Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category
Just to counter FDL, Corrente, Kos, and Open Left, let me just say that you motherfuckers are killing the liberal movement (I’m not ever going to bother addressing the PUMAs, who are only in this game to oppose Obama, nothing else). The Overton Window shifts left when the Republicans cease being a national party, not because you blogged about single payer a lot. At that point, the Democrats can split into a center-left and left party that can both win national elections.
Anyone on the left who opposes the president now is favoring this shift happening during their generation at the expense of this shift happening at all. You are all a bunch of selfish bastards who deserve to die in a fire; you are certainly not anyone who’s “keeping Obama honest”. Your shortsightedness will be all of our ruin.
Is it me, or does the leaked Journolist thread Mickey Kaus posted contain a whole lot of disagreement? This seems very unbecoming of a “secret liberal media email cabal” dedicated to coordinating talking points. If anything, the snippet provided by Kaus seems to match Ezra Klein’s initial description of JournoList as “a safe space where policy experts, academics, and journalists could freely talk through issues, bringing up the questions they considered urgent and the information they thought important”.
Furthermore, Kaus seems to have nothing of substance to say about the subject of the thread, Martin Peretz’s racist post about Mexicans. Kaus seems to think that disagreeing with Peretz here is somehow damnable, but doesn’t quite say as much. In any case, it’s troubling to see Kaus so readily defend his former boss with this boorish distraction. It’s almost as if they were looking out for one another against those dastardly whippersnappers. Of course, such coordination would be entirely kosher, as it was likely not conducted via email.
Part of the mental illness that is PUMA is the delusion that Sarah Palin is a super-secret liberal. PUMAs hold this belief despite Palin’s stated positions on the issues, her actions as governor of Alaska and mayor of Wasilla, and her lack of any positive record when it comes to gay or women’s rights. To PUMAs, it’s as if simply having a vagina confers all sort of progressive credibility on Gov. Palin, never mind her self-professed status as a right-wing fundamentalist wingnut.
None has been more outspoken in this delusion than Egalia, the proprietor of Tennessee Guerilla Women. So it’s no shock, then, to see Egalia gushing over Palin’s recent pick of Morgan Christen to the Supreme Court of Alaska. Christen is a former board member of Planned Parenthood and seems to be legitimately on the right side of most issues. To Egalia, this is proof positive that Palin really is the pro-choice feminist of the PUMA hivemind’s dreams, and Gov. Palin is somehow owed an apology by those who (correctly) called her pro-life right winger during the campaign.
If this was all there is to the story, that might very well be right. However, Egalia and her PUMA friends are purposely ignoring quite a bit of context to this pick. From the Washington Times writeup (HT: Andrew Sullivan):
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin had to make a tough choice in filling a vacant slot on her state’s Supreme Court: Appoint a woman who once served on the board of Planned Parenthood, or risk giving an environmentalist lawyer, also pro-choice on abortion, the chance to become an activist judge.
He admitted, however, that Mrs. Palin was “backed into a corner” by the state’s system for selecting judges, known as the “Missouri Plan.” Alaska’s constitution requires an independent panel to vet and then submit choices to the governor when positions on the court open up. The only names the panel submitted for consideration were Judge Christen and Mr. Smith – neither an obvious conservative choice.
“She didn’t have the ability to go out and pick anyone she wanted,” said Palin communications director Bill McAllister.
So Palin was forced by Alaskan law to choose between a liberal pro-choicer and a liberal pro-choicer and chose a liberal pro-choicer. Egalia wants to give Palin credit for this? Especially when Palin’s own staffer says that Judge Christen would not have been Palin’s pick had she a freer hand?
I’m sure Egalia’s next project is to portray Laura Sessions Stepp as a radical feminist. With a little bit of quote mining and a whole lotta lying, it should be a snap.
Lambert and Vastleft at Corrente are always complaining that they’re not PUMAs or racists, but instead trying to critique Barack Obama from the left. Funny, then, that they continue to let Carolyn Kay post on the front page. Kay, or “Caro” as she’s known online, posts a daily blog roundup. Of course, most if not all of her recommendations are PUMA blogs, and one in particular (let’s just say that if you don’t read the Confluence, you’d still get to read most of their writing via her posts). This is harmless enough on its own, but recently it’s come out that she’s a hard core Birther.
Take today’s post, for instance. Caro notes the Supreme Court’s denial of certiorari for Leo Donofrio’s crazy “natural born citizen” lawsuit with the kind of self-centered pith she’s become (in)famous for:
This decision confirms my belief that the Republican powers that be WANT Obama in the presidency. They must think they have a better chance of discrediting him and the Democratic Party with Obama at the helm.
It’s not that Donofrio’s suit has merit. It’s that the Republicans are engaged in a giant conspiracy to make the Democrats looks bad by…well, by…electing a Democratic president? Caro has gone so crazy that she’s gone down the rabbit hole and come out the other side. She’s spouting a racist right-wing conspiracy theory, blaming right-wingers for not expelling Obama from the presidency. She’s convinced herself that Obama will somehow discredit Democrats forever, so her ideal solution to protect Democrats is to elect a Republican. This is a special kind of crazy. It’s supporting Democrats via Rube Goldberg device.
This ranting isn’t by any means, though, a progressive critique of the President-Elect, which is what Corrente is supposedly all about. So Lambert and Vastleft, I’ll follow your lead and issue a self-righteous ultimatium: I’ll start taking you seriously when you shitcan Caro. Your tolerance of her right-wing bloviations undermines everything you claim to represent, and a dedicated reader of Corrente such as myself deserves nothing less than an end to this bullshit. What say ye?
UPDATE: Edited for clarity.
Let it be noted, yea blogosphere, that on Sunday, December 7th in the Year of Our Lord 2008, the Confluence fully embraced Birther conspiracy theories. Imaginary Hillary Clinton, in all her splendor and PUMAnosity, immediately let shtuey know she was pleased by appearing in public in a navy blue pantsuit.
For a site that originally renounced rumors and conspiracy theories about the President-Elect, the Confluence has certainly come a long way. It’s worth it, then, to restate the essential truth about the various Obama birth certificate/dual citizenship/etc. conspiracy theories: they are all fundamentally racist arguments.
To explain I’m going to need a little help from Melissa McEwan and the other writers at Shakesville. They have a long-running series of post entitled the “Obama Racism/Muslim/Unpatriotic/Scary Black Dude Watch“. The title is so slashed not because McEwan & Co. are individually chronicling mentions of Obama drenched in racism, or the times he’s called a Muslim or unpatriotic, etc. The Shakers are instead making the point that these different attacks are the same exact argument. It’s all about casting Barack Obama as “the other”.
Birther conspiracy theories follow in this dubious tradition. PUMAs and crazy right wingers want to “other”-ize Obama, but are afraid of risking the opprobium that explicit racism would bring down on them. So instead they speak in code: he’s a secret Muslim, he doesn’t wear a flag pin, he’s into black liberation theology, he’s a Black Panther, ad nauseum. “He’s not American” is simply one more way to say “he’s a [n-word], he’s not one of us”. Their goal isn’t so much to convince anyone (they’d need actual evidence for that), but to signal to other racists that Obama is not to be trusted. At its heart, it’s an effort to keep the faithful riled up.
The Confluence apparently wants to go down this road, which is sad, but not at all shocking. The quicker they out themselves as fringe racists, the quicker anyone of consequence will cease to take them seriously.
From No Quarter:
And yet PUMAs are constantly mystified why people accuse them of racism. Ye gods.
Dalinkat over at the Confluence is bragging about a video that exposes Obama voters as the idiots and brainwashed bots she always thought they were. As it turns out, though, the video is the result of a right-wing push poll run by John Zogby, the worst pollster alive. I am shocked that the Confluence would be involved in such obvious ratfuckery.
What I don’t get is Dalinkat’s post title. The “Obama voter gene pool”? What does that even mean? It’s not like all Obama voters share any sort of heritible characteristics…oh right, she’s talking about black people again. “The Confluence: We’re Not Racists, We Just Think Many Stereotypes About Black People Are True.”
Also, I’d like to thank myiq2xu for creating this conspiracty theory thread. It’s quite useful for anti-PUMAs such as myself to have thread where all Conflucians’ batshit insanity is consolidated in one place. Myiq2xu might have well titled this post “Please Show The Internet That You’re a Complete Idiot”.
I spent most of tonight at 11th and U Streets NW, where a giant fucking party was going on. Even if I get fired tomorrow, I will never, ever, forget hanging with hundreds of people, playing my horn at Black Broadway. God (or his non-union Mexican equivalent) bless America.
As today is Election Day, I should probably get around to responding to the prediction meme Jamelle tagged me with last week. Here goes nothing:
[Stupid wordpress apparently doesn’t like embedding things, so here’s the link.]
I have Obama winning North Carolina mainly to piss off Gary ChapelHill.
I’m voting around lunchtime today, and I’ll post my ballot here shortly afterward. Because I live in the District of Columbia, I am obligated to go out tonight to justify my residence here. I’ll either be at the League of Conservation Voters party or at Capitol Lounge, the old standby. If anything particularly memorable happens at either of these places, I’ll be sure to post a recap. Remember that exit polls are only useful when they’re complete, i.e., not during the election, and have a great day.
I have a very low-traffic blog, so I know damn well that my endorsement of anyone for any office would be an exercise in self-wankery and have very little impact. I know most of the people who read this, and those I don’t know can likely acertain which politicians I support by simply reading the blog. There are very few races where I feel that my opinion, let alone an official endorsement, could sway any votes.
This year, however, I’ve found a race where the vote tally is small and my friends seem to be trending in the wrong direction: the non-Democrat At-Large seat for the DC City Council. For some reason, some people I know think supporting incumbent Carol Schwartz (R) in her quixotic write-in campaign (she lost this year’s GOP primary) is a good idea. Perhaps it’s Ms. Schwartz tendency to call everyone “hon”, maybe it’s her status as a gay camp icon, but it certainly can’t be because she supports any good policies. Simply put, Carol Schwartz is a horrible candidate.
Therefore, I am officially endorsing Patrick Mara (R) for at-large City Council. As Dave Alpert of Greater Greater Washington notes, Mara doesn’t own a car, bikes to work, and is supportive of bike- and pedestrian-friendly initiatives. And as a Republican, he’s likely to oppose all sorts of onerous over-zoning of the city. If we must have a Republican on the council, better to have one that thinks we live in a city as opposed to one that thinks of DC as a glorified suburb.
P.S. Independent (but really Democratic) candidate Michael Brown is also running for this seat. All I know about Michael Brown is that he’s run for nearly every elected office in the District of Columbia, from mayor to shadow senator, and he’s lost handily every time. I think it’s our duty as citizens to make sure he gets the hint this time.