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In response to LGBT outrage over the Obama administration’s fierce advocacy of DOMA, Barney Frank issued a statement yesterday defending the administration.

Now that I have read the brief, I believe that the administration made a conscientious and largely successful effort to avoid inappropriate rhetoric. …

It was my position in that conversation with the reporter that the administration had no choice but to defend the constitutionality of the law. I think it is unwise for liberals like myself, who were consistently critical of President Bush’s refusal to abide by the law in cases where he disagreed with it to now object when President Obama refuses to follow the Bush example. …

… after rereading this brief, I do not think that the Obama administration should be subject to harsh criticism in this instance.

If you had any doubt that Barney was a party hack first and a civil rights advocate second last, you might be disappointed. Barney is upset that his big fundraising gala, featuring an appearance by Joe Biden (who voted for DOMA) is under fire. Barney would like all the queers out there to sit down, shut up, and sign a few checks. Your civil rights can wait. Barney wants your money.

The Obama administration says it will take action on LGBT equality eventually, probably, they guess. They’re thinking some time before 2016 they might have some time for that. I’m thinking that any gay, bi, or trans citizen who gives the Democrats another nickel is a damned fool.

Barney doesn’t speak for our community. Barney speaks for his party. Barney’s party has made it clear that it doesn’t give a tinker’s dam about LGBT equality.

Note to Barney: Thanks, but no thanks. We’ll speak for ourselves.

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I’ll bet that last week, most of you had never heard of Stuart Shepard, the director of digital media for James Dobson’s Christian hate machine, Fucking up the Family. Now, you probably have. Shepard has captured the attention of millions by demonstrating that he is, indeed, the quintessential Evangelical dumbass.

Shephard has suggested that Christians should pray for rain during Barack Obama’s acceptance speech: “not just rain – abundant rain, torrential rain, urban and small stream flood advisory rain … unexpected, unanticipated, unforecasted rain that starts two minutes before the speech is set to begin.” But see for yourself:

Somebody at Fucking up the Family thought better of it, and they’ve pulled the video. Even their own members objected, and people everywhere are making fun of Shepard. (They’re not laughing with you, Stuart, they’re laughing at you.)

However, even a colossal dumbass like Shepard comes up with a good idea every now and then. If you pray, go ahead and pray for rain. Pray for just the kind of rain Shepard is praying for. Really.

Unhappily, I can’t join you. I don’t believe in God anymore, and even when I did, I didn’t believe in the kind of God who would favor such a childish and small-minded request. But if you believe in God, and especially if you believe in a whimsical, indulgent kind of God who might be willing and even eager to arrange the weather to suit your every whim, then by all means, pray for rain.

I’ve made no secret of the fact that I don’t much care for Barack Obama. I don’t much care for anybody who’s willing to shitcan our constitutional rights to make a cheap political point, as Obama did in the FISA Amendments debacle. I don’t respect any politician who isn’t willing to take a stand for full equality for LGBT folks, and Obama is still out there touting separate-but-equal as plenty good enough for us. I just don’t like the guy. (And by the way, straight folks, I’ve got a news flash for you: Anytime any politician demonstrates that he’s willing to sell us down the river for short-term political gain, you can bet your hat, ass, and overcoat that he’s going to do the same to you, or whatever group you belong to, farther down the line. It never fails.)

However, as dismal as I expect an Obama presidency to be, there are some things that would be a whole lot worse. For instance, Shrub could die, resign, or be impeached, and Cheney could become president. Or Insane Train McCain could be elected. Barring unforeseen circumstances, either John McCain or Barack Obama will be living at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue a half a year from now, and given that choice, everybody in his right mind would prefer that it be Obama.

Under the circumstances, I think torrential rain during Obama’s acceptance speech would be absolutely amazing. Imagine Obama rising to his full potential as the remarkable speaker he is. Imagine the sodden crowd, whipped to a frenzy by masterful oratory and roaring through the downpour for their chosen candidate. Hell, throw in some lightning.

It’d be great theater; it’d be instant history; it’d be political legend. It would be the kind of thing – like the March on Washington, or Woodstock, or the fall of the Berlin Wall – that participants would brag about for the rest of their lives. “Oh, yeah! Obama’s acceptance speech! I was there!” Decades from now, their children would put it in their obituaries: “He was very proud to have been present for Barack Obama’s acceptance speech in 2008, and often recounted the experience for the edification of his grandchildren.”

So, if you believe your imaginary friend is the kind of deity who might enjoy indulging your political whims and fancies, then by all means pray for rain. Pray for “abundant rain, torrential rain.” Pray for lightning, too. If you get your wish, it’s going to be huge.

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South Carolina State Senator Kevin Bryant (R-Anderson) is still living up to his deeply-held Christian principles by lying like a rug on his blog. Yesterday, Bryant ― a close personal friend of Jesus ― posted the following:

As I’ve said from the beginning, I wanted to create a local discussion of Sen. Obama’s weak commitment to the war on terror and his lack of commitment to Israel. Guess what? It worked:

Check out the online discussions on these articles on the Anderson Independent Mail:
National group criticizes Sen. Bryant’s Obama post
and
Bryant’s opponent attacks ‘Osama’ photo on site

I haven’t come across anybody yet who’s actually stupid enough to think Kevin was really trying to stimulate a serious political discussion; even his supporters don’t seem to think so. Whatever he meant to do, he certainly didn’t “say from the beginning” that he was trying to “create a local discussion of Sen. Obama’s weak commitment to the war on terror and his lack of commitment to Israel.” Like so many of Jesus’ friends, Kevin has a noticeable problem telling the truth.

But let’s take a closer look at the discussion Kevin is so proud of having started. As of this writing, none of the comments mention Israel. Only one comment ― one critical of Bryant ― uses the phrase “foreign policy.” True, several of the comments do mention terrorism.

A user with the moniker UseCommonSense posted this:

The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee can kiss my you know what. Your not American-Arabs your terrorist. You just use the media to make threats instead of bombs like your brothers over in the middle east.

Sen. Bryant “YOU THE MAN”. It’s about time we have some public leaders stand up and call a terrorist a terrorist and that is what Barak Bin Laden Obama is. He is a terrorist to the middle class of America. He is going to tax, tax and tax the Middle Class and hand the money to the poor people. I just love working hard so some Closet Muslim can give my money to a lazy person.

and this:

Barak Obama already said he would meet face to face with Terrorist so what’s the big deal. Everyone knows that Obama and his wife are really Muslims bent on destroying this country. Only stupid people would vote for this man. Obviously stupid people also have no sense of humor.

Ohenry35 weighed in with:

If you can’t take the heat, don’t get involved in politics! The democrats have done more to hurt this country than Bin Laden and the rest of the Islamic terrorist put together.

Unfortunately for Bryant’s claim that his imaginary plan “worked,” most of the discussion seems to be about Bryant himself, and most of it’s not very complimentary. Fortunately for his political future, he can still count on the support of Jesus’ other truth-impaired friends.

People like In_Search_Of_Truths:

Maybe becuase his middle name is the same as the ousted former muslim leader of Iraq HUSSEIN whom was a tyrant and murderer and his last name is only a 1 letter from being the same as the murderer, extremist that is the #1 fugitive in the world responsible for thousands of deaths. OBAMA,OSAMA. Yes it’s only a name but would you want someone named ADOLF HITLER being our president? This Guy doesn’t have the experience to run this country and changes his stance on issues every time he speaks with his fork tongue. I give Bryant Praise for his web Posting.

and browneyedgirl:

The Book of Revelations!

This will make you think!
A Trivia question in Sunday School :
How long is the beast allowed to have authority in Revelations ?
Guess the Answer? Revelations Chapter 13 tells us it is 42 months, and you know what that is.
Almost a four-year term to a Presidency. All I can say is Lord Have Mercy on us.!!!

The anti-Christ will be a man, in his 40’s, of MUSLIM descent, who will deceive the nations with persuasive language, and have a MASSIVE Christ-like appeal….the prophecy says that people will flock to him and he will promise false hope and world peace, and when he is in power, will destroy everything ..

Is it OBAMA?? I STRONGLY URGE each one of you to repost this as many times as you can!

Each opportunity that you have to send it to a friend or media outlet…do it! I refuse to take a chance on this unknown candidate who came out of nowhere.

IN GOD WE TRUST

Bryant’s got the racist vote, too. Freebird22 says:

I have come up with the following opinion:

Obama is like one of those “Monkeys” that NASA used in the early stages of exploring space.

His handler’s have gone out and bought him five business suits, taken him out of his “Muslim Garb” dressed him in these suits and now sent him out into public space.

Obama is just like that “Space Monkey” in a space suit. A “Muslin Monkey” in a business suit shot out into space and has no idea, how he got picked for the mission or where he is going!!!! Without his written speech in front of him to read, he is totally lost for words when confronted about other important topics. Even the “Space Monkey” understood some sign language.

I’m a little worried about Jesus. When he was alive, he hated hypocrisy and lying, but since he died, his character seems to have changed. It seems nobody can associate with him for long without becoming a bigot and a liar, and all his friends are conscience-free. It’s disappointing to hear of Jesus running with the same kind of crowd he once condemned so strongly. It may be time to face the fact that, having kept such bad company for so long, Jesus himself has become a bad influence.

I’m not worried about Bryant, though. Appealing to bigotry and religious hysteria has never hurt a politician in the Palmetto State. Not yet, anyway.


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South Carolina State Senator Kevin Bryant (R-Anderson) has removed this from his blog:

Bryant's t-shirt?

The blog entry (18 July) in which the pic originally appeared has been changed to read:

Thank you for your interest in the picure recently posted on this site. As this picture has gotten plenty of attention, I would rather change the focus of this discussion to Sen. Obama’s record on National Security.

Are you buying that? He says it twice, adding in the post for 22 July:

I have been very impressed with the reaction to my blog post on Barack Obama. I originally posted the photo without commentary to stimulate an examination of Sen. Barack Obama’s foreign policy. I remain certain that his foreign policy ideas pose a great threat to American security no less than those of Al Gore or John Kerry might have. I believe that America has avoided another terrorist attack precisely because President Bush has been office for the past 8 years. I’m convinced that an Obama presidency will plunge us back into the failed foreign policies of the Clinton administration and put us in great danger. …

I have no regrets from this picture, however, I’m sure that a further examination of Obama’s foreign (and domestic) policies must occur in order that voters might truly understand the vast, vast differences between him and Sen. John McCain. I refuse to cower to the cultural police who evermore seek to censor our political discussion.

Well, I guess he’s playing to the stands, and anybody stupid enough to vote for Kevin Bryant in the first place is probably stupid enough to believe he meant his cheap shot as a stimulus to serious discussion of foreign policy. They might even be stupid enough to believe we didn’t have a terrorist attack in this country because Bush was in the White House ― making Bryant’s constituents as smart as Mike Meehan of Orlando. Meehan put this billboard up around Orlando:

stupid billboard

and then explained: “9/11 could have been prevented if we’d had a Republican president.”

It’s no secret that the Christian Right is deep in denial, but even I’m surprised to learn that they apparently forget that the de facto leader of the Christian Right at the time of the attacks, the man they believe is all that has stood between us and bin Laden, actually was in office at the time of the attacks. That would be the same man who apparently didn’t bother to read a report entitled “Bin Laden determined to strike in US,” which was handed to him more than a month before 9/11; the man who kept on reading My Pet Goat after he learned of the attacks; the man who responded to the attacks by going into hiding in Nebraska; the man who ― nearly seven years after the attacks ― still hasn’t captured bin Laden; the man who ignored the terrorist threat both before and after the attacks; the man who cynically used the attacks as propaganda for a completely unrelated invasion of Iraq; yes … that man. What party does he belong to, Kevin? Mike?

Back to Kevin Bryant. I’m not surprised at Bryant’s attempts to mislead. Unlike Jesus, the Christian Right has no problem at all with lying; their entire movement is built on lies (along with fear and hatred).

I’m not even surprised at Bryant’s sullen whining about “the cultural police who evermore seek to censor our political discussion.” Fundies love to whine about being persecuted, and if you disagree with them, they really do consider that persecution and censorship. Damn it, why can’t the world understand that it’s it mean to disagree with fundies? It doesn’t make the slightest bit of difference that nobody tried to censor him. People have called him an idiot, a bigot, and a hatemonger; people have laughed at him; but nobody I know of tried to censor him.

However, Bryant did censor me. He apparently didn’t like my comment on his blog post of 18 July, and refused to allow it to appear. I guess I’ll just post it here:

Always good to see our fine God-fearing politicians standing up for the traditional Christian values of mudslinging and character assassination. As the Lord taught, “Blessed are ye, when ye say all manner of evil falsely for my sake.”

Sarcasm, no doubt, counts as persecution and censorship in Bryant’s mind, and in the tiny minds of his supporters.


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Kevin Bryant (R-Anderson)Alabama. Mississippi. Texas. Utah. Virginia. North Carolina. Florida. Louisiana. Oklahoma. In the quest to elect the most embarrassing public officials, South Carolina is up against some formidable competition. Considering the field, the fact that we always seem to be at least in the top three is pretty impressive.

People who follow South Carolina politics have long known that “R-Greenville” is shorthand for “right-wing Christian halfwit likely to make the national news.” The most notable example lately is David Thomas (R-Greenville), who blew a gasket over ads meant to attract gay tourists from the U.K., but nobody in recent memory has excelled Mike Fair (R-Greenville), who wanted to outlaw oral sex between married couples.

Greenville County’s neighbor to the southwest, Anderson County, must have been feeling left out, because in 2004 they elected Kevin Bryant to the state senate. Now Bryant is poised to make “R-Anderson” a label as instantly recognizable as “R-Greenville.”

From USA Today:

A Republican state senator from South Carolina is being criticized for a post on his blog that shows photos of Barack Obama and Osama bin Laden wearing similar clothing, along with a line that states the difference between the two is “a little B.S.”

The image was posted on Sen. Kevin Bryant’s blog on Friday without an explanation from the politician. It appears to be a photo of a T-shirt, with images of bin Laden and Obama wearing turbans and the words “OBAMA” AND “OSAMA,” with the “B” and “S” each highlighted in red.

Bryant did not return messages left seeking comment Monday.

Surprised? Check out Bryant’s “core values“:

As a conservative, Bryant’s values are well rooted in the belief that Big Government is detrimental to the citizens of South Carolina. He believes the grip of excessive regulation on S.C. businesses is leaving free enterprise in jeopardy and believes this current trend must be corrected to preserve prosperity. Reflective of their convictions that our nation must begin to regard human life, respect the family unit, and acknowledge the moral basis from which we were founded, the Bryants are members of the NRA, National Right to Life, Christian Coalition, and Concerned Women of America, S.C. Waterfowl Association, Palmetto Family Council & S.C. Policy Council.

(In fairness, it should be noted that the Waterfowl Association and the Policy Council, unlike most of the Bryant’s associations, are not completely dominated by lunatics.)

Bryant on marriage: “Bryant is wholeheartedly committed to the sanctity of marriage as prescribed by our Creator.”

Bryant on Bryant: “Bryant is a born-again Christian, having trusted Jesus Christ as personal savior not by works, but through faith. He came to this saving knowledge at 8 years old. Christian principles are an important part of Kevin’s enthusiasm to display a servant leadership approach to public office, as well has his business, family, and community obligations.”

To understand South Carolina politics you have to realize that most South Carolina voters, especially in the Upstate, consider all of the above to be good reasons to vote for Kevin Bryant.

Don’t worry, America. South Carolina promises to keep amusing you for years to come.


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New Yorker coverThe Obama campaign is upset about the cover of The New Yorker, finding it “tasteless and offensive.” The editor of The New Yorker explains that the cover wasn’t meant to satirize the Obamas, but to satirize the scurrilous right-wing rumors about the Obamas. I don’t doubt that was the intent, but it was pretty clumsy. The average dumbass who sees that cover is going to see it ― tacked up over the water cooler at Fixed News, perhaps, or in the activities building of your local Southern Baptist church ― and assume The New Yorker is calling the Obamas terrorists. As Craig Crawford says, “Anytime … you have to explain a joke … it might not be a very good joke.”

The problem with the folks at The New Yorker is, they just don’t know that many dumbasses, and as a result they underestimate the number of dumbasses, and the intensity of dumbassedness, out here in flyover country. They’re woefully out of touch with the dumbass community. (There are, of course, plenty of dumbasses in New York City, but they aren’t the sort of people one knows if one is on the editorial staff of The New Yorker.)

The dumbass community concerns the Obama campaign a great deal. Since Obama was deemed the nominee of the Democratic Party ― though not yet nominated ― he’s been going full throttle after the dumbass vote. The most egregrious example, of course, is his craven vote for the FISA Amendments Act after he had promised to filibuster it, but that’s hardly the only example. Obama seems determined not to rest until he appeals to the kind of people to whom G. W. Bush appeals. I don’t think anything good can come of that, but there it is. Dumbasses of America, Obama wants your vote.

Because Obama wants the dumbass vote, his campaign is very concerned that 12% of Americans still think Obama is a Muslim. Dumbasses ― except for Muslim dumbasses ― really don’t like Muslims, so this kind of misinformation hurts Obama’s attempts to capture the dumbass vote.

I don’t think it pays to worry too much about that kind of thing. If you go around shouting, “I’m not a Muslim – I’m not a Muslim – I am not a frigging Muslim” all the time, it’s unseemly. It pisses off the Muslims who might be inclined to vote for you, as well as the non-Muslims who realize that being a Muslim doesn’t automatically make you an anti-American extremist, and it makes you look defensive and insecure.

Besides, about 10% of Americans are going to think Obama is a Muslim no matter what his campaign does or says. You have to bear in mind, dear Obamistas, that 20% of Americans can’t find the United States on a map. Never underestimate the power of invincible ignorance. The problem with going after the dumbass vote ― besides the fact that it pisses off all the intelligent voters ― is that no matter what you do or say, the dumbass community just isn’t that responsive to arguments or data.

The fact that only 12% of Americans think Obama is a Muslim, despite Fixed News and despite right-wing radio, is a triumph for the campaign. Seriously. 31% of Americans don’t know who the Vice President is. 32% of Americans don’t know we have a trade deficit. I can’t find any hard data, but I feel confident that at least 8 or 9% of the people can’t find their asses with both hands. 12% isn’t that bad. Chill.


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In other words.

Obama supporters PWNED!

Recently, Barack Obama pissed off lots of his supporters by breaking his promise and caving on FISA. His supporters were so pissed off by this flagrant violation of Obama’s own one-word platform that he thought maybe he ought to say something to make them feel better. His statement, reflecting the exact amount of change he hopes to bring to Washington, is presented here both in the politicalese original and in a plain English translation.

 

Obama:
I want to take this opportunity to speak directly to those of you who oppose my decision to support the FISA compromise.
Translation:
Some of you are pissed off about my decision to reverse my position on the FISA Amendments Act. First off, I’d like to insult your intelligence by calling this capitulation to the Bush administration a “compromise.”

 

Obama:
This was not an easy call for me. I know that the FISA bill that passed the House is far from perfect. I wouldn’t have drafted the legislation like this, and it does not resolve all of the concerns that we have about President Bush’s abuse of executive power. It grants retroactive immunity to telecommunications companies that may have violated the law by cooperating with the Bush Administration’s program of warrantless wiretapping. This potentially weakens the deterrent effect of the law and removes an important tool for the American people to demand accountability for past abuses. That’s why I support striking Title II from the bill, and will work with Chris Dodd, Jeff Bingaman and others in an effort to remove this provision in the Senate.
Translation:
I knew I’d take a lot of heat for caving on this bill. I know this bill sucks, and I understand at least part of why it sucks. For one thing, we here in Washington have decided to give a free pass to everybody who has violated your rights up till now. I’m going to vote for the bill anyway.

 

Obama:
But I also believe that the compromise bill is far better than the Protect America Act that I voted against last year. The exclusivity provision makes it clear to any President or telecommunications company that no law supersedes the authority of the FISA court. In a dangerous world, government must have the authority to collect the intelligence we need to protect the American people. But in a free society, that authority cannot be unlimited. As I’ve said many times, an independent monitor must watch the watchers to prevent abuses and to protect the civil liberties of the American people. This compromise law assures that the FISA court has that responsibility
Translation:
As bad as this bill is, it’s not the worst bill ever. If I don’t support allowing the president to spy on American citizens without warrants, the Republicans will call me a pussy. Your civil liberties will be safe in the hands of a secret court that denies one out of every 4600 requests for permission to spy on you. Seriously. The government will probably go through the formality of making FISA requests in the future, most of the time.

 

Obama:
The Inspectors General report also provides a real mechanism for accountability and should not be discounted. It will allow a close look at past misconduct without hurdles that would exist in federal court because of classification issues. The recent investigation uncovering the illegal politicization of Justice Department hiring sets a strong example of the accountability that can come from a tough and thorough IG report.
Translation:
You shouldn’t worry about it, because recent events have shown that it’s possible for an Inspector General to report on the government’s illegal acts within about six years after they happen.

 

Obama:
The ability to monitor and track individuals who want to attack the United States is a vital counter-terrorism tool, and I’m persuaded that it is necessary to keep the American people safe — particularly since certain electronic surveillance orders will begin to expire later this summer. Given the choice between voting for an improved yet imperfect bill, and losing important surveillance tools, I’ve chosen to support the current compromise. I do so with the firm intention — once I’m sworn in as President — to have my Attorney General conduct a comprehensive review of all our surveillance programs, and to make further recommendations on any steps needed to preserve civil liberties and to prevent executive branch abuse in the future.
Translation:
If we don’t pass this bill, the government might not be able to spy on you anywhere near as much as it wants, and then the Republicans will call me a pussy. Just give me a free pass on this one, and once I get into office, I’ll take another look at it. You can trust me.

 

Obama:
Now, I understand why some of you feel differently about the current bill, and I’m happy to take my lumps on this side and elsewhere. For the truth is that your organizing, your activism and your passion is an important reason why this bill is better than previous versions. No tool has been more important in focusing peoples’ attention on the abuses of executive power in this Administration than the active and sustained engagement of American citizens. That holds true — not just on wiretapping, but on a range of issues where Washington has let the American people down.
Translation:
I understand that some of you care more about the Constitution and your civil liberties than you care about whether the Republicans call me a pussy. You should just be grateful this bill isn’t even worse than it is. You can take whatever credit there is for that, because in Washington, especially in my office, it’s business as usual.

 

Obama:
I learned long ago, when working as an organizer on the South Side of Chicago, that when citizens join their voices together, they can hold their leaders accountable. I’m not exempt from that. I’m certainly not perfect, and expect to be held accountable too. I cannot promise to agree with you on every issue. But I do promise to listen to your concerns, take them seriously, and seek to earn your ongoing support to change the country. That is why we have built the largest grassroots campaign in the history of presidential politics, and that is the kind of White House that I intend to run as President of the United States — a White House that takes the Constitution seriously, conducts the peoples’ business out in the open, welcomes and listens to dissenting views, and asks you to play your part in shaping our country’s destiny.
Translation:
I learned a long time ago that the people can hold their leaders accountable. I don’t think you should hold me accountable, though, because I will hardly ever screw you over this bad again. Really.

 

Obama:
Democracy cannot exist without strong differences. And going forward, some of you may decide that my FISA position is a deal breaker. That’s ok. But I think it is worth pointing out that our agreement on the vast majority of issues that matter outweighs the differences we may have. After all, the choice in this election could not be clearer. Whether it is the economy, foreign policy, or the Supreme Court, my opponent has embraced the failed course of the last eight years, while I want to take this country in a new direction. Make no mistake: if John McCain is elected, the fundamental direction of this country that we love will not change. But if we come together, we have an historic opportunity to chart a new course, a better course.
Translation:
Besides, what are you going to do about it? Vote for McCain? Losers!

 

Obama:
So I appreciate the feedback through my.barackobama.com, and I look forward to continuing the conversation in the months and years to come. Together, we have a lot of work to do.
Translation:
So keep on emailing me, and I’ll keep pretending to give a damn. Oh, and send me more money.

 


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