Friday, October 15, 2010

Bill O'Reilly, Here's Proof That Not All Terrorists Are Muslim!

Bill O'Reilly thinks all Muslims are terrorists. If that's true then all Christians must be Nazis.
Lord, protect us from these absolute morons.

Some of those Muslim terrorists:

Timothy McVeigh

Eric Rudolph

Irv Rubin

Ted Kaczynski

Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold

Bruce Edwards Ivins

James Von Brunn

Glenn Beck

Look at ‘em, all them Moooslims what killed ‘mericuns!

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Jack Black in '[Mis]information'!

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This Election Bought For You By The Chamber of Commerce!

By Bill Press

Tribune Media Services

Ah, democracy. It was nice while it lasted, because, if the essence of democracy is honest and fair elections, democracy doesn’t exist anymore. This election has been bought and sold by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Karl Rove. And nobody cares.

Here are the facts. In this year’s mid-term elections, the Chamber is spending $75 to $80 million on TV commercials to elect their acolytes to the House and Senate. Except for a handful of Democrats, all the money is going to Republican candidates.

Who’s providing this mountain of cash to the Chamber? Oil companies? Banks? Insurance companies? Nobody knows … except the Chamber and its corporate sources. Because, under the Supreme Court’s recent Citizens United ruling, the Chamber is no longer legally required to disclose the names of its donors. And it refuses to do so.

As first reported by Think Progress, the Chamber also receives significant political contributions from more than 80 foreign-owned companies in 115 countries, and those funds are deposited into the same 501(c)(6) account used to pay for political ads. If you believe the Chamber, they carefully segregate their revenue stream, so that no foreign dollars are used to pay for campaign ads — which would, of course, be illegal. That seems unlikely, if not impossible. But, again, nobody knows the truth. Because there’s no disclosure.

In addition to the Chamber, several other stealth committees have popped up, including “American Crossroads,” created by Karl Rove and former Republican National Committee Chair Ed Gillespie, which has already exceeded its goal of raising $50 million to support Republican House and Senate candidates. Together with the Chamber, predicts Fred Wertheimer, president of Democracy 21, those groups will spend more than $200 million in this year’s mid-term elections — more than the Democratic and Republican National Committees combined.

Whether foreign funds are involved or not, the massive amounts of secret special interest spending in this election should concern all Americans, because it seriously undermines our democratic process. Even if we can’t escape the avalanche of TV ads, we should at least know who’s paying for them — as argued by President Obama in announcing his support for this year’s Disclose Act: “Now, of course, every organization has every right in this country to make their voices heard. But the American people also have the right to know when some group like ‘Citizens for a Better Future’ is actually funded entirely by ‘Corporations for Weaker Oversight.’” That legislation — which would have required full disclosure by all organizations, whether the Sierra Club or the Big Oil Club — was killed in the Senate after heavy lobbying against it by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

And no sooner had Obama repeated his call for full disclosure in spending for the mid-terms, than Karl Rove and the Chamber cried foul. Bruce Josten, chief lobbyist for the Chamber, complained of the president’s “smear tactics.” Rove even accused him of keeping “an enemies list.” Which, of course, Rove should know something about. Just ask Valerie Plame.

Rove’s whining is especially suspect considering the fact that, until the court’s Citizens United ruling, it was Republicans, not Democrats, who insisted on full disclosure. The political process “ought to have full disclosure, full disclosure of all of the money that we raise and how it is spent,” said House Minority Leader John Boehner on “Meet the Press” in February 2007. “And I think that sunlight is the best disinfectant.” But that was then, and this is now. Republicans were for disclosure, before they were against it.

In the end, who’s kidding whom? There’s only one reason Rove and the Chamber don’t want to release the names of their donors. Because they don’t want to confirm what we already know: that their ads are being paid for by banks who want to return to their old rapacious practices, by oil companies who want no restrictions on when and where they can drill, and by insurance companies who want to go back to denying coverage based on a pre-existing medical condition. They want more anti-consumer votes in the House and Senate, and they’re willing to pay any price — and maybe even break the law — to get them.

So much for 2010. With $200 million in secret contributions, special interests have already bought and sold this election. I can’t wait to see how much money they spend in 2012.

© 2010 Tribune Media Services, Inc.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Top 10 Reasons Foreign Corporations Sponsor Republicans!

Courtesy of the Utility Workers Union of America

Its has now been reported by several sources that the Chamber of Commerce is using funds from foreign corporations to try to affect American politics and the November elections.

Wonder why foreign corporations would want to defeat Democrats in the US?

Top 10 Reasons Foreign Corporations Support Republicans:

to keep trade deals unfair to workers here and around the world
to continue to get good paying US manufacturing jobs offshored
to stop the development of green energy so that we continue to spend billions on Mideast oil
to continue to allow corporations like British Petroleum to exploit US natural resources and pollute our environment
to weaken US unions so they can treat parts of the US like the developing world
to keep the US buying imports from around the world rather than re-develop US manufacturing
to continue receiving secret technology such as that used in military arms manufacuting
to dismantle Social Security and turn the fund over to Wall St to be gambled with all over the world
to continue to allow US drug corporations to sell medicine developed here more cheaply in other countries than in the US
to continue economic treason
The Chamber of Commerce has bragged that it is spending 75 million to defeat Democrats but they won’t say where the money comes from. Now we know.

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Open Borders is as American as You Can Get!

Among the great ironies of the present moment is that "Tea Party" calls for restrictive immigration claim to follow in the footsteps of the country's founders. But rather than mimicking early Americans, Tea Partiers explicitly reject one of the classic features of American exceptionalism: relatively open borders. Even more troubling, they disavow the truly revolutionary aspect of our past -- the idea that an ever-expanding range of people can be incorporated into a shared political and economic project. What remains are those racially exclusionary accounts of membership that have long marred national life.

American settlers, before and after independence, self-consciously broke from what they considered to be European judgments about migration and naturalization. The English crown from which the United States gained its independence took for granted that there should be a fundamental divide between subjects and aliens -- something that current Tea Partiers would find congenial. Under European monarchies, suspicion of foreigners went hand in hand with laws that limited landholding, inheritance, and meaningful political rights (like voting) solely to subjects of the crown.

By contrast, the U.S. developed remarkably flexible immigration policies that made the border more a port of entry than a meaningful barrier for new arrivals. These policies included practices that today would be quite surprising, such as noncitizen voting and noncitizen access to federal land out west. In the years after the Civil War more than a dozen states enacted laws that allowed immigrants to vote before naturalization. In doing so, they followed a tried and true path laid out by the founders' congressional approach to frontier territories as well as by early state measures in Vermont, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Illinois, Kansas, Minnesota, Oregon, Michigan, and elsewhere.

This openness was tied to settlers' views of the United States as a historically exceptional nation -- an "empire for liberty," uniquely committed to self-government and economic autonomy. As Thomas Jefferson famously argued, territorial expansion -- by providing settlers with equal access to land -- was the basic engine driving this national project. But for such expansion to be sustainable, the country needed a burgeoning population beyond the initial flow of English colonists. As a result, for most of our past, settlement and immigration were deeply intertwined; the country's settler identity was directly bound to the idea of the United States as an immigrant nation.

Still, this link meant that such openness did come at an important cost. On the one hand, the territorial need for immigrants over time led to the incorporation of Europeans of various ethnic and religious stripes, extending the categories for who could count as American. On the other hand, it also hardened the divide between settler insiders and excluded outsiders. This was because settlers believed that expansion and economic control required claiming land from native communities and conscripting outsiders to engage in socially necessary but degraded menial labor. Thus, although new Europeans (even non-Protestants) often were immediately included as political and economic equals, Indians, blacks, Mexicans, and Chinese -- many of whom had long lived on the land -- were overwhelmingly denied the very same voting rights or access to property.

Today's proposed reforms by Tea Partiers resonate with these exclusionary elements of the country's history, in which Americans raised barriers for outsiders due to their ethnicity and parentage. At present, immigrants to the United States come primarily from those regions (parts of Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, and Central and South America) that settlers previously viewed as unworthy of political acceptance. Unsurprisingly, despite the 1965 elimination of explicit racial quotas, current immigrants have not enjoyed anything approaching the swift and full inclusion of their European predecessors. Confronted by extensive social disabilities and serving as cheap labor at the bottom rung of the American economy, many immigrants face daunting forms of inequality and discrimination. In the process, they often find themselves playing the familiar role of historically subordinated groups.

Instead of falling into this trap, Americans must draw from our distinctive past a modern challenge -- to find new ways of incorporating today's outsiders as equals and potential fellow citizens, regardless of background. Rejecting xenophobic impulses in immigration policy is a good start.

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Sunday, October 10, 2010

Tea Party Candidates: I promise not to govern like I live!


It’s a conundrum when you are running as a DC outsider as you have no record to prove you walk your talk. How are voters supposed to know what you stand for? Well, they can always look at your life, right? Um, that is, unless your life is the opposite of the values you’re campaigning on. It is, after all, hard for the people to trust that you will somehow govern differently than you live. But for Tea Party candidates, proving their record isn’t an issue. The people who will vote for them aren’t interested in facts; they’re avid consumers of the Republican false narrative.

We have Joe Miller (R-AK) — Sarah Palin’s long lost love now estranged after her polls revealed Miller had best distance himself from the Great Divider – telling people he’s a small government conservative who doesn’t believe in things like unemployment. Unless……… it’s his wife getting it but only then after he has had to get rid of her because she was working for him as he worked as a part time magistrate for the state and it looked bad. No, honey, it doesn’t look bad at all, it just says that you are a true Palinista Grifter.

And then there’s the fact that the last time Joe Miller ran for office; he ran as a moderate but don’t you fear, another Alaskan Republican has assured us that Joe is a “good Christian” so that should put an end to all of your pesky questions. It’s not like any Christian elected officials have done us wrong. And then there’s the taxes Joe owes. My, my…no wonder he wants to disband the government.

The problem for Joe isn’t that the Tea Party will care- clearly they don’t give a hoot about reality; they love them a good anti-Obama jingle based on pure partisan team member enthusiasm. Come on now, if they were really about small government, Sarah Palin would not be their leader.

No, it isn’t the Tea Party. So long as the candidate is white and sounds militia oriented and angry and wants to take things away from OP, the Tea Party is cool. It’s the other people who vote who aren’t so easily fooled. Those moderate Republicans (RINOs!), civilized independents and centrists Dems. Those are the people who are being turned off in droves by the extremist rhetoric and the blatant hypocrisy of the Tea Party candidates.

Much like Joe, we have Christine O’Donnell (R-DE) who can’t pay her own bills, doesn’t like to work and who is being investigated by CREW for using her campaign funds to fund her personal life running as a fiscal conservative. She has oodles of debt, both personal and campaign debt from previous runs. It’s been suggested she received a tax lien from the IRS, making this a common thread among her, Joe Miller and Sarah Palin – all of whom would be the first to accuse Daschle of being a tax fraud for the same oversight.

O’Donnell has lied about her education background as well as making ludicrous claims of being harassed by political opponents (making her Palin adjacent in the paranoia department). Listening to O’Donnell (back in the good old days when she would take interviews), you can anticipate every duck, dodge and deflection. When asked on “The Early Show” whether voters could trust her with the nation’s finances when she’s appears to have had considerable financial difficulties herself, O’Donnell said, “Absolutely.” Just believe her. She’s a cute Christian conservative. Who are you to question her? Indeed, even her ad “I’m you” implies that we all have such lies, distortions and financial malfeasance in our backgrounds and that we would all think ourselves, if we did, worthy of being elected.

We have Sharron Angle (R-NV), a previous member of the fringy Independent American Party , trying to scare up white folks by demonizing brown skinned people. We have a video showing she supported a program to use tax dollars to provide prisoners with massages, with ties to Scientology which have since been cleansed from her ever self-purging website.

She is also a “Christian” so you’d better believe her. During the primary, Angle stated she wanted to eliminate Medicare and Social Security and privatize the Veterans Administration but now she’s also scrubbed her website of those extremist positions. Angle suggested that armed revolt may be in order if she doesn’t get elected with her “second amendment remedies” shocker. Angle has proven herself willing to say and do anything to get elected, the truth and facts need not apply.

All three are running as Washington “outsiders”, which is all fine and good, unless you look under the hood. One assumes that by outsider they mean one not corrupted by power, and yet each of them have shown a proclivity toward corruption and a heady, narcissistic rush of familiarity with the Republicans in Washington. All of them claim the mantle of Christian, and yet, evince absolutely no characteristics of Christianity as it’s known to most of us.

What else, pray tell, do they all have in common?

“He thinks the world of himself,” is how Rep. David Guttenberg, D-Fairbanks describes Joe Miller. I think we can apply that to all of these Teapublican extremist candidates.

Joe has already shown himself via twitter to be measuring the drapes of his soon to be senate office (later tweetnied; aka, he blamed the tweets on an office assistant). Angle was recorded trying to strong arm Tea Party candidate Scott Ashjian into dropping out of the race, suggesting she had this thing sewn up and Big Daddy supported her and only her. She dangled access to DC insiders in exchange for Scott’s dropping out of the race. This was rather shady behavior for a self-avowed Washington outsider. And O’Donnell is running ads proclaiming, “I am you.” As if. It takes a dangerous level of denial and self-regard to show your face after being outed as basically the opposite of everything you are running as, and yet with a perky smile, O’Donnell thinks she can dismiss all of the facts with a the siren call of populist oneness.

Pseudo certainty attracts a certain mindset, one that asks no questions and mindlessly parrots back the candidate’s self-description.

But these folks are clowns of the highest order. If they manage to get into office, they will only further derail the Republican Party, along with the country, if they actually try to live up to their na├»ve promises. But of course, they won’t. Not one of them actually cares about the issues they are campaigning on (as proven by their real life). For heaven’s sake, Joe Miller was for education before he was against it.

And two of the three have taken Sarah Palin’s endorsement, ridden it for all it was worth in the primary, and then not only distanced themselves from her but outright slapped her in the face with their refusal to say she was qualified to be President. While I am in agreement with them on this one, it gives me great pause to see a person so devoid of morality and integrity that they would present themselves as one thing during a primary and then run away from the crazy in the general. What kind of leader has so little regard for their own values?

And then, there’s always the issue of loyalty. They will not get anything done in Washington with that kind of attitude. Palin deserved a modicum of support from them and it would have been very easy to give a bland statement of support ala Karl Rove. Something like, “Sarah Palin has been a tremendous fund-raiser for the Republican Party and has a lot of support from conservatives. I believe she can help the party in many ways and support her in her efforts.” But they went out of their way to piss in her face.

It’s somewhat confusing watching this sideshow of clowns wrestle for power as they eat each other alive, as one is never sure who is worse.

Tea Party candidates are basically in this thing for their own enrichment, but what’s even more astonishing is the gullibility of their followers. Not one of these candidates walks their talk in their personal lives. Not one of them is what they purport to be. This has long been the Republican strategy, to run on a false but pretty narrative of “just like you-ism”, but never before has it been so transparent and insulting as it is this year.

We’re supposed to believe these clowns would govern better than they campaign and that they will suddenly become ethical, responsible, honest people if only we vote for them. If we don’t vote for them, we’re reminded that there may be an armed revolt. Listening to them dodge and deflect and parrot talking points verges on a parody of the absurd. Most days I’m not sure whether to laugh or cry.

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