Friday, July 23, 2010

There's a Joke in Here Somewhere: "The End of Men"

“Earlier this year, women became the majority of the workforce for the first time in U.S. history. Most managers are now women too. And for every two men who get a college degree this year, three women will do the same. For years, women’s progress has been cast as a struggle for equality. But what if equality isn’t the end point? What if modern, postindustrial society is simply better suited to women? A report on the unprecedented role reversal now under way— and its vast cultural consequences…”

The Honors Keep Coming for Paul the Oracle Octopus

The lovable Cephalopod continues to bask in the fame of his amazing perfect record of 8-for-8 World Cup predictions. Paul was honored by the Spanish town of O Carballino, whose mayor presented Paul with his personalized Number 8 Spanish National Team jersey and his very own statue. The charismatic aquatic creature seems to love people and all the attention he’s receiving. Paul’s star power is such that he even has his own Facebook page!


Adventures in Tea Party Campaigns: RACHEL MADDOW BAGS MARCO RUBIO



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Adventures In Tea Party Campaigns: RUN, SHARRON ANGLE, RUN!

Nevada Tea Party darling Sharron Angle calls a press conference AND THE PRESS SHOWS UP!



Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The White House and Secretary Vilsack Apologize to Shirley Sherrod

Four times, from White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs.

Gibbs' apologias came in a testy press briefing in which he refused to single out Andrew Breitbart, Fox News and right wing media for fueling these falsehoods and nearly destroying a good woman's honorable career.

Next, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack called Ms. Sherrod and apologized to her on behalf of the Department. He went on to offer her a position in the USDA that is different from the field job she currently has, and clearly loves. Ms. Sherrod asked for a few days to think about it.

Word of advice to Secretary Vilsack: Please offer Ms. Sherrod full reinstatement, which begins with a restoration of her status quo ante position for putting her "through hell." The Secretary was clearly contrite as he manned up in his presser, expressing his "deep regret" to Ms. Sherrod for making his decision in haste, and asking for her forgiveness, which she graciously gave.

In the meantime, Andrew Breitbart and Fox News should step forward and publicly apologize to Ms. Sherrod and the American people for their malicious smear which nearly cost her her job.

Any chance that will happen?

MEMO to the White House: Rehire Shirley Sherrod. NOW!

Spineless bastards. Forgive my French, but the WH record of backing down to every right wing fabrication alleging reverse racism in an effort to push back against legitimate charges of Tea Party racism has reached the boiling point.

Enough is enough! Grow a spine, already.

Andrew Breitbart, the same lying ratbastard who gave us the edited ACORN tapes has struck again, this time producing heavily edited dishonest and dishonorable tapes purporting to show a black woman USDA employee's racism against a poor white couple, when in fact the exact opposite was true. Not only that, but the omissions continued, as Fox conveniently left out the part that this occurred 24 years ago when Ms. Sherrod wasn't even in the federal government's employ.

What we see IN CONTEXT is the evolution of a thought process in which Ms. Sherrod, confronted for the first time with the reality of a poor white farm family reexamines her preconceptions and comes to realize that it's about black and white poverty, and not about race. In Oprahspeak, this would be called a lightbulb moment, which guided and informed Ms. Sherrod's career to this day, as she went on to help countless white farm families in dire financial straits.

Shame on AG Secretary Vilsack and the jellyfish denizens of the WH for buckling to Fox News and Breitbart, who are utterly despicable excuses for humanity. Ms. Sherrod deserves our respect and admiration. That she was three times harassed by calls from a WH hack, told to pull over, and then resign immediately, is shameful!

Make this right, Sec. Vilsack, or the WH will lose whatever tepid support its disgusted base still can muster, and not gain it back.

For anyone remotely interested in the truth, please watch the context of this story:

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"An ideologue injects poison into the internet, other people rush to judgment on camera, and an administration gets stampeded and commits this travesty of justice. The NAACP has at least had the courage to come back and say 'we were wrong' and apologize. Now the administration needs to do the same thing. The president -- tonight -- ought to order the Agriculture Department to reopen this case, give this woman a fair hearing, and -- if the facts are as they seem -- reinstate her with an apology. Indeed, I think she deserves a whole lot more than an apology. I think she deserves honor for her attempts to bring people together."

David Gergen, CNN

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Keith Olbermann Wannabe: Who Owns Whom?

Meet Tucker Swanson Carlson, formerly of MSNBC, whose unhealthy obsession with the network’s top-rated host resulted in a questionable and infantile scheme to purchase the domain name “” for no apparent purpose other than to harass Mr. Olbermann. Or rather, nip at Keith’s ankles from beneath the bridge like a silly wingnut troll, yelping “I own you.” Carlson’s internet outlet, The DC Caller, breathlessly followed up with a typically misleading header: “Keith Olbermann threatens legal action against The Daily Caller via Twitter.”

Keith did no such thing, as the DC Caller conceded:
In a tweet posted at 10:46 AM, the aging cable anchor wrote, “Regarding @TheDailyCaller and I hope whoever sold it to them got CASH.”

Several minutes later, an apparently still-reeling Olbermann clarified his meaning: “Also regarding @TheDailyCaller and – the law’s pretty clear on this, so, nice waste of money, Tuckie. #p2 #tcot.”

The implication is that MSNBC, or Keith Olbermann personally, will pursue legal action to stop the dissemination of news and information on The Daily Caller.

Not so fast, responded Tucker Carlson, editor-in-chief of The Daily Caller. “Some might step back and allow Mr. Olbermann to drain his bladder on the first amendment – indeed, on the Bill of Rights itself,” said Carlson. “Not us. No, by God, not us.”
So. According to Tucker Swanson Carlson’s internet outlet, Keith was “reeling” from the news, then “apparently still reeling” when he tweeted the “implication” that MSNBC or Olbermann himself “will pursue legal action to stop the dissemination of news and information on The Daily Caller.” First, real journalists understand there is a huge gulf between threat versus intimation of legal action. Second, the allegation that Keith’s possible lawsuit based on violation of the copyright laws, is pissing on the First Amendment and “the Bill of Rights itself,” strains credulity. Even though Tucker Swanson Carlson invoked God to his defense, legal scholars actually believe Olbermann has a good case.

No one has denied Tucker Swanson Carlson’s media outlet its First Amendment right to publish whatever it pleases. Who really cares –- it’s only one more wingnut propaganda outlet among thousands infecting the internet. Indeed, the optics are terrible for them. Carlson’s publicity-chasing stunt looks to be sleazy and desperate. It’s not as if the Daily Caller doesn’t have its own domain. It’s the petty and malicious intent behind Carlson’s purchase of He is using it to redirect searchers to the Daily Caller site and its steady stream of attack screeds aimed at Olbermann and has also appropriated Keith’s name as his “personal” e-mail:
Continue to check this space for updates on this developing story. And in the meantime, Tucker Carlson may be reached at his personal email address,
This is really weird. Let’s face it, there are better ways to increase readership: good writing, honest reporting, scoops, and exclusives come to mind. Tucker Swanson Carlson’s site is the usual hodge-podge of lies, distortions, poor writing, and right wing talking points that characterizes wingnut media. Increasing readership on Keith’s back beyond the true believers and ditto heads seems to be a tall order. A conservative critique based on facts and verifiable statements is one thing. Wingnut trash talking is another thing altogether -– not an audience grabber.

In the last analysis, wingnuts are their own worst enemy. They are hypocrites and demagogues. The truth is as toxic to them as the BP oil gusher is to fishers in the Gulf of Mexico. There’s nothing left for them but to lash out with ad hominem attacks until caught red-handed with their hands in the cookie jar. Evidently, Tucker Swanson Carlson has convinced himself that his childish antics will reflect well on him and his media outlet; that gleefully bawling he “owns” Keith Olbermann will magically transform his minnows into more than zeros.

But who really owns whom?

Back in the days of the Clinton impeachment, I recall how wingnuts fixing to troll liberal boards would frequently invade the sites by assuming the names, or handles, of some of the notable liberal posters, with a missing letter or other slight modification. This always puzzled me. Why would someone want to assume someone else’s name? I could only speak for myself. It had never occurred to me that submerging my identity in someone else’s was a good thing. There’s acting and there’s pretend. But we were discussing facts and issues. Reality. When I ventured into “enemy territory” either I used my own name or created a new one that had no connection with existing ones on the site.

I’m no Freudian analyst either, but I couldn’t help but think that these trolls lacked a good deal of self-esteem and were, by definition, rather twisted. Invariably, they were conservative libertarian types, with a similar profile to Carlson’s, united by a rabid disdain for liberals. Low self-esteem mixed with an arrogant disrespect for liberal views makes for a volatile mixture. The ad hominem attacks came thick and fast.

Tucker Swanson Carlson is using his infantile scheme as a platform to launch vicious personal attacks on Keith. Everything from Keith’s clothing to personal habits (real or imagined) is grist for Carlson’s hysterical tongue lashings. He sports a butterfly necktie yet criticizes Keith’s clothing -- pot meet kettle. He claims Keith is the most unpopular person in the building “by a factor of 10.” (I wonder how that particular math calculus was reached.) He claims to have received e-mails from MSNBC employees thanking him for his attacks. For all Keith’s alleged unpopularity (taken with a huge grain of salt, considering the source) it’s a wonder he is able to host MSNBC’s consistently top-rated show night after night.

Who are all these disgruntled Keith haters? If they stay in e-mail contact with Tucker Swanson Carlson, perhaps they should be working for Fox. Or Breitbart. Or Tucker Swanson Carlson himself. In a sense, it’s understandable that someone named Tucker Swanson Carlson (Swannie?) should consider a name change, even if it is Keith Olbermann. And it doesn’t hurt if the purchased name belongs to an Emmy nominee for outstanding writing in journalism. After all, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Unfortunately for the DC Caller femme fatale, in this instance it is neither sincere nor very elegant.