Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Republican Jackass of the Week

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

Fat Tony.

It's a shame these justices are appointed for life. With today's medical knowledge and available technology, we should be able to oust, expel, or otherwise discharge and forcefully retire a Supreme Court justice at the first sign of senility.

The Supreme Court today heard oral arguments to actually strike down key parts of the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

Although all American adults were already guaranteed the right to vote, the 1965 Voting Rights Act was necessary to force certain areas of the country to abide by that law, disallowing the blatant racial intimidation and discrimination that was rampant in some parts of the south.

When asked why, in 2006, the law was renewed for another 25 years by unanimous vote in the Senate, Scalia actually said it was “very likely attributable, to a phenomenon that is called perpetuation of racial entitlement. It's been written about. Whenever a society adopts racial entitlements, it is very difficult to get out of them through the normal political processes.”

Racial entitlements, you Jackass? An entitlement is the "belief that one is deserving of or entitled to certain privileges," according to Merriam-Webster.

No, my fat, arrogant, erudite elitist. Voting is not a an entitlement. It's a right, like it or not.

African-Americans may not have to return over and over to register to vote because "it's too early in the day / it's too late in the day / it's the wrong day of the week / the registrant isn't here today." They may not be asked to answer ridiculously impossible-to-answer questions anymore like "how many angels can dance on the head of a pin?" or "how many bubbles are in a bar of soap?"

But in case Fat Tony was in a coma for the last election cycle, let me inform him that many other, slightly more subtle forms of voter suppression were employed. Cutting early voting days, cutting voting hours, ending voting on the weekend before election day, cutting the number of voting machines in minority districts, suddenly demanding I.D.'s that were never required in American history and making sure voters in minority districts had long lines and waiting times up to 6 hours to tolerate, all were designed to suppress minority voters.

Even now, Regressive republican legislators in blue states like Pennsylvania are trying to rig the Electoral College rules so that votes in blue states are split between candidates.

Yeah, the 1965 Voting Rights Act is outdated, and all the discriminatory problems of the past are behind us.

My ass.

Hey, here's an obvious question for some real reporter to ask: if everything's fine now and there's no such thing as discrimination or voter suppression based on race, then why the rush to eliminate this Act? If Regressives in these far rightwing southern states are going to obey the law anyway, why the sudden need to eliminate it? Hmm?

8 Regressive Republican Governors Suddenly Accept Obamacare for their States

From the Huffington Post:

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie became the eighth Republican governor to back expanding Medicaid under President Barack Obama's health care reform law on Tuesday.

"After considerable discussion and research, I have decided to participate in Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act. While we already have one of the most expansive and generous Medicaid programs in the nation, including the second highest eligibility rate for children, we have an opportunity to ensure that an even greater number of New Jerseyans who are at or near the poverty line will have access to critical health services beginning in January of 2014," Christie said.

Other Republican governors, including Florida's Rick Scott and Ohio's John Kasich, also support the Medicaid expansion. Altogether, 25 states and the District of Columbia plan to broaden the program under the health care reform law beginning next year. Most of the new enrollees in states that expand are expected to be adults without children living at home, who were not previously covered by Medicaid.

Most of these far rightwing extremists blasted Obamacare as "too expensive / government controlled health care / Socialist / Communist." Now they seem all too willing to accept what their constituents want. Maybe it's because most of these liars and hypocrites are up for re-election. Maybe it's because Medicare Expansion will be 100% funded for the next 3 years by the Federal Government and won't cost the states a cent. After three years, the Fed will cover 97%, dropping slightly for several years until it reaches 90% where it will remain.

This reminds me of all the rightwing Teabagger extremist Republican governors who claimed to refuse stimulus money, only to be caught sending letters begging for their fair share and then having pictures taken of them cutting ribbons at the grand opening of these projects in their states.

They're all the same: first make a big show of claiming you hate the President and turning your back on the program, then, as sneakily as possible, open that slimy palm to get as much as you can.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Same Sex Marriage Passes First Hurdle in Illinois

The Illinois State Senate approved marriage equality legislation today by a vote of 34-21.  It's expected to pass the Democratically-controlled House in the state as well. Illinois' governor Pat Quinn (D) has already committed to signing the bill into law, so it looks like Illinois will be the 10th state to pass marriage equality legislation!

Recent PPP polls show that Illinois voters support marriage equality 48-42%.

For voters under the age of 45, it's 58-37% in favor.

Minority voters approve by even bigger margins:

Black voters approve 60-16%; and Latinos say yes 70-23%.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Senate Republicans Stall a Republican Sec. of Defense

See, this is what you get when you try, over and over again, to be bipartisan, civil, and you compromise with Regressive republicans. You get nothing.

With Leon Panetta leaving as Secretary of Defense, President Obama is attempting to fill that cabinet position with a republican -- Chuck Hagel, a longtime senator from Nebraska.

In an unprecedented act of douche-baggery, the Regressives spitefully filibustered his confirmation, requiring 60 votes, and only reaching 58.

They claim they need "more time to thoroughly vet" Hagel's background, as if he's some newcomer no one's familiar with.

Not to worry. This little display of brattiness will accomplish nothing. Another vote is scheduled for Feb 26, and Sen Hagel will be confirmed as the next Secretary of Defense.

You can read more here.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Republicans' First Step to Kill the PO: Mission Accomplished

No wonder this mailman drinks so much.
 The Regressive republican party's wet dream is to destroy the US Post Office -- wipe it out completely -- so it can privatize mail delivery. The first nail has been hammered into the coffin today, as the Postmaster General has announced that the Post Office will end Saturday mail delivery beginning this August.

Let's remember this is an entirely contrived problem. One that wouldn't exist at all if it weren't for the Regressive republican party.

In 2006, the Regressive congress passed a bill that requires the US Post Office to pre-fund 75 years' worth of retirement funds in a 10-year window. That means the Post Office has to set aside retirement money not only for people it hasn't hired yet, but also for people who haven't even been born yet.

Is there any other public or private company that is forced to set aside billions of dollars for people who have yet to be born? Of course not. What business has to stash away enough money to fully fund the retirement of future workers who don't even exist yet? Not one.

Lovable Truly will be laid off soon.
This is the ridiculous burden that has been forced onto the Post Office. Remember that not one cent in taxpayer money funds the operation of the Post Office.  100% of its daily operations are funded by postage. And if the Regressive congress hadn't passed this bizarre law in 2006, the US Post Office would have a surplus of $1,500,000,000.

That's 1.5 billion dollars.

So the fact that the Post Office is operating in the red is entirely the fault of the Regressive congress. This was their plan. And Step One was accomplished today.

Why do the Regressives want to destroy the Post Office? So private companies, like FedEx and UPS can take over. These two companies, coincidentally, have given millions to Regressive republican candidates.

If the people who live in rural cities and states think FedEx will deliver a letter for 45 cents, they're dreaming.