Know Them By Their Contempt For Facts

Chris Christie(R-NJ) seems to be out of the presidential race this cycle. One poll has Romney back on top. While another has Mitt Romney and Herman Cain tied. Rupert Murdoch and his Fox News noise machine will still decide who the conservative presidential nominee will be. Give Fox a few days to let the dust settle and we should start to detect who they prefer. It could be something subtle like Romney is a nice guy and all, but maybe he’d be better as a VP candidate to Perry as president or refer to Cain as a possible VP to Romney.

I have to admit I like a certain amount of certainty in my life. While I get tired of my routine and like to change things around once in a while, a routine can feel comfortable. On the other hand conservatives seem obsessed with not just certainty for themselves but being very serious people, are super concerned that everyone else have some iron box-like certainty in their life. Other than pushing America toward the austerity that will mean a lost generation of workers, one of their highest priorities in the last two years has been certainty. They are good at it. They knew from 2000 to 2008 that cutting taxes and spending like crazy would be a major factor in crippling the economy. They acted with all the seriousness and certitude America has come to expect from the radical Right. Herman Cain shares that maniacal concern with uncertainty – Cain Claims That His Tax Plan Is ‘Not Regressive On The Poor’ — Economists Disagree

Of course, Cain took a few moments to promote his “999? economic plan, which calls for the corporate income tax and personal income tax to be set at a flat rate of 9 percent, as well as the creation of a 9 percent national sales tax. During the interview, Cain said his plan would not be regressive for low-income Americans:

The first thing you do is you throw out the current tax code which creates too much uncertainty, and this is why I have proposed my “999? plan. Very quickly, it imposes a 9 percent business flat tax, a 9 percent personal income tax, and a 9 percent national sales tax. It expands the base so that everybody has a lower rate. And it is not regressive on the poor.

Cain seems to believe that, because his plan has a flat rate, it is not regressive. But sales taxes are hugely regressive on the poor.

Cain was part of a large corporation for years, he used to be a corporate CEO and is now part of a business group with business and financial holdings. In each of these stations he had a CFO or head accountant who knew what they would pay in taxes every year. Corporate America is certain it is sitting on trillions in profits. I’m not sure that his experience means he has no excuse for not running his numbers or that since he was a CEO, that explains why he doesn’t care if his numbers don’t work. Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 Plan

Praised by supporters for both its simplicity and its specificity, Cain’s plan drops the current 35 percent corporate tax rate to 9 percent, swaps the 6-bracket personal income tax system for a 9 percent flat tax and creates a 9 percent national sales tax.

“Our tax code is the 21st century version of slavery,” Cain said in a campaign video publicizing his 9-9-9 plan. “We will replace oppression with prosperity.”

Cain is a millionaire. he does not work per se. He is currently traveling around the country enjoying the leisure, luxury and lifestyle the vast majority of Americans will never know, no matter how hard they work. Is that the kind of slavery he is talking about. From the time he left college until now Cain has enjoyed a nice lifestyle – while I’m sure he has run into the same kind of cultural and institutionalized racism that every African-American experiences he can hardly describe his current circumstances as oppressive. His constant comparing taxes to slavery is almost as offensive and certainly untrue as Glenn Reynolds and his circle of jerks comparing taxes to rape – Humorless morons cracking rape “jokes”. Cain suffers the same malady I’ve observed in many right-wing conservatives over the years. They will have a certain skill set or talent, outside of that they’re all loony beliefs. In Cain’s case he has been surrounded for years by people whose job it was to say yes and to humor everything he said. Now he is of an age and disposition that he believes he is always right. No need to run any numbers through a real world situation. No need to make reasonable analogies between things – taxes=slavery. Sure they’re just the same.

Ezra Klein post on OccupyWallStreet – Who are the 99 percent?

“Married mother of 3. Lost my job in 2009. My family lost our health insurance, our savings, our home, and our good credit. After 16 months, I found a job — with a 90 mile commute and a 25 percent pay cut. After gas, tolls, daycare, and the cost of health insurance, i was paying so my kids had access to health care.”

Let’s be clear. This isn’t really the 99 percent. If you’re in the 85th percentile, for instance, your household is making more than $100,000, and you’re probably doing okay. If you’re in the 95th percentile, your household is making more than $150,000. But then, these protests really aren’t about Wall Street, either. There’s not a lot of evidence that these people want a class war, or even particularly punitive measures on the rich. The only thing that’s clear from their missives is that they want the economy to start working for them, too.

“I am young. I am educated and hard working. I am not able to pay my bills. I am afraid of what the future holds.”

[ ]…But this is why I’m taking Occupy Wall Street — or, perhaps more specifically, the ‘We Are The 99 Percent’ movement — seriously. There are a lot of people who are getting an unusually raw deal right now. There is a small group of people who are getting an unusually good deal right now. That doesn’t sound to me like a stable equilibrium.

The organizers of Occupy Wall Street are fighting to upend the system. But what gives their movement the potential for power and potency is the masses who just want the system to work the way they were promised it would work. It’s not that 99 percent of Americans are really struggling. It’s not that 99 percent of Americans want a revolution. It’s that 99 percent of Americans sense that the fundamental bargain of our economy — work hard, play by the rules, get ahead — has been broken, and they want to see it restored.

The Right is starting to pay attention and they’re scared of these people – 5 Reasons Occupy Wall Street Is the Real Boston Tea Party – are the spirit of the real tea party. Right-wing backlash against Occupy Wall St. begins

Out of some combination of contempt and opportunism, Fox News along with right-wing pundits and magazine writers are calling out Occupy Wall Street as stupid, juvenile, and dangerous.

The strain of deep contempt is best expressed in this column by National Review editor Rich Lowry, titled “The Left’s Pathetic Tea Party”:

Occupy Wall Street is not a real answer. It is both more self-involved and more ambitious than the Tea Party. It represents an ill-defined, free-floating radicalism. Its fuzzy endpoint is a “revolution” no one can precisely describe, but the thrust of which is overturning our system of capitalism as we know it. If elected Democrats dare associate their sagging party with this project, they need immediately to consult their nearest psychiatrist and political consultant, in that order.

Abe Greenwald at Commentary expands on the idea that the protest movement will hurt the Dems:

These leftists are so reckless that an extended, high profile “occupation” movement of national reach would bury liberalism months before November 2012. It would, in short, function for Democrats exactly as Democrats had hoped (in vain) that the Tea Party would function for Republicans in 2010. In unhinged “Occupiers,” conservatives would find an easy and clean target to run against and destroy.

 

OK than destroy Democrats in 2012 running on a ticket and message that says decent hard-working Americans did all the things they were supposed to do, among them get an education and work hard – and portray these people as shiftless lazy Marxists. Not all of course, but much of what the Right is so livid about is gasp! returning to about the same tax rate all of us “slaves” paid during the Clinton administration. Or having the tax justice Reagan spoke about – VIDEO: Reagan Called For An End To ‘Crazy’ Tax Loopholes That Let Millionaires Pay Less Than Bus Drivers. Note that Ann Coulter and the other right-wing knuckle draggers are not calling Saint Ronnie a totalitarian.

AP sources: Bush-era probe involved guns ‘walking’. The DOJ does oversee the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. That does not mean in the real world we all know that they got permission from Eric Holder for Fast and Furious. In fact the DOJ was prosecuting people for the Bush era Operation Wide Receiver. CBS and the right are making a huge deal about when Holder knew about F&F. he actually does not get an opportunity to fully answer Darrel Issa questions during the hearing the Right and CBS swears is a smoking gun. Issa keeps talking over him to score points. How this all turns out is still up for debate – especially since you know, all the facts are not in. I really would like to know why a conservative website calls itself The American Thinker. This is what passes for thinking over there – ‘The Black US Attorney Has Common Cause with the Black Criminal’ by Selwyn Duke

According to Department of Justice whistleblower J. Christian Adams, AG Eric Holder has a certain something in his wallet.  It is a quotation — and he has carried it for decades.  It essentially says, to quote Adams, “Blackness is more important than anything, and the black US attorney has common cause with the black criminal.”  It’s not surprising that Holder would feel this way about black lawyers and criminals.

Because in his case they’re one and the same.

Holder, the man whose misfeasance led him to drop the infamous Black Panther voter-intimidation case, now may have done what all corrupt men, sooner or later, eventually do.

The rest is the flimsy case that A.G. Eric Holder personally knew and condoned F&F. Does the name J. Christian Adams ring a bell. he is a notorious right-wing operative. The one that tried to hang the New Black Panthers voter intimidation case around Holder’s neck. In other words he and Mr. Duke have all the veracity of a cockroach fart – Manufactured scandal: Right wing’s phony allegations against the Justice Department

J. Christian Adams’ accusations that President Obama’s Justice Department engaged in racially charged “corruption” in the New Black Panther Party case do not stand up to the evidence. Adams is a right-wing activist tied to the Bush-era politicization of the Justice Department who has admitted he lacks first-hand knowledge of the events he is discussing, and his claims fall apart given the fact that the Obama DOJ obtained judgment against one defendant, while the Bush DOJ declined to pursue similar allegations in 2006.

[   ]….Adams is a long-time right-wing activist, who is known for filing an ethics complaint against Hugh Rodham that was subsequently dismissed, served as a Bush poll watcher in Florida 2004, and reportedly volunteered for a Republican group that trains lawyers to fight “racially tinged battles over voting rights”;

Adams was hired to the Justice Department in 2005 by Bradley Schlozman, who was found by the Department of Justice Inspector General and Office of Professional Responsibility to have improperly considered political affiliation when hiring career attorneys — the former head of the DOJ voting rights section reportedly said that Adams was “exhibit A of the type of people hired by Schlozman”;

Adams has admitted that he does not have first-hand knowledge of the events, conversations, and decisions that he is citing to advance his accusations;

The Bush administration’s Justice Department — not the Obama administration — made the decision not to pursue criminal charges against members of the New Black Panther Party for alleged voter intimidation at a polling center in Philadelphia in 2008;
The Obama administration successfully obtained default judgment against Samir Shabazz, a member of the New Black Panther Party carrying a nightstick outside the Philadelphia polling center on Election Day 2008;

The Bush administration DOJ chose not to pursue similar charges against members of the Minutemen, one of whom allegedly carried a weapon while harassing Hispanic voters in Arizona in 2006;

No voters have come forward to claim that they were intimidated from voting on account of the New Black Panthers standing outside the polling center in 2008;

The Republican vice chairwoman of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, which is currently investigating the Justice Department’s decision, reportedly said that the other conservatives on the Civil Rights Commission were trying to use New Black Panther case “to topple” the Obama administration. Thernston has also called the case “very small potatoes” and criticized the “overheated rhetoric filled with insinuations and unsubstantiated charges” surrounding it, and said that rhetoric has not “served the interests of the commission”; she further said that DOJ has given a “plausible argument” for not pursuing additional charges in the case;

 

Bush’s ATF Director Rebuffs Right Wing’s Fast And Furious Theory

For months, the right-wing media has been desperately trying to tie the ATF’s failed Fast and Furious operation to the upper reaches of the Justice Department and the White House, claiming that President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder must have known the flawed techniques used by the ATF despite their denials.

The right-wing media claimed that the stimulus funded the operation; that wasn’t true. They claimed that Attorney General Holder “took credit” for Fast and Furious in a speech; that wasn’t true either. They’ve even claimed, absent any evidence whatsoever, that the Obama administration deliberately set up the operation to arm Mexican drug cartels in order to justify increased gun control.

But in an appearance today on Fox News, Michael Sullivan, acting director of the ATF under President Bush, pushed back against such claims, saying that Operation Fast and Furious was “well within the rights of the director [of ATF] to approve or reject,” and that he would be “surprised” to learn that “authorities outside the ATF” would have known the details of a specific firearms trafficking operation.

Summer’s Last Sail wallpaper – Conservatives Still Own Identity Politics

sailing, ocean,blue

Summer’s Last Sail wallpaper

Practicing “identity politics” is one of those pseudo-intellectual  epitaphs conservatives like to throw at non-look-aid drinking thinking Americans. It serves two purposes. One is pure projection. To be a conservative one has to pass so many litmus tests the projection serves as a preemptive attack. The other is to pretend the Right does not have lingering racist issues ( this is not to say all conservatives are racists. Racists still tend to flock to conservatism and conservatives tolerate it, just as they do their homophobia because it gets votes.) neither I or The Onion could come up with a better example of conservative identity politics than a right-wing conservative blog called Political Byline. His/her post consists almost entirely of quotes lifted from Democratic websites – Speaking of Racism: Democrats show their true colors

As you know, Herman Cain, who is a very successful businessman and also a black Conservative, won the straw poll in Florida.  As you also know, I just pointed out some serious racism by the left. Well, the democrats are not disappointing; check out some of the racist or “So damned close to being racist without sounding racist” as you can get.

All of these postings are actual blog postings by liberal blogs about Herman Cain and the night is young:

“Update: And it’s official. Pizza King Cain wins the straw poll. By a lot” — The Impolitic  — “Another day in the clown car – Update”

I have also heard Herman Cain referred to as Herman “Greasy Pizza” Cain too; which is just another way of calling him a greasy n-word. I mean, why not just say that?

Apparently, the Republicans are doing one of these stupid Straw Polls in Floridatoday. The problem is, the base hates all the candidates, which makes picking someone in the Straw Poll a bit of a challenge. Byron York speculates that Herman Cain might do better than expected because no one feels like voting for Rick Perry after he called them heartless. This makes sense to me because the most obvious to do if someone calls you out on your heartless hatred of Latinos is to vote for the black guy. ‘See? I’m not a racist who thinks minorities are biting into too much of my paycheck. I’m color blind.’

Can you feel the Cainmentum?  — Booman Tribune

Can you feel the racism?

Florida straw poll voters decided they hate everyone and voted for the only candidate who’s never held public office, Herman Cain. — Crooks and Liars

So what if Herman Cain has never held public office? Why is that a problem to Democrats? I mean, Barack Obama’s time in office was not that great. Why is this an issue? Because Herman Cain is a black Conservative. That my friends is classic Democratic Party racism.

and finally:

I’d say that Republicans couldn’t be crazy enough to nominate Herman Cain … but then again, they also nominated Christine O’Donnell, Sharron Angle, Joe Miller, Ken Buck, and, yes, Sarah Palin.

So, why would not the Republicans be crazy to nominate Herman Cain? Because he is black and a Conservative? Racism much John Amato? Just saying…

….and the night is young. If I spot anymore racism, I will post it here.

Update: Wow… Push out a post and find more of it:

Yes, running a chain of pizza parlors is just like running a country. Just yell, and the employees will scamper around and bring those cheese suppliers to heel.

[….]

In a field that might be called Mittens and the Seven Clowns, the base definitely prefers the clowns. — The Mahablog

Out of the block quotes that blog uses to prove liberal racism, only one even mentions that Cain is black. And could someone tell me the day calling someone a greasy pizza or a clown became a racial slur. One news site and several Democratic bloggers use zero racial slurs and that amounts to proof Democrats are racists. The only person guilty of identity politics here is the wing-nut blogger. Democratic bloggers do not like Cain because he appears to be as loony as a bed bug. Cain acting like a pompous authority on the Constitution, quoted from the Declaration of Independence when supposedly quoting from the US Constitution. Cain insisted that the federal government has no role in business bankruptcies, again citing his authoritative knowledge of the Constitution – Yet  According to Article I of the Constitution, “[t]he Congress shall have power . . . [t]o establish a uniform rule of naturalization, and uniform laws on the subject of bankruptcies throughout the United States.” In a convoluted tirade Cain claimed he was more American and less African-American than Obama ( talk about identity politics and racism) –

Herman Cain: Obama ‘Was Raised In Kenya’ | In an interview with the Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg, surging GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain rejected the term “African-American” as an inappropriate “label.” Cain dismissed “African” as an accurate descriptor because “most of the ancestors that I can trace were born here in the United States Of America. […] I feel more of an affinity for America than I do for Africa.” The term, Cain implied, may be more appropriate for President Obama, who “is more of an international,” he said. “Look, he was raised in Kenya,” Cain said, “his mother was white from Kansas and her family had an influence on him, it’s true, but his dad was Kenyan.” For the record, Obama was born in Hawaii, spent four to five years in Indonesia, then returned to the United States to live with his maternal grandmother.

Imagine a white liberal saying that Cain was less American because he was the ancestor of Africans and then went on to get Cain’s actual birthplace and early history wrong. Unhinged rants like Cain’s are not just factually wrong, they display a contempt for the truth bound up with some morally reprehensible ethnocentrism. Ultimately Cain is making the same argument about Obama that conservative white racists have made – Obama is not one of us. It was another black conservative – Thomas Sowell – who called President Obama a Nazi and a Maoist. These are just two black conservatives and thus not near statistically large enough sample to condemn all black conservatives by any means. Yet it is amazing how these two use the same hyperbolic and ethnocentric labels one would expect from what has become the standard attack on a Democratic president. Apparently the infection of Obama Derangement Syndrome works just the same on black and white conservatives. Democratic bloggers – I should qualify that to the two dozen or so I read regularly – have another reason not to like Cain and once again it has nothing to do with identity politics and everything to do with Cain being your typical right-wing nutbar, Cain Touts 9-9-9 Economic Plan in WSJ Op-Ed

GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain again laid out his plan to revive the economy in a Wall Street Journal op-ed on Thursday.

Dubbed the “9-9-9 plan,” Cain’s proposal, which he has been touting for several weeks, would restructure the tax code to include a 9 percent corporate and personal flat tax and a 9 percent national sales tax. Taxes on repatriated profits would also be eliminated along with payroll taxes and the estate tax.

The inspiration, the former businessman said, came from three guiding economic principles: “Production drives the economy. Risk-taking creates growth. Units of measurement must be dependable.”

Cain included in his op-ed the Republican battle cry of reduced spending by the federal government and paying down the country’s debt. In addition, Obama’s health care reform, the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley corporate-governance law, and the Dodd-Frank bank regulation should be repealed, he said. “A dollar must be worth the same tomorrow as it is today.”

Like the vast majority of conservatives, plus a few Democrats, Cain likes to pretend that Bush and a conservative Congress did not run up the largest debts in the nation’s history while also driving the economy off the cliff. Republicans were and are still responsible for the bulk of the national debt. Cain’s 999 plan is based on nothing. It says nothing about the economic consequences for the average American household, the effects on the long-term deficit or pays any notice to how regressive such a plan would be on any American  that has an income under the national median – When Fox’s Chris Wallace said his plan did not add up, Cain would not identify one economist or one study that proved it was viable. Maybe the 999 plan is another Cain joke. He once claimed that as president he would not sign any bill over three pages long. When Jon Stewart satirized Cain’s three page bill pledge, Cain  – here comes more conservative identity politics – said that Stewart was a racist and that any journalist who took the three page pledge seriously was an “idiot”. I will give Cain an admittedly backhanded defense. He is as shallow, fanatical, loony, bullying, misguided, fact challenged racist and religiously bigoted as Cain is, he is no worse than conservative intellectuals such as Newt Gingrich, Bill Kristol, Victor Davis Hanson or conservative populist such as Sarah Palin  and Rick Perry. In that regard one of those Democratic blogs summed it up pretty well, Cain is just another clown in the clown-car.

Tales of conservative judges – Judicial Diva Gone Wild? Chief Judge Jones Tells Judge Dennis to ‘Shut Up’. Jones later apologized, but she does seem a bit iron fisted when it comes to letting any judge who does not tow her ideological line have their say or time for their questioning witnesses/lawyers.

They might hate and fear anyone to the left of Giovanni Gentile, but conservatives deeply fear some of their opponents. Elizabeth Warren is one of those who makes conservatives shake in their jack-boots – Republicans Panic, Desperately Seeking Dirt on Senator Elizabeth Warren

On Tuesday, when the Democratic-affiliated polling firm, Public Policy Polling, reported Warren narrowly leading Brown, 46 to 44 among likely voters, Brown spokesman Colin Reed put out a statement contending that “we have always known that Scott would be the underdog against whichever candidate wins the Democratic primary next September.”

But this past summer, before Warren enjoyed decent name recognition, Republicans were touting early polls showing Brown leading Warren 53-28, and declaring him a winner.

Now Republicans are putting out the word that there was something duplicitous or corrupt about Warren’s leadership of the Congressional Oversight Panel that monitored the Treasury’s Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP).

Politico ran a piece this morning headlined, “Warren’s TARP Panel under Scrutiny.” It quotes a Republican congressman alleging that the panel failed to disclose its own budget, including Warren’s own salary; and the authors of the piece rely on undisclosed sources to contend that Warren was cavalier in what she paid her staff.

The same Republicans who audited every penny and listened to ( if they were paying attention) every word Warren had to say related to financial regulation want a full accounting and they want it now.

But in fact, the panel’s budget and expenditures were disclosed to Congress in several reports that are public record, and its staff salaries were capped at the level of congressional staff. Its total outlays in its more-than-two-year life, as Politico reports, were a paltry $10.5 million. All of the records of the panel, which went out of existence earlier this year, are now on file with the Senate Rules Committee and available for public inspection.

So how about before we have another one of those Darrel Issa(R-CA) ghost hunts which flushes time and tax money down the drain, Congressional members read their own damn documentation. Gosh it might even be available on iPad with cartoons in the margins to make it less tedious.