Wednesday, April 3, 2013

April Fools: Various And Sundry

The week began with Aprils Fools Day.

April Fools.

Google suckered folks in with Google Nose, a new feature that would supposedly allow users to search the Internet by smell – which seems like a really neat idea until you realize that you would be searching the Internet. By smell.

Twitter outraged the blogosphere by announcing that they would start charging $5 a month for vowels – cheapskates could still use the free version of the micro-blogging service, apparently now renamed “Twttr.”

Video sharing site Vimeo changed its name to “Vimeow” and declared that they would traffic exclusively in LOLcat videos – frankly, I thought that might be an improvement, but then I realized I was just being catty, in a dogged sort of way.

The British newspaper The Guardian announced new augmented-reality glasses with “anti-bigotry technology” that when used with the print version of the paper were supposed to filter out bias – Rupert Murdock attempted something similar, but when the glasses were used with his media, readers complained that they could only see a blank sheet of cheap paper…

NPR ran a piece about an oral history project dedicated to preserving the war stories of US Navy dolphins (now retired to a water park in Belleville, Illinois), while lamenting how Rescue Bunnies from the Korean War were largely forgotten.

And, of course, The Onion, The Daily Currant, and a number of other humor sites managed to fool the usual number of people.

You’d think folks would catch on by now.

But in all fairness, it turns out that distinguishing humorous satire from serious reality isn’t as nearly as easy as it would seem.

For example, did you know that you can’t buy a Tesla electric car in Texas?

It’s true.

Tesla has a “gallery” in Houston where they can display their cars, but there is no store or dealership in the Lone Star state because Tesla isn’t allowed to sell cars in Texas. There’s actually a state law that prohibits the company from selling its automobiles.

April fools, right?


Texas is afraid of what would happen to capitalism if established auto-dealerships had to compete with Tesla’s direct-to-market business model.  So the state government prevents Tesla and other similar car manufactures from selling their products there.

Viva the Free Market! Texas style. Remember, Folks, it’s only Nazi Socialism when Obama does it.

OK, how about this? Which one of the following statements refers to same sex marriage?

"They cannot possibly have any progeny, and such a fact sufficiently justifies those laws which forbid the marriage of _____ ."


"By the laws of Massachusetts ____marriages between _____ are forbidden as criminal. Why forbidden? Simply because natural instinct revolts at it as wrong."


"Although there is no verse in the Bible that dogmatically says that _____ should not_____ marry, the whole plan of God as He has dealt with_____ down through the ages indicates that_____ marriage is not best for man."


"I believe that the tendency to classify all persons who oppose _____ as 'prejudiced' is in itself a prejudice. Nothing of any significance is gained by such a marriage."

Well? Which one?

Give up?

Ha! April Fools! It’s a trick question – none of the quotes refer to same sex marriage.

All four quotes were made in reference to inter-racial marriage. The first one comes from an 1883 Missouri court case, State v. Jackson, which argued that laws forbidding marriage between blacks and whites were fully justified because such “marriages” “couldn’t possibly” produce children. The second quote is from Senator James Rood Doolittle (D-WI) in 1863, who despite being a big supporter of President Lincoln’s Civil War policies, including Emancipation, wasn’t a big fan of seeing blacks equal to whites and who strongly opposed ratification of the Fifteenth Amendment. The third is a statement issued by Bob Jones University in 1998, which said that even though it wasn’t specifically mentioned in the bible, inter-racial marriage was still contrary to God’s plan – apparently God forgot to mention a number of important issues when handing down His Law, but, as usual when it comes to this sort of thing, I digress. And the last quote is from a Friend of the Court Briefing filed during Loving v. Virginia, the Supreme Court Case that finally legalized inter-racial marriage as a civil right.

Funny thing, swap in “same-sex” or “gay” for the deleted race-specific words, and those quotes can be found nearly verbatim in any statement opposed to gay marriage today.

The more things change, right?

Speaking of which, Georgia GOP Chairwoman Sue Everhart warned that straight people might enter into fraudulent gay marriages to obtain insurance benefits.

"You may be as straight as an arrow, and you may have a friend that is as straight as an arrow. Say you had a great job with the government where you had this wonderful health plan. I mean, what would prohibit you from saying that you’re gay, and y’all get married and still live as separate, but you get all the benefits? I just see so much abuse in this it’s unreal. I believe a husband and a wife should be a man and a woman, the benefits should be for a man and a woman. There is no way that this is about equality. To me, it’s all about a free ride.”

Yes, you read that correctly, Everhart is worried that straight people might get gay married solely in order to get healthcare.

Everhart is convinced that same-sex marriage is really about getting a free-ride on the government. Liberals, you know, always looking for a free-ride.

Except, of course, that part where even if you did get gay married, or even regular married, just so you could get insurance benefits, well, see, you’re still paying for them – so the whole fraud thing doesn’t actually hold water, but again, I digress.

In the same interview, Everhart went on to say that she couldn’t understand how two gay people could even have sex.

"If it was natural, they would have the equipment to have a sexual relationship."



I’ll pause for a moment so y’all can fully savor the part where a Southern Evangelical conservative finally agrees with Bill Clinton that he did not, in fact, have sex with that woman.




What’s that you say?

That’s different?

How? How is it different? They might have had “the equipment” as specified by Sue Everhart, but Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinski weren’t using it any differently than a same sex couple might and if it’s not sex between members of the same sex, then it’s not sex between members of the opposite sex.

You can’t have your intern and eat her too. Or rather you can –  if you’ve got the equipment. I’m just saying.

Listen, here’s the thing, if you’re really, and I mean really, worried that straight people might have to resort to getting gay married in order to obtain affordable healthcare, well, there’s an obvious solution for that: mandated universal healthcare with a single payer option.

You know, like they have in civilized countries.

But there I go, digressing. Again.

And as long as we’re talking about God and the South, Republicans in North Carolina want to declare a state religion.

House Joint Resolution 494, filed by State Reps. Harry Warren and Carl Ford, would refuse to acknowledge the US Constitution’s separation of church and state in North Carolina.  And in fact, if you read the resolution closely you’ll see that it goes beyond just the First Amendment, Warren, Ford and nine other Republican members of the North Carolina House want the right to refuse Federal Court rules on any Constitutional topic:

"The Constitution of the United States does not grant the federal government and does not grant the federal courts the power to determine what is or is not constitutional; therefore, by virtue of the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, the power to determine constitutionality and the proper interpretation and proper application of the Constitution is reserved to the states and to the people”.

"Each state in the union is sovereign and may independently determine how that state may make laws respecting an establishment of religion.”

“SECTION 1. The North Carolina General Assembly asserts that the Constitution of the United States of America does not prohibit states or their subsidiaries from making laws respecting an establishment of religion.”

“SECTION 2. The North Carolina General Assembly does not recognize federal court rulings which prohibit and otherwise regulate the State of North Carolina, its public schools or any political subdivisions of the State from making laws respecting an establishment of religion.”

I wonder if this means the Second Amendment could be considered null and void in North Carolina too?

A state religion.

Damn those stinking Muslims and their crazy beliefs, trying to impose Sharia law on us, trying to force Islam down our throats! They’re trying to turn America into Iran! Those Taliban bastar…

Wait. What?

They’re Christians you say?

Oh, well, then that’s totally different.


I’ll pause so you can ponder for a moment why it’s actually not, any different, I mean.


A state religion.


Listen, I’d be all for it if it was Frisbeetarianism (you believe that when you die, your soul gets caught in a gust of wind and lands on the roof and you can’t get it down without a step ladder. There’s also Killer Frisbeetarianism, but that’s practiced mostly by college kids).


Oh, right, you eat the flesh of your 2000 year old dead prophet and symbolically drink his blood, but Frisbeetarianism is silly. Got it.

Fine, let’s just see what the North Carolina Constitution says about this, shall we?

Article 1, Section 5 of the North Carolina Constitution: "Every citizen of this State owes paramount allegiance to the Constitution and government of the United States, and no law or ordinance of the State in contravention or subversion thereof can have any binding force."

Well, shit, y’all.

So much for that idea.

But, hey, at least recently announced GOP efforts to “reach out” to Democrat voters are making advances on other fronts.

Like the one where Alaska Republican Representative Don Young referred to Latinos publicly as “wetbacks” on state radio.  Ouch.

Like the one where an Idaho high school teacher found himself in hot water this week for using a controversial word during a tenth grade biology class on human reproduction. That word was “vagina.”  Because when you’re discussing human reproduction, you’re not allowed to name the naughty bits – in Idaho, kids aren’t allowed to learn the names for their various body parts until they join the military and get some shore leave in Thailand. Apparently the teacher was supposed to tell the kids that babies are found under cabbage leaves or delivered by FEDEX. 

Like the one where Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus wrote an article for the Uber conservative right-wing website Red State in which he declared President Obama, and indeed all Democrats, guilty of mass infanticide.

Now Priebus didn’t out and out accuse liberals of cheerfully tossing screaming babies into the ovens, not exactly. What he said was that Democrats support funding for Planned Parenthood. And Planned Parenthood loves killing babies. Ergo Democrats believe newborns have no rights and can be killed without consequence. Because obviously that’s what liberals believe, right?


“The President, the Senate Majority Leader, the House Democratic Leader, and the Chair of the Democratic National Committee (in whose home state this hearing occurred) made funding Planned Parenthood an issue in the 2012 campaign. They should now all be held to account for that outspoken support. If the media won’t, then voters must ask the pressing questions: Do these Democrats also believe a newborn has no rights? Do they also endorse infanticide?”

I know what you’re thinking: What a minute, how did we get from abortion, i.e. terminating a fetus in the uterus, to killing newborns – which by definition exist alive outside the womb?

Because that would indeed be infanticide.

Yeah. See Priebus is playing at the camel and the tent (um, okay, that’s a bad metaphor, but you know what I mean). He quotes an exchange between Alisa LaPolt Snow, a lawyer for Planned Parenthood, and Florida lawmakers who were arguing a bill before the legislature that would require emergency life-saving medical care for a fetus, if that fetus was removed from the uterus and inadvertently remained alive during an abortion procedure.

Rep. Jim Boyd: “If a baby is born on a table as a result of a botched abortion, what would Planned Parenthood want to have happen to that child that is struggling for life?”

Snow: “We [Planned Parenthood] believe that any decision that’s made should be left up to the woman, her family, and the physician.”

Rep. Daniel Davis: “What happens in a situation where a baby is alive, breathing on a table, moving? What do your physicians do at that point?”

Snow: “I do not have that information. I am not a physician. I am not an abortion provider. So I do not have that information.”

Rep. Jose Oliva: “You stated that a baby born alive on a table as a result of a botched abortion that that decision should be left to the doctor and the family. Is that what you’re saying?”

Snow: “That decision should be between the patient and the health care provider.”

Oliva: “I think that at that point the patient would be the child struggling on the table, wouldn’t you agree?”

Snow: “That’s a very good question. I really don’t know how to answer that. I would be glad to have some more conversations with you about this.”

Somehow Priebus gets from “I don’t know, I don’t have the expertise to answer your question, you may be correct, you maybe incorrect, but I’d be happy to discuss this unusual situation with with you further” to “OMG! OBAMA IS KILLING BABIES!”

But then it always comes down to Obama killing babies, doesn’t it?


I don’t know. I’m no particular fan of abortion, but like Planned Parenthood’s argument I don’t see where it’s my decision to make.

I think the people making the decision should be the same people who made the baby – with medical professionals in an advisory role. I think the person who owns the uterus should have the final say. I think that the state, the goddamned church, and anybody who wasn’t directly involved in the conception should mind their own damned business. 

As I’ve said elsewhere, the morality of abortion bothers me very little, either way. Thousands of children die unlamented every day, when the right-to-life crowd pulls the beam out of their own eye and starts doing something about that, I’ll allow that they’re sincere in their beliefs. Until then, I’ve got no use for their hypocrisy.  

That said, I wonder about the scenario described by the Florida legislature, i.e. a living fetus outside the womb as a result of a botched abortion.  The proposed Florida law would declare that baby legally human and grant it all the rights of any other citizen – including the right not to be terminated out of hand.

I don’t know what to think about that, to be perfectly honest.

I find it somewhat ironic that this would be the case in Florida of all states, you know the place where you’re only considered human and worthy of sanctuary if you can reach shore alive.

Certainly this situation deserves detailed examination. Perhaps, like boat people reaching the safety of the Florida beach, a fetus that survives an abortion attempt should be granted personhood and afforded protection under the law. Or perhaps not, perhaps the level of damage is so high, so extensive, that death may be preferable. I honestly don’t know. I strongly suspect every situation would be different, requiring those on the scene, parents, medical experts, those responsible, to make the difficult decision – instead of the distant state, instead of politicians, instead of the goddamned clergy, instead of the mob.

Again, I certainly don’t know. I’m glad that I don’t have to make that decision. My deepest and most sincere sympathies to those who do.

I find many hypocrisies big and small on this subject, but the one I find most ironic is that those who advocate loudest for small government and personal responsibility are perfectly willing to impose their will and ideology on others with the full force of the United States government when it comes to abortion.

Like Alisa LaPolt Snow I think we ought to talk about it in a rational manner – and I think we should be able to do it without calling the President a baby killer.

And on the subject of killing kids, I see that gun control is all but dead in the United States Congress.

I hate to say I told you so, but, well, I told you so right here in The Seven Stages of Gun Violence. Nothing much has changed, except the death toll.

An overwhelming majority of Americans support universal background checks for all gun purchases. Even if they can’t agree on anything else, they agree on that.  But background checks will not make it out of congress. What happened? What happened is that the check cleared, that’s what happened. The simple truth of the matter is that gun manufacturers and the gun lobby can buy more politicians than you can, it’s really just that simple, and no amount of dead kids will change that fact. Period. Since I wrote The Seven Stages of Gun Violence, the NRA has spent more than $2 Million buying politicians, the gun-control lobby spent around fifty thousand during the same period. And so it goes.

The good news is that the gun nuts are going forward with their plan to require NRA trained and armed teachers in every American school.

That’s what America needs, Ted Nugent training the staff of your kid’s school.

Boy, if that doesn’t make you want to shit your pants, I don’t know what will.

As I said up above, when the right-to-lifers actually start supporting life, I’ll start listening.

Obama announced a new national initiative this week to map the human brain.  Skeptical neurologists say that that the program is too ambitious, that the regular human brain is too complex and that we should start with something simpler – say like Ted Nugent.

And on a final note: scientists reportedly have discovered the actual Gate to Hell.

And apparently it’s in Turkey, not Texas.

No foolin’


  1. Turkey IS a town in Texas...



    1. Yep...been there..and like most of Tejas...so boring,... it would better be described as "the gate to heck"......

    2. Turkey, Texas, was rather important in the life of Bob Wills. Like everything, "boring" depends on your perspective.

  2. I'm not a big fan of April Fool's jokes. Just sayin'...

    The rest - excellent as usual. I was hoping you'd have something to say about Everhart's assinine comments, as well as the North Carolina thing.

    Any thoughts on North Korea's latest?


    1. Meh, same old North Korea.

    2. Jim Wright, I hope you're right - about North Korea.

  3. Most people really don't have to anything to fear from zombies. All they want is brains. :)

  4. Derweze (Turkmen language: The Gate, also known as Darvaza) is a village in Turkmenistan of about 350 inhabitants, located in the middle of the Karakum Desert, about 260 km north from Ashgabat.
    Darvaza inhabitants are mostly Turkmen of the Teke tribe, preserving a semi-nomadic lifestyle. In 2004 the village was disbanded according to President's order, because "it was unpleasant sight for tourists"

    The Derweze area is rich in natural gas. While drilling in 1971, Soviet geologists tapped into a cavern filled with natural gas. The ground beneath the drilling rig collapsed, leaving a large hole with a diameter of 70 metres (230 ft) at 40°15′10″N 58°26′22″E. To avoid poisonous gas discharge, it was decided the best solution was to burn it off. Geologists had hoped the fire would use all the fuel in a matter of days, but the gas is still burning today. Locals have dubbed the cavern "The Door to Hell".


    I found out about it like 2 weeks ago, . . .

    1. It's not a vacation spot for "weenies".

  5. So sorry to say this, but that was an unbelievably depressing read. Usually I'm laughing so hard the coffee is coming through my nose and splashing on the keyboard (yes, I know, not an attractive image...).
    But tonight...damn, not one chuckle.
    Dude...major buzzkill.

    1. I was wearing a pair of those glasses with the fake nose when I wrote it, does that count?

    2. And there's the chuckle.

    3. only a pair of glasses. And the fake nose, of course.

    4. OK, OK. The triple shot 1/2 caffe mocha just drenched the keyboard.
      All is right with the world...for a nanosecond.

    5. Isn't that how everyone dresses when surfing the net?

      When you consider that North Korea thinks Dennis Rodman is an official representative of the US, their present posturing is actually quite reasonable.


    6. Elle: Hey, Jay! Zed called. The high consulate from Solaxiant 9 wants floor seats for the next Bulls game.

      Jay: All right, let's put in a call to Dennis Rodman. He's from that planet.

      Elle: Rodman? You're kidding.

      Jay: Nope.

      Elle: Not much of a disguise.


    7. Yeah, thanks for that, Jim. Now where'd I put that brain bleach? (you're a funny, funny man)

      Yet another Jim

  6. I heard about the 'state religion' insanity too and boy, do I feel for all the rational people who live in that state. A shame that the GOP has effectively rigged the system via gerrymandering so that they can keep control away from the true majority.
    It sucks on so many levels.
    M from MD

  7. My Hero.......thanks for once again explaining things so eloquently.

  8. Well at least there's one rational member of the GOP in that state. Their House Majority Leader said he wouldn't even let the bill get to the floor for a vote. That effectively kills it. But don't worry, I'm sure they'll try again. After all how many times has the GOP in DC tried to repeal the ACA?

    1. Yes, but he only killed it because he has dreams of being US Senator, and has to give the appearance of being somewhat rational.

    2. I'm to the point that if Repr. Starnes were rational, he wouldn't be a Republican. These old boys keep coming up with more and more wacky schemes. And our governor, Pat McCrory, is right in there with 'em. He hired in his team of cronies, increased their salaries, between 5 and 8%, on the basis that 'they had to continue to live', then gave the shaft to everyday State employees. Plus, McCrory's cabinet is filled with 1) Art Pope: The Koch brother from another mother in charge of the state budget. 2. Kieran Shanahan: Found guilty of assaulting a neighbor's children, now leads the Department of Public Safety. 3. John Skvarla: A science skeptic takes over the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. (source: http://www.southernstudies.org/)

    3. I believe the GOP has tried to repeal the ACA 36 times so, ...failing miserably each time.

    4. Oh no. Each time the vote passes in the House. It's getting it to the floor in the Senate that's the problem.

    5. Failure isn't modified by the fact that repeal efforts might pass the House, it makes not a whit of difference in the assessment of failure. GOP House efforts at repeal are a failed effort right from the start, ...what, you think Obama is going to sign if the repeal did go through the Senate and reached his desk? Get real, any and all of the 36 attempts at repeal have been and will continue to be miserable failures. Simply failures in all of their respects.

  9. As a North Carolinian, I had hoped that once Jesse Helms went to his eternal reward, we would move beyond the point where we're a laughingstock in the national news. But no, it seems we have no shortage of idiots without brains. And somehow, they continue to get elected to public office.

    1. North Carolina isn't alone Ohio has some real jewels. I do feel better after hearing about the Maryland Assemblyman calling for an armed militia because of their gun control legislation. That's another whole level of crazy. :)

    2. Take heart, Anon. As FUBARed as NC became this last round, you can still point to your neighbor to the south and laugh at their whackaloon batshittery.

      Nit Wit: What the hell has happened to Ohio? I've moved back and forth from Ohio & PA a couple of times (originally from OH), last a resident in 2000. Didn't seem that crazy then, but then I lived in Columbus. Maybe that insulated me from the goofiness of the "sticks." Not that PA is much better. Oy veh!

  10. As usual, you said it with a flair. Love your posts!! Better than most pros!!

  11. Minor Quibble, Firearms manufacturers are largely remaining agnostic on the Background check issue. All New firearms are currently subject to background checks as they are sold through the licensed dealer network, all of whom are required to do background checks already. Dealers could actually profit from whatever fee is levied to conduct the private sale check. I know when I buy guns through out of state sellers, my very friendly local dealer charges me $25 to take in the gun, and run the background check. As I understand things, the big trouble with the private sale check is the fear (real or imagined, depending on the actual law in question) that a registration / database scheme is being snuck in alongside the background check.

    1. I disagree that they're agnostic. They're just happy to let the NRA do the work and take the heat FOR them.

  12. It is long past time to pass a fetal "Stand Your Uterus" law...and to up-armor the VaJayJay...

  13. According to the Bible, life begins at first breath. It is quite evident in the laws that killing a pregnant woman is a capital offense while causing her to miscarry is a moderate fine. (Exodus 21:22) http://www.thechristianleftblog.org/1/post/2012/10/the-bible-tells-us-when-a-fetus-becomes-a-living-being.html has many supporting links that talk about what the Bible *really* says about when life begins, and one of those links (http://www.religiondispatches.org/archive/sexandgender/6801/the_not_so_lofty_origins_of_the_evangelical_pro_life_movement_/) spells out how the Evangelical Christians suppressed contradictory viewpoints in their anti-abortion zeal, even going to the point of forcing InterVarsity Press to withdraw publication (for the first time in the publisher's history) of David Gareth Jones’ Brave New People because it mentioned what the Bible really did say...

  14. North Carolina is my home. But oh, how highly depressed I get when I consider my legislators. These people seem to have no shame about taking a government paycheck to 'represent' us, and then pulling this kind of crap, wasting precious time trying to legislate that which doesn't need to be legislated. They are parasites. I wish I could arrest them and charge them with fraud, dereliction of their elected duty, and leading an immoral life by sucking at the government teat without producing any benefit for anyone but themselves.

  15. My dad grew up in North Carolina. My mother grew up in Oklahoma. I've lived in Texas all my life. You'd reasonably think that between heredity and environment I'd have a pretty good shot at being a wack job, but as Willie Nelson says in _Me and Paul_, "After taking several readings I'm surprised to find my mind's still fairly sound."

    And my parents were pretty normal, as parents go.

  16. I have a term for those very un-American folks who think the their interpretation of the Bible should be the basis for law in this country. I call them the Christiban.


  17. I love all your "diversions". Thank you for making the very necessary notices in common sense; now if we could only force feed the stupids....

  18. Florida Reps. Boyd and Davis are both liars and fools. Anyone with a passing acquaintance to medicine knows that a fetus is not capable of breathing or living outside the womb during the time span an abortion would be performed by a medical doctor. After that, MDs do not perform abortions unless the fetus has so very many abnormalities that it would not survive anyway, an extremely rare case so that number is tiny.

    Now, if their plan of outlawing abortions or forcing out all abortion clinics from their states takes place, then their scenario just might happen in a back alley. No MD would be involved, just someone greedy or desperate with a coat hanger. The death rate for women would go way up. These are the same states with the same idiots pushing abstinence-only mis-education, so the need for abortions is higher.

    1. Isn't there something called partial birth abortion that happens near term? The fetus would almost certainly survive unassisted after that procedure. I have no idea if it's allowed in the state in question, or anywhere in the US, but it is performed in some places, Canada for instance.

    2. TimBo, you have so much bad information packed into so few sentences that I can't tell if you're incredibly misinformed or you want to be wrong. Doctors do not call it "partial birth" abortion. That's a scare label made up for propaganda purposes. It is called D&E, dilatation and evacuation, taking place between 16 and 24 weeks. Viability is not possible with today's medicine before 24 weeks and requires a full neonatal ICU, not just a bed. Full term is 37 weeks. The fetus in the rare case of a D&E is unable to survive anyway even if allowed to mature- or the mother would die- which is why anyone would consider the procedure. Please get informed before you spout off.

  19. I have been anxious about the North Korea situation too. What`s Shopkat`s take on it ? April Fool here: the Rolling Stones are appearing at Glastonbury Festival (True) and were reported as having being seen practicing camping in a tiny little tent.. the point being that they had once announced that they would never - under any circumstances - go camping.. Also that Richard Branson was about to invest in developing a glass-bottomed commercial aeroplane.

  20. In the past, several people have made it known that they do not understand the Fundamental Christian mindset on abortion. Why do they scream sanctity of life and then support the death penalty? Why are they only concerned with the fetus and then ignore it once it is born?

    If you look at the Fundy beliefs, you will realize that they worship an all powerful, loving, caring, protective God that is also (due to their beliefs in the Old Testament) vain, capricious, jealous, petty and will kill or injure you without a second thought, even if you are following all his rules. This instills a lot of fear and rage in them, which they dare not express or even think. Of course, they would never, ever admit this to themselves.

    Enter the pregnant woman. She carries a helpless, dependent fetus within her. There is not a blessed thing the fetus can do if the mother allows it to be injured because she is ingesting drugs or alcohol, or if she decides to abort it. She is all powerful and is supposed to be loving and caring and protect the fetus. The Fundamentalist identifies with the plight of the fetus and turns his rage on the mother, trying to strip her of the power to interfere and end the life of the fetus, just as their God can and does to them, in their eyes.

    That is why the right can support the death penalty and be pro-life in the same breath. That is why they lose interest in the fetus once it is born. They have no interest in seeing that the child has a chance in life, only that it is removed at last from the dependence of the womb.

    The rage and fear of the Fundamentalist Christian runs deep and colors all of their life. They hate the gays because straight and gay are not opposites, they are a continuum. All straights have some gay tendencies and all gays have some straight tendencies. In their minds, even the smallest thought of warmth toward the same sex must ruthlessly be pushed down and denied. Gays must be fought against ruthlessly because they are a constant reminder of the "evil" within.

    They would love to set up a "State Religion" because religion is declining and they know it. Their backs are against the wall so they want to set up a state where their religion is taught in the schools, honored in the halls of government and used as a battering ram against the "unsaved" to promote their values and beliefs.

    The poor Fundies are assaulted on all fronts, and they really have no idea why. Their fear is so strong that they literally cannot think straight. In spite of what you may think, they are not evil, and they cannot "snap out of it". They do not set out to be contrary, insulting or rigid. They are desperate and very, very frightened.

    Take heart. This, too, shall pass away.

    Jeanne in WV

    1. Jeanne, I appreciate your thoughtful and articulate post, but I think you are over-thinking it a little. I think it's more like this: What flips the switch to start all that cell division? GOD. Therefore, any pregnancy is God's gift. That makes any messy scientific questions about life or viability moot and does, admittedly, give you a simple and elegant answer. Life begins at conception and God wants you to have that baby. That's exactly why so many women are against abortion, even though the Left has trouble understanding that.

      ...and you shouldn't have sex unless you are married and can support a family, therefore abstinence-only "sex education" and reduced access to contraception.

      ...and if you commit a crime you should do the time and murderers can get their forgiveness from God.

      Not saying I agree, just that I see the people I grew up with saying this kind of stuff everywhere, if "everywhere" means "Facebook."

    2. Well, of course that is what they say. They have to rationalize it. They are not going to say "I am in the power of an all powerful God who can, and just might, snuff me at any minute for no good reason. I am scared shitless and I am projecting that fear onto the fetus and identifying with it's plight."

      I agree that they want to punish women who have sex, and who probably enjoy it, the sluts, but that is just icing on the cake. It is really only the Fundamentalists with their belief in the Old Testament who are adamant anti-gay and anti-abortion. There are many others who have those beliefs, but they are not interested in pushing their beliefs on others. They just don't have abortions or marry someone of the same sex.

      It also explains why Fundamentalist women are anti abortion. They are under the thumb of the same capricious God. I am not saying there are not several factors involved, but that the idea of identifying with the fetus explains a lot of their ideas that are otherwise unexplainable.

      Jeanne in WV

    3. Interesting take on that, Jeanne. Not sure if that's really how it goes (who can really know the subconscious of others?), but it does sound plausible. Thanks.

    4. If you want to watch a pro-lifer blow a gasket, just ask them why they don't protest at fertility clinics.

      Fertility clinics literally toss out or dispose of tens of thousands of embryos each year, maybe many more, often utilizing incinerators as if those embryos were simply medical waste. The numbers far outpace the numbers involved in abortions. Additionally, at any one time, there are estimated to be somewhere around a half million or more viable embryos frozen in a kind of man made limbo, most never to be implanted, most also to eventually be tossed or incinerated.

      It's estimated that as many as 50,000 women will turn to IVF services each year, and that number is likely to increase.

      Where are the pro-lifers? ......Crickets.

    5. I think you be confusin' 'em with all that there sciency talk. If there's no uterus, how can there be a baby? That's just crazy! Besides, there's nobody's face to get up into (that is, no slut shaming to be had) so where's the fun in that?

  21. Jim, thanks for your blog postings. They are an anchor of stability and sanity in an increasingly chaotic, high-entropy world. I look forward to every single one of them.

    Please keep up the good work!

    Blessed be.

    1. I am so pleased I happened upon Jim`s facebook posts and blogs. I`ve never met anyone so completely in tune with my own view on the world, and with such an ability to simplify all the complex issues we all worry about. Just great. And it goes without saying that Shopkat is great too !

  22. "That’s what America needs, Ted Nugent training the staff of your kid’s school.

    Boy, if that doesn’t make you want to shit your pants, I don’t know what will."

    heh heh heh

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  24. I'd really like to know if Priebus, or anyone else for that matter, can show an actual case supporting his hypothetical 'abortion survivor' scenario. Since they assure us that abortions are occurring wholesale in this country, then surely we have a large enough sample that any valid scenario will have occurred. If it hasn't, I think we can write it off as meaningless speculation. If it has, then the specific natures of those cases would be necessary to determine what the best practice would be in those circumstances. A parent, and sometimes a doctor, has the right in most states to elect not to take extreme measures to preserve the life of a child if the outcome is sufficiently unfavorable (i.e. if your child has a traumatic brain injury, you could choose not to preserve the brain dead child in a vegetative state for many years in spite of the fact that it's possible to do so).

    No matter how you cut it, it's pretty horrible stuff to think about. It's low class propaganda, however, to make an emotional appeal by invoking the image of a dying baby without really looking at how such a scenario could come about and what the likely outcomes would be.

  25. "There’s also Killer Frisbeetarianism, but it’s not for sissies"
    Sure wish you'd explained this one Jim. All I can picture (instead of being allowed to rest peacefully on some roof) is being clamped in the toothless jaws of a flatulent Golden Retriever and gummed throughout eternity. That would be really awful, eh ?

    1. Frisbee. Flying disk, always ends up on the roof and you can't get it down. Frisbeetarianism, your soul is like a Frisbee...

      Killer Frisbee (sometimes called Ultimate Frisbee), a game similar to full contact American style football crossed with Rugby often played by college students, typically resulting in sprains, black eyes, and large purple bruises.

    2. Round these parts, Ultimate Frisbee demands the use of repurposed circular saw blades.

      Some say it's a case of being somewhat extreme in our practice of being the conservative doctrinaires that we are.

    3. Oh good, no dogs involved........

  26. This NRA instructor who is to train teachers for our schools... is he to be the one who accidentally shot one of his students by ignoring the commandment, "thou shalt not point a gun at anyone other than one whom thou wishes to kill", or will he be the one who missed a pro-gun protest because he shot himself in the foot? Curious penguins are... curious!

    Ted Nugent, indeed...

  27. Checking my "Things I Hope Jim Covers This Week" list...

    Over-the-top religious Tenther nitwitism in NC... Check
    Dumbassness of his US Rep... Check
    Something about the silly shit people say about gay marriage... Check
    What the current BS in N Korea means... sorta check (reply to comment above. Pretty much the new guy rattling the sabre, like they always do)
    (Gun control crap not on my list because, frankly, I'm sick of hearing it. But I do agree with Jim's extensive posting on it elsewhere. It's actually the issue that drew me here)

    Very good, Chief Warrant. Keep up the good work!

    One thing, though... In the 5 1/2 years you've been at this, you still have an issue with the word "manufacturer." Is it the tricky left hand? (don't kill me; I'll be good)

    1. To some extent it does have to do with my left hand, which is partially numb. You'll note that most of my typos are left hand related. Unfortunately, I'm also left-handed, which causes me some issues in that I tend to drop things. It's also the fact that I type extremely fast and mostly by reflex - a residual leftover of Navy code training. My left hand doesn't always keep up.

      The typo is fixed. Thanks for pointing it out.

    2. I've known CTR's and 2621's to bang out code while asleep. You just edit out the errors cause the msgs are pro forma. God, I miss the Cold War. None of the current day Allah hu Akbar bullshit. Damned Ruskies. Tommy D

    3. I understand completely about the left hand; mine is numb also and the typos are amazing. I can just imagine what autocorrect would to with them.

  28. Jeanne had a good alternate take on the issue. Consider this alternative reasoning:

    I see a lack of protest by the Fundi's at abortion providers in the inner city. Could it be a lack of interest in non-white babies? The loss of white majority in 2040-2050 could be the fear driving the movement. All white babies must be saved; rape or unwanted or 12 yr old mother, it does not matter.

    This theory sounds impossible on the surface, but consider this: The major religions are waging war with believers as the trophy. Domination is measured by total parishioners. The easiest way to domination is not conversions, it is by producing more believers. Several religions have prohibitions on not just abortions, but all types of family planning.

    1. I think you are giving the Fundies way too much credit. They are run by their emotions, not by logic, and what you are saying is logical. I think you will find that inner cities, Chicago, Detroit, Harlem, etc. simply do not have a large Fundie population in or near them. Fundies are concentrated in the south, especially in rural areas. They do not have the wherewithall to to travel hundreds of miles, except of course, for the peripatetic Westboro group.

      They are not banning abortion so more babies (potential Fundies) will be born. First of all, they are absolutely furious that those libruls are having abortions and there is not a chance in hell that those librul babies will grow up to be Southern Baptists. Second, they don't think that far ahead.

      The Catholic church deliberately opposes abortion and birth control in order to spawn more Catholics, but for them, it works. Little Catholics grow up to be big Catholics, for the most part. Judaism and Islam are against birth control in varying degrees, but they, like the Catholics, don't spend time worrying about what those outside of their religion are doing. Fundies, on the other hand, are trying to set up a system where everyone breeds like crazy or abstains from sex. This will not benefit them, as they are a minority and would remain so.

      Fundies are driven by an all consuming terror, at the mercy of a dysfunctional God and also seeing their way of life, their world, crumbling about them. If you try to understand them logically and attribute reasonable motives to their actions, you will get nowhere. Terror is not logical.

      Jeanne in WV

    2. The fundamentalists are caught in a paradox of their own mass delusion. Politically, they cannot cede to logic or science, not ever, to do so, even in just a political context, is to literally blaspheme their foundational beliefs, i.e. they would have to decry or invalidate their own religious faith were they to ever even incrementally cede to logic or science.

      They have well and truly backed themselves into an inescapable delusional corner.

      They're stuck defending an indefensible position and they know it. That's what makes them so crazy, ....they know their beliefs are gyrating wildly along the edge of credibility, one misstep and they've cast themselves out of the only comfort they have constructed for themselves. Missteps, I might add, that they all make regularly.

      In truth, they've created a contingency for such. They've simply constructed 'passes' for themselves for those many instances when even they cannot help but acknowledge evident reality, for however short a time. All they have to do is ask themselves for 'forgiveness' and they surf right back on top of that edge where they're good to go another round.

      The all consuming terror they suffer from is the untenable nature of the mass delusion they've created for themselves.

  29. I am inspired by my neighbors to the south to emulate and one-up them. I intend to start campaigning not only for a state religion here in Virginia, but to actually re-name the state as "The Blasted and Chaotic Demesne of Yog-Sothoth".

    I think that will attract more tourists, as "Commonwealth" is so socialist, and "Old Dominion" is just too tea-drinking sissified. Know what I mean?


  30. I'm from NC and somehow I knew my fair state would end up in your blog. I'm so embarrassed! Of course, I am writing from the Asheville (blue) area which spawned the state's new law that women cannot be bare-breasted or expose their areola. Yep. Right there in state law now. That should create a lot of new jobs for the unemployed! Check back with us in about 10 years when all the nazis are gone.

  31. Wow, and Repubs don't want government control...and men can expose their breasts and areola.... not really much difference than a little fat tissue.

  32. I'm a native South Carolinian and have lived here all of my 52 years.(howdy NC neighbor! I love Asheville, and Raleigh and especially Charlotte) But I've gotta ask....YOU'RE EMBARRASSED?!?!?! We've got Mark Sanford, Bob Jones University, and Joe "YOU LIE!" Wilson. Historically...Fritz Hollings and Strom Thurmond. (forehead smack). However, SC really is a lovely state if you don't mind all the loonies and summers that make hell feel like it's air conditioned.... North Carolina...I'm practically BLUE with envy. (we can however get some credit for Stephen Colbert..right?)

    MA from SC

    MA from SC

  33. What to do with an aborted fetus that does not stop breathing? Simple - take it to the nearest right-to-life connected church who will be required to adopt it and provide for it, including medical care - wouldn't want the demon Obama involved in that, would we. They want it, they got it. They think it's a person with constitutional rights, let them treat it accordingly. Any right-to-life church or other institution unwilling to do the above should be deprived of its tax-exempt status and held up to public ridicule at taxpayers' expense as hypocritical assholes.

    1. What? Make them live up to their rhetoric? Quel horreur! They would say it infringes on their religious salaries- I mean liberties.

  34. Good Lord Jim,
    in this climate you will never run out of things to write about! And I hope you never do.
    Did you miss the absolute GOP outrage over the fact that the 'navigators', those people that the Feds have hired (unless of course your RED state refused the money) to help people decide on what the best health care options for them ARE ALSO RECRUITING VOTERS!! Thats right!! Damn them, they are bringing voter registration papers with them, and encouraging people to sign up and vote!! Damn liberal Nazi Socialists!!
    But wait, perhaps the outrage is more because they (the GOP) didn't think of that . . .
    Oh, and the gun thing?
    Arming teachers in school? ARE THEY OUT OF THEIR MINDS??!!
    I went to Catholic schools taught by nuns (grade school) and brothers (High School). There is no way i would ever have lived through my school life if my teachers had been armed!!
    You can dodge erasers, but bullets??
    Let's get real here . . . Love to all, Duff in nofla


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