Why do smart Republicans say stupid things? It’s the central political question of our era and it demands an answer.
In London Monday Bobby Jindal built an entire speech on the idiotic premise, already disavowed by Fox News, that European cities include sections specifically ceded to Islamic extremists.
That isn’t even the dumbest thing he said. He repeated all the usual racist tropes about how Muslims fail to “disavow” violence, implying rather strongly and ignorantly that they do not. He also launched into a surprising diatribe about the mortal danger posed by immigrants who refuse to “assimilate.”
There are only two credible explanations for this speech. Either Jindal is an idiot in the Michele Bachmann mold, or he is making a cynical, calculated career decision to abandon credibility in pursuit of power.
Let’s be absolutely clear – Bobby Jindal is not stupid. He’s a Brown University graduate in Biology who went on to complete a degree at Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar. Jindal has in the past flirted with the idea of coming out of the closet as a smart person by suggesting once that Republicans should stop saying stupid things. In that speech two years ago he chastised the party for embracing precisely the kind of “identity politics” he so forcefully endorsed on Monday.
Being a smart guy he has apparently come to some conclusions about his career. He learned some lessons from his experience trying to be a principled leader.
Why do Republicans keep saying stupid things? Well, some of them are idiots. Louie Gohmert and Sarah Palin and a laundry list of other daffy cartoon characters who should hold public office, or for that matter be trusted to look after your pets while you’re out of town.
Jindal represents something darker and far more disturbing. Bobby Jindal knows better.
It’s that intersection between cowardice and greed for power that is corrupting a whole generation of Republican leadership. Clearly, Jindal looked at the road ahead for himself and made some calculations about the cost of being a credible leadership figure. He has made his choice.
Dumb is far less dangerous in the long run than craven or cowardly. Bobby Jindal, more than Rick Perry or Steve King or Louie Gohmert, embodies the worst forces at work in the party right now.
I knew I needed a foundation for that molding of the deer.
“Let’s be absolutely clear – Bobby Jindal is not stupid. He’s a Brown University graduate in Biology who went on to complete a degree at Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar.”
I think we’re going to have to stop using attendance at Ivy League and Oxford as indicators of political worth. Most of America’s misguided public- and private-sector policies have been inflicted on us by people with credentials as fine as Mr. Jindal’s. Reading, writing, speaking, testing, and networking well are the requirements for elite academic credentials. Nothing more. A life-long committment to the principled application of those skills in nowhere in the equation.
In the end, Jindal’s ploy is clever. Bash the bogeyman over in Europe. It’s of no consequence to us, and American voters cannot expect him to do anything about it. It’s an easy way to position himself to the right on an issue without having to pay any actual political tolls. In America, smart politicians have to win the votes of a lot of dumb people. It’s not as though he’s promised to ban Sharia law in the U.S. Such a promise would demonstrate a deeper committment to political cynicism.
Chris, You’d think that Jindal, as an Indian minority, son of immigrants, with a fine mind (thanks, mom/dad), and wonderful educational opportunities, would be more grateful for the things others have done to help him advance. Instead, he’s become an elitist with very narrowly defined views and panders to the easy crowd that he knows is limited in their reasoning. What a shame he hasn’t utilized his intellect and education to give back a little of the largess he has received.
Bobby Jindal’s success is due to a determination to assimilate. Instead of telling himself that a person with his skin color could not compete, he was able to achieve success by virtue of hard work as well as intelligence. This is especially remarkable in a state like LA which has a reputation of being old south racist. He HAS given back of “the largess he has received.” Jindal is a great role model for any person of color.
OBJV – Tell me you live or have lived in LA and your opinion of Jindal will hold more credence. I don’t dispute your observation of LA’s reputation as “old south racist”, nor the rise of Jindal in spite of his Indian ancestry. That’s all we can agree upon where Jindal is concerned.
The ONE political topic that my five siblings and I emphatically agree on,(all five live in LA, are well educated and successful – 3 are Repubs), is what a disaster Jindal has been for the State of LA. I am the only one of the six who lives outside LA but we definitely agree onJinda l. There are many Indians in LA and throughout the U.S. who deserve that accolade. Jindal doesn’t.
mime, I’ve never lived in Louisiana so can’t attest to how Jindal has done as governor. Think of it this way … we are an equal opportunity country – Jindal, as a well-educated Indian American, is just as entitled to be a horrible governor as Obama, as a well-educated African American, is entitled to be a horrible president. 🙂
Objv, that’s right, if what we were talking about here was “entitlement”. Lifer’s blog was all about Jindal’s “judgment and commensurate “competence”. I repeat, my 3 staunchly Republican siblings who live and work in LA – (all are professionals and probably voted for Jindal for his first term) tell me he has been a disaster, and their first-hand, conservative assessment carries a lot of weight. Let’s stick to the point here, and that is Jindal’s performance, not his “right” to succeed as a minority.
I am offering an informed viewpoint that conflicts with your opinion of Jindal, which might be different if you had the same advantage of direct, accountable feedback. It’s unfortunate for the people of LA that Jindal hasn’t been successful. LA needs smart, good, strong leadership to counter the provincial character of the state and its many challenges. Jindal wanted to be elected governor in order to pursue the ladder of a political career. He chose LA. Sadly, he has not performed well and maybe it’s just as well that Americans have had the opportunity to assess the quality of his governance before he seeks higher office.
I just came across this article and thought you folks might enjoy the irony of it.
Speaking of the crazy train and it’s occupants, here is another little gem.
This is on topic and the latest on our La. Governor and his “no go” silliness.
Seems even his constituents are sick of him.
Are homegrown terrorists a threat?
Are immigrants who don’t assimilate a potential source of homegrown terrorists?
Has anyone substantiated claims of “no go” zones?
Not so far.
There’s an actual real problem here, and there’s no need to exaggerate and embellish and add additional red meat.
Sassy, the irony is that Americans fired their dysfunctional congress last November.
Well OV you are abjectly wrong. Again.
95% of Congress was re-elected last year.
Bubba, true, while most incumbents were reelected,…”In the House, CNN projected the GOP will have at least 246 seats, its largest majority since World War II.”
Quite a change from when Obama was first elected and Democrats controlled both the House and Senate. Read the article and weep, bubba. Here’s a tissue. Wipe your eyes and blow your nose. You look ridiculous. 🙂
Well OV nice deflection and resorting to childish. Na na boo boo responses but that doesn’t change the fact that you wrong yet again.
And now you look immature and silly to boot. But it does become you.
Get your facts right for a change and you don’t get corrected. How hard is that?
Apparently impossibly so for you.
Maybe you need to re-read the article and take off your rose colored glasses. The GOP is in danger of being fired in a major way in the 2016 elections. May I point out that they are going after Social Security, again, women’s rights, again and so on and on. The American people gave the GOP a chance to govern for all the people and if they continue on this destructive course they will lose a lot more than they gained.
Sassy, yes, the GOP does have to make good on promises to the American voter. Many Republicans won in the last election because Obama’s promises of “hope and change’ didn’t pan out for middle class. Instead of increasing prosperity, average wages have gone down. I know many people who found themselves underemployed after the recession ended. Income inequality has increased under Obama, the middle class was stuck holding the bill for Obamacare, and racial tensions are higher than before.
Objv – You blame Obama for income inequality? Racial Tensions? Under-employment?
Tell me, what responsibility do conservatives have in the above? IMO, Obama shares in the blame but the GOP got exactly what they wanted and worked diligently to achieve at America’s expense! Their long game was to neuter any gains by Obama to set up the 2012/14 elections. Sadly, they were very successful, on a procedural basis. Who really wins in a situation like this?
When the top 1% holds more than half of the entire world’s wealth, that bodes ill for the rest, wouldn’t you agree? Who, may I ask, will be able to buy the products being produced by the companies owned by the 1%? That is playing out in the markets right now. So, yes, the GOP “won”, unfortunately, now they have to govern. Welcome to the real world.
Way2 – Isn’t it ironic that the GOP panders to women with Ernst being picked for the SOTU response (such as it was), then fails to be able to put abortion legislation forward today because the women in their caucus (t u for standing up, ladies!) objected to the more onerous parts of it? Man!
As for social security. I’m on it (spoiler alert (-: ) am grateful for it, contributed to it, and believe in it for generations to come. Will changes be needed to keep it solvent? Probably, but, oh, so careful here. You are right….lots of little white haired men and women are gonna get upset if the GOOP (oops, meant GOP) starts messing with their socialized Medicare and SS!
Thanks Sassy. It was apparent OV didn’t read your link before posting her reflexive screed.
Or Chris’ nationally recognized post on the Blue Wall for the 2016 elections.
This is gonna be long, but I have a lot to say. Hang on.
Remember, objv, before you take another victory lap, that pesky pendulum has a bad habit of swinging both ways. Yes, the GOP had a big win. Yes, 95% of Congress were re-elected and that’s a damn shame in many instances. BUT, look deeper. Examine the role that gerrymandering played which destroys the bedrock of the one man/one vote Democratic principle. Both parties have done it but the GOP employed it on steroids in the last 6 years, and it has protected seats at the expense of Democracy. Then consider the large number of Dem seats in play in ’14 – which will be the GOP challenge in ’16. Now, look at your 401K. How’s it doing these days? Consider that the federal deficit has been HALVED, and, our banks are better capitalized (even if they’re still fighting accountability vis a vis the Volker Rule), and millions of Americans have health care for the first time. Ever try to live without health coverage? It’s scary and it is the single largest cause of personal bankruptcy in the U.S., the leader of the world. Isn’t that a sad statistic.
Unemployment is 5.6%.Yeah, yeah, I know, lots of people stopped looking for jobs or are working below their skills or part-time. Well, maybe so, but I will be watching to see what our GOP majority are going to do to add jobs – especially that benefit the middle class, address our crumbling infrastructure, improve wages for the middle class, address immigration, health care (show me the GOP solution!), climate change (our Senate voted overwhelmingly “yes” to the existence of climate change, but with the caveat that man has not contributed to it?????!!!!! Remember GOPlifer’s Four Inescapable Truths? If it wasn’t so sad, it would be funny.
Point is: the GOP won with the lowest approval rating in history. Dems didn’t do much better but they beat the GOP in this, at least. The American Public IS TIRED of all the bull….We (I include myself wholeheartedly) want government to work, not to be dismantled. We want our elected officials to do their jobs which means compromise. We want members of Congress to work more days on the job, LIKE WE DO. We want responsible, effective, affordable government. We want and NEED well run safety nets and a properly sized and carefully deployed military, and a business sector which runs profitably but doesn’t run over the workers and Consumers that THEY NEED for their profitability (and very large salaries…).
Dems need to do a better job as well, but the last time I looked, America is a Democracy, and that means at least two parties (T U Owl) which means compromise. Finally, you might find this link interesting, from the non-partisan, U. VA Center for Politics, run by Larry Sabato. Get on his email list and benefit from his institute’s research. Politics is complex and it is necessary. It doesn’t have to be ugly or ineffective but it will always be messy.
Apparently OV you are also not aware that wages have been stagnant since the 1970’s or that they have recently began to rise, even though slightly. As usual you would blindly and without facts gladly blame it all on Obama. There is much more at play in this than I’m sure you can comprehend. Here are some of the facts you glibly ignore.
Great post mime.
Way2 – Isn’t it ironic that the GOP panders to women with Ernst being picked for the SOTU response (such as it was), then fails to be able to put abortion legislation forward today because the women in their caucus (t u for standing up, ladies!) objected to the more onerous parts of it? Man!
I just posted this on the newest blog post,
Today the House will vote for a huge tax increase on small businesses to advance their anti-abortion agenda. Really? A tax increase on the job creators, imagine that!
The biggest irony for me is that Ernst’s family have recieved about a half a million dollars in “gubermin” subsidies in last few years. Not something the GOP has a problem with as long as its one of their own doing it. Hardscrabble my ass!
Way2, If there is one thing the GOP excels at, it’s hypocrisy! Doesn’t surprise me a bit even tho I don’t know what gubermin is all about….will google it and find out!
Sassy, I agree that wages have not risen spectacularly since the 70s, however many Americans feel that Obama and the Democrats have botched the recovery. I’ve heard over and over again how people feel who had good jobs pre-Obama but are struggling now.
“Average hourly earnings for most workers rose more than 4% per year in 2006 and 2007, but they have not risen more than 2.5%, year over year, since May 2010. They rose just 2.22% year-over-year in October 2014, Labor Department figures show. This is the weakest period of wage growth since at least the 1970s, and perhaps much earlier.
Mr. Obama has both political and economic reasons to worry about wages. One reason Democrats were routed in the November midterm elections was because of an economic unease that has gripped many Americans, despite the improving unemployment rate and stock market. Americans might have a job, but it isn’t necessarily the job they want. Or it isn’t paying them what they want or need to get ahead.”
Republicans need to step up to the plate now, but if Democrats keep on trying the same old ploys, Republicans will be able to keep control of Congress.
Hint: Legalizing millions of illegal immigrants who drive down wages does nothing to help poor and middle-class.
Objv, Your observation that wages haven’t risen spectacularly is, well, an understatement. WSJ aside, it is really important for all of us to try to be factual and objective. The income divide is well documented, and it ain’t wages that are going up. The reasons are many, not all politically induced. Global factors, techology, and so many other reasons factor in.
But, it’s like climate change, or “global warming” as I prefer to think of it. If nothing is done to help improve the situation, where does that take our economy? Who will buy the Tiffany diamond earrings? (their earnings forecast was down). A rising tide does lift all boats but you have to own a boat first, or, you drown! That’s what is happening to millions of struggling Americans.
So, what are the GOP priorities? The Affordable Care Act. The Affordable Care Act. Today the House passed legislation that would remove funding for health insurance for: federally employed women who are raped while in the military (defending our butts); in D.C. (so close and yet so far from Congress); and small businesses who offer abortion in their comprehensive health plans to their employees.
Way to Go GOP! Great start out of the gate! Maybe we should ask Ms. Ernst to focus her talents on all these rapists! Save everyone a lot of money and agony!
As for the Dems using the same old ploys. Really? That just doesn’t pass the smell test.
As for all those illegals driving down middle class wages….maybe we need to go after the employers who are benefitting. Or, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce that is pleading for immigration reform. Like health care alternatives to the ACA, show me the immigration plan!
Reading the WSJ is broadening. I value the opinions that are cogently presented. I don’t, however, agree with them on many of their solutions or assessments of the problems.
Sassy wrote: today the House will vote for a huge tax increase on small businesses to advance their anti-abortion agenda. Really? A tax increase on the job creators, imagine that!
Huh? The House voted to eliminate the tax credit businesses get for abortion coverage.That’s a “huge” tax increase?
Don’t press the panic button yet. This is likely to be vetoed by Obama.
“Hint: Legalizing millions of illegal immigrants who drive down wages does nothing to help poor and middle-class.”
Nice deflection there OV and no surprise coming from you, but once again you are wrong. “Illegal” immigrants do drive down wages in normally low paying jobs no doubt. Employers hiring these people know that they can get away with paying lower wages and avoid paying taxes for these folks because after all where are they going to complain about unfair treatment? So is it the immigrant or is it the employer that actually drive down wages?
Legalize these people and wages rise as a result because they would then have the protection of labor law to protect them from exploitive employers. They get right with the law, pay their back taxes and stay out of trouble they will become an asset that contributes more to our economy than those who avoid paying their fair share taxes.
Go2, you’re being too rational in connecting the dots for Objv. It’s an “inconvenient truth” . Good answer, tho. I liked it (and even understood it….and, believe it (-: )
Huh? The House voted to eliminate the tax credit businesses get for abortion coverage.That’s a “huge” tax increase?
If a small business is allowed a tax credit that is potentially 30,000.00$ over a 3 year period I would call that a huge increase when multiplied by about 12 and half million employer small businesses. That figure is from the census bureau.
for further information from the IRS
One more thing to consider as it pertains to your myopic comment about illegal immigrants.
Way2, Great documentation! And, that is precisely WHY the U.S. Chamber of Commerce wants immigration addressed. They’ve done the math, and their bottom line improves. It would be nicer if they were behind immigration reform for humanitarian reasons, but, that’s not how their boat floats.
Sassy, the the credit reduction would only affect policies that pay for abortions.
I know you and I disagree, but I do not feel that the federal government should in any way subsidize or give a tax credit for abortions. A large swath of American women find abortion to be abhorrent and many see it as murder. Even if it is legal, it should not be paid for with government money or savings derived from tax credits.
Got to run … I will take up discussion on any loose ends with you and 1mime later. I know this topic is not about to go away. 🙂
Great read, Way2. The Atlantic does excellent, indepth writing on important issues. Of course, as the author notes, it is up to the voters to change the system as it will not change from within. Therein sows the seeds for disenfranchisement. Block ’em, make it real hard to vote through gerrymandering (both parties – what a shame), their buds at SCOTUS, and state legislatures. The GOP plan attacks the presumptive liberal voting base in whatever way possible. It’s ugly and wrong.
This is off topic but it hit the idiot trifecta of Florida, Walmart and gun toting vigilantes.
One has to wonder what would happen if the old black man had “stood his ground” and shot the asshole white vigilante in Florida.
In Florida he would go to jail, directly to jail and he would not collect 200$ for passing “Go”.
I remember this story too. I’m seeing a problem in the long run.
Check out all the new gun laws being proposed in Texas! As a gun owner myself I find these proposals way out of line. These new laws remove the protections that law abiding citizens have enjoyed even while living in the “wild, wild west” of more than a hundred years ago.
2nd amendment only applies to white folks, dnot they know?
Remember this genius idea?
“One has to wonder what would happen if the old black man had “stood his ground” and shot the asshole white vigilante in Florida.”
It is nice to see that the fool got the assault charges he deserved.
I thought of JG’s post regarding tax burdens when I read this from you probably could guess it………
Republicans Address Income Inequality By Offering Middle Class Hot Stock Tip
Link, Crogged? I can’t wait to make my fortune!
The Onion-I don’t dare actually OPEN anything from there……
Just in case you missed it…………
I wish I could think of a clever response to Cruz’ stand up mess up, but, suffice it to say I see right through his narcissism. Thanks for the catch, Way2!
While J. Ernst”s response was so “measured” as to put one to sleep one comment she made did not even get a mention… what she said was ( I paraphrase ) this new Congress will make it a priority to “repeal and replace Obamacare”. Just where the hell is the Republican plan to replace “Obamacare”, who wrote it? when was it put into the form of a bill and presented to Congress for review and debate?
Patience, Way2! They’re working on it….and working on it….and…you get the picture….sort of like immigration reform. Maybe if they’d stop obsessing on womens’ rights and gun rights and start working on everyone’s rights, they might have time for that piddly little health care problem impacting millions of Americans.
Patience is a virtue, I’m told, and apparently I have none!
You know, the news I’m hearing is Mitt will be the top contender. The GOP, I believe, is still reading the tea leaves and will not support a TParty candidate for Pres….IMHO. We might need to refocus our attention away from the wing nuts to the more likely candidates. I am not a Mitt fan but Lifer may be right in that he has the most “recent’ organizational history. What a choice: Romney? Cruz? Jindal is history. He damaged himself badly in London. One down, 8 to go.
Many in the GOP might not support a Tea Partisan candidate.
But that doesn’t matter much if the Tea Partisans are the ones who are energized enough to turn out in large numbers to vote in the party primaries.
An interesting sidebar following tonight’s SOTU address: Romney gave his response to the President’s address before the GOP formal response was held. He did it via Facebook, but he is coming on strong, I think, to demonstrate he is energized and committed to winning the nomination. Pretty sassy move. ‘ Course, it could backfire. And, so it begins…….
Speaking of “responses” 1mime, I thought Joni Ernst’s was pretty weak. She pulled a Palin and opened by saying (paraphrased) “I will not be responding to the SOTU speech” and then launched into her canned and rehearsed speech. Weak, very weak.
And I also take exception to her “credentials” as a “combat veteran” which the media accepts without apparently any reservations or research or verification. I guess you can say technically she can call herself a combat theater veteran and by Army standards she can wear her unit patch on her right shoulder to signify such. However, she was a Captain commanding an Iowa National Guard transportation unit in Kuwait and Iraq in 2003 and 2004 and I am not able to find any information on whether Ernst was involved in any actual combat, encountered the enemy in any type of military action or activity, or fired her weapon or been fired upon by an enemy combatant or even “went outside the wire” on a combat patrol. I also cannot find any medals or decorations Ernst was awarded for her service in “combat” or even for her general service in the military.
As for a REAL female combat veteran in Congress, my respect and admiration goes to Lieutenant Colonel Tammy Duckworth who flew more than 120 combat hours as an air assault Blackhawk pilot in a combat unit (106th Aviation Regiment, 28th Infantry Division with the Illinois National Guard) in 8 months of duty in Iraq in 2004 and was awarded the Combat Action Badge and Air Medal in addition to the Purple Heart for her combat wounds in which she lost both her legs and was severely injured in her right arm when her chopper was hit by an RPG:
I don’t know why LTC Duckworth doesn’t get paraded around like the Republican for her genuine combat service.
Hell, even John Kerry who was awarded the Silver Star in combat in Vietnam which was never in dispute, allowed himself to be incorrectly smeared and Swift Boated on his military service without a strong response.
I have to give it to the Repubs to have a better propaganda machine than the simpering Democrats.
Real heroes rarely seek public affirmation, Bubba. Agree on Duckworth – class act. The length alone of Ernst’s response was mind-numbing. From a content standpoint, it was flat but she at least didn’t get thirsty in the middle of the presentation, a la Rubio (-: It was also way too long. I didn’t hear any of the other GOP responses but am amused that there were so many. Maybe the GOP tent is getting bigger!
bubba, I think it’s seldom a good idea to try to parse various forms of military service for the correct amount of combat-ness.
Last year, for my employer, I was asked to write up the experiences of employees who are military veterans. So I interviewed them and did my best to understand their time in the military.
The majority of them had MOSs that were not combat soldier. But they all trained hard and carried weapons when overseas. In one case, a non-combat job became a combat job over the course of 3 seconds.
The swift-boating of Kerry was extremely difficult to witness, a soulless thing. We should be careful we don’t lose our souls. It’s only politics.
I don’t know anything about Ernst, except that her wide-eyed glossy persona scares me a little.
Bobo, I understand that any and all military in country during time of war are at risk. As a matter of fact, Jessica Lynch was part of a transportation unit that came under fire when she was injured and captured and her unit suffered significant dead and wounded casualties. And she is considered a combat veteran without equivocation. And normally I will let such expansive qualifications go, but when it is used extensively for political gain, then the overstatement becomes disingenuous at a minimum and egregious considering what a genuine combat veteran experiences as I noted with LTC Duckworth.
And to be perfectly honest, these concerns and distinctions are important within the military and go back to the Vietnam era (and possibly earlier) with the derogatory acronym “REMF” that Vietnam combat veterans labeled soldiers who are technically at war in a “combat zone” but safely ensconced in the Rear Echelon away from any actual conflict. I leave it to your imagination what the other 2 letters of the acronym represent. And I understand current guerrilla warfare in Iraq and Afghanistan is different from Vietnam, but there are still varying levels of risk and exposure to hostile contact with enemy combatants and I think it does an injustice to genuine combat veterans to conflate those soldiers who experienced and risk the dangers of real combat equally with those who in reality did not and would not have despite their being stationed in country in a war zone..
I would like to see how RoR feels about it as a Vietnam veteran himself. And I believe he is a combat veteran but I’m not sure and don’t want to overstate it for him.
Bubba, you have to admit that the GOP was trying to offer up a nice little PR package: young, pretty female – ck; military- ck; not running for President – ck; glib – ck; followed the party line – ck. What else could we expect? Substance? Independence?
I don’t remember her mentioning her credentials at hog castration….how nice of her.
Thankful for small favors huh 1mime? I thought the pig castration meme was over the top. But not surprising.
What a clown.
In LA, we would call that “crawfishing” (-:
I’d call that good interviewing. Too bad we see so little of it here.
Some of those British reporters pull no punches!! That’s why I like listening to BBC interviews-they call out people who try to squirm away.
Yeah Bobby, why don’t you tell us exacty which neighborhoods have this Muslim problem, since you know so much about it.
But, but, but, Bobby Boucher said “alleged”. Now he has a get out of jail free pass to say whatever wingnut crap bait he wants with impunity!
What a tool.
I agree about the BBC. Watch this famous clip from BBC Newsnight. It doesn’t really matter if you know the circumstances of the interview. It’s brutal.
The only American interviewer I remember that came close to this style was Tim Russert.
JG, it’s both backtracking (Jindal style) and a hard-hitting interview. American news has become too packaged and “safe”. Substance is suffering under the guise of of false courtesy and legality. I’ll never forget the interview at the Capital of Rep. Grimm threatening the reporter. Guess the reporter got the last laugh, tho I am certain he feared for his life.
Meet the Press’s Chuck Todd admitted on-air that he and other interviewers (on the Sunday talk shows) let their guests off easily out of concern that they won’t come back if they are asked hard questions. Sadly enough, he admitted this in a roundtable discussion of political humorists. Watching Jon Stewart dissect Huckabee the other night (in which Huckabee’s criticism of Beyonce was followed by Stewart showing a clip of Huckabee playing guitar while Ted Nugent sang “Cat Scratch Fever”) it does seem like the fake news shows are better at calling out politicians than the real ones.
Amusingly, I googled this to find a link, and amongst the top hits were ones from this site (Liberaland, which I had never heard of before) and the Washington Examiner, which is FoxNews on paper. The Liberaland one had video…
I think David Gregory did a little better in that regard, too bad he couldn’t sell.
Slate just published an article by a woman that once lived in one of these “No Go Zones”. It seems it is worse that even Piyush Jindal describes.
Unlike most other parts of Paris, you could walk around the neighborhood all day and never hear a word of English, though you might hear some Arabic or Chinese, or otherwise heavily accented French. And as far as it was from the center of town, everything I needed was within walking distance: There was a mediocre bakery just around the corner (and a better bakery a few blocks south), a decent outlet of the grocery and drugstore chain Monoprix, a fantastic Lebanese restaurant whose owner gave away desserts for free. Just a few blocks away was the Canal de l’Ourcq, with jogging paths, public art, and green spaces along the water.
Can you imagine being subjected to jogging paths and culture…..CULTURE dang it. Heaven forbid.
Turtles I think those would be the places I would gravitate to should I ever choose to travel abroad.
Well if you listen Jindal you better pack your veil and prayer rug.
Who listens to Jindal?
I was headed in on 290 the other day when I noticed a gathering of people with placards and signs. The placards and signs had what appeared to be anti-Islamic messages on them. I won’t mention exactly what they said because I think you can already guess. It kind of reminded me Chick fil A’s billboard with the cows except it was with Mooslims and what not.
I think someone is trying to start the end times in proper when I see this stuff. I don’t think the prophets in the Bible mention Islam, do they? They do say that the world will be suckered when he finally does make an appearance. I think that would probably include conservatives and Christians as well. I mean if he lowers taxes and fights crime and all he can’t be the Anti-Christ, right?
Good luck Bobby, cause if you sow the whirlwind you shall surely reap it.
What does it profit a man, if he gains Louisiana?
“What does it profit a man, if he gains Louisiana?”
It profits him damn little. At the rate Louisiana is sinking Bobby will be knee deep in the Gulf of Mexico soon.
“Little fat man said, isn’t it a shame, what the river has done to this poor cracker’s land.”
“What does it profit a man, if he gains Louisiana?” Not a hell of a lot.
” ‘What does it profit a man, if he gains Louisiana?” Not a hell of a lot.’
To be fair, there’s some damn good food and live music in NOLA.
I stand corrected Fly, I sure do love those oyster poboys!
Bobby better watch his mouth. I seriously doubt this will go anywhere but if it embarrasses Fox I’m down with it.
Let’s use Shakespeare again, “The first thing we do, is kill all the ……………
lawyers….it’s not the lawyers that needs killing in this case. Spreading lies in the guise of “news” should be called out.
RoR- Two wrongs don’t make a right, but at least Fox issued a pretty strongly and unambiguously worded retraction, which is more than the WH did regarding the stupid gaff of not sending anyone of any significance to the Paris rally to show solidarity with the civilized world. “Well yeah – we polly shoulda sent somebody else”, just doesn’t cut it, if you ask me.
Actually fifty I think the WH made a goof, however they may have done the wise thing. I support free speech with my life, however just doing shit to piss people off isn’t real smart. This has escalated into something that may start WWIII. Fox deserves everything they got coming. It’s easy for those so called “news” commentators to vomit garbage and then say “Oh dear I am so sorry”.
I’m with you, but can’t see any possibility of the ‘wise thing’ thing.
The best way to fight bullshit is with truth, and probably not with lawsuits. The sooner we all begin to see the major newsy organs as purveyors of ‘truthy entertainment’, the better we’ll all be for it.
And insofar as avoiding “pissing people off” with what we say, I’ll observe neither one of us do very well, do we? 😉
Well now fifty, you know I am the poster child for political correctness when it comes to pissing people off. 😎
Useless lawsuits and empty suits, “I’ll take empty gestures for 200 Alex…….”
Jindal “bobbed and weaved” at a CSM luncheon when asked about creationism too. Now, notwithstanding the fact that having a B.S. degree in biology qualifies no one as a ‘biologist’, being a smart guy, (as we’re agreed he is), we must believe he knows that creationism is, at its core, a complete fabrication and total bullshit, but didn’t say as much. So what?
Here’s the ‘So what”: He is apparently a guy who says what he thinks he needs to say to get elected, whether or not he actually believes it. Were you to ask me what I think of Islam, or even religion in general, I’d not be electable for what I’d reply. But I’m not running for office.
It would appear that the choices are: vote for a really stupid person, (say SJL), who likely really believes every asinine thing he/she says, vote for a relatively smart person who will say what it is you probably want to hear, or vote for a candidate, sincere and honest, sharp as a tack, who happens to hold the same opinions as you do. I submit to you that finding the latter is like finding a jar of pickled chicken lips.
“.., we must believe he knows that creationism is, at its core, a complete fabrication and total bullshit, but didn’t say as much. So what?”
I’d say the “so what” is that he’s catering to the anti-science crowd at a time when science and tech and knowledge are becoming major drivers of the economy and the USA’s edge on other counties in this arena is shrinking.
FP- He’s more likely catering to the Fundies, as opposed to the “anti-science” crowd, though you could well argue the validity of any such distinction.
Apparently, a lot of anti-vaxxers turn out to be wealthy fundamentalists.
“Anti-science’ is a broad population cutting across political and religious worlds-the vaxxers contain a lot of erstwhile liberals.
I often and willingly ignore my doctor, so who am I to choose to label anyone?
Well, I’m writing here, that’s who I am to label.
Jindal is appealing to an overwhelmingly white subset of Catholic and Protestant Christians who profess a belief in the complete accuracy of a book written by a committee of non-Catholic, un-Protestant, authors known as ‘God’. God is all powerful, except when it comes to public schools and our ability to rationalize anything we choose to believe.
As a said earlier, Jindal has done more than bobbing and weaving. He has actively supported the teaching of creationism in LA public schools.
Strictly speaking, he has advocated the teaching of it as a local ‘option’. On the other hand, he’s also opined he’d like to see his own children schooled in evolution. And this is Bobby Janus Jindal we’re talkin’ about.
“Local options” are too often an appeal to idiocy or cronyism.
“Local control” is hurting the American educational system. We need strong national standards, coupled with the will and treasure to make them work. (Obviously, “unfunded mandates” are problematic.)
“…a jar of pickled chicken lips.” What a colorful analogy.
The problem with voting for someone smart who panders to the least common denominator is that you do so in the hopes that they will not act on the base politics they propose (“If elected, surely he wouldn’t really…?”). The GOP has been testing this assumption over the last few years, though safe in the knowledge that a presidential veto awaits their craziness. What they would do if they held all the strings of power is debatable, but when you cast your integrity into a pit of creationism, ISIS crossing our Southern border, Obamacare socialism, it is hard to have much confidence that they would govern responsibly.
I think it was you who mentioned Machiavelli the other day. Were but either ‘side’ immune to the dicta of political science that he described!
“The GOP has been testing this assumption over the last few years, though safe in the knowledge that a presidential veto awaits their craziness. What they would do if they held all the strings of power is debatable,..”
The notion that some of them, deep in their heart of hearts, even if they won’t admit it to themselves, could be grateful to Obama for saving them from themselves is highly amusing.
And sobering at the same time.
True enough, 50.
To this point it has largely been Harry Reid saving both Obama and the GOP by refusing to dignify some of the House’s crazier or more futile measures with a Senate hearing. That layer of insulation is gone, so Mr. Obama will need his veto pen ready, at least based on the first week of fun from the new Congress.
What was the Dudley Moore movie where he was suddenly struck by honesty and began producing advertisements reflecting truth (Volvo-ugly but safe)?
The problem here isn’t the ‘truth’, but Jindal’s shortcomings as a politician and a speaker. I come not to bury creationism, but to praise it, and I don’t know how to make the argument well enough for you to know what I mean.
“Crazy People”, good stuff.
“Paramount Pictures presents ‘The Freak.’ This movie won’t just scare you, it will fuck you up for life.”
“You may think phone service stinks since deregulation, but don’t mess with us, because we’re all you’ve got. In fact, if we fold, you’ll have no damn phones. AT&T – we’re tired of taking your crap!”
50, YOU”RE THE BEST! Picked chicken lips, indeed!
I’m sure that the conservatives who sputter on about “Hussein” or “Barack Hussein” because “it is his given name” will soon be on board with Piyush Jindal.
Krauthammer is referencing “no-go zones” in his latest column too.
My take is that Jindal taking the easy way out. The quickest and cheapest and easiest way the rally people is to give them an enemy. It plays to our basest nature. It’s also hurts efforts to deal with a real danger, which is the minority in the Muslim communities who become radicalized. The best way to find those people and stop any attacks they may be planning is to have good community relations, so that the people who want no part of the radicals will be willing to tip off law enforcement. Here’s an example of doing it right:
“The FBI learned a lesson after stopping three Denver girls from joining ISIS. Today on Morning Edition, we heard how the terrorist group convinced the teenagers to go to Syria. They got as far as Germany. That’s where authorities intercepted them. The FBI learned of their plans only after their fathers contacted the bureau. And here’s the lesson – if law enforcement hopes to stop people before they join terrorist groups, it needs the cooperation of Muslim communities in the U.S.”
The Republican Party base does not trust information outside the conservative bubble, and that bubble is almost invariably wrong. It isn’t more complicated than that IMHO. The base survives because – with few exceptions, such as this blog – inconvenient facts, history and conservative “heroes” go down the conservative memory hole and the conservative and MSM keeps a tight lid on that so last year’s disasters never get examined again. Instead, when anyone mentions the catastrophic consequences of the enactment of “conservative” policies, the media keep repeating the mantra, “Well, both sides do it.” Followed changing the subject to by the “scandal” of the minute (fill in the blank with Benghazi, the IRS, etc.). Mission accomplished.
What is sad is the clear demonstration here of what impact the Ted Cruz effect has on right wing politics. Jindal has seen how popular Cruz has become with the far right and his rock star popularity with them AND the ADHD addled tabloid media hungry for a reality TV quality firebomb sound bite that seems to pass for political “insight” these days.
It will be an interesting Repub primary season as all the attention starved second and third rate “conservative standard bearer” wannabes try to outwingnut and outcrazy Cruz.
And both Cruz and Jindal are smart to know exactly what they are doing. And power hungry and amoral enough to not care what damage they do to the American political process (and this country) in their naked scorched earth approach to their single minded pursuit of power and publicity. At any cost.
However, I am enjoying the Schadenfreudian hilariously dismissive mocking responses to this hateful/racist wingnut idiocy.
“the name of the city [of Birmingham] had been shortened to Birming because Muslims do not eat ham.”
In response to Governor Jindal, I will simply relay what the mayor of Rotterdam said following the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack. His name is Ahmed Aboutaleb and he is a Muslim, born in North Africa but who has been raised in the Netherlands and has risen to be mayor of one of the largest cities in the realm (and one of the largest ports in the world, I might add).
“It is incomprehensible that you can turn against freedom. But if you don’t like freedom, then for heaven’s sake, pack your bags and leave. If you don’t like it here because some humorists are publishing a little newspaper you don’t like, may I say that you should just fuck off. It is stupid and incomprehensible. Leave the Netherlands if you cannot find your place here or accept the society we want to build.”
There are obviously segments of Muslim immigrants in Europe who are not willing to integrate and accept enlightenment values that we cherish in the West. But to placate to the right wing in this country that assumes that all Muslims are terrorists or at least sympathizes with terrorism is disgraceful and dangerous.
Thanks for sharing a wonderful post, John! We need more mayors like Aboutaleb. Heck, we need more people like Aboutaleb! Yes, there are politicians who are constantly scamming others with all sorts of lies and distortions to further their careers (with little concern for truth or consequences), but, people like Cruz and Jindal won’t win if we pay attention. Sadly, there are too many who don’t.
Aboutaleb might be my new favorite politician.
I do not know Mark Harper, the government minister in charge of immigration, is pretty high on my list. He told Domino’s Pizza to basically bugger off a year and a half ago because they wanted cheap labor
“The chief executive of Domino’s British franchise, Lance Batchelor, told the London Evening Standard newspaper this week that his firm was struggling to find workers after a tightening of immigration rules.
Batchelor had appealed to the government to allow his firm to bring in unskilled workers from outside the EU, saying Domino’s could hire 1,000 workers immediately.
“He should perhaps pay his staff a little more and then he might find it easier to recruit them … He runs a profitable business, he should pay what the market demands,” said Mark Harper, the government minister in charge of immigration.
“I don’t think that we should import relatively unskilled labour from outside the European Union just so that he (Batchelor) can keep his wages low,” Harper told a parliamentary committee on Tuesday.”
I cannot imagine any US politician telling Walmart to pay their employees higher wages instead of relying on the government to subsidize their low wages.
I’m seeing parallels with the calculated stupidity of certain old-time Democrats. The one who comes to mind is George Wallace. In Wallace’s early career, he came across as a civil-rights liberal. Losing an election, he decided to go full-on racist and, in doing so, won the governorship of Alabama. He continued pursuing this line, which his early career shows was not sincere on his part, through his third-party run for the presidency in 1968 and right up until he was shot in 1972. After that, he reverted to his earlier positions.
That’s one example of a smart Democrat who played dumb to win public office. Jindal is probably doing the same thing for the same reasons, pandering to the same people and/or their aging children.
As GOPlifer suggests, there is a political game being played in which winning elections or passing laws IS NOT the object. The object IS making democracy and self government appear unworkable so that powerful personalities can move in to fill the gap, a scenario more reminiscent of Hitler’s Germany than of Washington’s America. I commend GOPlifer for offering constructive criticism of one of our two great political parties. Imagine America with only one functioning party: it is an oligarch’s dream, a patriot’s nightmare.
Ted Cruz is another example, and arguably a more frightening one.
Ted Cruz is the devil in disguise.
It ain’t no disguise.
I love Ted Cruz! You guys are just jealous of his charm, good-looks and Hispanic heritage. 🙂
Yes OV he is another “breath of fresh air” for you.Not surprisingly.
Bubba, you are like a breath of fresh air in a stale smelling refrigerator. There, there. Does that make you feel better? I never wanted you to feel left out. 😦
Jindal is pandering to the base, pretty obvious there.
Some strategists, Peter, have written books on how their party would rule permanently, it makes me concerned. I know there was one for Republicans but the ones that stood out to me were 40 more years by James Carville (He’s a Democratic strategist so that’s obvious and it was written after the 2008 election) and Permanently Blue by Dylan Loewe. One party rule no matter who’s running is not good for the country.
I guess James and Dylan never visited the places where their party has ruled “permanently”, I live near some, Buffalo and Lockport, in Western NY. Lockport is mostly Republican while the Democrats have won the mayoral elections in Buffalo since the 1960’s. There was one time in 2009 where Republicans didn’t even bother to put a candidate out, the Democratic primary is sadly the real race in the city.
Both cities have big areas that are undeveloped. James and Dylan have never been to a country with real one party rule. Even after the rule is done, it takes a long time for the country to recover.
Wouldn’t it be great if we had more than two parties to choose from? As you point out, a lopsided duopoly too easily becomes a monopoly, and those are even worse in politics than they are in business.
My father-in-law is a profoundly intelligent man. He’s an engineer and will soon retire as an executive of a very large construction firm with global reach (he builds oil and gas refineries for a living; his last project was in Turkmenistan, I think). But on politics, he can’t muster any more than the usual bumper sticker Republican soundbites. My wife, who is extremely close to him, argues with him all the time. It’s not that he’s conservative that bothers me. It’s that such a smart guy has such a limited imagination and ability to articulate positions on issues that aren’t right out of the Fox News script.
Boy, can I relate to your situation! It’s like there’s no other position but the one they’re espousing. And, so often, Fox News is the 24 hr news source. It’s frustrating and bewildering to see intelligent people who we care about shut down when politics is involved. I wish I could explain it, heck, I wish I could understand it! If one thinks deeply on complex issues, there is room for a wide range of views. Failing to try to understand other points of view as well as refusing to articulate one’s own position(s), is becoming the way people defend their views. It’s lazy and it’s sad. And, it’s a big factor in the political divide in America.
There are different kinds of intelligence, I guess, though I’d never underestimate my father-in-law. We happened to drop in one afternoon and he was reading work e-mail on the sofa and listening to Kraftwerk. No joke. But don’t get him started on drug legalization or welfare. I mean, the guy actually DVR’s The O’Reilly Factor. Just amazing.
This describes the politics of almost all of the baby boomers I know. To what extent do you think this might be a generational affliction?
I don’t have a clue about baby boomers. Anse and I were talking about our elders…who would probably range in age from 60s-80s. They are fixated on Fox. At least one can sort of understand the fear and ease of manipulation of older people even if they are intelligent. Baby boomers….do they read? Has their educational process encouraged creative thinking? Do they have the patience to dig deep into important issues or are they focused mostly on their on more narrow world? Answer those questions and maybe we’ll be able to make a start at understanding where they’re coming from.
I hate to burst your bubbles here but not all baby boomers are stuck on stupid. Quite a few of them actually post here. I will agree that many tend toward the Republican side of things but even those vehemently disagree with the most extreme members of the party. Remember that the 60 and 70 year old’s today grew up in the sixties.
1mime, the elders that you’re talking about and the Baby Boomers are one and the same.
Way2, of course I realize this doesn’t describe all Boomers. What I was trying to ask was, are younger generations just as prone to this way of thinking?
Firebug, What’s the old saying about being liberal when young and growing more conservative as you age and experience more of life? Listening to the many young people that I know from various backgrounds what I hear is that for the most part they reject the ideology of social conservatives yet they want a government that is limited but effective. Young people seem to be more in tune with fairness and equality and equal justice for everyone. More to the point, they seem more willing to listen to both sides of a debate until they feel like they are being lied to.
I am a baby boomer who was raised in a staunch GOP family. Mind you, the GOP of the 1960s bore little resemblance to the party of today. I don’t think my basic values and political philosophy have changed all that much, but today’s Democratic party is where I feel most at home.
For me, the election of President Reagan was the seminal event that began my transition from the GOP to the Democrats. I voted for him when he won his first term, but came to regret it as I witnessed his indifference to the less fortunate in our society and his overt deference to the wealthy and big business. His administration also supported the Christian fundamentalist movement that questioned the patriotism of citizens who disagreed with their religious beliefs. And Reagan’s handling of the AIDS epidemic, even refusing to acknowledge its existence or support efforts to contain it because it affected the “wrong kind of people”, was unconscionable.
To conclude, I think the Reagan Administration divided the country in unprecedented ways. Christian fundamentalism caused a schism in the Christian community. Such fundamentalism is particularly strong in rural areas, and the polarization between the urban and the rural has been further exacerbated. Furthermore, this fundamentalism has led to dogmatic thinking in the secular sphere, with little room for entertaining, let alone acknowledging the possible validity of an opposing view. I would submit that the Fox News demographic is mainly composed of this group that Reagan wrought. And we boomers were right in the middle of all of this.
Way2, I’ve thought about that old saying, and could it possibly be that simple. But then I think about the older generation I knew growing up–the parents of the Boomers. I was only a kid, but I remember enough to realize that they had a completely different perspective on life and politics. They had a sense of shared obligation, instead of the sense of shared fear we’re supposed to settle for nowadays. There was none of this pettiness. It first struct me 30 years ago, in a conversation about abortion with my great aunt Opal who was nearly 80 at the time. She minced no words declaring that it was wonderful it was so safe now, and what business was it of the government’s. I guess she was part of a generation that got to see firsthand how government can profoundly improve our quality of life without infringing on it in the process.
“I would submit that the Fox News demographic is mainly composed of this group that Reagan wrought. And we boomers were right in the middle of all of this.”
Ergo, much of it can be explained by the timing? That makes sense. Do you think growing up and coming of age in a prosperous economy may have also contributed?
Do you think the Fox News-watching segment is still an overwhelmingly fundamentalist demographic? Has it become secularized at all?
You may be right about the prosperity that we enjoyed during those years. Perhaps that comfort validated Reagan in the eyes of many boomers.
As for Fox, whenever I watch it (which is fairly often when I visit my father who watches only Fox or TCM), I detect a fundamentalist subtext. I’ll admit that I may be overly sensitized to this. There are at least two subjects where the fundamentalist viewpoint is clear. First, the passionate support of Israel at all costs so that the Biblical prophecies can come true. Second, the virulent attacks on all aspects of Islam (not just radical Islam). Fox’s Islamophobia came to bite them when they had to grudgingly retract their stories of Islamic “no go” zones within Europe where Sharia law is practiced and local police do not enter.
You’re describing large parts of my family. FoxNews as the primary news source and little interest in fact checking. It took me six months to convince my father, also a smart and successful entrepreneur, that taxes had not, in fact, gone up under Obama (in 2009) and that, in fact, overall tax receipts had plummeted. My mother is beyond hope. My brother once sent one of those chain emails to me about how many people were on the dole and how people on welfare shouldn’t be allowed to vote – while he was collecting uninsurance! My uncle loathed Bill Clinton for having weaseled his way out of the Vietnam draft (which my uncle could not do), but gave W. a pass on the same issue on the flimsy construct that W. had been in the National Guard. His son is a true believer conservative and comments on the takers routinely, though he was educated entirely at public expense all the way through college (on ROTC), whereupon the Navy trained him to do his current job, which is to fly airplanes whose development was subsidized by defense contracts from one government-built, -owned, and -operated airport to another.
It’s just cognitive dissonance. They do not see that they are primary beneficiaries of the very system they want to dismantle.
“First, the passionate support of Israel at all costs so that the Biblical prophecies can come true.”
Thank you! I was puzzled as to why the right wingers I know are all such vehement defenders of Israel.
“It’s just cognitive dissonance. They do not see that they are primary beneficiaries of the very system they want to dismantle.”
Cognitive dissonance, indeed. Sometimes it seems as if we are rapidly transforming into a nation of schizophrenics, governed by sociopaths.
“You’re describing large parts of my family. FoxNews as the primary news source and little interest in fact checking.”
Mine too. And some members of my family can get very emotional over a political disagreement. I just do my best to avoid political discussions. And all those fwd:fwd:fwd:etc emails go straight to the trash.
“First, the passionate support of Israel at all costs so that the Biblical prophecies can come true.”
If you are seriously supporting policies with the purpose of bringing about Armaggedon, you are no better than people who hijack airplanes and fly them into buildings. In fact, I’d say that you are worse, as your vile plan would cause even more death and destruction.
I hope you’re not talking about me!!
The Armageddon thing arose in the 70s and 80s. I remember my father being excited about a book called “The Late Great Planet Earth” by Hal Lindsay, which describes events in Israel the Bible says must occur before the Messiah returns. The book was later made into a film “documentary” featuring Orson Welles. Readers were advised to get their ducks in a row so they’d be ready for the Rapture and judgment any day now.
My parents are liberal and watch MSNBC. I have to admit to becoming quite nauseous after five minutes of it being on.
Each of them nauseate me. This false dilemma is omnipresent in our culture, maybe the human brain, which only considers what is presented rather than the entirety of a world. We can dismantle a welfare state and still provide a floor for all citizens. We can have commerce and rules regarding commerce, they aren’t exclusive.
“A picture is worth a thousand words” and there are pictures of Abraham Lincoln, maybe even a couple of him at Gettysburg?
Crogged — Excellent comment regarding the “false dilemma.” But, with a system legally and institutionally dominated by two parties, that’s the natural lens we’re presented through which to see the world, even if it’s a stupid one.
Yet another reason we need a strong, multi-party system.
This has hit a sore spot with me. My step-father, normally a smart, normal guy, totally lost it when Obama became President especially after he was elected twice. He’s become a Foxbot and constantly forwards those bullshit emails that are so easily debunked and outright false. Now he spends all his time online reading anti-Obama propaganda and buying up guns and ammo like he’s getting ready for a war. My mother, not a great Obama fan herself, is going nuts dealing with him and even she’s admitted that the stuff he’s spouting is outright false and outrageous. You can’t argue with him though. Like most tea party types he just gets mad and shouts.
I never thought he was as racist as he is but he’s revealed himself. Everything is “ragheads” this or “goddam slant eyes are taking over the country”, “Obama wants to be king”, etc.
Apparently, a black guy getting elected sent some old white farts ’round the bend. We have to tread carefully at family events and carefully avoid anything he can turn around to Obama, which unfortunately he’s become adept at doing.
GG, don’t you get tired of always having to be the one who “tip toes” around “the subject” at family events? We all do it to keep peace, but I am beginning to believe that holding back is actually perceived by them as weakness rather than restraint. When the hard right is family, that’s especially tough. It’s an impossible situation and I don’t see it getting better. The alternative is to do what Fly suggested, avoid political discussions and, by all means, deleting offensive emails (without reading them!). Trying to reach out through information has been a waste of time and likely results in a scene.
It’s easy to say this animus is pure racism, but is something deeper at work here? Lifer’s blog on how pluralism threatens low income whites is more easily understood than the anger of many upper middle class and the wealthy. IMO, for them, it’s entitlement and resentment over paying for social safety nets for the poor. How easy it is to ignore or forget how government has (and will) benefit all of us at various times in our lives. For me, it’s part of what living in a civilized society entails. Shared obligation. Not wasteful, but shared.
“This has hit a sore spot with me. My step-father, normally a smart, normal guy, totally lost it when Obama became President especially after he was elected twice.”
I’ll admit, I really really hated the fact that GW Bush ended up as President after that farce called election 2000. Needless to say I wasn’t happy with him getting elected in 2004 after that debacle that was the Iraq invasion. But guess what? I got on with my life. Sometimes your candidate doesn’t win (or your anti-candidate doesn’t lose) and you’re going to have to deal until the next election.
How do you think he’d react should Hillary Clinton win in ’16? Some of my relatives would continue their wailing and gnashing of teeth.
I don’t see his paranoia and fear disappearing since Houston has so many “brown” people. As of now, it’s almost impossible for him to see a doctor who wasn’t born in India or Pakistan. He comes from the grocery store bitching about some perfectly nice, agreeable young girl working the register in a hijab as if it’s a personal affront. He’s become just awful but maybe if a Republican is elected he’ll stop his stockpiling of weapons in fear of “Obammy” taking his guns or declaring martial law to set up his dictatorship. 🙂
“For me, it’s part of what living in a civilized society entails. Shared obligation. Not wasteful, but shared.”
I agree 100%. I’ve visited countries where there are no safety nets. It isn’t pretty.
This blog makes a good support group for people with relatives gone off the political deep end.
Yes it does. It also challenges me and makes me laugh, Fly! Here’s a little podcast that will make everyone smile, and there’s no politics involved! I hope this link will activate for all to enjoy, if not paste it in your browser. It’s worth it.
Restore Your Faith In Humanity in Four Minutes Flat
Thank you 1mime. Very inspiring. And good to see an international flavor to it.
It seemed the right time for something like this, altho I try to stay on point out of respect to Lifer and other participants. I really enjoy the forum. Should be about time for a SOTU post by Lifer….I’m hoping he will examine today’s Senate vote on climate change, er, global warming?? The caveat for many of the Repubs voting “yes” was that climate change was occurring but man wasn’t causing it! Huh? Not even a teeny weeny bit? Would that hurt too much to admit?
“How do you think he’d react should Hillary Clinton win in ’16? Some of my relatives would continue their wailing and gnashing of teeth.” –fly
I think that the Obama presidency was Fate’s way of ensuring that our first female POTUS has a much easier time of it than she would have.
Love that video and thanks for posting it.
It is a very frustrating problem. I’ve written about this before:
“Reason in politics does not come from the same sources as individual reason. In our personal lives, we learn to shun stupid or loony ideas because we recognize or experience first-hand the damage they produce. Many of the same people who are scanning the skies for UN helicopters nonetheless do a very good job caring for their children, performing surgery, or operating heavy machinery.”
Some of us in other geological parts of the country decided he was an idiot after his Republican response in 2013. He ridiculed spending federal money on volcano studies. He evidently loves Federal money on hurricane and oil spill incidents. As you might guess I live not far from an active volcano. LOL
Well OK. You said a stupid thing. Palin is stupid. She gave a talk in Hong Kong (IIRC) and a leftie said after hearing her to the effect, “She is not stupid”. I don’t know why Palin is stupid keeps getting passed around. You may not like her policy positions. She may not do well in off the cuff remarks (Joe Biden?). But stupid?
Judging by the sentence structure, I’m guessing that Gov. Palin edited that comment for you too?
I used to write for ECN magazine – when I want sentence structure I have sentence structure, When I’m wasting time on a blog I don’t put in near as much effort.
Strangely enough Sarah suffers from your same “effort” malady.
Both majored in the art of word salad.
Palin got caught having not done her homework during that infamous Katie Couric interview (Really Sarah, you couldn’t offer an opinion on any recent major SCOTUS decisions??). Instead of “I wasn’t prepared, I’ll work harder and do better next time”, her response was the intellectually lazy “the media is out to get me”. So if she really has the smarts you claim, she sure didn’t make much of an effort to use them.
The ability to give a good talk is not in any sense a measure of her intelligence. Speeches are written by others (sometimes at least) and rehearsed. The measure of intelligence is the ability to craft a reasonable argument and defend it in front of unscripted questions. Palin’s inability to do that was crystal-clear in 2008 and since then she has very rarely ventured outside the bubble where she might be further exposed as a fraud.
I admit, her little rant about “fruit fly research in Paris France! (I kid you not!)”, that one was personal!!!
Because of the fly thing, or do you just have a particular affinity for Paris?
Both! Paris is at the top of my list (along with Rome and Istanbul) of cities I dearly hope to visit someday.
Thank you for (unintentionally) confirming my assessment with each new post OV.
Welcome to the blog, M Simon! Clearly, you have not met our resident grammarian the great and mighty Owl of Bellaire. Some may uncharitably label him by the Freudian term “anal retentive” but I am sure that what he does is a public service.. (I’ve learn a lot.) Even Chris has benefited and found out that his use of “ya’ll” was not correct. Watch those apostrophes!
Also, make sure you read EVERY comment as soon as it is posted. I’ve gotten burned in the past because I did not correct a fellow conservative over some vile remarks he made about a more liberal contributor to this blog.. Apparently, the comment in question was up for only a short time before Chris took it down, but I was guilty as sin for not being chained to my computer all day so I could comment immediately.
Buckle your seat-belt. You’re in for a bumpy ride. 🙂
I see the trolls have returned to Chrispistrano.
And apparently you’re not paying attention again in your zeal to flame and personal attack other posters OV. Owl is nowhere near this post. It was Chris himself who noted the mangled grammar.
Reading comprehension fail OV. Again.
And by the way, it’s
“I’ve learn[ed] a lot.”
objv, why have you suddenly become such a lame jerk? Was it just that Sternn and kabuzz were previously able to keep up the idiocy level, so you didn’t have to? Or is there some sort of inverse-seniority system in the conservative world, such that when they departed you were required by custom to assume the position of bottom-feeding snark?
And don’t you dare complain about personal attacks; you yourself opened that can of worms with your pitiful screed.
We all welcome M.Simon to the blog. I try to be coherent more than punctually correct, but, I wouldn’t follow this blog if I felt I was wasting my time. There are some fine minds posting interesting information and views (as well as some great zingers). If you stick around, you’ll find you can learn a lot and get a good laugh, too (rocks & stumps, anyone?).
As for my earlier “boomer” comment, I didn’t express myself well (so much for “coherence”). I agree with the WaytoGo’s assessment that many Boomers are more socially liberal and fiscally conservative and want fairness and equality for all. Thank god for that! One additional point about Boomers….Increased media access has provided a great opportunity for broadening views; however, we still need to “think” and be selective about what and whom we believe.
That gets me to “lied to”. And, that’s the thrust of Lifer’s post on Jindal. It has become politically expedient and evidently acceptable to give public figures a pass when they make outrageous, untrue or exaggerated comments. That falls squarely in the “lied to” camp and they absolutely should get called out for it
I particularly liked “like a breath of fresh air in a stale refrigerator” and a ‘bottle of pickled chicken lips’ was well done too. Don’t be good, be good at it……
Crogged, you may forgotten that “breath of fresh air” descriptor was in reference to a banned gutturally misogynistic and homophobic wingnut poster.
Owl, glad you showed up. I knew if I dangled some bait in the water you would bite. 🙂 I’d like to continue our discussion from a few days ago. Yes, I admit to behaving like a lame jerk and I concede that I have been “bitching” and taking up valuable blog space, (sorry, Chris), but I am still upset about the circumstances under which Tuttabella and Cap left.
I ‘m most unhappy about Tutt leaving since she contributed a unique perspective to our discussions. She truly tried to understand people and kept an open mind. I realize that Cap sometimes provoked others, but the insults and profanity directed toward him were far worse than anything he dished out – that is, until the end.
While you may not have posted specific details about Cap on Lifer’s blog, I remember you posting his name and address on the old Chronicle site. I don’t know if you took part in looking up Cap’s birth certificate, but that combined with trying to find personal information about his adoption,,his parents and where he lived via google maps indicates stalking behavior by members of this group. Personally, I’d report it to authorities if someone tried to do that to me.
Adoption records in the 1960s were usually sealed.New birth certificates were issued with the adoptive parents listed. Because information on Cap’s birth certificate was misinterpreted, Cap was called a liar and his parents were insulted. No apologies were made.
Owl, you and some the others like the claim the moral high ground. Do you really not see where you have gone wrong?
Bubba, you have now taken on the mantle of being the “breath of fresh air in a stale smelling refrigerator.” Happy?
My grammar is horrible, but the mistake was intentional
I lived near San Juan Capistrano for awhile. Lovely place. I would gladly become a troll if I could return. 🙂
How many horses have you brutalized to death already in your lame revisionist defense of the lame, OV?
And yes of course allllllll your grammatical, logical, and factual errors were ALWAYS intentional…
It’s sad when a perpetually ignorant, gullible, and misinformed wingnut ASSumes everyone else is just as gullible…
So, somehow horses are brutalized in my lame defense of the lame?
Bubba, I’m laughing! I don’t know if you were trying to be funny, but that was hilarious!
Thank you for (unintentionally) confirming my assessment with each new post OV.
You’re welcome, bubba.
“…..but I am still upset about the circumstances under which Tuttabella and Cap left.”
What circumstances? They left of their own free will, when they were here Sternn did nothing to add to the conversation here but throw out one inflammatory remark after another. He was treated in the manner in which he deserved, I do not condone the leaking of his personal information but his comments were quite insulting towards most everyone here. Tuft chose to leave on her own, I will not lose any sleep over her own decision.
objv complained, “While you may not have posted specific details about Cap on Lifer’s blog, I remember you posting his name and address on the old Chronicle site.”
Then you would remember wrong. Perhaps this is the same willful partisan blindness as you displayed last time around, since I’ve said this before but you seem determined not to get it.
I never posted Sternn’s address. After he publicly boasted about having a Captain-Sternn-associated domain name, I looked that up. The WHOIS records for his domain clearly and publicly list his name and address — contrary to the usual practice, which is to instead list your Internet registrar’s contact information. So far as I know, that information is still there, freely accessible to anyone on the Internet who cares to look it up.
So, why are you trying to blame me, when Sternn outed himself?
Oh, right. Because you’re a partisan crank.
Owl, my name is in the local phone book and my house has windows. Does that entitle someone to peep through my windows because I have left the curtains open?
True, Sternn did not go to great lengths to hide his identity. That did not mean he wanted personal information posted on the Chronicle site or this blog. Going so far as to look up information about his parents on his birth certificate was positively creepy. No wonder Cap left.
Turtles, you may not have liked Cap, but you’ve got to admit that he was constantly attacked by multiple people on this blog who swore at him and used derogatory terms.
While, yes, this blog is much more peaceful after Cap and Kabuzz left, the comments have become even more one-sided. The constant back-slapping and telling each other how smart you are does not promote any kind of meaningful debate on the issues important in this country. A circular self-congratulatory loop only reinforces the same old thought patterns and prejudices. Ideas should be challenged – not shouted down.
I’m in agreement with you on this whole West Texas dirt storm which has left all piles in every corner of every window of this house. Nobody here is perfect, what a shock.
Stop with the name calling and unnecessary editorial comments regarding the author. I don’t need an editor or footnotes for even a two paragraph comment from our most convoluted posters .
I don’t give a sh@t if I find your political/cultural comments to be somewhat supportive of what I consider ‘truthful’ and no one writing here has come up with useful shorthand for describing disparate and distinct thoughts into one convenient word.
But if you want to say I’m smart and pretty I’ll take it, even if it makes us an echo chamber.
1. Everything you say about someone is really about you.
2. Everything someone says about you is true.
3. Don’t be good, be good at it.
Let that fester or steep or inform or just help you chill the fuck out.
“Owl, my name is in the local phone book and my house has windows. Does that entitle someone to peep through my windows because I have left the curtains open?”
Um, yes. And if you parade around naked in your living room with the front curtains open, you can be arrested for indecent exposure, even though you were within your own house at the time. Do you really have nothing to offer but ridiculous arguments?
“Going so far as to look up information about his parents on his birth certificate was positively creepy.”
Are you claiming I have done so? I have not. So quit your useless kvetching and either get on point or get out.
And Objv the ‘you’ in my response was global, not directed at ‘you’…….insert emoticon here…
Crogged, you ARE smart and pretty! Thanks for speaking your mind. I do like your comments and they often make me smile.
Well, Owl, I have to confess that I do walk around my house in various stages of undress, but someone would have to make an effort to walk up to my house and press their face against one of the windows to see anything.
Figuratively, Cap was not standing naked in front of a window since he had not posted his own information. Some of the people here had to make an effort to go to various websites to see if they could ferret out any information they could use to intimidate or humiliate him.
I did not claim that you specifically were the one who looked up the birth certificate information, but you did post information about Cap and have made derogatory remarks about his background and where he lived.
I’m getting tired of this topic as well and I’m not the type of person who stays angry long, but I did feel I owed it to Tuttabella and Cap to stand up for them when their reputations were trashed.
… so now go ahead and do your happy dance. I’m done – unless you are the one who brings up the subject.
“Turtles, you may not have liked Cap, but you’ve got to admit that he was constantly attacked by multiple people on this blog who swore at him and used derogatory terms.”
Yes, I fully recognize his treatment. I treated him bad as well at times but it seems you are not willing to admit his negative treatment was due to his own behavior. He has insulted near everyone here in one way or another. So please do not expect me to feel sorry for him. He was a troll plain and simple….I won’t miss him at all.
Jindal’s intellect isn’t necessarily in question here. His knowledge of the political process is though, in fact outside of his research in the medical field both as a biologist and a policy author he really knows nothing. That means he is at most qualified to sit in a think tank or work for a consulting firm on medical policy and frankly it has shown. He’s been a right-wing suit for the corporate agenda in LA since his governorship began. While I’m on a visiting professorship here in this state I’ve watched him cut nearly 600 million from higher ed and wants another 300 million. He’s proposing to shut down about half of the programs in the only major public university in New Orleans to appease his racist supporters.
At the end of the day his political career is done for and this attempt to resurrect it as a right-wing reactionary isn’t going to do much to save it. The practical realities of the situation are already done, he’s sold everything that wasn’t bolted down by constitutional amendment to the oil and gas industry and the LA residents re-elected him based on the R next to his name even though they resoundingly hate him. It’s an interesting study in how people are even willing to accept the disconnect from their personal understanding of the situation and their beliefs tied to party and position.
Don’t forget Jindal’s dismantling of the LA health care system. He has been outspoken on his intention to reduce state employee levels, by any means necessary, regardless of the consequences. It will take decades for LA to recover from his tenure.
Yes, and it’s called, “voting against one’s best interests”. (See earlier Lifer’s blog, “How Pluralism Threatens Lower Income Whites”.)
As I said, and you seem to concur, if his skills as governor provide a clue about how he would be govern as President, that’s all the information you should need.
As for Sarah Palin being “bright”…..I wouldn’t know where to start on this subject, so I’ll pass.
Having lived in LA for many years and with many family members still there, I follow LA politics. Interestingly, my family is split, politically, but all of them dislike Jindall and feel he has been a train wreck. Of course, his actions are all about cutting taxes and the conservative agenda. And, that’s where he runs into a brick wall. Jindall, who gave the Republican response to President Obama’s 2009 SOTU address seemingly has careened from pathetic to off the wall nuts. IMO, Jindall wants to be President badly but is finding it difficult to figure out what suit to wear.
And, while I’m Jindall-bashing, let me state that being smart doesn’t make one wise. He is trying so hard to be relevant and to distinguish himself and he falls flat when he doesn’t totally screw up. Ask people from LA what they think of Jindall and you’ll probably get a wide range, but if his tenure as governor is any indication of his skills for higher office, Katy bar the door!
Today is a good day to think about political and moral courage.
As I ran errands at lunchtime, I listened to pieces of various MLK speeches and his life story as I got in and out of the car.
Sometimes it seemed I heard true anguish in his voice, anguish as in ‘why am I doing this?’
He seemed to know it was highly likely it wouldn’t end well for him.
I think MLK was an incident of ethical DNA mutation, something that doesn’t happen very often. He saw justice just outside the experience of those he loved, he wanted that justice. But there were many barriers.
If it wasn’t for that pesky DNA problem, he might have been able to choose another path when he got tired. Biologically, though, he had no choice.
I’m inspired by MLK. There are advanced degrees offered in leadership, but I think that’s all window dressing, attempts to codify what is only occasionally seen.
Very nice and eloquent tribute to MLK and you conveyed what a truly inspirational and uniquely insightful and gifted man he was Bobo.
When it gets disavowed by Fox News, you know it’s ridiculous
It’s important to add that, despite his Biology degree, Jindal advocated the teaching of creationism in Louisiana public schools.
It’s clear Jindal has made the calculation that being smart is not the path to power in today’s GOP.