Friday, July 31, 2009

Chuck Is ... Tired and Disgusted

As was noted in the previous post I am quite conscious of my lack of posting and also tired of the focus. This thing started out as a campaign site and turned into commentary and hopefully advocacy. Lately it's been about kicking the snot out of Republican stupidity - and some Harley pictures.

Talking about how stupid the Republican Party is a an organized entity may involve a lot of truth but it is also depressing as a pass time. At this site it is also preaching to the choir and it's a small choir. In the absence of regular posts over the last week entry numbers have fallen by about a dozen. There is a regular traffic of just over 80/day that come for archived articles, mostly gun oriented.

Opposed to just not doing anything with this I'll spend awhile deciding exactly what to do with it or to do away with it and let it be known. Meanwhile, it's all up in the air and there may or may not be posts.

Who Didn't See This Coming? Health Reform, Nah

Health care reform has died messy deaths for over 50 years and it begins to look as though another fatality is in the offing. You could take the Republican stance and words from nearly any time in five decades as short sighted ideologically driven arguments have scared people stupid. We have this failure of something nearly resembling a system because apparently through repetition the same stupid statements resonate with enough Americans to kill reason.

Pundits are beginning to express surprise that the populist mechanism built by the Obama campaign isn't turning out demonstrations and real public push in support of the reform drive. Some easy excuses are that it is summer and also people are burnt out. The big thing is, "get behind what?" I have less than no idea what is going to come out of Congress and I don't know any citizen that does. It begins to look as though what will go forward is nibbling around the edges of a problem that requires chainsaws and wrecking balls. You may not forgive me for this, but I begin to believe that what will happen will be nothing more than cover to do essentially nothing and kill reform for another generation. Why the hell should I climb on that bandwagon?

Advocates of single payer were kissed off from the outset and bipartisanship was touted. I'm supposed to give a damn about support from the political party whose Senate leader recounts and anecdote about a friend of a friend in Canada who died as part of his opposition? Once single payer went away there was only a debate about how watered down the result would be. You cannot start your negotiating position by tossing your strongest alternative because it is politically difficult. It stood in stark contrast to the Republican do nothing position and left somewhere to go in negotiations.

Now that you've watched the Banks get bailed out and make money hand over fist as the rest of us sink you get to watch the big profiteers of health care do the same at your expense. If in case you have not paid attention, you are unaware of the linkage of health insurers and Banks it would pay you to understand where your insurance payments go after the overhead costs - invested in Banks. You expect, what, when two of the most powerful economic interests have common ends? I'm a left Democrat not some half hearted Republican shill and I'm not putting five minutes of my time into kissing up to them and their plutocratic masters.

I never expected Pres Obama to be a leftist and I understand incremental progress but I also never made any agreement to stand next to a cesspool and start moving toward it. How badly beaten do Republicans have to be before Democrats stop acting like a more reasonable version of them? If you've noticed and wondered about a lack of posts here - I'm sick of being limited to pointing to Republican idiocy (despite their enthusiasm for providing it).

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The GOP & The Birthers

You'd really have to suspend disbelief to get involved in The Birther Conspiracy group. There are some things you'd have to ignore, like the entire Bush Administration - not to mention political animals like John McCain and Hillary Clinton with an entire boatload of money. Just to mention one item about BushCo, these people were willing to suspend Constitutional guarantees to go after threats, things like illegal wiretapping of Americans and Habeas Corpus so it is a bit of a stretch to imagine they didn't take a good look at Obama's birth. If you for a second think GWB thought he had a friend in Barack Obama you have very odd ideas.

Both Hillary Clinton and later John McPOW had a lot of money and a real desire to beat Obama. There was plenty of ammunition to stir their curiosity and they have some pretty powerful contacts. You've got a black guy short on DC credentials with a funny name, an awkward middle name, and an avowedly non-citizen father, who further lived in not only a foreign country but a Muslim one. The idea is that they simply didn't get it.

There is the little matter of a bunch of documentary evidence that exists, hospital records, birth announcements, birth certificate to get around that would be a bit difficult to just make up. But the nefarious 'them' could do it, you know - the them that have unfathomable resources. Why is open to question. Since we know this is just so much unadulterated hogwash the question is just what is up and what is the GOP going to do with it?

There isn't a much better way to ensure oblivion than for a political group to wander off into wack-land. There are quite a few people who don't like Obama's politics and some who just don't like him; which is to be expected. It is another thing to fly in the face of reason and evidence to insist that we have elected and ineligible President. This takes some real emotion driven thinking and the emotions are what concern me. I doubt the anger and fear displayed are nearly as much about documents as they are about why he must be inelegible. I won't speculate about motives that are not expressed and thus unknown to me, I will assert that they exist and that any politician that embraces this is going to get into real trouble. The more subtle problem for the GOP is that ignoring it will infuriate this portion of their base, an ordinarily safe base.

I've read people who are unhappy that the issue is getting any press coverage at all and I disagree. This plays two ways, if the GOP plays along with it at all the middle, which strongly dislikes any kind of looniness, will be offended and scared by it and if they ignore it a very noisy bunch will loose their collective minds (what's left of such minds). The over-amped GOP rhetoric is poised to bite their ... behinds. They've worked very hard on creating fear and division and disgust with their political opponents and it has worked - only not in the intended manner. They've managed to get a sizable number of people so worked up that they will enthusiastically embrace craziness and something that is generally regarded as being crazy. Their difficulty with this particular crazy is that it doesn't have Holy Books or interpretations of them that people will swallow however reluctantly for backing. It has no historical or thematic basis to sustain it in the general public. Most people don't believe that the World was created 6000 years ago but they're willing to give believers the benefit of doubt on crazy on the basis of religion. This is different.

Whatever the driving emotions, they are unstated and lose their reach to people's sympathies. The whole thing is sort of new, born in a space of months and as such misses the tolerance space. It is going to be regarded as simply nutty and the fierce urgency of its backers will scare people. People on the left like me who view this a simply a natural progression of the GOP trajectory over many years would never take one of their pols seriously. People who in the past have been willing to give the GOP a respectful hearing are going to take this badly.

These folks are not going to go away. They are really stirred up and every attempt to reason with them or show them evidence only drives them harder and farther out that limb. The thing has become almost religious, it is true...because it is true - a belief system. Something really big is at stake for these folks and it is expressed as concern for life of their nation in vehement terms. Their current home is the GOP and everybody knows it. The Obama administration's silence on it is exactly right. No evidence would suffice to defuse it and addressing it would give it credence - something politically best left to its home, the GOP which has ahold of the sharp end of a double edged sword.

I'm more than happy to title this unofficial post in a way to enhance its search friendliness and I expect unhappy hits. I'll be quite pleased to infuriate this bunch, I like them riled up and noisy. They really do need to get to their supposed Representatives of the (R) stripe in government who quite frankly think they're ridiculous. Really, Birthers, you might expect a lefty blogger to cast you as deluded twits but the news for you is the GOP Congress can't quit laughing at you except when worrying about you making them look foolish. Show me where and when they're standing up for you. (Celebrities don't count)

Gasoline Powered 60 MPH Airconditioning

Let's just say it's 95F and cooling off is the desired end of an activity.

Let's take it a step farther and say that you own a Harley and live not too far from mountains and timber. A tank top, vest, and some gasoline will suffice. I'd be glad to have you come along, next time ... bring a bike.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Pat Buchannon, Icon Of The CPoR

Too bad the initials of the Confederate Party of Republicanism don't spell something rude. There have been times I've admired Pat's political insights without agreeing with his politics ... or racism. What he is up to now isn't politics beyond winding up the racists. Sotomayor followed established precedent and the law in the Ricci (firefighters case). She did not in any sense go out on a limb to advance minorities at the expense of anyone (whites).

Pat made no case about Clarence Thomas being an affirmative action kid, but Sotomayor is defined by that appellation - it is her entire metre. He is furious. The Second District Ricci decision is some form of aborted justice and it is her doing. Never mind that the City itself pulled back from the test and had it checked by experts or that the Supreme Court in reversing set a new standard rather than following established law. Sotomayor is a militant for following the law rather than creating a new standard - she's an activist ... somehow.

The descent of the Republican Party into the CPoR should be distressing to its members, but their behavior doesn't indicate that. Republicans have a favorability rating for Palin at 73%, no kidding. It seems the longer Obama is in office the farther off the rails they run. As you watch the Senate confirmation hearings on Sotomayor you see actual elected Senators careening into the racist ditch along with the unelected Pat - and you can only shake your head.

Why Pat is given air time for this particular crap is a mystery to me.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Green Gone

There was a point in using green backgrounds, it's been made and I found it uncomfortable to read so we're back to blue for my lefty Democrat stance.

Blog AWOL - Playing In Salem, OR

Grand-baby Braden is the reason I disappeared from the blogosphere. I couldn't fit the laptop on the bike in a manner that I'd care for so I played and this waited.

***As always click pic for full size***

Due to unforeseen circumstances I had Sunday morning free and the Salem HOG Chapter had something to do - about 140 miles of Poker Run east, south, and west of Salem. Pretty riding though being pushed out of 6th gear hammered gas mileage. You can see much less than half the bikes. HOG = Harley Owners Group.

These are a few of the riders gathering at Salem Harley for the Poker Run.

The State Park Ranger was busy cleaning up the park at a covered bridge which was a draw stop for the Run. I suppose when he pulled in he thought he'd parked conveniently - then bikes started pulling in ... and pulling in ... and pulling in.

The park lot overflowed - considerably.

I managed an abysmal poker hand, an Ace high nothing which was way too high for Worst hand. At each stop you draw a card from a deck and have it noted on a score card and it was a darned good thing I hadn't hocked anything to play.

Yes, I enjoy blogging and yes sometimes I really do think I have something to say; but some things trump that. It is 400 miles of twisty mountainous roads from here to Salem and at this time mother and baby live there. He recognizes me and reacts very favorably to me and has no father since he is dead so there is a gap that needs filling. That statement discounts how much he has charmed me.

At six weeks he is teething, an early timing and makes his moods pretty variable. Grandpa creates smiles and laughter and tires him out - a break for Mom. In this scenario you all come second and there is the additional draw of ... Harley.

Sen Jeff Session (R-AL) Confederate Party of Republicanism

It is a real shame to hold up an accent as emblematic of something particularly noxious, Jeff Sessions' Alabama accent put up all the almost dog whistles of racism while "questioning" Sonja Stotomayor. One could look at this statement as projection if it weren't for Sessions own failed hearings for a federal bench. This would be the fellow who joked that the KKK wouldn't be so bad if it weren't for their use of pot and that the NAACP and ACLU are communist inspired and try to force civil rights down people's throats. That might have been enough, but attacking a man as a disgrace to his race for defending black people was kind of icing on the cake.

Sessions repeatedly brought up country of origin or race and gender in attacking Sotomayor. He repeatedly used out of context quotes to make the same point Sotomayor had made and went as far as trying to use a female judge's opinions on judging against her - a judge sitting behind Sotomayor in support of her. The pathetic last remnants of the Confederate Army are wearing Rs in the Senate this week and being as bad at politics as Lee was at Gettysburg. One could only hope that the end results would be the same.

Friday, July 10, 2009


Rep Sestak is challenging (D?) Specter. I've spent some time trying to figure out how much of a loss to the Democratic Party Arlen going away would be. The GOP has a loon to run against one of the (D)s and I can't see Arlen having the incumbent edge in such a Primary. I'm trying to figure out what value he's been to the Democrats, anyhow.

I suppose this is PA's business but I'd encourage them to give Sestak a close look.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Random Musings

It seems Leon Panetta said in closed hearings that the CIA had misled the Congress, the CIA says it isn't their policy - OK, but did you do it?

Palin quit out of ALTRUISM. Huh? It seems there were only 3 ethics complaints active.

Ensign and Sanford were both "C Street" devotees, seems all that old time religion missed fire - makes you wonder about the rest of them... (C Street House is a secretive religious house and organization for electeds) The aggrieved hubby released a letter from Ensign that is a real winner - these pricks pretended to tell this nation about the sanctity of marriage, you betcha, the gays are a real threat to their marriages ... but they didn't do men...

Depending on which Republican is doing the talking; Sarah Palin either committed political suicide or the most brilliant piece of political strategy. I actually hope she's around for a good long time but I'm real sure brilliant is the wrong adjective.

Sen Inhofe says Sen Franken looks like a clown - in quite a few circles people who espouse the kinds of things Inhofe does are regarded as clowns despite their looks. There is a difference here, Franken made jokes in a previous employment, Inhofe makes a joke of being a Senator - one is funny the other is dangerous. That OK keeps electing this ... person ... makes some of the stereotypes of Okies seem reasonable. Too bad.

Sarah said Hillary whined too much, but then she also didn't quit when she quit and she was just pointing out how mean people were to her, not whining. Pitbull my ass, whining puking mewling amateur who'd cut your bowels out and hang them on her wall for political benefit.

Michael's dead, memorialized, and we haven't heard the end of it until hell freezes the networks solid. This dysfunctional bunch are going to be a staple of cable for...ever.

Sen Kyl on Obama/Russian nukes agreement: "I’m very concerned that the administration is more anxious to make a deal than it is to ensure the protection of the United States." Today's GOP - Palin and this, well there's always Cheney and Rush...

Rep Patrick Murphy, Iraq vet, is shepherding a repeal of "Don't Ask Don't Tell through Congress - just think of all the marriages this will destroy. Wingnut heads will explode, the 101st Keyboard Brigade will assault DC ... if they can find enough bags of Cheetos and Mom will let them out of the basement.

Michael Jackson is still dead.

At 70 mph Harley Davidsons can get real serious about bug killing, I'm beginning to look like a car wash stalker.

The cell phone camera is a convenient sized package for biking but it isn't much as a camera and I don't know how much I like it as a phone. I guess I'll have to start trying to figure out a way for the Fuji to ride where I can get to it. I've never wanted a 'bagger' but there is something to be said for having places to put things...

Construction workers need to work steady or they get out of shape - just ask me when I've had to pack shingles up a ladder. This afternoon I had a ready answer.

Boehner and that bunch are back to going on about tax cuts again, with tax rates at historic lows (minus SS/FICA). These are the asshats that couldn't cut rich taxes fast enough or spend money we didn't have to blow people up fast enough ... or in about a dozen ways drive the economy in a ditch. They hope that with GW Bush safely out of office everybody will forget that he didn't drive that car all by himself.

Sounds like Harry Reid is starting to push his Caucus around a little bit on health care. Try to wrap your head around Jay Rockefeller putting out a report trashing the Health Insurance Industry for reaming the public ... and comparing them to Enron and AIG. Where'd that come from? Somebody forget to send a contribution?

Not too long ago I asked a US Senator if the American public should think investment banks and health insurers ran the Senate or not. The Senator was not amused, and I wasn't making a joke. No, I don't think this Senator is owned by them but I'm not exactly sure about a hell of a lot of our government. I'm not nearly stupid enough to think that wealth won't always carry power and influence no matter who is making laws and regulations but there comes a point where it is so damn blatant and so obviously counter to the public interest that torches and pitchforks start to seem reasonable. We had some damn bad driving going on clear back into the Clinton era but some institutions put the pedal to the metal to make sure this wreck was spectacular and you will note that those most responsible not only got rich but are doing just fine right now. Wouldn't the GOP just howl if they were made to take personal responsibility for their crappy performance? Not like you could get enough out of them to fix anything, but it might be an object lesson. If I screwed your roof up that bad I'd have to fix it, but I don't play with big enough numbers to get the "free pass card." Now GOP (Cheney) pals Halliburton through KBR can electrocute soldiers in showers and the money just keeps rolling in.

Proof that abject stupidity is not a bar to employment at FauxNews:
Kilmeade and two colleagues were discussing a study that, based on research done in Finland and Sweden, showed people who stay married are less likely to suffer from Alzheimer's. Kilmeade questioned the results, though, saying, "We are -- we keep marrying other species and other ethnics and other ..."

At this point, his co-host tried to -- in that jokey morning show way -- tell Kilmeade he needed to shut up, and quick, for his own sake. But he didn't get the message, adding, "See, the problem is the Swedes have pure genes. Because they marry other Swedes .... Finns marry other Finns, so they have a pure society."
The video is even more ludicrous...imagine that.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

So, Would You Blog Or Do This

C'mon, 4th of July weekend and a motorcycle rally or stay home and amuse 5 readers not out for the weekend? High Desert Motorcycle Rally in Ontario, Oregon.

as always click pic for full size

Now for other fireworks you could look to High Desert Harley Davidson for the Harley Girls at a Meridain, Idaho barbecue for bike builder Chica. Thunderstorm cells produced cross winds from hell on the ride over, up to 60mph which allowed the Screaming Eagle to demonstrate its superior stability, admirably.

The Poker Run was up one side of the OR/ID border and down the other, this shot is of one side of the street and half the bikes at this location. Since the phone camera doesn't allow data entry I can't tell you which town.

Another town and less than half the bikes there, you'd think a mess composed of no more than 3 in a suit and A,2,3,5,7 might be a winner for low hand - hah. Around 100 miles of riding with cool motor scooters and a drink waiting at every stop - seven total. One thing about being a sober person is that many iced-teas won't generate poor behavior or tickets.

A Governor can resign and the President take trips and a blog get neglected when it comes to this kind of fun. Three bands played, Witch Burn, 57 Heavy, and the Pat Travers Band, fire works, lotteries, food stands, bike and car show, and lots of riders.

Update Breaking News - Michael Jackson Still Dead

In fact deader, but still very much a factor in News circles - unlike important shit. It has given Rep King NY-R a chance to make a fool of himself, so all is not lost - though he needs little opportunity to manage to educate us as to why voting Republican is particularly stupid at this time.

If a sad stupid mess has to be the news focus couldn't they take a look at what makes the GOP tick?

When Quitting Ain't Quitting...Or Something

I'll admit I've sat on the Palin resignation for awhile, partly because I was at a motorcycle rally and missed the news when it happened and since then...well I've wasted time trying to figure out what she was talking about.

When I've heard "a higher calling" referred to it generally had something to do with god or simple unrecompensed service. Given the "desecration" term applied to Momma Palin and baby modified Trig there may be some Ascension in the works, but I'm doubtful. As far as I've been able to tell, Palin very much cares about being compensated monetarily, soooo.... I think there will be money. Lots.

Now I don't usually play grammar police or dictionary detective but the word quit or quitter don't seem to have many contradictory meanings. She has said pretty plainly (given that it was Palin speech) that quitters suck. (there seemed to be an implication that the left or libruls were it) Now I've had a problem working out how this works; not walking away from an elected position would be quitting and quitting is making the good fight. The easy way would be to spend the next year and a half doing the grunt work of running a state and trying to get along with a recalcitrant legislature and, rather than squabbling with critics, showing the critics why they are wrong. Actually that sounds like a tough job, especially with people being soooo mean.

I hear/read people talking about how crass and mean modern politics is, and I laugh my ass off. In the world of 24/7 news things get around faster and get farther around, but even the cretinous stupidity of Fox News is light weight blather. Maybe historical ignorance is a badge of honor or something in certain circles, but an easy question for these folks is just exactly what was it that Burr shot Hamilton for? Political speech - hey, you betcha. If I had a ten spot for every time the accusation of "palling around with terrorists" passed her lips I could take some serious Harley rides on the soon to be ex-Governor's ticket.

(parenthetically I've wondered for a while how it is that these tough talking kick ass Republicans manage to be such victims of practically everything in the world. Apparently being a personally responsible hard guy Republican means being able to crotch kick at will but folding into a whining tear stained pile over being bitch slapped.)

The post script to the quitter not quitting speech was pure gold, a threat of legal action against any reporting of rumors about her Ladyship and misbehavior. It seems the legal talent these Alaskan nimrods employ is equal in talent to Palin and unable to grasp the meaning of "public figure." As long as she wishes to put herself in front of the public I am free to mock her, satirize her, and report on any scurrilous rumor that is bruited about - entirely free of legal consequences. It is not only correct but also legally permissible for me to note that Sarah Palin is a lying ten pounds in a five pound sack of Republican dog-pile. I breathlessly await her legal beagle taking me on...

David Letterman may have told a stupid joke about her daughter, but Sarah made a stupid joke of herself with her own mouth and tactics. No one in the MSM or Blogosphere had to do spit other than pay attention and quote her. That does mean quote her, not only accurately but also in context. Some people wishfully prognosticate that she's done for politically, not so. She will be given a platform to purvey stupidity and meanness to the American public and be well paid for it. It has nothing to do with earning anything, beyond mockery, but with notoriety achieved at the hands of a deluded McPOW campaign. She takes herself entirely too seriously for it to be the Comedy Central Network so it about has to be the comedy of FoxNews, which takes jokes quite seriously.

It is a common right wing meme to assert that the left is scared of her and hates her, I may have been worried that a purported centrist like McCain could carry her into office with himself, but I have no fear that as a ticket leader she poses the least threat to any fairly credible Democratic Presidential candidate. I could care less if she stayed Governor or got a FoxNews time slot to gibber from, she is her own worst political enemy and a great example of why Republicans should be avoided at the ballot box. The thinking that in low turnout off-year elections she could be a factor by turning out the base ignores the reaction of the middle and the left to her politics and her in general and especially to the appearance of her rallies.

All I can say is "Go Girl"