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If Only!

[ 4 ] March 21, 2010 |

Some Republican just claimed that the health care bill would be the most “massively pro-abortion bill since Roe v. Wade.” I suspect here that the “stupid or lying” question is, as usual, answered by saying that it’s a little from column A…

I never thought they could make Stupak look good.



[ 16 ] March 21, 2010 |

A great progressive moment. And what Yglesias said about Pelosi.

Your Republican Party, Ladies And Gentlemen!

[ 25 ] March 21, 2010 |

It’s pretty impressive that John Boehner’s first substantive argument (that you won’t be able to keep your health insurance under this plan) is a flagrant, baldfaced lie.

I’m also interested in his claim that members of Congress are bound in all cases to vote consistently with public opinion surveys.  I await Boehner’s support for a robust public option…

Andy McCarthy on the moral superiority of cheaters.

[ 8 ] March 21, 2010 |

Over on The Corner, Andy McCarthy unwittingly claims that Democrats are morally superior to Republicans:

I know we tire of the hypocrisy, but I really think this is remarkable. We spent the eight years through January 19, 2009, listening to Democrats complain that President Bush had purportedly caused a constitutional crisis by issuing signing statements when he signed bills into law. Democrats and Arlen Specter (now a Democrat) complained that these unenforceable, non-binding expressions of the executive’s interpretation of the laws Bush was signing were a usurpation Congress’s power to enact legislation. But now Democrats are going to abide not a mere signing statement but an executive order that purports to have the effect of legislation—in fact, has the effect of nullifying legislation that Congress is simultaneously enacting?

Democrats, he argues, were correct when they complained that signing statements were “unenforceable, non-binding expressions of the executive’s interpretation of the laws [and] a usurpation Congress’s power to enact legislation.” They were right to complain when the Bush administration appended them to legislation, but now they must defend the very principles conservatives have never had and stop President Obama from appending anything to H.R. 3590 when he signs it into law or be branded rank hypocrites. Consider this in baseball terms:

Read more…

60 Minutes Expose on Haiti’s Children

[ 2 ] March 21, 2010 |

Watch CBS News Videos Online

I knew about some of the issues of unaccompanied children in Haiti (like other disaster areas) but I did not know about Haiti’s hidden slave population and the way the earthquake may have exacerbated the problem.

Channeling his inner Redshirt

[ 5 ] March 21, 2010 |

In light of Rep. Paul Broun’s nutty invocation of the “Great War of Yankee Aggression” the other day, it’s good to see that actual Confederate wannabees aren’t completely losing their shit over the prospect that 95 percent of Americans might be covered by health insurance.

Never mind. I forgots t’ check with the gomers at the gun counter.

I ran out on some errands this morning, and noticed several things.

The gun store downtown was doing what I suspect was unusually brisk business for an early Saturday morning outside of hunting season. This same gun store’s parking lot was overflowing mid-afternoon yesterday shortly after 3:30 PM, with traffic filling the lot, the nearby on-street parking filled, and overflow parking spilling into the gravel lot next door.

I’ve also seen a minivan with a warning/threat against Obamacare written in red paint on the windows (I didn’t get a great look at it as it was moving in the opposite direction, but I got the gist of it).

This is hardly the equivalent of militiamen forming on the village green, but there seems to be a distinct undercurrent of frustration and rage building against the federal government in general, the tricks of Democratic Party in specific, and tomorrow’s Obamacare may be the catalyst.

Of course, when the “distinct undercurrent” happens to come from your own blog — in which you’d just one day earlier ruled that HCR is a “capital crime” and predicted, a la Orval Faubus, that blood will soon enough drench the streets — I suppose you’d have to be a complete numbskull to overlook the trend.

As for the wider relevance of the War of Northern Aggression to all this, I can only encourage opponents of reform like Rep. Broun to continue insinuating some sort of comparison between the non-existent Obama-Reid-Pelosi conspiracy to seize the  health care system and the non-existent Lincoln-Seward-Sumner conspiracy to seize the South’s human chattel.  It’s a winner for sure.

The Sausage Factory

[ 9 ] March 21, 2010 |

It’s unfortunate that they couldn’t get the majority without cutting a deal with these clowns, but the difference (while bad) is also minor, so you do what you have to do.

…and, yes, it didn’t even involve much of a concession; the primary one seemed to be giving Bart Stupak more attention.

Thanks for Making the Connection Explicit, Newt…

[ 12 ] March 21, 2010 |

And of course, the push for civil rights legislation was an utter failure, and produced no positive consequences of note for Americanswhite southern men.

But former Republican House speaker Newt Gingrich said Obama and the Democrats will regret their decision to push for comprehensive reform. Calling the bill “the most radical social experiment . . . in modern times,” Gingrich said: “They will have destroyed their party much as Lyndon Johnson shattered the Democratic Party for 40 years” with the enactment of civil rights legislation in the 1960s.

Random Cake Blogging

[ 6 ] March 21, 2010 |

My son is having a street hockey birthday party today. Last time we did this I had to create a cake that looked like an ice-hockey rink. This time, however, he asked for this:

Not the most complicated cake I’ve ever been asked to make for a birthday.

But still pretty cool.

It’s going to be yummy, too… in case anyone cares, the recipe I used for “Log Cabin Chocolate Cake” is here.

Nutpicking for Me, But…

[ 12 ] March 21, 2010 |

Glenn Reynolds: “here are some photos from that antiwar rally today in DC. Note the Soviet-nostalgia T-shirt. But guess which one the press will cast as “extremist?””

Glenn Reynolds, quoting and heh-indeeding La Althouse later in the same goddamned post: “Still, the Washington Post uses the term “angry protesters.” That’s a journalistic device to delegitimitize the demonstration by merging everyone into the few persons who said something racist/homophobic.”

That’s hacktacular! I don’t think the “some guy with a sign somewhere” game is useful no matter who’s using it, but Reynolds is certainly not in a position to complain about it.

And even funnier is that it’s probably not even the most egregious hackery in that post. As Thers notes, he also links to a very short video of the protest and claims that it “debunks” reports that racist slurs were directed at John Lewis at that…or, apparently, any other time. And then we have the assertion-without-evidence that the media “ignored the anti-ObamaCare protests,” which to the extent that such obscure outlets as the New York Times and Washington Post count as media is transparently false (and note also the Althouse quote.) I think we have a coveted Mickey Kaus triple crown of hackery to award here.

Sunday Geek Blogging

[ 3 ] March 21, 2010 |

When the issue of my blog post on BSG and the UN came up during the diavlog the other day, Mark told me he’d never even seen Battlestar Galactica. I tried to explain the show’s premise in a few sentences before getting on with the discussion, but without spoilers, I think this video does it much better:

Courtesy of Jason Sigger.

What I Learned Doing My First Bloggingheads Diavlog

[ 4 ] March 20, 2010 |

1) A small puppy, if walked real hard first, will sit quietly outside long enough for a decent taping with no unseemly background noise. (I had worried about that.)

2) It’s important to spell out your acronyms on the first use in speech just like in writing.

3) I say “um” a lot more than I ever thought.

Anyway, check it out. UN Dispatch’s Mark Leon Goldberg and I talk about pirate economics, the Somalia aid scandal, gender politics, and the coming Cylon takeover how popular culture figures in UN public relations strategies.