Friday, February 17, 2006

Judged by the company we keep.

The U.S. and Iran agree on a few things--namely, making sure that gays have no rights in the UN.

This is pathetic. Examine the list of countries we side with in making this decision:

In voting against the applications to the NGO committee, the U.S. was joined by Cameroon, China, Cuba, Iran, Pakistan, the Russian Federation, Senegal, Sudan, and Zimbabwe. Votes in favor of consultative status came from Chile, France, Germany, Peru, and Romania. Colombia, India, and Turkey abstained, while Côte d'Ivoire was absent.

Let's see...on human rights and tolerance, we side with Iran, Pakistan, Cuba, China, Zimbabwe, Sudan and Senegal as opposed to France and Germany. We didn't just abstain--we VOTED AGAINST THEM.

Tim Lahaye would be proud.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

A pathetic attempt at humor from Nick Danger

Really, this is truly pathetic. Let's take this one piece by piece.

Good morning, fellow xenophobic, homophobic, racist, sexist brigands! It's time to hit those boards!

This would be funnier if it weren't so close to the truth--at least for the Gedd Tancredo and James Dobson conservatives.

RedStaters, we have a whole day of budget cutting, orphan starving, and war mongering to attend to. So let's get to it!

Unfortunately, this actually is the truth.

Yes, it's another great day to be a Republican! We hold the White House, both houses of Congress, we're about to take over the Supreme Court, and all of this without caring about people or having a brain in our heads! Never have such miserable, stupid cretins held such power! Revel in it, my friends!

No no, we never said that the cretins have the power. We just said that the cretins hold elected office. Of course the people who actually have the power are smart.

we've unmasked Harry Reid as a crook

Hmm. Did I mention that Harry Reid co-sponsored the legislation Abramoff was lobbying against, that Abramoff never even attempted to get Reid (unlike Conrad Burns, whom he purchased) to change his vote on the BILL HE CO-SPONSORED, and that our activists got the AP to change their inaccurate fishing expedition for bipartisanship to this scandal? Keep trying, guys.

we've got Hillary Clinton dancing to our tune

Good point. I don't like her either.

and still the Democrats won't get angry with us. They won't call us names, they won't throw spears at us... it's as if no matter what we do to them, the Democrats just roll over and take it. They're almost no fun anymore.

Really. I thought that the main problem Howard Dean and the Democrats have is that we're too angry. Last time I checked, you guys thought the same thing about Hillary. So which is it? I'm confused.

And now the same thing is happening with blogs. Here we are at RedState, passing up some of the oldest liberal blogs on the Internet in terms of size and influence, and what do these liberals do about it? Nothing! What can they do about it? Nothing! It has to frustrate them to no end. Here we go zooming past them — beep beep — and they're sitting there like Wile E. Coyote with steam coming out their ears.

Wow! You guys finally found a voice on the internet to match one of our top ten! It took you guys long enough. But I'm wondering how it happened. Mark Warner was talking last night about his expansion of broadband access in rural Virginia--maybe that's what drove up your traffic.

Still, it would be nice to get some recognition from them, some token of their frustration at the way we keep trouncing them.

Not so much any more. Try this out for size. A new order is coming, and it's coming because people are sick of exactly this--and you espouse it perfectly. You know, Nick, there's a fundamental rule of wisdom to live by. You know what it is? "when you're on top, treat those beneath you with respect, because you won't be on top forever, and you'll enjoy the precedent you've set when you're not." So when we win in 2006, Nick, and then reclaim the Presidency in 2008, it would only be fair to do our absolute best to crush your party into the ground, given your arrogant taunting.

But we won't do that, Nick. Because in your pathetic excuse for a blog piece, you did indeed get one thing right:

They're smarter, they're nicer to their inferiors (just ask them)

In not too long, Nick, you'll be thanking your lucky stars for that. Actually, though, in fairness--you got something else right too:

they have better hair

Because it doesn't matter how much Wolfowitz sucks on his comb--it still won't help him.

From the "why can't he just admit he made a mistake" department

This is what happens when you have an administration that is completely devoted to secrecy and dedicated to never admitting error.

If this incident had been reported immediately, and the Vice-President had come out quickly and said, "this is a terrible accident, and I clearly feel bad about what happened. It just shows that no matter how experienced you are, you can still make a mistake and accidents can still happen. This should be a lesson for hunters everywhere" or something like that, this would have remained where it might otherwise have belonged, provided it is true that alcohol isn't a factor: fodder for late-night comedy skits. Instead, the handling of the incident has become, as thereisnospoon has so eloquently pointed out, a metaphor for the way this administration handles every single other problem: try to control the media first. If that doesn't work, blame the victim. Whatever happens, never admit any sort of wrongdoing.

I mean, let's take a look at Cheney's only official statement concerning the incident, as released by the Washington Post:

"The vice president said that his thoughts and prayers are with Mr. Whittington and his family."

Oh my god! This is a sick joke. I mean, first of all, he has the statement released in the third person, rather than issuing a statement himself. Second: "his thoughts and prayers are with Mr. Whittingon and his family"? I SHOULD HOPE TO HELL THEY ARE!! HE SHOT THE GUY, DIDN'T HE? I mean, that's the type of impersonal statement you release when some acquaintance gets sick or has an injury or something. When you're the reason the injury took place, isn't it incumbent to go a little further? Maybe "express deep regret" at least? Something?

This administration is really something else. What's sad is if it takes something like this to get the average person to actually realize it.

They really think we're Soviets.

I have been having an email exchange with a familial relation of a very prominent conservative. I know him (though I've never actually seen him in person) through a familial relation of mine that lives near to him. I shall save the details for confidentiality's sake--suffice it to say that he is a very strong conservative, and very intellectual.

We have been exchanging emails originally based on an article in the National Review. What is interesting is that he did not call the National Review "conservative" or "rightist" or any other such word--he used the term "counter-socialist" to describe it. Later on in the exchange he said the the National Review was a foil to the progessive--that is, "socialist," ideology.

I was flabberghasted, and frankly a little insulted. I responded to him concerning these statements that the equation of the term "progressive" with "socialist was completely incorrect and that liberals are for the most part free enterprise capitalists who believe in having a strong social safety net, and that is exactly the way I described myself, since I had, after all, started my own business in conjunction with my brother and was a free enterprise capitalist myself. He said that he was "pleasantly surprised" that I called myself a capitalist.

Surprised? Really? Shocked that I don't avidly support Soviet-style communism or something? Is that really how bad political discourse has gotten in this country, that even the most educated, intellectual conservatives have a genuine belief that liberals don't believe in free enterprise and want state socialism?

I went to a fundraiser with Mark Warner tonight--I'll blog about that soon. Maybe if we nominate for the presidency the founder of a major corporation (Nextel, in Warner's case), the conservatives will actually realize that we too believe in free enterprise--we just believe in a strong social safety net, in strong unions, workplace safety regulations, etc. to create the balance between owner and employer that leads to a strong and productive society.

This conversation has opened my eyes to one thing in particular--when I get called a communist by various people of the opposing political ideology, that's not some hateful hyperbole--that's their genuine opinion. Because if that's what the more educated ones who have experience with major state and national politics believe, imagine the ones who don't have that same experience. That's just scary.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Conservatism vs. the Cult of Bush

A friend just forwarded to me this blog post by Glenn Greenwald, whose blog I shall now have to check more often--it's tough to keep up with all the good reads there are in the blogosphere these days and sort through all the information.

The following is what I wrote back to my friend in response to the article.

The next question, of course, is WHY this has come about. What turned conservatives into authoritarian cultists? In my view, a "perfect storm" of factors created this unusual situation:

1) W wants to be an authoritarian cult leader, as he has demonstrated time and time again.

2) 9/11 made people in general more accepting of the idea of security-based strong presidency.

3) The success of the Rovian "personal destruction" political strategy made it dangerous for anyone who disagreed to do so publicly.

4) The revivial of social conservatism, focused exclusively on reversing what they view as social ills, such as abortion and gay marriage, through the use of the supreme court, and not caring nearly as much about any other issue, has created a situation in which a very politically powerful group of zealots has defended this president through thick and thin, right and wrong, scandal after scandal, exclusively to keep him in the position of being strong enough to nominate judges of their liking.

5) As happens with all emperors, the best way to get ahead in your own career is to revere the emperor--so we have a bunch of toadies signing up with the political machine to further their own interests.

This is precisely why I think that the Republican party will suffer enormously in 2008 and beyond. They have focused so extensively on being Bush's cult base that trying to make some sort of imperial succession to another candidate who doesn't have the same views on everything will be extremely difficult, and it will leave a lot of Republican candidates directionless--as usually happens with imperial succession.

This is why the Republicans' best chance is to nominate Jeb Bush in 2008. It's so much easier to pass succession through bloodlines...

One wonders if Jeb is going to run in 2008. If he does, then by the time he's had a couple of terms, his fully bilingual and charismatic son (whose name I don't remember) will be old enough to run...

Sunday, February 12, 2006

What they USED to think of FISA

Incredible. The hypocrisy is absolutely incredible.

If they protest it, they're defending freedom. If we do, we hate America.

Ah well.