03 November, 2009

Happy Hour Discurso

Today's opining on the public discourse.

It's special election time!  Which means it's special stupidity time, as well.  NJ gubernatorial hopeful Chris Christie's apparently decided a plagiarism blitz is just the thing to help push him over the finish line in first place.  He forgot the cardinal rule: do not fuck with the Pythons, because the Pythons will fuck you up:
Chris Christie could soon be facing legal action from some very illustrious people: Monty Python.

This comes after the Christie campaign used footage of a sketch from Monty Python's Flying Circus, without having sought permission, for a Web video. The video has since been taken down, but was preserved by Monty Python and given to the Huffington Post.


"It is totally outrageous that a former US Attorney knows so little about the law that he thinks he can rip off people," said [Terry] Jones. "On the other hand -- another of Bush's legal appointees was Alberto Gonzales and he didn't seem to know much about the law either."
Game, set and match to Jones.  Zap!

Not content to stop at ripping off the Pythons, Christie's campaign also swiped stock footage - and failed to cover up all of the anti-theft watermarks.  Awesome.  I'm seeing a pattern here.  You'd think a former AG wouldn't be such a stupid thief, but he is a Con, after all.

In New York's 23rd, Republican Dede Scozzafava got driven from the field by the teabagging masses.  She's repaid the favor by endorsing her Democratic opponent.  Not only that, she's campaigned beside him, and now taped a robocall for him.  Something tells me she really doesn't want to see Hoffman win.

This might be because Hoffman is an insane jackass who claims Glenn Beck as his mentor:
Conservative blogger Charles Johnson of the site Little Green Footballs reported yesterday that Doug Hoffman, the Conservative Party candidate in the NY-23 special election, signed a pledge to uphold Glenn Beck’s 9/12 Project principles in Congress. The signed pledge is available online, and Hoffman touts his endorsement from the 9/12 organization on his website. Like the lobbyist-planned tea parties, the 9/12 Project is a creation of Beck, used to go after Beck’s liberal enemies and to organize hateful anti-Obama rallies.

Although there is a groundswell of far right tea party and Beck-inspired candidates running for office in 2010, very few Republicans running for Congress or Governor have signed the 9/12 pledge. Noting that he signed a document pledging his “sacred honor” to uphold Beck’s list of values and principles, Johnson aptly deems Hoffman “The Glenn Beck candidate.”


But the 9/12 pledge isn’t the only pandering Hoffman has done to secure Beck’s enthusiastic support. Today on his radio program, Beck continued to nudge Hoffman to be more conservative. After being prodded by Beck to say climate change is not caused by human activity, Hoffman announced, “Well, I think there’s a lot of debate on there. I don’t believe that it’s totally manmade.” Beck cohost Pat Gray praised Hoffman’s lurch to the right, noting “he’s getting stronger every second.” Beck chimed in, agreeing, “He’s getting stronger, there it is, every second.” Hoffman then groveled:
PAT: Every second. What about
HOFFMAN: I have good mentors here.
GLENN: Wait, wait. Wait, wait. Are they mentors that will show –
HOFFMAN: I’m talking about you, Glenn.

My goodness, how touching.  I'm surprised they both didn't burst into tears.  Could it be that Glenn's out of Vicks?

Voters of NY-23, you have an important choice.  You have to decide between a sane Democrat endorsed by the former Republican candidate, or the man whose lips are so firmly attacked to Glenn Beck's arse that he doesn't have time to care what his constituents want or need.  Choose accordingly.

Time now for Hypocrites on Parade.  Sen. Evan Bayh deserves special mention:
Policymakers should be focusing on economic growth, not deficit reduction. Some "centrists" haven't gotten the message.
Faced with anxiety in financial markets about the huge federal deficit and the potential for it to become an electoral liability for Democrats, the White House and Congressional leaders are weighing options for narrowing the gap, including a bipartisan commission that could force tax increases and spending cuts.
But even the idea of a panel to bridge the partisan divide has run into partisan objections. Many Democrats, including in the White House, are loath to cede such far-reaching decisions to a commission and doubt Republicans' willingness to compromise. And most Republicans remain adamantly opposed to tax increases, leaving the prospects for any bipartisan approach limited at best.
The proponents, however, are pressing for a Senate vote this month. "If we have the same process and the same people, we are going to get the same results," said Senator Evan Bayh, Democrat of Indiana, who recently met with Mr. Obama to discuss the idea. "The Democratic Party wants to spend more than we can afford; the Republican Party tends to want to cut taxes more than we can afford. So we are stuck."
First, there's no evidence to suggest there is "anxiety in financial markets" about the U.S. budget deficit. The opposite appears to be true.

Second, Evan Bayh recently voted to "reform" the estate tax, cutting taxes for the extraordinarily rich, at a cost of $750 billion over the next decade. To pay for it, he recommended ... nothing. The costs would simply all be added to the deficit. I hope he'll forgive my skepticism about his credibility on the subject of fiscal responsibility.

Deficit concern trolling from the man who voted for tax cuts in an amount that could very nearly pay for the entire health care reform bill.  That's just precious.

So is Rep. Joe "Liar!" Wilson, who is complaining about the shortage of the vaccine he voted against funding:
Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) says President Obama has endangered American lives by not doing more to alleviate the nation's short supply of H1N1 vaccine. In a new interview with the conservative-leaning CNSNews.com, Wilson says Obama's administration is "solely responsible" for the vaccine shortage, which he said are related to promises America made to donate vaccine to some foreign allies.

"The current administration is solely responsible. They can't blame this on any prior administration," said Wilson. "This is the responsibility of the current administration. They've put the lives of Americans at risk."
Last week, some Democrats predicted that H1N1 could become a line of new line attack of attack on Obama from Republicans. In a release issued on Thursday, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee claimed that any criticism of H1N1 policy by the GOP would amount to hypocrisy.

The DCCC pointed to a June vote on a supplementary appropriations bill as evidence. Wilson joined 95% of Republicans and voted against the bill, which contained special funding to combat H1N1 both domestically and internationally.

Cons didn't vote for the bill because, well, they vote against nearly everything Dems try to do.  Still, I didn't see Wilson making any valiant attempts to present a stand-alone bill for H1N1 funding.  Did you?

As for the Cons' claims that Obama's administration has fucked up the H1N1 response, Steve Benen makes short work of their bullshit.

He also spanks them good and hard despite the "Dems did it, too!" defense:
Washington Post political reporter Perry Bacon, Jr., chatted with readers about a variety of issues today, but one exchange in particular stood out for me.

A reader asked a good question that often goes overlooked: "The filibuster is out of control. Why should 40 Republicans get to veto what the majority wants? Do you think we'll ever get filibuster reform? It wasn't always like this -- filibusters used to be rare."

Bacon's response, in its entirety, read: "The Democrats filibustered lots and lots of things from 2003 to 2007." That was it, the whole response to a highly pertinent question. Nothing about the reform-minded inquiry; nothing about the relevant history.


Perhaps now's a good time to republish this chart from Norm Ornstein.


If you're having trouble making out the years, note that as recently as the 1960s, filibusters were rare (and as it turns out, largely inconsequential). The number spiked in the last two years of Clinton's presidency, and then spiked again after Democrats won back Congress in 2006. The chart doesn't include the current Congress, but we know all too well that the tactic is now an assumed hurdle for practically every bill and nominee.

Is Bacon right that Democrats "filibustered lots and lots of things from 2003 to 2007"? It depends, I suppose, on how one defines "lots and lots" -- the differences between those Democratic minorities and the current GOP minority are quantitative and qualitative, and it's irresponsible to argue that the two are comparable, or worse, identical.
Let's not pretend the Con foot-stomping can in any way be compared to what Dems did.  I think the little spike thingies on the chart demonstrate the difference quite nicely.

Remember when Huckabee went on Faux News begging viewers to sign a petition, which redirected them to his very own PAC?  Looks like the subsequent flap hasn't stopped him from using the information collected for his own ends:
Huck PAC now sending petition signers emails asking them to phone bank for Republicans. A Media Matters for America employee who signed Huckabee's petition at balancecutsave.com received an email on November 1 from Huck PAC asking people to participate in a phone bank for Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell and congressional candidates David Harmer and Doug Hoffman. The email says that "[w]e need to help get each of these fine men elected" and asks recipients to "take a moment now to make phone calls to voters"...
I'm sure Faux News will be all over that scandal.  Any minute now. Yup.  Cuz they're a legit news outlet and stuff.

And, finally, a rather blackly humorous "tomato-tomahto" moment:
Regina Dinwiddie, the Kansas anti-abortion activist who set up an eBay auction to benefit the suspect in the George Tiller murder, tells TPMmuckraker in a phone interview that she's angry that eBay pulled her items -- and that she believes they did not glorify violence, but rather "glorify the end of a very violent man."
The "very violent man" didn't die quietly of heart failure.  He was shot to death by the man they're now auctioning outrageous anti-abortion "art" and incitements to further murder in order to defend.  In other words, they're glorifying violence.

And eBay's not letting them get away with it.  Imagine that.

1 comment:

Woozle said...

Gotta dash, but must mention that at some time in the past decade or three a deal was cut wherein a filibuster would no longer require the opposition to actually stand up and, you know, filibuster. They can now just say "we're filibustering that", and it requires 60 votes instead of 51. It was never made a formal rule or anything, so either side could break the deal at anytime. (And these people supposedly work for us. Right.)

Maybe everyone knows that, but I had to mention it.