Friday, May 1, 2009

Not Quite In the "Asshat" Category - But Mara Liasson's Definitely A "Tool"

Now, I'm a big fan of National Public Radio (NPR), and I thoroughly enjoy listening to their many programs (even during "pledge drives").

It's my belief that for the most part, NPR is a pretty damned good place to get solid, well-reported news, and usually, some pretty damned good in-depth analysis of that news.

Except for any analysis provided by Mara Liasson.

She is a tool for the right wing.

A paid "political consultant" for NPR, Mara Liasson is also a paid "political consultant" for Fox News Special Report With Bret Baier and Fox News Sunday.

On Fox, this "pundit" regularly rubs elbows with the likes of Bill Kristol, Editor of the right-wing Weekly Standard and founder of the Project for A New American Century, a neoconservative blueprint for worldwide American Imperialism.

Then, she returns to NPR and regurgitates the bullshit talking points she absorbed while playing with Kristol and his ilk.

To put it bluntly, I'm tired of the crap she spews.

Today, on NPR's Morning Edition, Ms. Liasson again repeated the tired conservative lie that President Obama "vowed to eliminate" earmarks.


During the 2008 presidential campaign, Obama promised to reform the earmark process and eliminate "screwy" or wasteful earmarks.

But anything Mara can say to get a dig in at the president, or the Democrats, and to further the Republican agenda is allowed to pass.

You expect that on Fox News. After all, when Fox News is involved, the truth just too limiting... and besides, we all know that reality has a well-known liberal bias.

So - NPR... do me a favor:

Dump this shill for the right-wing.

You should replace her with Elizabeth Arnold, who has forgotten more about politics and analytical thinking than Liasson will ever learn.

Thanks for listening.

h/t to Media Matters.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Asshat Of The Week: Congresswoman Virginia Foxx, R-North Carolina

As anyone who reads this blog (that's all 10 or 15 of you) may have noticed, I haven't had a lot to say in the last couple days.

This is for several reasons.

Work has been sort of busy for me, and will be for the balance of the summer, I suspect... and the weather has (finally) been nice for the last few days.

Nice weather means when I get home from work, rather than sitting down at the keyboard, I've instead logged a few miles on my motorcycle. Riding is very soothing and therapeutic, and beats hell out of a analyst's couch.

So, I've been a bit lazy.

However, tonight, while eating dinner (after a short ride, of course) I tuned in to the Rachel Maddow Show. Rachel covered a story about the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act (HR 1913), also know as the Matthew Shepard Act, which passed the U.S. House of Representatives yesterday by a wide margin, 249-175.

Matthew Shepard was a young gay man who was kidnapped, tortured, and murdered near Laramie Wyoming in 1998. It was
clearly a hate crime in every sense of the word, perpetrated because Matthew Shepard happened to be gay.

But it wasn't a
federal hate crime. A crime committed against someone because of their religion, their race, their ethnicity, even their gender- are all potentially hate crimes under federal law. Prosecutable under federal law.

Committing a crime against a gay person just because they are gay is... well, just a crime. Maybe. If the state or local laws happen to say it is. But the feds can't prosecute it, and it's up to state or local yokels to decide.

In a very simplified nutshell, the Matthew Shepard Act extends the federal definition of "hate crimes" to include crimes committed against people as a result of their sexual preference.

That makes perfect sense to me, and to anyone who thinks about it for a few minutes.

But - it's apparently A Terrible Idea™ if you're a "compassionate conservative."

A similar bill passed both the House and Senate in 2007... and was promptly vetoed by our then-President, "Mr. Family Values/Compassionate Conservative" George W. Bush.

Not really surprisingly, yesterday Representative Don Young, R-Alaska was one of the "noes."

Don rarely deviates from the party line except to help bring home the bacon - either for Alaska, or for someone from some other place who contributes to his Campaign Legal Defense Fund (like those Florida developer folks).

Now, I'm sure C-Span recorded
many conservative's comments made during floor debate that were The Classic Stupid™.

But Representative Virginia Foxx, R-North Carolina,
takes the cake.

On the floor of the House, she claimed that the murder of Matthew Shepard was merely a robbery gone wrong, and that calling it a "hate crime" was a "

Here she is, in all her glory:

Perhaps torturing, beating, and murdering gays is considered a sport in North Carolina.

This woman is typical of the current crop of conservatives: Stupid, mean, and willing to lie their ass off if the truth happens to conflict with their religious or cultural beliefs.

Because, as Stephen Colbert pointed out, "the truth has a liberal bias."

It's especially fitting that her last name sounds the same as the cable "news" channel that spouts this sort of insane drivel... and gets away with it.

So, Representative Virginia Foxx, R-NC, you win the
"Bodenstown Asshat of the Week" award!

I may make this a regular weekly feature... there's certainly no shortage of asshats out there... the problem will be determining their degree of worthiness.

Update: Just watched "Countdown With Keith Olbermann." KO bestowed Rep. Foxx the dubious "Worst Person in the World"
award this evening (it's only because Keith elects to not use words like "asshat").

Monday, April 27, 2009

A Baker's Dozen! Sarah Sets ANOTHER Record!

Celtic Diva has the scoop on this one: Yet ANOTHER ethics complaint against Governor Sarah Palin!

Caribou Barbie has hit the Big Time™!

That makes thirteen (13) ethics complaints so far... and counting, I assume.

All I can add is this tongue-in-cheek comment...

Damn you, David Axelrod!

The Flaw In Andrew Halcro's Speculation About Sarah Palin's Political Choices

Before you think this is a criticism of Mr. Halcro - it isn't.

Yesterday, Andrew Halcro, a former award-winning member of the Alaska House of Representatives, the owner and operator of Avis Alaska, an independent candidate for Alaska Governor in 2006, and a political commentator/blogger extraordinaire, today made a prediction about Sarah Palin's route in 2010.

He thinks she will bail, and not run for reelection.

Andrew provided a very-well written (the guy can really write), considered, and logical justification for his belief.

Without simply cutting and pasting his verbiage (it's better written than mine, and you can use the link above to go read it yourself), here it is in a nutshell (forgive me for paraphrasing, Mr. Halcro):

Because of her failed 2008 vice presidential bid, coupled with her unrelenting quest for national media attention ever since, Sarah is now kind of between a rock and a hard place.

A run for reelection to the Governor's Office will repeatedly bring up this question from her opponents, the press, and the Alaskan voters:

Will you, Sarah Palin, commit to serving your full 4-year term as governor, and not drop everything to run for president in 2012?

If Palin answers "Yes," then her right-wing evangelical/conservative base across the "real" America will get the message that she is no longer interested in being president, and they'll find someone else to focus their adoration on.

If she answers "No," then in all probability, it will cost her the race. It would merely prove the case that Sarah's focus isn't on Alaska and Alaskans, but instead on her own political ambition.

If she answers "Yes," and then runs for president anyway... she'll be crucified as an obvious liar, just another sleazy politician who will do or say whatever it takes to get elected. Not a good way to kick off your bid for the Oval Office.

So, based on the above scenario (the logic of which I agree with wholeheartedly) for Sarah Palin, Andrew Halcro is of the opinion that Sarah Palin will not run for reelection, but will instead focus her attention on the White House in 2012.

(Now, Mr. Halcro went into a lot more detail than I did here, and pointed out other reasons why a Palin reelection bid may be doomed to failure anyway - but that's not germane to my point.)

Here's my point.

Andrew Halcro's conclusion is the product of sound, logical reasoning.

So why, in the title of this post, did I say it is flawed?

Because his conclusion is rational. It's logical.

That IS the flaw.

My observation is that reason, logic, and good political sense have little to do with Sarah Palin these days.

Jaunting off to speak to the anti-abortion crowd in Indiana in the final 72 hours of the legislative session made perfect sense to her.

Launching a "preemptive" media attack on the teen-aged father of her grandchild and his family became a top priority.

Picking an unnecessary fight with the legislature over Kim Elton's Juneau Senate seat was more important than Juneau actually having Senate representation.

Choosing for Alaska's attorney general perhaps the most divisive personality she could find (whose legal acumen barely rises to mediocrity) because he agrees with her cultural viewpoints was more important than looking for the best and brightest.

So while I like your logic, Mr. Halcro...

Reason can not be applied to explain the irrational.

"Logic" and "Sarah Palin" should probably not even be used in the same paragraph.

Just sayin'.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Every Thinking Person Knows It, But It Bears Repeating: Rush Limbaugh Is An Asshat.

Apparently, Mr. Oxycontin Tub-O-Guts Babblesnort has been mouthing off about Somali Pirates... just making stuff up as usual.

On Fox News Special Report on April 13, Mort Kondracke said that Obama did the right thing with regard to the pirates, and that he was in church with the president on Sunday, who looked "preoccupied."

On April 14, Limbaugh stated that the reason Obama looked "preoccupied" because he "was worried about the order he had given to wipe out three teenagers on the high seas," Limbaugh said. "Black Muslim teenagers."

What an asshat.

Guess what? I'm not the only person to think that. Captain Shane Murphy, second in command on the Maersk Alabama, feels the same way.

"It feels great to be home," said Murphy in an interview with WCBV in Boston. "It feels like everyone around here has my back, with the exception of Rush Limbaugh, who is trying to make this into a race issue...that's disgusting."

Murphy went on to say, "You gotta get with us or against us here, Rush," Murphy said. "The president did the right thing...It's a war.... It's about good versus evil. And what you said is evil. It's hate speech. I won't tolerate it."
Bravo, Capt. Murphy!

h/t to Huffington Post and Media Matters

Texas Governor Rick Perry - No Cognitive Dissonance Here!

Holy Carp.

I hate to keep singling out Texas Governor Rick Perry for demonstrating Classic Stupid™, but much like Alaska's Governor, he just can't seem to stop.

About 12 days ago, Governor Perry made loud noises about Texas seceding from the union.

"United States? We doan' need no steenking United States!"

Now, his week, Perry is now calling on the federal government to come to his state's aid because of the swine flu outbreak.

Now, I'm not suggesting the federal government should ignore him or anything like that. The current swine flu problem could wind up being a pandemic, and Texas borders what appears to be the source. Stopping the spread of this disease and saving people's lives is priority one.

Even for that pesky Fed'ral Gummint.

But Governor Perry has again demonstrated that he is perfectly capable of putting on whatever political hat that meets his purpose at the moment. No cognitive dissonance here.

Perry is a political chameleon, with no philosophical substance whatsoever.

In other words, he's a typical modern-day Republican. Just like someone else we all know.

The position flexible, and such as, you betcha!


h/t to Huffington Post