Jun 122014
 

I have said many times that the Republican Party  has sown the wind by embracing the racism, hatred and extremism so beloved by the Tea Party pseudo-patriots.  I have said many times that they shall reap the whirlwind.  But beyond those general predictions I was a surprised as everyone else that one small manifestation of that whirlwind would be the TEAbuggery that will kick Eric cantor from the House Majority leader’s chair and send him scurrying off to K street.

CantorHatThe House Republican leadership, so solid in its opposition to President Obama, was torn apart Tuesday by the defeat of its most influential conservative voice, Representative Eric Cantor, the House majority leader. His demise will reverberate all the way to the speaker’s chair, pull the top echelons of the House even further to the right and most likely doom any ambitious legislation, possibly through the next presidential election.

Conservatives who have helped fuel some of the most contentious showdowns over the last three years on issues such as immigration and raising the federal debt ceiling are likely to be emboldened by Mr. Cantor’s shocking loss as they seek to replace him with someone even more closely aligned with their views.

Further, House Republicans began to immediately plot a new leadership structure that before Tuesday night had hinged merely on whether Speaker John A. Boehner would seek to keep his post next year.

One measure of the extraordinary defeat could be seen in the candidate’s finances. Since the beginning of last year, Mr. Cantor’s campaign had spent about $168,637 at steakhouses compared with the $200,000 his challenger, David Brat, had spent on his entire campaign. With Mr. Cantor out, members from solidly Republican states will almost certainly be vying for one of the top jobs, if not Mr. Boehner’s gavel. The current Republican leadership slate is filled with members from swing states where the pressure to moderate views on topics such as immigration looms… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <NY Times>

You can be sure that virtually any House Republican who was considering the slightest compromises will be running scared because of this.  That bodes ill for America, because it guarantees a continuation of Republican sabotage, obstruction, and sedition.  Our only hope is that continuation causes a backlash that sends centrists to the polls in November to kick them out.

The best coverage of this story came from Rachel Maddow, and I have five clips from her coverage.

I do predict that one effect of Republican retrenchment even further to the right will be to alienate themselves even more from the American people, making a Democratic sweep probable in 2016.

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May 312014
 

One of the biggest reasons that Katrina devastated New Orleans so completely is that the wetlands that have served as a storm buffer from the Gulf of Mexico in the past are mostly gone.  To a great extent, the oil industry destroyed them to facilitate extraction and transport.  The voters of Louisiana have made it crystal clear that they want the companies that did the damage to repair it.  But thanks to Bobby Jindal and the Republican Party, the voters have been drilled, baby, drilled!

GOP-OilThe oil and gas industry won a significant victory Friday in the Louisiana Legislature, receiving final passage of a bill that seeks to kill a lawsuit filed by a New Orleans area levee board against nearly 100 oil and gas companies.

The lawsuit by the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East alleges the companies’ drilling activities damaged Louisiana’s coast and vulnerable wetlands.

Senators voted 25-11 for the measure by Sen. Bret Allain, R-Franklin, that is aimed at retroactively voiding the lawsuit.

The vote sent Allain’s bill to Gov. Bobby Jindal, who is expected to sign it into law. The Republican governor opposed the lawsuit and pushed for the measure’s passage…

Inserted from <NOLA.com>

Effectively, no local government entities in LA will have the right to sue corporations without going through the Republican-controlled state government and any ongoing lawsuits pending, like this one, are now moot.

Rachel Maddow explained this issue in much greater detail.

This is how corporate criminals externalize costs.  They make everyone pay part of their production costs, like the 2,000 people that died, and either the people that pay to repair the wetlands or the people who will lose life, limb and property, if the wetlands are not repaired.  When Republicans own the government, so does Big Oil.

With Republicans in charge, what the voters want does not matter, and Big Oil will continue to pocket obscene profits, because the rest of us are paying the cost of the destruction they leave in their greedy wake and even subsidizing them with our tax dollars.

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May 212014
 

Today is primary day in several states, the closest thing we have to Super Tuesday on the 2014 campaign.  By the time this is posted, most of the numbers will be in, but this should still be a good guide to what happened.  Perhaps the day should be renamed Stupor Tuesday to reflect the awareness of Republican voters and all people too stupid to get off their butts and vote.

0521Wehbe

Get excited, because voters are casting ballots in six states holding high-stakes primaries. It’s the busiest primary day of the year so far — and the most consequential.

From tea party vs. establishment infighting in the West to a Democratic sprint to the left in the Northeast, there’s a lot going on. But fear not! Here’s where we come in. Below we give you the six [sic] most important things to watch:

1. Who will make the Republican runoff for U.S. Senate in Georgia?

2. What will Mitch McConnell’s margin of victory be?

3. Will Democrat Tom Wolf advance to a showdown against the nation’s most vulnerable governor?

4. It’s business versus tea party in Idaho. Business is poised for victory.

5. Will Monica Wehby hold on in Oregon after a story about "stalking" her ex-boyfriend last year?

6. Will a Clinton-backed U.S. House candidate advance in Pennsylvania?

7. There are two GOP primaries for U.S. House in Arkansas worth following.

8. Which Republican will take on the last white Democrat from the Deep South in the House?… [emphasis original]

Inserted from <Washington Post>

I’ve shared all the headers to give you a taste of what it covers.  Click through for the meat of the article.  To me. the most interesting item is the one on Monica Wehbe.

Rachel Maddow covered the day in two videos.  I’m sorry that I can’t get the clips in an Internationally viewable format, but I’m including their titles so you can search later.  In the first she covers Oregon Republicans.

Political weirdness finds a home in Oregon

In the second, she covers the other primaries.

The upside here is that we lose a couple real jerks from GA in the House.

Next we get to sort it all out.

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May 152014
 

I am pleased to report that a Federal Appeals Court has stopped the state of Texas from killing Robert James Campbell.  While the court did duck the issue that using unknown drugs from a secret source runs the rick of depth by slow torture, they did discover that Texas had hidden evidence that he is not mentally competent to face execution.

0515death-chamber

A little more than two hours before he was scheduled to be put to death here, a convicted murderer was granted a stay of execution by a federal appeals court on Tuesday so the courts could review his claim that he is mentally disabled — a disability, his lawyers argued, that state agencies had long known and concealed.

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans granted the request from lawyers for Robert James Campbell, 41, who had been set to be the first inmate put to death in America since a botched execution in Oklahoma last month drew attention to the methods, drugs and secrecy surrounding lethal injections.

The court had refused to intervene in the execution based on Mr. Campbell’s lawyers’ contention that the state was withholding crucial evidence on the drug to be used. But it issued the stay on a second argument made by Mr. Campbell’s lawyers on what the law refers to as mental retardation… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <NY Times>

Rachel Maddow covered this Republican blood lust.

Texas already had three other tests that showed the same results, but had denied that they existed. that’s how desperate these so-called Pro-Life Republicans are to kill. The same Republican executioners lied to a pharmaceutical manufacturer, claiming to be a hospital to get drugs fore execution. That’s how desperate these so-called “Pro-Life” Republicans are to kill. They are a moral stain on the face of this nation.

Republicans define life as something that begins at conception and ends at birth.

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May 122014
 

Republicans get very strange, when it comes to witches.  They seem to think that devil is hard at work through broomstick riding crones.  They are so over the top on the subject that the only thing anyone will ever remember about the candidacy of Christine O’Dingbat was her claim not to be one.  Rachel Maddow had some fun with the Great Benghazi Witch Hunt, before getting serious.

0511OdingbatRep. Pete Sessions (R-TX) said the following on the House floor yesterday, “[Democrats] would blame our insistence upon getting the truth as a political ‘witch hunt.’ Well, Mr. Speaker, that must mean that there’s a witch somewhere.”

MSNBC host Rachel Maddow has a bit of fun with the inanity that is otherwise known as Pete Sessions. Critics have charged the announced Select Committee on Benghazi will amount to nothing more than a partisan ‘ witch hunt’. With some background on the Salem witch hunts from the 17th century, before going back even further with a sketch from Monty Python’s "Holy Grail" where villagers accuse a woman of witchcraft. Sessions isn’t just some rank-and-file knucklehead either, but was once the chairman of the NRCC (National Republican Congressional Committee)… [emphasis original]

Inserted from <Crooks and Liars>

This video is the same content as the clip embedded in the article, but it’s in a format that can be viewed internationally.

I think Nancy Pelosi was wrong to boycott the Republican Katrina Cover-up Committee in 2005. The problem with that tactic is that the mainstream media tends to parrot Republican lies, without challenge, so the truth is never heard. I think that attending the committee is a better solution, as the media tends to cover the conflict, when Democrats challenge Republican lies, and it gives us access to subpoenaed materials that support the truth, which Republicans would otherwise bury. However appointing just one or two strong progressive Democrats (no DINOs) to that committee gives us the needed "in your face" presence, and document access. It also serves as protest and minimizes time wasted by having five in a powerless role.

Finally, when Rachel said “there is no witch”, I trust that she meant the Satanist broom-riding set and intended no disrespect to people of the Wiccan faith.  Nor do I.

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Apr 172014
 

I have long said That Al Dubya (as in G Dubya Bush) is far more dangerous, when it comes to terrorism in the US, than Al Qaeda ever was.  For out latest example, here’s a white supremacist hate-crime, how his tea party mayor supports him, his sordid history, and how the hate groups that the Republican Party has embraced are linked together in a terror network.

0417MillerThe mayor of a small Missouri town has mostly nice things to say about the white supremacist accused of killing three people at Jewish facilities last weekend.

Marionville, Mo. Mayor Dan Clevenger spoke warmly this week of Frazier Glenn Miller, who allegedly went on a killing rampage on Sunday in Overland Park, Kan.

"He was always nice and friendly and respectful of elder people, you know, he respected his elders greatly. As long as they were the same color as him," Clevenger said while laughing, according to television station KSPR. "Very fair and honest and never had a bit of problems out of him."

Clevenger said he sympathized with some of Miller’s views, but didn’t like to broadcast that.

"Kind of agreed with him on some things but, I don’t like to express that too much," Clevenger, the owner of a local repair shop, said… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <TPM>

Miller is not the lone nut-job the media is making him not to be, but part of a well organized web of terror.

Rachel Maddow had more to say about Miller, after an extensive discussion of some of his allies.

I think it’s long past time to release that Homeland Security report on rabid right terrorism, r4egardless of Republican objections.  Furthermore, DOJ needs to return to indicting these terrorists for sedition, in spite of their Republican support.

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Mar 132014
 

Let me begin with the caveat that I am not a fan of Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA).  She spends far more time in bed with America’s rogue agencies (CIA, FBI, NSA) than any Democrat should.  That said, I stand in full support of her attempts to bring to light both the crimes committed by the CIA under the Bush Regime, and their subsequent crimes to prevent the Senate Intelligence Committee from fulfilling their proper oversight roll.  Here’s the latest.

0313TortureIt was outrageous enough when two successive presidents papered over the Central Intelligence Agency’s history of illegal detention, rendition, torture and fruitless harsh interrogation of terrorism suspects. Now the leader of the Senate intelligence committee, Dianne Feinstein, has provided stark and convincing evidence that the C.I.A. may have committed crimes to prevent the exposure of interrogations that she said were “far different and far more harsh” than anything the agency had described to Congress.

Ms. Feinstein delivered an extraordinary speech on the Senate floor on Tuesday in which she said the C.I.A. improperly searched the computers used by committee staff members who were investigating the interrogation program as recently as January.

Beyond the power of her office and long experience, Ms. Feinstein’s accusations carry an additional weight and credibility because she has been a reliable supporter of the intelligence agencies and their expanded powers since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 (sometimes too reliable)… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <NY Times>

I strongly recommend clicking through for the rest of this excellent article.

Here’s an excerpt from Dianne Feinstein’s address on the Senate floor.

I find her statement fully credible.  Given her normal conservative bent on national security issues, there is no basis at all to believe she is lying.

Rachel Maddow provided additional detail and explained the background in most excellent fashion.

Major kudos to Rachel Maddow!

The CIA’s complaint is that Intelligence Committee staffers removed the Panetta Report from the computers provided them to a secure safe in the Hart Office Building.  Technically, they may be correct, because that did violate the agreement between the Committee and the CIA.  However, the CIA had already violated that agreement in two ways.  First they had been spying on the use of the computers provided the Committee for their “exclusive use”.  Second, they had removed documents from those computers to prevent their use as evidence.  When Committee staffers discovered that the CIA was removing documents, they took the steps necessary to protect what they considered the most important document by removing it to the same secure location they would have used to review the documents, were it not for the special arrangements made for this investigation.  To me it seems that the purpose the CIA had in having the documents reviewed at the non-standard location, which they controlled, was to surreptitiously prevent the overseers from doing their job.  Therefore I find the removal of the of the Panetta Report to be fully justified, under the circumstances.

I am gratified to learn that Feinstein intends to declassify and release the summary and conclusions of the Senate Intelligence Committee investigation of the torture perpetrated by the Bush Regime until Obama discontinued it, when he took office.  I am equally gratified to learn that Obama supports this as well.  While I have a pretty good idea what it will contain, releasing this information is long past due.

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