Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Sarah Palin's Inquisition ~ Let's "Baptize" Terrorists With Waterboarding

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Oh, Sarah Palin - there she goes again. When she isn't shooting off a gun she is shooting off her mouth. This Gun-Loving Mama Grizzly who thinks them Libruls is out to "Steal Her Christmas" now equates Waterboarding with Baptism in a new low even for her. Jesus would not be amused, anymore than he was by the Spanish Inquisition. Did I mention she said this to the NRA and they cheered? Yeah, Jesus wouldn't like that either. This woman was almost our vice president. Oh dear Lord, thank you for saving us.

From The Hill
“They obviously have information on plots to carry out Jihad,” ...(Palin) said at the National Rifle Association (NRA) annual meeting on Saturday evening, referring to prisoners. "Oh, but you can’t offend them, can’t make them feel uncomfortable, not even a smidgen.
Well, if I were in charge, they would know that waterboarding is how we baptize terrorists.”

Was she sorry she said it? Nahhhhh.

From NBC News
In a brief interview with NBC News, Palin doubled down on a remark she made earlier this week at the NRA convention.
"Would I make it again? Why wouldn't I, yeah, absolutely. Terrorists who want to annihilate Americans, innocent Americans, our children - whatever it takes to stop them. If I were in charge, I'd be stoppin' em," she said.

And now she's blaming Obama because #Benghazi :

From Palin's Facebook Page
Actions to stop terrorists who’d utterly annihilate America and delight in massacring our innocent children? Darn right I’d do whatever it takes to foil their murderous jihadist plots – including waterboarding. Whatever one thinks of my one-liner at the NRA rally about treating evil terrorists the way they deserve to be treated to prevent the death of innocent people, it’s utterly absurd for MSNBC to suggest that I could put our beloved troops in harm’s way, but we’ve come to expect the absurd from that failing network.

If you want to talk about what really harms our troops, let’s talk about politicians who gut our military’s budgets, or a president whose skewed budgetary priorities slash military benefits, or an administration that puts our vets on endless waiting lists for care that comes too late to help those who’ve paid the price for our freedom, or those who break bread with those who think it makes no difference how our military heroes died in Benghazi or anywhere else trying to protect America. Those actions are a heck of a lot more harmful than declaring an appropriate message our enemies should receive. If some overly sensitive wusses took offense, remember the First Amendment doesn’t give you a right not to be offended. Perhaps hypocritical folks who only want Freedom of Speech to apply to those who agree with their liberal agenda might want to consider that the evil terrorists who were the brunt of my one-liner would be the first to strip away ALL our rights if given the chance. That’s why we do whatever we can to prevent them from killing innocent people. And for that, we should NEVER apologize. Good Lord, critics... buck up or stay in the truck. And if you love freedom, thank our troops! Thank our vets! And thank those who have the brains to support them and the guts to defend what they have earned!

Even some Conservatives are offended:

No, Sarah Palin, Baptism Isn’t A Good Punchline For A Terrorist Joke
. . . Joking about baptism in the context of this aggressive action suggests that we don’t think baptism is as life-giving or important as it is.
~ Mollie Hemingway on The Federalist

OK, stop. Not only is this woman, putatively a Christian, praising torture, but she is comparing it to a holy sacrament of the Christian faith. It’s disgusting — but even more disgusting, those NRA members, many of whom are no doubt Christians, cheered wildly for her.
Palin and all those who cheered her sacrilegious jibe ought to be ashamed of themselves. For us Christians, baptism is the entry into new life. Palin invoked it to celebrate torture. Even if you don’t believe that waterboarding is torture, surely you agree that it should not be compared to baptism, and that such a comparison should be laughed at. What does it say about the character of a person that they could make that joking comparison, and that so many people would cheer for it. Nothing good — and nothing that does honor to the cause of Jesus Christ.
~ Rod Dreher on The American Conservative

For anyone to confess Christ as their savior and to compare one of the means of God's grace to an act of torture is reprehensible. I hope members of Gov. Palin's local church will explain to her why her remarks denigrate the Christian faith. Such remarks bring shame on the Body of Christ and to our witness in the world. Even more shameful, however, is the fact that so many Christians would cheer her support of torture (and yes, waterboarding is torture).
~ The Gospel Coalition

Yes, Palin's Fox pal Sean Hannity Can Mansplain Why Waterboarding is Exactly Like Baptism (well not really, but he tries):
Let’s say, God forbid, one day you’re in a parking lot, somebody comes and they try and grab, um, all of — let’s say you have three kids — they try and grab all three of your kids but they only get one.
Well, let’s say they get your three kids.
And you get one of the people responsible for kidnapping your kids. Let’s see. Would you wanna baptize them by waterboarding the guy that took your three children?
I think I would. I think — as a matter of fact it wouldn’t be much of a question. I think I’d baptize him again, and again, and again until I found out where my kids are.
. . . I don’t understand the sensibility of liberals.
You have the guy — the mastermind, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed — you know how many people got waterboarded? Three. Three! That’s it!
I just asked the question that way, because I don’t think there’s one of you listening, not one liberal out there if you have an honest bone in your body that wouldn’t say I would do whatever it took. Get the information quickly. Expeditiously.
Whatever it took. That’s just the way life — that’s just the way we roll. It’s the way America rolls.


Someone pointed out that the NRA might not be the best venue to talk peace, love and Baptism. Ya Think?

. . . for a self-professed Christian like Palin to use this beautiful religious ceremony with strong historical precedent as a part of a cheap joke to garner support for her otherwise typically uninspired stump speech is beyond repugnant. But what is more repugnant is that the National Rifle Association didn’t immediately distance itself from her. As far as I am concerned, until or unless they do, the National Rifle Association is guilty by association, and they, too, are anti-Christian.
~ Brendan Diamond on Democratify

Some were embarrassed (again) for Alaska:

Not everyone from Wasilla agrees with Sarah Palin. I feel it is important for my reputation as a human being who grew up in Wasilla, AK to take a stand. My family and I moved to Alaska in the early 70's. I went to public school in Wasilla from 1st through 12th grade, and I graduated from Wasilla High School in 1986. During that time, I was also a Blue Bird, a Camp Fire Girl, a Rainbow girl, a member of the First Presbyterian Church ...
There is Nothing in my upbringing in Wasilla that ever promoted or tolerated the idea that it is ok, good, or necessary to torture anyone.
. . . Furthermore, combining the acts of water-boarding (torture) and baptism (a sacred spiritual ritual) is an idea so reprehensible it could be used as a theme in Game of Thrones.
~ Rdeforrest on Daily Kos

For Most on the Left, this is just Palin being Palinesque:

Hammer Down ~ Sterling #BannedForLife from NBA

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Via @NBAMemeTeam

To the delight of basketball fans and non-racist people everywhere, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver put the hammer down and banned Donald Sterling, the owner of the LA Clippers, for LIFE from the NBA. Buh-Bye, don't let the door hit you on your way out.

Previous Related Post:
Rabid Racism Meets Cognitive Dissonance in LA Clippers Donald Sterling

From New York Daily News
The NBA has slam-dunked Donald Sterling.
In an historic move, an emotional Adam Silver banned the Clippers owner for life on Tuesday following the release of racist recordings that were, indeed, from the NBA’s longest-tenured owner.

“Effective immediately, I am banning Mr. Sterling — for life,” Silver said.
“The hateful opinions voiced by that man are those of Mr. Sterling,” the NBA commissioner said in announcing the ban, the first of its kind in the four major American sports. “That they came from an NBA owner only heightens the damage and my personal outrage.”

. . . In addition to the lifetime ban — which bars Sterling from having any association with the NBA — Silver added that he will encourage the league’s other owners to invoke their power to vote in favor of forcing Sterling to sell the team. Additionally, he will be fined $2.5 million — the maximum allowed under the NBA constitution — and the funds will be distributed to anti-discrimination groups.

This comes after President Obama made a strong statement against Sterling while giving a press conference in Asia:

Via Salon.com
I don’t think I have to interpret those statements for you, they kind of speak for themselves,” Obama said. “When ignorant folks want to advertise their ignorance, you don’t really have to do anything. You just let them talk. And that’s what happened here.”

Obama also expressed confidence the NBA would address the situation, and said the United States still wrestles with “the legacy of race and slavery and segregation.”

“Obviously, the NBA is a league that is beloved by fans all across the country,” Obama said. “It’s got an awful lot of African-American players. It’s steeped in African-American culture. And, I suspect that the NBA is going to be deeply concerned in resolving this.”


Monday, April 28, 2014

Rabid Racism Meets Cognitive Dissonance in LA Clippers Owner Donald Sterling

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Previous Related Posts:
Bye-Bye Cliven Bundy
SCOTUS Brings Back Jim Crow
Accidental Racist Song a Failure to Communicate
Paula Deen Fired from Food Network Over Racist Remarks
Arizona Radio Racist Calls Obama "First Monkey"
Ohio GOP Admits Racist Voting Rules


The owner of the LA Clippers Basketball Team went on a racist tirade that was taped by his racially mixed girlfriend and leaked out to the celebrity website TMZ. It's almost unbelievable that one man could hold such conflicting beliefs, especially being Jewish himself! But he even hates certain Jews (see below). Cognitive Dissonance and Racism are both alive and well. Someone should inform Jusices Scalia and Roberts who think we don't need election rules to protect minorities anymore. Wrong! There are still rabid nutjobs walking around hating people for the color of their skin and wanting to rationalize it every way they can - Cliven Bundy, and now Donald Sterling. Sadly they are the tip of the racist iceberg.

TMZ Broke the Story:
L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling told his GF he does NOT want her bringing black people to his games ... including Magic Johnson ... and it's ALL on tape.

TMZ Sports has obtained audio of Sterling making the racist declaration during a heated argument on April 9th with V. Stiviano ... after she posted a photo on Instagram posing with Magic.

Sterling rails on Stiviano -- who ironically is black and Mexican -- for putting herself out in public with a black person (she has since taken the pic down). But it doesn't end there. You have to listen to the audio to fully grasp the magnitude of Sterling's racist worldview. Among the comments:

-- "It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you’re associating with black people. Do you have to?" (3:30)

-- "You can sleep with [black people]. You can bring them in, you can do whatever you want. The little I ask you is not to promote it on that ... and not to bring them to my games." (5:15)

-- "I’m just saying, in your lousy f******* Instagrams, you don’t have to have yourself with, walking with black people." (7:45)

-- "...Don't put him [Magic] on an Instagram for the world to have to see so they have to call me. And don't bring him to my games." (9:13)

Sports Illustrated
The Los Angeles Clippers held a silent protest against owner Donald Sterling prior to Game 4 of a first-round playoff series against the Warriors on Sunday amid a controversy that has enveloped Sterling regarding racist comments he allegedly made in an audio recording.
Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and the entire Clippers team took off their jackets and placed them at mid-court during warm-ups, revealing long-sleeved t-shirts that had been turned inside out so that the team’s logo and name were not visible. The team also wore blue jerseys with the words “Los Angeles” across the chest rather than a jersey design that bore the word “Clippers,” and donned black socks.

From Deadspin

V: I don't understand, I don't see your views. I wasn't raised the way you were raised.

DS: Well then, if you don't feel—don't come to my games. Don't bring black people, and don't come.

V: Do you know that you have a whole team that's black, that plays for you?

DS: You just, do I know? I support them and give them food, and clothes, and cars, and houses. Who gives it to them? Does someone else give it to them? Do I know that I have—Who makes the game? Do I make the game, or do they make the game? Is there 30 owners, that created the league?

. . .

V: Honey, if it makes you happy, I will remove all of the black people from my Instagram.

DS: You said that before, you said, "I understand."

V: I DID remove the people that were independently on my Instagram that are black.

DS: Then why did you start saying that you didn't? You just said that you didn't remove them. You didn't remove every—

V: I didn't remove Matt Kemp and Magic Johnson, but I thought—

DS: Why?

V: I thought Matt Kemp is mixed, and he was OK, just like me.


V: He's lighter and whiter than me.


V: I met his mother.

DS: You think I'm a racist, and wouldn't—

V: I don't think you're a racist.

DS: Yes you do. Yes you do.

V: I think you, you—

DS: Evil heart.


DS: It's the world! You go to Israel, the blacks are just treated like dogs.

V: So do you have to treat them like that too?

DS: The white Jews, there's white Jews and black Jews, do you understand?

V: And are the black Jews less than the white Jews?

DS: A hundred percent, fifty, a hundred percent.

V: And is that right?

DS: It isn't a question—we don't evaluate what's right and wrong, we live in a society. We live in a culture. We have to live within that culture.


Sunday, April 27, 2014

Bye-Bye Bundy

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Here we are at another weekend and Cliven Bundy and the Libertarian/Gun-Totin'/Cow-Lovin'/Obama-Hating/FoxNews/TeaParty Stand-Off at #BundyRanch is still a hot topic on the interwebs. The only difference is, Bundy's fifteen minutes of fame are pretty much over, and suddenly all the pundits are slamming him. His racist dog whistle wasn't subtle enough, and his rambling non-apology apologies just highlight how bizarre his views are.

Even the Koch Brothers are wiping the cow poop off their Super Pac, especially now that Rachel Maddow has connected Bundy's "Sovereign Citizen" views with the "Posse Comitatus," a racist Christian anti-tax group rooted in post-Civil War reconstruction. Bundy will ride off into the sunset, or perhaps to jail whenever the BLM comes back to collect the payment for 20 years of grazing rights. Adios, Jerk. At least he served the purpose of once again revealing the racism behind Fox News and the crazy Libertarian far-right.

Previous Related Posts:
Cliven Bundy Talks About "The Negro" As the GOP Stampedes Away
Wingnuts Declare Victory as Feds Leave Bundy Ranch
Bundy Ranch Stand-Off Attracts Wingnuts and Militias


Sort of an Apology (but not really)as Bundy tries to "whitesplain" what Martin Luther King thought of Rosa Parks:

From CNN's New Day Transcript, Interview with Chris Cuomo, April 25, 2014

BUNDY: No, I'm not a racist. But I did wonder that. Let me tell you something. I thought about this, this morning quite a bit.


BUNDY: And thought about what Reverend Martin Luther King said. I thought about Rosa Park taking her seat at the front of the bus. Reverend Martin Luther King did not want her to take her seat in the front of the bus. That wasn't what he was talking about. He did not say go to the front of the bus and that's where your seat was.

What Reverend King wanted was that she could sit anywhere in the bus and nobody would say anything about it. You and I can sit anywhere in the bus. That's what he wanted. That's what I want. I want her to be able to sit anywhere in the bus and I want to be able to sit by her any where in that bus. That's what he wanted.

He didn't want this prejudice thing like the media tried to put on me yesterday. I'm not going to put up with that because that's not what he wanted. That's not what I want. I want to set by her any where in that bus and I want anybody to be able to do the same thing. That's what he was after is not a prejudice thing, but make us equal.

CUOMO: Mr. Bundy, nobody --

BUNDY: You understand what I'm saying?

CUOMO: You know what -- I kind of do. I'm not sure that I understand it. I understand that Martin Luther King's message was one of peace and freedom. And that when you suggest that you were wondering if blacks were better off as slaves, that's the opposite of freedom and very offensive to people. I think you probably know that.

BUNDY: Well, let me tell you -- I took this boot off so I wouldn't put my foot in my mouth with the boot on. Let me see if I can say something. You know, maybe I sinned and maybe I need to ask forgiveness and maybe I don't know what I actually said.

But you know when you talk about prejudice we're talking about not being able to exercise what we think and our feelings. We're not freedom -- we don't have freedom to say what we want. If I call -- if I say Negro or black boy or slave, I'm not -- if those people cannot take those kind of words and not be offensive, then Martin Luther King hasn't got his job done yet. They should be able to -- I should be able to say those things and they shouldn't offend anybody. I didn't mean to offend them.

More from the same CNN interview, as Bundy cradles a dead calf on live TV then gives his interpretation of the Constitutional Right of the government to own public land:

CLIVEN BUNDY, NEVADA RANCHER: Well, this dead calf died this morning. He's been without his mother two weeks, and we found him -- actually Fish and Wildlife people down in Overton, Nevada, found this calf and called us.

We picked this calf up last night and tried to save his life. He's been too long without a mother. He's been badly abused -- you can see his tongue here. Let me lay the calf down --

CUOMO: That's probably a good idea given it's a little early. A lot of families are watching, Mr. Bundy so we don't want to upset them too much.

BUNDY: Well, you know they ought to be upset. What's wrong with America? They can't even stand a dead calf. We have a lot of dead calves around here. I want to show you these bottles right. These bottles right here, they're going to feed calves that their mothers are dead or gone somewhere.
In other words, we've got about 27 calves. This dead calf only represents one of many. Americans too darn soft-hearted to see a dead calf?

. . . CUOMO: Well, let's talk about that, Mr. Bundy . . . Why do you think that calf is dead? Is that calf dead because somebody -- let me finish the question -- is that calf dead because somebody killed it or is it dead because of your reluctance to follow through with the laws that every other rancher in your state complies with? Who is responsible for the death of the calf?

BUNDY: I'll tell you who is responsible for it. This calf would be -- produce something for America. Now this calf's dead. That's what I did, produce. And that's what all the rest of the ranchers do, produce for America. They're producers.  We're not out here just having fun and having a party. We're out here trying to produce food for you people. That's what we're doing.

. . .  CUOMO: The constitution in article 1 section 8 and in the in the Fifth Amendment gives the federal government the right to appropriate and purchase land. Your state constitution recognizes --

BUNDY: For what person -- for what purpose?
CUOMO: For purposes that it deems appropriate.
BUNDY: For what purpose can they do it? No, it don't say that.

CUOMO: It absolutely does. You should read the book instead of just holding it in your pocket maybe. But when you look at your state constitution, it says that it respects the federal law. That's why your ranchers, your brother and sister ranchers pay the fees that you refuse to.

Now, you come on the show, you hold up a dead calf and that makes everybody upset. But you should look at yourself for why the calf is dead because if you paid the fees, this wouldn't have happened. Isn't that a fair point?

BUNDY: No, it's not.
CUOMO: Because?

BUNDY: Not a fair point at all. This is the United States of America. I live in a sovereign state, the state of Nevada, and I abide by all the state laws. I'll be damned if this is property of the United States. They have no business here.

They have no business harassing my cattle, abusing this calf to the point he's dead. They left this calf for two weeks without a mother. Now we happen to find it and we wasn't able to save it last night.

CUOMO: Mr. Bundy, nobody wants to see a dead calf. I'm sorry you lost the livestock. Nobody wants to see a loss of animal life. The question is how did we get to this situation? You have to be honest with yourself about what the law is.

Rachel Maddow On the Posse Comitatus
(Power of the County)
Which Explains Bundy's World View

(My transcript from video)

Rachel Maddow: There was a man named William Potter Gale. A self-styled preacher, he held a really long grudge. By that I mean he held a grudge that started half a century before he was born.
William Potter Gale's beef with the universe began in the 1860s, right after the Civil War when the Southern States were far from being folded back into the Union. They were still under the control of Federal Troops.

. . . They were kind of "Occupied Territories" and they hated it. So after years of Reconstruction, after years of state capitals being occupied by Federal Troops after the Civil War, white southern lawmakers used a series of political machinations that would make a senator blush to wrangle through Congress at the time to get those Federal troops, those hated 'Yankee" Federal Troops, out of the South.

From and after the passage of this act, it shall not be lawful to employ any Army of the United States as a posse comitatus

That last part means "Power of the County" and throughout history, going back to England, it refers to the county government, specifically the County Sheriff, as the supreme law of the land.

Our Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 said that federal forces could no longer supplant local authorities in the South ...in the handling of law enforcement of the population. And that act came out of a very specific time for a very specific purpose: that Act said 'Union Troops, get out of the South, our counties are going to take it from here.'

And so roughly a dozen years after the Civil War, the Federal Government did pull the troops back from the Southern States and local white officials in the South were thereby essentially cleared to reassert their authority over their own communities. We know exactly what they decided to do with it, right? The end of the Reconstruction Era led to Jim Crow Segregaton and the lynchings and the cross-burnings and the organized terror campaigns used to enforce the Jim Crow rules. The years after Reconstruction were so difficult for our country that many people argued the Civil War hadn't really ended in the South.

. . . In 1957 President Eisenhower sent Federal Troops back into the American South ...to stand guard over the Desegregation of Little Rock High School in Arkansas. He sent soldiers to make that happen. The Federal Supreme Court had made it the law of the land but it took federal troops to make it the law of Arkansas.

By then old William Potter Gale was already preaching white supremacist claptrap which he put under the banner of the "White Christian Identity Movement." But that decision by President Eisenhower to send those troops to Arkansas in 1957, that so enraged William Potter Gale that he decided he was going to start his own new branch of that movement and he was going to give it a new name. A writer named Kevin Carey wrote a great piece about this in the Washington Monthly - William Potter Gale called his new movement "Posse Comitatus" named after that 1878 Law.

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As Gale explained that County Sheriffs were the supreme law of the land and that county residents had a right to form a posse to enforce the Constitution - however they, as "Sovereign Citizens," chose to interpret it. Public officials who interfered, said Gale, should be hung by the neck at high noon.

So individuals are Sovereign, only the County Sheriff is in charge, the Federal Government has no authority in this guy's white supremacist world. And yes, his operating theory sounds crazy and sounds fringe ...but if that was your particular flavor of extremism in, say, the early 1970s and you didn't think the anti-Civil Rights, and you didn't think the anti-Fluoride John Birch Society was extreme enough for you, then you could join William Potter Gale and his extremist Posse Comitatus. All through the 1970s Mr. Gale worked the farm belt states specifically, planting chapters in Kansas and Texas...

(Discussion of Ruby Ridge, Oklahoma City Bombing, Militia Movement, White Christian Identity Movement)

. . . Today you can still find William Potter Gale memorialized by the Aryan Nations online, but you can also find echoes of his ideas in the Oath Keepers, Guardians of the Republic, and the Ten Orders that they "will not obey." Also these folks, the Constitutional Officers and Peace Officers Association led by Sheriff Richard Mack, foremost purveyor of the "Sheriffs in-charge" rule today. Sheriff Mack was the one who made headlines in the middle of the Cliven Bundy Fox-News-Hyped Nevada Ranch Stand-Off recently when he said that he and the militia members flocking to Nevada to fight the Federal Government alongside that rancher might try to use their wives and daughters as human shields once the shooting started.

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So the County Sheriff is the highest law in the land. There is no Federal Government There's only the Sheriff. "Posse Comitatus." The Power of the County. ...It is a weird idea, an old idea that is directly in a linear way, directly descendent of the people who came up with this cockamamie idea in the first place in the 1800s to argue that Federal Troops shouldn't be allowed into the South to protect black people.

(Plays video of Bundy telling Hannity that the Clark County Nevada Sheriff should take guns away from the Feds, and that he wants to fight against Harry Reid's "Army" from the BLM)

So the Clark County Sheriff is the highest authority in the land, if you live in Clark County, Nevada . . . Fox News Channel, conservative media broadly - I don't think they spent all this type hyping and glorifying this rancher in Nevada because he is a Posse Comitatus guy. ... I don't think Fox News has been celebrating him for weeks now specifically because of that. But somebody should have noticed that the guy kept bringing this stuff up, right?

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Nevada Congressman Steven Horsford told Rachel that the other locals in Bunkerville want Bundy's Armed Militia to get out of their community.

I spent the day in Mesquite, meeting with residents who actually live in Bunkerville and who are neighbors of Cliven Bundy. ...And they, like myself, are extremely frustrated by the fact that we have these armed militia in our community, the fact that children in Bunkerville, which is a community of only about 12-1300 people, cannot walk around the corner from their home to their school without armed militia on the hills of our community. That they can't go to church on Sunday without armed militia being in or around the church because Cliven Bundy is there and the armed militia are there.
And his comments...do not reflect our community. They don't reflect the majority views of Nevadans, or the western way of life and the way most of us feel. His comments were racist, they're infused with bigotry and hatred and belong in the dustbin of history.


For historical reasons, the federal government owns a lot of land in the West; some of that land is open to ranching, mining and so on. Like any landowner, the Bureau of Land Management charges fees for the use of its property. The only difference from private ownership is that by all accounts the government charges too little — that is, it doesn’t collect as much money as it could, and in many cases doesn’t even charge enough to cover the costs that these private activities impose. In effect, the government is using its ownership of land to subsidize ranchers and mining companies at taxpayers’ expense.
It’s true that some of the people profiting from implicit taxpayer subsidies manage, all the same, to convince themselves and others that they are rugged individualists. But they’re actually welfare queens of the purple sage. And this in turn means that treating Mr. Bundy as some kind of libertarian hero is, not to put too fine a point on it, crazy. 
Suppose he had been grazing his cattle on land belonging to one of his neighbors, and had refused to pay for the privilege. That would clearly have been theft — and brandishing guns when someone tried to stop the theft would have turned it into armed robbery. The fact that in this case the public owns the land shouldn’t make any difference.
~ Economist Paul Krugman, New York Times

From Huffington Post
WASHINGTON -- Americans for Prosperity Nevada, the state affiliate of the Koch Brothers-backed group, appears to have hastily deleted social media posts expressing support for Cliven Bundy, the renegade rancher who exposed himself as a racist in recent press conferences.

A tweet sent by AFP Nevada on April 10 urging followers to read more about the #BundyBattle, which involves Bundy's refusal to pay fines for allowing his cattle to graze on public land, has been deleted. A Facebook graphic that the group posted criticizing the Bureau of Land Management for enforcing grazing laws against Bundy has similarly disappeared.

Previously, the page read: "The BLM spent HOW MUCH to round up cattle? ONE MILLION DOLLARS." As of Friday afternoon, it reads: "This content is currently unavailable"

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Cliven Bundy Talks About "The Negro" as #GOP Stampedes Away From #BundyRanch

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Previous Related Posts:
#BundyRanch Stand-Off in Nevada Attracts Wingnuts and Militias
Wingnuts Declare Victory as Feds Leave #BundyRanch


Well, it was almost inevitable that right-wing "hero" Cliven Bundy would eventually crumble. But wow - his racist rant on "The Negro" who should still be a cotton-pickin' slave is almost sublime. And now the same Fox pundits and politicians who built him up as the best thing since vanilla ice cream are heading for the hills as fast as they can. Might as well make some popcorn, sit back and enjoy the show.

From the New York Times
“I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” he said. Mr. Bundy recalled driving past a public-housing project in North Las Vegas, “and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids — and there is always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch — they didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.

“And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do?” he asked. “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.”

From the Washington Post
. . . since those controversial comments were published, he has seen most of his friends in high places vanish overnight. Republican politicians who saw the Bundy stand-off as an opportunity to connect with the far right are now trying to figure out which adverb will put the most distance between themselves and the rancher.
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul went with wholeheartedly, releasing a statement on Thursday saying Bundy's "remarks on race are offensive and I wholeheartedly disagree with him."

. . . (Bundy) went on Alex Jones' radio show, and said, "I'm not racist" and that the New York Times should retract their story. "I would appreciate that. I think they should do that," Bundy said. "They're making it a racist-type thing."
On Peter Schiff's talk radio show, however, he stood by his remarks. "Are they happier now under this government subsidy system than they were when they were slaves, and they was able to have their family structure together, and the chickens and garden, and the people had something to do?”

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Headline: Roger Ailes (of Fox News) owns Cliven Bundy now: How dumb opportunism became a right-wing nightmare
. . . Surprise! Sean Hannity’s hero, whose cause has been embraced by Sens. Dean Heller of Nevada and Rand Paul of Kentucky along with Texas Gov. Rick Perry, turns out to be an old-time Republican racist, the kind that even Jonathan Chait recognizes, and Fox News and the GOP have a problem.
~ Joan Walsh on Salon

By noon on April 24, Fox had mentioned the rancher only twice, and never covered his racist comments. On Fox & Friends, co-host Steve Doocy drew a parallel between Bundy's standoff and the situation of two Texas landowners, and Fox's Andrew Napolitano told viewers to "forget the battle in Nevada" to focus on events in Texas instead.
While Fox News did not cover Bundy's comments, Fox host Greta van Susteren spoke out on her blog, highlighting the Times' article and noting "Let me make this plain: I condemn what Cliven Bundy said about African Americans."
~ Media Matters for America

(Bundy's racist remarks) are beyond repugnant to me. They are beyond despicable to me. They are beyond ignorant to me
. . . They (Liberals) want to say that conservatives are racist. Conservatives hate women. Conservatives want old people to die, granny over the cliff. They want the young people to fend for themselves. They want to poison the air and poison the water.
People that for the right reasons saw this case as government overreach now are branded because of the ignorant, racist, repugnant, despicable comments of Cliven Bundy.
~ Fox News Host Sean Hannity, one of Bundy's most staunch supporters

A few things. First, to take the quote at face value it’s odd and sounds offensive. You’re talking about government overreach and you go into this story? Secondly, I hope no one is surprised that an old man rancher isn’t media trained to express himself perfectly. He seems to be decrying what big government has done to the black family ...
. . . If Bundy is a racist, that is awful, but what exactly does that have to do with the BLM?
~ Bundy Defender Dana Loesch on her Blog

If you (GOP) ever want to be taken seriously for your outreach efforts, you might want to start by not defending racists.
~ Mo Eleithee, DNC Communications Director

The Republican's Karmic Chickens of racist dog whistles are finally coming home to roost. Leaders can distance themselves now all they like, but American voters will remember well how recently many of these same people were perfectly happy to stand by on the sidelines taking advantage of racist diatribes they now wish to renounce.
~ HoundDog on Daily Kos

The remarks brought about a quick rebuke from Chandler Smith, a spokesperson for Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV). Heller had previously called Bundy and his supporters “patriots” for their actions and challenged Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s (D-NV) description of them as “domestic terrorists.”
Smith told the Times that Heller “completely disagrees with Mr. Bundy’s appalling and racist statements, and condemns them in the most strenuous way.”
~ Raw Story

Nevada State Assemblywoman Michele Fiore . . . spoke with both Sean Hannity on Fox News and Chris Hayes on MSNBC to argue the Bundy cause. Hayes spoke with Fiore over video, as she was attending the Bundy ranch barbecue. She stopped short of saying that she agreed with Bundy in not recognizing the authority of the federal government, but questioned the heavy handedness of the BLM. "I'm not saying I agree with Cliven Bundy, what I'm saying is, the way this was handled was really suspicious." Fiore doesn't believe Bundy owes the government $1 million in unpaid grazing fees — it's probably closer to a couple hundred thousand.
. . . What she's saying now: . . . In a statement, Fiore said Bundy "has said things I don’t agree with," but "we cannot let this divert our attention from the true issue of the atrocities BLM committed by harming our public land and the animals living on it."
~ The Wire

There’s nothing conservative about this man. This is where nihilism about the federal government gets you in trouble every time. This has happened before. It happened when conservatives raced blindly to put their arms around George Zimmerman, a man who gets in all these troubles. They basically pick their friends based on who their enemies are. In this case, a lot of people in conservative media have raced to this guy’s defense. They must be feeling very exposed this morning.
~ Joe Scarborough, conservative host of MSNBC's Morning Joe

At least one politician stood by Bundy - this kind of figures because Joe Walsh is best known for not paying his child-support.


Monday, April 21, 2014

Snowden Has a Sad Over Putin Question

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Previous Related Posts:
Putin and Snowden Chat About Surveillance
All Hail the Snowden Pulitzer


Poor Little Snowden! Always misunderstood and victimized by his own words and actions! The other day he showed up on Russian TV asking Vladimir Putin a carefully prepared question about surveillance. Whether he meant it to be a brave act or not, it came across as a publicity stunt orchestrated by the Russians. Snowden tried to follow-up with an editorial in the Guardian, but the damage was done and he was being mocked all over the internet. Now his advisers are trying to absorb the blame for his staged question, saying he "couldn't get in touch with his online advisers" that day, which makes Snowden sound naive and helpless on his own. Ironically, this just points to an obvious flaw in Snowden's mythos as an idealistic maverick whistleblower ~ he is actually the puppet of many - the Wikileaks crowd, Greenwald, Poitras, Guardian UK, the Libertarians, perhaps the Chinese, as well as Putin.

From the Daily Beast
NSA leaker Edward Snowden instantly regretted asking Russian President Vladimir Putin a softball question on live television about the Kremlin’s mass surveillance effort, two sources close to the leaker tell The Daily Beast.
“It certainly didn’t go as he would’ve hoped,” one of these sources said. “I don’t think there’s any shame in saying that he made an error in judgment.”

He basically viewed the question as his first foray into criticizing Russia. He was genuinely surprised that in reasonable corridors it was seen as the opposite
. . . I know this is hard to believe. I know if I was just watching from afar, I’d think, ‘Wow, they forced him [Snowden] to do this.' But it’s not true. He just f***ing did it.
~ Ben Wizner, ACLU Attorney and Snowden Adviser

I was surprised that people who witnessed me risk my life to expose the surveillance practices of my own country could not believe that I might also criticise the surveillance policies of Russia, a country to which I have sworn no allegiance, without ulterior motive. I regret that my question could be misinterpreted, and that it enabled many to ignore the substance of the question – and Putin's evasive response – in order to speculate, wildly and incorrectly, about my motives for asking it.
~ Edward Snowden in The Guardian UK

Jealous Clowns Brooks and Todd Discuss Whether Obama is s Manly Alpha-Dog ~ Updated

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Previous Related Posts:
Armchair Chicken Hawks Call Obama Weak, Trembling and Feckless on Russia
Obama Baffles Media by Ordering Congress to Vote on Syria
Chuck Todd Admits that Truth Isn't Part of His Job Description
David Brooks: GOP are Wackos Because Obama Divides GOP
Chuck Todd Jumps the Shark over Romney Voting Machines


On Meet the Press this Sunday, Old Frat Boy David Brooks and MSNBC's Non-Journalist Chuck Todd questioned the President's "Manhood" in dealing with world affairs. The irony is painfully obvious. Number one, both of them are pretty much the antithesis of Macho, using talking points from the #GOP on any given day like a couple of trained parrots, which is an insult to parrots. And number two, they just sound jealous, as if they have career ~ if not "manhood" ~ envy.

They're just so ready to emasculate the President now that Obamacare is a success, while GOP has gone flaccid except for their "Patriot" rhetoric. The Republican Presidential candidates are the return of the clown show, and the Tea Party only wants to have an armed insurrection in Nevada. I guess size really does matter when you are the incredible shrinking party.

Transcript Via Crooks and Liars

DAVID BROOKS: And, let's face it, Obama, whether deservedly or not, does have a (I'll say it crudely) but a manhood problem in the Middle East: Is he tough enough to stand up to somebody like Assad, somebody like Putin? I think a lot of the rap is unfair. But certainly in the Middle East, there's an assumption he's not tough.

. . . CHUCK TODD: And isolating Putin, but also just sort of containing this issue, because there is this fear, as you know. He doesn't want this to become the rest of his presidency, you know. But in many ways, he is being tested here in some way on how he handles Ukraine.

So, for instance, I'm about to hop on a plane in two days. We're going on this Asia trip. And, oh, by the way, Japan has an issue with islands with China; Korea has some territorial issues. There are a lot of countries in Asia that have territorial issues with China. Where is the United States going to sit when this decides to raise its head and become an issue there? So that's why this does matter globally, sort of how the White House responds to this. And they have no interest right now in doing sectoral things.

DAVID BROOKS:I mean, basically since Yalta, we've had an assumption that borders are basically going to be borders. And once that comes into question, if in Ukraine or in Crimea or anywhere else, then all over the world, you know, the tokens--

CHUCK TODD: All bets are off.

DAVID BROOKS: All bets are off.

CHUCK TODD: It is open.

CHUCK TODD: By the way, internally, they fear this. You know, it's not just Bob Corker saying it, okay, questioning whether the president is being alpha male. That's essentially what he's saying: He's not alpha dog enough. His rhetoric isn't tough enough. They agree with the policy decisions that they're making. Nobody is saying-- but it is sort of the rhetoric. Internally this is a question.


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. . . It was this president who escalated the use of force against al Qaeda; it was this president that launched the mission that killed bin Laden; it was this president who increased the use of predator drones to strike at terrorist suspects (including killing Americans affiliated with al Qaeda living abroad); it was this president who helped assemble an international coalition to strike at the Gadhafi regime in Libya; and on and on.
. . . If you knew literally nothing about the last five years, you might hear this chatter about “manhood” and “alpha males” and assume that President Obama was a pacifist, reluctant to use military force under any circumstances. But given what we know about what actually happened over the last five years, the scuttlebutt is just bizarre.
~ Steve Benen, Maddow Blog

The racial aspect adds another dimension. Obama’s entire political career has been defined by pushing back against the “threatening, black alpha-male” stereotype. Conciliation, not confrontation, is not just his style, but the core of his substance as well.
. . . The more that physicality, per se, is demonized in the black male, the more problematic it becomes for white males asserting their own masculine identities, particularly their power over women. This inherent, largely buried contradiction lies close to the core of the GOP’s current problems, simultaneously losing the votes of women and minorities in a long demographic decline.
Faced with this reality, the GOP has no choice. No matter how riddled with contradictions it may be, faulting Barack Obama for his performance of masculinity is the only possible move Republicans have left.
~ Paul Rosenberg on Salon

Brooks exemplifies the problem with US foreign policy, which is that the inside-the-beltway chickenhawks with small peckers equate military aggression with “manhood.”
~ Juan Cole on TruthDig

How is it that the GOP still feels that if you don't threaten a war, you are not a man? It galls the GOP to no end that Obama is smart enough to fix problems and avoid conflicts without resorting to warfare.
~ ImaPragmatist on Huffington Post

Because as every good Tea-Thuglican knows, the only way to deal with any foreign country is by whipping out your missile and wagging it in their face.
~ Shawn K. on ThinkProgress

More Old White Ba___ds trying to Castrate a Black man.
War loving, A**kissing,"CHICKENHAWKS!" make me sick.
~ Tom L. on ThinkProgress

These folks are to funny...in other words, Obama is not being the bully of the world they are so accustomed too! And that's exactly why we reelected him! Alpha males don't start or look for fights...or stick our nose in others business!
~ Art W. on ThinkProgress

Pasty GOP Media Tools Chuck Todd and David Brooks Decide That Obama Has a Manhood Problem
~ Headline on PoliticusUSA