It’s Time for the Democrats to Fight Back
5/10 ~ Calling the deadly attack in Benghazi the “most egregious cover-up in American history,” Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) predicted Thursday that President Barack Obama will soon face calls of impeachment. “Of all the great cover-ups in history — the Pentagon papers, Iran-Contra, Watergate and all the rest of them, this is going to go down as the most serious, the most egregious cover-up in American history. People may be starting to use the I-word before too long.”
5/11 ~ Fox News’ Bill Hemmer to Mike Huckabee: What you’re describing, comparing [Benghazi] events of today to Watergate.
Mike Huckabee: I sure am Bill. [...] It was a planned orchestrated attack led by terrorists, terrorists, Bill. And this White House has to explain why it hasn’t owned up to that. Why it can’t say it. I think frankly, if this issue really gets traction that it deserves, and let it say it deserves, go back. Richard Nixon was forced out of office because he lied. And because he covered some stuff up. I will be blunt and tell you this. Nobody died in Watergate. We have people who are dead because of this. There are questions to be answered and Americans ought to demand to get answers.
5/12 ~ Conservative columnist George Will on Sunday suggested that President Barack Obama could be impeached after it was revealed that the IRS had targeted tea party groups.
5/13 The Salt Lake Tribune ~ Utah Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz has called the handling of Benghazi an “impeachable offense,” and that he had vowed to keep searching for answers from the White House.
5/15 ~ “My question isn’t about who’s going to resign — my question is who is going to jail over this scandal?” ~ John Boehner.
Let me see if I have this straight; The increasing chatter of the Republican party is trending towards IMPEACHING President Obama, over either Benghazi; a contrived “scandal” centered around a fraudulent e-mail, or one of two other stories, the IRS and AP outrages du jour, for which there is thus far ZERO evidence that the president was even aware of them until he was informed of them last week.
Where were these concerned “patriots” when Dick Cheney, George Bush and Donald Rumsfeld LIED us into a war that decimated our economy, our reputation and our hegemony? And Huckabilly says “nobody died” in Watergate. How about in Iraq? Oh, that was different, we had to rid Saddam of those weapons of mass destru… oh, never mind, that’s not an “impeachable offense.”
And John ‘Agent Orange’ Boehner wants to know “who’s going to jail.” How about looking over your shoulder? You’ve got plenty of corrupt crooks in your party to choose from, beginning with Darrell Issa, David Vitter and the petroleum industry’s own errand boy, James Inhofe. But no, Boehner’s job is to defend them, not incarcerate them.
And where the hell are the Democrats in all this? Bill Maher once said “I wish there was a little bit of George Bush in Barack Obama.” And I absolutely agree. The Republicans don’t shy away from getting down & dirty and knocking the Democrats off their heels. It’s high time they learn to fight fire with fire, and STOP being such weenies. If the GOP tell lies, as Huckabee did above (It was a planned orchestrated attack led by terrorists, terrorists, Bill. And this White House has to explain why it hasn’t owned up to that) then call them LIARS. Don’t say “We disagree,” or ignore them and hope they go away. The very reason they continue to lie and smear the facts, is because they know they can do so with impunity. In case you’ve missed it, this strategy has been working for them, and they aren’t going away.
And let this also be a lesson to Barack Obama and the Democratic leaders in the Senate; exonerating Cheney/Bush/Rumsfeld/Wolfowitz of criminal proceedings four years ago bought you exactly zero good will from the party of thugs and thieves. And now that they have the power, they’re using it to deny you your legacy, your agenda, and any hope for progress over the coming three years.
Good guys finish last. It’s time for the Democrats to grow a pair.
© 2013, agentleman.
Top 10 Myths about introverts
Myth #1 – Introverts don’t like to talk.
This is not true. Introverts just don’t talk unless they have something to say. They hate small talk. Get an introvert talking about something they are interested in, and they won’t shut up for days.
Myth #2 – Introverts are shy.
Shyness has nothing to do with being an Introvert. Introverts are not necessarily afraid of people. What they need is a reason to interact. They don’t interact for the sake of interacting. If you want to talk to an Introvert, just start talking. Don’t worry about being polite.
Myth #3 – Introverts are rude.
Introverts often don’t see a reason for beating around the bush with social pleasantries. They want everyone to just be real and honest. Unfortunately, this is not acceptable in most settings, so Introverts can feel a lot of pressure to fit in, which they find exhausting.
Myth #4 – Introverts don’t like people.
On the contrary, Introverts intensely value the few friends they have. They can count their close friends on one hand. If you are lucky enough for an introvert to consider you a friend, you probably have a loyal ally for life. Once you have earned their respect as being a person of substance, you’re in.
Myth #5 – Introverts don’t like to go out in public.
Nonsense. Introverts just don’t like to go out in public FOR AS LONG. They also like to avoid the complications that are involved in public activities. They take in data and experiences very quickly, and as a result, don’t need to be there for long to “get it.” They’re ready to go home, recharge, and process it all. In fact, recharging is absolutely crucial for Introverts.
Myth #6 – Introverts always want to be alone.
Introverts are perfectly comfortable with their own thoughts. They think a lot. They daydream. They like to have problems to work on, puzzles to solve. But they can also get incredibly lonely if they don’t have anyone to share their discoveries with. They crave an authentic and sincere connection with ONE PERSON at a time.
Myth #7 – Introverts are weird.
Introverts are often individualists. They don’t follow the crowd. They’d prefer to be valued for their novel ways of living. They think for themselves and because of that, they often challenge the norm. They don’t make most decisions based on what is popular or trendy.
Myth #8 – Introverts are aloof nerds.
Introverts are people who primarily look inward, paying close attention to their thoughts and emotions. It’s not that they are incapable of paying attention to what is going on around them, it’s just that their inner world is much more stimulating and rewarding to them.
Myth #9 – Introverts don’t know how to relax and have fun.
Introverts typically relax at home or in nature, not in busy public places. Introverts are not thrill seekers and adrenaline junkies. If there is too much talking and noise going on, they shut down. Their brains are too sensitive to the neurotransmitter called Dopamine. Introverts and Extroverts have different dominant neuro-pathways. Just look it up.
Myth #10 – Introverts can fix themselves and become Extroverts.
Introverts cannot “fix themselves” and deserve respect for their natural temperament and contributions to the human race. In fact, one study (Silverman, 1986) showed that the percentage of Introverts increases with IQ.
© 2013, agentleman.
Horrifying New Trend: Posting Rapes to Facebook
Apple iPhone displays the Facebook app’s splash screen in Washington. A year after a nightmarish share offering, Facebook still has its ardent backers and detractors.
It’s yet another story of how social media can apparently become a tool for abuse — and evidence of it. But the lesson seems all wrong. In Chicago this weekend, prosecutors announced three teenaged boys will tried as adults for aggravated criminal sexual assault after allegedly raping a 12-year-old girl — and posting a video of the attack on Facebook.
Prosecutors say the girl went to the home of Scandale Fritz last December and, “after she declined his demands for sex, he raped and sodomized her,” and then “demanded the girl have sex with the other two boys” while he recorded it. Chillingly, prosecutors add that Fritz’s companion Kenneth Brown can be seen holding a gun in the video. After the incident, the girl filed a police report and was examined at a local hospital. Two days after the alleged assault, the video appeared on all three boys’ Facebook pages. Prosecutors say that Fritz has already provided “a handwritten statement to his involvement.”
This is just the latest in a demoralizing spate of stories involving sexual assault as porny entertainment. Last year, Jared Len Cruise was convicted of sexual assault in a brutal gang rape of an 11-year-old Texas girl — a crime that was recorded on a cell phone and circulated around the girl’s school. In April, 17-year-old Halifax student Rehtaeh Parsons committed suicide 18 months after allegedly being raped — and having a photo of the event distributed among her classmates. After her death, her mother wrote on her Facebook page, “Rehtaeh is gone today because of the four boys that thought that raping a 15-year-old girl was OK and to distribute a photo to ruin her spirit and reputation would be fun.” Local authorities had found “insufficient evidence to proceed with charges,” despite the fact that the image alone would be considered child porn under Canada law.
And in Steubenville, Ohio – perhaps the most infamous example — Trent Mays and Ma’lik Richmond were convicted in March of raping a classmate and then sharing images from the night and “hundreds of text messages from more than a dozen cell phones.” It was a collection of gleeful, callous boasting that the judge later declared “profane and ugly.”
The Chicago story is still unfolding, but here’s what is known so far: It involves a young man, who prosecutors say admits to making a video, and a 12-year-old child. Yet again, it wasn’t enough to just do something awful. It had to be documented; it had to become a trophy to be shown off. In an interview with Business Insider last month, psychology professor and sexual violence expert Dr. Rebecca Campbell noted that, “Sexual assault is a crime of power and dominance. By distributing images of the rape through social media, it’sa way of asserting dominance and power to hurt the victim over and over again.”
It’s an act of brazen aggression, and one that says the victim’s experience is just a show to be shared. That it can also become a tool of justice, evidence of a crime, seems only now to be becoming more evident. Yet whether it makes any difference in stopping assault — or merely the covering up of it — remains to be seen. When he sentenced the Steubenville rapists earlier this year, Judge Thomas Lipps warned other teens to “to have discussions about how you talk to your friends, how you record things on the social media so prevalent today.” The lesson in all of it still doesn’t seem to be about rape. Rather, it’s not to get caught bragging about it.
© 2013, agentleman.
Too-Big-To-Fail Banks Have Raked In $102 Billion In Subsidies Since 2009: Report
© 2013, agentleman.
When I began writing this I was overwhelmed with the desire to hit something…or vomit. Over the coming weeks that desire has lessened to a slow simmer of absolute disgust and dismay at what has become of the party that I used to love and support. I was once a Republican living in a red state. Today I’m a registered Democrat living in a blue state. This is my story and why I left the Republican Party.
It all started in 2007. I was a 27 year-old divorced woman with no children. I was a survivor of severe domestic abuse. I was single with no money, no home and no plan other than to try and be something more than what I was. I had a car, my clothes and hope.
After moving to a new state with the help of friends, I found a very cheap apartment in a part of town that I still cringe over. My 2 jobs at minimum wage didn’t bring home enough for luxuries like choosing where to live and what to eat. There were days that I had to decide whether I was going to put gas in my car so I could get to work or eat. I always chose work. At least at one of my jobs I would get breakfast and lunch 2 days a week. I could make a $3.99 pizza with 8 slices last for 7 days. I could eat on a can of beans and a pack of crackers for even longer.
I applied to the local university in my town and went back to school while maintaining my two jobs. I took between 15-18 credit hours each semester while working. All of this was possible because of government loans and scholarships.
I went to counseling 2 times a week to work through my PTSD that was caused by the domestic violence I experienced. The church that the counselor worked out of paid for my appointments because I was too poor to pay for them and my counselor said I wouldn’t improve mentally without them.
The biggest fear during this time was that I might get physically sick and need to go to the doctor. When you’re poor, healthcare is something that you dream about. It’s something that you pray you won’t need. It’s the anxiety of “what if” that keeps you awake at night. I went to work sick. I took finals while running a 104 fever. I ruptured 3 discs in my back and couldn’t walk for a week. I wasn’t able to get it treated for 3 years. I lost one of my jobs. I found another minimum wage job. It didn’t offer health insurance.
Basic healthcare is not a luxury. It is not just for those that “deserve” it. In the country of abundance that we live in, healthcare should be affordable for every citizen. It’s reprehensible that I can buy a DVD player for less than what it would cost me to go to the doctor and get an antibiotic. Here in the United States we have some of the best medical technology and doctors in the world. Why do we think that only a few of our citizens should be entitled access to them? Why didn’t my Republican party see that? I was left with no answers.
The day I went to sign up for food stamps opened my eyes and changed everything. I had grown up in an upper middle class family. We were traditional, conservative and religious.
I need to break here for a moment and ask that as you read the “religious” part; that you would not confuse it with faith. These are 2 vastly different concepts. What some hold as religion is not the God of the Bible.
My family believed one pulled themselves up by their own bootstraps and never asked for help. It was a family that held firm to a Republican ideology that those on food stamps or “government handouts” were poor, uneducated and lazy individuals that just wanted to stay home and watch tv. These types of people were of the lowest kind. They were to be distrusted and almost hated. However, as I sat in the overcrowded room I looked around and saw people from all walks of life. You could see the desperation on their faces and the worry in every word. “I need help now. What do I do? Please help me.” There was something else that was there too…something so tangible it was overwhelming. It was shame. That oppressive shame of having to say, “I can’t do this on my own.”
I left in tears never returning. My Republican roots and their mantra echoing in my ears…”Lazy, poor, ignorant….Shame!” I told myself I would rather starve.
Throughout this time I had been listening to the candidates’ speeches in preparation for the 2008 election. I came from a very politically active family and there hasn’t been a single election that I haven’t known about and had an “opinion” on (even if it was only given to me by my parents) since I was 8 years-old and my father ran for his first public office as a Republican.
This election was different though. Not just because we potentially had our first African-American candidate, but because we had a candidate that spoke to the people about the everyday issues. We for once had a candidate who said not everyone can pull themselves up without a hand reaching out. I heard words of the civil obligation we have to each other, words of encouragement and of hope.
I went back and listened to every speech I could find that Senator Obama had made. I listened with new ears and a new heart. I was no longer the girl that had lived “easy”. I knew what hard was and I wanted a candidate that did too. I reevaluated what my own personal political beliefs were and I knew that I could no longer support the Republican platform.
In 2008 I watched as President Obama was elected. I clapped and shouted with fellow democrats at the headquarters’ watch party. It was my first election that I ever voted Democrat in. Everything had changed.
In 2009 I graduated from college with a degree in Political Science and History. I was able to get a better paying job and move into a slightly nicer part of town.
My feelings toward the Republican Party have not changed. They really are no longer Republicans. There are some moderates left, but the narrow, fear mongering voice of the party that has taken over drowns out all of those that speak truth. They have traded in a Christian belief of loving your neighbor for one that champions big business, the wealthy, and those that have no idea what struggle looks like.
Over the past few months alone we have seen how far gone the Republicans really are. 160 voted against The Violence Against Women’s Act. My party that I once loved deserted me. Not just as a woman, but as a citizen of this country. We even have a Republican, New Hampshire state Rep. Mark Warden saying “Some people like abusive relationships.” My response to him;
“I can answer truthfully that no, I didn’t like having my jaw broken or the bones in my face shattered. I didn’t like being dragged by my hair or strangled. I didn’t like the bruises, busted lips or black eyes. I didn’t like the mental and physical scars it left me with. And that’s why I left with nothing. I didn’t like having to choose between my life and my livelihood, even when your party makes it so hard for women to be on their own. I did. Now, can you please walk in my shoes for a while? My feet are awfully tired.”
When it comes to food stamps I have seen many of my Republican friends say how it’s so great that we have drug tests for food stamps and yet they’ve never given out food to the homeless or the poor. And they don’t care that the testing will cost Florida millions of dollars and thus far has only saved them $60,000. 98% of those tested have passed. It’s still the idea that everyone that needs help must be lazy and on drugs. Another lie that the Republicans would have us believe. I’m sure that there are some that fall into that category, but not all. Just like I know that not all Republicans are right-wing, gun-toting, women hating nut jobs…just some of them are.
There’s another issue that I’ve decided to add in here. I debated long and hard on it, but it needs to be talked about. It’s the issue of guns. On September 4, 1962 my grandmother was shot and killed with a .45 caliber automatic pistol. It was a gun that was obtained legally from our own US government actually. Because of this I have very strong views on gun control. Yes, I had them even as a Republican. I just kept them to myself back then. I don’t care what nationality, race, religion or party affiliation you are. When you believe that your right to own a gun is greater than another human being’s right to live, you have serious problems. I am at a loss for words as to how the very same people who wear the name of Christian are also the loudest opponents of gun control. “Jesus loves you, but please don’t take this deadly weapon from me.”
My grandmother was a model and an artist. She left behind 3 small children. One of them was my mother. How different her life would have been if our country had strong gun control laws.
People love to ask me, “How could you ever be a Democrat?” My response is always the same; “Because I know what it’s like to not be a corporation that has the ear of a well-connected Senator. I know what it feels like to not have a lobbyist organization to speak for me. I know what it’s like to be a second class citizen in a country that claims to protect the weak. I have been the woman in need of food stamps, the woman that the Violence Against Women’s Act protects. Obamacare was written for me and the millions of others just like me. I went to school on government ‘handouts.’ I want to live in a nation that values life above the cost of a bullet.“
My friends, I didn’t leave the Republican Party. They abandoned me years ago.
© 2013, agentleman.
Can’t let this one rest.
I’m going to be redundant; You are an atheist, so fucking what? It only means that part of your brain that governs critical thinking isn’t stuck in stupid. Congratulations.
It’s right to bash faith as what it is, the willful suppression of critical thinking. Considering we have arrived at a point where we really can affect the elimination of our species with technology available on the web, we NEED all the critical thinking we can get.
It’s our obligation to trash, deride, criticize, denigrate and ridicule religion with every breath. Religion is the weapon of choice for despots and would be conquerors the world over. We allow them to suit up in their impenetrable holy armor and bring down havoc on the credulous masses. We NEED to strip them of it and leave them naked in their true ambitions.
There is no kind way to tell the common theistically challenged individual that their beliefs are wrong. There’s no Neutron Bomb of reason that will destroy the superstition and leave the individual untouched. You can’t cut away the cancer that is religious enslavement without making them bleed a little.
Sure, they have a right to be stupid, it should be one of the amendments to the Constitution, “Congress shall make no law abridging the right of the individual to be an idiot.” But do they really have the right to pass their stupidity along like a genetic malformation? Are they ENTITLED to free and unfettered access to your kids minds? No.
Let’s give a real world, real time example; In the Sovereign State of Uganda, groups of mostly white, middle class young people with biblically mandated missionary zeal have descended and along with their bibles, their smattering of charitable aid and of course, their fundamentalist understanding of their religion. Along with which, they have brought their bible approved, it’s right there in black and white, hatred of a whole class of people based on their sexual orientation. This has prompted the never too stable (remember Idi Amin DaDa?) government to enact laws calling for the DEATH of homosexuals. No, not just denying them employment or health insurance, housing and education or the ever popular right to marry who they choose, but the eradication of gay people. And since gay people are born every day, we can be assured that the fundamentalist inspired, bloody red, bone white and cyanotic blue merriment of religious slaughter will continue for ever and ever amen….
Wake up Dude… pick a side.
Lead, follow or get the fuck out of the way.
© 2013, agentleman.