Monday, October 31, 2005

I am FU**ING BURNT-OUT on all this Partisan SHIT!!

And I do mean to call all of it SHIT.

Between the damn culture wars, red state/blue state, Conservative litmus tests for SCOTUS nominees, the RAW HATE that is SO COMMON in partisan politics now, that to my mind it is the 21st century version of RACISM (as Racism was a tolererated form of RAW HATE in this nation for far far far far too long,) I am ready to pull a Howard Beal (that movie "Network,") and start shouting,

"I'm mad as hell and not gonna take it anymore!!!"

I have seen too many people who I once thought were reasonable and decent, turn into bigots. I have seen too many people who I thought were sensible and kind, turn irrational and hate-filled. I have seen too many people who I thought were intelligent, slip into the deepest gutter of ignorant thought, act, and speech.

I have seen too many people I respected, turn UGLY.

Shit shit shit. I know that it would be good for me right now to go to some cloistered community, and do some deep meditation.

Or go to Vegas.

I need a break.

Where is the LOVE??

One last Ranting Thought:

People should judge people by the content of their character, not their DAMNED, STUPID-ASSED, SHITTY POLITICAL leanings.

Did I say already that I mean to call all of it SHIT???

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Ok you FAR EXTREME Right Wingers . . . Don't Hurt Yourselves Patting Yourselves On the Back.

For the end of Harriet's Rodeo.

I think the guy I just heard on BBC news had the correct analysis.

Since Harriet had no paper trail, the Judiciary committee wanted her WH papers, and Bush wasn't going to waive Attorney Client Privilege, even for his favorite fan.

Bye bye Harriet. We hardly knew ya. And never will.

Monday, October 24, 2005

(*Still reeling from the implications of this simple truth, that has escaped me for so long*)

Ok, I confess, this is another recycle of something I wrote myself, but first published on a web forum (earlier today. I can only come up with so much interesting stuff in a day, I declare.)

The topic under discussion the Miers Nom., and I was responding to yet another tiresome remark by yet another far-righty, about how Bush should have listened to his base, bla bla, barfing, yadda yadda. And then like an epiphany . . . it hit me:

One person's holy crusading activist is another person's Hijacker and Usurper of democracy.

One person's obstructionist is another person's defender of the status quo.

(*BANG*) I just popped a clot in my pre-frontal lobe!!

The DNC is now the defender of the STATUS QUO
(*still reeling from the implications of this simple truth, that has escaped me for so long*)

Hell, I think I finally have finally figured out who the REAL CONSERVATIVES are.

They are the DNC!!!

I don't know what you guys are, what you who claim to be conservatives really are, but if the DNC is the defender of the Status Quo, then what on earth are you guys?

Someone help me on that last point. We can co-author a paper and get published in The Economist, or some such rag.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Words of the Day

Cognitive Hierarchy.

Sounds fancy and it is, since most folk are mere single-step thinkers.

I will have to revisit this some time later.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

My Manifesto (Or Just More NOISE?)

Recently, I found myself trying to summarize my core political beliefs.

Without further ado, here goes:

I truly believe most all politicians are lying-assed ambitious bastards, regardless of party affilliation.

I believe that the GOP is not necessarilly the "Conservative" party and that the DNC is not necessarilly the "Liberal" party.

I believe that people tend to put way too much stock in either Label. Both are too subjective and warped beyond the historic meanings.

I think that one of the bizzare but important major difference between GOP and DNC pols is that more GOP pols will lie about being cons than DNC will about being libs; GOPers need to call themselves that (more often), in order to get elected, but DNCers don't have to declare themselves libs to get elected.

They will get branded as such by the GOP in attack ads, so they really don't have to declare it leave alone lie about it.

I believe the so called neocons are neither; they are old fashioned colonialists and imperialists, who are not being terribly honest about being that.

I believe that Bush is not a real Con (even if it is hard to say what that is, anymore, as the meaning of that has been warped beyond its historical meaning) but at best he is a member of the republican money elite (the Plutocrats), who has learned how to talk the talk, and pander enough to get the support of people who call themselves Cons.

I believe the War on Terror took a seriously wrong turn with the invasion of Iraq.

I believe Afghanistan is slipping into something of a critical failure, with too many of the Taliban/Al Qada still being alive, and living in the borderlands, and too much of the country being dedicated to the opium trade.

I belive that everyone is entitled to their personal religious beliefs, but the minute they start trying to get the gvt. to cater to it, is the minute they become obnoxious.

Following that up, given how many Americans are religious, and how many faiths and sub faiths are practiced, and the fact that one has to be a wacko cult before the gvt. starts knocking on your door, I believe that anyone who thinks religions or religious values are under assault in America, is not dealing with reality and is ignoring the facts.

I believe a Dem pol is more likely to lie about personal stuff, and a GOP pol is more likely to lie about "on the job" stuff. I am not saying by a WIDE margin, but I see a pattern there.

I truly believe that when religion and politics are merged, that the only net result is religion gets debased, and politics gets more personal and ugly. I further believe the GOP leaders know that, and rely on it . . . that last part at least.

I believe that passionate emotional rhetoric in politics (to be specific, demagogery) is more of a danger to the American way of life, than terrorism.

I admit that the DNC message is stale, and needs to be retooled and repackaged, some, but I believe that if the DNC picks up too many of the GOP rhetorical tricks, the party will suffer. Well, maybe not at the polls, but I don't want to see the DNC go that way too much.

Pandering does suck, I think!

I believe that even if Foxnews (barely) qualifies as a legitimate news outfit, they have nearly singlehandedly lowered the bar for what passes as professional journalism in this country by deliberately blurring the distinction between reporting and commentary to a new level of confusion and partisanship.

I believe in free speech, but I think somebody like Hannity or Rush should not be treated as entertainers, or infotainers, but as political operatives, and forced to comply with Federal and State Campaign Finance Laws. (that one just came to me now.) And if Foxnews doesn't clean up their act, I want them regulated that way too. Ok, I will throw in Air America too, just to be fair. I agree with some people's opinions that Randi Rhodes is the Left's Answer to Hannity. Same crap and tactics, different slant.

I believe that the GOP is the PRO Business, All The Way, party. I also believe the DNC is the slightly less enthuastic Pro Business Party.

I believe that anyone who does not want to have an abortion should not have to have an abortion, and that those who want one should be left alone.

If people are ALL THAT concerned with other peoples' sinning and immortal souls, they should get their butts away from the abortion clinics, go to the inner city and follow around the Gangsters and Drug Dealers and Murderers and Muggers and Rapists, and try to talk those sinners out of their sinning ways and save their souls. Picking on women who for the most part are already distressed is not doing God's Work. It is merely being obnoxious, Just My Opinion. (Admittedly, the second part of that one came to me just now, and I am not being strictly serious there. I am making the point that if one is so concerned about other people committing sin, there is a LOT more sin happening all over the place than at the increasingly-few abortion clinics in America. I find it bizzare, even if obviously explainable, why people who claim to be interested in saving people from sin tend to target the most emotionally-vulnerable and least violent sinners, for face to face confrontations.)

I believe P.J. O'Rourke was dead on, when he said that "Republicans run on the issue that gvt. doesn't work, get elected, and prove it."

I believe that Social or Culture Conservatives really have no business voting GOP, but I understand that the GOP at least pays lip service to those issues that Social and Cultural Cons favor; they just so rarely do anything more than pay lip service to those issues. That is my point.

I think that Cons are more likely to take the label way too seriously. Cons are more likely to think of that label as having some sort of meaning in their life beyond it being a mere philosophical (in the broadest sense of the word) preference, and a "world view." I think it is more likely to be considered a defining characteristic for Cons. But for Libs the label is more of "an attitude" and philosophical view; it doesn't really mean much more to us than that.

I think the "Culture war" is demagogery, if not grossly exaggerated twaddle. Yes, I know some people take that stuff seriously; I think it is mostly the political equal of Chicken Little saying the sky is falling. And by that I mean, in almost all of human history, in likely every human society, there have always been people preoccupied with such things. It is old, unoriginal, and basically tiresome to me.

And speaking of demogogery, I am not saying it is only used by the GOP, but I do say this:

The GOP is way more skilled and successful at it.

I think the most intelligent thing I have heard anyone say about American Politics recently is what I heard this guy say on NPR or CSPAN (don't remember which) radio over the the past couple days; the main diff. between the GOP and the DNC is the GOP is better at communicating to its base's emotions, but the DNC is more likely to focus on policies and programs.

My translation of that is the GOP goes for the gut and keeps it simple, where the DNC talks about gvt. programs and that really is not appealing to many Americans. Like the famous quote by Otto von Bismark (and I paraphrase) the more you know about how sausages and laws are made, the less you will like them.

And let's remember that there is a word that describes communicating effectively at the emotional or gut level: Demagogery*.

Ultimately I think politics (and gvt.) are so deep in bullshit that that is the best way to describe either. However, it is important bullshit as opposed to most bullshit, which is usually meaningless shit.

demagogue, US ALSO demagog

a person, especially a political leader, who wins support by exciting people's emotions rather than by having good ideas
(Cambridge International Dictionary of English)

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Pick the Adjective to Describe the Miers Story. Or maybe the ENTIRE BUSH Presidency.

Yet again, I am jacking my own stuff. This was my reply/response to a discussion about the appropriate adjective to describe Harriet's Rodeo.

I am having trouble deciding which I prefer? Kafkaesque or Felliniesque?

I am at a loss for a word that combines bizzarness, illogic, and a sense of impending doom, with a carnivalish sense of frivolity.

Grand Guignol meets Comedie del Arte?

Chucky meets Punch and Judy?

Godzilla meets Bambi?

But wait . . . isn't there some Band who's name gets at my meaning?


How about Twisted Circus?


And in line with one of my favorite topics, how Cons who think Bush really was a Con got snookered?

Here is the cover jacket of a yet-to-be released book from some con lawyer/thinktanker, who is one of the ones who is waking up from the coma, coming off the acid trip, waking up and smelling the coffee, (I'll stop there with the cliches.)

According to the blurb I read on Wonkette, this guy got canned from his think tank after his boss read the manuscript.

DISLOYALTY in the name of OBVIOUS TRUTH can not be suffered, by these bastards.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Us vs. THEM

Just a quickie. We can call this series (if it turns out to be a repeated theme) Comparative Partisan Politics.

My quick thought of the comparison between us (meaning Dems) and them (meaning GOP) is . . .

NOT that our party is all that greatly more ethical than theirs, but the GOP's version of corruption is so much more repellent, transparent, predictable, and in the end (I believe) more damaging to the body politic and the Nation as a whole.

Greedy Plutocrats? Nope, not my kinda people. They do not get my vote, or my support.

And their partners in crime, the (does anyone but them believe it) alleged Moral Majority (or whatever other appellation is preferred or used?) Nope, not the sort of people I want running the country, either. I confess, not all of the Christian Right are so far off the edge as to deserve to be called American Taliban, but too many are, and in any event, you might find mention of the Creator, in the Declaration of Independence, but you will not find "Jesus Christ" in the Constitution; as yet, at least.

And for the record I have nothing against Jesus. As the song says . . . "Jesus is alright by me." But I don't think a Christian Theocracy has any innate superiority to that of any other religion. It is all the same sort of thuggery, with a different prayerbook. That is the only real difference.

Just my take on it.

If Jesus himself show up in this lifetime, DEFINITELY support Him. But don't trust anyone who claims to be closer to Him, or doing His work, or even if they merely claim to be "inspired" by Him.

Personally, I can't imagine Jesus inspiring anyone to award no-bid contracts, or to cut taxes or to bomb people.

That sort of illogic, and moral corruption is what I call BLASPHMEY!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Karl Rove NOT a Genius . . . But Turd Blossom???

Yet again I am jacking something that is my original work, but first published elsewhere on the net, by me. Fairly fresh stuff. I did at least write it today.

My explanation of what Karl Rove is, and is not:

No matter how "clever" a Karl Rove is, he can not make people who are not already prepared eat a bowl of bullshit and ask for a second helping, all of a sudden want to eat the bullshit. I almost want to make the analogy to Rove being a Crack Dealer, except the Crack Dealer usually has to get the 'client' hooked first. However if you follow my analysis of the paper, the nation is lousy with addicts already, and they are already jonesing for the next fix.

I guess that makes Rove, not only less than a genius, but less than a Crack Dealer. He is only the runner, bringing the dime bags across the street to the way-too-eager customers.

And that my friends is how we end up with millions of people believing a 3rd generation Exeter man/Aristocrat/Plutocrat is not really a 3rd generation Exeter man/Aristocrat/Plutocrat but instead is a regular guy, who is (*cough* *choke* *throws a brain clot and dies of a stroke over the insanity of it all*) sincerely a moral and decent man, a "compassionate conservative" and ends up elected not once but twice to the most powerful position in the world.

Monday, October 10, 2005

"If HE Wants a Say in Who Gets to be A Judge, He Shoud Run for a Senate Seat!!!"

So said the fictional Repub nominee for the presidency on TV's West Wing, about some fictional, pesky, self-appointed wing nut Christian Con Advocate.

Now if ONLY the real GOP had the balls to say that, and mean it??

But hey, I have been known to spend too much of my time in my fantasy world.

Meantime, in the real world, I really find it revolting how the Bushies can have Rove give assurances to the likes of Dobson, in secret meetings, and not be condemned for exactly what it was: Pandering (attempted at least), and Placating an "interest group" that has a clear agenda to appoint activist judges who will overturn precedent.

Sometimes being an American is like a very bad Acid Trip, or Case of Food Poisioning (take your pick.)

Anyway . . . after I started this post, the memory (of the history) of how Jack Kennedy caught some hell as some people were worried about whether a Catholic would be too easily swayed by the Pope, popped in my head. Now even if I suspect Bush is a liar and a fraud, both in his christianity and how he deals with the Religious Right Wing, I think the VERY IDEA of the White House engaging in the PLACATING of RELIGIOUS LEADERS, on a SCOTUS nomination is far more dastardly, heinous, and wicked, than anything likely that Kennedy would have done, when his religion was questioned, as something that might have HAD HIM AT THE BECK AND CALL AND UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF PARTICULAR RELIGIOUS PERSONS.

Hyprocisy, thy name is "Moral Majority" (and that Majority part is a LIE. So is the Moral part, for far too much and far too many of those people who consider themselves part of that "movement.")

Friday, October 07, 2005

No I Am NOT Going to Directly Insult Conservatives . . .

But instead I will quantify them. Not really me, but this paper I found on the net seems to describe the beast coldly, dispassionately, and puts them in the proper context. And the paper of which I speak is:

"Political Conservatism as Motivated Social Cognition,"

Now maybe I read the thing too quickly, but I sorta got the idea that pehaps conservativism really is not a political idea or ideology at all, but is merely a (cluster) of personality traits?

Now THAT may explain why conservativism has NO APPEAL at all to me:

I don't have the personality for it!

For example, consider this nugget:

"Intolerance of ambiguity constituted a general personality variable that related positively to prejudice as well as to more general social and cognitive variables. Individuals who are intolerant of ambiguity are significantly more often given to dichotomous conceptions of the sex roles, of the parent-child relationship, and of interpersonal relationships in general. They are less permissive and lean toward rigid categorization of cultural norms. Power–weakness, cleanliness– dirtiness, morality–immorality, conformance–divergence are the dimensions through which people are seen. . . . There is sensitivity against qualified as contrasted with unqualified statements and against perceptual ambiguity; a disinclination to think in terms of probability."

Anyway here is the link to a summary with analysis, and a the full paper.


Yes, this is THAT paper, that cause some (GOP) pols to have a hissy fit, a couple two-three years back.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Bonus. New Phrase to Describe Conservative Bullshit:

The Mobius Strip of Conservative Antidisambiguation.

Harriet Who??

Ok. Bush's selection for the SCOTUS vacancy has me in mind of when Souter was nominated. Souter was a virtural unknown at the time, recently pulled up from the NH Supreme Court to the 1st Ciruit.

I remember the jokes well (even if they were not that funny) as I was working in my law school's law library that summer, and first I heard of the nomination was via a phone call I got from the local paper. Soon after that, the jokes came. He's from where? NOOO he's from Weare.

Anyway, Harriet seems to be an interesting choice, insofar as if she hasn't been a judge, there is no papertrail to worry about. At least, no written opinions on any of the issues of the day.

I have already read/heard cons pissing in their own cornflakes about this "super stealthy" nomination.

Even so, I have to say that it smacks of that rare sign of intellignce at the WH; a decision that was made for the sake of expidiency, minimizing friction with the opposition, and making the least waves as possible, instead of pleasing the base.

It is almost cunning.

Almost . . . .
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