Momentous (and Crazy) Times (Updated)

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Labor, Obama Administration, Wingnuts Being Wingnuts

There’s much more going on than I can follow. You may have heard there’s a civil war in Libya, for example. For a while it seemed that Moammar Gaddafi was toast, but the news this morning is that he’s using paramilitary forces and mercenaries to crush the rebellion. The post-Gaddafi era may be postponed, alas.

In Wisconsin, it appears Democrats in one legislative house, the Assembly, have ended a filibuster and reluctantly agreed to allow Gov. Walker’s union-busting bill to come to a vote. Wisconsin Senate Democrats are still out of state, however, so it can’t pass into law just yet.

Must Read:Scapegoats in Wisconsin” by Mark Erlich.

Organized operatives paid by FreedomWorks are attempting to throw the protesters off their game by inciting them to violence. Shoving into crowds and getting into people’s faces while being terminally obnoxious, a few of the Koch-paid goons have been insulted right back, which of course is captured on video and labeled “union thuggery.”

One, um, video of dubious veracity begins with some guy practically begging a protester to hit him. Then the camera turns away, the image gets fuzzy, and you hear noises that sound like punches. When the camera comes back into focus, you see a somewhat puzzled union protester, still holding his sign, while the Koch guy is screaming “you just hit a girl!”

While I do not condone violence, neither do I condone BS. The allegedly assaulted young woman was allegedly the FreedomWorks operative allegedly holding the camera, and although she is allegedly petite and the man who allegedly assaulted her (without dropping his sign) appears to be quite large, there are no reports she needed medical help. Please; that’s the best you got? This, dears, is what real thuggery looks looks like.

Update: Stephen Colbert demonstrates —

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Elsewhere: Although Indiana has backed down, the situation in Ohio is still at an impasse. Also, a bill that would strip collective bargaining rights from municipal workers has just left committee in Oklahoma.

In other news, the Obama Administration is not going to defend the Defense of Marriage Act, which has always struck me as being blatantly unconstitutional. A federal judge has found the Affordable Care Act to be constitutional, which now brings us to three judges yes, two judges no.

Finally, there’s a bill pending in the state of Arizona that would repeal the law of karma within state borders. I’m serious. HB 2582 would prohibit courts from basing any decisions on “religious sectarian law,” which beside being an oxymoron is defined as

… any statute, tenet or body of law evolving within and binding a specific religious sect or tribe. Religious sectarian law includes Sharia Law, Canon Law, Halacha and Karma but does not include any law of the United States or the individual states based on Anglo‑American legal tradition and principles on which the United States was founded.

I like the part about Anglo-American legal tradition. I also suspect that the authors of this bill assume the Ten Commandments are part of that Anglo-American tradition and wouldn’t be prohibited.

Karma, of course, is basically just the principle that actions have consequences; cause and effect. You might as well prohibit gravity. This bill is right up there with China’s regulation that lamas may not reincarnate without government approval. For that matter, I’d expect the Arizona legislature to pass a law prohibiting species from evolving within state borders, but then they’d have to acknowledge that species do evolve.

Update: Alex Pareene has more about the so-called “union thug” video, which has gone viral on the Right. Pareene points out that this video was made in Washington DC, not Wisconsin, which I had not noticed. “FreedomWorks could only manage to provoke an incident in D.C., because the people of Wisconsin are a gentle and peaceful lot, unless there is a Packers game on,” he says.

He also says that what he saw was the gentleman in the video pushing away the camera. I can’t make out that he did anything in particular, but you take a look and see what you think. Pareene continues,

Pushing a camera away from one’s face seems less “thuggish” to me than it does … defensive. And purposefully picking fights with people in order to provoke an angry response does not really prove much of anything.

Pareene also says that the young woman whose camera was pushed is now comparing herself to Lara Logan, the CBS reporter who was assaulted in Cairo, which I also hadn’t noticed until he pointed it out. He continues,

I am not making that up. I wish I was making that up. But I would actually not make that up, because it would seem beyond the pale to accuse conservative activists of being so horrible, so desperate to play the victim, so morally depraved, so deep into their persecution fantasies that they’ve lost all perspective on the rest of the world.

Yeah, pretty much. One of the keys to interpreting teabaggery is that in their minds, they are always the victims.

Update: See Wonkette and Tbogg.

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21 Comments

20 Comments

  1. c u n d gulag  •  Feb 24, 2011 @11:37 am

    The wealthy in this country have lost sight of where this country has been, how it got here, where it could go, and, instead, where it is now going.

    Their anti-union activity is just trying to push the poor and middle class back into steerage permanently, and by taking over those middle sections of the ship they get more and better luxury suites and nicer deck chairs for themselves.

    The only thing they don’t realize is that if income isn’t more equitably distributed, this Titanic is going down soon. It won’t go down because of an iceberg. It’ll go down because it’s too top heavy. Too much gold on the upper deck with nothing to equalize it underneath.
    And even if they do get to a lifeboat, where are they going to go? Do they think that there are a lot of nations that will welcome with open arms the very people who destroyed their own country?
    I don’t think so. Not a country that’s not a 3rd world one, anyway. Or not many.
    It might set the little people off in their own countries realizing that they need to take matters into their own hands before their own overlords adopt the ‘American Suicide By Income Inequality’ pact as their own.
    And even if they are accepted in another fairly wealthy country, and then kill another economy, as this formula is guaranteed to, how long before they run out of places to go? Ultimately, where are the rich in the world going to go? Mars? Not yet, anyway.
    And billions of poor people in this world, no matter how much heavy artillary and other weapons at the disposal of the rich and powerful, will overcome a few of the million who are really greedy – or die trying. And a lot of wealthy people will be buried right next to the paupers in mass graves.
    So, rich people, you can either give us the abilitiy to feed ourselves with decent jobs and wages, OR YOU WILL FEED US. Just not as an act of charity, but as the main course with whatever else we can find lying around to sautee up next to you.
    Remember, always order your rich vermin well done. Those big vermin have a lot of other little vermin in ’em!

  2. biggerbox  •  Feb 24, 2011 @11:41 am

    AP is reporting that Ghaddafi is now blaming Osama bin Laden for the uprising in Libya, claiming that al Qaeda operatives have been slipping hallucinogenic drugs into the young people’s coffee.

    I miss the days when something like that would be the craziest, most humorously irrational claim I’d hear all week.

    Now I’m trying hard to not worry about how the coming Depression, when rising oil prices due to rebellions in North Africa cause consumers to cut back on spending, which combined with the fanatical Republican cut-spending jihad nonsense that kills government spending destroys demand across the economy.

    Where have you gone, John Maynard Keynes?
    The nation turns its lonely eyes to you, woo-woo-woo.

    It’s probably good I’m not out protesting, because if I hear another person tell me that the government needs to cut back just the way families need to economize in times like this, I might get provoked to violence. (Howsabout Dad gets a better paying job, you bozos??? Frack. Not that a global macroeconomic system is at all comparable to a family budget, for goodness sake. But I digress.)

    I have no information about the rumor that John Boehner is now trying to hire away Ghaddafi’s writers to work for the GOP in Congress.

  3. goatherd  •  Feb 24, 2011 @12:17 pm

    Don”t make the mistake of reading any of the comments at the Rand Paul video unless you want to experience some verbal thuggery. I guess it figures that people with such a loose grip on reality can believe that they have simple answers to problems and special insight into things that they never honestly studied. But, hey that’s just my libtard opinion.

    ……………

    Somewhere in the netherworld Ayn Rand is working on a new novel extolling the virtues of Randian supermen like Gaddafi. His fatal flaw will be that he didn’t “go Galt” before someone penetrated his security and whacked him.

  4. Swami  •  Feb 24, 2011 @12:19 pm

    I must be missing something….How do you combat the Law of Karma? My understanding is that the law of Karma is an abstract idea/ article of faith that hasn’t been and can’t be codified and recorded in statutes. Can somebody explain, or point me in the right direction by way of a link to understand what Arizona law makers are referring to with their anti-Karma legislation? Or did they just throw in the Karma thing to cover all their bases?

  5. maha  •  Feb 24, 2011 @12:43 pm

    I must be missing something

    Somebody is missing something, but I don’t think it’s you.

  6. moonbat  •  Feb 24, 2011 @1:45 pm

    Everytime I think I’ve plumbed the depths of right wing ignorance, something comes along, to wit, the bill about applying “religious sectarian” law (whatever that is) to repeal Karma – to show me that No, we haven’t hit bottom yet.

    I’d love to sit down with the author(s) of the bill, to try an explain to them the relationship between their dreaded notion of Karma and the better known (to them) Golden Rule.

    The link to “Organized operatives paid by Freedom Works” doesn’t work – article was probably pulled.

  7. maha  •  Feb 24, 2011 @1:54 pm

    moonbat — I fixed the link. It’s not that interesting, though.

  8. c u n d gulag  •  Feb 24, 2011 @2:22 pm

    There are a lot of vultures in these ‘momentous and crazy times.
    They feed off of peoples desperation.

    Yesterday, I got an e-mail from a recuiter for a job as a novice internet recruiter for a staffing company. It called for me to get on my computer for an interview today. You were given a link and told to sign in 20 minutes before the “interview.” They would call you at the appropriate hour. But nowhere on the e-mail did it mention the companies name. Well, something smelled very fishy. But, I figured, what have I got to lose?
    So today, I signed in a 1/2 hour before I was supposed to, and lo and behold the companies name was there. I quickly googled it, and the first thing that came up was the companies name and the word “scam.”
    So, I looked into it. It seems that they invite 300 random schmucks and give them a 45 minute spiel on how they’re going to earn $30 dollars an hour from home.
    Sounds great, right? Who wouldn’t want to do that?
    Here’s the kicker: They only had 30 positions open, and the first 30 people who could pay almost $300 would get the “jobs.” Qualifications for a job as a staffing recruiter? None.
    Now, I worked in HR for a long time, and staffing is a pretty specialized position not only in a company that does its own staffing, but also in a company that staffs for others. Not every yutz can do that job.
    So, I broke my connection and didn’t answer the phone.
    Here’s the link for anyone who might read this and get an e-mail from this company, to save you the trouble.
    http://www.trustlink.org/Reviews/Recruiting-and-Staffing-Careers-206400270

    I also want to reming everyone of what I’ve read – that out of every 50 jobs that offer you a salary for working from home, over 49 are NOT LEGITIMATE!
    That’s less than a 2% honesty rate!
    The rest are all goniffs. Vultures trying to pick at whatever money desperate people have in the hopes that maybe this offer, this one, is the real one, and they can get some money.
    Why isn’t our government looking for, and closing these ‘false hope mills?’ Then putting the people behind them in the slammer? Yeah, I’m pretty sure deregulation and llack of resources are behind it all.
    Well, at least I kept the $300 (which I didn’t have anyway).
    So, at least in this sting, I wasn’t stung.
    But some other poor desperate fool might not have been as lucky.

  9. Swami  •  Feb 24, 2011 @2:23 pm

    Somebody is missing something, but I don’t think it’s you.

    Actually,Maha…I’m missing gainful employment..and it’s been missing for the past 3 years.. I did earn $135.00 so far this week and the week isn’t even over yet. But I’m not complaining..I have a wife who is working full time..and that’s a good thing.. to have a women who not only cooks and cleans, but is able to support me — a blame America lazy tree hugging liberal who thinks the world owes me a living.

  10. LillithMc  •  Feb 24, 2011 @2:24 pm

    Love the Colbert video. Thanks!

  11. Felicity  •  Feb 24, 2011 @2:51 pm

    You got it, cundgulag. Labor puts money into the hands of owners, in fact without labor owners would have little to put in their pockets (which makes labor having no seat at the negotiating table indefensible – rather like a prosecutor being allowed to prosecute a case for the state but the defendent not being allowed a defense lawyer.)

    Of course if they’re smart they won’t let wages fall below the poison line, the line that separates those still fit enough to show up for work from those who are too sick and under-nourished to show up. (From their recent behavior, however, I doubt that they’re smart enough to be aware of the ‘poison’ line – may go down with the ship like the rest of us and the country.)

  12. erinyes  •  Feb 24, 2011 @4:40 pm

    Rumor has it that Gaddafi wants to install his idiot son, Moammar W. Gaddafi as the new leader.
    Swami, I’m still working, but I’m feeling like Boxer the horse in ‘Animal Farm”.
    The once fantastic bod is failing, and my days of rolling more rocks up the hill than all the other horses are over. I see the glue factory just over the horizon……….

  13. c u n d gulag  •  Feb 24, 2011 @5:01 pm

    Oh great, now Breitbart has inspired a legion of right wing lunatics to walk around with video cell phones, getting in people’s faces, and when they push back, accuse them of assault.
    Expect more of the morons to pop up now like those little poisonous mushroom’s in the spring underneath rocks and dead wood.

    Dude had it right though when he said, ‘I can’t have an intelligent conversation with you, because you’re not intelligent.”
    I guess the truth hurts.

    And yes, yes, you’re truly just like Lara Logan.
    If Lara was a simple-minded, cretinous nebbish and all-around fucking ignorant dipshit.

  14. moonbat  •  Feb 24, 2011 @6:03 pm

    Robert Reich, The Republican Shakedown.

  15. Bonnie  •  Feb 24, 2011 @9:00 pm

    Moonbat said “. . . and the better known (to them) Golden Rule.”

    Unfortunately, none of the rightwingers really know the Bible. And, the last thing they are familiar with from the Bible is “The Golden Rule.”

  16. Swami  •  Feb 24, 2011 @9:16 pm

    Well. I don’t believe in the law of divine retribution…Cause if it were so, Dick Cheney would be a moldering in the grave.

  17. erinyes  •  Feb 25, 2011 @8:08 am

    The “Golden Rule” is now “grab all the gold”.
    I wonder if it wasn’t just a farce all along to keep the little people in line.
    (there’s actually no doubt in my mind)http://www.ebaumsworld.com/video/watch/894932/

  18. erinyes  •  Feb 25, 2011 @1:28 pm

    Swami, more like a smoldering pile on the ground………

  19. Bonnie  •  Feb 25, 2011 @7:52 pm

    FYI, on March 21 there will be an HBO Documentary on the Triangle Waist Factory fire, which Maha discussed earlier this week.

  20. erinyes  •  Feb 25, 2011 @8:44 pm

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