Archive for: May, 2010

Progressive Women Must Unite in Support of International Violence Against Women Act

May 29 2010 Published by under Issues, U.S. Senate

International Violence Against Women Act

The World Health Organization just released appalling statistics on domestic violence against women. The ten country study included: Bangladesh, Brazil, Ethiopia, Japan, Peru, Namibia, Samoa, Serbia and Montenegro, Thailand and the United Republic of Tanzania. The report concludes that violence against women is widespread. Amnesty International is urging Americans to support the International Violence Against Women Act in response to these horrifying statistics.

Amnesty International Fights Violence Against Women

Although the WHO study doesn’t include the US, the incidence of domestic violence and intimate partner violence in this “free land” are chilling. On average, more than three women and one man are murdered by their intimate partners in this country every day. In 2000, 1,247 women were killed by an intimate partner. The same year, 440 men were killed by an intimate partner. Intimate partner homicides accounted for 30% of the murders of women and 5% percent of the murders of men. *

Over two-thirds of violent victimizations against women were committed by someone known to them: 31% of female victims reported that the offender was a stranger. Approximately 28% were intimates such as husbands or boyfriends, 35% were acquaintances, and the remaining 5% were other relatives. (In contrast, victimizations by intimates and other relatives accounted for only 5% of all violent victimizations against men. Men were significantly more likely to have been victimized by acquaintances (50%) or strangers (44%) than by intimates or other relatives.) **

And contrary to popular notions, domestic violence also occurs often against well-educated, well-to-do women — as written about by Susan Weitzman in her book “Not to People Like Us”: Hidden Abuse in Upscale Marriages.” As a country that highly values personal liberty, these kinds of statistics are quite simply unacceptable. Although we like to think of America as a nation of the free, there are hundreds of thousands of women in this country who are not free. We can’t solve this problem in our own country — imagine how bad it is in countries that do not have all of our resources.

The WHO study reveals:

– Between 15% and 71% of women reported physical or sexual violence by a husband or partner.

– Many women said that their first sexual experience was not consensual. (24% in rural Peru, 28% in Tanzania, 30% in rural Bangladesh, and 40% in South Africa).

– Between 4% and 12% of women reported being physically abused during pregnancy.

– Every year, about 5,000 women are murdered by family members in the name of honour each year worldwide

– Worldwide, up to one in five women and one in 10 men report experiencing sexual abuse as children. Children subjected to sexual abuse are much more likely to encounter other forms of abuse later in life.

Violence against women is the result of a power over and power under structure. It’s the result of patriarchy maintaining its power and control, using economic, physical, and emotional weapons to do so. I can’t help but wonder why we, one of the richest countries in the world, continue to look the other way as our own women are murdered every day, let alone women around the world. Domestic violence is so ingrained in our culture, people barely bat an eye. When Rhianna was beaten up to Chris Brown, it was only days before the headlines were “Why did she stay?” instead of “Why did he beat her?”.

The attitudes about violence toward women are neanderthal-esque here, we’re still stuck in the “are you sure this isn’t her fault, after all, they were fighting” stage. There are countries where this is not tolerated and where a man is shunned for this kind of thing. It would be really great if this country could evolve to that point one day. But I digress.

Domestic violence is the result of the same patriarchal, authoritarian power structure best represented in this country by the old boys club of the current Republican Party, which fights to maintain the status quo of white male privilege. Now, if those white males respected and honored women and minorities, we wouldn’t have a problem necessarily. But while they give lip service to those ideas, their main concern is keeping other groups down so they can stay up. But the Republican Party isn’t in power right now (as evidenced by the never-ending shrieking and cries for special prosecutors to impeach the Democratic President). Perhaps we can push forward with legislation to better protect women and children here and all over the world.

According to Amnesty International’s website, “The International Violence Against Women Act (I-VAWA) is the first comprehensive piece of legislation in the United States aimed at ending violence against women and girls around the world. It would improve our government’s response when women are victims of sex trafficking and rape during war and would provide aid to women’s groups on the ground working to help survivors of domestic and sexual violence.”

Your representatives need to hear from you if you support this legislation. This is the kind of legislation we can hope to get passed with a Democratic majority. Our Vice President has long stood up for women’s rights. If not now, then when?

We need to make our voices heard on this issue. We can’t afford to be silent.

The violence aimed at women in this country and around the world is unacceptable. Please join me in standing up for your sisters around the globe.

ENOUGH.

*Bureau of Justice Statistics Crime Data Brief, Intimate Partner Violence, 1993-2001, February 2003. Bureau of Justice Statistics, Intimate Partner Violence in the U.S. 1993-2004, 2006.

**Ronet Bachman Ph.D., U.S. Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics, “Violence Against Women: A National Crime Victimization Survey Report,” January 1994, p. 1

7 responses so far

Sarah Palin’s Fence of Oil Email Obstruction

May 28 2010 Published by under Issues, Republican Party

Sarah Palin’s Many Fences of Obstruction: She Can Run but She Can’t Hide

Sarah Palin's Obstruction of Transparency

Sarah Palin is all the news for the fence on top of a fence she built to protect herself from the prying eyes of a stalker—or, as we say in reality, a highly respected investigative journalist. The fence nailed to another fence is the perfect analogy to Palin’s modus operandi: Palin lives in fear of exposure and has been known even as a Mayor for her press black-outs, obstruction of transparency and lack of accountability to the people. She continued such tactics as governor of Alaska. The AP requested emails under the Alaska Public Records Act (Freedom of Information Act request) from the Palin administration over a year and a half ago were just released recently, serving as a perfect example of Palin’s secretive nature .

In 2008, the AP attempted to do their job as journalists to inform the people about a candidate who was running for Vice President and was an unknown to the lower 48. They, along with several other media outlets such as MSNBC, put in a Freedom of Information Request for Palin administration emails. In the AP’s case, the request centered on the pipeline project Palin touted as a major accomplishment.

Of course, those of us who researched Palin knew that the pipeline had actually not been built, contrary to Palin’s less than accurate claims on the campaign trail. And not only had it not been built, but it seemed highly unlikely that it would ever be built. If Palin was so proud of this achievement, why did her administration block the release of the pertinent emails for almost two years? The AP reports:

The correspondence is contained in more than 2,000 pages of e-mails between Palin’s office and others surrounding the pipeline process. The e-mails were released to The Associated Press this week under a public records request filed in 2008, when Palin was the Republican vice presidential nominee. Palin resigned as governor last year.”

The emails that were released reveal a possible synching of messaging with the firm who won the contract for the Pipeline as well as revealing that Palin may have had inappropriate contact with the executives at TransCanada:

“The documents also illustrate some of the contacts between the administration and TransCanada.

Marty Rutherford, a Palin point person on the pipeline team, chided a TransCanada vice president in an Aug. 4, 2008, e-mail for comments the company’s chief executive made about the project requiring the involvement of Exxon Mobil Corp., a company that’s had a bitter history in Alaska.

“We need to ensure that comments about the Producers are scripted in the future,” Rutherford wrote to Tony Palmer, TransCanada’s vice president for Alaska Development.

Palmer responded that he understood the state and TransCanada should be coordinated “to the best of our ability” and would try to sensitize TransCanada to “that requirement.””

This is, of course, unseemly and in light of Palin’s recent accusations that Obama is in bed with BP (those BP donations were actually all from employees, but we know Palin doesn’t vet or research before she accuses or endorses, hello speech stealer) is simply indicative of the tendency for Palin to confess via accusation.

The AP story is a must read for anyone interested in just how deeply Sarah Palin was “in bed with big oil”. I mean, aside from literally sleeping with Todd Palin, himself a producer and unregistered lobbyist. Alaskans have some very interesting stories about Todd Palin’s role in all of this, but until that story comes out, the question that can and should be asked now is why is the media allowing Palin to get away with such blatant manipulation and avoidance of transparency?

Why are these emails just being released now? They were requested in 2008 — back when Sarah Palin was running for the second highest office in the land, and the people in the lower 48 knew nothing about her. This is called transparency blocking and it is not an American value. Not even in Real America.

The Alaska Public Records Law (APRA) is a series of laws designed to guarantee that the public has access to public records of government bodies at all levels in Alaska. “Statutes 40.25.100 – 40.25.125 of the Alaska legislature define the law. As recently as 2003, the Alaskan Supreme Court said that access to public records is “a fundamental right” (see Fuller v. City of Homer). In January of 2009, the Alaska Democratic Party said the state’s repeated delays in providing public records it has asked for involving then Gov Palin were “excessive and unwarranted.” The state notified the Democrats … that it would likely need until the end of March if not longer to provide records first requested more than four months ago, on Sept. 22, during the heat of the presidential campaign when Palin was the Republican Party’s vice presidential candidate.”

But apparently the state needed longer than that.

And this wasn’t a one-off or even a three-off problem, it was a predictable trend. After having a request for over 1,000 emails denied by the Palin administration that cited “executive privilege”, Andree McLeod (Republican who filed several of the ethics complaints against Palin) sued for access to the emails. In October of 2008, the Anchorage Superior Court ordered the Palin administration to preserve all emails dating back to December 4, 2006. They were also ordered to retrieve emails and attachments from Yahoo and other private emails accounts that were used to conduct state business. Palin had two accounts with Yahoo and at least one other private account. We still don’t know if these records were in fact saved as ordered.

Back to the AP emails:

The AP requested different groups of e-mails, including from June 1, 2007, and Dec. 1, 2007, to cover the submission period for companies vying for the pipeline contract. Only one, dated Nov. 30, 2007, was apparently included. Public records officer Linda Perez said she would look into why other e-mails weren’t included.

E-mails released run into late 2008.

The governor’s office also released a 72-page log detailing e-mails it was withholding for what it described as reasons including attorney-client or executive privilege. Subject lines on those e-mails included “Messaging/Strategy,” “Myth Busting,” and “Bad News.””

So, after a year and half, we are supposed to believe the administration just left out the emails from June 07-Dec 07 during the submission period. They’re going to “look into” why they weren’t included. No reason was given, apparently, but we were treated to a reason for the redaction of other emails. Apparently in this new “democracy”, “messaging” and “myth busting” are now protected by executive privilege. I know, you thought that was only for Dick Cheney. Palin and Dick have never seen an obstruction to transparency they didn’t embrace. Information is not for the people. The rabble.

In case you were wondering, the Alaska Public Records Act states no specific time for completing FOIA requests but states they will be completed: “….’as soon as practicable’ but no later than the tenth working day after receiving a proper request”. Tenth working DAY. Not month or year. DAY. The Palin administration is either exceptionally incompetent or they are deliberately obstructing the very law that protects citizens via transparency. Or they are both incompetent and obstructionist.

The thing about a Presidential run is that the media will have time to vet Sarah, and you can bet Mitt Romney has the goods on her, as many of the McCain people are with Romney now. They know where the bodies are buried. Sarah can run. But she can’t hide. Even behind that fence.

10 responses so far

Fox Floats A New Conspiracy Theory That Obama Let the Gulf Oil Leak Happen

May 27 2010 Published by under Featured News

A brand new Obama/oil leak conspiracy theory is making the rounds courtesy of Fox News and Fox Business. The network is alleging that Obama intentionally let the oil leak so that he could ban offshore drilling. Eric Bolling said, “Are you sure they didn’t let it leak so he could renege on his promise to, to, to allow some offshore drilling?”

Here is the video of Eric Bolling on Fox Business courtesy of Media Matters:

Bolling floated his conspiracy theory to Alan Comes that Obama didn’t really want to stop the leak, “Let me ask you this, alright, Alan, day one. That leak came and BP said there’s about 42,000 gallons — 1,000 barrels a day were leaking. About day nine, they said, you know, it looks like it’s going to be 5,000 barrels per day, 210,000 gallons. Today, day 38, we find it’s likely a million gallons a day. Had the Obama administration gone in there, sent the Army Corps of Engineers into that hole, into that — the, the, the dig, and find out that there’s a million gallons a day, and BP had no way of stopping this, they may have started then, not day 38.”

He then asked Colmes, “Are you sure they didn’t let it leak so he could renege on his promise to, to, to allow some offshore drilling?” Colmes responded by mocking Bolling for going all black helicopter, “Oh, that’s what — it’s a big conspiracy. Hey, there’s a black helicopter. Yeah, it’s all about reneging on a permit, that’s right.”

Bolling was also on Fox News floating the same theory with Neal Cavuto:

Cavuto said, “I don’t want to sound too jaded or cynical, but do you think a lot of this was baked into the energy cake? I don’t know. This accident happened as horrific as it was and is, and it provided a very good excuse to just say no, no to drill baby drill.” In case you don’t understand the conspiracy theory, here it is. After supporting expanding offshore drilling since the 2008 presidential campaign, and announcing an expansion of offshore drilling recently, suddenly, Obama changed his mind, and when the explosion occurred in the Gulf, he saw his chance to go back on his word and get rid of offshore drilling.

Like most conspiracy theories, this one when closely examined makes no sense. Obama announced at the beginning of April an expansion of offshore drilling, so why would he suddenly change his mind? The President of the United States doesn’t need a disaster in the Gulf to change his position offshore drilling, and the idea that Obama would let the Gulf Coast be ruined so that he could reverse course on a policy decision is absurd. The only people dumber than these conspiracy theories are the people on Fox News who are advancing them. This one has no logic, no merit, and it makes no sense.

11 responses so far

Keith Olbermann Highlights Real American Palin’s 350 Acre “Swimming Hole”

May 26 2010 Published by under Featured News

On his MSNBC program Countdown, Keith Olbermann, while discussing Sarah Palin’s latest paranoid freak out over getting a new next door neighbor in Joe McGinnis mentioned that what Palin considers the family “swimming hole” is really a 350 acre lake, with public access, because you know all real Americans have a lake in the back yard for swimming.

Here is the video via MSNBC:

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Palin made it sound like she is living in typical small town America, “Yes, that Joe McGinniss. Here he is – about 15 feet away on the neighbor’s rented deck overlooking my children’s play area and my kitchen window. Maybe we’ll welcome him with a homemade blueberry pie tomorrow so he’ll know how friendly Alaskans are.”

She continued, “We found out the good news today. Upon my family’s return this morning from endorsement rallies and speeches in the Lower 48 states, I finally got the chance to tackle my garden and lawn this evening! So, putting on the shorts and tank top to catch that too-brief northern summer sun and placing a giddy Trig in his toddler backpack for a lawn-mowing adventure, I looked up in surprise to see a “new neighbor” overlooking my property just a stone’s throw away. Needless to say, our outdoor adventure ended quickly after Todd went to introduce himself to the stranger who was peering in…I wonder what kind of material he’ll gather while overlooking Piper’s bedroom, my little garden, and the family’s swimming hole?”

Most of the good stuff in this segment came from The Washington Post’s David Weigel, who pointed out that once again Palin was using her kids as human shields, “He’s never mentioned the kids. This is of a few instances where Palin has taken a personal attack, or not a personal attack, a political attack, a biographer attack, a journalist’s investigation, and claims that it is an insult to her kids. This happened with David Letterman that David Letterman who made a joke about Bristol Palin, who’s a bit of a public figure. She’s a spokesperson for abstinence, and Palin claimed, despite what Letterman was saying. He was making a joke about another kid. Everyone is after her kids…When she starts attacking, if you try to attack back, she throws up this defensive shield, and in this case it involved I think being incredibly unfair and a bit slanderous to someone.”

Weigel went to say that Palin needs to learn to take it when journalists are investigating her, and he called her more of a celebrity than a political figure. He was mystified by Palin’s consistent need to get involved in these personal political feuds and insults, but the answer isn’t really all that elusive. Sarah Palin has built her career on playing the victim. Her celebrity and fame must be constantly fed with more victimization. This is Palin’s way of mobilizing her base for her presidential run, while also preemptively striking to discredit anything that the McGinnis book might reveal.

I think that Weigel’s discussion of Palin’s habit of using her children as human shields was first for someone in the national media. Sarah Palin’s children alternate between being political props and human shields. She uses her children to generate sympathy in her never ending quest for victimization.

Weigel has in the past been incredibly favorable towards Palin, and if even he is growing tired of her games, then I can’t help but wonder what would happen to Palin if the national media started ignoring her desperate pleas for attention. Palin may rant about the “lamestream media” but without the media, she would still be nobody in Alaska. Palin needs the media and the spotlight. She has no ideas to offer and is disinteresting in putting in the effort needed to become a serious political figure, so her right wing bubble gum fame is all she has.

Palin the millionaire who lives in a compound is selling a Middle American fantasy that about as real as her description of the family swimming hole. Unless only millionaires are real Americans, Palin has as much in common with real America as her family swimming hole does with a backyard swimming pool. As usual, those pesky facts get in the way of what Sarah is selling.

22 responses so far

Fox News Threatens Sarah Palin Book Author Joe McGinniss

May 26 2010 Published by under Featured News

Palin and Fox News try to intimidate Joe McGinniss

Fox News issued a warning and a thinly veiled threat to investigative journalist and author Joe McGinniss, who is writing a book about Sarah Palin, Alaska, and the oil industry. On Fox and Friends today, Steve Doocy said, “Mr. McGinniss, if you’re watching right now, I would be very careful wearing hats out there because in the wrong hat, in the wrong light, could appear to be antlers.”

Here is the video courtesy of Media Matters:

Doocy said of McGinniss moving next door to Palin, “You know there are a lot of people on the political left who she absolutely drives nuts. He obviously is a guy who’s got an agenda. He’s writing a book to that effect, but Mr. McGinniss if you’re watching right now, I would be very careful wearing hats out there, but in the wrong hat, in the wrong light, could appear to be antlers. It could be perilous out there in Wasilla.”

If you are not aware of the story, yesterday, Sarah Palin took to her Facebook page and unleashed a paranoid rant about Joe McGinniss renting the house next door to her. Palin wrote, “Joe announced to Todd that he’s moved in right next door to us. He’s rented the place for the next five months or so. He moved up all the way from Massachusetts to live right next to us – while he writes a book about me. Knowing of his many other scathing pieces of “journalism” (including the bizarre anti-Palin administration oil development pieces that resulted in my Department of Natural Resources announcing that his work is the most twisted energy-related yellow journalism they’d ever encountered), we’re sure to have a doozey to look forward to with this treasure he’s penning. Wonder what kind of material he’ll gather while overlooking Piper’s bedroom, my little garden, and the family’s swimming hole?”

She continued, “Welcome, Joe! It’ll be a great summer – come borrow a cup of sugar if ever you need some sweetener. And you know what they say about “fences make for good neighbors”? Well, we’ll get started on that tall fence tomorrow, and I’ll try to keep Trig’s squeals down to a quiet giggle so we don’t disturb your peaceful summer. Enjoy!” She also accused McGinniss of spying on her. If you thought this story couldn’t get any stranger, now we have Fox News issuing not so veiled threats to McGinniss on the air.

Fox News is obviously serious about protecting their investment in their chosen 2012 Republican presidential candidate, but a threat against the life of a journalist is a new low even for them. Anyone who doubts whether or not Palin is running for president in 2012 needs to wake up now, she is running, and she is so desperate to keep damning, career ruining information about her and the oil industry out of the news, that she had her bosses at Fox turn up the heat on Joe McGinniss. If she has nothing to hide then why are she so paranoid and Fox News so threatening?

Sarah Palin has a lot to hide, and there has been a great deal of money invested in her, so the only surprising thing about the behavior of Fox News is that they issued the threat/warning so obviously on the air. Palin is trying squash McGinniss and his book, and a quick look at her sketchy past in Alaska provides lots of possible clues why. Palin and FNC can’t stop every journalist and every book. Eventually, the truth will come out. The microscope of a presidential candidacy is too intense, and the campaigns are too long for the truth to stay hidden forever. If Joe McGinniss doesn’t uncover the truth, someone else certainly will.

136 responses so far

Poll: Only 2% of Democrats and 22% of Independents Support the Tea Party

May 26 2010 Published by under Featured News

Weren't you guys the Moral Majority in the 1980s?

The latest CBS News poll contained some interesting information about who supports the Tea Party movement. Contrary to what Tea Partiers claim, their movement is not bi-partisan. Of the 20% who considered themselves Tea Party supporters, 36% were Republicans, 18% were Independents, and only 2% were Democrats, so much for that organic bi-partisan movement to take back America. The Tea Party is really nothing more than the same old white Republicans.

Respondents to the CBS Poll were divided in their opinion of the
Tea Party. 22% had a positive opinion, 20% had a negative opinion, 21% were undecided, and 36% didn’t know enough about the Tea Party. When support was broken down by party affiliation, 44% of Republicans, 22% of Independents, and 2% of Democrats had a favorable opinion of them. Forty percent of Democrats, 14% of Independents, and only 5% of Republicans held an unfavorable view of the Tea Party.

Only 20% of Americans identified themselves as Tea Party supporters, but 59% responded that they did not support them. Republicans were split almost evenly on the Tea Party, as 39% supported it, and 36% didn’t. Independents were against the Tea Party by an almost 3 to 1 margin, 58%-21%, and Democrats were almost universally against the Tea Party, 80% did not support, 2% did. Not surprisingly, 55% of Tea Party supporters were angry at Washington. It is here that I wish the poll would have dived a little deeper. It would be interesting to see what issues they are most upset about, because their cause de jour seems to change by the moment.

A picture of the Tea Party is taking shape, and it is not the one that Tea Party leaders like Sarah Palin are out there selling. This is not an organic non-partisan movement. They are a far right splinter group of Republicans who are looking to assume control of the GOP. They aren’t new people. In the 1960’s they were the radical right. In the 1980’s, they were Jerry Falwell’s Moral Majority. In the 1990s they were the culture warriors, and after the Clinton scandal family values conservatives. In the 2000s they became social conservatives, and in 2009-2010, they are the Tea Party.

While the original Tea Party movement was started by Libertarians who supported Ron Paul in 2008, they have been pushed out and replaced by Sarah Palin and the far right. The split within the GOP on support for the Tea Party is evidence of the battle that is going on for the ideological soul of the GOP. Anyone who thinks the Tea Party movement is sustainable over the long term is kidding themselves.

This is a movement based on right wing anger, and once the anger fades away, so will the Tea Party. Even after they are gone, the far right will be back in a few years, dressed up with a new name and spouting the same extremist political views. They will be back trying sell the same views that have been rejected for decades, and they will claim to be bi-partisan organic, and new, but it will really be the same white sponsors, with the same white faces, advocating the same old politics.

3 responses so far

Sarah Palin and Nikki Haley’s Right Wing Persecution Complex

May 25 2010 Published by under Featured News, Issues, Republican Party

Sarah Palin took to her Facebook page to defend yet another persecuted Christian (aka, Tea Party favorite) in South Carolina, Nikki Haley. Haley is the front-runner in the Republican primary for Governor of South Carolina and she has been accused of having an affair with a staffer by said staffer who recently announced the affair on his blog. In reality, this isn’t persecution, this is politics.

Sarah Palin Smugging Up Her Endorsement of Tea Party fav Haley

The irony of this scandal is that its origin comes from the patriarchal values and inherent hypocrisy of both extremist Christianity and the current Republican Party. It’s a scandal steeped in faux-feminism and dirty Southern Republican politics. Palin claims the origin of the accusation is “the opposition”, which is as disingenuous and inaccurate as almost everything that comes out of Palin’s mouth.

Sarah Palin’s Facebook Note: “Nikki Haley in Opposition’s Crosshairs: a Good Sign for Nikki and South Carolina!

Well, whaddya know? South Carolina’s conservative candidate, Nikki Haley, recently zipped to the front of the line in her state’s race for governor; and lo and behold, now accusations of an affair surface….

When Nikki and I held her endorsement rally on the steps of the beautiful and historic South Carolina state house a few weeks ago, I warned her and her family that she would be targeted because she’s a threat to a corrupt political machine, and she would be put through some hell. That, unfortunately, is the nature of the beast in politics today – especially for conservative “underdog” candidates who surge in the polls and threaten to shake things up so government can be put back on the side of the people…

The accuser, Will Folks, is a Libertarian Republican who not only worked for the current Governor Sanford as a spokesperson but has also done PR work for Mrs. Haley. How exactly is he the opposition? Folks claims the relationship took place when he worked for Haley in 2007. And how is he “some blogger”? He writes a blog called “Faith in the Sound”, a conservative blog that according to the Guardian UK:

“…features occasionally insightful commentary, thinly sourced stories of state political intrigue and photos of women in bikinis.” Oh, my. Misogynist much? The Guardian goes on to describe “His website refers to him as “Sic Willie,” sports the tag line “Unfair. Imbalanced,” and often promotes Haley’s campaign. Besides running his website, Folks has worked on several successful political campaigns.” In other words, he runs a website comprised of a veritable patriarchal feast: conservative news combined with cheesecake porn and alpha male sports, topped off with steroidal puffed up egotism and proud ignorance. In other words, the current conservative platform.

Haley is certainly no “underdog”, she was the front-runner in this race and a conservative in Red South Carolina. This is just more of Sarah Palin’s fantasy world where she and Carrie Prejean (masturbation video queen) are victims of a cruel world, who have to carry a heavy wooden cross nailed to their backs as they faithfully carry on in the name of their co-opted Jesus.

An added twist in this story is that Folks pled guilty to domestic abuse in 2005 when he kicked in a door and pushed his then fiancé. It’s worth noting here that the very same patriarchal “values” which are the tenets of the Republican authoritarian platform, enable violence against women who are second-class citizens in their world-view. It’s as if everything Palin stands for empowered this accusation to be leveled at Haley.

It would be unfair to suggest that accusations of infidelity don’t smear male candidates, as Haley certainly knows from watching her mentor Gov Sanford go through the public Crucifiction (but ultimate pardon from the old boys network of the Southern Republican party who did not impeach him after his Argentinian hike, but slapped him on the wrist). In fact, when Haley was asked about his affair in a debate, she hypocritically stated, “We need to keep the Lord close, we need to keep our family close, we need to keep our friends close. And we need to make sure we are never put in those situations so that that can happen.”

The only bonus for her is that she is not being charged with sexual harassment, which she most certainly would be were she a man, as Folks worked for her. I’m sure Palin remembers her ranty rants about David Letterman, no?

For those of you unfamiliar with the South, to be a far right Republican Christian in the South is different than the rest of the country. It’s not doubling down but tripling down on rigid gender stereotypes. See, Haley stands for the same things Palin does, which are not values that promote freedom and liberty for women, but rather keep women oppressed. Haley has been given a 100% rating by LIFEPAC, the South Carolina Citizens for Life political PAC, an anti-choice group that claims to protect the “pre-born” from euthanasia.

A true feminist would not be running on a Republican Christian ticket. The Republican party has been grooming women like Haley and Palin to be sexy Uncle Toms — ultimate betrayers of their gender, and that’s part of what makes this story so predictable and yet so sad. Palin the anti-feminist endorsed Haley, another anti-feminist.

The irony that this woman-abusing man is the person outing Haley can’t be lost on those who value their freedom and liberty as women. Having an affair and being outted for it as you inch closer to success is not persecution, it’s politics. Had Palin been paying attention during the 2008 campaign, she might have noticed a man named John Edwards whose career was ended over this very issue. What’s hypocritical here is Palin’s claim that this is persecution from the opposition by “some blogger”.

If Palin or Haley were true feminists and Christians, they would not claim persecution when called out on their failings nor resort to hiding behind Jesus. Personally, I could care less who John Edwards slept with, who Bill Clinton slept with, or who Nikki Haley slept with. But then, I am not a radical Christian running on family values and social issues that involve judging other lifestyles.

To be brought down from success by a sex scandal sucks, but this is the world and the value system Republican Christians support. To be hoisted on this petard should come as no surprise to them unless they are so hypocritical as to believe the standards they seek to impose on others do not apply to themselves, as Sanford asserted. The Right seems to believe that Jesus has given them a special dispensation when it comes to infidelity.

In truth, it’s impossible to reconcile infidelity with their Family Values Platform and this is the problem. This isn’t persecution, it’s politics.

Edited to Update: Sic Willie (Folks) now claims he has the emails to prove it and he’s none too happy with Sarah Palin accusing him of “making things up” and at least one news outlet confirmed it was ready to run with the story which Folks claims is what prompted his confession. If this is true, any reasonable person can read between the PR Titanic and surmise that Haley may have been working with Folks to get the best version of this story out there ahead of the revelations. Or at least, that’s what they’re suggesting in the SC State House.

15 responses so far

Bill O’Reilly Rejects Palin’s Obama-BP Conspiracy Theory

May 24 2010 Published by under Featured News

Bill-O takes Obama over Palin

On Fox News tonight, Bill O’Reilly took up Sarah Palin’s latest conspiracy theory that Obama is more worried about campaign cash then cleaning up BP’s mess. Not surprisingly, O’Reilly disagreed with Palin, and said, “Oil companies give big time money to both parties…John McCain got a lot of money from oil companies. Sarah Palin gets money from oil companies.”

Here is the video courtesy of Media Matters:

O’Reilly disagreed with Palin’s claims and said, “Talking Points does not believe that President Obama cares about BP’s campaign cash. He’s got lots of money.” After defending Republicans against the media, Bill O’Reilly compared the oil spill to Katrina and concluded, “It’s almost the same thing here with the oil spill. The feds were slow in reacting, but the outcome tragically wouldn’t have changed. The no spin truth, nobody knows how to stop the damn oil.”

O’Reilly then brought in Brit Hume who agreed with Palin on the media’s double standard but disagreed with Palin’s claims about campaign cash. Hume then brought up a good point, “I think the president’s motivated by two things. One, of which you mentioned, he doesn’t know what to do. British Petroleum says they do more of this deep water drilling it says than any other company around the world. They are probably better positioned and have better equipment to deal with it. They’re legally responsible for dealing with it.”

Bill-O later said, “We’ve been looking around for anybody in the U.S. government, Army Corps of Engineers, geological people that say hey look you should try this, nobody has put forth that. They have pretty much tried everything and nothing’s working.” He then put the knife in Palin a little deeper, “Let’s go on the record here. Oil companies give money to both parties, big time money to both parties. I mean we could break it down, but John McCain got a lot of money from oil companies. Sarah Palin gets money from oil companies. She’s a drill person, so that I don’t think is fair and you agree with me on that.”

Let’s compare O’Reilly’s discussion, partisan spin and all, to Keith Olbermann’s call for the Navy to be deployed to clean up the oil:

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Olbermann and Howard Fineman’s point was that the White House doesn’t get it. Olbermann asked, “Are there no Marine geologists available in the country? Is the Navy on vacation this month?” As Brit Hume correctly pointed out on O’Reilly’s show, legally this is BP’s mess, not Obama’s, and O’Reilly’s people actually attempted to talk to the government. Apparently this was too much work for the Countdown team. Once again, Keith Olbermann shows that he can be just as ignorant and brain dead as Sarah Palin. We all know Olbermann panders to the crowd on the Left that consider themselves intelligent when they bash Obama and deliver GOP talking points, but Olbermann and Fineman did a better job of giving the GOP argument than Fox News did.

One of the worst kept secrets in all the media is Bill O’Reilly’s distaste for Sarah Palin. When discussing Bill-O and women, you must keep in mind that he is a misogynist, but beyond that, O’Reilly is a mainstream Republican who doesn’t care for Palin’s type of politics. One has to wonder if Bill-O’s staff really needed to bring up the oppo research on Palin’s oil money to make their case. There is a reason why most of Palin’s FNC appearances are on Hannity and Greta. As we have seen tonight, O’Reilly doesn’t care for her, and will take a shot at her every chance he gets.

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Crazy vs Evil: Massa Claims Cheney is plotting a Coup against Obama

May 24 2010 Published by under Featured News

Disgraced former Congressman Eric Massa, of the infamous Glenn Beck interview, is back again with a new charge that Dick Cheney is engaged in treasonous activity by hatching a conspiracy to get Gen. David Petraeus elected president in 2012 as a Republican. Massa told Esquire, “we would be witness to an American coup d’état.” Petraeus denies it, and Cheney is not talking.

The story according to Massa as printed in Esquire goes like this, “Four retired generals, he said — “three four-stars and one three-star” — had picked up disturbing reports that Petraeus, the commander of United States Central Command, whose portfolio contains the worst trouble spots on the globe, including Iraq and Afghanistan, had recently met with Cheney — twice — and Cheney was trying to recruit him to run in 2012. Were he to be the nominee, Massa said, Petraeus would be in the unprecedented position of a military man running for president against his own commander in chief.”

Massa continued, “We have to see this for what it is. There is a reason that we have in this country civilian leadership of the military. It is, among other things, to avoid something like this. Because in order to succeed electorally, General Petraeus must fail militarily. You understand? In order to succeed electorally, he must fail in his mission. Were he to run and win — and if he were to run, he would win in a landslide — we would be witness to an American coup d’état. It is the functional equivalent of the political overthrow of the commander in chief.”

Massa accused Cheney of plotting a coup against the US government, “I know something about the Uniform Code of Military Justice. And I want you to tell me how this is not a coup. You’ve got a commander with armies in the field, and he’s plotting with Dick Cheney to bring down his commander in chief. How is that not a coup? It’s Seven Days in May!”

A Petraeus spokesman told Politico that there is no truth to Massa’s claim, “Gen. Petraeus has not met with former VP Cheney to discuss a possible 2012 presidential nomination. Nor has he exchanged anything other than pleasantries with the former VP in their one or two chance encounters since VP Cheney left office. Gen. Petraeus has stated on the record numerous times that he has no interest in, nor intention of, running for political office.”

Even when you consider Dick Cheney’s involvement, this is a pretty fantastic allegation. Massa assumes that Petraeus would want to run for president in 2012, that what Cheney is doing is plotting the overthrow of the United States government, and most importantly if Petraeus ran, he would defeat Obama. I happen to think that a potential Petraeus candidacy would play out similarly to that of Wesley Clark’s failed presidential bid. In the modern era, military persons often lack the media and political skill sets to be formidable candidates.

The days of direct military service being a direct path to the presidency ended with the Ike. Massa also doesn’t take into account that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan remain unpopular, and that it is the economy, not national security, which is dominating the minds of electorate. Choosing a candidate who is directly involved in war would be popular with Republicans, but not the electorate at large. Selecting a candidate with no experience at all in politics would be the fast track to being blown out by Obama in 2012.

Determining what if anything to believe in Massa’s claims is tricky, because Massa is crazy, but Cheney is evil. Dick Cheney tried to circumvent the constitution by declaring himself a separate branch of government. The former vice president is someone who views the law as an optional guideline, but Massa is insane, so I think the part about Cheney trying to recruit Petraeus to run makes sense, because he doesn’t care for Palin or Romney, but the coup part strikes me as a fantasy. Then again, it can be argued that Cheney’s time as vice president was littered with treasonous acts, so I wouldn’t put it past him, but the 2012 part of this makes no sense at all.

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Sarah Palin Greeted by Environmental Big Oil Protesters in Vegas

May 24 2010 Published by under Featured News, Issues, Republican Party

Sarah Palin was speaking last night in Las Vegas, Nevada, headlining the annual shopping center convention. But it was the environmental protesters dismayed by Palin’s continued support of off -shore drilling lined up outside of the convention hall where Palin was speaking that drew the attention.

Palin protesters

About a dozen protesters greeted protested Palin outside the Vegas convention hall. ABC Channel 13 reported:

“About a dozen protesters stood outside the Las Vegas convention center where Palin delivered her speech. They say the spill in the gulf of Mexico is the direct result of unfettered drilling. And are now calling on our national leaders to take action and make sure this doesn’t happen again.

“Drill Baby Drill,” a line just as controversial as the person who made it so popular. Although Palin’s views on energy are no secret, the protesters believe the U.S. can no longer look at offshore drilling as a safe and viable option.

“Drill Baby Drill leads to spill baby spill and our gulf, our economy cant take that anymore,” said Sierra Club organizer Vinny Spotleson.

Watch the protesters here:

In an interview with Fox, the half-term governor said she’s still in favor of off-shore drilling as way to break our nation’s dependence on foreign oil, even as oil spills into the Gulf in unprecedented amounts and dead marine life litters the previously beautiful shores of Louisiana. In her Fox interview Palin warned,

“Maybe this is a lesson for those who oppose supplies being extracted on shores and on land like ANWR, in Alaska…let’s drill there where it’s safer than off shore,” said Palin.

As Ms Palin should know, in 2000, biologists noticed something very strange about some of the frogs in Alaska’s Kenai Refuge. Many of them were missing eyes and had missing or deformed legs and feet. The likely culprit: toxic chemicals released by oil companies. If that wasn’t enough to clue her in, maybe the largest oil spill in history before the Deepwater Horizon spill which took place in Alaska might have altered Palin as to some problems. The Exxon Valdez debacle ravaged local marine, animal, and plant life as well as the native population. Their losses totaled millions, if not billions of dollars.Because oil will float on the ocean in a thin film, a single barrel spilled can cover a huge surface of water and can affect everything that the water touches.

Environmentalists and sane people the country wide are calling Palin out on her Drill Baby Drill energy “policy”, but this small group of protesters had the privilege to make their opinions known as directly as one can with Sarah Palin (who does not interact with the press or protesters and makes announcements from the junior high cover of her Facebook page which no one can counter). Americans have had enough of Palin inserting herself into the national dialogue on serious issues only to pollute the waters with toxic inaccuracies and down right obscene distortions of reality.

Spill, Baby, Spill should have been enough to chill the shrill shill from Alaska, but no. She keeps on peddling her magical made up energy policy claiming we won’t be dependent on foreign oil if only we drill. Sigh. Here’s to the protesters in Vegas.

Image courtesy of KTNV

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