Monday, July 11, 2011

Karma, Baby

Yes... I know.  All two people who read this blog think I've been abducted by aliens.

I haven't.  Yet.

But this is going to be short. I'm busy, but I have a message I'd like to send.


To the dumbass who thought it would  be a good idea to steal my debit card number and try to buy plane tickets (to Saudi Arabia, no less):

BWAHAHAHA!  Nice job! That sucker wouldn't give you cab fare to the next block!

(I have never in my life been so perversely happy to be broke.)

That is all.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Tell CNN to let Gary Johnson debate!

I just received another email from the Gary Johnson campaign.

(Heh. No, they didn't read my passionate diatribe about the debate and offer me a future cabinet position.)

From the email:
CNN, WMUR, and the New Hampshire Union Leader will host a presidential debate on Saturday, June 13th in Manchester. Republican presidential candidates Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Tim Pawlenty, Herman Cain, and Ron Paul will participate. In addition, unannounced candidate Michelle Bachmann and Rick Santorum will also take part.

Gary Johnson, however, will not participate. Why? Because he wasn’t invited.

This morning, we learned along with the rest of world that CNN and the other debate sponsors have decided to exclude Governor Johnson from sharing your voice in the debate.

Apparently, the powers-that-be in the mainstream media do not want Americans to hear from the man who has been called “the most dangerous politician in America.”

In the latest Gallup poll, released one week ago, Governor Johnson’s level of support registered at 3% nationally. This is competitive with candidates like Tim Pawlenty and Rick Santorum, both of whom have been invited to participate. In fact, I’m not aware of a poll in which Mr. Santorum has out-polled Governor Johnson nationally.
Nationally? Nope. Just with the evangelicals and fundamentalist social conservatives whose arses he continues to chap his lips upon.
To our shock, at about 6:30 this morning, we learned that Governor Johnson was not invited, he was not going to be invited, and he would not be allowed to participate.
Nonsense. Insulting, infuriating nonsense.

The Johnson campaign helpfully provided contact info for the folks behind this decision.
(404) 827-1500 or (202) 898-7900
Text: CNN (space) and your news tip to 772937 (don't forget the space after CNN).
Twitter: @CNN or @teamCNN

(603) 669-9999
Twitter: @WMUR9

Union Leader
(603) 668-4321 Twitter: @unionleader

Please place that action. When you’re done, make your most generous donation today. Let it be said that we did everything in our power to win the flight for liberty:
 Blow up their phones! Flood their inboxes! Get their attention!

I can promise you... mine is one email address they're going to get tired of seeing.

Related: GOV. JOHNSON... Clearly a bigger person

Gov. Gary Johnson - Clearly a bigger person

A bigger person than...  who?

Your humble insanely pissed off blogger, that's who.

So, I saw on Memeorandum that CNN had announced their debate line-up.  I was pretty excited. I've made no secret of that fact that I'm a fan of Gary Johnson, and I felt he didn't have an opportunity to say enough at the First in the South debate.

I was hoping that maybe he'd get a chance to be in a more... what's the word?... traditional debate.  You know. The kind where candidates aren't told to raise their hand to signify an answer (Never mind nuance or extenuating factors on the topic at hand. Yes or no, raise your hand! Nonsense.). Better yet, the kind of debate where aspirants to the highest office in the land aren't asked Miss Universe questions.

"Um... like... if you were on a reality show, what would it be? OK. Now, if you were a car, what kind of gas mileage might we expect?"

(Idiocy. Whoever came up with that reality show question is too vapid to be involved in political discourse. Go join a Jersey Shore chat room or the Octomom fan club or something.)

So. You might imagine I was beyond disappointed to see that Johnson wasn't included.

Disappointment gave way to fury, however, as I realized that that sanctimonious prig Rick Santorum is on the ticket. (NEWSFLASH - While the fundies may be all for a Santorum theocracy, there aren't enough of them to get him elected.) Also on the dais will be Newt Gingrich... because Newt and the media keep telling us he's a viable candidate.  (NEWSFLASH 2 - People outside the incestuous beltway gang hate this guy. Right, left and middle.)  Most of the rest of them I understand.

Are there any announced candidates besides Johnson who aren't invited?

Anyway, moments ago Johnson sent out a statement. Once again (and probably for every damn one I get) I'm posting the whole thing:
“I respect the right of CNN and the other sponsors of the June 13 New Hampshire Republican presidential primary debate to apply their own criteria and invite who they choose.  It is, however, unfortunate that a significant segment of the Republican Party, and more importantly, millions of independent voters who might be Republican voters, will not have a voice on the stage in Manchester.

What will be missing is the voice of those who hold an undiluted view of individual liberty – those who believe that individual rights extend to women who face choices about abortion,  Americans who happen to be gay, and those who don’t place other asterisks on freedom.

Likewise, there will be no voice for the growing number of Americans who see the hypocrisy and failure of drug laws that condone alcohol at White House Dinners while incarcerating millions of Americans, including our kids, who choose to smoke pot.

I wish the participants in the debate well.  And I sympathize with the millions of Americans whose beliefs will not be on display in Manchester on June 13.

I look forward to participating in the July 10 debate in Las Vegas, sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform and the Daily Caller."
Johnson can "respect the right of CNN and the other sponsors" if he likes. I don't respect anything about it.  In fact, I call bullshit.

I am sick to death of having to hold my nose and vote for the lesser of two suck-fests. I've grown weary of having the media and political establishment tell me who is "electable". I hate that a major media (pffft) outlet would ignore the candidate with the single most impressive track record.

And CNN can cram their "criteria". They invited Trump, fergawdsake. (Who already took his ball and went home, may I remind you. He's proven he doesn't have the stuff.) They invited Palin, who isn't even a damn candidate! Ditto Guiliani and Huckabee.

But they'll ignore Johnson, who had the guts to declare months ago while most of the others were still playing "will-I-won't-I-exploratory-someone-beg-me-cuz-that's-what-my-ego-requires" foolishness.

I'm disgusted.

And at the same time, I back Gary Johnson MORE STRONGLY THAN EVER.

The CNN debate may be the first one I'll ever skip.


Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Tallywhacker Hacker

OK, Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-oh, that's too easy) has dominated Memeorandum all weekend, thanks to a merry prankster.

You've heard the story by now, right? Congressman's all minding his business, watching some hockey and thinking about tweeting about it. Suddenly, he notices a tweet... from him!... to a young woman!... showcasing someone's stiffy! With lightning reflexes, the Congressman deletes the tweet, deletes his entire photo collection, and manages to find the humor in this embarassing situation, sharing a little joke with his followers.

Ahhh... I love happy endings.

Except there's tons more to it. R S McCain has a pretty comprehensive roundup. Ace's Twitter stream from that weekend was hilarious, and has more links & info.

Go read the WeinerGate story there, if you've missed much (and it's still developing). I brought it up because I've found another story that - when looked at alongside the Weiner tweet - makes me want to scream CONSPIRACY! Or something else...

You see, this has happened to others. Yes, although it sounds hard to believe that even one politician would fall prey to hackers twittering his tweeter, it may be the first signs of


a new-style political activist that attempts to... well, I admit, motive makes this a toughie... are they trying to embarrass these guys? Get them dates? I dunno. Anyway, for whatever reason, they're on a mission to show the world the private parts of politicians (or a reasonable facsimile thereof, 'cause of course they cry "that's not my junk")!

Meet George Lepp, Canadian PC candidate. Mr. Lepp had his Blackberry stolen and a "graphic photo" tweeted from his account. (Guess what kind of graphic photo... Yup. That's it.) According to conflicting reports, it either was or was not recording in camera mode while in his pants pocket. (Though I ask you... would footage from your pocket show your bare body? Or just some white cotton and darkness?) Regardless, the tweet was discovered - by his son - and removed.

So, why do I bring this up?  C'mon! Two of them?

This is clearly the work of an evil genius, probably connected somehow to Andrew Breitbart. (I don't know how. I just know that's what they scream. AaaiiirrgarblegarbleBREITBARTsnortmaddowsigh. Right?) Anyway, I suspect the DUfringe is incorrect. It's not a conspiracy. It's a lone wolf.

The Tallywhacker Hacker.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Special Delivery

"Neither snow, or rain, or sleet, or dark of night, will keep us from our appointed rounds..."

Hell, even a good crap will only slow us down a little...  or something.

A Portland mailman was caught with his pants down.  Literally.  Dropping off a package along his route.
Derfler had been waiting for his babysitter when he saw his mailman acting odd at his neighbor's house across the street. The postal worker then pulled down his pants and that's when Derfler began snapping pictures.

"To come on to our property and to defecate - it's just wrong."

No shit.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Big Brother is Tweeting?

Huffington Post is happily announcing a new “job created” in the White House.
The Obama administration has created and staffed a new position tucked inside their communications shop for helping coordinate rapid response to unfavorable stories and fostering and improving relations with the progressive online community.
What the hell?!

“Rapid response to unfavorable stories”? I could see something like that geared toward… oh, I dunno… inaccurate stories. Or even fabricated stories.

The President of the United States of America has finally created a damn job, and it’s a media hall-monitor who’ll respond rapidly to unfavorable (read: right-leaning) stories. AND he’ll further toady to, presumably leak to, and likely make journo-police out of the progressive (read: fringe left) online community.


This is creepy stuff.

Oh, sure… they’ll make fun of anyone who says as much. They already are. That’s part of why I find it so… well, creepy.

This administration genuinely sees nothing wrong with paying a federal minion to muck around in the formerly free exchange of ideas and information.

Ahem… Mr. President?
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances
Now, nowhere in there does it say “But the President can just create an agent or agency who does things this article forbids, as long as he’s smart enough to slip it past the rubes!

So. We have arrogance beyond anything we’ve previously guessed at, let alone experienced. We have a “Constitutional scholar” (my ass) who’s confused the writing in the margins of his Cliff’s Notes with imagined progressive amendments to our sacred document. And we have a NEW JOB CREATED!

(Actually, that part’s crap since dude already worked for the administration. So while Obama may have earned a prize for chutzpah, he doesn’t get any credit for job creation. Again.)

And ya know what else about it I don’t like? They think it’s funny. “Oh, Big Brother’s gonna getcha! You betcha! Oh-HAR-HAR-HAR!” That’s right. This violation of one of our most basic rights is hi-freaking-larious. Why, look at the tone they’ve started out with.  As @MINITRU  @BaghdadBob  @jesseclee44, his first tweet was this:

First Tweet

Yeah, I’m amused.

One thing about it… If Obama had created this job, he’d have gotten extra credit for providing unparalleled job security. I mean, what could be more certain than a paycheck that’s guaranteed for as long as folks are unfavorable to Obama? Why, he’s set ’til… what?


(h/t Memeorandum)

Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Mitch Daniels out - IN Governor announces he won't run for President

Governor Mitch Daniels has ruled out a run for President.

In a move that some might call disappointing, but none could call a surprise, Daniels cited his family as the reason he has decided not to join the fray.

In an email to supporters, Daniels wrote:
"In the end, I was able to resolve every competing consideration but one, but that, the interests and wishes of my family, is the most important consideration of all. If I have disappointed you, I will always be sorry."
The Daniels family has made no secret of the fact that Mitch's wife Cheri does not prefer the glaring spotlight of life as a political wife. Then the story of their divorce and remarriage started trending as news, and many in the media and blogosphere speculated, or flatly stated, that their marital history was the reason for her media-shyness.

At the time, I linked Ben Smith:
And so Daniels, whose waiting game (in this theory) was effective family politics, if puzzling national politics, can now say, "Well, now it's out there. And now it's old news. No reason not to run."
...and gave my own two cents worth:
Uhh… no. If Daniels runs, Cheri will be subjected to everything from fashion critiques to parsing of her every spoken word. This is only the front edge of the storm.
Now today, DrewM at AOSHQ speculates:
There must be even more to the wife leaving-returning story than we see on the surface (and that's quite a bit already).
Uh... yeah. That, or her worst fears were proved correct. Mitch Daniels hadn't even decided whether to run, and we're climbing all over them with microscopes. And I remind you... "front edge of the storm". Had he announced a candidacy, the media - sharks already - would have been on her like sharks on steroids. Anyone running has to survive the press throughout the ugly primaries and the uglier general... before they have to be scrutinized like no others for four or eight years, with coverage of every move they make.

Not a comfortable situation for a private person. Which may describe Mitch Daniels as well. At the state GOP dinner, he said of running for President:
”My friends know it’s never been any intention of mine. I’d like to go to some quiet place where nobody could find me. Like Al Gore’s cable network."
He must be serious if he's considering hiding out with Gore.

Still, I respect and admire his decision... all the more because I suspect it wasn't an easy one, or one he'll ever stop hearing about. And while some might see this as a show of weakness, I disagree. This is a different kind of strength.
"Simply put, I find myself caught between two duties. I love my country; I love my family more."

Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Conservative commenters picking on little girls?

The 16-year-old high school girl who challenged Michelle Bachmann to a debate is claiming she's received threats of violence and rape.

I call bullshit.

Here's the deal: A week or so ago, Cherry Hill student Amy Myers challenged Bachmann to a debate on the Constitution. She threw down the gauntlet in a letter posted on CNN's iReport. The story made the news and blogs, Congresswoman Bachmann didn't respond, and attention wandered to other things as new stories replaced the challenge.

Now Ms. Myers and her father, Wayne, are in the news again... This time, they tell the Courier-Press they're alarmed about comments on conservative websites.
"A lot of them are calling me a whore"
They say commenters have threatened to publish their address, or commit violence or rape.

Here's why I'm not buying it.

First, they haven't shown proof. No screen captures, no links, nothing. These two are social-media-savvy enough to upload to iReport and run a Facebook page dedicated to this publicity stunt debate, but they didn't blog or otherwise document these heinous acts?

Second, the father claimed that the school had received threatening mail... but the school says the calls they've received were questions about whether Myers is a student, who wrote the letter to Bachmann, and similar inquiries.
Bastnagel said the district's security director told Wayne Myers none of the calls contained threats. He also assured Myers the district would investigate any threats.
Also, the father claims to have his mail carrier and a neighbor watching for suspicious activity. He says:
"I personally did not think there would be a reaction like actual stalking and the vitriol that's coming out."
But neither the story or the quoted police officers mention a stalker.

So already, this whole thing strikes me as shady. But it gets stranger.

Amy was set to give the C-P a video interview. The night before, "a somewhat panicked-sounding Wayne Myers phoned to cancel". His reason? The threats sent to the school. You know... the ones the school assured him didn't happen.

But he also mentioned it would be better for Amy if Bachmann couldn't study the videos.
"If she does the video interview, they might find certain weaknesses. We don't want to bring up what her debate strategy is going to be."
Good grief. This guy's a goof. And people are spreading this b.s. around like it's pinkeye - and escalating it. Already at least one message on the Facebook page is calling the mystery comments "death threats".

I repeat...


Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

UPDATE: Linked in an excellent piece at WyBlog. Thank you, sir. Go read the whole thing:
What we have here is an unhinged liberal activist preaching to the choir. They expect Tea Partyers to be misogynistic haters because that is the stereotype they've created. But in reality I would stake my reputation on any actual threats being quickly and vehemently shouted down by folks from the Right. That's how we roll. We debate ideas, not personalities. 
Nailed it in one.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Gary Johnson: Time's up in Libya, Mr. President

Jake Tapper (via Memeorandum) is reminding President Obama that he's out of time where Libya's concerned.
The legal license President Obama used to justify U.S. military intervention in Libya expires today, and there's little sign the White House is working quickly to get it renewed.  
And he's not the only one. I received the following press statement from the Gary Johnson campaign. (Since there's not enough serious coverage of Johnson and his ideas elsewhere, I'm printing the whole thing.)

Maybe, just maybe, they forgot.  Or maybe they actually  believe that what the U.S. is doing in Libya somehow doesn’t constitute the use of our armed forces -- $750 million worth of bombs and missiles notwithstanding.  Whatever the reason, it is obvious that the President has no intention of  complying with the War Powers Act with regard to our military intervention in Libya. 

This blatant disregard for the law must not go unchallenged.  As several Senators did this week, Congress must demand an explanation for the fact that, with no declaration of war, no authorization from Congress, and certainly no imminent threat to the U.S., our forces are today engaged in what is clearly a military conflict halfway around the world in Libya.  

Specifically, the War Powers Act requires that the use of American forces in a conflict must be ended within 60 days of commencing – unless Congress expressly authorizes otherwise.  In terms of our current engagement in Libya, Congress hasn’t authorized anything, nor has the President asked them to, and today, May 20, is the 60th day.

Perhaps we will be pleasantly surprised and the President will stop our military’s involvement in Libya -- today, but I rather doubt it.   The War Powers Act was enacted almost 40 years ago for a reason.  After fighting two costly wars, Korea and Vietnam, with no formal declaration of war, Congress acted to limit the authority of the President to engage the military in “open-ended” conflicts with no clear congressional consent.  It was carefully crafted to allow the Commander-in-Chief to respond to attacks and otherwise take whatever action necessary to protect us.   At the same time, it was obviously crafted to limit precisely the kinds of ill-defined and costly uses of our military that we are witnessing in Libya right now.

To be fair, this President is certainly not the first to disregard the War Powers Act.  Some have even questioned its constitutionality.  But until the Courts or Congress deem otherwise, it is the law of the land – and in my opinion, a good one.

If there are compelling reasons, strategic, humanitarian or otherwise, to be doing what we are doing in Libya, then Congress will likely authorize it.  If not, then perhaps we shouldn’t be firing those missiles and dropping those bombs – missiles and bombs financed with borrowed and printed money.

Either way, Mr. President, don’t treat today as just another deadline to ignore.
Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

The RNC gets a lesson in free markets

The NYT (via Memeorandum) is reporting that the Democratic National Convention received twice the contributions in April that the Republican National Convention drew.

Democrats raised $12.4 million. The Republicans, by contrast, raised $6.1 million.

The Times credits massive fundraising by Obama - and Republican voter discontent over Michael Steele - for the difference.

I'm not convinced that's the case here.

Oh, Obama's raising cash. That part's correct. And Republican voters are discontent, that's also correct. But the idea that they're still irritated over Michael Steele? I don't think so... (Well, maybe they are. I just don't see that as the money problem.)

So what's going on?

I think Republican voters learned an important, albeit painful, lesson about the National Party in 2010 - starting with Charlie Crist. Also, let's not forget Newt Gingrich's candidate Dede Scozzafava. How about Arlen Specter?

Time and again, despite actual conservative candidates with grassroots support, the Republican establishment has chosen to ignore the will of the voters (read: DONORS, you fools) in favor of keeping it all in the club. And finally, it got to be more than non-establishment types could bear.

Michelle Malkin has multiple archived posts (in her link style: here, here, here, here, and here) demonstrating exactly how previous donors reacted to solicitations from the RNC. Some of those are hilarious, you should check 'em out.  RS McCain has also covered the grassroots dissent, and linked the "Not One Red Cent" movement.

So now we have another Presidential election on the horizon... What'll happen? Will there be empty coffers for Republican candidates? Have the conservative voters disengaged?


But they've learned.

They aren't going to send hard-earned money to a National Party that is more concerned with itself than the country or the voters. They're going to wait... choose their candidate... and send the cash directly to those campaigns.

I think it's a good thing. Let the Republican Party as an entity get a little taste of how the free market works. Maybe they'll learn a lesson, just like their voters have - the hard way.

Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Another funny Gary Johnson "Pothead for President" post

Everybody's having a little harmless fun at Gary Johnson's expense.

See, Willie Nelson and The Pothead TeaPot Party endorsed him for President. Then they forgot. Or got the munchies. Or saw something shiny. And then Willie remembered he doesn't really know as much about politics as playing the guitar. Which is probably for the best.

Anyway, anytime Johnson's name comes up, it's a good time for pot jokes. And a lot of it's funny.

But there's nothing funny about this.

KFOR-TV reports an Oklahoma woman is serving a 12 year prison sentence. For $30 worth of pot.
Dee Starr, who was facing more serious charges, two felony counts for dealing drugs and for having drugs in front of children, got 30 years probation, again no jail time. Patricia Spottedcrow pleaded guilty to her crimes as well.  She faced the very same two felony charges as her mother, Dee Starr.  However, Spottedcrow got a 12 year prison sentence, no probation. 
The four children are living with their grandmother. They'll be denied a mother for twelve years of their early lives. And I'm not hearing "don't do the crime if you can't do the time". Twelve years in prison for what basically amounts to a few joints is barbaric. And how can you justify the costs?
This year Oklahoma taxpayers will pay about $40 a day for Patricia Spottedcrow's minimum-security incarceration, that's appoxirmately $14,000 a year.
So that's what...? $168,000 over the course of her sentence? Oh, wait... I'm not factoring in the raises in organized prison labor costs over that stretch. So the cost will come somewhere closer to... say... a gajillion dollars sound right?

But surely we're talking small numbers here, right? How many prisoners like this are we talking about?
Oklahoma leads the nation in the incarceration of women. We imprison women at a rate twice the national average. And the number one crime for which Oklahoma women are in prison is drugs.
It's time to have a grown-up conversation about our marijuana laws.

We can laugh together. And we should also be able to have a serious discussion. According to the WHO, 42% of Americans admit to having tried pot. As have the last three Presidents. And what, half the candidates or would-be's? Santorum, Palin, Gingrich, Daniels... Oh yeah, and Johnson.

It's time to stop acting hysterical (or laughing hysterically) every time the subject comes up. (And just by the way... if marijuana were truly a scourge, would we be making jokes in the first place?)

We need to talk about this, and we have one candidate willing to do so. Fortunately, that candidate also has an impressive record in both the private-sector and public office.

(h/t Reason)

Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

On the road again... and under the bus

Willie Nelson has un-endorsed Gov. Gary Johnson for President.

Has Johnson changed his positions since yesterday? No. But apparently Nelson has smoked more than enough of the substance he and Johnson want legalized to affect his thinking and judgement.

When asked by his own TeaPot Party to explain why he was for Gary Johnson before he was against Gary Johnson, Nelson offered the following:
“I know I said that... But I think I will wait and see where he stands on other things. My bad. Sorry. I still think he is a good guy but so Is Dennis [Kucinich] and if he decided to run I would personally vote for him. If it came down to either him or Gary I’m already committed to Dennis. They both have said they support legal pot.”
He went on to say (emphasis mine):
"If we back someone that’s us telling them how to vote. I’m not qualified."
I'm inclined to agree. In fact, if he can't stick to a decision from one day to the next, I'm not convinced he's qualified to vote, let alone endorse a candidate.

In truth, Nelson's endorsement would do more harm than good anyway. First, it offered itself as joke fodder for numerous bloggers and pundits. But more importantly, the TeaPot Party (as T pointed out) has "We lean a little to the left" as a portion of their motto. While I'd be happy to see a Republican candidate who can pick up moderates the way Obama did, the "lean left" and Nelson's efforts for farm subsidies would be held against Johnson.

So I'm not heartbroken that "my candidate" has lost his first endorsement. It comes, after all, from someone with so little understanding of politics that he thinks Kucinich has a shot at the White House. And as a Reason commenter mentioned, "If pot smoking aliens invaded tomorrow, Willie would endorse them."

No great loss.

Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Obama to announce aid for Middle East... forgets basic rule of survival

According to the WSJ, President Obama is set to announce a new aid plan for North Africa and the Middle East including what could be billions of dollars in debt forgiveness and "direct aid", which I suspect is a euphemism for "hand 'em some cash".

We're facing a continuing economic repression depression stagpression struggle, no one's volunteering to forgive our debt, we're battling over cuts to our own budget...

And President Obama wants to dish out billions of dollars worth of shameless buttkissing aid to the Middle East. Money we do not have.

Mr. President, have you never flown commercial? You know, before it came with the complimentary happy ending massage? Every flier (even those who can't read - see below) knows that when the plane is going down, you put on your own oxygen mask first! If you don't save yourself, you can't save anybody else.

"There's no reason to become alarmed, and we hope you'll enjoy the rest of your flight. By the way, is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?"    (Airplane, 1980)

Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

Monday, May 16, 2011

A decision for Mitch and Cheri Daniels

I spent the weekend thinking a lot about politics... and marriage.

I'm married myself. Like most marriages, I think, it's more often than not a happy one. Sure, there are the occasional flares of temper or clashes of personality... and more rarely there are the knock-down, drag-out, winner-take-all blowouts that are inevitable when two different people with two different minds each believe they are "right"  and the other, therefore, "wrong".

Anyone who is in a successful marriage knows it's a balancing act. A balancing act done on a high wire, in hurricane gusts, with the audience occasionally throwing things at you while you pinwheel your arms in an effort to keep it all together and up in the air.

I realize that sounds negative. It shouldn't. It's just that marriage is work. A successful, happy marriage is even more work - and includes sacrifice, selflessness, and support.

So, allow me to admit right up front that I'm sympathetic to Cheri Daniels, before I get further into this.

It's no secret that Mitch Daniels is allowing his wife's (and daughters') feelings to play an enormous part in his decision whether to run for the Republican nomination. He compared running for President to bungee jumping... with your loved ones along for the ride.
"This is one where you have to strap a bunch of people, your family and others, along with you."
Now, I don't intend to touch on the actual gossip involved. It's all over the innerwebs - go look it up if that interests you. I don't care that they once divorced, I don't care who left who or why. I'm not even going to speculate about it for the simple reason that I wasn't there. (There are two sides to every story, especially between spouses, and it boils down to their business, in my opinion.)

What I consider relevant is that they are married now, and by all appearances want to remain that way. Mrs. Daniels clearly does not care for the role of "politician's wife" and the media scrutiny that entails. Mr. Daniels just as clearly does care about the impact of a Presidential run on his wife and family.

As he should.

I'll be honest... the reaction from many "pro-family" conservatives has surprised me.

Ace had a piece up at AOSHQ where he seemed to see this from the same angle I do... but unlike me, he realized ahead of time that others would see it very differently.
Here's the thing: That's what a husband is supposed to do, right? When women imagine dream husbands, that's the sort of thing they'd claim they really respected, right?
But I don't think people will respect this.
He notes in his post that some of his own commenters are going after Daniels. (Actually, savaging him might be a more apt description...)
When I wrote this post, I expected commenters to give Daniels a bit of a break. Turns out, not so much. It seems like even people who should be predisposed to giving him some space on this are looking for reasons to mock him. If the comments are a preview of the liberal media, then forget it.
The reality is this:  In our era of "new civility", it doesn't even matter about the divorce and remarriage. The media, comedians, and Blogosphere will go after Cheri Daniels just because.

I'm no different. I have several posts about Michelle Obama that are not just uncomplimentary but actually kinda mean.  (Though in comparison to some of what I've read, they're mild.)  So why did I write them?  Because she's fair game.  (Lest you think this is a partisan thing for me, you can see where I've also called Olbermann's remarks about SE Cupp acceptable as well. And while I don't care for Glenn Beck, I found his remarks about Meghan McCain hilarious - and acceptable.)

A few years ago, while I was subjecting one of my offspring to a rant on politics, The Kid said, "You should run for office!"  I replied, "Not at all. You couldn't give me the job."  You see, unlike many Americans, I never want to be famous. The idea horrifies me. I've said it before:
See, this is America. In America, we ONLY put people on pedestals so we can watch them fall off. And if they don't cooperate and fall of on their own, we nudge them off. And sometimes we knock them right off like American gladiators jousting with those big styrofoam lances. Get the picture?
Is it nice? Well, no. But it's reality, which isn't always nice.

So I can understand where Cheri Daniels is coming from. And as someone who acknowledges that marriage is a team sport, I can understand where Mitch Daniels is coming from, too.

What I can not understand is the conservative reaction.

The media has portrayed the deference to Daniels's wife as "waiting for permission", although I've yet to see an actual "permission" quote attributed to either Daniels. And reader comments on various blogs (which I'm not linking, as I don't want to be held responsible for the ideas of my own commenters) have ranged from dismissive to downright brutal assertions that Daniels is "whipped", along with some sentiments that he should just tell the little lady how it's gonna be.

This from the pro-family side? Really? We should show we're pro-family by mocking him as a wimp who took back a runaway wife? Or by encouraging him to disregard her wishes? Or by demanding (like the spoiled brats such commenters sound like) that the Daniels marriage be damned, run because we say so?

Ben Smith wrote (basically) that if Cheri was afraid of the spotlight... well, she's in it anyway so problem solved.

Uhh... no. If Daniels runs, Cheri will be subjected to everything from fashion critiques to parsing of her every spoken word. This is only the front edge of the storm.

Perhaps the best take on this, in my opinion, comes from Moe Lane:
But if Gov. Daniels is well and truly not sure whether his family is ready for that, well, I would advise the governor then that he already knows the answer to the question “Should Mitch Daniels run?”
I agree. He knows the answer.

And so do we.

While Mitch and Cheri have not announced their decision, I've made mine.
Daniels can't run. And if he does, no genuine pro-family voter can support him.

We do not want a leader so callous that the feelings of the woman who shares his home and bed count for nothing.  And if Cheri comes around under pressure, we do not want a leader who is (understandably) distracted from the job at hand because of marital strain that will happen when a hesitant spouse gets the treatment we must admit she will receive.

And do we want to bear partial responsibility if their marriage, after all it has survived, fails in the White House because we've pressured him to run and his wife to be compliant?

I don't judge either Daniels for the things they've come through together. And I don't think any of what I've learned from all this reflects on him as a candidate...

But his wife's concerns have merit, and although I certainly won't take a "Be nice to Cheri" pledge or suggest anyone else should, I won't pretend that I would subject my own family to the kind of scrutiny and criticisms she'd be sure to face.

And I'd like to suggest that some married (or wanna-be-married) conservatives try looking at this from the perspective of their own relationships. Isn't the mantra "God... Family... Country"? If you're going to start disregarding the "family" part of it in favor of "country",perhaps you've switched teams.

Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

I think I'm alright... Hell, yeah!

Today's ear worm, courtesy of Todd Snider.

At least it's a song I like. A lot. And it reminds me of someone...  ;)

You know just the other morning
I was hanging around in my house
I had that new book with pictures of Madonna naked
I was checkin' it out
Just then a friend of mine came through the door
Said she never pegged me for a scumbag before
She said she didn't ever want to see me any more
And I still don't know why

I think I'm am alright guy, I think I'm am alright guy
I just want to live until I've gotta die
I know I ain't perfect, but God knows I try
I think I'm an alright guy, I think I'm alright

Now maybe I'm dirty
And maybe I smoke a little dope
It ain't like I'm going on TV
And tearing up pictures of the Pope
I know I get wild and I know I get drunk

Well, it ain't like I got a bunch of bodies in my trunk
My old man used to call me a no good punk
And I still don't know why


You know, just the other night
These cops pulled me over outside a bar
They turned on their lights
And they ordered me out of my car
Man, I was only kidding when I called them a couple of dicks
But still they made me do the stupid human tricks
Now I'm stuck in this jail with a bunch of dumb hicks
And I still don't know why


(Neurotic note... The "alright" for "all right" is the artist's error, not the author's... just sayin'...)

Monday, May 9, 2011

The ONE car that could (maybe) make a hybrid driving hippie outta me...

Zero to sixty in three seconds... top speed over 200 mpr... and fergawdssakes LOOK at it.

The Jaguar C-X75 concept car:

Sure it costs $1.1 to $1.7 MILLION... 

But I'm about as likely to pay that for this baby as I am to pay forty-something grand for a Volt.

Just sayin'.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Thoughts on the GOP debate...

So. The first GOP debate is a done deal.

I'm really troubled. I'll come back to it.

I thought it was Herman Cain's night. I like Cain. He's not my first preference, but I could get behind him.

I'm disappointed for Gary Johnson. Read that:  for, not in. His problem is, he comes off as kind of a dork. He isn't a great public speaker, and he tends toward low-key. He's got some great ideas, and some remarkable accomplishments as Governor... but few conservatives on Twitter knew much about him (Their fault. If you don't know something, educate yourself before you form an opinion!) and judged him on presentation. It didn't go well.

Oh, dear... if only we could find a President who was eloquent... and photogenic... and could whip out a snappy soundbite!  Oh.  We've done that.  I believe that's what we've been told about the last two Democrats in the Oval Office. President Rockstar has certainly worked out well.

It's a shame we couldn't have heard more about his record. As Governor, Johnson cut taxes fourteen times without ever raising them. He cut the size of government. He cut the growth of government. He privatized much of the prison system and did the same with highway construction. He fought for school choice. He was nicknamed Governor Veto because he vetoed over 750 pieces of legislation and used line-item veto on thousands more.

And, in fairness, he didn't get the same questions/face time as others. People on Twitter were calling him a whiner when he brought it up, but it isn't whining if it's the truth.

But it's early. I can hope. He is tenacious. And really, Herman Cain walked away a star because he is one. I'm not taking anything away from him. If he's the GOP pick, I'll back him.

What troubled me last night was the reaction to Rick Santorum. On Twitter, and in the Fox focus group.

They loved him.

I'm aghast. Literally, and I've never used that word before to describe myself.  I'm concerned, and horrified, and disgusted, and as close to speechless as I get.

I understand social conservatism, even when I disagree with it. Or, I thought I did.

But Rick Santorum is a bigoted, hateful human being.

I'm not generalizing or stereotyping. Most of the so-cons I know from life and from blogging strike me as great people, sincere and remarkably tolerant of this admitted social-libertarian in their midst. I wasn't born an atheist, and I understand the faith behind the position most times. We've had differences of opinion, but for the most part it's been congenial and respectful from both sides...

Which is why I just don't get the slobbering over Santorum.  More than that, I'm repulsed by it.

He's infamous for his "man on dog" nonsense, and went so far as to imply that accepting homosexuality would put us on a slippery slope to acceptance of incest and bestiality. As to gays in the military, he says "We have a volunteer army... they can un-volunteer, too." (Perhaps he'll enlist to replace them?)  His thoughts on women make the Geico caveman look highly evolved (I covered an interview between him and a fawning SE Cupp here, where he implies that Sarah Palin would be distracted by "all those kids" she has if elected... never mind that he has a passel of his own kids, there's a wifey at home to tend them.) While I have little use for feminists, when it comes to Santorum they're right on the money.

He voted to stop big malpractice payouts... after his wife won her suit against a chiropractor. He's opposed to abortion... other than the one his wife had, of course. (In fact, when they met, Santorum's now-wife was living with the founder of the first abortion clinic in Pittsburgh. How pro-life is that?!)

And Santorum is a fan of Big Government. Not the website, the soul-crushing, liberty-stunting expansion of the federal government.

How about the fact the he purported to represent PA while living in a Virginia McMansion? (With apparently questionable financing? Very interesting article. If you support him, go read the whole thing.) And during that time, a local PA school had to fund his kids' cyber-schooling... in VA.

But what caused me the most consternation wasn't any of the many things about Santorum that already curl my hair. (Like his insistence that you can't have fiscal or any other stability without strong faith. How insulting! While I try to be accepting and tolerant of others' faith, apparently I'm not good enough for ol' Rick because I don't believe as he does. Guess he won't want my vote...)

No, what troubled me is the conservative reaction to this pompous ass.

If Rick Santorum is an example of what Republicans are looking for... well, I'm not sure I have any place among them. He's anathema to what I believe people should hope for and hope to be. He's a hateful, judgmental little man who COULDN'T WIN HIS OWN STATE!

And if the GOP runs this clown, they will also lose. Period. Four more years of Obama if this ass wins the nomination, bank on it. Not only will moderates and independents never back this arrogant prig, I'll be on a one-blog mission to convince every voter I can reach.

So please, so-cons... think carefully. I get that many of you will never set the pot issue aside long enough to learn something positive about Johnson. And I fully realize his stance on abortion is off-putting to many. (Odd that those same cons aren't bothered by Santorum's ok-for-my-wife-but-not-for-you philosophy...) While I'm a big fan of Gary Johnson, I get that my first choice probably won't make the cut. Fine. As I said, I sincerely like Cain also. Run him and you can count me in.

But Santorum? Never. I mean that. Never in this life.

And if the GOP primary goes to Santorum... I'll have to seriously consider whether I can be a part of conservatism in any form. And maybe that's for the best. If Santorum is what conservatism is all about, clearly my values and ideas are not valid or desired as part of the conversation anyway.

It makes me genuinely sad, as I fully back most of what conservatism stands for. I think I have something to add to the equation, and I certainly can't self-identify as liberal. But acceptance of Santorum effectively marginalizes me - and millions of other moderates.

For now, I'm going to take a "wait and see" approach. The way I feel this morning, I don't even care if I blog about politics for a while.

This might be the beginning of a blog vacation...

UPDATED to clarify:

After a private conversation about this post, I realize this bit didn't come across the way I meant it. Rather than change the body of the post, I'll just try to explain myself a little better...
And if the GOP runs this clown, they will also lose. Period. Four more years of Obama if this ass wins the nomination, bank on it. Not only will moderates and independents never back this arrogant prig, I'll be on a one-blog mission to convince every voter I can reach.
By that I do not mean that I'll support President Obama. I mean that if the fringe has their way and Santorum is nominated, the moderates and independents who've been looking to cash in that "Change" they got will flee the Republican candidate in droves.  If you think they tacked left for a candidate they convinced themselves was moderate, wait 'til you see their response to a Santorum theocracy.

And while I'll take my blog down before I turn it into an Organizing for America offshoot, I will do everything in my admittedly limited power to remind folks why Santorum couldn't win his own state.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

"He would like it to be clear that the crime of bestiality occurs everywhere"

Sure it does...

But especially in West Virginia.

19 year old Mark Thompson was arrested and charged with kidnapping and killing a pygmy goat.  Oh yeah, he also sexually assaulted it.  He told officers he was high on bath salts, but the cops think he just really likes goats:
"The argument of bath salts is just an excuse...  There had to be an underlying desire there somewhere, and maybe the bath salts decreased the inhibitions enough to make it happen, but the bath salts is a cop out."
Well, from the look of him, I'm thinking maybe the cops are onto something.

High on bath salts with yer dick in a goat is no way to go through life, son.

Maybe bath salts can explain the hair...?

Thursday, April 28, 2011

NOW will you homeschool me?

I've mentioned the six-year-old... You know, Michelle Obama's biggest fan. The one who dreams of taking over the world and remaking it to suit her whims.

She wants to be homeschooled.

Now homeschooling is a touchy subject at Casa De Scratch. One of the supposed grownups is all for it (can ya guess who?). One feels homeschooling would deprive them of socialization. (Bear in mind, three of my five are female. To me, socialization=boys, so I don't have a huge problem depriving them. Regardless...)

She asked if we'd homeschool her. To her credit, it's hard to argue with the logic she used:

"I already know more than any of the second graders (she's in first). And I can read books as high as they'll let me (to her utter frustration, school policy is that she can't take out books above her grade level). I could read your books, I bet!"

Aaahhh. Now she's getting cocky.

I turned to the bottom step, where I always have a pile of books, and shuffled through them. (I generally have books in almost every room, most with bookmarks where I left off. I read whichever is closest to where I perch, and usually have several going at once.)

I handed her Jon Krakauer's Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster. (I'm an Everest nut along with all my other uber-dorky qualities.)

So. She opens the book... clears her throat... looks at me like I'm a freakin' idiot for challenging her... and reads a passage. (Full disclosure: she stumbled over "carabiner" and "oxygenated". Not too shabby. She also got really upset that she couldn't make heads or tails of a few words... until I explained they aren't in English and she can't read a language she can't speak.)

I take the book, turn to another chapter, and return it.

With an even more blistering look, she reads another passage.

Then she looks me right in the eye and asks, "NOW will you homeschool me?"


"I then explained the obvious problem with his third eye being opened in public"

Heh again. More Fark, more nekkid.

This time it's a vegan who ate some Taco Bell and blasted open his third eye.

C'mon... you've had Taco Bell. He's lucky his "third eye" is all that blasted open.

Oh. Did I mention he was a teacher who stripped at school after being fired? Kinda makes you wonder why he was fired, huh?

Don't worry. He'll be all right. In fact, he's still planning to teach:
"...on a new level, with hands in the earth, gathering the essence and learning how to love one another and fully appreciate the spiritual realm."
Taco Bell. Opening third eyes, and appreciating the spiritual realm. Nekkid.

"Are anyone else's nuts sticking to the mat?"


Saw this at Fark... and this kinda thing is exactly why I love Fark.

Nekkid yoga., uh ... you know, my things ... what happened is they got stuck in a painful, friction-related way against the rubber mat. From deep inside came a sound like this — "Eee-ee-eeeee" — as I frantically reached down to free my, uh, the boys.
Eee-ee-eeeee, indeed.

Monday, April 25, 2011

When the smoke clears... A closer look at Gary Johnson for President

The current crop of Republican hopefuls leaves me feeling uninspired.

No, no... That's far too mild.

The list of Republicans being discussed as our "options" in the beltway and the media leave me with a hollow feeling in the pit of my stomach. It's something like despair. Or the intestinal flu. I want to ask "Is this really the best the GOP can do? Really? I have to hold my nose and vote for one of these people?"

(If I want to see Obama go home as a one-term President, that's exactly what I have to do.)

So I was really excited to see that Gary Johnson had announced he's running. I've long been an admirer. He has a proven record, an understanding of our situation (and don't dismiss that as unimportant - our current administration has no grasp whatsoever on the situation and that's why it keeps getting worse), and Johnson holds to the ideals of smaller government and personal liberty so dear to the conservative heart.

Yet most of what I've read about his announcement refers to him as "best known" or "famous" or "most recognized" for his stance on marijuana and the War on Drugs. And very little I've read gave him the most remote odds of winning.

Yes, Gary Johnson has some controversial views on the drug war, and marijuana in particular. But he's famously best known and most recognized for those views because the media (old and new) highlights the controversial. (What a surprise that he's viewed in the way he's repeatedly been depicted.)

But if conservatives would give Johnson a shot on the issues and not write him off as the stoner candidate, I believe they'd like what they see. So please, let's put his stance on drugs to the side a moment (we'll come back to it, and I believe you'll see it's perfectly in line with conservative principles) and look at what else he's about.

In other words, let's let the smoke clear and see what's really there...

As Governor of New Mexico, Johnson cut taxes fourteen times and left not only a balanced budget, but a surplus. He was responsible for New Mexico's longest ever stretch with no tax increase. He cut the size of state government and privatized part of the prison system. He cut government growth by half. He fought for a school choice program. He vetoed over 750 pieces of legislation, 200 of those in the first six months. He used the line item veto thousands of times, often to remove spending from bills. He reformed Medicaid, and got the state's costs under control. He hired private companies to build highways.

That's not what he's talked about or what he's promised us or what the polls tell him we want to hear. That's what he's done.

(As an aside, he's also climbed Mt. Everest... oh, and Mt. McKinley, Mt. Kilimanjaro and Mt. Elbrus. He's also competed in multiple Ironman Triathlons. How's that sound after a coupla years of watching President Mom Jeans embarrass himself trying to act sporty?)

So that's a taste of what he's done. If elected President, what else would he like to do? A lot of what the grassroots conservatives are calling for.
Government spends too much because it does too much... We should start by reassessing the role of the federal government, and always asking the question: Should the government be doing this in the first place?
Johnson advocates balancing the budget. Immediately. With trillions in cuts across the board, and entitlement reforms. He also wants to eliminate the corporate income tax, thereby making it less expensive for a company to create jobs in America.
The problem is public education in America is now doing less with more. This is unsustainable for our pocketbooks and, most importantly, unfair to our children.
Johnson wants to abolish the Department of Education and return education decisions to the parents and local school systems.

So Johnson is right in line with some of the conservatives' major concerns. The economy, taxes, education, restricting government growth...

Now, about that marijuana thing.

Gary Johnson wants to end the drug war as we know it. He also wants to legalize, regulate, and tax marijuana. But that doesn't mean his campaign slogan is "Party hearty; Die high!"

On the contrary, although Johnson readily admits a personal history of pot smoking, it's not something he does now or thinks others should be doing. In a 2001 Reason interview, he said:
Marijuana is a handicap. So is alcohol... But in spite of being a handicap, it shouldn’t be criminal.
But if Gary Johnson doesn't want to change the law so he can toke up in the Oval Office, what's his motivation? Why push for an end to the drug war?
I’m a cost-benefit analysis person: What are we spending and what are we getting? My premise is the war in drugs is a miserable failure. I don’t know of a bigger problem in every single state, or a bigger expense that might actually have alternative solutions. Drugs account for half of law enforcement spending, half of prison spending, half of court spending. What are we getting for it? We are arresting 1.6 million people a year in this country on drug-related charges, and it’s a failure.
I can't see how any small government constitutional conservative can argue the point.

I consistently have... disagreements with conservatives who want smaller government but are perfectly fine continuing to fund the War on Drugs. While I believe that on some level they accept it because it feels like a war on sin, it goes against every conservative principle.

It's expensive. Enormously expensive. It's an abject failure that we keep throwing money at... similar to the failing public school system, but most conservatives are on board with an education shakeup. It's an affront to personal liberty and, frankly, smacks of the nanny-statism that usually sets conservative teeth on edge. And it has actually caused underground criminal enterprise, much as alcohol prohibition created and strengthened the original gang problems.

But I hope it's clearer... while Johnson definitely advocates major changes to our drug policy, he's not looking to be President Chong. He's coming at the issue from a small-government, common sense, conservative viewpoint.

I urge my fellow conservatives (That's inaccurate. This is nearly begging, but I'm fine with that. Looking at the other Republican wanna-runs, there's that feeling in my gut again.) to take another look at Gary Johnson... to wave away the clouds of smoke and actually learn something about the candidate.

Reason magazine offers excellent roundups here and here, and their 2001 interview is here. Race42012 collected Johnson's public answers to questions posed on Twitter, offering further insight. The Boston Globe wrote about his legalization ideas here. And his campaign site is here.

Johnson's biggest obstacle at the moment might be low name recognition. While I'm hoping to help correct that, it's not the end of the world. In my congressional district, an almost unknown candidate destroyed the Republican party's chosen candidate in the primary, then went on to close within single digits of the sitting Congressman with a huge war chest and major connections. In the age of the TEA Party, being a relative unknown isn't as much of a handicap it used to be.

So, please... have a look at Gary Johnson. And if he can't be accepted as the conservative candidate, someone explain to me why. With the notable exception of Herman Cain, he's the only candidate I can feel passionate about so far.

Now I just have to convince the rest of you...

Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

Also posted at Left Coast Rebel. Thanks!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Those Mysterious Independent Voters

Are independent voters really so mysterious?

Why is it that our simple refusal to claim party affiliation leads supposedly intelligent political writers/bloggers to speculate wildly about what goes on in the mind of an independent? I posted about this before, back when David Brooks wondered "What independents want".

I've been an independent from the time I first registered to vote until the 2008 primaries. Did I suddenly see the wisdom of playing for a team? Uh, no. I changed my registration for the specific purpose of voting in the primary, a right otherwise denied me in my state. I do not self-identify as a Republican, and there's a very real possibility I'll switch to Democrat for the next primary, based on what happens with PA's redistricting. I'm a moderate conservative, social libertarian, and -- at heart and in my mind -- an independent still.

So I get annoyed by the folks like Brooks who wonder in print what it is we independents want. I stick by my common sense answer from the time -- Why not actually ask one?!

Seems maybe that's a little too much like work... why not just make shit up? And hey! The more insulting, the better!

Take, for example, "The Indy Conundrum" over at Mother Jones where Kevin Drum has the answer:

First: the vast, vast majority of independents don't really have any idea what Obama's plan to handle the deficit is. They just know that (a) the deficit is high and (b) Obama is president.
Aahhhhh. I see. We're stupid. Reminds me of Brooks. (Cue the flashback music and wavy graphics.)

"If I were a politician trying to win back independents, I’d say something like this: When I was a kid, I had a jigsaw puzzle of the U.S. Each state was a piece...."
Heh. That line still pisses me off.

Anyway, Drum wasn't finished. (Don't blame me for the interruption. It was Brooks.)

Beyond that, there are kids to get to school, laundry to be done, bosses to be pleased, and leaky faucets to be fixed. The details of the deficit debate are just a bit of partisan background noise that they haven't really parsed yet.
See that? Not only are we stupid, we apparently suffer from the world's first case of collective ADD.

"Don't bother me with Teh Poly-ticks right now, sonny! The dishwarsher's runnin', the dog needs put out and I gotta get to work! How many thoughts do you think my precious little head can hold all at once?!"

(As an aside, this might be the first valid reason I've ever seen to join a political party... Mussolini got the trains running on time, and apparently when you pick up that little "D" or "R", all the broken crap in your house is magically repaired so you can concentrate on toeing the party line! Yea! Where do I sign up? My dishwasher hasn't worked since the hippies screwed with the soap formula.)

Seriously, what the hell?

Drum's brain fart brilliant observations were provoked by a Washington Post piece on the new McClatchy-Marist poll. It shows that while independents tend to feel similar to Obama on tax hikes and Medicare/Medicaid cuts, they still don't approve of the job he's done on the deficit... or really, the job he's done overall.

Thus, it's a mystery! An enigma! A fer-gawds-sakes CONUNDRUM!

Except it isn't.

A lot of moderates and independents allowed themselves to be bamboozled into believing Obama was himself somewhat moderate. (Not this indy. I'd heard his little critique of the Constitution early on and was telling friends and family the man was a socialist before he ever ran across the football-tossing plumber.)

A lot of independents and moderates did want change. -- Until they got a taste of the kinds of change Obama had in mind. Ramming through unread, unwanted legislation... government takeover of the auto industry... the stimulus... TARP... czars... class warfare... public sector vs. private sector... redefining "opaque" as "transparent"...

Are you getting my point?

And yet, now that Obama is back in campaign mode, the liberal press/bloggers want to make it as if it's the independent voters with the problem and not the President. (Don't bother to comment or email that Brooks is a conservative. Bovine excrement. He's a conservative like I'm an Olympic athlete. Read: Not friggin' remotely.)

So, in the interest of saving these heavy thinkers some actual effort at their craft, please allow me to repeat what I wrote in response to Brooks barely a year after the election. And bear in mind, I can't speak for all independents. (We hate that! Something the two parties have never been able to figure out.) But it isn't that different from what my conservative friends think:

...THAT'S what independents want most. A government that listens to its people, and does what we want. A government that remembers American people have minds (some of them damn brilliant), and treats us accordingly. A government that serves us instead of ruling us. A government that protects us without controlling us. A government that provides the framework, and then gets the hell out of our way.
Mystery solved.


Pre-Posting UPDATE:

I wrote this yesterday (Wed., April 20) and didn't get a chance to post it. (I had to take the rabbit to get neutered, and hooboy do you ever wanna read that post when it goes up. Or maybe you don't...)

Anyway, I'm glad life got in the way for a minute. It gave me a chance to go and read the McClatchy-Marist poll results myself. Which I should have done in the first place. Turns out, the independent numbers track pretty closely to the overall voter numbers.

So Independents aren't the problem. Obama is the problem.

And the only real mystery here is how Drum came to his (baseless) conclusions...

But don't be too rough on him. Maybe his dishwasher won't work with hippy soap either. Can't expect him to concentrate on that and make sound political judgements at the same time, right?

Cross-posted at Republican Redefined.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Water Powered Jet Pack



WBC Whackadoos Outnumbered... and Outclassed

This is really cool.

The Phelps cult tried to put on another disgraceful performance, and ended up the focus of a bigger protest.
"It looks like we planned for what we got... The cooperation of the people here was phenomenal. Everyone that was here got to exercise their rights."
I hope this starts happening every time their bus pulls up.


SE Cupp responds to Olbermann, comes off looking worse than he did

I'm really beginning to think this woman is a ninny.

I posted earlier about Olbermann's tweet heard 'round the world. (I obviously do not subscribe to the general conservative view on this.)


Not content to bask in the outraged support of her admirers (not to mention her mother), S E Cupp took to the airwaves to respond to Olbermann herself...

And came off sounding like a fool.

(Yeah, yeah. I know. But I ducked the rock, so better luck next time.)

Appearing on Beck's radio program (as covered by The Blaze), she said... well... she said some pretty stupid stuff.

Beginning with what I assume was a joke (albeit a bad one), she said of Olbermann's feelings toward her:
I don't recall ever turning down one of his sexual advances, so I don't know what his beef with me is...
Oh, heehee. Ain't I cute?

But then we move to melodrama.
When you get death threats and hate mail, you never get used to hearing that someone wishes you were dead.
Oh, give me a fuckin' break. While I believe she gets death threats and hate mail, I don't believe for a second you can reasonably compare KO's remarks to such. Come on. The guy's a tool, but he's also just a mouth and everyone knows it. Besides, he didn't wish her dead... he wished she'd never been born. Not the same thing.
No one is going to be surprised to learn that Keith Olbermann is incredibly misogynistic and has huge problems with women.
Noooo. But some folks might be surprised to learn that a supposed writer doesn't know that "has huge problems with women" is pretty much the definition of the word "misogynistic". Wonder if she knows the definition of "redundant"?

She goes on to lament that Olbermann would
...spew that kind of vile in a public forum...
I guess she needs the definition of "vile" as well. (Hint, punkin'... it ain't a noun.)

She also mentions her mother's defense, which most adults might be embarrassed by.
And it involved my mom, most importantly, who was kind enough to address a letter to him on the Blaze because I didn't really have the stomach for it yesterday. She had no problem, let me tell you.
Maybe she had no problem with it, but aren't you grown? As a supposedly mature, professional adult, is it appropriate to send a note from your mommy when things get all icky?

Back to the melodrama... was really gross, and unfortunately a kind of a sad and scary moment...
Gross? Scary? My head hurts. But she keeps talking.
I'm just gonna put it out there - he better hope nothing happens to me in the next few days or else he's gonna get a wrath (rash?) of hell rained down upon him...
Oh, lady, are you shitting me?! If something happens to you... Give me a break. Are you almost finished?

Ooop. Turns out she is. Just this one last little tidbit to share.
It would be really nice if some groups like Planned Parenthood or NOW or some of the feminist groups would sort of come out and say that we reject this kind of invective...
WHY?! Why do you need liberal women's group to speak out? Would that make it less gross or scary? Who gives a shit where they stand? You know they don't stand for you!

I know... it's probably sarcasm. (Let's hope... but I suspect that might be giving her too much credit.) Still, why even go there?

My opinion?

She's gonna milk this sucker for all it's worth (which is already far more than it should have been), and stretch it into as much publicity as she can.

A more appropriate response would have been to shrug it off with a "consider the source" and a grin, while reminding all the concerned conservatives she's made of tougher stuff.

Unless she isn't.

In which case she should take her purse and go home.