On Being A Small Blue Dot In A Dark Red, Theocratic State

Just for fun, since I am doing some long-overdue digital housekeeping, here’s an article from 2007. This is, you’ll note, before Barack Obama was elected President. You may want to keep that part in mind when you read (that, and this is dated; I don’t get newspapers dumped on my lawn anymore–if you stop paying them, they do eventually cut it out–and those unwanted Pennysaver rags can’t be stopped by anything short of a very, VERY high wall).

HERE’S THE OLD STUFF:

I’ve also been catching up on the massive pile of newspapers–the newspapers I didn’t want and which rarely arrive (or which get swiped before I go fetch them from the puddles in the driveway, where they always end up)–and which are 90% adverts. Somehow a WTOC “news” paper ended up in the reading spot instead of being pitched, unread, into a bin. Each time I have attempted to read it, it makes me develop frown wrinkles.

WTOC 11 is one of a handful of local “news” channels, and, I’m 99% sure, they are responsible for the advert I groused about previously, which involved a rich white guy standing behind a White Baby Jesus nativity scene and reading ponderously from The Bible, which started airing in October, thus earning two frownie marks at once. October is for Hallowe’en (and my birthday), but not for pushing Christmas down my throat before I’m out of overpriced, undersized Tootsie Pops. Also, not everyone down here is Christian, though it sometimes sure seems like it. Maybe I’m grumpy, but it seems foolish for a supposedly unbiased news channel to air religious propaganda. Since they are FOX NEWS-lite, though, I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised.

To my surprise and delight, though I couldn’t find the original article online (their website is terrible), I did find a comment from someone at Fort Stewart (military, of course) who grumped about another article Bill Cathcart (the article writer, and The Highest Muckity Muck at the station) penned wherein Cathcart misinterpreted Dennis Kucinich’s recent nay vote (unrelated to the article I’m grumping about, but intended to spark discussion about the “real” reasons behind the Iraq war and 9/11 and so on, from what I gathered) and wound up talking about Christianity for the last 2/3 or the article, which had fuck all to do with anything. The military guy patiently posted the more accurate details about the Kucinich vote and then complained that the pro-GOP and pro-Jesus stuff was really unnecessary. Word. And all the more “word” because, lo and behold, it proves that at least one of the many military d00dz in Jesusland is capable of having a lick of sense, and thinking for himself. (Imagine how popular he must be among his peers. Poor guy.)

Enjoy the article, which I have transcribed for your pleasure, and which would otherwise be lost to the mists of time (even the Wayback Machine failed me):

“Like the continual drip of a rusted faucet, ridiculous actions never cease. Two more servings of compost scooped from the heap. Several high school students in ever-progressive Boulder, Colorado, walked out of their classrooms to protest the daily recitation of the Pledge Of Allegiance, which includes, of course, our much-cherished tribute to God’s guidance. These left-ward youngsters chose to recite, instead, their own secular version, claiming that ours violates the Constitution’s “separation” clause, which, as you well know, does not exist.”

ZOMG! Two teenagers not wanting to pray at school! The horror! How “ridiculous”! What “compost”!

Shall we take bets on where Cathcart stands on the Creationism v. Evolution battlelines? No?

And when did “progressive” become a BAD thing? Honestly?

“Look, you want to write your own wedding vows, have at it. But you do not edit the American citizen’s pledge of loyalty to suit your own Mother Earth needs. Chalk up another one to social studies replacing history classes, and our trendy micro-focus on self. Forget our country; it’s me that counts. And, oh, by the way, God, thanks for the earth and stuff, but we’ve got it handled, so we’re cutting you loose.” 

First, let us applaud Cathcart’s generous offer to allow people to write their own vows without his disapproval. What a great guy!

Whereas I do agree that “micro-focus on self” is a problem a lot of kids seem to be afflicted with these days, and it is something I might fuss about in the future, I disagree that it runs hand in hand with Gaea worship (or that this might be wrong, as religion is a personal thing, thanks). I also resent the constant reminder, by fundies, that they take the whole Genesis thing really, really literally.

“Colorado requires its schools to read the Pledge daily over the PA. Students may either recite or stand quietly. So, with their Constitutional objection bogus, kids opting out, or even refusing to simply listen to our Pledge, must either be confused about where they are, or prefer to commit their allegiance to some other nation or galaxy. Ah, the sweet arrogance of youth.”

You can bet that if the school recited a “Gaea pledge” every morning that Cathcart would be railing against this just as strenuously as he is railing against the students who are trying to find a middle ground where they can still pledge allegiance to America without bringing someone else’s religious beliefs into it. Because they don’t want to pledge allegiance to someone else’s God, they are automatically bad kids. I don’t agree.

Some “other nation or galaxy”? What the eff?

“And speaking of professing allegiance to a nation other than America, according to a just-released Opinion Dynamics voter poll, 5% of Republicans, 7% of Independents and 19% of Democrats feel that the world would be better off if the United States lost the war in Iraq! Incredible and despicable. Talk about being self-possessed, or more likely, just plain possessed. While they have a right to that opinion, they should be absolutely ashamed to have it, given that this foolishness is just all about punishing President Bush. Our country and its future be damned.”

Note the TINY percentage of people who disagree with Cathcart’s point of view, here, and it is STILL pissing him off, though he graciously allows that they have the right to disagree. Even so, he just knows that they feel this way because they are out to punish Bush. There could be no other reason for their opinion. Furthermore, since they are so wrong-headed, they should be ashamed! SHAME on them for holding a different opinion, because clearly that also means they don’t give a crap about Amurika and where it is going.

Or, conversely, maybe they care A LOT, and didn’t like seeing tens of thousands of people dying for a trumped-up war that has produced no WMDs and where the trigger point was ostensibly 9-11, something NO Iraqis have been tied to, ever. (But the Saudis are our political buddies, you know.)

He can NOT stand it that even a small handful of people, of all political persuasions, disagree with him (and Bush). How can they not see the WISDOM and RIGHTNESS of the war? How can they say it would be okay to LOSE? How HORRIBLE and un-American!

GAH! People like this drive me crazy.

“By the way, those ex-patriots might want to remember that wish when the center of their city is in ruins, since a loss in Iraq clearly beckons further attacks here.”

Oh, CLEARLY. Because Iraqis flew planes into buildings, you know. And killing as many of them you can get your hands on will stop the random handful of nutburgers who embarrass their less-crazed neighbors by kamikazi-ing into stuff for the promise of seventy virgins and a mess of figs and honey in the afterlife.

Maybe losing the war would be unpleasant, but since we foolishly got into that mess on false pretenses in the first place, I don’t know that sticking it out is going to magically make things all better.

“Beyond un-American and pro-terrorist, defeat-at-any-price is imbecilic. Our loss there would be catastrophic, for Iraq, for the Middle East, for Europe, for the United States. To actually embrace defeat, people have to be out of their minds. Oh, wait, that’s it. They are! And they don’t belong in this country.”

ARGH ARGH ARGH!

Translation: “You disagree with me? You are crazy, and you need to leave the country.” Sir, if you will pay for my relocation, I will gladly take you up on your kind non-offer.

Now, let’s discuss.

Separation of church and state is a political and legal idea usually identified with the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, which states that Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…

The phrase building a wall of separation between church and state was written by Thomas Jeffersonin a January 1, 1802 letter to the Danbury Baptist Association. (Wikipedia)

“Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should “make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.” (Thomas Jefferson)

… no man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burthened in his body or goods, nor shall otherwise suffer on account of his religious opinions or belief; but that all men shall be free to profess, and by argument to maintain, their opinion in matters of religion, and that the same shall in no wise diminish enlarge, or affect their civil capacities. (James Madison)

What Cathcart is saying (which is actually true) is that the exact phrase “separation of church and state” itself does not appear in the Constitution, but, on the other hand, he’s a bit wrong-headed as well, as it has been quoted in several opinions handed down by the United States Supreme Court.

The phrase “separation of church and state” became a definitive part of Establishment Clause jurisprudence in Everson v. Board of Education, 330 U.S. 1 (1947), a case which dealt with a state law that allowed the use of government funds for transportation to religious schools.

While the ruling upheld that the state law (allowing federal funding of religious schools) as constitutional, Everson was also the first case to hold the Establishment Clause applicable to the state legislatures as well as Congress, based upon the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

In 1962, the Supreme Court extended this analysis to the issue of prayer and religious readings in public schools. In Engel v. Vitale 370 U.S. 421 (1962), the Court determined it unconstitutional by a vote of 6-1 for state officials to compose an official school prayer and require its recitation in public schools, even when it is non-denominational and students may excuse themselves from participation.

As such, any teacher, faculty, or student can pray in school, in accordance with their own religion. However, they may not lead such prayers in class, or in other “official” school settings such as assemblies or programs, including even “non-sectarian” teacher-led prayers. […]

The court noted that it “is a matter of history that this very practice of establishing governmentally composed prayers for religious services was one of the reasons which caused many of our early colonists to leave England and seek religious freedom in America.”

In short, Cathcart is both right, in that the exact phrase does not appear in the particular document he cites, and wrong, in that he seems to be wilfully ignoring what our Founding Fathers intended and what more enlightened laws have underscored since.

What always boggles me is how Righty Whitey Christian Americans, generally speaking, are not in favour of other theocracies world-wide, but are all in favour of having one here. When Kennedy was running for office, a vicious tide of anti-Papist / anti-Catholic rhetoric spewed forth like sewage from a leaky pipe. Guess what? Since the majority of rich white people in charge of things at the time were not Catholic, suddenly they became more amenable to the idea of separation of Church and State, because they genuinely feared that Kennedy’s religious beliefs would interfere with his Presidential duties. They were more amenable, because their idea of religion was not shared by, arguably, the then most powerful man in the country.

Now that the arguably currently most powerful man in this country is a Born Again ex-cokehead Righty Whitey idjit who feels the need to inflict his religion on the country as a whole, the rich white dudes in power think separation of Church and State is now a BAD idea. Wonder why.

My prediction: we are going to be hearing how separation of Church and State “doesn’t really exist” or it is a bad idea UNTIL, by a miracle, some non-Protestant person is elected as President. And with the level of political corruption in this country, do you really think that will happen any time soon? Honestly? Right now, generally speaking, it supposedly “looks pretty good” for Democrats. This, I am telling you, will bring out some of the most vicious, underhanded, pro-Jesus flagwaving xenophobic mutts you ever saw during the next Presidential campaign.

What I’d love is a President who gets into office (without help from governor brothers, denying African Americans their vote, or friendship with the guy who OWNS Diebold) as a WASP-acceptable candidate and then converts to Judaism, which is a religion most of my sane friends practice, or something else that would make the rich white Jesus freaks go bananas. We might even get some “no backsies” laws that might actually stick that make it crystal clear that the State has no damn business dabbling about with religion of any stripe or type.

Last time the issue went before the Supreme Court, they punted, all the better to avoid truly clarifying the damn policy once and for all.

Sadly, I can not predict with certainty that we’ll have a Dem in office next go ’round, because the frontrunners, last I checked, are either female or black, and there are enough folks out there who are uncomfortable with both or either to potentially jigger the election for whoever the Repubz decide to nominate.

Do I personally think Jesus is “bad”? No, actually. I also know plenty of people who are devout and not hypocritical about it, and they don’t see the need to convert everyone else to their point of view, because they have the sense to understand that religious belief is deeply personal and private.

Some websites you may find interesting:


Americans, generally speaking, do not like or want to try to understand other theocracies, often nattering on about how wrong-headed and foolish those beliefs are, and comparing their own flavour of (usually) Christianity favorably to those other beliefs. As has been done for centuries, a particular type of Christian is really not into “live and let live” when it comes to competing religious beliefs. Not satisfied with their own personal salvation and religious beliefs, they feel the need to force everyone else to think and feel the same exact way, and to accept the same view of God as they have. I never understood that.

I especially don’t understand it when it involves two earnest, buzzcut-sporting, zitty teens in neckties (riding bikes) who insist on waking me up on the weekend.

I don’t understand the kind of mind that condemns the entire Muslim religion based on the actions of a handful of fanatical Muslim assrods, while conveniently neglecting to recall offenses a handful of fanatical Christian assrods have perpetrated throughout the ages.

I don’t understand the kind of mind that is so xenophobic and jingoistic as to say things like “America! Love it or leave it!” while forgetting that America is about preserving personal freedoms and rights, as long as those do not infringe upon other people’s freedoms and rights. Technically. Officially. Well, that’s what they keep telling us.

And meanwhile they are also forgetting that a lot of other countries sincerely hate our American guts, and don’t want any of the average American personality types to soil their country. Given that I don’t like the average American and average American interests (including political ignorance, dislike of reading, spelling and grammar, choices in mostly crap entertainment, their mostly crap musical preferences, their mostly crap etiquette, especially their crap dating behavior, overly indulgent or completely hands-off parenting, pro-tanorexic fashion, anti-intellectualism, false piety combind with judgmental behavior when faced with anyone who falls into the “other” category, materialism, use of animals / babies as accessories, and so on and so on) much myself, I can’t really blame them.


I guess I am incredibly angry that, say, Paris Hilton merits even one line of press, whereas actual NEWS news is considered too “unsexy” to bother with at all. (Example: I’m irritated that I even know “New York” is a person as well as a place, though what she does or contributes to the world, well, THAT I do not know.) And we’re infecting the rest of the world with the same crap values (though, to be fair, the UK has us beat where it comes to the “build ’em up then tear ’em down” trivial non-news “reporting” and publishing).

I guess if you say “we’re the best country on Earth” often enough, some folks really start to believe it. I’d say the truth somewhere in the middle: that we do a lot of things right and our intentions are generally good, but we mess up in a lot of areas, too, and you can’t acknowledge one side, the side where we do something really right, without also admitting to the other side, the one where…hoo boy!…have we ever got some work to do.

I think I need some caffeine and a lie down.

END OF OLD STUFF.

Okay.

Did you catch that bit about how it would be hilarious if we got a President in office who announced he wasn’t Christian? Well, instead we got a Christian that the conservative nutbags among us keep swearing is really a Secret Muslim.

It is probably best that we didn’t enrage the crazy people by having him announce he was giving up bacon permanently and converting to Judaism, after all.

 

 

 

Election 2012: FOUR MORE FOR #44! SUCK IT, MITTENS

Claire McCaskill–IN (beat Todd Akin)

Tammy Duckworth — IN (beat Joe Walsh)

Joe Kennedy III — IN

Tammy Baldwin — IN

Sherrod Brown — IN (beat Josh Mandel)

Kristin Gillibrand — IN

Elizabeth Warren — IN (beat Scott Brown)

Alan Grayson — IN

Joe Donnelly — IN (beat Richard Mourdock)

Martin Heinrich — IN

Maggie Hassan — IN

Grace Meng — IN

Patrick Murphy — IN (beat Allen West)

Princeton wonks and Nate Silver at 538, vindicated!

Gay marriage in more states! Yay!

Best of all:

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA IS IN.

I am so proud.

The voter suppression didn’t work. The dodgy electronic voter machine shenanigans failed. The constant lies, race-baiting, bigot-encouraging, cynical photo-ops, hatred for women, unions, minorities and the 47% from Romney failed. The Koch brothers failed. FOX News, failed. Rush Limbaugh, failed. Karl Rove, failed, Donald Trump, failed. Sean Hannity, failed. Glenn Beck, failed. Ann Coulter, failed.

THEIR BULLSHIT FAILED.

We the people, we won.

‘…But The Political Parties Are Both The Same So I Am Not Voting!’

‎”I’m not going to vote. What’s the difference between Romney and Obama, anyway?”

Ignoring, for a moment, how unintelligent people sound when they say stupid shit like that, let’s pause for a second and think of some differences between the candidates.

Why vote? Well, I don’t know about YOU, but I’m going to vote for the candidate who isn’t trying to shove a vaginal probe up my private parts, has not vowed to kill Planned Parenthood, is less likely to start a war in Iran, doesn’t want to kill healthcare for the needy, does not hate on the gays, does not oppose equal rights, won’t protect the wealthiest 1% from paying their fair share of taxes, doesn’t support Citizens United, won’t ignore infrastructure problems, won’t sell off our national parks and forests to the highest bidder, who won’t protect polluters, who won’t deny federal aid for communities affected by natural disasters, who won’t deny students a chance at a college education because they are not independently wealthy, who won’t give free reign to religious bigots trying to erode Separation of Church and State, who doesn’t believe that corporations are people, who doesn’t believe that money is the same as free speech, who is not actively trying to disenfranchise voters, who supports the DREAM act, who won’t screw the poorest and most helpless in our society, and who won’t gut social services and education. I’m going to vote for the guy who has released his tax returns. I’m going to go for the guy who does not take quotes from his opponent and edit them out of context to tell lies in his adverts.

I will vote for the guy (Obama, to be clear) who is responsible for:

  • The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
  • The Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010
  • The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare, or the ACA)
  • The Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act
  • Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repeal Act of 2010
  • The Budget Control Act of 2011
  • Ending the war in Iraq
  • A new START arms control treaty with Russia
  • Capturing / killing Osama Bin Laden

What about Romney?

  • A member of the same political party that endorses all that crap I already said I was not in favor of
  • Worked at Bain, but tells conflicting stories about when he actually left a position of responsibility. It looks like he was there for three years after he claimed he was.
  • Worked for the Salt Lake City Olympics, but all correspondence related to his tenure there has been destroyed.
  • Was Governor of Massachussetts, but all correspondence related to his tenure there has been destroyed and all the computer hard drives wiped.
  • Panders to ignorant Birthers and the hyper-religious
  • Has not, as far as I can tell, ever taken even one stand on an issue that he has not flip-flopped on later for political expediency
  • Lies his ass off constantly (oh, wait, that’s not an accomplishment; my bad)

Also, I am going to vote for the guy that the Koch brothers are not actively trying to purchase the White House for.

Check out the big brain on Brad!

So, no…I’m not going to use laziness or disinterest in doing my civic duty keep me from getting informed about how the two front runners are NOT the same and then using my self-imposed ignorance of the candidates and issues as an excuse not to vote. Neither should you.

Another take on this, from “Diamond Rain” on Facebook:

“To all the people who insist all the candidates are the same, there is no difference between them — which is clearly not true… the proof is in seeing how they vote, in the case of a legislator or a judge, and the huge differences between the policies they enact in the case of a president — but if you think there is no difference, then what do you suggest we do to preserve and better the Republic? Not vote?

Someone is going to be the next president. Saying there is no difference between [Romney] and Obama is not only wrong, but it is worse than a useless contribution because it suggests that the democracy is ineffective and there is no point participating. As far as I am concerned, those who take the position that there is no difference between the parties and/or the candidates are:

1. Wrong.

2. Doing the country a disservice and

3. Are either:

a: On the losing side and trying to convince others to stay home and not vote because they are desperate to find a way to win or;

b. Too lazy to educate themselves in the vast differences between parties and candidates and would rather get a few cheap applause from others who are also too lazy and want to use that as an excuse to do nothing and take no position.

Ignorance is easy. Learning is not.”

So don’t be an asshole. Educate yourself. Pick a candidate. Do your civic duty. Vote.

False Equivalencies: Why Glenn Beck Pretended to Be Upset Obama “Ate a Dog”

Glenn Beck is SIMPLY APPALLED, people. Obama, when he was a small child, living in a country that does not have the same taboo about eating dogs that we do, was given dog to eat by his adult caretaker. Well then, Beck, I guess you have to stop calling President Obama a Muslim then since it is forbidden by their faith.

Man, the conservatives really had to dig deep to counter Romney’s callous treatment of the family dog. Ever hear of “two wrongs don’t make a right”?

Or, more accurately, that the offending passage from one of Obama’s books that they are attempting to color as “just as bad” does not elaborate on whether Obama knew he was eating dog beforehand (I was fed donkey and snake AND rabbit without knowing that was what it was before I ate it), does not mention that it is common in the country where he was raised (even if it is gross to Western sensibilities), and involves, at best, being a passive bystander and consumer of an anonymous and nameless livestock animal raised for meat like a cow or chicken or pig.

Compare that to what Mitt Romney admits he did as an adult: he was an actively responsible party mistreating a living animal with a name (Seamus) who was already elevated to the status of house pet by strapping him for hours atop the family car, and then he did nothing to remedy the situation after the supposedly beloved companion animal / four-legged family member expressed discomfort, fear, and distress by, well, crapping himself.

So now we’re comparing what Obama did as a child to an anonymous animal, when he had no choice but to do eat what his adult guardian told him to do, to what Romney did as an adult to a family pet, when he had several options he could have chosen at any time, such as putting his luggage atop the car and the dog inside it. What, was he more concerned that a suitcase might fall off than the dog carrier? To repeat: Obama was a child who was FED dog by his caregiver (how much choice did YOU have in deciding the dinner menu at your home when you were a kid?), while Romney was an adult who freely chose how to treat the family dog and to ignore the poor animal’s obvious distress.

In short, weaksauce all around. But would you expect anything else?

You know, I remember Matt Drudge spamming the entire USENET with his screeds, not bothering to check if it was wanted or appropriate.

Back in the day, self-promotion and advertising of any sort were LOATHED and resisted. There were newsgroups (sort of like forums) which existed as separate little “islands” of discussion devoted to a narrow-focus subject, and people resented–especially when access was via a slow dial-up modem), and EVEN MORE when they got on USENET via the first paynets–reading something off-topic.

Most people using USENET had access to approximately 5,000 newsgroups of varying degrees of popularity. Drudge would spam his long and 99.8% off-topic and self-indulgent / self-promotional “reports” to every single newsgroup he had access to, and would ignore everyone raising hell about it (SO RUDE). He did not participate in discussions that I EVER saw. He was out to talk about what he wanted to talk about, and to hell with you or if it was an appropriate venue or even if anyone else was interested even tangentially in his posts.

If there was any justice, he would eventually have gotten tired of spamming the world and being hated by nearly everyone with USENET access globally and would have gone away (or, when the Internet finally had a GUI, he would have made a ranty Angelfire or Geocities webpage with spinny skulls, under construction animations, rainbow-hued horizontal dividers and GIFs of Reagan with a halo and Clinton with devil horns…maybe an ASCII cow or Bart Simpson picture). Unfortunately for us all, he was leaked documents about the Lewinsky scandal, probably because he was a self-important global spammer who ignored all criticism in his lust for blathering about how much conservetism rocks and liberals all suck to EVERY DAMN BODY’S NEWSGROUPS, he posted THAT all over the damn place, and, voila, the little asshole has never stopped being self-important, spreading gossip and mostly unsubstantiated dross, and trying to just shout louder than anyone else, without regard for anyone who might find him tedious, wrong, annoying, etc.

So, there you go.

I’m not upset that he busted Clinton and Lewinsky, for what that is worth. Someone else would have. I’m just annoyed that he has ended up being REWARDED for being a giant hateful conservatard asshole with no social skills or courtesy for others.

Seriously, there is no justice in this world.

One of my conservative friends (who was VERY irritated that I reminded him that the Heritage Foundation was responsible for the part of Obamacare he had been ranting about most) treated me to this false equivalency:

  1. Windmills for wind power kill birds.
  2. Birds fly into the windmills and die.
  3. Lots of them.
  4. Ergo, windmill blades killing birds is JUST AS BAD as drilling for oil and having a pipe burst and spill oil everywhere. (“Take that, liberals! How you like us now! You bird-murderers!”)

Yes, indeed. Birds fly into stuff. That is, of course, exactly equivalent to BP getting away pretty much scot-free with dumping tens of thousands of gallons of biohazardous material into the Gulf, killing dozens if not hundreds of species (including birds; heck, if you want to be utilitarian, including fish and shrimp that humans eat) and then trying not to actually pay any of the damages without being arm-twisted.

Man.

I did not even bother to get into a discussion about it. Because birds flying into windmills is EXACTLY THE SAME THING as probably permanent damage to not just birds but also a lot of sea life and HUMAN BEINGS in the area. And wind power is just evil, anyway, because Republicans are wary of it. No big money in wind power. So it has to be EEEEEVIL and bad.

Seriously. As columnist Dave Barry used to say, I am not making this up.

(Birds fly into wind power windmill blades: BAN WIND FARMS.
Birds also fly into jet engines on places. BAN PLANES.
Birds also fly into house and business windows. BAN WINDOWS.)

Both political parties have their flawed cheerleaders, though.

Nick Kerton says, “The bad thing about [Joe] Scarborough isn’t that he’s a harsh conservative, but that he constantly says he’s a “centrist”. His fucking theme song is Stuck In The Middle With You. Scarborough is obvious, though. Chris Matthews is a bit conservative leaning as well, while Al Sharpton tends to paint atheists unfairly when religious issues come up — in one segment he explicitly suggested that social justice could be an EXCLUSIVELY religious value. But CNN…argh. When they’re not saying the Dems just need to give more to the rabid dogs, they’re spending half an hour explaining how an exit poll works.”

I agree with all three criticisms. Joe is mostly an economic conservative. Chris gets very hawkish and sort of, hmm, fratty and he never met a boring sport analogy he didn’t love to rant at length about. Al is still recovering from the Tawana Brawley Hoax and his mild animus towards any atheist or agnostic folks.

While we are at it, I like Keith Olbermann (and his affection for James Thurber is charming), but he’s kind of a douchenugget off-camera.

The false equivalencies are thoroughly annoying, whichever side does it, though. There is something to be said for comparing apples to apples, rather than apples to kumquats, Ford Pintos, or monkeywrenches.

Ken Bennett, Arizona Secretary of State, Won’t Let The Birther Dream Die

Dear Ken:

We in the great state of Hawaii have received your request…nay, demand…that we release the President’s birth certificate. We are sorry to hear that the entire state of Arizona lacks Internet access and that you did not see both the long and short form birth certificates we already released ages ago.

Let’s be frank, Ken. We in Hawaii are weary of dealing with stupid bullshit like this and we have stuff we need to do. Our Secretary of State is very busy doing Secretary of State stuff, for example, and is eager to learn how you manage to do your Secretary of State stuff and still have time to be all het up about an issue that never was a valid issue to begin with. I suppose there is nothing at all going on in Arizona whatsoever that would keep you busy.

See, Ken, the people who go all nuts over this birth certificate stuff tend to be the kind of idiots who can’t use Google to look up when Hawaii was admitted to the United States as a real, 100% legal, no take-backsies, full-fledged state. Which, incidentally, I seem to recall happened only a couple of years after Arizona had the same status. You guys were the last of the Contiguous 48 to become a state. Remember that? (Also, in case it comes up, your neighbor New Mexico is also a state and not part of Mexico. Hope that helps.)

Your Birther torch-bearer is a crazy dentist cum LOLyer with a voice like an un-oiled outhouse door hinge who actually was NOT born in the United States and she has a name like one of those Internet memes the cool kids all think are so hilarious; you know, the one with an owl. What kind of name is Orly? Is she a nutjob? Yarly.

In conclusion, dear Ken, we will stop what we’re doing right this very minute and rush to get you yet another copy of this goddamned birth certificate that everyone else has seen a hundred times and plastered on t-shirts and coffee mugs all because you can’t stand brown and black people and are doing your best to make your contempt acceptable and excusable to all the other assholes in your state.

You’re a low IQ moron. You are wasting everyone’s time beating a horse so dead that it has already been made into a truckload of Elmer’s glue, gummi bears and Jell-O. You suck and we hate you. You’ll get the goddamned copy of a copy of a copy of a copy of the stupid birth certificate when we damn well get around to it.

Cordially yours,

Hawaii

P.S. Yo momma.