Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Faux Plots

What happened in Benghazi was a terrible tragedy, but I'm heartily sick of the right-wing trying to manufacture a faux cover-up or "scandal" out of the incident by politicizing it. They can investigate and question the timeline of events to their hearts content, yet the story does not belong in the headlines front-and-center when compared to other issues facing the country.

I used to respect John McCain even though I never agreed with most of his views. However, every time he steps out in front of TV cameras to make comments about Benghazi he comes off like a bitter, old fool. McCain has made himself less than credible in recent years and has become increasingly irrelevant on the national stage. It's very sad to witness.

Perhaps it's time he retired with a semblance of dignity.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Right-Wing Notes

There has been a lot of political commentary about Republican "soul searching" over the past week, most of it constructive, but will the party take heed?

Conservatives have constructed a myth that says certain groups—blacks, Hispanics, women, young people—vote Democratic because they're stupid, because they're lazy, and because they can be purchased with trinkets and baubles. It'd be one thing if they kept that myth a secret, but instead they shout it from the rooftops. Then, when it's over, they wonder why those people voted Democratic again.

In order to remain a viable party with whom people from all groups can identify with, the right-wing needs to change their inherently disdainful view of the electorate in general. Sounds logical, no?

Not so fast. Apart from a few surprising comments by Bobby Jindal, Haley Barbour and Kelly Ayotte – and one might doubt their overall sincerity in the scheme of things – an entire political party cannot change their collective views overnight and expect people to find them credible. Republicans are likely hoping the American populace will forget the nasty sling-fests of 2012 by the time the next election rolls around, thus confirming their opinion of the public as a horde of idiots with no memory retention. However, it's doubtful that today's media will let them forget.

From Jindal:

The Republican Party is going to fight for every single vote. That means the 47 percent and the 53 percent…We've got to make sure that we are not the party of big business, big banks, big Wall Street bailouts, big corporate loopholes, big anything. We cannot be, we must not be, the party that simply protects the rich so they get to keep their toys.

Maybe there is optimism for the party if they can make good on some sort of change over the next four years, but I have my doubts they will take the opportunity to really connect with the American people in general. It's just not part of their identity makeup.

And lastly, from Eugene Robinson:

I know it's early, but I have a sinking feeling the Republican Party is taking all the wrong lessons from last week's election. Step out of the echo chamber, Republicans. There's a big country out there, and it's trying to tell you something. For the sake of party and nation, try listening.

Let's hope they do.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Mixed Bag

One of the major drawbacks of the GOP is their tendency to label those who don't think or believe as they do as "un-American." More than once on the campaign trail, Romney spoke of "taking America back." Take America back from whom? Other Americans who just happened to disagree with his vision for our country? We're not true Americans because we didn't buy into his whitewash?

Narrow-minded lack of inclusion from the right is a huge turnoff. Extreme social positions aren't helpful, either. I understand they are pro-choice, but please don't force those views down my throat, thank you. All they have to do is stay away from abortion clinics and allow others to make their own choices.

When I skim online articles, I often read comments left by other readers. The hateful rhetoric is simply astounding. Seething resentment seems to be the norm, which was in evidence long before the presidential election took place. It's difficult to imagine a sane person shooting off such vitriolic drivel.

As for pundits on television, the over-used phrases during the election season I hope to never hear again are "double-down" or when someone peppers their commentary with "at the end of the day…"

And if it comes down to this, I say good riddance:
The various states need at least 25,000 signatures before their petitions can be submitted to the Obama administration for consideration. However, their ludicrous intent simply verifies right-wing irrationality and state of denial.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Sunday Goodies

I particularly liked this passage from the article Romney is President by Maureen Dowd:

Romney and Tea Party loonies dismissed half the country as chattel and moochers who did not belong in their "traditional" America. But the more they insulted the president with birther cracks, the more they tried to force chastity belts on women, and the more they made Hispanics, blacks and gays feel like the help, the more these groups burned to prove that, knitted together, they could give the dead-enders of white male domination the boot.

And is this going to be the next GOP mantra?
The right-wing tried to make the "Benghazi Scandal" into a major talking point only to discredit President Obama without much success, so now it's going to be rich corporations firing people just because the President was reelected? Perhaps those same corporations will lose customers (re: revenue) because of their irrational extremism, so it's a moot point anyway.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Distasteful Citizenry

Why various parts of the world think we are a nation of zealous, uneducated idiots:
You can bet the ignorant, southern-tinged crappola comes directly from people who identify with the right-wing.
I know blatant disrespect displayed by the latter headline was perpetuated by the specific McDonalds franchise, but it's turned me off completely. I doubt I'll ever give them my business again, no matter which state they reside in - not even for their fries.

*POSTSCRIPT 11/11/12: Add Papa John's to the no-business list. I never liked their pizza anyway.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Election Blurbs

I cried with joy when it was announced Barack Obama was re-elected to a second term as President of the United States on Tuesday night. Growing ethnic and social demographics are now shaping our country, which is a wonderful thing to behold in my lifetime.

There was a slight bit of distress when Romney refused to concede because of Ohio, but thankfully he came to his senses and bowed out.

Some of the related headlines and editorials:
Reportedly, Romney was so sure he would win the election he didn't even consider writing a concession speech. Maybe his staff didn't get the message, either:

Other good bits:

Nate Silver's poll calculations were completely validated on election night. I had faith his predictions were right on the money, but being human I also had fleeting doubts as the first returns began rolling in. Happily, it didn't take long for the results to prove him right.

I was particularly pleased to see New Hampshire select an all-women congressional delegation, and very happy with the decisive wins of Elizabeth Warren (MA) and Claire McCaskill (MO). That voters kicked creepy "rape" candidates to the curb was also satisfying.

All in all, a delightful night!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Moving Tear-Jerker

My mother is Canadian, but has never obtained US citizenship despite being married to my American-born father for more than fifty years.

However, she was moved by President Obama's final campaign speech tonight. We both had copious tears running down our cheeks as he spoke, emotionally charged by his obvious sincerity and humaneness. There was never in any doubt in my mind as to who would get my vote anyway, the same as it was four years ago.

My admiration goes to those who are willing to stand in line for hours on end to cast their ballots, despite right-wing attempts to squelch their voices in many areas across the country.

Thankfully I was able to vote via absentee ballot more than two weeks ago, so I will be spared the painful wait.

Fired Up!

And so it begins on the right note…
I'm keeping my fingers crossed the rest of the day goes just as well all across America…

Monday, November 5, 2012

Unfair & Unbalanced

Interesting graphic from Media Matters:

I know how Fox News distorts or simply ignores the facts, so I never watch their reports or lunatic-fringe programs.
However, the disproportion in coverage is still surprising.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Political Hay

While I don't care for Chris Christie on a political level, I believe he is motivated by sincere concern for the people of New Jersey following Hurricane Sandy and not his own career advancement. He honestly cares about his state and the folks residing within it. All the recent political hay directed at him is simply foolish.

Friday, November 2, 2012

GOP Sketch

Perhaps the most succinct description of the right-wing I've heard all year:

Republican policies caused the economy to crash. Republican obstruction has made the economy harder to fix. And Republicans want us to focus only on bad economic news.
That's some advertisement for them for letting them take over the economy again, isn't it?

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Pundit Repeat

In 2008, I posted a blog entry about the various media commentators featured during the presidential election. It's surprising to see many of the same pundits still in evidence for the current election, such as Paul Begala, James Carville, Eugene Robinson, Joan Walsh, Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Richard Wolffe. Two of my "new" favorites are Karen Finney and Robert Reich, who both appear regularly on the MSNBC shows.

There were several people I never wanted to see again for the 2012 election season, but they are back just the same: Tucker Bounds, Bay Buchanan, Lou Dobbs and Sean Hannity among others.

Some things never change – some people, too.

Stormy Past-Dragging

In the scheme of things, it is very disturbing that Mitt "Lipsmacker" Romney is in favor of deep cuts to FEMA. If we take him for his recorded words, does that mean any possible future natural disasters will receive the same shameful lack of attention as Bush gave to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina's devastating sweep?

Should we leave inadequate and vastly underfunded relief efforts to individual states so they can continue to ignore people just as they do in bipartisan wealth-horde denial and fantasy "trickle down" job creation? It doesn't happen, because Republicans rarely step-up to the plate even in support of their fellow citizens in dire straits unless such actions benefit them politically.

In plainer right-wing terms, if you are a minority or poor just suffer and die. If you are white and rich or semi-affluent, we'll be there to rescue you tout de suite.

Thank God President Obama modified FEMA and how it operates and responds, especially now when more than 60 million Americans need it most for the aftermath of Sandy.