Archive | Scary Crazy Wingnuts

Why Wingnuts And Their Centrist Enablers Are Scum

Krugman:

The lights are going out all over America — literally. Colorado Springs has made headlines with its desperate attempt to save money by turning off a third of its streetlights, but similar things are either happening or being contemplated across the nation, from Philadelphia to Fresno.

Meanwhile, a country that once amazed the world with its visionary investments in transportation, from the Erie Canal to the Interstate Highway System, is now in the process of unpaving itself: in a number of states, local governments are breaking up roads they can no longer afford to maintain, and returning them to gravel.

And a nation that once prized education — that was among the first to provide basic schooling to all its children — is now cutting back. Teachers are being laid off; programs are being canceled; in Hawaii, the school year itself is being drastically shortened. And all signs point to even more cuts ahead.

We’re told that we have no choice, that basic government functions — essential services that have been provided for generations — are no longer affordable. And it’s true that state and local governments, hit hard by the recession, are cash-strapped. But they wouldn’t be quite as cash-strapped if their politicians were willing to consider at least some tax increases.

And the federal government, which can sell inflation-protected long-term bonds at an interest rate of only 1.04 percent, isn’t cash-strapped at all. It could and should be offering aid to local governments, to protect the future of our infrastructure and our children.

But Washington is providing only a trickle of help, and even that grudgingly. We must place priority on reducing the deficit, say Republicans and “centrist” Democrats. And then, virtually in the next breath, they declare that we must preserve tax cuts for the very affluent, at a budget cost of $700 billion over the next decade.

In effect, a large part of our political class is showing its priorities: given the choice between asking the richest 2 percent or so of Americans to go back to paying the tax rates they paid during the Clinton-era boom, or allowing the nation’s foundations to crumble — literally in the case of roads, figuratively in the case of education — they’re choosing the latter.

Gee, I wonder if that has anything to do with this:

I frequently listen to the opposition, from Fox News to Rush, because I have always felt it very important to stay abreast of just how they’re thinking. They don’t know it, but I’m also on the email list to receive some of the right-wing emails/messages they send to their fellow Repubs. I received one today from Dick Morris, the guy who talks out of the side of his mouth as a regular pundit on Fox News. Morris, a former Democrat, was part of the Clinton administration and has re-devoted his life to Dem/Obama bashing.

Today I received Morris’ latest email stating what he feels the Republican strategy should be if they were to regain control…his ‘answer’ to solving the economic problems created by the Bush Regime. To my amazement (I don’t know why I’m so surprised), based on Morris, the Republican strategy is to literally block much needed financial aid to struggling states with the ultimate goal being to force all of the states INTO BANKRUPTCY! They also plan to break ALL union agreements including wages, rules, pensions and more!

Not only does this explain why Repubs are voting against everything that could be helpful to The Recovery, but this email is absolutely, incredibly revealing and spells out exactly what we can expect should we allow the Repubs to regain power. Below are excerpts from the Morris email/newsletter. Truly dangerous stuff. Here’s what Morris wrote:

*As Congress reconvenes next week to pass a $26 billion bailout of state and local governments entombed in their own deficits, we witness a foretaste of the crisis that will be the central event of the first half of next year: the collapse of state governments.

*As long as the Democrats control Congress, they will continue to rubber-stamp Obama’s requests for bailouts of profligate states. But when the Republicans take control, they will be less than forthcoming. Republicans will ask the central question: Why should taxpayers from states that have cut their budgets and observed spending restraint, pay for the extravagances of the other states? Why should forty-seven states have to pay for California, New York, and Michigan?

*The Republican solution to state financial distress should be simple: The Party should insist on a change in the federal bankruptcy law providing for a procedure for state bankruptcy (none now exists). This process must call for abrogation (means=to end) of all state and local public employee union contracts as is usually done in private sector bankruptcies. By freeing states and local governments (including school boards) of their union obligations on wages, work rules, staffing, and pensions, they have a chance to survive and, indeed, to prosper. But merely subsidizing these massive expenditures just prolongs the misery of the states in question.

*The collapse of overspending state governments must trigger the diminution of the power unions hold over their budgets and their politics. Their coming bankruptcies offer an opportunity for reform and the Republican Congress – backed by newly elected Republican state governments – give us precisely the opportunity we need to effectuate it. (*=Excerpts from emailed Dick Morris.Com newsletter entitled “The Coming Catastrophe: State Governments”)

Like Flies To Honey

Every wacky wingnut in the world is on the teevee today to bemoan the “discrimination” against God-fearing Christians if the courts allow gay marriage. Now Wingnut Wendy Wright of Concerned Women for America is on Hardball talking about what this does to “the children” of America and how Christians will be “persecuted” for living their “beliefs.”

You remember that for a very long time, these were the same arguments advanced by the godly right wing against the legalizing of interracial marriage. They seem almost quaint now, don’t they?

The Backlash

Got an advance copy of my friend Will Bunch’s new book last night and just love it! It’s about wingnuts and Tea Partiers, and how they were infuriated by Obama’s election.

Now, my own bosses at Crooks and Liars wrote a similar book, and so did Max Blumenthal. Both of those books were great, but have significantly different slants than this one.

The difference, I think, is the same strength Will brings to his work as a reporter. He’s got the rare reporter’s knack of interviewing wacky folks without condescending to them — he really wants to understand them. And the book is written as a sort of detective story: Where would you begin to learn about the Tea Party and what drives them? He takes all those random moments we’ve caught on the teevee or online, and weaves them into a fascinating narrative about where they came from and what it means.

It’s not out yet, but you can pre-order it on Amazon if you’re interested.

Start Talking

I think one of the reasons I’m not as depressed as most people about the insanity in this country is that I directly confront insanity where I find it. If someone standing in line at the supermarket says something misguided, I’ll say, “Why do you believe that?” or “Why would you say such a thing?” I have a conversation.

People don’t always listen to me, but they are a little less likely to feel 100% sure that everything they believe is valid. Imagine if more people did it!

We have many festering carbuncles in this country, disgusting boils of racism, resentment and bile. You have to pop them if we’re going to heal.

For instance, I really don’t want anyone getting away with the assumption that because we both have white skin, I approve of the way they feel about black people or Mexicans. But they won’t know if I don’t tell them.

Confronting this nonsense is the single most useful thing you can do. I’m not saying be belligerent (heavens, no — I’m a double Libra!) but start talking: “Really? No, I don’t feel that way at all, and here’s why.” If they respond with erroneous “facts”, ask them where they got the information. Ask them if they ever verified the information independently, “because you can’t believe what you see on TV.”

Remember what Vaclav Havel wrote: The single most revolutionary thing you can do is refuse the lie.

Moderate Is As Moderate Does


Watch the video and see just how wrong Pat was when he was praising the Bush tax cuts…

One of the reasons I don’t have any respect for Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe is that, while they maintain their thin candy shells of “moderation,” they are more than willing to give protective cover to the far-right fringe of their party. Case in point: Collins was here in Philly this week, raising money for Pat Toomey, the loony-tunes Club for Growth extremist and former Wall Street broker who’s running against Joe Sestak.

Why? Probably because the RSCC figured out a real winger (Sam Brownback etc.) wouldn’t get much love in a relatively liberal urban area like Philadelphia. Susan was happy to come in and do her part in making her party even more extreme:

Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, a prominent moderate Republican, raised campaign cash Monday for Pennsylvania GOP Senate nominee Pat Toomey, a conservative who as recently as last year was trying to defeat people such as Collins.

The endorsement could provide ammunition for Toomey against his Democratic opponent, Rep. Joe Sestak, as they battle to seize the middle ground and define each other as an extremist.

After a fund-raising lunch at the Union League, Collins and Toomey said they were united around the core Republican principles of lower taxes, limited government, and individual freedom.

Never mind that the Club for Growth, a free-market advocacy group that Toomey ran until he declared his Senate candidacy last year, had skewered Collins as “Comrade of the Month” for her vote for President Obama’s stimulus legislation.

“This is a pivotal race,” Collins said. “It is one of those key Senate races that is going to determine whether the Republicans are able to regain control of the Senate or at least increase our numbers so we can be an effective check on the excesses of this administration.”

Toomey, who has made a concerted effort to reach out to moderate Republicans ahead of the general election, said that he believes in the same kind of “big tent” party that Collins does.

“As Republicans, there’s lots of individual items we’re going to disagree about, but there’s a broad theme on which we agree,” Toomey said.

Sestak’s campaign said voters should not be fooled – Toomey is to the right of the Pennsylvania mainstream. It launched “Republicans for Sestak” at an event outside the Constitution Center, where four GOP voters from his Delaware County district praised him.

Toomey is an “ideologue,” while Sestak is a “pragmatic, problem-solving” centrist, said Scott Jenkins, an investor and cochairman of the Republicans for Sestak steering committee. He supported Sestak in his first run for Congress, in 2006.

Toomey’s campaign released the names of 40 Democrats from across the state who are supporting the former Lehigh Valley congressman, boasting that its cross-partisan group was 10 times bigger than Sestak’s. Jonathon Dworkin, spokesman for Sestak, said 40 to 50 people were on the steering committee of Republicans for Sestak.

Tickets to the Collins-Toomey lunch cost $1,000 for individuals and $2,000 for representatives of PACs, according to an invitation to the event. The Toomey campaign declined to say how much was raised

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An Oldie But Goodie

A day in the life of Joe Republican:

Joe gets up at 6 a.m. and fills his coffeepot with water to prepare his morning coffee. The water is clean and good because some tree-hugging liberal fought for minimum water-quality standards. With his first swallow of water, he takes his daily medication. His medications are safe to take because some stupid commie liberal fought to ensure their safety and that they work as advertised.

All but $10 of his medications are paid for by his employer’s medical plan because some liberal union workers fought their employers for paid medical insurance – now Joe gets it, too.

He prepares his morning breakfast, bacon and eggs. Joe’s bacon is safe to eat because some girly-man liberal fought for laws to regulate the meat packing industry.

In the morning shower, Joe reaches for his shampoo. His bottle is properly labeled with each ingredient and its amount in the total contents because some crybaby liberal fought for his right to know what he was putting on his body and how much it contained.

Joe dresses, walks outside and takes a deep breath. The air he breathes is clean because some environmentalist wacko liberal fought for the laws to stop industries from polluting our air.

He walks on the government-provided sidewalk to the subway station for his government-subsidized ride to work. It saves him considerable money in parking and transportation costs because some fancy-pants liberal fought for affordable public transportation, which gives everyone the opportunity to be a contributor.

Joe begins his work day. He has a good job with excellent pay, medical benefits, retirement, paid holidays and vacation because some lazy liberal union members fought and died for these working standards. Joe’s employer pays these standards because Joe’s employer doesn’t want his employees to call the union.

If Joe is hurt on the job or becomes unemployed, he’ll get a worker compensation or an unemployment check because some stupid liberal didn’t think he should lose his home because of his temporary misfortune.

It is noontime and Joe needs to make a bank deposit so he can pay some bills. Joe’s deposit is federally insured by the FSLIC because some godless liberal wanted to protect Joe’s money from unscrupulous bankers who ruined the banking system before the Great Depression.

Joe has to pay his Fannie Mae-underwritten mortgage and his below-market federal student loan because some elitist liberal decided that Joe and the country would be better off if he was educated and earned more money over his lifetime. Joe also forgets that his in addition to his federally subsidized student loans, he attended a state-funded university.

Joe is home from work. He plans to visit his father this evening at his farm home in the country. He gets in his car for the drive. His car is among the safest in the world because some America-hating liberal fought for car safety standards to go along with the taxpayer- funded roads.

He arrives at his boyhood home. His was the third generation to live in the house financed by Farmers’ Home Administration because bankers didn’t want to make rural loans.

The house didn’t have electricity until some big-government liberal stuck his nose where it didn’t belong and demanded rural electrification.

He is happy to see his father, who is now retired. His father lives on Social Security and a union pension because some wine-drinking, cheese-eating liberals made sure Dad could take care of himself so Joe wouldn’t have to.

Joe gets back in his car for the ride home, and turns on a radio talk show. The radio host keeps saying that liberals are bad and conservatives are good. He doesn’t mention that the beloved Republicans have fought against every protection and benefit Joe enjoys throughout his day. Joe agrees: “We don’t need those big-government liberals ruining our lives! After all, I’m a self-made man who believes everyone should take care of himself, just like I have.”

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