March 31, 2011

The Dying of the Right: Republicans WILL Believe Anything

If it’s about Obama, Clinton or poor old born-again Jimmy Carter, nothing is too absurd for the gullible right-wingers, as long as it’s defamatory. Some of these dizzy neocons, in a massive exercise in psychological projection, seriously believe liberals and progressives are fascists who want to see them in camps or dead, even though no evidence of this exists outside of the empty spinning flywheels of right-wing propaganda. (And these are the same bubbleheads who enthusiastically thumbs-up such Republican reptiles as WI Gov. Scott Walker, OH Gov. John Kasich, NJ Gov. Chris Christie, and MI Gov. Rick Snyder, the latter actually trying to secure the power to nullify local elections and run towns from the governor’s office. If that’s not fascism, I don’t know what is.) They didn’t learn the lesson of the Junior Bush years: There is a steep price to pay for those who create their own reality, and disinformation and delusion inevitably lead to ruin. The current incarnation of the GOP as a minority Christopublican-Tea Party is already sliding down the slippery chute; in ten years, both of these addled factions will have been shunted to the sidelines where they belong and a true conservative secular Goldwater Republican Party will reemerge to own the brand.

“Stupid or ‘lop-eared’ marks are often played; they are too dull to see their own advantage, and must be worked up to the point again and again before a ray of light filters through their thick heads. . . . Always they merit the scorn and contempt of the con men. Elderly men are easy to play because age has slowed down their reactions.”
– Excerpt from “The Big Con: The Story of the Confidence Man” by David W. Maurer, published in 1940, (pgs.103-4). The film “The Sting” was based on Maurer’s book.

“Put together any ten Americans at random and get their honest opinions — odds are at least two of them are going to be scary dumb.”
– Mac Carroll

Will Republican Voters Believe Anything? The Right’s Hyperbolic, Dysfunctional World

To have credibility within the Republican Party is to have none outside it. They act as if all their Kool-Aid has been spiked.

By Gary Younge
Comment is Free
The Guardian (UK)
Via AlterNet
March 28, 2011

Polls suggest there are between one in three and one in four Americans who would believe anything. More than a third thought President George Bush did a good job during Hurricane Katrina; half of those thought he was excellent.

Throughout most of 2008, as the economy careered into depression, just over one in four believed Bush was handling the economy well.

As Bush prepared to leave office in January 2009, bequeathing bank bailouts, rampant unemployment, and Iraq and Afghanistan in tatters, a quarter of the country approved of his presidency.

These are national polls that span the political spectrum. So you can imagine how concentrated the distortions become when filtered through the tainted lens of the right. A poll earlier this month revealed that a quarter of Republicans believe a community rights organisation called Acorn will try to steal the election for Barack Obama next year, while 31% aren’t sure whether it will or not. It won’t. Because Acorn does not exist. It was defunded and disbanded after a successful sting operation by conservatives a couple of years ago.

Meanwhile, a poll last month showed that a majority of Republicans likely to vote in the primaries still believe Obama was not born in the United States. He was. But no number of verified birth certificates will convince them.

Read the rest here.

March 23, 2008

Frank Rich: The Republican Resurrection

Filed under: Commentary — Tags: , , , , , , — Volt @ 9:43 am

Frank Rich, The New York Times, March 23, 2008

The day before Barack Obama gave The Speech, Hillary Clinton gave a big speech of her own, billed by her campaign as a “major policy address on the war in Iraq.” What, you didn’t hear about it?

Clinton partisans can blame the Obamaphilic press corps for underplaying their candidate’s uncompromising antiwar sentiments. But intentionally or not, the press did Mrs. Clinton a favor. Every time she opens her mouth about Iraq, she reminds voters of how she enabled the catastrophe that has devoured American lives and treasure for five years.

Race has been America’s transcendent issue far longer than that. I share the general view that Mr. Obama’s speech is the most remarkable utterance on the subject by a public figure in modern memory. But what impressed me most was not Mr. Obama’s rhetorical elegance or his nuanced view of both America’s undeniable racial divide and equally undeniable racial progress. The real novelty was to find a politician who didn’t talk down to his audience but instead trusted it to listen to complete, paragraph-long thoughts that couldn’t be reduced to sound bites.

In a political culture where even campaign debates can resemble “Jeopardy,” this is tantamount to revolution. As if to prove the point, some of the Beltway bloviators who had hyped Mitt Romney’s instantly forgotten snake oil on “Faith in America” soon fell to fretting about whether “ordinary Americans” would comprehend Mr. Obama.

Mrs. Clinton is fond of mocking her adversary for offering “just words.” But words can matter, and Mrs. Clinton’s tragedy is that she never realized they could have mattered for her, too. You have to wonder if her Iraq speech would have been greeted with the same shrug if she had tossed away her usual talking points and seized the opportunity to address the war in the same adult way that Mr. Obama addressed race. Mrs. Clinton might have reconnected with the half of her party that has tuned her out.

Read More Here

March 5, 2008

David Sirota: The Clinton-Lieberman Connection

Filed under: Commentary — Tags: , , , , , — Volt @ 6:25 pm

David Sirota, Credo Action, March 5, 2008

Confusion and misinformation are two of the most powerful weapons in a desperate politician’s arsenal. They were used by Joe Lieberman in the 2006 general election against Ned Lamont, and exit polls suggest that they helped Hillary Clinton blast her way through yesterday’s primary in Ohio.

Over the last few weeks, Clinton has been telling Ohio voters she never supported the North American Free Trade Agreement – an agreement that has become a symbol of corrupt economic policies to many working-class voters. Clinton has made these claims expecting everyone to forget her speeches over the last decade trumpeting NAFTA as a great success.

Her direct quotes praising NAFTA repeatedly are not up for interpretation – and neither are her absurd claims to “have been against NAFTA from the beginning.” We’re talking about pure, unadulterated lying here – and lying with a purpose: To confuse enough voters into thinking she actually did oppose NAFTA and that her strong support for NAFTA is somehow the same as Barack Obama’s longtime opposition to the pact. Last night’s results prove the scheme worked.

CBS News reports that “among Ohio voters who expressed that trade takes jobs away, 55 percent supported Clinton.” The Associated Press has some more details:

“Clinton’s past support of the North American Free Trade Agreement didn’t hurt her in Ohio where most voters think trade with other countries has cost the state jobs. Blue-collar workers and voters who live in union households backed Clinton as did voters in northern Ohio where manufacturing job losses have been staggering the past decade, according to exit polls for The Associated Press and television networks. Clinton won nearly six in 10 votes from union households in Ohio’s Democratic primary Tuesday and the same number among people who earn less than $50,000 a year.”

Read More Here

March 3, 2008

Campaign Financing To Date

Filed under: Toon — Tags: , , , , — Volt @ 9:45 pm

March 1, 2008

“When an Emergency Letter from Richmond Comes to the White House…”

Filed under: Commentary — Tags: , , , , , — Volt @ 6:02 pm

Democratic Underground, February 29, 2008

When an emergency letter from Richmond comes to the White House at 3:00 in the morning, who do you trust to pick up the quill?

An unknown golden-tongued trial lawyer from Illinois, who’s only served in Congress for one 2-year term?

Or James Buchanan, a man with 40 proud years of service to his country under his belt?


In a difficult time, the experience we need.”

“I’m James Buchanan, and I approve this lithograph.”

Read More Here

February 28, 2008

From Day One…

Filed under: Toon — Tags: , , , — Volt @ 7:28 am

February 26, 2008

Robert Parry: Why the War on Obama?

Filed under: Commentary — Tags: , , , , — Volt @ 5:45 pm

Robert Parry, Consortium News, February 26, 2008

While some cynics still view Barack Obama’s appeal for “change” as empty rhetoric, it’s starting to dawn on Washington insiders that his ability to raise vast sums of money from nearly one million mostly small donors could shake the grip that special-interest money has long held over the U.S. government.

This spreading realization that Obama’s political movement might represent a more revolutionary change than previously understood is sparking a deepening resistance among defenders of the status quo-and prompting harsher attacks on Obama.

Right now, the front line for the Washington Establishment is Hillary Clinton’s struggling presidential campaign, which has been stunned by Obama’s political skills as well as his extraordinary ability to raise money over the Internet. Obama’s grassroots donations have negated Clinton’s prodigious fundraising advantage with big donors.

Powerful lobbies-from AIPAC to representatives of military and other industries-also are recognizing the value of keeping their dominance over campaign cash from getting diluted by Obama’s deep reservoir of small donors. It’s in their direct interest to dent Obama’s momentum and demoralize his rank-and-file supporters as soon as possible.

So, neoconservatives and other ideological movements-heavily dependent on grants from the same special interests-are now joining with the Clinton campaign to tear down Obama by depicting him as unpatriotic, un-vetted, possibly a “closet Muslim.”

Read More Here

February 23, 2008

Frank Rich: The Audacity of Hopelessness

Filed under: Commentary — Tags: , , , , , , , — Volt @ 10:50 pm

Frank Rich, The New York Times, February 24, 2008

When people one day look back at the remarkable implosion of the Hillary Clinton campaign, they may notice that it both began and ended in the long dark shadow of Iraq.

It’s not just that her candidacy’s central premise — the priceless value of “experience” — was fatally poisoned from the start by her still ill-explained vote to authorize the fiasco. Senator Clinton then compounded that 2002 misjudgment by pursuing a 2008 campaign strategy that uncannily mimicked the disastrous Bush Iraq war plan. After promising a cakewalk to the nomination — “It will be me,” Mrs. Clinton told Katie Couric in November — she was routed by an insurgency.

The Clinton camp was certain that its moneyed arsenal of political shock-and-awe would take out Barack Hussein Obama in a flash. The race would “be over by Feb. 5,” Mrs. Clinton assured George Stephanopoulos just before New Year’s. But once the Obama forces outwitted her, leaving her mission unaccomplished on Super Tuesday, there was no contingency plan. She had neither the boots on the ground nor the money to recoup.

That’s why she has been losing battle after battle by double digits in every corner of the country ever since. And no matter how much bad stuff happened, she kept to the Bush playbook, stubbornly clinging to her own Rumsfeld, her chief strategist, Mark Penn. Like his prototype, Mr. Penn is bigger on loyalty and arrogance than strategic brilliance. But he’s actually not even all that loyal. Mr. Penn, whose operation has billed several million dollars in fees to the Clinton campaign so far, has never given up his day job as chief executive of the public relations behemoth Burson-Marsteller. His top client there, Microsoft, is simultaneously engaged in a demanding campaign of its own to acquire Yahoo.

Clinton fans don’t see their standard-bearer’s troubles this way. In their view, their highly substantive candidate was unfairly undone by a lightweight showboat who got a free ride from an often misogynist press and from naïve young people who lap up messianic language as if it were Jim Jones’s Kool-Aid. Or as Mrs. Clinton frames it, Senator Obama is all about empty words while she is all about action and hard work.

Read More Here

February 22, 2008

Paul Krugman: Don’t Rerun That ’70s Show

Filed under: Commentary — Tags: , , , , , — Volt @ 1:55 am

Paul Krugman, The New York Times, February 22, 2008

Will the next president be the second coming of Jimmy Carter? Given Thursday’s economic headlines, full of dire warnings about the return of 1970s-style stagflation, you might think so.

Realistically, though, the parallels between the problems facing the U.S. economy now and those of the late-1970s aren’t that strong. That’s the good news.

The bad news is that the economy probably will look similar to, but worse than, the economy that undid the first President Bush. And it’s all too easy to see how the next president could suffer a political fate resembling that of both the elder Mr. Bush and Mr. Carter.

Let’s talk first about the Carter-era economy.

Jimmy Carter’s overall economic record was much better than most people realize — the average economic growth rate under his administration was 3.4 percent per year, slightly higher than the growth rate under Ronald Reagan and far better than growth under either Bush.

Read More Here

Powered by WordPress