Monday, March 30, 2015

A replacement for Jon Stewart has been found.

Courtesy of The Verge:  

Comedy Central has found a new host for The Daily Show: Trevor Noah, a South African comedian who has appeared as a contributor to the show three times over the past year. According to The New York Times, Noah will be announced as Jon Stewart's replacement today. Noah may be a surprising choice, both as a lesser-known name and with respect to the wealth of regular talent on The Daily Show that Comedy Central is passing over, but as a standup comedian and a series contributor, Noah has consistently offered thoughtful perspectives on social issues and international news stories. He's also quite funny. 

A date has not yet been set for Stewart's departure or Noah's debut as host. "I’m thrilled for the show and for Trevor," Stewart says in a statement, according to the Times. "He’s a tremendous comic and talent that we’ve loved working with." 

With Noah heading to The Daily Show, both of Comedy Central's late night series will soon feature hosts who aren't white — all while the other big names in late night continue to face criticism over their lack of diversity. The Times asked Comedy Central about the possibility of choosing a woman as host, which the network says it considered. "We talked to women. We talked to men. We found in Trevor the best person for the job," Michele Ganeless, president of Comedy Central, tells the Times. Later, Ganeless describes why Noah was ultimately chosen: "He brings such a unique worldview and a deep understanding of human nature, which makes his comedy so insightful."

I actually have no yet formed an opinion as to whether Noah is up to the job or not as I have only seen his work on the show a handful of times.  However I have seen his comedy routine and he is incredibly funny.

But let's face it filling Jon Stewart's shoes is quite an undertaking for ANYBODY, so I am sure that  Noah is feeling both blessed and cursed at the same time.

Blessed that he has this wonderful opportunity, and cursed with the fact that he will forever be compared to a man who has reached legendary status in this country.

Oh well, I plan on continuing to be a loyal viewer. So unless Noah totally sucks ass he will have at least one set of eyes he can rely on.

The National Enquirer has some inside poop on the upcoming Dakota/Bristol nuptials. As well as the reason Sarah is pushing them toward the altar so aggressively.

Courtesy of the Enquirer:  

Sarah has cooked up a secret strategy to win the White House in 2016 – and her future son-in-law is the key! 

He’s Medal of Honor winner Sgt. Dakota Meyer, who recently announced his engagement to Sarah’s daughter Bristol, 24.

With a real war hero in the family, Sarah, 51, hopes voters will forget her clan’s bad behavior, sources said. 

“Since the moment Dakota appeared on her TV show, she’d been trying to figure out how to best use him to her advantage,” said a Palin insider. “So, she started pushing Bristol and Dakota together!”

The piece goes on to claim that Bristol first met in January when they were in Las Vegas.

You all remember that, right?

After all how could we forget?

The Enquirer also confirms the blind item about the ring: 

“Sarah was so eager to have Dakota marry her daughter that she even bought a huge diamond engagement ring for them,” added the insider.

And here is the kicker:  

But a quickie marriage isn’t the only thing on Sarah’s mind, sources revealed. At a recent event for potential Republican presidential candidates, Sarah said: “Without putting any words in my mouth, you can absolutely say that I’m seriously interested” in the 2016 race. 

The insider said: “With Dakota stumping for her, Sarah honestly believes she can’t lose!” 

Okay well that kind of confirms something that my source told me way back in December.

I am still a little doubtful that Palin is serious about launching an actual campaign, however the rest of this definitely rings true and confirms much of what I've been told.

In fact I am almost certain that I know who the Enquirer is using as a source, and if accurate they are definitely getting the inside scoop. However keep in mind that Palin not only lies to the media, and to her supporters, she lies to her family as well.

President Obama trolls the Republicans by using their own predictions of doom and gloom against them.

I like how this video plays the Republicans actually making the statements as Obama shoots them down word for word.

And yes I think this President deserves to take a little credit. Hell he deserves to take a mountain of credit.

For all of those who thought that the engagement between Dakota and Bristol was off. Nope.

Text under the photo on Enjoygram:

completely surprised by my sister today with the most beautiful bridal shower!! 

Holy crap they even  put flags everywhere during baby bridal showers!

In the meantime this is how Dakota is spending his bachelorhood.

Oh yeah this is a marriage made in heaven, or someplace else that starts with an "H."

Sarah Palin mounts her old dead horse, and starts ringing her bell to warn the patriots that "ISIS is coming, ISIS is coming!"
Click dazed expression to play video.
I am going to transcribe the video just to test my pain threshold.

Here you go, oooh that stings already:

"Well President Obama's war against ISIS, it's going so well that ISIS is expanding. The Nigerian terror group called Boko Haram has now repeatedly pledged its allegiance to ISIS. At one stroke ISIS has added a new center of operations, thousands of new fighters, and thousands of square miles to its Jihadist empire. ISIS now controls territory in Iraq, Syria, Nigeria, possibly even Libya. While the Obama administration takes its time, refusing to bring decisive force to the fight. ISIS kills innocent men, women, and children by the thousands. And with each kill, each propaganda video, it increases its apill (sic) to Islamic radicals. How much does ISIS have to grow before we realize the magnitude of the threat? The Obama administration (Jarring edit here) Their priority is on limiting American involvement and that means jihadists run wild. (Is that anything like "Girls Gone Wild?") President Obama wanted to be the President who ended wars. (Yep that's why we elected him.) It's what he claimed. But he forgot a fundamental principle (Oh please enlighten us oh bewigged one!) It's hard to end a war when the enemy is still fighting. (You know correct me if I'm wrong but I don't think that ISIS even existed when we invaded Iraq and Afghanistan.) So he forfeited our victory in Iraq (Wait, we won?) imposed ludicrous restrictions on our troops in Afghanistan, and remember he called ISIS the 'junior varsity' even as it was gathering terrifying strength in Syria. Friends we're fighting the most evil jihadists the world has ever seen. Yet the Obama administration refuses to act like we're at war. It's time to take the gloves off overseas. Before ISIS can take the war to us here at home."

Gee I wonder how much ISIS had to contribute to SarahPAC in order to get Palin to make this nifty propaganda video for them?

Isn't this the same way that George W. Bush helped to elevate a rag tag bunch of sheep herders into one the scariest terrorist groups on the planet?

Here is what the folks over at Wonkette had to say:

ISIS is, by almost any measure, losing ground. The group failed to take the city of Kobani, and they failed in large part because President Mom Jeans bombed the living shit out of them. ISIS has been driven out of Tikrit, with a few remaining defenders cut off and encircled near the Tigris River. The group’s revenue streams have been decimated, and their fighting formations are beginning to experience desertion among the rank-and-file. 

ISIS is also currently under attack from Saudi Arabia, the Kurds, Egypt, Canada, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Turkey to name but a few.

And of course all of that is thanks to the efforts of the United States and the President that the Republicans keep accusing of "leading from behind."

But let's face it, Sarah Palin and her ilk will not be satisfied with a US response until we have gallons of American blood spilling onto the hot sands.  And of course NONE of that blood will spill from her precious military prop, because he is safely out of harm's way taking drugs, starting fights at parties, and sponging off of his famous mother.

Well Ted Cruz has one demographic firmly on his side. Right Wing talk radio hosts.

Courtesy of Politico:  

Glenn Beck wants listeners to pray for him. Mark Levin says Fox News is out to get him. Hugh Hewitt calls him an “intellectual leader.” Rush Limbaugh thinks his campaign launch was “masterful.” Laura Ingraham hails him as “Reaganesque.” Erick Erickson considers him a “good friend.” 

Ted Cruz may be trailing in the polls and strapped for cash, but the first declared candidate of the 2016 race is winning in at least one key contest — the conservative talk-show primary.

Tens of millions of listeners — and potential GOP primary voters — tune in each week to the biggest right-wing radio hosts, who hold forth on the merits and demerits of the various 2016 Republican hopefuls as keenly as they spit invective about Barack Obama and the Democrats. Many of them are big fans of the Texas senator, if not outright supporters. Most are holding their cards close, refusing to hug any candidate too tightly, be it in the spirit of equanimity or out of fear of alienating some listeners. 

But nearly all the kings and queens of the conservative airwaves express admiration for a man almost universally despised by his Senate colleagues and dismissed by the mainstream media: Cruz. And they are equally clear about who they do not like: Mushy “progressives” like Jeb Bush and Chris Christie. 

let's face it these really are the people that have the ear of the Republican base right now. 

I predict that Cruz will do quite well in some of the primaries, Iowa for instance.

However when he stands on that stage with the rest of the 2016 contenders, debating champion or not, I think he will quickly demonstrate why can NEVER be trusted to get anywhere near the White House.

I also predict that Cruz will not go down quietly and that he will do substantial damage to the other presidential wannabes before his campaign finally gasps its last.

Former Republican operative from South Carolina holds his wife hostage in Chick-fil-A parking lot, blames too much cough syrup.

Courtesy of TPM:  

A former official with the South Carolina Republican Party said an improper dose of cough medicine was to blame for an incident in which he refused to let his wife out of their car, the Charleston City Paper reported Saturday. 

Todd Kincannon, an attorney who briefly served as the executive director of the South Carolina Republican Party in 2010, allegedly refused to let his wifeout of their car after the couple got into an argument at a work function Thursday night, according to a police report obtained by the newspaper. 

A Lexington County Sheriff's deputy responded to a "possible domestic incident" at about 10:21 p.m. at Kincannon's Columbia, S.C. home, according to the report. The report stated Kincannon's wife, Ashely Suzanne Griffith, told the deputy there had been an altercation in a Chick-fil-A parking lot on the drive home. 

Griffith told the deputy that she asked to get out of their car after her husband began screaming at her, according to the police report. The report stated that Griffith said she hit her husband in the arm several times because he grabbed her to prevent her from exiting the car. She also told the deputy that Kincannon had threatened to kill himself if she left the vehicle.

Later Kincannon told a Charleston newspaper that he was all hopped up on cough syrup: Here’s what happened last night:

I had a severe upper respiratory infection, and I’m the kind of guy who never goes to the doctor. I finally went and was prescribed something called Benzonatate for my cough. I’d never taken it before, and took it for the first time last night. Basically, I went completely crazy after taking it. I don’t even remember all of it. My wife called 911 because she was worried about me and my behavior was way out of character and erratic, and she was afraid for her safety and mine. The cops came and they called EMS, and EMS took me to Lexington Medical Center. My blood pressure on scene was something like 190 over 130 and I was tachycardic. The ER doctor at LMC saw me and I was diagnosed ... with an allergic reaction to Benzonatate. Apparently a very small percentage of people go absolutely nuts when they take the stuff, and I’m apparently in that very small percentage. I had calmed down by the time I got to LMC and they let me go after a brief evaluation. I’m totally fine now and not taking any more Benzonatate. 

They need to add a warning label to Benzonatate: “Warning: May cause people to go completely nuts.”

Sounds legit. I mean who doesn't start manhandling women after they take prescription cough suppressants?

A drugged out Republican getting all abusive with his wife in a Charleston Chick-fil-A.

Sounds like a typical Saturday in South Carolina to me.  

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Watch Indiana Governor Mike Pence outright refuse to answer any of George Stephanopoulos's questions about his state's new controversial law.

Courtesy of Mediaite:  

This Week host George Stephanopoulos absolutely grilled Indiana Governor Mike Pence (R) over the newly-signed “religious freedom” bill, which critics maintain would allow businesses to refuse services to LGBT customers. Pence argued that the bill’s intentions had been misrepresented in media coverage, and insisted he would not change the bill, though he did continue to say he would “clarify” it. 

However, Pence refused to answer two “yes or no” questions posed to him by Stephanopoulos over the potentially discriminatory ramifications of the bill, including whether it would allow a florist to deny services to a gay couple, as its supporters maintain. 

“There’s been shameless rhetoric about my state and this law and its intention all over the internet,” Pence said. “People are trying to make it about one particular issue, and now you’re doing that as well.” 

Stephanopoulos asked the question several more times. “It’s a simple yes or no question,” Stephanopoulos said. 

“The issue here is: is tolerance a two-way street or not?” Pence said. “There’s a lot of talk about tolerance in this country having to do with people on the left. Here Indiana steps forward to protect the constitutional rights and privileges of freedom of religion for people of faith in our state, and this avalanche of intolerance that’s been poured on our state is outrageous.”

Wow that is some of the fanciest dancing I have seen since John Travolta on Saturday Night Fever. 

Pence goes on to say that he would NOT pass a law protecting the rights of the LGBT community, which would of course make people less concerned about this new law. And at one point refuses to answer Stephanopoulos's question about whether or not it should be legal to discriminate against gays and lesbians.

By the way as Pence continues his dance more and more businesses are making the decision that Indiana is now a "no go zone" for them and their employees.

US soldiers raped and sexually assaulted dozens of Colombian children between 2003 and 2007, filmed the attacks to distribute as pornography, and face no charges due to treaty granting immunity.

Colombian children
Courtesy of WSWS:  

US soldiers and military contractors were responsible for the rape and sexual abuse of scores of Colombian children, but faced no legal repercussions because of a treaty between Washington and Bogota granting them full immunity. 

A fresh revelation of these appalling crimes came as a byproduct of ongoing peace talks between the Colombian government and the FARC (Armed Revolutionary Forces of Colombia) guerrilla movement taking place in Havana, Cuba. 

Last month, a Historical Commission on the Armed Conflict and its Victims in Colombia, formed jointly by the Colombian government and the FARC, presented an 800-page report documenting the causes and consequences of the decades of civil war that have claimed millions of victims in terms of dead, wounded, abused and displaced. The commission was composed of leading Colombian academics and intellectuals acceptable to both parties. 

A section prepared by Renan Vega Cantor, a professor of history at the National Pedagogical University of Bogota, dealt with the role played by the US military. The Pentagon has sent advisers and contractors to the country as part of Plan Colombia, which has included $6 billion in mostly military aid directed at combatting both drug trafficking and the anti-government guerrilla movements. 

The report cites 54 cases of rape and sexual abuse of minors, some as young as 12. “In one of the best known cases, in Melgar and in Giradot [both are to the southwest of the capital of Bogota, with a major Colombian air base that housed US “advisers” located in Melgar], 53 minors were abused sexually by mercenaries, who also filmed it and sold the tapes as pornography,” the report states. The young girls were subsequently threatened with death, and they and their families had to leave the area.

This post is the result of a late night message from my daughter demanding that I write something about this and let people know what we have done. 

She was of course quite horrified and wanted to know how we could not only allow this to happen, but also protect those who committed these atrocities.

My response is of course to refer to the Ted Cruz post from earlier today.

After all how can Americans be held accountable when they are clearly agents of the "American civil religion" whose every action is divinely inspired?

This is the result when you see the military, and military contractors, through rose colored glasses and believe that their every action overseas "protects us over here."

How dare we even think of prosecuting them for helping to keep us free by spreading American exceptionalism to every corner of the planet?

For those who want to learn more about this you can read here, here, and here as well.

Dakota Meyer, Bristol Palin's newest fiance, gives instruction on how to accidentally shoot one of your children for breaking a water glass.

"Remember slow is smooth, smooth is fast." And they say this guy is not a philosopher.

All kidding aside I thought Cletus gave some good tips on how to overreact to a noise in the middle of the night.

I mean personally I just stumble around the house stubbing my toes, cursing frequently, and wielding a plastic baseball bat. But then I'm a trained professional.

Of course perhaps Huckleberry has increased the possibility of home invasion by putting his name on products like this.

And taunting ISIS like this.

I think my advice to Tripp would be to try and stay with dad as much as possible, and when staying with mom use the bathroom BEFORE bedtime, use only Dixie cups for late night drinks, and for God's sake stay low.

Ted Cruz and the American "civil religion." This guy is even scarier than we thought.

Courtesy of Salon:  

Cruz’s White House run is disturbing, and not just because it involves Ted Cruz. Rather, he embodies the modern conservative propensity toward a fundamentalist American civil religion and its attendant, overly simplistic myths. As the English political activist George Monbiot observed during the dawn of the second President Bush’s Iraq War, to America’s conservative subculture “the United States is no longer just a nation. It is now a religion… It is not just that the Americans are God’s chosen people; America itself is now perceived as a divine project.” American civil religion hinges on what Ted Cruz defined in his Liberty University speech as “the promise of America,” embodied in “the American exceptionalism that has made this nation a clarion voice for freedom in the world, a shining city on a hill.” The religion of America is a civil religion that casts the United States as a divine world power shaped by a series of comforting myths that, in the eyes of fervent believers like Cruz, make it the ultimate political Promised Land. 

The term “civil religion” goes back to the writings of French philosopher Jean Jacques Rousseau, who ruminated on the tensions that arise when church and state become separate entities. In American discourse, the term is most closely associated with sociologist Robert Bellah. In 1967, Bellah characterized civil religion as “a set of beliefs, symbols, and rituals” that was “neither sectarian nor in any specific sense Christian” but nonetheless constituted a shared experience of being American that was inspired by Christian notions of redemption and spiritual fulfillment. Civil religion casts America as a beacon of secular and sacred hope in a fallen modern world. In this context, Bellah wrote, “Europe is Egypt” and America was the Promised Land to which ”God has led his people to establish a new sort of social order that shall be a light unto all the nations.” And if this concept seems open-ended and ripe for abuse, that’s because it is. 


Cruz had the myth of the Chosen Nation down pat when he claimed that America is “an indispensable nation, a unique nation in the history of the world.” As for the myth of Nature’s Nation, he evoked America as the cultivated political garden of God Himself that, “from the dawn of this country, at every stage… has enjoyed God’s providential blessing.” The myth of the Christian Nation? Cruz parroted the now standard (but historically bogus) right-wing claim that the U.S. “was founded upon” the idea that rights come from a very specific “God Almighty.” Cruz’s reference to the myth of Manifest Destiny was more veiled, but he name-dropped key historical figures such as Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson, Franklin Delano Roosevelt (no doubt for good bipartisan measure) and, of course, Ronald Reagan to reiterate his point that God has blessed every step in America’s development. The myth of the Capitalist Nation came via his railing against standard conservative government bogeymen like “regulators,” “tax collectors” and Obamacare that despoil the purity of the Free Market. Finally, Cruz touted the myth of the Innocent Nation when he claimed that political change will only come from “lovers of liberty” who realize that “God isn’t done with America yet.” Bless their liberty-loving souls. 

Cruz’s speech was a prime example of how the right wing promotes a deeply fundamentalist American civil religion that relies on time-honored myths to characterize the United States as a nation guided by providential destiny. Cruz and other conservatives don’t see America as one nation that is a part of world history; they see it as one nation apart from world history, one that exists free of the flawed human agency and historical contingency that — contrary to Cruz’s claims — has shaped all of the human experience. 

An America as defined by a future President Cruz is an America that sees itself as blindingly perfect, naively innocent, incapable of critical reflection over both its strengths and weaknesses and utterly convinced of its capacity to shape the world in its own image. Cruz’s version of civil religion is the ultimate example of how conservatives “absolutize the righteousness of the United States.” When you believe that God has blessed America from the beginning, you ignore the times that Americans have invoked God to justify the evils of Indian removal, slavery, racism, sexism and environmental destruction. More importantly, you undervalue the times when Americans have overcome those sins to demonstrate what Abraham Lincoln called ”the better angels of our nature.” When you worship capitalism and tout the United States as the world’s only hope, you ignore the false idols that led to the Great Recession and the bloody folly of the Iraq War that’s left the Middle East in tatters. When you develop a false sense of American innocence, you view national self-reflection as a weakness.

This of course is the same kind of thinking that allowed an arrogant pseudo Texan from a famous political family take this country to war with the idea that all the poor savages needed was a little American exceptionalism in their lives to make all of their problems simply disappear.

It's also the same mindset shared by a Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum, Rick Perry, Bobby Jindal, and of course Sarah Palin.

In fact when Palin suggests that President Obama is trying to "fundamentally change America" this is what she is talking about. The idea that the President would try to convince Americans to climb off their high horse and recognize that we are part of a global community that can all work together toward progress rather than an oligarchy that is working to proselytize their message of political religiosity to the unsaved, frightens people of limited intellect such as Palin.

However the most dangerous thing imaginable for this country would be to return to leadership that sees this country as not only without flaws, but incapable of mistakes due to the fact that the Constitution, much like the Bible, was inspired by God and is therefore infallible. (Amendments Shamendments.)

Now if you will excuse me I have to go lie down in the fetal position for a few minutes.

Sarah Palin says that any person who joins a terrorist organization should lose their citizenship. She may have a point.

"Only freedom lovin' Mericans can look at my butt."
Courtesy of Raw Story:  

Message to would-be ISIS recruits: Sarah Palin doesn’t want you back. The former Alaska governor and current media firebrand said in a Facebook post Friday that Americans who leave the country to join a foreign terrorist organization should be stripped of their citizenship. 

 “As crazy as it sounds, a U.S. citizen who leaves this country to join ISIS, al Qaeda, or any other terrorist organization does not immediately lose his or her citizenship,” Palin wrote in the post. “That needs to change!” 

The post, which was accompanied by a video in which Palin spoke of the “threat of radical Islam,” was shared more than 1,200 times within two hours. “It’s a simple fact that some people are drawn to ISIS’s brutality,” Palin says in the video. “They’re actually inspired by videos of beheadings and burnings. They actually believe ISIS’s religious message.”

Well of course stripping an American of their citizenship flies, without due process, in the face of the Fourteenth Amendment which states that; "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws." But why should such a detail bother Palin?

Yeah that sort of makes it hard to enforce a rule which suggests that these individuals "immediately lose his or her citizenship" without first giving them the opportunity to be tried before a jury of their peers. 

Of course I'm sure that does not Palin any pause since the only part of the Constitution she seems to care about is the 2nd Amendment.

However I am not completely in disagreement with her point of view here.

I think that people who run off to join ISIS should probably be detained when they reenter the United States as a possible threat to our security, and if warranted imprisoned or even exiled.

IF they are first found guilty of course.

But hey why stop there. I mean if we are going to take away the citizenship of Americans who go overseas to collaborate with anti-American groups and terrorist organizations why not do the same to people who do it right here on our shores.

The FBI has labeled the sovereign citizen group a terrorist organization.

So I would guess that anybody who fraternized with a group like that, the Alaska Independence Party for instance, might need to be scrutinized by the Federal government to determine if they represent a potential threat.

And if that person were also known to support anti-government groups like the Tea Party, and hang out with folks who had made actual threats against the President of the United States and his Secretary of State like this guy..... 

...well I would think that somebody like that would be hanging onto their citizenship by a thread.

You know it is such a rarity when I even minimally agree with Sarah Palin, that when I do it represents kind of a nice change. Don't you agree?

During interview with Harry Reid on Nevada radio, President Obama calls in to surprise the retiring Senator with heartfelt praise.

Courtesy of Politicususa:  

Sen. Reid was told that he had a surprise caller, and after a pause a voice came on the line and said, “Is this Harry Reid?” Reid answered, “It is.” The President said, “Harry, this is Barack.” Reid could only say, “Well, I’ll be damned.” Obama asked, “Are you allowed to say that on live radio?” Reid repeated, “Well, I’ll be damned. What a guy.” 

The President said, “Well, I think when the stories has been written and when all is told, you’re going to have somebody who has done more for the Nevada for this country than anybody who has been in the Senate. I could not be prouder of him. He did an unbelievable job on a whole bunch of really tough issues. Saving this country from a depression, making sure millions of people had health care, making sure that young people were able to go to college. He’s been one of my best partners and best friends, and I’m really honored to have served him.”

Harry Reid was also quite effusive in his praise of the President, and ultimately it was a very nice moment where two battle scarred veterans of many political skirmishes expressed admiration for each others courage and tenacity.

After listening to this exchange all I could think is what will this country do without Barack Obama and Harry Reid at the helm of this nation steering us around and over Republican obstructionism and bad policy decisions?

You better bring your "A" game Hillary Clinton, because you are definitely going to need it.

America is practically defenseless. If you ignore all that money we spend on defense.

Just imagine how much good we could do with our tax money if we were not so focused on using it to kill people in other countries.

And if we ever start to feel safe enough to spend our money on programs to benefit Americans, well that is the conservative's cue to fear monger and find a reason to start another war.