Old British Sailing Ship wallpaper – Joe Biden Speaks the Truth. Republicans Offended.

Old British Sailing Ship wallpaper

At campaign event Biden mentions rape in criticizing Republicans

The vice president, known for speaking his mind and at times putting his foot in his mouth, said that Republicans who want to cut spending while at the same time cutting taxes for the wealthy are similar to rape apologists.

The Hill is a fine example of the Village media mentality. Biden is known for “at times putting his foot in his mouth”, as compared to who? Glenn Beck, George W. Bush or Sarah Palin.  More from the same The Hill report,

In setting up his comparison, the vice president explained to the audience that before the Violence Against Women Act that he championed was passed into law, “there was this attitude in our society of blaming the victim,” according to a press pool account of the event.

“When a woman got raped, blame her because she was wearing a skirt too short, she looked the wrong way or she wasn’t home in time to make the dinner,” Biden said.

Some right-wing women in the comments duly noted their breath taking faux outrage. Do all conservatives buy the same impenetrable fact bubble from a government sub-contractor who has the bubbles imported from China. Biden is being generous towards public attitudes and conservative Republican attitudes in general when it comes to blaming the victim. From March 16, 2001 – Republican lawmaker blames 11-year-old victim of alleged gang rape

While it’s a common tactic of abusers, it’s something no one expected of Republican Florida state Rep. Kathleen Passidomo.

During debate over a bill that would legislate a dress code for Florida students, Passidomo blamed the alleged gang raping of an 11-year-old in Cleveland, Texas on the way the young girl was dressed.

“There was an article about an 11 year old girl who was gangraped in Texas by 18 young men because she was dressed like a 21-year-old prostitute,” Passidomo declared.

“And her parents let her attend school like that. And I think it’s incumbent upon us to create some areas where students can be safe in school and show up in proper attire so what happened in Texas doesn’t happen to our students,” she added.

Passidomo managed to encapsulate every Republican talking point about rape into a short rant – rape victims are to blame, the way one dresses is the cause of rape and she added a little extra malice by blaming the victim’s parents. Back to VP Biden,

“We’ve gotten by that,” he said. “But it’s amazing how these Republicans, the right wing of this party – whose philosophy threw us into this God-awful hole we’re in, gave us the tremendous deficit we’ve inherited – that they’re  now using, now attempting to use, the very economic condition they have created to blame the victim – whether it’s organized labor or ordinary middle-class working men and women. It’s bizarre. It’s bizarre.”

After Biden’s appearance at the fundraiser, his office tried to focus on the economic message.

“The vice president was obviously making the point that on any issue, we shouldn’t blame the victim,” Biden spokeswoman Elizabeth Alexander said. “Blaming workers or union members for states’ fiscal crises – an argument made by some Republican governors – isn’t the answer.”

Biden is simply speaking truth to power. Republicans are, to the core, fundamentally bourgeois corporate socialists who believe the elites should run the country and the rest of us should pay when they screw up. I covered a few of the specifics in the post before this one and Robert L. Borosage covers the same ground here – Republicans Who Crashed The Economy Want The Middle-Class to Pay.

Some of the commenters at The Hill rush to say Biden has “no class”. Never ever take lessons from a right-wing conservative on class: Kansas lawmaker compares rape to auto theft. Or here’s some conservative class, GOP candidate compares ‘tyrannical’ health care bill to slavery in commercial. Here is some more class and what passes for a reasonable analogy in Wingnuttia, The health-care-is-rape argument comes courtesy of WorldNetDaily managing editor David Kupelian. In a piece entitled “Barack Obama and the date-rape of America” or Glenn Beck’s version, Glenn Beck Compares Healthcare Reform to Roman Polanski’s Statutory Rape. Also a candidate for the top ten rape analogies, Republican Ken Buck Compares Homosexuality to Alcoholism, Defends Rape as ‘Buyer’s Remorse’ (video).

Just recently Republicans tried to redefine rape downward. Unless the victim was severely beaten while tied up with a gun at their head, was it really rape –  Drugged, raped, and pregnant? Too bad. Republicans are pushing to limit rape and incest cases eligible for government abortion funding. Having “class” is not the issue as much as having a set of values that should be abhorrent to any person claiming to be civilized. Listening to Republicans whine and lecture about rape and blame analogies is somewhere in the ball park of listening to them claim they know where the WMD are, they’re experts at running the economy and they have singularly superior values.


“As Putin rears his head and comes into the air space of the United States of America, where – where do they go? It’s Alaska. It’s just right over the border.”
— CBS interview with Katie Couric, September 25, 2008

“Iranian twitter activity similar to what we did in House last year when Republicans were shut down in the House,” Rep. Pete Hoekstra(R) on comparing Republicans to Iranian dissidents.

“So I had Cheneys on both sides of the family and we don’t even live in West Virginia,” Dick Cheney’s West Virginia incest joke. Classy?

“It all goes back to one fundamental principle — and that is to make (the media and public officials) live up to their own book of rules. If you want to call out a hypocrite, the best way to do that is look at how he lives his life.” – convicted right-wing scam artist James O’Keefe

“…the area in the south and the west and the north that coalition forces control is substantial. It happens not to be the area where weapons of mass destruction were dispersed. We know where they are. They’re in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, south and north somewhat.” Donald Rumsfeld – March 30, 2003

Antique World Map 1715 – Republicans Who Crashed The Economy Want The Middle-Class to Pay

Antique World Map 1715

Who Gets Hit With the Tab for the Great Recession?

Governor Scott Walker and a gaggle of Republican governors assault the right of workers to bargain collectively in states across the country. Teachers get laid off as school budgets are cut across the country. Colleges hike tuitions and shut down course offerings. Public workers face furloughs, layoff, cuts in health care and pension benefits. Congress is tied in knots about how much and what to cut. And Republican and bipartisan pressure to go after Social Security and Medicare is escalating.

We should be very clear about what unites these stories, for these struggles will say much about what kind of America emerges from the rubble of the Great Recession.

Who gets stuck with the bill for the Great Recession?

From the tea party Republican caucus to the Obama White House, leaders of both parties have moved from worrying about the recovery to worrying about how to pay for the costs of the Great Recession. With 25 million Americans in need of full time work, this is bipartisan folly. With Japan melting down, the Middle East erupting, energy and food prices soaring, housing prices and starts sinking, states and localities enacting brutal budget cuts, it is callously irresponsible, risking a double dip recession that will explode public deficits.

But that’s where we are — focused on who pays for the mess. Wall Street excess and conservative deregulation (by law and lassitude) blew up the economy, causing the Great Recession. The bankers were bailed out. Working families took the hit from the downturn — in lost jobs, lost savings, weakened pensions, declining home values, pay and benefit cuts.

The recession blew a large hole in public finances at every level. Tax revenues plummeted. Expenses — from unemployment insurance to food stamps to public health — rose. Public pension funds suffered investment losses. States and localities face severe deficits with a mandate to balance their budgets. At the federal level, the recession doubled the national debt, and drove deficits up to 10% of GDP (much of this the result of plummeting tax receipts).

Now the question is who pays for the damage?

The Republican position is clear and consistent at every level of government. They want to send the bill to teachers, cops, seniors, kids, the poor and the vulnerable. From Governor Walker in Wisconsin to Governor Kasich in Ohio and across the country, Republican Governors and conservative legislators are pushing for deep cuts in education, jobs programs, and public health programs (particularly Medicaid). They are slashing spending while seeking in many cases to cut taxes for corporations and the affluent.

That’s true at the federal level as well. Republicans went to the mat to extend tax breaks for millionaires in December, and now are threatening to close down government to slash spending on education, jobs programs, energy and the environment, and public health for the remaining months of the FY 2011 budget. And for next year’s budget, they are girding themselves to take on the core insurance programs — Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid — that provide the most vulnerable Americans — seniors, the widowed, the disabled — with some modicum of security.

We aren’t buying what they are peddling

This agenda is immensely unpopular. Americans have rather clear and sensible ideas about how to cut the deficit. They want Social Security and Medicare protected. They oppose cuts in education. They don’t like tax hikes on families that are already suffering pay cuts. With the growing and extreme concentration of income and wealth, voters support tax hikes for the richest Americans, imposing a surcharge on incomes above a million dollars. With Wall Street’s casino wrecking ruin, they support taxes on bank profits, and a financial speculation or transaction tax to slow computer driven speculation. With the Pentagon spending about as much as the rest of the world combined spends on their militaries, they’d start with cuts in the defense budget, as well as subsidies for Big Oil and other corporate interests.

The more people become aware of the Republican agenda, the less they like it. In Wisconsin, Governor Walker hoped he could cram his legislation through a legislature under Republican control before people knew what hit them. But when workers mobilized, and Democratic Senators left the state, the voters got a chance to look at the Governor’s program — and his popularity plummeted. The same would surely be true of the public’s reaction to the cuts demanded by the House Republicans in Washington, were we ever to have a pitched battle over them.

Dismember the Opposition

That reality requires the second front in the conservative offensive: a frontal assault to weaken the ability of organized people to counter the power of organized money.

Doing the bidding of corporations, banks and the wealthy insures that conservatives will have well stocked campaign coffers and deep independent expenditure money pots that can fund air and ground wars in support of their actions. Citizens United, the ruling written by the conservative gang of 5 on the Supreme Court, opened the floodgates to corporate money. Its effect — like that of Reagan firing the Patco workers — was as much symbolic as substantive, making it clear to corporate CEOS that this was the moment to go all in.

But even the most sophisticated Orwellian ad and Astroturf campaigns have a hard time overcoming the opposition of organized people. So conservatives have set out systematically to weaken or destroy the opposition.

That’s why core worker rights are under assault in states across the country. This isn’t about balancing the budget; it is about weakening the ability of workers to resist. Unions are the most potent opponent of the conservative agenda. With private sector unions weakened by globalization and the all out corporate assault on them over the last three decades, public employee unions — teachers, cops, fire fighters, nurses — are the leading edge of the opposition, and the leading target of the new attack.

But it isn’t just unions. In states across the country, efforts are underway to strip students of their right to vote on their campuses, hoping to suppress the votes of the young. Various forms of requiring voter ID at the polling booth are being revived, seeking to depress the votes of seniors, minorities and the poor.

Studying Republicans or more aptly the modern extreme right-wing movement is a lesson in cultural anthropology. They’re like some ancient European tribe that has a set of very rigid dogmatic beliefs. No matter how much evidence is presented that the world is not flat or that voodoo supply-side economic does not work for the vast majority of Americans, they refuse to believe their lying eyes. The Bush tax cuts did not produce job growth for eight years. What did Republicans learn from that. We have to cut taxes some more. These same Republicans shipped American jobs to Asia. Corporate profits took a deep with the Great Recession, but now they are back to record levels. Republicans obviously are not embarrassed by having a horrible job creation record. All the evidence would seem to indicate the contrary. They can talk job creation all day, but they obviously don’t care about jobs or the unemployed. The current White House also seems to think that just extending unemployment insurance lets them off the hook. Republicans are not ashamed of giving children, the elderly, nurses and teachers the economic shaft. remember House majority leader John Boehner(R-OH)  said that if slashing the federal budget meant the loss of jobs than so be it. The Republican governors of Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan and Florida have all decided that cutting taxes and weakening bargaining rights will perform some job magic. None of these far right-wing Republicans have created jobs. They have given corporations that are making record profits, more tax breaks. Even before these state tax breaks many corporations, making millions in profits paid little or no income taxes.

New Hampshire serves a good example of passing the buck for collapsing the economy, not to the people who caused it, but to the victims of conservative economic policies, New Hampshire House Approves Tax Cut On Cancer-Causing Cigarettes, Cuts Health And Education Funding

– Yesterday, The House’s powerful Finance Committee moved forward on legislation that would cause mass layoffs of physicians and nurses and result in more than 12,000 people, including 500 to 800 children, losing their health care coverage.

– Wednesday, the House approved a bill freezing funding for schools.

– Tuesday, lawmakers approved a bill that “removes compulsory school attendance for children.”

– The Republican-controlled Senate approved pension-reform legislation that increases health care costs and raises the retirement age for public workers.

– House members passed an amendment to the state Constitution “to bypass a Supreme Court decision ordering the state to pay for the cost of an adequate education for every public schoolchild.”

If you get the big picture, all the elements that go into making communities and the nation strong for the long-term, there is no cost benefit to society for not compelling children to attend school or slashing education budgets. This is Big Government conservatism in action. Given the opportunity, they will use their power to pander to the corporate welfare state at the expense of the working class. Tea nut conservatives, the conservatives who like to pretend they had nothing to do with causing the Great Recession, should be thrilled with the current economic trends. They will truly have an America of the late 1700s. A few landed aristocrats and the rest of the country mostly uneducated, and living hand to mouth.