Archive for category Laugh
Last night’s “debate” consisted of the usual , predictable procession of prefabricated inquiries and answers.
Nothing new was asked and nothing new was learned.
Newt wasn’t asked ONE question about his wife cheating. Santorum wasn’t asked ONE question about his embryo problem. Perry wasn’t asked about his alternate lifestyle – if untrue, he should have been delighted to refute it. Romney didn’t have to account for his liberal talk shutdown on our airwaves. Huntsman was absent!
No mention of a religious test either.
Kudos to Ron Paul for making sense and not wearing a flag pin on his lapel.
Shame on ABC!
While Herman Cain’s popularity among the most ignorant group of people (Republicans) on the planet (I call them Hobbits), and the rest of us were getting our panties all in a bunch over it, Rachel Maddow figured it out… PROOF she is the smartest political pundit in the world.
“But at this point in the campaign no one has figured out that this is not politics. This is art.”
- Still has no real campaign team, no state offices
- Claims his 999 plan came from bank teller on Chagrin Blvd in Pepper Pike, Ohio?
- 999 is also the tax structure of SimCity
- Sexual harassment settlement dated 9/99
- Chapter 9 of his book is called “45-A Special Number” (4+5=9)
- Compared himself to Black Walnut flavored Häagen-Dazs, for it’s ‘staying power,’ doesn’t exist anymore
- “Koch brother from another mother”
- Closed first GOP debate with a verse the Pokemon movie theme song
- The weird smile that follows his campaign managers smoking a cigarette
- The ‘He Carried Yellow Flowers’ Campaign video
- This Stossel punked HARD in this interview on abortion
Who’s been punked so far?
- Hobbits and Tea Baggers
- Koch Brothers
- Fox News
- Brewski/Rush Limbaugh
Reminds of the Punking Carl Wimmer did on Herriman Hobbits.
I can think of a few more:
…to be continued…
Should have known when we saw this.
As an Ancestral Mormon:
There are just two questions I would ask of the two Mormon candidates in the Republican race for president:
What do you think about the present day “Tea Party”?
What do you think about the “Book of Mormon on Broadway” Play?
This is a serious post, but don’t miss the funny part towards the bottom.
Known as the “American Legislative Exchange Council“, this group was more comfortable when it’s inner workings were unknown, but a member becoming uncomfortable with it’s real mission, decided to release massive amounts of information about the group to “The Center for Media and Democracy”, which can be found here.
The long list of people who have been involved in this organization, which was formed in 1973, reads like a who’s who of mischievous scoundrels. ALEC claims to be a non-partisan, non-profit organization, but currently only has one Democrat out of 104 legislators in leadership positions. Current and past members which I personally don’t trust include:
Henry Hyde, Paul Weyrich, John Kasich, Jesse Helms, Jack Kemp, John Boehner, Eric Cantor, congressman Joe Wilson, Dennis Hastert, Tom DeLay, Andrew Card, Donald Rumsfeld, Scott Walker, and Jan Brewer.
Featured speakers have included: Milton Friedman, Newt Gingrich, Dick Cheney, Dan Quayle, Jessie Helms and Pete Coors.
ALEC has given awards to: Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, George H.W. Bush, Charles and David Koch, Tommy Thompson, John Kasich, Rick Perry, Mark Foley, and Congressman Billy Tauzin.
You read through this stuff and all kinds of lights go off in your head if you’ve followed politics at all. With something this voluminous, it’s probably best to be introduced to the particulars by somebody who can distill it down in a short interview. Terry Gross is one of the very best interviewers in the country because she asks hard questions when she has to, always knows the subject she is discussing and has a great left hook. Her show on NPR is called “Fresh Air” and, unfortunately covers musicians most of the time, but even those shows can get a little too revealing. KISS member Gene Simmons ordered his interview with Gross removed from NPR’s archives.
John Nichols, is a political writer for “The Nation” and has been reporting on the documents. There is nobody better for the job because Nichols is an expert researcher and has been flawlessly covering important stories about powerful institutions in America for a long time. Mr. Nichols’s interview with Gross can be heard here and the transcript can be read here.
I highly recommend listening to the entire interview, but here are some parts I found very interesting:
GROSS: Now, you say ALEC is known for its refusal to compromise. What do you mean?
Mr. NICHOLS: Well, I mean this is part and parcel of what we’re seeing across the political life right now. Back in the 1970s, early 1970s, a number of new organizations, think-tanks, membership groups, political operations, were started by true-believer conservatives, really passionate conservatives, as well as some libertarian folks and a lot of corporate folks who were very frustrated by the Nixon presidency.
Richard Nixon, elected as a Republican, quite hated by a lot of Democrats, went out and created the Environmental Protection Agency, Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, expanded public housing, was relatively sympathetic to a lot of unions. And they were thinking, you know, this just doesn’t work.
This is – here we elect Republicans and we still end up getting, you know, policies that don’t favor what we want. And so ALEC, like a lot of these other groups, has worked for a very long time to get political players trained up, raised up, get ideas into the mix that are very pure, that are not about compromise but that are about, you know, winning the game, winning the whole thing.
And I think that’s one of the reasons why ALEC is not just interested in corporate regulation, tax policy, but also very, very interested in election law and election policies.
GROSS: What would you say [ALEC's] agenda is?
Mr. NICHOLS: Well, I think it’s to make it easier for corporations to do what they want to do, and not all those things are evil, although sometimes folks talk about corporations that way. But it’s just to clear the way – lower taxes, less regulation, particularly less environmental regulation, a lot of protections against lawsuits. ALEC is very, very active in what’s referred to as tort reform. And also an opening up of areas via privatization for corporations to make more money, particularly in places you might not usually expect, like public education.
ALEC is a very, very strong advocate for voucher programs and privatization programs in the area of education.
GROSS: And privatization of prisons as well?
Mr. NICHOLS: Oh, very ambitiously for privatization of prisons. And there’s a group called the Corrections Corporation of America that’s very, very active with ALEC, and they build prisons.
GROSS: So the focus of ALEC is legislation on the state level, not the national level. Most of us, I think, are more focused on national legislation. Why is ALEC focused on the state level?
Mr. NICHOLS: Well, because they’re smart. The fact of the matter is that we live at the local and state level. That’s where human beings come into contact with government more often than not.
Almost reads like THE list of anti-liberal policies, doesn’t it?
Besides talking about the voter ID legislation being rolled out all over the country, Mr Nichols talks about something that has been an obsession of mine and apparently of his too (emphasis mine):
Mr. NICHOLS …I focus – my interest is in elections. I’m always fascinated by, you know, how our elections play out, how our politics plays out, how democracy itself functions. And so I looked through all the documents, at least everything that was in this document dump on elections and on democracy and on everything from the Electoral College to how we do local initiatives. And frankly, it’s amazing. There is just such meticulous work. They are very detail-oriented, very, very focused on a whole host of issues and they have an opinion about everything. And, you know, what they – how they want elections to work.
Money should speak. No question of that. They think it’s a big deal. They love the Electoral College. They think it’s a very, very dangerous notion to have direct election of presidents. They even say at one point that if you had direct election of the presidents you might create a situation in which someone with a plurality was elected. So what they’re saying is you might create a situation where the person with the most votes got elected.
Now for the funny part…
Well it happens that the national chairman of ALEC, Noble Ellington, made the bad decision to go on with Gross also; what results is a pretty funny interview. I guess he thought he could get away with some ridiculous claims or actually believes that ALEC is helping the American people.
Mr. Ellington’s interview with Gross can be heard here, and the transcript can be read here. I highly recommend you listen to get the full effect. Here’s a part of the conversation:
GROSS: But the taxpaying public isn’t at the table.
Mr. ELLINGTON: Wait just a minute. Don’t don’t assume that.
Mr. ELLINGTON: I work for the taxpaying public. So don’t assume that they’re not, because they are. And we represent the public and we are the ones who decide. So the taxpaying public is represented there at the table because I’m there.
GROSS: I understand that, but you’re there at the table with corporations. But at the table…
Mr. ELLINGTON: Can I interrupt you again?
Mr. ELLINGTON: It’s not just corporations. I’m there, and members of ALEC is the Americans for Tax Reform, the National Taxpayers Union, National Federation of Independent Businesses – those are people that we represent as well and those are people who are members.
GROSS: But those are all pro-business, anti-tax groups. People not represented at the table include workers, union members, teachers, students…
Mr. ELLINGTON: No, ma’am. No, ma’am.
GROSS: Patients who are can’t medical bills…
Mr. ELLINGTON: You are completely wrong.
GROSS: Uh-huh. I’m sorry?
Mr. ELLINGTON: I represent…
Mr. ELLINGTON: I, me, as an elected official, I represent unions. I represent teachers. And you’re saying you want taxes raised? Is that what you’re saying?
GROSS: I don’t think I said I want taxes raised. I don’t think I said anything about what I wanted.
(Soundbite of laughter)
Aren’t you glad that Mr. Ellington, the Koch brothers, the “Americans for Tax Reform” and Paul Weyrich, are/were watching your back, America.
Yep! That Paul Weyrich:
Whom the editors at the Deseret News and the AP gave a glowing sendoff when he died.
Apparently, cartoonists all over the country are coming down hard on the Tea, (not a real), Party fraud:
Maybe the working class animals don’t need your love after all!
I need to laugh about this so I can keep going. Jon Stewart chides the Tea-GOP for being sore winners:
You control less than half of one chamber of Congress, and yet have somehow convinced everybody they’ve got to slash trillions in spending because of the “deficit crisis,” when Republicans supported the largest contributing piece of it — the Bush tax cuts! TAKE THE WIN. What are you still angry about? Yes, government still exists. We still have traffic lights. We’re sorry. Not everybody defines freedom as the ability to not pay taxes. Government isn’t perfect, but some people wish it was better, not GONE. This whole process has been like, you’re in a bank, it’s a negotiation where you’ve got some hostages, and after getting everything you wanted, you’re still going, ‘Oh, and one last demand: I still get to kill the hostages, right?’ This is the part where they all come after you and they go, ‘You won the debate, what are you going to do now?’ And you go, ‘We’re going to Disney… Colonial Williamsburg.’
I can’t get over the horror of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) showing up at last on the House floor… and voting to screw the American middle class. We’ve done nothing to her. We were on her side!
UPDATE: Matt Taibbi: Debt Ceiling Deal: The Democrats Take a Dive
Now, Barack Obama has surrendered control of the budget to the Tea Party, whose operatives in congress used the same suicide-bomber tactic, threatening a catastrophic default unless the Democrats committed to a regime of steep spending cuts without any tax increases on the wealthy…
The Democrats aren’t failing to stand up to Republicans and failing to enact sensible reforms that benefit the middle class because they genuinely believe there’s political hay to be made moving to the right. They’re doing it because they do not represent any actual voters. I know I’ve said this before, but they are not a progressive political party, not even secretly, deep inside. They just play one on television.
For evidence, all you have to do is look at this latest fiasco.
UPDATE: The Age of Austerity is Here. Final Senate vote: Aye 74, Nay 26.
UPDATE: The White House says that President Obama has signed the bill into law.
The official invitation we’ve been waiting for has arrived.
It’s not every day you get a chance to appear in a YouTube video. Well, actually it is every day, but this is Dancing With Matt so it’s special.
We’ll be meeting at 6:00 pm Friday, June 24 at the north end of the Great Salt Lake State Marina.
The Great Salt Lake State Marina is located off exit 104 on Interstate 80, about 16 miles west of Salt Lake City. Day use is $2 per vehicle.
If you’re getting this email, you’ve either written to me or signed-up on my site to be notified when I’ll be in your area. Well, I’m coming to SLC to include it in my new dancing video. This is an invitation to come out and join me.
In this new video, I’m actually learning how to dance, so I’ll be showing some easy moves and asking people to follow along. But don’t worry. I’m still not very good at dancing so you don’t have to be perfect either. Just remember to smile and have fun.
We’ll be filming for about half an hour in total. Expect to sweat a bit.
Dancing Event Info
PLACE: North end of the Great Salt Lake State Marina
DATE: Friday, June 24th
Here’s a Google map of the location:
The plan is for us to wade into the lake a bit and dance in the water. I’m aiming for ankle-depth. We certainly won’t go any deeper than knee-depth. But do wear clothes you won’t mind getting wet in.
I like to include a photo of a recognizable landmark to meet at, but in this case I don’t have one. We’ll just be meeting at the north end of the Marina parking lot and then walking down to the shore. I’m told parking at the marina costs $2.
If you want to pass this around to friends, there is a Facebook event page with all the information included in this email. You can view it here:
When you get to the spot, look for the guy who looks like the guy in the dancing video. Just come on over, say hello, and ask if I am Matt. If I’m not Matt, I will let you know.
Before we dance, I will need to get your legal permission to appear in the video. I’ll shout some legal-sounding stuff on camera and you can just nod and give me a thumbs up if you’re okay with it.
I can’t guarantee the clip we shoot will end up in the final video. There will be a lot of footage to choose from and some of it will not be used.
Wearing distinctive clothing will make it easier to spot yourself in the video, but please do not dress as a licensed character (Mario, Spider-Man, Sarah Palin) or I will have to blur you and that will make everyone think you showed up naked or something. Also, please do not show up naked.
…if you DO decide to show up naked, I will be selling T-shirts and books that can be used to cover yourself. The T-shirt says “I Danced With Matt” and the book is about the travels that went into making the previous “Where the Hell is Matt?” videos, but it will work well enough as a fig leaf for your lower parts. Everything is $15.
You’re welcome to bring your own camera. After the shoot, I’ll stick around for as long as anyone is waiting. I’m happy to dance with you in your own picture/video, so don’t hesitate to ask, but I do request that you wait until we’re finished shooting because I’ll be very busy until then.
Please reply to this email or on Facebook if you plan to attend, and let us know how many people you’ll be bringing, so we have a rough idea of how many to expect.
We’re planning to put the final video up on the Internet sometime in late 2011.
I know a lot of you are nowhere near Salt Lake City. I can only put together so many of these events, so I pick the cities where I’ve received the most emails and I try to invite people to the event that’s closest to them. The nearest events to SLC are Boise and Denver, so let us know if either of those are better for you and we’ll send you those invites.
I look forward to dancing badly with you!
Previous One Utah post:
Matt Harding Coming to SLC (June 6)
Got an e-mail today from Matt Harding. He’ll be dancing badly in Salt Lake City in a few weeks, and wanted suggestions for a venue. I said the Salt Lake City Main Library would be ideal. Other people are suggesting the City-County Building, Liberty Park, and Temple Square. What spot would you pick?
Hopefully, we’ll soon know when and where.
h/t to Larry for posting this video to One Utah originally. It brightens my day. And I remember Yemen as a fun place despite the tragic events happening there now.
UPDATE: The ideas are coming in from people on Matt’s mailing list. My initial idea, the SLC Library, is out because he wants to come on Saturday, June 25 and the Utah Arts Festival will be at the library then. City-County Building is out, because a permit is required to shoot video there. Temple Square is too tightly regulated. Other people have suggested the International Peace Gardens, Liberty Park, and the Olympic Legacy Fountain at The Gateway. I said This Is The Place Monument might be good.
UPDATE: Matt is looking at choosing one of the Great Salt Lake beaches as a venue so he can dance in the water. Tentative date– Saturday, June 25.
UPDATE: Matt hasn’t issued his “official” invitation yet, but it looks like we’ll be getting together at the Great Salt Lake Marina at 6:00 pm on Friday, June 24. The marina is off I-80, two miles west of Saltair.
It’s just another example of a local or national “news” network getting some clod to say he’s outraged at something that doesn’t matter – Does Matter. In this case, it’s a local outlet of Fox “news” which tries to portray an uprising of parents against a student poll which names Dick Cheney and George W. Bush as number four and five in a poll that features Hitler, Osama Bin Laden, and Charles Manson.
Of course the first thing you want to do in a case like this is to censor the student poll by placing a piece of tape over the results of the student poll, because nobody’s going to wonder why there’s a piece of tape in their yearbook hiding the results of a student poll.
I hope you don’t have as much trouble as I did trying to watch this video – choppy to say the least – but notice how hard the woman in the broadcast tries to get the truth out. You gotta love it!
In my snarky opinion: Hitler, Osama Bin Laden, and Charles Manson did not succeed in bringing America down.
The Republicans have one, publically acknowledged, hero. How often do they bring up Ayn Rand, or any previous president from the Republican side? They are reluctant to talk about Lincoln because he – you know – freed the slaves.
Even the young men who created Superman comics knew that if he didn’t have SOME vulnerability, the story wouldn’t fly, but why worry about that? We have Ronald Reagan and decades of get-on-your-knees imagery and bombast.
If you think the following video was created for the 1980 election of Reagan, you’d be wrong. It was produced recently and is part of a project started by Mike Huckabee to teach history:
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