that German Chancellor Angela Merkel is now pitching the magic tiara at brown folks makes me cringe.

So many myths have sprung up because of constituents needing jobs. It’s hard to keep from joining the outcry about the immigrant workforce, and their anchor babies, for those running for office in the present atmosphere of xenophobia. Facts might help.

In a nation that has more than a fourth of its workforce originating outside the country, German leaders are appealing to the native exclusivity, an unfortunate development for all concerned.

Mrs Merkel told a gathering of younger members of her conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party on Saturday that at "the beginning of the 60s our country called the foreign workers to come to Germany and now they live in our country… We kidded ourselves a while, we said: ‘They won’t stay, sometime they will be gone’, but this isn’t reality.

"And of course, the approach [to build] a multicultural [society] and to live side-by-side and to enjoy each other… has failed, utterly failed."
(snip)
Such recent strong anti-immigrant feelings from mainstream politicians come amid an anger in Germany about high unemployment, even if the economy is growing faster than those of its rivals, our correspondent says.

He adds that there also seems to be a new strident tone in the country, perhaps leading to less reticence about no-go-areas of the past.

The kind of hostilities that are generated by political rhetoric may be with us for some time to come. In this country, we have an increase in feelings against all immigrant groups as well. It isn’t beyond the pale for our extremists to threaten that immigrants are ‘dropping’ babies, even those that will come back to haunt us as manchurian terrorists – while actual statistics show that that is a malevolent myth.  . . . Read the rest of this entry →

Gohmert Plays Manchurian Baby Card

12:00 pm in 2010 election, Elections, Government, Legislature, Politics, Republican Party by Ruth Calvo


It isn’t often that a true loon can find his way onto national television, so it’s almost understandable that Louie Gohmert is holding hard onto his Manchurian baby card. Calling the dastardly wannabe terrorist mommy out has spurted this habitue of the closet onto a big stage, and he’s making full use of all three rings.

Last night, Anderson Cooper treated Gohmert to questions that assumed the congressman would have solid information to go with his accusations. To those who’ve been appalled by Gohmert’s fact-free spiels over many years of watching congressional proceedings on C-SPAN, it is no surprise that what he actually produced was a gripe about having to answer questions.

"You’re attacking the messenger! Anderson, you’re better than this, you used to be good… you used to find that there was a problem and go after it," said Gohmert. "You listen. This is a problem. If you spent as much time looking for evidence as you’ve spent belittling me, you’ve spent this whole week belittling me."

Actually, the video speaks for itself, which is more than you can say for Gohmert.

Manchurian Babies Attack!

10:30 am in Politics, Republican Party by Ruth Calvo


All indications that the campaign to take over America is on, and there is nothing too stupid for the right to use in driving its voters over the cliff. Now it’s the accusation that terrorist babies are being bred for the U.S. maternity market.

Put that jacket with the wrap-around arms back down. There are candidates that crazy out here in flyover country. It’s not just that citizenship in the country taken over in the 1600′s by northern Europeans can be recklessly offered to babies whose parents arrived later than then. It’s that we could have a production line impregnating wannabe terrorist mothers and dumping them on our doorsteps, according to the wingnuts seeking office in the Loan Star State.

Riddle warns of an elaborate terrorist plot to have foreign mothers give birth to babies in the United States, who will then be trained to destroy America once they come of age. In her animated appearance on CNN, Riddle defends the baby conspiracy plot despite admitting she "doesn’t have the hard evidence on hand."

A few choice exchanges between Cooper and Riddle:

Cooper: But you have no actual evidence.

Riddle: Other than former FBI folks.

Cooper: Can you tell us who these former FBI folks are, what evidence they have or what evidence they’ve shown you?

Riddle: At this point I’m not going to reveal that.

Cooper: You say some former FBI agents have talked to your office. Have they given your office some facts or actual proof?

Riddle: That information we are still gathering.

Gathering proof shows that there isn’t anything too daft for the conspiracy theorists digging hard for votes to dream up. A secret agent told me; I can tell he’s a secret agent because he’s dressed to look like one of us. These fiends among us will stoop to anything.

You know those wily terrorists are even stepping on cracks in the sidewalk, (step on a crack, break your mother’s back), showing their extreme malevolence against mothers, and probably apple pie too. Maybe I should run for crossing guard, so that I can stop the dreadful violence against mothers.

The Founders’ Worst Nightmare

8:00 am in Uncategorized by Ruth Calvo

A constitution is a wonderful thing. One carefully crafted so that it lasts, preserving liberty from the authoritarian form of arbitrary government it ended for this country, is a treasure. Having a constitution that protects individual rights cannot be appreciated too much.

To protect our constitutional rights, the founders put in a lot of body checks, known as ‘checks and balances’ and left a great deal of power to the states, knowing that a diverse population would guard itself against takeovers from any faction that became too powerful, through the many ways provided.

The founders had a great deal of faith in the value of liberty, and when they looked at themselves, intelligent and dedicated to self-government, they saw a great hope for the advancement of mankind. They weren’t as great as they could have been, and one of their greatest failings was overlooking the institution of slavery that they were unable to abolish without shredding the emerging nation. Later generations took care of that wrinkle, as civilization advanced. The constitution was crafted further, the Bill of Rights added to make up for concepts that it hadn’t originally incorporated.

Sad to say, now the country faces a political farce that calls itself constitutional, and that claims it wants to return the country to constitutional government – by eliminating the very representative government set up by those forefathers who freed us from domination by authoritarians. The power of the vote having been exercised, and a party put in power legitimately, have become the objects of a vocal and totally ignorant uprising from the right wing. Call it hate politics, call it teabagging, call it corporate warfare against social support programs: it is a rejection of democracy.

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