06 January, 2009

Happy Hour Discurso

Today's opining on the public discourse.

Sore loser:

Norm Coleman has made it official: He is filing a lawsuit to challenge the election result in Minnesota, which he does not believe to be a valid count -- and he is making clear that for the sake of democracy, Al Franken should not be seated in the Senate.

Coleman went through the list of things his campaign says went wrong: For example, that absentee ballots for Al Franken were counted twice, and that there were no uniform standards in reviewing rejected absentee ballots.

"Until these issues are settled," Coleman said, "any attempt to seat a Senator who is not properly certified violates Senate precedent, and usurps the will of the people of Minnesota."

This is, of course, the same man who said that for the sake of healing and all that kumbaya crap, the loser should gracefully concede. Of course, he failed to add that he meant this only in the case Al Franken was the loser.

And how's the bi-partisan peace, love and understanding coming along? Oh, deary me, not too good:

Republicans on the Hill want to re-litigate the Elian Gonzales affair and the Marc Rich controversy, so it stands to reason that some conservatives still want to talk about the Terry Schiavo matter.

Social conservatives and pro-life activists are mobilizing against President-elect Barack Obama's pick Monday for the No. 3 Justice Department job, a lawyer who aided the effort to remove Terry Schiavo's feeding tube during the landmark right-to-die case four years ago.

It is unusual for special interest groups to wage a fight over a sub-Cabinet appointment, but conservatives eager to press the Republican Party to mount some form of opposition to the emerging Obama administration say Thomas J. Perrelli's resume as a private lawyer and his appointment Monday as the nation's associate attorney general may provide the rallying cry. [...]

[Perrelli's] high-profile role in the Schiavo case in 2005 stirred instant vitriol among pro-life and socially conservative activists who ordinarily focus their energies on judicial nominees.

Andrea Lafferty, executive director of the Traditional Values Coalition, derided Mr. Perrelli's selection as "just another death-peddler Obama has added to his list of nominees." She said he's earned the nickname among pro-lifers of "Piranha Perrelli" for his work on the case.

The Family Research Council's Tom McClusky noted that several end-of-life questions may reach the Justice Department in the coming years, and Perrelli's role might make it more difficult for the conservative argument to prevail.

Imagine that.

Yes, hard to imagine the Cons would pitch a fit over an issue that 70% of Americans said the government should keep its nose out of. It seems their tone-deafness will continue indefinitely. They're Cons, so the living-in-the-past part is all too expected.

If a Con challenges you to check their facts, by all means, do. The results are eminently entertaining:

Appearing on CSPAN’s Washington Journal this morning, Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN), the third ranking Republican in the House, repeatedly claimed that the solution to the economic crisis was to “do what Ronald Reagan did” and implement “across-the-board permanent marginal tax reductions.” Towards the end of his interview, however, a caller challenged Pence’s idea, saying that deficits exploded under Reagan, forcing the first President Bush to raise taxes.

Pence replied that the caller was right that Reagan “saw deficits and the national debt grow,” but claimed it was the fault of spending in Congress because Reagan’s tax cuts “resulted in more than a doubling of the revenues.” Pence then asked viewers to “check me on this”:

PENCE: You’re absolutely correct in saying that they saw deficits and the national debt grow under President Reagan, but it was — and check me on this, people can check things easily on the internet these days, check me on this — the rate reductions that President Reagan enacted resulted in more than a doubling of the revenues over the next seven years that went from the American people to the federal government.

ThinkProgress loves a challenge, so we looked into Pence’s claim. As he suggested, it wasn’t hard to find out on the internet that this common conservative claim is wrong.

As Media Matters noted when Sean Hannity made the same argument, revenues did not get close to doubling under Reagan:

According to the White House’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB), when adjusted for inflation to constant fiscal year 2000 dollars, receipts (revenues) increased only from $1.077 trillion to $1.236 trillion during Reagan’s term in office.

So, fact-check: Epic Fail. Oh, and Mike?


Thank you.

While they're at it, I hope they start realizing just what a bunch of numbnuts they sound like when they try to talk about "the Facebook:"
When the six men hoping to lead the Republican National Committee weren't promising to build a religion around Ronald Reagan, they were talking about how hip they are to the tools the kids are using on the tubes.

"We have to do it in the Facebook, with the Twittering, the different technology that young people are using today," Duncan ventured.

"Let me just say that I have 4,000 friends on Facebook," contributed Blackwell, putting his hand on Dawson's and Anuzis's knees. "That's probably more than these two guys put together, but who's counting, you know?" Acknowledged Saltsman: "I'm not sure all of us combined Twitter as much as Saul."

Anuzis claimed he had "somewhere between 2- and 3,000" Facebook friends, which prompted Blackwell to remind the audience that he has 4,000 friends on the social networking site by waving four fingers behind Anuzis's head.

Well, if one candidate has more Facebook friends than another candidate, it's obvious who the superior visionary is.


The Republican Party has deep and systemic problems. Its ideas are unpopular and its policies have failed. The GOP's agenda and ideology are out of sync with the nation's needs. Whether a candidate for RNC chairman has 3,000 or 4,000 friends on Facebook is hopelessly irrelevant.

"Hopelessly irrelevant" is actually a damned good description for the Republicon party as a whole, come to think of it.


flameraven said...

"the Facebook"? Is that like "the internets"? I hear that these days, you can also see, like, moving pictures on that "UToobz" thing everybody seems to be talking about.

Also, people only count how many friends they have on MySpace. Not Facebook. Way to fail. >_>;

Woozle said...

Assuming this is the Ken Blackwell in question, he currently has 149 supporters.

It may be that he has a separate personal account, and has 4000 friends on that account, but I couldn't find it -- although I did find Blackwell for Pres 2012 (31 members) and Anti-Blackwell (15 members).

Oh wait, this is probably it -- 3928 friends. Darn, he's actually reasonably close to the truth, then. (Alert the media: Republican Statement Regarding Technology Is Found to Be Reasonably Accurate.) But, you know, I think we should demand a recount...