Ford’s Infamous Pardon Revisited

helen-thomas-w-ford

Forty years ago today, Gerald Ford effectively ended his chances at re-election by pardoning Nixon.

The howl of public outrage was overwhelming. (Just like the howl to go to war with Saddam and his mushroom clouds.) Another True Believer complains this day, four decades later:

Watergate’s most lasting sin: Gerald Ford, Richard Nixon, and the pardon that made us all cynics
Rick Perlstein / Salon

Ford let Nixon off 40 years ago today.  That launched Iran-Contra, “too big to fail” — and proved power trumps law  —  When you’ve published a book about Watergate, your phone rings off …

OK. Whatever. That was pretty much what he’d have said at the time.

But, while my perceptions have changed somewhat over the years, I responded in print on September 17, 1974, and there’s not much I’d change. Or: I already wrote this column … forty years ago. Continue reading

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House GOPs To Study Little Bighorn Strategy

cheney

Cheney reveals the source of his deep rage

What if I told you that the Congress with the lowest approval rating in history (single digits) has, via the House Majority (the least productive House in history) invited one of the least popular politicians in American history to meet with them to explain strategies for being popular (as in “the popular vote”)? Would you claim I was hallucinating? I know I would, except … [emphasis added]

Dick Cheney to meet with House GOP on midterms
Alex Isenstadt / Politico

Former Vice President Dick Cheney will appear before House Republicans at a Tuesday meeting to discuss the midterm elections, according to two sources familiar with his plans.

Cheney’s appearance comes as Republican leaders launch a final push for members to contribute money to the National Republican Congressional Committee, which has persistently lagged behind its Democratic counterpart in fundraising. One of the sources said Cheney would “highlight the importance of keeping a GOP House majority.” …

Seriously? Continue reading

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The Fall GOP Strategy Becomes Clear

A very clear outline of the GOP fall strategy is beginning to take shape:

Obama Goes on Meet the Press, Reality Fails to Intrude
John Hinderaker* / Power Line*
[* Seemingly, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Koch Industries.]

President Obama appeared on Meet the Press this morning with new host Chuck Todd.  The conversation focused primarily on ISIS, Iraq and Syria.  Much could be said about Obama’s comments, but what struck me most was how disassociated …

demon yearbook

The ‘upholstered’ 1971 yearbook

Let me tell you a story and then we’ll talk about cults and reality:

Back when I was in high school, the Lucas Demons were playing in the opening rounds of the Kansas state A tournament in the recently-built and more-than-spacious Wilson High Scho0l gym (Wilson was AA. In Kansas at the time, it went all the way to AAAAA).

We B-teamers had concluded our season, but were along for the experience and cheering section. After all,  with classes 0f 13, 15, 22* and 11 in (respectively) the freshman, sophomore, junior and senior classes, you need all the cheering you can get. And in that AA gym, the A teams and their supporters looked sort of small. Continue reading

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Battle of the Network Moralists

nancy grace defender of public morality

Father Coughlin

There is little that our modern media does worse than make grand moral pronouncements. Worse, our standards have fallen so low that the lede in two “serious” post-mortems by two “serious” news organizations varies from tres trite to disgusting non-sequitur. the latter first:

For Bob McDonnell, a Miscalculation at the Scene of a Blunder
Jason Horowitz / New York Times

WASHINGTON — On Aug. 15, 2013, Bob McDonnell visited the site of one of Virginia’s great tactical blunders.  —  As part of his final official tour of the state as its governor, Mr. McDonnell went to Ball’s Bluff State Park in Leesburg, where more than 150 years ago a Union army scout crossed the Potomac River and mistook a row of trees for an unguarded Confederate camp. The next morning, Union soldiers approached the trunks and branches and soon found themselves surrounded by well-armed Mississippi infantrymen. By the end of the skirmish, Confederate soldiers had killed nearly half of the Union troops, many of them pushed off the bluff and into the Potomac…

Uh, WTF? In the week of the 150th anniversary of the Fall of Atlanta, a story about the “Republican” ex-governor of Virginia begins with the slaughter of Union soldiers? Disgusting. But it’s a, you know, “hook.” Continue reading

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Birtherism Loses on ACA in DC

don't tread on my obamacare

The loony decision of the DC Circuit court’s three-(conservative)-judge-panel that anyone on Obamacare via the Federal exchanges couldn’t get tax credits … has been vacated. [Emphasis added]:

BREAKING: Federal Appeals Court Withdraws Decision Defunding Obamacare
Ian Millhiser / ThinkProgress

In July, two Republican judges on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit handed down a decision defunding much of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This effort to implement Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-TX) top policy priority from the bench was withdrawn on Thursday by the DC Circuit, and the case will be reheard by the full court — a panel that will most likely include 13 judges. In practical terms, this means that July’s judgment cutting off subsidies to consumers who buy insurance plans in federally-operated health exchanges is no more. It has ceased to be. It is, in fact, an ex-judgment….

Yes. But listen to law professor Scott Lemieux of Lawyers, Guns and Money, writing for The Week: Continue reading

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Racial Animus Revealed by Algebra

Indians

Brent Bozell thinks you’re being too sensitive. Besides,
a poll says that a majority of non-Indian Americans
thinks “Redskins” isn’t a racial slur. What’s your deal?

Because polling is so much more important than justice:

New poll says large majority of Americans believe Redskins should not change name
Scott Clement / Washington Post

(Post Sports Live/The Washington Post)  —  A large but shrinking majority of Americans say the Washington Redskins should not change their team’s name, according to a poll released Tuesday finding …

Back in college, I came up with something I like to call the “Jew Test.” The Jew Test is very simple. When someone is speaking about a group in rather vicious and general terms, we perform the following algebraic equation (since changed to global search and replace — which didn’t exist when I was in school) of substituting the term “Jew” for every occurrence of the group being demonized. Continue reading

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Enter the Fraidy Cats

ISIL sotloff

America just finished getting its collective panties untwisted, and now this:

Video Appears to Show ISIS Execution of Second American Steven Sotloff
Lee Ferran / ABC News

… A new video appears to show the execution of Steven Sotloff, the second American killed by a self-professed member of the Islamist terror group ISIS.  —  In the video, which appeared online today, Sotloff addresses the camera …

THIS is what comes of hiding the horrors of war from your own nation for more than a decade. We sanitized our own gore, and now, when actual GORE shows up, we are “terrorized.”

That’s why they call it “terrorism” Einsteins. Continue reading

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Labor Daze, A Dickensian Contrast

1912 Child_labour_cartoon-PD

Labor Day actually falls ON Labor Day this year. Monday, September 1, 2014.

It was the strangest of days, it was the  most predictable of days.

Happy Labor Day.  Are Unions Dead?
Jonathan Cohn / The New Republic

—  An interview with Rich Yeselson, labor strategist and expert … Are unions dead?  —  No.  —  Explain, please.  —  Their power has declined enormously, obviously, but unions, especially the largest ten or so, are still significant American institutions….

Yes: who could have predicted that, having literally bought themselves the best legislatures and Supreme Court that money could buy, that unions would be systematically crushed, beginning with that old “Union President” Ronald Wilson Reagan and the flight controllers’ union, the bastards, wanting sane working conditions for insane jobs!

But consider what happened the LAST time that Labor Day actually fell on Monday, September 1:

Continue reading

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In Which I Scare Eric O’Keefe

hunters exercise caution

I’m getting sick and tired of these fellows who bluster and bully airwaves claiming that I scare them and require idiots like Sean Hannity to exclaim in horror:

Joining us now from the Media Research Center is Brent Bozell. You know, I know there’s a lot of hatred now towards conservatives, Brent. Where could this go legally? And what if it was a conservative that said this, either a blogger or a talk-show host?

[...]

BOZELL: I think it’s terrible that you say something like that. I have no question about it.

And when Ted Nugent claims that he and his family live in fear of their lives because of “me”: Continue reading

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Our Unseen Kleptocrat Masters

peepingtom0

They wait in darkness for their minions’ reflexive
and libelous* attacks on their enemies.

[* Thanks to SCOTUS, it is virtually impossible to libel a "public figure," however, and very easy to become one for the purposes of shysters' defenses.]

The media manipulators scream and squeal that media manipulation can’t be true:

Obama: Media makes you think ‘world is falling apart’
Justin Sink / The Hill

—  President Obama on Friday said social media and the nightly news are partly to blame for the sense that “the world is falling apart.”  —  “I can see why a lot of folks are troubled,” Obama told a group of donors gathered …

Eeek! Squeals Powerline (and the usual suspects from yesterday, you might note): Continue reading

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Treason Re-emergent and Triumphant

gop titanic

Desperate GOPs attempt to launch a new fake scandal for the election.

Well, considering that Benghazi fell flat, the IRS “scandal” went nowhere, Obamacare no longer worked as an issue and birtherism died a protracted and hideous death, what NEW scandal can the GOPs come up with to tide them over the November elections? Ahhh, the old “Nine Lebbin” hates and fears!

terror judicial-watch

judicial watch attempts to spread mindless fear

Imminent Terrorist Attack Warning By Feds on US Border
Judicial Watch

Islamic terrorist groups are operating in the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juarez and planning to attack the United States with car bombs or other vehicle born improvised explosive devices (VBIED).  High-level federal law enforcement …

So: IF what they are “reporting” is correct, “outing” it here represents a grotesque interference with law enforcement. But who cares? After all, this isn’t about stopping “terrorist attacks” but, rather, conflating the racist animus against “illegal aliens” with the bowel-voiding fears of terrorism re-ignited by the endless chittering of the chattering class about ISIL*.

More importantly, look WHO is pushing this meme hard into the blogosmear [emphasis added]:

Continue reading

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Priebus To Nowhere

priebus tweet

Reince, Reince!

Chuck Todd Pushes RNC Chair: ‘Too Many Crazy White Guys’?
Caitlin MacNeal / Talking Points Memo

On MSNBC’s “The Daily Rundown,” host Chuck Todd asked Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee, on Thursday about report commissioned by two conservative groups that found that the Republican party is still lagging behind the Democratic party with women voters.

According to the report, obtained by Politico on Wednesday, women said the GOP was “stuck in the past” and “intolerant.” The poll found that 49 percent of women view the Republican party unfavorably and 39 percent view the Democratic party unfavorably….

Priebus’ first salvo of  splattering BS was semi-classic: Continue reading

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The Invasion Is On

Ukrainian prisoners are paraded through Donetsk

People yell as Ukrainian prisoners are paraded through
Donetsk in eastern Ukraine on August 24

Russia finally openly invades Ukraine. I look forward to hearing Russian apologists rationalize this one:

Official: Russian forces back rebels with tanks in eastern Ukraine  —  Kiev, Ukraine (CNN) — Pro-Moscow rebel forces in eastern Ukraine, backed by Russian tanks and armored personnel carriers, battled government forces on two fronts Thursday, a Ukrainian military official said…

I realize that columns of tanks and military equipment can be rationalized as “humanitarian aid” but, seriously, Putin is determined to grab all the real estate he can without ever doing a damn thing to improve the lives of the people living ON that real estate. Continue reading

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How Mitch McConnell sells out the American People to Kochs + Cronies

nast moneybags

When I told you that the Kochs were engaged in a hostile takeover of the GOP, I never realized how high up the food chain it went. The Nation has obtained audio of their Summer Kleptocrats’ Konvention in Dana Point, California. Old Mitch McConnell is cleanly in the pocket of Boss Tweed Koch:

Lauren Windsor / The Nation

Caught on Tape: What Mitch McConnell Complained About to a Roomful of Billionaires (Exclusive)  —  At a secret meeting of elite donors convened by the Koch brothers, McConnell laid out his plan for shrinking the federal government and whined about having to vote on minimum wage bills….

Awww. Meet the New Boss Tweed, same as the Old Boss Tweed. Continue reading

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