Daily Gnuz

Evangelical Christians’ reactions/non-reactions to Charlottesville, via The Christian Post:

First, there are actually a couple of articles where pastors, etal, are finally allowing their collective conscience to break through. Here’s one, and here’s another

Of course, those voices are few, and they’ve got competition, i.e.:

Here’s an opinion piece from “guest contributor” Brad Huddleston, the title of which I thought promising, until I actually read it: “Charlottesville: Jesus Commands Us to ‘Tell The Truth’, So Why Aren’t We?” A few excerpts:

“I was in Charlottesville, Virginia, during the riots and what I observed and what I saw in the media’s coverage are, for the most part, two very different narratives.

Although the atmosphere was volatile everywhere I walked, I have to believe that it was Sovereignty that kept me away from the physical confrontations. I did, however, observe verbal ones. I saw various white supremacist groups filled with hate and evil intentions. They were armed with weapons and ready for a fight. I also watched members of Black Lives Matter as well as Communists/Marxists, carrying their hammer and sickle flags. They were also filled with hate and evil intentions.”

Sounds to me as though it wasn’t “Sovereignty” that kept him away from the physical confrontations, it was his own cowardice. So all he did was “observe” certain things, verbal interactions, certain flags, and interpret them in the light of his own prejudices [“during the RIOTS”.]  How dare he automatically credit BLM with “evil intentions”, when they were protesting against NAZIS and WHITE SUPREMACISTS! And if BLM were involved in extremely heated arguments defending their right to exist as equals in the face of horrifying insults, threats, violence, etc., who would blame them for hating everything that these armed, sometimes uniformed, Confederate-and-Nazi-flag-waving un-American RACISTS do, say, and stand for. The hammer-and-sickle flag-waving “Communists/Marxists”? The author ‘identifies’ them in a later section as the Antifa. I call bullshit. Apparently the author was so terrified he couldn’t even verify what these people were marching for/against.

“The media was slamming the various white supremacist groups (and they should). But I immediately noticed something very perplexing. Very little if any coverage was being given to the various Communist and Marxist groups and violent Black Lives Matter and Antifa activists. It was as if the white supremacists were the only ones who were filled with hate. I kept waiting and waiting for someone to show images of the reality that we, who were actually there, observed.”


“Let’s never forget that the Communists and Marxists have killed far more people than Hitler. Nevertheless, they are all equal in their evil, and all should be equally condemned. If they are participating in the same riot, they should share the same headline. Because white supremacists’ numbers are small, we should be far more concerned about their Marxist and their Socialist cousins. Our American universities have been cranking them out for years, and we’re now seeing the results.

Both extremes were represented in Charlottesville on that scary day. To give the extreme left a pass, and even affirm them, would make Hitler proud.”

I can’t even comment, I’m so gobsmacked by this. But I would like to ask Mr. Huddleston if any of the BLM or Antifa drove a car at speed into a crowd of human beings, killing one and injuring more than a dozen others; and how many BLM or Antifa were “ARMED WITH WEAPONS and ready to fight” as the Nazi/KKK and white supremacist pseudomilitary actually were?

And then we have conservative black pastors and others defending trump’s abhorrent remarks in “Black Christian Leaders Detest Claim That Trump Is the ‘Driver’ of Racial Division in America.” Here’s just one little slice of this twisted, surreal pie:

“Corrogan Vaughn, a political activist who ran against Democrat Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland in the 2016 election, argued that those in the media who blame Trump for the racial tension in the United States are trying to turn Trump into a “villain.”

“Don’t make our commander in chief a villain when in actuality it is more the villainess of the media in terms of making something where nothing is,” Vaughn stated.

Oh, joy, keep screaming that the “media” is to blame, and this imaginary ‘alt-left’, ffs – like who’re you gonna believe, trump and the evangelicals, or your lying eyes?

For more, here’s the Christian Post’s Political page. Have fun.

This is our Open Thread – enjoy!

Sunday Roast: Can’t stop watching…


I admit it:  I can’t get enough of Drumpf getting the shit startled out of him when a protester made it past the security gates (although not on stage).  I wish I were more of a computer geek, so I could make a loop of the initial panicked grabbing of the podium, through the “I just want to go home” look when the secret service guys let him go back to inciting the crowd.

Drumpf was probably hoping they’d just rush him back onto the Drumpf Aeroplane, so he could he could have a bit of a crying jag — and then have his manservant bring him fresh drawers.  He talks tough, but I think he actually pissed himself in Dayton, OH.

You reap what you sow, you bombastic blibbering baboon.

This is our daily open thread — Watch it again!


The Watering Hole; Friday September 5 2014; Kochs, Fascism, and the Minimum Wage

Yesterdays Watering Hole post linked to a transcript of Mitch McConnell’s speech given at a June 2014 Koch Brothers-financed secret strategy conference of right wing financiers and various of their (present and future) bought-and-paid-for political errand boys. Today, news of another newly released audio from the same get-together, this one by Koch Industries vice president Richard Fink. The article briefly discusses Fink’s major premise:

After explaining that when he sees people on the streets, he tells them to “get off your ass and work hard like we did,” the man identified as Fink said that the culture of victimization is the ‘main recruitng ground for totalitarianism, for fascism, for conformism.” Raising the minimum wage, he claimed, would cost 500,000 people their jobs — a claim that has been disputed by some economists:

 FINK: We’re taking these 500,000 people that would’ve had a job and putting them unemployed, making dependence part of government programs, and destroying their opportunity for earned success. And so we see this as a very big part of recruitment in Germany in the twenties. When the Germans were crushed by World War I, the allies put a very strong settlement on that. They lost their meaning in life. And if you look at the rise and fall of the Third Reich … what happens is a fascist comes in and offers them an opportunity.
He added that similar patterns were seen in “Lenin and Stalin Russia” and Mao in China.”
In other words, raising the minimum wage for workers is . . . ummmm . . . a Nazi-Fascist-Marxist-Leninist-Communist-Maoist thingee!
Means I was dead wrong yesterday when I suggested that since, in Mussolini’s words, “Fascism . . . is the merger of state and corporate power”, therefore the Koch-financed “merger” of corporate money/power with Wingnut-government politics, including the purchase of Wingnut politicians by billionaires, heralds the advance toward an American-style Fascism, effectively to become the governing anti-common man policy of the emerging Oligarchy.
And to think that all along it’s exactly the opposite, that Fascism mainly happens after the minimum wage is raised! Wow. My bad! Learn something new and different every day, I guess.
If in the next life I should happen to run across my Swedish immigrant grandparents somewhere out there in the ether, rest assured I’m going to chew them out BIG TIME for leaving good old Socialist Sweden behind and moving to THIS, The Land Of The Nutcase Screwball!

The Watering Hole: June 8 — Paper ballots, please.

I thought it might be a good idea to go back to a post by nwmuse in 2008, and pull out a video series of an interview of Stephen Spoonamore by Velvet Revolution (about half an hour to watch the videos), regarding the sorry-assed Diebold voting machines some states are using in our elections.

nwmuse said it better than I can:

Every American who cares about  living in an actual democracy, not just the illusion of a democracy, with full, fair, and transparent elections, should watch these videos. This man [Spoonamore] is a cyber security expert, and he is also a longtime conservative Republican. He is clanging the warning bells, and explaining with absolute clarity and detail, that our elections ARE being stolen, and warning that we must do something to stop it.

Oh look, it’s four years later, and we’re still using the same machines, and we are no closer to any sort of paper trail or reliable auditing.  Like Spoonamore says, these machines are designed perfectly for stealing elections, while letting the people think we still have a vote.

Our representative democracy is in jeopardy, if it’s not dead already — and whether or not it means a damn thing — paper ballots, please.

This is our daily open thread — Thoughts?

The Watering Hole December 13th, 2011 Vulnerability

Breaking News:

A gun and grenade attack in the centre of the Belgian city of Liege has killed at least two people and wounded 47 including a toddler, media say.

Witnesses say a man in his 40s threw grenades at a bus stop in Place Saint Lambert, a busy square. At least two other men are thought to be involved.

Reports say one of the attackers is among the dead. Local media say another has been detained, while a third is involved in a stand-off with police. (more)


An unidentified Scrooge poisoned visitors to two of Berlin’s popular Christmas markets with an offer of tiny bottles of liquor that were laced with vomit-inducing chemicals, police said Friday.

The suspect, who was in his mid-40s, hit two of the traditional holiday fairs Thursday and at the first, spoke to two foreign students, a man and a woman in their mid-20s, in English.(more)

No so recent:

At 9.15am on Friday 4 November, two men stormed into a building society in the east German town of Eisenach. One was wearing a black balaclava, the other a gorilla mask. Both had guns. They demanded money, punching a bank teller before grabbing €70,000 (£60,000) from the safe and hopping on to bicycles they had propped up outside. They knew what they were doing – it was their 14th bank robbery in 12 years.(more)

In a Democracy a lunatics like the Norway killer Breivik and the perps in the first story today will always find an opportunity to do damage, as will the psycho cowards like in case two.

Case three, however, shows some significant difference. The victims of the neonazis were law-abiding, hard working small business owners. As they were of Turkish and Greek descent, police immediately took decisive steps to solve the crimes. All the victim’s family members were thoroughly interrogated and checked for any criminal or drug contacts in their past, family feuds were on top of the list as well. “You know how they are, don’t you”. “All criminals”.”Not like us.” “They kill off each other”. The killings were dubbed “Doner killings” named after the popular Turkish fast food.

Well it wasn’t “Doners” that were murdered, it was fellow human beings. And they were murdered by some of “us”. “You know how we are”. “All Nazis”. “We kill those who are different”. This time we thoroughly earn the badge. Alas, again.

This the Daily Open Thread. Really.

If You Think What’s Happening In Wisconsin Is Bad…

… wait until you take a look at the bill the Republican majority in Michigan is poised to ‘shove down’ the public’s throat

Unions and others oppose the legislation because it would give broad new powers to emergency financial managers, who are appointed by the state treasurer. Those powers include the ability to nullify collective bargained agreements, imposition of new agreements for those bargaining units which will have effect for as much as five years after the EMF leaves office and the ability for the manager to dissolve local governing bodies of schools and cities. The EMF would also have the power to eliminate any local ordinance or law he or she decides to eliminate.

(emphasis mine)

Good Lord… would this not establish a virtual Republican dictatorship in perpetuity, as long as Republicans can stay in office? Why even bother to hold local elections anymore, if a handful of ’emergency financial managers’ answering only to the State Treasurer have nearly unlimited power to dissolve all and any local governments, eliminate any law or ordinance, and effectively break any contract they choose?

At this time the bill has been passed in both chambers of the Michigan Legislature and will assuredly be signed by Governor Rick Snyder as fast as possible, after some minor reconciliation… such as, whether a human being must declare a state of financial emergency, or can a CORPORATION or BUSINESS be vested with this power?

Yes, you read that right… depending on what Republican legislators decide amongst themselves, a CORPORATION may soon have the power to dissolve any local government in Michigan they deem to be in a ‘state of financial crisis’, send ALL locally elected officials packing, and install their own administrators in perpetuity, and all with the Governor’s blessing. No doubt, minority Dems will have NO SAY in the final decision.

Let the voiding and nullifications begin!

So much for Republicans and their endless shrieking about the ‘rule of law’… I guess it just pertains to THEIR rule of law. The rest of us? Clearly… not so much.

I can’t imagine this will make it past judicial review, which is almost assuredly coming as we speak. And I am ASTONISHED at the degree of arrogance Republicans put on display when they try such a blatant power grab as this. I’m beginning to think the excesses of the Bush Administration were simply a dry run for what they intended all along and now we’re getting the full-blown production.

Here’s what the ever-articulate Rachel Maddow has to say about it…

The good people of Wisconsin are now working to recall eight Republican State Senators. You can learn more about the recall effort here and here, or even donate and/or volunteer.

It’s on and they don’t intend to quit coming at us.

They will only be satisfied with complete victory and perpetual Republican rule.

Time Warp: Don’t be a Sucker

This film was made by the US military in 1947, and deconstructs the social manipulation and division of the Nazis party in Germany.

Look familiar?  The tactics used by such groups as Fox News, FreedomWorks, and Americans For Progress, along with their Tea Party followers are eerily similar aren’t they?

There is nothing new under the sun.  After fighting World War II against the murderous fascists, are we now going to fall for these tactics ourselves?  Are WE the suckers now?

Stay tuned…

HT:  Commenter sc mom on ThinkProgress

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From the Old World: Concerns

From 1918 until 1933 Germany had a democratic constitution. It had very high standards when it came to personal liberties and free speech, even if the words were wielded to harm and ultimately destroy the first functioning Republic in Germany.

Enemies of any democratic order started to throw doubts on the legitimacy of the Government right at the beginning. Eschewing policy discussions, they used taunts, false allegations and ridicule to demean the Republic’s representatives, institutions and symbols, thus shattering the already weak support for the Republic. Add to that the economic woes of the 1930’s and you see the foundation for the dictatorship that followed and the loss of any civil liberties Germans has had before.

What I have seen in your blogs and newspapers lately leaves me concerned for the prospects of the Obama Presidency. It is not mainly the ever loonier ravings of the clueless. There are absolutely inane and insane claims out there, from the birth certificate to the death panels to the indoctrination of your children. Some of the screaming mob of the right are hardly eloquent enough to order a one course meal in one sentence. Some are more than a few cards shy of a full deck, like Glenn Beck or Ann Coulter. Their pathetic appearances tend to make us cringe or laugh or both. However, we should never underestimate the power of their vile propaganda. Grain by grain the very fabric of your President’s standing will erode. All criticism from the right aims at discrediting the person and not his policies, thereby destroying the trust in  the office of President.

What concerns me most is the institutionalized disrespect for your President. The heckling during President Obama’s speech is only one indication for that. Officials from Congressmen to school district supervisors are working hard to show that they neither respect Barack Obama as a President nor respect him as a man. They pick up the blathering of the crazies and disguise it in a more acceptable language to be made more palatable for the middle classes.

Let us not, due to intellectual disdain for the clearly anti-intellectual, underestimate the danger they pose. Many German intellectuals did it during the Weimar Republic and paid a very high price for it.

Just sayin’.

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The Watering Hole: July 21 – Hermínio da Palma Inácio

Hermínio da Palma Inácio

Hermínio da Palma Inácio

Hermínio da Palma Inácio  was the leader of the first hijacking of a commercial aircraft. On the 10th of November 1961, five man and one woman boarded the TAP Super-Constellation called Mouzinho de Albuquerque carrying in their hand luggage 100 000 pamphlets protesting against the Portuguese dictator Oliveira Salazar and urging the people to rise for democracy. Half an hour after take-off, Palma Inácio stormed in to the cockpit and with a revolver threatened the flight crew to follow his orders.

As the flight continued to Lisbon the crew told that there wasn’t enough fuel to return to Morocco, but Palma Inácio was an experience aircraft mechanic and had a license for commercial flight, so he checked the records and confirmed that the plane had been fueled in Casablanca. When arriving to Portela Airport, permission was asked to land, and just before touchdown, the pilot initiated a go-around at low altitude. The plane was depressurized and by the emergency windows the leaflets were thrown over Lisbon and Faro.

He then allowed the plane to return to Morocco, apologized to the passengers, presented all the ladies onboard with a rose, and then vanished.

Hermínio da Palma Inácio died on July 14th, 2009.

Bailing on the Bailout

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The following is a comment by John Smith in response to this article on Bush’s Give Us $700 Billion Dollars Unfettered By Any Oversight Whatsoever Wall Street bailout.

Dear Member of Congress:

You are being asked to assign unprecedented powers to an unelected, and unaccountable former Wall Street banker, under the guise of bringing stability to the markets and solvency to our banking system. With one hastily thrown together vote, you are going to create the most powerful human being in world history – Henry Paulson.

This is being done for the purposes of fixing a “crisis” that has suddenly, in the last hour, been presented to Congressional leaders. This act would remove the constitutionally mandated powers of regulation of the money supply, and the value thereof, from Congress and give it to an unelected member of the President’s cabinet. According to the act, this person would be above judicial review, and be allowed a $700,000,000,000 revolving line of credit to print money on behalf of the United States government. That is more power than anyone has ever had – anyone. Caesar did not have this power.

This should sound eerily familiar.

In March of 1933, after the “crisis” of the Reichstag Fire, newly named Chancellor of Germany, Adolf Hitler, petitioned the German Reichstag to give him plenary powers over the affairs of German government. The Reichstag transferred its power, on an emergency basis, to the Cabinet of Germany for a period of four years, and this was called “The Enabling Act”. This was to deal with the perceived “crisis” of Communists within the German government, when the “crisis” was never fully substantiated. It is believed by most historians that the Reichstag Fire was a deliberate act to coax the Reichstag into giving up its power.

That history did not end well.

You are being goaded into giving Henry Paulson plenary powers over the economy and government spending, money supply, and value of that money. Those powers belong to you, held in trust for the citizens of the United States. Our Founders gave you those powers TO PREVENT THE VERY SCENARIO THAT SECRETARY PAULSON HAS PRESENTED TO YOU.

You are being manipulated.

Continue reading

From Worse to Worser

Here’s today’s collection of craziness from around the Internets.

McCain’s plan for healthcare? Make sure you don’t have any. No healthcare, no problemo, right? Well, you can have it if you can afford to pay for it on your own, because your employer will probably no longer be doing so (if you’re lucky enough to have an employer and you’re further lucky enough that your employer offers it!)

Mark Kleiman and Steve Benen take on McCain’s lack of an economic policy. Of course, McCain’s “plan” will be touted throughout the right-wing blogs and by the talking heads ad nauseum. (Oh, for another “Appeasement” moment! I especially loathe that smug, lying Brad Blakeman on MSNBC’s Verdict.)

Who killed the electric car? Why, GM did. And now, they are planning to cut thousands of white collar jobs and debating whether to sell more of their brands or completely shut down production. Apparently, June saw GM’s sales drop to the lowest in 15 years. Imagine if it that one millionth electric car sold had been a GM instead of a Toyota. Further imagine all the downstream jobs that might have been created in every area of parts, to manufacturing, to distribution. Nah, don’t. It will just make you cry.

Did you see Dana Milbank freak out over the economy?

What about those polls? They suck! First, there’s the pet owners choosing McCain over “petless” Obama because McCain owns pets. And then there is this lunacy: eight out of 10 people say supporting U.S. policies around the world is seen as an act of patriotism, BUT, protesting U.S. policies you oppose is also patriotic, according to two-thirds of those polled. HUH?

Oh, and six in 10 see wearing a pledge flag indicates that a person is patriotic.

McCain continues to play funny with the money.

What’s Homeland Security doing to make flying a further nightmare safer? Well, first, there is the Introduction of “behavior detection” technology at major US airports where you can be arrested if you act in a way that “might distract or inhibit a screener from effectively performing his or her duties.” Oh, and there’s that little added bonus of a $1500.00 fine.

But, wait, there’s more! Travelers, prepare to be tortured!

Now, usually I wouldn’t be one to link to the Washington Times but I cannot recall seeing something as chilling as this:

A senior government official with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has expressed great interest in a so-called safety bracelet that would serve as a stun device, similar to that of a police Taser®. According to this promotional video found at the Lamperd Less Lethal website, the bracelet would be worn by all airline passengers.

This bracelet would:

  • take the place of an airline boarding pass
  • contain personal information about the traveler
  • be able to monitor the whereabouts of each passenger and his/her luggage
  • shock the wearer on command, completely immobilizing him/her for several minutes

The Electronic ID Bracelet, as it’s referred to as, would be worn by every traveler “until they disembark the flight at their destination.” Yes, you read that correctly. Every airline passenger would be tracked by a government-funded GPS, containing personal, private and confidential information, and that it would shock the customer worse than an electronic dog collar if he/she got out of line?

This makes RFID seem like child’s play!

Are you scared yet?

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