27 August, 2009

Happy Hour Discurso

Today's opining on the public discourse.

Another day, another Con politician making inane arguments that are incredibly easy to debunk - and shooting his party in the foot to boot:
Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R) of Utah argued yesterday that the discouraging long-term deficit figures are a serious problem -- that shouldn't be blamed on a certain former president. "It's not George W. Bush's fault," Chaffetz said, adding that "this 'credit card Congress' bears responsibility."

That's one way to look at it, but let's also note reality. The Center for American Progress' Michael Ettlinger and Michael Linden took a closer look at the mid-season review and explains that the "real story is ... fairly obvious."

From their report: "The policies of the Bush administration, which included tax cuts during a time of war and a floundering economy, are clearly the primary source of the current deficits. The Obama administration policies that are beginning to give the economy a needed jumpstart -- the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in particular -- place a distant third in contributing to the 2009 and 2010 deficit numbers."

Even Chaffetz should be able to understand this. Bush approved tax cuts, but didn't pay for them. Bush expanded Medicare, but didn't pay for it. Bush launched two expensive wars, but didn't pay for them. Bush took a quarter-trillion-dollar surplus, and then handed off a $1.3 trillion deficit to his successor. "It's not George W. Bush's fault"? C'mon.


But if Bush isn't to blame, I suppose Chaffetz would have us believe that lawmakers who backed Bush's policies are to blame?

Chaffetz, in other words, is pinning the budget mess on his Republican colleagues. He probably hasn't thought this one through.

Do they ever?

Meanwhile, Sen. Mitch McConnell jumps on the Stimulus Stupidity bandwagon with both feet:

Yesterday, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) demanded a halt to stimulus spending, saying money from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act should be diverted to paying down the deficit. McConnell, who lead the opposition to the stimulus in the Senate, has been an ongoing critic. “You do have to wonder, though, whether the stimulus has had any impact at all,” mused McConnell earlier this month on Fox News. A McConnell spokesman recently summed up the senator’s sentiment, noting, “By any measurable index, the stimulus package has been a failure.”

But despite McConnell’s steady stream of criticisms and demands that money stop flowing to projects, he has been a vocal champion of the stimulus in his home state.

Yesterday — the same day he asked for Recovery Act money to be diverted — McConnell and Rep. Ben Chandler (D-KY) toured a construction site at the Blue Grass Army Depot in Madison County, Kentucky. The facility, which is used to contain and destroy chemical weapons compiled during the Cold War, is in desperate need of repair and has leaked Sarin gas as recently as last year. McConnell quickly took credit for the new construction, noting that he and Chandler had inserted an additional $5 million into the 2010 budget.


However, McConnell conveniently forgot to mention that even more additional funds for facility construction were awarded through the stimulus. A Defense Department report states that $5,876,000 has been allocated from the Recovery Act to the Blue Grass facility for repairs. Chandler voted for the stimulus.

It’s not the first time McConnell has championed projects funded by the “failed” stimulus to his constituents. When Kentucky put forth a request for advanced battery technology funds from the stimulus, McConnell lauded the effort to ask for more money as “a major victory for the commonwealth of Kentucky” that would “allow the citizens of Kentucky to play a key role in accelerating America’s independence on foreign sources of oil.” At a town hall meeting last week in London, KY, McConnell slammed President Obama and his economic policies. But he then sheepishly added, “I hope London will get some of” the stimulus money.

I'm not sure it's possible to be a bigger fucking hypocrite, but I'm sure the Cons will show us how.

In media assclown news, John Stossel's doing his level best to prove he's Faux News-caliber stupid:

Here we go again. ABC's resident Glenn Beck wannabe, John Stossel, whines in a recent blog entry that all critics of President Obama are labeled racists by his supporters. To prove his point, he cites an article by a right wing pundit who has been consistently wrong about issues of race -- Jonah Goldberg.


Without one shred of evidence to back up his assertions, Stossel ends his screed with this:

Come on. Every president eventually is criticized by the media – even one as “transcendent” as Obama. The President’s supporters should engage his critics with facts, not charges of racism. Read on...

Facts? If Mr. Stossel wants facts, he sure picked the wrong person to quote on his blog. The fact is, that racism is driving the heavy resurgence of right wing militias in this country. It is a fact that threats against our newest president have skyrocketed, and his race plays a huge role. The Minuteman movement is based on extreme racism and xenophobia, and all of this is being perpetuated daily by Republican politicians, Fox News and the titular head of the Republican Party, Rush Limbaugh, who gleefully aired a parody about President Obama called "Barack the Magic Negro."

I'm not trying to say that all critics of President Obama are racists, but there's no denying the fact that racism permeates much of the Republican Party, it's punditry and media. Oh and there's this, this, this and this -- and that's just the tip of the iceberg. Hey Stossel, if you're going to make these broad allegations, you need to come to the table with more than just quotes from Doughy Pantload wetting himself over Janeane Garofalo.

Indeed. But that's a bit too much to expect from John Stossel, I'm afraid.

I would now like you all to pour a new round and prepare to raise a toast to Glenn Beck. Now, I'd like you all to wipe up the alcohol you spilled and fill your glasses properly this time. No, seriously, Glenn deserves recognition for his accomplishment. He spent a good portion of his show scribbling conspiracy theories on a chalk board and didn't eat the chalk:

Glenn Beck has been imploring his viewers this week to record the show and keep it and watch it and rewatch it so that they can absorb all the vital information it will contain, because it's rilly, rilly important.

The upshot: There are a bunch of radical left-wing Marxists who have been mainstreaming themselves through various civil-rights and community-organizing fronts who are all connected to President Obama.

The apparent nexus of this conspiracy is the Apollo Alliance, which describes itself thus:

The Apollo Alliance is a coalition of labor, business, environmental, and community leaders working to catalyze a clean energy revolution that will put millions of Americans to work in a new generation of high-quality, green-collar jobs. Inspired by the Apollo space program, we promote investments in energy efficiency, clean power, mass transit, next-generation vehicles, and emerging technology, as well as in education and training. Working together, we will reduce carbon emissions and oil imports, spur domestic job growth, and position America to thrive in the 21st century economy.

Woo. Sounds like a bunch of wild-eyed Marxist radicals to me. Their board, too, looks like a bunch of people who make their livings as capitalists -- though Beck wants to paint them all as "anti-capitalists."

That would be because Color of Change co-founder Van Jones was an Apollo Alliance board member before he became Obama's special advisor for green jobs, enterprise and innovation. And Color of Change is obviously anti-capitalist in Glenn Beck's world because they've convinced so many advertisers to pull their capital from Beck's show. For, strangely enough, blatantly racist rants against Obama. Paging John Stossel!

Speaking of racist, anti-abortion frother Randall Terry got himself kicked out of a town hall, and one of the skits he got ejected for was, shall we say, a little less than racially sensitive:

In Virginia last night, Terry was kicked out of a town hall held by Rep. James Moran (D-VA) and former Vermont Governor Howard Dean after he interrupted and accused Democrats of murdering babies. The Hill reports on Terry’s extreme protest last night:

The Moran town hall was the last stop on a 10-city tour for Randall Terry, the anti-abortion activist known for his extreme tactics.

Terry’s colleagues put on a skit with a man in an Obama mask pretending to whip a bloodied woman, who kept saying, “Massa, don’t hit me no more. I got the money to kill the babies.”

Gee, that's gonna persuade people who aren't already rabidly insane.

Continuing the Cons Without Class theme, check out the wingnuts reacting to Ted Kennedy's death here, here and here. In civilized circles, it's considered customary to wait at least twenty-four hours before disrespecting the dead, but that's a bit much to expect from the Rabid Right.

Would there be enough clown makeup in the world to paint them for what they are?

1 comment:

Chris said...

Amazingly, one of the most touching tributes to Ted Kennedy just came in from none other than George Will, whose claim to intellectual autonomy has lately been tarnished by a series of clearly dishonest articles on global warming featured this year in the Washington Post. To my mind his piece lays out with an even handed economy the human side of a great and important man. Well worth reading...