Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Palin's Alaska Has the WORST Debt to GDP Ratio in America

Well, my, my, my. Looks like Sarah "The Quitter" Palin had a reason for bailing on Alaska: the state's debt to GDP ratio is the HIGHEST in America, despite the fact that Alaska gets about $1.78 in Federal benefits for $1 it sends to the feds in taxes. Here is a graph showing the top 25 states with bad debt to GDP ratios (click to enlarge):

(You'll notice evil blue state California is 23rd on the list. Of course, California is a net CONTRIBUTOR of federal taxes, unlike Alaska.)

Palin left the town of Wasilla mired in $20 million in debts (for "improvements", she argued) even though she secured $27 million in earmarks as well. (That figure might possibly constitute the highest level of federal pork per capita of any town in America.) She was the "Earmark Queen" as governor of Alaska as well. Bear in mind that Alaska's difficulties arose while the state was pulling in record oil revenues and collecting more money than ever from the NEW TAXES THAT PALIN APPROVED. (See here.) And the state is STILL BROKE.

Palin says she quit for the good of Alaska. Looking at these numbers, I'd have to say she was right.

YES! Lawsuit Filed Against Hannity's Phony, Criminal "Charity" Scam!

Joe Conason has the details for us here. Excerpt:

The CREW [Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington] complaints, posted on the watchdog group's Web site, provide considerable detail about the facts uncovered in its investigation of Freedom Alliance. Among the documents cached on the site is a contract showing that proceeds from the concert tour are actually controlled by Premiere Marketing, a Tennessee speakers agency that represents Hannity and North, and its president, Duane Ward.

At the heart of the CREW complaints -- and the questions raised about the Freedom Alliance by Schlussel -- is how much of the total that Hannity and North promised to devote to scholarships for the children of wounded and deceased veterans was spent on that worthy purpose. The data compiled by CREW's researchers from Freedom Alliance's own IRS 990 forms show that in every year since 2003, when the concert tours began, the organization has spent more on postage and printing combined (and on salaries) than on "grants" -- and far more on "expenses."

Let's keep the pressure on these crooks and grifters. These bums are leeching money contributed in good faith by people trying to help wounded veterans. Throw the book at 'em!

And let's ask Fox "News": how long are you going to keep this lying weasel Hannity on the air?

UPDATE: The link to CREW's official complaint is here.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Hitchens on the Catholic Child Abuse Scandal

I don't always like or agree with Christopher Hitchens, but his take on the horrible crimes committed by certain Catholic officials over the years is right on the money. Excerpt:

So it seems that 1) Ratzinger was quite ready to take on individual priests who gave him any trouble, and 2) he was very firm on one crucial point of doctrine: Get them young. Tell them in their infancy that it is they who are the sinners. Instill in them the necessary sense of guilt. This is not at all without relevance to the disgusting scandal into which the pope has now irretrievably plunged the church he leads. Almost every episode in this horror show has involved small children being seduced and molested in the confessional itself. To take the most heart-rending cases to have emerged recently, namely the torment of deaf children in the church-run schools in Wisconsin and Verona, Italy, it is impossible to miss the calculated manner in which the predators used the authority of the confessional in order to get their way. And again the identical pattern repeats itself: Compassion is to be shown only to the criminals. Ratzinger's own fellow clergy in Wisconsin wrote to him urgently—by this time he was a cardinal in Rome, supervising the global Catholic cover-up of rape and torture—beseeching him to remove the Rev. Lawrence C. Murphy, who had comprehensively wrecked the lives of as many as 200 children who could not communicate their misery except in sign language. And no response was forthcoming until Father Murphy himself appealed to Ratzinger for mercy—and was granted it.

The more I read about all of this, the more outraged I am. Ratzinger has no business running ANYTHING, and much less giving "spiritual advice" to anyone.

And all I can say is...

écraser l'Infâme!!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Michele the Moron Strikes Again!

Did you know that before September 2008 the economy was 100 per cent private? Yuh huh. And the evil, anti-American (her term) Barack Obama seized it and made this country into some kind of socialist thinga-majiggy. Michele Bachmann told us so. This, from the same woman whose family sucked up more than $250,000 in Federal farm subsidies over a ten year period. This from a "patriot" so utterly ignorant of her own country's history that she confuses Herbert Hoover with FDR. This, from a woman who is either so shockingly dishonest or frighteningly insane that she claims that Barack Obama is planning to herd our nation's young people into "re-education camps". (In fact, just enter the word Bachmann as a search term on my blog. There's a lot more.)

Michele Bachmann is a disgrace to Congress. Her wretched combination of right-wing paranoia, unhinged McCarthyism, and bare-faced lying make her one of the very worst of the Right-wing radicals that are such a deadly threat to our nation's survival. That this incoherent clown is a spokesperson for the "Tea Party" people says everything we need to know about the modern Republican Party.

Remember folks--if the Republicans win this year, Little Michele becomes even more powerful--and more dangerous.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Monday, March 22, 2010


The health care reform bill isn't as strong or as sweeping as it should be. It doesn't set up anything like the single payer system that makes the most sense and would serve the American people most efficiently. It lacks a public option and makes far too many concessions to the insurance industry. But it is SO much more than has been offered before that we have to count it as a major victory both for President Obama and, more importantly, the American people. (The New York Times has the story here.) And the reaction to it has been fascinating. To hear the Radical Right talking, you would think America had just been taken over by Stalinists. (The Daily Kos has the Freepers' alternatively hilarious and disgusting foot stamping here.) But of the reactions I have read, I like Andrew Sullivan's the best :

Again, the real parallel is Ronald Reagan. People forget how unpopular Reagan was at the same point in his presidency — and passing a big tax cut was legislatively a lot easier than reforming a health sector the size of the British economy. But like Obama he persisted and, with luck and learning, aimed very high.

Obama has bet that this is his destiny. He is extremely cautious from day to day, staggeringly flexible on tactics, but not at all modest when you look at the big picture. He still wants to rebuild the American economy from the ground up, re-regulate Wall Street, withdraw from Iraq, win in Afghanistan, get universal health insurance and achieve a two-state solution in Israel/Palestine in his first term. That’s all. And although you can see many small failures on the way, and agonising slowness as well, you can also see he hasn’t dropped his determination to achieve it all.

Friday, March 19, 2010


The damning evidence is here. It seems old "patriotic" Sean-boy has been SCAMMING MONEY from his so-called "Veterans Charity". The specific details are infuriating and sickening. Excerpts:

According to its 2006 tax returns, Freedom Alliance reported revenue of $10, 822, 785, but only $397,900–or a beyond-measly 3.68%–of that was given to the children of fallen troops as scholarships or as aid to severely injured soldiers.

On the other hand, 62% of the money went to “expenses,” including $979,485 for “consultants” and an “advisor.” Yes, consultant/advisors got more than double what injured troops and the kids of fallen troops got. The tax forms show that “New World Aviation” got paid $60,601 for “air travel.” Was that for Hannity’s G5? Like I said, neither the charity nor Hannity is talking. And finally, that year, Freedom Alliance spent $1,730,816 on postage and shipping and $1,414,215 on printing, for a total of $3,145,031, nearly half the revenue the charity spent that year and about eight times what the injured troops and the children of fallen ones received.

That’s especially heartbreaking when you compare the hundreds of thousands consultants got and the millions spent on printing and postage to the outrageously small amounts given to wounded soldiers. In 2006, Freedom Alliance gave only $1,000 to a soldier from Bay City, Michigan, whom the charity says was in the following condition:

Face was blown up and lost sight in one eye.

And that $1,000 was relatively generous, when you consider this soldier from Romulus, Michigan, whom Freedom Alliance only gave $200:

SM [serviceman] was involved in roadside bomb incident in Iraq, which caused loss of both legs and left arm.

Romulus is a mostly Black Detroit suburb, which is one of the poorest cities in Michigan and in America. Freedom Alliance gave this brave soldier roughly $67 per limb. That’s sickening.

So is the fact that this soldier, from Alexandria, Virginia, also only got $200 from Freedom Alliance:

SM was wounded in Iraq by an IED explosion. Lost right arm and severe shrapnel wounds to upper body and face.

Also appalling is the fact that in each year’s tax returns soldiers described as having brain trauma injuries, multiple amputated limbs, and severe burns over most of their bodies get a few hundred bucks each from Freedom Alliance and in almost every case, no more than $1,000.

That year, while fat-cat consultants and expenses took millions of Freedom Alliance’s money, seriously wounded troops to whom Freedom Alliance donated received a pathetic average of $785 each and the college student kids of the fallen got a paltry average of $2,943 toward tuition. Yes, out of millions raised that year by Sean Hannity at his Freedom Concerts, only $309,000 was given out in scholarships to 105 students, and only $110,703.82 was given to the wounded soldiers.

Freedom Alliance’s 2007 tax returns aren’t much better. Out of $12,459,317 it raised that year, only $895,347–or just 7%–went to seriously wounded troops and scholarships for fallen troops. 53% went to expenses, including $1,464,627 in postage and $1,151,428 in printing. $604,995 went to “professional fees” and “consultants.” Out of millions paid for Freedom Concert tickets and raised in fundraisers by Hannity listeners, only $596,500 went to college scholarships for soldiers who died in battle, and only $299,897 went to horribly injured troops. 208 student children of the fallen got an average of $2,868 apiece for tuition, though many got only $1,000 or less. 382 soldiers with serious injuries got an average of $785 each.

I have been saying it for years: Sean Hannity is a liar and a fraud, a disgusting right-wing con artist who lies as easily as most people breathe.
He dares to judge the loyalty of other Americans while betraying everything decent America stands for.


If the conservative media have ANY integrity, they will blow this son of a bitch Hannity out of the water once and for all.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Jon Stewart ANNIHILATES Glenn Beck

This is SO FREAKING BRILLIANT I had to share it with you, even though that makes two Jon Stewart videos in a row. Jon applies the kind of "reasoning" and "logic" that Glenn Beck uses (in his insane mental diarrhea) to analyze our current politics. This is an instant classic:

"Suck on That, Corporations!"

More unbelievable brilliance from Jon Stewart. (Hat Tip: old buddy and faithful reader Tom Englund.)

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
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Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Click on the link here and watch.

Watch especially the part starting at 50 seconds. You'll see several right-wing SCUM telling a man afflicted with Parkinson's disease that he won't get any "handouts" on their side of town. Watch the right-wing ASSHOLE who mockingly gives him $2 to "help". Listen to another right-wing ASSHOLE call him Communist--all because he supports a health care reform bill that might help him with his condition. Someone very close to me is afflicted with Parkinson's disease. Watching these conservative SCUM ridiculing this man PISSES ME OFF.


G-d damn, am I mad.

UPDATE: The video has been placed on YouTube and I can now embed it:

Monday, March 15, 2010

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Yes, the Vatican Has a Chief Exorcist

Details may be found here.

Quotes from the Chief Exorcist:

"When the possessed dribble and slobber, and need cleaning up, I do that too. Seeing people vomit doesn't bother me."

He also condemned the Harry Potter books, saying they were dangerous because they dabbled in the occult and failed to draw a clear distinction between "the Satanic art" of black magic and benevolent white magic.

And just for the record, there is indeed an Association of Exorcists.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Republican War on the Middle Class

An astonishing post here that lays out in detail the Republican plan to pour unheard of new riches into the pockets of the wealthiest Americans and make the economic plight of the middle class even more desperate than it already is. Yes, since I am a rabidly Democratic partisan, you might think I'm exaggerating. I'm not. Let me post the most relevant sections of Steve Benen's item about Rep. Paul Ryan's tax proposals, or "roadmap":

As the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities explained today, the roadmap "calls for radical policy changes that would result in a massive transfer of resources from the broad majority of Americans to the nation's wealthiest individuals."

The Roadmap would give the most affluent households a new round of very large, costly tax cuts by reducing income tax rates on high-income households; eliminating income taxes on capital gains, dividends, and interest; and abolishing the corporate income tax, the estate tax, and the alternative minimum tax.

At the same time, the Ryan plan would raise taxes for most middle-income families, privatize a substantial portion of Social Security, eliminate the tax exclusion for employer-sponsored health insurance, end traditional Medicare and most of Medicaid, and terminate the Children's Health Insurance Program. The plan would replace these health programs with a system of vouchers whose value would erode over time and thus would purchase health insurance that would cover fewer health care services as the years went by.

An analysis by the Urban Institute-Brookings Institution Tax Policy Center found that the richest 1% of Americans -- those making more than $633,000 a year -- would find their tax burden cut in half in 2014. The more one makes, the bigger the cut -- millionaires who Republicans have already taken good care of would find their taxes cut even more dramatically, by hundreds of thousands of dollars

The congressional Republicans are simply declaring all-out war on America's vast middle class. The Radical Right is cozying up to the richest and most powerful in an even more shameless and blatant manner. And all of this won't even have an effect on the nation's indebtedness for years and years to come, if ever.

Spread the word. Spread this post. Get some action going on this. If the Democrats can take the offensive on this, maybe 2010 might not be so rough of an election year after all.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Bill Kristol an "Expert" on Iraq? UNF***ING BELIEVABLE.

Fox "News" personality (I refuse to say journalist) Chris Wallace yesterday referred to neoconservative warmongering chickenhawk William Kristol as an "expert" [sic] on Iraq. According to the link here, these are some examples of Kristol's "expertise":

September 19, 2002: Saddam Hussein was "past the finish line" in developing nuclear weapons.

February 20, 2003: "He's got weapons of mass destruction."

February 2003 (from his book, "The War Over Iraq"):

"The United States may need to occupy Iraq for some time. Though U.N., European and Arab forces will, as in Afghanistan, contribute troops, the principal responsibility will doubtless fall to the country that liberates Baghdad. According to one estimate, initially as many as 75,000 troops may be required to police the war's aftermath, at a cost of $16 billion a year. As other countries' forces arrive, and as Iraq rebuilds its economy and political system, that force could probably be drawn down to several thousand soldiers after a year or two."

(Reality check: The war has cost over a trillion dollars and 120,000 US troops remain there seven years later.)

February 24, 2003: "In retrospect, [the Bush administration] probably shouldn't have gone down the inspections route ... Doing so merely handed the Europeans and the U.N. — neither of them known for their dissatisfaction with Saddam's rule — a say in the process. The idea, of course, was to mollify them (as well as Colin Powell) and in the process hope that inspectors would stumble across a casus belli. But neither aim has been accomplished.

February 24, 2003: "Having defeated and then occupied Iraq, democratizing the country should not be too tall an order for the world's sole superpower."

March 1, 2003: "Very few wars in American history were prepared better or more thoroughly than this one by this president."

March 5, 2003: "We'll be vindicated when we discover the weapons of mass destruction."

April 1 2003: "On this issue of the Shia in Iraq, I think there’s been a certain amount of, frankly, Terry, a kind of pop sociology in America that, you know, somehow the Shia can’t get along with the Sunni and the Shia in Iraq just want to establish some kind of Islamic fundamentalist regime. There’s almost no evidence of that at all. Iraq’s always been very secular."

Kristol is a fraud down to his toenails, one of the very worst of the soft-spoken homicidal maniacs who casually call for the deaths of other people on a routine basis. To say Kristol has been wrong on virtually every foreign policy pronouncement he's ever made doesn't quite do the word "wrong" justice. Kristol has raised being idiotically wrong to a surrealist art form, a dimension of wrongness beyond the grasp of the ordinary person. And for his bloodthirsty ranting, his total and utter incompetence, and his genuinely shocking dishonesty, he has been promoted and lionized, especially by the Radical Right.

An "expert"? In what? Inflicting grief and suffering on countless other people? Yes, in that area Kristol is virtually without peer among the degenerate class known as the conservative punditry. In every other respect, he is a malicious fool, and a particularly malignant tumor on our unfortunate body politic.

But an "expert" on Iraq? Is that a joke?

Friday, March 05, 2010


[Click for Larger Image]

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Mitt Romney Vehemently Opposing Mitt Romney-Style Health Care Reforms

The amusing story is here.

Man, Ol' Mittens wants to be president so bad he can SMELL IT!

Wolf Blitzer Helps Promote Outrageous Right-Wing Smear

Glenn Greenwald has the whole disgusting story here.

The Radical Right can get away with every G-d damned thing imaginable in this country. That's why I fear for America's future.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Mitt Romney: Foreign Policy Knucklehead

The funny/scary details are here. Excerpt:

There are two salient global facts Romney never considers in his book. The first is that it is actually possible to obtain positive-sum relations with rising powers. The rise of China does not have to equal the decline of the United States. If, as Romney argues — following Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer — decline is a choice, so is permanent international competition. The concept of diplomacy is completely foreign to Romney. He dismisses the State Department as “assistant secretaries and… bureaucrats” and proposes designating regional relations to “one individual” who would become a “presidential envoy or the ambassador from CENTCOM or any of the other regional military commands.” Such an individual would “encourage people and politicians to adopt and abide by the principles of liberal democracy,” something that “would be ideal if other allied nations created similar regional positions, and if we coordinated our efforts with theirs.” That’s it for diplomacy, and he doesn’t have an agenda for global development. Why the world will simply do what America says simply because America says it is something Romney never bothers to consider. High school students at model U.N. conferences have proposed less ludicrous ideas.

And this babbling tough-guy wannabe is the BEST the Republicans have to offer in 2012. Hey, just put a nickel in Mitt and he'll regurgitate all the right-wing idiocy you want him to.

More (well-deserved) bashing of Romney to come. Much more.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

The Westboro Scum Strike Again

This time at the Virginia Holocaust Memorial