Remember The Anti-Gay Alamo

Alamo

If we don’t stop the “LGBT assault” in its tracks right now, Santa Anna is going to blow through Houston like a Hurricane according to Georgia GOP House candidate Jody Hice.

Pastors in the Houston area have been subpoenaed for records of their sermons related to their failure to gather enough valid signatures to repeal a non-discrimination ordinance. The Religious Right, meanwhile, alleges that it’s a witch hunt being carried out by a gay mayor.

Jody Hice, for his part, says Houston is “the new Alamo” where straights will face off against the horde of marauding gays in a final confrontation.

via RightWingWatch

[The] Religious Right has turned the incident into a cause celebre, and Hice is on board, declaring on his radio program that the Houston incident is “the new Alamo” for anti-gay activists.

“This is the battleground now over traditional family,” he said. “And what is going to occur over this development is that we are either going to see this in Houston, Texas, be the beginning of the end of the LGBT assault, if you will, on freedom to practice religion and of traditional family values being rightfully defended, or this is going to be a huge step toward the ultimate collapse of religious liberty in America.”

It’s not clear if Jody Hice understands that the Alamo ultimately fell to the enemy.

Also not clear: if he understands that the Alamo is located in San Antonio.

Jody Hice will probably be a member of Congress come January.

Posted in Georgia, Religion, Wingnuts | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Florida Governor Rick Scott is an Embarrassment

In case you missed it, this has be seen to be believed.

Florida Governor Rick Scott refused to take the stage at the gubernatorial debate last night because Charlie Crist had a small fan under his podium.

The real awkwardness begins around 50 seconds into the above video. The crowd in attendance broke out into laughter and then boos after the debate moderators announced that Governor Scott would not participate in the debate because of the small fan under Crist’s podium.

Rick Scott eventually took the stage several minutes later.

I can’t recall a more embarrassing debate moment this side of “oops” or “please proceed.”

Posted in Epic Fail, Rick Scott | Tagged | 8 Comments

DOCTOR Rand Paul Doesn’t Know Shit About Shit

Dr. Rand Paul has no idea what he is talking about.


If that were true, we would see many more infected people here in the U.S.

Thomas Eric Duncan, the Dallas man who died from Ebola, was in close proximity to over 100 people before his death and so far only two nurses who treated him without protective gear have been infected.

Duncan reportedly spent hours in a hospital waiting room in close proximity to dozens of other people and so far none of them have become ill. Duncan also spent time close to his family but none of them have become ill either. He also spent time in close proximity to other passengers on his flight into the US.

Unless your cocktail party is actually a secret orgy, I think you’re safe.

And while we’re on the subject of Rand son of Ron, he’d really like the first lady to know that he’s eating donuts. Because he’s a rebel like that.


Posted in Rand Paul, Super Stupid | Tagged | 16 Comments

Serious Risk

Health Risk

Artist – Rob Rogers

In other news, a study conducted by the University of Delaware found that white people are more supportive of voter ID laws if they’re shown pictures of black people voting.

Meanwhile, infamous end-times lunatic and conspiracy theorist Glenn Beck will accompany Washington football team owner Dan Snyder in the owner’s booth this weekend, because Dan Snyder is terrible.

Posted in Glenn Beck, Open Thread, Racism | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Out of Control Spending

The federal budget deficit has decreased to it’s lowest level since 2007 thanks primarily to economic growth. Furthermore, the federal government also posted a larger surplus, beating most estimates.

via Bloomberg

Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew said the fiscal improvement is partly tied to stronger growth, as the nation’s unemployment rate dropped to 5.9 percent in September from 7.2 percent a year earlier. Still, the deficit is forecast by the Congressional Budget Office to start widening again as an aging population prompts more spending on Social Security and health care. [...]

Last month the government posted a $105.8 billion surplus, compared with a $75.1 billion surplus September 2013, today’s figures showed. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of 23 economists was for a surplus last month of $90 billion, with estimates ranging from $53 billion to $106 billion.

While I’m sure the Congressional Budget Office, I have to say I’m increasingly skeptical of predictions that we will face Deficit Doom in the near future.

The fact that the economy has drastically turned around under a Democratic president is not reflected in polling, as you might have guessed, because Americans are pretty dumb.

You have to be ignorant to place more trust in the Republican party’s handling of the deficit given that they produced the record setting deficits of yesteryear; given that their policies would explode the deficit all over again.

Posted in Economy | Tagged , | 6 Comments

We’re Still Learning How Terrible the Bush Admin Was

The New York Times has an enlightening article on the plight of American service members who uncovered old, decaying chemical weapons in Iraq who were systematically marginalized and even denied treatment.

I recommend reading the entire piece, but here’s the gist:

From 2004 to 2011, American and American-trained Iraqi troops repeatedly encountered, and on at least six occasions were wounded by, chemical weapons remaining from years earlier in Saddam Hussein’s rule. [...]

The American government withheld word about its discoveries even from troops it sent into harm’s way and from military doctors. The government’s secrecy, victims and participants said, prevented troops in some of the war’s most dangerous jobs from receiving proper medical care and official recognition of their wounds.

“I felt more like a guinea pig than a wounded soldier,” said a former Army sergeant who suffered mustard burns in 2007 and was denied hospital treatment and medical evacuation to the United States despite requests from his commander. [...]

Congress, too, was only partly informed, while troops and officers were instructed to be silent or give deceptive accounts of what they had found. “ ’Nothing of significance’ is what I was ordered to say,” said Jarrod Lampier, a recently retired Army major who was present for the largest chemical weapons discovery of the war: more than 2,400 nerve-agent rockets unearthed in 2006 at a former Republican Guard compound.

According to interviews and information obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by the Times, military personnel discovered at least 5,000 chemical warheads, shells and other munitions.

To be clear, these are not the Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMDs) the invasion was based on. According to the Times, these weapons were manufactured prior to Operation Desert Storm in 1991 during Iraq’s war with Iran. Furthermore, these weapons were manufactured with our help.

In five of six incidents in which troops were wounded by chemical agents, the munitions appeared to have been designed in the United States, manufactured in Europe and filled in chemical agent production lines built in Iraq by Western companies.

I don’t know if blindly sending men into the field to recover chemical weapons and then concealing their existence is evidence of a cover up or incompetence, or both, but it is entirely characteristic of the Bush administration doctrine of flying by the seat of your pants.

The timeline provided by the New York Times goes beyond the Bush administration (2004) into the early years of Obama administration (2011) and I get the impression that the full extent of the legacy of poor treatment of veterans left behind by the Bush administration (and exacerbated by austerity) is beyond the scope of what we currently know.

We deployed men and women to a war zone, and in some cases to chemical weapon dumps, without body armor or protective gear, and when they returned home they were greeted with bumper sticker ribbons and little else.

“Support the troops” my ass.

This story seems prescient given the GOP’s recent hardon for redeploying ground combat troops to Iraq which would undoubtedly reignite the quagmire that President Obama ended.

Posted in George W. Bush, Iraq | Tagged , | 7 Comments

Bring Your Guns

A Republican state representative in Ohio is forgoing the backyard barbeque and holding a “machine gun social” instead.

“This is a nice event,” state Rep. Ron Maag (R-OH) told the Cincinnati Enquirer for an article published on Tuesday. Scheduled for Oct. 23 at a nature center, his fundraiser will let people as young as teenagers shoot machine guns with the presence of an instructor, the paper reported. [...]

“People need to understand. There’s doctors, there’s lawyers, there’s businessmen and women, there were judges, there were superintendents of schools,” he said.

It doesn’t actually make me feel better to know that doctors, lawyers, judges, and school superintendents will be at the event. It only makes me question their impartiality, competence and sanity.

Posted in Gun Fetishists | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Rick Santorum is Preparing to Run for President, He Says

Santorum

Former Republican presidential candidate and second place finisher Rick Santorum tells RealClearPolitics that he’s preparing to run for president again.

“I’m doing everything right now as if I’m running,” he said. “So we’re moving forward and trying to line up supporters — both grassroots and donors. We’re talking to folks who might be interested after the [midterm] election to come and help the team, so we’re starting to put the pieces together, but we’re not going to make the final decision until 2015.”

Santorum says he’s preparing for another run because, historically, candidates who finished in second place in previous elections fared better in the next election.

I’m not so sure that will be the case for Santorum because the social landscape has changed dramatically in just the last two years, with same-sex marriage expanding to more than half the country.

On the other hand, Santorum may view this as his moment and opportunity to run against it, but he’ll have to compete with Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) who has wasted no time in calling for a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage. In either case, it seems inevitable that the Republican candidate in 2016 will be solidly anti-gay.

But what a joy it would be if Santorum, a man who brought us classics like “blah people,” does run again.

Also this:

Posted in Election 2016 | Tagged | 11 Comments

Mitch McConnell Continues to Slither Under the Radar: Repeal Obamacare — Except for Kentucky

Regardless of whether the Republicans win enough seats for a majority in the U.S. Senate, there’s a very real possibility that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) will be defeated by Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes. But if the traditional news media continues to miss one of the most damning stories on McConnell, it could swing the election away from Grimes and back into the Republican win column.

The other night, the candidates squared off in a televised debate, and the news media takeaway the played directly in McConnell’s favor: Grimes continues to sidestep questions about whether she voted for President Obama and, as Tommy Christopher pointed out, her question-dodging prompted NBC News’s Chuck Todd to outrageously suggest that by refusing to answer the question Grimes has “disqualified herself.” This is somehow the big national story: Grimes’s choice for president, and why she refuses to discuss her votes. Again, we’re not talking about legislative votes or even decisions she’s made as Kentucky’s Secretary of State — her choices in the voting booth.

Between this and the wall-to-wall Ebola hysteria, the traditional news media has attained full clown-show status. Chuck Todd might as well be wearing giant red shoes, squirting Joe Scarborough will a seltzer bottle, while a chimp on roller skates flogs Willie Geist with a cartoon-sized Wiffle bat.

What’s been almost entirely overlooked out of Kentucky, regardless of the cable news venue, is an issue that speaks directly to the rotting core of the Republican Party. McConnell keeps insisting that he will help to repeal the Affordable Care Act, aka. “Obamacare,” even though a plurality of Kentuckians love the ACA insurance marketplace there, known as “Kynect.” On top of that, 60 percent of Kentuckians support the expansion of Medicaid, as authorized by the ACA. By the way, that 60 percent? I should clarify: it’s 60 percent of Kentucky Republicans. Kentucky Republicans by a supermajority margin support the expansion of Medicaid per the dreaded Obamacare law. Support rises to 79 percent among all Kentuckians.

Yet Mitch McConnell wants to repeal the law. Sort of?… CONTINUE READING

Posted in The Daily Banter | 2 Comments

Morning Awesome

Nicola Conte – “Kind of Sunshine”

Posted in Morning Awesome, Music | Tagged | Leave a comment

Diagnosis

Diagnosis

Artist – David Horsey

In other news, Texas Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Gregg Abbot says it doesn’t matter if same-sex marriage will “produce societal benefits.” Even if it does, he argues, it is the job of the state to promote having children.

I must have missed the part in the constitution that says the state should promote heterosexual marriage in the interests of reproduction.

This man will be worse then Rick Perry.

Meanwhile, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker says the minimum wage is pointless because, obviously, the wage fairy will swoop down and give people high-paying jobs if the government would just get out of the way. It’s what Free Market Jesus intended.

It’s a nice bedtime story.

Posted in Open Thread | Tagged , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Scott Brown Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop ISIS-Ebola-Border Fearmongering

Former Senator Scott Brown continues to shit himself over the thought of Ebola-carrying terrorist criminal persons crossing our southern border with Mexico.

When asked if we should place restrictions on traveling to or from West Africa, Brown went much further than he was prompted to go and tied the question into border security.

At 0:25

BROWN: I think it’s all connected. For example, we have people coming into our country by legal means bringing in diseases and other potential challenges. Yet we have a border that’s so porous that anyone can walk across it. I think it’s naive to think that people aren’t going to be walking through here who have those types of diseases and/or other types of intent, criminal or terrorist. And yet we do nothing to secure our border. It’s dangerous. And that’s the difference. I voted to secure it. Senator Shaheen has not.

It continues to amaze me that Brown has chosen to make border security the centerpiece of his campaign in New Hampshire which is 2,000 miles away from the southern border.

And make no mistake, this is a campaign with racial undertones that is focused on the southern border with Mexico rather than the border New Hampshire shares with Canada. That is not a coincidence. There have been no documented cases of immigrants or other undocumented persons walking across the border with Ebola or with the intent of committing terrorism. Furthermore, there have been no documented cases of Ebola in Mexico.

Even if it were a possibility, are we suppose to accept the idea of someone infected with Ebola making the perilous journey across the border on foot? Does that make any sense?

Whether prompted to or not, Scott Brown has taken questions about ISIS and Ebola and turned them into a border security issue at a time when our border is more secure than it has ever been.

The irony is that a scenario in which an American infected with Ebola crosses into Mexico is more plausible.

Posted in Terrorism, Wingnuts | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

Who Done It?

Fox & Friends is very concerned that we don’t have a Surgeon General at a time like this.

The previous nominee was mysteriously “tied up in politics.”

At 0:38

DOOCY: You would normally think that in something like this, the Surgeon General would be in charge, but right now at this point oddly, the United States of America does not have a Surgeon General. His nomination is tied up in politics.

It’s “odd,” he says, that we don’t have a Surgeon General.

Who could have possibly been responsible for tying up his nomination in politics?

Fox & Friends co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck falsely claimed that Murthy views gun ownership as a “disease” and forwarded claims that he has “a radical agenda when it comes to guns and your health.” Network legal analyst Peter Johnson Jr. suggested Murthy would make the examining room about “about party registration or about gun registration,” and Fox host Megyn Kelly claimed that Murthy is “not a big fan of the Second Amendment,” and said he is “so anti-gun that the NRA has decided to score this vote.”

Oh.

Yes, in case you’ve forgotten, Dr Murthy was slimed by the NRA and Fox News because he said he considers gun violence to be a public health issue. And it is a public health issue in that guns kill 30,000 Americans every year. But the NRA’s attacks weren’t limited to public health concerns. The entire campaign against Murthy was wrapped in a coating of conspiracy theory about gun confiscation and gun registration databases.

Congress was and is more concerned about the NRA’s scorecard than public health and, not-coincidentally, some of the most outspoken Ebola fearmongers led the charge against Dr. Murthy’s confirmation.

Posted in Conspiracy Theory, Guns, Healthcare | Tagged , , , | 13 Comments

Conspiracy Theory

tinfoilHats

Representative Steve Stockman (R-TX) has uncovered a grand conspiracy and discovered that President Obama will soon issue Order 66 Order 33 to seize total control after Ebola spreads throughout the country.

via RightWingWatch

STOCKMAN: Well, I think, what was it, executive order 1332 or 33, where Obama has laid out—it’s a great Forbes article too, you can read about it—but he talks about using emergency powers to take over control of the economy and everything. Of course our friends at ‘snoops’ [Snopes.com] say it’s false, then you read about it and it turns out to be true. I think, I don’t know, their terminology is there’s always a crisis which they want to use to their benefit, I would not be surprised that the reason that you see a lack of response is so that it becomes a real crisis and things can be used to correct the crisis, you know.

I searched for a Forbes article on executive order 1332 and 1333 and I couldn’t find anything. The closest example I could find is a list of executive orders signed by the president last year concerning background checks and statistical analysis of gun violence.

I couldn’t find a Snopes article either.

Stockman continues:

It’s just bizarre there’s not enough action up front and I’m wondering if that’s — I’m not saying this — but I’m wondering if that’s intentional in order to create a greater crisis to use it as a blunt force to say, well in order to solve this crisis we’re going to have to take control of the economy and individuals and so forth. I don’t know. It’s just a strange non-response, a strange way of handling it and I think that if it does go forward and we do not control it, there may be an overreaction where the government starts taking away the rights of those that aren’t that necessarily involved or need that to happen. I hope that’s not that case but as you know this current government uses crisis to advance their philosophy and their agenda.

He’s not saying, he’s just sayin’.

The idea that the administration hasn’t responded is hogwash. In fact, Stockman’s ideological colleagues have been incensed because the administration has responded by deploying military personnel to Africa to construct field hospitals. Some, including Laura Ingraham and Rush Limbaugh, have gone so far as to say the president’s plan in Africa is to redistribute wealth from white people.

If Stockman is so concerned, he could support the confirmation of a surgeon general. He may also want to take matters up with the Texas Health Department as they, alongside the CDC and the Department of Homeland Security, are primarily responsible for the situation in Dallas.

Stockman could also get really crazy and throw his support behind universal healthcare coverage and Medicaid expansion.

stockman_bumpersticker

Posted in Conspiracy Theory, Steve Stockman, Wingnuts | Tagged | 6 Comments

Mitch McConnell is a Fool or a Liar, or Both

mitch-mcconnell-ap

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell insists that Kentucky’s health insurance exchange, known as Kynect, is just a website.

It isn’t.

During his debate with Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes yesterday, McConnell said he would repeal the rest of Obamacare but keep Kynect.

“Kentucky Kynect is a website. It was paid for by a grant from the federal government,” he said. “The website can continue, but in my view the best interests of the country would be achieved by pulling out Obamacare root and branch.” McConnell explained that Kentucky officials can also maintain the state exchange “if they’d like to.” “States can decide whether or to expand Medicaid or not,” he added. “It’s a state decision.”

Kynect is not just a website. It, like any other health insurance exchange, is a portal to Obamacare. Kynect cannot and would not function without the underlying mechanisms of Obamacare which enabled the creation of the exchange in the first place.

Repealing the rest of Obamacare would mean rolling back the expansion of Medicaid (which now covers hundreds of thousands of Kentuckians) and the end of subsidies. It would also mean repealing the cost control mechanisms that lower the cost of healthcare across the board. Without these provisions, Kynect would be reduced to just a website.

It’s true that choosing to expand Medicaid is a state decision, unfortunately, but they can only choose to do so because of Obamacare. Repeal Obamacare and there is no Medicaid expansion.

There’s no chance that Mitch McConnell doesn’t know better. He is lying.

If he really and truly doesn’t know better, he’s an even bigger fool than anyone fathomed. And that may be a worse explanation for him.

Would you vote for a man who doesn’t know his ass from his elbow? Maybe you would as long as he opposes that darn Obama.

Posted in Healthcare, Lying Liars | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments

Glenn Greenwald’s “Nothing to Hide” Challenge is Pretty Damn Stupid

During his TED Talk presentation last week, The Intercept‘s Glenn Greenwald issued a challenge: If you defend the National Security Agency’s surveillance activities by insisting that you have nothing to hide, then you should send all of your usernames and passwords to Glenn Greenwald, allowing him to publish anything he finds particularly juicy. Here’s the actual quote:

“Over the last 16 months, as I’ve debated this issue around the world, every single time somebody has said to me, ‘I don’t really worry about invasions of privacy because I don’t have anything to hide.’ I always say the same thing to them. I get out a pen, I write down my email address. I say, ‘Here’s my email address. What I want you to do when you get home is email me the passwords to all of your email accounts, not just the nice, respectable work one in your name, but all of them, because I want to be able to just troll through what it is you’re doing online, read what I want to read and publish whatever I find interesting. After all, if you’re not a bad person, if you’re doing nothing wrong, you should have nothing to hide.’ Not a single person has taken me up on that offer.”

Yeah, I wonder why.

First of all, this is a bit of a strawman fallacy. Very few reputable people use this “I have nothing to hide” line of reasoning in defense of NSA any more because it stupidly and simplistically concedes that NSA might actually be spying on them personally without a warrant — a concession that’s both inaccurate and nearsighted.

It also draws a ludicrously false comparison… CONTINUE READING

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Morning Awesome

Wolfmother – “Mind’s Eye”

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Bitter Pill

BitterPill

Artist – Steve Greenberg

This is the state of abortion coverage in Texas now than most clinics have been forced to close. Women are calling from hundreds of miles away to find access.

Ken Lambrecht, president and CEO of the Planned Parenthood clinic in Dallas, said he was anticipating a jump in calls but not from so many women hundreds of miles away.

He told the newspaper that when a mother seeking an abortion for her daughter was told the next available appointment wasn’t for another three weeks, she said: “We might as well go to Mexico.”

That’s the goal, isn’t it? The conservative goal is to make it so impractical that it becomes inaccessible.

This primarily harms low-income women. Conservative middle and upper class women who vote Republican can afford to travel long distances for abortions.

Posted in Abortion, Open Thread | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Keepin’ it Classy in New Hampshire

Former Senator Scott Brown visited a tailgate party at the University of New Hampshire over the weekend and surrounded himself with fratbros. What happened next probably won’t surprise you.

Before breaking into a “Scott Brown” chant, a couple guys in the crowd had other things to say.

Almost immediately at the 8 second mark of the video, a couple guys yell “fuck her right in the pussy” in reference to Brown’s opponent Jeanne Shaheen. And if that left any doubt in your mind, they get more specific at around the 40 second mark.

Around 40 seconds in, a couple bros start yelling “Elizabeth Warren sucks” and “Jeanne Shaheen sucks” followed by “fuck Elizabeth Warren.”

That’s when the Scott Brown chant breaks out, but at the 1:10 minute mark one of the same bros yells “Jeanne Shaheen, what a cunt!”

Scott Brown does not have a history of surrounding himself with classy people and this is reminiscent of the time his campaign staffers made tomahawk chops and whooping sounds during his campaign against Elizabeth Warren.

Posted in Assholery | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

Outreach

picard_riker_double_facepalm

New Hampshire state Rep. Steve Vaillancourt (R) skips the pleasantries and gets right to the heart of the matter: ugly women need not apply.

This gets progressively worse.

I seem to recall hearing that a new survey is out revealing that, with two caveats, an attractive candidate can have as much as a seven to ten point advantage over a less attractive (or even an unattractive) candidate.

Okay. I can see where this is going.

In New Hampshire’s second congressional district, if I may be so bold as to speak the truth, Republican Marilinda Garcia is one of the mot attractive women on the political scene anywhere, not so attractive as to be intimindating, but truly attractive.

So she’s attractive but not so attractive as to make you feel inferior? How nice for you.

Let’s be honest. Does anyone not believe that Congressman Annie Kuster is as ugly as sin? And I hope I haven’t offended sin.

“Ugly as sin.”

How ugly is Annie Kuster? Again avert your eyes if you don’t want to hear it, but I actually thought of Annie Kuster last weekend when I was in Montreal. Not far from the Second Cup Coffee Shop I at which I was sipping and writing is a bar called Mados. It’s on the section of St. Catherine Street which is blocked off for pedestrians only in the summer; it’s near the Jacques Cartier Bridge. Thus, tens of thousands of Montrealers and visitors walk by Mados on their way to the fireworks displays on summer nights.

On almost any given night, standing for all to see in front of Mados is a rather attractive drag queen. People stop to pose for pictures with this Mado drag queen; other drag queens gather round because, you see, Mados is a drag queen bar…not that there’s anything wrong with that. [...]

By now you probably know why I think of Annie Kuster whenever I walk by Mados; sad to say, but the drag queens are more atrractive than Annie Kuster….not that there’s anything wrong with that. [...]

Annie Kuster looks more like a drag queen than most men in drag.

Ouch!

Now that last bit came off very Freudian to me, but you get the gist. Women who are this ugly, he says, don’t have much of a chance to win.

Your accomplishments and policy positions apparently don’t matter if you don’t fit Republican Steve Vailliancourt’s definition of attractiveness. And on the flip-side, they also don’t matter even if you do meet his criteria of attractiveness. Vailliancourt says nothing of Garcia’s policies, only that she’s hot.

The good news for Steve Vailliancourt is that the same standard is not applied to men.

Posted in Epic Fail | Tagged , , | 5 Comments