Texas Taliban

A shocking amount of conservative politics is a multilevel marketing scam

A shocking amount of conservative politics is a multilevel marketing scam:

What they found is that most of these groups aren’t really raising money in order to support conservative candidates for office or to lobby on behalf of conservative causes — they’re raising millions of dollars and then spending 80 to 90 percent of that money on fees to consulting firms that are run by the people who started the groups. In effect, you have direct mail and email campaigns whose sole purpose is to raise funds to pay direct mail and email operatives.

This explains why do many want to run in the GOP primary. It’s good for fund raising.

Homegrown Extremists Tied to Deadlier Toll in U.S. Since 9/11 - The New York Times

the breakdown of extremist ideologies behind those attacks may come as a surprise. Since Sept. 11, 2001, nearly twice as many people have been killed by white supremacists, antigovernment fanatics and other non-Muslim extremists than by radical Muslims

(via Homegrown Extremists Tied to Deadlier Toll in U.S. Since 9/11 - The New York Times)

The lack of reporting of the problem of right wing extremism should be called out for what it is. Political correctness.

The Jade Helm Conspiracy Theories Are Moronic, but They’re Still Right About One Thing

The Jade Helm Conspiracy Theories Are Moronic, but They’re Still Right About One Thing:

Worth a read. Alex Jones is like pure, uncut, pharmaceutical grade Glenn Beck. His involvement in making the whole thing comedy gold. And before you warn me that he might be right, broken clocks and all, he is wrong way to often about way to much to view as anything other than a nutter.

How Tea Party tax cuts are turning Kansas into a smoking ruin

How Tea Party tax cuts are turning Kansas into a smoking ruin:

The state’s rainy-day fund is dwindling to zero. Month after month, revenue comes in even lower than fiscal officials’ most dire expectations. In the rest of the country, school budgets are finally beginning to recover from the toll of the last recession; in Kansas, they’re still falling. Healthcare, assistance for the poor, courts, and other state services are being eviscerated.

The cynic in me thinks that’s the result they want. To cut taxes on the wealthy and services for the poor and blame the poor economy on immigrants and Obama.

Militia Leader Lives Off Gov Disability Checks

Militia Leader Lives Off Gov Disability Checks:

Democratic Underground user Kpete recalled a story in the Washington Post where it mentions Vanderboegh’s disability checks, while in the next breath, the militia leader speaks against what he perceives as President Obama’s ‘collectivism.’

When he gets a check, he is getting his money back. When other people get a check, they are taking his money.

Promoting Evolution Is 'An Act Of Disloyalty To America'

Promoting Evolution Is 'An Act Of Disloyalty To America':

"American political philosophy is based on the belief that the world was created by God in six days, and that this creation event occurred about 6,000 years ago," he explains, adding that news reports describing the Earth as millions of years old were either ignorant or "anti-American."

Where is genesis mentioned in the constitution?

Paul Ryan’s Irish Amnesia

Paul Ryan’s Irish Amnesia:

What infuriated Mitchel was that the Irish were starving to death at the very time that rich stores of grain and fat livestock owned by absentee landlords were being shipped out of the country. The food was produced by Irish hands on Irish lands but would not go into Irish mouths, for fear that such “charity” would upset the free market, and make people lazy.

….

“We have this tailspin of culture, in our inner cities in particular, of men not working and just generations of men not even thinking about working or learning the value and the culture of work.” In other words, these people are bred poor and lazy. Where have I heard that before? Ah, yes — 19th-century England. The Irish national character, Trevelyan confided to a fellow aristocrat, was “defective.” The hungry millions were “a selfish, perverse, and turbulent” people, said the man in charge of relieving their plight.

Worth a read. The inference to suffering on the right is amazing.

What they seek is nothing short of a different definition of American citizenship granted only to highly religious people, and highly religious Christians in particular.

What they seek is nothing short of a different definition of American citizenship granted only to highly religious people, and highly religious Christians in particular.:

they have made a rather spectacular claim, though not explicitly. What they seek is nothing short of a different definition of American citizenship granted only to highly religious people, and highly religious Christians in particular. They are demanding that our laws stake out for them a kind of Citizenship Platinum, allowing them an exemption from any law or obligation they’d prefer to disregard. They would refashion the First Amendment in their image.

Radical Christians are making America safe for Sharia law by creating legal precedent of religious views being imposed on others by force.

1.8 Million Definite Militia Members to March on DC, Install New Government #MotherJones

1.8 Million Definite Militia Members to March on DC, Install New Government #MotherJones:

Harry Riley has a dream. On the morning of May 16, somewhere between 10 and 30 million (estimates vary) God-fearing patriots will assemble in Washington, DC, for what Riley, a retired Army colonel from the Florida panhandle, is calling “Operation American Spring.” They’ll protest outside the White House by day and set up in campgrounds and RV parks outside the city by night. They won’t leave until President Barack Obama, along with Attorney General Eric Holder and congressional leaders of both parties, resign and appear before a specially convened investigative tribunal for further disciplinary action—a polite version of a tea party coup. It’s not likely to happen—but two former Fox News personalities have endorsed the endeavor.

I doubt its more than a few hundred.

Apartheid's Useful Idiots - Ta-Nehisi Coates - The Atlantic

Apartheid's Useful Idiots - Ta-Nehisi Coates - The Atlantic:

Buckley’s racket as an American paid propagandist for white supremacy would be repeated over the years in conservative circles. As Sam Kleiner demonstrates in Foreign Policy, apartheid would ultimately draw some of America’s most celebrated conservatives into its orbit. The roster includes Grover Norquist, Jack Abramoff, Jesse Helms, and Senator Jeff Flake. Jerry Falwell denounced Desmond Tutu as a “phony” and led a “reinvestment” campaign during the 1980s. At the late hour of 1993, Pat Robertson opined, “I know we don’t like apartheid, but the blacks in South Africa, in Soweto, don’t have it all that bad.”

Why exactly is it on the right that allows them to give safe harbor to racists and have it shrugged off? Why does the right draw so many racists and so many people willing to hire racists? 

A War on the Poor

A War on the Poor:

I still sometimes see pundits claiming that the Tea Party movement is basically driven by concerns about budget deficits. That’s delusional. Read the founding rant by Rick Santelli of CNBC: There’s nary a mention of deficits. Instead, it’s a tirade against the possibility that the government might help “losers” avoid foreclosure. Or read transcripts from Rush Limbaugh or other right-wing talk radio hosts. There’s not much about fiscal responsibility, but there’s a lot about how the government is rewarding the lazy and undeserving.

The tea party merges the prosperity gospels with Ayn Rand and walks away with a belief that economics is nothing more than a morality play where the wealthy are wealthy because of virtue and the poor are poor because of vice. 

House Republicans Skip Obamacare Briefing They Furiously Demanded

House Republicans Skip Obamacare Briefing They Furiously Demanded:

most of the House Republicans who had demanded their own closed-door briefing from the administration on President Barack Obama’s struggling health care rollout were no-shows on Wednesday.

This is what is wrong with congress in one simple headline. There is far more interest in outrage than due diligence. You would think that they would want to actually do their jobs, or simply to sit in the briefing and then attack the parts of Obamacare they hate. But no. They just want to yell and scream and don’t care if they get any facts right.

Conspiracy theories explain the right

Conspiracy theories explain the right:

The conservative mindset is in decline. Stories of cabals and secret plots provide comfort as its power wanes

If I were to tell you that a cabal of Congressional Republicans had been quietly working with a roster of little-known political organizations since the last election, many of them funded by a pair of shadowy billionaire brothers, to bring the country to the brink of financial ruin, I’d understand it if you thought I was talking about a conspiracy theory. But really I’d be describing the sausage making that goes on in politics today and the blurry lines between lobbying and influence peddling

Right wing politics is a racket, not a political philosophy. 

Conservatives Had Better Hope George W. Bush Was a Dummy

Conservatives Had Better Hope George W. Bush Was a Dummy

if conservatives want us to believe that the United States blundered through a major terrorist attack, two major failed military adventures, dismal economic performance, and then finally an epic economic collpase all while under the watch of a very bright and attentive leader then it seems like a much deeper failure of the movement.

Rubin said that she was trying to show how easy it would be to commit voter fraud with just a signature and gets arrested for voter fraud.

Rubin said that she was trying to show how easy it would be to commit voter fraud with just a signature and gets arrested for voter fraud.

Democratic Nevada Secretary of State Ross Miller, who has called for a photo ID law, slammed Rubin in a statement. “If Ms. Rubin was trying to demonstrate how easy it is to commit voter fraud, she clearly failed and proved just the opposite,”

Is there a political Darwin award? She’s a shoe in.

David Brooks Now Totally Pathological

David Brooks Now Totally Pathological

Many moderate conservatives have simply broken off from the party, at least in its current incarnation, and are hoping or working to build a sane alternative. Those who remain must escape into progressively more baroque fantasies.

Those who think the GOP and the Dems are both equally bad are the 2nd biggest obstacle to fixing the nation’s problems.

Anyone shocked that the party that isn’t able to function in congress without grandstanding and obstructionism is unable to have a smooth running convention?

40 Economists Say The GOP Has Abandoned Economic Reality

40 Economists Say The GOP Has Abandoned Economic Reality

A survey of forty economists from across the ideological and partisan spectrum has concluded that on some of its most cherished issues, the Republican Party has simply taken leave of economic reality. For instance, economists Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers noted that one of the results from the survey - run by the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business, which is hardly known for a left-wing slant - is an overwhelming agreement that the 2009 Recovery Act (i.e. the stimulus) brought down unemployment.

And the GOP responded by with a long diatribe about socialism and abortion written in crayon.

House GOP Blocking Abortion Access for Raped Soldiers

House GOP Blocking Abortion Access for Raped Soldiers

if an Army medic serving in Afghanistan is raped and becomes pregnant, she can’t use her military health plan to pay for an abortion. If she does decide to get an abortion, she will have to pay for it with her own money. And if she can’t prove she was raped-which is difficult before an investigation is completed-she may have to look for services off base, which can be dangerous or impossible in many parts of the world.

Wow. This is just cruel.

Serrapio went by the stage name of "Jay Valor" online

Joaquin Amador Serrapio Jr., the Miami man arrested for making online threats to kill President Barack Obama while he spoke at the University of Miami last week, has a large internet footprint. Serrapio went by the stage name of “Jay Valor” online, and fronted a local bar band known as the Jay Valor Band. On his Jay Valor Twitter account he made several disturbing Tweets in which he freely used the n-word, professed his love for Abraham Lincoln’s assassin John Wilkes Boothe, and challenged the Secret Service to arrest him.

Joaquin Serrapio, Miami Man Who Threatened to Kill Obama, Loves Ron Paul, Racism and Journey Covers - Miami News - Riptide 2.0

Another one of those isolated incidents of right wing nutters promoting violence.

Federal transportation and infrastructure policy has traditionally been an area of strong bipartisan agreement," says Aaron Naparstek, a Loeb Fellow at Harvard University's Graduate School of Design and founder of Streetsblog.org. "Now, it seems, Republicans want to turn cities into a part of the culture wars. Now it's abortion, gay marriage and subways.

Federal transportation and infrastructure policy has traditionally been an area of strong bipartisan agreement," says Aaron Naparstek, a Loeb Fellow at Harvard University's Graduate School of Design and founder of Streetsblog.org. "Now, it seems, Republicans want to turn cities into a part of the culture wars. Now it's abortion, gay marriage and subways.

The Tea Party's war on mass transit - salon.com

Gingrich was the first to suggest that subways were elitist. I expect this to become a growing non-issue in the next few years with more and more time spent on suggesting that subways hurt the poor, cause urban decay, are wasteful, etc.

Rick Santorum Rejects Catholic Church Teaching on Evolution

Rick Santorum Rejects Catholic Church Teaching on Evolution

I’m a little weary of Rick Santorum prancing around as the “Catholic candidate” when he stands in direct opposition to the Church on a whole host of issues, including torture, the death penalty, pre-emptive war, the welfare state and global warming — just to name a few.

In a nutshell, he only agrees with the church when it comes to gays being icky and women being unable to control their sexuality without the paternal influence of men.

The appetite of red states for federal subsidies mocks the tirades of their politicians against the federal government. In March 2008, on the verge of the Great Recession, 22 Republican states were net recipients of federal subsidies, while only 10 Democratic-leaning states were. Sixteen blue states were net payers of federal taxes, compared to only one red state, Texas (thanks to the oil and gas industry).

The appetite of red states for federal subsidies mocks the tirades of their politicians against the federal government. In March 2008, on the verge of the Great Recession, 22 Republican states were net recipients of federal subsidies, while only 10 Democratic-leaning states were. Sixteen blue states were net payers of federal taxes, compared to only one red state, Texas (thanks to the oil and gas industry).
The red state model is (also) broken - salon.com

Sarah Reidy, the national director of scheduling for Jon Huntsman's presidential campaign, had some stern words for her own party after the audience at a debate in California applauded the number of executions during Texas Gov. Rick Perry's tenure, and then some in the crowd at a debate in Florida cheered when the moderator asked if a sick person without insurance should be left to die. In a post on her Facebook page, Reidy, who joined Huntsman's campaign in August but was not speaking on its behalf in this instance, said the behavior made her "sick and sad" for the Republican party.

Sarah Reidy, the national director of scheduling for Jon Huntsman’s presidential campaign, had some stern words for her own party after the audience at a debate in California applauded the number of executions during Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s tenure, and then some in the crowd at a debate in Florida cheered when the moderator asked if a sick person without insurance should be left to die.
In a post on her Facebook page, Reidy, who joined Huntsman’s campaign in August but was not speaking on its behalf in this instance, said the behavior made her “sick and sad” for the Republican party.
Huntsman staffer says she is 'sick and sad' for the Republican Party after watching presidential debates | The Ticket - Yahoo! News

I saw three little girls having a tea party. They were more mature, reasoned and grounded in reality than the tea party political movement.

Representative Darrell Issa, Republican of California, gave an interview to the Wall Street Journal in which he suggested that he might further the conservative agenda through an occasional compromise. That provoked a tirade from Rush Limbaugh, which then produced a torrent of angry e-mails and phone calls to Issa's office. Issa quickly and publicly apologized to Limbaugh and promised only opposition to Obama. Multiply that example a thousandfold, and you have the daily dynamic of Congress.

Representative Darrell Issa, Republican of California, gave an interview to the Wall Street Journal in which he suggested that he might further the conservative agenda through an occasional compromise. That provoked a tirade from Rush Limbaugh, which then produced a torrent of angry e-mails and phone calls to Issa’s office. Issa quickly and publicly apologized to Limbaugh and promised only opposition to Obama. Multiply that example a thousandfold, and you have the daily dynamic of Congress.
Is Congress Broken? - The Dish | By Andrew Sullivan - The Daily Beast

Has anyone noticed that the people who confuse weather and climate are really quiet during record heat waves? Every cold snap gets them all a flutter, sarcastically asking where the global warming is. Where are they now? Y U NO SAY ITZ HOT?

Bill Nye Boo'd In Texas For Saying The Moon Reflects The Sun

Bill Nye, the harmless children’s edu-tainer known as “The Science Guy,” managed to offend a select group of adults in Waco, Texas at a presentation, when he suggested that the moon does not emit light, but instead reflects the light of the sun.

As even most elementary-school graduates know, the moon reflects the light of the sun but produces no light of its own.

But don’t tell that to the good people of Waco, who were “visibly angered by what some perceived as irreverence,” according to the Waco Tribune.


From Bill Nye Boo’d In Texas For Saying The Moon Reflects The Sun


The war on science continues.

Evangelical Liberty University received half a billion dollars in federal aid money - War Room - salon.com

Liberty University, the evangelical private Christian school founded by dead apartheid-supporting bigot Jerry Falwell, received $445 million in federal financial aid money last year. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, by the way, received $420 million from the federal government.

From War Room - salon.com

Any tea party members going after money that goes to unaccredited bible colleges?

Lawrence O'Donnell Asks Rep. Steve King if He's Got His Christian ID Card to Prove He's Not a Muslim

Lawrence O’Donnell decided that turnaround was fair play with wingnut Rep. Steve King and asked him if he had his Christian ID card or some other means to prove that we should take his word that he’s not a Muslim.

From Crooks and Liars

This is how you deal with evidence free assertions from wing nuts.

Inquiry and Intimidation

What the GOP wants is to make people afraid even to do research that produces conclusions they don't like. And they don't stop at trying to undermine the research - they go after the researchers personally. The goal is to create an environment in which analysts and academics are afraid to look into things like financial-industry malfeasance or climate change, for fear that some subcommittee will either dig up or invent dirt about their private lives.

McCarthy had nothing on these guys.

From Inquiry and Intimidation - NYTimes.com

Awful

Women In Hijabs NOT exempt from pat-downs

Recent stories on Glenn Beck’s blog The Blaze, Fox News and elsewhere suggested that the TSA would only pat down the head and neck of Muslim women who objected to backscatter X-ray machines.

From Women In Hijabs NOT exempt from pat-downs

This false story started in the Glenn Beck parallel reality should be debunked in the same media that promoted the story. But it won’t be.

Christianism Watch

Check out “Jesus Camp,” a place where children are taught to venerate the Great Leader, George W. Bush, to speak in tongues, and adhere to the rigid politics of Christianism.
From Andrew Sullivan | The Daily Dish: Christianism Watch

Jesus Camp. What really bothers me about this that it appears to have nothing to do with Christian Theology and everything to do with Christian Identity. I imagine that a Jesus Camp would be where the kids learn about doing good works and the joy of leading virtous lives; not a place that teaches kids to be Warriors for God. Jesus Camp looks more like this than that.

The Purpose Driven Life Takers

Imagine: you are a foot soldier in a paramilitary group whose purpose is to remake America as a Christian theocracy, and establish its worldly vision of the dominion of Christ over all aspects of life. You are issued high-tech military weaponry, and instructed to engage the infidel on the streets of New York City. You are on a mission - both a religious mission and a military mission — to convert or kill Catholics, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, gays, and anyone who advocates the separation of church and state - especially moderate, mainstream Christians. Your mission is “to conduct physical and spiritual warfare”; all who resist must be taken out with extreme prejudice. You have never felt so powerful, so driven by a purpose: you are 13 years old. You are playing a real-time strategy video game whose creators are linked to the empire of mega-church pastor Rick Warren, best selling author of The Purpose Driven Life.
Talk To Action | The Purpose Driven Life Takers (Updated)

It is stuff like this that really tests my faith in free speech.

Group Seeks I.R.S. Inquiry of Two Ohio Churches

A group of religious leaders has sent a complaint to the Internal Revenue Service requesting an investigation of two large churches in Ohio that they say are improperly campaigning on behalf of a conservative Republican running for governor.
From NYT

This is the real reason to oppose the President’s Faith Based initiatives. It not only promotes the politicization of religion, it rewards it.

devolution

Captive chimpanzees fail to help others in their social group, even when it causes no inconvenience, a behavioural study in Nature journal has found.
This may explain why GOPers hate the teaching of evolution. Maybe they are less evolved.

Just for the record, there is a difference between GOPers and real conservatives. I have a lot of respect for real conservatives like John McCain, Lindsey Graham, Olympia Snowe, Christopher Shays, David Dreier, etc. Its a shame that they have to take a back seat to the Texas Taliban.