T. Paine's Saving Common Sense makes the point that problems can't all be solved by soaking the rich. Sadly, he obscures a legitimate point by wildly exaggerating the view of those with whom he disagrees. Building up a straw man, then triumphantly knocking him down.
Chuck Thinks Right notices an archeological find. An ancient man buried as a woman would be buried in that culture. Speculation is divided on whether the 5,000 year old man was gay, was transgendered, or that the whole thing means nothing at all. Chuck, being Chuck, concludes that archeology is a waste.
Nancy Hanks at The Hankster notes the rantings of a potential progressive third party candidate. Unlike 2000, it isn't Nader. But the siren song is the same. Last time it gave us the eight year long enlightened rule of Bush/Cheney/Rove. But, if at first you don't succeed, keep trying until everyone's life is miserable.
- James Wigderson waxes sarcastic on the latest electoral screw up in Wisconsin. They lost, but found, an entire city?.
This weekend, we must contemplate how the Republican campaign against women's health and Planned Parenthood connects to the promised laser-like focus on jobs. Give up? So do we all.
Extreme conservative FUNGAZI.COM is funnier than a butterfly attack as he uses Earth Hour for a launching point on political symbolism. After laughing myself silly, I thought about the deeper truth, as expressed by analyst Steven Wright: If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.
Tommy Christopher of Mediaite knows his French. We know this because, when he's heard it all before, he gets a sense of déjà écouté, which is extreme enough to actually become Proustian (no kidding!). He recounts a running feud among bedfellows. Keith Olbermann and Bill O'Reilly !?! square off against Ted Koppel. Political filmmaker Robert Greenwald and Fox spokespersonage Rich White somehow get into the mix, which Tommy summarizes as a la carte cable, which is also French and much funnier in context. This is not Tommy's best, but he is generally more entertaining on his worst day than ... well ... me. Read him here. By the way, I like Tommy's French sampler. It gives me a sense of Chevrolet é Coupé.
Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) says something silly. Ned Williams at Wisdom Is Vindicated decides it just isn't silly enough, so he falsely quotes her. Ned has had several very good moments. This isn't one of them.
Nancy Hanks at The Hankster just got her Art History Degree. She celebrates with a few political cartoons (amusing) and then tacks on skyline views of New York at dusk. Beautiful. Oh Come on and click. Like two compelling posts in one.
- T. Paine's Saving Common Sense put's Obama's excursion in Libya on trial and finds it unconstitutional.
Jack Jodell, friend of the working blogger, has an angry but funny piece at THE SATURDAY AFTERNOON POST. Jack is getting a little, okay a lot, fed up with television advertising. Now for a word from our spons-aggrgg.
Extreme conservative FUNGAZI.COM opposes the Obama action in Libya. "What the heck are we doing in Libya when we already have a war going on in Iraq and another in Afghanistan?" Sounds like a reason to get out of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Slant Right's John Houk, on behalf of himself and all other "Biblically Moral" folks promotes the never ending fight against gay people. I dunno. I wonder if John might be confusing morality with moralism. It is possible that the occasional Biblically Moral individual, the one who gazes in the mirror and sees a saint, may have a reflection looking back at a prig.
Tommy Christopher Mediaite has strong opinions after an Oklahoma Republican attacks state Firefighters for briefly flashing the Oklahoma City bombing in a television ad. Tommy comes down on the side of ... well read it to see.
Manifesto Joe of Texas Blues catches Texas Young Republicans in a demonstration of the famous three levels of disinformation: lies, damn lies, and epic Götterdämmerung level lies. This set concerns school personnel.
- T. Paine's Saving Common Sense pays homage to a mythical speech by a mythical principal written by conservative Dennis Prager. Many of us know Prager as an anti-Muslim conservative activist who also denigrates equality as an unAmerican European value. The fictional principal is pretty strict until the last paragraph, where he okays smoking, coffee, and sexual harassment. Oh. He's against sex education. Okay, school's out.
Holte Ender, living in Mad Mike's America, takes note of a blog writer who transcends all blogs, Jack Jodell. Holte likes Jack's idea of fighting for change through Democratic primaries with a sort of subset political party.
Extreme conservative FUNGAZI.COM starts with a reasonable observation that public servants should not expect to retire in fabulous wealth. He then proceeds on the assumption that this, in fact, typically happens.
Our favorite John Myste at Mysterious Things offers a critical review of the creation of existence by God. His conclusion: a set of design flaws was caused by a lack of quality control. Reminds me of the late Carl Sagan's comment: "In order to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe."
Problem child Tommy Christopher, writing for Mediaite fawns over the wit and wisdom of Andrew Breitbart of misleading video fame. Poor Shirley Sherrod is gone and forgotten by the middling mind of Tommy. Breitbart is "nothing if not quotable" he giggles appreciatively.
Chuck Thinks Right gets a bit ticked at Hillary Clinton for comments about Tunisia until Tommy's pretty, witty, and wise smear artist, Andrew Breitbart, pats Chuck on the head and tells him it's okay. Then he sees her point.
Conservative T. Paine's Saving Common Sense rolls up everything he doesn't like, calls it Moral Relativism, and casts it as Satan's plot to justify the euthanasia of grandmothers everywhere. Even T. Paine's mushiest thinking makes for entertaining reading. Yeah, he's that good. Reminds me of a piece I once saw somewhere (Okay, it was here and I wrote it) that included a comment by the 19th century French poet, Charles Pierre Baudelaire: The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he doesn’t exist.
Ned Williams at Wisdom Is Vindicated slaps around Jalen Rose for referring to a groundbreaking basketball team of two decades ago as Uncle Toms. Ned makes a good point, then muddies it a little with a concluding comment: "America's in trouble race-relations-wise and in general as long as 'being black' means what Jalen Rose seemingly thinks it does." Actually, America has been in trouble race-relations-wise and in general, and white racism has more to do with it than Ned seems to acknowledge.
- Slant Right's John Houk makes the case that an anti-Muslim law against Sharia is desperately needed because the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States is not enough. His evidence is a ruling by a local judge in New Jersey a couple of years ago which was overturned because of ... wait for it ... the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. Anyone who discovers a flaw in John's reasoning gets to leave class early.
Extreme conservative FUNGAZI reveals why he is regarded as an extremely able writer, in an in depth exploration of public sector unions. He begins sympathetically, then gradually takes the reader to his anti-union conclusion. Worth reading, if only for technique.
James Wigderson considers the stripping of public sector unions of their ability to negotiate benefits. Republicans insist the measure was completely legal because it because it had nothing to do with anything budgetary. James agrees it was completely legal. Besides, it was necessary for budgetary reasons. I sense some sort of flaw in his reasoning.
Ned Williams at Wisdom Is Vindicated defends against the charge that conservatives embrace Jesus, but go against his teachings. He goes on to blast us lefties for our willingness to "expand government at the expense of liberty." An interesting argument, made even more interesting as Ned abandons it completely when it comes to government banning marriage equality.
Even before Fox News viewers began skewing surveys on education by statistical displays of ignorance of basic facts, public perception of foreign aid has been way off the mark. Ordinary folks rank foreign aid as about 24 percent of the US budget on average. In reality the figure is a little under one percent. In recent years the US has slipped to 12th in the world in foreign aid as a percentage of GDP. But T. Paine of Saving Common Sense will set things straight, right? Well, Not so much.
At Mediaite, Tommy Christopher raises the racially charged history of one conservative activist James O’Keefe, while looking for something, anything, nice to say about another, smear artist Andrew Breitbart. He finally settles on Breitbart deserving credit "for being willing to surround himself with liberals".
- Our favorite John Myste at Mysterious Things criticizes me for being too gentlemanly. He's not even sarcastic. He also names me as one of his favorite bloggers, while neglecting to provide a link. Guy can't get a break these days. Fortunately, he does stop by here to unleash his biting wit.
Max's Dad, on the other hand, finds as his examples elected officials ranting to a screaming crowd against a group of Muslims, as the Muslims raise money for America's homeless.
At Saving Common Sense, conservative T. Paine rages at the Obama administration for not defending the Defense of Marriage Act in court. One extremely well informed comment is published in dissent. Oh gosh, it was by me. Also entertaining is a civil on-line dialogue between T. Paine and JMyste which, sadly, does not descend into the dreamed for food fight.
Ned Williams at Wisdom Is Vindicated points out that a Georgia bill, that would throw a woman into prison for experiencing a miscarriage, might be wrongheaded. He also anticipates that lefties might seize on it to "prove" the absurdities of current positions of right-to-life. Actually, that ship has sailed.
- Slant Right's John Houk, who has been screaming opposition to the overthrow of governments in the middle east as a leftist plot, is now angry about the hypocrisy about main stream media's failure to report atrocities by authorities resisting revolution. It's the Qadafi effect possibly combined with the all too human reluctance to admit when we are wrong. We all partake of that vice, don't we?
Chuck Thinks Right takes an Obama quote out of context, "I won. So I think on that one, I trump you." and thinks he's scored a huge point. In fact, within days after taking office, Obama had just expressed openness to an Eric Cantor presentation, "Eric, I don't see anything crazy here." He did point out that there would be differences in ideological approaches, and added (Here's Chuck's big score) "I won. So I think on that one, I trump you." Republicans told reporters they were impressed with Obama's bipartisan approach. Here's the context that, for some strange reason, escaped Chuck's notice. How odd.
At Slant Right, poor John Houk embraces a false dichotomy, equating anything other than unregulated capitalism with Marxism. Since Marxism killed millions, this proves unions should be driven to extinction. Oh my.
Ned Williams at Wisdom Is Vindicated, offers his take on union-busting. He proposes rank majoritarianism, arguing that, whenever conservatives gain even a momentary majority, they should be able to deprive others of rights without these bothersome obstructions. The same case might be made for depriving gays of basic rights. Of course Ned would never do that, right?
James Wigderson decries bogus comparisons of opponents to Hitler, but echoes the call for legislative majority rule when it comes to dismantling unions in Wisconsin. He argues that it is a necessary step to solving budget shortfalls. James neglects to mention that unions had agreed to all the governor's budget demands, leaving only the dismantling of the unions themselves as an issue. Now why would James not mention this? Lack of space, perhaps.
Manifesto Joe of Texas Blues does not much care for historical revisionism concerning President Reagan, or when it comes to much of anything else.
- The Mind of Bryan Lee Peterson relates yet another instance of his fictional writing becoming true. This fellow Bryan is turning out to be one scary guy.
In 1998 an email alert went around the world. Alabama had passed a law redefining pi, the mathematical relationship between the diameter and circumference of a circle. It's used in everything from construction to aerospace. Problem is it's an irrational number. You can never write it out exactly in decimal, binary, or any other numbering system. If you ever try to write it out, you'd better pack a lunch cause it'll take you forever. It has an infinite number of digits. It's so inconvenient, there oughta be a law.
Besides, the Bible defines pi in the First Book of Kings. Solomon commanded the construction of a huge vessel where priests could clean their hands. "Then he made the molten sea (that'd be the vessel); it was round, ten cubits from brim to brim, and five cubits high, and a line of thirty cubits measured its circumference." So ten cubits across and thirty around, and there's your ratio. Pi is defined by the Bible as 3.0, right? And since everyone in Alabama knows the Bible was written directly by God, it can't be wrong. So let the law be passed, pi is now declared to be 3.0. If buildings crumble and planes fall from the sky, let God's will be done.
Problem with the story is it never happened. Alabama never considered, let alone passed, such a law. The story was originally written as an April Fool's parody and was published by NMSR Reports. It went viral, emailed and re-mailed as an authentic story. The arguments were so similar to those actually used by creationists that it seemed believable.
The story did contain some element of truth in another context, though.
There was a similar bill that really was passed in 1897 by the legislature of Indiana. A legislator handed a copy of the bill to a visiting professor and asked if he would like to meet the sponsor. The professor "replied that he was already acquainted with as many crazy people as he cared to know." He did hold overnight sessions educating enough politicians so that the house bill never got through the Indiana state Senate. It was laughed off the agenda. Indiana owes a lasting debt of gratitude to Professor Clarence Abiathar Waldo of Purdue University.
You would have thought the war on science would have been over when cigarettes were determined to cause cancer. A lot of industry CEOs perjured themselves before Congress, insisting they could see no causal connection between smoking and the Big C. What a bunch of wusses.
If they had shown the creativity of today's Montana state government, they would have added that cancer is really beneficial to a smoker's health. House Bill 549 got its first reading in the Montana state legislature on Friday. It finally acknowledges that global warming is a fact. There is simply too much evidence to deny that without looking too silly, even for science deniers. The proposed law declares global warming to be a good thing, "beneficial to the welfare and business climate of Montana." Reaction from scientists ranges from laughter to outrage. Imagine passing a state law to repeal the effects of climate catastrophe.
It would never be considered in Alabama, except in an April Fool's joke.
Slant Right's John Houk is suspicious of Egyption democracy because of how anti-Muslim activist Pamela Geller instructs her band of avid followers which, sadly, includes John.
The Mind of Bryan Lee Peterson finds yet again that what he writes today becomes tomorrow's headline. I've asked him to write about a Missouri political blogger who wins the Lotto, but he has yet to grant this one small favor.
Our favorite John Myste at Mysterious Things relates a heartwarming story about wisdom learned from his fraudulent grandfather about coins and conservatism. I'm a sucker for wisdom from tricky sages about conservative theory. Besides, Myste is a remarkably entertaining writer.
Max's Dad loved this year's Super Bowl and was less than impressed with a few of the artfully attired fans.
- Chuck Thinks Right asks readers to sort out the idea of the husband of Congressional Representative Gabrielle Giffords returning to space while the victim of attempted assassination is still recovering.
Ned Williams at WisdomIsVindicated goes Breitbart with a video exposing Planned Parenthood. His busy schedule keeps him from clicking any of several sites exposing the exposé as fraudulent, relying on heavily doctored videos. Poor Ned was duped.
MadMike's Michael John Scott regards Christianity as a danger to the world and documents his feeling with a fascinating video. Regarding dangerous Christians, Michael couldn't be referring to ME . . . uh . . . could he?
- A liberal blogger gets mad, then refuses to be baited by me. Rats.
They ANIMATED this?
Next season: Secrets of mowing your lawn and then getting your mail
Dusty Taylor at Mad Mike's America doesn't much care for the new GOP definition of rape. Seems little girls molested and impregnated by adults don't count. Republicans argue the children consent to it. Has to do with preventing abused kids from getting abortions.
Chuck Thinks Right rightly objects to claims by Representative Jim Moran (D-VA) that racism is the reason Democrats lost last November. All this time I thought it had something to do with the economy.
Legend Mag, the Independent Life site promotes an event in February: a national conference of independent voters. Organized Independents? I dunno. Sounds like jumbo shrimp, or Michele Bachmann on the Intelligence Committee.
- Jack Jodell, at THE SATURDAY AFTERNOON POST, journeys to Havana to see Cuba for himself.
Have a safe weekend. Pray for someone in pain. A lot of them out there this week, despite an economy sputtering back to life.
Tim McGaha at Tim's Thoughtful Spot weighs in, obliquely, on the historical controversy of whether President Buchanan was guilty of provoking the Civil War through inaction or rash preemptiveness in supplying Fort Sumter. He looks at a last second abortive attempt at compromise and why it failed.
At Chuck Thinks Right, Chuck is shocked, just shocked, at welfare costs generated by illegal aliens. He's so shocked he lacks the strength to click over to snopes to find it's a hoary old myth. False. Untrue.
- At Mad Mike's America, friend John Myste visits trial by court.