Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Don't Call Up That Which You Can't Put Down, Chapter 2

From Daily Kos, an excellent summation of the position which six years of screeching for impeachment of a centrist President has left the Republican party:

"Don't call Obama a tyrant.

When you call Obama a tyrant wingnuts want to impeach him

When wingnuts want to impeach Obama Dem voters get motivated to vote in off year elections.

The GOP really has two choices here, either shitcan the looney impeachment talk OR admit that Obama isn't the lawless tyrant hell bent on destroying the constitution that they've painted him as for the last 5 or 6 years.

But the GOP can't do either of those things or their rabid teabagger base would throw them out faster than you can say Eric Cantor.

Whereas Obama can now continue to rope-a-dope these schmucks to his hearts content
.
Don't want to pass a real immigration reform bill that addresses a clear pathway to citizenship? I'll just get my pen and my phone. There is an Executive Order for that.

Which will make wingnuts howl for impeachment

Which will make Dem voters realize they need to get off their asses and vote in 2014."

It has been a real spectacle the last few days to see Republicans all over the country, after promoting impeachment for six years, suddenly realize where they are taking themselves.  Now, in the most preposterous specimen of Obama blaming in their whole history, they are trying to blame Obama because they have been howling for impeachment.

So they are trying to shut their people up until November, because they know that if the impeachment train leaves the station before then, they are screwed- every Democrat in the country (including the dead ones in Chicago) will turn out to vote, and the right wingers will be wiped out.

Don't think impeachment is over, however. We all know that, though that impeachment train I referred to is still in the station, it's all coaled up and ready to go; and the day after the election, win or lose, the Republican "base," the out of control monster they deliberately created, is going to demand that the leaders come through on their promise to kick the guy out.  Not that they can, but what they can do is make the country even more ungovernable than it already is, and in the process make it that much easier for their rich masters to muscle their way into control of more and more of our resources- which is all they were ever after.

Monday, July 28, 2014

What The Republican War on Obamacare Means in Mitch McConnell's Home State.

That would be Kentucky, and I was just about struck dumb by these two maps (something that, as you know, rarely happens to Green Eagle) showing just what Obamacare has meant to Kentucky.  This is via Daily Kos and Leo Weekly in Louisville.  Things like this need to be spread, because they show just what a bunch of malignant monsters Republicans are:


The decrease in the rate of the uninsured in Kentucky is astounding, and particularly so in places like Harlan County, one of the most intense anti-Obama places in the country.  This is what the Republicans in Congress have been working for years, almost single-mindedly (other than the phony scandals) to take away from the American people.








Democrats all over the country should be shoving this down Republicans' throats, but that just wouldn't be polite, so I guess they will just curl up in a corner and lose in November.  Believe me, it's not Libya or executive orders that make Republicans want to get Obama out of office- it's this, and the dim hope the sometime in the future, people will start figuring out why their lives are being destroyed.

World War I

Just a brief note:  Today is the 100th anniversary of the Austro-Hungarian declaration of war on Serbia, starting World War I.  On August 4, a week later, Germany, the Austrians' ally, invaded Belgium, drawing France and England into the war.
And thus we entered the modern world.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Death to Obamacare

Just a brief comment, but I'm a little puzzled by the panic over the ruling by a Federal District Court about Obamacare last week.

The court seemed to have decided (by a 2-1 majority, the two justices being of course two more examples of the pollution of our court system by corrupt right wingers) that Obamacare subsidies are only allowed for State exchanges and not the Federal one that exists in those many States whose voters have decided to stab themselves in the back by electing Republicans to run things.

Well, we all know that it is very likely that this ruling will not stand, but what would happen if it did?  The States that voluntarily participated in the Affordable Care Act (the Democratic States) would continue as they are into the foreseeable future, while those States that rejected participation due to spite and political animus (the Republican States) would see millions of their residents stripped of access to health care.  Over a few years, we would see the health status of the two groups of States diverge more and more, with people from Republican States getting sicker and sicker, and paying more and more for whatever scraps of insurance they could afford, while the health status in Democratic States would continue on the upward path initiated by Obamacare.

There's nothing like the possibility of dying to sharpen the focus of people, particularly when that possibility is created for no reason but political advantage. 

We already know that there is a wide divergence between Republican and Democratic States on many issues that affect their residents- education, infrastructure, teen pregnancy rates, infant mortality, etc.  So far, this has not added up to a great enough critical mass to snap the residents of Republican States out of their daze.  But threaten them with a premature death that residents of other States don't face, and maybe finally they will decide who is really on their side.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Wingnut Wrapup

Mark Davis, Town Hall:  "Gaza, Ukraine, Border Crises Have Roots In a Weakened America...(Obama's) stewardship of America’s decline is a prime cause of Mideast turmoil, Russian adventurism and a porous southern border."

And restless leg syndrome. That's Obamas's fault too.  Here's some more incisive opinion from Mark:

"...even George W. Bush, who kept us safe with a war taken to the enemy after 9/11, supported a ridiculous “two-state solution” that hastens to grant Palestinians a nation well before they show any aptitude for non-terrorist self-governance..."

He kept us safe after 9-11.  AFTER 9-11.  After the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil.  He gets a pass on that one. See, 3000 dead Americans on American soil just wasn't Bush's fault, but an airplane shot down halfway around the world by people who we have absolutely zero control over was clearly Obama's fault.  Because he is weak- which apparently consists in not squandering trillions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of lives only to make the Middle East worse.  Now, that's strength.

Streiff, Red State:  "“It may be a terrible tragedy”: Flight MH-17 and the overweening narcissism of Barack Obama"

There you go- it's Obama's self-love that shot a plane down.  Man, that guy is powerful.  No wonder they're worried about him becoming a dictator.

I had some more of this jackass blaming of Obama for something we had nothing to do with, but that's all I can stand, so let's just go on to a real expert:
John McCain, professional TV show loudmouth:  "I don’t understand this president. The crisis on the border. He did the fundraisers, the fundraisers in New York while they’re major conflicts, not to mention the loss of American lives. It was reported there were Americans on the airplane. I do not understand it. I think your network has already played the clip of Ronald Reagan’s reaction when the South Korean airliner was shot down. This is just what we used to call in the military A-W-O-L."

So Ronald Reagan threw a tantrum, and Obama didn't.  That really shows how much better a leader Reagan was.  And by the way, speaking about AWOL, John, you spilled your guts to the North Vietnamese, and told them everything you knew, you traitorous son of a bitch.  Let's see your lies top that.

Kurt Schlichter, Town Hall:  "Liberals Hate Civil Rights... Liberals never met a civil right they didn't dislike. As with everything about liberal ideology, liberals’ great concern for civil rights is a scam, a lie, a fraud designed to sucker in the weak-minded and disguise their goosesteppy inclinations.  Sure, liberals pose as advocates of civil liberties, but only when they don’t have the power to squash them."

Why, that's a unique perspective, I think you will have to admit.  It will take a lot of historical evidence before people accept that.  Well, don't worry, Kurt Schlichter delivers the goods:

 "In my new book, Conservative Insurgency, a speculative future history of the struggle to restore our system and culture, the left’s coordinated attack on our Constitutional rights is one of the biggest motivations for the pushback that results in conservatism’s final victory."

Yes, Schlichter proves his point by citing a science fiction book he wrote himself, in which everything he claims is true.   Preposterous lie and self-enriching advertisement in one tidy package- Conservativism at its finest!



Well, Kurt, you should read my new book, in which ten foot tall flying monkeys from the moon invade the earth, decide they like it here, and everyone ends up singing "Old Man River."


Richard Fernandez, PJ Media:  "Is the U.S. About to Be Blindsided by a Major Terrorist Attack?"
Well, not that Richard has any evidence of, but what a perfect opportunity for a lazy writer to attack Obama.  At least one thing we know for sure: if someone comes to Obama with evidence of an imminent attack, at least he won't tell them "Okay, you've covered your ass" and then ignore them, like Bush did before 9-11.

Gina Miller, Renew America:  "Impeach Barack Obama, the anti-American, Marxist fiend"

Fiend.  Now he's a fiend.  Let's just move on.

But Wait! The real crazy doesn't stop with Gina:

Bryan Fischer, Renew America:  "Obama politicizes air tragedy to promote sexual deviancy"

This seems to be about the fact that there were some AIDS researchers on the Malaysian airplane, so Obama should have looked at the good side, because more gay people may die as a result.   Note:  If there is anyone out there who still believes in such a thing as "compassionate Conservatism,"  this ain't it.

Michael Bresciani, Renew America:  "Ultimate definition of hypocrisy - Dems spinning border invasion as humanitarian crisis"

Helping starving, sick children fleeing from murderous regimes which our country has supported for decades is abominable, when we could just send them back to die, because they are invaders.  How common decency has now become hypocrisy, while sociopathic indifference to the plight of the helpless has become patriotism, I'm not really sure, except that I do know that the Koch brothers are making money out of it somehow.

Matt Barbour, Renew America:  "From behind a smoking sniper rifle high atop his ivory tower peers the secular-"progressive." He surveys his many victims, strewn across the American landscape below and mockingly sneers, "War on Christianity? What war on Christianity?"

He then resumes shooting, all the while insisting that those uncooperative Christians who scatter for cover behind the word of God and the U.S. Constitution somehow suffer from a "persecution complex"

Oh yes, liberal intellectuals shooting at people from towers- that happens every day.  Matt continues:

"In the ongoing culture war, it seems there are no rules of engagement. The secular left will accept nothing short of unconditional surrender. That is to say, the pagans demand that we Christians abandon the biblical worldview altogether, and adopt their own."

No we don't.  We just want you to shut the fuck up and leave us alone.  And by the way, Matt, one of those commandments from God was "thou shalt not bear false witness."  I guess you forgot about that one.

Katie Pavlich, Town Hall:  "Harsh Gun Control Law Kills More Jobs: Beretta Leaving Maryland For Tennessee"

Of course, loose gun laws kill actual living people, which is okay, I guess, as long as they are not rich people.  Anyway, moving jobs to another State isn't quite the same as killing them, is it?

J. Christian Adams, PJ Media:  "Shirley Sherrod v. Breitbart Update: Big Law Fuels the Left"

"Big Law" ruled in favor of a woman who was lied about in a concerted campaign from the right, and who lost her job as a result of the lies, over the people that told the lies.  Favoring the victims over the criminals- the very essence of left wing jurisprudence, and what an abomination.

Bridget Johnson, PJ Media:  "Bipartisan Bill Moving Forward to Condemn Obama for Taliban 5 Release"

That would be a house bill with 82 sponsors: 81 Republicans and one Democrat.  That's bipartisanship alright.  Oh, by the way, the one Democrat was Nick Rahall:

"Rep. Nick Rahall of West Virginia says he supported George Bush more than Barack Obama"

Democrat, right.  Oh well, he will be gone soon.  He's in a district that went for Romney by 33%, and he is way behind in the polls.  This is one Dem I don't think we'll miss.

Oleg Atbashian, PJ Media:  "Sarcastic Posters Meet Obama at Silicon Valley Fundraiser"

Boy, that must have really hurt his feelings.

Jim Hoft, Gateway Pundit:  "Obama Monkey-Banana Signs Pop Up in East Russia"

That must have hurt his feelings too.  Man, Conservatives have to take comfort in some pretty pathetic victories these days.

Renew America:  "Congressman vows to investigate Google searches of 'America' movie"

Well, I'm glad they're doing something.  Did I mention that this is a Republican congressman?  Oh, you already guessed that?

Andrew C. McCarthy, Renew America:  "Will Obama snatch defeat from the jaws of victory over Hamas?"

And here I didn't even know that he was in the war.

Cathy A. Burke, Newsmax:  "Report: Militants Moved Next Door to Benghazi Mission Before Attack...Islamic militants ultimately blamed for the Sept. 11, 2012, attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya, raised concerns when they boldly moved next door to the facility, yet "nothing was done," Fox News reported Tuesday."

Benghazi- the lie that will never die.  And by the way, what were the Embassy staff supposed to do, have lots of loud parties and hope the militants would get disgusted and move out?  Keep vicious pit bulls in the back yard and let the fence fall down?

And I like this:

"Republicans in May entrusted a seven-member team with "getting to the truth," in the words of House Speaker John Boehner, about whether the Obama administration misled  Americans about the deadly attack.  Five Democrats also are on the newly formed select committee to investigate the attack."

Of course, they really aren't on the "team."  They're Democrats, so they are not really Congressmen.



Enough.  See you soon.

The Trouble With Talking About The Middle East

The problem we always run into in talking about the Middle East is that there is so much long-standing misinformation about the subject that it requires an extreme effort to discover the truth.  This is not a one-sided situation.  I remember being taught, when I was growing up, that all of the Arab residents of Israel who left in 1947 did so voluntarily, at the urging of their political and religious leaders.  We have long since learned that this is only partially true; that a significant number were driven out by hostility and threats from Jews.

The same is far more true on the other side.  The greatest success at this maneuver has been getting the world to swallow the whole notion of a "Palestinian" people, an ethnic group whose claims stand against those of the Jews, but which was never heard of before 1967.  This has enabled them to portray the Jewish migration to Israel as a specimen of colonialism, an easily sold fabrication which flies in the face of the obvious fact that you are not a colonialist when you are returning to your homeland.  Another is that there was a large population of Arabs in the area of Israel that had been there for a long time- a claim that is easily falsified, as we know that this land was largely depopulated as late as the 1860's.

Another is the endlessly repeated claim that it is a war crime to expel an unalterably hostile population from your country after they have joined in a war against you.  At the very time that Israel was founded, the victorious countries of World War II were in the process of removing millions of ethnic Germans from various countries in Eastern Europe, most notably the Sudetenland, where 3 million ethnic Germans were forced to move back to Germany as a result of their hostility to Czechoslovakia in the war.  This establishes a clear international precedent for the Israelis to refuse to allow the repatriation of an incurably hostile minority.

Anyway, discussion of this issue inevitably declines into wasting time wading through the falsehoods on both sides, and never ever reaching the point where we can deal with the truth.  This is the problem I have had with Sam.  I just don't have the time or energy to enter into endless circular arguments with people who do not have the will to discover clear historical fact.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Bibi

I want to get my two cents in on Bibi Netanyahu.  And let me start out by saying that he disgusts me the same way that Bush and Cheney and Reagan and McCain and Gingrich do.  More about this later.

I first noticed Netanyahu in the early nineties, and he seemed immediately familiar to me- a self-serving demagogue cut from the same cloth as the American guys I mentioned above.  But the Israelis couldn't see that, and for a historical reason.  Israel is not an old country.  Up until Netanyahu, all of the high ranking members of Israeli governments had participated either in the fight to establish the State, or in the struggle to build a society from nothing.  And as with our founding fathers, this left even the most deplorable of them, like Sharon, with a commitment to the welfare of Israel that overrode their lowest motives.  Not so with Netanyahu.  He cared for no one but himself, and was willing to advance in Israel the same right wing cant that has caused us such damage here in the U.S.  In a way, he is more destructive than Republican leaders here, because he is not so surrounded by think tanks, pollsters and other manipulators who could try to keep him from spinning off from reality in such a tragic manner.

We can see this clearly because we have lived with it so long, but the Israelis could not, and thus they got Netanyahu.  And the results they are getting are pretty much the same as the results that we got under Bush and Cheney.

At the start of this current spate of violence, I was shocked to see how much public opinion seemed to have turned in the direction of the Israelis.  Comment sections on web posts that had routinely featured hundreds or thousands of the most sickeningly antisemitic remarks were now filled with supporters of Israel.  All gone now.  With eight hundred deaths and counting, the Palestinians have again succeeded in the only thing they seem to be able to do besides terrorist violence- convincing the world (which is predisposed to see things in any way unfavorable to Jews) that the Israelis are once again the bad guy.

No matter that a very large number of civilian casualties are undoubtedly the result of the callous actions of Hamas, mixing their military installations into the civilian population in a deliberate attempt to cause any Israeli response to their attacks to result in Palestinian civilian deaths, and whose soldiers, in a violation of international law, wear no uniforms, and can therefore be declared to be civilians once they are dead.  Far too many people are ready to ignore the 13,000 rockets, the tunnel attacks on Israel, the hatred espoused by Hamas, all of it, in order to blame the Jews.

Still, Netanyahu's strategy of mindless militarism has produced the same result that Bush's and Cheney's did- making his own country one more time a pariah, and allowing the Arabs to portray actions taken by Israel in self-defense as some sort of abominable aggression.

This is the result of giving in and letting the right rule your country, wherever it happens.  Thanks, Bibi.


P.S.- there seems to be a random line of type across this post, at least on my browser.  I don't have a clue where it came from.  Sorry.

Earth survived near-miss from 2012 solar storm: NASA

This news just in:

"Washington (AFP) - Back in 2012, the Sun erupted with a powerful solar storm that just missed the Earth but was big enough to "knock modern civilization back to the 18th century," NASA said."

What, the Sun is a Republican?

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

It's All Israeli Lies and Propaganda

Every time we hear the claim that Palestinians use their own civilians as sacrificial victims to prevent Israelis from fighting back against them without the inevitable worldwide condemnation, the claims pour in that it is nothing but lying Israeli propaganda.

Well, this statement, from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees, should put an end to that:

"Today, in the course of the regular inspection of its premises, UNRWA discovered rockets hidden in a vacant school in the Gaza Strip. As soon as the rockets were discovered, UNRWA staff were withdrawn from the premises, and so we are unable to confirm the precise number of rockets. The school is situated between two other UNRWA schools that currently each accommodate 1,500 internally displaced persons.

The Agency immediately informed the relevant parties and is pursuing all possible measures for the removal of the objects in order to preserve the safety and security of the school. UNRWA will launch a comprehensive investigation into the circumstances surrounding this incident.

UNRWA strongly and unequivocally condemns the group or groups responsible for this flagrant violation of the inviolability of its premises under international law."

This was the second time in recent days that the UNRWA has found Hamas missiles stored in their currently unused buildings.  And this comes from an organization with a notorious history of pro-Palestinian leanings.

In light of this, every denial from Hamas that they are not deliberately endangering their own people to extract propaganda value from their suffering must be proven in detail; otherwise these claims should be disregarded.

It is far past time for people to face who is really imposing disaster on Palestinian civilians.

Steve King Throws a Party

Congressman Steve King, one of the most unrepentant racists and immigrant haters in Washington, held an anti-immigration rally this past weekend:
I know this is getting boring, but as long as the Mainstream press treats the teabaggers, the anti-immigrant racists, the Bundy Ranch would-be terrorists, and all the rest of the right wing haters as a significant movement in this country, I'm going to keep showing the truth.

And what is the truth?  This supposed movement is largely a creation of rich people like the Koch Brothers, who over the years have spent tens if not hundreds of millions of dollars manufacturing the illusion that large parts of the voting public support whatever the rich guys want.

Apparently, this was one of a number of immigration "protests" held across the country this weekend; all of them were busts, attracting at most 40 people, as few as 3.  Yet we are held hostage by this mirage of a movement, because it suits the mainstream press and the Republicans to treat them seriously, and the Democrats are, as usual, afraid to tell the truth.


The protests were a bust. Local news reports and pictures posted on social media show anemic turnout, from about 40 people in front of the United Nations in New York to just three at a McClellan, Texas, border control station who wondered if they had gotten the wrong address. - See more at: http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/anti-immigrant-protests-bust-five-things-weekends-rallies-told-us-about-nativist-right#sthash.d881VBN5.dpuf
The protests were a bust. Local news reports and pictures posted on social media show anemic turnout, from about 40 people in front of the United Nations in New York to just three at a McClellan, Texas, border control station who wondered if they had gotten the wrong address. - See more at: http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/anti-immigrant-protests-bust-five-things-weekends-rallies-told-us-about-nativist-right#sthash.d881VBN5.dpuf
The protests were a bust. Local news reports and pictures posted on social media show anemic turnout, from about 40 people in front of the United Nations in New York to just three at a McClellan, Texas, border control station who wondered if they had gotten the wrong address. - See more at: http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/anti-immigrant-protests-bust-five-things-weekends-rallies-told-us-about-nativist-right#sthash.d881VBN5.dpuf
The protests were a bust. Local news reports and pictures posted on social media show anemic turnout, from about 40 people in front of the United Nations in New York to just three at a McClellan, Texas, border control station who wondered if they had gotten the wrong address. - See more at: http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/anti-immigrant-protests-bust-five-things-weekends-rallies-told-us-about-nativist-right#sthash.d881VBN5.dpuf

Monday, July 21, 2014

Another Short Thought About Republican Warmongering

With Republicans now furious that Obama won't send weapons to the Ukraine to use in its fight against Russia, and a number of them actually demanding that we send American troops to the region, I would like to point out the following:  Woodrow Wilson worked for two and a half years to keep the United States out of World War I, and it wasn't a tough fight because hardly anyone else over here wanted to be in the war either.  Finally he had to call for war.  And what was the provocation that drew us into World War I?  It wasn't the sinking of the Lusitania, it wasn't the violation of Belgian neutrality, it wasn't the attacks on our merchant fleet, it wasn't the damage done to our allies.  It was the discovery of Germany's attempts to get Mexico to go to war against the United States:

"On (March 1st) in 1917, the text of the so-called Zimmermann Telegram, a message from the German foreign secretary, Arthur Zimmermann, to the German ambassador to Mexico proposing a Mexican-German alliance...is published on the front pages of newspapers across America...Public opinion in the United States now swung firmly toward American entrance into World War I. On April 2, Wilson went before Congress to deliver a message of war. The United States formally entered the conflict four days later."

Of course, Germany never went so far as proposing sending actual troops into Mexico, as many Republicans seem to want to do in Eastern Europe.  They just tried to manipulate the country next door into siding with them against us.  The Zimmerman telegram was far less of a provocation that what Republicans would do to Russia, yet it led us into World War I.  Can you imagine anything short of an all-out attack that would lead the Russian public into virtually unanimous support of Putin's aggression that for their great geopolitical enemy to station troops only a few hundred miles from their soil?  Can you think of anything that would do more to justify the long-standing Soviet and now Russian notion that it needed a buffer zone of countries under its control between Russia and Europe?

Republican foreign policy is just as mad and self-destructive as Republican economic and social policy.  There is a very good chance that, if Obama had not won in 2012, we would be on the path to World War right now. 

Sunday, July 20, 2014

How About Some Palestinian Popular Music?

Here is a song which illustrates the state of Palestinian pop music so well.  It comes from a site called MEMRI,  which follows Arabic TV and provides excerpts with translations.





I found this site through Infidel753, who has a much more frightening excerpt of a speaker at a rally in Gaza.  I urgently encourage you to click on the link and listen to this evil, perverted man- it's only a couple of minutes long, but it should dispel any doubts you should have about who are the bad guys in the Middle East.

Any way, all things considered, when it comes to music, I'll stick with Buddy Guy.



That doesn't have a thing to do with the subject- I just needed it to get the other one out of my mind.  Because after that, I've got the blues too.