Monday, September 18, 2017

Meanwhile, in The World's Greatest Democracy



While the American people are captivated by the spectacle of the President of the United States displaying to the world a fantasy in which he violently assaults a candidate that he cheated out of her position, the following is happening in the Republican controlled Congress, which I will allow to be described by a piece at Daily Kos, as I am just too sick about all of this to rewrite it in my own words:


"In order to get the bill through, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell intends to cut off all debate, prevent any amendments, and refuse any discussion. It’s a combination that has never been used before. It’s a genuinely unprecedented shutdown of the Senate.

In addition to a process that’s ripping up the Senate rules ...

There have been no public hearings.

There is no CBO score.

The total amount of discussion will be limited to two minutes, with no amendments, no other votes.

But you can’t say there will be no hearings, because there is going to be a hearing. A single hearing. The way that hearing is going to be structured shows the fundamentally bizarre lengths Republicans are reaching to force this bill to the floor. That one hearing won’t be in front of any committee that has control over health care. It will be in front of the Homeland Security Committee. This committee has never before had a hearing on healthcare.

Why this apparently nonsensical choice? Because Republican Committee Chair Ron Johnson has agreed to limit witnesses on the Graham–Cassidy healthcare bill to just two: Graham and Cassidy, the authors of the bill. No health care experts will testify about health care. Republicans will make sure there is no one to tell a personal story of what this bill would do to them. No one to give any statistics or evidence about how it would gut healthcare and destroy provisions that protect patients."

This is not democracy.  It is the deliberate forcing on the American people of legislation that benefits no one but the rich bastards that fund the Republican party, which as I have said so many times, has not been a legitimate political party for decades, but is now a corrupt conspiracy on a level with the most criminal governments anywhere in the world today.

What is the point of trying to spread the word about what is going on in our country, when we all know it by now, and that is not slowing the Republicans from trying over and over again to pass the worst possible medical care bill they can think of, along with any other legislation that will rob the American people to pay off their masters?  And if you think this is bad, just wait a couple of weeks until we get Republican "Tax reform," which I guarantee you is going to be an even bigger crime. We have had one party governments many times in the history of this country, most notably in the hands of Democrats for many years after the Republican depression, but never (until the time of Reagan) has any party cast aside any shred of responsibility to the people, and sold itself lock stock and barrel to a few hundred rich sociopaths, who have decided that the best thing for them personally is an oligarchic dictatorship that considers the interests of no one but themselves.

And this, from the party of "government of the people, for the people, by the people."

Well, that's what we've got.  What are a few bloggers supposed to do about that?  If you figure out an answer, please let me know.



Saturday, September 16, 2017

MOAR- Mob of Asshole Republicans

Or this:
The Mother of All Rallies!!!  Promoted by Republicans for at least two months, this event took place in Washington D.C. today.  Didn't hear about it?  Well, here's some of the advance material:



"MOAR Mother Of All Rallies Patriot Unification Gathering-The Woodstock of American Rallies

America First patriot rally in support of American values, American culture, American traditions, and of course President Donald Trump. Our goal is to rally 1 million patriots to Washington DC to send a shock-wave message to the world that they have to go through us to take this country or change its culture."

ONE MILLION PATRIOTS!  Well, as is the inevitable outcome of right wing marches, they fell a little short of their predictions.

Here is a photo used in their promotional material:
Actually, I think this is from the inauguration of Barack Obama, where there were actually a million plus attendees.  Here is a photo of the actual crowd at today's event:
Maybe six or eight hundred, and who knows how many of them were casual tourists.  Well I guess that was their stand- it was just a small stand.

What kind of fool do you have to be to believe the Republicans' claims to speak for a massive, worked up political force in American life, when this happens over and over again?  The Republican party is good at one thing only: managing to assemble electoral victories on one day every couple of years, through a combination of billions spent on lying propaganda and character assassination, intense, criminal gerrymandering all over the country, and as we now know, treasonous collaboration with a hostile dictator that wants nothing but to destroy the power of the US government.  But that is all it takes to ruin our country, despite the fact that, as I have been documenting for years, their alleged massive base is essentially nonexistent, at least if it is measured by how many people are willing to get off their asses and do a damned thing to help bring about the fascist oligarchy that has been the Republicans' only real goal since at least the time of Reagan.

And yet here we go, straight down the road to hell, while the Republicans' rich backers strip every penny of value from the country.  So far, no hope of a good ending.

Friday, September 15, 2017

22!!!!!!!

While most of us have been preoccupied with lesser things, let me note that the Cleveland Indians won their 22nd game in a row yesterday, setting a new American League record.  They are now only four games behind the all time record of the New York Giants, set in 1916, of 26 games without a loss, although that streak was interrupted by a tie game resulting from a rainout.
Yay, Tribe.  Go for five more, and break a hundred year old record.

I can remember not that long ago when the Indians were the laughingstock of professional baseball.  Not any more, I guess.

The Machines are Going to Kill Us

Many people may, by now, heard of Facebook allowing its very powerful apparatus to be used by Aryan Supremacists to recruit followers:

"Want to market Nazi memorabilia, or recruit marchers for a far-right rally? Facebook’s self-service ad-buying platform had the right audience for you. 

Until this week, when we asked Facebook about it, the world’s largest social network enabled advertisers to direct their pitches to the news feeds of almost 2,300 people who expressed interest in the topics of “Jew hater,” “How to burn jews,” or, “History of ‘why jews ruin the world.’

Nice, huh?  And Facebook's explanation for that?

"After we contacted Facebook, it removed the anti-Semitic categories — which were created by an algorithm rather than by people"

Well, that's great- we now, apparently, have anti-Semitic machines.  I guess we are supposed to forget that these "algorithms" i.e. software, were created by people who apparently didn't care if they were benefiting from marketing to neo-Nazis.  No one is to blame, because the machines did it.

I'm sure that this argument will soon be extended into many areas of our lives.  After all, if you kill someone with a gun, you are not responsible because the machine did it, right?




Monday, September 11, 2017

Republican Lies, McCain Edition



Even when they try to tell the truth they can't help lying.  Case in point today, the ol' Maverick, for some reason granted a space on national TV to maunder on about global warming, which he claims to believe in:

"Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) says he has no idea why his GOP colleagues deny basic climate science... 

(Jake) Tapper... asks McCain why, with a few exceptions, the Republican party, “the president, the governor of Florida, et cetera, act as if it’s not real, even though the overwhelming scientific consensus is that it’s real and it’s man made?” 

“I don’t know because I can’t divine their motives,” McCain said."

He doesn't know their motives.

Well, he knows their motives perfectly well, as does any other rational person:  They are corrupt criminals who have taken bribes to lie about climate change.  Can't be admitting that, though


Saturday, September 9, 2017

Trump and the Democrats? Don't Be Ridiculous

After Donald Trump made his deal to sabotage House Republican leadership, the press has been full of the most arrant nonsense about his turning to the center, or becoming Presidential, or other such rubbish.  You would think that by now, there would be nobody left that had any illusion that Trump would ever make a move that was not both self-serving and piggish.  But here the pundits are again, falling for his crap, or at least pretending to.  You'd think that it would be obvious that Trump is not siding with the Democrats; he is siding against the Republican leadership in the house, in the person of one Paul Ryan.  Here's a little from a post at Daily Kos:


"Trump is not happy with Paul Ryan, and he doesn't care who knows it...As much as popular vote loser Donald Trump likes to tweet his feud with Mitch McConnell, it's the other Republican leader—House Speaker Paul Ryan—that he really seems to have it in for. First we saw reports that Steve Bannon—banned from the White House but still reportedly on Trump's cell phone speed-dial—is plotting with the Freedom Caucus maniacs to oust Ryan. Now AP is reporting that Trump is basically fed up with him."

Trump isn't happy with Paul Ryan?  Bullshit; he is scared to death of him, for the obvious reason:

"Ryan controls whether and when the House takes up articles of impeachment. Anyone thinking strategically about future consequences would not go out of their way to alienate the person who holds your future in their hands."

Unless you can remove him. And there is the answer to everything.  Ryan, the only politician in Washington that can match Trump's self serving treachery, is the person with his finger on the impeachment button.  Trump is not siding with anyone, he is trying to crush Ryan out of existence.  From the Washington Post today:


"Several influential House conservatives are privately plotting ways to use the legislative calendar this fall to push their hard-line agenda — including quiet discussions about possibly mounting a leadership challenge to House Speaker Paul D. Ryan.  The group has gone so far as to float the idea of recruiting former House speaker Newt Gingrich or former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum as potential replacements for Ryan (R-Wis.) should there be a rebellion. The Constitution does not require that an elected member of the House serve as speaker."

And why has this become so urgent?

For an answer to that, I suggest you take a couple of minutes to watch the following video by Keith Olbermann, who explains in his typical blunt fashion just how close to impeachment Trump really is; and as you watch this, remember that it is all based on what is known in public at this point- none of us really knows how much more Mueller knows at this point.  And pay particular attention to the role of Mike Pence in all of this, putting him in the impeachment frame too:



Well, leaving the impeachment process in the hands of a treacherous monster like Ryan, who is just salivating at the prospect of making himself President is something that even the monumentally stupid Trump is not going to allow.  He needs to replace Ryan almost immediately with a totally captive right wing toady who will never allow impeachment to go forward; a role for which Gingrich or Santorum would be ideally suited.  And that is what this is all about.  At this point, Trump will side with anyone who might have the ability to help lever Ryan out of his position, because Trump recognizes a fellow rat in Ryan, and knows what will happen the minute Ryan sees his path to the Presidency open up.


Thursday, September 7, 2017

Oblivious Left Wing Comment of the Day

From the normally totally perceptive Digby, I am afraid:

"I frankly don’t understand why people are still wondering if there was collusion during the campaign."

Digby, none of these people you are referring to are "wondering if there was collusion during the campaign."  They all know perfectly well that there was collusion- massive, treasonous collusion, as proven beyond a shadow of a doubt through dozens of actions by Donald Trump and his minions.  They are not questioning the clear facts, as you very well know.  They are attempting to shout those facts down in any way they can, by denying over and over again what we all know to be true.

They are not stupid; they are paid liars, and they are going to go on lying, and threatening, and diverting people's attention, from now until doomsday, since the alternative is to admit that their entire party is a corrupt pack of traitors.

There.  Isn't it nice to just state the truth for once?

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Wingnut Wrapup

As I've said, I have pretty much given up on Wingnut Wrapup, but I think it's a good idea to once in a while look in on the wingnuts, just to remind ourseves of what a grotesque pack of evil, anti-American, hate filled people make up the Republican base.  So, here we go:

Katie Pavlich, Town Hall:  "Dennis Prager: The Left Chooses to Go After Statues Instead of Fighting Real Evil...Prager argued that the left goes after statues because they aren't willing to confront real evils in the world."

Real evil apparently not being the return of the most malignant form of racism, or the efforts of the Republican party to turn the country into a fascist state, or the right's embrace of sadism as a legitimate way to treat their opponents.  Because the Democrats are confronting (however weakly) those evils, or I should say, I guess, those delightful new American principles brought to us by the Republicans.

Guy Benson, Town Hall:  "Will Democrats Take 'Yes' For An Answer on DACA, or Demagogue Compromises to Protect a Wedge Issue?"

Translation:  will Democrats agree to a half dozen piggish, hateful Republican proposals, out of fear that the Republicans will blame Democrats for doing away with DACA?  Answer? Probably.  Or, as Guy puts it:

"we will resolve the DACA issue with heart and compassion – but through the lawful Democratic process"

I.e. by our usual tactic of taking hostages and ramming through as many horrible abuses as possible before agreeing to any decent proposals at all.

Katie Pavlich:  "America to the FBI: We Deserve to See Hillary Clinton's FBI File"

Yeah, that is what "America" is really worried about at this point.  According to a Rasmussen "poll," i.e. a Republican lie.  And even Rasmussen could barely get the number over 50%, no matter how they rigged the count.

And now a cartoon showing the deep sensitivity the right shows to the plight of the dreamers:


Yeah, just dump ice on their heads.  That'll solve the problem.  Hurt them a little more, that's the answer, you sons of bitches.  Well, I guess that if they are still dreaming that the Republican party is going to treat them decently, maybe they need to be awakened, so they can start packing.

Christine Rousselle, Town Hall:  "People Are Seriously Mad that Taylor Swift Hasn't Condemned Trump"

Seriously mad.  And I mean SERIOUSLY mad!!!!  Who are these people that are seriously mad? Who the hell knows, but they are SERIOUSLY MAD!!!!11!!!!!!1!!!  At Taylor Swift!  Man, that is a disturbing turn in American political affairs.

Streiff, Red State:  "EPA Reaches Staffing Levels Not Seen Since The Reagan Administration...The workforce at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is on course to fall to its lowest level since Ronald Reagan was president, an agency official said on Tuesday.

After buyouts and retirements, that number could drop to 14,428 by October...That would be below the fiscal 1988 level"

The stupid, ignorant Streiff is really proud of that.

Brandon Morse, Red State:  "Christian Colorado Baker Called Nazi by Politician Actually Son of Holocaust Camp Liberator"

Actually, Hitler was the son of...well, who cares about that?  It's what you do yourself, not what your father did, Brandon.  And actually, no one really compared this guy to a Nazi, but what's a lie that small in the blizzard of lies that comes from the right every single day?

Brandon Morse, Red State:  "LOL! Planned Parenthood Says ‘Every Person Has The Right To Live’ In DACA Outrage Email"

Apparently, to right wingers, they don't.  I'd keep that in mind if I were you.

Joshua Caplan, Gateway Pundit:  "Steve Bannon Set For First Major TV Interview Since Leaving the White House "

Oh boy.

Joshua Caplan, Gateway Pundit:  "REPORT: Susan Rice Set For House Intel Committee Grilling Over Unmasking Controversy"

A "grilling" over a phony issue invented by Republicans.  Well, pretty much par for the course for our Republican Congress.

Moneywise 411:  "The First Major “Win” For The Trump Presidency...Some experts believe President Trump may be gearing up for his biggest win yet.

According to Washington insiders, three “confidential” members of Congress are reportedly drafting a critical new bill.  Once signed by the President, it will give public recognition for the first new “stock exchange” in America in nearly 50 years."

That would, apparently, count as Trump's biggest win of his whole Presidency.  Pathetic, huh?  I just want to point out that this was actually an ad disguised as a news story at Gateway Pundit.  Grifters gotta grift.

Jim Hoft, Gateway Pundit:  "Police Are Looking for 6 Suspects in Massive Wedding Brawl that Left White Girl Knocked Out on Street"

Vital news, Gateway Pundit style.

Jim Hoft, Gateway Pundit:  "Bill De Blasio Goes Full Commie"

Whatever.

Curtis Dahlgren, Renew America:  "NOW CAN WE GET SOME REAL NEWS? Robert E. Lee made some serious mistakes, but he knew when to repent and concede. After hurricane Harvey, some people don't know whether to blame the Russians or God"

Huh?  Curtis does, however, finish his column with this remark:

"Well, that's the column for this week. It's not the column I intended to write, but like a bowel movement..."

Okay, then.  I'm not exactly sure where Curtis thought he was going with that remark, but take it for what it's worth.  And yes, that is what he really said.

Linda Harvey, World Net Daily:  "The move to 'repeal and replace' Christianity"

Whoopee!  Where do I sign up? Linda states:

"Oh, wait. The Southern Poverty Law Center is already doing (the) dirty work for the enemies of Jesus.

Whatever.  Knock yourself out telling lies, Linda.

And now for the big investment opportunity of the day!

Joseph Farah, World Net Daily:  "Make a Hit Movie With WND!  Two years ago, WND CEO Joseph Farah decided the time was right for WND to make its first major motion picture. We must bring (this) story to A-list actors, top distributors, marketing executives, and technicians in order to create a powerful package for investors. This film investor package will cost about $120,000."

Which Joseph would like you to cough up.  Care to take a chance on the likelihood that a pack of right wing lunatics are going to make a hit movie?  Personally, if I were you, I would send your money to Green Eagle, to help recognize his long time dream of bringing "Heinrich Himmler-The Man and the Dream," starring Rowan Atkinson in the title role, to the silver screen.

James V. DeLong, American Thinker:  "Sarah Palin and the New York Times: The Next Chapter...After a judge issued a ridiculous ruling in favor of the Times, can Palin win an appeal in her libel suit?  The case isn't hopeless."

Yes it is, James.  Deal with it.

Bruce Walker, American Thinker:  "Make North Korea a Chinese Protectorate...America ought to take the position that North Korea is a protectorate of China, recognizing China's right to represent North Korea's interests in global affairs"

No explanation of how to get China to go along with this, or what in God's name would make China want to take on the massive problems of North Korea's impoverished, backward population.  I guess Trump will just "make" them do it.  Just as soon as he gets done making Mexico pay for the wall.

John Nolte, Breitbart:  "CNN’s Jake Tapper Again Spreads Debunked Lie About Trump Mocking Disabled Reporter"

A "debunked lie" that anyone can see on video:



But right wingers will never give up denying what is right in front of their faces.

John Binder, Breitbart:  "Fashion Notes: Vanity Fair Snubs Melania Trump, Honors Michelle Obama on ‘Best Dressed’ List"

Man, that's going to be a big scandal. Maybe Vanity Fair could make up for this snub by putting Melania on the "Best Undressed list."


I think Michelle is clearly not going to beat Melania out in the nude posing department.

John Daniel Davidson, The Federalist:  "DACA Backlash Shows Democrats Don’t Really Think Their Policies Should Be Subject To Elections...Donald Trump promised to rescind DACA if he won the election. So why does Barack Obama have a problem with Trump following through on his promise?"

Well, maybe because it is a piggish, racist, hate filled policy that nobody should support.  Imagine rewriting Davidson's statement as follows:

"Death Camp Backlash Shows Democrats Don’t Really Think Their Policies Should Be Subject To Elections...Adolf Hitler promised to kill all the Jews if he won the March 1933 election. So why does Barack Obama have a problem with Hitler following through on his promise?"

Same thing, really.


And let's just go out on the comedy headline of the day:

Kelleigh Nelson, Before it's News:  "Our President, Sacrificing Everything to Save America"

Ha.  That should be an amusing account.

Well, off to take the Corgi to the groomers.  See you soon.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Fast and Furious

Hurricane Harvey, which dumped the greatest amount of rain in a single storm in US history, is barely over, and the damage has barely begun to be calculated, when along comes Irma.
And here it is, earlier today.  Have you ever seen such a perfectly organized hurricane?  Irma is currently the second strongest hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic, with wind speeds only a few miles an hour short of the all time record of 190 miles per hour.

One storm after another.  What will it take to get the right wing liars in this country to give up their multibillion dollar campaign of deception and finally admit that something is happening here that must be addressed?  We still have a couple of months of this year's hurricane season to go- maybe we will have a third or a fourth of these things, while the short term profits of energy companies destroy the future of the human race.

And what is to come in that future?  In five or ten more years, will we see half a dozen of these "thousand year" storms every year?  Or even more, with an intensity that even now seems inconceivable?  How long before 200 mile an hour storms batter the South several times a year?  How long before large parts of the Atlantic and Gulf regions become uninhabitable?  Will the former residents of those areas still be willing to play the sucker for the rich bastards whose greed is destroying the planet?

The sad news is that there is no sign that these people will ever face reality, on this issue any more than they have on any other.  Hang on tight; it's going to be a rough ride.

Monday, September 4, 2017

What Is There to Say?

Really.  I think with the last month- with the Charlottesville business and Trump's open approval of the Aryan Supremacists behind it, with the freeing of the concentration camp master Joe Arpaio, with the mindless threats against North Korea, with the hideously callous reaction to Hurricane Harvey, with the dozens of hateful actions he has taken as President, with the endless dribble of details of his collaboration with the Russians and their dictator, there is no reasonable person on earth that can not see what is going on in the United States.

I am positive that even the majority of the 34% or so of the American people that claim to believe in him are lying, too ashamed at the way they were suckered into selling the country to crooks to ever admit that they know what they did.

Well, so what? As I said, we all know it, and we all know that the rest of the Republican leadership is as corrupt as Trump is, if not as stupid and deranged, so we know that things are going to have to get far worse before these loathsome crooks will even consider doing the right thing.

I like to think that I have my blog (like most people who have left wing blogs, I'm sure) to say something that everyone else isn't saying, but what could that be today?  Anyway, that's why I haven't been posting much lately.  Too bad, because I enjoy writing blog posts, but not when they have nothing to add to anything.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Ignorance, Hypocrisy and...

Ever ready to apologize for the worst of the right wing, the Washington Post has this incisive analysis:

"Evangelical Christians voted for Donald Trump in overwhelming numbers. Evangelical support for the president remains relatively firm; indeed, even as others criticized the president’s remarks in the wake of Charlottesville, evangelical leaders rose to the president’s defense. All of this gets under the skin of President Trump’s critics, who cannot believe that men and women who think of themselves as godly can possibly stomach Trump’s behavior. For such critics, the only possible explanation for evangelicals’ continuing faith in Trump is some combination of ignorance and hypocrisy.

Conversations with actual evangelical Christians at a recent gathering here — the Hillsboro Family Camp, where families have met annually since 1972 for four days of praise and worship — suggest a different picture. These voters — and almost all of them voted — see Trump’s flaws but perceive him as a fellow sinner willing to fight the forces of the establishment on their behalf."

Nope.  Green Eagle (along with every other sane person on earth) is going with the ignorance and hypocrisy thing.  And after hearing the result of the Post's "conversations with actual evangelical Christians,"  I will add that they are unashamed liars too.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Freedumb In Houston!!!

So we all know that freedom consists in businesses and their rich owners being able to do whatever they damned please, right?  And we have a classic example of how freedom helps the people of Texas live the good life that their Conservative overlords have promised them, in return for not caring about pollution, global warming and all those other meaningless obsessions of those dumb libruls.

Today's example comes in the form of the city of Houston, the largest city in the nation that has no zoning regulations, because who has a right to tell someone what they can do with their own money, on their own land, amirite?

And what does zoning have to do with the recent floods that have a good part of Houston under water?  Well, a couple of things.  First of all, zoning regulations in sane cities require that when an area is developed it has sufficient roads in and out of it so people can get out in an emergency.  No need for that kind of evil Government tyranny in Texas!  So, we have the freeways, which are mostly built below ground level, looking like this:
and no ability to call for an evacuation, because literally hundreds of thousand of people could be caught in massive traffic jams on these roads and drown.

Another insignificant feature of zoning regulations is a restriction on the percentage of any lot that can be covered with impermeable surfaces, preventing the land from absorbing rainfall.  Another useless example of Government over-regulation, I guess, until it rains a lot.

I just want to point out that this strategy saved the people of Texas billions of dollars in construction costs, so good for them.  Of course, now, the people of the rest of the country (by which of course I mean primarily the blue States, which are the only ones who make enough to support themselves, let alone anyone else) will have to cough up billions themselves, to put Texas back together again. Freedumb!  It's a wonderful thing.