Koch’s War on Obama

The gala marked the social ascent of Koch, who, at the age of seventy, has become one of the city’s most prominent philanthropists. In 2008, he donated a hundred million dollars to modernize Lincoln Center’s New York State Theatre building, which now bears his name. He has given twenty million to the American Museum of Natural History, whose dinosaur wing is named for him. This spring, after noticing the decrepit state of the fountains outside the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Koch pledged at least ten million dollars for their renovation. He is a trustee of the museum, perhaps the most coveted social prize in the city, and serves on the board of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, where, after he donated more than forty million dollars, an endowed chair and a research center were named for him.

One dignitary was conspicuously absent from the gala: the event’s third honorary co-chair, Michelle Obama. Her office said that a scheduling conflict had prevented her from attending. Yet had the First Lady shared the stage with Koch it might have created an awkward tableau. In Washington, Koch is best known as part of a family that has repeatedly funded stealth attacks on the federal government, and on the Obama Administration in particular.

Read more http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/08/30/100830fa_fact_mayer#ixzz0ymB5PgBr

Truly Inspirational

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsUVL6ciK-c&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

Thanks to all the moms for coming out of the woodwork and taking our country back.

I love how Republicans, or conservatives in general act like we’ve had a thousand years of left-wing rule and that there is something to actually “take back.” It makes me wonder if we’re living in the same universe…

LET’S TAKE OUR COUNTRY BACK (from these liberal black-voting tax-raising left-wing-because-i-said-so liberals). I WISH US’N COULD RE-ELECT BUSH. Come on people, get with it.

The God Project: Hinduism as Open-Source Faith

With over 330 million gods worshipped over Hinduism’s evolution in the past 5,000 years on the Indian sub-continent, Josh Schrei of HP considers this religion the only “open-source” religion.

At the heart of the Indic source code are the Vedas, which immediately establish the primacy of inquiry in Indic thought. In the Rig Veda, the oldest of all Hindu texts (and possibly the oldest of all spiritual texts on the planet), God, or Prajapati, is summarized as one big mysterious question and we the people are basically invited to answer it.

“Who really knows?
Who will here proclaim it?
Whence was it produced?
Whence is this creation?
The gods came afterwards, with the creation of this universe.
Who then knows whence it has arisen?”

On the God Project:

In Indic thought, there is no trade secret. The foundation of yoga is that the key to god, or the macrocosm, or the absolute … lies within the individual and can be accessed through a certain set of practices. It’s a beautifully simple but ultimately profound concept that has been allowed to flourish unchecked for millennia. The process of discovering and re-imagining the divine is in your hands. The God Project.

.:huffingtonpost.com->

Republicans’ Dirty Secret

Perhaps the most fascinating political conundrum of the 2010 election is one faced by GOP senators, almost all of whom voted for TARP and supported some of the other bailouts in the thick of the financial crisis. The good news is that, for all their shortcomings, the bailouts did the trick, preventing a deeper economic crisis. The bad news is those bailouts are now considered political poison by the tea partying conservative base.

That puts Republicans in a strange position: unable to say the legislation failed, but at pains to distance themselves from their vote nonetheless. Over the past couple days, I’ve asked a number of GOP senators whether, nearly two years later, they think the bailout bill was effective. Their answers were revealing.

Sen. Judd Gregg (R-NH), who’s retiring at the end of the year and is therefore unencumbered by the need to defend himself from the GOP base, has nothing to run away from.

“It was extremely effective,” Gregg told me. “Not only was it effective and stabilized the financial industry, it also returned to the taxpayers almost $20 billion in interest and dividends that they would have otherwise not have.”

…Read the Rest…

Laura Bush Supports Gay Marriage, Abortion

And… in timely fashion she speaks up about it! </sarcasm>  Interesting read though, I suggest you check it out.

In response to a question about gay marriage, she said, “There are a lot of people who have trouble coming to terms with that because they see marriage as traditionally between a man and a woman. But I also know that, you know, when couples are committed to each other and love each other, that they ought to have, I think, the same sort of rights that everyone has.”

Mrs. Bush said she and the ex-president “disagree” on legalizing same-sex marriage.

“I understand totally what George thinks and what other people think about marriage being between a man and a woman. And it’s a real, you know, reversal really for [them] to accept gay marriage,” she said.

When King asked if she could accept gay marriage, the first lady said: “I think we could, yeah.” “You think [legalization of same-sex marriage] is coming?” asked King.

My Ninja, Please: Tea Party Liberal Infiltrators

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYfmShJe5MA&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

The Right wing media and the Tea Parties are playing chess while the Left and the mainstream media are playing checkers.

While they can be disparaged as being narrow minded ideologues possessed of an authoritarian personality, Conservatives in the U.S.–and the extreme Right wing that has now become the center of the GOP–have long been masters of using emotional and moral appeals to motivate their public. While the Democrats are hamstrung by an issues based approach to politics, Conservatives have mastered the art of creating an alternate world of political facts and reason (enabled by the Right wing media echo chamber) where the reality based community need not tread.

This week the note being struck is that liberal infiltrators (in the guise of “agent provocateurs”) are targeting the Tea Parties in order to smear and discredit them. Without any factual substantiation (and ignoring the racist, bigoted, and violent rhetoric that is common at the Tea Party gatherings) the Right has succeeded in reframing the narrative which surrounds the tea baggers. Now, freed from any responsibility for their own actions, the Tea Parties can point to some imagined villain as being responsible for all things disruptive and violent at their protests. [Read the rest from Chauncey DeVega via OpenSalon]

A.S. I.F.

These people gotta lotta gall, in my opinion. I can see why it is important that some dude harasses a racist at a rally, don’t get me wrong, but let’s also keep in mind that there’s something to be said for attracting that type of element in the first place. The Nazis don’t feel comfortable just strolling down the street in most places — and frankly, this dude with the camera seems to be the only person who cares. Get serious, ninjas. Oh… and PLEASE!

Tea Party speaker gay-baits Lindsey Graham

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2MCXjkS8cc&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

At a Tea Party rally in Greenville, S.C., last week, a speaker tried to figure out just what, exactly, is wrong with Graham. “Barney Frank has been more honest and brave than you. At least we know about Barney Frank, nobody’s going to hold it over his head.”

He continued, “Look, I’m a tolerant person. I don’t care about your private life, Lindsey. But as our U.S. senator, I need to figure out why you’re trying to sell out your own countrymen, I need to make sure you being gay isn’t it.”

This is the language of a political movement that sees itself defending a peculiar, limited version of democratic politics. Academics have a term for this idea: herrenvolk democracy. The basic idea is that there is supposed to be equality, and even unanimity on crucial matters, among qualified citizens. And if someone breaks the consensus, it’s not so much a sign that there needs to be an argument about this or that issue. It just casts doubt on whether that person was a legitimate member of the group in the first place. (Note that Graham himself has criticized the use of “racial epithets” on the right.) [Read the whole story from Salon.com]

My Ninja, Please: Black Conservatives Taking Heat

Let me preface this by saying, GEE, YA THINK???

And to the man below. YER A BUM!

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) – They’ve been called Oreos, traitors and Uncle Toms, and are used to having to defend their values. Now black conservatives are really taking heat for their involvement in the mostly white tea party movement—and for having the audacity to oppose the policies of the nation’s first black president.

“I’ve been told I hate myself. I’ve been called an Uncle Tom. I’ve been told I’m a spook at the door,” said Timothy F. Johnson, chairman of the Frederick Douglass Foundation, a group of black conservatives who support free market principles and limited government.

“Black Republicans find themselves always having to prove who they are. Because the assumption is the Republican Party is for whites and the Democratic Party is for blacks,” he said.

Johnson and other black conservatives say they were drawn to the tea party movement because of what they consider its commonsense fiscal values of controlled spending, less taxes and smaller government. The fact that they’re black—or that most tea partyers are white—should have nothing to do with it, they say.

“You have to be honest and true to yourself. What am I supposed to do, vote Democratic just to be popular? Just to fit in?” asked Clifton Bazar, a 45-year-old New Jersey freelance photographer and conservative blogger.

Opponents have branded the tea party as a group of racists hiding behind economic concerns—and reports that some tea partyers were lobbing racist slurs at black congressmen during last month’s heated health care vote give them ammunition.

But these black conservatives don’t consider racism representative of the movement as a whole—or race a reason to support it. [LINK]

This is the most obvious thing in the world. It doesn’t take a Colin Powell to see that you blacks aren’t welcome at TEA Party events. The fact that you would try to FRONT is setting the rest of us back multiple millenniums. And not just ninjas, but the whole human race. Ya’ll need need to STOP STOP STOP.

At least, don’t expect us to take this lying down, ya damn turncoats.

In any case, don’t expect ninjas to just take this ish lying down… GTFOOHWTBS.

John McCain is So Effin’ Confused

Note: This post from Wonkette is so hilarious that I was forced to jack it in its entirety. You should really go check out the blog, though.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6S-d4xPItJY&feature=player_embedded[/youtube]

Here is a clip, ANY clip, of John McCain’s rally with Sarah Palin this afternoon, in Arizona. See she’s bustin’ out the leather tit jacket. TeLLyPrOmmTr, notes-on-mah-hand, etc. But just look at John McCain back there. Just look at him. At :32, clapping like that robot monkey with the cymbals. He has no idea what the fuck is happening. #LINK#

Massaging the Curriculum: A Texas Guide to Rewriting History

I haven’t much to say about this besides that you should read the article.  Part of me thinks it’s scary, another part of me thinks that it’s always scary when you see sausage being made.

I mean… I remember that in school we colored in pictures of happy “Pilgrims” and “Indians. “  Sometimes feeling like you were lied to can be more dramatic than not.

McLeroy moved that Margaret Sanger, the birth-control pioneer, be included because she “and her followers promoted eugenics,” that language be inserted about Ronald Reagan’s “leadership in restoring national confidence” following Jimmy Carter’s presidency and that students be instructed to “describe the causes and key organizations and individuals of the conservative resurgence of the 1980s and 1990s, including Phyllis Schlafly, the Contract With America, the Heritage Foundation, the Moral Majority and the National Rifle Association.” The injection of partisan politics into education went so far that at one point another Republican board member burst out in seemingly embarrassed exasperation, “Guys, you’re rewriting history now!” Nevertheless, most of McLeroy’s proposed amendments passed by a show of hands.

Finally, the board considered an amendment to require students to evaluate the contributions of significant Americans. The names proposed included Thurgood Marshall, Billy Graham, Newt Gingrich, William F. Buckley Jr., Hillary Rodham Clinton and Edward Kennedy. All passed muster except Kennedy, who was voted down.

This is how history is made — or rather, how the hue and cry of the present and near past gets lodged into the long-term cultural memory or else is allowed to quietly fade into an inaudible whisper. Public education has always been a battleground between cultural forces; one reason that Texas’ school-board members find themselves at the very center of the battlefield is, not surprisingly, money. The state’s $22 billion education fund is among the largest educational endowments in the country. LINK

They say history is written by the victors.  Given how frequently we accuse our politicians of attempting to rewrite history, nay, how frequently they do, maybe we should begin to say that the victors are also written by history.