Jigsaw Equanimity

Jigsaw Equanimity


Mud Pie:
Even though the latest June 2015 polls showed that the general American public does not want the ACA repealed, such as the ‘Rasmussen Reports’ at 59% and the ‘Kaiser Foundation’ reporting 66%, Republicans are still playing politics with healthcare in coddling to their minority base.  

Let’s recount. Along with two Supreme Court challenges, no less than 56 vain legislative repeal votes, the last one this February 03, 2015, Republicans have attempted to dismantle Obamacare. With economic issues such as job losses, wage discrepancies, unbalanced oligarchic societal wealth and a floundering middleclass teetering on the poverty line, Republicans have preferred instead to waste time and taxpayer dollars on a political venting charade instead of efforts to sustain the average American.

So with the latest three Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) decisions in denying the GOP’s squelching ideology, Republicans are eating mud pies and it isn’t very tidy...it’s a sloppy mess…much ado with mud smudge all over the face ya know...

Just within the period of one week, the GOP has been tossed a triple whammy by a conservative majority court no less and they are not taking kindly to it.

Whammification I:
The first SCOTUS majority decision this past Thursday, June 25th, ruled against the ‘King vs. Burwell’ case that concerning the ACA, federal subsidies as written under the healthcare law are indeed legal. In the 6-3 majority ruling, ultra conservative Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito dissented.

The King case was Republican fronted by the libertarian think tank, ‘Competitive Enterprise Institute’ (CEI) in paying for the services of the Jones Day Law Firm led by chief lawyer Michael Carvin, who doubles as an advocate for conservative corporate causes. Further, CEI is primarily funded by the Koch brothers, but in addition is funded by pharmaceutical companies and yes…Google and Facebook.     


This case should have never been brought to a district court much less than to the Supreme Court. The first contentious complaint by the right is inferring that Congress intentionally setup the ACA to only give federal tax credits to those states that did not create their own exchanges thereby to coerce states into developing their own exchanges. The problem with that is there is absolutely no verification from start to finish in the law to verify this false interpretation.

The plaintiff’s main argument is also groundless. In ignoring the whole document and concentrating not even on one sentence, but a phrase in one sentence of the ACA document, theyve totally misconstrued the plans intent. That one phrase when isolated out could be interpreted by any one’s own perception. That one phrase, in which congress could have easily amended but the Republican House refused to is: “established by a state.”

The premise of the whole ACA law is that federal subsidies are available to all of those who qualify, which would include those red states that refused Obamacare and Medicaid subsidies. The Republican false interpretation suggests that it means those states that setup their own brand of Obamacare also applies to those red state legislatures that did not want any of their constituents to benefit from Obamacare, therefore federal subsidies should be refused, negating 6.8 million folks from receiving any kind of healthcare. Plaintiff lawyers were insisting that only customers of an established state exchange could get assistance.

This would effectively dismantle all of Obamacare taking away healthcare immediately from the affected thirty-four states’ 8 million, while the further unraveling would entail the disqualification of the nation’s 19.7 million folks that have enrolled under Obamacare since 2014. The federal public health department estimates that this would cause 10,000 of those folks losing Obamacare to die each year. The insurance industry reported that the insurance market in thirty states could implode, raising premiums as much as 256%.    

However, in the ‘Fair Housing Act’ hearing this past January 2015, Scalia elucidated that the Court’s obligation in interpreting a statute is to “look at the entire law,” not just “each little piece” in isolation. He further said in his argument, “We have to make sense of the law as a whole.” In reference whether or not something is allowed by a statute can only be determined “when all parts are read together,” Scalia concludes. Yet, Scalia was more than willing to allow Obamacare to unravel based solely on a misinterpreted phrase of one sentence.       
           
In addition to the case not having legs is the four plaintiffs that were picked to represent the law firm’s complaint justification. It turns out, just like the innumerable Republican false stories of how Obamacare had made their lives miserable, these four people’s stories were a very poor example of what the right was attempting to portray. All four never gave testimonials much less show up in court as a witness and one of them did not know anything about the court case.

Interviewed before the final ruling by journalist, Stephanie Mencimer, the first one, whose namesake bears the court docket’s title, is David King. He had not been harmed by Obamacare and bragged that he didn’t care much at all on the outcome of the SCOTUS decision since he personally had healthcare through the VA. When asked by Mencimer why he would allow his name to be used to affront the ACA and what he was getting out of it, with his total disdain for Obama, his inferred reply was, “The only benefit I anticipate is the satisfaction of smashing the signature achievement of the president.”

Number two was Brenda Levy. She could not recall how she had actually been selected as a plaintiff. When told how the case could potentially erase millions of folks’ healthcare, she had no idea stating, “I don’t want things to be more difficult for people. I don’t like the idea of throwing people off their health insurance.” She was totally unaware that her lawsuit was backed by groups wanting to oppose the ACAs Medicaid expansion. Levy has health problems and claimed Obamacare had made insurance too expensive even though she’d never checked out the exchange where she could qualify with her existing conditions in purchasing a plan for $149.00/month.

The third is Rose Luck who refers to Obama as the “Anti-Christ.” Luck has been down on her luck and has had medical bills pile up on her where once she faced a legal judgment for nearly $5,000.00 in unpaid medical bills. While stating that Obama came to power because, “he got his Muslim people to vote for him” she prefers to go uninsured or temporarily pay for catastrophic insurance rather than purchase a plan on the ACA exchange for $333.00/month. Considering her physical state of hip impairments, she could make that payment even lower as being qualified for a hardship waiver.

The last plaintiff is Doug Hurst. He had a little over $8,500.00 to pay in out of pocket medical bills in 2009. His insurance premiums in 2010 before implementation of Obamacare were $655.00/month. Hurst is eligible for a bronze plan under the ACA for $65.00/month but chooses not to take it, out of his principled loathing for the president.

These four are the best the law firm could come up with as plaintiffs. To constitutionally bring a suit to the Supreme Court one has to prove that he/she has been harmed by the defendant. The only harm being done here is self-inflicted; certainly not from Obamacare.

Congresswoman Cathy McMoriss Rodgers (remember her and her 2015 State of the Union rebuttal) asked her constituents to post their Obamacare horror stories on her Facebook. Instead of horror stories she got mainly praise stories which below are samplings.

My story is that I once knew 7 people who couldn’t get health insurance. Now they all have it, thanks to the ACA and President Obama, and their plans are as good as the one my employer provides--and they pay less for them. Now, that’s not the kind of story you want to hear. You want to hear made-up horror stories. I don't know anyone with one of those stories.”

I work for cancer care northwest. We actually have more patients with insurance and fewer having to choose treatment over bankruptcy. Cathy, I’m a die hard conservative and I’m asking you to stop just slamming Obamacare. Fix it, change it or come up with a better idea! Thanks.”

With Obamacare, I saved 300 bucks a month premium.. I have more coverage.. I like ObamaCare and can't wait til we go to the next step... Medicare for ALL.”

She quickly pulled her request and all the replies off of her page.

Current presidential candidate, Ted Cruz recently this past March put out on his Facebook page, “Quick poll: Obamacare was signed into law four years ago yesterday. Are you better off now than you were then? Comment with YES or NO!

There was an almost instant deluge of yes comments. Out of the 47,000 comments, two-thirds were resounding yeses before Cruz had it deleted. He just couldn’t face the truth that since the truth has come out; the vast majority is in favor of Obamacare, as even his own right-wing Facebook website proved so.

Actually, most Republican politicians gave a deepened sigh of relief after the decision. Contrary to GOP claims and in particular with their mouthpiece in Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI), Republicans would have had no equivalent alternative to the ACA if indeed SCOTUS had voted in favor of King. In that regard, Republican politicians know that would make for one angry constituency.

I was going to quote some Republican comments about the decision, but their derision is irrelevant. Instead I’ll espouse on what they hide, although I will quickly illustrate this. In following the 6-3 majority SCOTUS decision, several Republican politicians are unrelenting in their quest to repeal the ACA. Lyin’ Paul Ryan is one and Jeb Bush has already started raising funds by sponging off the ruling.

In the following video, Ryan prior to the decision contends there are “GOP plans in place” or “in the works” to fill Obamacare’s void if indeed SCOTUS would favor King. Please note that he never gives a for instance much less specifics on the plans’ contents merely because Republicans have no replacement. Moderator Chris Wallace, who is wholeheartedly conservative over at Fox News, nonetheless makes Ryan dance all over the place except on the floor.


This line Ryan is trying to feed the American public is nonsense for 63% of Americans believe that Republicans have no alternative according to the latest ‘Kaiser Health Plan Poll’.   

He does refer to a GOP plan offered before the ACA became law, but that vague plan according to a grim reaper analysis by the ‘American Academy of Actuaries’ warns the costs attached to this plan, even the offered modifications of it, would lead to spiked increases in average costs and threaten insurer solvency. Besides, the plan was based on a tax. Got that…a taxing system! I always thought the word ‘tax’ with Republicans was equivalent to a viral plague and was to be run away from.    

Just to shed more light at the sheer hypocritical stance Ryan holds to, take a peek at the video below. Prior to the SCOTUS ruling, he actually was attempting to pin the confusion on what to do if SCOTUS had ruled otherwise solely on the back of the president as if it wasn’t the Republican push to have the case sent all the way up to the Supreme Court to begin with. The reason: simply to shed his and his party’s blame onto Obama when all the voting constituents lose their healthcare. A devious ploy indeed!    

Also when viewing, please do note how chastened he is when in disingenuous disrespect, totally ignores Representative Sander Levin (D-MI) as he addresses him. Ryan gives smirks and speaks to others, but never gives any eye contact to Levin as he delivers his address. Now further on as Levin speaks, you can tell on Ryan’s blank stare into the void of deep outer space that Levin’s message is hitting hard and digging abysmally no matter how Ryan pretends.



The only semi-concrete offering some GOP politicians, like Congressmen, Charles Boustany (R-LA) and Dennis Ross (R-FL) are throwing out was to extend Obamacare.

That makes logical sense doesn’t it…wanting to repeal a law only to simply wind up extending it? Fixing a law the GOP claims is “broken,” is “a train wreck” and will “cave under its own weight” only to extend it once all the breaking, wrecking and caving occurs in its absence…that is miracle reasoning I tell ya what…     

According to a released report by the ‘Department of Health and Human Services’, the ACA has saved Medicare $384 million during its pilot program of 2012 and 2013 and with its current trajectory will exceed half a billion dollars in savings by the end of 2015.

Immediately after the Supreme Court’s ruling, investors were delighted of the outcome causing the financial markets to soar. The biggest winners were healthcare corporations with ‘Tenet Healthcare’ (THC) heading skywards with a jump of over 12% in stock shares. ‘HCA Holdings’ saw an 8.8% jump and ‘Universal Health Services’ saw their shares shoot up 7.5%.

According to ‘Atlantic Private Trust Wealth Management’ portfolio manager, Fred Weiss, the healthcare industry had been seeing 12% profit margins since the inception of Obamacare, with the SCOTUS decision; they now will realize 30%.

Today almost 30 million American folks are insured under Obamacare dropping the rate of the uninsured from over 18% down to 12.3%. Over the next decade, if not for Obamacare, an average of 25.5 million folks extra would be uninsured. That includes men, women, children and infants.

The percentage of Americans that say Obamacare has hurt them or their families: a low 22%.

These statistics ignored by GOP politicians does not defray their part a bit in attacking Obamacare; they simply switch from a revealed lie to focus on another lying charade until it is revealed to the public. It is endless.         

Concerning healthcare, Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) does not get schooled, but kindergartened (my word) by Canadian, Doctor Danielle Martin of Toronto with some added insurance from then Independent Senator Bernie Sanders who is presently running for president as a registered Democrat.



In Chief Justice Roberts’ majority opinion he stated, “The upshot of all this is that the phrase, an exchange established by the state under [42 U. S. C. §18031] is properly viewed as ambiguous. The phrase may be limited in its reach to state exchanges, but it is also possible that the phrase refers to all Exchanges—both state and federal—at least for purposes of the tax credits.”

Roberts continued, “In a democracy, the power to make the law rests with those chosen by the people. Our role is more confined —‘to say what the law is’. That is easier in some cases than in others. But in every case we must respect the role of the legislature, and take care not to undo what it has done. A fair reading of legislation demands a fair understanding of the legislative plan. Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them. If at all possible, we must interpret the Act in a way that is consistent with the former, and avoids the latter.”

As a symbolic rib jab to Chief Roberts, in Justice Scalia’s dissent he bemoaned, “We should start calling this law SCOTUScare,” and I contend, “Yepper sports fan, perhaps we should and so be it.”

The real issue here is that Republicans simply do not want any kind of healthcare whatsoever that can be utilized or afforded by all. Tying that in with the conservative base’s hatred of Obama they are in the hole they dug so deep that the GOP will not veer away from the incessant obfuscation in relating the facts to what the ACA really has achieved.

Republicans apparently do not understand how laws work. The ACA was passed by both Houses and not during the dead of night like they try to pretend. This was done even after countless GOP obstructions and their fingerprints smudged all over it in the form of amendments. Final point…one cannot take a law to the Supreme Court of the land and annul it simply because one hates it or it doesn’t fit their political fancy. If ya do, then ya get mud pie in your face as is what exactly happened.
  
Whammified II:
On June 26 of this year, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the LGBTs right to marriage equality. In a 5-4 benchmark ruling of the marriage equality Obergefell vs. Hodges decision, the fundamental right for same sex marriage was proven as guaranteed under the ‘Due Process Clause’ and the ‘Equal Protection Clause’ of the 14th Amendment. The dissenters were, Chief Justice John Roberts and by nature of course, Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito.

The case revolved around an Ohio gay couple, Windsor Obergefell and John Arthur who were legally married in Maryland, but their native state Ohio would not recognize the legal bond stressing through the state government’s Ohio Register that although they contend discrimination against legally married U.S. citizen gay couples is unconstitutional, the state’s Republican majority government will vigorously defend Ohio’s same-sex marriage ban. The respondent ‘Hodges’ comes from the brief the Director of Ohio Department of Health, Richard Hodges filed in conjunction with the Ohio district attorney’s office.

The case went to SCOTUS due to the fact that after Arthur had contracted amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and becoming terminally ill, the couple wanted their marriage recognized where Obergefell could be listed on the death certificate as the surviving spouse. In Ohio under the state case, Obergefell vs. Kasich (yes, that is John Kasich, the Ohio governor now running as a GOP presidential candidate) the Kasich side won, leaving Obergefell as excluded from any benefits due to his spouse’s death. This is how the case wound up on the Supreme Court’s docket.

Justice Kennedy gave the majority opinion and although flowed as in a poetic script, it was straight to the point in methodically tackling the topic this nation has wrestled with for decades now through the courts.

In the contents, Justice Kennedy wrote, “The dynamic of our constitutional system is that individuals need not await legislative action before asserting a fundamental right. The Nation’s courts are open to injured individuals who come to them to vindicate their own direct, personal stake in our basic charter. An individual can invoke a right to constitutional protection when he or she is harmed, even if the broader public disagrees and even if the legislature refuses to act. The petitioners in this case are people, whose lives are fleeting. If there is a right to marry, then barring them from marriage for even one of their days on earth is a deprivation of that right, and being told to be patient is not a fit judicial response. In addition, he argued, denying the claim to same-sex marriage is itself an intervention in the democratic process, because it would teach the Nation that these [same-sex marriage bans] are in accord with our society's most basic compact.”

Justice Scalia was not a happy camper in being on the wrong side once again while having to write another minority dissension. He implied this case went against the will of the American people just as the ACA King Case did. Apparently he doesn’t keep up with the polls, for in favor of same sex marriage since 2010, surveys have consistently shown the American public in acceptance at over 50%. The latest 2015 ORC/CNN poll showed a result of 63% in favor. Concerning Obamacare, along with the afore mentioned June survey results at the top of this article, according to the ‘Kaiser Health Survey’ just released this July, only 29% are in favor of repealing Obamacare with 70% in favoring no repeal.

In throwing a barb at Justice Kennedy, Justice Scalia wrote in his dissent, “I write separately to call attention to this court’s threat to American Democracy.” If he had been referring to the Supreme Court’s Citizen’s United decision, for once I would wholeheartedly agree with him. But he wasn’t; he was haranguing on the Obergefell ruling. So when he infers a minute later in his opinion bit, “Today’s decree says that my Ruler, and the Ruler of 320 million Americans coast-to-coast, is a majority of the nine lawyers on the Supreme Court,” I realize he’s still the self-righteous pomp he’s always been. Scalia has no business injecting his religion and religious views onto the rest of us in his trite diatribe.

Now if he’s really serious about the court he belongs to is actually a real and present danger to American democracy (his words), then I suggest he step down and aside allowing another adjudicator to step in and judge final decisions based on reason and impartiality instead of religious bias and conservative rhetoric.
             

It simply appears that the right will accept Adam ‘n’ Eve, but surely never an Adam ‘n’ Steve.

Let’s go easy now…oh for the humanity of it all; oh the onslaught of right-wing rage following the announcement of equality.

Cruz, the current Tea Party con-artist favorite, called it some of the darkest 24 hours in our nation’s history. Compared to what…9/11…the Timothy McVeigh bombing…the multitude of American produced serial killers…Sandy Hook…presidential assassinations…the World Wars…Vietnam…the history of unjustified minority lynchings…ethnic church burnings…folks murdered simply for being gay? Again, compared to what?

Former Baptist preacher turned politician, Mike Huckabee, appearing on ABCs 06/28/2015 ‘This Week’, offered this statement after the ruling, “The Supreme Court has spoken with a very divided voice on something only the Supreme Being can do-redefine marriage. I will not acquiesce to an imperial court any more than our Founders acquiesced to an imperial British monarch. We must resist and reject judicial tyranny, not retreat. This ruling is not about marriage equality, it's about marriage redefinition. This irrational, unconstitutional rejection of the expressed will of the people in over 30 states will prove to be one of the court's most disastrous decisions, and they have had many. The only outcome worse than this flawed, failed decision would be for the President and Congress, two co-equal branches of government, to surrender in the face of this out-of-control act of unconstitutional, judicial tyranny.

He further admonished, “The Supreme Court can no more repeal the laws of nature and nature’s God on marriage than it can the law of gravity. Under our Constitution, the court cannot write a law, even though some cowardly politicians will wave the white flag and accept it without realizing that they are failing their sworn duty to reject abuses from the court. If accepted by Congress and this President, this decision will be a serious blow to religious liberty, which is the heart of the First Amendment.”

Huckabee also did not like the White House in celebration lighting up the grounds in the LGBT rainbow colors, contrasting it to a willingness to display the rainbow but not a Christian manger scene. “Now Michael,” that is what I would say to him…“Now Michael settle…there is no comparison between the two. Where one display breeches religious rights of others in favor of your own firebrand choice of exclusive religion, the other simply is recognizing a minority’s victory.”

Along with Huckabee, most all other GOP candidates alluded to the decision as an affront to religious freedoms. Of course, they all assuage to the moral conservative base in proclaiming the mantra, “I believe in the Bible’s traditional marriage.”

On NPR (06/28/2015) Senator Ted Cruz of Texas bemoaned, “The next major battlefield that is going to occur following this marriage decision is religious liberty.

Ben Carson on the day of the ruling declared, “I call on Congress to make sure deeply held religious views are respected and protected. The government must never force Christians to violate their religious beliefs. I support same sex civil unions but to me, and millions like me, marriage is a religious service not a government form.”

Louisiana governor, Bobby Jindal demands in a whining manner, “Obergefell will pave the way for an all-out assault against the religious freedom rights of Christians who disagree with this decision. This ruling must not be used as pretext by Washington to erode our right to religious liberty.”

As stated many times before, I’ll say it here but once more. No entity, like a government or religion nor any individual, like a politician or judgmental naysayer has the right to deny a loving adult couple the chance to legally bond in marriage. Comparing gay marriage to bestiality and pedophilia is pure ignorance.

If it is truly “biblical traditional marriage” conservative Republicans want, then go by it. In the Bible men are allowed as many wives as they can handle. That is your traditional marriage. Is that what Republicans are proclaiming all need to be adhering to?

God spoke and said that if the 18 wives and concubines were not enough for King David, God would see to it that David receives ample more; (II Sam. 12:8). But for all you right-wing women harping about biblical traditional marriage…God’s law is that if a female performs polyandry or even found to not be a virgin on her wedding night…she is to be buried up to her neck and stoned to death as how they executed womenfolk back then; (Lev. 20: 10, Deut. 22:22, Deut. 22:13-21).     

Some GOP’ers stuck to their snobby noses in who marries or not by implying it is simply a matter of states’ rights. Former Texas governor Rick Perry had this response, “I’m a firm believer in traditional marriage, and I also believe the 10th Amendment leaves it to each state to decide this issue.”

Carly Fiorina in saying the ruling is “only the latest example of an activist court,” further stating, “I do not agree that the Court can or should redefine marriage. I believe that responsibility should have remained with states and voters where this conversation has continued in churches, town halls and living rooms around the country.”

Aw, is big bully the federal government picking on l’il red states? Spying on them and taking away their rights all due to a couple of SCOTUS decisions they don’t particularly like? To rear-up a take for instance, what about Texas?

If ya might recall, in the ‘Operation Jade Helm 15’ U.S. military Special Forces were conducting practice exercises in and around Texas military bases. A few conspiratorial citizens complained about martial law, so Governor Greg Abbott sent out the Texas Guard to ensure that there was no attempt at that happening. Abbott’s explanation for doing so was to monitor the U.S. military to safeguard Texan citizens, private property as well as constitutional rights infringements.

Once the folly of it all was gaining exposure in paranoid Abbott suspecting that the U.S. military might be attempting a Lonestar coup, all kinds of corny jokes started popping up. Abbott’s office downplayed their actions in saying it was merely “a standard responsibility of acting as a liaison when federal military deploys in Texas for any reason.”

But here we go…it’s all about conspiratorial suspicion of the big bad bully federal government coming to pick on the state of Texas, but what about the state of Texas actually bullying a small municipal government. I just suppose that is all fine and dandy for Abbott.

Just weeks after Abbott issued his Texas Guard to monitor the actions of the federal military (ya know, that one military that goes to battle for Texas and every other state), Abbott and his Republican legislature banned the city of Denton from restricting oil and gas companies from conducting fracking in the city and surrounding communities. Denton city officials’ defense is that the oil industry shouldn’t wield more power than citizens’ rights when it affects their properties. That doesn’t matter much to Abbott and company, so he signed the legislation into law. Now, I implore of ya…who really is the big bad bully? Ya know, it is always the bully who cries first when he feels he’s being picked on. States’ rights my fanny perpendicular…

While we’re on this, Abbott surely cried wolf during the federal government military operations, but boy-howdy did he howl a different tune when he wanted dependence to federal aid and taxpayer dollars after all the recent Texas floods.
  
Former governor of Florida, Jeb Bush who is also a younger brother to George W. Bush, along with former New York governor, George Pataki went both ways by instilling the irrevocable paired arguments of religious freedoms and states’ rights into their comments. Bush expressed in a released 06/26 statement that, “Guided by my faith, I believe in traditional marriage. I believe the Supreme Court should have allowed the states to make this decision.”

Pataki in a WMUR radio interview this past spring said to anyone who might be listening, “I believe it should be left to the states. Honestly, I think marriage should be between a man and a woman. I honestly think it has religious connotations and I believe marriage is between a man and a woman, but I think that states should have the decision power and the ability to decide themselves. Marriage has never been a federal issue.”

All I’ll say to ‘Jeb!’ and Pataki is that…it becomes a federal issue when states deny constitutional rights.

A couple of Republicans even want to amend the U.S. Constitution.

In a 06/26/2015 op-ed in the conservative ‘National Review’, Cruz in his ongoing appeasement to right-wingers tallied forth, “Obergefell undermines not just the definition of marriage, but the very foundations of our representative form of government. I have already introduced a constitutional amendment to preserve the authority of elected state legislatures to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman, and also legislation stripping the federal courts of jurisdiction over legal assaults on marriage.”

Scott Walker, governor of Wisconsin in his almighty benevolence fires this statement after the SCOTUS decision, “I believe this Supreme Court decision is a grave mistake. The only alternative left for the American people is to support an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to reaffirm the ability of the states to define marriage.”    

The Constitution of the U.S. was not written for any person or party’s comfort zone…it was written expressly to announce the freedom and equality of all citizens no matter their race, creed, religion or dare I say…sexual identity.

The only response to this SCOTUS ruling that I kind of liked was Donald Trump’s. He tweeted, “The Bush appointed Supreme Court Justice John Roberts letting us down. Jeb pushed him hard! Remember!” This was a direct jab to Jeb!

All of these Republicans listed above are seeking the highest command in the land as the next U.S. president. All hail the chiefs…     

Whammified III:
The third whammification (again, my word) offered up to Republicans by SCOTUS did not gain as much media exposer as the other two, but still had grave impact on current trending Republican policy. SCOTUS on this past late June, in a 7-2 decision blocked Arizona and Kansas from going ahead with their nonsense voter ID laws. I call it nonsense because under the Republican ploy of countering nonexistent voter fraud has been laid bare years ago as the Republican way of disenfranchising the poor, the weak/ill elderly, students and minorities from their fundamental right to vote.

I’ve become way too bored to hear this flimsy excuse again. It is strictly attempts by Republicans in these red states to block groups they feel tend to vote Democrat. For sure, the next time I hear that used as an excuse again for these Jim Crow-like laws, I’m going to smack his nostrils then belly punch him.


Although this SCOTUS ruling only covers federal elections in these two states of Arizona and Kansas, it is what these right-wingers are after, for they already have the state votes through extreme gerrymandering. The two dissenting were Justices, Alito and Thomas. Surprisingly, Justice Scalia was in the majority in voting against the state’s voting laws. This is the second time Arizona’s voting laws have been rebuffed by SCOTUS, as in 2013 the same 7-2 majority voted against it.

This ruling follows the Supreme Court’s earlier granting of Texas’ severe voting laws while the High Court refused to hear challenges against North Carolina and Wisconsin. So maybe the conservatives, except for Thomas and Alito are beginning to see the unconstitutionality in these rashes of red state voter ID laws.

Texas lost its federal lower appellate court case where Abbott/Perry and company immediately called for a Supreme Court hearing. U.S. District Court Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos in the lower federal court wrote that, “The Texas law not only runs afoul of the VRA (Voting Rights Act) ban on racial discrimination, but also is an unconstitutional poll tax, because it requires those without ID to spend time and money to acquire one.” She also stated not only does the law discriminate; it was designed to do so.

Currently Texas requires the disenfranchised to acquire a Texas driver license, since any other state issued photo ID is unacceptable. For instance, a state college student photo ID is unacceptable, but an NRA membership card or passport is. How many senior citizens, bedridden folks dependent on Medicare or the poor do ya reckon have or can obtain those?

In addition, one must have a copy of their valid birth certificate which can be purchased for $23.00, although there is a valid certificate offered for $2-3.00 that Texas decided not to advertise or offer on the official website.

Texas is also now unconstitutionally declining immigrant parents’ newborns their birth certificates. The ‘Texas Department of State Health’ are telling new mothers that they cannot issue birth certificates to their newborns. This means that these infants growing up can’t enroll in public or private schools and the mothers will not be able to approve critical medical care since they cannot prove their relationship to the child. This is illegal to the core. Texas should get their tallies whacked in all kinds of lawsuits and legal judgments. 

Although Wisconsin could keep its voting laws, the Supreme Court refused the state from implementing it for the November 2014 elections probably because it was too near Election Day to make the proper changes. That’s a hunch since no reason was given in their decision.

In Wisconsin’s dirty tricks, the Republicans had voter ID registration offices closed down in Democrat leaning districts lowering access in acquiring the right to vote and when election officials requested more money to publicize the new voter ID requirements, Wisconsin Republican majority legislatures stood in the way turning the request down.

For Arizona, the SCOTUS ruling not only blocked their voter ID laws, it also deemed it illegal for Arizona Republicans to force Arizona’s ‘Independent Redistricting Commission’ which has been given the task of sweeping up the state’s GOP majority legislature’s biased partisanship from redistricting on their own. The commission’s responsibility in a more fair redistricting input was upheld.   

Concerning these three Supreme Court cases, let’s shed some perspective by going back a bit in history.

Lochner vs. New York was a 1905 landmark SCOTUS decision that was a case claiming liberty of contract implicit in the ‘Due Process Clause’ of the 14th Amendment. The Lochner case involved a New York work ban for bakers working 10 hours per day and over 60 hours per week.  Joseph Lochner, a bakery owner and a lower court defendant was charged a fine of $25.00 for making his bakers work over the 60 hour limit. He contended that the New York law was depriving him of life and liberty without due process of law. Lochner’s argument was that the right to freely contract out employees was an inalienable right of employers encompassed by substantive due process.

Under then Chief Justice Melville Fuller, his Supreme Court voted in favor of Lochner by a 5-4 decision claiming the New York hourly ban was not a safeguard determent for the health of bakers in arguing that it was more of a labor law attempting to set employment terms. The law, the Court majority proclaimed, was unreasonable and unnecessary. Corporate conservatives were enthralled so much so that the term the ‘Lochner Era’ became a business hold catch phrase. 



In these recent decisions, Chief Justice Roberts in premonition wording sent a clear message to the increasingly far right-of-center vocal forces that wish to use the Supreme Court to enact sweeping economic agendas — ‘not on my watch’—will you dictate your will. His Obergefell dissent, even though he voted against it explicitly disavows the new Lochnerian evangelism that captured much of the conservative Federalist Society. And his King sentiment shows them that further efforts to politicize the judiciary may lead to punishment, for his King opinion along with the Court’s ruling punished conservatives by rendering Obamacare immune to all future legal challenges.

Lameless:
President Obama is no lame duck, no sir/ma’am, there is no lame duckery (yet another of my misconstrued, but see the jest of it all words) walking the halls of this White House. During his last years in office, known as the lame duck session Obama’s certainly not been a typical president; he’s in fact been atypical. Where W. Bush’s favorability ratings in his last two years in office hovered between 27-30%, Obama’s ratings have ratcheted up from a low of 38% to a current 46% and still climbing as according to a Gallup survey this month.

Three big SCOTUS whammies within one week followed closely by an agreed diplomacy deal with the U.S. and Iran…this president’s achievements have shot skywards. He truly makes me right proud of myself as an American and my country’s humbleness and ethics while still maintaining vigil and strength.

The politics being played out by Republicans, their incessant obstructionism has not scathed Obama whose reserved seat remains in the West Wing. Regardless of all the Republican venom being spat at him each day with no recognition of his accomplishments while actually attacking them, Obama carries himself as unchanged whether under the conditions of duress or joy. To come right to the point, bigots do not like a black man living in a White House.

I defend Obama a lot with facts, for Icky Twerp knows for sure there has been a ton of averse personal and political emotions conjuring scores of falsities and misinformed tales about this president. So before I defend him some more with the truth, allow me this time to include some sprinkled praise here and there for the man.

Even though this nation’s common folk are still hurting from that self-induced Republican ‘Great Recession’ due to GOP financial deregulation policies, the GOP still has the audacity to ridicule the poor and those who lost their jobs, savings, pensions and mortgages due to the tentacles of the recession reaching out far and wide. A Republican hand me down phrase when they feel cornered, especially when asked about the lack of job bills coming out of Congress is to bluntly state, “Get a job,” then leave with ruffled feathering, or simply to demean the poor as the excuse for the nation’s economic woes instead of attacking poverty.

Through all this and even with the record breaking senate Republican filibusters (over 310 from ‘09-‘014) and House Republican’s constant repealing (56 times) of the ACA Act, Obama methodically, as if with a surgeon’s steady hand has been operating in skills that have pulled this nation from the brink, taking it off life support to breathe another day of fresh air. There is still recovery though and Obama recognizes that, if only the GOP congressional portion could.  

Under Obama the national debt and deficit have been falling. One proof of this is that one never hears anymore of Republican politicians’ incessant screaming that the debt and deficit are out of control. Of course they were out of control when Obama inherited the White House from the W/Cheney administration. In fact the two entities then were skyrocketing ever spaceward.

Obama has tamed the beasts, halting their upward trends and actually have the deficit dropping even under post recessionary circumstances.



The federal deficit has not only been falling, it has done so in absolute terms. The deficit reduction has dropped so quickly that some economists, as reported by the ‘Wall Street Journal’ during the 2012 deficit reduction, were concerned it might be too excessive.

The national debt as the total stock of U.S. debt owed is a much larger figure to approach, but it too has slowed in its exponential increasing. Since the 2008 financial crisis the national debt rose steeply. Obama in cutting the national deficit almost in half has slowed it and contained it. This is something no recent Republican president has ever done. In fact, the U.S. debt burden is inching into a decline and is no longer going upwards.

As of 2014, the debt in dollars is $17,824,071,280,733.82, but the most important measure of the debt is not in dollar terms, but rather its size in relation to the economy. Just like a substantially wealthy person able to absorb a financial hit, where a very poor person would go under, so too can a larger economy absorb a greater national debt as a percentage of GDP.

Economists almost solely measure debt to the size of the economy and under Obama, the economy has experienced rapid growth; in particularly in contrast from the Bush years of continual borrowed money practices. Compared to the deep rooted recession years Obama inherited as a result partly from that borrowed money, this president has glued the nation’s economy back together again. 



According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), due to Obama’s policies, their latest projections show that debt held by the public (currently at 75%) will remain static going into the next two years. By 2018 it will actually tick down to 71% of GDP. From there it will hover between 71-74% for the next decade. 
   
The ‘U.S. Department of Labor’ statistic results released the first of this month, shows 64 straight months of private sector job growth adding 12.8 million jobs while under Obama’s leadership. According to the ‘Bureau of Labor Statistics’, between April and August of last year over 200,000 jobs per month were consecutively created. 

Oh there’s more bad news for Republicans and it’s something that really pee-pees them off; Obama has witnessed the best performing private sector job creation in American presidential history superseding the Republicans’ semi-deity…Ronald Reagan who in their eyes is the best of economic presidents. Deny all they want or keep a blind eye, but those are the facts cowpunch; look ‘em up. I’ll take facts over belief any day. One is of substance, while the other is merely fairy tale.

Obama shined through with some glorious uplifting light during his eulogy in Charleston, South Carolina for the nine black church members slain by the white racist, Dylann Roof. [Just a moment of a break here, but what is it lately for these bad guys having common everyday words for last names like Roof and the New York convict escapee, David Sweat?] Anyway, Obama not only gave a speech, he preached it in his deliverance. His inflection of words in his homily’s tone was well centered thus understood by those who knew how to interpret it.

Watch the video below in viewing a glimpse of his humbleness. In his tribute Obama culminated grace, humility and courage while taming a hostile act. Just as he listed the victims of Sandy Hook in his eulogy, which broke me while he remained stolid, so too did he read off the names of the Charleston victims. Obama is respectful of his perspective audience displaying a more somber moment at Sandy Hook while showing a more celebratory salutation in Charleston.


       
Now the last item here of this section concerns the U.S./Iran nuclear deal’s conducted and concluded diplomacy. This I intentionally did not add into the wham bam thank ya Sam grouping for it is far more beyond the whammies in scope…it is of global historical import. It is unfathomable for me that not one Republican has stood up beyond the partisan divide and congratulated the Obama administration for a job well done. Instead they prefer rattling their teeth in political playtime and anti-Obama posturing. Without reading the finished product, they’re out on the airwaves, internet and newspapers on how bad a deal it is; even tried to sabotage it with Senator Tommy Cotton’s (R-AK) gaff letter to Iran as signed by 46 other Republican senators.

This Obama deal though is momentous; its conclusion was sworn by Republicans that it could never be. After all it’s been decades that there was no breakthrough in diplomacy between the two countries, so they remained hated enemies. What remarkable progress this president has doggedly performed in putting the free world into a stronger position.


Remaining hated enemies between the U.S. and Iran wasn’t working and offered no option. American espionage admitted they could go no further in getting vital information from Iran’s secretive nuclear facilities, therefore there was no control on Iran’s pursuit in manufacturing and obtaining the material necessary in creating a plutonium fueled nuclear warhead.

Something had to be done and Obama chose diplomacy over what would be a very costly war.

In this deal composed of six world powers and led by the U.S., from the very outset the Obama administration had to put in place an international panel. Getting China and Russia to hop on board and keep them in place was a true feat unto itself. Known as the ‘P5+1’ the other nations involved were the United Kingdom, France plus Germany; all staunch allies. Since the negotiations were held in Europe, sometimes the negotiations were called ‘E3/EU3’ plus the representative from the European Union.

All the roots to an Iranian nuclear warhead have been sawed off. That includes a major decline of enriched uranium for 15 years of only 3.67%; that is a major drop from the currently stockpiled 8 tons in which Iran is going to have to sell to another nation for peaceful energy means. That was a major sticking point for the Iranian diplomats but they finally relented. The 3.67% can only be used for peaceful purposes for one needs a further purity of enriched uranium to reach a threshold of 90% before it is weapons grade useable. Definitely this low level of enriched uranium could never be used to produce plutonium…the nuclear bomb of choice these days.

Iran is going to have to reduce its 19,000 centrifuges down to 6,104 and out of the reduction, only 5,060 will be able to enrich uranium over the next decade.

Iran’s main and largest nuclear reactor called Fordow cannot enrich uranium for another fifteen years. Fissile material may not be stored there.

The ‘International Atomic Energy Agency’ (IAEA) has free reign to inspect the Iranian uranium enrichment facilities at any unannounced moment. For inspections of military bases where perhaps Iran could conduct enrichment under a veil of secrecy, inspectors can also inspect the bases after a twenty-four day notice.

Sanctions will be lifted only after a United Nations watchdog verifies key steps have been taken by Iran. If indeed a violation occurs the sanctions automatically snap back into place until an agreement comes to term in absolving the impasse, but only after Iran completes its nuclear related steps. If Iran doesn’t obligate its probation period, only five out of the eight (which includes Iran) negotiating nations must agree on what to go forward with, which keeps Russia and China from vetoing the snapback of sanctions.  


In Republican arguments against the deal they have often whined about the twenty-four day notice insinuating it is for the current enrichment facilities as opposed to military bases. So let’s get this straight. All enrichment facilities can have immediate inspections at any time. The twenty-four day notice is only for military bases where Iranians don’t want their conventional warfare capabilities to be exposed. Now that’s understandable isn’t it?

Well now Republicans I’m sure are already whining about the military bases where the delay could give the Iranians enough time to cleanup and hide all their fissile nuclear material and equipment. This only shows ignorance. Radioactive material that can be around for billions of years is not going to be undetectable where it has been a few short days before.

In addition there is a five year moratorium on conventional weapons stockpiling and an eight year moratorium on Iran acquiring more ballistic missiles. It also puts in place a transparency that has never been conducted since the new Persian regime took control of Iran through unlimited IAEA access, which in itself is also a check on Iran’s destabilizing efforts of the Middle East region.

If Iran isn’t staying in line, the IAEA will alert the western nations. If the western nations and in particular the U.S. doesn’t severely scold Iran like the W. Bush administration did to North Korea, then just perhaps this Iranian deal will bear fruit. With North Korea, during inspections there in finding some cheating going on, the subsequent U.S. belittling caused the Asian nation to cut-off the inspections then accelerated their nuclear ambitions.

However, there is another main obstacle brewing and that is the American Republican controlled congress. 

Since the deal’s breakthrough, Republicans have been doing there usual personal ranting and political posturing. In line with Israel’s prime minister, Cruz called the deal “a catastrophic mistake” and has vowed to guess what…filibuster for the fourth time blocking Obama appointees unless the deal is revoked.

Can do nothing criminal in the eyes of his Republican handpicked state supreme court Scott Walker proclaimed, “We need to terminate the bad deal with Iran on the very first day in office.” What does he think; that he could do that before having all his cabinet and administration in place? Is he so wrapped up in catering to his right-wing base that he is willing to appear that immature?

Jeb Bush said that in Obama making this diplomacy deal with Iran, the president has “legitimized” the Iranian regime. Oh really, since his brother W. is his top advisor maybe he should consult with him and find out that it was W. Bush in 2004 that attempted diplomacy himself with Iran only to miserably fail after just two meetings.

All Republican leaders have nothing good to say about the deal, but offer no other alternative solution except for more sanctions or go to war.

What do Republicans think there politically motivated assessments are? Is it far superior over the rest of the world who are praising the deal? Is it that all the experts of diplomacy and nuclear physicists saying this is a viable and concrete agreement are wrong?

GOP unending sequels in their switching on and off excuses of why the deal is no good, tells ya right there, they have no true argument. Under the cuff, most Republican leadership is realizing the deal has diffused the nuclear bomb, so now they argue money Iran gains from the lifting of sanctions will go to support Hezbollah and Hamas. Ya know what, perhaps some of the untied money will, but the accord’s agreement is not about that, its full intention is to disengage Iran’s nuclear capabilities. So Republicans switch off and on again in going back to the bomb in saying it will give Iran a better opportunity to gain a nuclear bomb without any substance to back that claim up. They are just exhaling.



Look, Republicans blindly praise Reagan for his ‘trust then verify’ with Russia during the collapse of the Soviet Union, while they obnoxiously condemn Obama for his ‘distrust then verify’ deal he has accomplished with Iran. Can’t they compare?

Along with Cuba, Obama has ripped two American nemeses off the face of the map. Most definitely we can’t say Iran and Cuba are now our jovial partners due to the recent diplomacy, but for sure they no longer are our perceived mortal enemies which for decades have gotten us nowhere.      

Befuddled and Bamboozled:
Most Republicans I just s’pose are good folk generally. For cryin’ out loud, I’m from Texas…born and raised in that presently ultra-conservative Lonestar state. I’ve many friends, even a few devout relatives who are endeared to the Elephant Party, but herein lies the problem. Most are so filled with fear in constantly being exposed, hence bombarded by their moral majority brand of religion, their politicians incessant catering to angst/worries, Fox News condemnation media plays, right-wing conspirator talk show radio and exclusive select group morning coffee meetings…that they cannot see a reason to not fear. They don’t want that fear exposed so conceal it in anger that leads to hatred to all things other than themselves. They have actually ‘zombicized’ (my word) themselves out with this constant barrage of fear developing biased phobias to nurture the addiction.

There was a radio article a couple of years ago espousing upon a family story where the husband/father’s personality had changed. He had lost his job of many years due to the recession, but finally found one some 70 miles away from home. Driving to and fro a roundtrip of 140 miles every week day could become boring, so I suppose he would flip through the radio stations to ease the mundane. He latched onto right-wing conservative talk shows radically changing him from a social and jovial unbiased jolly fellow to a bigoted grouch. The daughter and mother stated it was amazing the transformation where he once was the encouragement for interacting; he now only wants to be left alone with his Fox News TV. He became a constant bellyacher complaining about the poor, liberals and minorities while, Katy bar the door if anyone messed with his radio and TV channel knob changers. He was festering and stewing where once he laughed and saw life for its blessings.       

I’ve gone to a Republican friend’s house and countless times all that’s on is Fox News blasting out the station’s ideological slant while Rush Limbaugh or Michael Savage radio stations are blaring out neo-con rhetoric vile. He’s constantly exposed to this form of right-wing bombardment. My friend on numerous occasions proclaims Limbaugh “a true genius.” Even after I’ve pointed out Limbaugh’s myriad lies, it seems to only enforce his thoughts on the genius note of the leviathan talk show host ever more.

Incessantly exposed to this type of abhorrent rhetoric and sour belief over factual substance…it’s no wonder Fox News and the Limbaugh styled radio station listeners consistently show that they are the least informed of factual news and events as concluded from academic and scholarly survey studies. 

Because they’re so locked up in their make-believe world, it’s as if Republicans proper do not comprehend that racism still exists today in America; for after all, we have a black president.

Dylann Roof

On the evening of June 17, 2015 Dylann Roof with premeditated racist thoughts calmly walked into the Emanuel AME black church, ya know…God’s House and after an hour or so of worshipping with the congregants opened fire murdering three men and six women, a total of nine folks.   

With this incident there apparently is a case of the white tone deafness bug. Never mind the fact that Roof got his hatred inspiration from the ‘Council of Conservative Citizens’ website ran by Earl Holt III who is president of a white supremacy group and Republican donor (Holt has contributed to Cruz, Santorum and Rand Paul’s presidential campaigns), Republican white folk still don’t want to consider this an act of a racist/terrorist crime.

Roof knew exactly what he was doing as revealed in his manifesto which read, “I chose Charleston because it is most historic city in my state, and at one time had the highest ratio of blacks to Whites in the country. We have no skinheads, no real KKK, no one doing anything but talking on the internet. Well someone has to have the bravery to take it to the real world, and I guess that has to be me.”

Also in his manifesto included are these excerpts, “Niggers are stupid and violent. At the same time they have the capacity to be very slick. Black people view everything through a racial lense. Thats what racial awareness is, its viewing everything that happens through a racial lense. They are always thinking about the fact that they are black. This is part of the reason they get offended so easily, and think that some thing are intended to be racist towards them, even when a White person wouldnt be thinking about race. The other reason is the Jewish agitation of the black race.”

Segregation was not a bad thing. It was a defensive measure. Segregation did not exist to hold back negroes. It existed to protect us from them. And I mean that in multiple ways. Not only did it protect us from having to interact with them, and from being physically harmed by them, but it protected us from being brought down to their level. Integration has done nothing but bring Whites down to level of brute animals. The best example of this is obviously our school system. A horse and a donkey can breed and make a mule, but they are still two completely different animals. Just because we can breed with the other races doesnt make us the same.
  
In a modern history class it is always emphasized that, when talking about “bad” things Whites have done in history, they were White. But when we lern about the numerous, almost countless wonderful things Whites have done, it is never pointed out that these people were White. Yet when we learn about anything important done by a black person in history, it is always pointed out repeatedly that they were black. For example when we learn about how George Washington carver was the first nigger smart enough to open a peanut.”

As witnessed in these few passages of Roof’s manifesto, he is intelligent, sometimes articulate but uses these qualities to promote his hatred and racism. Some may get a chuckle out of his peanut crack, but it is only because it’s tickling the fancy of their bigotry funny-bone. Pure and simple though, Roof conducted a racist/terrorist act. The photo above of him is from a collection of many just like it with him, a gun and the Rebel flag.

Even after the discovery of Roof’s racist manifesto along with acknowledgement as being influenced by Holt’s website, right-wingers had to sidestep and downplay Roof’s actions stating he was an isolated lone wolf or as Santorum demurred in attempts, to deflect and soften the outcome as an assault on religion rather than a racist event. According to a CNN/ORC poll, results show that a whopping 61% of whites feel that the Charleston killings wasn’t a racist/terrorist crime.



Speaking to Joe Piscopo on his radio station AM 970, Santorum delivers, “You talk about the importance of prayer in this time and we’re now seeing assaults on our religious liberty we’ve never seen before. It’s a time for deeper reflection beyond this horrible situation.”

Do you see what Santorum is doing here…he’s attempting to deflect away from the racist root cause of Roof’s actions and since the atrocity was carried out in a church, utilizes that to equate it as an attack on religious liberty by backtracking the incident to a phrase that resonates well with the right-wing…an attack on “religious liberty.”

Rick Perry went so far as to simply call Roof’s actions a mere “accident.” When being interviewed by ‘Newsmax’ reporter, Steve Malzberg during the week of the tragedy, Perry said, “This is the M.O. of this administration, anytime there is a accident like this. You know, the president’s clear. He doesn’t like for Americans to have guns, and so he uses every opportunity — this being another one — to basically go parrot that message.”

Ought oh…another one of them “oops” moments there, huh Perry…  

Fox News did its darn best to play down the racist issue and instead of me ranting about their commentary, Stewart does a superb job in the video below by exposing the media’s hypocrisy, deflection and downplay.


So Fox News…stick that up your flatulent windpipe…

Just after the Charleston, massacre within ten days a rash of eight black churches were burned to the ground. Guess who is about the only group of folks to offer any aid to the churchless Christian congregants…it’s American Muslims; imagine that. A coalition of Muslim community groups started the ‘LaunchGood’ program designed to collect donations for members of the burned-out churches. The donations will go forward to rebuilding all eight churches.

Funny how that never made any of the Fox News stories…

I have to point a few things out, for South Carolinians are not all bad and it rings of hope through the muffling of the Charleston killings.

Thanks to state policies of religious tolerance, South Carolina gave birth to ‘Reform Judaism’ in 1824 by reforming religious legislation.

South Carolina was the first state in 1870 to elect a black U.S. congressman, Joseph Rainey to the House of Representatives.

Seventeen months before Rosa Parks’ refusal to give up her bus seat in Alabama, Sara Mae Flemming sat down on the only vacant seat in a Columbia, South Carolina bus that happened to be in the white section. She refused the bus driver’s demands to get up and when she was exiting the bus at her stop, the driver punched her in the belly. Her subsequent lawsuit through South Carolina legal ground works helped pave the way for later civil rights rulings including Rosa Parks’.



Today, hundreds of white South Carolinians joined hundreds of black South Carolinians in a Charleston 06/21 march of solidarity.

Now though, this nation has yet another event to grieve over the senseless murdering at the Chattanooga, Tennessee marine recruit offices. On July 16 last week, four service members were immediately killed with one dying from his injuries two days later. The shooter was also killed by police. The culprit was Kuwaiti born American, Muhammad Abdulazeez, who was raised here in America and performed well in a high-end middleclass neighborhood while participating in high school activities. He appears to have acted alone just like Roof.

Immediately though, as totally opposite in their response to the Charleston killings, Fox News morning, noon and night televises this as a hate/terrorist crime. Ya see, since Roof was white with no Mohammad in his nametag, he couldn’t be racist, but with Mohammad Abdulazeez as being Muslim, well then he has to be a terrorist. They even spread bogus stories that had already been proven as false.

One of the falsities the station immediately ran with was on the Fox News show ‘Happening Now’ in host Jon Scott and guest Chad Jenkins trying to implicate the Clintons by laying blame on former President Clinton as the reason the shootings could have occurred. Here’s what was said:

Scott: It should be pointed out that many people might think that military service members are armed carrying their side arms day and night, that’s not the case. It’s pretty unusual for all but the MPs to be carrying their side arms isn’t it?

Jenkins: Well, and look at the Fort Hood shootings. We had two shootings now that were mass casualty situations and now the recruiting station. Unfortunately, the executive order put in place by President Bill Clinton back in the nineties took away the rights for service members to carry, conceal, and to protect themselves here in the homeland.

This was proven false years ago as originating from a conservative website. There never was a Clinton executive order as such; the change in Army regulations was under the H. W. Bush administration in 1992, which only applied to the Army and not the Marines.

The station went and ran with another bogus tweet turning it into an all day long story based solely on anti-Muslim Pam Gellar’s tweet which read, “This morning an ISIS supporter tweeted this at 10:34 am -- the shooting started at 10:45.” The station tried to link this up to an ISIS terrorist act, but the timing was off. From the morning news to Sean Hannity’s radio appearance, this false story was spread.

Catherine Herridge, Fox News’ chief intelligence correspondent reported, “The last investigative thread I would mention at this point is that we're taking a hard look at a Twitter account -- an ISIS-linked Twitter account -- that seemed to have foreknowledge of the shooting in Chattanooga. The tweet went out at 10:34 with the hashtag Chattanooga referring to American dogs and a likely shooting. This of course was about 15 minutes before the shooting took place.”

Geller was claiming it was sent out prior to the shootings, but it was quickly pointed out by other media outlets that the time frame was Eastern Standard Time (EST) and not on Pacific Time or even Mountain or Central Time. Chattanooga is on EST. Ya see, the tweet actually went out at 1:34 PM, three hours after the incident initially started and and at least two hours after it ended.

Getting whiffs of this, Brett Baier attempts to cover for Fox’s imploding avalanche in the vain attempts to keep the ISIS linked story going by saying, “Let me be careful about the tweet to the ISIS related account. In Garland, Texas we know that it came out before the shooting, before that happened. In this case, the time stamp does say 10:34, but we don’t know if that’s Pacific Time, Mountain Time or Eastern Time, so we have to be careful about it coming out before the shooting. Point is, there are ISIS accounts that are pointing directly to this incident and pointing directly to this incident, touting it as one of own.

The point to all this…of course both incidents were horrid accounts of terrorism.     


It doesn’t matter if Obama had saved the world singlehandedly from invading Martians or created a living wage job for each and every adult American, the right-wing is still going to appall him and spread their repugnant beliefs instead of the truth.

It doesn’t matter if it is due to their own actions like shutting down the government, or whether Obama had nothing to do with an outrageous claim, Republicans nonetheless will blame Obama for it and their base will reel the baited fish in.

Just this past Tuesday July 14th, House Speaker John Boehner laid out the ridiculous claim that Obama is fully responsible for California’s record breaking drought when he posted on his Facebook that the worst drought in 1200 years as a “man-made water shortage — not worsened by climate change, but by President Obama himself. In the midst of the historic Dust Bowl conditions, Americans still have a God-given right to green lawns.”

Since just this past May, Boehner claimed the old boring Republican phrase, “I’m not a scientist” bit when he said, “I’m not qualified to debate the science over climate change,” then I suggest to him…zip the lip.  

There is a genuine hatred for this president throughout the ranks of the right…

But why, I don’t rightly know. Maybe it’s because he’s a progressive, or maybe it’s because he’s simply black with their bigoted selves, or perhaps just maybe it’s because he’s both progressive and black.

In thinking they’re cute, Republican political leaders have called Obama all kinds of names and feel no shame or responsibility for it. The latest is the mayor of a Spokane suburb called Airways Heights. The conservative mayor, Patrick Rushing posted this on his Facebook, “Gorilla face Michelle, can't disagree with that. The woman is not attractive except to monkey man Barack. Check out them ears. LOL.”

In 2012, Barbara Espinoza of the former Arizona conservative radio show ‘Hair on Fire’ she coproduced with then, AZ GOP chairman, Randy Pullen addressed Obama as the “First Monkey President.”

In 2011 on a local Denver radio show, Representative Doug Lamborn (R-CO) called the president ‘Tar Baby’ when he said, “Even if some people say, well the Republicans should have done this or they should have done that, they will hold the President responsible. Now I don’t want to even have to be associated with him. It’s like touching a tar baby and you get, you get it, you know… you are stuck and you are part of the problem now and you can’t get away.”

These Republican insults of the president go all the way back to the beginning of Obama’s presidency. Of course when chastised, they counter it was all in fun or just a joke, but all refuse to resign from their office.     

For all you bigots…got some stirring news for ya though…even though Obama is just as white as he is black, as both races flow as half through his veins; it is the African black that is the most pure of the human race…not white. The origin of Homo sapiens comes directly from out of Africa. The other races only came after as mutts once the original African Homo sapiens migrated and integrated with the other dispersed hominids that too themselves, once had out of Africa origins.

Besides, on Obama’s maternal side, the family lineage goes all the way back to the colonial period. Obama has that direct descendent qualification to belong to the ‘Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution’…something that most who constantly demean Obama’s patriotism do not have that distinction.

My cup of pride doth runneth over for this president and I will proclaim it to all.

Desecrated Battle Flag:
I’ll end on a note or two concerning the Confederate battlefield flag.


For me growing up in West Texas, the stars and bars flag of the Confederacy truly was a symbol of my southern roots and heritage. I have even written in years past a small thesis concerning just that. It was never tied into slavery or ethics but represented a true lost cause that was valiantly fought but nonetheless defeated. It represented the heroes such as Generals Robert E. Lee or Stonewall Jackson who knew how to get the most while having not much to gain in rallying their troops. The Civil War was lopsided. The North had all the superior military hardware and populous army while the Rebels marched barefooted in rags. No matter though how ill-equipped, or tired, or hungry those Rebels were when it was time to fight, by George they fought and fought hard. I root for the underdog every time in any event due to the reflection of this heritage.

The Confederate battlefield flag represented that sentiment, but no longer, for bigots have stolen that heritage from me. The flag no longer is a symbol of a lost cause, but of a smoldering intolerance.

When I see northerners flying the bars and stripes, I realize now that it is not about a heritage but of inflammatory discrimination. When I see Oklahomans flying the Rebel flag to greet Obama during his recent visit there last week I realize the flag no longer is a symbol of a battered lost cause, but of defiance and ridicule.

For ya see, those northerners, those New Yorkers had ancestors that marched under the stars and stripes; not the stars and bars. Oklahoma wasn’t even a state when the Civil War was conducted, it was Indian Territory. No, they fly the flag for one reason…to display it as a symbol of defiant prejudice and misguided patriotism.

For that I indeed do believe the flag must come down…it’s time to let go…


In Analysis,
BJA
01/19/2015