The GOP has a big problem with racism

*NOTE: This post was accidentally submitted (as ‘Dear GOP: You lied’) before it was ready. My best guess is that I was drowsy and hit ‘publish’, rather than ‘save draft’. The version of this post that was submitted was far from complete. Upon discovering this, I deleted the post. I apologize and I will be more careful in the future.

Jeopardy answer:

Once upon a time, there was a man-an “exceptional” man born into an “exceptional ” Western country.  Over the course of his life, this man was a businessman, a television entertainer, an author, and an investor. His various occupations enabled the man to accrue great wealth, and to many, he was viewed as a celebrity. But wealth and prestige was not enough for this man. He sought more-he sought to be the leader of this Western country. Fueled by ignorance, backed by more wealth than any person truly needs, and armed with a Grand Canyon-sized ego, this mendacious media mogul recently announced his candidacy for presidency of the United States.

Jeopardy question:

Who is Donald Trump?

Continue reading “The GOP has a big problem with racism”

The GOP has a big problem with racism

Yes Mr. O'Reilly, let's look at some stats

FOX “News” commentator Bill O’Reilly has made a career out of being an obnoxious, racist, homophobic, transphobic, sexistmisogynistic bigot (an extremely lucrative career). The highly rated conservative pundit (who, I am shocked to find out, is only #43 in Iris Vander Pluym’s Abattoir; what’s an asshole like O’Reilly gotta do to move up the list?!) regularly engages in inflammatory rhetoric that’s clearly designed to gin up his conservative viewership. If there was a personification of the phrase ‘punching down‘, it would probably look like Bill O’Reilly. I find the man so repellent that I don’t even want to hear his voice. I don’t know how the folks over at Right Wing Watch can stand it (and O’Reilly is far from the only craptastic conservative they report on). Thankfully, listening to his voice is not necessary for me to learn the latest awful thing he’s said. For that, I have but to turn to Raw Story:

Continue reading “Yes Mr. O'Reilly, let's look at some stats”

Yes Mr. O'Reilly, let's look at some stats

Yes Mr. O’Reilly, let’s look at some stats

FOX “News” commentator Bill O’Reilly has made a career out of being an obnoxious, racist, homophobic, transphobic, sexistmisogynistic bigot (an extremely lucrative career). The highly rated conservative pundit (who, I am shocked to find out, is only #43 in Iris Vander Pluym’s Abattoir; what’s an asshole like O’Reilly gotta do to move up the list?!) regularly engages in inflammatory rhetoric that’s clearly designed to gin up his conservative viewership. If there was a personification of the phrase ‘punching down‘, it would probably look like Bill O’Reilly. I find the man so repellent that I don’t even want to hear his voice. I don’t know how the folks over at Right Wing Watch can stand it (and O’Reilly is far from the only craptastic conservative they report on). Thankfully, listening to his voice is not necessary for me to learn the latest awful thing he’s said. For that, I have but to turn to Raw Story:

Continue reading “Yes Mr. O’Reilly, let’s look at some stats”

Yes Mr. O’Reilly, let’s look at some stats

What. Did. I. Just. Watch?!

Ben Carson.

Ted Cruz.

Carly Fiorina.

Mike Huckabee.

George Pataki.

Marco Rubio.

Rick Santorum.

These are all the GOP contenders clowns hoping to win their party’s nomination as well as a spot in the Oval Office in January, 2017. Oh, wait. I forgot one. This guy:

This is Rand Paul.
This is Rand Paul on some serious drugs. Any questions? (I can think of a few, like “What the hell was the photographer-Gage Skidmore-thinking?” and “Who’s body does that belong to, bc it sure as hell isn’t Rand Paul’s?”)

In an attempt to paint Rand Paul as true patriot will defend mom, apple pie, and the U.S. against President Obama and his nefarious plans, a pro-Rand Paul SuperPAC released a really fucking bizarre commercial. Complete with bald eagles (fire-breathing ones, natch), a bare-chested Rand Paul, and enough explosions to make Michael Bay jealous, after watching this commercial, you’ll probably be scratching your head:

Seriously, what the fuck did I just watch, what demographic was the video aimed at, and why did the SuperPAC think this would help Rand Paul’s campaign?

(h/t Addicting Info)

What. Did. I. Just. Watch?!

Utah lawmaker is a rape apologist

In The History of the Pleas of the Crown 17th century English lawyer and judge Sir Matthew Hale wrote:

But the husband cannot be guilty of a rape committed by himself upon his
lawful wife, for by their mutual matrimonial consent and contract the wife hath
given up herself in this kind unto her husband which she cannot retract.

According to Hale, a husband is entitled to sex from his wife, the signing of a marriage contract means a wife gives her ongoing consent to sex, and a wife cannot retract her consent so long as she remains married. In other words, husbands have a marital rape exemption. By virtue of being married, a husband has the right to demand and engage in sex with his wife, regardless of her wishes. Marital rape exemptions in the United States, which can trace their roots back to Hale’s treatise, were included in the criminal code of all U.S. states for most of the country’s history. In 1976-200 years after the founding of the United States-Nebraska became the first state to abolish the marital rape exemption, with other states following…very…slowly. North Carolina and Oklahoma became the last states in the nation to remove their marital rape exemptions-in 1993 (27 years after Nebraska).

Unfortunately, while the courts have criminalized marital rape, deep-seated cultural and religious beliefs about married women continue to persist in our culture. These sexist and misogynistic beliefs make it difficult for many people to recognize sexual coercion in marriage (thanks a bunch Sir Matthew Hale, for your role in perpetuating sexism and misogyny). As a result, despite the elimination of the marital rape exemption, the crime is infrequently prosecuted.

Though infrequent, prosecution for marital rape does happen. For Rep. Brian Greene of Utah, this is cause for concern:

A Utah measure seeking to make that legal clarification won early approval in a state legislative committee Tuesday, but some lawmakers qualified their support, questioning whether the law would designate sex with an unconscious spouse as rape.

“If an individual has sex with their wife while she is unconscious … a prosecutor could then charge that spouse with rape, theoretically,” said Rep. Brian Greene, R-Pleasant Grove.”That makes sense in a first date scenario, but to me, not where people have a history of years of sexual activity.”

Rep. Greene clearly holds the same disgusting, misogynistic beliefs about a woman’s “wifely duties” as Sir Matthew Hale. And he’s just as fucking ignorant. If your wife is unconscious, she cannot consent. Sex without consent is the very definition of rape. Marital status does not change that definition. Husbands are not entitled to sex from their wives and wives do not owe their husbands sex (or anything else for that matter). Whether you engage in non-consensual sex on the first date, or after 10 years of marriage it is still rape. It doesn’t magically become NOT rape if a husband has non-consensual sex with his wife. Thankfully, decent human beings spoke up in opposition to Greene:

Others disagreed. If a person is unconscious, having sex with him or her “is rape. Period. End of story,” said Rep. Brian King, D-Salt Lake City. “Let’s make the statute clear. Let’s not dance around it.”
According to prosecutors, “consent is a decision that has to be made at the time of the act,” said attorney Donna Kelly from the Utah Prosecution Council. “You cannot give consent to sexual activity if you’re unconscious.”

Utah’s current law doesn’t adequately protect victims, advocates and others told the House Judiciary Committee at the Capitol on Tuesday.

“This is something that’s been a long time coming,” bill sponsor Rep. Angela Romero, D-Salt Lake City, said after the meeting. “At the end of the day, if someone’s unconscious or they’re a vulnerable adult, then the logical answer is: Don’t try to have a sexual relationship with them.”

Lawmakers parsed HB74 to understand the implications for sex between partners, husbands and wives and those who may be incapacitated by mental disabilities, medication or surgery. The legislation aims to clarify the definition of consent in sexual assault cases.

“I’m not at all trying to justify sexual activity with an unconscious person. It’s abhorrent to me,” Greene said. But he questioned whether sex with an unconscious person should be “rape in every instance — dependent only upon the actor’s knowledge that the individual is unconscious. That’s the question. That’s what I struggle with.”

If you’re trying to question whether non-consensual sex is rape, then you are arguing that not all rape is bad, and you have utterly failed to be a decent human being. I wonder if Rep. Greene’s Mormon beliefs play a role in his odious views on marital rape.

Nah. I’m sure there’s nothing in Mormon doctrine that says the husband is entitled to sex from his wife, or that a wife is duty bound to give her husband sex when he wants it regardless of her desires.

If you have been the victim of sexual assault or if you are a family member or friend of someone who has been victimized, please call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-HOPE (4673) or visit them online for secure, free, and confidential help.

Utah lawmaker is a rape apologist

Republican official showcases upper level ignorance

Last week, Russell Pearce, a top Arizona GOP official had some interesting things to say about low income Arizonans (Arizonians?):

Tuning into The Russell Pearce Show on Saturday nights on Phoenix talk-radio station KKNT 960 AM can be illuminating.

For example, on one recent episode, the recalled former state Senate president got off on the subject of public assistance in all its various forms.

He suggested that if people would just give him the authority, he’d set things right with all these here gub’mint programs.

“You put me in charge of Medicaid,” Pearce told one caller, “the first thing I’d do is get [female recipients] Norplant, birth-control implants, or tubal ligations. Then, we’ll test recipients for drugs and alcohol, and if you want to [reproduce] or use drugs or alcohol, then get a job.”

Down deep, Pearce really is an old softy. This is just his version of tough love.

“I know there’s people out there [who] need help, and my heart goes out to them, too,” he explained that same evening. “But you know what? That should never be a government role. That’s a role for family, church, and community.”

So generous. So thoughtful. Why, if only we had more people like him in the world, all our problems would be solved!

::we interrupt this post because I need to go find a bucket to puke in…ah, much better::

Anyone remember the Count?  From Sesame Street.  Imagine his voice as we say:

One, one fail!

Two, two fails!

Three, three fails!

Four, four fails!

Ah ha ha ha ha ha ha!

Fail the first- He’d “get” low income women birth control or tubal ligations? What does that mean? You’d force them?  You do know that’s a violation of their privacy and their bodily autonomy, right?  What’s that? You don’t care?  Oh, silly me. I forgot we’re talking about the women folk.  In this country, they get different, and fewer rights, than men do (at least according to the GOP assbigots).  Oh, and is he going to “get” these to the women folk free of charge?

Fail the second- Drug testing low income government assistance recipients.  ::Le sigh:: This.  Again.  How many times must reality smack these Republican nincomfucks upside the head before they will listen (yeah, yeah, I know)?  Here is yet more evidence that Republican views are divorced from reality:

The testing is meant to assure taxpayers their money isn’t being “wasted” on the less desirable, those who would somehow manage to buy drugs with the assistance. But in Tennessee, where drug testing was enacted for welfare recipients last month, only one person in the 800 who applied for help tested positive. In Florida, during the four months the state tested for drug use, only2.6% of applicants tested positive. Meanwhile, Florida has an illegal drug use rate of 8%, meaning far fewer people on services are using drugs than their better-off counterparts. The drug testing cost taxpayers more money than it saved, and was ruled unconstitutional last year.

Then there’s the lovely state of Utah:

Utah has spent more than $30,000 to drug test welfare applicants after it passed a new law last year. But in that time, just 12 people have tested positive for drug use, according to state figures.

Utah doesn’t randomly test applicants or require them to all undergo a drug test, but instead requires them to complete a written questionnaire that is meant to screen for drug abuse. Those who have a high probability are then given drug tests. The state spent nearly $6,000 on written tests for 4,730 applicants, 466 of which had to take a drug test, which cost more than $25,000. The law doesn’t disqualify those who test positive but instead requires them to go into a substance abuse treatment program.

And in Virginia:

Virginia Republicans are reviving plans to force welfare recipients to take drug tests before receiving benefits, saying they have found ways to reduce the price tag that doomed the proposal earlier.

“We got hung up last year on the cost, and it seems that we determined the costs aren’t as great as we were told last year,” said Del. Dickie Bell, R-Staunton, the bill’s sponsor. “There are new methods of screening and testing used other places, and some are practical and could be applied here.”

Bell hasn’t introduced drug test legislation yet for the 2013 General Assembly session. The bill he introduced in the last session would have screened all state welfare recipients and then administered drug tests to those suspected of drug use.

The legislation failed, however, after the state estimated it would cost $1.5 million to administer the tests, compared with the estimated $229,000 that would be saved by stripping benefits from those who test positive.

I’m starting to see a pattern:  Republicans are idiots.  Drug testing welfare recipients is a waste of taxpayer dollars because there are insufficient numbers of low income Americans who are doing drugs. Stop trotting this bullshit out.

Fail the third-Pearce’s comments make use of the GOP talking point that welfare recipients are not working.  A large number of them are working:

Over the last two decades, large shares of SNAP households have become working households. In 1989, 42 percent of all SNAP households received cash welfare benefits and only 20 percent had earned income. By 2010, over three times as many SNAP households worked as relied solely on welfare benefits for their income.

Despite the large jump in unemployment during the recession, the share of SNAP families with earnings has continued to increase in recent years.  This suggests that for a growing share of the nation’s workers, having a job has not been enough to keep them out of poverty.

(via Media Matters)

Another thing that many Republican officials fail to realize is that many of the people who benefit from government assistance are children and the elderly.  You know, the people who don’t/can’t work or are retired.

Most SNAP recipients were children or elderly. Nearly half (48 percent) were children and another 8 percent were age 60 or older. Working-age women represented 28 percent of the caseload, while working-age men represented 16 percent. (source)

That ties in nicely to fail the fourth-that the government shouldn’t assist low income families.  It’s funny, to hear the arguments from opponents of marriage equality, it is in the government’s best interest to forbid same sex marriage because think of the kids. If the government has a vested interest in thinking of the kids as a reason to make same sex marriage illegal-don’t they have an interest in supporting those families with kids who are struggling to put motherfucking food on the table?!  But no, think of the kids is a refrain only trotted out to oppose marriage equality (and of course, it’s not about the kids in that case either, otherwise, they’d see the many LGB families with kids that would greatly benefit from having their parents in a legally recognized marriage).

The fail is further added to when you recognize that private charities are not up to the task of providing for the millions of Americans who require financial assistance and they NEVER were (libertarians, take note).

The power of the fail is strong in Russell Pearce.  Thankfully, he has since resigned.


Republican official showcases upper level ignorance

Michele Bachmann says dumb shit…again

She may be on her way out, but Rep. Bachmann still has time to say completely idiotic shit:

“Foreign nationals that have come into the United States are between 300- to 500,000,” Bachmann told an incredulous Crossfire co-host Van Jones. “My heart is broken for a female college student in Minnesota who was raped, murdered and mutilated by a foreign national who came into our country. We had a school bus full of kids in Minnesota — four children were killed on that school bus because an illegal alien driving a van went into that schoolbus.”

What she’s talking about is unclear.  This could be the school bus incident she’s referring to, but she doesn’t make it explicit.  Plus, that was in 2008.  This is 2014, and she’s ostensibly talking about the immigrant children coming to the US that has the GOP up in arms.  How a horrible incident in 2008 relates to that is unknown.  It is also unclear who she is referring to when speaking about a female college student who was raped.  Nor do we know how that horrible act relates to the wave of immigrant children venturing to the United States.

What does seem to be clear is that Rep. Bachmann is attempting to link two horrible events with the waves of immigrant children coming into the US, and she’s not using any logic whatsoever to connect the events.  Is she scared that children as young as toddlers, coming from Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador, are here to rape college students?  Is she worried their presence will lead to horrible accidents throughout the US?  Has she forgotten that these are children and teens we’re talking about?  Why is she eyeing them with suspicion and uncertainty?   Does she have evidence that these children are a threat to the US? Or is she engaging in xenophobic fear-mongering?  Somehow I don’t think we’re going to get concrete answers.

I wish that Rep. Bachmann would display some empathy and compassion.  In many cases, these children are coming from areas with crushing poverty and extreme violence:

Although there has always been crushing poverty in Central America, violence in the region has escalated in recent years. For example, Honduras has the most murders per capita of any country.

Drug cartels and gangs are at the root of the increased violence. Some of these children are fleeing gang initiations, according to several reports.

Where is her compassion?  Why doesn’t she seem to care that these children are fleeing horrible circumstances?  Does she not care?  Silly questions, I know. We’re talking about Michele Bachmann here of course she doesn’t give a flying fuck about immigrant children.  Maybe if they were a different color

Michele Bachmann says dumb shit…again