SEAL book raises questions on who killed bin Laden…
“Although we applauded the decision-making in this case, there was no doubt in anybody’s mind that he would take all the political credit for this too”
Yearly Archives: 2012
Reason.tv reports: “Ron Paul-supporting delegates have accused the Republican establishment of changing the rules of the seating process in order to avoid embarassment for Republican nominee Mitt Romney. Their arguments are not without merit.”
“The Ron Paul faction did not go out quietly, cheering loudly whenever Ron Paul delegates were announced and yelling out the running tally of Paul votes every time the convention announcer failed to do so.”
“While Maine–and the broader Ron Paul movement–lost this symbolic battle, some delegates say that Republicans have made a bad mistake alienating the Ron Paul vote by picking this fight.”
“‘The party’s fractured. This was completely unnecessary, and it’s ridiculous,’ said Ron Paul supporter and Oklahoma delegate Steve Dixon.”
Paul supporters had vowed a floor fight, which has been handily snuffed out by procedural shenanigans.
“Work within the party,” they said. “You’ll be part of the process,” they said. Suckers.
UPDATE: The disunity has only just begun:
Members of Maine’s delegation to the Republican National Convention lost their battle to reseat 10 supporters of Ron Paul on Tuesday after a brief but boisterous floor fight, during which the hall echoed with chants of “Seat Maine now!”
Moments later, Paul’s delegates and alternates from Maine — some wearing clothespins on their noses — walked out of the convention hall in protest.
Eric Brakey writes:
After today’s exodus, the Maine Delegation held a rump national convention. I was elected National Convention Chair and we voted unanimously to nominate Ron Paul for President. It was over and done with in 60 seconds.
Our rump convention was held in jest, and yet it had more integrity and legitimacy than anything that took place inside that Tampa convention center.
UPDATE II: Ron Paul’s supporters had embarrassingly more enthusiasm than Romney’s supporters when Ron Paul walked onto the convention floor championing a wreath of flowers (Hawaiian lei, we presume) around his neck. Tell us NBC:
Ron Paul’s appearance Tuesday on the floor of the Republican National Convention evoked split conventions of the past as the retiring Texas congressman received a hero’s welcome from supporters.
The former two-time GOP presidential candidate walked out to greet a roaring group of supporters from the Nevada delegation, one of several he won during the detailed process of allocating delegates to this convention.
When asked by NBC News what he hoped to accomplish by visiting the floor, Paul said, “Just saying hi to some friends from Nevada.”
Paul supporters started chanted, “Let Him Speak!” When Romney supporters started chanting “Romney, Romney!” Paul backers screamed “Ron Paul! Ron Paul,” drowning out the delegates pledged to the Republican nominee-in-waiting.
HA! Even NBC can’t cover for Romney when the enthusiasm gap has been exposed by Paul supporters in grand fashion. At his own convention, where we can finish laughing at the GOP presidency ambitions of 2012 when he’s handily beaten by entrenched incumbent Obama (or gasp, Gary Johnson) at the polls in November.
Don’t forget this moment.
UPDATE III: Linda Bean, scion of the LL Bean clothing empire is letting fly at Romney over being a control freak. Via Esquire:
“They just don’t want us on the floor,” Bean says. “They’re afraid.”
The latest hassle was a document the Romney wants them to sign. “They want us all to sign that we will agree with everything in the convention.”
“Yeah, sign here that you will not oppose anything that Romney brings forth.”
That ain’t gonna fly with a bunch of libertarians, Bean says. “He’s too controlling.”
That’s not all.
“We aren’t even allowed to have our credentials for the next day — they’re passing them out new every day. What does that mean?”
Loyalty oaths are nothing new to the GOP, with George Bush bringing them in vogue during his 2004 re-election campaign. But Romney’s campaign seems to be getting ahead of themselves pushing such pledges at a contentious convention.
From an August 22-26 CBS election poll:
As many as 45 percent of registered now say they are paying a lot of attention, including slightly more Republicans (47 percent) than Democrats (42 percent). In April, 43 percent were paying a lot of attention. In August of 2008, 51 percent said they were paying a lot of attention.
Another 34 percent of voters say they are paying some attention, while 20 percent are paying little to no attention.
[...]There is some room for movement in the race – but not much. About four in five voters say they have made up their minds which candidate to support, but for about one in 10 the race is not yet over, as they say it’s too early and their minds could still change. Similar percentages of Obama and Romney voters could change their minds.
The conventions will undoubtedly offer reviews, from both sides, of the Obama presidency thus far. A slight majority of voters says that the Obama presidency has brought more disappointment (55 percent) than satisfaction (45 percent).
Democrats are satisfied, but more apt to be just somewhat satisfied (53 percent) than very satisfied (29 percent). Another 18 percent of Democrats are disappointed. Most independents (58 percent) are disappointed. Republicans, perhaps unsurprisingly, are very much so.
It’s safe to say the democrats and republicans have done their part to disenfranchise Americans with extreme ballot restrictions measures and psychological barrages of hate. Is it any surprise that one in five are taking refuge in complete political solitude (and thus, powerlessness).
Newsroom, starring Jeff Daniels as anchor Will McAvoy, isn’t pulling punches. But with hindsight super-abilities comes the flip side of preaching to new audiences who were first unaware of any of the facts (quasi-history).
Maybe they were tuned into TMZ, I mean TMI and not the issues of deficits run up by the imperial and christian alliance. But those audiences will look at this and think: “hmm, this looks about right.” Maybe they’ll get interested in getting up and giving a damn about their country direction — realizing it’s they who control that course.
Or maybe they’ll just hate news people a little more and realize what unhappy pathetic people they also are (fictional: feeling sorry for yourself after a hit piece in New York Magazine, oh boo hoo don’t console yourself with your millions… swallow pills).
Sadly enough, Sorkin has done a terrible job giving Ron Paul any credit for his true role as godfather of the tea party (before it was hijacked by every interest group and became a reactionary nationalist movement), relegating him to brief quips on economic issues and once again trudging through the racist views of others that were published under his banner without his knowledge. In a recent episode, going so far as to ironically have the only black man in the newsroom play Paul during a mock debate. The humor and jabs at everyone in the truth industry is indeed the most ironic thing about this show.
Still, I love them for trying to understand the republican narrative that’s developed since the 2008 crash and Obama’s presidency, but that’s the power of a hindsight fictional show far flung from the actual power centers covering the screwups in the news: even they won’t get the story right.
Newsday reviewer Verne Gay writes on the season’s finale:
But I was struck in a couple of instances by what some viewed as the series’ chief virtue — that it offered a candid look at how editorial decisions are made in the newsrooms of major television networks.
I didn’t have the heart to tell those readers, but . . . no, that is not the series’ chief virtue. That doesn’t even belong on the list of virtues. “The Newsroom” is a fairy tale, almost wholly disembodied from the real world of television journalism, even with its real world takes on newsmakers as diverse as Casey Anthony and Grover Norquist.
But Aaron Sorkin, in his defense, isn’t seeking verisimilitude as much as (if I may coin a new word) quasi-similitude, in which viewers are lulled into thinking this is a real world when in fact all Sorkin wants to do is mount an entertaining series and score a few points at the same time.
“The Newsroom” is kind of a Trojan horse of a series, ingratiating itself and then — once inside your head — unleashing its hordes of Sorkian notions of fairness, Democracy, the Tea party, threats to American life (as he sees them), and so on. Verisimilitude be damned.
That’s another way of saying there’s not much accuracy, but it’s entertaining as hell.
It’s a good time to be independent or third party:
Among the findings:
• Views of the political parties have soured. For the first time at this point in at least six elections, voters are inclined to see both the Republican and Democratic parties unfavorably.
• Views of the candidates are worse than in 2008. At this point four years ago, 63% viewed Obama favorably; now 53% do. Then, 59% viewed Republican John McCain favorably; now 48% view Romney favorably.
• The enthusiasm gap that boosted Obama in 2008 has turned around this year. Now 53% of Republicans and those who lean Republican say they are more enthusiastic than usual about voting this year, compared with 46% of Democrats and Democratic leaners.
• Obama gets more blame for negative attacks than he did in 2008. Then, 30% accused him of attacking his Republican opponent unfairly; now 44% do. In contrast, 40% say Romney is attacking Obama unfairly, compared with 48% who said that of McCain four years ago.
In 2008, 25% said both candidates would make good presidents. Now, just 12% do.
USA Today finally acknowledging the stench of duopoly? Fucking awesome.
Not bothering to mention non-duopoly options? Fucking typical.
Mitt Romney is busy this week: finally winning the Republican Party’s presidential primary; trying (and failing) to quell the Ron Paul schism developing within the GOP; Keeping Paul Ryan from saying anything in light of recent embarrassing party remarks about rape and abortion.
Seizing a unique opportunity to blindside the campaign, the DNC went on full attack and has doubled-down on the “You didn’t build that” gaffe made by President Obama. By sharpening the end and pointing it directly at Romney and his career of brutal capitalism, they’ve aptly made a weapon of the gaffe by turning the spotlight back on his record at Bain Capital (well over a decade ago).
Making a further issue of Romney’s finance tycoon past could ultimately backfire on democrat strategists as the current weak economy — destroyed in part by Obama — weighs on voters’ minds. After all, Romney could fire back that he’s done learned from his mistakes and Obama has merely been trying to learn on the job.
TAMPA, Fla. — In a speech that was part motivational, part valedictory and at every opportunity critical of the mainstream Republican Party on the eve of its convention here this week, Representative Ron Paul declared his “liberty movement” alive and well on Sunday before a crowd of nearly 10,000 supporters who were eager to testify to that claim.
Ron Paul spoke for more than an hour and urged followers not to give up. “The worst thing we could do is be silent,” he said.
Mr. Paul said that he had recently read in newspapers that the so-called Ron Paul Revolution was over, and that whatever enthusiasm voters had shown toward his presidential campaign in the Republican primary season was gone.
“They only wish!” Mr. Paul thundered to an audience that seemed to become more energized with his every word, their roars of approval reaching a deafening level inside the Sun Dome at the University of South Florida.
I encourage you to see the entire video. With an introduction by son Rand Paul, we can conclusively prove that everyone can somehow forgive and forget that Rand was a campaign turncoat who prematurely endorsed Mitt Romney just a couple months back… just so long as he makes some funny TSA jokes.
Overshadowing the successful Ron Paul rally, which was free with a $10 minimum parking fee, had been a rather tense competition with P.A.U.L. Festival. Paul Fest and Paul Rally though haven’t seemed to play nice, and Ron Paul campaign manager Jesse Benton is reported to have sent a text message to the famous libertarian investor Peter Schiff among others telling them it was “bad news.”
The behind the scenes battle has someone video recording Schiff unwittingly reading off a text message from Benton to potential speakers (who bailed at the last minute). The Ron Paul Rally had also barred Iraq Veteran turned libertarian media spokesman Adam Kokesh from attending. Benton told Reason “We respect Adam’s service but he’s a very troubled young man. We just hope he can get his life together.”
Libertarians, Ron Paul, interpersonal drama… Grab some popcorn, this shit never gets old.
Kathleen Parker writes at the Daily Beast:
“It is noteworthy that so many Republican men are focused on women’s reproduction and issues of the hearth, while veteran Republican women leaders are riveted on the economy and jobs. Could it be that the liberal goal of reversing sex roles finally is manifesting, most vividly within the party least likely to have advanced the cause of evolution? If only men could get pregnant, then we’d really have a rollicking debate. If only…”
“Meanwhile, Romney had better speak often and with conviction about his own disagreement with some of his party’s platform, or the anti-woman narrative will become so entrenched that the 2012 GOP may go down in history as having sacrificed the nation’s economy to protect the rights of human embryos.”
I had this poop that was so bad one time that it felt like childbirth. If only…
But seriously though, this is one of those ruinous wedge issues that runs through every party because of its religious intonations and of course paternalism. The only thing missing is for the media to conveniently trot out some young women who have had abortions and are incidentally the daughters of powerful Republican men.
I agree wholeheartedly with the “scientifically proven” fact that “77% of Americans believe birth control shouldn’t be part of the national political debate.” But reality doesn’t just wish itself away.
In conclusion: keep making babies fill up the earth so we overflow into the stars.
In late August the Pentagon announced a contingency plan is in place for seizing Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal should President Obama order them to do so, and that the plan involves sending “small teams” of special operations forces into Syria.
Jason Ditz of AntiWar.com writes, “The idea that this could be accomplished with only ‘small teams’ of ground troops is dramatically far afield of what officials were saying only last week, when they claimed that the plans involved a 50,000-60,000 strong occupation force just to secure weapons, and even more for ‘peacekeeping’…
Officials did not indicate what ‘small teams’ meant in terms of numbers, or try to explain the difference from last week’s figures. It could reflect two different schools of thought inside the administration, or could simply be a way to get ‘some’ troops on the ground by any means necessary and then later on use the larger estimates as an excuse to escalate.”
As with Iran, Syria poses no legitimate threat to the United States of America or the American people. However, that does not stop the President and the Pentagon from preparing to invade yet another country.
Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the military has a “very professional and a very trained and ready force in the Gulf region … and it’s in a deterrent preparedness posture, but at some point if we’re asked to use it, it’ll be ready… I take the president’s word that he will consider the use of chemical and biological warfare as a game changer.”
While I can’t predict the future, I believe any action against Syria by the US military will lead to an attack on Iran. I suspect this partly because of the negative rhetoric against Iran and partly because of the relationship between Syria and Iran. Hossein Taeb, the head of the intelligence bureau of the Iranian Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution, said, “We all have a responsibility to support Syria and not allow the line of resistance to be broken.”
I certainly do not condone the violence being perpetrated by Syrian President Bashar al Assad. Neither do I support the violence being perpetrated by the American government. Since the U.S. and coalition attacks began the American military has killed nearly 1 million people in Afghanistan and Iraq. Since 2009 there have been approximately 2,500 deaths from drone attacks in Pakistan, alone. The Congress recently passed legislation that allows the American military to use drones in the United States and the FAA estimates 10,000 drones in the sky by 2017, so don’t rule out the possibility of drone attacks in the “land of the free” in the not too distant future.
Whether or not the American military attacks Syria, Iran or any other country, I will continue to speak out against future violence, especially violence perpetrated by the American military.
The Tampa P.A.U.L. Festival was incredibly receptive to Gary Johnson, who hoped to woo Ron Paul’s Revolution in a fiery speech given at the ad hoc parallel libertarian events going on in Tampa, Florida this week.
In my strategist-tinted opinion, Johnson has easily been the most polished and electable candidate Libertarians have nominated since at least the days of Harry Brown. The fact that he’s been too busy climbing Mount Everest and other peaks when he wasn’t running successful and morally-intact businesses or fixing New Mexico’s government to even amass a closet of skeletons (you know the political vices where they climb some other peaks and ruin government) — well, it’s a nice added bonus to be the only remaining viable candidate talking about ending the military interventionist policies.
For a glimpse of how popular Johnson is becoming, stealthily and without media help, his book “Seven Principles of Good Government” was released at the end of July and has already run out of stock. The Kindle version is of course still available for a jaw-dropping $9.99, but I guess Johnson has to fund a campaign however he can given that most libertarians probably tapped out their political budgets on Ron Paul.
UPDATE: Check out Gary Johnson’s tribute video/commercial to Ron Paul. It would be nice to see Ron Paul give him a pat on the back somewhere along the line after the convention winds have calmed.