Thursday, August 6, 2009

Well, I'm a Joker, a Smoker, a Midnight Racist Poster..

Dana Milbank
Michael Stickings
Mike Madden

"The President is trying to put a happy face on the economy. But don’t you think “we’re losing jobs at a much slower pace” is a little weak?" - Will Durst

"Coincidence is the word we use when we can't see the levers and pulleys." - Emma Bull

Ahh, its summer, that wonderful time of the year when adolescent boys the world over lock themselves in their rooms and stare at the computer screen for endless hours as they try to unleash viruses, worms, create denial of service attacks, and try to hack secure servers. Twitter and Facebook are currently under denial of service attacks, and news feeds are sluggish, meaning who knows when this blog will get posted today. This week, web sites for several members of the US House of Representatives were attacked, their front pages wiped out and replaced with grafitti;" Jeff Ventura, a spokesman for the House's chief administrative officer,
said the defacements of several member Web sites began Aug. 1, and were the result of an outside computer vendor failing to adhere to the House's required security standards.
As I said, it could be kids from anywhere, Calcutta, St Petersburg, Manilla, Dallas, Duluth, or look upstairs right now and see what your kid is up to...

Yesterday I used a photo of the Obama-as-the-Joker poster with Rush Limabaugh (see post below), but forgot to link to the story about it, my bad. From the Washington Post: "Urban blacks -- the thinking goes -- don't just live in dangerous neighborhoods, they carry that danger with them like a virus. Scientific studies, which demonstrate the social consequences of living in neighborhoods with high rates of crime, get processed and misinterpreted in the popular unconscious, underscoring the idea. Violence breeds violence... Superimpose that idea, through the Joker's makeup, onto Obama's face, and you have subtly coded, highly effective racial and political argument. Forget socialism, this poster is another attempt to accomplish an association between Obama and the unpredictable, seeming danger of urban life. It is another effort to establish what failed to jell in the debate about Obama's association with Chicago radical William Ayers and the controversy over the racially charged sermons of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

Obama, like the Joker and like the racial stereotype of the black man, carries within him an unknowable, volatile and dangerous marker of urban violence, which could erupt at any time. The charge of socialism is secondary to the basic message that Obama can't be trusted, not because he is a politician, but because he's black." So, is Rush Limbaugh and other right wingers trying to start a race war?

And I wonder about older folks of my parent's generation, who grew up when segregation was still the norm, and the attitudes they inherited like second-hand smoke. My grandparents were from Kentucky, and used to try and shock me when I'd come to stay with them. They'd get drunk and make all kinds of racist statements and jokes, and would laugh at the look of horror on my face. When my parents got older, they, too, would make racial slurs. I know my father was frustrated for many years because he felt the only way his boss got promoted was through affirmative action quotas. My father worked in the aerospace industry, had the kind of security clearance that can't be given out anymore due to a generation that has inhaled, and his boss didn't even know the basics of what he did. So racism was a social norm when they were growing up, and it could also develop through experiences from work and careers. All being cynically tapped into by people purposely trying to manipulate that "fear of a Black man," spread among this older generation like flouride in our drinking water. Welcome to the old-school style of the GOP...

Here is a link to view the 4 page August Recess Action Kit from Freedomworks, with instructions and talking points to use at townhall meetings Freedomworks is the main website that organized the tea parties back in April. Can't wait to see their back-to-school specials...

Sonia Sotomayor has been confirmed by the Senate, as reported by the NY Times: "Voting largely along party lines, the Senate on Thursday confirmed Judge Sonia Sotomayor as the 111th justice of the Supreme Court. She will be the first Hispanic and the third woman to serve on the court.
Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. was expected to administer the oath of office to Judge Sotomayor, 55, in the next few days, with a formal ceremony likely in September. She succeeds Justice David H. Souter, who retired in June.

Democrats celebrated the successful nomination and relatively smooth confirmation process as a bright spot in a summer when they have been buffeted by several challenges, including rocky progress on their attempts to overhaul the nation’s health care system, President Obama’s falling approval ratings, the climbing unemployment rate and other lingering economic problems."
There will be much rejoicing in the Hispanic communities tonight, it should transcend any party politics...

And lastly, congratulations to former Manson cult member Lynnette Squeaky Fromme, who will be released from jail after serving 30 years for attempting to kill President Gerald Ford for the sake of the redwoods. Should we give her a welcome home hit of acid, or do you think she might like today's designer drugs more?

late night jokes, guess no one was very funny last night:

"President Clinton flew all the way to North Korea, under the cover of night, to rescue two beautiful women from the clutches of an evil dictator. And what's amazing is that's the exact same alibi he used on Hillary last week." --Conan O'Brien

"The Pentagon's concerned that Facebook could pose a security risk to U.S. military personnel. Yeah, because apparently, there's no telling what al Qaeda could do if it knows what a soldier's five favorite romantic comedies are." --Conan O'Brien

"Former President Bill Clinton yesterday flew behind North Korea's iron deficiency curtain and secured the release the two journalists. No guns, no bloodshed, just a silk suit, raspy southern charm and, based on personal experience, a hint, just a touch, of P. Diddy's 'Unforgivable.'" --Jon Stewart

"Here is the most Clinton-esque detail of the entire operation [on screen: anchors reporting that the jet was owned by Shangri-La Entertainment]. What? Mr. President, we have to send you to North Korea, but we don't have a plane for you. 'Let me call my friends at Shangri-La Entertainment. They owe me one. They know why.'" --Jon Stewart

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