Labor Day Open Thread

I hope that everyone has a delightful day today – as for me, I have to work.  Being a mindless cog in a faceless, corporate entity does have its draw backs.  Seems that the bosses have a misconception of what “labor day” is about.  Ah, well.  On the other hand, I’ll be earning double time and a half…and my vacation starts after work today!  Two weeks off…including a trip up to Reno to see the new grandson!  This does means that from the 9th on blogging might be a bit light, but we’ll make it all work.

We are, of course, all waiting in breathless anticipation of Obama’s jobs speech…while my leg hasn’t quite started to tingle over it, I’m sure I’ll be fainting dead away when The One tells us how he’s going to undo all the garbage he’s done up to this point.  I’m sure you all feel the same way – so, you can discuss that.  Or, if that proves a bit boring, you can go on to more exciting subjects, like how to clean lint out of the dryer.

So, have at it.

61 thoughts on “Labor Day Open Thread

  1. js September 5, 2011 / 9:21 am

    tom delay gets 3 years for “money laundering”…hyped up because nobody caught him actually violating campaign finance laws…after they spent “years” digging to find something…yet…obama…collects 200 Mn over the internet…without as much as a care as to where the money came from…and not one formal investigation about it…even after it was demonstrated that some of that money came from foreign nations…clear violations of statute…

    An auditor for the Federal Election Commission is attempting to have his bosses seek a formal investigation into the collection by the Obama for President campaign of more than $200 million in potentially illegal political donations, including millions of dollars of illegal, foreign donations, and has sought a request for assistance from the Department of Justice or Federal Bureau of Investigation. But the analyst’s requests have largely been ignored. “I can’t get anyone to move. I believe we are looking at a hijacking of our political system that makes the Clinton and Gore fundraising scandals pale in comparison. And no one here wants to touch it.”

    • neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 9:28 am

      js

      as soon as the birth cert investigation is completed they are going to……Oh WAIT!!

  2. RetiredSpook September 5, 2011 / 9:24 am

    It’s probably a good thing U.S. financial markets are closed today. Asian financial markets began tanking last night (ET), and the contagion has followed the sun around the globe with European markets following suit early this morning.

  3. Leonard L'Farte September 5, 2011 / 9:57 am

    Is it common for the trolls not to show up on weekends and holidays?

    • neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 10:36 am

      some are paid agent provocateurs from media matters, and other leftist organizations.
      yes M-F 8- 4:30

    • bardolf September 5, 2011 / 11:35 am

      Only losers comment on weekends and holidays.

      • Amazona September 5, 2011 / 11:59 am

        Or people who don’t have to use company time and computers. Or people too honest to use company time and computers.

      • neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 12:02 pm

        yup

  4. neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 11:05 am

    Rep. Maxine Waters Calls For A Trillion-Dollar Jobs Program
    Real Clear Politics

    OPM and an IQ of 85

  5. neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 1:01 pm

    speaking of TROLLS

    • Dave September 5, 2011 / 3:27 pm

      Whomever the GOP nominee ends up being…this would be the first TV ad…Showing Obama at the GIFFORDS memorial scolding us and telling us to be more civil…then cut to his appearance with Hoffa and the “uncivil” violent comments…after that cut to the “0” job growth and downgraded credit rating…if Obama manages to get re-elected after all of that, then you can bet there are some ACORN fradulent voters having a serious impact on the election. This president is just continuing to provide fodder for this opponents. Let’s hope they are smart enough and wise enought to know when and how to use them.

  6. Count d'Haricots September 5, 2011 / 1:59 pm

    Did anyone else catch BIG LABOR’s call for violence against “Republicans” at an Obama Campaign event? Hoffa tells the leftist faithful to “take them out”, declares WAR, and tells Obama the he (Unions) are his “army”.

    Where’s the call for civility from the hypocrites?

    • neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 2:08 pm

      Commies always resort to violence.
      With any luck mr hoffa will join sr on the 50 yard line.

      • Count d'Haricots September 5, 2011 / 2:14 pm

        Didn’t Jr say in a speech at the dedication of the Teamsters’ Building in Detroit, “my father will always be a corner-stone of this building”?

      • neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 2:34 pm

        Count

        LOL
        he went for a ride in trunk of one of the cars his goons built.
        I love poetic justice.

        PS to mr hoffa,
        12% of America belongs to your criminal empire, BRING it ON big boy!!
        Hope YOU are in the first wave to attack my city I love a big fat target.

      • bardolf September 5, 2011 / 10:37 pm

        HOFFA: Everybody here’s got to vote. If we go back and keep the eye on the prize, let’s take these son of a bitches out and give America back to America where we belong! Thank you very much!

        What are the odds of Fox taking a quote out of context and it appearing on B4V? 100%

      • neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 11:26 pm

        barfdork

        did you even watch the video of his rant and threats?
        chances NOT 100%

  7. dennis September 5, 2011 / 4:25 pm

    Curious to find that Bodie’s post and link just disappeared – on an open thread no less. Is there really such a thing as an open thread on this blog? Seems to be just another Orwellian term used to purchase the illusion of open-mindedness.

    The article linked was an insightful analysis of GOP strategy by Mike Lofgren, who served for 16 years as a Republican staffer on both House and Senate Budget Committees. It’s long and I doubted anyone here would be motivated to read it for comprehension, but apparently Mark decided preemptively to protect all your tender minds from exposure to a point of view from outside his sandbox here. So I’ll post the link again, and encourage anyone with a dangerous curiosity about thought outside the lines to copy it before it gets deleted again. The author makes a persuasive case, especially concerning the 3 principal tenets of the Republican Party of 2011.

    As Washington Monthly notes, Lofgren is no fan of Dems. But he also believes “nothing … quite matches the modern GOP.” As a sidebar to his article I would note the GOP has been enormously successful at framing political issues in terms that completely obfuscate all the ways their priorities work against the interests of ordinary Americans. Anyway, check it out while you can. This link has been deleted once here already: http://www.truth-out.org/goodbye-all-reflections-gop-operative-who-left-cult/1314907779

    Also commentary on Lofgren’s article in Washington Monthly: http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal/2011_09/mike_lofgren_leaves_the_cult031989.php

    Mark is not the moderator and you are not exhibiting courage in reposting the link, which is to a blatantly biased hit piece. Bodie has been informed many times that his posts which consist only of insults and attacks will be deleted. You can both find blogs that cater to this kind of mentality. This is not one of them. //Moderator

    • neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 10:50 pm

      dennistooge

      the usual BS and clap trap denny.
      glad you and boobie have bonded, you can be the new dumb and dumber team.

  8. Green Mountain Boy(You have an ugly goat) September 5, 2011 / 6:39 pm

    Thousands of words to say repubs are mean and evil. Yawn, what a waste of space.

    • Bodie September 5, 2011 / 8:06 pm

      Not mean and evil so much as driven by ideology above reality (which has been plainly obvious for some time now) and extremely comfortable lying to get their way.

    • neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 10:58 pm

      GMB

      you got that right, and a waste of oxygen.

  9. Mark Edward Noonan September 5, 2011 / 8:59 pm

    Bodie,

    Just because he was a Republican staffer doesn’t mean he was actually Republican…and even if he was, he was clearly of the Arlen Specter variety…in other words, someone we’re well rid of. You’re welcome to him.

    • Bodie September 5, 2011 / 10:20 pm

      Yes, Mark, attack the source because you know he speaks the truth. Exactly as I predicted you’d do.

    • neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 10:52 pm

      boobie

      one mans opinion does not indicate it is the “truth”, it is just an opinion by some sore loserman.

    • Bodie September 6, 2011 / 12:53 am

      No, it’s the fact that what he says is true–I note that nobody has been able to confront what he says–that indicates it’s the truth.

      • Amazona September 6, 2011 / 6:31 pm

        What he says is a lunatic temper tantrum, a spewing of irrational hatreds thinly dressed up as political commentary—-exactly like your own posts, Bodie.

      • dennis September 7, 2011 / 12:17 am

        Amazona talks about “Lofgren’s overheated prose” – and then works herself up into a truly astonishing lather, hitting notes like “the rantings of this paranoid and hate-driven lunatic” and “a sick, twisted, vicious mind, which can only impress people of a similar pathology.”

        One can’t help but note she is doing this in reference to a person who is by magnitudes her intellectual (not to mention journalistic) superior. Are heavy metals leaching into the groundwater somewhere near your ranch, Ama?

    • neocon1 September 6, 2011 / 8:55 am

      boobie

      only in the “mind” of some drone useful idiot tool would someone believe that.

    • Mark Edward Noonan September 6, 2011 / 12:03 pm

      Bodie,

      Ok, so let’s take a look – here’s a quote:

      Pandering to fundamentalism is a full-time vocation in the GOP. Beginning in the 1970s, religious cranks ceased simply to be a minor public nuisance in this country and grew into the major element of the Republican rank and file. Pat Robertson’s strong showing in the 1988 Iowa Caucus signaled the gradual merger of politics and religion in the party. The results are all around us: if the American people poll more like Iranians or Nigerians than Europeans or Canadians on questions of evolution versus creationism, scriptural inerrancy, the existence of angels and demons, and so forth, that result is due to the rise of the religious right, its insertion into the public sphere by the Republican Party and the consequent normalizing of formerly reactionary or quaint beliefs. Also around us is a prevailing anti-intellectualism and hostility to science; it is this group that defines “low-information voter” – or, perhaps, “misinformation voter.”

      That is not the opinion of a Republican – that is the opinion of a committed, functionally atheist, anti-Christian leftist. It is an assertion that the left is the “reality-based community” while we bitter-clingers are thinking the world is flat and preparing to burn witches. I can argue against those views and have a fun time doing it, but I won’t be arguing about what is going on in the GOP….because none of those accusations against the GOP are based on reality…70-80% of Americans believe that God had a direct hand in the creation of everything…this ranges from those very few who do believe in creation 6,000 years ago in 6 literal days to those who believe in 6 billion years but assert that the evidence indicates a design in matter which necessarily lead to what we see today…and people who adhere to these varied views are Republicans, Democrats, Independents and what have you…your linked article is not making so much false as absurd accusations…the sort of stupid, not-related-to-reality polemic we’re used to from leftists.

      • Amazona September 6, 2011 / 6:28 pm

        Anyone who has studied yellow journalism and examples of efforts to manipulate emotions instead of simply present facts can tell at a glance that Lofgren’s overheated prose is so much like Bodie’s incessant parading of irrational loathing that there is no other way to look at it other than as an exposition of such deeply held personal opinion that fact is irrelevant.

        When you are looking at an article, or listening to an interview, or watching an interviewer, there are tell-tale words, tones and expressions that let us see whether or not the “journalist” is engaging in objective reportage of facts or trying to sway people to his or her personal viewpoint. Diane Sawyer is a classic example of this. You can tell from her facial expressions—-the Klingon-like deeply furrowed brow, the downturned mouth, the squinted eyes—–and the dramatic lowering of the voice to indicate when she is going to say something that we really need to find ominous, when she is nearing something she feels we need find fearsome or objectionable. The breathless pause before uttering the word “controversial” is a clue that we are supposed to believe that whatever she is about to reveal is seriously disputed, and we should also view it with distrust.

        So when a statement starts with the word “pandering” we start with a blatant clue that the author is not simply reporting, but is venting his own emotions and furthermore trying to sway us to his highly biased point of view. Let’s take another look at that quote: This time let’s highlight the words that indicate bias and even loathing for the subject.

        Pandering to fundamentalism is a full-time vocation in the GOP. Beginning in the 1970s, religious cranks ceased simply to be a minor public nuisance in this country and grew into the major element of the Republican rank and file. Pat Robertson’s strong showing in the 1988 Iowa Caucus signaled the gradual merger of politics and religion in the party. The results are all around us: if the American people poll more like Iranians or Nigerians than Europeans or Canadians on questions of evolution versus creationism, scriptural inerrancy, the existence of angels and demons, and so forth, that result is due to the rise of the religious right, its insertion into the public sphere by the Republican Party and the consequent normalizing of formerly reactionary or quaint beliefs and also grew into the major element of the Republican rank and file ; it is this group that defines “low-information voter” – or, perhaps, “misinformation voter.”

        Those are just the individual words: The sentence structure and compilation of claims are even more blatant. “..a full-time vocation..” , ..grew into THE major element of the Republican rank and file. ..” “…its insertion into the public sphere by the Republican Party …”, “…it is this group that defines “low-information voter” – or, perhaps, “misinformation voter.”

        This is a great quote to study because it contains not one single fact, only a litany of wild-eyed inventions and speculations. Lofgren clearly hates and distrusts people of faith and his bigotry is so prevalent it appears to be the basis of a massive conspiracy complex in which the dreaded and despised people of faith have co-opted the even more reviled Republican Party to create a hybrid monster of unequaled evil and danger.

        Ooooh! Danger, Will Robinson!!!

        Being “unable to confront” the rantings of this paranoid and hate-driven lunatic is hardly the same as indicating that what he says is the truth. There is no way to “confront” insanity and paranoia. The article is a vicious screed of irrational loathing and hatred completely lacking in fact. One man who now claims to have been a “Republican (cue ominous background music….) OPERATIVE !!!” creates a fever swamp of wild-eyed theories and “explanations” and accusations and general screeching hysteria, which can only appeal to the few who share his irrational hatreds, and Bodie, who slurped down this toxic KoolAid with apparent gusto, is fretting because no one will take it seriously.

        I put it in the same category as the reports of Jews piling infants into barrels and then stabbing them through slits and pressing the blood out of them to be used to make matzos for Passover—sick, twisted, vicious rantings of a sick, twisted, vicious mind, which can only impress people of a similar pathology.

        If spook wants to discuss it, fine. I find it beneath contempt and worthy of examination only to illustrate the level to which the Left has had to sink to generate any kind of following at all.

        The GOP has changed, and will continue to change, just as the Democratic Party is in flux as the radical international Left takes it over and the traditional, JFK-style, Democrat is left in the dust. But this strange and bizarre need of such as Lofgren and Bodie to invent and then attach all sorts of wild, weird, convoluted conspiratorial “reasons” for the changes in the GOP is just plain nuts.

        I suggest they spend this energy and passion on learning the truth about the Left instead of frantically pursuing every nutjob anti-Republican theory that comes along.

      • Bodie September 6, 2011 / 7:00 pm

        Wow, all that screeching shows that Lofgren really hit the nail on the head. Great performance, though, Amazona–defensive, hypocritical, wild-eyed, and scattershot.

        And, of course, utterly unable to refute a single point that Lofgren made amidst all that unhinged anger. Go join neocon, Mark, cluster, and spook in the Failure Corner. But thanks for providing a floor show first.

    • tiredoflibbs September 6, 2011 / 12:45 pm

      Jeffy flails: “Yes, Mark, attack the source because you know he speaks the truth. Exactly as I predicted you’d do.”

      Says the drone who routinely attacks the source regardless of the documented truth behind it and of course, jeffy does not provide sources of his own.

      What he SAYS is gospel…..

      Only in jeffy’s land of make believe is what he says and posts true. They are the reasons he loses so often and makes a fool of himself time and again.

      Typical and pathetic.

  10. neocon1 September 5, 2011 / 10:50 pm

    Typical conservative cowardice.

    ROTFLMAO……typical libtard BS is more like it.

  11. dennis September 6, 2011 / 2:03 am

    What does it take to keep you honest here, Mark? Don’t you ever embarrass yourself? Never mind – you don’t have to answer. You’re the king of the sandbox and I already know the answer.

    As for Lofgren’s article I was correct: no fear of anybody here actually reading it for comprehension – it’s so much easier to kick sand. If your side cared that much about objective reality and the nation’s well-being we would be living in a much different set of circumstances now.

    • RetiredSpook September 6, 2011 / 10:10 am

      Dennis,

      What struck me most about the 2 linked articles is the last paragraph of the Washington Monthly review article:

      For much of the American mainstream, there’s very likely an assumption that voters can choose between a center-left party and a center-right party, because this assumption was generally accurate for several generations. It’s past time for the mainstream to realize this is simply no longer true. Those who have any doubts should apparently talk to Mike Lofgren.

      Mike Lofgren clearly sees the desirable power split being between the old “center-Left” Democrat Party and the old “center-Right” Republican Party. The problem with that is that the old center-Left Democrat Party no longer exists. The modern Democrat Party has drifted so far left that it’s in danger of falling off the edge. You know they’re in trouble when the Communist Party USA openly brags about using and controlling the Democrat Party. You know they’re in trouble when Democrat rallies include a litany of Communist and Socialist organizations. No one, and I mean NO ONE in the Democrat Party is attempting to get back their father’s Democrat Party. The GOP, OTOH, IS experiencing a fight between the establishment, which is really nothing more than Progressive light, and a growing, grass-roots force that wants to get back to a constitutional model.

      So you’ve got one side that is in the process of destroying prosperity and limiting freedom, and one side that at least has an element whose main desire is to expand freedom and prosperity. Which model do you want to live under?

  12. Cluster September 6, 2011 / 8:26 am

    I think Bodie, and the linked article is absolutely right. The GOP doesn’t even come to close to having rational and intelligent people like Maxine Waters, DWS, Alan Grayson, Anthony Weiner, Howard Dean, Keith Olberman, Chris Matthews and Clair McCaskill, just too name a few of the rocket scientists on the left side of the aisle.

    • neocon1 September 6, 2011 / 8:59 am

      cluster

      you forgot the A (hole) team.. “stand up” joe, and “bring a gun” barry.

    • Bodie September 6, 2011 / 10:53 am

      So Mark, neocon, and now cluster have failed to respond to the article. Clearly, Lofgren is dead on in what he says, as the conservatives here are doing everything they can to avoid confronting his article.

      • RetiredSpook September 6, 2011 / 11:25 am

        Bodie,

        You apparently missed my response @10:10AM this morning. I realize you like to dwell in old threads where your comments aren’t as likely to be deleted, but perhaps you should ask Mark to do a thread on the Lofgren article. Lofgren does make some valid points, but, by and large, it appears he’s undergone metamorphosis similar to David Brock, except Lofgren has less name recognition. My reaction would be that sh*t happens.

      • RetiredSpook September 6, 2011 / 11:38 am

        BTW, Bodie, by my count, this is your first attempt at serious discussion. Just a friendly tip — you can catch a lot more flies with honey than with vinegar. Instead of posting something like the Lofgren article as a major gotcha, why not post it as basis for serious discussion? I realize that would be diametrically opposed to the persona you present on this blog, but what have you got to lose?

      • tiredoflibbs September 6, 2011 / 12:49 pm

        spook, all jeffy has is gotcha moments….

        …. and very weak ones at that. His extremely rare instance of a “serious discussion” ended when he made the ASSumption that since no one “responded” (but of course it is due to his lack of reading comprehension when several really have) he is proven correct.

        That is his MO. 95% of the time his responses are undocumented and are loading with pure vitriol.

        He is a troll, a drone – nothing more.

      • Bodie September 6, 2011 / 1:10 pm

        No, I saw your response, Spook. My bad for failing to include it in the list of conservatives who failed to respond to the article. After all, whining about the Communist Party and declaring that because you’ve moved far to the right-wing fringe means that “the left” has moved to the fringe doesn’t really address–much less refute–the points of Loftgren’s article, now, does it?

      • Cluster September 6, 2011 / 1:42 pm

        Bodie,

        Lofgren’s piece is an OPINION piece. And we all have opinions, of which I disagree with his, which is the only response needed. Are you familiar with what an opinion is? We all have them, just FYI.

      • Cluster September 6, 2011 / 1:46 pm

        Bodie,

        And in regards to Lofgrens religious assertions, Obama himself has said that his Faith is fundamental to his politics. What’s your opinion on that?

  13. dennis September 6, 2011 / 1:08 pm

    Spook, I also predicted to myself that any response to the article would make a caricature of Lofgren’s thesis and you bear me out this morning. Lofgren obviously is no fan of the Democratic party, however his whole point is that extremists on the right are now doing the greatest damage to our country, not the left. He cites John Judis summing up the GOP as follows:
    “Over the last four decades, the Republican Party has transformed from a loyal opposition into an insurrectionary party that flouts the law when it is in the majority and threatens disorder when it is the minority. It is the party of Watergate and Iran-Contra, but also of the government shutdown in 1995 and the impeachment trial of 1999. If there is an earlier American precedent for today’s Republican Party, it is the antebellum Southern Democrats of John Calhoun who threatened to nullify, or disregard, federal legislation they objected to and who later led the fight to secede from the union over slavery.”

    That’s quite unambiguous. I read nothing in either article about the GOP expanding freedom and prosperity, which seems to be a figment of your imagination, and a mythical Tea Party talking point for defending all the insurrection on the right. Just before the quote you cite from the Washington Monthly, Benin says, “The issue that should dominate the landscape is the radicalization of the modern Republican Party and the effects of having one of two major political parties [that would be the GOP] descend into madness.”

    I read nothing in either article to about how far left the Democratic party has gone, as you suggest. Lofgren says he left politics “because I was appalled at the headlong rush of Republicans, like Gadarene swine, to embrace policies that are deeply damaging to this country’s future; and contemptuous of the feckless, craven incompetence of Democrats in their half-hearted attempts to stop them.”

    Again Lofgren is completely unambiguous in pointing out the Right as the active party in the destruction of America as we know it; the primary fault of the Left seems to be the lack of will or competence stop the GOP in its wanton destructive path. In his footnote 4 he notes, “During the past ten years, I have observed that Democrats are actually growing afraid of Republicans. In a quirky and flawed, but insightful, little book, Democracy and Populism: Fear and Hatred, John Lukacs concludes that the left fears, the right hates.”

    Which gives the lie to Mark’s constant accusations of liberals being “hate-filled”, which I have repeatedly called him on – but I stopped long ago because there is only the merest pretension to a veneer of honesty here on this blog. Lastly I would also note, bearing out Lofgren from his observation above, I saw no entrenched attitude or general movement in Congress during the Bush administration to equal the systematic, open contempt many GOP politicians now make a point of exhibiting to a sitting president. This is a new phenomenon in our time, it is deeply corrosive to public civility and only encourages a breakdown of polity and ultimately of the rule of law.

    • RetiredSpook September 6, 2011 / 1:48 pm

      Dennis,

      Business calls — I don’t have time to address all your points. I’ve asked Matt and/or Mark to devote a thread to Lofgren’s article, because it addresses a number of issues that deserve discussion, and it is a discussion which I relish having. The fact is, however, that, in the last 20 years, David Brock and, to a substantially lesser degree, Mike Lofgren (seriously, who EVER heard of Mike Lofgren prior to this article?), are the only Republicans who have had such a publicly displayed epiphany. If there were a wholesale exodus of Republicans echoing the same theme, you might have a credible argument.

      • Mark Edward Noonan September 6, 2011 / 8:52 pm

        Spook,

        I have a KofC meeting (with all the other bitter-clingers, ya dig?) but I’ll put up such a thread ASAP – possibly for tomorrow morning.

  14. dennis September 6, 2011 / 2:16 pm

    Mark, you cite Lofgren saying “Also around us is a prevailing anti-intellectualism and hostility to science; it is this group that defines ‘low-information voter’ – or, perhaps, ‘misinformation voter.'”

    Then you comment: “That is not the opinion of a Republican – that is the opinion of a committed, functionally atheist, anti-Christian leftist. It is an assertion that the left is the ‘reality-based community’ while we bitter-clingers are thinking the world is flat and preparing to burn witches…”

    That is an incredible accusation – are you really saying Lofgren is a committed leftist? For you to conclude the “linked article is not making so much false as absurd accusations… the sort of stupid, not-related-to-reality polemic we’re used to from leftists” is worse than throwing out the baby with the bathwater – you’re using one detail (creationism) where Lofgren may indeed be wrong to excuse dismissing the entire premise of his article, which addresses an entirely different issue. This is a facile and intellectually dishonest ploy whereby you avoid any kind of responsibility to grapple with difficult realities.

    As a biblical Christian and a creationist with published articles on the topic dating from before the worldwide web, I wholly agree with Lofgren’s overall conclusions, even while reserving a particular disagreement with his presumption of evolution. This is how critical thinking works. The pervasiveness of evolutionary belief does not render every person who holds it to be an idiot, worthy of dismissal on any other matter in which we happen to disagree. The field of “science” covers a vast number of disciplines and even if nobody has proven the existence of the Higgs boson we still are capable of putting people on the moon.

    You can’t simply dismiss everyone who disagrees with you as an extremist, anti-Christian leftist. As I have pointed out before, much of the opposition to “Christianity” is not in fact a hostility to Christ or his teachings, but rather to the simulacrum of Christianity that has been made by hard right evangelicals. It is the co-mingling of their brand of fundamentalism with politics, which rightfully should scare anyone who loves liberty and respects freedom of conscience.

    • Bodie September 6, 2011 / 7:02 pm

      “You can’t simply dismiss everyone who disagrees with you as an extremist, anti-Christian leftist. ”

      Well, yes and no. On this site he can, which is why he labors so heavily to keep that nasty reality from intruding.

      But out in the real world? No, he can’t. He’ll just get laughed at, if not outright ignored. Little wonder, then, that Mark seldom leaves his protective bubble.

    • Mark Edward Noonan September 6, 2011 / 9:03 pm

      Dennis,

      That was just one example – but each of his assertions are entirely kook leftist in nature. There is nothing in Lofgren’s article to indicate a one-time adherence to even moderate GOP views…the sort of GOP views which would get you a kind word from the NY Times, that is. In other words, compared to him Arlen Specter is a rock-ribbed conservative.

      • dennis September 6, 2011 / 11:59 pm

        I get the distinct feeling that Dwight Eisenhower would also be a kook leftist in your personal political spectrum.

  15. dennis September 6, 2011 / 3:31 pm

    Spook, you say “by and large, it appears he’s undergone metamorphosis similar to David Brock, except Lofgren has less name recognition.” Lofgren anticipated your response and pre-empted it near the end of his article:

    “It is not in my pragmatic nature to make a heroic gesture of self-immolation, or to make lurid revelations of personal martyrdom in the manner of David Brock. And I will leave a more detailed dissection of failed Republican economic policies to my fellow apostate Bruce Bartlett. I left because I was appalled at the headlong rush of Republicans, like Gadarene swine, to embrace policies that are deeply damaging to this country’s future; and contemptuous of the feckless, craven incompetence of Democrats in their half-hearted attempts to stop them. And, in truth, I left as an act of rational self-interest…”

    You also seem to feel both Lofgren’s anonymity and his maverick status argue against his credibility, as if a relatively unknown staffer with a contrarian view simply can’t be smart enough to be correct on this. “If there were a wholesale exodus of Republicans echoing the same theme, you might have a credible argument.”

    This presumes majority opinion as being more or less infallible, or at least the best measure of credibility. I’ve never believed that to be true, as mass delusions and hysterias have occurred throughout history. With considerable assist from the “rabidly ideological talk radio and cable TV political propaganda arm” of the GOP identified by Lofgren, what we’re seeing now is essentially another period of delusion overwhelming public opinion – at least within one of our major parties.

    Yale psychology professor Geoffrey Cohen observed in a controlled study that both liberals and conservatives tend to follow their parties, even when their parties disagree with their own ideas. “When reference group information was available, participants gave no weight to objective policy content, and instead assumed the position of their group as their own. This effect was as strong among people who were knowledgeable… as it was among people who were not. Finally, participants persisted in the belief that they had formed their attitude autonomously even in the two group information conditions where they had not.” see https://eee.uci.edu/10s/55550/home/Cohen+2003.pdf

    So now, during an extremely bad economy, the Republican Party has completely abandoned their historical position that stimulus spending generally assists economic recovery. They now talk of things that have no historical record of helping recovery, but focus on deficit reduction and cutting regulations because that’s the party line. The majority, at least within the GOP on Capitol Hill, is wrong and Lofgren sees it. There will be no wholesale exodus of Republicans along with him, because most are swept up in the delusion.

    • Amazona September 6, 2011 / 6:21 pm

      Here is an excellent example of a blatant lie. Or several.

      “So now, during an extremely bad economy, the Republican Party has completely abandoned their historical position that stimulus spending generally assists economic recovery.”

      Oh, really? Republicans have a historical record of supporting government intervention in the economy? And just how far back does this “historical position” go? What utter crap.

      There has been strong opposition within the Republican Party to every single government “stimulus” effort. Try learning a little real history for a change instead of just spouting Leftist claptrap. Or, if you are so sure that “..the Republican Party ..” HAD a “….historical position that stimulus spending generally assists economic recovery.” then cite it, quote it, and don’t just claim it.

      True, the GOP as a party has not always been as true to the Constitution as we might like. There have been wobblers, though not as examples of the party itself. But why focus on a philosophy which no longer defines any part of the party? Do you have a Way-Back Machine that will let you change history? What do the past mistakes of the GOP have to do with the efforts of the Republican Party TODAY, and the conservative movement that is pushing it? You make as much sense as someone would who insisted we should not buy Fords today because of the Pinto debacle.

      This is what you Lefties do—instead of arguing what is relevant, which is the actual policies and ideas and realities of the current movement, you try to shift the focus to people who are no longer in government or even alive, to policies of the past you can now redefine, and to general irrelevancies.

      I would not care what the Republican Party actually DID stand for, back when, if today, in 2011, it is the best alternative to the galloping Leftism represented by the Democrat Party. Even if you could support your wild-eyed claims, that was then and this is now. A pragmatic examination of our two-party system and the reality of getting a whole new third party in play in time to derail the Marxist locomotive of the Obama administration simply says that we have to grab hold of the GOP and make it, as much as possible, a true Constitutional party.

      “They now talk of things that have no historical record of helping recovery, but focus on deficit reduction and cutting regulations because that’s the party line. ”

      Again, utter claptrap. There IS a historical record of “helping recovery” but the Left doesn’t like it because it involved stepping out of the way of the recovery instead of trying to engineer it. And the “things” that HAVE helped recovery are, and always have been, relaxing of too-stringent regulations, lowering of taxes, and lessening government interference.

      As for your whine about deficit reduction, two things:

      1. When you and your kind had the Bush deficit to squeal about, his measly deficit was the end-all and be-all of all political thought and economic growth, To hear you guys carry on, there was never and could never be anything as significant as this deficit. So stop being so hypocritical.

      2. If you truly do not understand the role of debt and deficit in an economy, well, that explains your stupid posts.

      • Bodie September 6, 2011 / 7:03 pm

        “wild-eyed claims”

        “the Marxist locomotive of the Obama administration”

        Let’s just enjoy the utter lack of self-awareness the above two quotes illustrate.

        OK, go ahead and do your banshee impersonation, Amazona.

    • Bodie September 6, 2011 / 6:54 pm

      “There has been strong opposition within the Republican Party to every single government “stimulus” effort. ”

      Nice lie, Amazona. Not that honesty has ever been your calling card.

    • Mark Edward Noonan September 6, 2011 / 9:00 pm

      Dennis,

      While I’m sure you can find the odd quote or two from GOPers through history arguing that government spending is useful, I doubt you’ll find anything which indicates that the GOP, as a party, has ever held to such thinking. Part of the reason that Hoover was so badly crushed by FDR is that a good portion of the GOP base was dismayed at Hoover’s deficit spending to stimulate the economy…and FDR ran on a balanced budget platform.

      The GOP has never held that government spending can directly help the economy…though we have long been a party in favor of internal improvements to facilitate the movement of people and goods (so way back when we advocated canals and rail road construction…and Ike’s advocacy of the Interstate highway system was just in keeping with GOP traditions). We never held to the Keynesian idea that spending, of any sort, is good no matter what it is spent on, and no matter how the money was obtained.

      As it stands now, even if you were a GOPer in favor of Obama’s stimulus spending (and there were some), the facts of the past two years prove that it doesn’t work…so anyone leaving the GOP over our opposition to more stimulus is, in plain words, being quite a thick-skulled fool.

  16. dennis September 6, 2011 / 10:05 pm

    Amazona and Mark, we haven’t had an extremely bad economy many times; the references I made were primarily with the Bush stimulus in mind and the huge spending (WW2) that ended the Great Depression. Both of these were significant historical precedents for economic recovery after a disastrous economy. I misspoke in attributing the position to Republicans particularly; spending for economic recovery is a general axiom rather than a Republican doctrine. But that was not my main point, it was tangential and hardly negates the larger points made by Lofgren.

    Both of you select his comment on the GOP’s pandering to fundamentalism to attempt to discredit him. May I suggest Ama you also read my reply to Mark at http://tinyurl.com/3zonbm6

    In fact Lofgren nails it. What he recognizes, whether he’s religious or not, is the huge chasm between the modern religious Right and the historical Christian faith tradition. A lot of what calls itself Christianity now is a political movement using the guise of religion to extend its influence and social appeal. It is quite literally religion that has gone over to the dark side. It rejects Christ’s teachings and values (those things I regard as the very essence of Christianity) and instead favors a punitive and selective reading of Old Testament traditions by which it justifies all sorts of worldly ambitions, many of which are in fact opposed to Christ’s teachings.

    This right-wing politicized evangelicalism has somewhat in common with the authoritarianism of medieval Catholicism, especially in its attempts to combine church and state. However it is not the Christianity anyone could derive from a plain reading of the Gospels or the theology of the New Testament. To say Lofgren “clearly hates” people of faith on the basis of this article is hate speech of all its own kind.

    • dennis September 6, 2011 / 11:50 pm

      Sorry, I meant WW1 – more fodder for you to mock your opponents, although it’s not as if I didn’t know which one came first.

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