Monthly Archives: October 2015

The Stupid Fruit Doesn’t Fall Too Far From The Tree

And Bristol Palin, while totally indigestible, is low hanging on her particular family’s branches. She is on the Patheos network, writing a journal of sorts. A blog. Why she is there, I do not know, because she isn’t having a conversation on faith. Oh, she may write the occasional Jesus Is Great post, but she’ll glomb onto just about any subject. I should move my blog over there because I have much more to say about matters of faith than she does. It would be a great platform for people like me who thinks religion is barely tolerable garbage and who enjoy jamming four letter words into every other sentence they write. On second thought, I may just stay here. They’d probably have to bowdlerize me. Nope.

So anyway, why should anyone listen to her? I can write and think a hundred times better than that little snot, yet her blog is read by tens of thousands of people at least. So can most bloggers I know, many of whom are a hundred times smarter than I am. But her fucking family name carries weight in some circles. Her audience is built-in. Me? You motherfuckers never come to see me. I have thirty followers, who in all likelihood delete me when they see my blog’s name in their mailbox.

I allow comments. I am thrilled that you say anything, even if it is mean-spirited or totally at odds with what I am putting across. Bristol has disabled hers, because like her mother, she can’t stand scrutiny or criticism. That’s why Katie Couric torpedoed John McCain’s presidency; because his vice-presidential pick couldn’t name a magazine. She could have said, “No, I don’t, but here are some books I love to read. Here are some blogs I follow”. That would have been enough to get her off the hook. But no, we all know how that turned out.

(Her spiritual heir in this latest election is Ben Carson, by the way.)

Back to Bristol. What’s she going on about this week? The latest act of police brutality caught by cellphone. You’ve all seen the video plenty of times. That South Carolina campus cop got FIRED posthaste by his boss, the sheriff. But Bristol thinks she knows better than the top brass:

Yesterday on Facebook, I linked to this story about a cop who was called to deal with a student who was asked by her teacher, administrator, and the police to leave a classroom after being disorderly.  

She refused.

Every time.

Eventually, the policeman grabbed her, tipped over her chair, and put her in cuffs.

Whoa, Bristol, stop right there. Using a cell phone is not “disorderly”. It’s disruptive. I don’t know what she means by “disorderly”. Truculent, perhaps, but the word “disorderly” conjures up the idea that someone broke the law…and that’s just not the case here. She broke the rules. And she concatenated that whole scene in that classroom. Sure she was grabbed…by her neck. Sure he cuffed her, but not before he threw her halfway across the room after pulling the student from her desk, not her chair. That asshole cop went from 0 to 100 in less than a second.

That, my friends, is why Officer Slam lost his job. When I was in the Army, we were given cards to help us remember to use “escalation of force” before we went and put bullets through things and people. It seems that police know this concept as well.

That includes school cops. It should especially concern school cops. They are dealing with kids, who are insouciant at times but usually pose no danger to the policeman or the school. I have seen it in more than one place that the girl was “punching” him. Did anyone else besides me get a gander at Officer Slam’s physique? Of course you did. That’s why you don’t buy this bullshit that he had the right to grab her by her neck and throw her across the floor.

But let’s be done with that. Bristol has a larger point to make after she distorts the facts:

I can’t believe this, when are we going to look at what KIDS are doing wrong? Instead of instantly blaming police and higher authority?

When will parents take full responsibility for their kids, teach them not to act like punks, and listen to AUTHORITY?

Honey, we blame authorities because they are to be held to a higher standard of conduct than the rest of us. That’s how they got to be authorities and professionals. And we do reserve the right to question that authority and usually it is their job to do a better one once we point out their shortcomings. That’s how things work in a society based on liberty and fraternity. But that’s not Bristol’s America. Like most members of the right, the natural tendency is to defer to authority. They thirst for the day when they can become one. They have a love affair with power. Don’t think, don’t question, just obey.

I suppose in her little stunted way, she is enjoying being an authority herself. As soon as I see justification for that, I will let you know. Watch this space. Not hers.

Iraq And Roll

I have not been consistent on my feelings about the fate of Iraq. In May, I suggested that Iraq is kaput, finished as a nation and there’s not a thing we can do about it. This month, I said that if we want to rid Iraq of ISIS, we should go balls deep into that country with the type of overwhelming force that Colin Powell espoused. Or, we can say fuck it. It’s never going to be a humanitarian mission-it will forever be about keeping that black gold for ourselves. Clinton isn’t bound by the campaign promise that President Obama made, and so far she isn’t giving any signals that she won’t re-invade. Fighting ISIS is going to be one of her first challenges.

I can’t have it both ways. Or, I’m ambivalent on the subject. Sorry about that. I should not be so willing to send our boys back to the desert. However, some of them really get off on killing. I know this firsthand, so shove it.

Anyway, we’re inching as close as we can to sending ground troops. “Advisers” and other troops are going to “embed” with Iraqi units.

Air strikes and advisers. Hmm. The quagmire deepens, and the long hard slog isn’t done.

Will The Shark Jump Happen?

About two months ago, I said Trumpmania would die in December, and that Ben Carson is going to be the benefactor. That was an easy one.

But I don’t know. I just don’t know anymore. I predicted Jeb Bush would climb in the polls once the batshit insane candidates were done pissing on their own legs and say or do something politically stupid. The indicators point to him leaving the race soon. Who is left? Heavy duty regressive troglodytes. Not to say Bush wasn’t one, but I though he would be the one to bring conservatism a sheen of respectability since the brand is so tarnished, if not toxic. George Bush fooled a lot of people with “compassionate conservatism”, and that’s the space Jeb Bush was attempting to occupy. But It’s Trump, Carson, Rubio, Cruz, Fiorina-all nauseating goldbrickers who shouldn’t be in control of anything beyond a shopping cart.

Now as we all know, conservative voters have flavors of the month. Fucking Rick Santorum was in the lead at one point in 2012.Chew on that for a second. You need to be literally crazy to win the favor of primary voters. It’s gotten so bad that even the Freedom Caucus, the real fruitcakes in the House, are in danger of losing their seats because they are supporting Paul Ryan, who is not conservative enough either.

It’s breathtaking, watching this spectacle. No one is pure enough. No one. The most difficult part to understand about this is that they are all the same except for their inseam size, perhaps. There isn’t much daylight between Ted Yoho and Paul Ryan. They both want the same thing to be done-to finally bring the republic to its knees by ruining every gain this country has made for the common man since the 1830s. Add a a generous portion of Christianity, a little pre-emptive war, shake vigorously, and voila, religio-capitalistic fascism. I’m not exaggerating.

So what’s a poor conservative candidate to do? The only thing left to do is howl like a rabid chimpanzee on krokodil and say the stupidest thing you can think of. Donald Trump, Mike Huckabee and Ted Cruz are working in this area. In Ben Carson’s case, you can even leave out the thinking part and just form sentences around the words “Hitler” and “slavery”, somehow managing to catch a nap while speaking. Love it to death.

When will it end? How will it end? When is far right too far? Has the presidency of Barack Obama brought the absolute worst out of conservative voters? That’s just one theory. Maybe it’s something else. One thing is for sure-half of this country is losing its cotton picking mind.

As Close As We’re Going To Get

I am a political animal first.

Second, I am a humanist.

This means I will put party and country before religion, or lack thereof in my case.

Lord knows I have spent more time than I want to ballyhooing Hillary Clinton for the presidency. She’s the worst best hope we have. Anyone who can’t see her obvious advantages over Bernie Sanders as a candidate has horse blinders on. I’m not too keen on idealism. I am, despite the yearnings of my heart, a pragmatist. Half a loaf is better than none.

But I am still impressed with him. So far, he has not been able to project the encyclopedic breadth of knowledge that Clinton has. I think he will do better in the next debate. He’s probably been told he needs to jump her, even if that goes against his integrity. He’s stuck in a pattern of repeating himself robotically, speaking in platitudes where Clinton has been showing off her bona fides and experience. That will probably not make the nut.

As you probably know, voters will support a Muslim or a homosexual before they vote for an atheist. The only group more vilified than atheists are socialists. And by my lights, Bernie is both. He isn’t quite willing to come out of the closet, but I give points for effort:

On “Jimmy Kimmel Live” Wednesday night, Sanders was explaining his popularity and why he is electable.

“You say you’re culturally Jewish, you don’t feel religious,” Kimmel told Sanders. “Do you believe in God, and do you think that’s important to the people of the United States?”

“Well, you know, I am who I am,” he replied. “And what I believe in and what my spirituality is about is that we’re all in this together. That I think it is not a good thing to believe that, as human beings, we can turn our backs on the suffering of other people,” he continued, as the crowd applauded and cheered so loudly he had to pause. 

“And you know, this is not Judaism. This is what Pope Francis is talking about, that we cannot worship just billionaires and the making of more and more money. Life is more than that.”

Yup, that’s one of our boys.

Hillary Clinton did the religion dance, and quoted the Bible as a great source for inspiration. My heart sank a little when she did that. I mean, the book is not all bad, but I can only stomach so much pandering before I get upset. I’m not exactly holding my nose to vote for her, but I would love some forward motion on the religion issue. But it is what it is and I have to do what is best-namely supporting a winner. Christ, we have a black man in the White House. Some people are not even going to vote for a woman yet, and that’s where we are at.

They will probably put my ashes in an urn before an atheist arrives at the White House.

Timing. And that time is not right yet. There is too much to lose if we do not keep the Oval Office.

Mosquerade

Oh, great. It’s time for the “Things Donald Trump Will Look At And What A Great Thing He Will Do To Fix It” game:

Donald Trump went on Fox Business Wednesday and said he would emulate the British government and not only revoke passports but close mosques in the United States in order to fight the Islamic State.

Stuart Varney: “Now, in the UK, in Britain, they’ve obviously got a terror problem. They’ve got a lot of youngsters going over to fight for ISIS, about — just under 1,000 are going over there, and they’ve got a whole new series of proposals to deal with this, including withdrawal of passports from some of these people who’ve gone over just to fight-“

Trump: “Absolutely. Good, good.”

Varney: “…and closing some mosques. Would you do the same thing in America?”

Trump: “I would do that. Absolutely, I think it’s great.”

 Varney: “Can you do it? Can you close a mosque? We do have religious freedom.”

Trump: “Well, I don’t know. I mean, I haven’t heard about the closing of the mosque. It depends, if the mosque is, you know, loaded for bear, I don’t know. You’re going to have to certainly look at it. But I can tell you one thing ,if somebody goes over and they want to fight for ISIS, they wouldn’t be coming back.”

No shit, Donald. I’m pretty sure that anyone we find who has fought with ISIS or any other terrorist group is going to see himself or herself not treated well upon their return. What’s a “loaded for bear” mosque? Would anyone like to get back to me as to what that means?

I loved how he backtracked on this “great” idea after Varney brought up freedom of religion. But I’m willing to let that slide-he got stopped in medias res and muddied the water. That’s a whole lot more than I can say for the person breathing down his neck in this crazy race.

Ben Carson never gets put back on his heels like this.

That’s primarily because he doesn’t have a leg to stand on.

Laugh Of The Day

Goes thusly:

Republican presidential candidate and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson claimed he is in “great danger” — and in need of Secret Service protection — because a “secular progressive movement” opposes him, BuzzFeed reported Thursday.

“I’d prefer not to talk about security issues, but I have recognized — and people have been telling me for many, many months — that I’m in great danger because I challenge the secular progressive movement to the very core,” Carson said on WABC radio’s “Rita Cosby Show” on Thursday, BuzzFeed reported. “You know, they see me as an existential threat, but I also believe in the good Lord and we take reasonable precautions.”

Excuse me. Time to go laugh my ass off. And then perhaps weep a little because he’s a top contender for the highest office in the land. Like, real people want to vote for him. He makes sense to flesh and blood creatures just like you and me.

Let me let you down gently, Ben. We are not threatened by your candidacy. We think you’re hilarious, and a bit worrisome because you have no connection to anything anyone could call reality. Let’s break down “secular progressive movement”. Yes, Ben this is a secular country, and most of us like to keep it that way. So you’re a rabid Christian. Big fat deal. That does not make me want to kill you or hurt you. Mainly I feel sorry for you that you’re so goddamn dumb. And “progressives” can’t wait for you to win the nomination, Ben. You will be stomped into a Hillary-sized mudhole- and once regular Americans get a load of your stupid, this will be a blowout unseen since 1984. They don’t know you like I do…yet. Not even your handlers will be able to handle you, because you are off-script and the reservation every time you have a brain fart.

You say you challenge me to my very core. We all know how good you are with challenges.

As for an existential threat…

Excuse me. I can’t believe I am typing these words in this order.The syntax looks good. I cannot comprehend the subject of the piece, though. Time for another laughter break.

I oppose you and everything you stand for. But once again, I don’t want to rub you out-I want you soundly defeated and judged for the dubious policies you seek to implement. In some ways, I guess you are an existential threat. But not to so-called “progressives”, which apparently is the set of people who don’t think like you- a rather large number, if I miss my guess. You are a threat to the American way of life as we know it. You threaten the truth.

Paranoia, big destroyer. You will survive, if only for amusement. And certainly long enough for your incipient radio show and speech circuit after you lose.

Ken Ham, Being Wrong Again

That is one thick motherfucker.

Hemant Mehta relates a conversation with a non-believing chaplain about death and the meaning of life:

A few months ago, I had a long conversation with Bart Campolo, a former evangelical Christian and current Humanist chaplain. Our talk was both illuminating and emotional since we spent the bulk of it discussing death.

Campolo is explaining how atheists, too, can find meaning in life. Smith asked: “What spiritual nurturing would someone who doesn’t believe in a spiritual life need?”

If somebody came to the conclusion, as I did a number of years ago, “I think this life is all there is. I think that when I die I’ll be dead,” the most immediate question that came to me was, if this is it, how do you make the most of it? I have this wonderful opportunity to be a sentient human being, to be able to think and feel and understand and fall in love and have relationships. How do you make the most of this life?

Who ends up feeling the most fulfilled?” It’s people that have loving relationships, and who do work that they feel makes the world a better place, and who cultivate a sense of gratitude and a sense of wonder at just the amazingness of being alive and living in this universe with all its beauty and all of its stuff.

Love it. That’s how humanists roll. It is the wonder, the gift, that makes it all worth it.

Ken Ham, however, did not get the point:

Campolo believes that once he dies, and when others (including the people he supposedly helps have a fulfilling life) also die, then that will be the end of them! They won’t even know they ever existed. So for all his fluffy talk about living a full life and falling in love, and so on, ultimately life is all totally pointless! All he is doing is leading others to a purposeless, meaningless life.

Won’t even know that they ever existed? What the hell does that mean? If he means that people are forgotten because they are dead, then there is Ken’s first mistake. It’s called memory, Ken. It’s called a legacy that can last across generations.

A full life is what we all want. And we don’t, as the chaplain said in the article, have to go from thrill to thrill to have a fulfilling life. And nowhere did the chaplain say that falling in love was part of that. But nevermind-what Ken misses, is that there is reason to live. We get the opportunity once to do it-and that is the point. This life can hold purposefulness without having to imagine that God will take you up so that you can kiss his ass for eternity. I don’t know how dumb you can be to not see that we can find fulfillment in the life that we have. Some trash the gift, and leave us early-but being a good person while you are here is what we atheists strive for. I have yet to meet the atheist that doesn’t feel a deep sense of responsibility to do good and to be a force for positivity.

Yes, we will die, and that is the end. But that does not mean that we are born to do just that. There’s a whole array of things we can do in between. And people like Ken Ham are the enemies of true humanity, the dupes who insist that you can only do good if only you would believe what they do. A lot of blood has been shed by promulgating that kind of shit, Ken. Go fuck yourself.

I Am No Expert

Here’s a new weaselly Christian thing going around when they realize that they have to grudgingly accept evolution as a fact. “Well, I believe that microevolution happens, but not this macro-evolution thing.”

Here’s how one yoyo puts it:

 I believe in evolution on a small scale. We see evolution from a maggot to a fly. However, to say that humans came from a single cell organism is a bit far fetched.

Is it really? Damn, you’ve killed your own assertion before you could even get your point across. What you are describing is growth, not evolution; and even if that were evolution, then why yes, a human life did come from a single cell. Not so far-fetched now, huh?

What these creationists always miss is the massive scale of time that changes happen across. Small wonder, because they think the Earth is 6000 years old. Look pal, I can’t even conceive the amount of time that life has had to bring us to our present state of nature. And you can’t either. But we can both learn by studying the clues that bring us to our facts. We share DNA with every living thing imaginable. We resemble other creatures, even. The signs are all there. But no, you think all your answers can be found in a bible. And that’s where you keep fucking up. You are trying to prove God exists by showing me a book that says God exists. My children’s Hardy Boys novels are not proof of the existence of the Hardys. I appreciate the fact that you’d like to turn that around on me and say that just because Darwin said it, it’s not necessarily true.

I give up. It’s gotten so bad that you want to deny the scientific method. I’m out of ideas.

Until y’all realize that that book is fiction, you’re never going to get it. Take an objective look. Step a bit back and read it. It’s pretty fucking weird, isn’t it? You really think that’s how shit happened? Isn’t evolution a bit less bewildering than Genesis, Leviticus or Revelations?

No?

Oh, well. At least I can say I tried to help.

Burn Of The Day

Mr Smart Stupid has a new idea emanating from his filterless brain:

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson said Wednesday he would use the U.S. Department of Education to police speech on college campuses. 

During an interview, Glenn Beck asked Carson if he would shut down the Education Department as president. 

“I actually have something I would use the Department of Education to do,” Carson responded. “It would be to monitor our institutions of higher education for extreme political bias and deny federal funding if it exists.”

During a town hall meeting in Des Moines, Iowa, last month, a student asked President Barack Obama last month what he thought of Carson’s plan to monitor for political bias on campuses. Obama responded, “I have no idea what that means, and I suspect he doesn’t either.”

War Is Over

…said John Lennon, and we wanted to believe that so bad. But America sickly lurches from one conflict to another, and if we don’t send bodies, we send guns. War. War never ends.

That is for another post. One particular war is over, yet some mouth-breathing fucksticks can’t get over the fact that they were on the losing team.

Somehow, this loss nets the participants’ great-great grandchildren a badge of courage, even if they don’t have the guts or the physique to go fight in today’s wars. They may have warrior blood, but they also have shit for brains.

I’m talking about your average cracker yahoo redneck who won’t stop waving the Stars and Bars around because of something called “southern pride”. On one level, I guess I understand that people are very provincial. They do things like root for local sports teams and have a very visceral connection to the games- it’s almost as if they were the coaches and the owners, who couldn’t give a fat fuck about its fans if it weren’t for the fact that they need asses in seats or eyeballs on ads. It’s something I have never understood, perhaps because I didn’t like phys ed or sports. Sports watching consumed my father. But that’s not my point.

The point is, people are often connected to the ground they walk on. Whatever. Fine by me. Support your state, your city, whatever you like. If that is how you want to spend your time, go right ahead.

But this rebel flag thing has gone too far:

Hundreds of Virginia residents were waging a new Confederate battle this month and refusing to give up state license plates with the flag on them. They say the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles’ recent recall on the controversial plates violates their rights, despite being essentially approved by a federal judge in August.

“Next thing you know, they’re going to say you can’t wear blue on Monday … or you can’t wear yellow on Thursday. Where’s it going to end?” Kevin Collier, a commander with the Stonewall Camp of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, told the local news station.

I hope this is humor. It certainly does not make an argument, so it must be an attempt to be funny.

Now, if caught on the roads with the invalid plates, drivers could be charged with a misdemeanor, MSNBC reported.

Collier told WVEC his refusal was a matter of principle and family history. “I have a great-great-great grandfather who fought and died with the 5th Georgia Infantry. And his four brothers all died with him in the name of that flag,” he said. “I will go to jail before I change those tags.”

Oh my, what a brave martyr! And a stupid one, at that. Who gives a damn if your relatives fought for slavery rights and lost? You’re on the wrong side of history, slappy. True, the men in front of the cannons may not have understood why they went to battle, or were told that the north was invading them. It’s a crying shame. All war is. And the north and the south, for better or for worse, is united again, under one waving banner.

It’s important to remember that not everybody looks at that flag the same way. Particularly, black folk. And it’s also important to remember that the rebel flag was resurrected by southern governments and radicals during the civil rights era to unite racists to their cause. It was a lot like putting “In God We Trust” on our money-we needed the people to rally against godless communism. Dog-whistle politics at its worst.

You flag enthusiasts are being duped. You’re defending nothing, nothing of importance at the least. You’re being used by invisible hands who want you to despise and be defiant. You’re not just cozying up to the TV and doing the two minutes hate-you want your “pride” to be all over your clothes, your trucks, and your seats of government. You want everyone to stick it, 24 hours a day.

In other words, you are a gullible, obnoxious dick. Congratulations.

Dude, you are not going to go to jail over the flag, unless you fail to pay the fine for continuing to display that license plate. Whine “Molon Labe” all day long. We’re trying to scrub our racist past, in the ways that we can. And you sir, are not what we would call helping.

H/T: Zandar

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