What Conservatives Consider Mainstream and Where America Really Stands on The Issues

Black and White New York Panorama wallpaper

Black and White New York Panorama wallpaper

New York Panorama wallpaper

New York Panorama wallpaper

 

 

The conservative reaction to President Obama’s iaugural speech was all too predictable – full transcipt here. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)

“One thing is clear from the president’s speech: The era of liberalism is back. His unabashedly far-left-of-center inaugural speech certainly brings back memories of the Democratic Party in ages past,” he said. “If the president pursued that kind of agenda, obviously it’s not designed to bring us together, and certainly not designed to deal with the transcendent issue of our era, which is deficits and debt.”

Mitch is old school, believing as m any on the radical Right do, that simply using the word liberal is all the demonization required to damn any political thought, any agenda, any public policy. It still works, up to a point. The far Right used it leading up to the 2008 elections, frequently interlaced with anti-Christ, Muslim, the birth certificate weirdness as code for the “other” and of course, accusations of being a Marxist. It didn’t work then. It did not work for the first four years. Conservatives, never to be guilty of being old dogs capable of learning new tricks, kept to the same tiresome clown act during the 2012 campaign. While I would agree with other analysts that President’ Obama’s inaugural address was his most progressive speech since his stump speeches in 2007, the President’s speech represented the agenda of the majority of the American people. While many still find the term liberal a stigma, when it comes down to what they think about the issues, president Obama and Democrats are in step with the public. Mitch and his conservative comrades are more and more becoming embarrassing remnants of a dying movement whose “values” range from plastic and hypocritical, to antithetical to the values of most patriotic Americans. By ” transcendent issue of our era, which is deficits and debt” Mitch means the massive debt he voted for during the Bush administration while he and his party crashed the economy. This is the McConnell Unified Field Theory of the Universe – keep dragging out the same tired lies and blame the other guys for the conservative movement’s incompetence and malevolence.

Let it not be said that I have not given the radical Right it’s say in it’s own words:

Charles Krauthammer Suggests Opposing Cuts To Social Security, Medicare, And Medicaid Is Part Of Obama’s “Liberal Agenda.” During Fox News’ coverage of Obama’s inauguration, Fox contributor Charles Krauthammer suggested Obama’s speech about supporting federal benefits, and expanding green energy and civil rights was an “ode to big government” and an outline of his “liberal agenda.” Krauthammer later claimed that Obama’s speech was evidence that the president wants to “change the ideological trajectory of the country.” [Fox News, 1/21/13 via FoxNews.com]

The majority of Americans support all those programs. They keep millions of Americans not just out of extreme poverty, but alive. Chuck lives on winger welafre churning out factually challenged bullsh*t for the kool-aid drinkers.

Peter Johnson Jr. Suggested Obama Gave A “Hard-Left Manifesto” By Pointing To “Phantom Arguments” In Terms Of Civil Rights And Global Warming. Fox News legal analyst Peter Johnson Jr. appeared on Fox & Friends to attack the issues raised during Obama’s second inaugural address as a “hard-left manifesto.” Johnson went on to claim that political moderates would react to the speech by asking ” ‘is this president in touch with the realities of America?’ “

Johnson appears to be the one utterly out of touch with both humanity and the American people. The majority of Americans support action against human induced climate change and support equal rights for gay couples. Historically Johnson and the conservative movement can be proud to say they are in fact on the side of Stalin and Hitler. Both extremists were anti-environment and anti-gay. That comparison is not, unlike that of zealots like Wayne LaPierre, factually wrong hyperbole, it is historical fact. If McConnell, Kruthhammer and Johnson want America’s values to be the same of history’s most notorious despots I suppose they’re free to do so. Though they go too far when they claim their values are American values.

I’m not crazy about how Wonkette covers political issues – especially since Anna Marie Cox left, but they do nail the headline on this one, How Did It Take Five Whole Weeks To Blame These Shootings On Welfare Mom Fraud? Though TP has a better write-up, House Republican Leader Blames Gun Violence On ‘Welfare Moms’

CONSTITUENT: My question is regarding the guns and is Washington at all aware of the psychotropic drugs that these children are taking? I guarantee it 100 percent that’s our big problem. [...]

LANKFORD: I agree with that. I think there’s a bunch of issues that, quite frankly, most liberals are afraid to talk about. [...] Where are we on all those psychiatric drugs? We’ve overmedicated kids. Quite frankly some of the overmedication of kids are because welfare moms want to get additional benefits and if they can put them on SSI through maintenance drugs, they can also put them on Social Security disability and get a separate check. That is wrong on every single level. Not only is it fraudulent to the government, but it also tells a kid with great potential, “don’t try because you’re disabled.”

I can hope that Rep. James Lankford (R-OK) and his supporters never have jury trial and the bar for burden of proof  of their guilt is as low as the bar for what they believe to be their truth. In 2011 9.8 million Americans received Social Security disability benefits. The Inspector General’s Office only found enough suspicion of possible fraud for for benefits in 4,600 cases. That means, if all of those cases were fraud that .047 percent of Americans who collected disability committed fraud. Financial Crimes Report to the Public Fiscal Years 2010-2011

Securities and Commodities Fraud

General Overview

The continued uncertainty and volatility of today’s financial markets could be measured by the Dow Jones Industrial Average movement from 12,681 on July 22, 2011, to 10,655 on October 3, 2011. As a result of such tumultuous markets, the FBI witnessed a steady rise in securities and commodities frauds as investors sought alternative investment opportunities. With the development of new schemes and trends—such as securities market manipulation via cyber intrusion, the increase in commodities fraud, the continued rise of Ponzi schemes, and foreign-based reverse merger market manipulation schemes—securities and commodities fraud is on the rise. Since 2008, securities and commodities fraud investigations have increased by 52 percent, and the FBI currently has over 1,800 pending investigations. During this period, the losses associated with these types of schemes have increased to billions of dollars. The losses are associated with depreciative market value of businesses, reduced or nonexistent return on investments, and legal and investigative costs. The victims of securities and commodities frauds include individual investors, financial institutions, public and private companies, government entities, pension funds, and retirement funds.

Combine that with fraud in the private health care sector,

Through FY 2011, 2,690 cases investigated by the FBI resulted in 1,676 informations/indictments and 736 convictions of HCF criminals. It should be noted that numerous cases are pending plea agreements and trials. The following notable statistical accomplishments are reflective in FY 2011 for HCF: $1.2 billion in restitutions; $1 billion in fines; $96 million in seizures; $320 million in civil restitution; and over $1 billion in civil settlements.

Mortgage Fraud by Private Lenders
With elevated levels of mortgage fraud, the FBI has continued to dedicate significant resources to the threat. The FBI has increased the number of agents who investigate mortgage fraud cases from 120 special agents in FY 2007 to 325 special agents in FY 2011. FBI pending mortgage fraud cases have increased from 1,199 in FY 2007 to 2,691 in FY 2011, with a peak of 3,129 in FY 2010

If regulations for private business were as tight as though for public funds like Social Security, we’d have both less private business fraud and more prosecutions.

Where are the reports that show a definitive empirical connection between single moms, Social Security and gun violence. There are none. There are reports that show that moderate gun regulation decreases the number of guns that fall into the hands of criminals. And that guns in the home increase the chance of violent death. The far Right will blame anything other than guns for gun deaths – video games, movies, Social Security, being a single mother. Yet very modest gun safety proposals morph magically into complete gun confiscation and hysteria directed at anything to distract from guns as at least a factor to be considered.

This is a good article that takes a fair look at the Right’s panacea, more guns will equal more safety, Your Brain in a Shootout: Guns, Fear and Flawed Instincts

But the research on actual gunfights, the kind that happen not in a politician’s head but in fluorescent-lit stairwells and strip-mall restaurants around America, reveals something surprising. Winning a gunfight without shooting innocent people typically requires realistic, expensive training and a special kind of person, a fact that has been strangely absent in all the back-and-forth about assault-weapon bans and the Second Amendment.

In the New York City police department, for example, officers involved in gunfights typically hit their intended targets only 18% of the time, according to a Rand study. When they fired 16 times at an armed man outside the Empire State Building last summer, they hit nine bystanders and left 10 bullet holes in the suspect—a better-than-average hit ratio. In most cases, officers involved in shootings experience a kaleidoscope of sensory distortions including tunnel vision and a loss of hearing. Afterward, they are sometimes surprised to learn that they have fired their weapons at all.

“Real gun battles are not Call of Duty,” says Ryan Millbern, who responded to an active-shooter incident and an armed bank robbery among other calls during his decade as a police officer in Colorado

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Guns have place in thinking about personal safety, but they are not the cure-all some people believe.

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