On-Going Things that are Pissing Me Off 14

Well a few things have been on my mind and building up, so let’s begin.

Charter Schools and Voucher programs:  There is no evidence that Charter Schools are any better than public schools, there is evidence however that they are much, much worse. What is this about, the incessant need to cheap out on our children? What I mean by cheap out here is, the hiring of unqualified individuals with crackpots ideas to teach our children.

Creationism: Check.

Distorting test results: Check, Why does Michelle Rhee’s name always come up in these cases?  (Hey New Orleans, what’s up?)

Greenwald, because Greenwald… that guy is simply exasperating. I’m tired of him.

Climate change deniers.. seriously, what will it take for these people to wake the fuck up?

Politico, all of it, all of their reporters, Check out the link, Pot meet kettle.

Chuck Todd, who doesn’t seem to know what his job actually is, oh well.

Congressional Republicans, god they piss me off. So once again they are attacking poor people. Why do they hate poor people so much? I honestly don’t understand it.  Republicans actually worship at the Temple of Draco. I am convinced of this.

Congressional Republicans have rushed headlong into a draconian new cut to the nations meal assistance program known as  SNAP. The 5% cut will displace 3.8 million people from receiving this assistance.  Not a big deal for those Republicans and their big wig friends.  However, the SNAP program dollar amount is around $32.00 a week for groceries per person. Wow. If one gallon of non-organic milk is around 6.00, which is roughly 1/5th of the weekly allotment, how does one get adequate nutrition? And yet these horrible human beings, Congressional Republicans, are willing to throw 3.8 million more people off the rolls, even though they are only getting $32.00 a week. It’s a huge cut at a time when we should be putting more money into that program. We should be boosting WIC, Public Health programs and senior meals. These monies need to be restored.

There are huge societal consequences to malnutrition.

In children the effects are great from an early age in that it impacts cognitive abilities.

From the Nursing Times.

Here is more on the impact of malnutrition on children and pregnant women.

Effects of malnutrition on the elderly.

And let’s be honest here, cutting SNAP does nothing for the budget, it has no impact. If Republicans were serious about righting the wrongs of subsidized money we would quit subsidizing oil, natural gas, corn, commodity crops, military contractors and their cost plus bidding processes, etc and so on. Cutting SNAP just makes Republicans look like they worship at the temple of Draco.  Well they do worship at the Temple of Draco, that is part of the problem.

And now onto ACA, Republicans need to stop, just stop, they look like the biggest asses on the face of the earth.  Like Chris Hayes said on Real Time last night, let’s see what works, let’s get this law implemented and see what works, and we will go from there.  And frankly, this is the law, all three branches have affirmed this. All three.  Time for the opposition to get over it. They Lost. Time to  participate in the system we have created, contribute to new reforms, something anything, just quit being such pricks about everything by basically holding the entire country hostage because they are still mad they lost the election in 2008 and 2012.  If they don’t they will be left out of the process, because the more they dig their heals in and do nothing, or do things that have extremely negative effects on the nations already fragile economy, they will be thrown out of office, and that is just fine by me.

That’s all I got.

Have a good day.

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Kermit Gosnell, Eleventh Dimensional Chess, Michelle Rhee, Rand Paul and Other Bullshit that Pissed Me Off This Week 5

Sigh, the right wing media is having a major melt down about Kermit Gosnell, complaining on and on ad-infinitum that the Main Stream Media is not covering the Gosnell story. Of course this is absolute BS, since I first starting hearing about Gosnell in 2011. The question must be asked, where was the right wing media in 2011 when it came to Kermit Gosnell, serial abuser of women in need? Oh right, it didn’t suit their purpose back then to talk about this at all, in fact it was a non-story to them. Why? Let’s review the work that was done in 2011 about Gosnell and his arrest in January of 2011:

http://www.myfoxphilly.com/story/17533017/doctor-allegedly-killed-babies-with-scissors
http://www.cnn.com/2011/CRIME/03/02/pennsylvania.abortion.doctor/index.html
http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local/Abortion-Doctor-Charged-With-Murder-114205094.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/23/us/23doctor.html?_r=0
http://www.newsworks.org/index.php/the-feed/item/11662-21tmmayor
http://www.delawareonline.com/article/20110128/NEWS01/101280337/AG-Beau-Biden-launches-probe-into-abortion-doctor-s-work-in-Delaware?nclick_check=1
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/23/kermit-gosnell-abortion-c_n_812702.html
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/01/19/national/main7261741.shtml
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1354889/Kermit-Gosnell-House-horrors-abortionist-1-8m-year.html
http://rhrealitycheck.org/tag/dr-kermit-gosnell/

There were just so many reports at the time of his arrest all about his clinic of horror. What we know is, that facility was not inspected by the state of Pennsylvania for 17 years. Of course the excuse wingers are using that the place wasn’t inspected in 17 damn years was because of a pro-choice policy, which is utter bullshit.  The Business Insider article does say that it was Governor Tom Ridge, Republican who ordered the Dept of Health to stop inspecting abortion clinics, and that isn’t because of  a pro-choice policy that is a direct result of conservatives not believing that the health of women is important. Let’s be clear, it seems Dr. Gosnell would have used hangers to give women abortions if he could have gotten away with it, the state of Pennsylvania was complicit. It’s disgusting but it has nothing to do with being pro-choice, it has everything to do with not believing women health is important. And now a bunch of men are enraged because they think the story isn’t being covered… more utter bullshit, and they don’t care one bit about the health of women, they care 100% about using this case to politicize the health of women. It certainly isn’t shocking.

Then we get to the 11th Dimensional Chess Meme, smh, really? The  I just hate the meme, it’s lame. Everyone who is using this term as though it has meaning, stop it, you sound stupid when you type it out day after day after day. Sheesh!

Michelle Rhee’s reign of error in the DC schools is finally coming under some intense scrutiny, in light of the big testing scandal in Georgia. See the test scores of those kids in DC took a sudden rise, and it just seemed highly unusual for this to happen.  Cheating on standardized tests is at the core of this scandal and Rhee selling her so-called methods to other school systems is on the periphery.  There is plenty of evidence that Rhee’s policies encouraged teachers to cheat. Here is some evidence from a Frontline Investigation:

The DC-CAS scores at Noyes, where 81% of classrooms were flagged for high erasures, are themselves circumstantial evidence that supports Cothorne’s allegation. Below are the Noyes DC-CAS scores over five years; 2011 represents the year that security was tightened.

  2007 2008 2009 2010 2011
Reading 44.14% 61.53 84.21 61.36 32.40
Math 34.24% 57.69 62.79 53.64 28.17

 
That represents a drop of nearly 50 points in reading between 2009 and 2011, and a drop of roughly 34 points in math. Note also that in 2011 Noyes students were scoring below their pre-Rhee level.

In all, data are available for 16 schools with erasure rates of at least 50%. DC-CAS reading scores rose in only two schools after security was tightened. Math scores rose in just 4 schools and declined in 12.

Rhee is the epitome of an educated grifter. It pisses me off that people seem to believe that improving scores always equals firing teachers. It isn’t that easy people, and for the most part teachers are very dedicated to helping children learn. I’m sick of people like Rhee who present easy solutions to improving education for the underprivileged, Guess what it isn’t easy. There are no quick solutions, we have to have community based solutions that include a change in how we view education. Where all children are not hungry when they begin class, where families have access to help, want to better education children, well the community must come together, and that has little to do with test scores. Melissa Harris Perry has the right idea, but of course she is attacked for it. But I know one thing for sure, Rhee took advantage of the DC system and helped no child learn.

Oh Rand Paul, sure thing black people need to know just how great Republicans are beginning with Lincoln, because they would never know what he did or anything really, unless a white person tells them.  What a great way to recruit people to your party, condescend to them repeatedly!

Yes it makes me mad that people are attacking Melissa Harris Perry for saying the raising children is a community responsibility, it is, how is that so wrong? Oh conservatives on the one hand you always insist how great thigns were in the past, when you would get in trouble at home after getting in trouble with a neighbor for being a pinhead, but if a liberal suggests that is important to raising children suddenly it is communism, socialism, social engineering and all wrong. Idiots.

There are many more things that piss me off on an on-going basis, but we can’t go over them here, this would be a never ending blog. Have a good Sunday my tens of readers!

The 10 Rules for Everyone About John Derbyshire and Conservatives 3

John Derbyshire fills his kids heads full of racist crap, I am pretty sure he does that right after they place those white hoods upon their heads and go out for a good old fashioned cross-burning. If you want to read his BS piece of crap piece it is at a place called Taki Magazine, something I’ve never heard of but Dave Weigel says it is a magazine of one of the former founders of the American Conservative, let’s call him “not Pat Buchanan”. Not that Pat himself doesn’t have problems with race, but this one isn’t his.

Let’s review some facts about Derbyshire, in February 2001 he wrote a piece that should have had him banned from anyone publishing any of his work for the rest of his life, in fact he should have been relegated to serving food to Klan meetings. This particular column  gave us real insight into Derbyshire. That column was all about his hatred for a young Chelsey Clinton and how it would be okay to exterminate her and her parents.  And of course he does this all under the guise of humor, I guess humor for conservatives is all about killing a young girl cause you don’t like the politics of her parents. He is a real piece of work, and then yesterday he went a step further.

I am pretty sure he thinks he is an ironic, ancient hipster, who seems to believe he is teaching us all something, and he is mad that the Trayvon Martin murder has once again shone a light on institutional racism in America.

America of course is not a perfect place, and John Derbyshire is trying to make it even less perfect. And he isn’t ironic or funny, which is why I’ve come up with my own 10 Rules for my kids, before the leave the house when they come across either John Derbyshire or other conservatives.

1. Among your fellow citizens are roughly 30 million or so who identify as conservative, and whom I shall refer to as idiots. The cumbersome term “Caucasian” seems to be in decline, thank goodness so instead we will use the term Klan Cracker. I think that says it all to  normal people.

2. American Caucasianscome from all over Europe but some of the worst among us were hatched under rocks and we know them today as conservatives, you will recognize them as those who can’t get along with others, who don’t’ share and who believe in their own enormous IQ’s. They are unlike their white counterparts because they’ve built their own reality and they stay in it, Bill Maher calls it, The Bubble. I call it hell.

3.  They appear to be just like every other white person until they open their pie-holes. Once they do you will instantly know the difference, a.) they think it is funny to threaten the children of people they don’t like b.) They portray themselves as victims even though they own the world.

4. The default principle in everyday personal encounters is, that as a fellow citizen, with the same rights and obligations as yourself, any individual conservative is entitled to the same courtesies you would extend to a non-conservative citizen. That is basic good manners and good citizenship. In some unusual circumstances, however—e.g., paragraph (10h) below—this default principle should be overridden by considerations of personal safety. These guys love concealed weapons so it is best to avoid them at all cost. It could save your life.

5. As with any population of such a size, there is great variation among conservatives in every human trait (except, obviously, the trait of identifying oneself as conservative). They come fat, thin, tall, short, dumb, smart, introverted, extroverted, honest, crooked, athletic, sedentary, fastidious, sloppy, amiable, and obnoxious. There are conservative geniuses but there are more conservative morons. There are conservative saints but there are many more conservative psychopaths (i.e. George Zimmerman, Timothy McVeigh). In a population of thirty or more million, you will find almost any human type. Only at the far, far extremes of certain traits are there absences. There are, for example, no conservative with common sense, they only have anger and believe they are winners.

6. As you go through life, however, you will experience an ever larger number of encounters with conservative Americans. They seriously bring their conservatism with them everywhere, then they will call you names and once people tell them to STFU, they will claim the mantle of victimization and cry like babies. Assuming your encounters are random—for example, not restricted only to conservatives who are so self assured their worldview never changes—the Law of Large Numbers will inevitably kick in. You will observe that the means—the averages—of many traits are very different for conservative and regular Americans, as has been confirmed by methodical inquiries in the human sciences. Don’t bother arguing with them, they are far to stupid to convince with facts, remember they’ve created their own world in the face of facts.

7. Of most importance to your personal safety are the very different means for antisocial behavior, which you will see reflected in, for instance they all carry concealed weapons, steer clear of them, always. They might get mad and shoot you for no apparent reason, i.e. see George Zimmerman.

8.  These differences are magnified by the hostility most conservatives feel toward everyone who doesn’t believe as they do. Thus, while conservative-on-conservative violence is uncommon but does happen, see David Frum’s expulsion from American Enterprise Institute.

9. A large cohort of conservatives—in my experience, around 90% —is ferociously hostile to everyone else and will go to great lengths to inconvenience or harm us. Remember they carry concealed weapons.

10. Avoid concentrations of conservatives not known to you personally, they simply cannot be trusted and they will threaten your life.

And with that I allow my kids out into the world, to consort with everyone but a conservative, in general they have low IQ’s, reject facts and hate women and minorities of all kinds. Even though you are white don’t get yourself in with their group, they require white hoods and cross burnings and that can only lead to trouble with the FBI.

Breitbart Blogging Troll Attacks Emerald City Comicon Guest Wil Wheaton 10

What is it with those bloggers at BigJournalismLies? Do they never ever leave their politics at home and have some damn fun? The answer to that question people, is they never fucking do not ever.  Let’s take the example of Adam Baldwin, the actor from Firefly and Chuck etc, he came to Emerald City ComiCon this past weekend. Well guess what he also writes for BigLies. I was going to go over and chat with him and tell him how much we loved Chuck and his character, but then some stuff went down and he tried to turn ComiCon into Breitbart world.

So here we were at ComiCon, talking about the Trek series, BSG, Firefly, etc and so on. No one talks about anything other than that, one discussion I was in while we were waiting to meet George Takei was; who is less trust worthy Romulans or Vulcans? Obviously the answer is Romulans, but that was an actual point of discussion. LOL’s!!!

This year was unbelievable because we were subjected to the long reach of Breitbart  world. Delivered by his angry band of blogging minions started an ideological battle  at Emerald City ComiCon.

But it started out great. I got to meet Edward James Olmos and that was amazing and cool as hell. I also got to meet and shake hands with George Takei! Oh man, yes that was so cool, and of course the man who shows up to every Emerald City Comicon Wil Wheaton. If you don’t know who Wil Wheaton is, you probably never watched NextGen, Stand By Me. We were excited to see Wil Wheaton again.

It all began with this little youtube promo.  Watch it and then continue reading.

That is funny, right?

Well guess who didn’t think it was funny.  Adam Baldwin took offense and made the claim to his twitter army that Wheaton and Lawson were mocking the bible. I don’t see it, but whatever. Insert Breitbart trained outrage machine here —–> It churns in perpetual motion like a twisted victim chip that never leaves its collective shoulder, picking fights and then blaming the victim of their ire.   I see what you’re doing Adam Baldwin.  Every aspect of our lives must come down to picking ideological fights, then brushing it off by saying all publicity is good publicity and then threatening a defamation lawsuit even though you started the fight. You learned so well from your former boss, may he Rest in Peace.

I’d already known Baldwin wrote for BigLies prior the event. I’d looked him up on twitter and that day he was having a twitter war with Podhoretz over his (Baldwin’s) opposition to vaccinations. I shut his page down immediately, thinking I just didn’t really want to ruin his acting for me. You know everyone has a right to their own beliefs etc and so on. I’ll forget about it and just remember that I love the movies and television shows he’s been in, he’s funny and he definitely has enormous talent.

The personal swipes at another ComiCon guest, seemingly came out of nowhere. But rest assured whenever some famous person tweets, be they a blogger, actor or a politician,  their followers often times jump in to either agree with the person they follow or to attack the target of the tweeters ire.  So what I imagine happened is, suddenly Wheaton began to get idiot right-wing threats. Sometimes extremist followers on twitter take things way too far.  All of this was really unnecessary, it was ComiCon, not a political fundraiser or a rally, it simply wasn’t about politics this weekend. At some point as a society we have to begin to condemn those who would rather keep us rigidly,  ideologically divided like George Bush demanded when he said; “You’re either with us or against us.” It will ruin our lives if we allow it.  At the very least leave your extremism and anger at home when you come to any of the Cons. We are not stupid and we aren’t pawns in your ongoing ideological battle to conquer the world.

CrossPosted @DAGblog

The Evolution of Liberalism 2

Ultimately as liberals and progressives I think we get stuck in our definition of words. There are some people who define liberalism as a static rather than dynamic concept. But I would put out there that liberalism as a concept is dynamic and does nothing more than reflect the milieu of any given era in civilization.

Let’s take the oft talked about Greatest Liberal of all time FDR. FDR was a great liberal, but he interred Japanese Americans, which isn’t liberal at all. Social Security was a liberal policy, but just for white men when it began. Just saying.

Let’s look at R.M. Nixon for a minute, an arch conservative with fascist tendencies, who committed a political crime, that dude created the EPA and his signed into law NEPA thanks to  Scoop Jackson, another flawed liberal in Washington State politics, he supported Vietnam but was a great environmentalist. They usher in an era of deep research into ecological restoration. Nixon reflected his era,because of the pressures around him. That era  demanded some action on the environment, which was considered a liberal cause.

Let’s look at t Jimmy Carter for a minute, you define him as a liberal, but under his administration the airlines were deregulated, this is not what we would consider today to be a liberal policy position. Indeed he was reflecting his era, his time. And many of the Carter policies were liberal.

We all know that under Clinton, Welfare was effectively gutted, and that was an indication of what was to come, the deregulation of financial services. People love Clinton now, b/c the economy was so great back in the 90’s and everyone wants to go back to that, but at the time, Clinton’s policies were just reflecting the era, sometime his policies could be considered quite liberal, The Federal Acquisition and Streamlining Act of 1994, a very liberal policy that expanded the numbers of minority businesses competing for Federal Government contracts. It was a very important micro-economic policy.

Barack Obama is no different from those Presidents, he reflects this era. This returns us to my original statement, but what I am describing is our dynamic  concept of liberalism which has changed over time.  His agenda is mostly liberal. But not everything his administration proposes or accomplishes is liberal. I think that is because as people we too are more complex than that, we are not one dimensional and we are not static beings. We evolve and change as do our expectations of civilization. This is just another step up in our continuing growth as humans. As we continue to evolve as people, our government will evolve with us.

Crossposted at DAGBlog

In Defense of Melissa Harris Perry 3

It all began with a Michael Moore visit to the View. It was nothing short of appalling. So we will call it Exhibit 1:

For the longest time I just didn’t know what to say about that clip, I’d certainly read all of the criticism of Moore after this episode. I’ve been formulating what I want to say since then, and reading as much as possible about onslaught of commentary that followed his outburst of what can only be called blatant racism. And in a sense I think Professor Harris Perry (ProfHP), was really responding to this, after being exposed to much of the diva outbursts that attempt to denigrate the Presidency of Barack Obama, in the so-called progressive blogsophere. I am going to introduce this clip as the penultimate example of racism in the so-called progressive community, and I am using Moore’s gaff first because it is a blatant example of employing a stereotype to describe ones disappointment in the President. Does Moore really believe this?    Moore definitely caused an avalanche virtual debate.  I did read much of it. However as a white person, I still believe I have much to learn about racism and how it manifests in the most blatant and subtle ways. Ultimately in order to bridge our racial divide white people have to listen. But in a deeper sense first and foremost ProfHP does have some real hard evidence of racism in the so-called progressive community and that begins with Michael Moore’s statement on The View. That does constitute evidence, it really does.   Why would you stoop to a stereotype to register your already well-known disappointment in the President? So we have one significant piece of evidence or outright racism, because unlike what Joan Walsh writes, evidence that is not in the form of a poll can also be relevant and serve as examples of racism at work, because most progressives don’t believe they are racist! They would never admit to it to a pollster, and that means we have to have other means of gathering data, come on, this isn’t that hard.

Exhibit 2: So after ProfHP’s original piece appeared in The Nation, Joan Walsh weighed in, with an okay blog, but it didn’t tell the entire story, and her blog required proof of racism via poll data.  Poll responses about subtle racism cannot be supported without actual working evidence, which is often the things people say and write. Joan Walsh used the conservative talking point, there is no evidence to conclude such things, when in fact there is evidence, first and foremost Michael Moore.

Exhibit 3: The leader of the group New Progressive Alliance, Anthony Noel, told an African-American blogger to get over being black and to start debating like a human. What? OMG, I don’t know how to respond to that kind of racism and I can’t believe this is actually happening and this does constitute evidence, cold hard factual evidence of racism among the so-called progressive blogosphere.

Exhibit 4: David Sirota’s response to ProfHP: Boy that guy is one mad upper middle class employed talk show radio host isn’t he, I had never read him prior to this, so I delved into his stream of consciousness, and that is what it was a stream of consciousness wrapped in white-hot anger. So let’s get to Sirota’s criticism, to which he claims not one person has taken on his so-called facts to challenge him, people have just called him a racist. Well Dave if the shoe fits buddy, I guess you will have to wear it. Sirota wrote this:

By seeing this record and then explaining away declining liberal support for President Obama as a product of bigotry, Harris-Perry exhibits the ultimate form of both denialism and elitism.

But does she really exhibit the “ultimate” form of both denialism (which is not a word for the record) and elitism, (hello pot, meet kettle). Because there is ample evidence of her thesis. Sirota doesn’t want to acknowledge it, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t evidence. First of course this elitism crap is being carried too far, Sirota by definition is a liberal elitist, he should quit pulling the faux populism card.  But what does account for the declining support of so-called progressives? Hell according to politifact.com the President has accomplished many of his campaign promises, in fact he has accomplished 147 of his campaign promises. Why are his accomplishments never acknowledged or if they are they are written off as tiny and not worthwhile and doesn’t make him progressive etc and so on. The list of his accomplishments are here: Politifact.com.  Was Clinton a surrender monkey when his health care bill failed and he never talked about universal health care again? Health Care was huge, and because of it more people are covered.

Let’s go over more examples of racism in the Progressive community and these do constitute proof, the proof folks like Walsh, Sirota and Lyons are demanding.

Exhibit 5: 2011 article by Robert Kuttner: Black and Bleak

The problem is less Obama’s failure to target black unemployment per se than his weakness on the jobs issue generally. Race comes into the equation because of an almost pathological aversion to conflict on Obama’s part, which has been widely attributed to his wish to bridge racial and ideological gaps.

What? It is as though Kuttner doesn’t realize that the President through policy implementation has successfully “strengthened  Small Business Administration programs that provide capital to minority-owned businesses, support outreach programs that help minority business owners apply for loans, and work to encourage the growth and capacity of minority firms.”  So actually the President is working to help minority communities by supporting the growth of business, which can only serve to help any given community by providing more jobs. So that makes Kuttner’s analysis not just wrong, but weird. Is it direct racism? Maybe not, but it is subtle, if Kuttner had done his homework he would see the President is implementing the same kind of policies the Clinton Admin for minority owned business. These were programs that were immediately ended when Bush took office.  No doubt African-Americans have suffered a great deal during this terrible recession, greatly. However, this is a statistic that never changes, it doesn’t matter who is in office or what his color might be. African-Americans have always suffered more during economic downturns and as a people we should attempt to address and make corrections. It is all our responsibility, and we should start by getting Republicans out of congress.   So  when I read this particular line made me feel uncomfortable; is it subtle racism? It makes me think Kuttner believes the President is just looking for approval of white, protestant men, otherwise, why is up with the sloppy statement based on some sort of ESP?

Race comes into the equation because of an almost pathological aversion to conflict on Obama’s part, which has been widely attributed to his wish to bridge racial and ideological gaps.

Exhibit 6: FDL sometimes is a hotbed for subtle and outright racism. Case in point: This is a blog post about labor unions, but then there is this the last line in the blog:

The basic problem is that the Rich ate all the pie. What do you intend to do about it? Snuggle up to their Democratic Party incarnation some more in the hope of getting some crumbs? There used to be a term for that, on the plantations. House N****r.

No one is going to tell me this isn’t evidence of racism amongst so-called progressives. Was it necessary to  head directly to plantation talk? Was it? How can anyone write that there is no evidence of some divisive racial language used by some people on the left?

Exhibit 7: Now let’s get to Gene Lyons, who perhaps responded like a bully and then pulled his own race card.  Lyons in retaliation asserted that ProfHP was a fool, and that was bad enough, but then came the most troubling paragraph:

Furthermore, unless you’re black, you can’t possibly understand. Yada, yada, yada. This unfortunate obsession increasingly resembles a photo negative of KKK racial thought. It’s useful for intimidating tenure committees staffed by Ph.D.s trained to find racist symbols in the passing clouds. Otherwise, Harris-Perry’s becoming a left-wing Michele Bachmann, an attractive woman seeking fame and fortune by saying silly things on cable TV.

If I didn’t know better, I would have figured this was written by one Rush Limbaugh, not just denigrating the Professors expertise but making a claim that she used her blackness to intimidate tenure committees, OMG, and yet there is no racism in the so-called white progressive community.  This type of commentary makes me nearly speechless. I said nearly.  When the President was elected I was naive enough to believe that so-called progressives would never ever stoop to racially insensitive speech. I.Was.Wrong.

Cross Posted at  DAGblog

What Is Your Plan Progressives! 4

Yeah this comes out of a comment yesterday and I want to know what the progressive plan is for getting more progressive legislators into the government, because that is the pertinent question here. So before I head out on a 50 miler today, I am going to ask the question, what is your plan to getting what you want?

Let’s revisit my first question and I will take out the part everyone keys on, about taking the President down, it’s snarky I know and too easy to fight about.  I’ve conveniently reviewed some other primary challenges to sitting presidents in our more recent history, here it is again in case you missed it:

“LBJ and Carter attracted powerful left-bent primary challenges.”
1968: Libs primary LBJ, lose general.
1972: Libs go down to worst defeat in election history.
1980: Libs primary Carter, lose general.
1984: Libs loose 49 of 50 state
2012: Libs: “Primarying Obama will make us stronger in 2016!”

I will only ask you this: How do you plan to actually get what you want? Conservatives seem to have a reasonably good track record of doing that, they get droves of crazy folks elected to congress, to governorships and to statehouses. Liberals’ track record on that is abysmal. I myself am not sure how liberals can do it, conservatives have worked for more than 30 years to convince the general public that taxes =evil=socialism=communisim=ungodly=democrats. But instead of counteracting that stuff, the consensus that seems to be building  is the best way to achieve liberal goals right now is to focus most of your energy on attacking the current President. Shades of 1968 indeed. I generally agree that the entire United States could use better politicians, (which is a pipe dream for sure)  I doubt that one can return to the heady days of the New Deal/Camelot/Great Society by ridding ourselves of this current President, but I could be wrong, stranger things have happened. However, I suspect the end result will be just another chapter in American Liberalism’s melancholy history of setbacks and self-defeat.

I say this because of the things I’ve seen in 25 years of participating in the process at the very smallest levels of government to our own statehouse where I was a Senate page.

How do we attain the goal of good governance? Does it require a plan? And that is my question, in a nutshell.

But what is true is there is no “progressive plan” to infiltrate the government at local levels on up which gets us on the road to forming a more progressive government. We are searching for a better way, democrats too, but we are fighting an uphill battle.  But the pertinent question is, how do you attain those goals? Don’t you have to begin by educating the public, by infiltrating government at all levels including the School Board, the PTA, County and City Councils etc and so on. Doesn’t it have to be done first from the micro level in order to impact the macro level which is the federal government.

I don’t know how much experience many of you have with school boards and PTA’s but I have to tell you, some of the most ideological folks on the right turn out candidates and voters to be heard in school districts and I am of the opinion it all starts right there at the very bottom levels of government.

I had the displeasure of having gone to school board and PTA meetings for years,  (3 children will do that to a person) and when I write displeasure, I mean displeasure emphasis on the dis. In general I would be there and one or two others more like me,  and a pack of conservative religious right-wing, mom pants wearing wait I mean lovely women who spent their time hijacking entire meetings with nothing more accomplished than the third word of the mission statement because they are afraid everything written leaves out god and you actually argue about this for weeks on end! So I get why lots of regular people don’t participate in this stuff, it’s not fun, it’s not a particularly productive thing to do with ones personal time. However the only way to be heard to effect change is to participate. I would occasionally force my husband to go with me, but he’d actually look for things to do at home to fix so he wouldn’t have to attend those tedious meetings. People would cycle in and out, but those ideologues sent there presumably by their churches always showed up, to every.single.meeting. which gave them some defacto power.  One time we spent what seemed to be several meetings arguing about whether or not Senior English should allow their students to choose books by Sherman Alexie, who is a home town boy for gods sake!  (I am reliving those nightmares now, ugh.) Those meetings were nothing short of torture enough to scare the most civic-minded away. But if we cannot even accomplish getting on school boards en-masse or just participating at that level, in order to infiltrate the system, how will things ever change?

When I worked for the local newspaper I covered county council meetings, another bastion of participation by the property rights crowd, at this time I was covering the GMA (growth management act, quite controversial among wingers) those people flooded meetings, what a nightmare, and of course later they were able to get people on the councils that were more amenable to their views… even though the GMA’s requirements are pretty explicit in that a plan is required, but there is always wiggle room with implementation. They were then able to get more ideologues elected, and I see some of those people working their way up through the legislature now, and they began on the school board and then moved to the county council, and are now in the Washington State Legislature.

And of course we saw that at work all over the nation with ACA, where senior citizens and angry white people came to protest government-run health care… what???? But that is what happened and those actions by those people did damage to the bill, they did damage to what could have been more progressive legislation. I know you think the President is to blame, but politicians respond to those who show up to their town hall meetings.

All snark aside, what is your plan to get more progressive legislators elected around the nation? It isn’t as if almost everyone at DAG isn’t interested in changing our polices and politics, but how can you accomplish these goals without a plan.

Crossposted at DAGblog

Chris Matthews to Joe Walsh (R) Il, “He’s Your President Too.” 5

Let’s get this out there, Rep. Joe Walsh is discrediting a good name. The Joe Walsh I remember, played guitar had his own band and sang songs like All Night Laundromat Blues.. this guy, well he just doesn’t seem like he is that much fun and he is trashing what is otherwise a very good name! I know I almost voted for the real Joe Walsh in 1980, the best part was I saw him in concert twice that year, man that was a great Eagles tour. Oh, I digress, because this Joe Walsh is definitely not that Joe Walsh.

May I present you with the video, Chris Matthews versus Rep. Joe Walsh, Illinois 8th district, dufus.

Crossposted at DAGBlog

What Ever Happened to Baby Jane Hamsher? 11

Wow, things happen when you are on vacation, and by things I mean Baby Jane Hudson  Hamsher’s blog meltdown the other day has turned into a thing of absolute wonder.  It was very dramatic wasn’t it, her Baby Jane Hudson style meltdown, dumb m-fers, really? Yeah that is the way to win an election, start another big fight on the interwebzz between like-minded people, that definitely gets us to where we want to be, wait, wut?

This ridiculous behavior is just  all too familiar to me, I still haven’t really gotten over the 2000 election. I can’t tell you how many well-meaning people I argued with back then who said they wouldn’t vote for Al Gore, who had become one of the more powerful Vice Presidents of our time, in terms of his mastery of government and his ideas of reform and modernizing government via the ever-changing world of technology.  He brought in an era of reform among the ranks of government.  Most people may or may not remember his Reinventing Government initiative, it was a program that worked, it was the result of Al Gores hard work and his experience in congress. Yet what was with the crowd that insisted  Gore and Bush were essentially the same, and why are they doing it again after all they should have learned from the Bush fiasco Presidency.  We can safely say there would have been no Iraq War if Al Gore had been President during 9-11. And yet here we are, discussing one more time how awful times a million the President is and his supporters are soooo stupid to ruin his chances like this, by supporting him, err or something.  It has now reached the crazy stage, in fact since Hamsher and that other crazy irrelevant guy Pat Cadell are actively working to make sure this President isn’t reelected, how liberal could either one really be? Yes, we know the answer, not liberal.   These shoddy analysis are pushed by the media.  They rely on manufactured controversy to get better ratings, and that is their only goal. The problem with the “primary Obama”  as led by Baby Jane is they seem impervious to facts, they seem unable to understand party politics, they just hope that the President will be in a primary race. That isn’t going to happen and if anyone thinks it will it is because they actually have their head planted firmly in the sand.  The Party has her candidate and it will not be Alan Grayson or Dennis Kucinich.  It is time to accept this fact and move on.   I am hoping we won’t let a faction of “the always pissed off crowd” disrupt this election.  I don’t know if they have the power to do so, but they certainly believe they have the power to do so.

Baby Jane Hamsher seems no different from Ralph Nader, she is a professional gadfly. She is a woman scorned no doubt about it,  I believe the blogger Eclectablog that he was sent an email from one of her employees basically saying she is going to crush him, and keep him from getting paid writing gigs on the internet..it is kind of comical in a sad sort of way. Does anyone really have that kind of power on the internet? I mean this isn’t William Randolf Hearsts era anymore, so the email comes off as ridiculous. I am not convinced anyone has that kind of power to crush a voice on the interwebzzz. How can anyone take her seriously after this kind of behavior? The over-the-top anger seems so like TBag in its apparent irrationality. And this draws us right back to the Baby Jane Hudson metaphor; Baby Jane Hudson, a former child star whose light went out long ago, her one and only goal in life was to become relevant again, one more time, this time she wouldn’t blow her chance, except that she did, because she always blows her chances.

What I don’t get is the end game, because certainly if they help sweep in more Republicans, progressivism will be even further from the doorstep of American politics. Because my instinct tells me that if you really are progressive you would want to prevent a Republican from being President, because in this day and age they simply have proven to be a threat to America. I mean hell, they are willing to play chicken with the economy, i.e. debt ceiling fiasco.  Republicans are holding a gun to their own heads and ours by their willingness to take the entire nation down in order to win a Presidential election, which is surreal and might I add unpatriotic!   And shouldn’t we be rallying people around this fact rather than fighting over whether or not there will be a primary challenger for this President?  (There will be no primary… it just isn’t going to happen).

Personally, I wish the war between progressives would end, ugh it is sooo tiring, and boring as the same issues are rehashed over and over again with no solutions in sight.   Baby Jane is relegating herself to obscurity, by her own actions, and for what? Just to be a contrarian, a gadfly, a rabble-rouser?  She never does explain why we are dumb mfers?  Nor does she adequately explain how supporting the President is really hurting his chances, is it opposite day and no one told me?  Well we will never truly be able to understand Baby Jane’s motives but I think they have more to do with making money rather than any real political agenda, she is just doing it the Rush Limbaugh/Scientology way, by building a base of fanatic followers who don’t ever think for themselves. Yikes what  way to make money.