02 August, 2009

Happy Hour Discurso

Today's opining on the public discourse.

We can take a break from health care stupidity in order to enjoy some media dumbfuckery. I think my favorite so far is Glenn Beck's warning that the guvmint is using Cash for Clunkers to control your computer:

Before you play the video of Glenn Beck's latest loony-tunes conspiracy theory, keep in mind that it's totally nuts. Here's the key information debunking it:

  1. If you are a consumer visiting cars.gov (the "cash for clunkers" website) the Federal government cannot take control over your computer, nor will it ask permission to do so.
  1. The "Terms of Use" statement to which Beck refers in this clip is not from cars.gov. Rather it is a login page for dealer transactions located at esc.gov.
  1. The only people who can get login credentials for the esc.gov site are dealers who have been screened and registered for the "cash for clunkers" program.
  1. To summarize: the page in question isn't on cars.gov and can only be used by dealers who have already registered. Consumers won't be impacted by any of this.
I don't have enough anti-nausea medication on hand to post that video here. Head on over to Daily Kos if you haven't had your daily dose of dumbshittery, or if you're needing to sound plausibly ill when you call to weasel out of something.

This next bit is something you might want to keep on hand for medical emergencies, just in case you run out of ipecac syrup:
When I first received an email yesterday telling me that Michelle Malkin would be a guest on ABC's "This Week with George Stephanopoulos," I thought it was a joke. I assumed it was an example of exaggerating for comedic effect -- as in, "The Sunday morning shows' guest lists tilt to the right so often, one of these days, we'll even see Malkin on."

It turns out, this wasn't a joke.

Here are the scheduled guests for the Sunday public affairs shows and other weekend programs....

This Week hosts Treas. Sec. Tim Geithner and ex-Fed Chair Alan Greenspan. The roundtable is author/columnist Michelle Malkin, Atlanta Journal-Constitution's Cynthia Tucker, Bloomberg's Al Hunt and Wall Street Journal's Jerry Seib.

This is the Malkin of "The Defeatocrats' Cheer." The Malkin of "In Defense of Internment." The Malkin who went after a 12 year old and his family over their support for expanding S-CHIP. This Michelle Malkin.

Is there anyone on the right too insane for MSM? Or is the left just so amazingly sane and rational that the MSM feels the only way to balance our views is to bring on someone as certifiably psychotic as Malkin?

If it's for the ratings, they can fugeddaboutit. Just ask Lou Dobbs, who's CNN overlords just got a rude shock if they thought his Birther bullshit would pull in the ratings:
Dobbs is not only humiliating himself, according to a report in the New York Observer, he's also driving viewers away.

According to The Observer's analysis of Nielsen data, in recent weeks, as criticism of Mr. Dobbs has continued to go up, his ratings at CNN have continued to go down.

Mr. Dobbs' first began reporting on Obama birth certificate conspiracy theories on the night of Wednesday, July 15. In the roughly two weeks since then, from July 15 through July 28, Mr. Dobbs' 7 p.m. show on CNN has averaged 653,000 total viewers and 157,000 in the 25-54 demo.

By contrast, during the first two weeks of the month (July 1 to July 14) Mr. Dobbs averaged 771,000 total viewers and 218,000 in the 25-54 demo. In other words, Mr. Dobbs' audience has decreased 15 percent in total viewers and 27 percent in the demo since the start of the controversy.... [I]f Mr. Dobbs' affinity for "birthers" is a ratings ploy, it's a pretty ineffective one.

So sorry, CNN. Faux News already has the lock on the "batshit fucking insane" demographic.

While we're (alas) on the subject of the Birther fucktards, note the results of a Research 2000 poll conducted for Daily Kos, asking one simple question:

That's right. The South is waaaay behind the rest of the country when it comes to facing reality. So that's nearly half of Southerners who buy Birther bullshit. None of you will be shocked to learn that 28% of Republicans swallow the bullshit whole, while a further 30% haven't decided whether to face up to reality or retreat into Faux News fantasy-land. And yet some geniuses would like us to believe the Birther bowel movement is all a nefarious plot by Obama to make Cons look like total dumbshits.

News flash: no one needs to help Cons do what comes naturally to them. I think the above poll results bear that out. The fact that Cons are back to pushing their Birther admendment right after voting to confirm Obama was born in Hawaii offers further testimony to their blinding stupidity.

And no, Cons, you can't wish these poll results away by saying "B-bu-but Dems are crazy, too!!" Not when this is your evidence:

I clicked through to the poll and this is what I found:

Democrats in America are evenly divided on the question of whether George W. Bush knew about the 9/11 terrorist attacks in advance. Thirty-five percent (35%) of Democrats believe he did know, 39% say he did not know, and 26% are not sure.

Of the Democrats that said Bush did know or that they weren’t sure if he knew, how many of them were relying on testimony elicited from Condi Rice at the 9/11 hearings? You know, the part where she admitted presenting a Presidential Daily Brief titled “Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States” to President Bush in August, 2001? I haven’t found the exact text of the question Rasmussen used in his poll, but I am certain that Condi was also caught in a lie when she said nobody had ever contemplated the idea of terrorists using planes as missiles. If there was any ambiguity to the question, there are plausible, non-“kooky” reasons at least some Democrats may have answered the way they did. Anyway, I’m not trying to say there were no conspiracy-minded Democrats answering the poll; instead I’m saying that this isn’t a “clean, apples to apples” comparison.

Whereas there's no damned factual basis at all for Birther beliefs. It's all just stark-raving madness with a heaping helping of racism.

In other words, the party's got a long way to go before they can climb out of the insanity pit and start to act like a mature, responsible political party rather than a bunch of raving madmen.

So where is the RNC talking the party? Straight into the heart of Wingnuttia:
The RNC adopted three resolutions yesterday that give a pretty good indication of where the party is heading:

1) RNC resolution calls “Obamacare” a march toward “socialism.” For months, right-wing members of the RNC have been urging Michael Steele to call Obama a “socialist.” They even proposed a resolution renaming the Democratic Party the “Democrat Socialist Party.” But Steele pushed back, saying, “We don’t see this president so much as a socialist as we see him as a collectivist.” In recent weeks, however, Steele has succumbed to the right-wing’s influence and started calling Obama’s health care proposal “socialism.” Now, the RNC has adopted a resolution that “recognize[s] that Obamacare is marching America further towards Socialism and urge that it be stopped.” The resolution proposes “true cost savings” can be realized by encouraging seniors to opt out of Medicare:

RESOLVED, that true cost savings be achieved by allowing Medicare patients to opt out of Medicare program to pay for their own catastrophic insurance, and allowing Medicare participating physicians to discount their service fees for cash payments;

2) RNC resolution says Obama violated Constitution by appointing czars. For months, the right-wing fringe of the Republican Party has been railing against Obama for the appointment of policy “czars,” despite the fact that President Bush engaged in the same practice. Fox News has been pushing the conspiracy that Obama is acting unconstitutionally, even while the network’s own correspondent has acknowledged that the myth is false. The RNC has now adopted a resolution condemning Obama for his appointment of these policy liaisons:

RESOLVED, that the Republican National Committee recognize that the current concentration of powers in the Executive Branch is a violation of the powers of the President of the United States as defined in the U.S. Constitution and is dangerous to the citizens of America;

As ThinkProgress has noted, many of the “czars” that the right wing is up-in-arms over are actually Senate-confirmed positions. Moreover, the history of presidents appointing high-ranking policy advisers goes back over hundreds of years.

3) RNC adopts resolution to kill cap-and-trade. The RNC’s resolution on cap-and-trade declares that the cost of it will “greatly exceed any benefit.” It also declares that global warming is merely a “pretext” for passing cap-and-trade:

RESOLVED, that we urge Congress to vote no on Cap-and-Trade and to reject all efforts to use global warming as a pretext to increase federal revenues;


For a Party attempting to broaden it base, these resolutions that pander to the conservative “wacko wing” are extremely unlikely to help that cause.
But by all means, continue. I'm curious to see just how many Dems we can end up with in the House and Senate. Hell, if you guys keep on helping Dems like this, I'll even donate a few bucks.


John Pieret said...

What's up with O'Reilly saying he's been "dealing with the Obama White House, now, for almost ... more than a year"? Is he just unfamiliar with the concept of a calendar? Is he counting the time since the election (in which case he still isn't familiar with the calendar)? Or is it that he needs some way to blame Obama for the Bush recession?

Cujo359 said...

re: Lou Dobbs - it's a tough call for CNN, I suspect. They have to compete with Fox and MSNBC for the people who are stupid enough to believe what they see on TV news these days. Even in America, that's a finite group, and it may be getting smaller.