Thursday, March 15, 2012

I'll be happy to read your palm, too.

I make no claims to psychic powers (or, to be honest, to the existence of psychic powers), but I'm willing to make some predictions. The GOP candidates are going to keep kicking each other in the crotch up until the convention. Ron Paul might or might not stay in, but the three front runners? They're all in it for the long haul.

Mitt Romney will be the eventual candidate, but first he has to overcome two handicaps: the fact that the Religious Right Wing distrusts Mormons, and more importantly, that he comes across as a privileged huckster, a rich kid trying to sell used cars. He's used to being surrounded by two types of people: shameless sycophants willing to laugh at anything he says, and other billionaires. He has no idea how to connect with ordinary people, because he only sees them at a distance: he's Dan Ackroyd in the beginning of Trading Places.

Santorum swept the South, but doesn't realize that he has less than no chance of attracting a majority of Americans. He's turned off about 80-90% of women by indicating that he doesn't care if they're going to die in childbirth, they're taking that kid to term. And then, just because he opens his mouth and random stuff falls out, he decided to lose another 16 percent of the electorate by telling Puerto Ricans that they needed to speak English.

OK, Frothy, is it a good idea to make fun of somebody's cultural heritage? Here's a hint - I live in New Mexico - want to guess what state you just lost entirely? Here's another - do you speak Latin? Think about it.

And Gingrich? He's got no more chance of getting elected than a radioactive skunk, but he's staying in, because he feels like he deserves to be elected king president.

I've got to admit it: I may have gotten frustrated in 2008 watching Hillary Clinton snipe at Obama. But I've got to say, it's much more entertaining watching the GOP do it to each other from the other side of the fence.

That's why the GOP is panicking and trying to prevent people from voting. Tea parties across the country are pushing for measures like "voter ID laws" despite the fact that there is exactly zero voter fraud. Is it a good idea to require Americans to show ID in order to vote?
More than 74,000 people who skipped voting in past elections might have been excluded from data used to estimate how many voters lack state-issued identification... Earlier this week, the Election Commission said nearly 217,000 registered voters in the state lack a state driver’s license or photo ID. That already was nearly 40,000 more than the election agency had previously estimated.
Studies show that these measures mostly affect young, minority and low-income voters, as well as voters with handicaps: in other words, strongly Democratic groups and people who think Obamacare is a good idea. Funny how that works, isn’t it?

The Justice Department already had to stop Texas from taking the vote away from more than 300,000 Texans, because they'd be likely to be voting for Obama.

And there is one very specific reason they want to do this. One conservative lawmaker even admitted it - they couldn't let out-of-state college kids vote where they were going to school, because they'd be "voting as a liberal. That’s what kids do — they don’t have life experience, and they just vote their feelings."

Legal American citizens have already been prevented from voting, and it’s only going to get worse. Because the GOP knows that the only way that there isn't going to be a black man in the White House in 2013 is if they steal the election.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Ruck Fush II: Black Clouds on the Horizon

There is a distinct possibility that I am spending entirely too much of any given day thinking about Rush Limbaugh. (As in "I need to scrub my brain with steel wool, because the words 'Limbaugh' and 'sex' have appeared in the same sentence.") But sadly for someone with an active imagination, he is in the news of late. And sex is involved.

So, question time. Rush has been married for roughly twenty of the sixty-one years he has infested this earth. He is known to have acquired Viagra (and a few other substances) through a number of sources. A few of them were even legal.

So, it's probably safe to assume that he had sex with one or more of his wives. (I started to have this mental image of him being lowered onto her with a crane, but then my gag reflex kicked in and I spent the rest of the night gripping the porcelain throne and dry-heaving...)

He doesn't have any kids. So I'm guessing that either birth control was involved, or those D-cup man-boobs have very little to do with him being morbidly obese.

Now, you take a man who hasn't seen his winkie without a full-length mirror in decades, a man with a documented willingness to lie about any subject in the world, a known drug addict with a fondness for cigars that smell like petrified turds: you take that man, and then you note that he is currently married to a reasonably hot woman half his age, and you know one thing as a universal truth.

That man is rich.

You know for a fact that she didn't marry him for his looks, or for his charming personality. He wouldn't have a chance in hell of landing this woman if he didn't have in excess of seven figures in the bank.

So, we have a woman who is willing to occasionally allow this bloated half-human slime to bounce his sweaty nethers against hers for a few seconds, before a thin dribble of lifeless sperm oozes out and he rolls over, exhausted, and falls into a bourbon-induced coma.

(And the next day, while he's railing against whatever liberal plot he claims is destroying America this time, she dashes off for a morning of passion with Reynaldo, the Dominican pool boy.)

So, in essence, the former Kathryn Rogers is having sex for money. Which would apparently mean that, by Limbaugh's definition, she's a prostitute.

I'm just saying...

But that is neither here nor there. More importantly, before anybody loses control of their gag reflex, let's turn away from this sordid scene of the human Hindenburg and his harlot, and consider one fact.

What does it say about America that Rush Limbaugh has been sending up racist dogwhistles for over twenty years, but it's his sexism that finally causes him to start hemorrhaging advertisers at an alarming rate? Why is it sex and not race that brings him down?

This fat bastard has been sexist for years: I mean, admittedly, there are more white women than black people in America, but bigotry is bigotry, isn't it? From the beginning of his program, before he was even syndicated, he was using the term "feminazi" to refer to... well, to any woman who said anything that wasn't strict Judeo-Christian submission to a man. And it isn't like he's ever pulled back from that position.
I have long told you, for example, Undeniable Truth of Life No. 24, written back in 1987: Feminism was established so as to allow unattractive women easier access to the mainstream of society.
See, I recently made fun of an idiot who titled a blog post "In Defense of Pat Buchanan and the First Amendment," where I finally had to explain to him, in tiny little words, why Pat Buchanan qualified as racist. And Limbaugh uses exactly the same tactics as Buchanan: he dog-whistles his way through life.

It all boils down to the "Southern Strategy" of the GOP, as explained by Lee Atwater, advisor to Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush, and later Chairman of the Republican National Committee.
You start out in 1954 by saying, 'Nigger, nigger, nigger.' By 1968 you can't say 'nigger' -- that hurts you. Backfires. So you say stuff like forced busing, states' rights and all that stuff. You're getting so abstract now [that] you're talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you're talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is [that] blacks get hurt worse than whites.

And subconsciously maybe that is part of it. I'm not saying that. But I'm saying that if it is getting that abstract, and that coded, that we are doing away with the racial problem one way or the other. You follow me -- because obviously sitting around saying, 'We want to cut this,' is much more abstract than even the busing thing, and a hell of a lot more abstract than 'Nigger, nigger.'
And there you have one of the core strategies of Rush Hudson Limbaugh III.

There are dozens of articles out there listing the various racist things he's said, going back to his earliest days in the radio. His empty-eyed zombie supporters will then find one that isn't properly sourced, and claim that the whole list is therefore invalidated. So the best way to play this little game is to find the ones that still exist in recorded form.

Unfortunately for Rush, this is not a difficult thing to do. Watchdog groups like Media Matters have literally hours of the stuff.

His favorite tactic (and that of much of the White Right Wing) is to paint Obama as a usurper, an outsider. He's different from "you and me," and so he's scary! He's the "Halfrican-American," the "angry black guy" from Kenya who's taking over the country: Limbaugh draws on the stereotype that all black men are gang members and thugs, and therefore, that Obama is dangerous.

Rush then reinforces this with continual references to Kenya, to Obama being "more African in his roots than he is American" and "behaving like an African colonial despot." Why specifically an African colonial despot? Well, see, Africa is full of black people! And it's in chaos! Which is what Obama is going to do to us!

And Limbaugh is fairly open about it. Not like Newt Gingrich, who calls Obama "the food stamp president" (see, all black people are on food stamps), but then gets to talk about "more people have been put on food stamps by Barack Obama than any president in American history" (a lie, by the way - that record is still held by George W. Bush). Rush doesn't hide behind code words like "food stamps" and "entitlement society" - he comes right out and tells you that Obama is going to confiscate your house.


This guy's -- this guy obviously has got a new role model, Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe. The next thing to look out for is for Obama to take the farms. Well, that's what Zimbabwe, that's what Mugabe did, he took the white people's farms.
That little clip actually covers many of Limbaugh's little tricks, all in two minutes and forty-four seconds of your life that you'll never get back. It's got Obama looking up to African dictators, it's got America spiraling into chaos, Obama taking your house - hell, early on, he even get's the subconscious "violence" reference in, saying "Bernanke and Obama are out of bullets, that they've got nothing left in the quiver." See? The angry black guy is dangerous! He has guns! (And bows and arrows, because Africans use arrows, right?)

Well, with his sponsors running away from Rush Limbaugh so fast that he has to play dead air and PSA's, maybe we're finally hearing the death rattle of the Rush Limbaugh show. But let's not remember him just as some bile-spewing, misgynist asshole: there were so many other reasons to hate him.

Saturday, March 03, 2012

Ruck Fush

Winston Churchill is occasionally said to have made the statement "Show me a young Conservative and I'll show you someone with no heart. Show me an old Liberal and I'll show you someone with no brains." This is, of course, a lie. As Paul Addison of Edinburgh University put it:
Surely Churchill can't have used the words attributed to him. He'd been a Conservative at 15 and a Liberal at 35! And would he have talked so disrespectfully of Clemmie (Clementine, the Baroness Spencer-Churchill, his wife), who is generally thought to have been a lifelong Liberal?
And I like to think that I'm proof of the exact inverse of that theory, regardless of which idiot said it.

As a young man, I entered the military as a relatively moderate conservative. I listened to Rush Limbaugh, I had few interests in helping anyone but myself, I was known to make sexist and (yes, I'm afraid) racist jokes once in a while.

But then I met people. I learned things. I discovered that a "society" made up of devoted followers of Ayn Rand would simply fall into chaos: with every member dedicated to their own selfish pursuits, the fabric of that society would eventually fall to shreds. Why would a Randian want to join the police, or the enlisted ranks of the military, where nobody gets rich? A philosophy of selfish materialism can only work if it is allowed to grow, like a wart or a tumor, out of an otherwise healthy society.

Look up the history of the "robber barons" in industrial America to see how well that worked out.

So, I slowly overcame my shameful past - and I have to admit, much of the cause of this has to do with trying to live up to the example of the Trophy Wife, one of the few truly good people I have ever met.

In a way, I suppose that means that I'm worse than the "ordinary" liberal (if such a thing exists) - I'm a Born-Again Liberal. I came from the darkness of selfish ego, into the white light of humanity.

But, yes, I used to listen to Rush Limbaugh. I thought he was funny. I haven't thought so in years.

And now, he's going on his national soapbox, and calling a private citizen a slut. Because he's an bloated, lying bag of ass. He is the herpes sore on the face of society.

This is what Rush Limbaugh is saying.

What does it say about the college coed Susan Fluke, who goes before a congressional committee and essentially says that she must be paid to have sex? What does that make her?

It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex. She's having so much sex she can't afford the contraception. She wants you and me and the taxpayers to pay her to have sex. What does that make us? We're the pimps... the johns, that's right. We would be the johns... no! We're not the johns. Well... yeah, that's right. Pimp's not the right word.

OK, so, she's not a slut. She's round-heeled. I take it back.
Her name, you oozing pile of rotting feces, is "Sandra." And those ellipses are there, not because I cut anything out, but because the drugs are finally taking their toll and his ability to spew bile and lies occasionally goes off-track. Hopefully, the memory lapses will get worse, and he'll shut up altogether.

(Actually, if there was any justice in the universe, he would get Parkinson's and be completely unable to communicate. That isn't happening, and therefore, there is no god. Q.E.motherfuckingD.)

See, that's what Rush said. It is, of course, unrelated to reality, but it's what right-wingers want to hear. Because the last thing they want is for people to know what Ms Fluke actually said.
A friend of mine, for example, has polycystic ovarian syndrome, and she has to take prescription birth control to stop cysts from growing on her ovaries. Her prescription is technically covered by Georgetown's insurance because it's not intended to prevent pregnancy.

Unfortunately, under many religious institutions and insurance plans, it wouldn't be. There would be no exception for other medical needs. And under Sen. Blunt's amendment, Sen. Rubio's bill or Rep. Fortenberry's bill there's no requirement that such an exception be made for these medical needs...

In 65% of the cases at our school, our female students were interrogated by insurance representatives and university medical staff about why they needed prescription and whether they were lying about their symptoms.

For my friend and 20% of the women in her situation, she never got the insurance company to cover her prescription. Despite verifications of her illness from her doctor, her claim was denied repeatedly on the assumption that she really wanted birth control to prevent pregnancy. She's gay. So clearly polycystic ovarian syndrome was a much more urgent concern than accidental pregnancy for her.

After months paying over $100 out-of-pocket, she just couldn’t afford her medication anymore, and she had to stop taking it.

I learned about all of this when I walked out of a test and got a message from her that in the middle of the night in her final exam period she'd been in the emergency room. She'd been there all night in just terrible, excruciating pain. She wrote to me, "It was so painful I'd woke up thinking I’ve been shot."

Without her taking the birth control, a massive cyst the size of a tennis ball had grown on her ovary. She had to have surgery to remove her entire ovary as a result.

On the morning I was originally scheduled to give this testimony, she was sitting in a doctor's office, trying to cope with the consequences of this medical catastrophe.
(Those ellipses are because I did cut some stuff out. Go read the whole thing. And yes, Mr Santorum. This woman had to be medically sterilized because you are opposing birth control. It would be ironic if it weren't so goddamned sad.)

That's Rush Limbaugh for you. More than happy to lie on any subject, at any time.

Now, Rep. Jackie Speier is calling for a boycott of his sponsors. And I think that's a pretty damned good idea: the right wing will whine that he's having his free speech suppressed, but he's welcome to say whatever he wants to; he just also gets to take responsibility for his lies.

Now, because Rush is a turd, Quicken Loans, Sleep Train, LegalZoom.com and Sleep Number have all pulled ads over this. (If you want to say thanks, they all have contact us or feedback somewhere on those links I gave - but you should know you'll probably end up on a mailing list.) However, there are others.

Clear Channel Communications
200 East Basse Road
San Antonio, TX 78209
Public Relations: (210) 822-2828
publicrelations@clearchannel.com

John Hogan
President and CEO, Clear Channel Media and Entertainment
JohnHogan@ClearChannel.com (that's a guess)

Tony Alwin, Senior VP - Creative, Marketing and Public Relations
(602) 381-5700
TonyAlwin@ClearChannel.com (that's on the website)
Carbonite, Inc.
177 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115
Main Office: 617-587-1100
Toll Free: 877-665-4466

David Friend, Co-founder and CEO

Tom Murray – VP, Marketing
617-587-1100
Century 21 Real Estate
International Headquarters
1 Campus Drive
Parsippany, NJ 07054

Web comment form
Richard W. Davidson, President and CEO

Bev Thorne, Chief Marketing Officer
and owner of the Evergreen Farm
4 Bass Lane
Lebanon, NJ 08833
(908) 236-9550
info@theevergreenfarm.com
Michael Callaghan, VP, Strategic Marketing
mike.callaghan@century21.com
(from a site called Lead411.com, who's going to spam me forever)
973-407-5238
ProFlowers
Web contact (or try "site feedback")
wecare@customercare.ProFlowers.com
800.580.2913

William Strauss, CEO
Proflowers.com
5005 Wateridge Vista Dr
San Diego CA 92121-5780
And that's just the easily available public information.