Archive for conservative asshats

WI GOP may allow cameras next: Poll watchers already allowed 3 feet from voters

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cameras in faceImage via

voter intimidation voter suppression

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker signed a bill this year that let poll observers intimidate get within thirty-six inches of the voters they are hovering over monitoring. Nothing like having the rabidly right wing poll police breathing down your neck while you try to make private choices in what used to be a country that believed in democracy. Now Wisconsin may allow cameras. Now they want their "observers" to be able to record your personal information, too.

Steve Benen at The Maddow Blog on the original law:

The law would allow observers to stand 3 to 8 feet from the table where voters announce their names and addresses and are issued voter numbers, or from the table where people register to vote.

Gee, who could possibly mind if a total stranger, a fanatic extremist partisan with fervently opposing views, overheard your name and address? Or scrutinized and challenged your vote? What could possibly go wrong?

breathing down neck, intimidateImage via

Here's a video of Rachel Maddow explaining the original law in full back in April:

Clearly, that's not enough Dem harassment for Wisconsin Republicans. Now the election bullies observers would be able to unnerve their fellow citizens not just with their presence, but also with cameras and video recorders. If Americans exercising their voting rights happen to rub the monitors the wrong way, then hey, chill them to the bone. Document them. Record them. Use your cameras as weapons. Make them as uncomfortable as possible. Terrify them. Try to suppress their votes by causing them to avoid the polls in order to avoid the poll watchers.

Via the Green Bay Press Gazette:

Wisconsin officials may lift the ban on camera usage by election observers.

The state elections board will meet Monday to vote on proposed changes to election observer rules, the Wisconsin State Journal reported. The Republican-controlled Legislature proposed the ban reversal.

Election observers have been prohibited from shooting photos and video at the polls for the past eight years.

If the ban is lifted, cameras can start being used during the August primary. So much for your privacy, Wisconsinites.

Via nutsandolts.com

This is going from "creepy" to downright scary.

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South Miami Mayor: "Rubio is an idiot."

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Marco Rubio

From the Things We Already Know Department: Marco Rubio is an "idiot." I know, I know, that's redundant, but there still may be someone out there reading this who isn't aware. In this particular instance, it's about climate change. Rubio the Genius-o doesn't believe that climate change is man-made-o:

"I do not believe that the laws that they propose we pass will do anything about it. Except it will destroy our economy."

His brilliance is blinding, isn't it? Kinda like the sun that's baking Mother Earth to death.

child squinting blinded by sun

He's clearly competing with former Alaskan Half-Gov Ignoramette McVacant for who can stick their head in the sand more deeply. It's a toss-up, but McVacant has a slight edge. But I digress. Back to Florida...

Here is a headline and sub-headline at The Guardian:

Miami, the great world city, is drowning while the powers that be look away

Low-lying south Florida, at the front line of climate change in the US, will be swallowed as sea levels rise. Astonishingly, the population is growing, house prices are rising and building goes on. The problem is the city is run by climate change deniers.

Via TPM:

Rubio is among those Florida politicians, including Gov. Rick Scott (R), who've refused to address the warnings of those experts.

"Rubio is an idiot," South Miami Mayor Philip Stoddard said, as quoted by The Guardian. "He says he is not a scientist so he doesn't have a view about climate change and sea-level rise and so won't do anything about it."

Stoddard noted that "the waters are rising." True.

And Marco Rubio is in way over his empty little head.

rubio etch a sketch

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SCOTUS rules for Freedom of Tyranny

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women's rights vote 2014 scotus decision freedom of religion

Freedom, freedom, freedom schmeedom. The concept is losing its meaning, especially in light of the Supreme Court's warped perception of the word. My reaction to their ruling on contraception and "freedom" of religion is still hampered by my inability to respond with anything but sputtering noises and involuntary twitches, bursts of banging my head against the wall, and convulsing into tears of outrage. Freedom my ass. What about our freedom to not have your damned religion shoved up our atheist and/or non-Christian hineys?  Bam! And that was just a hiccup. I'm shutting up now.

By the way, conservatives, how's that outreach thing going for ya these days?

Anyway, instead of ranting, which would be nothing more than stream-of-consciousness outbursts at this point, I'll leave it to the Los Angeles Times letters to the editor, because, despite evidence to the contrary, our voices still matter. The Times headline for this batch of letters is, notably, "Don't want more Hobby Lobby decisions? Then don't elect conservative presidents":

The U.S. Supreme Court's distressingly improvident 5-4 decisions in this year's religious rights cases should surprise no one. They are the price we have paid for suffering disproportionate conservative appointments to the high court from 1980 to 2008, when Republicans occupied the White House for 20 of those 28 years. ("Supreme Court, citing religious liberty, limits contraceptive coverage in Obamacare," June 30)

All who despair over the Supreme Court's unseemly bowing to religious zealots — especially when certain faiths' tenets are allowed to trump enlightened medical care — should remember this in 2016: If a Republican is elected our next president, look for the court's conservative judicial activism to endure far beyond his or her term of office.

Robin Groves, Pacific Palisades

***

I am losing confidence in our system of three branches of government. Two of them seem no longer to be working for us.

The Supreme Court increasingly seems to be operating as a political body, rendering decisions that make questionable judicial sense unless one happens to be a corporation that has taken on "person" status or a religious group that wishes to impose its specific beliefs on its employees. These decisions are becoming more questionable as our do-nothing Congress functions less like an elected body responsible to the people and more like a robot body created and manipulated by wealthy donors.

As long as our lethargic electorate keeps reelecting these legislators, our president is left to act alone and the court decides in an increasingly predictable way, we will see the continued eroding of our beloved constitutional form of government.

Bette Mason, Corona del Mar

***

If there's a silver lining to the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby ruling, it's that the decision will energize progressive voters to flood the polls for the foreseeable future as well as fuel boycotts against businesses that use religion as an excuse to discriminate.

Jerry Weil, Seal Beach

***

Will someone please explain to me how forcing your religious beliefs on others, who may or may not agree, is freedom of religion? Sounds more like tyranny to me.

Barbara Buckner, Laguna Niguel

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Rand Paul, what if a Dem joked about trading YOU "instead of 5 Taliban"? Hmm?

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not funny hahaha no

This tweet is already a couple of days old, but calling out Rand Paul for his tone deaf idiocy never gets old:

rand paul tweet Bergdahl trade Dems

He got a lot of Twitter backlash, but check out the very first reply he received:

"Isn't that redundant? and how would you tell the difference?"

Two class acts.

What patriots.

What jokesters.

What the f***.

The real joke is Rand Paul, a very, very bad one.

So let's get this straight. According to Paul and his fanboy @varifrank, the words Democrats and Taliban are interchangeable and/or President Obama should have handed over Dems to the Taliban. To be imprisoned. And tortured. And possibly killed. Isn't that a knee-slapper? Are we laughing yet?

No. We are not.

Some "jokes" are not funny, Rand Paul. And that you would make light of a very serious situation, that you would imply that Democrats' lives are worthless, that you would equate them with deadly enemies is pretty appalling.

He's your guy, GOP. This is the lowlife many in your party would like to see as commander in chief, residing in the White House, attending state dinners, handling delicate negotiations with other world leaders, and as the president who is responsible for the health and welfare of all Americans.

Go ahead, Republicans. Make Rand Paul your nominee. We dare you.

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Former Reagan advisor: Tea partiers are "morons, stupid, ignoramuses, bigots, dying off."

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former reagan advisor Bruce Bartlett on Ed Show Bergdahl

Republicans eating their own smaller

On "The Ed Show," Ed Schultz interviewed former Reagan advisor- slash- Bush 41 policy advisor Bruce Bartlett about the tea party as well as your favorite hypocrite and mine, Sen. John McCain. See: "Secret decoder ring decrypts behavior" of GOP v. Obama! Hint: Blatant hypocrisy #Bergdahlzi.

Let me put it this way: Bartlett didn't mince words. Or to put it another way, he showered us Dems with gifts. Bartlett blasted the hell out of "other Republicans," tea party "morons," and had a few words to say about Weather Vain (Added note: "Vain" is a pun, intended, hence the misspelling) McCain.

It was as if the heavens opened and dropped bundles of unadulterated vindication upon our aching Lefty Lib heads.

I may invite him to become a regular contributor to TPC. Oh, but I kid the rational Republican.

Ed and Former Reagan Advisor Bruce discussed how the GOP supported the release of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl earlier this year, yet changed their tune to adhere to conservative talking points once he was released. McCain has been the poster boy for this political exercise, as you can see by the Rachel Maddow video at the link above.

Bartlett also stood by President Obama's decisions on the prisoner of war exchange, loud and clear.

And with that, here is another episode of Republicans Eating Their Own. The good part starts at about 2:27. A-a-and, we're off!

Bruce Bartlett:

[McCain] probably has his finger up in the air, looking around to see which way the tea party is blowing.

After the Vietnam experience, we all agreed that we must do more and do everything humanly possible to get all of our soldiers home who are captured, and we didn't ask questions about whether they were deserving or not. They're prisoners of war, they're American soldiers, they deserve to be brought home...

It's all been turned around now, because of the tea party. The Republicans in Washington constantly have their finger on the pulse of the grassroots, trying to figure out what they want, and how to pander to them.

But unfortunately, these people in the tea party are morons! I mean, they really are. They're stupid, they're ignoramuses, they have no idea what they're talking about, they're extremists, they're bigots.

Senator Thad Cochran... may very well lose his primary to some crackpot moron tea party person.

[Conservative Republicans] keep moving further and further to the right...

Fox-- which is essentially the Republican Party network, simply panders to the Republican Party line-- has an age 72 average viewing age. And so those people who make up the tea party are basically dying off.

bingo2

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Hey climate change deniers: State emission cuts have NOT brought economic ruin.

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another talking point bites the dust

map climate change emission cuts

Climate deniers-- hey you, over there on the right, I'm talkin' to you-- wail and moan about regulating carbon emissions because, tyranny!!!! and Armageddon!!!! and economic disaster!!!! That sound you hear is the coal industry shaking cash from their enormous wallets to buy their way out of cleaner air and water standards. Because, tyranny!!!! and Armageddon!!!! and economic disaster!!!!

Well, they're wrong. And there is proof that cutting emissions will not bring economic ruin to America. Sweartogod.

Via the New York Times:

The cries of protest have been fierce, warning that President Obama’s plan to cut greenhouse gases from power plants will bring soaring electricity bills and even plunge the nation into blackouts. By the time the administration is finished, one prominent critic said, “millions of Americans will be freezing in the dark.”

OMG 1

That sounds positively terrifying! Oh em gee! We will become a nation of freeze-dried citizens! All in the ironic name of saving lives!

Just a sec... hold that thought. I'm hearing through my imaginary news anchor earpiece that at least 10 states have already achieved emission cuts by the amount the president has fecklessly Kenyan-dictated-- some in excess of that-- and more states will make similar progress before the deadline of 2030.

Don't those tree-hugging, green-tinged fools realize their Kenyan-dictated, feckless, reckless actions will bring economic ruin?!

[T]heir strides so far have not brought economic ruin. In New England, a region that has made some of the biggest cuts in emissions, residential electricity bills fell 7 percent from 2005 to 2012, adjusted for inflation. And economic growth in the region ran slightly ahead of the national average.

Oh.

Via onamatopoeia.wordpress.com

Yet another Republican talking point bites the dust. Imagine that. Quel surprise.

Over in Europe, they're headed toward a 43 percent emission cut from power plants and "other energy-intensive industries" by the same year. That makes our measly 30% cuts look pretty... feckless.

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Only 1 of 5 Taliban swapped for Bergdahl has hardcore past, per experts #Bergdahlzi

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maddow taliban who changed talking points impeach

Here it comes... wait for it... Another talking point debunked. The GOP attempt to smear President Obama with #Bergdahlzi!!!! just took a hit. This time it pertains to the Taliban who were traded for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl in order to save his, you know, American life. But that's not good enough for all those Republicans who cheered for Bowe and wept with joy... until they didn't.

There have been a lot of hypocritical GOP deletions bouncing around the Twitter Machine. Read about it here: "Secret decoder ring decrypts behavior" of GOP v. Obama! Hint: Blatant hypocrisy and more about the hypocrisy here: Hagel unaware of any "soldiers dying as a result of efforts to find, rescue Sgt. Bergdahl."

Suddenly Bergdahl's life wasn't worth a damn to them, because if he mattered and the president saved his valuable life, then something Obama accomplished might actually, possibly, maybe *gasp* appeal to potential voters. And the GOP could never have that, now could they?

So of course, they're Swiftboating Bergdahl and calling the president a terrorist appeaser, or a U.S.-put-er-in-danger-er, or a reckless lawbreaker or something-er. Impeachazi!!!!

According to everyone in the whole wide media world, especially the on-air Republican bleating heads, the Taliban who were freed were the worst of the worst! The awfulest of the awful! The hardcorest of the hardcore! Why, before you know it, they'll be right back to their old dirtiest of dirty tricks terrorizing every man, woman, and child in America and we'll all die!!! DIE!!!

Never mind that they'll be stuck in Qatar for at least a year, and after that, they'll be under the same over-watchful eye of the Big U.S. Spy Machine that everyone has been kvetching about.

And oh yeah... never mind this from the Los Angeles Times:

A closer look at the former prisoners, however, indicates that not all were hard-core militants. Three held political positions in the Taliban government that ruled Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001 and were considered relative moderates. A fourth was a mid-level police official, experts say. [...]

The backgrounds of the prisoners, who are confined to the Persian Gulf nation of Qatar for one year under the terms of the exchange, indicate that they would have little utility on the battlefield after more than a decade in prison. They range in age from 43 to 47.

The article then goes on to describe the more benign prisoners. One was a civilian official-turned-governor who never held a military post. His job "was to ensure the government operated as usual and to resolve tribal complaints."

The description of another "is sharply at odds with that of journalists and analysts who met him in the late 1990s. [He] assiduously reached out to local clerics, including minority Shiite Muslims, to address their opposition to the Taliban."

Then there was the guy who, "after the U.S.-led invasion... offered his help to U.S. forces in locating the Taliban supreme leader, Mullah Mohammed Omar, but was arrested instead."

Analysts believe that the ex-prisoners, if they rejoined the Taliban, would serve at most in advisory roles, saying they are too far removed from a movement that has lost many of its top leaders to U.S.-led coalition operations.

"They are not aware of what has been going on for the past 13 years," said Waheed Muzhda, a political analyst in Kabul who served in the Taliban's Foreign Ministry.

Not that these men were the types we'd want to hang out with at Starbucks, but most of the Taliban who we released were not the big, bad, worst of the worst boogeymen that we were led to believe. Please follow the link for more details.

And with that, here are today's L.A. Times letters to the editor, because our voices matter:

The rescue of our only prisoner of war should have been a source of pride for America and validation of the fact that we do not leave behind those who serve in our military.

Before this young man returns home from five years of Taliban captivity — which essentially may have been torture — the Republicans are setting him up for condemnation because it was President Obama's efforts that returned him to us.

Waiting for facts has never been a Republican goal, which is why we are in this war in the first place.

Claire Zimmer

Palm Springs

***

Charles Manson was presumed innocent until proven guilty. So were killers Jeffrey Dahmer, Sirhan Sirhan and so on.

So why not Bergdahl? Why the rush to judgment by some conservative politicians and pundits?

Of course, the reason is political; you knew that, and my question is rhetorical.

The real question is: When will voters start choosing representatives who will identify and deal with real issues of public concern, instead of ideologues and party hacks?

Fredric Dunn

San Diego

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