Archive for civil war

"Gas is being thrown on the internal GOP fire."

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add fuel to the fire

It's so simple, GOP. Just do as the president does and you could lessen your pain. Maybe. If you really try. It's amazing how making an effort to rectify problems actually helps to solve them.

Via First Read:

A tale of two problems: Combining the two biggest political stories over the past week, we have this question: What has been the more significant disaster -- the problems associated with the federal Obamacare website, or the state of the Republican Party after the shutdown? There is one important difference between the two stories. While the Obama administration is throwing every resource to fix its website issue, is anyone inside the GOP trying to prevent an all-out ideological civil war from breaking out? In fact, it seems to be just the opposite: Gas is being thrown on the internal GOP fire.

Republicans eating their own smaller

One example of this internal combustion concerns the Dickette herself, Liz Cheney, who is running against Sen. Mike Enzi for a Wyoming U.S. Senate seat. Per Politico, it seems she's a tad irked at John McCain, among others. She sent out a fundraising letter that said, “Liberal Republican senators like John McCain and Olympia Snowe have endorsed my opponent. We must be doing something right if these folks are fighting so hard to preserve the status quo.”

Keep throwing that gas, Liz. We all know how the Cheneys get off on big explosions.

shock and awe iraq

And just because you've all been so good about putting up with all our rants and fundraisers, here's a little reward: Raffy "Ted" Cruz's BFF Mike Lee is facing a backlash over that pesky GOP government shutdown. All together now:

awwww

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Video- CNN’s Gloria Borger Presses Recluse Grampy McCain: Is GOP In a ‘Civil War?’

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Budget War or Civil War -- A GOP Confederate Ruse

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GettysburgThere's a growing, no, make that a festering train of thought chugging down the rails in this cynic's mind. It's called distraction and Reconstruction. It has to do with this funding battle raging in Washington. Is this all really a distraction -- something to erase our recent memories of the Republican party's attacks on our domestic rights? Things like immigration, the EPA, voter's rights, women's rights, fracking, big Wall Street regulations, Food Stamps, and subsidies to GOP's favorite charity, oil.

Referring to a recent article on The Hill:

Six months after the Republican National Committee (RNC) issued a post-election blueprint for rebooting the party and reaching new voters, top Republicans are worried their party is failing to meet its goals.

Party strategists and a number of Republican lawmakers are concerned about fallout from the GOP’s handling of the government shutdown, public infighting between lawmakers, attempts to reach out to female and minority voters and an overall lack of a positive vision for the country.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) warned that the GOP was “taking our eye off the ball” by failing to focus on boosting appeal with Hispanics, young voters and women — groups that voted strongly Democratic in 2012.

When your post-national election report card says you're failing in so many areas, how do you start things over, level the playing field and even force an advantage? You start a war. A form of distraction which unites the people and if you win, you gain more control. If you lose, people are so busy talking about the fight and battle that they forget all of the other issues that were derisive before the war. And then you can start Reconstruction.

Reconstruction

But starting a war is risky. A recent Talking Points Meme by Tom Kludt put it rather illustratively:

A Republican congressman drew parallels between the government shutdown and one of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War, saying Thursday that the GOP has "found itself embroiled in battle on a battlefield it didn't intend to be on."

"I would liken this a little bit to Gettysburg, where a Confederate unit went looking for shoes and stumbled into Union cavalry, and all of a sudden found itself embroiled in battle on a battlefield it didn't intend to be on, and everybody just kept feeding troops into it," the congressman said. "That's basically what's happening now in a political sense. This isn't exactly the fight I think Republicans wanted to have, certainly that the leadership wanted to have, but it's the fight that's here."

In this parallel, change shoes to Obamacare and the battle to the government shutdown. All that's left is the surrender at Appomattox which will be the debt ceiling. Then General Robert E. Cruz will be lost to the ages along with his deputy, Colonel Beauregard Boehner and Reconstruction under Abraham Obama will begin.

Reconstruction 2 rebuilding

At least that's the projection as the story is going along so far. Not exactly Tom Clancy or Bruce Catton, but it's pretty close.

It's an interesting ruse these Republicans are running. And we're seeing signs of it already. Who's talking about civil rights? Who's talking about women's issues. Who's talking about gun control or voter rights? Who's talking about clean air and water? Who's talking about immigration? Or fracking, for "fracking" sake?

This war is about distraction from those issues and consolidation into one battle -- one the Tea Party wing of the GOP has produced.

Fortunately, it didn't work for the Confederate South at Gettysburg. What we have to hope is now is that, 150 or so years later, the South doesn't rise again -- God help all of us all if it does.

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"Fag!" Say What, Ole Miss?

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ole miss stadium 3

Ah, Ole Miss -- University of Mississippi in case you don't follow football or U.S. history. It has a great and storied past.  Home of the Runnin' Rebels.

Some highlights from the school's annals which began with it's opening it's doors way back in 1848, are compiled by Wikipedia:

With the outbreak of the Civil War in 1861, classes were interrupted when the entire student body from the University of Mississippi enlisted in the Confederate army. Their company, Company A, 11th Mississippi Infantry, was nicknamed the University Greys, and suffered a 100% casualty rate during the Civil War. A great number of those casualties occurred during Pickett's Charge at the Battle of Gettysburg on July 3, 1863.

Those were great, brave soldiers and citizens. On the wrong side of the war, but still to be honored and respected.

Ole Miss James Meredith

Desegregation came to Ole Miss in the early 1960s with the activities of United States Air Force veteran James Meredith from Kosciusko, Mississippi. Meredith won a lawsuit that allowed him admission to The University of Mississippi in September 1962. He attempted to enter campus on September 20, September 25, and again on September 26, only to be blocked by Mississippi Governor Ross R. Barnett,

After the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held both Barnett and Lieutenant Governor Paul B. Johnson, Jr. in contempt Meredith, escorted by a force of U.S. Marshals, entered the campus on September 30, 1962.

Again, that's some great history. On the wrong side of justice and civil rights, but they learned from that and the school it totally integrated and has a fine record of acceptance and tolerance. So much so, it was chosen to host the first presidential debate between Senators John McCain and Barack Obama.

If you love football, you'll know the name Manning -- three quarterbacks destined for the Hall of Fame. There's Payton, Eli and their father Archie. Archie hailed from Ole Miss. He was so great a star for them that...

Archie Manning's uniform number, 18, is the official speed limit of the Oxford campus.

Why this preamble? It's to show that this school's storied past is a reflection on history. And it was made again this past week. But once again, on the wrong side of justice. And it ties in with bigotry and football. Toss in a bit of theater and you have the story. Now here it is, courtesy of Veracity Stew:

Matthew Shephard 2

The play, [The Laramie Project] written by Moisés Kaufman, is based on the 1998 murder of gay Wyoming college student Matthew Shephard, and details the events and individuals surrounding the hate crime that captured the world’s attention for its brutality and unimaginable cruelty.

Shouts of “Fag” and other anti-gay slurs disrupted a production of “The Laramie Project” at the University of Mississippi on Tuesday night. Most of the disruption came from a group of about 20 Ole Miss football players.

Now jeering (respectful kind, anyway) and shouts are commonplace in the outdoor athletics stadiums but have no place in a theater, so perhaps these football guys can be forgiven for getting carried away. But they can't be forgiven for what they shouted. It's HATE pure and simple.

Once again Ole Miss is on the wrong side of the issue. And it remains to be seen what action the school takes. Here's what they've done so far:

The school’s athletic department issued a formal apology for their players’ conduct, and Dean of Students Sparky Reardon offered said simply that he was “extremely sorry to hear” of the incident.

No suspensions from the team? No forfeiting of a game? No loss of scholarships? Football is a multi-million dollar program. Will there be any meaningful action taken by the school?

This is a real test. I hope they pass it. I'm going to be watching. Hate is hate. And what this gang did is inexcusable. It is a wake-up call to how times may change the issue, slavery, race and now LGBT rights.

You show your colors proudly, Runnin' Rebels. Now show what you're really made of.

HBO has just made a film based on the the play which will soon be coming out. Here's the trailer -- and based on this, the Ole Miss Football players felt is appropriate to yell out "FAG!!!"

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"'Animal House' had a better grip on reality than today's tea partiers"

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animal house zit get it

I love "Animal House." I love that it fits into this post even more. For a time, I was even friendly with Stephen Furst ("Flounder") who I also loved.

Did I mention that Tea Party Support Dwindled to Near-Record Low? I love that, too.

And now to supplement all that love, here are today's Los Angeles Times letters to the editor, because our voices matter:

Re "GOP senator digs in heels," Sept. 25

While on the surface Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) appears to be a loose cannon in acting out his contemptuous agenda against the Affordable Care Act, one must admire his insane rants and deeds for what they illustrate.

Cruz is the new face of the tea party, and he will be a constant reminder of just how out of touch with reality he and his backers really are. One can only hope that Cruz continues his inane march to the point that even the most low-information voters see fit to dump both him and the party that so vehemently supports nothing for the middle class and everything for the wealthy.

Keep up the good work, Sen. Cruz.

Jack Kenna

Whittier

***

Cruz's quixotic "filibuster" against Obamacare reminded me of this classic movie soliloquy: "I think that this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture."

My apologies to "Animal House," whose Deltas had a better grip on reality than today's tea partiers.

Kevin Powell

Long Beach

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VIDEO: GOP "so intent on spinning [#Obamacare] ahead of time shows they're actually nervous the thing's gonna work"

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jim crow obamacare

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Chris Hayes:

So, with health care exchanges set to open for enrollment on October 1st, we are just eight days away from the effective launch of Obamacare. And while Ted Cruz and his threats are soaking up a lot of attention, it's easy to lose sight of the fact we are very close to a pretty incredible day in the history of American health care.

And so, it is no surprise, the right wing has gone into overdrive in trying to shape the narrative of that day before it happens. Not least by once again sewing the seeds of misinformation about the impact of law.

News anchor:

"We have confirmed more than 100 Emory health care employees are going to lose their jobs in part because of the Affordable Health Care Act."

misinformation Miss Information smaller

Hayes:

Turns out, that wasn't so much confirmed as, well, untrue. As The Atlantic pointed out, top officials said the layoffs have nothing to do with Obamacare. That's a quote. and Frum and his allies don't have to it right, either.

...The trend in an increase towards part-time work precedes the passage of Obamacare. We should be clear on this. This is probably a larger structural labor market trend.

Look at this chart. ... There was indeed a huge spike in part-time work, but it came with the great recession in 2008 and the financial crisis:

chart involuntary part time workers chris hayes

Since then, involuntary part-time employment, that is, workers who would like to work full-time jobs but are stuck in part-time jobs, has actually trended downward.

This is part and parcel of the broader Republican case against President Obama, which is to basically blame everything that has happened because of the worst financial crisis in seven years, on the president himself.

It isn't to say there aren't employers who say Obamacare is forcing them to cut hours, but as economist Mark Zandi has pointed out, the claim that Obama care is causing some large-scale shift to part-time work is simply not borne out by the data.

If Obamacare is going to be the disaster conservatives say it will, we will all know that very shortly. There is no reason to lie about it ahead of time. If anything, Republicans should be excited for the experiment to start so they can be proven right. The fact that they're so intent on spinning ahead of time shows that they're actually nervous the thing's gonna work.

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VIDEO: Rand Paul compares Republicans to (wait for it) Charlie Sheen

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charlie sheen winning smaller

Here are a few gems uttered by the one, the only (thankfully) Rand Paul at at the Liberty Political Action Conference in Virginia.

Via First Read:

CHANTILLY, Va. -- Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., said on Thursday that Republicans have been “winning” recent Washington battles and laid out a roadmap for how the party can use the victories to appeal to key voting blocks that fueled President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election. [...]

And by winning Washington battles, he's referring to the GOP civil war that's tearing his party apart.

Who is probably the least likely to protect your privacy among Democrats? Hillary Clinton,” Paul added. (He did not specify why he thought the former secretary of state would be so vulnerable on this issue.) [...]

On Thursday, Paul said making it an issue for Republicans to campaign on can help win over another demographic that Obama dominated in 2012 – African Americans.

This from the guy who questioned the Civil Rights Act on The Rachel Maddow Show... and then denied he ever did:

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But here's the money quote:

Rand Paul:

Does anybody remember Charlie Sheen when he was kind of going crazy… And he was going around, jumping around saying, "Winning, winning, we’re winning." Well I kind of feel like that, we are winning. And I’m not on any drugs.

That's debatable.

Yes, Rand Paul thought it was a good idea to compare the GOP to Charlie Sheen... the cringe-worthy, wackadoodle guy on drugs who was losing.

And Paul wants American voters to trust him to be their next president. Good luck with that, genius. And thank you for playing:

really bad analogies

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