Excitement is high for our Carnival of the Elitist Bastards! I'm loving the ideas and input, and I'll have more to say on this once today slows its frenetic pace. For those of you interested in joining up, leave your comments in the post above and be assured we're taking all elitists!
But for now, on to the discurso: Because Stupid Never Stops.
The L.A. Times now has a short, sharp retort for those Pollyannas who said, "Wiretapping, schmiretapping. Our government would never abuse those powers!" The L.A. Times sayeth, "Think again" (h/t to CB):
The number of Americans being secretly wiretapped or having their financial and other records reviewed by the government has continued to increase as officials aggressively use powers approved after the Sept. 11 attacks. But the number of terrorism prosecutions ending up in court -- one measure of the effectiveness of such sleuthing -- has continued to decline,
in some cases precipitously.
The trends, visible in new government data and a private analysis of Justice Department records, are worrisome to civil liberties groups and some legal scholars. They say it is further evidence that the government has compromised the privacy rights of ordinary citizens without much to show for it.
These concerns come as the Bush administration has been seeking to expand its ability to gather intelligence without prior court approval. It has asked Congress for amendments to the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to make it clear that eavesdropping on foreign
telecommunications signals routed through the U.S. does not require a warrant.
Note to Congress: Just Say No. We've got over 200 days of fuckwittery left, we don't know what insane assclown may end up in the White House next, and I don't think we need to be handing any administration carte blanche to play Spy vs. Regular Joe. Keep the fucking feds out of my conversations, thanks ever so much.
Some of us are old enough to remember when such warrantless surveillance was used by the FBI against political dissenters, you know. We're watching you watching us. And you haven't silenced us yet.
Speaking of watching, it's time to grab the popcorn and alcohol and sit back for the amusing launch of the Republicons' rebranding efforts:
According to a memo that will circulate to House Republicans today (and which Boehner’s office seemed willing to leak), the GOP caucus will get a relatively straightforward message: “Washington is broken, the American people want it fixed, and Democrats in Washington have proven unable or unwilling to get the job done [ed. note: that would in large part be due to Republicon hijinks, just so's you know - D.H.]. Republicans will. Americans have seen first-hand the change Democrats are making, and it is moving America in the wrong direction. To the American people, we say that Republicans will deliver ‘the change you deserve.’”
The closer one looks at the details, the more one wonders whether those corporate advertising and rebranding experts were overpaid.Next week, Republicans will premier their energy policy, focused on boosting the supply of domestic production, bringing down gas prices and creating jobs, the memo states.
In following weeks, GOPers will roll out their visions for other issues:
* Health care — “Affordable, high-quality health care for every American by giving families greater choice and control, not through a massive expansion of government health care controlled by bureaucrats.”
* The economy — “A stronger economy by stopping the largest tax increase in American history, cutting wasteful Washington spending, balancing the budget by 2012, passing serious entitlement reform and strengthening our housing sector.”
Security — “From threats our families face both at home and abroad by securing our borders once and for all, taking on the rising criminal threats in our communities and giving terrorists plotting new attacks no place to hide.”
In other words, the re-branded Republican Party will look exactly like the old Republican Party, except now we’ll hear GOP candidates saying “change you deserve” an awful lot.
And if this country continues to let these stupid fuckers get their hands on the White House, we will get exactly the change we deserve: none. Let's hope America's gotten older and wiser after the endless insanity of the last eight years.
Just have to say, though, my sides are still splitting over that whole "entitlement reform" tapdance. That's rich, coming from them.
I wonder what entitlement reform looks like in their world:
The McCain economic agenda includes: $1.7 trillion tax cut for corporations, $300 billion a year in tax cuts that aren’t paid for, and a plan that delivers 58 percent of the benefits to the top 1 percent of taxpayers and only 9 percent to the bottom 80 percent.
All this coming from a man who once said he “cannot in good conscience support a tax cut in which so many of the benefits go to the most fortunate among us.”
Yup. Just as I thought. "Welfare Moms, you're On Notice again! You poor people can just get yer grubby noses out of the public trough. Oh, and fast-disappearing middle class: we'd like you to step right up to this slide we've got all greased for you. Welcome to the lower class!"
Ah, Republicons. Never a day goes by you don't prove, once again, that you're all sizzle with no steak.