Ever since the Republican Party scurried to goose-step in lock step behind Wayne LaPierre and the gun industry, I have predicted that Republicans in Washington D.C. would pass no firearms legislation. I was wrong. House Republicans actually have passed a firearms related bill. They want to restrict ammunition purchases by the US government, so nut cases can have more.
The Republican-led House of Representatives managed to pass a piece of gun-related legislation in time for Friday, the six-month anniversary of the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. According to Rachel Maddow, however, the law is a conspiracy theory-inspired piece of right-wing fantasy come to life…
…This particular conservative freakout was born, as Maddow said, “in the usual conspiracy clearinghouses,” World Net Daily, TheBlaze.com and InfoWars.com.
The trouble is that these kinds of right-wing extremist ideas are getting traction in Congress. Republican politicians are legislating against their own straw men…
If the supply is gone, I can tell you who has it. See the picture above. The republican’s main goal where mass shootings is concerned seems to be to preserve their ability to perpetrate them in threatened attempts to overthrow the US government. That is sedition!
Republican hopefuls are flocking to another faith and freedom conference. They are claiming to redefine the Republican party to achieve a majority in future elections. The problem, as always is that the Republican party at present represents neither faith nor freedom. Furthermore, it’s getting worse.
Paul Ryan on Friday morning, addressing the conservative Faith & Freedom™ "Road to the Majority" conference…
…Yes, that’s right, Paul Ryan and the hard-right social conservatives he was talking with represent the mainstream of American politics. Sure, there’s that little detail about how we just had a big national election and Paul Ryan’s side lost by a pretty healthy margin, but that doesn’t count. As Paul has explained to us before, the only reason he and Mitt Romney lost the election was because "urban" voters turned out en masse for President Obama. And everybody knows they aren’t real Americans… [emphasis added]
Lyin’ Ryan may keep repeating the lie that we urban Americans, the ones who pay the bills, so that Red States can keep taking more federal money than they contribute in taxes, are not real, but we’rw real enough for him to want to raise OUR taxes to provide more welfare for the 1%.
As for Republican extremism, Rachel Maddow had some important update’s.
As Rachel said, this really is what the Republican party is like right now. It’s worse than it has ever been. To correct Rachel on one point, there is one potential Republican hopeful that is not making a holy pilgrimage to kiss the bank account of Supply-side Jesus (not the real one). That is Chris Christie. If anything, that he has the presence of mind to avoid this is a little frightening, because although he avoids the social extremes we are seeing from Republican Pharisees and Sadducees, he is still a 1% Republican.
This is today’s only article, because I’m going for my quarterly surgery to remove a recurring growth on my foot. No worries. It’s routine. Happy Flag day to all. The best way to celebrate the day is to unwrap a Republican at every opportunity. I am, once again, writing early.
Jig Zone Puzzle:
Today’s took me 3:13 (average 4:30). To do it, click here. How did you do?
From MSNBC: How Republicans get war on women legislation passed.
Unwilling to cede the status of most fascist Reich in America to Teafuhrer McCrory and McCrorystan, the minions of Fartfuhrer Walker and Fitzwalkerstan are charging hard.
From NY Times: Deaths exceeded births among non-Hispanic white Americans for the first time in at least a century, according to new census data, a benchmark that heralds profound demographic change.
The disparity was tiny — only about 12,000 — and was more than made up by a gain of 188,000 as a result of immigration from abroad. But the decrease for the year ending July 1, 2012, coupled with the fact that a majority of births in the United States are now to Hispanic, black and Asian mothers, is further evidence that white Americans will become a minority nationwide within about three decades.
No doubt the halls of Republican Party HQ are now filled with great wailing and gnashing of teeth.
From Right Wing Watch: TPM’s Perry Stein today reports that the Virginia GOP, fresh after nominating the ultraconservative ticket of Ken Cuccinelli and E.W. Jackson, has now appointed Rev. Joe Ellison as the party’s Director of African-American Engagement.
Republican Party of Virginia chairman Pat Mullins hailed [Republican Party delinked] Ellison for his “knowledge and experience,” and Ellison said that he will help build “the future of our party” by showing black voters that they “share far more values with the Republican Party than they realize.”
As Stein notes, Ellison in 2010 announced that he is “declaring war against Planned Parenthood” and applauded televangelist Pat Robertson’s claim that Haiti was devastated by a deadly earthquake as divine retribution for making a “pact with the Devil” 200 years ago.
Voodoo already yet?!!? The Republican Party has goose-stepped into a state of pseudo-Christian InsaniTEA! He’s supporting the same Pat Robertson who prophesied that God would punish Orlando, Florida with a hurricane to punish them, because Disney World had adopted a policy of non-discrimination against LGBT employees. The next hurricane to make landfall damaged Robertson’s own Virginia Beach HQ. God just may have a fantastic sense of humor.
The Republican claim that this stems from our founding fathers is a lie.
One might think that there are enough scandals afoot, both real those of Republican manufacture. Sadly one would be wrong, because we have now been served a fresh set of scandals from the State Department, coupled with the larger scandal that State may have been covering up by squashing investigations into those scandals.
The State Department is reviewing how allegations of sexual and other misconduct were handled following claims that internal investigations were quashed or whitewashed, the department said Monday.
A report from the department inspector general’s office listed eight alleged examples of improper interference from above to head off or water down inquiries by the department’s law enforcement branch, CBS News reported Monday.
The cases included allegations that security agents assigned to then-Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton regularly hired prostitutes while traveling on the job and that a sitting ambassador was suspected of soliciting prostitutes in a public park.
State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki confirmed the draft inspector general’s complaint but gave no specifics about the cases. She said that all were investigated or are being investigated and that the department has brought in outside law enforcement investigators to review cases and procedures, she said.
Psaki called the idea that the department would look the other way at criminal behavior by an ambassador “preposterous.”… [emphasis added]
Corn was spot on about one thing. You certainly can’t trust Darryl Issa (R-InsaniTEA).
I certainly hope that the outside law enforcement review of this behavior comes quickly, and is reported transparently, regardless of the outcome. The right-wing media bubble is already on this like slime on a teacup. Even if proven false, the truth will never receive as much exposure as the scandals. It could become a fatal flaw for Hillary’s 2016 Presidential candidacy, and we need to consider alternatives for the Democratic nomination, if Hillary is actually implicated. Hillary claims to have been unaware of the investigations until the scandal broke.
The news of the Verizon Wiretaps and PRIS presents us with highly complex issues, not given to knee-jerk reactions without careful consideration. In my opinion, these programs, as currently constituted, are bad for America, but not to the extent that the anti-Obama folks on both sides of the aisle would have us believe.
President Obama on Friday defended a pair of recently disclosed surveillance programs as striking the “right balance” between national security and civil liberties following a speech Friday in California.
“You can’t have 100 percent security and also have 100 percent privacy and zero inconvenience. We’re going to have to make some choices as a government,” Obama said.
“You can complain about big brother and how this is a potential program run amok, but when you actually look at the details I think we’ve struck the right balance.”
The administration acknowledged Thursday that the National Security Agency had monitored domestic telephone data and international internet traffic from tech companies like Google, Microsoft, and Facebook.
Obama stressed that every member of Congress had been briefed on the phone monitoring program and that the relevant Intelligence committees were aware of PRISM — the system by which the NSA accessed internet traffic. He also noted that federal judges had to sign off on data gathering requests… [emphasis added]
This Republican judge was appointed to the FISA Court long before Obama was elected. FISA is the safeguard the law intended, so technically that safeguard is in place. However, having FISA in place has no effect whatsoever, when such men abuse their power to circumvent the law. Chris also interviewed Jeff Merkley (D-OR), but that part of the video is missing. Of course, Jeff is on our side, fighting for oversight and accountability.
Note that Ron Wyden (D-OR) is a leader in opposition. Once again, Oregon is leading the way.
Are there sufficient safeguards in place? The real problem here is that we have no way to know, because even the limits on these programs are classified. Only the Gang of Eight (the top Democrat and Republican in the House and Senate and on the House and Senate Intelligence Committees) are so informed, and they may tell nobody else, rendering them incapable of doing anything about it, without committing an act of criminal sedition.
Having classified limits does not work. Obama may well have other limits that he has imposed about how the data so gathered is used. I hope he does and wish I knew. But I know for a certainty that during the Bush/GOP regime, national security devolved into Murder, Inc. If, God forbid, another Republican ever infests the White House, proper checks and balances had better be in place.
Yesterday threw me off my schedule. After I posted the Open Thread, I went to sleep, but was quickly awakened by a call from a social worker who may have a lead on a new place for me. She referred me to another social worker, whom she said knew I would call. I had to leave voice mail. I waited for him to call, and felt too excited to sleep. I finally went back to sleep yesterday evening, but the telephone woke me up. Half-asleep, I thought it might be the social worker, but it was a wrong number from a collection agency who did not want to believe that I have had my number for over ten years, and I am not the guy whose pound of flesh he wanted. Grrr! I went ahead and started my research early, because it’s too hot and I’m too irritated to sleep. I even have an extra article, but this Open Thread is the major post today.
Jig Zone Puzzle:
Today’s took me 4:33 (average 5:14). To do it, click here. How did you do?
From Think Progress: The College Republican National Committee released a report on Monday outlining the major challenges facing the GOP as it seeks to rebrand and redefine itself in the aftermath of the 2012 election. The survey criticizes the party’s singular focus on “big government” and “tax cuts” and calls on Republicans to become more tolerant and open on issues like same-sex marriage and women’s reproductive health.
But a close reading of the 90-page report finds that young people have strong disagreements with Republican policies — including large parts of former candidate’s Mitt Romney’s platform — and are far more likely to support progressive positions. Here are 11 examples:…
Click through for the 11 examples. This Republican survey describes a complete antithesis of everything the Republican party represents.
Note how the Republican ducked Chris’ questions attempting to spin (spell that l-i-e) their own poll results to fit InsaniTEA.
From Me: When the IRS scandal broke, the first thing I did was to read the statute. I was most surprised to discover that the regulation people at the IRS violated and the language of the statute itself are completely unrelated.
When I’m wrong, I say so. Therefore I suppose I should also pat myself on the back, when I’m especially right, because I did what all the major TV journalists, save one, have still failed to do. I analyzed the scandal accurately, because I read the law.
From MSNBC: Rachel Maddow reflected on the career of Frank Lautenberg.
RIP Frank, and thank you for a job well done. I’d hate to be in Christie’s shoes right now. If he does the right thing, he will lose the rabid Republican base, and all chance at the 2016 Republican nomination. If he doesn’t, he will lose the support of NJ Democrats in 2014, possibly costing him the governorship.
This is actually one day out of date, as I started to prepare it for yesterday, so I presume that by now, you all know that Michele Bachmann (R-InsaniTEA) will be stepping down after this term. That should increase the intelligence on the House Intelligence Committee by a bunch of IQ points! She did not actually say why.
Michele Bachmann, a Tea Party firebrand and 2012 presidential contender, announced on Wednesday she will not seek re-election to the U.S. House of Representatives but said her surprise decision had nothing to do with multiple investigations into her campaign finances.
Bachmann, a conservative Minnesota Republican whose outspoken style and sharp criticism of President Barack Obama made her a prominent and polarizing national figure, did not give a specific reason for stepping down. But she said she was not ducking the likelihood of a difficult re-election fight in her suburban Minneapolis district.
Bachmann, 57, faced a probable rematch next year with Democrat Jim Graves, who came within 1 percentage point of beating her in 2012 in a congressional district that was carried easily by Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney.
"My decision was not influenced by any concerns about my being re-elected," Bachmann said in an 8-1/2 minute video announcement posted on her campaign website in which she sat in front of a bookcase and spoke over light rock music reminiscent of political ads… [emphasis added]
Is that an collection of InsaniTEA or what? The sad thing is that millions of Faux Noise sheeple believe every word of it to this day. Sadder yet, there is no shortage of Republican wing-nuts in Congress to take over the role she plays.
I think Bachmann is resigning for two reasons. The first is that she will be hard pressed to hold on to her seat. The second is the investigations into her criminal campaign practices. How can I tell this? It’s obvious! She said they were not the reasons, demonstrating conclusively that they are.
The bottom line still remains that every Republican in office is one Republican too many!