Mike ”Hunter” Lazzaro – LikeTheDew.com http://likethedew.com A journal of progressive Southern culture and politics Mon, 19 Nov 2018 13:02:29 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.8 http://likethedew.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/cropped-DewLogoSquare825-32x32.png Mike ”Hunter” Lazzaro – LikeTheDew.com http://likethedew.com 32 32 Jim DeMint leaves the Senate, and everybody’s happy about that http://likethedew.com/2012/12/07/jim-demint-leaves-the-senate-and-everybodys-happy-about-that/ http://likethedew.com/2012/12/07/jim-demint-leaves-the-senate-and-everybodys-happy-about-that/#comments Fri, 07 Dec 2012 07:48:44 +0000 http://likethedew.com/?p=46687 everyone is damn glad to see Republican Jim DeMint (head bitter crank among bitter old cranks, kingmaker of his own asylum, biggest cracked pot in the tea party) leave the Senate for his turn in the lands of sweet, sweet wingnut welfare. The tea partiers love it because they figure DeMint will help Heritage break away from any past remnants of thinky-in-their-tanky and race headlong toward peak wingnut...]]>

The reactions on this one are almost unanimous: Nearly everyone is damn glad to see Republican Jim DeMint (head bitter crank among bitter old cranks, kingmaker of his own asylum, biggest cracked pot in the tea party) leave the Senate for his turn in the lands of sweet, sweet wingnut welfare. The tea partiers love it because they figure DeMint will help Heritage break away from any past remnants of thinky-in-their-tanky and race headlong toward peak wingnut:

DeMint press conference (file photo)
DeMint press conference (file photo)

“I was shocked, and at first I said, ‘Oh no,’ but then I said, ‘Wait a minute, let’s think about this,” said Joe Dugan, chairman of the Myrtle Beach Tea Party in South Carolina. “The Heritage Foundation is a tremendous organization, and as president of it he will have a broad, broad platform to educate people across the country about

conservative ideas and ideals. And that’s what the country needs.”

Non-conservatives love it for, well, the exact same reason. From the People For the American Way:

Today’s announcement blows the cover on the longstanding myth that the Heritage Foundation is a serious think tank, as well as the common misconception that Heritage is focused on fiscal, not social, issues. In fact, like DeMint himself, Heritage has played an active role in pushing rigidly anti-gay, anti-choice dogma while attacking laws that protect the separation between church and state.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is not exactly devastated, given DeMint’s crazyass involvement in Republicans blocking a U.N. treaty on treating disabled people better, for Christ’s sake:

“I think what we saw the night before last in the U.S. senate was one of the saddest…of all occasions,” Pelosi told reporters. […]

“Anyone who’s a party to that, I wish them well wherever they are going,” Pelosi said.

Jim DeMint is happy about it because he finally gets to translate his usual, gratis craziness into bucketfuls of money, and oh yes, because he wants to help the GOP and/or screw the GOP, depending on who’s asking:

“I think it’s safe to say that Boehner is not forcing either of you guys out, right?” Limbaugh asked DeMint and now-former Heritage Foundation president Ed Feulner, according to audio by The Right Scoop.

Quipped DeMint: “It might work a little bit the other way, Rush.”

DeMint also told Limbaugh he hopes to use his new role to help the GOP appeal to more Americans.

You heard that right, Sen. Jim DeMint is going to go out and help the GOP appeal to more Americans. You are going to want to clear space on the ol’ Tivo for that one, because that, my friends, is going to be a kind of crazy not seen since J. Edgar Hoover brought audiences to their feet with his world-famous thirteen dog and two pony musical review.

Democrats are happy because Jim DeMint’s conservative-promoting track record is whole bucketloads of crazy, but at least he sucks at it:

Out of the 20 candidates [DeMint’s PAC] organization gave money to, 15 won their primaries — but just seven won the general election.

The winners included Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, and Ted Cruz.

The losers included Sharron Angle, Christine O’Donnell, Ken Buck, and Richard Mourdock.

Even the Official Mostly-Creepy Stalker and Head of the Mitt Romney Fan Club, the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin, was happy—albeit only because having one-man wrecking ball DeMint finally get the heck out of the Senate that he has done his level-best to turn dysfunctional is good news whoever is maybe thinking about becoming the next Mitt Romney:

DeMint has been a destructive force, threatening to primary colleagues, resisting all deals and offering very little in the way of attainable legislation. He has contributed more than any current senator to the dysfunction of that body. He has worsened relations between the House and Senate, as he did in the budget fights in recent years, by meddling and pressuring his home state representative. His departure leaves other senators who seemed impressed with his brand of politics free to find their way to a more constructive position in the body.

All in all, almost nobody involved in politics sees a downside here. In leaving to head Heritage, DeMint both gets to make a happy boatload of money (at conservative expense, of course) and gets to lead a prominent organization into becoming just as nutty as he can possibly convince them to be. The Senate is happier, because nobody outside of DeMint’s small band of merry crackpots liked dealing with him or his constant efforts at making sure the Senate got nothing done, ever, on any subject. The tea partiers are happy, the non-tea-party-Republicans are happy, the Democrats are happy—what’s not to love? Gaming out who gets DeMint’s current seat, and what that means doesn’t point to anything that would be worse than Jim DeMint staying in the Senate. There’s even hints that disgraced ex-governor Mark Sanford might take the long walk back from the ol’ Appalachian Trail in order to run for the seat, which may be the single most glorious thing 2014 could possibly have in store for us.

And that, mind you, doesn’t even take into account the possibility of an appointed “Sen. Sticky Fingers”, as Sticky Fingers restaurant chain owner Chad Walldorf (and former Sanford deputy chief of staff) is apparently one of those being considered by Gov. Nikki Haley as she looks to appoint a short-term replacement for DeMint. Oh, South Carolina, is there anything you can’t make hilarious?

More reactions:

A great choice! RT @PeterHambyCNN DeMint has made it known in Columbia that he wants Tim Scott to be appointed to his seat, sources tell CNN

@SarahPalinUSA via web

Jim DeMint’s Chosen Successor Maybe Has Had Sex Outside Of Marriage, Burn Him http://t.co/…

@Wonkette via Wonkette

I’m sorry to see Sen. Jim DeMint leave the Senate, but grateful he’s staying active. He’s a bold leader and we need him!! #TCOT

@ChristineOD via txt

fun factoid: Jim DeMint is about to be Mitch McConnell’s wife’s boss. http://t.co/… hey Elaine, you may need to start a union.

@sethdmichaels via web

Heartwarming stuff, all of it.

In any case, we may have found the single most widely lauded decision of Sen. Jim DeMint’s storied career, and by a wide margin. No matter what you think about Jim DeMint, everyone involved agrees: the best single thing he’s ever done is leave.

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When men were free http://likethedew.com/2012/03/26/when-men-were-free/ http://likethedew.com/2012/03/26/when-men-were-free/#respond Mon, 26 Mar 2012 22:08:19 +0000 http://likethedew.com/?p=38191 "Tell us a story, Grandpa Santorum," several of the children said together. It was cold, and from the front of the concrete bunker, there was a low whistle as the wind pushed through the gaps around the old wooden door. "Tell us a story again, from the before-times."

Grandpa Santorum smiled a grizzled smile. The children knew he loved to tell stories; the old man knew they liked hearing them. "Oh, I don't know," he answered. "There are so many stories from those times. But I think I've already told you every story worth telling. I'm not sure how many more stories there are."

The children protested loudly. "Tell us what it was like!" said a small girl in a flower-print dress. "Tell us about the freedoms!" a bony young man exclaimed.

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I am running for President of the United States to reverse the course we are on under President Obama. Our government everyday and in every way is ordering us around, trampling our freedoms, curtailing our religious liberty and building a dependency on big government.

This is President Obama’s vision for America and we cannot let him succeed. This election is a turning point for our nation and we must be committed to fight for freedom. […] Voters are responding to our message giving us strong wins in Kansas, Alabama and Mississippi within the last 10 days.

Now we continue on to Louisiana and beyond, and we need your help as we stand on the side of conservatism and freedom. Let us take up this fight together with renewed vigor, so that future generations do not say about America, “When men were free.”

Working hard for America,

Rick Santorum

—From a fundraising email sent by the Rick Santorum campaign

“Tell us a story, Grandpa Santorum,” several of the children said together. It was cold, and from the front of the concrete bunker, there was a low whistle as the wind pushed through the gaps around the old wooden door. “Tell us a story again, from the before-times.”

Grandpa Santorum smiled a grizzled smile. The children knew he loved to tell stories; the old man knew they liked hearing them. “Oh, I don’t know,” he answered. “There are so many stories from those times. But I think I’ve already told you every story worth telling. I’m not sure how many more stories there are.”

The children protested loudly. “Tell us what it was like!” said a small girl in a flower-print dress. “Tell us about the freedoms!” a bony young man exclaimed.

Grandpa smiled again. He would tease them about the stories, but he would never really deny them one. “Well,” he started out. “What was it like, in the before-times? Why, I remember it as if it was yesterday. Oh, the way the sun would shine, in those days before The Obama, The Destroyer of All Things.” (Here the children squealed at mention of The Destroyer, as they always did.) “The way people would laugh, and sing! It was not at all like these dark days.” He leaned back in the tattered old chair, settling into the rhythm of his speech. “But what was it really like? I think it all boils down to one thing. In those days, men were free.”

The children gasped appreciatively, even though most of them had heard the phrase a hundred times before. “The women too?” asked the girl in the flower-print dress, her eyes wide. She was new to the group, and new to Grandpa’s stories of those long-past golden days.

“Don’t be stupid, little Sally. Of course not the women. I said the men.” The other children laughed, and Sally looked sheepish.

“The men, they were free. Well, the white men. The black men, not so much. The brown ones, not so much. But the white men, the lily white ones, now, and not the ones from certain countries, mainly just the ones of the right breeding, now they were free. As long as they were Christian, anyway. And you had to be the right kind of Christian, too—none of that Mormon crap. Catholics were sketchy—I was a Catholic, you know, and it could be tough sometimes, what with all the oppression—but definitely evangelical protestant types, now they were nearly gods among men. Not to be sacrilegious, but you know what I mean.” The children nodded, though no, none of them really knew what he meant.

“This was a time when, if you were the right color and the right religion, you were simply recognized as better than anyone else. Jobs would open up for you. You had something called a pension, which was essentially just free money if I remember it correctly. You had a wife of your choosing, so long as she was similarly white and of the right religion. Oh, and the right social status, of course. And she would do whatever you wanted, because everybody knew that religious white men ran the world, and everybody knew that it was the job of the women to make sure they could do so in peace. Not at all like now.”

Sally looked confused, but if she had any opinions on the matter, she kept them to herself, as decent God-fearing children should. “But what happened?” she asked quietly.

“Oh, my dear. The better question would be what didn’t happen. It all happened so quietly. A few of us, we tried to speak up—you know, back in my day I was quite the influential fellow—but nobody would really listen. It started going wrong, and then just kept going more wrong. One day we elected a black guy as president, and I think the whole thing started to crumble right then and there. That’s when we started losing those freedoms. When it really took off, anyway.”

“What did The Destroyer do?” asked a very young boy near the back.

Grandpa narrowed his eyes. “Well, what did he do … he did … hmm. It wasn’t so much that he did anything. I mean, even at the time nobody could quite put their finger on how he was destroying things, which is what made it so damn scary, if you will. But there was one thing, one big thing, that you could point to. Yes sir, it was The Destroyer that tried tried to expand access to health care.” The children shivered at this. If Grandpa owned a flashlight, he would be holding it under his chin right now to properly set the mood, as usual, but Grandpa refused to use his flashlight ever since the Dark Ones mandated a three percent increase in battery efficiency, the year before last, and so it sat in a dusty box in one corner of the long, damp bunker.

“Yep. There were a bunch of folks before then that proposed people maybe ought to get better healthcare, good solid Christian people, but nobody ever actually acted on it. They all knew that’d be stupid. But then here comes this Obama fellow, and BOOM! Slightly better health insurance for some people. Kinda, anyway. You can’t imagine, children, how terrifying it was. I heard tell people maybe started living slightly longer after that, even in states that didn’t give a damn whether or not they lived longer. Kids with preexisting conditions got insurance, even though God clearly didn’t want them to have insurance, otherwise he wouldn’t have given ’em a preexisting condition, now would he? No, it was a frightening time, a frightening time.”

Grandpa looked wistfully at the bunker ceiling. “Of course that wasn’t the only problem. It was just a symptom of the disease, if you will. No, the real problem was the losin’ of the freedoms.” He was quiet for a while. The children waited silently, and politely, like all good God-fearing children were taught.

“You see, children, freedom is a funny thing. A very funny thing. If I give you a bit of freedom, then I have less of it, you see? You can’t just make freedom out of thin air. The only way someone gets more freedom is if they snatch it away from someone else. And that’s exactly what started happening. All sorts of people started takin’ our God-given freedoms, and keeping them for themselves.”

He shifted his feet uncomfortably. Everything Grandpa Santorum did looked uncomfortable; he looked like a man for whom the whole world was just a small rock in his shoe or burr in his sleeve, waiting to poke him again if he so much as twitched. “It started way back when, of course, before I was even born. We gave black people some freedom, we gave the womenfolk some freedom, and other folks, one group or another. But every time we gave them a little bit more freedom, we were takin’ it from ourselves. Soon we were giving freedom to Muslim folks—Muslim folks! Can you imagine? The women, now, they demanded a lot of freedoms. Let me talk to the doctor by myself, they’d say. Let me worry about my own choices, they’d say. We even had a ‘Violence Against Women Act.’ Now I ask you, as much as we’re all against violence here, isn’t it true that if you protect some folks from violence, well then you’re taking the freedom to be violent away from other folks? It’s pernicious, that’s what it is. It’s pernicious.” It should be noted here that none of the children knew what “pernicious” meant, but the way Grandpa said it made it clear enough that it was a bad thing.

“And the gays. That’s when it all came crashing down. The very slightly improved health insurance regulations, that was one thing, and the womenfolk getting all pissed off and demanding this and that, but it was nothing compared to the gay folk. Once we started giving them freedoms too, it was all over.”

“Whoa,” the children murmured appreciatively. “What happened then?” asked little Sally.

“Well you see, the more freedom we started giving the gays, the more freedom we were taking from other folks, same as every other time. We started taking freedom away from good churchgoing folks, by letting the gay people just say they were gay, with no shame at all. We started taking freedom away from people who hated gay people, because suddenly if you thought being gay was an abomination unto the Lord, maybe somebody else would object to you saying it, and then how would you feel? How outrageous.” He was beginning to getting worked up now.

“Then all Hell broke loose. They started letting gay folks get married. Same legal rights, even the same word, and we all know that the word of something is pretty much the only thing that matters. Can you imagine what happened next? Now why would a man get married to a woman if they could choose to just skip all that and marry another man? It was a mess. Why, I’m ashamed to say I myself turned gay for about 10 years, after that. Don’t know how it happened exactly, but the minute they started having gay weddings, it was like the Devil himself was egging me into that beautiful white dress.

“Yessir, everybody was getting freedoms. Everybody but the white Christian men anyway, you know, the ones of the right evangelical persuasion and political inclinations and all that. It was their God-given right to be gigantic assholes to everybody else, but slowly and surely, they started taking those rights away. Well, of course, you could still be an asshole to people, sure, but other people wouldn’t listen as much. They wouldn’t necessarily just do what you say. And when your whole freedom relies on telling other people what they should do, but you give the other people freedom to not listen to you, what do you really have? A whole lotta nothin’, that’s what. They might have their freedom. But you don’t have yours.”

His eyes were narrow, and his face grim. No doubt about it, Grandpa was angry just thinking about it.

“That’s what I mean. You give someone freedom, you have to take it from someone else. You start out with decent white Christian men of a certain persuasion and belief system protecting all the freedom, keepin’ it safe. Then you start parceling it out to others, and all you’ve got left is a system where everybody’s got some freedom, but the good white conservative Christian evangelical protestant and maybe Catholic, as long as they’re the right kind—they end up with practically nothing. They end up just being another face in the freedomy, freedomy crowd. Did you know that ‘freedomy’ and ‘sodomy’ rhyme? No coincidence there. No coincidence …”

By now his eyes were fully closed. His voice was trailing off, and it finally stopped there. Whether he was asleep or not, the children couldn’t tell. They waited a minute, and then two, and then five, but once the old man started snoring, they knew the story was done. “C’mon” said the bony tall boy, motioning to the others. “Let’s let him sleep now.”

The childen filed out of the dark, wet room, through the old wooden door, and into the bright sunlight of late afternoon. “I guess I gotta go to baseball practice now,” one said. “Yeah, I’m gonna go play Holobox,” said another. The group broke apart in various directions, some cutting through the shrubby trees to the west while others headed down the hill to the rows of tan houses below.

“Wow, you were right,” said little Sally. “Grandpa Santorum is really nuts.”

“Told you,” said the bony tall boy. “He’s totally bat-tron. I hear he used to be some big shot, a long time ago. He was even famous on the Internet. But he kept getting crazier and crazier and eventually he just broke his brain or something. Hey, my mom says not even to go near him, so don’t tell anyone, okay?”

“Wow,” Sally repeated softly. “Wow.”

They followed the other children headed down the hill. Grandpa Santorum’s old concrete bunker was a neat enough place, especially during the blistering hot days of summer, but there was only so much of that crap that anyone could take.

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Bishops ‘helped sway’ Komen to anti-Planned Parenthood policy http://likethedew.com/2012/03/16/bishops-helped-sway-komen-to-anti-planned-parenthood-policy/ http://likethedew.com/2012/03/16/bishops-helped-sway-komen-to-anti-planned-parenthood-policy/#comments Fri, 16 Mar 2012 07:24:27 +0000 http://likethedew.com/?p=37981 Oh for the love of Voldemort. Reuters:

Internal Komen documents reviewed by Reuters reveal the complicated relationship between the Komen Foundation and the Catholic church, which simultaneously contributes to the breast cancer charity and receives grants from it. In recent years, Komen has allocated at least $17.6 million of the donations it receives to U.S. Catholic universities, hospitals and charities.Church opposition reached dramatic new proportions in 2011, when the 11 bishops who represent Ohio's 2.6 million Catholics announced a statewide policy banning church and parochial school donations to Komen.

Such pressure helped sway Komen's leadership to cut funding to Planned Parenthood, according to current and former Komen officials.

Stop it. Just be quiet already. Is there no eff-up that the bishops of my previous church aren't intimately involved with?

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Oh for the love of Voldemort. Reuters:

bishopsInternal Komen documents reviewed by Reuters reveal the complicated relationship between the Komen Foundation and the Catholic church, which simultaneously contributes to the breast cancer charity and receives grants from it. In recent years, Komen has allocated at least $17.6 million of the donations it receives to U.S. Catholic universities, hospitals and charities.Church opposition reached dramatic new proportions in 2011, when the 11 bishops who represent Ohio’s 2.6 million Catholics announced a statewide policy banning church and parochial school donations to Komen.

Such pressure helped sway Komen’s leadership to cut funding to Planned Parenthood, according to current and former Komen officials.

Stop it. Just be quiet already. Is there no eff-up that the bishops of my previous church aren’t intimately involved with? Any single one? If a memo comes out that has one of these American bishops suggesting to Rush Limbaugh that he start calling people “sluts,” I may have to reserve a flight to that moon colony Newt Gingrich is going to build.

You will note, dear reader, that there was never any question as to whether or not Komen should partner with the Catholic Church despite some very, very freaking notable investigations of that Church that conflict dramatically with Komen’s newly invented policy of not partnering with groups that are under “investigation.” You will also note that, to my knowledge, Planned Parenthood never pressured the Komen foundation to cut off their ties to the Catholic Church because of their extremely controversial pro-covering-up-child-rape policies, which suggests Planned Parenthood has significantly more grace than your average Bishop John Q. Vaginawatcher. Seventeen million dollars is a lot of money and, according to popular conservative logic, getting those grants frees up other “fungible” money for use by the church in their efforts to push back against child rape victims. (You may note I am decidedly not over that particular issue. Given that apparently they haven’t yet given up on fighting victims, I plead guilty.)

The problem for Komen, and for conservatives pressuring it, and for bishops pressuring it, is that once you politicize something as seemingly bipartisan as fighting against breast cancer, you’ve poisoned the effort. You’re saying that sure, saving lives is important—but not as important as your own moral edicts against unauthorized sexytimes. That’s asinine. From a religious standpoint, from an ethical standpoint, and even merely from a self-serving strategic standpoint, it makes you look like, well, this.

During my entire life, in the church and out of it, I have never seen the Catholic Church fight so hard for something as they have fought contraception and, yes, abortion. Poverty, social justice, civil rights—there are plenty of pronouncements against all, but I never seem to hear of anyone being threatened with excommunication or denied communion for being a racist, or treating the poor like crap, or being pro-death-penalty. No, it’s all about sex. Who should be having it, who should be condemned for it, and who should be punished in which ways for daring to have it. If I just once saw this nation’s Catholic leadership be as insistent with political leaders over that whole making sure children have enough food thing as they were about anything having the slightest bit to do with women’s vaginas, my goodwill for them would skyrocket. Instead, we get this. And we’ve been getting this, unrelenting, for decades.

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Tracking President Rick Santorum’s first 100 days http://likethedew.com/2012/02/25/tracking-president-rick-santorums-first-100-days/ http://likethedew.com/2012/02/25/tracking-president-rick-santorums-first-100-days/#comments Sat, 25 Feb 2012 07:48:58 +0000 http://likethedew.com/?p=37289 Apparently Rick Santorum is going to be countering Mitt Romney's rip-roaring bout of nothingness with a speech of his own. The topic will ostensibly be what a President Santorum would do during his first 100 days in office, which sounds like the plot of any number of bad movies, all of which end with somebody or multiple somebodies getting nuked ... Rick Santorum's first 100 days? One shudders to imagine. So let's imagine!

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Apparently Rick Santorum is going to be countering Mitt Romney’s rip-roaring bout of nothingness with a speech of his own. The topic will ostensibly be what a President Santorum would do during his first 100 days in office, which sounds like the plot of any number of bad movies, all of which end with somebody or multiple somebodies getting nuked. (Given that it’s going to be given at 8 o’clock on a Friday night, it also has all the hallmarks of a weekend news dump.)

We’ve settled on “100 days” as being a nice, pointless measurement of presidential accomplishments. I assume this is because after that point, most of the staff is moved in, you’ve learned where the bathrooms are, and if you haven’t fixed the economy or achieved world peace yet it’s your own damn fault for being lazy. But Rick Santorum’s first 100 days? One shudders to imagine. So let’s imagine!

Day 1: Announces the Presidential Morality Corps, a group of bitter old cranks who will scour the countryside looking for people holding hands out of wedlock, beating offenders with rulers.

Day 2: Bombs Google headquarters.

Day 4: FDA rescinds approval of all forms of birth control, including the rhythm method.

Day 7:  Proposes the Inefficient Lightbulbs for Jesus Act.

Day 9:  Explains why God wants us to bomb Iran. Explains that if God didn’t want us to bomb Iran, he would have given them nuclear weapons to defend themselves with.

Day 10: Bombs Iran.

Day 14:  Announces new dress code for federal employees. Men: sweatervests. Women: full-length knitted burkas.

Day 22: FBI announces sweeping new anti-sodomy investigations. The President informs Congress that as a result of the War on Sodomy, constitutional protections against domestic espionage no longer apply.

Day 45: Secretary of State Sarah Palin causes minor scandal when she confuses Iran with San Francisco. To avoid admitting error, Republicans cede California to Iran.

Day 47: Secretary of State Sarah Palin says she suspects California of having nuclear weapon facilities, and that she can see them from her house.

Day 55: Proposes the Drill for Jesus Act.

Day 62: Medicare replaced by new faith-based insurance. If you get sick, it’s because God wants you to die.

Day 63: Proposes the Deregulate Wall Street for Jesus Act

Day 64: Announces new dress code for visitors to federal offices. Men: full-length knitted burkas. Women: no longer allowed in federal offices.

Day 70: Proposes the Club a Baby Seal for Jesus Act

Day 72: Proposes the Global Warming for Jesus Act

Day 81: Secretary of State Michele Bachmann announces that she believes France has nuclear weapons while speaking at the funeral of former secretary Sarah Palin, who died after slipping on baby seal blood during White House Easter preparations.

Day 82: Announces the dissolution of the Federal Reserve; American monetary policy will be set directly by Goldman Sachs.

Day 83: Announces the federal government will no longer be prosecuting hate crimes, so long as the perpetrator truly believed his victim was a heathen and/or immoral person while beating/murdering them.

Day 89: Announces in televised address that polar bears are agents of Satan, and that they deserve to be wiped out. Initiates military action to do so. Informs Congress that because of the War on Polar Bears and/or Sodomy and/or Birth Control, constitutional prohibitions against the quartering of troops no longer apply.

Day 91: Secretary of State Michele Bachmann announces that she believes the Vatican has nuclear weapons capabilities, and may be providing nuclear materials to Iran, California, and Department of the Interior head Richard Cheney.

Day 97: After sustained bombing campaign against the Vatican, declares himself the new Pope. Informs Congress that because of the War on Satan, all remaining constitutional protections no longer apply.

Day 98: Pardons former Secretary of State Michele Bachman for crimes against humanity at the urgings of new Secretary of State, Mr. Buttons, a cat with markings that look somewhat like Jesus high-fiving Ronald McDonald.

Day 99: Presents Presidential Medal of Freedom to George W. Bush after historians announce Bush can no longer be considered the worst president in American History.

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Florida Tea Party locked in pointless battle with CAIR http://likethedew.com/2011/11/06/florida-tea-party-locked-in-pointless-battle-with-cair-claims-boycotts-are-sharia-law/ http://likethedew.com/2011/11/06/florida-tea-party-locked-in-pointless-battle-with-cair-claims-boycotts-are-sharia-law/#respond Sun, 06 Nov 2011 20:08:12 +0000 http://likethedew.com/?p=32328 This one is a bit hard to summarize, but the short version: The Florida Tea Party would like you to know it is very, very tolerant, it's just that the Muslims are using Sharia against them and hate the First Amendment and stuff. That's why they invited the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) to their upcoming convention. It's also why they apparently near-simultaneously demanded a hotel cancel a CAIR event, an action that was meant as retribution for CAIR supposedly helping to get far-right blogger Pamela Geller, whose blog exists primarily to smear Muslims and whose name came up rather frequently in relation to the recent domestic terror incident in Norway, disinvited from another hotel a while back, all because CAIR hates us for our freedomz:

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Crackpot Brand, Geniune 100% Amerlcan Tea

Claims boycotts are ‘Sharia Law’

This one is a bit hard to summarize, but the short version: The Florida Tea Party would like you to know it is very, very tolerant, it’s just that the Muslims are using Sharia against them and hate the First Amendment and stuff. That’s why they invited the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) to their upcoming convention. It’s also why they apparently near-simultaneously demanded a hotel cancel a CAIR event, an action that was meant as retribution for CAIR supposedly helping to get far-right blogger Pamela Geller, whose blog exists primarily to smear Muslims and whose name came up rather frequently in relation to the recent domestic terror incident in Norway, disinvited from another hotel a while back, all because CAIR hates us for our freedomz:

However, around the time that Ross extended the invitation to CAIR, he also emailed catering staff at Jungle Island in Miami, asking them to decline to host a CAIR fundraising banquet set for Nov. 12.

This is the email that Ross sent to the vice president of food and beverage at the hotel where CAIR’s event will take place:

It has been brought to my attention that your facility will be hosting a fund raiser for the Council of American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) on Saturday November 12th 2011.

I respectfully request that you cancel this event with CAIR. This is an organization that does not recognize the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution. It has tried numerous times to place political pressure on U.S. politicians by trying to stop them from speaking at various freedom loving Constitutional events across Florida and the United States. This attempt by CAIR to muzzle the 1st Amendment rights of American citizens cannot go unanswered.

Please be advised sir that your facility is now being boycotted and placed off limits by members of my Tea Party Coalition across the state of Florida. This boycott of your facility will be lifted when your event with CAIR is cancelled. Thank you.

CAIR, for its part, denies that they had any hand in getting that Pamela Geller event canceled anyway, which does them no good because Pamela Geller blames Muslims for every single thing that happens to her or anyone else. When CAIR asked the tea partiers about the letter, the tea party group disinvited them from the convention because they had “disrespected” Geller, presumably by pointing out to people that she is in fact batshit crazy, and said:

Ross says he emailed the hotel because he was frustrated with CAIR “putting political pressure on hotels” and trying “to shut down” events that are hosted by people they disagree with. “Sharia law is what they are using to shut us down,” he says.

“If they can’t handle what they dish out,” he says, “then they should pick other tactics.”

Well, that clears that up. So here’s my question: Do you think anyone in the Florida Tea Party knows what “Sharia” even is? Apparently it is rather all-encompassing, but I’ve got to admit, if there’s something in Muslim law specifically about ticking off Pamela Geller, that would be a hell of a thing (also: sign me up).

And if boycotts are, as the tea partiers assert, part of “Sharia law” then aren’t the tea partiers practicing Sharia by asking for a boycott? Are there Sharia and non-Sharia boycotts? What’s the difference between those, exactly? And if the First Amendment allows boycotts, but some boycotts are “Sharia Law,” then is the Constitution endorsing “Sharia Law”? How very confusing.

It seems a given at this point that tea party-ism seems to go so strongly hand-in-hand with racist conspiracy theories. It was supposed to be about taxes, of course, but they gave that up long ago; now it’s just the same far-right crowd moaning about Agenda 21 and immigrants and those suspicious brown people over there. It’s old, tired and dull, but apparently prejudice is the only thing that can reliably rally conservatives to meetings, and so yet again, here we are.

I think CAIR probably ought to not engage these crackpots any further. Much as we still strongly suggest that Democrats do not appear on Fox News, I think CAIR engaging in a group that sees “Sharia law” in every reflection and wisp of cloud will probably not amount to much. If a CAIR representative made good points, during their convention, it would be evidence of conspiracy; if a CAIR spokesman started reading aloud some of the crazy, bigoted things said by people like Pamela Geller, there would be a general outrage that conservatives were being “attacked.” The tea party movement has already decayed into self-parody, I don’t think there is any reason to still treat them as if they were anything but a bunch of cranks, bigots and conspiracy theorists.

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