Month: October 2014

Lindsey Graham makes racist and sexist remarks about what he’d do if elected president

Republican U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, who is up for re-election on Tuesday for a full six-year term in the U.S. Senate, made racist and sexist remarks about what he’d do if he were to win the 2016 presidential election at a private dinner attended by men only:

U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham‘s remark at a private, all-male dinner about mainly helping white men if he became president was a joke taken out of context, his campaign said Thursday.

But Graham’s opponent, Democratic state Sen. Brad Hutto, said the comment shows he is a typical Republican who isn’t concerned about the middle class, poor, minorities or women.

About 20 seconds of clips of Graham’s speech were provided to The Associated Press, and Graham’s campaign confirmed it was him speaking. CNN first reported the remarks Wednesday, less than a week before the election to decide whether Graham gets a third term in the Senate. He has outspent Hutto by a wide margin and is a big favorite to win in conservative South Carolina.

After using profanity to say the government is messed up, Graham tells the group: “If I get to be president, white men who are in male-only clubs are going to do great in my presidency.”

That did NOT sound like a joke to me, and I thought that Lindsey Graham’s racist, sexist remarks were NOT funny whatsoever. Not only did Graham, a very conservative Republican who is one of the biggest war hawks in either house of Congress, indicate that he intends to run for president two years from now (although he hasn’t formally entered the race for the GOP presidential nomination yet), he also indicated that, if he were to somehow win the presidency (what little chance of that happening is, more than likely, gone due to his remarks), he’d only appoint white men to cabinet positions and other heads of federal agencies. That is a 19th century view of society, and someone with that kind of view of society doesn’t belong in the White House.

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Chuck Todd gives anti-abortion zealots like Joni Ernst political cover

Chuck Todd, the right-wing beltway media hack who is the host of NBC’s Meet the Press, gave supporters of the proposed personhood amendment political cover in a piece about Iowa Republican U.S. Senate candidate Joni Ernst:

In a profile of Iowa Republican nominee for U.S. Senate Joni Ernst, NBC host Chuck Todd asserted over the weekend that a so-called “personhood” amendment that she supported would protect “unborn human beings.”

On Sunday’s edition of Meet the Press, Todd visited Iowa and noted that the winner of the race would likely decide control of the U.S. Senate.

“Ernst hopes to benefit from the fact that her first name isn’t congressman,” Todd explained. “But what could be holding her back—in what is clearly an anti-Washington year—is some of her very conservative positions, including something called personhood which in some cases would grant all unborn human beings with equal protections.”

The personhood amendment is a proposed amendment to the U.S. Constitution and state constitutions that would legally define human life as beginning at conception. What the personhood amendment would do is take away a woman’s right to make many reproductive health decisions, including whether or not to terminate a pregnancy and whether or not to use birth control. The personhood amendment would force pregnant women to carry fetuses to term, even if an abortion were necessary to save the life of the mother. That is a downright barbaric idea.

Chuck Todd giving political cover to far-right anti-abortion zealots like Joni Ernst is yet another example of the corporate media in this country being completely in the tank for the far-right Republicans. Iowans should vote for Bruce Braley on November 4 in order to send a message to the corporate media that they’re tired of them giving political cover to far-right extremists like Joni Ernst.

12 years ago today, we lost Paul Wellstone in a plane crash

Twelve years ago today, progressives in Minnesota and all across America lost a hero when U.S. Sen. Paul Wellstone (D-MN) was killed in a plane crash near Eveleth, Minnesota. The crash also took the lives of Wellstone’s wife, Sheila, his daughter, Marcia, the pilot and co-pilot of the plane, the driver of Wellstone’s campaign bus, and two of his campaign staffers.

In honor of the late, great Paul Wellstone, here is a collection of YouTube videos consisting of three of Wellstone’s TV ads and his 2002 floor speech in opposition to the Iraq War that was supported by the Republican Administration of George W. Bush:

Paul Wellstone’s progressive legacy is still alive and well in Minnesota and across America.

The “Party of Israel” insults Jews

Judging from this CNN article on the new, secret “Comms College” run by the Republican National Committee (RNC) for Republican communication staffers, it’s not going well for the GOP.

For example, RNC communications director Sean Spicer said this about how the GOP planned to reach out to Jewish voters:

…How many Jews? You wanna do a Rosh Hashanah thing or something on Israel? You name it.

Using Rosh Hashanah, a major, two-day Jewish holiday celebrating the new year according to the Jewish calendar, for political grandstanding would be seen as downright offensive by Jewish people. The fact that the same Republican Party that has criticized President Obama and other Democrats for not being big enough shills for Benjamin Netanyahu and his government in Israel thinks that using Rosh Hashanah for political grandstanding is appropriate proves once again that they absolutely suck at campaign messaging.

Rick Scott can’t tell the difference between an electric device and an electronic device

Republican Florida Governor Rick Scott, facing a tough re-election battle against Democratic challenger Charlie Crist, a former Republican governor of the state who left the Republican Party a few years ago and joined the Democratic Party a couple of years later, refused to appear at a debate with Crist for several minutes over something as trivial as Crist using a fan to keep himself cool:

While Scott claimed that Crist’s use of an electric fan violated the debate rules, the debate rules reportedly prohibited electronic devices from being used in the debate, not electric devices. Electronic devices are items with computer chips in them, such as computers, cell phones, tablets, and other similar devices. Electric devices are items that are powered by electricity, but do not have computer chips in them, such as light bulbs and…you guessed it…electric fans.

Crist called Scott’s refusal to appear at the debate on time over his use of a fan “the ultimate pleading of the Fifth”, referring to Scott invoking the Fifth Amendement a total of 75 times in a deposition related to a civil case involving Columbia/Hospital Corporation of America (Columbia/HCA), which Scott was a former CEO of, at the same time the federal government was prosecuting Columbia/HCA for, among other things, Medicare and Medicaid fraud.

Several minutes after Crist appeared on stage, Scott relented and appeared on the debate stage. When asked by debate moderators about why Scott delayed his appearance at the debate, Scott tried to claim that Crist didn’t plan on showing up to the debate despite the fact that Crist appeared on stage several minutes before Scott did. That’s an absolutely absurd claim by Scott.

I’m certain that Floridians are sick and tired of Rick Scott’s corruption and political games.

I spent over two weeks in a mental institution in Indiana when I was 9 years old or so

For those of you who have been following the Wisconsin gubernatorial race extensively, you may have known about a TV ad which the campaign of Democratic candidate Mary Burke is either currently running or has run which features Erin Forrest, the chairwoman of the Jefferson County (WI) Democratic Party who entered into a deferred prosecution agreement and served probation in order to get domestic violence charges against her dropped.

Normally, I would write a blog post on The Prairie Badger, my blog about Wisconsin politics, and criticize Forrest for effectively blacklisting Scott Michalak, a unsuccessful Wisconsin State Assembly candidate in 2012, over some sort of domestic violence issue that Michalak had in which I’m not familiar with the details of, when Forrest had domestic violence issues of her own not long after the 2012 elections in Wisconsin.

However, I’m going to do something completely different instead.

I’m guessing that nobody who is reading this blog knows about this part of my past, but, when I was 9 years old or so, I spent a little over two weeks in a mental institution in Vigo County, Indiana. I spent a little over two weeks in a mental institution when I was an elementary school-age child because, when I was, if I recall correctly, a fourth-grade student at a public elementary school in Westville, Illinois, I frequently acted in a violent manner toward people around me. Because my behavioral issues were so severe, my parents sent me to Charter Behavioral Health (now known as Harsha Behavioral Center) near Terre Haute, Indiana.

I don’t credit spending two weeks in what could best be described as a minimum-security mental institution with improving my behavior, as my behavioral health slowly improved as I grew older to the point that my only behavioral health issues are ones usually associated with people who, like me, have Asperger’s syndrome, such as being obsessive about certain subjects that I’m interested in and having difficulty properly communicating with people. Additionally, I would never act in a violent manner toward anyone nowadays. However, the fact that I once spent time in a behavioral health institution is something that will haunt me for the rest of my life.

I cannot, in good conscience, write a blog post criticizing a political figure for hypocrisy when it would be hypocritical for me to do so. That’s why I felt the need to admit that I once spent time in a behavioral health institution when I was a child.

First Lady of the United States: The most overhyped person in America

You may have heard about Michelle Obama, the First Lady of the United States (FLOTUS), campaigning for Democrats like Illinois Governor Pat Quinn and Wisconsin gubernatorial candidate Mary Burke over the past couple of weeks.

However, this blog post isn’t about Pat Quinn or Mary Burke, in fact, it isn’t really about Michelle Obama. It’s about the Office of First Lady of the United States, whose holder has traditionally been the most overhyped person in this country thanks to the corporate mainstream media in this country.

The Office of the First Lady, automatically bestowed to the wife of the president should the president have a female spouse, has virtually no political power, with the duties of the office including being in charge of official social and ceremonial events at the White House and having the power to appoint her own staff members, all but a couple of which serve non-political functions (even the ones who do have political functions have no real influence on public policy). Despite that, the corporate media in this country fawns over the First Lady, providing extensive coverage of practically every event the First Lady does at least in the local area of where the event is being held, if not nationally. Even worse, the corporate media in this country will frequently obsess over what the First Lady wears, which I think is absolutely absurd. As long as she’s not doing anything stupid or illegal, I don’t care about what the First Lady does.

Should, someday in the future, a man be spouse of the president, through either the election of a woman in an opposite-sex marriage or a man in a same-sex marriage, the title of the office would probably be changed to First Gentleman of the United States, although the corporate media would fawn over whoever were to hold that office as well in a similar manner that they currently fawn over the First Lady.

One of my biggest pet peeves is how the corporate media in this country treats the family members of the most powerful people in this country, especially the First Lady of the United States, like royalty.

Michigan Republican Party sends out mailer asking people to call 91-year-old woman who is in hospice care

The Michigan Republican Party recently sent out a mailer, on behalf of Republican Michigan House candidate Brandt Iden (61st House District), criticizing the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a federal law providing millions of previously uninsured Americans with health insurance. The Michigan GOP’s mailer asked people to call a phone number, which they claim is that of John Fisher, the Democratic challenger to Brandt, in order to complain about a law that has helped millions of Americans.

However, the phone number that the Michigan GOP provided is actually that of Fisher’s 91-year-old mother, Isabel Marie Kramb, who is in hospice care due to the fact that she suffers from congestive heart failure. I am not going to publish Kramb’s phone number for privacy reasons.

This is one of the worst examples of gutter politics that I’ve ever seen. I find it disgusting that Michigan Republicans would harass and intimidate an elderly woman, who is in hospice care due to heart problems, by having the far-right extremists who compromise the Michigan GOP’s base of support call her. This proves that Republicans have no respect whatsoever for the elderly and the ill.

My video entry to the MAYDAYin30 video contest

I’ve decided to enter the MAYDAYin30 video contest that MAYDAY PAC, the Lawrence Lessig-led, crowd-funded SuperPAC that supports ending the culture of big-money politics in this country by, among other things, overturning the Citizens United v. FEC U.S. Supreme Court decision by a federal constitutional amendment.

My submission is a video supporting the campaign of Staci Appel, the Democratic U.S. House nominee in the 3rd Congressional District of Iowa. Appel, who has been endorsed by MAYDAY PAC. Staci supports amending the U.S. Constitution in order to overturn the Citizens United v. FEC U.S. Supreme Court decision and end the era of big-money campaigns and SuperPACs that can raise unlimited amounts of money from big-wig donors.

Here’s my video:

If you like my video and would like to see it aired as a TV ad on stations covering Central and Southwestern Iowa, you can vote for my video here!