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I honestly don’t have the words to describe this. Rep Trent Franks (R-AZ) won’t vote for SCHIP, apparently because he’s so concerned with the “unborn” that he can’t support “hillarycare”–you know, the program passed by the Republican congress under Clinton.
This is my favorite part,* though:
Mr. Speaker, the reason I say those things is that there is one. critical. component of protecting innocent children I have learned over and over again, and that is if you desire to protect children, you must. protect. the family—because either families or government bureaucrats will ultimately make the decisions about nearly all aspects of our children’s lives.
The proposed S-CHIP legislation funds and empowers government bureaucracies and not families. [yammer yammer talking points. . .]
Mr. Speaker, behind me this picture is a little baby who deserves to be protected like every. other. child. in this country, and yet, before the sun sets in America today, four thousand unborn children will be killed through abortion-on-demand, and, Mr. Speaker, their mothers will never be the same.
So he doesn’t believe in government-funded health care because bureaucrats because families make better decisions than bureaucrats can, but he’s happy to diagnose the effects of abortion on women and decide they just shouldn’t be allowed to make choices about their own reproductive health. Bureaucrats can’t help families with medical bills, but can damn sure force them to have kids.
The hypocrisy is truly breathtaking.
*By “favorite part” I mean “part that made my brain ooze out my ears in desperation to escape fundie ‘logic’”
I love it when wingnuts bring the crazy in list form October 26, 2007Posted by Evil Bender in News and politics, wingnuts.
because it’s somehow much more hilarious than other forms of bringin’ crazy. By now, you’ve probably heard about Family Security Matters’ “Ten Most Dangerous Organizations in America.” (The link goes to Crooks & Liars’s coverage.) The list is as follows:
10 ) Think Progress
9 ) Muslim Student Association
8 ) CodePINK
7 ) American Civil Liberties Union, National
6 ) Family Research Council
5 ) Center for American Progress
4 ) League of the South
3 ) MoveOn.org
2 ) Universities and Colleges
1 ) Media Matters for America
I particularly like the two right-wing groups thrown in to make this list look “fair and balanced.” Much has already been said about #2, and with good reason: the right-wing phobia over education is massive and it would be hilarious if it weren’t so scary.
But I’ve also got to take a moment to address it’s absolutely ludicrous criticism of Media Matters (most of the piece’s criticisms are ludicrous, but I’ll confine myself to the first item on the list. I’ve conveniently placed asterisks next to falsehoods for your reading convenience:
You’re unlikely to find a more dishonest machine than Media Matters. Their entire operation involves listening to conservative talk radio and television commentators, taking anything out of context that they can, and running the host through the mud. They are professional smear merchants who routinely attack Bill O’Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Neil Cavuto.
Media Matters is virulently anti-free speech when the speech involved is conservative in nature. The organization actively issues directives to its readers to contact Rush Limbaugh Show affiliates to try to boot him off the air for the “phony soldiers” comment that organizations like Media Matters willfully took out of context.
Media does matter for America – which is why you should steer clear of the astoundingly inaccurate and unethical Media Matters for America.
I’ll give them this: if I were a crazy-ass wingnut, I’d think Media Matters was exceptionally dangerous, too. How dare they quote what people say and place that quote in context?
Naturally, the piece gives no evidence to defend its claims, nor can it: Media Matters doesn’t take anything out of context. In fact, their coverage of right-wing idiocy includes transcripts to give the full context. Take the Rush Limbaugh “phony soldiers” comment: Media Matters quoted rush, gave audio and an in-context transcript, and then was routinely attacked–falsely–for its supposed lies.
No surprise there, of course: the far right’s game plan is to lie and then to lie more when called on it. And so they need to go after Media Matters in particular, for Media Matters annoying habit of documenting what wingnuts say is very damaging. Unfortunately for the right, they can’t explain how placing their words in context is unfair.
Or maybe I’m being too harsh in attributing to them malicious intent: maybe their fear of education has left them without the necessary critical thinking skills to actually evaluate an argument’s claims. Hey, it happened to Phillis Schlafly.
Tattoo blogging: finally following up October 24, 2007Posted by Evil Bender in Blogging, Body Art.
I’ve meant to post this for ages, but kept forgetting to do so. So, belatedly, here’s my tattoo. I’m pretty happy with it, I must say, though it might not be as awesome as Little Hoot Owl’s full back piece.
Google meme! October 24, 2007Posted by Evil Bender in Blogging.
1 comment so far
I’d like to suggest a meme, where the premise is that you will attempt to find 5 statements, which if you were to type into google (preferably google.com, but we’ll take the other country specific ones if need be), you’ll find that you are returned with your blog as the number one hit.
So let’s see what returns hits on my blog:
- Evil Bender
- evil men kissing
- fear the gay penis
- funniest evil movies of all time
- bible wrong about bats
That’s pretty damn sweet, if I say so myself.
Bozell gets it wrong on Phill Kline, Planned Parenthood, of course October 24, 2007Posted by Evil Bender in News and politics, reproductive rights, wingnuts.
I’ve not had much to say about Phill Kline’s most recent attacks of legal medical procedures, because I’ve been busy and because what’s happening is obvious to anyone who is paying attention. Kline, a thuggish enforcer of his own warped values at the expense of the law, is harrassing Planned Parenthood with the same bullshit he was spewing as Kansas AG. But I’m getting ahead of myself–what forced me to talk about this in more detail was this column of lies from Brent Bozell. It’s a long whine about how unfair it is that the media doesn’t spread his lies about Planned Parenthood. As you read, keep in mind that Bozell considers himself a media watchdog. That’s a bit like putting Gonzo in charge of an ethics commission.
Bozell starts with a bang:
As much as liberals decry major corporations that act as if they’re above the law, there’s always quiet when the subject is Planned Parenthood, America’s No. 1 corporate provider of abortions. During its 2005-2006 fiscal year, the Planned Parenthood Federation of America performed a record 264,943 abortions, reported a tidy profit of $55.8 million — and received a record high in taxpayer funding of $305.3 million.
Amazing! He can’t get through the first paragraph without blatant dishonesty. Planned Parenthood is a not-for-profit. It isn’t in business to make money, and no shareholders are benefiting if it manages to stay in the black. But champion of accuracy that he is, Bozell omits that information to make it sound like Planned Parenthood is getting rich off abortions.
After complaining about the Aurora, Il clinic, he moves on to defend Phill Kline’s baseless attacks on Planned Parenthood in Johnson County, Kansas:
Down the highway in Kansas, Johnson County District Attorney Phil Kline just filed 107 charges against Planned Parenthood, charging that its clinic in Overland Park performed unlawful late-term abortions. Kansas state law holds that abortion is legal only when a doctor affirms that the baby is not viable to live outside the mother’s womb. If the baby can live, then two doctors must attest the abortion is necessary for the woman’s physical or mental health. That’s why clinic records are an issue.
The 23 felony counts allege that Planned Parenthood submitted false “pregnancy termination reports” to a court on Aug. 21 in response to a subpoena. District Court Judge James S. Vano agreed there was probable cause to think crimes had been committed and set a Nov. 16 court date. Planned Parenthood faces more than $2.5 million in potential fines.
By “probable cause” it appears he means the judge did not immediately throw out the case. But how meritorious is said case likely to be? Well, let’s review. It began when Phill Kline worked desperately to get access to private medical data as part of his anti-woman crusade. Then he leaked–possibly illegally–information to that bastion of responsible journalism, Bill O’Reilly.
Then, when his embarrassing conduct as AG caused him to be overwhelmingly rejected by Kansas voters in 2006, Republicans selected him to be Johnson County DA. His replacement at the state level looked over the years of work Kline had done trying to nail Planned Parenthood or doctor George Tiller for something, anything, and found that Planned Parenthood had done nothing wrong, and Tiller had committed a few misdemeanor offenses. He also found that Kline himself was the truly guilty party, being either completely dishonest or completely negligent in his rush to enforce his own will on the population of Kansas.
So Phill Kline’s simply on a vendetta mission against abortion providers as he always has been, and so he won’t let a little thing like being wrong stop him. As the AP reports,
“The real story here doesn’t have anything to do with how Planned Parenthood conducts its business,” said Pamela Sumners, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri in St. Louis. “Everybody knows Planned Parenthood scrupulously adheres to the law. This is obviously just a case of Phill Kline, who was voted out as attorney general, trying to misuse his local prosecutorial discretion to keep grinding this ax that the voters have said they don’t want to hear about anymore.
“He’s doing the same thing, just in a different guise,” she said. “I think everybody’s going to see through him.”
Indeed. But of course Bozell, who avoids mentioning any of the above context, doesn’t see it that way:
But you’ll not see a story virtually anywhere on this budding scandal because the press studiously avoids scrutiny of its liberal sacred cows — or focuses its guns on that person who would dare to get in their way. They’d lionize a state official attacking crisis-pregnancy centers that try to talk women out of abortions. But investigate the abortion industry, and you’re a national disgrace.
One becomes a national disgrace by putting his or her personal agenda ahead of the law, particularly when that job is to enforce the fucking law. Kline’s not getting any sympathetic coverage because everyone who has covered this issue before knows this is more of the same sleazy, dishonest slimebaggery from a petty, lying little shit.
Bozell isn’t content to stop there. (more…)
No way the friendly, single headmaster could be gay, right? October 24, 2007Posted by Evil Bender in Blogroll, language and lit, Morality, wingnuts.
1 comment so far
I’m far from the first to notice that John Mark Reynolds is bringing an excessive amount of crazy in his attempt to prove that, no matter what Rowling says, Albus Dumbledore is totally not gay. In doing so, he’s going against the typical fundie line. See, Reynolds is invested in the idea that the Harry Potter books are Christian allegory (this is silly, and anyway, as I’ve previously argued, the more apt religious parallel would be to Buddhism), and so he has to argue that Harry couldn’t be gay–that would undercut the “religious” message Reynold’s is desperate to read into the text.*there’s no doubt that Rowling is playing with symbolism drawn from a wide range of sources, there is a huge difference between saying some
Reynold’s argument is basically that he doesn’t see evidence of Dumbledore’s homosexuality, therefore he must not be gay:
Rowling chose to hide her “opinion” of Dumbledore’s sexuality until the story arc was done, Dumbledore dead, and his life written. Now her opinions no longer matter, just her text. If she could point to anything in that text that suggests something greater than friendship, mentoring, or a professional relationship, then that would matter. She has not and cannot. She carefully hid the “fact” and now it is too late to introduce it.
Lest one think that I say this only because homosexuality bothers me, then let me compare it to another situation. Suppose that Rowling now claimed that Dumbledore and Minerva McGonagall had a passionate relationship. Since there is no reason in the text to know this is true, or to find it relevant to the story arc as we have it, Rowling’s opinions of the headmaster’s heterosexual affairs matter very little in terms of understanding the books as they are. There is as much evidence of this (after all) as of Dumbledore’s homosexuality.
If I utterly hide a fact (as an author), then I cannot suddenly introduce it by opining outside of my book about my book.
Yes, he’s absolutely right. There’s absolutely no reason to think the affable, elderly bachelor headmaster who has never been romantically linked to another could possibly be gay, right? Not the man who’s most passionate relationship was with another man. Not the man who is so private.
How to know if a wingnut is lying to you, “mom and dad” edition October 15, 2007Posted by Evil Bender in bigotry, News and politics, wingnuts.
When they tell you something.
Case in point: The fine folks WingNutDaily and much of the rest of the radical right are in an absolute tizzy over the supposed banning of the words “mom” and “dad” from California Classrooms. Says WND:
“Mom and Dad” as well as “husband and wife” effectively have been banned from California schools under a bill signed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who with his signature also ordered public schools to allow boys to use girls restrooms and locker rooms, and vice versa, if they choose.
[. . .]
“SB 777 will result in reverse discrimination against students with religious and traditional family values,” said Meredith Turney, legislative liaison for Capitol Resource Institute. “These students have lost their voice as the direct result of Gov. Schwarzenegger’s unbelievable decision. The terms ‘mom and dad’ or ‘husband and wife’ could promote discrimination against homosexuals if a same-sex couple is not also featured.
“Parents want the assurance that when their children go to school they will learn the fundamentals of reading, writing and arithmetic – not social indoctrination regarding alternative sexual lifestyles. Now that SB777 is law, schools will in fact become indoctrination centers for sexual experimentation,” she said.
Indoctrination centers for sexual experimentation, you say? How could something so shocking have gone unreported in the mainstream media? Perhaps because it’s complete BS.
I get (snail) mail! October 6, 2007Posted by Evil Bender in Origins, Science, wingnuts.
Today a copy of CSA News arrived at my house. A publication of The Creation Science Association of Mid-America, it is a poorly edited flier which should embarrass Creationists, if they had an desire for accuracy and honesty. It’s headline essay argues that Rick Warren (of Purpose Driven Life fame) is linked to “Old Earth, Evolution, Liberalism, Nazism, Communism, and the Great Harlot.” It’s filled with such great observations as this:
Am I teaching that Warren is a key player in the end times? NO! For all I know Warren will be dead, or exposed as a fraud, before all the details are in place. But Warren is certainly a key player.
Um, what? He’s not a key player, but he is a key player? I guess that’s the kind of sound reasoning I should expect from the same people who advertise their products this way:
This book examines stereotypical evolutionary “reasoning” rather than dwelling on the latest “discoveries.”
Let’s see. Bizarre use of quotation marks? Check. Unwittingly admitting that they don’t understand anything about science? Check. Unwittingly admitting they are addressing straw men? Check.
Don’t you love it when they do our work for us?
Friday poetry: Broken Window by Jim Daniels October 5, 2007Posted by Evil Bender in Poetry.
1 comment so far
The thoughtful points raised in this thread–ironically, given the stupidity to which my post responds–left me with lots to think about. The older I get, the more I think William Carlos Williams had it right: “It is difficult to get the news from poems/yet men die miserably every day for lack of what is found there.”
With that in mind, today’s poem
by Jim Daniels
Bush Vetoes Health Care Bill and lies, lies, lies. October 4, 2007Posted by Evil Bender in Dubya, health care, Morality, News and politics.
1 comment so far
As he promised, Bush vetoed a bill which would have provided health care for millions of uninsured kids. So what bullshit reason is he going to give for his hatred for the poor?
“Here’s the thing, just so you know, this program expands coverage, federal coverage, up to families earning $83,000 a year,” he said. “That doesn’t sound poor to me. The intent of the program was to focus on poor children, not adults or families earning up to $83,000 a year.”
Leaving aside for the moment that Bush doesn’t have a single fucking clue what poverty is, this might–might–be a good point if a) Bush wasn’t spending many times as much on his lie-based war as the sChip expansion would cost, b) poor kids weren’t getting coverage too, c) no families who aren’t poor could benefit from insurance help, and d) he wasn’t lying through his teeth:
But supporters of the bill immediately seized on that claim and said it was not true. Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, a loyal supporter of the Bush White House, responded angrily to the president during a Capitol Hill news conference.
“Are families of four making $83,000 going to get benefit(s) under this? Not unless the administration agrees to it. This bill does not call for that high level of expenditure,” Hatch said.
Hatch explained that the only way such families would get SCHIP coverage would be if their states petitioned the administration for a waiver — just like under the current program. When New York, made such a petition, the Bush administration turned it down.
So Bush is afraid that a future administration might expand a program to help more people, and that’s why he vetoed it. So helping kids is a problem for Bush, but in fairness to him, he’s been busy lying about torture:
White House on Thursday reiterated its position that the United States does not condone torture. The statement comes in the wake of a New York Times report alleging that the Justice Department authorized harsh interrogation procedures in secret memos.
The Times reported that in 2005, as Congress passed a law banning cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of detainees, the Justice Department secretly issued a legal opinion saying that the CIA’s harsh interrogation practices are not cruel, inhuman or degrading. Another memo explicitly authorized exposure to extreme temperatures, physical beatings and more.
According to the newspaper, the decision came after the Justice Department publicly withdrew an earlier memo that condoned extreme interrogation procedures.
This President thinks he is above the law. I look forward to the day he stands trials for the war crimes he has committed. When that day comes, I hope well-insured American children will gather around to watch.