Keeping Up With The Republicans

Here’s a headline from USA Today this morning:

Obama to propose paid sick leave for American workers

Now try to imagine this headline:

Romney to propose paid sick leave for American workers

I know, I know. You can’t imagine such a thing. There is no way Republicans would put workers on their agenda, except to attack workers’ rights to organize or sustain a union. But Republicans are up to something, right? They’re not just sitting around waiting for Jesus to come back, are they?

Nope. They’ve been busy. But besides saying President Obama is worse than Hitler, and besides saying he should start a religious war against Islam, what is the GOP doing these days? Oh, you know:

♥ The family values party has told Hispanic families to go straight to hell.

♥ And speaking of family values, God’s man in the upcoming GOP presidential field, former Arkansas governor and always a preacher Mike Huckabee, recently criticized the Obama’s for their parenting skills.

It seems Huck doesn’t like Beyoncé or her husband Jay-Z and thinks it is God-awful for the Obama daughters to be exposed to them.  As many have pointed out, though, the Huckster is a friend of Ted Nugent, who wrote a song about raping a 13-year-old girl, which apparently satisfies Huckabee’s lofty standards of moral decency.

huckabee and nugentOh, not only is Huckabee a friend of the draft-dodging Nugent—a man so vile and full of hate that calling President Obama a “subhuman mongrel” is one of the nicer things he has said about him—Huck also had Nugent on his Fox television show, where he played bass for the aging rocker on a nice rendition of “Cat Scratch Fever,” a song Ted wrote about getting laid when he was “just ten years old.” The song, performed before a mostly lily-white audience of like-minded evangelicals, also features this paean to godliness:

Well, I make the pussy purr with the stroke of my hand
They know they gettin’ it from me
They know just where to go when they need their lovin’ man
They know I’m doin’ it for free

Amen. Thank God for Republican family values!

♥ Sen. Rand Paul, who also wants your vote for president, naturally thinks the way to demonstrate his qualifications for the office is by attacking disabled folks. That is in sync with the Tea Party-controlled House of Representatives, which on its first day in session this year passed a new parliamentary rule that will, essentially, hold hostage Social Security disability benefits, as GOP New Deal-haters figure out how much to cut from the program. Because, as we all know, there are tons of people—parasites, all—out there defrauding the system. Except there aren’t. Like most of these things, it is a Republican fantasy that people are lazy and don’t want to work, a fantasy that Rand Paul believes he can exploit for political gain, just like President Romney did.

♥ Speaking of Rand Paul, the man who is now directing RANDPAC, Paul’s political action committee, is John Yob. Who is John Yob? He’s the same man who helped get Dave Agema elected to a position on the Republican National Committee. So what? you might say. Who the hell is Dave Agema? Allow the National Journal to introduce him to you:

In a New Year’s Eve Facebook post, Michigan RNC Committeeman Dave Agema republished an essay from American Renaissance, a white-supremacist newsletter. The article, which Agema said he found “very enlightening,” argued that “blacks are different by almost any measure to all other people. They cannot reason as well. They cannot communicate as well. They cannot control their impulses as well. They are a threat to all who cross their paths, black and non-black alike.”

That ain’t all:

Agema has a well-documented history of making inflammatory statements. He argued that President Obama is really a Muslim. He praised Vladimir Putin for Russia’s brutal stance on homosexuality. He blamed Satan for dividing the Republican Party. He even shared what he called an “eye opening” essay on Facebook that posed the question: “Have you ever seen a Muslim do anything that contributes positively to the American way of life?”

Yep. He sits on the Republican National Committee, even though, finally, the GOP is “censuring” him.

♥ A man the GOP won’t censure, however, is that great American patriot, Louie Gohmert of Texas. Gohmert wishes “our top leaders in this country” had “the courage” of the military dictator—I said dictator—running Egypt. But the Tea Party genius didn’t stop there. He crapped on the efforts of the U.S. military, which has been at war, fighting terrorists, since 2002:

If the story is properly written about Egypt, and one day it will be, they will see that in the last six years, that besides Israel, the country that has been most fearless in standing up for freedom and against radical Islamic terrorism, unfortunately, has not been the United States because of our leadership. It has been the nation of Egypt.

I am sure the families of all those Americans killed, as well as all those Americans who have been wounded fighting “radical Islamic terrorism” for the last six years, appreciate the fact that a Republican congressman has their backs—at least long enough to stick an Obama-hating knife in them.

♥ On a happier note, one of the Tea Party nuts who voters, wisely, tossed out of Congress in 2012 is Joe Walsh from Illinois. Here is a headline about him that appeared on Talking Points Memo yesterday:

Ex-GOP Congressman Hopes ‘Cowards At CNN, MSNBC’ Are Beheaded

I remind you that this crazy man, despite losing to Tammy Duckworth in 2012, still got 45% of the vote.

♥ Oh, Mittens is back and this time he promises he will—really, truly, honest-to-Kolob—worry about the poor. And we know that, just like in the case of Joe Walsh, at least 45% of the electorate will believe him.


[AP photo: “A bugler plays during burial services for Army Staff Sgt. Scott W. Brunkhorst, Tuesday, April 13, 2010, at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va.” Staff Sgt. Brunkhorst, who was 25 years old, died “in the Arghandab River Valley, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.”]
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  1. Duane,

    It just occurred to me that a way of understanding our major political parties might be to give them a couple of analogues. I would suggest that the Republicans are akin to the Muslims, while the Democrats are more like Christians (or at least what Christians should be.)

    I’ve previously used the pejorative term “American Taliban” for the Republicans anyway so branding them as Muslims seems to fit. But not for all of them of course. I’m talking Tea Party and the nut jobs like Huckabee and Nugent and this Agema guy.

    Anyway, the tendency for the GOP to have for a predilection for authoritarianism – in the sense John Dean describes it in “Conservatives Without Conscience” – and their worldview that puts guns before butter, the rich before the poor, and their almost universal lack of empathy and compassion, places them on the same level as the Imams and the Ayatollahs. Far right Conservatives tend to be militant, strident, and hateful. And when it comes to politics, they are hypocritical and hyperbolic. All of these attributes could just as easily describe Islamic jihadists.

    Democrats, on the other hand, seem to want to protect the poor, take from the rich, strive for equality and human rights, and maximize government services. This worldview, it seems to me, leads Democrats to take a more Christian approach to governance – at least in comparison to the Republicans. The down side is mainly money. Democrats put social capital above financial capital; e.g. socialism vs. capitalism. The Republican criticism of FDR’s New Deal and Keynesian economics are good examples.

    That gets us down to the Crusades, or at least the Crusades that were to get the Muslims out of Jerusalem. In my little hypothetical here, Jerusalem would be Congress. There is a bloody war going on there for sure and there has been an ebb and flow over the decades. Unfortunately, divine intervention by either God or Allah is not likely to help


    Liked by 1 person

    • Herb,

      I like your analogy.

      Yes, the right tends toward authoritarianism, as Dean says very well in his book(s). And from my perspective, the fault is largely with dogmatic religious belief, which by nature, embraces some concept of authoritarianism, as in “Jesus is Lord” or Allah is “King of Kings.” This fondness for God- and scripture-based authoritarianism has often resulted in the official persecution of heretics (a practice the Christian church has, for the most part, abandoned, but with which Islam, obviously, is still struggling) or other forms of condemnation. Thus, it only makes sense that the fundamentalists are fairly overwhelmingly right-wingers, with a penchant for reactionary politics and for patriarchalism. In the Christian U.S. this behavior is manifested in, say, the act of denying women reproductive rights, and in Muslim-dominated societies by denying them nearly all rights, keeping them uneducated, and forcing them to cover their heads and faces.

      You can bet that the more religious fundamentalists there are in any given society, the more authoritarian it is and, thus, the more conservative it is and, thus, the more oppressive it is. Fortunately, many people on the left have either abandoned religious faith altogether, or believe in a relatively gracious and liberal expression of it.

      Thanks for making me think.



  2. Troy

     /  January 15, 2015

    I recall that the “Huckster’s” son, when he was 18, once tortured and hung a stray dog that wondered into a church camp, where he was counselor for younger children. So much for criticizing the First Family on their parenting skills! What a jerk and asshole that guy is!


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