Friday, April 12, 2013

Last Call

Same Republican anti-minority, anti-immigrant crap, different state.

Four North Carolina House Republicans filed a bill on Wednesday that notably introduces the “show me your papers” provision of Arizona’s anti-immigration law. Under the bill, H.B. 786, police can check the immigration status of anyone they stop or arrest and detain them for “reasonable suspicion.” The bill also makes it easier for police to seize immigrants’ vehicles. Furthermore, it would require a detained undocumented immigrant to pay the costs of his or her arrest, while making bail more difficult.

The bill does provide driver’s permits to undocumented immigrants if they lived in the state for one year. However, these licenses follow the controversial design North Carolina attempted to issue to DREAMers, which mark them from the rest of the state’s population: Undocumented immigrants would receive a vertical license, instead of the standard horizontal one, and they would carry a thumbprint.

Yeah.  Round up time, yeehaa.   If you're wondering when North Carolina became insane, it was the second the GOP got control of the legislature and the Governor's mansion, so welcome to having a bunch of regressive bigots run your state like the rest of racist assholes in the South, guys.

Increasingly glad I left, when Kentucky is more progressive...

Ashley, Alison, And The Turtle Part 6

As I covered in last night's Last Call, Progress Kentucky has shaped up to be just about Mitch McConnell's best weapon in defusing the primary charge against him from the right, and completely disarming Kentucky Democrats on the left.  I'm glad I'm not the only one out there who thinks these clowns need to exit the stage as quickly as possible.  Evan McMorris-Santoro and Ruby Cramer bring us the epitaph:

It's probably possible for a political group to be worse at accomplishing its core mission than Progress Kentucky is, but it's difficult to imagine how.

In its short lifespan, the super PAC focused solely on defeating Sen. Mitch McConnell has instead helped the Republican incumbent deflect his low approval rating and conservative critics by subjecting McConnell to comically incompetent political attacks.

"They've managed to become McConnell's favorite whipping boy," said Jimmy Cauley, a longtime Kentucky Democratic strategist. "It's kind of laughable because they didn't exist four months ago. And yet they've gotten wrapped up in a string of four or five controversies."

Kentucky Democrats aren't ready to say Progress Kentucky has helped McConnell, but national Democratic observers have their jaws on the floor as they watch the group turn McConnell into a sympathetic figure, generating good headlines for him time and again. 

And that's the real damage done, these idiots have managed to make one of the most personally vile and villainous scumbags in Congress into the aggrieved victim, despite McConnell's awful, misogynist attacks on Ashley Judd and his atrocious voting record, all while he's managed to use his office to enrich himself by tens of millions of dollars.  The story should be how vulnerable, ineffective, and terrible McConnell is.  Instead, these two pudknockers have collapsed the circus tent and are running around setting bits of it on fire.

If the leakers of the tape wanted it to hurt McConnell, their plan backfired. McConnell raised money off his claim that he had been the victim of "Nixonian" tactics, and generally fomented conservative support with his outrage-based spin strategy after the tape came to light. Now that it looks like McConnell might be proven right about the origins of the tape, it's likely he'll get even more mileage out of Progress Kentucky.

The longer Progress Kentucky is in the news, the less McConnell's record is.  Kentucky Democrats are already a lost cause for most Americans.  If the rest of the Dems across the nation throw in the towel on beating Mitch because Heckle and Jeckle here have made the KY Dem brand too toxic to help...

McConnell has real political problems, including low approval ratings and Tea Party types in the GOP who are less than thrilled with his leadership in the Senate. National Democrats fear that the repeated Progress Kentucky faceplants are letting McConnell coast along.

"If it was them, this is an idiotic move and something that could jeopardize the larger push against McConnell in '14," one senior Democratic strategist in D.C. said of the tape. "If this is true, you ask yourself, why anybody would risk such a maneuver, especially on a tape was damning but not a game changer?"

In fact, Progress Kentucky is so bad at its stated task that some Democrats whisper behind the scenes (a better word is "hope") that it must to be a front set up by McConnell to make him look good and Democrats look terrible. Jennings had a message for those Democrats: no such luck.

"That's wishful thinking on the part of Democrats, I am sure, who seriously want to be as far away from these people as possible," he said.

Gives me a headache just thinking about it.

Food For Thought

Stephen Hawking, one of the most intelligent people our generation will ever see, recently spoke to students about more than just science.  He talked to them about life in general.

Hawking rattled off nuggets of advice: Look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Be curious.
"However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at," he said.
A mind so powerful that he is the bar by which genius is measured shows  us the way to success.  Never stop trying, be curious, be creative, and look for your talents and how to use them.  His words are empowering when you consider the GOP attacks on education and the attitude that wanting to study is an entitlement that the common folks don't deserve.

So let's see.  Someone so smart his name is synonymous with genius wants you to think and learn and reach,  learn to relish challenge and apply your given talents, because without those attributes the human race is doomed.  When one of the smartest people alive says this, anyone who disagrees had better pack (or reference) some serious academic weight.  That's all I'm saying.



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