Extremism in Defense of Religion…

October 31, 2011

…is something that Barry Goldwater had less use for than communism.

The following quote has been popping up a bit lately.  Its worthwhile, so I thought I’d repeat it here:

Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they’re sure trying to do so, it’s going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can’t and won’t compromise. I know, I’ve tried to deal with them…

There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious beliefs. There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme being. But like any powerful weapon, the use of God’s name on one’s behalf should be used sparingly. The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following their position 100 percent. If you disagree with these religious groups on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of money or votes or both. I’m frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in ‘A,’ ‘B,’ ‘C,’ and ‘D.’ Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me? And I am even more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who thinks it has some God-granted right to control my vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today: I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of ‘conservatism.

Todays christianists who masturbate whenever the names Reagan and Goldwater are spoken would, if Messrs. Reagan and Goldwater were to suddenly re-animate, have about as much use for Messrs. Reagan and Goldwater as Dostoevsky’s Grand Inquisitor did for the second coming of Jesus.

R.I.P. – The Britney Spears Corollary to Godwin’s Law

October 31, 2011

You know that corollary, right?  The one that states that any discussion about gay marriage will eventually get to Britney Spears’ eighteen-second marriage – and how it is legal by gay marriages involving partners who’ve been together decades aren’t.

Well, that went bye-bye today – and it went to wherever Bill Hicks’ sense of irony is hanging out these days.

A completely useless lifeform – one of the Kardashians – has decided to end a twenty-three-second-old marriage that, because it was to a guy, is valid anywhere without question…

and the news of this breaks on the same day that another completely useless lifeform – one whose crowning achievement in life was attempting to make sure that that Kardashian marriage was protected against the scourge of marriages that might be between two men or two women and last more than twenty-three seconds – ceased being a lifeform.

I leave it to you all to work that up into proper corollary form.


1647 articles, eh?

If you actually care about that marriage/divorce and your name isn’t Kardashian, you’re part of the problem…

and the 1% thanks you.

COINTELPRO: The Next Generation

October 31, 2011

Example one:

Cops Apparently Telling Drunken Street People: ‘Take It To Zuccotti’

Example two:

Conservative blogger gives out free bongs to embarrass protesters

And, of course, do remember what the first generation of COINTELPRO was all about:


The Committee finds that domestic intelligence activity has been overbroad in that (1) many Americans and domestic groups have been subjected to investigation who were not suspected of criminal activity and (2) the intelligence agencies have regularly collected information about personal and political activities irrelevant to any legitimate governmental interest.


(a) Large numbers of law-abiding Americans and lawful domestic groups have been subjected to extensive intelligence investigation and surveillance.

(b) The absence of precise standards for intelligence, investigations of Americans contributed to overbreadth. Congress did not enact statutes precisely delineating the authority of the intelligence agencies or defining the purpose and scope of domestic intelligence activity. The executive branch abandoned the standard set by Attorney General Stone — that the government’s concern was not with political opinions but with “such conduct as is forbidden by the laws of the United States.” Intelligence agencies’ superiors issued over-inclusive directives to investigate “subversion” (a term that was never defined in presidential directives) and “potential” rather than actual or likely criminal conduct, as well as to collect general intelligence on lawful political and social dissent.

(c) The intelligence agencies themselves used imprecise and overinclusive criteria in their conduct of intelligence investigations. Intelligence investigations extended beyond “subversive” or violent targets to additional groups and individuals subject to minimal “subversive influence” or having little or no “potential” for violence.

(d) Intelligence agencies pursued a “vacuum cleaner” approach to intelligence collection — drawing in all available information about groups and individuals, including their lawful political activity and details of their personal lives.

(e) Intelligence investigations in many cases continued for excessively long periods of time, resulting in sustained governmental monitoring of political activity in the absence of any indication of criminal conduct or “subversion.”

Elaboration of Findings

The central problem posed by domestic intelligence activity has been its departure from the standards of the law. This departure from law has meant not only the violation of constitutional prohibitions and explicit statutes, but also the adoption of criteria unrelated to the law as the basis for extensive investigations of Americans.


what a quaint concept.


October 30, 2011

One More Reason to Support the Recall of Paul Scott: Anti-Public Education, Corporatism-Pusher Michelle Rhee

October 30, 2011

This shouldn’t be a surprise.

The national education reform group StudentsFirst has committed nearly $73,000 to help Rep. Paul Scott, R-Grand Blanc, avoid being voted out of office in a recall election, campaign finance reports show.

The group’s Michigan political action committee has paid for $13,591.05 already and owes another $59,408.29 for services rendered, the reports show.

The group is headed by former Washington, D.C., Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee and has advocated for eliminating or reforming teacher tenure systems and other changes.

We all (even The John) know about Paul Scott’s transphobia – upon which he based his campaign for secretary of state, a campaign which should have led to his being permanently banned from the practice of law – but his and Rhee’s anti-education (and that’s what it is, not simply anti-public education but anti-education period; these people believe that education is a privilege that you should only be able to partake in if you’re born into a gene pool and trust fund that can buy it for you) goals are even more disturbing and should by themselves be cause to boot the little pustule from office.

I could elaborate, but I’ll turn it over to one of the commenters at MLive:

Color me unsurprised that an ethics-challenged self-promoting opportunist would be in Scott’s camp. They’re both cut from the same cloth. Google Michelle Rhee+cheating scandal and then ponder just what and how many backroom deals will come to fruition once Scott destroys public education in Michigan.

StudentsFirst is another one of those Orwellian monikers. Profit for a few elites comes first — the students are the last consideration.

Students First…

Uh huh…

First into the meat grinder.

Soylent Green is the result of what Michelle Rhee has in mind for students!!!!!!

Its time for Paul Scott to have to look for a private sector job in the economy his party created.

Michigan, please give him the opportunity to have to do so on November 8th.

You Get to Privatize Social Security When We Get to Nationalize Citibank, Bank of America, Exxon and Goldman Sachs

October 30, 2011


Even after Wall Street blew up our economy and Americans got to experience their 401K’s and pension funds taking massive hits due to their maleficence, some of the panel members of this Saturday’s Forbes on Fox were still pushing for Social Security privatization.


Will the Corporatist Media Force Herman Cain to Apply this ‘Logic’ to the Next Instance of Christianists Claiming that Homosexuals in the Media Encourages Homosexuality?

October 30, 2011

You know what the answer is…

CBS host Bob Schieffer scolded Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain Sunday for an online ad that prominently features his top advisor smoking a cigarette.

Cain explained that while he doesn’t personally smoke, he didn’t have a problem with Mark Block’s smoking hadbit: “I don’t have a problem if that’s his choice.”

“It sends a signal that it is cool to smoke,” Schieffer noted.

“No, it does not,” Cain argued. “Mark Block smokes. That’s all that ad says. We weren’t trying to say it’s cool to smoke. We have a lot of people in this country that smoke, but what I respect about Mark as a smoker, who is my chief of staff, he never smokes around me or smokes around anyone else. He goes outside.”

“He smokes on television,” Schieffer pointed out.

“If they listen to the message where he said America has never seen a candidate like Herman Cain. That was the main point of it. The bit on the end we didn’t know whether it would be funny to some people or whether they were going to ignore it or whatever the case may be,” Cain said.

…even if you’ve drunk enough korporate kapitalist kool-aid to claim that you don’t know what the answer really is.

For Those Who Don’t Like Sport, This Time We Have…Pugs!

October 30, 2011

Okay, “pug”…singular

…because I haven’t posted a photo of my buddy Louise lately.

So Much for the Economic NEEDS of Trans People…

October 30, 2011

With apologies to Roger Waters: What gays want, gays get.

And Yet, Only the Pushback is Deemed by the Corporatist Media as Being ‘Class Warfare’

October 30, 2011

From the NYTimes:

On Friday, the law firm of Steven J. Baum threw a Halloween party. The firm, which is located near Buffalo, is what is commonly referred to as a “foreclosure mill” firm, meaning it represents banks and mortgage servicers as they attempt to foreclose on homeowners and evict them from their homes.

[A] former employee of Steven J. Baum recently sent me snapshots of last year’s party. In an e-mail, she said that she wanted me to see them because they showed an appalling lack of compassion toward the homeowners — invariably poor and down on their luck — that the Baum firm had brought foreclosure proceedings against.

When we spoke later, she added that the snapshots are an accurate representation of the firm’s mind-set. “There is this really cavalier attitude,” she said. “It doesn’t matter that people are going to lose their homes.” Nor does the firm try to help people get mortgage modifications; the pressure, always, is to foreclose.

When I called a press spokesman for Steven J. Baum to ask about the photographs, he sent me a statement a few hours later. “It has been suggested that some employees dress in … attire that mocks or attempts to belittle the plight of those who have lost their homes,” the statement read. “Nothing could be further from the truth.” It described this column as “another attempt by The New York Times to attack our firm and our work.”


You be the judge.  There are five more at the NY Times website.

(BTW – I also suggest reading the comments.)