Monday, March 12, 2012

Last Call

If a Birther pretends that he doesn't believe the President is a US citizen, is he a racist panderer, too ignorant to hold public office, or derelict in his duties to investigate and impeach?  Or hell, all three?  Meet Florida GOP Congressman Cliff Stearns at a town hall from last month:

All I can tell you is that the general consensus is that he has produced a birth certificate. The question is, is it legitimate? That’s where we stand now. I’ve seen a copy of it on television. But you know the Governor of Hawaii couldn’t get what he felt was an original of the birth certificate. He tried to do it and gave up on it. So I think what Obama’s showing is a facsimile, but I think that debate probably is not enough, shall we say, just to impeach him. We’re going to have an election in five or six months so we can change the course of history by electing someone other than Obama. That’s what elections are all about. If we started impeachment this time of year, very difficult in terms of time and strength.

So yeah, at this point I'm leaning towards the first and second of the three, but Stearns himself makes the case that he's guilty of the third as well.  Impeachment is hard.  Why bother with all that hard work when you can just pretend the President is a Kenyan and spread racist hatred among your constituents?

That's much easier.

Not-So-Slick Rick Slips

Republicans seem to get in the largest amount of trouble when they screw up and tell the truth.  It's probably why they resort to lying so much.  Take Rick Santorum, for instance, in Missouri this weekend.

Rick Santorum deviated from the party line this weekend when he suggested that an improving economy could damage Republicans’ chances in November. Santorum, whose campaign has helped bring social issues to the fore this year, let slip Saturday that the economy might not be a winning issue — or even the main issue during the election.

“You hear now the media starting to say, oh well, looks like the economy is getting better,” Santorum told supporters in Missouri Saturday night after winning the Kansas caucuses. “You know, the economy may be getting better and Republicans may lose their edge on that issue. Well, if that was the only issue in this race, that may or may not be the case, we don’t know.”

So, you wonder why Republicans are so busy playing the gender, race, and class cards so far in 2012 as the economic news begins to improve?  Remember in October the economy was the most important issue and it's all that mattered to both the "liberal media" and to the GOP.  Now all of a sudden it's all about birth control, same-sex marriage, and hugging Harvard professors.

Wondering why Republicans no longer want to talk to voters about jobs and economy anymore?  I'm not.  Santorum has given the game away, too.

Dennis No Longer The Menace

Angry Black Lady takes my 2010 post on Dennis Kucinich being just about the worst party line Democrat in the House and runs with it like the Mongol Horde on the open steppes.

Do you know who has never stated that he doesn’t “believe in the substance of Roe v. Wade”? President Obama.

Do you know who said “nope, zero” when the GOP wanted to cut funding for Planned Parenthood? President Obama.

Do you know whose administration stepped in when the New Hampshire GOP defunded Planned Parenthood and provided funding so that underprivileged New Hampshire women could continue to obtain contraception? President Obama’s.

Or what about when President Obama promised to veto the GOP’s “Let Women Die” bill?  Need I go on?

You see, at a this point in time when Republicans are trying to travel back in time to the glory days when gals just put an aspirin between their knees; when Republicans are trying to force foreign objects into a woman’s vagina under the guise of “Right to Know and See” or “Informed Consent” while simultaneously permitting doctors to withhold prenatal medical information because such information might lead to abortion; when Republicans are trying to pass bills that allow women’s health decisions to be subject to the religious whims of employers and health insurers; when the “no taxes increases ever” Norquist-boot-lickers turn around and attempt to levy a sales tax on women who seek abortions, I only have one response: Screw you.

I don’t care whether Kucinich was against the Iraq War or not. I was, too. I don’t care that he doesn’t like Obama’s policy of “targeted assassinations of American citizens without due process far from any battlefield.”  I don’t either.   So why should I miss Kucinich?  Why would I want more Kuciniches?

Which is precisely what voters in the ridiculously gerrymandered Ohio 9th said.  Marcy Kaptur is no prize either, mind you.  He awful positions on abortion make her a serious problem, but it's telling I would take over Kucinich any day of the week.   He's as bad as Kaptur on women's issues and a lot worse on a number of other things.

Having said that, hey Ohio?  Next primary?  Get a real Democrat in Ohio 9, please.  Kaptur is better than Kucinich the way mauling is better than disembowelment.

"An Overzealous Attempt To Make Sure That Accurate Information Is Put Out"

Berkeley Police Chief Michael Meehan has come under fire after sending an armed sergeant to Oakland Tribune reporter Doug Oakley's home in the middle of the night to push for changes to a story.

According to the Oakland Tribune, Meehan claimed that Oakley misquoted him in a story. Minutes after reading the article, Meehan ordered Sgt. Mary Kusmiss to visit the reporter's home and request that he correct the article -- at 12:45 a.m.

"At first I thought something really bad was happening or they were coming for me, like I was going to be arrested," said Oakley to Berkeleyside. "It was really intimidating."

It would have been out of line to place a call at 12:45 a.m. It would have been too much to send an officer over before contacting Oakley, even in broad daylight. Though Chief Meehan tries to shrug it off, the reality is that this goes beyond "bad judgment" and zoomed right past inappropriate. The misunderstanding came down to a small correction, an apology issued for one thing and attributed to another. This was not over a scandalous accusation, or a lie told on behalf of the police. That's the part that bothers me most. If it was a career killing spin or insane accusation that could damage public relations, I could see trying to get a quick revision or audience, even though that is still wildly inappropriate and should have been approached delicately if at all.  This was over nothing, which makes me wonder how close the journalist was to something important.

No real harm came from the events, of course. It's still something they will be trying to live down for quite some time.

Egypt Clears Doc In "Virginity Test" Issue

This is a follow-up from when women who were at a  protest in Egypt were forcibly given virginity tests last year.  The case got a lot of attention, but the judge just cleared the doctor based on inconsistencies in what witnesses said.  Right before court, some witnesses for the women mysteriously and suddenly decided to change their testimony.  So once upon a time, these people were willing to support the women's account, and now have decided they do not.

Originally, they tried to deny it ever happened, but a senior officer finally admitted it did.  Hey, how's that for an inconsistency?  They outright lied about it happening, but now they know it did.  Yet a judge's conscience directed him to clear the man.  A second betrayal for these women, who were hoping for justice.

It has been determined to be illegal as a result of this incident.  They know it happened.  The man responsible was cleared and several witnesses all decide to change their statements at the last minute.  No, that doesn't seem fishy at all, does it?

Also, just for a final reminder, don't forget the entire reason they were tested is because if they were not virgins, they were sluts who brought this on themselves.  Women are responsible for their rape, because they were clearly asking for it and allowed it to happen.  Honor killings somehow make it right by killing the woman who was a victim of rape.  Then I had a chilling thought: as crazy as it sounds, our own government is moving in that direction as well.

According to many candidates and people currently serving, if you are a woman in America and have sex outside of marriage, you are a sinner and don't deserve some medical benefits, the right to make your own medical choices, and now don't always have the right for full medical disclosure from your own doctor.  I love my doctor, I think he is a great fella.  However, I don't want his opinion to override mine as to whether I am capable of making a personal medical choice.  Yet that is what some women are facing, and more will surely follow.

This morning, I find myself equally horrified on behalf of the women who had five minutes of probing and leering and betrayal by their courts, and concern for women here, who are finding their rights and legal standing subject to the whim of political posturing.  At this point, I am fully convinced that Roy Blunt, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum have had a conference call and said in utter disbelief, "holy crap, it worked!  Forreals!  Inorite?!  Hey, what can we try next?"

We gotta cap this stupidity, and do it fast, and be a positive example for a change.

Johnny Volcano Rewrites History

I didn't see Game Change this weekend on HBO, I basically live blogged it while it was happening in reality, folks.  No need to relive that dark chapter in American history and how it set back the country a good 10 years.  Still, it's interesting to see how FOX News Sunday was all about how the film hurt John McCain's tender, tender fee-fees.

Fox News host Chris Wallace on Sunday asked the Arizona senator to respond to HBO’s movie “Game Change,” which implies that he only selected Palin because she was a woman.

“I thought she was the best qualified person,” McCain insisted. “I thought she had the ability to excite our party, and the kind of person that I wanted to see succeed in the political arena. She was a very effective and successful governor [of Alaska]. Again, I look forward and not back.”

“What I don’t understand, even in the tough world of politics, why there continues to be such assaults on a good and decent person, Sarah Palin, a fine family person, a person whose nomination energized our campaign,” he said. “We were in the lead and they continue to attack and disparage her character and her person.”

But it was the way he was portrayed by actor Ed Harris that seemed to most get under McCain’s skin.
“I’m portrayed as using an exceeding amount of coarse language,” the failed nominee explained. “I don’t use course language very often. I have a larger vocabulary than that.”

If Sarah Palin was the most qualified person as veep in 2008, why is she not running now in 2012?  Also, McCain didn't actually watch the film either, he says.  That's cool.  He didn't vet Palin, too.  He's not done a lot of things in hindsight he probably should have, which is why he lost to Barack Obama.


Cold Hard Cash In Iceland

It's rather refreshing to hear a European country say these days that they want into the euro currency rather than out of it, but that's what Iceland is considering.  However there's a long, ugly slog ahead for Reykjavik's government to finish the transition.

Iceland will either adopt the euro after joining the European Union or drop the krona and unilaterally adopt another currency as “the situation can’t remain unchanged,” said Prime Minister Johanna Sigurdardottir.

“The choice is between surrendering the sovereignty of Iceland in monetary policy by unilaterally adopting the currency of another country or become a member of the EU,” Sigurdardottir said in a speech delivered at a Social Democrat Alliance party convention today in Reykjavik, the capital. EU membership will allow Iceland to “cooperate with EU countries as a sovereign nation, which has a say in the decision and policy making in all fields of cooperation.”

Iceland started EU-entry talks in July 2010 and will probably vote on accession in early 2013. Of a total of 35 negotiating chapters for EU accession, Iceland has opened 11 and completed eight, the EU said in December. The primary challenges facing the talks relate to agriculture, the environment and fisheries, according to EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Fule.

A Capacent Gallup poll last month showed that about a quarter of the island’s voters support joining the bloc, or 26.3 percent, while 56.2 percent oppose EU membership. 

And it's that last part, where a vast majority of Icelanders want no part of the EU that is going to get a lot more play over the next 12 months or so before the vote.   Unless something incredible happens, Iceland won't be joining the EU anytime soon without some serious government economic coercion.  Whatever form will it take, it will most certainly involve the euro currency.

We'll see.


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