An outside-the-Beltway perspective on current events, politics, media, and the arts. We are proud to be part of the Reality-Based Community.

Contact Us

Recommended Diversions

Tuesday :: Aug 19, 2014

Ferguson's Questions and Hypocrites

by Deacon Blues

I was gone for all of last week, and I had hoped to avoid commenting on the sad spectacle in Ferguson, Missouri. Suffice it to say we still don’t know exactly how the fateful confrontation unfolded between patrol officer Darren Wilson and Michael Brown, and the way the political leadership is handling this, we may never know. However, no matter how large and intimidating young Mr. Brown may have been to Officer Wilson, who has been described today in favorable terms, there still needs to be an explanation why such force was used, including two heads shots into an unarmed suspect from a distance after hitting him with four initial shots.

For the record on the matter of these protesters, if only five percent (5%) of the 78 arrested last night were actually town residents, then can we all agree that there is plenty of blame to go around well beyond Ferguson for how this tragedy is being used by many for their own purposes?

Ask yourself this: why does the right wing fringe become unglued when federal law enforcement goes after white scofflaws like Cliven Bundy, yet they remain relatively nonplussed when local law enforcement uses weapons of war to go after African American citizens in their own town? Then again, many of these same right wing fringers have no problem with young white Americans armed with assault weapons standing up to federal law enforcement officials.

Based on that, can we assume out of consistency that these same fringers would have no problem with young African Americans similarly arming themselves with assault weapons to protect themselves from an overly-aggressive local police force?

I thought so.

And to cap it off, two House GOP representatives last month said in an open congressional hearing that the Bundy fiasco demonstrated that it should be left to local law enforcement to deal with contentious issues rather than well-armed federal agencies. I wonder if the famously stupid California GOP representative Tom McClintock and Utah GOP representative Chris Stewart fully support letting local law enforcement armor-up and play soldier in the aftermath of what we've seen in Ferguson? Of course they do; when it comes to local white law enforcement acting against African Americans, you can count on the GOP to be fully supportive. Yet when it comes to federal law enforcement acting against local white scofflaws and extremists, not so much.

Deacon Blues @ 1:58 PM :: Link :: Comments (0) :: TrackBack (0) :: Spotlight :: Digg It! ::

Saturday :: Aug 2, 2014

These Are Not Good Graphs

by paradox

[Cross-posted at Daily Kos.]

Three days ago I saw a tweet of Obama propaganda, an allegedly sincere blast of four graphs demonstrating the very good underlying results of leadership that were being distracted from by the House lawsuit.

I am deeply disturbed and seriously unsettled, not of course with the partisan cheerleading but with the fact that the graphs represent various political disasters and flaming mistakes of horrifying scope, not accomplishments to boast of.

In an evolution of zero fun I will attempt to illuminate the truth so that the little people might possibly not be put through these catastrophes again, we can learn and leadership damn well better. I’m not out to bash Obama—I am a partisan Democrat fiercely wanting to serve and be loyal, how would that help us?

This is not any attempt at changing Daily Kos editorial policy or direction, nor a defiant thumbing of nose to those fine humans or anyone. Simply a statement of truth to horribly stupid and dangerous ideas we should never allow as accomplishments, for once justifying a 1500 word limit, not the usual 750.

Follow me below the liberal constellation of Kosomotapia into this funhouse of failure and futility, gird yourself, perils of screaming frustration and outrage lay ahead.

Continue reading "These Are Not Good Graphs"
paradox @ 9:29 AM :: Link :: Comments (2) :: Spotlight :: Digg It! ::
Friday :: Aug 1, 2014

Worthless Votes

by Deacon Blues

It now appears that House Republicans will make every effort to pass a meaningless "deport the kids" measure today, and then pass a second bill to prevent the president from granting more permanent status to immigrant children who've been in the country for years. The net result, as Harry Reid noted today is that "House Republicans will vote to deport children who have been living in the United States their entire lives."

Operationally, these votes are irrelevant because the Senate has left town and nothing legislatively will happen on these issues until later in the year, if then. All of the outrage from congressional Republicans last month wasn't sincere, simply political pandering and victimization of these juveniles. But that doesn't let Democrats off the hook either. The Senate had a chance yesterday to put real pressure on the House if they had been able to pass their own proposal out of the chamber and send it over while the House dithered. Instead, Harry Reid prevented the GOP from offering any amendments to the bill, knowing that it would incite them to do what they did, which was kill the Senate from acting.

As for the president, he's contributed to the impasse by talking up unilateral executive action on granting thousands of juveniles protection from immediate deportation, knowing that this would also incite the GOP. The White House should have simply shut up instead of openly talking something up for political advantage. And to make sure the House GOP leadership goes ahead today with these votes, Obama preemptively attacked them a short while ago. It doesn't mean his criticisms are without merit: John Boehner and Kevin McCarthy are abdicating their responsibilities and making things worse. It's just that Obama himself is not blameless here.

While the operational impacts from today's meaningless House votes are minimal, it remains to be seen how House GOP incumbents in purple districts will be affected by their votes today politically. Yet we should all have known better that the only calculation that mattered to this Congress and this White House at the end of the day is the political calculation; the kids be damned.

Deacon Blues @ 12:02 PM :: Link :: Comments (0) :: TrackBack (0) :: Spotlight :: Digg It! ::
Thursday :: Jul 31, 2014

GOP Says "Screw The Kids"

by Deacon Blues

After screaming at the top of their lungs several weeks ago about the “crisis” caused by thousands of immigrant children “storming” our borders, and Barack Obama’s alleged indifference to the issue, House Republicans this afternoon couldn’t even muster enough votes to do anything about it.

But suing the president and going on vacation? Sure.

In other words, these kids were nothing but political props to John Boehner and the GOP, and GOP governors should be directed to fire their anger not at the White House, but at their own GOP delegations. Did you hear that Rick Perry?

As I said several weeks ago, Obama should hammer the GOP relentlessly on these abdications of responsibility during the congressional recess in August. The White House and DCCC should focus their fire on the 20-30 House Republicans in purple districts, and highlight their vote yesterday on suing the president, when these same GOP incumbents couldn’t be bothered to deal with real issues before taking their vacations.

Deacon Blues @ 12:41 PM :: Link :: Comments (3) :: TrackBack (0) :: Spotlight :: Digg It! ::
« Link to Previous Entry