Friday, April 16, 2010

Michele Bachmann is Lying Again

OK, so this is not really big news.  Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) is part of the GOP spin machine and she will parrot whatever is put in front of her apparently.  She went on Larry King last night and absolutely lied through her teeth.  What's worse, King let her just go on and do it.

Bachmann was trying to sell the line that by reforming health care in this country Obama was nationalizing the system and had a full "51% of the private economy".

Listening to this crap it's no wonder the Tea Baggers are upset. The truth is far from this and nowhere in the health care reform bill that was passed is government takeover of the industry, far from it!  Here is a little of her pathological diatribe:
" The story in our country has been the federal government takeover of private industry. The federal government literally, in 18 months’ time, has taken either direct ownership or control of 51 percent of the private economy. Eighteen months ago, 100 percent of the private economy was private. But today, the federal government literally owns banks., the largest insurance company in the United States. The federal government owns over half of all home mortgages today in the United States — Chrysler, G.M. the student loan industry and now health care."
The truth, something the GOP never worries about is that the private economy is still private.  The TARP may have bailed out some institutions, but they still belong to the stockholders. Yes, the government  ( that is you and me) have become minor stockholders in a few banks, 6 percent of Bank of America and 7.8 percent of Citigroup as of early 2009, but that is a far cry from "literally owning the banks".

Now I don't expect that the truth can stand up to the Big Lie if it is told long enough, but the news organizations should at least check facts and ask the question of where this lying talking head gets her numbers.  Her answer would be telling, and I'll bet it came from the RNC's talking points.

Vatican Praised Bishop for Covering Up Pedophile Priest

Say what? Do you mean to tell me that there is a letter from the Vatican actually praising a Bishop for his decision to cover up child abuse rather than expose it to authorities? Well, if you read Latin, you could see for yourself. Here is a translation of the letter by French publication Golias, sent by the Vatican to Cardinal Darío Castrillón Hoyos.

“I rejoice to have a colleague in the episcopate who, in the eyes of history and all the other bishops of the world, preferred prison rather than denouncing one of his sons, a priest....”

A priest who was jailed for three months for not reporting a pedophile priest to the authorities. Funny thing to praise someone for? 

Meanwhile the tone of rhetoric from the Pope has become less defensive.  In his homily on Vatican Radio yesterday he said, “I have to say that we Christians, even in recent times, have often avoided the word ‘repentance,’ which seems too harsh. Now under the attacks of the world, which speaks to us of our sins, we see that the ability to repent is a grace, and we see how it is necessary to repent, that is, to recognize what is wrong in our life.”

This is a major shift in the statements that have come out about the recent scandals, and perhaps signals a change in Vatican attitude.  Who know?  Personally, I think the Catholic Church in this Pope is headed for a major schism.  Glad I am not Catholic, this must be very tough on the faithful.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Meteor Streaks Across Wisconsin Sky - CNN Has Video

Wonderful video!

Traditional Values Coalition Lies Again & Again & Again

This time they are trying to use transgendered folks as their scapegoat.  TVC's Andrea Lafferty tells this whopper in an attempt to derail ENDA:
"Every state will be forced to make cross-dressers, drag queens, transsexuals, and she-males* (male-female hybrids) into protected classes. Therefore, every school district in America will be forbidden by law to reassign any she-male teacher because this would be considered "discrimination." Thus, children will be trapped in classes taught by men who dress as women, and students will be indoctrinated to affirm that this is normal behavior."
Someday all this pathological lying will come back to bite these people!

Wha' Happen' to WaMu?

Just blocks from my house a brand new building went up back in 2008.  It was going to be a Washington Mutual branch and it was nearing completion when the skids were put on at WaMu in September.  That building, complete except for removing the covers from the signs and putting in furniture sat empty until a couple of weeks ago.  That's when the bulldozers moved in and tore the bright new bank building to the ground.

It is a suitable parallel to the company itself.  Flying high in the sub-prime bubble and then bulldozed into the ground as it failed.

In the case of WaMu it was just plain unbridled greed that bulldozed it.  Bankers drinking their own Kool-Aid and believing that the artificially inflated housing market couldn't fail were the cause. If you ever needed proof of that greed, how about this story from Politico which details the WaMu lenders on a junket to Hawaii where they gleefully took a turn at karaoke.  The song?  "I Like Big Bucks" to the tune of rap song "Baby Got Back".
“I like big bucks and I cannot lie/You mortgage brothers can't deny,” sang the WaMu rappers.

The presentation, which included cheerleaders moving in time to the music, and choreographed moves by the singers, continued:

“That when the dough roles in like you're printin’ your own cash/
And you gotta make a splash/You just spends/Like it never ends/
Cuz you gotta have that big new Benz/
All of that bling you're wearin'/ Shining so bright peoples starin'/
It's crazy, I gotta ski Aspen/That's all I'm askin'”

During another skit, the WaMu bankers in Kauai staged a mock funeral for their competition, Countrywide Financial, a mortgage lender that was also deeply involved in the subprime market.
From rapping to rap-sheet kind of makes some kind of karmic sense doesn't it?

Beware the Ides of April

Happy Tax Day!  If you haven't done your taxes yet, either get a copy of Turbo Tax and get cracking or file an extension.  As for me?  Well I did mine back the first week of February, that is a personal best.  In the past I have been known to file one or two extensions before getting them done.

Also, it's Earth Day at Starbucks.  Bring in a refillable mug and get a free coffee!  On my way now.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Senate Passes Resolution Condemning Uganda

The Senate in a rare bipartisan move issued a resolution condemning Uganda's anti-homosexual laws. The resolution was introduced by Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) and co-sponsored by Sens. Tom Coburn  (R-Ok.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine).

Feingold said in a prepared statement, "Sadly, this legislation is just one example of actions taken around the world to restrict the rights of people just because of their gender or sexual orientation… We need to speak out consistently against all such discrimination. The Senate’s passage of this resolution begins to move us in that direction, and I will continue working with my colleagues and the administration to continue to address this issue.”

The resolution passed unanimously!

Cat vs iPad - Enough Cute Video to Last a Week

All I can say is, "Awwww". Oh yea and "I WANT AN IPAD!"

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

GOP Opposes Wall Street Regulation - No Surprise!

Sometimes it's all too easy to see where the allegiances of the Republican Party are.  Mitch McConnell , (R-KY) is squaring off in a battle over financial reform.  As a "fiscal conservative" you'd think he would be all for ending the excesses of Wall Street that brought the country to the brink of financial disaster.  Think again!

Big business and big money are what the GOP is all about!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Catholic Bishop Blames Jews for Pope's Troubles

So true to its form, the Catholic Church has decided that with all the controversy swirling around Pope Benedict XVI to take it's usual tactic and ....(drum roll) blame the Jews!

That seems to be a sort of default for the Vatican, deflect criticism and then blame those who had nothing to do with the source of the problem. 

Giacomo Babini, the emeritus bishop of Grosseto has determined that the criticism directed at the Pope is coming from "Zionists".  Why?  Well because it is so "powerful and refined".  Well I feel pretty sure that many Jews would be flattered to have Bishop Babini think they were powerful and refined, but most would say, "what is with this Babini?"

Moreover,  the Catholic church needs to start looking inward to find the root of its problems with pedophile priests, not casting about for a scapegoat.  Of course that is not the Vatican way.  So what else is new?

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Dixie Carter Dies

Like most of the gay men I know Dixie Carter held a special place in our hearts. Her acerbic character on Designing Women had just the right mix of charm, savvy and biting wit. 

She died Saturday morning at age 70 at her home in Los Angeles.  She was married to actor Hal Holbrook.

We will miss her very much.