Republicans in Desperate Race to Deny Demographic Changes

Republican gerrymandering of district lines may begin to pay off in other ways than winning a disproportionate number of state legislative seats. With control of state legislatures in the majority of states, many in blue states, Republicans are expected to introduce bills that would eliminate the winner-take-all electoral college rule.

So, despite losing the popular vote by a substantial margin, Republicans continue to look for ways to preserve their WASP advantage even though the nation is tilting away from that demographic.  Keep an eye on Walker and his minions. 

Putin would be proud.

Cross-posted at The Other Side of My Mouth

The Stupid, It Hurts

I was curious what our anti-smart counterparts at Fred Dooley’s hilariously named Real Debate Wisconsin blog would have to say about the Newtown massacre. I was disappointed, but not surprised, that contributor “still unreal” thought it necessary to trivialize the event in the following manner.

“This may surprise some of you, but I’m for banning all guns.  Also while we’re at it, lets prevent any future copycats by being proactive:  I say we also ban light sabers now, before its too late. And we should probably pull Star Wars off the shelves, too.  Seems logical, right?”

Where do these people get this crap? Lights sabers and Star Wars? Video games? Let’s get real. A gun, a singularly designed weapon to kill lots of people quickly was used to kill children. At a public school. Dynamite was not used. Knives, baseball bats, ninja stars, nukes, light sabers nor zombies were used. No, it was a gun. People died.

It didn’t happen because there were too few males. It didn’t happen because the kids failed to harness their inner Chuck Norris and rush and take down the shooter. It didn’t happen because the shooter was tranked on playing Grand Theft Auto all night. It didn’t happen because the school was designated a gun free zone. It didn’t happen because god is pissed. It didn’t happen because someone forgot their gun at home and could have defended themselves. And it didn’t happen because of Sheriff Clarke’s assertion that Israeli-type ideas regarding defense were not used. If the man had half a brain he would know that gun laws in Israeli are highly restrictive and that only law enforcement, the military or those properly trained and licensed in settlements prone to attack are allowed to carry.

It happened because the shooter was mentally ill and had easy access to deadly weaponry.

Let’s get serious. A serious discussion about the accessibility of guns is needed. Not snide trivializations.  By doing so you diminish the lives abruptly ended.

Are Conservative Brains Really This Stupid?

h/t Wonkette

Megan Mcardle at the Daily Beast has an idea for students the next time confronted by a crazy with a gun.

“I’d also like us to encourage people to gang rush shooters, rather than following their instincts to hide; if we drilled it into young people that the correct thing to do is for everyone to instantly run at the guy with the gun, these sorts of mass shootings would be less deadly, because even a guy with a very powerful weapon can be brought down by 8-12 unarmed bodies piling on him at once. Would it work? Would people do it? I have no idea; all I can say is that both these things would be more effective than banning rifles with pistol grips.”

Imagine, if you will, five and six-year olds mustering the courage to gangrush the shooter at Newtown.  F*cking clueless.

Pile on.

I’m Still Laughing

Today on WTMJ radio, Gary Stork of NORML (National Organzation for the Repeal of Marijuana Laws) was interviewed as part of a pro v. con segment.

Here’s a link to the podcast, but I’d like to touch on a few things that were outstanding about the interview.  Mainly, I laughed my ass off.  Here’s why.

When Stork was asked why marijuana should be legalized he said, among other things, that everyone should be free to grow any plant they like. That got me laughing.

Stork was then told that there are people who believe that marijuana could be a gateway drug. In other words, use of cannibis could lead to use of more powerful drugs such as cocaine and heroin. Stork seemed confused. He then said that tobacco and even milk — yes milk — could be considered gateway drugs, and then he rambled on for about 30 seconds. By this time in the interview I had to pull over because my eyes were tearing so badly.

Stork later said that one of the consequences of Wisconsin falling behind in the legalization race might be a brain drain. Now I turned the car off because I was afraid of accidentally pulling out into traffic, I was laughing so hard.

Lastly and a classic, Stork was asked this, “As we speak right now, are you under the influence of marijuana?”  There was a pause. Then Stork said, “Uhh. No, I’m not.”  But then proceeded to admit except for the cannabis medication he was taking for his glaucoma (legitimate) and that he had taken to prepare for this interview (not so). Hitting head on steering wheel.

Look, I’m in favor of legalization for a myriad of reasons. But maybe getting stoned before an interview wasn’t the best idea, Gary Stork.

Another Young Man Killed By Conservative Justice

Jordan Davis, a 17 year-old black teenager was shot to death by Michael Dunn over a loud music dispute last Friday in — where else — Florida.  Apparently Dunn parked next to a car with four black teenagers listening to music and asked them to turn it down. Words were exchanged and Dunn reached into his glove compartment and fired eight to nine random shots — two hit the young man and killed him. Dunn drove off when his girlfriend returned to the car. He claimed he thought he had seen a gun barrel flashed inside the kids car and that they might be gang members.

By the way, no weapons were found inside the kids car.

Couple of things: Does anyone for one second think if the kids had been white Dunn would have opened fire? And his lawyer claims Dunn’s actions were those of a responsble firearm owner. Really? The responsibility bar must be set low.

And finally, he’ll probably get away with it.

More George McGovern

Wrote this a few years back at my old blog. Sad day with the passing of George McGovern who was never ashamed to admit he was a liberal.

Back in 1972, when I was a sophomore in highschool, I first became acquainted with presidential campaigns and candidates by helping to run the student-led campaign for the anti-war Republican congressman, Pete McCloskey. McCloskey’s run for the Republican nomination was doomed to failure. He was facing the still incredibly popular President Richard Nixon who had managed to push Watergate questions temporarily into the background.

But it was fun and it piqued an interest in politics I didn’t know I had. Soon, with McCloskey in the background I became aware of the Democratic candidate for president, George McGovern. McGovern’s campaign was making a huge effort to get the youth vote out and I was swept along in the enthusiasm generated by his quixotic campaign. Unfortunately, the Tom Eagleton affair blew up his bid and that enthusiasm faded and failed to turn out the vote.

Four years later it was Gerald Ford vs. Jimmy Carter for president. I was now old enough to vote, but neither choice did much for me. So, my first vote for the presidency wound up being a write-in as I voted for George McGovern.

Fourteen years later (I spent the intervening years travelling the US, Europe and working) … I’m working part-time at the Kenwood Inn at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. I had just gotten to work and I peeked out into the dining room. I was stunned to see George McGovern enter, escorted by a couple of professors I recognized.

Anyway, I was excited. George McGovern! I had always wanted to meet him and here was my chance. I walked over, excused myself and asked the Senator if I could shake his hand. He smiled and as we shook hands I told him that I was honored to finally meet him and that, additionally, I had voted for him in 1976.

The professors sitting at the table exchanged smirky looks. McGovern, though, was all courtesy and he gently told me that I must have meant 1972 because that was the year he ran for president. I smiled and said no. I explained I hadn’t been old enough to vote in 1972 so had waited until the next election to write his name in.

With that he smiled again, thanked me and squeezed my hand a bit extra. I’ll never forget our meeting.

It’s a shame that McGovern never got the chance to lead our nation. We as a people would have been better off — by far.

Anime Character Paul Ryan’s Faux Empathy

I so care for the poor.Claiming to have run a marathon one hour faster than he really did was bad enough. Now anime character Paul “Serial Liar” Ryan cleans clean pots and pans for faux empathy photo op.

According to Brian J. Antal, president of the Mahoning County St. Vincent De Paul Society, “We are a faith-based organization [and] we are apolitical because the majority of our funding is from private businesses.” He added that private individuals might reconsider support if the charity appeared to favor a candidate.

From the Washington Post article: Ryan had stopped by the soup kitchen for about 15 minutes on his way to the airport after his Saturday morning town hall in Youngstown. By the time he arrived, the food had already been served, the patrons had left, and the hall had been cleaned.

Upon entering the soup kitchen, Ryan, his wife and three young children greeted and thanked several volunteers, then donned white aprons and offered to clean some dishes. Photographers snapped photos and TV cameras shot footage of Ryan and his family washing pots and pans that did not appear to be dirty. (my emphasis)

This guy has no shame.

Another Ignorant Conservative Gets Literary

Oh my Flying Spaghetti Monster, save us from conservative ignorance.

Arkansas Representative Jon Hubbard (R-Plantation) has written a book in which he steadfastly puts forth those ideas conservatives hold close to their nasty little shriveled hearts, but won’t say out loud for fear blacks won’t pick up their garbage anymore. From Wonkette comes this delightful piece by Kris Benson letting us in on the “thoughtful” meanderings of Rep. Hubbard.

Did you know that slavery was a blessing in disguise and because of that praiseworthy institution blacks are better off in America than they would be in dirty, dusty Africa?

And gosh, if only blacks would embrace higher education. They might attain so much more … like being the lead fry cook in charge of french fry production.

Oh, it’s the blacks’ fault that education scores are not what they were because integration caused whites to yearn for lower standards … you know, get lazy like blacks.

Unfracking believeable. Not really.

Did I mention that the Nazis were misunderstood.

Read the article here.