Questioning assumptions, left and right - We lead off with a pair of recent books, one striving desperately to undermine our confidence, and the other trying just as hard to snap us out of our fu...
23 hours ago
Prince of Darkness to Sue Boehner for Defamation!
Gates of Hell (AP)
Lee Atwater, Chief Legal Officer for Lucifer, Scratch, Mephistopheles, Diabolus and Associates has just confirmed that the Prince of Darkness will indeed be suing former Speaker of the House John Boehner in the State of Ohio for Defamation.
"You learn to tolerate a whole lot of bad press on our line of work, but enough is enough" Mr. Atwater said reading from a prepared statement.
"We don't mind our names being dragged through the mud whenever there is a natural disaster, act of terrorism, or pointless loss of life on a massive scale just like what the previous Republican Administration gleefully delivered in Iraq and Afghanistan."
"Or even when a Former G.O.P. Speaker of the House turns out to be a child-molesting waste of flesh from way way back. That stuff all comes with the territory and we accept it. But getting characterized as being as low as Ted Cruz is a horse of a different color as far as we are concerned."
"Therefore we will be seeking the souls of both Mr. Boehner and Mr. Cheney (if he ever had one,) as direct compensation for being slanderously compared to the likes of Mr. Cruz in a public forum plus Rush Limbaugh's weight in gold bullion six times over in punitive damages."
"This demand automatically escalates to twenty Limbaugh weight units of fine gold should Ms. Failurina ever even once open her mouth in public again...."
“He’s not going to get the nomination, is he?” my wife asks anxiously as she gazes out of the kitchen window at the Bernie for President sign on our front lawn. No, I assure her, and he certainly won’t win Maryland on April 26. I’m voting for Bernie, and my wife may, too, but we’re doing so on the condition that we don’t think he will get the nomination. If he were poised to win, I don’t know whether I’d vote for him, because I fear he would be enormously vulnerable in a general election, even against Donald Trump or Ted Cruz, and I’m also not sure whether he is really ready for the job of president.
Why, then, vote for him at all? For me, it’s entirely about the issues he is raising, which I believe are important for the country’s future. Hillary Clinton and her various boosters in the media have made the argument that it’s impractical and even irresponsible to raise a demand like “Medicare for all” and “free public college” that could not possibly get through the next Congress, even if Democrats eke out a majority in the Senate. They presumably want a candidate to offer programs that could be the result of protracted negotiations between a Democratic president and Speaker Paul Ryan – like a two percent increase in infrastructure spending in exchange for a two percent reduction in Medicaid block grants. I disagree with this approach to politics.
What Sanders is proposing are political guideposts – ideals, if you like – according to which we can judge whether incremental reforms make sense. He is describing, whether you like them or not, objectives toward which we Americans should be aspiring. That’s a central activity in politics. Should it be confined to issues of Democracy or National Affairs? Or is it the kind of activity that is entirely appropriate for a nominating contest? Ronald Reagan and the conservatives thought so during the 1970s. And I think Democrats should be thinking this way now. So I applaud Bernie Sanders for not limiting his proposals to what might appear on a President’s often-ignored budget requests.
1. It is possible that a maximally great being (God) exists.
2. If it is possible that a maximally great being exists, then a maximally great being exists in some possible world.
3. If a maximally great being exists in some possible world, then it exists in every possible world.
4. If a maximally great being exists in every possible world, then it exists in the actual world.
5. Therefore, a maximally great being exists in the actual world.
6. Therefore, a maximally great being exists.
7. Therefore, God exists.
1. It is possible that a maximally great turd exists.
2. If it is possible that a maximally great turd exists, then a maximally great turd exists in some possible toilet.
3. If a maximally great turd exists in some possible toilet, then it exists in every possible toilet.
4. If a maximally great turd exists in every possible toilet, then it exists in your toilet.
5. Therefore, you need to flush your toilet.
Denny Hastert, the longest serving Republican Speaker of the House in history, second in the line to the presidency for eight years, was a serial pedophile who preyed on adolescent boys in his charge when he was a high school wrestling coach before entering electoral politics. What is worth remembering is that Hastert's improbable rise to the pinnacle of political power in Washington was a direct consequence of Republican party efforts to exploit and eventually criminalize Bill Clinton's extramarital sex life in order to overturn the 1992 and 1996 presidential elections. The chain of events is clear and straightforward. ...
Clinton's mind-bogglingly reckless and impulsive relationship with Lewinsky did come to light in early 1998. And after it became clear that the mere revelation was not enough to drive Clinton from office, congressional Republicans grew increasingly determined to find a way to fashion it into a crime which would justify Clinton's impeachment. (It is worth remembering that Clinton's vaunted second term approval ratings only truly hit their highs after the Lewinsky scandal broke.) And that they did. ...
What we would learn only later was that while driving the country toward impeachment Gingrich was himself carrying on an affair with a twenty-something congressional aide named Callista Bisek. Gingrich would later divorce his wife Marianne and marry Bisek - they remain married - just as he had years before married Marianne after carrying on an affair with her while married to his first wife. ...
Meanwhile, the Republican conference quickly settled on Rep. Bob Livingston as Speaker Designate for the next Congress and de facto leader as the House moved toward impeaching the president. But then news broke that Hustler's Larry Flynt (yes, it was all really weird) was preparing an article on affairs conducted by Livingston and other members of Congress. This pushed Livingston to admit his own history of adultery and then - the very day the House passed articles of impeachment - in effect resign the Speakership even though he had not actually become Speaker.
Livingston resigned from the House and was succeeded by David Vitter, who would continuing paying for sex with prostitutes after moving to Washington to take his seat in the House and later in the Senate. In 2007, Vitter's phone number emerged from a published list of the phone records of "DC Madam" Deborah Jeane Palfrey. Vitter nonetheless survived the prostitution scandal and was releected to the Senate in 2010. He failed in his bid to become Governor of Louisiana in 2015. Palfrey later committed suicide, aged 52, shortly after being convicted of money laundering tied to running the prostitution ring. ...
Various names were at first mooted to succeed Livingston. But consensus quickly formed around a man little known even in Washington, let alone in the nation at large: Dennis J. Hastert.
A former top staffer for a Republican legislator in Wisconsin suggested this week that GOP legislators were motivated to pass the state’s tough photo voter ID law because they believed it would help them at the ballot box, an account he expanded on in a Wednesday interview with TPM.
Todd Allbaugh, who served as chief of staff for state Sen. Dale Schultz (R) until the legislator retired in 2015, first made the claims in a Tuesday Facebook post that caught the attention of national voting rights experts.
In the post, Allbaugh recalled a 2011 caucus meeting of GOP state senators about the voter ID legislation. Allbaugh said during that meeting, some Republicans were “giddy” over the legislation's "ramifications" and the effect it would have on minority and young voters.
Once he left politics, Allbaugh opened a Madison, Wisconsin, coffee shop, where TPM reached him over the phone and he elaborated on those claims.
“It just really incensed me that they started talking about this particular bill, and one of the senators got up and said, ‘We really need to think about the ramifications on certain neighborhoods in Milwaukee and on our college campuses and what this could do for us,’” Allbaugh said. “The phrase ‘voter suppression’ was never used, but it was certainly clear what was meant.” ...
“It left a pit in my stomach to think that a party that I had worked for for years and years and years was literally talking and plotting to deny someone, a fellow citizen, their constitutional right,” Allbaugh said.