Tasting the Air–Blech!

We just got our lane blown out. The Contrarian got out to do a bit of shopping for me. He discovered that the alternator is bad and needs replacing. He would have done that today, but for the fact that another FREAKIN’ SET OF STORMS IS COMING!

Yep, we are expecting a few inches tonight, 1-4. But Tuesday night we are talking FEET. Everyone is being very sly about where, and who, and how much. Cowards!

So my shopping this week is off, and it will be bread and water by Thursday. Well, not quite that. More like simple meat, potatoes and frozen veggies. This winter crap is getting OLD.

***

Don’t know if you saw yesterday’s humor post. It was a lot of fun to do, and frankly I could do a blog only on The Blaze and it’s merry band of misfit dumbos. If you liked it, let me know and I’ll do it as a regular or semi-regular feature. I did that one on only the first three pages of a ten page list of comments. These people are simply mad as hatters.

***

Speaking of which, and I’m not speaking of a witch or which either, but that’s by the by, whatever by the by means. Words are strange, especially when grouped together. They have secret sex I think and become odd “sayings” that have no inherent meaning.

Be that as it may (you see my point), I was thinking the other night about “if I could. . .” Now that would make a good post don’t you think? “If I could. . .put Sarah and Michele and Christine and Sharron in a cabin in the woods for a month with lots of hidden listening devices. . .I would!” Do you have any “if I could” ‘s?

***

Political Irony has a new list of late night funnery. Do go see if you want to laugh a bit.

***

The way I see it, the reason the GOP is ultimately doomed is that it is caught in a three-way, and much as they seem fun at first, they usually prove disastrous in the long run, frankly in the shorter run. First ya got your true blue GOPers. These are the old-fashioned types, Colin Powell is an example. Believes in reasonable social legislation but conservative fiscal policy. Then there are the RINOS, sometimes more liberal, sometimes more self-serving. They can blow any number of directions depending on their philosophy, but mostly because of their desire to preserve their own power.

Then factor in the Teabuggers. These come of two flavors, both of them relatively crazy. One wing are libertarians who want to slash and burn and care zero about social welfare. The poor be damned, lower taxes and let the market govern. The other wing, mouths a lot of fiscal conservatism, doesn’t understand a bit of it, (neither does most of the other wing frankly), but they wet themselves over abortion, gay rights, and their new gods, the FF’s. All is seen through a biblical lens of their own interpretation.

How to marry these three? Beats me, and it’s apparent that the cracks already exist in the menáge e trois. A don’t see a future that can work for them.

***

Remember CPAC? That meeting which every righteous Republican, certainly every Presidential hopeful attended? Be there or be square as they say? Well, people are bailing on CPAC this year like it carries the plague. Latest to bow out is newly elected Marco Rubio. He follows DeMint, new BFF of the teabuggery clan. Most all the “good” people are now out. The GOP speaks out with clarity: WE DON’T LIKE NO GAY PEOPLE. Yes, the marginalizing party, becomes marginal.

***

The Blaze ran a piece about a California man arrested with a car full of “high-end” fireworks, making threats against Islam in the parking lot of a mosque in Dearborn, Michigan. Nothing much to report, except that the commenters query whether he is “left-wing” and whether he might have been “delivering the fireworks to Muslim extremists.” Also, much discussion on the relative minor character of the fireworks. Want to imagine what they would have said should a Muslim have been arrested in a Christian church parking lot? I leave it to your imagination. Crooks and Liars has a good story on the “left-wing aspect.”

***

I saw this over at Joe.My.God. I just had to steal it and print it here. I laughed till I nearly croaked!

***

Andrew Sullivan has a great piece you should read. I have often found myself saying that I wish the left had a “Fox” of its own. But I don’t really mean that. I mean, I want a strong independent media voice that speaks truth based on thorough and fact driven investigation. To have a Fox of our own would mean that thinking and discourse would even further deteriorate. The point is, that although I liked Keith Olbermann a lot, I was also aware of his being over-the-top and making more of a story than the facts warranted. The crazy right never seems to see that in their pundits. Not even a little.  Read Sullivan’s post, it’s a good one.

***

What’s on the stove: spaghetti and meatballs, salad

Discussin’ Science From the LazyBoy

Come on in. Pull up a couch. Don’t worry ’bout that coffee table, go right on ahead and rest them shit-kickers on it. Buds in the fridge. No not that fridge, the one right next to yer arm.

 Handy ain’t she? Set the remote right on it too. Only thing I don’t got is a crapper. Like a cheetos?

Well, now we’re all here. Got us a week to go before the big ‘un, so I was figurin’ we could have a real inTelechual discushun, ’bout  that there  climate change and evOlushun business, ya know that thear-rey that we all comes from monkeys?

(Shhh, I’ve set the scene. You can go to The Blaze and see the video of Bill Maher having a discussion of these things, but the comments are way better.)

historyguy48 Posted on January 29, 2011 at 9:18am

This guy is a comedian. So this has to be a joke, right? Idiots like him are a dime a dozen. The only thing settled about global warming, is that it is a scam. Evolution is still a theory, not proven science, so far, It does look like it may be true, but remember the Piltdown man scam? That one “proved” evolution, until it was pointed out that it was the body of a ape with a human skull.

Hey Historyguy48, is your knowledge of history as good as your knowledge of science? And where did you get your history education? Just so I can warn parents to keep their kids away.

KICKILLEGALSOUT Posted on January 29, 2011 at 9:21am

Science by definition is a branch of knowledge or study dealing with facts. No one is against facts, but it seems Atheist are. The problem today is when people try to claim hypothesis’ and theories are science. If it was in fact science it would not be called a hypothesis or a theory. The error today is to say people who don’t believe in evolution are anti-science, for example,
What I want to know if how people can just make the “jump” to evolution. No scientist in the world today can answer 2 questions by science. Where did it all come from? How did inorganic material transition to organic life? No one can answer this but then just jump to the “facts” of evolution. You can’t just skip a step and the most important one for that matter. There is no sense talking about evolution until they can answer those questions. The only answer is a Creator God or the guess of man.

Kickillegalsout let me see your dictionary dude. Oh looky here. It says the definition of Kickillegalsout is: a guy who can walk around with no brain. I’m not sure you know what side of the street you are on. Join Historyguy48. Together you don’t own a brain cell.

independentvoteril Posted on January 29, 2011 at 9:45am

Maher..

MEMO:
Global warming hoax is OVER..Your side lost.. and evaluation only exists for PROGRESSIVES the rest of us came from CREATION.. which explains WHY the progressives have the mentality of a monkey.. actually that’s an insult to monkeys who are MUCH smarter than PROGRESSIVES..
End of Debate…

IndependentvoterIl: What is not over is the debate as to whether you should be allowed to drink, drive, vote  or even leave you house unescorted. Your picture is attached this week to the phrase willful ignorance coupled with general stupidity.

bobodu Posted on January 29, 2011 at 9:57am

Of course, the science should NOT be debated!!

Mr. Creationist…can you explain how a light bulb works?

Well you betcha. Ya see…in ever light bulb dat God created… He put a tiny lil Jesus in dere…and dat lil Jesus just wants ta shine ya see…He wants ta shine His light on da world…but when we turn off dat switch…we‘us jus’ turnin’ our backs on Jesus…an He casts darkness over da room..

bobodu: You are da man!

TexasCommonSense Posted on January 29, 2011 at 10:47am

There has been climate change as long as there’s been a climate. . .

TexasCommonSense: okay, I only included you because your NAME IS AN OXYMORON! Dude really!

canyousmellmenow Posted on January 29, 2011 at 11:01am

He said he came from monkey geans. In the 70′s we were gona freeze now were gona melt ? I can tell you this, I am freezing, my gas and electric bill are higher then ever. Send me some global warming please………

canyousmellmenow: yes, and please stay down wind of us from now on. I’ll send you something buddy, but global warming is gonna come free of charge.

Kalish Posted on January 29, 2011 at 12:48pm

When you see how intiricate our universe is, or even our human bodies, all the different species etc.. you really have to be off your rocker to think all these things and many more came from nothing, and all of a sudden “bang” everthing just happened, by pure chance, and there is no evidence that carbon dating is even accurate beyond 5000-8000 years

Kalish: Can’t you see I’m in a barcalounger? No rockers here. You got your bang and your evolution confused, but then I guess you haven’t heard they have better dating that carbon now. Damn science, always a changin’ things on a guy.

truwired Posted on January 29, 2011 at 5:14pm

Evolution has no science to back it up!
“ALL” of the proof/evidence is based on assumption. Radio carbon dating has proved itself over and over to be inaccurate.
At least creationists have written testimony to back itself up!
Praise Jesus!!
I Corinthians 1:

25 Because the foolishness of God
is wiser than men; and the weakness
of God is stronger than men.
26 For ye see your calling, brethren,
how that not many wise men
after the flesh, not many mighty, not
many noble, are called:
27 But God hath chosen the foolish
things of the world to confound the
wise; and God hath chosen the weak
things of the world to confound the
things which are mighty;
28 And base things of the world,
and things which are despised, hath
God chosen, yea, and things which
are not, to bring to nought things
that are:
29 That no flesh should glory in his presence

truwired: we are to assume you are one of the foolish things? Or are you the weak or the base? Yes, I can see how you have evidence. Exactly which creation story from Genesis do you personally hold to? Hey, just askin’.

AriBenTZion Posted on January 30, 2011 at 2:50pm

A w, t h e l i t t l e J e w.

AriBenTZion: aww the little hate monger. In any discussion, throw in a little anti-Semitism just to sweeten the mix.

CottonMPG Posted on January 30, 2011 at 12:51am

I feel sorry for those who are so determined to cling to this evolutionary theory. It flies in the face of true science. The only observable changes in living creatures have to do with a loss of genetic material and this could only result in devolution and/or adaptation.
To clarify, you must start with a living creature first, then you can, through natural or human directed selection, eliminate unwanted characteristics by only allowing certain individuals to live and reproduce. Bacteria and viruses adapt similarly to our own immune systems. They appear different but they are still bacteria or viruses, they don’t turn into amoeba. A wolf hound is still a domesticated wolf as is a dachshund. They are simply adapted, through intentional selection to a specific purpose. The second law of thermodynamics states that all things are moving from order to disorder. This is true science and is readily observable all day every day. This is also in direct opposition to the idea of evolution. Oh and by the way, who do you think would be more highly evolved of all the races if evolution were true? Ask Darwin. He had very definite ideas on the matter. The Bible teaches that God created two human beings in His image and that all the races of the world are descended from them.

CottonMPG: I would, but hate to tell you dude, Darwin is dead. Always helpful to interject a tiny bit of racism in there too isn’t it. A good discussion should be like punch right? Or meatloaf. Or maybe somebody should punch you for being a meatloaf.

Smokey_Bojangles Posted on January 29, 2011 at 9:22am

Why are there no talking apes?People who thought this way have caused over 100million deaths.Bill will meet his idols,Mao,Stalin,Hitler etc in Hell.

Smokey_Bojangles: Stop smoking that. Whatever it is, stop smokin’ it now. It’s made you stupid.

SND97 Posted on January 29, 2011 at 10:14am

I don’t care How, When, Where, What Time Frame, God created man and the heavens and the Earth and everything that is life. It’s called faith, sometime I think God simply looks at all of us and just scratches his head at our stupidity.

Read the very first verse in the old test about the waters, and then ask yourself one question, how did that verse written thousands of years ago possiblly know that the entire earth was once covered with water and then the land formed? Even Scientist admit that the Earth was in fact covered with water in it’s history, so how did that first explain that thousands of years ago before so called Science knew it?remember now, put con and science together and what do you get? Conscience

SND97: Go back and try to read that again. There is nothing said in the bible about the earth being covered with water. Just water dude. And no scientist says that the earth was covered with water. All or most land masses were at one time or another under water, but not at the same time. And frankly, science doesn’t know anything. It’s not a person. Yes, and put dipsy and doodle together and you get dipsydoodle or SND97. I see you point.

BRAVEHEART Posted on January 29, 2011 at 10:26am

Evolution is an extreme Fairy Tale just like 99% of the idealology that Liberals buy into. Once you buy into liberalism your capacity for accurate knowledge and competent understanding (discernment) is extremely diminished. These people become like Droids that can not function outside of a confined enviorment or equasion. They actually construct an artificial world that supplies the necessary parts and peices for their dogmatic liberal Socalist utopia.

Braveheart: Oh I’m so glad you’ve helped us to see the truth. Not like you crazy righties, who get the best news here at Blaze and then at WorldnetDaily and then Fox. Have I correctly covered your reading and watching list? I take it none of the above is giving any spelling lessons these days?

The only sad thing, is that these damn fools actually vote.

Can Spring Be Far?

Spring? Is anyone talking about spring yet?

Things have been decent here for some days. We are getting more snow next week and colder temperatures again, but frankly, we aren’t sure how bad.

It’s nothing, compared to the East. I sure do feel sorry for those poor folks. Well, sorry, but glad too. Glad it’s them and not us. Them and us. Comparisons are inevitable.

I haven’t been off the property for nearly a month now. It will be by next Thursday, which I am hoping will be a shopping day. The Contrarian has gotten out a couple of times and is out now, buying a few things to tide us over. We got blown out yesterday, since he didn’t quite make it out the driveway at the road. So we were officially stuck  for the first time this year. Not bad all told, usually we have had at least 3 or 4 by now.

***

One begins to wonder if we are on the cusp of something really big happening in the Middle East. Tunisia fell, and now Egypt is tottering. Not sure how that will play out, but it seems it’s either going to be a new government or a very ugly crackdown. Yemen is rumbling. No word yet if the Iranians have become emboldened again to try to break that regime.

Time will tell as they say. That’s a waste of words heh? Time doesn’t tell anything, and “they say” is just a cheap way of not researching to who actually said that. Anyway, the obvious is true. We will know more in the future. Like we would know less?

***

Political Irony has your late night humor. Given that there is NO football, humor is a necessity here. Grumpy husband alert.

***

Elizabeth Kaeton has a very important post on the proposed Rethug bill about non-funding of abortions. It re-writes what “rape” means, and thus seeks to limit abortions. It’s Machiavellian in its intent certainly. It hopefully will be opposed by all intelligent and compassionate persons.

***

David Frum has a short piece on why the GOP, and its apologists need to let go of Palin. The new ERW (extreme right-wing) claims she would be a nobody without the Left. Frum disagrees and the comments are rather good on this one.

***

Under the theory that everybody has a talent. Andrew Sullivan found a map of the US with notes on what each state excels at. Iowa is first in “sick days taken”. Go see what your state does best at.

***

If I got this straight: We are sort of for people throwing off the chains of dictatorship and deciding their own fate. Some would argue that this is what is happening in Egypt. John Bolton was always a point man for Dubya’s “nation” building theories, always decrying “human rights violations”. But now Bolton backs Mubarak because he fears the Muslim Brotherhood may gain control in a democratic process. Sooo. What is this Muslim Brotherhood, and should we ignore our principles for expedience sake? The Brookings Institute explains the history of the Brotherhood and says the danger is not that great. One can see the predictable lines of debate on this one. Neo-cons versus rational people.

***

Gosh, what would the world be without hypocrisy? I mean, irony is one thing, but hypocrisy, it fairly makes life worth living. To be able to point someone out and know with deep satisfaction, that the person at the end of your finger is someone who fails to live by any standard they themselves set. It’s purely delicious, enough to make you happy for the rest of an entire day.

Ayn Rand, beloved of the cockadoodle-do right-wing teabaggers, is one such person.  Now, first let me say, that no teabagger probably ever heard of Ayn Rand before Beck or a colledge ejucated right-winger happened to remember reading her utterly forgettable tomb, Atlas Shrugged.

Rand, as you may remember ranted against the poor and most of the middle class as undeserving rabble, sucking the well-earned funds from the real people, the rich, who got to be rich because they were, well, just better in every way. Well, it turns out Rand, sank to the level of the much maligned masses: she drew both social security and medicare under another name, “Ann O’Conner”.

Paul Ryan, the GOP budget czar, credits her with being his guru. Rand, with two other women started American libertarianism. The other two women refused social security on principle.

***

What’s on the stove: burgers and fries and coleslaw. It’s Saturday! Drat, the spellchecker isn’t working so hope I spelt awflea gooder than useyul. :)

I Don’t Hafta, But I Am

You know, there is no good way to denote whistling is there on paper? As to the actual thing, I can do it a bit, but did you know that if you can’t sing in tune, you can’t whistle in tune either? That just seems wrong.

Don’t know why I thought of that.

I wrote a piece over at Walking in the Shadows, so I’m not feeling extra wordy over here. That means I’ll write less than 1000 w o r d s here. Are you happy about that?

Yesterday, I mentioned that Jon Stewart had skewered Foxless Noise about Megan Kelly’s claim that they didn’t use the Nazi thing to denigrate people. He did that by simply using clips from their own shows–Beck, O’Reilly, and whoa, even Megan herself was present to two such over-the-top rhetoric.

Billo got all hot and bothered, and went about the nonsense of “justifying” his Nazi reference regards Huff Po. So Jon was forced to explain to BilboBuggins that that wasn’t the point. Explaining was not a defense to “we never do that!” And just to make it even clearer, Stewart threw in two more instances wherein the Bloviator had used Nazi references to put down people.

Billy, you can’t compete against the master. Stop trying! (Go the The Daily Show to see the video of last nights show!)

***

Speaking of which, I continue to wonder. When Foxy and all the other air-headed right-wing wonkos lie, where do they think that print and video goes? Do they really think it’s out of sight, out of existence? The fact that their ignoramus  listeners wouldn’t bother to check is one thing, but surely they should realize that the smarty left will look up the archives. Archives–add that word in your dictionary Foxy Morons.

***

Instead of fixing the problem, the Senate decided it was easier to be dysfunctional. No changes in the filibuster rules. I don’t get these fools. But then again, maybe I do: they are fools.

***

I guess it goes without saying that American foreign policy ain’t quite right, when you feel restricted from supporting democratic uprisings because it interferes with our “security” interests. Why is America so often supporting dictators in the name of security? Experts claim the US cannot afford to be on the wrong side again, supporting a repressive regime.

***

Don’t know about you, but I loves me some birthers. I mean, I wish they would have a convention, because it would be grand to go and view 13 crazy people in one room. Imagine the costuming? Imagine the signs? Imagine the scary makeup?

The Blaze, that scion of rag “reporting” has a piece on the subject, and Hawaii’s innovative way to garner a few bucks from the tried and true loonies who pester then   for copies of the President’s birth certificate.

The Blaze specializes in non-stories, (three paragraphs and 4 pictures) designed to catch the attention of the rabble on the extreme right, so they can rant about how their lives are being ruined by whatever annoys their beer-swilled minds. The comments of course are the point.

BMartin1776 had this to say:

 I hope at least half the states pass that eligibility law for 2012 b/c Barry Dunham, Soetoro, Obama or whatever his name is will be screwed.

Taguoshi added:

B.O. is going to be remembered as the bowing President without a birth certificate, Now, isn’t that just so special?

Peaceuntoyou suggests it all started with a plan from his “radical mom”:

what criminals. You know wish I could rember (sic)  it all. But I truely  (sic)remember there was something in the news years ago about his radical mom and how she said He was going to be the president of the United States. She was really mad I remember. Have to try to do old research unless someone remembers to.

SMYFP thinks its odd the paper boy doesn’t come forward:

It is convenient that no more than a handful of people have come forward remembering “good ole barry” Everybody else in america that was born a citizen here in 1961 will have literally hundreds of people that can remember their life. How is it that no one knew him before? Coincidence? enquiring minds want to know!

And this last from Greensicko who is very sure:

For 100 bucks you will find out Obama is not the first black president, he (sic) listed as WHITE.

There you have it from the ideologically and intellectually deformed.

The Country is safe when we know where they are.

Let’s hear it for Friday!

Me Tarzan, You Jane, Nobody Knows What the Chimp Thought

We are a dualist species. We think of most everything in either or, left or right, up or down, in or out. You get the drift.

We are red state, blue state, we are elites, average joes, we are adventurous or skittish. We define binarily, we do it all the time.

Mostly we define us, them. We’ve always done this, in fact those in the know claim they know of no society or people who doesn’t have some concept of themselves versus others.

So, are we to throw up our hands and just give up and in? Are we doomed to any real concept of unity? Are we perpetually at some level of war with anyone not like us?

No. At least so says Erich S. Gruen, in a new book called, Rethinking the Other in Antiquity. Gruen posits that we make that a choice, it’s not an imperative. Basically, he looks at ancient groups and teases out the nuances of their relationships with others. While superficially, they may appear us-them, in practicality such was not really the case.

While perhaps not totally convincing, Gruen at least points to the fact that we are not in a hopeless adversarial situation,  never to be solved. In a world increasingly divided, this is good news.

***

If you are just dying to engage in some deep philosophical thought, (and who isn’t), then pop on over to read about morality and the good life. Can you achieve happiness without living morally? Is morality a virtue for its own sake? Should it be? Now that you are thoroughly all jiggly with desire to know more, go on, get over to read more! (Whew, now I feel like I’ve done my moral duty in presenting you some uplifting material.)

***

Good grief, the most funny stuff seems to be coming from Iowa these days. You better sit down for this one. It seems Sharron Angle, (remember her?) was in Des Moines, IA, no doubt for some teabaggery thing. She admits she’s thinking of running for President! Hip, hip, Hurray! Now just think. The handlers/caretakers of Bachmann, Palin and Angle gather the ladies together for a good old DEBATE. Can you just imagine the fun? Oh Please God, Oh Please!

***

Foxy Noise should leave well enough alone. Some days ago, that idiot Megan Kelly chastised a guest for claiming that Fox regularly used Nazi references to people they don’t like. Kelly said this was untrue, she watches all the shows and Fox NEVER does such a thing.

Of course this was too much for Jon Stewart, who a couple of days ago ran a montage of Fox “Nazi references, including Beck of course, but also O’Reilly. Well Billo couldn’t resist defending himself. You can read it at Crooks and Liars. Somehow, his calling Huff Po Nazis is not the same as some congressman calling the GOP Nazis. Billo—you are an idiot.

***

It wasn’t that long ago. Just a couple of years. Remember? Our foreign policy was in shambles. Bush’s cowboy diplomacy had angered most of the world. He epitomized the idea of “ugly American” and strutted around like we had no need of allies. Nobody could touch our stuff.

Yes, well it seems that most of the GOP potential presidential candidates continue in the same vein. American Exceptionalism continues to rear its ugly head.

This idea that we are the greatest, the best, the God-ordained perfection in the world is troubling. As we become more and more a global economy, and our political and security needs are necessarily entwined, boasting about our superiority is decidedly a stupid thing to do.

But morons like Palin, DeMint and others seem determined to alienate everyone. What’s worse, it’s being tied to a  religious element that is even more unsavory. A blatantly revisionist history, a call for a spiritual renew all seem aimed at reclaiming our rightful place as God’s favored.

To be so blind and obtuse as to not see how ugly this appears to the rest of the world is tragic. To not realize that every country’s people like to think well of their own homeland is short-sighted in the extreme.

Worse yet, these folks are starting to have a negative and embarrassing influence within other countries as they support groups and leaders who are properly Christian, as they see it, although they may be acting in decidedly unChristian ways.

It’s a long article at AlterNet, but well worth your read. (The Family raises its ugly head again.)

***

I admit to a good deal of ignorance. I’m totally ignorant why Tunisia is up in arms. Ditto for Egypt. I think I’m supposed to be for the Tunisian uprising, but not so about the Egyptian. Anybody want to explain it in a nutshell? I’m not so much a follower of international news. My bad.

***

No one mentioned it. But I saw it. I figured John (Eye’s the SPEAKER!) Boehner was most aware that he was on camera during the SOTU. And it put him in a conundrum of sorts. I mean President Obama kept saying things that were universally good, and it would not look good to not applaud.

So John seemed, a good deal of the time, trapped into half-hearted clapping that he really didn’t want to do, but thought would look bad if he didn’t. Then there were other times that his face looked for all the world like he’d been chewing a lemon. How to keep a calm face when he desperately wanted to yell in the best GOP wacko form: “YOU LIE.”

I thought it was funny at least.

I’ve Found My First Alien!

If you see this woman (boy I know it’s a stretch), run, run, run for the hills. Michele (you like me, you really like me!) Bachmann is an alien. The TV show “V” is no lie.

Suddenly a pall came over Iowa, and I knew it had reached us. The dingbat from Minna-SO-ta, arrived in Iowa and ‘splained to us heathens the real news about our hiss-tor-ee.

You see, contrary to what you might have learned in high school, or perchance in undergrad school, slavery ended with the Founding Fathers. Yes, yes, surprised aren’t you? Wondering about that 3/5 clause? Trying to figure out what that dang Civil War was all about?

Michele, my ding-dong bell, tells us that the “founding fathers worked tirelessly, until slavery was no more”.

“It didn’t matter whether they descended from known royalty or are of a higher class or a lower class. It made no difference. Once you got here, we were all the same. Isn’t that remarkable? It is absolutely remarkable.”

Yes, and did you know this:

John Quincy Adams worked tirelessly, until slavery was no more too.” Except that JQA died like 15 years before the Emancipation Proclamation. Of which there was no need in the first place, since the FF had already eradicated it.

Yes. Silly old us. Dumb us.

Ms. Bachmann, while missing some of the finer points about black history in this country, also missed a few points about the early colonies. Last time I checked, Catholics, Jews, and Quakers, among others who were not of the Puritan persuasion, were not allowed to own property, run for office, and were often run out of the colony, if not hung. But “we were all the same.”

What is even more frightening, is that tons of the extremist right have risen up on their haunches to defend her, claiming her take is correct. Yes, these history and constitutional experts are just plain tired of black folk trying to gain all the sympathy. When will they stop complaining?

I guess Washington and Jefferson, just “sorta owned slaves” for their own good. There is a claim that Washington’s false teeth were taken from his slaves, and worse yet that James Monroe had 30 of his slaves executed for attempted escape.

I rather suspect that Ms. Nuttery has gotten her history from David (historian is a pretty word, I think I’ll call myself one) Barton, the religious ed teacher who now claims to know more about the history of our foundation than do legitimate scholars.

Barton is noted for quote mining letters written by various people in the original colonies all to prove that the country was founded on Judeo-Christian principles, with a presumption that we were a Christian nation. What Barton does is take a scrap of truth and try to create an entire garment from it.

That’s where Glenn Beck got his novel and utterly disgusting “defense of the 3/5 clause.” Beck ingeniously claims that the 3/5 clause was a brilliant “first move to end slavery”

“. . .unless you know why they put that in there. They put that in there because if slaves in the South were counted as full human beings, they could never abolish slavery. They would never be able to do it. It was a time bomb.”

Except this is totally wrong. If the founders had wanted to end slavery, then giving them no value would have been the best they could do. The South wanted them counted 100% so they would have greater representation in Congress. Giving them 3/5 only encouraged them to import more slaves, thus to up their control, and thus ensuring that the institution would be retained.

This is revisionist history at it’s best/worst depending on which side you are on. Sadly, one has only to go to The Blaze.com to see the fruits. I have quoted here, commentors there who said exactly what is quoted here by Bachmann and Beck. These people find what they want to hear, they are never going to study any deeper, and frankly, they’ve been taught by Beck et al to distrust “real” scholars as nothing but eastern  liberal elites.

Of course it does no good to try to explain any different. Beck and company play to fear and gin up their troops to hate all the appropriate people: elites, liberals, blacks, Muslims, immigrants, and Democrats in mass.

Meanwhile Beck whistles a happy tune on his way to the bank to deposit more of his newly gained fortune.

Bachmann? It’s always hard to tell. Is she willing a willing shill or a duped dope? I’m not sure we will ever know.

Back at the ranch: The GOP is none too pleased with bobble head’s “tea party” reply to the SOTU. It was, so I’m told, BORING. Worse it conflicted with their boy Ryan’s equally boring response. You can get a fact check of her “facts” here, if you wish, but you can be assured she didn’t get many fact right. One might conclude that she knowingly falsified her claims.

If you missed it, Ryan basically hoped you had a short memory by claiming that “we are all responsible for the state of our deficit” since both sides did awful things. Forgetting I guess that under Clinton we had a surplus and after tax cuts for the rich, two wars unfunded, and a patient’s prescription bill that costs billions and was also not paid for, added to no regulation of banking, we tanked.

He then went on to basically say Obama was destroying America, and Republicans would set things right, without any specifics at all. Just a lot of veiled threats that if we don’t give the power to them, bad things will happen to your kids.

So much for “GOP Policy.”

And the beat goes on.

Fall to Grace

First my thanks to the Hatchette Book Group and Sarah Reck specifically, for offering this selection for my review. I am indebted to them for their many kindnesses over the last year or so.

Jay Bakker’s Fall to Grace: A Revolution of God, Self and Society, is something of a surprise to me. Bakker, as you might guess, or know, is the son of Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker, dis-graced (as Bakker puts it) leaders of the PTL club. Jim Bakker as you recall, went to prison and sadly Tammy Faye died not long ago from cancer.

Jay Bakker, candidly reviews his life, its ups and downs. Predictably he, as a young child, had a ball being in a famous and wealthy family. As the family’s fortunes fell, so did his own, and he went the route of many kids in his position: drugs and alcohol. Also, as you might suspect, his hold on faith broke as well.

Like many, Bakker struggled with how he could redeem him life after years of bad choices and bad living. It did not happen over night, but finally he “heard” the words of a friend who patiently stuck with him, repeating again and again, that God’s love never wavered. After long arguments, night after night, often in a fog of alcohol, Jay finally fell to Grace.

And grace is what Jay Bakker preaches, and what he believes with all his heart. He carefully explains the concept to those who may be unaware, largely through the voice of Saint Paul in Galatians, his admitted hero.

 Jay was undoubtedly brought up in a fundamentalist mind-set, but as regards the bible, he has grown from that limited view, into a more mature and nuanced understanding. He notes that not all of Paul’s letters may actually be written by Paul, and he notes the work of Robert Wright’s,  The Evolution of God, as well as the work of Karen Armstrong, and Henri M. Nouwen.

Those who might shy away from the book on the grounds that it is but another fundamentalist tract, need not worry. I found little in the book that I, as a fairly liberal/progressive Christian, would quarrel with.

What Bakker sets out to do, is to show others how they, steeped in their own screwed up lives, can find a way out of the wilderness through the offering of God’s unlimited grace. Grace, as he explains, is God’s offering of favor to us, completely unmerited by anything we have done or could do.

It is release from the Law, the Law that Paul spoke of as regards the Torah, but also the Law that we impose today in the manner of morals and accepted behavior in a modern world. We don’t have to live up to some mark, God is always offering us the grace of  forgiveness and favor.

When one comes to this belief, then and only then, Jay argues, one can by choice begin to see a better way of living, one that is not self destructive  and hurtful to others. We can begin to value ourselves as we now realize God values us. And that is the first step. Once we value ourselves we automatically want to do those things that enhance our newfound goodness as humans.

This leads, as we study Jesus’ words and Paul’s, to a realization that love is the controlling factor in the world. It is the aim of our lives, to love and to continue to grow in love, thereby squeezing out the fears, the angers, the greed, and jealousies we are all too prone to.

When love is freely given, not attached to our hope that it will gain us anything (salvation), then we begin to love the doing of things for others more than any other thing. We embody God’s grace, and offer it to others.

This is the way we change hearts and minds, this is the way we build the kingdom.

Perhaps in the most stunning fundamentalist reversal, Bakker has been able to find his way through the ugliness of homosexual bullying that is so prevalent in the fundamentalist world. He has correctly (in my analysis) understood the flimsy “biblical evidence” against homosexuality and come out the other side as a clear and loud voice supporting the gay community.

He, today, preaches to those he calls the freaks and geeks, the unlikely and the unwanted of society. I suspect he brings both comfort and joy to their lives.

While the experienced reading and thinking liberal Christian will not find much new here, those new to faith, or those who are outsiders and wonder if the church has a place for them, will find a welcoming spirit and reason for joy.