Stupid Is As Stupid Votes

It is fitting that on the day that The Howard Stern Show reveals the results of its I.Q. challenge (and it’s neo-conservative douchebag Scott Depace by a point) that E.J. Dionnemustard asks:

Can a nation remain a superpower if its internal politics are incorrigibly stupid?

Poor, unfortunate nail. You’ve been hit square on the head by Mr. Dionne. Go read it here.

Meanwhile, elsewhere in Leftblogistan:

Would the ADA Pass Today?

Jonathan Cohn asks this question in the New Republic. I says hell no it wouldn’t.

Cohn notes that the Act passed the Senate in July 1990 with a comfortable margin, passed the House on a fully unanimous voice vote, and was gladly signed by President George H.W. Bush. Can you imagine the rhetoric that would be employed to defeat it today? It would probably be pinned as a Commie-nist plot.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: “Conservatives” are no longer conservatives. Barry Goldwater would have been tied up and body surfed out of the 2008 Republigloat Convention, and, as much as they uttered his name in reverence, Ronnie Raygun would be made to sit in a corner wearing a funny hat. These people are not conservatives. They are Bizarro-Utopian Anarchists.

The Bottom Line On Racism

I just wanna say this because it boggles my mind.

Racism is more than just one guy calling another guy a bad name because of his hue.

Racism is the power that insult hurled has because of the history and because of the institutionalization that makes that power possible.

Racism is 400 years of black people allowed to be owned and another 100 years of black people allowed to be sorely mistreated. It’s a society that would not allow black people to learn how to read, to dine with the rest of us, to worship with the rest of us, to live with the rest of us. These conditions did not happen between individual people. These conditions happened because powerful institutions colluded to make it so, on purpose.

So here’s the fact that I wish all people could understand about racism: Black people cannot be racists.

Let me say this again in another way so that you might understand it better: If you are a black person in this country, you cannot possibly be a racist.

Because when white people mount up with the armor of racism, it’s a powerful mace indeed that they grasp, and it’s one that no African-American can even reach out to touch. Sorry, white people, but “honky” just isn’t drenched with hundreds of years of oppression and terror like that other word is.

So. The next time you hear Buchanan or any of these other jive turkeys on the television, and they’re accusing Shirley Sherrod—whom I am officially applying today to adopt as my third Grandma—or the NAACP or the Rev. Al Sharpton or whomever of being a “racist?”

They’re putting their stupid white foot into their stupid white mouth.

Profiles in Courage?

Recently one of the more familiar NPR voices whose name I can’t remember honored Dan Schorr as a “courageous cranky monument to a courageous cranky profession. “ I will give them that Dan Schorr was courageous and cranky and a monument to what journalism should be. Dan Schorr was hated by Noxin, shut out of Russia by Khrushchev, fired by CBS for leaking a document that CBS would not allow him to report about. His contract with CNN included a clause saying the company would not interfere with his reporting, and CNN put him aside and let the contract expire when they figured out what he really meant by that. Dan Schorr was courageous and cranky and a true hero to anyone who believes the Fourth Estate should be something more than a political tool or a trivial entertainment.

Courageous and cranky. I will not give the shills at NPR the right to take the title for themselves or for any other journalist who has not specifically earned it… and there are damned few of them. Rachel Maddow, Ellen Smith, Helen Thomas, Eugene Robinson. The McClatchy newspapers deserve some credit for not caving in to common wisdom on Busch’s phony Iraq war. There may be other honest and upright journalists out there, but they are rare.

For every Dan Schorr there are a thousand Judith Miller’s, willing to sell their soul to the high and mighty for an opportunity to get a front page byline and a mention on 60 minutes. Lies and deceit and bullshit bought and sold by the media have accounted for much of what might rightly be considered our decline. The Whitewater fraud could have been uncovered and exposed. Lazy reporters preferred to take crap they were fed and report it as gospel, even if it made no sense on its face. The real scandal of the Lewinski saga was not that the president got a blow job in his closet but that it was a part of a “vast right wing conspiracy” that was determined to cripple and destroy if possible a moderate presidency.

It goes without saying that the fools in the press never seriously questioned the “elections” of The Moron George W. George Busch, never held Congress’ feet to the fire on investigating his crimes, and only when it was so obvious the television camera could not miss it was there any serious discussion of his gross incompetence. No member of the Fourth Estate raised any fuss when one of their own bloviators built his reputation and his career on hatred of immigrants, even though most of his claims were false or wildly exaggerated. Bob Woodward wrote two worshipful books about The Moron before he discovered the winds of conventional wisdom were changing and wrote a third to correct the record.

Although most press outlets have begun to admit up front that the President’s Birth Certificate is real, many still maintain that there is a genuine issue raised there. The Press stood by and watched a brilliant and capable leader, Van Jones, get railroaded out of office by the right wing lie machine. Not one journalist ever investigated the record and came to his defense (neither did the Obama Administration.) The press always found false claims of voter fraud to be reasonable, especially when ACORN was involved, and accepted at face value Andrew Brightfart’s lies about that most valuable and innocent organization. Now we have the spectacle of another of Brightfart’s lies being accepted from coast to coast and costing an honorable public servant her job, all without a modicum of skepticism from the news media.

Courageous my ass! Cowards and whores and mountebanks have only the courage of their ambition.

A Special Special Comment

For a long time, our man Keith did everything he could to wear out his signature bit, the “special comment.” I suspect that his handlers were impressed with the ratings they bore and egged him on, to the point where for a while he was making a nightly “quick comment.” Either at that point, or at the point where he dedicated an entire hour to a “special comment” on health care reform, or at the point where it was nearly successfully lampooned by Ben Afleck on Saturday Night Live, the thing really jumped the shark.

You’ve got to remember how awesome the original Special Comment was. We were in the throes of the stupidest war ever. And the Secretary of God-Damned Defense had just come out and said that anyone who disagreed with the administration’s stance on this stupid war was somehow um, morally or intellectually confused. Keith tore the living hell out of that, and a star was born.

Luckily, the K-Man has given the Special Comment a bit of a respite as of late, at least comparatively. That is the right move. That “Special Comment” logo should only be dragged out when you’ve written something truly inspiring about something that’s truly and legitimately pissed you off, brother. How to tell when that occurs? You’ll know it when you’ve written it.

Like last night. I was concerned when the man started by comparing this Shirley Sherrod thing to the Dreyfus Affair. But man what the hell happened after that was really something.

In case you missed it:

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

He tears Fox “News” a new asshole of course, though he isn’t dishonest about the thing; he agrees that media in general failed on the Sherrod incident. He also rips into the White House, as they deserve. The killer is the ending, which I’m not giving away for you. It’s lovely.

And of course, Howard K. Kurtz is in the fucking Washington Post today inexplicably apologizing for Fox “News.” Kurtz claims that Fox “News” actually did its homework on this thing actually actually. Howie. Baby. We’ve seen the tape dude. Does Murdock sign your checks as well?

Nip It In The Bud, Bud

A lot of liberals are coming down pretty hard on the White House for its knee-jerk response to the Shirley Sherrod story. I agree with the criticism to a large extent. But I think the critiques do not consider a certain specific perspective.

This is a President who was a candidate who in both capacities has seen too often the deleterious effect of a negative story that sprouts legs and walks on its own. The Rev. Wright story. The health care reform town halls. ACORN. This is also a White House that may be running on fumes regarding its own momentum, and yet one with a still ambitious political agenda. It may very well be a White House that doesn’t want another damned story to sprout legs and start boogyin’.

Little did the Administration know that at mid-afternoon, the tide would change completely on this story, that the farmers Sherrod helped all those years ago would do the decent thing and come swiftly to her defense. Who could have guessed such a thing would have happened? By day’s end, all the air had been sucked out of that sucker and Ms. Sherrod was sitting pretty.

Yes, for sure, the White House’s reflex when it comes to this thing has become absurdly well-honed. The President’s staff would do better when this shit hits the fan to take a step back and consider the source. Andrew Breitbart is not a legitimate news source and he probably farts a lot, and a ten minute Google search might have saved them the embarrassment of having to resolve things with Ms. Sherrod now. (Because they do have to do that now.)

But. I can certainly understand the impulse.

By the way. Three cheers to The Washington Post for successfully burying this story’s lead all the way to friggin’ China in this morning’s edition. The story’s resolution; the full context of Sherrod’s story and the Spooners’ dash to her defense, should have led that story, you numb-nuts, instead of appearing way in the last paragraphs. Shame on ya.


At 3:15, Congressman Grayson at last says what I previously said needs said. Senate Republigoats AND BEN NELSON fought long and hard to withhold munny from you that you’ve already paid in. Once again, Grayson kicks ass and takes names.

Unemployment Insurance

Here’s what I don’t understand about what’s not being said regarding the Senate’s asshole behavior on the unemployment extention.

If you work, your employer is required to pay state and federal payroll taxes into unemployment on your behalf. This expense is based on your earnings. These benefits are included as part of your gross income for consideration by the Internal Revenue Service.

We’re not talking about handouts when we’re talking about unemployment insurance. We’re talking about a legitimate benefit that people pay for through their working lives. The Senate is denying people a benefit they’ve already paid for. These assholes are stealing from you. Again. Dig?

Why isn’t anyone saying this, anyway?