Monday, March 19, 2012

A Weird Thing to Behold

"The idea that the Crusades and the fight of Christendom against Islam is somehow an aggression on our part is absolutely anti-historical. And that is what the perception is by the American Left who hates Christendom....What I'm talking about is onward American soldiers. What we're talking about are core American values."

-Rick Santorum, 22 February 2011

Jon Stewart p
osed the musical question this past week on that essential viewing for political junkies, the Daily Show:

Why isn't Mitt Romney killing Rick Santorum in the primaries?

Why indeed
. This is really not that difficult a question to answer. In a column this week, Kathleen Parker scolded smart-alec bloggers like myself who tend to portray southern Republicans as half-witted buffoons. She makes an awful lot of good points for a conservative - and this particular column was no exception. It would be wrong to assume that everyone from that region of the country are ignorant chuckle-heads. That is just not the case. In fact I know personally of more-than-a-few ladies and gentlemen of dear old Dixie who are just about the smartest, most sophisticated people it has ever been my privilege to meet. My problem is not with Southerners per se - not at all - just the jackasses down there who vote. Their mediocrity is reflected in the manner of men and women they send to Washington to represent them. Just listen to any of them on the floor of the House on any given day, jabbering away like diseased little mynah birds. Do I exaggerate?

My feeling
on this subject would apply to the Midwest as well - which as we all know is the "new South". Why is Rick Santorum doing so well in this region of the country? What the hell is wrong with these people? Why they would favor a lying fool like Santorum over anyone defies basic reasoning. And to think, were it not for the Newt Gingrich factor - splitting up the neanderthal vote - Mr. Rick would more-than-likely be the front runner at the moment! The Illinois primary is tomorrow and it looks as if he might very well take home all of the marbles in that contest too. Have Republican voters in Illinois lost their minds? Do they not see what a hideous dingbat this man is? Are they blind to the fact that he is a dangerous extremist? He can't seem to make up his mind whether he is running for president or ayatollah. What are they putting in the water in the Land of Lincoln?

This embarrasses me to no end due to the fact that my late grandmother Loretta Doran was born and raised in Rockford. That's a photograph of her on the left that was taken one-hundred years ago in 1912, right around the time she turned sweet sixteen. Wasn't she lovely? That's my grandma! Family legend has it that she was the belle at every ball. I don't doubt that for a minute. I don't think she agreed with the platform of the Republican party all that much. From the time she became old enough to vote - until the day she died - she was a registered Democrat. Her native state's connection to Abraham Lincoln aside, the Great Emancipator's influence over the GOP had long-since evaporated by the time she entered this world in 1896, thirty-one years after his death. She would later marry my grandfather, Kentucky native (and Notre Dame graduate) Walter Clements. They would settle in South Bend, Indiana to raise a family of five children. She passed away at age sixty-eight on February 11, 1964 - which was the day that Sarah Palin was born. Talk about getting out while the getting's good. Never let it be said that my Grandmother Clements did not have perfect timing.

The same yea
r that photo of Loretta Doran was taken (1912) the progressive Republican and ex-president Theodore Roosevelt tried to take back the White House from his former friend William Howard Taft. Although he won the primaries quite handily, the powers-that-be within the GOP refused him the nomination at the convention that summer. They had had enough of Roosevelt's enlightenment. The progressive wing of that party died at that very moment, never to be seen again.

A century later they are as intellectually rigid and politically shortsighted as they ever were. You only need to take notice of the war against American women they have been stupidly waging throughout this primary season. Mitt Romney - undeniably conservative as he is - appears to be too much of a left winger for the moronic Tea party crowd to stomach. If that doesn't tell you how far down into the ideological muck that party has sunk nothing will. The fact that uber knucklehead Rick Santorum came so close to beating him in his own state of Michigan tells me more than I want to know - not only with regard to where that party has gone - but where it appears to be going. It's not a good place either - trust me.

Still, as we
ird as things have gotten, the freak out of the ultra right wing in America is an amusing thing to watch. They have a surplus of unintentional comedians who never fail to delight. The road they want to take us down is a very dark and dangerous one to be sure, but there will be no shortage of hoots and giggles along the way. We're talkin' seriously dark humor here. Every American will be living in his or her very own, custom-made Dr. Strangelove movie. It is times such as these that I cannot help but bemoan the fact that Lenny Bruce did not live to be an old man. Can you even imagine what his take on the America of 2012 would have been? And if only George Carlin might have been given a few more years. We sure could use them now.

Benito M
ussolini once described fascism as "the total merging of corporate and state power". We appear to be there. We've been heading toward this point for over thirty years, and yet the journey has been at such a snail's pace, only the few of us who have bothered to pay attention seem to have noticed. Think about it for a minute. A monumentally stupid man - Rick Santorum - is at this moment a major player within one of America's two, mainstream political parties. He makes George W. Bush look like Albert Einstein. With every passing political season they just keep setting the bar lower and lower and lower....

I never dreamed it could get this weird.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY
tomdegan@frontiernet.net

AFTERTHOUGHT:

I was interviewed by Scott Henderson and Terry Motley on the Brass Knuckles Radio Network out of Chicago twice in the last two we
eks - on March 3 and on March 17. If you have the time to spare, here are two links to listen to the programs:

March 3 - I come in at fifteen minutes:

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/shenderson19/2012/03/03/brass-knuckle-progressive-radio#.T1H5f6kjsSM.facebook

March 17 - I come in at forty-seven minutes:

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/shenderson19/2012/03/17/brass-knuckle-progressive-radio

I had a lot of fun doing them. Hear the entire programs if you can. Happy listening, campers!

SUGGES
TED READING:

Johnny, We Hardly Knew Ye
by Dave Powers and Kenny O'Donnell

An intimate look into the life of Jack Kennedy by the two men who knew him better than all others. A great read - and a very funny book! Let's face it - Jack Kennedy was a scream!

And join me on my Facebook page:

http://www.facebook.com/tomdegan

Please "friend" me. I have no life.

Cheerio! Pip! Pip!

UPDATE, 3/21/12:

It would seem that Mr. Rick's hopes in the Illinois primary came crashing down into little bitty pieces after he told a gathering that he didn't care about the unemployment rate. Somewhere Grandma Clements must be smiling. It's funny; although I was only a small boy when she passed on, I can still hear her voice in my memory.

38 Comments:

At 1:43 PM, Blogger Suzan said...

I swear I've said from the first of these Rethuglican Follies that that's been the point all along.

And they have made their point.

Here we come!

- Jebbie


Ready for the rest of the year's frolics?

Love ya,

S

he makes George W. Bush look like Albert Einstein

 
At 2:38 PM, Blogger charles moore said...

Hi Tom, I agree that some very strange things are going on in the south. As someone who grew up in a backwoods, rednecked, bigoted, segregationist southern state and have cousins still living there (and yes, they have barely progressed past the knuckle dragging stage) what is happening is really amazing.

It is not surprising that Romney is getting no traction as he represents the wealthy Damned Yankee (and no, the Civil War has not yet been settled) but Santorum is one of those hated northern Catholics, which should make him almost as bad as Romney. So why is Gingrich doing so poorly as a good ol' southern boy? After all, he is a "good Christian" (changes religion like he changes his wives) has asked God to forgive him, he is southern to the core and doesn't have to prove that he likes grits. Strange doings, indeed.

 
At 4:37 PM, Blogger Dave Dubya said...

When it comes to appealing to the ignorant and fearful, Bible thumping trumps everything.

 
At 4:56 PM, Blogger Yellowstone said...

Newt, by Santorum's standard, is a 'snob'. He's got too much education. And furthermore he is an Educator. Not good (if you remember what GWBush was saying.)

This kind of rhetoric resonates with the lowly Southerners.

BTW: Guess who's hiding in the bushes . . ?

 
At 5:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

When it comes to appealing to the ignorant and fearful, Bible thumping trumps everything.@Blogger Dave Dubya

This from the man who gets paid to watch other men behind bars, he should know thumping when he sees it

 
At 7:56 PM, Anonymous BlogMan said...

"Benito Mussolini once described fascism as "the total merging of corporate and state power". We appear to be there. We've been heading toward this point for over thirty years, and yet the journey has been at such a snail's pace, only the few of us who have bothered to pay attention seem to have noticed. "


When the state tries to takeover the Health Care Industry, sure we have noticed Tom Degan!

When the state bails out Detroit to save UNION jobs, tells the original bondholders to take a hike, and builds $41,000 electric cars that go only 30 miles that nobody wants, sure we have noticed Tom Degan!

When General Electric pays no corporate taxes to the state in exchange for only pro Obama propoganda on its NBC affiliate, sure we have noticed Tom Degan!

When the state tries to infringe on the The First Amendment of the United States Constitution which protects the right of Freedom of Religion, sure we have noticed Tom Degan!

 
At 10:19 PM, Blogger Mack Lyons said...

Gotta love people who consistently vote against their own interests. That's been a big problem of the Deep South since...forever.

Good luck trying to reach a people who take fierce pride in being poor, uneducated and easily exploited.

 
At 2:03 AM, Anonymous Ron Baldwin said...

To BlogMan,
You forgot to remind us that our President is a devout Muslim and was born in Kenya.

 
At 6:40 AM, Blogger Modusoperandi said...

BlogMan "When the state tries to takeover the Health Care Industry, sure we have noticed Tom Degan!"
You have Single Payer now? When did this happen?

"When the state bails out Detroit to save UNION jobs, tells the original bondholders to take a hike…"
Exactly. Except wrong.

"...and builds $41,000 electric cars that go only 30 miles that nobody wants, sure we have noticed Tom Degan!"
Yeah! GM, maker of many, many cars, builds one that isn't doing well! Take that, Tom Degan!

"When General Electric pays no corporate taxes to the state in exchange for only pro Obama propoganda on its NBC affiliate, sure we have noticed Tom Degan!"
Exactly. And when I say that I, like BlogMan, am assuming with no facts whatsoever, that GE payed a bunch (oodles, to be precise) under previous administrations.

"When the state tries to infringe on the The First Amendment of the United States Constitution which protects the right of Freedom of Religion, sure we have noticed Tom Degan!"
Yeah! Why should Roman Catholics, when operating secular institutions, have to pay for insurance for things they find objectionable. I mean, it's not like they have non-RCs working for them. If there's one thing I know, it's that "religious freedom" means that I can tell you what you can do with your own body, and that it applies to employers, not mere employees, even when those morally objectionable things are used for something other than sweet, sweet coitus, possibly even enjoyed by, outrageously, both parties*. In addition "religious freedom" includes the freedom to accept public moneys from the moist nipple of the Government Teat, via tax exemptions, programs and contracts to provide services to the public, while not playing by the same rules that secular groups have to follow.
In short, BlogMan is perfectly okay with working for a Christian Scientist, who covers nothing except prayer for medical insurance.
Remember kids, when the Muslims get to overrule secular law way it's "Sharia Law taking over!", but when the RCs do it it's "religious freedom".



* Sssh! If you're really quiet you can hear the complete non-outrage over the coverage of vasectomies.

 
At 10:00 AM, Blogger Leslie Parsley said...

As Tom points out, the South doesn't have a handle on ignorant chuckle-heads. In fact, they reside in other sections of the country as well. Some even stop by here to proudly display their ignorance in all its glory. Not all of us below the Mason-Dixon Line have the chuckles these days. Many of us are cringing and wondering if we need to renew our passports.

 
At 1:48 PM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

Welcome back Modusoperandi!

 
At 7:23 PM, Anonymous BlogMan said...

" Ron Baldwin said...
To BlogMan,
You forgot to remind us that our President is a devout Muslim and was born in Kenya."

You are entitled to your opinion Ron Baldwin, that is not my opinion.

Mr. Baldwin, the 2 year anniversary of ObamaCare is this week and we hear only crickets from the liberal media! How Come?

Playing the race card when the chips are down is no surprise as it is a favorite amongst you liberal loons.

Has Obama ever left campaign mode and been a leader in the past few years?

 
At 7:42 PM, Anonymous James said...

Hey Blog man, how come Conservatives never give any praise when Liberals do things that agree with them? Obama signed the HDAA and every Republican voted for it. Is that not in his favor?

 
At 2:10 AM, Blogger Modusoperandi said...

Jefferson's Guardian "Welcome back Modusoperandi!"
Yes. Um. This site was blocked. "Bad reputation domain". My reputation, apparently. I apologize for the rampant cussing and bouts of nudity.

 
At 3:56 AM, Blogger RUBY SLIPPERS said...

I think Tom Degan is a hunk...but if he did ever invite me to lunch, there is no way we could talk about politics...between the heat from that and his animal magnetism, the artisan bread would be "toast" and perfectly good Bucherondin would become "CheeseWhiz." Second thought..what a way to go! I would toast with Tom for the matchless 1st Amendment...and to all the modest little things that make it mean something priceless.Happy 1st Day of Spring, Tom!

 
At 4:14 AM, Blogger Tom Degan said...

RUBY, WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LIFE???

And a happy first day of Spring to you as well!

Love and Peace,

Tom

 
At 12:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Liberals just can't seem to understand that when our economy collapses and our currency becomes worthless due to the debt and the Fed printing so much money, the first people to be hurt are the poor, the disabled, senior citizens, and the middle class.

We used to call Liberals, "bleeding hearts." They have lost the right to that characterization and now should be called "Chicken Ostriches." They are too afraid to take their heads out of the sand to see the impending disaster.

 
At 1:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually it has been a Hundred years Near that we have been heading here ...... Next year is the 100 anniversary of the Federal Reserve

 
At 8:39 AM, Anonymous boltok said...

Do I need to re-post the Islamic Crusades which preceded the Crusades.

Do a google search on every war/conflict on the globe. All have muslims involved.

On a side note, this is the end result of your policies, in terms that actually matter:

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-57400369-503544/national-debt-has-increased-more-under-obama-than-under-bush/

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2012/03/21/geithner_asked_what_would_be_very_last_debt_ceiling_request_says_a_lot_would_make_you_feel_uncomfortable.html

 
At 10:39 AM, Blogger Harley A. said...

So, what's the party line on the National Defense Resources Preparedness (NDRP) executive order?

Just really good liberal policy?

Even scarier question - why are they putting it in place now?

 
At 10:56 AM, Anonymous Invisable Friend said...

Etch-A-Sketch is coming to the rescue! Conservatives are thrilled, I'm sure.

 
At 12:46 PM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

Harley A., you asked three very good questions...

"...what's the party line on the National Defense Resources Preparedness (NDRP) executive order?"

Don't know. I'm not a Democrat. Personally, I'm appalled, but not too surprised, given that this president has basically just extended his predecessor's policies, with a few tweaks here and there. Essentially, we're experiencing Bush III.


"Just really good liberal policy?"

Not liberal policy at all, given that Obama's not a liberal; he's a corporatist. Thought we've gone over this already. Haven't we?

Incidentally, some say, and I've come to the same conclusion, he's a neoconservative.


"Even scarier question - why are they putting it in place now?"

That is a scary question, one which I've been grappling with for a very long time -- even before NDAA 2012 and NDPA. Personally, I believe economic collapse is imminent, and they know it, because they're either going to instigate or, or they know they can't do anything to stop it. Either way, they're getting all their ducks in a row.

I'm waiting for the other shoe to fall...

...how 'bout you?

 
At 2:02 PM, Blogger Harley A. said...

JG -

Yes, very concerned and I agree with your assessment. I think the other shoe will drop unfortunately.

 
At 3:25 PM, Anonymous boltok said...

I found a fantastic video which demonstrates how liberals develop and operate within our economy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vMG-LWyNcAs&feature=player_embedded#!

 
At 3:52 PM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

Harley A., isn't it interesting that we both come to the same conclusion, while arriving at it from totally different premises?

 
At 4:19 PM, Blogger Harley A. said...

JG -

I expect we agree on more than it appears most of the time.

 
At 4:46 PM, Blogger Ellis D., Esq. said...

You can agree until Hell freezes over but nothing will ever change.

 
At 6:58 PM, Anonymous Harry Deitch said...

Dave Dubya,

Is the following offensive to you? My guess is it would have been if Rush had said it.

At a political fundraiser Wednesday night, De Niro said, “Callista Gingrich. Karen Santorum. Ann Romney. Now do you really think our country is ready for a white first lady?”

 
At 10:28 AM, Blogger Harley A. said...

There's no "war against American women". That mantra is worn out - even as a progressive slogan.

50%+ of Americans believe abortion-on-demand to be morally wrong - to be murder. No one is telling women what to do with their bodies - rather we are telling them what they should not do to the bodies of the children growing inside them. It's really not difficult, and the rhetorical diversion really has no moral, legal, or logical legs to stand on. And, no, I'm not referring to the rare cases where we find ourselves in moral dilemas - such as when the mother's life is in danger. Yes, sometimes, we have to make difficult decisions and that is a hard reality in life. That is no argument. Rather, that such decisions are difficult validates the premise that abortion is wrong.

Such provocative rhetoric isn't helpful. I could very easily claim that pro-abortionists are pro-murder. That's just inflammatory and not helpful. So, I refrain from that. When I hear of a "war on women" - I know that the author has no argument or has not the ability to argue for their position (I don't blame them, it would take one heckuva of a debater to defend it). Rather, they inflame. Because, in fact, there is no war on women in America.

 
At 10:59 AM, Blogger Modusoperandi said...

Harry Deitch "At a political fundraiser Wednesday night, De Niro said, 'Callista Gingrich. Karen Santorum. Ann Romney. Now do you really think our country is ready for a white first lady?'"
Set the wayback machine for 2008.

Harley A. "Because, in fact, there is no war on women in America."
Harley is right. It's not a war on women. It's a war for men.
Call it "Patriarchy", like patriots would.
Those broads are too emotional to rule their own reproductive rights, anyway.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm off to go get some Viagra and/or a vasectomy; two rights that I have that no state in the union (as far as I'm aware) is even remotely attempting to restrict. Maybe on the way I'll pick up one of those trans-vaginal scanning wands or a mandatory waiting period or I'll become a obgyn just so that I can not tell a prospective mother that her fetus is has gone terribly wrong or I'll get a conscience exemption as a pharmacist or I'll legislate abortion clinics out of existence by raising their health and safety standards above that of hospitals (note: all, and more, things that have cropped up recently).
Because there is no war on women in America.

 
At 12:17 PM, Blogger Harley A. said...

Really MO, more inflammatory rhetoric? Viagra and vasectomies have never killed a baby in the womb. Please stay on target. If you have a valid reason why it is really okay to kill unborn babies, then I'm all ears. Haven't heard a good defense to date.

There has never been ANY precedent in ANY other legal arena where a person holds "rights" that cause serious harm to another person (with the exception of war and punishment of crimes). Abortion is the only one, because baseless rhetoric continues to deflect and mischaracterize the issue. Don't get me wrong - OF COURSE this can cause an assymetric burden on a woman - I get that. And, I'm not insensitive to that. But, I can't condone killing the baby to relieve the burden. It is not an easy issue.

Now, to the men. I personally feel that men (mostly overgrown boys these days) in America are THE main cause for most abortions and not the women. I am in no way excusing them - rather I hold them (us) just as if not more responsible. It isn't just a woman's issue in my mind.

 
At 1:46 PM, Anonymous boltok said...

Important research from left leaning Pew Research:

http://cfif.org/v/index.php/commentary/54-state-of-affairs/1357-pew-research-republicans-more-knowledgeable-than-democrats

 
At 3:15 PM, Blogger Modusoperandi said...

Harley A. "Really MO, more inflammatory rhetoric? Viagra and vasectomies have never killed a baby in the womb. Please stay on target."
See DC, where the Blunt Amendment narrowly failed or Arizona, where they're trying to pass a law putting employers in between women and the Pill. See Texas, where they defunded Planned Parenthood (even at the cost of the state losing Medicaid funding), which has no abortion clinics in Texas. The FRC is openly discussing dismantling Einsentadt and the GOP is openly admitting that the goal isn't just Roe, Griswold. Utah's expanded (but, ironically, narrow) Ab-Only sex-ed bill, thankfully, just got vetoed. The GOP now wants to cut all funding for Title X. And that's just off the top of my head.
If you think this is just about abortion, you have not been paying attention.

 
At 9:43 AM, Blogger Yellowstone said...

Must it now be true?

The GOP believes, "life begins at conception, and ends at birth"?

How many kids today are without health insurance? What has happened to Planned Parenthood?

Why are our kids not being educated, as they should?

"Cut taxes, reduce spending", they say.

 
At 5:10 PM, Anonymous Ron Baldwin said...

To Harley A at 12:17 PM:

You bring up an interesting point on “rights” in your second paragraph, and your last sentence of that paragraph is absolutely true, “It is not an easy issue.”

I suspect that many people who comment on abortion have not read the Roe v Wade decision. It was a unanimous nine to zero decision and contains an extensive history of abortion. For example, the first restrictions on abortions did not occur until the 1850’s, and then abortions in the first trimester were often treated as misdemeanors. The 1850’s seems like a long time ago but I lived with my grandparents until I was age 22, and my grandfather was born on 1860.

As a non-lawyer I would say that the principle basis for the Roe v Wade decision centered on the viability of the fetus and the conflicting rights of the fetus and those of the pregnant woman. There was a careful consideration of the sometimes conflicting rights of the fetus to be carried to term and the rights of the woman to privacy in making decisions about her body. The conclusion was that in the first trimester there was no possibility of viability and the rights of the woman were predominate. In the third trimester the rights of the fetus were predominate absent serious medical consequences to the woman. In the middle trimester the conflicting rights were more balanced and it was left as a medical decision. Many people reading the decision for the first time are astounded that careful consideration was given to the rights of the fetus.

I think we can agree that if abortion is declared absolutely illegal there would still be abortions. That was pretty much the situation before the 1973 Roe v Wade decision. As an old geezer I well remember the days of the so-called back-alley abortions and the often terrible carnage on pregnant women. Those with enough money could fly to a country that permitted abortions for a medically-safe abortion. Those without sufficient resources took their chances.

 
At 10:35 AM, Blogger Harley A. said...

Ron, thoughtful reply - I appreciate it. Again, I'd respectfully disagree on the viability issue (and yes, I agree it was a major consideration for the court).

The reason is this. Even a healthy newborn, if left on its own, is not "viable" outside the womb absent proper care. Many adults (invalid, mentally handicapped, elderly, etc.) are also not "viable" absent full-time care. So, setting a "viability" precedent is an extremely dangerous and unwise one, I think.


Again, I don't treat the issue lightly as if there are no difficulties and challenges (as you know from your many years on this earth, life comes with such). Nor am I unsympathetic to the women. But, ultimately, truth must intervene and prevail in the arguments.

 
At 9:03 PM, Blogger Chris said...

Interesting that anonymous in synonymous with coward.....if you didn't think you were saying goofy shit, why wouldn't you show yourself?....just saying. One of my pet peeves......and I know it won't matter, because you aren't the kind to listen....:)

 
At 7:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's good to be noticed and to make people THINK, keep up the good work.

You don't know what you're talking about. Maybe I am new to this, maybe people like you scare me and I don't want you stalking, threatening, or intimidating me, maybe I respect people's privacy and right to express their opium. Either way, you are a scary person and need to get a life.

 

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home