16 January, 2009

Happy Hour Discurso

Today's opining on the public discourse.

Welcome to Happy Hour at the cantina! I would like to direct your attention to the bar. Most bars provide, at best, a bowl of peanuts for your munching pleasure. I've gone and gotten you some abortion donuts (h/t):
Krispy Kreme, being the genial purveyor of glazed goodness that it is, decided to get in on the Obama inauguration craze and is offering one free doughnut to every costumer on January 20, Inauguration day, and released this seemingly innocuous press release:
"Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Inc. (NYSE: KKD) is honoring American's sense of pride and freedom of choice on Inauguration Day, by offering a free doughnut of choice to every customer on this historic day, Jan. 20. By doing so, participating Krispy Kreme stores nationwide are making an oath to tasty goodies -- just another reminder of how oh-so-sweet 'free' can be."
Well, The American Life League noticed the liberal use of the word choice and decided to blast the chain bakery for producing abortion doughnuts.

"The unfortunate reality of a post-Roe v. Wade America is that 'choice' is synonymous with abortion access, and celebration of 'freedom of choice' is a tacit endorsement of abortion rights on demand," the group's president, Judie Brown said in a statement.

The press release even demands that Krispy Kreme apologize. Well, my darlings, if they do not knuckle under to the wingnuts, you can expect me at my local Krispy Kreme at 1900 1st Ave. South in Seattle next weekend, just to show my support. I'd plump for a free abortion donut on Tuesday, but alas, I'm due at work.

I really hope they don't give in to these fucktards, because after staring at thousands of Krispy Kremes, I'm salivating.

I don't even know where to go from there. How do you top anti-abortion fanatics freaking out over a choice of donut? We shall, however, have to do our best, because the stupid is flowing - well, I can't say liberally, because liberals are never this stupid:
During the presidential campaign, Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) -- a #1 seed in my bracket for Most Offensive Member of Congress -- offered one of the more insulting attacks of the year against Barack Obama. King told Fox News' Geraldo Rivera that al Qaeda would be "dancing in the streets" if Obama were elected. He added, "[I]f they don't dance in the streets, I will come and apologize to you and everybody in America. But I'm saying, I'm right."

As is usually the case, King had no idea what he was talking about. Instead of apologizing, King has decided to offer a new smear.

While he was willing to concede he was wrong about the whole terrorist street dancing routine, King has moved on to the whole "Hussein" controversy. He doesn't like the fact that the president-elect will be sworn in using that middle name during Tuesday's Inauguration. [...]

The congressman says he doubts Obama's sincerity when he explained that he chose to use his middle name so as to be historically consistent with past inaugurations, when America has heard the full names of its presidents echo from the inaugural stand.

"Whatever his reasons are," King said, "the one he gave us could not be the reason."

You're absolutely right, my darlings. That's the kind of stupid that makes you spit out your drink. Sorry about that. Here's a napkin, a new drink, and some abstinence-only clowns to go with your abortion donuts:

Yes, literally clowns. And not just just any clowns. Clowns who teach middle schoolers sex education!

The good folks at the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland were kind enough to send this info to me touting the work of one Derek Dye, the latest in the long, funny and sad line of abstinence-only sex education heroes. Dye uses his juggling clown schtick to draw the middle school kids’ attention, and then… Wham!

“Having sex before you are married is just like juggling machetes!”

“Sex before marriage will destroy all of your life’s dreams!”

Thanks to George W. Bush and a complicit Congress, we currently spend $1.5 billion a year to fund abstinence-only until marriage sex education in our public schools. And yes, that money goes to people like Derek Dye, as he is employed by the Elizabeth New Life Center that received a $800,000 CBAE grant in 2007 to promote abstinence until marriage. His qualifications? A “Bachelor of Fun Arts” from Barnum Bailey Clown College, and an abstinence educator certification that can be purchased for $50.
I suppose now would be a really good time to mention that abstinence-only education is faring really, really badly as far as preventing teen pregnancy, STDs, and all that, regardless of clowns.

Not to mention it's led to yet another Bush failure:
CNN's John King told viewers last night, after Bush's farewell address, that the president "mentioned the program to fight AIDS in Africa." King added, "Any liberal will tell you it has been a dramatic success."

Likewise, former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) wrote an opinion piece for CNN, arguing that Bush's legacy includes having "saved 10 million lives" through his efforts to combat AIDS. "The bottom line is: George Bush is a healer," Frist said.

Given this, it's worth setting the record straight.

[T]he President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) ... required that starting in fiscal year 2006, 33 percent of funds for AIDS prevention be spent on abstinence-until-marriage education -- a provision the Bush administration reportedly lobbied Congress to add.

As Media Matters for America has documented, according to many of the government officials responsible for managing PEPFAR abroad, as well as the Institute of Medicine, the Government Accountability Office, and the Center for Public Integrity (CPI), the abstinence-until-marriage education requirement hindered PEPFAR's effectiveness in preventing the spread of AIDS. Congress removed the requirement when it reauthorized PEPFAR in 2008.

I haven't yet found something Bush actually succeeded at, other than proving that conservative ideology fucks up everything it touches. In that, he's earned an unqualified A+.

And Dana Perino takes the prize for not thinking through the consequences:
Dana Perino, Bush's press secretary, chatted with the conservative Washington Times this week, reflecting on her two years on the job. Reader P.A. alerted me to this interesting comment:

When asked if she perceived a bias in the media against the president, she said, "I don't think I would always be asked about my feelings about liberal bias in the media, if there wasn't any liberal bias in the media."

Got it. As Perino sees it, there must be something to the premise of the question if the question is asked all the time. If there was no bias, the argument goes, the question wouldn't come up.

But if we take this one step further, the line of thought becomes even more illustrative. For example, Perino is frequently asked to defend Bush administration incompetence. If we follow her logic, I don't think she would always be asked about Bush's incompetence, if there wasn't any Bush incompetence.

Steve has entirely too much fun with exploring the various uses her statement could be put to.

When it comes to spectacular Con stupidity, I've been spoiled for choice today. Do I highlight Grover Norquist's comparing tax cuts to torture? Dana Perino lying about what moving company Bush will use? A Faux News reporter lamenting that Bush "inherited" 9/11? Bush's farewell address?*
Most of the address was pretty boilerplate. Other than the deadly terrorist attacks that occurred on his watch, his record on national security is just wonderful. Other than his administration's behavior on torture, rendition, and indefinite detentions, "America is promoting human liberty, human rights, and human dignity." Other than the current collapse, his administration "took decisive measures to safeguard our economy." Whatever.
Steve's snippet there strikes me as a masterful summation of Bush's presidency, a parade of catastrophe brought on by terminal stupidity that would seem brilliant if only we could overlook the fact that absolutely everything Bush did was disasterously dumb.

But when it comes to the creme de la stupid, I'm not sure than anything else today really competes with this confection:
In an article published on Townhall today, RNC Chairman candidate and former Ohio governor Ken Blackwell urges congressional conservatives to oppose the reinvestment and recovery stimulus plan promoted by President-elect Obama. Though he offers standard conservative arguments against the plan — including a screed against the growth of “big government” — Blackwell seemed most concerned about the political benefit Democrats might see from successfully boosting the economy.

He warned that the bill, which calls for 80 percent job creation in the private sector, could create 600,000 new federal jobs — a problem because it would make it that much harder for for Republicans to win back Virginia:

While only a few details are known, one overlooked issue is that it could create a major electoral advantage for Democrats at taxpayer expense. That would be unacceptable for what is being touted as a nonpartisan measure, and gives Republicans yet another reason to oppose it if not restructured. […]


The bottom line is that, in an economy that lost 1.2 million jobs last year, Blackwell’s biggest concern is to block the creation of new jobs because those newly-employed Americans might vote Democratic.
It's one thing for a political party to fuck the nation every which way including sideways just so they can stay in power. It's quite another to tell people that you're willing to sacrifice their well-being because the other party has the good ideas, yours doesn't, and if anyone sees this in action the Cons will never win an election again.

And remember, this isn't just some fringe-idiot making these statements in a public forum. It's one of the Cons' leading lights.

That's why I can't say they've been generously stupid, either. But thankfully, you can have your pick of prolifically, overwhelmingly, profligately, or inexhaustibly when you need to explain with some accuracy just how stupid this country's entire right wing is.

*Saw this too late to add in with Steve's assessment, but dday's blistering take on Bush's fond fuck-off speech is just too good for you all to miss:

A Tale Told By An Idiot
I didn't watch one second of Bush's farewell address and I didn't really read much coverage of it either. I heard that he said something like "our air and water is cleaner" and frankly, that's all I need to know about it. I guess when he wasn't lying about his record, the whole theme of the speech was "I tried."

Sorry, not good enough. The Effort Olympics may work for young children, but for leader of the free world I don't think you should get an "also competed" award. Under his tenure, the President crippled our economy at home, sold off much of the country to corporate interests, violated more laws than I thought we had on the books, caused us little but scorn abroad and was directly responsible for the death and suffering of untold millions. That is the work of a sociopath, and a few flowery words written by speechmakers saying "I always tried to do what's right" won't really paper over the pain.
A pièce de résistance to go with our crème de la stupid. Damn, that's good stuff!


george.w said...

Oh man, so much smackdown - Dana you are awesome.

“Having sex before you are married is just like juggling machetes!”

Funny, because I've used a similar analogy myself; that sex outside of marriage is like juggling hand grenades. It's exciting and somewhat dangerous, so make sure the pins are secure. Maybe wrap some sort of elastomer retaining device over the pin, y'know?

OK, not a perfect analogy. The point is that yes, there are risks in sex and that the risks can be mitigated.

Pledging to cross your legs and never have sex is pitting your willpower against Mother Nature - some people do manage it but it actually is less 'normal' (judging from how uncommon it is) than homosexuality.

Cujo359 said...

People stupid enough to be outraged when a spokesmodel for domestic appliances wears a paisley scarf are capable of anything.

ShariYS said...

Just a slight clarification -- Ken Blackwell was NEVER the governor of Ohio, thank Zeus. He was a gubernatorial *candidate* who implied that his opponent (the current governor, Ted Strickland) was gay when he (Blackwell) couldn't think of anything truthful to hit Strickland with -- and was defeated decisively by the voters, who finally came to their senses and realized how corrupt the Republican political machine in and out of Columbus really was. Ken Blackwell has no credibility. He makes Alan Keyes look sane.

Heathen Hermit said...

Come to think of it, when Blackwell was Ohio Secretary of State, his office managed to post the social security numbers of millions of taxpayers on their website. Poor man just couldn't seem to understand why millions of people were furious with him. He's a real winner.