Saturday, September 26, 2009

You Have Not Thought This Through

Think Progress tells the story of what happens when a fake conservative like Michelle Bachmann invites a real small-government, limited-intervention conservative like Ron Paul to appear with her:

As Paul spoke passionately about ending all military operations and keeping government out of people’s “lifestyles,” a lone heckler began to shout, “Tell her!” Bachmann remained serene, hands folded in her lap, facing Paul. Bringing up Obama’s announcement that Iran had secret underground nuclear facilities, Paul announced that he had had enough of “fear-mongering” for the sake of the “military-industrial complex.” Bachmann, who once advocated nuking Iran, kept her eyes trained on Paul as her heckler repeated, “Tell her! Tell Michele! Tell her!”

I've noted before that Ron Paul was the only "conservative" running for President last year who actually espoused any real conservative principles, and the other "conservatives" (who were really Daddy-state authoritarians masquerading as conservatives) treated him like a lunatic. I suppose Crazy Shelly Bachmann, who really is a lunatic, figured she and Paul would be kindred spirits.

Look how wrong you can be.

It's Only Treason When Liberals Do it

d r i f t g l a s s:

On Sarah Palin's speech to a group of 'high-flying global investors" in Hong Kong:
She didn't refer to President Barack Obama by name, the Wall Street Journal reported, but said she called his campaign promises "nebulous, utopian sounding... Now 10 months later, though, a lot of Americans are asking: more government? Is that the change we want?"

Some attendees were disappointed by her focus on her home state and her attacks on President Obama.

"Driftglass" notes: all of you who escaped our nation's 25-year-long Conservative prefrontal Limbaughtomy remember, six short years ago when a singer blurted out a dozen unprepared words dissing George W. Bush at a concert in London (or, as wingnuts always ominously intone "On Foreign Soil!"), the Right absolutely lost its collective shit.

There were marches. Vigils. Coast-to-coast Hate Radio rants. A virtual embargo on playing the music of "The Dixie Chicks" anywhere in this Home of the Brave...

But while I might not care what the Wasilla Grifter has to say about anything, anywhere, every single fucking Conservative who pretended to be standing on righteous principle when they went full DEFCON 1 monkeyshit in 2003, and who now stays silent or cheers Caribou Barbie on needs to have their voter registration card confiscated and ceremonially burned atop a pyre of Tobie Keith records.

For starters.

Damn Skippy. Here's a little remembrance from the Dixie Chicks:

Friday, September 25, 2009

Poor Michelle

Michelle Malkin Has Feelings, Too - The Daily Beast
The recipient of occasional death threats, she has twice felt the need to move her family to undisclosed locations—and in recent years decamped from suburban Washington to the flyover wilds of Colorado. When she goes on book tour or lectures on college campuses, she is accompanied by a private security guard. “I limit the amount of traveling and speaking that I do, but you just never know,” she says.

Let me just say very clearly, that threatening people's lives for their opinions is wrong.

But my sympathy for Michelle Malkin is somewhat lessened when I remember that her M.O. often involves posting the names, e-mail addresses and phone numbers of people she deems ideologically impure and asking her many readers to badger them. While piously claiming that she doesn't condone threats, she took no action, such as taking down the numbers and addresses when she found out threats were being made. A school which Malkin targeted over a video showing children singing songs about Barack Obama had to go into lockdown because of death threats:

"The tension at B. Bernice Young Elementary School escalated to such a degree Thursday that the school was placed temporarily on lockdown after its principal received death threats over a YouTube video that showed nearly 20 children being taught songs lauding the president, though back-to-school night events continuing as planned Thursday night at the school."

Malkin's record of stalking schoolchildren and their parents for expressing beliefs about health care that she doesn't like is well-documented.

When you make your money out of stirring up hatred against people, you shouldn't be surprised when your readers act hatefully. Nor should you expect a lot of sympathy when some hate comes your way.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Location as Character

I'm part of a virtual panel of writers talking about regional mysteries and settings over at Jonathan Maberry's Big Scary Blog. Drop on by!

Thanks to Jon for inviting me, and if you haven't checked out his book PATIENT ZERO yet, get it. Get it now. It rocks.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Wake up, Democrats. Bipartisanship Is Dead and Joe Wilson Signed the Death Certificate

Latest Newspaper Column:
I had originally planned to compare Joe Wilson, the Republican representative from South Carolina who hollered "you lie!" at President Obama during his address on health care, to Kanye West.

In case you missed it, West is the rapper who disgraced himself during the MTV Video Music Awards by running on stage, taking the mike from award winner Taylor Swift and insisting that Beyonce should have won the award. Both have apologized: West to Swift, and Wilson to President Obama.

Wilson's apology, however, might have seemed a little more sincere had he not immediately started using his outburst as a fundraising tool. He began posting on his Web site that those nasty liberals were trying to "muzzle the American people who have been outspoken against their risky plan" and pleaded, "Will you please make a donation to help me fight back against these partisan attacks?"

I guess I missed the meeting where acting like trailer trash on the floor of the U.S. Congress was declared to be a conservative principle.

In contrast to Wilson, Kanye is apologizing every chance he gets, including a tearful scene on Jay Leno's new show when Leno asked Kanye what his mother might have said about his behavior. He's not using the fuss to tell people they should buy his records because he's being persecuted.

Good Lord. How low have you sunk when a world-class twit like Kanye West is showing more class than you?

The "partisan attacks" that Hollerin' Joe was whining about referred to a resolution introduced in the House for the lowest possible sanction for someone who committed a serious breach of decorum: a "resolution of disapproval."

The idea of even this mild a rebuke set off the usual fits of the vapors from the usual gang of right-wing pundits. Commentator Bill Kristol, for example, warned that if the Democratic leadership pursued a reprimand, they'd be "leading the party off the cliff."

Let me get this straight: The idiot who hollers out during a presidential address like a drunk redneck at a cockfight isn't "leading his party over a cliff," but the people pushing for the mildest reprimand of his boorish behavior are? But, hey, thanks for your concern, Bill. I'm sure you only have the best interest of the Democratic Party at heart.

I want to make one thing clear: I don't think it should be forbidden to call the president a liar. I did it myself during the Bush years, quite a bit, back when it was still considered the Worst Thing In The World. I just didn't do it on the floor of the House during a presidential address.

If a Democratic representative had yelled, "Bush lied, soldiers died!" during, say, the 2006 State of the Union address, the same people lining up behind Hollerin' Joe right now would be demanding he be impeached, at least those who weren't demanding he be sent to Guantanamo.

In any event, the resolution passed upon nearly a straight party vote, and I dearly hope that the tally serves as a wake-up call to the Democrats. Bipartisanship in the House is dead, Wilson's outburst was its obituary, and this vote buried it. President Obama is to be commended for trying to bring the Republicans into the tent, but the GOP has slapped away his hand every time it's been extended.

You want to look at the face of Republican "bipartisanship," look at the face of Joe Wilson captured at the moment when he's yelling at the president of the United States: red-faced, finger pointed in indignation, his pig-eyed, slack-jawed fury a chilling echo of those awful photographs from the early '60s of people shouting at civil rights protesters. Lucky thing Joe Wilson didn't have access to a police dog or a fire hose.

Fact is, when a Republican these days talks about bipartisanship, what he's really demanding is minority rule. He's demanding that his party still set the agenda and make policy for the nation after being soundly defeated in the last two elections.

Sorry, guys, it doesn't work that way. And it's time the Democrats started acting like it.