Private Sector Says ‘No’ To Indiana Bigotry

Joe Skipper / AP )

Gov. Mike Pence (R) of Indiana has risked sending his state into a fiscal downfall with a recent decision to sign into law a pro-discrimination bill dressed up as Christianity. This bill was put forward by the corrupt, immoral people of Advance America who want to protect hatred for others over the protection of ideals like freedom and liberty.

In response to this extremely stupid and anti-gay bill the State of Indiana has already begun to suffer. Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce.com, canceled all programs that required travel to the state. The Gen Con gaming conference and the NCAA also both expressed publicly that this may cause a change in future venues within the state.

If these radical bigots don’t start accepting that their religious beliefs do not amount to an excuse to commit acts of discrimination against others they are welcome to be free of the boycott.

Otherwise … #BoycottIndiana!

Gutting America

Now that the budget cuts have been released for public viewing I am reminded that we have a Democratic president who enjoys passing Republican policies.

This budget as it stands now is the gutting of America and the road to ruin. Slashing every domestic program in sight and leaving the wasteful military spending alone is the sort of move I would expect from a Republican, but if this is indeed the budget Obama supports then it amounts to yet another huge failure of this president to stand up for progressive values.

Gutting $415 million from state and local law enforcement, $438 from energy efficiency and renewable energy, $786 million from FEMA first responder grants, $1,045 million from HIV AIDS, viral hepatitis, STD and TB prevention — all of these proposed cuts represent a desire to see Americans suffer and to see this country fail as a competitive nation.

Combining these facts with the $5 billion increase in military spending illustrates to me that the whole of Washington DC is hell-bent on turning America into a war state with permanent rampant poverty. I expect such destructive and illogical policies from Republicans, they maintain the role of the uninformed saber rattlers, but to see such a ruinous and hideous budget plan being endorsed by Democrats is disgusting.

It’s obvious to me, as things stand now, that Obama along with the Democratic Party have thrown the middle class and the American worker under the bus. All the while holding up the bloodthirsty military industrial complex and the heartless desires of corporate America as paramount.

It is nothing short of a lie that the nation is “broke” and if either party was serious about trimming waste without gutting vital social services the first on the chopping block would be the Pentagon budget.

What this country has is a tax revenue problem. As any conservative will tell you GE paid nothing in taxes last year. That is only the tip of the iceberg, but a good place to start. Closing all the corporate tax loopholes combined with raising income taxes on the wealthiest Americans would free more than enough tax revenue to manage the debt while at the same time avoid gutting important government services in the process.

The failure of American Democracy is perfectly represented by the non-choice of Democrats who cave on if not directly promoting anti-American policies and Republicans who pander to racists if not openly endorse fascist laws. The choice between moderate conservatives calling themselves Democrats and extremist conservatives calling themselves Republicans is no choice at all.

Senate Reconciliation Now!

The Republican obstructionism on the health care reform agenda is not “principled objections” as Senate minority leader Eric Cantor suggests. It is non-principled, pure nihilistic policy of poisoning the well and deception on behalf of conservatives.

The liberal majority that elected Democrats to office in 2008 has spoken.

The Public Option must survive in a final health care bill, and the process of reconciliation between House and Senate bills is the only avenue by which Democratic representatives can claim to have made any “meaningful reform” come reelection time.

Make it clear that this will not go away, and we the liberal progressives will not be silent.

This push did not come from the White House, or the Progressive Caucus, or from the desk of Sen. Harry Reid. This push for a strong public option through reconciliation came from the people who understand that health care is a moral issue, not merely a budgetary issue.

Both President Obama and Senator Reid remain open to the pursuit of Senate reconciliation, but I believe it important to state that this in itself is the “failure to sell health care reform to the American people” I spoke of before.

Instead, we will have to make perfectly clear that the public option must go forward and does not continue to be the “public optional.”

Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) announced on Friday afternoon that he would work with other Democrats and the White House to pass a public option through reconciliation if that’s the legislative path the party chooses.

The party has spoken. The ball is their court now in congress, but we must not allow this to fade into the night.

Just as Paul Krugman recently closed an op-ed with, “Health Care Reform Now!” I would say the as he except in different words given the changing of the situation but holding the same meaning:

Senate Reconciliation Now!

Ayn Rand is Running the TEA Party

(Boston Globe)

Coldhearted novelist-philosopher Ayn Rand is Running the both the TEA Party and the GOP, her self-serving ideology the real backdrop of the modern political right-wing.

Alan Greenspan was one of many Randites who have come to see the failing in their former logic.

Greenspan, to his credit, came forward in the height of the global economic meltdown to speak out against the exact same kind of “free-capitalistic” business practices that caused the crash. He clearly stated that he found: “[a] flaw in the model that I perceived as the critical functioning structure that defines how the world works.

Conservatives and libertarians greatly ignored and widely dismissed Greenspan and his unsubtle rejection of these “Ayn Rand Economics” or “Free-Market Capitalism” styled politics that he had once been a strong advocate of. I contend that these people do not care to explore flaws in their ideological stances and instead (in greater and greater numbers it seems) only seek to create an atmosphere of me-versus-you if any person is in anything but outright agreement if not an atmosphere of outright violence.

Dishonesty and willful ignorance dominates the TEA Party, right along with the radical GOP, leaving me to assume that no less than Ayn Rand coming from beyond the grave is the one is truly running the party.

(will re-post with full essay when finished transcribing)

“American Right Wing Distaste for Government” by Stellaa

This is a post from Stellaa’s blog that I think deserves consideration:

 

Although this is indirectly about the healthcare debate, I want to step back and ask my friends on the right about their ideas on “government” and the Reagan cry that you hold dear: “government is the problem, not the solution” 

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I am confounded by a paradox in thinking by conservatives and libertarians.  Let me see if I can break it down and not fall in the pit of confusion and distortion that they come seem to embrace with gusto.   

This is how the conservative thinking goes:

  • American conservatives seem to own the symbols of patriotism.  The flag, the national anthem, the militaristic rituals, statues, songs and just patriotic bravado– oh, they own the “founding fathers”.  

  • Yet, these same people despise their government.   The very government, that is the instrument the US Constitution, the mechanism by which our democracy is implemented.   The thing that has kept the “democracy” alive.  

  • They deem this “government” incapable of any competence, except of course when that government goes to war, puts people in jail   or executes them.  Somehow, in their minds, government does that just fine.  

  • They seek to strip the government of all powers and privatize all activity.  This sentiment, of diminishing powers is only when the other side wins.  Privatizing the government services is a constant theme, public goods should be for private gain.  

  •  They cite the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, yet, they do not tell us, if we did not have a government, courts, legislators etc, who and how would that Constitution  be protected and or enforced?  Yet, unlike me, who only has a distaste for the second amendment, they would gladly trim the sails of all the other amendments.  So, why should government define marriage?  Why should government be involved in their reproductive decisions?  Why should government be entrusted with god?  Why should government control what we see, hear or read?  

  • If it’s the size of government they dislike, then why do embrace corporate bureaucracies?  The corporate bureaucrat does not have a public process where at least the citizen can file a complaint and get a hearing.  Public bureaucracies have provisions for change of unjust rules.   

So, Mr. Reagan and all his followers who blindly believe that “government is the problem”, pray tell, how do you suggest we manage this democracy, this nation?  What are you offering to replace government?   Why do you trust and embrace government when it comes to imposing your values and yet you distrust government in mechanical functions?  

Think of a simple thing like building codes.  If we stripped those powers, tell me, tell me how the free market would make sure that the materials and the builders built habitable and safe buildings?  

 I have worked in government and have fought with government for decades.  I have little faith in the talk of change as long as we have elected officials who receive contributions and depend on being reelected.  

Of course I am cynical about many aspects of how this nation is governed, but damn if I am willing to give it up to a bunch of looneys with guns, corporate boards and “that void of the conservative alternative”.   

What the f*** do you guys want?   How do you suggest we do this?  If tomorrow we eliminated all government in the US, what would this world look like?

Yes, there is the odd anarchist who will chime in and tell me how the whimsical free thinkers of the world will all hold hands and make sure, because they are such spiritual and righteous beings.  Trust they say  people will just do the right thing.  Yes, right, now go off and do a pantomime and wear some fairy wings and as soon as you are done, get married and become a meaner and nastier bourgeois pig than I could ever be.  

I often find that for all the claims of “godliness” that the right-wing in politics and specific people on the internet / media are some of the most hostile, mean-spirited, spiteful and unhumble people one could find.

I have posed the similar questions as well, when confronted with this.

With no coghent reply, ever.

I’ve decided this is all fine and dandy. The day they all burn their Social Security Cards, State Identifications, and Passport–then swear off all government roads and all government connected service–is the day I will start taking them seriously.

As for now they are acting as nothing less than unpatriotic traitors exchanging politics for fear-mongering.

Repost: Loyal Opposition No More

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For many years I have felt that for all our disagreements between liberal and conservative individuals in the U.S., there was a shared position by both sides.
A loyal opposition to the opposition, if you will.
For the time being, as since the election of Democratic President Barack Obama, I believe the majority of the conservatives of America have thrown down this national system of civil loyalty in politics in place of a pure obstructionist agenda.
The Party of “No!” is not conservative, nor liberal, it is pure nihilism in place of understanding.
I have not heard any amount of logical rebuttal to an Obama Policy or policy proposal, except in very rare cases.
I find I cannot listen to the standard bearers of GOP right-wing radio these days. Like most people I have my “hang-ups.”
Dismissive attitudes, a complete lack of humility and screaming people down end up on my list.
Every time I have been listening to conservative talk radio, or GOP responses, since the election of Barack Obama I am disgusted by the complete lack of integrity and grace in politics. Every word a smear, every point a spin.
Reducing everything down to simply “look at who is doing the name-calling” is not the issue. Though it is important thing to avoid name-calling as much as possible.
Not sticking to the facts about our democratic representatives and our recent national historical facts is unpatriotic.
I wish it were not so, and no group can claim to innocent of some form of vitriol in these times. But if something I say amounts to “name-calling” then I’m afraid it must be so. But understand I don’t say such things in a state of glee as we see from others screaming rational people down.
I find it offensive that in a matter of weeks all our politics have reduced to childishness and fear-mongering about the government.
Instead of having an actual political dialogue they insist on presenting “vague-facts” along with connect-the-dots logic, which is simply dirty pool politics.

Tea Party Folks Did Not Vote In ‘08

obamacowboy

“I was actually black before the election.”

— President Barack Obama

I well aware of how vastly arrogant my headline for this post is.

I’m not a TEA Party (“Taxed Enough Already”) person, nor a right-winger, nor a libertarian, nor a fringe radical. But I actually pay attention to both sides of the political spectrum, in fact all sides of the political spectrum, and I do it on my own without relying on the work of others to decipher it all for me.

I am stepping outside of my ‘box’ here, but what I’m telling you is based off of real comments of real people who didn’t get paid more if they screamed louder or lied harder.

And these people enraged with everything Obama does or says did not vote. Period.

They all sat home and decided that it was all a wash. Or the vast majority of them did at least. Maybe a few voted for the anti-American psychopath Alan Keyes.

Now Obama came out to say, in a very clever way, that the animosity against him is political and not racial.

I think very likely this is, for the most part, completely accurate.

A lot of these people are so angry because they didn’t vote. And that’s really it. There isn’t a lot more to understand.

Sure they are ‘anti-government‘, but not really. They are only anti-government when the government is run by mainly Democrats and their hatred for the government dissolves as soon as the Republicans are in power. It’s laughable and complete partisanship, but also not racist in any form.

The issue of this modern strain of racism is far more subtle and far more disguised than something so simple as overt anti-black statements.

This is part of why the rightwing cannot process the words of Jimmy Carter.

His courageous words involved looking at the world in more than a black-and-white, on-and-off, bumper sticker mentality. One must dabble in nuance and undercurrents to come to this conclusion.

It’s rather simple:

Some white people in this country are not willing to share power with non-whites.

If you actually read Carter’s comments, that is exactly what he said.

And it would be deplorable and insane if President Barack Obama was going to back up the words of Jimmy Carter. That would be completely wrong-headed and bad for the country.

So this whole issue has been a-swing-and-a-miss in terms of the conservative response to these charges. They constantly imply that Carter said that all rejection of Obama is based on race and everyone political knows that such a statement is completely false.

This example here of the TEA Party people and how they in fact placed no trust in democracy whatsoever during the election and then want to place faith in democracy through protest at this stage is just one of many examples that shows that it‘s not all racial motives.

Basically they came late to table and that’s part of their extreme bitterness. They are quite angry with themselves for the nonsense they were spouting, that I was listening to, that voting was completely pointless. Now they really wish they had gotten out there.

The big point a lot of people on the left fail to make about all this is that it is the failure to reject racialists like Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh and the failure to reject McCarthyist claims, that started long before Glenn Beck started repeating them, is the best example of racism in The Republican Party.

The howling silence from major ticket Republicans in regards to race-baiting and McCarthyism running wild in their party is pretty much the best evidence that exists that not only was Carter right, he understated the problem.

But I’m no brazen fool, I know exactly what I’m asking the GOP to do. I want them to throw away the Southern White Racists and throw away the White Nationalists, both of which really do vote Republican. So my request is for them to throw away votes.

And they won’t do that. Especially not now that they are wounded, limping party relying on media hounds to do CPR to their wrinkled husk.

But it’s about doing what is right for the country even when that might not be what is best for the party.

And this complete unwillingness to even admit that a boil of festering racism exists upon the fringe of the rightwing, makes me think that perhaps this veiled racism against any non-white leadership is actually present in a vast majority of cases.

Something Carter never said. Something I’ve never heard anyone say whatsoever.

But when many people won’t even explain why they believe Carter was mistaken and all they do is engage in bigoted insults against him, misrepresent what he said and just plain arrogantly insult anyone who backs Carter up; it truly does the beg the question if they just view the matters from a different lens or if they actually are so enraged because they know these statements are true and cannot abide by it being discussed openly in public.

Overt Race-Baiting From Limbaugh And Racial Politics At-Large

rush_limbaugh_operation_chaos_cigar

“In Obama’s America white kids now get beat up with black kids cheering, ‘Yeah! Right on, right on!’”

“When is the last time Gen. Powell endorsed a white liberal for president?”

“This whole election [2008] was based on race.”

These are just a small taste of the flagrant racialist sentiments that have come from the Pro-Republican ultra-conservative rightwing-mouthpiece Rush Limbaugh.

Not once has any major Republican party figure come out to distance themselves from these shameless attempts to drum up anti-black sentiment against Barack Obama.

While Jimmy Carter expressed what I thought needed to be said, the larger part of my personal feelings on the matter is that of the unwillingness to question those that present themselves as conservatives or Republicans but in truth engage in viscous race-baiting.

It is the lack of togetherness around combating racism that leads me to such reasoning.

If their movement was so invested in racial equality, wouldn’t they want Limbaugh thrown off the air? Or at very least to stop calling himself a conservative and just admit to being a Race-baiter more than he is anything else?

But, no.

He is a mainstay in conservative-talk and even the Chairman of The RNC, Michael Steele, wouldn’t stand up to him on a matter as simple as if Limbaugh was an “entertainer“ or not.

Obviously Rush Limbaugh is a Radio Entertainer, but these quotes are examples of exactly what kind of entertainment his program really offers. Race-baiting against African-Americans and vile, political hatred for all who disagree with him all wrapped up in one package.

In that much alone, bringing no other examples, I could say almost the same words the former President Jimmy Carter spoke that have sparked controversy except more directed on to the shoulders of mainstream conservatives than the anti-Obama forces.

This failure to reject the racialist statements of a popular political-talker on any real level begs to question if indeed many support these untrue and racially divisive statements.

In short, it is this defense of figures like Limbaugh or the defense of racist cartoons that promotes the idea in minds of some that perhaps racial motivates do exist far more strongly than political motives in minds of others.

PORTSMOUTH, NH - AUGUST 11: Police stand near protesters outside Portsmouth High School where U.S President Barack Obama is holding a town hall August 11, 2009 in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. President Obama is in town to speak about the need for health insurance reform to a crowd of eighteen hundred. (Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images)

PORTSMOUTH, NH - AUGUST 11: Police stand near protesters outside Portsmouth High School where U.S President Barack Obama is holding a town hall August 11, 2009 in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. President Obama is in town to speak about the need for health insurance reform to a crowd of eighteen hundred. (Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images)

“We have to take our country back!”


“Get your government hands off my Medicare!”

There are two reasons why I believe some of the extreme sentiments in The Health Care Debate are perhaps more than merely political partisanship from the right.

(1) The Patriot Act expanded federalism and government power, as well as government involvement in our lives, without anywhere near the same level of intense resistance from these same groups who claim to stand only for limiting government power.

(2) Republican President George W. Bush initially expanded federalism, once more in a single presidency, to include market recovery spending again without anywhere near the same level of personal attacks on his character.

The ideals of conservatism state that we should have let the market fall and just let the chips fall where they may. The ideals of conservatism state that creating more government is always the wrong direction and only limiting it is the correct course.

If this resistance was in fact some ‘grass roots’, ‘bipartisan’, ’community event’ based on conservative ideals then these same people would have held protests and thrown tea parties at the actual expanse in federalism, and not at this late stage.

This talk of revolution and talk of oppressive government certainly begs any level of credibility with even the most elementary review of facts. A disconnect exists between the level of outrage and the stances they claim to hold dear.

It is important to point out, that I agree with Speaker Pelosi on the matter of astroturfing in the Health Care town halls.

I eluded to that in a previous post: “Marble-cake Federalism and Health Care Reform”.

‘Astroturfing’ is a political term you don’t hear often. It means that a big entity, like a medical insurance company, is funding the protestors by means of paid-provocateurs and organizers usually working as private contractors.

I am not trying to belittle or demean those that have issues with the Health Care bills or issues with the very notion of government Health Care Reform.

I am only saying that in my view all these events don’t add up.

The problems in Congress and the deficit issue or the many other points I have heard made never include addressing why these issues, that have been this way prior to the election of Barack Obama and during the presidency of George W. Bush, are suddenly such strong points of contention.

I would remind everyone of the Obama Stimulus and how a very similar message was present in those speaking out in public and in the media but none of them ever explained why they neglected to protest or even voice their opinion when Bush issued a Stimulus Check and bailed out the banks.

Non-explanations combined with a specific rejection of specifically this president combined with intense pre-judgments, like the charges of “indoctrination or despotism coming from people on the right wing when Obama merely addresses school children, are the reasons that I support Jimmy Carter in confronting the issue instead of shying away.

Dick Cheney Fails To Understand American Values

dick-cheney

Former Vice-President Dick Cheney continues to obfuscate the truth and tarnish the name of all Republicans by means of standing up for cruel and unusual punishment of military detainees.

Appearing on FOX News Sunday recently, the former Vice President continued to advocate a dangerous and sick agenda by claiming pride for the torture and prisoner mistreatment that occurred under The Bush Administration.

Beyond this outrageous fact, Cheney made a statement that I see as a direct affront to very heart of American Values like he has never done before.
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WALLACE: So even these cases [of interrogation] where they went beyond the specific legal authorization, you’re OK with it.”

3_61_320_cheney

CHENEY: I am.

This was a true testament to how divorced Dick Cheney remains from any understanding of our national standards of justice and our mutual values as a people.

Cheney clearly declares that he cares nothing as to the pursuit of justice to those that break the law under the blanket of authority claiming to pursue justice themselves.

This country does not accept any person or body to be beyond the law, and Cheney insulted this nation by supporting the notion that supporting illegal actions under government supervision are acceptable in a free nation of laws.

Republican Obstructionism in Health Care Reform

I see these God-forsaken ads running on my blog about how people are supposed to “Stop Obama-care Now!” and I would like to metaphorically spit on this nonsense once and for all. Anyone attaching the misnomer of “socialized medicine” or using the phrase “Obama-care” at this stage has already labeled themselves as part of the partisan agenda weakening this country from within everyday.

I contend that if we witnessed these same bills moving through Congress proposed by Republicans instead of Democrats that many of the same harsh opponents of reform would flip-flop their stance entirely. Almost anyone questioned on their position in the media or otherwise states that they think there should be “some kind” of reform.

I am left to think that a vast majority of the resistance to the passage of these measures is simply playing politics on behalf of Republicans, in that if President Obama passes a successful humanitarian bill that enhances the lives of so many American families the political consequences to their party will be too severe to manage.

At least the televised and media punditry are motivated by this end, if noting else.

This Party of No” mentality is dangerous to us all. If anyone has a valid objection or concern by all means they should make themselves known. But when a person simply stands on the legs of right wing talking points and shaky numbers I tend to think they would be a strong advocate for “McCain-care” if the universe where all flipped upside down.

Sara Palin Quits Her Job

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Former Republican Vice-Presidential candidate, and soon to be former Governor of Alaska, Sara Palin has decided to walk away from her responsibilities as governor as well as her obligations to those who voted her into office.

Whatever her reasons may be she is electing to be extremely vague and elusive, leaving the speculation running wild. It’s possible the ethics probes are the reason. It’s possible she is fed up with political partisan bickering and propagandizing.

Whatever the reason the fact remains that this representative is walking away from her responsibilities and setting a terrible example to the nation in terms of governorship.

Bigots Against Islam Run The Republican Party

The hatred of others based on their faith is the favored tactic of the Anti Obama Republicans in this current political climate. If this hatred was directed at another religion the whole of the American public would reject this bigotry as unpatriotic and down right sick. This propaganda and lies about Islamic faith is tolerated by Republicans because many Americans chose to believe lies, such as the misnomer that the majority of Muslims are in fact terrorists, in place of speaking with their fellows whom may be more directly connected to the truth of the matter than a pack of lying pundits.

Racism against Arabs and bigotry against Islam seems perfectly acceptable to millions of Americans, while racism against Blacks and bigotry against Christians or Jews is downright unacceptable. These Republican Americans and their conservative counterparts seem to believe that civil rights extend only to certain colors and certain faiths.

These disrespectful and partisan Americans put into question their dedication to the principals of non-discrimination in our society. Until major representatives of the Republican Party denounce this bigotry and racism in their ranks they remain in my mind a continued threat to peace and national security in the United States of America.