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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

It’s The Racism, Stupid

It is.

It’s the racism.

It’s the sexism.

It’s the homophobia.

It’s the fear of the other. It’s bigotry and bias in a dozen forms and whatever label you want to slap on it. 

Let’s just stop pretending that it’s anything else.

You know, I’d have more respect for these people, not a lot more respect but perhaps some anyway, if they’d just come right out and say it. Get it out in the light where we can look at it. Instead they pretend to righteous indignation – what? How dare you call me a racist! How dare you call me a sexist! Or a bigot! Or a homophobe. Why, I’m insulted, I’m offended that you would say such a thing. In fact, you’re the bigot because you won’t tolerate my bigotry! Yes, yes, that’s it. Bigot? I know you are, but what am I? 

And then we have to listen to their nonsense, their fear and hatred and endless bile, and we’re all supposed to act like we’re so damned stupid that we don’t all really know what we’re talking about here.

And what we’re talking about is the bigotry.

When you dig down to the bottom of it, when you cut away all the euphemistic hedging and code words, when you look at what these people are really saying, well, it’s bigotry pure and simple. It’s racism and sexism and hate and fear. You can pretty it up however you like, you can deny it all you want, you can throw in a little Jesus and the tired bit about patriotism, yes you can pretend otherwise, but that’s exactly what it is.  And don’t try to tell me that it’s not.  I’m white. I’m male. I’m straight. I hear what other white straight males say when there are only white straight males in the room and I know it when I step in it.

So let’s just cut the bullshit, shall we?

Take a look at the comments under any Yahoo! News article. Any article.  Take a look at the comments under nearly any Wall Street Journal article on politics or the economy.  Take a look at the comments on any TEA Party forum. Any forum. Look at what any conservative pundit says every single day. Any conservative pundit. Look at the statements by outspoken conservative politicians and party leaders, every single day. Go on, look.

These are all verbatim quotes from the above sites. You can find plenty more for yourself with exactly zero effort.

- The citizens who share the belief that the Constitution, Bill of Rights and our Declaration of Independence should remain as the foundation of this nation, are outnumbered today.

- he got elected because of minorities voting for him in extraordinary numbers. He had the worst economic record of any incumbent president and due to the racial bias in his favor and the character assassination of Romney, as well as the media blackout of Benghazi, he slithered like a snake into another term. Short lived perhaps - he's being busted by for his before, during and after screw ups that led to deaths of an ambassador and three others

- Romney won among the core of America, the ones who pay the taxes and drive the economic engine.

- You are the ones who call us white trash and trailer trash.... You don't like anything that is right !! As opposed to wrong. Homophobia? That implies I am afraid of homos, I ma not!! Class warfare started with Obama and him being against the rich although he is rich too. There are way too many people in this country on assistance. But there are no jobs, we can't keep doing that .Keep the illegals out, Seal our borders and no more anchor babies, wherever or whenever their parents got here. I don't care, the country has had enough!!!So have the American people!!!.

- I had a hard time looking at and listening to Obama for just four years. He doesn't look like America. Jindal would be even worse... Ugly people!!! I don't want no Indian in the White house. That black man has been bad enough!!! Clinton won't go away, he thinks like Obama, doesn't matter what you do, He thinks he's a rockstar!! NOT!!! WE will take America back!!! It is our country!!!

- Obama didn't win, the unions, the lazy, the illegal aliens and the commies and socialists won. You don't know it yet but AMERICANS lost.

That’s right. Americans

And who are Americans? Well let’s see, they’re not in a union, they’re not lazy (Lazy, we know what that means, don’t we? No Protestant work ethic for those people. Wink wink), they’re not Latino or Asian or gay or any of those people. You know, those people. You know the ones. They’re scheming to take away our country. Ours. Us real Americans.  You can tell an American, because he looks like an American, right?  And Americans aren’t elected by minorities, now are they?

If it wasn't for the 47% on welfare, barry sure as hell wouldn’t have won. You can see we are become a 3rd world country. Wait for the muslim brotherhood to take over.

Oh no, not the Muslim Brotherhood! Not that!

Welfare.  The forty-seven percent. Gee, where have we heard those dog whistles before?

How many times have you seen this meme since the election?

The population of the US is around three hundred and twelve million.  So, one hundred and fifty million, that’s about how many people forty-seven percent of the American population is, give or take.  Seventy-two percent of America is white, that leaves about ninety million people of color, of which about seventy million are defined as “black” or African American. Now  according to the US Department of Health and Human services, the Commerce Department, and the CATO institute’s own figures, a little over four million Americans actually live on welfare as of 2012.  Four million. Not one hundred and fifty million. Four million. About sixty million receive some kind of assistance, some kind of help, but they’re not living on it.  Four million, that’s the number of people on welfare. That’s about one percent of the total population (1.2% percent if you want to get precise). 

One percent and some change. Not forty-seven percent. One percent.

Of which, about two million are actually white.

Want to do the math yourself?

No?

Okay, what all this means is that of the non-white population, ninety-nine percent aren’t living on welfare. 

But what’s the statement here? Half the population is on welfare. And who are the folks on welfare? What color does popular perception paint their skin? About half of them are white, but that’s not really the color you think of when somebody mentions “welfare,” is it? Most of the white people on welfare live in the poor rural South and are hardline conservatives, but that’s not really the location or the party that comes to mind when people say “welfare,” is it? 

Be honest, what do you think of when you hear “welfare?” 

What you should be hearing is a dog whistle.

And while we’re at it, what color is the Third World?

What are we really afraid of here? Go on, you can say it – but then again you really don’t have to, do you?

Forty-seven percent, it’s complete bullshit, just another manufactured bogeyman.  But there it is, ingrained in the public mind and no amount of math will ever dislodge it. 

Why?

Because that’s what a different forty-seven percent of the population wants to believe.

We’ll come back to this meme in a bit.

Oh, hell, let’s come back to it right now.

This is too good to pass up. So here’s a quick “Caption This Post” of our favorite moocher with a big ol’ bufforilla ass…

That’s the lead-in to a fun little contest on the Angry White Dude blog.  Who was the mad little white dude talking about? “Moochelle” Obama, of course. Isn’t that clever? Moochelle.  You can thank Rush Limbaugh for that one. There’s a whole internet meme that makes Moochelle demotivational posters.  Moochelle, do a search on that name, see what you get. Because, apparently, a graduate of Princeton and Harvard, someone who has worked her entire life, first as a lawyer, then as the highly successful executive director of a large non-profit, then an Associate Dean of Student Services at the University of Chicago and then Vice President of Community and Student Affairs, not to mention a member of the board of TreeHouse Foods, and whose salary placed her well into the upper 1% of American income and who pays more in taxes than most Americans gross in a year and has long before she ever became First Lady, is a “mooch.” 

She’s also a “Silver back gorilla” and has a “big ol’ bufforilla ass.”

Gorilla. 

Again, you want to do the math or shall I?

No matter that by any definition Michelle Obama is an educated eloquent successful accomplished professional  – who, I might add, put her own career on hold and took a subservient role to her husband’s goals, a position hard line conservatives think is the proper place for a woman – as an African American, well, she’s still just a gorilla, a monkey, a mooch. One of the “Forty Seven Percent” sponging off real Americans. 

You know, it’s funny, the same people who call the First Lady a mooch are the same people who bitch about how lazy other folks are, who mock others for their weight and tell them to get off their asses and exercise – and yet when Michelle Obama busts her own ass day in and day out to eat right and exercise and set a decent example for our overweight youth, she’s a still a mooch and gorilla. 

You know what the single largest search on my website is?

“Michelle Obama posture.” 

Gorilla. Bufforilla. Go on, tell me it’s not racism. Show me the same comments about Barbara Bush’s tush. Nancy Reagan’s work ethic. Or Pat Nixon’s posture. Go on. I’ll wait.

Google Sasha and Malia and see what you find.  Don’t eat anything first, unless you like being sick.

Then go right on and tell me it’s not racism. Go ahead, make me laugh.

Tea Party Nation blogger Judson Phillips came up with an idea: he wants conservatives, i.e. Real Americans, in the Electoral College to go on strike. That’s right. Do what they’ve been doing in Congress for the last four years, obstruct. 

See, the idea is to prevent validation of the election results, both the popular vote that conservatives are so big on and the Electoral College vote, both of which they lost decisively.  Phillips’ idea is that if he can get enough conservatives to hold up the final electoral vote validation, then the Electoral College deadlocks.

Then the House of Representatives gets to decide who the next president will be by Fiat.

And the House is controlled by Republicans.

Isn’t that beautiful?

The Tea Party, the folks who claim to love democracy and The Republic oh so very much, who lay claim to being patriots and the only real Americans, who are overwhelmingly white to a degree that makes any other race utterly insignificant in their make-up, want to override that self-same democracy and install their own President directly. 

Why?

Royce Latham, one of Phillips’ readers explains:

Sexual perversions and drug use of the Obamas…forged birth certificate…voter fraud of biblical proportions. Why are we talking secession instead of removing the New York Times and supporting citizens' Grand Jury indictments [sic] against this unbelievable treason, felonies and usurpations raining down on us on a daily basis?

Sexual perversions? Jesus Haploid Christ, I’ll bet money that Royce has Birth of a Nation on Blu-Ray.

And then there’s all the rest of it, like a song you just can’t get out of your head, birth certificate, voter fraud, treason, usurper, oh woeho, do wop do wop, raining down on me.

Everybody, sing along, you know the words.

Again, don’t think it’s really racism?

Think I’m exaggerating?

Take a look at the comments regarding this idea on the President Mitt Romney 2012 Facebook page.  Also, take a look at how many “Americans” really, really like the idea of aborting democracy and just taking over when they don’t get their way.  Facebook commenters come with pictures, note the demographics. 

Hey, I’m just saying that if there’s that much white sauce in the fondue, you’re probably going to find a stack of crackers nearby, that’s all.

Look at this. Really look at it.  Those angry pinch-faced TEA party loons aren’t claiming voter fraud, not really. Hell even Allen West has finally conceded. They’re not calling for new elections, not really. They admit, finally, that Mitt Romney lost and that Obama won.  In fact, the entire idea of locking up the Electoral College tacitly acknowledges the validity of the election, that a majority of voters wanted Barack Obama to have another four years.  So they’ve hit upon an idea to bypass democracy and the Republic, disenfranchise those voters, and install their own genuine Old White Guy.

Honestly, the only way you get to this point, is if you see half the country, and especially people of color, as not real Americans. 

Note: the deadlock idea is about as valid as creationism by the way. Doesn’t work. The electoral college was designed to keep soreheads from taking over America not help them.

Funny thing, when these people claim to love the Constitution, they literally mean the Constitution as originally written – the one that left three quarters of the population, women, blacks, and the poor, as non-enfranchised chattel.

And that’s the world they want to return to.

Which makes this last week all the more ironic.

A while back, Rick Santorum told conservatives they were stupid, and they cheered him.

Last Monday, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal told Republicans to "stop being the stupid party."

Jindal admonished the GOP to make a concerted effort to reach a broader swath of voters with an inclusive message. 

It is no secret we had a number of Republicans damage our brand this year with offensive, bizarre comments -- enough of that. It's not going to be the last time anyone says something stupid within our party, but it can't be tolerated within our party. We've also had enough of this dumbed-down conservatism. We need to stop being simplistic, we need to trust the intelligence of the American people and we need to stop insulting the intelligence of the voters.

I’m not exactly sure how you insult the intelligence of voters who think “bufforilla” is an acceptable label for anybody, let alone the First Lady, but I’ll leave that as an exercise for the reader.

"If we want people to like us, we have to like them first," Jindal said on Fox News Sunday. What a concept, eh? It warms my heart to know that Bobby Jindal likes me, and just in time for Christmas too! Why it’s like a Doctor Seuss story – and Bobby’s heart grew two sizes that day!

Meanwhile, Mitt Romney apparently didn’t get the memo, he’s going around telling these same conservatives that the only reason Barack Obama won is because he gives free stuff to lazy minorities who don’t work and aren’t real Americans. Boy, that’ll get ‘em to like you.

Mitt’s not only still losing this election, he seems hell bent on losing the next one too.

In the weeks since the election, Republicans have come to the conclusion that “The White Vote” isn’t the automatic win it used to be.   The GOP has come to the sudden and unpleasant realization that by the next election cycle – or the one after that at the latest – the United States will be using the word “minority” to describe an entirely different demographic. 

The glum and frightened look on conservative faces isn’t that they lost per se, rather it’s the same look an alcoholic gets when he realizes there’s only a swallow left in the bottle.  

If they want to have any say in how this country is run in the future, they’re going to have to change the Republican party to reflect a representative cross-section of America. 

It’s really that simple.

Because, see, it’s the bigotry, Stupid.

It’s not just the Dick Mourdocks and the Todd Akins and the Michele Bachmanns, it’s not just the Rush Limbaughs and the Glenn Becks and the Ann Coulters, it’s not just Bill O’Reilly and RedState and Tea Party Nation – it’s the whole damned constituency.

It’s the overall racism and sexism and misogyny and religious extremism.

I’ll tell you exactly what it is, it’s the people who can look at an accomplished well spoken wealthy black woman, the First Lady, and see only a welfare dependent moocher, a monkey, a gorilla, a nigger.

It’s the racism, Stupid.

It’s the racism and all the rest of it. It’s the sexism. It’s the homophobia. It’s the gibbering fear and the paranoia.

It’s the goddamned bigotry.

It’s the bigotry and it’s in everything.

Utah Republican Governor Gary Herbert warned conservatives that the country was going "center-left" on issues like gay marriage.  When he was asked what Republicans could do to survive the shift without violating their principles, he said:

If you must discuss it, stand by your beliefs, but please, for the good of the party, try not to sound like a jerk.

For the good of the party.

Not for the good of the nation.  Not for the good of the people you’re trying to attract.  For the good of the party

What Herbert doesn’t seem to understand is that those beliefs make you a jerk, no matter how nice you phrase it. When your position is that of denying others their piece of the American dream because you just plain don’t like them, you are a jerk. It’s really just that damned simple.

You. Are. A. Bigot.

At the same Las Vegas meeting, former Reagan adviser Bill Bennett told the gathering:

You can articulate your opposition for example to same-sex marriage, but you can do it in a dignified way, in the right language, in a forceful way that shows you're not a bigot or intolerant.

You know, you can only make the facepalm so many times before you end up with a headache.

Again, what Bennett just doesn’t seem to get is this: no matter how “dignified,” no matter the “language,” you’re still an intolerant bigot.

You. Are. A. Bigot.

Not one of these conservative leaders stood in front of their party and said, “Enough! We can no longer tolerate racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, the hate and the fear in our ranks. We must change. We must honestly acknowledge that America has changed and we must change with it. We must discard the past and move forward and become the party for all Americans. We must lead. We must stop referring to our fellows as communists and Nazis and Bufforillos. We must become a movement that is truly worthy of the title The Party of Lincoln!

Oh, sure, maybe it sounded a little like that, but that’s not really what they said, is it?

No, not really.

Of course not.  No GOP leader could say that, because, well, then he’d sound like a liberal, wouldn’t he?

Instead, they’ve decided to fake it.

Because, when it comes right down to it, well, it’s the bigotry isn’t it?

We’ll just pretty it up. Put some lipstick and new dress on it – because, hey, the lazy welfare dependent Forty-Seven percent is too damned stupid to notice anyway.  They’re just gorillas after all, monkeys, right? Poor and stupid and easily duped. Hell, they don’t even speak English, most of them.  If Obama can fake them out, heck, how hard can it be. Right?

We haven’t heard “separate but equal yet,” but then we really don’t have to, do we?

What’s the Jean Giraudoux quote? 

The secret to success is sincerity. Once you can fake that, you’ve got it made.

Republicans are going to have to do more than fake it. 

They’re actually going to have to change. 

They’re going to have to do something about it for real.  They’re going to have to stop being the last refuge for racism, sexism, homophobia, religious extremism, and all the rest of it. 

And if they don’t?

Well then in less than a decade they are going to find out exactly what it’s like to be a minority in America.

119 comments:

  1. wonderful, love it.

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  2. Even if any of them read this, that they would understand it.

    Much less, do anything to change their ways.

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    1. That comment presumes that the rank-and-file Tea Partiers even know how to read. The responses I tend to get when I say things similar to what the Chief's said are along the lines of infantile screeching noises and poop-flinging.

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    2. These are the same Tea partiers, who carried a copy of the US Constitution in their pockets and purses, but never read it. They do the same thing with the Bible. Jesus threw out the Old Testament and defined virtue in a very simple way: Do unto others as you would have others do unto you. Period, no exceptions, no caveats.

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  3. Thank you Jim. This was a really great read. Unfortunately, precious few of the people who should read this will.

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    1. Oh, they will read it. Then they will feel aggrieved.

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  4. I so agree with ya Jim...change? I don't think a ship without a rudder can change course very easily or quickly...The Bismarck kinda brings a picture to mind...once, the GOP was a real Juggernaut...now...the GOP has been seriously damaged and is leaking...and listing to the starboard...rats seen swimming away...

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  5. Actually, when I think of welfare recipients, I think of myself and my daughter and the people I worked with back when I was on workfare, almost all of whom were white (and the one person who wasn't was Native American). It came as a huge surprise to me to find out that I was supposed to hear "welfare recipient" and think of black people.

    I think I must be hearing impaired, I keep missing their dog whistles.

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    1. I'm right there with you. I am actively petitioning for disability and many of my right wing family members have been spouting that rubbish and were all like, "Oh, not YOU!" when I pointed out that I was petitioning for gub'ment money.

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    2. Yep, same here! When my two boys were very little, my hubby and I both worked but we still couldn't make ends meet and neither of our jobs offered any benefits. He had a college degree, I didn't, but we both worked for the same company and for our area it was considered a GOOD job. In order to keep a roof over our heads and food in our children's stomachs we received about $75 a month in food stamps and our kids' healthcare was provided through Medicaid.

      We were visiting my parents a few years after that bad patch (and after we'd moved to a new state and gotten better jobs with benefits so we didn't need assistance anymore), and my parents started spouting off about a new low-income housing unit that was being built.

      When I pointed out, in detail, the assistance WE'D needed not all that long ago, the room was instantly silent. My mom's response was, "Well, that's different."

      I said, "How, exactly?"

      "Well...you only needed it for a little while."

      I just shook my head. "Because we got lucky, Mom. We caught a break. If we hadn't, as hard as we were working we'd never have gotten out of the hole. We'd be moving into that housing and being REALLY thankful for it."

      "Oh."

      Yeah. Oh. People who've never caught a truly bad break, or even been made to suffer severe consequences for a bad decision, can't understand the feeling of sick helplessness you feel when nothing you do changes your situation.

      And when it comes to that - everyone has caught a break at some point. A parent or friend who helps you out for a short period, and keeps you from falling into a hole you can't get out of. That boss who gave you a raise. The landlord who didn't raise your rent. That dream job you worked for but didn't really deserve any more than the other 40 applicants. We all need to be thankful for the help we've received along the way. None of us are "self-made."

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    3. OMG...I grew up in SoCal and lived for a short time in the Pacific Northwest, but in 2000 we moved to Florida!!! I'd never been exposed to blatant bigotry. I was thrilled when President Obama took it the first time and had my eyes wide open on the 2nd, but I was still shocked by this 'in-your-face' racial speak-easy...that's what I call it. OMG...I read the comments and was appalled by the disrespect. Even when that congressman had the nerve to yell out loud in chamber during the Presidents address. Again, 'racial speak-easy' at work. I'm so glad that I AM NOT ALONE.

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  6. I love a man who does his homework before he speaks, and then DARES others to do the same. Bravo!!!!

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  7. Great article Jim! How anybody could hate Michelle Obama is just way, way beyond me.

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  8. Personally I LOVE visiting the USA - I go over on a fairly regular basis. I love how, in general, people are more polite and helpful than here in the UK. However, I do find the number of (what I call) ‘Isms’ over there rather worrying. You know Sexism, Racism, Sectarianism, Homophobia, which are mostly (aside from bigotry) utter bloody SELFISHNESS. I also find the sheer hypocrisy of so many people who claim to be Christian profoundly worrying – for example my friend’s father is an ex-USN NCO and a Baptist yet he profoundly believes that helping people with Welfare is wrong and that he shouldn’t have to pay for it – a sort of ‘I’m alright Jack, screw you’ selfish notion. Surely if we are to have a ‘Society’ then we have to act as a Society – the clue is in the word!

    The other thing that worries me is the level of intolerance amongst certain sections of the population (and it’s growing over here too) – about 10 years ago I was in Greenville, S. Carolina, and was gobsmacked to see that every second building was a church yet there were people sleeping rough on the streets. Imagine that, in a First World Nation, no strike that through, in the Nation that claims to be the ‘Leader of the Free World’, people sleeping on the streets; anyone would think it was Kenya!

    Bear in mind that I am not a Christian (‘Deist’ is about the closest description to how I perceive the world), and in those days used to wear a pentacle 5 pointed star medallion (itself originally a Gnostic Christian symbol) and I have a tattoo (apparently a major No-No in SC, especially for a woman). So there I am in the local supermarket buying provisions such that I could cook up a Nepalese curry for my hosts that evening when a woman comes up to me and accuses me of being a ‘Dayville Worshiper’! To say I was a little nonplussed would be an understatement; I mean Dayville’s was a chain of American style ice cream shops over here in the mid ‘70s. So I replied with the immortal line: ‘That’s right, I adored their pistachio and almond!’ (OK I admit it, I love winding up religious fundies.)

    This statement was met with spittle flying apoplectic fury (seriously I thought she was about to have a coronary) and the response: ‘Satanist!’ whilst pointing at my pentacle. The rest of the conversation went as follows:

    Me: ‘Sorry?’

    Fundie Woman: ‘That is a Satanic symbol’

    Me: ‘Huh? It’s a 5 pointed star.’

    FW: It’s Satanic.’

    Me ‘Listen sunshine, it’s a fucking 5 pointed star, if it’s so damned Satanic why is it that every aircraft operated by the USAF, the USN, the USMC and the US Army have at least 3 of them painted on? If it’s so Satanic why are there 50 of the bloody things on your national flag? If it’s so Satanic, why is your Defense Department called the Pentagon, FFS?’

    FW (with a flash of insight promoted, no doubt by my accent): ‘Oh. You’re not from around here!’
    Me: ‘No, and if this is what ‘round here’ is like, I won’t be coming back!’

    I had hoped that that sort of thing would have died out, but I fear it’s on the rise in the USA. Having said that, we Europeans did export all our religious weirdos over there in the 16 and 1700s, and then to cap it off the Brits cunningly devised a plan for you to keep them, to whit lose the Revolutionary War on purpose!

    Kee up the good work Jim.

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    1. Your statement about the stars being all over iconic American institutions and symbols reminds me of a story my belle-mere tells about when she was a member of a church (Methodist/Wesleyan, Lutheran, Episcopal? don't recall).

      Another member of the church, apparently convinced she knew better than anyone else how to run all their lives, told her what a shame it was that she let her two sons run around in that awful long hair (late '60's/early '70's), that it was ungodly (or something close to it). E took her to the Sunday school room, pointed at the portrait of Jesus at the front of the room, and said that she hoped her sons followed His example. The other lady left in a huff.

      I've never seen a depiction of Jesus with short hair. Wonder where she had ;=}. She'd probably have accused you of being a Satanist too, without having thought about nationally significant 5 pointed stars, which I happen to wear.

      I also have to wonder how those of us who are not Christian seem to have a better functional/literary understanding, from as close to original sources as one can get, of "holy writ", than most fundamentalists. When I had a sign by my door saying that I wasn't interested in visits from solicitors (not in the UK sense), proselytizers, or door-to-door sales, most of the proselytizers didn't even know they were one...or what the word meant. Gah.

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    2. Hell yeah, Deborah- I love it when people put asshole fundies in their place- 'specially over the 'debbil wershippin'. Being an atheist in a small midwestern town, I hear a fair amount of bullshit- we're looked upon with a very jaundiced eye, "cuz 'round here, we luv Jeezus."

      For example: An old girlfriend and I were out for lunch not too long ago, having an awesome conversation and just catching up; when a dour-faced elderly church-going looking lady walked straight up to our table, cleared her throat, addressed my homegirl in much the same as you had been, with plenty of contempt and derision; when the old gal saw the pentacle/triple goddess medallion she was wearing low in her (ample lol) cleavage. Now I half expected Girlfriend to tell the old bat to pound sand, but she let the old gal have her rant about being a 'debbil wershipper', then with amazing poise and grace (and perfect diction, I might add), explained, "This is a pentacle, it is the symbol of my religion, which is Wicca. Wicca has been practiced for at least as long as Christianity, with no blood shed in it's name, ever. We worship the Earth Mother and Nature itself." She smiled sweetly at the nasty old bag, and said, "These symbols within the Pentacle are called the Triple Goddess; they represent the three phases of a woman's life. This crescent represents the virgin, pure of heart and body, just like that little one over there", and pointed at a young teenaged girl. She continued, "The Full Moon in the center represents the full woman, ripe and fertile, and looking for a seed to be planted" and with a flourish, addressed herself. "Now this last crescent should be of particular interest to you, ma'am", she said with a honey-sweet voice, "It represents the Old Crone, bitter and barren, with only distant memories of rapturous pleasure and passion to warm her on the cold nights in the twilight of her life". She gently took the lady's hand in hers and patted it, "I think we know who the old crone is, don't we dear?" I shot Stella Artois straight out my nose, and declared her my coolest ex-girlfriend EVER.

      It's really good to see some love from across the pond- right back at'cha luv!

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    3. Damn Deborah, you too should be blogging. So, based on your comment can we assume that Great Britain celebrates Thanksgiving on July 4th?

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    4. Don I think that would be too much.

      Generally we just breathe a sigh of relief. :)

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  9. You quoted someone as saying
    "The citizens who share the belief that the Constitution, Bill of Rights and our Declaration of Independence should remain as the foundation of this nation, are outnumbered today"

    and later qualified? refined? it by writing:

    Funny thing, when these people claim to love the Constitution, they literally mean the Constitution as originally written – the one that left three quarters of the population, women, blacks, and the poor, as non-enfranchised chattel.

    I'm beginning to think that many conservative politicians think this way. There seem to be quite the number of politicians, would-be office holders especially, who seem not to understand the Constitution & Amendments which they have/will swear to uphold cannot be interpreted through their own filters. It's driven me nuts over the last decade, as I have seen this nonsense increasing. Don't even ask me about Citizens United and some of the other anti-individual human persons judgements handed down of late--I tend to foam at the mouth. Likewise with former govt. (usually Federal) regulators who then get jobs as lobbyists for the industry/ies they were supposed to be regulating.

    I agree with the first statement, as long as we leave Holy Writ or whatever OUT of what this country's foundation was or is. Our Founders, active or in the background, didn't know in their day what advances in society, technology, immigration, and world politics might produce today and in the centuries to come. I like to think they would have welcomed the fine tuning with later Amendments as our nation grows.

    Just because Yeshua ben Miriam (please correct my Hebrew if I'm wrong) knew better than to ask women of that time and culture to join him on his wanderings, due to their reputations being tarnished if they did go wandering about with a bunch of unrelated men, doesn't mean he didn't think they weren't up to the calling--the Papacy never seems to realize this in their narrow view of women's roles and selves.

    I am happy that Congress is becoming more diverse in its social, cultural, and religious makeup. I'm happy to see governments across the nation doing the same.

    You write such great rants. You write such great essays on what our country can or could be, and I really appreciate the education I'm getting here. Just wish there was a way I could read comments which came after mine/filled pages, without having to remember to keep stopping by, which is not one of my talents (memory, that is).

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  10. "Hey, I’m just saying that if there’s that much white sauce in the fondue, you’re probably going to find a stack of crackers nearby, that’s all."

    Jim, that's the finest bit of prose that I've had the honor to read this whole damn campaign season. Bravo Zulu, Sierra Hotel! You've pretty much nailed it, you know- as a middle-aged white guy in the middle of whitebread Indiana, I hear a lot out of these idiots since the election- most of them don't even try to hide their bigotry; on the contrary, they wear it as some kind of Teabilly badge of honor. Hell, I can't even go have thanksgiving dinner with my family today because I know my Mom will launch into a tirade about how "Obummer stole the election! (He's Hitler you know...)" Around here, the older people use the dog-whistle talking points they hear ad infinitum on Fox, but they're not prej'dist. In fairness, there are a lot of people who 'get it' here too, but for every one of them I know, I know five who are on the 'bufforilla' bandwagon. (on a personal note- Michelle Obama is not only beautiful, educated, well-spoken and graceful, she's the kind of woman the Teabillies fear most- she's a strong, confident woman who is her own person, and not an extension of her husband. Plus she's teaching her daughters to be the same kind of women. I actually admire that. A lot.)

    The sad thing, but the ultimately good thing is, that generation is dying off more rapidly every year. Serving in the military, you learn, Adapt or Die. The GOP at every level seems to think they can play by the same rules they've used since St. Ronnie was elected, and our country (and the world) has changed quite a bit in the past 30 years. We don't need to return to some nostalgic 'gee-whiz' 1950's America that never existed- There are a lot of genies that will be refusing to return to their bottles, and hopefully we in the middle-class can regain some of the ground we've lost in the past 30 years.

    TL;DR- What I think we're seeing here is the beginning of the end of the GOP as we've come to know it. And that's just fine with me.

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    1. I only have one objection to what you said, in that it is their version of St. Ronnie, not the one that was actually elected and all that.

      After all, Reagan raised taxes. Repeatedly. He also gave amnesty to "the illegals", ran up the deficit, etc.

      Not to mention that, as I recall, Dick Cheney said during his time as VP that "deficits don't matter".

      Funny, that.


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  11. Unfortunately, too many of these folks don't realize you can't move forward if you are always looking backwords.

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  12. Backwards. I hate typing on a tablet. Although in retrospect back words is pretty apt too.

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  13. Unfortunately, too many of these folks don't realize you can't move forward if you are always looking backwords.

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  14. I find it ironic that so many of the party of Lincoln are in favour of secession...

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    1. That is because, since the mid-late 60s, the GOP started taking in the Wallace Democrats that bolted after the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and by the time 1980 rolled around, they had seized ideological control of the Party. Today's GOP is simply a better funded version of Wallace's AIP, ideologically and demographically. Not only is the GOP no longer the party of Lincoln, Ingersoll and Teddy Roosevelt, it is no longer even the party of Goldwater, who was effectively thrown out of the GOP by the 90s for being too "liberal."

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    2. Most Americans either are ignorant of the fact, or will not admit the fact exists, that Republicans used to be the more liberal party and Democrats the more conservative. The liberals and conservatives swapped places, as M.C. says above, during the Civil Rights era. I have had to inform people of this in lots and lots of online conversations when I see Republicans claiming that today's Democratic Party is the exact same one that was pro-slavery 150 years ago.

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  15. What a great read from post through comment!

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  16. Guess we just have to hope that attrition will win the day. So---not in this lifetime, right?

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    1. It shouldn't take more than a few decades, most of that crowd is 55 or older, and they eat a lot of bacon.

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    2. OK, you made me laugh out loud and I really needed that this morning!!
      THANK YOU.

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    3. Except bacon doesn't kill people. Tell 'em to go vegan, it'll work faster.

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  17. Greg - ETC(SW) USN - RetiredNovember 22, 2012 at 5:42 AM

    Grateful on Thanksgiving for having found your blog and love this latest entry.

    Not long ago, I had a spirited debate with a retired Marine and former co-worker (well, student (me) - TQL instructor (him) relationship) revolving around voter "fraud" and how it was really all about voter suppression. He, and a couple of friends who joined the discussion on facebook, went on and on about how it wasn't racist, but there was no denying it just in the way they framed their argument around people who were "too lazy" to get out and get an ID that they never needed before, to prevent something that was, in fact, nearly non-existent. I really don't think they see anything wrong with the coded language they use and maybe some are really oblivious to the racism of it. They've simply swallowed the Kook-aid that's been served up ala Lee Atwater years ago describing the "Southern Strategy". It's become so much a foundation to everything the GOP is today.

    Oh, and my turn to find a typo. You wrote, ". . . it’s the people who can look at an accomplished well spoken wealthy black women, the First Lady . . . ". I think that should be "woman", singular.

    As always, thanks for all you do. I hope this holiday season brings you all the joy and fellowship you so richly deserve.

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  18. Thanks Jim. Another grand slam home run. In the weeks since the election, after the briefest moment of reflection on the loss, the GOP seems to be doubling down on the isms and divisive rhetoric. It's like they saw that hate lost and that the country is changing and that the old divide and conquer tactic was no longer working but just said "we'll get 'em next time". Isn't the definition of insanity doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results? Ahhhh, they're insanely bigoted.

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  19. When I think of people on welfare, I'm reminded of my time working in social services for my state back in the mid-70s. I don't know the numbers TODAY, but I know that at THAT time, I was surprised to realize that fully 75% of welfare recipients, trying to get by on a pittance of help from the state, were, in fact, children.

    CHILDREN.

    Every time someone complains about welfare fraud or lazy welfare recipients, I remember that a great percentage of recipients are innocent children needing food to eat, a safe place to live, an education, medical and dental care, vision checkups, clothes to wear, and a supportive home environment of love and understanding.

    Every time welfare payments are cut, or people are kicked off of welfare, or the government makes it ever harder for people to receive help in their greatest times of need, I remember that innocent children are suffering due to the hateful policies of Gee OH PEE politicians scornful of the needs of poor and disabled people.

    In my own bleeding liberal mind, I see welfare recipients = children, primarily. And I get mad all over again.

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    1. It's actually closer to 80%, as far as I remember from recent research, if you include all children under the age of 18.

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    2. Jeff Lamm aka CthulhuNovember 22, 2012 at 7:53 AM

      As a disabled white male, divorced (dammit, I miss you, honey) and a single father, I can tell you this. I am NOT a deadbeat. I'm not faking my disability, I didn't fake the car that crushed my right side, or the unsafe work conditions that ruined my back. I didn't fake the multiple surgeries and the subsequent bloodclots that almost killed me after dying TWICE after the accident, and I am NOT getting rich or living large on my disability payments.
      But I will admit that, without my disability and the supplimental payments my daughter gets, we'd be homeless and would starve.

      I worked hard and served my country in the Navy and Army, and it hurts greatly when the right wing spouts its usual hatred for people like me.

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    4. Bleess you, Jeff, and thank you for your service. Your quite heroism in raising your daughters and fighting for your health is admirable. I'm glad you were able to put your family first and take the disability and other help you needed.

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  20. I'm with C.L. Berkshire on the fondue line. I'm not usually susceptible to spit takes, but I'm glad I wasn't sippin' my coffee right then.

    I'm usually not early enough to catch these, but I think maybe it was supposed to read "They’re just gorillas after all"?

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    1. Missing word found (it was on the floor under my desk, the cats had knocked it off the desk). Fixed. Thanks

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    2. Jim, you just put these typos in deliberately, right, to see if we are paying attention?

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    3. Mom, it IS something I would suspect a CWO of doing...

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  21. So as a woman waiting for the bigoted, ultra-conservative, in-laws to awaken (shoot me now, please), what is actual percentage of people taking ANY form of assistance. Anyone know? Oh sure, I could Google it, but you know what I would have to wade through, and I have to start the standard, expected turkey and all the trimmings spread, soon. Actually, my in-laws give me hope for this country - my husband, my WASP, raised by bigots, raised to be religious (and they mean Methodist only), up to recently avowed Republican, voted for Obama. And really, the in-laws aren't going to be around much longer. It may sound cruel, but it is true.

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    1. From the numbers given in the post, approximately 19%.

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  22. Starting a friendship with a neighbor like you is one of the things on my Thanksgiving gratitude list this year, Jim. Thanks for saying this. I've been saying for it for years, but sadly, we still live in a world where hearing this from a gay Hispanic doesn't carry the same impact as when a white guy says it. Thanks for being that guy. I'm pretty certain I can speak for all minorities, women, LGBTS's, etc. when I say we don't hate white people. We are scared shitless of about 18 to 23% of them. Bet you can guess which ones.

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  23. It is my understanding that the 47% represents people receiving all forms of government assistance.... Social security, Medicare, Medicaid, troops in war zone not paying federal taxes, federally insured home loans, small business loans, VA, pell grants, federally insured student loans, and the list goes on. If you think of all the ways the federal governments helps it's citizens, I am surprised it is only 47%.

    For me It is my mother whose rants about the President's election in 2008 were sufficient to contact secret service, except she is 80 and can't drive at night or long distances. It is my brother who carried on about deserts at the White House Thanksgiving Dinner because of Mrs. Obama's campaign over childhood obesity. I am sure he is all for secession.

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  24. O.K., screw the turkey, I had to dig anyway. As best I can make out, the 47% figure comes from Romney's "47% of the people who will vote for the president no matter what", "47% who are with him, who are dependent upon government" statements. Apparently that figure was based on people who didn't pay federal income tax. It's part of that whole "entitlement" thing. Now 10.3 of that 47% are, wait for it, the elderly. About 2/3rds of the 47% do pay payroll taxes, so they are working, they just don't make enough to have to pay federal income taxes. Some are students.

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    1. That is correct. That's where the figure comes from.

      This was detailed in this post: Mitt Romney, A Simple Test of Character.

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    2. The number of people who receive benefits from the Government changes depending on how you define "benefit." If you're just talking welfare, it's about 4%. If you include unemployment, it goes up. When you include Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid it's getting to the 40-50% range. Then there's tax cuts which could be considered benefits, like the tax cut I get on the interest I pay on my mortgage. That's a Government benefit, too.

      You might want to show your in-laws this Bloomberg article which says up to 96% of households get some kind of benefit from our Government.

      But even that article leaves out the benefits we all get from the fact that we are citizens of an America which looks out for freedom and justice, not only for it's own citizens, but for many others across the world, who are alive only because of our foreign aid. I think 100% of Americans get benefit from our Government, and quite a few others who aren't Americans, too.

      Yes, I know there's a lot in injustice in the world, including here in the USA, but we all benefit, however indirectly, from the Government created by those people who came together in the late 1700s, with ideas of freedom and equality shared by all.

      We are all the 100%.

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    3. FWIW, I've seen the 47% number floating around conservative postings on the interwebs for quite awhile. Fortunately Romney had the poor judgement to give it air outside the echo chamber. I'd research the origin (perhaps already done by JW previously?) but I'm too busy catching up on past posts here. My response to those numbers was generally to contrast corporate welfare being a much larger dollar % of the budget. That those commenters were racist had been previously established, many times admittedly so.

      In other news, relevant irony dept., final election results show Romney with 47% of the vote.

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  25. Thank you for clarifying the origins of the "Moochelle" libel; I had suspected that it might be Limpbaugh. I had seen it from more than one Frightwinger, so I knew that it had to have come from some sick bastard, but I wasn't sure which one.

    I was in an online discussion with a Frightwinger who insisted that the term "dogwhistle" was invented by the DNC and was just a "talking point." Blind, deaf, dumb and hopeless.

    A friend and I have a mantra: Say the thing that needs to be said to those who need to hear it. Thank you, as ever, for saying the thing that needs to be said. As to whether those who truly need to hear it will, that's on them. I can only hope.

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  26. Note how these people always speak for America and Americans? "Americans have had enough, etc..." Well, it's Nov. 22 and the people have spoken when they voted for Obama Nov. 6, so it's time they quit speaking for all of us, certainly not speaking for me!

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  27. As the GOP casts around seeking an excuse, ANY excuse, to blame their massive failure on, it comes down to this: They're completely in denile. They will lie to everyone, ESPECIALLY themselves, to pretend the world hasn't passed them by, and that they're still special.

    But they aren't. And instead of admitting it, and evolving into the 21st century, they're trying to keep up the lie.

    Good for them. Because when they fail again and again, they'll continue to marginalize themselves, and we'll be able to make up the 30+ years of lost ground we should have made. And maybe, move us even further forward.

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  28. I'm sure the conversation went something like this:
    "That Michelle Obama is a big Buffy The Vampire Slayer fan. She can explain the plot of any episode. She has so much Buffy knowledge that we call her the Bufforilla."

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  29. "Class warfare started with Obama and him being against the rich although he is rich too."

    Seriously, how stupid does this sound? They are saying that Obama is against himself, and not seeing how dumb that entire concept is.

    I live with this crap all the time (over half of my family), and it wears you down. Once again, Jim, I am so thankful to have found people like you and your friends. It's like a long drink of icy cold water in the middle of the blazing hot desert.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Very well said! Living in Florida and having family members who actually believe Fox is a News channel for real truly does wear me down, being as I'm disabled and struggling (very much unlike them) you get tired of the "everyone just needs to pull themselves up by the bootstraps and go to work!" mentality. I can't wear boots... They'd look silly in my wheelchair anyway. ~sigh~
      Finding Jim and every one of these wonderful folks who've left so many awesome comments really gives me faith in humans that has been very sadly lacking.

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  30. Why is it always the Enlisted ranks that cut through the B.S. Thank you Sir.

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    1. Well, hate to be a pain, but I retired as a Chief Warrant Officer. In the US Navy, a CWO is a commissioned officer. In fact, my commission is hanging on the wall in front of me right now, right under my sword and my retirement papers. Warrants are officers, they're just not gentlemen.

      However, that said, I was enlisted for 16 years, commissioned for 8. Typically we're referred to as Mustangs.

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    2. Jim is right, Joe. However...

      I'm sorry to burst your bubble, Jim, but anyone who would (continue to) help his fellow citizens instead of turning his back *is* a gentleman. In the U.S.A., being a gentleman is based on what good you do in your life and the honor you uphold, not your accent, rank or birth. That's one of our advantages. The Mustangs I've met may have been lewd, crude, and socially unacceptable, but I'd rather have them watching my back than anyone who knows which of five forks to use at a tea party. Or a Tea Party, for that matter, when my back would also need protection.

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  31. "Well then in less than a decade they are going to find out exactly what it’s like to be a minority in America."

    Let all the crazy bigots joint the GOP and then marginalize them, on the level of the Peace and Freedom Party. What we need is a "loyal opposition" party whose mandate is to work for the good of the country once the election is over.

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    1. That phrase "loyal opposition" has been running through my mind as well. Goot thought. It is what we need. Not necessarily fall over and play dead because of losing an election, but work constructively to get the job done.

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    2. "Loyal opposition" is a good thing. What we've seen over the last 4 years or so is anything but loyal and anything but for the good of the country.

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  32. So good, I read it twice. Today's GOP: Come for the tax cuts, stay for the bigotry.

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  33. I am grateful that with this election, and the campaign running up to it, the Republicans were forced by their own strategies to have to admit that intolerance is the core of their ideology.
    In many ways: they actually did come right out and say it. It was almost the perfect storm that churned up the muck. Their candidate was pushed so far to the right...just to capture the base, that no level of dog whistle could drown out the truth.
    They have never had facts or empirical data validating their economic policies, so they once again had to fall back on their social policies. Those policies being a fear based world view of pure unadulterated hatred for the "others".
    As a strategy, it is the last bastion of a very old power structure, which is fascism. That is not hyperbole, it is history, and you see it today in those who having lost at the ballot box, now want to just "take their country back".
    I keep thinking back to the analogy of the civil war. What percentage of the confederacy were actual slave owners? I would say far less than 1%. Yet they were able to convince a huge section of the country, mostly poor, to fight to the death to preserve their right to own slaves.
    There is a reason Mitt won the confederacy. Bigotry is a disease that we have never cured. It feeds on ignorance, and is perpetuated by fear.
    Slavery was the original sin of this country and it required racism to thrive. The civil war stopped it from killing us, but like an infection it adapts and comes back.
    We will never truly purge ourselves of it, until we recognize that it still exists, is not just a symptom of a disease, but is the disease itself.
    Thankfully, the primary carriers all just spent the last two years very loudly coughing.





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  34. "In the name of tolerance we must not tolerate the intolerant."

    Great breakdown Jim!

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  35. The Republican Party has killed itself. Unfortunately it is not a clean death, but a lingering, painful one caused by the poison they have been ingesting for the last 30+ years. Death this way is never easy to watch. There's a lot of screaming and writhing around. A lot of prayers for a Higher Power to come and save them. (After they refused to drink the antidote that was offered to them because they didn't trust us not to give them poison.) And a lot of blaming and cursing those of us observing their self-inflicted plight.

    So it's messy. It's not a lot of fun. And it can still be a bit dangerous for an observer to be standing by the deathbed too closely.

    And after the funeral is over we can watch the heirs duke it out over who will rise to inherit the GOP's empty seat. Green Party, Tea Party, Libertarian, or Spacetarian.... who knows?, but it will be interesting to see what rises to the top. My best guess is the progressive green party will garner a lot of old time Republican leaning people, libertarians and others to challenge the Democrats.

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    1. Their death throes are far from over and they'll cause even greater damage before they're over.

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    2. This reminds me of the fact that the main vampire in Buffy the Vampire Slayer the movie is staked or something midway through the movie and spends the REST OF THE MOVIE groaning and dying... and still isn't quite dead by the time the movie ends... even through the end credits.

      I wish the GOP was anywhere near that funny.

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    3. Grease rises to the top. My momma taught me that in order to make a good pot of soup, one has to keep skimming until all the grease is removed. Hopefully four more years will make it palatable.

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    4. That vampire was Peewee Herman :)

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  36. WOW! I felt like you had reached into my mind and said all I wanted to say and said it well. Stonekettle Station has entered my life. I am a senior, retired, white woman living in FL and I often feel like the lonely petunia in the onion patch. I was approached by the Tea Party GOP with confidence that I would be theirs, ripe for the plucking. Boy did they have me wrong! I think that a lot of us are not being noticed..that there are a lot of white Americans who are sick of bigotry, evangelical arrogance and the fear-mongering of the good, old, rich, male WASP's club. We may not have made up the majority of those who voted for the POTUS, but there were a lot of us...a whole lot of us! The GOP needs to go back to the drawing board and the lobbyists need to be chased out of every hall of government with a cat of nine tails. You are right. It IS the racism and it is making a lot of people, like me, very angry.

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    1. My 77 yr old mother is right with you Sister (though she fled Florida years ago). She has disowned a lot of her old time friends because of their fear, fire and flood mentality over our current President. She even got off FB because of all the vitriol on it regarding politics. My mother is smart enough to notice who is BSing her and who is working on her behalf. So are a lot more older people than you would think. ....meanwhile my rabid Republican father is sitting down in Florida moaning about the black man in the office who has taken all his rights away. Sigh.

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    2. Oh my dear Lady, how you've made me smile for the 2nd time about Florida! (The first time since I moved here in '04 was when Obama won Florida!) It does my heart good to see there actually ARE a few people here that use their brains! (Well, ok, along with my hubby who's actually from Mi., you would make # 2 that I've seen so far) This is a horrible place to live as a female, let alone a "liberal" one! Thank you for adding to my hope for this silly state I'm stuck in! Thank you, thank you!
      (No GOP morons would ever even TALK to me! All you need to do is be visibly disabled- which I am -and have many tattoos in a state that is too hot to wear clothing enough to cover them all! It works like a charm! :D )

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  37. Brilliant. Absolutely brilliant and spot on.

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  38. Lovely post. I would like to say that the USA tilts to the south and that's where all the ignorance has congealed, but then there's Alaska, Idaho, and the part of MN that votes for the MN Cuckoo.

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    1. MN Cuckoo - I love that! I live in the part of MN that is unlucky enough to have her represent us again. We don't know how she gets elected, but I am sure that it must be some sort of evil mind control thing. Note - she doesn't even live in the distrct she represents. And that wasn't an issue in this election. Many here were hoping that her run for the presidency would have lasted longer so she wouldn't be able to run for her old position. The election was the closest race she has had and we can only hope that next time a better person wins. (Remember though that this is the state that elected Jesse Ventura as govnr/chief crazy person.)

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    2. @ WAKE UP AMERICA...
      Let's keep a level playing field, shall we? I am a 68-year-old white veteran,born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama.I still live here. I voted for Obama twice. Most of my neighbors are black.Be careful how you paint the South - it is still changing.

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  39. Fear of 'the other' is probably closely correlated with the lack of a 'risk-taking' gene (yes, they found such a thing a few years back). People who do not like risk do not like things to change, they fear things that are new and different.

    I don't know if they are also more likely to have less logic ability and less 'emotional IQ', but the comments you used in your article and the blaring lunacy of many in the losing party seem to demonstrate that this is highly likely. I believe that a turning point has been reached where these dimwits will be marginalized, and I believe that social media has played an instrumental part in the party's idiocy being broadcast to a far larger audience, which has brought about its downfall (and will continue to render it irelevant, hopefully).

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    1. I agree about the fear of change, but I think there is another fear in play as well.

      I think many of these people know full well what they have done to the "others" in our country, and what they fear most is that those "others" will, in turn, do unto them in return.

      I believe this, because I grew up around this very attitude. Fear of the Black Person's Revenge should they ever come to power was so thick you could cut it with a knife in my little town in the SW corner of Pennsylvania.

      This fear exists because these people cannot fathom people who don't think like they do. Given a chance, they will screw everybody and anybody that they can, to maintain what they see as "theirs" - and they believe that, given a chance, everybody else will screw them in return. Especially the people they've screwed.

      That was what Ryan expected with his blather about how people 55 and over had nothing to fear concerning their plans for SS & Medicare - he expected that by assuring the 55-and-over crowd, they would be willing to screw the under-55 crowd (which includes me, by a whole 3 years). That didn't happen - and I think it didn't happen because most people don't think like the Ryans do. More people believe in basic fairness and decency than in screwing their neighbors, and that is a very good thing!

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    2. Thanks, slavicdiva, for this:"I think many of these people know full well what they have done to the "others" in our country, and what they fear most is that those "others" will, in turn, do unto them in return." I've been thinking the same thing as I've watched the republicans tolerate racism and bigotry within their party for the sake of winning elections. There seems to be a real fear that once whites are in the minority, the new majority will abuse them. I grew up under segregation in the South, and I am more open-minded and tolerant than many of the people living here. My parents were forward thinking. They taught me that one shouldn't condemn an entire group simply because a few members of it are intolerant, racist nuts. If anyone should be a bigot and a racist, it should be me, but I'm neither thanks to my parents. What these republicans don't understand is that I have no desire to abuse them or take any of their possessions away from them. My life has been similar to Michelle Obama's. I came from a humble background, educated myself, and taught high school social studies for over 30 years and retired with a decent income, but in the minds of the people I see everyday, I'm the moocher and the leech, and it's based only on the color of my skin. Sad.

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    3. I think this also extends to homophobia, at least as far as guys are concerned. I suspect that many men know they could take a sexual partner by force, or as part of a conquest, and the thought that someone could do that to them is scary.

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    4. slavicdiva, I have inlaws like that. My MIL will say to me "They are accusing me of XYZ - I would never do that to them! Why do they think that about me?" And I have to tell her (again and again), "They think that way because given half a chance, they would do XYZ to you. Because they would do that, they think everyone would do that."

      *sigh* On a separate but related topic, my inlaws and grandparents are starting to depress me. They aren't the rabid conservatives, they are actually really nice, loving people....and yet they fall into some of these same patterns. The cognitive dissonance is staggering.

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  40. I wish I could be so well written when this subject comes up, or even well spoken, but I just get too emotional and depressed by it all. Thanks for telling such ugliness in such a beautifully written way, Mr W.

    bd

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  41. As usual, your eloquence blows me away. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family! .......and Nazis!

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  42. I've been reading your blog for a long time now and truly appreciate all your honesty and excellent writing. Thank you so much for this one. I'm a black woman in the south. The racism is an everyday thing for me. I've been to Africa and it was so freeing to not feel it there. It felt actually as if I were considered a human being, not a "problem".

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  43. Both the post and the comments have been delightful to read this evening. Thank you Jim, even if the cats did take that word from you!

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  44. YES. I have been thinking the same thing for some time. Especially with the supposed waves of people on welfare- the "takers" as I hear the neo-cons at work wax pathetic about. The real figure you pointed out- 1.2% (of which half are white is accurate). My husband is disabled, and I have spent time watching people apply for food stamps, disability, and medical assistance. Only about half are non-whites. All have hard luck stories. My husband was knocked out of the work force by a devastating illness. I am thankful he was on my insurance- but the medical bills (2.3 million dollars!) and their copays/deductibles still threw us for a loop. We did not ask to get into this fix. I am a federal civil servant- so I suppose in the neo-con mind we are "double dipping." But, since my husband and I are both- does that make it OK? I detest racism and sexism. It turns my stomach. I remember protesting the stifling policies post McCarthyism in the 1960's and 1970's. I am a baby boomer who is stunned to see people wanting to revert back to the suffocating McCarthy era policies. Ugh. Thank you so much for pointing out what is really afoot- RACISM. Yes. It is.

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  45. Gerrymandering - it's the chief line of defense for the rightwingers. Remember, convicted felon Tom "the Hammer" Delay's firewall? The minority elect the House of Representatives thanks to Gerrymandering. The rascals won't be voted out until gerrymandering of Congressional seats is banned. The majority of voters in Ohio voted for Democratic Congresspersons November 6th, yet the Ohio delegation is still Republican. The Congress is elected by a "rotten borough" system in which democratic voters are concentrated in a minimum number of Congressional districts where their margins are 90%, while Republican voters are spread out among many districts so as to win each district by 55% of the vote. Cities are sliced up so that manageable numbers of urban democrats are combined with larger number of rural "hicks" who are even despised by their own Republican representatives. Republican Congresspersons choose their voters, voters do not choose their Congresspersons. It's upside down. The House of Representatives has become the fortress of privilege, and is not responsive to a rapidly changing public will as intended by the Constitution.

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  46. Thank you, Jim, for your continuing series of essays that are equal parts eloquent, earthy, and blunt. It is so refreshing to hear a voice that is *sane* commenting on the political and social scene. My mother, God rest her soul, was a registered Republican all her adult life -- but she voted for Obama the first time, and she would have voted for him the second time if she hadn't carelessly died at the age of 103. She was increasingly appalled by the extremism voiced by the R party and couldn't for the life of her figure out what had happened to the party that put Eisenhower in the White House. This latest electoral cycle, with all of the arrant nonsense that was spouted, would have turned her speechless with rage -- so, in all likelihood, there *are* older Republicans out there who are sensible people (I am acquainted with at least two). Keep saying what you've been saying, even if the crazies decide to put out a contract on you; they're probably too stupid to be effective, anyway. And best of luck and prosperity to you.

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  47. Posted on the Romney FB page:
    http://darinscott.blogspot.com/2012/11/urgent-call-to-action-house-of.html
    Scary stuff-ignorant sincerity never works out well...

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    1. I just lost an hour of my life. It was kind of like a horror movie, except there was no popcorn. Wow. There's a lot of hatred and deceit out there. I forget sometimes, living in the insulated bubble that is Seattle.

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  48. A couple things...

    1.) you know that the GOP is REALLY in denial when they won't look at the demographic and the truth that it reveals about their candidate, Mith (I mean) Mitt Romney, not even winning his own state.
    2.) someone should have done some research about what Romney's own father actually believed and stood for; maybe had they been SMART ENOUGH to do so and not so have been so arrogantly thinking they could buy their way into the presidency, they would have been SMART ENOUGH to also realize that they REALLY NEEDED that same 47% that he disparaged in order to win. Also, maybe if he was at least smart enough to have done that, he would have campaigned on what his old man seemed to realize about the GOP back in the day, that many of them still clearly think is information they don't need (poor babies... so old Mith could at least have TRIED to get it right). Because I don't know what that LAME ATTEMPT show at running for the POTUS they put on was about - except a very expensive joke showing that "they played around and got messed around": Dear Barry Goldwater, From George Romney.

    His daddy is probably still ROLLING OVER IN HIS GRAVE about where the GOP still is in 2012 and how this whole thing turned out!

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  49. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  50. Bigotry is bigotry, and hatred is hatred, no matter how you try to cloak your fear of "the other" in religious doctrine or moral values or some bizarre interpretation of the Constitution.

    "My feelings as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God's truth! was greatest not as a sufferer but as a fighter.

    "In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. How terrific was his fight against the Jewish poison. Today, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before the fact that it was for this that He had to shed his blood upon the Cross."

    This quotation is attributed to Adolf Hitler. If you simply replace the references to Jews with (whatever "other/s" makes you squirm), it would fit right in at a conservative rally or a Rush Limbaugh rant.

    Apparently, these "patriotic Americans" are eager to stage another Beer Hall Putsch so they can "take their country back."

    The Real Enemy of these Real Americans is fear and ignorance. And Nazis...

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  51. Ugh. The 'government assistance' dog whistle that Jim refers to makes me grind my teeth every time I hear it. I worked (mostly) as a cashier in two Wal-Marts for 5 consecutive years. You know how many colored families I ever saw using food stamps? ONE. I cannot count the number of Caucasian people that I saw using food stamps, WIC, or other government assistance.
    I'm not saying that there's any shame in it; food is expensive, and good food is even more so! Our society has somehow made Little Debbie cakes less expensive than fresh fruit, dooming many people to be overweight, impoverished, and model cases for type II diabetes, but that's another can of worms. The point here- and the thing that so many Conservatives don't seem to understand- is that you cannot characterize one skin-color as being worthless, or moochers with no sense of work ethic. You can't do this partly because it is wrong in and of itself, and partly because it's just not true.
    On a closing note, the 8th Commandment of the pact that Yaweh made with the newly-freed Egyptian slaves says that, "Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor." Ya'll might wanna look into that.

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  52. Gia Gracielle GaleanoNovember 24, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    Dear Mr.Wright,

    This is my first time coming to your site. I really enjoyed reading this article. Your writing style reminds me of Tim Wise, another straightwhitemale who has the integrity, moral courage and fierce intelligence to specifically and unequivocally condemn racism in no uncertain terms. It is crucial that straightwhitemales clearly, forcefully and consistently speak out against racism, misogyny and homophobia. I think that may be the only way things will change. So I thank you very much.
    Prior to writing my comment, I diligently read your commenting rules in their (not "they're") entirety and have done my best to comply. I didn't want to get yelled at. I'm a ballerina.

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  53. Have you been reading my mind?

    Have you and I been communicating telepathically?

    Are you reading my emails?

    As I have been saying this the whole election cycle. Bigotry is so obvious, it had an odor. A stench that can make a person gag and retch. A feted smell that can permeate and rot a man's mind,,, if allowed,,, if INVITED. Kind of like Vampires, you have to ASK it into your home. Once inside, it can take over and control the man with little effort, and maybe some Budweiser. There it sits, reminding the man of who he is. "That's right," the stench says,"you're Big Oil, Insurance Companies, Bankers, and war mongers. So we can't let those stupid liberals continue to interfere with our way of life. Cause it is pretty near perfect for me." But the stench is NOT thinking of the man. Not so much.
    What does it do? It feeds itself(inflammatory media and bat shit crazy pundits) and spreads among the man's circle. Killing off all REAL intelligence. Preferring the man to have a more Football/NASCAR mentality. (drink, shout, drink, shout drink, fight, drink, crash car, drink, fight, drink, shout, etc) Then there is no time left to really look at their lives, their country, their world. They can and will believe WHATEVER the stench tells them. They "got no time" for the real truth. No time to do some basic searches on the web to find a different layer of truth.(Although some do use it to go look for things that smell even worse......) Nor do they even consider getting information from EDUCATED people, preferring to grasp onto ideas from college dropouts, drug addicts and witch doctors. That's because they were never paying attention, in any school they attended. History,,,,, a strange and wonderful thing. One of those things that if left unattended, will come back to bite one in its ass.

    The GOP needed a bath, and I think they got one. Let's see if they can come out smelling better next time.

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  54. You are by far my favorite online read and
    you are right by not feeding the trolls.I see a lot of trolls like these on YouTube videos comments. Their only mission is to spew hate across the internet.

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  55. One more thing to be thankful for...

    Jim Wright saying what needs to be said.

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  56. hey, your rants really make me laugh (the "perhaps you should pray that Jesus will return in time to help you pull your head out of your ass" comment was milk-through-the-nose funny), but i googled "sashia and malia" and went through ten pages of results and i didn't see anything remotely racist, much less nauseatingly racist.

    i googled "sashia and malia" and "moochelle" and also came up empty-handed.

    i even googled "sashia and malia" and "obumer" and out of the handful of hits for that combination, this very blog post was #2.

    what search terms were you using?

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  57. “It is a sign of great inner insecurity to be hostile to the unfamiliar.” Anaïs Nin

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  58. Thank you for doing the necessary research ANDaying out the entire argument so effectively

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  59. So, if Judson Phillips has his way and gets the Electoral College conservatives to strike, are they going to elect Mitt Romney that all the the GOP have been publicly throwing under the bus since the election? Well, that would be stupid! Oh, wait.....

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  60. Let the Tea Party be their own party....Republicans? Take your party back and allow them to sink or swim....you don't need them. Stop propping up these radicals because you are afraid you won't win without them....you lost because you are pandered to the dark side too long and we, "real" Americans, can't stomach it any longer.

    Listen up!

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  61. To better understand why the GOP is full of racists, read the May 19, 1970 New York Times interview with Nixon political strategist Kevin Phillips, the master-mind behind Nixon's "southern strategy". If you're tired of the phony "I'm not a racist" BS from your race-baiting GOP friends, the interview is a refreshingly candid discussion of who the GOP platform was designed to appeal to and why. I'm a white woman who grew up in the south and have been hearing since the mid '60's how the Democrats are the negro party (not their exact words)so Phillips' straight-forward honesty was a nice change. After reading the interview I'm convinced that racism, homophobia and mysogeny are so intergral to the GOP's very being if the Republican Party didn't actively continue to appeal to those folks the party would just cease to exist. Fiscal responsibility you say? Give me a break! When they first embraced the Southern Strategy in the 1960's, the GOP sold their soul to the devil and maybe, just maybe that devil started to die on Nov 6, 2012.

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  62. Excellent post as always.

    A tertiary point, not quite a nit-pick. If the electoral college were stalled, the vote would go to the House, but the Republican control would not necessarily do what you think. It turns out (my civics are rusty, too) that it's one vote "per state" in the House, not per-Rep.

    See the end of this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sHEDXzOfENI (also, this narrator is awesome, he has lots of great videos about voting, gerrymandering, and such)

    And this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electoral_College_(United_States)#Contingent_presidential_election_by_House

    So it might be closer than you think, or even go to the Democrats, since it's the big states that are red and the hoard of tiny ones that are blue.

    Knowin' is half the battle! :-)

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    1. Jim,this need to be said.Bravo.racism is ignorant.

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  63. Electoral College voting is done in each state, with the sealed votes going to the US Senate to be counted. No Electoral College quorum is needed nor technically ever happens since they never meet as a group. The President is decided by a simple majority of the total possible EC votes, and President Obama has much more than that. This will never involve the House of Representatives. The Tea Baggers are historically illiterate as well as nuts for even bringing this up, but we (at least 53% of the country) knew that.
    See
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/11/27/1165189/-Deny-Quorum-in-Electoral-College-Good-Luck-With-That
    and
    http://www.usatoday.com/story/theoval/2012/11/28/obama-electoral-college-tea-party-judson-phillips/1731291/

    Yes, *if* the vote went to the House, then the President should get 26 states, assuming the Representatives voted like the majority of their states' voters instead of along partisan lines. The majority of Ohio, Texas, and other states' Representatives are Republicans due to district gerrymandering, not split between D's and R's like the popular vote. That is why the country has a disproportionate number of GOP House Representatives but a majority of Dem Senators. The Tea Baggers were hoping the House Reps would undemocratically and despotically throw their consitutents votes away, like the fascists they are at heart.

    By the way, the word is spelled "horde". A hoard is the pile of gold a dragon or a Tea Bagger or other monster sits upon.

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  64. Hey, speaking as part of the 47%, I wonder. Mr. Wright, if you want to see another disgruntled person's reaction to the 47% crap, drop me a line by my google account.

    I think you'd enjoy it. I doubt you'd find it annoying.

    sign me
    Retired Research Scientist.

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  65. Hey, speaking as part of the 47%, I wonder. Mr. Wright, if you want to see another disgruntled person's reaction to the 47% crap, drop me a line by my google account.

    I think you'd enjoy it. I doubt you'd find it annoying.

    sign me
    Retired Research Scientist.

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  66. Hope you don't mind, I saved this post in its entirety to my personal archive for future reference. As a hoarder of good knowledge and well written commentary, I believe such should be protected from those who would undermine the general well being for personal gain.

    With utmost respect,

    Active Duty Chief Warrant Officer Two

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  67. First let me say that I respect your service in the military. I have two sons currently in the military; one in the Army and the other in the Naval ROTC Program at the University of Notre.

    Also my wife, Carol Mc Croskey who passed away from thoracic lumbar cancer seven years ago, served in the military in the late 1970s.

    I need to make this short because I truly think we are from different tribes. I take issue with your characterization of Republicans and Conservatives. “The people of which you speak, “I do not know.”

    As a Tea Party member and an “American” who happens to be Black, I have never met anyone who is racist within the movement.

    Most of us are concerned about the political….social…….and financial health of this nation.

    In regards to the Republicans and Conservatives chances in coming elections, I do agree with you wholeheartedly; but for very different reasons.

    I don’t see how we can ever win again, not because of a “latent intractable racism.” Conservatives (and not necessary Republicans) don’t appeal to the worst in human nature. We simply can’t be the “Santa Claus Party.”

    (For Example)

    The wards of the state/entitlement mentality that is systemic to the Black community (controlled by democrats since the 1970s) has been a disaster in far too many urban areas. The over reliance on government solutions among Black Democrats has done more to truncate any real progress that was made in the Post-Civil Rights Era.

    Our President is a master at appealing to our lesser angels.

    http://www.freedomsjournal.net/2012/02/08/our-lesser-angels/

    But he has and continues to be extremely effective in garnishing the votes of Latinos and others partial to the Siren call of identity politics.

    I think there are racists in both the democrat and republican parties but it has been my observation over the last 45 years, that the latter don’t play the race/class/gender card nearly as much as the modern day democratic party seems to be fond of.

    Once again, I just don’t see, nor have I experienced anything among modern day Conservatives and Republicans that is inherently racist.

    I have always felt that I have been treated as a person and judge by the content of my character by the vast majority of Republicans and Conservatives.

    To paraphrase Martin Luther King Jr., (also a Republican), we need to get beyond those things which divide us.

    We are American first, and not Gay Americans, Black Americans. Latino Americans, et al.

    http://www.freedomsjournal.net/2013/02/20/just-american-please/


    God Bless
    Patrick


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