Mitch McConnell Hearts The Violence Against Women Act, Can We Get a “Wait, What?!?”

Silly Republicans.  We’re not all as gullible as your average Fox News viewer.

Senate Minority leader Mitch “I love filibusters so much, I filibustered my own bill” McConnell, famous for performing, in the words of Lawrence O’Donnell, “the most idiotic thing any minority leader has ever done on the Senate floor,”and the man I would most like to see sitting across a poker table from me, is up for re-election, and like all Republicans Senator Mitch has a women problem.  Funny how waging a war against the 50.8% of the nation with vaginas leads to a little backlash against your party, isn’t it?  Senator Mitch is dealing with the problem with the time tested method of gathering a few token members of the population together into a group in your favor.  Ladies and gentlemen, I give you “Women For Team Mitch”, an event held on Friday where press packets featuring testimonials from Kentucky women.  I know, I guess some women want government inside their vaginas.  Weird, isn’t it?  And a bit kinky.  Maybe it is a side effect of the whole “Fifty Shades….” craze.  Think again, ladies.  From what I hear, the GOP ignores the safe word.

One of these testimonials caught the eye of an alert reporter for the Louisville-based LEO Weekly, Joe Sonka, who posted it on Twitter.  Let’s turn to TPM for the rest of the story:

The quote, attributed to a woman named Angela Leet in Jefferson County, read, “Mitch was the co-sponsor of the original Violence Against Women Act- and continues to advocate for stronger policies to protect women. I am proud to call him my senator.”

Wow.  I didn’t know Mitch was such a crusader for women’s rights.  What a stand up guy.  See, not all Republi…wait a second here.  This is Mitch McConnell, right?

McConnell did cosponsor a version of the Violence Against Woman Act in 1991, which never received a Senate vote. But by the time the measure came up again in 1993, McConnell was no longer a cosponsor, and in fact voted against final passage of the bill. In 2005, it was renewed by an unrecorded voice vote. In 2012, McConnell voted against the Senate-passed VAWA, which died in the House. Then early in 2013, he again voted against VAWA re-authorization, which passed the Senate by a vote of 78-22, and eventually passed the House and was signed into law.

Wait, What?!?  A member of the Republican party, a member in a leadership position, engaging in deception?  Say it isn’t so!  I wonder what Democratic candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes would say about this if she found out?   Would she ovary up and call him a lying liar who lies?

“The women of Kentucky will not be fooled by Senator McConnell’s failed leadership and deception when it comes to issues important to women and their families,” Grimes spokeswoman Charly Norton told TPM. “His actions read loud and clear: McConnell repeatedly voted against equal pay for equal work, the Violence Against Women Act and now turns to lies to cover his shameful record.”

Hmmm.  Not as pithy as “lying liar who lies,” but close enough.

 

Fun Facts About Bradlee Dean

On this weekend’s edition of Sons of Liberty Radio, host Bradlee Dean, the drummer of the Christian metal band Junkyard Prophet who once attempted to sue Rachael Maddow for quoting him, revealed some very interesting statistics.  Dean, who performs school assemblies, public schools included, designed to spread bigotry in the name of Jesus, first claimed that abortion and homosexuality are the “last two stages a country takes” before God decides to fuck all that forgiveness crap and pass judgement upon a nation.  Then his fellow host Jake McMillan reached deep into his friends rectum and pulled out the following facts:

“half of the murders in large cities were committed by homosexuals; thirty-three percent of child abuse cases were committed by homosexuals; half of the foster children molestations were done by homosexuals.”

McMillan went on to explain why homosexuals are so evil:

McMillan explained, to Dean’s agreement, that gays are prone to criminality because “when a person’s mind has gone to that extent of committing an abominable act, it shows what else they are capable of.”

Dean jumped in to explain how the evil gay mafia gets away with it all:

But of course gay rights are gaining ground, Dean claimed, since “they got their homo in office,” and have “infiltrated” the White House.

You can listen to all of these words come from the bigots mouths over at Right Wing Watch, if you are so inclined.

Can we pause a second to think about this?  Half of the murders in large cities.  Half.  Citation.  Fucking.  Needed.  Out of all the made up statistics I have ever seen (by the way, 72% of all statistics quoted on the internet are made up by the person quoting them, current statistic included,) this one takes the bukkake.  How gullible or bigoted does one have to be to read that and not immediately call bullshit?  How much of an insult to his audience is it that Bradlee thinks they will buy this stat?  How sad is it that a majority of his listeners probably are thinking that all homosexuals do is suck cock, fuck ass, and kill people?

Since Bradlee and his co-host opened the door wide open with those “statistics” and the claim that President Obama is a homosexual, I feel it is only right to show Mr. Dean that I can make stuff up as well.  So for all your right wing trivia needs, here is:

Fun Facts About Bradlee Dean!

  • To those he is close to, Bradlee’s nickname is “cumdumpster.”  And according to fellow members of Junkyard Prophet, he earned the nickname.
  • While Bradlee is the butch in his relationship with his co-host Jake, behind closed doors Bradlee is 100% a catcher.
  • Bradlee keeps his hair long not because he is in a metal band, but because Jake likes something to hold on to when he is pitching.
  • Bradlee’s most cherished fantasy is to be taken by an African American in a position of power; when he claims Obama is a homosexual, he is masturbating.

All of that is exactly as true as homosexuals committing half of all murders in large cities.  Well, with one difference.  There is a slight chance that one of the claims I made could actually be true.  We all know how repressed homosexual desire can present as homophobia.  It is quite possible that Bradlee Dean could lust after cock.  And though very doubtful, it could be true that he actively gobbles the cock night and day, and publicly spews forth his homophobic hatred out of a sense of shame.  The only thing completely impossible is that homosexuals commit half of all murders in large cities, 33% of all child sexual abuse, and half of all foster child molestations.  Compared to that list, my list is practically accurate.

 

Wouldn’t This Be a Good Thing?

From the Bigoted things said by people in funny hats Department comes the following, courtesy of MSN:

Kirill, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, isn’t putting it gently. In his Sunday service at a church in Moscow’s Red Square, he said that when countries start to recognize same-sex marriages, they’re shoving the rest of us closer to the apocalypse. “This is a very dangerous apocalyptic symptom,” he told worshippers at the Kazan Cathedral. “We must do everything in our powers to ensure that sin is never sanctioned in Russia by state law, because that would mean that the nation has embarked on a path of self-destruction.” Russian President Vladimir Putin has praised Kirill’s church as “the guardian of Russia’s national values.”

Now I am not going to spend much time making fun of his silly hat, or that fact that he looks absolutely fabulous.  I will leave that to the crew over at the Cognitive Dissonance podcast, who spend a fair amount of time doing just that in their latest episode.

I will post this picture,

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just to point out that in the year 2013 a large number of people are allowing their views on sexual morality to be shaped by gay Santa Claus and his bearded, black robed, mourning elves.  Seriously, Gandalf, I thought you were a white wizard, not a flaming wizard, and did Frodo and Sam’s relationship really sour you that much on homosexual love?  Isn’t what two hobbits do in the privacy of their hobbit hole the business of no one but them?  You’d think that gay marriage would just give you more opportunities to fire off your fireworks and recruit hobbits for your quests.

Anyway, I am always somewhat perplexed by Christians who cite something or other as bringing us one step closer to the apocalypse as a bad thing.  I mean, doesn’t that mean Jesus came back?  Isn’t that what they want?  For some beliefs, that would mean they have already been raptured to their front row seat to watch sinners burn.  Other beliefs aren’t quite so hateful, but still, most of them agree that Apocalypse = Jesus coming back!

Have you ever had discussions with the infuriating type of religious person who says that there is no reason to try to change things, cause Jesus is coming back soon anyway?  Or the lovely bunch that want Jews to rebuild the temple in Jerusalem, just so it will fulfill prophecy and bring about the end times?  Why aren’t these people marching arm in arm with the LGBT community demanding gay marriage?  The next time some fundy tells me they are against gay marriage, I am just going to ask them why, all the sooner til you get to watch us sinners burn.

*sigh*  It is 2013 and the “guardian of Russia’s national values,” is a bigot who believes in the Apocalypse.  I wonder if he also believes in Unicorns, fairies, and the legitimacy of Putin’s election?

 

Help, Help, I’m Being Oppressed!

It has been horrible.  All my life, I have lived with the yoke of oppression, cursed by my gender and the color of my skin, discriminated against in ways I never even realized.  It is only because of Suzanne Venker and the important work that she has done to call attention to the plight of others like me that I am finally able to recognize the hate and the prejudice I have been the target of for all these years.  If only I was born in a different time, where this open bigotry was not tolerated, what my life could have been, what roads would have been cleared, what doors opened.  Thank you, Suzanne.  Thank you for your piece on FoxNews, which has finally given me the courage to proudly look at the world and shout:

I’m a white male, and I am sick of being a second class citizen!

Funny, isn’t it?  All those years I thought being a white male gifted me with, I don’t know, white male privilege, and it turns out I was the one being discriminated against.  It seems that when we give women equal rights under the law those rights are somehow stripped from me?  Like there aren’t enough rights to go around or something?  Let’s unpack this, with a hat tip to Ed Brayton over at Dispatches.…:

The truth is, men have become second-class citizens.

The most obvious proof is male bashing in the media. It is rampant and irrefutable. From sit-coms and commercials that portray dad as an idiot to biased news reports about the state of American men, males are pounced on left and right. And that’s just the beginning.

Awww.  Poor men!  Are their feefee’s hurt?  Do they need a hug?  Wait a second….I’m a man!  Why am I not curled up in a ball on the floor sobbing over the endless attacks my sex suffers in the media?There is a lot of shit in this article.  Claims about Title IX and the Violence Against Women Act, and various other claims.  I’ll be honest with you, I really don’t feel it is worth the effort to refute it.  The article is just claims thrown at the wall.  The sources she quotes come from the WSJ opinion page and a female psychologist who is a Men’s Rights Advocates wet dream.  Perhaps her book is better referenced, and perhaps I will take the time to read it and respond to it.  But this article is just so much MRA bullshit.  Feel free to read it at your leisure, and look into the claims yourself if you feel the need.  The end of her article says everything I need to know:

 Yet it is males who suffer in our society. From boyhood through adulthood, the White American Male must fight his way through a litany of taunts, assumptions and grievances about his very existence. His oppression is unlike anything American women have faced. Unlike women, however, men don’t organize and form groups when they’ve been persecuted. They just bow out of the game.

America needs to wake up. We have swung the pendulum too far in the other direction—from a man’s world to a woman’s world.

That’s not equality. That’s revenge.

Oh fucking please.  We have to fight through what?  That’s not revenge, it is MRA bullshit!

ABC Decides to Kill a Couple of Kids for Ratings

Are they going to feed them into a wood chipper?  Unleash a pack of rabid dogs on them?  Force them to watch endless hours of Extreme Weight Loss, The Bachelorette, and Celebrity Wife Swap until they can’t take it anymore and commit suicide?

Nah, they are just going to make Jenny McCarthy a co-host on The View.  You see, Elisabeth Hasselbeck decided to leave The View for a spot on Fox and Friends, Fox New’s insanity filled morning news show, which apparently opened up the “hot blond with crazy opinions” spot on ABC’s morning talk show.  Now while Elisabeth Hasselbeck’s crazy opinions were your garden variety right wing conservatism that you can find all over the TV dial, Jenny McCarthy’s crazy opinions are a bit more dangerous.  Jenny believes that vaccines cause autism, and has been an outspoken champion for the anti-vax movement.  She has appeared on Oprah to spout her insanity, appeared at anti-vaccine rallies, wrote for anti-vaccine websites, supported disgraced “researcher” Andrew Wakefield even after the truth of his “study” linking the MMR vaccine to autism was exposed; Jenny McCarthy is the celebrity of the anti-vaccine movement, and she has dedicated a large amount of effort to promoting a link between vaccines and autism and questioning the safety of vaccines in general.

And Jenny is free to have these views.  If she wants to believe that vaccines caused her son to grow an invisible third arm out of the top of his head, that is her right.  And that belief would have about the same scientific backing as her belief that vaccines are harmful and cause autism.  This is not an open scientific question.   There is no debate in the medical community.  On one side you have Jenny McCarthy, discredited “researchers” like Andrew Wakefield, and a few people either out of their area of expertise, or with very questionable conflicts of interest.  On the other side, you have the rest of the medical community and all published research.

And yet, Jenny has these views.  And now she will have a national television audience, and she will use her platform on The View to express these views, because she has used every other possible platform to express them in the past.  And even if the rest of the co-hosts argue with her and say that vaccines are safe and do not cause autism, it will still have the appearance of an open debate, not the closed scientific question that it actually is.

And some people watching will listen to her.  And they will not vaccinate their children because of what she says.  Why would they listen to her?  *shrug*  They will.  As ThinkProgress writes:

It’s easy to dismiss the idea that McCarthy’s work on autism and vaccines has an impact–celebrity activism often gets accorded outsized importance or treated with utter contempt, when it’s a much more complicated phenomenon. But a University of Michigan survey of parents found that 24 percent of them were willing to place some trust in figures like McCarthy on the question of the link between vaccines and autism, which is a much higher level of credibility than the average person’s going to be able to elicit from the general public.

And even if it is only a small number of people who listen to her and make that choice because of her, well….

And even a small number of parents who decide not to vaccinate on the word of someone like McCarthy, or Andrew Wakefield, the doctor who wrote the initial paper linking autism and vaccines, and has since been banned from practicing medicine in the UK, can have significant public health impacts. California saw a spike in whooping cough in 2010 that resulted in a number of deaths. Wakefield’s work contributed to a rise in measles cases in the United Kingdom. And fears of vaccines in general have lead to suspicion of the HPV vaccine, which is a critical way to help girls reduce their risk of certain kinds of cancers.

Some children will get measles, and whooping cough, and other vaccine preventable diseases because their parents decided not to vaccinate them due to baseless fears sowed by Jenny McCarthy.  And those children will give those disease to children who are either too young to be vaccinated, or who can not be vaccinated due to compromised immune systems or allergies.

And some of those children will die from those diseases.

And some of those children who die will die because ABC decided to give Jenny McCarthy a national platform for her anti-vaccine lunacy.

Which leads to the title of this post.

Way to go, ABC.

I’ll close with this from the ThinkProgress article:

But while it’s possible to debate many sides of many issues, one of the benefits of medicine is that there’s actual evidence that some ideas and right and others are wrong. McCarthy’s are wrong, and continuing to defend them with that other standby of people who like to advance conspiracy theories without evidence, that she’s just raising questions, doesn’t make her decision to stick to her discredited ideas any more admirable. And it doesn’t give The View cover, either. This is not a vital debate in American society in which McCarthy’s position has been historically underrepresented, or a polarity along which it’s important to have multiple perspectives in order to make for a lively conversation. It’s a hoax, on par with McCarthy’s original belief, before her son’s autism diagnosis, that her son was an “indigo child,” a New Age theory that tries to comfort parents of children with autism and learning disabilities by convincing them that their children actually represent a new stage in human evolution.

Maybe Jenny McCarthy has a range of other opinions that ABC, which airs The View, thinks will be valuable to its audience. But the company is a news organization in addition to an entertainment company. And ABC should consider the damage McCarthy’s done to the public interest against whatever else she might have to offer.

 

 

McDonald’s Proves That No Increase in the Minimum Wage is Needed

So McDonald’s provides money management resources for their employees, including various guides and a budget worksheet.  They can say what they will about it, but to me it screams,”See?  Working for minimum wage isn’t so bad if they’d just learn to manage their money!  No need for any radical wage increases that could cut into our bottom line.”  Let’s take a look at their sample budget worksheet, shall we?

budget_wksheet2_1
Damn, that doesn’t look too bad.  After all the bills are paid, you still have $750 left over for the month for spending money!  What the fuck are all these low wage workers bitching about?

Continue reading

Wait, If Masturbation is a Sin, Shouldn’t You Be Pro-Abortion Now? I Am So Confused….

From, well…, everywhere, but we’ll go with The Salon with a hat tip to The Wonkette:

Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas, said on Monday that he supports the proposed federal ban on abortion at 20 weeks because he has personally witnessed male fetuses with their hands “between their legs” pleasuring themselves at 15 weeks.

Well, that is perfectly reasonable….  Wait.  What the fuck did he just say?

“There is no question in my mind that a baby at 20-weeks after conception can feel pain. The fact of the matter is, I argue with the chairman because I thought the date was far too late. We should be setting this at 15-weeks, 16-weeks,” said the former OB-GYN during the House Rules Committee debate on the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.”

“Watch a sonogram of a 15-week baby, and they have movements that are purposeful,” he continued. “They stroke their face. If they’re a male baby, they may have their hand between their legs. If they feel pleasure, why is it so hard to believe that they could feel pain?”

I know what you all are thinking.  “Why only male fetuses, Rep. Burgess?  We all know everyone does it!”  And while that is a perfectly hilarious response to such an idiotic argument, I have to go one step farther and ask why you aren’t condemning these sinful fetuses not only for the sin of masturbation, but for masturbating inside of their mother, which has to be incest in some way or another as well!

I know my Bible, Rep. Burgess.  Masturbation equals abomination.  Incest with your mother also equals abomination.  Screw the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” where is the “Incestuous Masturbating Unborn Child Mandatory Abortion Act?”

I mean, good God Rep. Burgess, if they are jacking it at 15 weeks, there won’t be a pillow in the house safe to lay your head on by the time they are a year old.  And that poor family dog.  This is one slippery slope argument I’ll endorse wholeheartedly!

Employment Policies Institute, The Bieber, Billboards, and Disingenuous Arguments

An interesting combination if there ever was one, no?  The Employment Policies Institute is a Washington, D.C. based organization that exists to campaign against raising the minimum wage on the local, state, and federal level.  As the Salon reports, their latest billboard campaign seeks to make Los Angeles residents Beliebers in their disingenuous arguments:

Using a somewhat angry picture of the pop star, a Los Angeles billboard asks: “Why is Justin Bieber so sad?”

“Could it be because 24% of teens who want a job can’t find one? Teen unemployment makes us all sad. Unfortunately, raising the minimum wage will only make things worse.”

OMG!  Is it true?  Is multi-million dollar recording “artist” Justin Bieber really taking a stand against raising the minimum wage?  With all the other questionable decisions the Bieb has been making recently, this one isn’t too far out of the realm of possibilities.

Queries to Bieber about the billboard went unanswered, according to the Huffington Post:

A spokeswoman for Bieber did not respond to a HuffPost query asking whether the singer approved of his likeness being used and whether he agreed that the minimum wage should not be raised. A cursory search of the heartthrob’s lyrics catalogue turns up no mention of the minimum wage or labor economics more generally.

Damn.  There would have been much more humor value in this story if the Bieber and his boatloads full of money really would have come out against raising the minimum wage.  No, seems like it is just a little bit of unauthorized usage which the EPI of course defends.

Though it didn’t consult Bieber, the Employment Policies Institute defends its use of the star’s picture, saying that the ad doesn’t draw any conclusions:

“It could be many things,” Michael Saltsman, a researcher at the Employment Policies Institute told the Huffington Post. “We’re asking a question — and we’re speculating the answer — but we’re not implying that he supports any particular policy.”

While that is quite a weak defense, it is much stronger than any possible defense they could come up with for their actual argument that raising the minimum wage costs poor teenagers employment opportunities.  Quick, flash the fact symbol and call in that superhero of the rational, scientific research!

Economic Policy Institute: “The Warnings Of Massive Teen Job Loss Due To Minimum Wage Increases Simply Do Not Comport With The Evidence.”

While it is true that there is some disagreement among economists about whether increasing the minimum wage increases or decreases employment, there is a consensus on the essential point: the impact of a minimum wage raise on jobs, whether positive or negative, is small. The warnings of massive teen job loss due to minimum wage increases simply do not comport with the evidence.

and

University Of California: Minimum Wage Has Nothing “But Very Small Disemployment Effects” On Teen Employment.

Including controls for long-term growth differences among states and for heterogeneous economic shocks renders the employment and hours elasticities indistinguishable from zero and rules out any but very small disemployment effects. Dynamic evidence further shows the nature of bias in traditional estimates, and it also rules out all but very small negative long-run effects. [Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, UC Berkeley

A lesson everyone can benefit from:  When the evidence isn’t on your side, distract everyone by flashing your Bieber!

Your “Wait, What?!?” of the Day, Brought to You by the Virginia GOP

Virginia GOP nominee for lieutenant governor E.W. Jackson is truly the gift of complete wingnut insanity that keeps on giving.The more I look into his past, the more often the words “wait…what?” seem to escape my lips.  Today’s gem comes from Talking Points Memo:

In an April 28, 2011 statement while he was a Senate candidate, conservative minister and lawyer E.W. Jackson held up the three-fifths clause as an “anti-slavery” measure. The context of his statement was to attack President Obama after a pastor at a church service he attended referred to the three-fifths clause as a historical marker of racism.

“Rev. [Charles Wallace] Smith must not have understood the 3/5ths clause was an anti-slavery amendment. Its purpose was to limit the voting power of slave holding states,” Jackson, an African-American, said in his statement.

My apologies if your head just exploded.

Ohio Seeks to Bring the Crazy to Their Students

From Think Progress:

The American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio is challenging an Ohio school district for considering a “controversial issues policy” that would require teachers to encourage discussions about creationism and conservative conspiracy theories about U.N. Agenda 21.

Springboro Community City School District’s new curriculum — part of an effort to help students think critically and learn to “identify important issues” — mandates that “[a]ll sides of the issue should be given to the students in a dispassionate manner” to help “students to be taught to think clearly on all matters of importance, and to make decisions in the light of all the material that has been presented or can be researched on the issues.” Controversial issues include:

religion when not used in a historical or factual context, sex education, legalization of drugs, evolution/creation, pro-life/abortion, contraception/abstinence, conservatism/liberalism, politics, gun rights, global warming and climate change, UN Agenda 21 and sustainable development, and any other topic on which opposing points of view have been promulgated by responsible opinion and/or likely to arouse both support and opposition in the community.

Teachers would have to provide equal weight to widely-accepted scientific theories like evolution and right-wing conspiracies advanced by Glenn Beck. Under the policy, students could not learn about sustainable development without also assessing the impact of U.N. Agenda 21, a series of non-binding U.N. recommendations for ensuring that economic growth does not undermine the environment, which conservatives believe will destroy American sovereignty and freedom. The Agenda was developed at a summit in Brazil in 1992 with support from President George H.W. Bush.

Ahh, teach the controversy.  “We should have enough faith in our children to be able to present both sides of a controversial issues to them and trust that they can decide for themselves which one is correct.”  Most often presented in relation to the evolution/creationism debate.  The problems with this approach are legion.  For one, in many cases you are taking an issue that is not an actual controversy in the factual sense, only in the political/religious sense, and presenting both sides as if they had equal evidence in support.  Yeah, many high school students would be able to make a rational decision based on the evidence on these subjects, but if a distorted view of the evidence is presented, then the decisions reached are bound to be distorted as well.  Among other concerns also lies the whole religious issue of teaching creationism in public schools.  Which may be one hurdle this policy will not be able to clear:

The ACLU criticized the district for adding evolution to the “controversial issues” list, noting that the policy “appears to explicitly permit the teaching of creationism.” “It has been firmly established that this practice is unconstitutional, in violation of the Establishment Clause,” ACLU legal director James L. Hardiman explained in a letter.

In 2011, the school board “backed away from plans to teach creationism under public pressure” from the ACLU. It plans to vote on this proposal in early June and is facing similar criticism from parents and students. 

How long til the first school district requires equal time to 9-11 truthers?  To moon landing deniers?  Holocaust deniers?  The “reptoids run the government” nutters?  The Agenda 21 kooks?