Wednesday, April 14, 2021

CAN YOU IMAGINE THE RIGHT-WING FREAKOUT IF THE CAPITOL POLICE HAD DONE THEIR JOB?

The New York Times reports:
The Capitol Police had clearer advance warnings about the Jan. 6 attack than were previously known, including the potential for violence in which “Congress itself is the target.” But officers were instructed by their leaders not to use their most aggressive tactics to hold off the mob, according to a scathing new report by the agency’s internal investigator.

In a 104-page document, the inspector general, Michael A. Bolton, ... found that the agency’s leaders failed to adequately prepare despite explicit warnings that pro-Trump extremists posed a threat to law enforcement and civilians and that the police used defective protective equipment. He also found that the leaders ordered their Civil Disturbance Unit to refrain from using its most powerful crowd-control tools — like stun grenades — to put down the onslaught....

“Heavier, less-lethal weapons,” including stun grenades, “were not used that day because of orders from leadership,” Mr. Bolton wrote. Officials on duty on Jan. 6 told him that such equipment could have helped the police to “push back the rioters.”
I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, the report says that the Capitol Police had adequate warning of what was coming and should been able to prevent the Capitol from being breached. On the other hand, do we trust any police agency right now to find the sweet spot where order is maintained without the use of excessive force?

Even if the Capitol Police had used an appropriate amount of force, if that included stun grenades, can you imagine the right-wing reaction -- not just at the time, but even now, and for the foreseeable future? Can you imagine this being done ... not to evil BLM/Antifa commies, but to Real Americans?



We'd have never heard the end of it. We'd have been told that all the rioters we saw on the real January 6 were as meek as lambs and wouldn't have dreamed of destroying property, attacking cops, or threatening to hang the vice president and members of Congress. The cops would be "Nancy Pelosi's fascist goons" now. Every protester who was even slightly injured would be a right-wing media star. And on this alternate January 6, it's likely that more rather than fewer Republicans would have voted to challenge the results of the election. Maybe they all would have, because the suppression of the riot would have become their equivalent of the death of George Floyd, a moment that proved their systematic oppression conclusively.

If you think Republicans feel "canceled" now, imagine if the cops on January 6 had canceled their riot. Even the ones who deigned to acknowledge before January 6 that Biden won the election would be desribing it as one of the great acts of totalitarianism in American history.

CEOs AND CORPORATIONS WON'T SAVE VOTING RIGHTS

Wow! Amazing!
Amazon, BlackRock, Google, Warren Buffett and hundreds of other companies and executives signed on to a new statement released on Wednesday opposing “any discriminatory legislation” that would make it harder for people to vote.

... the new statement, which was also signed by General Motors, Netflix and Starbucks, represented the broadest coalition yet to weigh in on the issue.

“It should be clear that there is overwhelming support in corporate America for the principle of voting rights,” [former American Express CEO Kenneth] Chenault said.
But:
The statement does not address specific election legislation in states, among them Texas, Arizona and Michigan, and Mr. Chenault said there was no expectation for companies to oppose individual bills.

“We are not being prescriptive,” he said. “There is no one answer.”
And:
Coca-Cola and Delta, which condemned the Georgia law after it was passed, declined to add their names, according to people familiar with the matter. Home Depot also declined, even though its co-founder Arthur Blank said in a call with other business executives on Saturday that he supported voting rights. Another Home Depot co-founder, Ken Langone, is a vocal supporter of Mr. Trump.
And:
JPMorgan Chase also declined to sign the statement despite a personal request from senior Black business leaders to the chief executive, Jamie Dimon, according to people briefed on the matter.
I'm with Michael Hiltzik of the Los Angeles Times -- I don't believe this represents a commitment to voting rights that will be sustained. Hiltzik notes how quickly corporate pledges to withhold money from supporters of Trump's attempted election theft are breaking down:
JetBlue, which said in January that it would “temporarily pause all contributions as we review the political landscape,” was the first company to donate directly to an election objector. The airline made a $1,000 contribution to Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R-N.Y.), according to a company campaign finance filing on April 5 first reported by Bloomberg....

Other companies have circumvented their own doubts about contributing to election objectors by donating to political committees. That’s how AT&T rationalized its $5,000 donation to the House Conservatives Fund, which is chaired by Rep. Mike Johnson (R-La.), another election objector. Every single one of the fund’s 10 “priority members” also voted against certifying the vote.
And so on. Hiltzik also notes that previous pledges of corporate virtue were mostly talk:
The fate of the 2019 pledge by 187 big-business CEOs to serve all corporate stakeholders — employees, suppliers, customers and communities — not just shareholders provides another data point to help analyze the value of high-profile corporate promises. The pledge was viewed as a possible sea change in how companies were managed. A “watershed,” even.

One year later, however, the promise was revealed as empty. As we reported, a few companies raised their minimum wages, but typically either in compliance with or anticipation of government mandates to do so. Some consumer companies offered frontline workers “hero” bonuses for their work during the pandemic, but withdrew them even before the pandemic ebbed.

The first CEO to abandon his pledge to dump the shareholder-value model was Amazon’s Jeff Bezos. After Bezos signed the pledge, his company cut health benefits for part-time employees at Whole Foods, which Amazon had acquired.

Business groups, including the Business Roundtable, which sponsored the 2019 pledge, continued to lobby to roll back environmental laws and make it harder for ordinary people to have a voice in corporate decision-making. Why, just a day or two after the big Zoom meeting of CEOs, the Business Roundtable unveiled its new ad campaign: Opposing the corporate tax increase being considered by the Biden administration.
The corporations are generating publicity that might last through this weekiend, when the Sunday talk shows sum up the events of the week. But after that, we'll never hear about it again, and the same companies and individuals will be donating to vote suppressors by midsummer.

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

RIGHT-WING SITES LAUNCH PRO-VACCINE ATTACKS ON BIDEN, BUT THEIR READERS ARE STILL ANTI-VAXX

The Biden administration has paused distribution of the Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine after a small number of recipients (fewer than one in a million) developed blood clots -- and because a Democratic president is temporarily withholding this vaccine, the conservative media is suddenly very, very pro-vaxx.

Gateway Pundit:
President Donald Trump blasted the Biden administration and the FDA over the ‘pause’ in the Johnson and Johnson vaccine for the COVID-19 China coronavirus announced Tuesday morning.... Trump warned the pause would hurt vaccination efforts and questioned whether the FDA was working with rival Pfizer on the vaccine ‘pause’.
Breitbart:
Trump defended the “extraordinary” results of the vaccine but lamented the company’s vaccine would never recover its reputation after the pause was announced by federal regulators.
Fox News:
Media members across the political spectrum have come together in agreement to bash the decision by the FDA and CDC to recommend a pause in the rollout of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine after six instances of severe blood clots in recipients.

"6 cases. Not 6,000 cases. Not 600 cases. Not 60 cases. 6 cases out of more than 4 million shots delivered. Our public health experts continue to fail us," conservative Marc Thiessen wrote.

FiveThirtyEight founder Nate Silver called the decision "a disaster" that is "going to get people killed" and create more vaccine hesitancy. Media Research Center vice president Dan Gainor quoted Silver’s tweet, adding "I can't disagree with this."
But their readers are unpersuaded. From the Gateway Pundit comments:
I don't care if President Trump turns water into wine...

Not taking an untested, unapproved shot.

****

even if it was tested AND approved I wouldn't take it

****

Same here. Also, I don't like this road trump has been going down. He needs to stop promoting these vaccines. I'v said this for a while. I'm also disappointed he hasn't said jack crap about passports. I'v been watching this vaccine crap for over a decade and these issues are huge for me.

****

I agree! These vaccines are going to be a disaster! Its only been 4 months since they started giving these vaccines and already people having really bad side effects compared to vaccines that have been in studies for 10 years. Trump needs to stay away from promoting any of these and do more to question forcing people to get the vaccine or you can't travel.

****

Same here. Anyone who promotes vaxxines is either a sellout globalist stooge or a moron. The drug companies can't be held liable for the damage they cause, as planned by the eugenicist owners.

****

... the majority of those getting the vaccine are sheep to western medicine which is based on the occult. Meaning, way more left of center folks will suffer or die than those on the right. Consider it like Noah's Ark; a cleansing, if you will, of the world's population.
And at Breitbart:
Sorry DJT. Not even you can convince me to take the vaccine.

****

Yep...I'll never take it and neither will my wife, a pharmacist licensed in multiple states.

We don't get Vaxxed for a 99.98% survivable disease and less than an year of trials.

****

At a function Friday night, a black lady (a definite democrat) asked me if I had gotten the vaccine. Then, she proceeded to scold me that I would harm other people if I didn't get the vaccine....to which I replied:

You and your ilk warned everyone who would listen that the "Trump vaccine" was dangerous and they could die if they took it. The vaccine hasn't changed---it's the same vaccine that was created under the Trump administration. Now you want me to take that very dangerous vaccine ONLY because Biden was elected....No thanks----you can't have it both ways. Call it the Trump vaccine if you want...but I'll never take it.

****

Similar case here too. ONLY democrats ask me if we have had our Shots.

Conservatives figure it's none of their business. We like them. A lot.
And at Fox:
... not taking any of these vaccines is not, "insanity", it is our right as Americans to take a vaccine or not take it. Second, those who are amazed they would pull a vaccine over 6 incidents out of 4 million should remember we destroyed an economy and the lives and livelihoods of many people over a virus with a 98.2% survival rate. That should surprise no one....
****

what do you want to wager that there were more than just 6 cases? Realize that this is a very rare condition, but currently don't have that much faith in CDC.

****

HAHA Nothing says "we have no idea what we're doing" than demanding everyone get vaccinated, then admitting those vaccines could be harmful.
There are also Fox commenters who think this is happening because evil Democrats who want to exercise total control over everything and everyone are losing their stranglehold on Our Freedoms:
Well, they are immunizing a virus that has an average of 98.6% survival rate, that they used as a political weapon to scare people, for power and control. They also want to maintain that power and control, and by immunizing people they are LOSING that power and control , so they come up with this. See the game now. If you don't, there are no words!

****

Exactly that’s why they want you masked up and not socializing even after your vaccinated.. biggest scamdemic to ever happen SO FAR....
I'm seeing a lot of that as well in the comments to a Twitchy post that also favorably quotes Nate Silver criticizing the pause:
My take: Public Health Officials (ex: Fauci) are going to see their stock wane as vaccinations increase....so they found a straw to grasp to keep the panic levels elevated.

****

... Power is why. These bureaucrats will lose power if everything continues at the current rate. Likely by early July at that. And well power corrupts and those who possess it almost universally seek more. It makes more sense from all angles if looked at like that.

****

I think the same thing. They need to extend their power grab and, halting vaccinations will help that. Yes, this is "only" the J&J vaccine but the distrust will extend to the other ones

****

Kind of makes you wonder just how accidental it was that 15 million doses of the J&J vaccine were spoiled at the factory a couple weeks ago. They wouldn't want to exceed Biden's target by too much - gotta slow things down to keep the plandemic going.
So the right-wing media says: Trump's mighty vaccines are good and Biden is screwing them up. Right-wing readers say: The pandemic is a hoax, the vaccines are a hoax, the pause is a hoax.

They get you coming and going.

ALL-POWERFUL DEMOCRATS!

Imagine if Democrats were as powerful as Republicans think we are. Here's something Donald Trump said in his speech over the weekend:
The former president reserved much of his venom for McConnell, who he called a “stone cold loser” and criticized for not blocking the Senate’s certification of the 2020 election results.

“If that were Schumer instead of this dumb son of a bitch Mitch McConnell they would never allow it to happen. They would have fought it,” Trump said, according to the Washington Post.
Right. Remember how Democrats got the presidential election results successfully overturned in 2000, 2004, and 2016? They were relentless!

Trump followed up yesterday:
Former President Trump said late Monday that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is “helpless” against considerations by President Biden to expand the number of Supreme Court justices serving on the bench.

"With leaders like Mitch McConnell, they are helpless to fight. He didn’t fight for the Presidency, and he won’t fight for the Court," Trump said in a statement released by the Save America PAC. "If and when this happens, I hope the Justices remember the day they didn’t have courage to do what they should have done for America."
Joe Manchin oppoes Supreme Court expansion. Kyrsten Sinema opposes Supreme Court expansion. Mark Kelly and Jon Ossoff have rejected expansion. But, sure, the unstoppable, all-powerful Democrats will just ram this through.

It's not just Trump. It's also Tucker Carlson, who said last week:
“The Democratic Party is trying to replace the current electorate of the voters now casting ballots with new people, more obedient voters from the Third World.”
"Obedient"!
... in the 2020 election, ... returns from overwhelmingly Hispanic — and, heretofore, overwhelmingly Democratic — precincts showed the incumbent president making massive gains with a demographic he’d spent five years disparaging.

... all across the country, areas with large Hispanic populations moved sharply right in 2020, even as the broader electorate moved left.
Of course, the Democratic Party, as described by Republicans, is also powerful enough to steal the 2020 presidential election using multiple form of election manipulation ... which, for some reason, were not applied to Senate races in Maine, North Carolina, Iowa, Texas, or South Carolina.

The real Democratic Party isn't doing badly right now, but it would certainly be more fun to belong to the fantasy Democratic Party described by Republicans.

Monday, April 12, 2021

"BIDEN ISN'T REALLY PRESIDENT" IS THE NEW "OBAMA ISN'T REALLY AMERICAN"

In the heyday of birtherism, some of the people who advanced the notion that Barack Obama wasn't born in America and was secretly a Muslim did it with a certain degree of deniability. Sure, there were pure birthers like Orly Taitz (and Donald Trump), but there were also people like House Speaker John Boehner -- now positioning himself as a foe of GOP conspiratorialism -- who didn't exactly say that Obama's origin story was a lie, but didn't repudiate it very forcefully:
On Meet The Press ... Boehner couldn't even bring himself to dismiss the idea:
MR. GREGORY: As the speaker of the House, as a leader, do you not think it's your responsibility to stand up to that kind of ignorance?

SPEAKER BOEHNER: David, it's not my job to tell the American people what to think. Our job in Washington is to listen to the American people. Having said that, the state of Hawaii has said that he was born there. That's good enough for me. The president says he's a Christian. I accept him at his word.
Taking the president "at his word" that he's not a secret MOOZLEM is the favored formulation of Obama's political opponents for avoiding a direct question about his faith.... Boehner's statement is the exact same one Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made ..., that "The president says he's a Christian. I take him at his word."
Nobody doubts that Joe Biden was born in America. The right's favorite conspiracy theory about Biden is that he's so mentally impaired that he can't possibly be the real president. Hardcore mental-impairment truthers openly use words like "senile" and "dementia" in reference to Biden.



"Respectable" Republicans feel they can't do that -- but they can tiptoe around the issue, the way Senator John Cornyn does:



If you ask Cornyn point-blank whether he's implying that Biden has a mental impairment, I'm sure he'll angrily insist that you're putting words in his mouth. He's just asking questions about Biden's ... sense of engagement with the job. After all, belligerent tweets are practically mandatory for a president, aren't they? (They actually do seem to be mandatory for GOP officeholders.) Cornyn is just asking questions.

I'm sure this is a trial balloon. On behalf of the party mainstream, Cornyn, I assume, is testing how far a Republican can push this talking point without seeming to push it. Others will follow.

IF THIS WERE AN ELABORATE CONSPIRACY, HOW WOULD IT LOOK DIFFERENT?

I'm very skeptical about this:
More than 100 chief executives and corporate leaders gathered online Saturday to discuss taking new action to combat the controversial state voting bills being considered across the country, including the one recently signed into law in Georgia.

Executives from major airlines, retailers and manufacturers — plus at least one NFL owner — talked about potential ways to show they opposed the legislation, including by halting donations to politicians who support the bills and even delaying investments in states that pass the restrictive measures, according to four people who were on the call, including one of the organizers, Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, a Yale management professor.
Remember when some corporations very publicly announced that they wouldn't give money to Republicans in Congress who'd back Donald Trump's efforts to steal the 2020 election? Very soon afterward, we learned that the money was beginning to flow again. Next year, when most of these Republicans are up for reelection, I expect very few January 6-related donation bans to still be in place. Democrats want to raise taxes on the rich and corporations. Republicans don't. So corporations will be giving to the GOP again.

I expect this new campaign to be similarly evanescent, assuming it ever amounts to anything beyond this carefully crafted leak to the media. And while I don't want to fall for conspiracy theories, this almost seems calibrated to work in Republicans' favor.

Think about it. Republicans are now selling themselves as the "working-class party," the party that hates "elites." Your right-wing relatives are already easily enraged by phrases such as "woke capitalism"c and "corporate communism."

None of this changes GOP officeholders' preference for giving more and more money to corporations and the rich. But this battle makes Republicans seem like the champions of ordinary people.

So corporations make what are likely to be mostly empty gestures in response to these bills. Some liberals will be fooled and will think better of these corporations, which will help the companies' bottom line. Right-wing voters won't manage to mount serious boycotts -- they'll still drink Coke.

So the companies aren't taking big risks. Maybe they'll get one or two bills tabled or modified. And then, having pocketed liberals' goodwill, they'll go right back to giving money to Republicans, who, in turn, will have enhanced their image as the anti-"elite" party.

I don't really believe that the companies are coordinating this with the GOP, but they're not really working at cross purposes.

Sunday, April 11, 2021

THEY DON'T EVEN WANT THE SHOWMANSHIP, JUST THE ABUSE

So I'm reading the latest Ron DeSantis puff piece, this one in The New York Times ...
Now, with Florida defying many of the gloomy projections of early 2020 and feeling closer to normal as the pandemic continues to dictate daily life in many other big states, Mr. DeSantis, 42, has positioned himself as the head of “the free state of Florida” and as a political heir to former President Donald J. Trump....

Mr. DeSantis’s political maneuvering and extensive national donor network have allowed him to emerge as a top Republican candidate to succeed Mr. Trump on the ballot in 2024 if the former president does not run again. The governor’s brand of libertarianism — or “competent Trumpism,” as one ally called it — is on the ascent.
... and eventually I get to the passage that appears in every puff piece about DeSantis:
Mr. DeSantis has raised his profile despite lacking the gregarious personality that might be associated with an aspiring Trump successor. Unlike the former president, no one would describe the publicly unemotional and not especially eloquent Mr. DeSantis as a showman.
In a long love note to DeSantis published by Politico last month, the version of that passage was this:
Newly ascendant though he might be, the “future of the party” is just as standoffish and uncharismatic as he’s always been.
The Politico story, by Michael Kruse, included a lengthy chronicle of the author's struggles to get face time with DeSantis; Patricia Mazzei, the autrhor of the Times story, tells us that DeSantis wouldn't agree to an interview with her.

So why is the media so taken with DeSantis? We know that some in the media crave the caffeine jolt of Trump's daily Twitter abuse.



But they're not getting that from DeSantis. So what are they getting?

In the Times, Mazzei writes:
... the governor’s favorite foes are the “corporate media,” against whom he has scored political points....

[A recent] “60 Minutes” [story] focused on how Publix supermarket pharmacies received [COVID vaccine] doses and left out relevant details, including an extended response from the governor at a news conference.

On Wednesday, in Mr. DeSantis’s words, he “hit them back right between the eyes,” accusing “60 Minutes” of pursuing a malicious narrative.

He left without taking questions.
They don't even care if the next Trump is boring -- they just want him to be nasty. They want someone who (a) is seen as presidential timber and (b) will abuse them.

(The abuse has to be from the right, of course. When President Biden didn't hold a press conference for a couple of months, they were livid, not besotted.)

They could get the abuse they want from any number of Trumpian lunatics who appear to want to be president -- Donald Trump Jr., Rand Paul, Ted Cruz. But DeSantis is a guy who's liked by both Trump voters and the members of the old-guard GOP establishment, people who, we're told, have been secretly whispering their disdain for Trump for the past five years. So he has across-the-board appeal (among Republicans, who are the only real Americans) and he hates the mainstream media. No wonder the MSM thinks he's dreamy.

Saturday, April 10, 2021

ADD TWO LETTERS, INDUCE OUTRAGE


Here's the headline of a Reuters story:



Now here's the headline of a New York Post story based on the Reuters story:



Notice the key difference? Reuters says the Biden administration is considering payments to "Central America." The Post says the payments are going to "Central Americans."

The main difference in the wording is two letters. The difference in right-wing outrage is incalculable.

The Reuters story says:
The United States is considering a conditional cash transfer program to help address economic woes that lead migrants from certain Central American countries to trek north, as well as sending COVID-19 vaccines to those countries, a senior White House official told Reuters on Friday.

The potential program would be targeted at people in the Northern Triangle region of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, Roberta Jacobson, the White House’s southern border coordinator, told Reuters in an interview, without saying who exactly would receive cash....

“The one thing I can promise you is the U.S. government isn’t going to be handing out money or checks to people,” Jacobson said....

Biden, who took office on Jan. 20, has called for $4 billion in development aid to Central America over four years to address underlying causes of migration. On Friday, the White House requested $861 million from Congress for that effort in Biden’s first annual budget proposal. That would be a sharp increase from the roughly $500 million in aid this year.
In other words, this is the kind of response you have to an immigration problem if you're grown-ups: You attempt to use the wealth of the United States to help solve problems and improve conditions in countries from which people are fleeing in order to get to the United States.

I've added emphasis to point out specifically what won't happen. But the Post cynically tweaks the Reuters headline, knowing that anti-immigrant rage addicts will barely read past the new headline and conclude that giving cash to individual immigrants is precisely what the Biden administration intends to do.

Here's how the Post story begins:
It’s pay to stay away.

The Biden administration is considering sending cash payments to Central Americans in a bid to prevent them from making the trek north as the US grapples with the worst immigration crisis seen in 20 years, Reuters reported Friday.

The potential cash transfer program would be targeted at residents of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, which account for the overwhelming majority of migrants illegally crossing the border, Roberta Jacobson, the White House’s southern border coordinator, told the outlet.
So the payments are "targeted at residents," according to the Post. Six paragraphs later, near the end of the story, we're told:
Jacobson, who announced Friday she is stepping down, couldn’t explain to Reuters how the program would work but did say she can “promise” “the U.S. government isn’t going to be handing out money or checks to people.”
So the payments aren't "targeted at residents"? Which is it? But by this time it's assumed that the reader's blood is already boiling at the prospect of American checks going to individual brown foreigners.

Thought leaders on the right are now promoting the Post's version of the Reuters story:



This is how they do it. This is how they've done it for years -- big lies are useful sometimes, but tiny adjustments to the truth can pack an outrage wallop, and most people won't even notice that they're lies.

Friday, April 09, 2021

NEW YORK TIMES: THE PARTY OF FREEDOM FRIES AND BIRTHERISM HAS ABANDONED ISSUE-ORIENTED POLITICS!

Really, New York Times?
Republican lawmakers are passing voting restrictions to pacify right-wing activists still gripped by former President Donald J. Trump’s lie that a largely favorable election was rigged against them. G.O.P. leaders are lashing out in Trumpian fashion at businesses, baseball and the news media to appeal to many of the same conservatives and voters. And debates over the size and scope of government have been overshadowed by the sort of culture war clashes that the tabloid king relished....

[Trump's] preference for engaging in red-meat political fights rather than governing and policymaking have left party leaders in a state of confusion over what they stand for....

Having, quite literally, abandoned their traditional party platform last year to accommodate Mr. Trump, Republicans have organized themselves around opposition to the perceived excesses of the left and borrowed his scorched-earth tactics as they do battle.
Right -- the GOP that's fixated on culture-war talk today is totally different from the GOP that attacked John Kerry for speaking French (at a time when right-wingers loathed the Iraq-war-skeptical French government and cheered the rebranding of French fries in congressional dining halls as "freedom fries"). It's totally different from the GOP that was obsessed with Barack Obama's birth certificate, or Bill Clinton's sex life, or Hillary Clinton's health.
It’s a strikingly different approach from the last time Democrats had full control of government, in 2009 and 2010, when conservatives harnessed the Great Recession to stoke anger about President Barack Obama and federal spending on their way to sweeping midterm gains.
Yes, the anger at Obama was strictly fiscal.

The fight against Obamacare seemed like a policy fight, but in retrospect it was obviously a "You want to give free stuff to Those People" fight. Is the Times still unable to acknowledge that?

The party that hates voting rights now is the party that hated ACORN in the Obama years. The party that hates "cancel culture" now is the party that once hated...


I'm stating the obvious, though I wish it were obvious to the Times.

THE RIGHT'S VOTER-FRAUD PARANOIA AND IMMIGRATION PARANOIA ARE BASICALLY THE SAME THING

America's most prominent racist said this yesterday:


... Now, I know that the left and all the little gatekeepers on Twitter become literally hysterical if you use the term "replacement." If you suggest that the Democratic Party is trying to replace the current electorate, the voters now casting ballots with new people, more obedient voters from the third world. They become hysterical because that's what's happening actually. Lets just say it that's true.

...

If you change the population, you dilute the political power of the people who live there. So every time they import a new voter, I become disenfranchised as a current voter. So I don't understand why -- everyone wants to make a racial issue out of it. You know the white replacement theory? No, no, this is a voting right question. I have less political power because they are importing a brand new electorate. Why should I sit back and take that? The power that I have as an American guaranteed at birth is one man, one vote. They are diluting it. No, they are not allowed to do it. Why are we putting up with this?
The Biden administration wants an eight-year path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants in America, but Carlson is talking here as if immigrants cross the border unlawfully, establish a toehold in America -- and then begin voting immediately.

If you believe that's happening, it's because you think our elections are riddled with corruption, all of it favoring Democrats. I don't know why Republicans win so many elections in America if that's the case, but Republicans seem to take it as a given that voting here can't be trusted. And why shouldn't they believe that? Since the Bush era, they've been told by the right-wing media, Republican politicians, and conservative advocacy groups that pro-Democratic cheating is widespread.

They think mail ballots are fraudulent and voting machines flip votes to Democrats and, for all I know, they think Biden votes were beamed in from Alpha Centauri last November. But they also believe that undocumented immigrants vote in large numbers -- just after he was inaugurated, Donald Trump reportedly told congressional leaders that 3 to 5 million undocumented immigrants voted against him. Trump's first press secretary, Sean Spicer, claimed that a study demonstrated that 14% of the votes in the 2016 election were cast by non-citizens.

This is what your right-wing relatives believe: that border crossers today will be Democratic voters tomorrow -- literally.

Thursday, April 08, 2021

THE WORST PEOPLE

This development in Gaetz-ghazi is just too perfect:
Joel Greenberg, the former Seminole County Tax Collector at the center of a sprawling criminal probe into everything from stalking to wire fraud to sex trafficking, used taxpayer money to pay $7,500 in legal fees to state Rep. Anthony Sabatini, records show.

While still serving as tax collector, Greenberg gave Sabatini a $3,000-a-month “legal counsel” contract in September 2019 — five days after Sabatini was admitted to the Florida Bar. Greenberg canceled the contract a little more than two months later, citing “extreme budget constraints.”

It’s not clear what Sabatini, a Republican from Howey-in-the-Hills who casts himself as a crusader against “wasteful” government spending, did for the $7,500.

Emails provided Monday by the Tax Collector’s Office show that Sabatini was asked to help with litigation involving a software contractor and with a trio of disputes involving former employees. But the emails didn’t show any work Sabatini produced, and records compiled as part of a Seminole County audit into Greenberg’s office spending show officials were “not sure” what exactly Sabatini worked on.
Anthony Sabatini? That would be this guy:

Of course this guy is running for Congress -- and he might be handed a seat by the Florida legislature:
Sabatini has tried to emulate Gaetz’s bombastic and confrontational style in politics and has already announced plans to run for Congress himself in 2022.

Incumbent Republican U.S. Rep. Daniel Webster, who currently represents Lake County, criticized Sabatini for potentially challenging him. But Gaetz has expressed tacit support for Sabatini’s decision to run because Florida lawmakers may draw a new Congressional seat in the area when they redo legislative boundaries next year.
THe word "kakistocracy" means "government by the worst people." It would seem to apply in this case. Maybe the Gaetz/Greenberg scandal will keep Sabatini out of Congress -- but I doubt it.


(Via Betty Cracker.)

HOW IT STARTED/HOW IT'S GOING

Townhall's Kurt Schlichter loved capitalism...



Until ...



Kurt writes:
Old habits die hard, and now it’s time for the GOP’s habitual support of big business to die, and to die hard.

Look around – the corporations have decided it’s a great time to use their power against us. There used to be a kind of gentleman’s agreement – they stay out of our business and we stay out of theirs.

But they broke that agreement. They decided to go all in. And it’s no coincidence that the political positions they have taken conform exactly to those of the Democrat Party. So, the hell with them.
(Stops reading, looks up corporate political action committees.)
... The companies were never with us culturally – they wanted fewer regs, lower taxes, open borders, and docile workers. They didn’t care about social issues. They stayed out of it. But a few decades ago, when those icky evangelicals and others who actually worshipped something besides the almighty dollar showed up, the corporate types got restless. After all, it made for awkward convos at the country club when you were allied with the Jesus gun people from out there in Americaland. So, today, they have intervened in favor of our enemies, but they expect us to sit back and pretend it’s 1987.

Why did they go with the liberal establishment? Because that’s who the multinational bigwigs are, and always have been. It’s always about class, and the class these robber barons circulated within looks down on regular Americans
Back in 1987, did Schlichter somehow overlook the fact that "multinational bigwigs" tend not to be churchgoing gun owners living in shotgun shacks in rural Texas? Was this information concealed from him as part of a sinister plot to deceive him about the nature of capitalism?

No. He always knew, and he had no problem with it. He mocked other people who thought capitalists had too much power. Let them have whatever they want! They're capitalists! They've earned it!

Until the moment when they started using their power to do stuff he doesn't like. Then it suddenly became time to smash The System.

I sometimes see Schlichter on social media complaining about "crony capitalism," which is a term that has an actual meaning, but not the way Schlichter applies it. To Schlichter, "crony capitalism" is "capitalism acting in the interests of people I don't like."

Sorry that the superficial but occasionally consequential interest in social responsibility on the part of large corporations upsets you, Kurt. But you should have seen the potential for this in 1987.