An Alaskan journalist's perspective on local and national issues

Posts tagged ‘Republican Party’

A Woman Judge Blames a Woman for Being Sexually Assaulted?!

Reading this story was a lot like reading about Clarence Thomas, a Supreme Court Justice who grew up in the Jim Crow days and had to live with the racial segregation that that entailed, thinks that black people shouldn’t have rights.

Here’s the premise of what happened – a cop goes to a bar.  He is drunk.  He flashes his badge at the door so as not to pay the entrance fee.  Once inside, he goes up behind a woman.  He grabs a hold of her, puts his hand up her skirt, and starts rubbing his hands on her genitals.

As you can imagine, it was insane.  The cop, Robb Gary Evans, was immediately fired from the police force, and arrested.  At the trial, he was convicted of sexual assault, and sentenced to two years in prison, and to be put on the sex-offender registry, as is proper.

However, there was a twist.  The judge in this case, Jaqueline Hatch, said that sentencing this ex-cop to jail time was excessive, and instead sentenced him to probation, and 100 hours of community service.  Also, he is not going to be put on the sex offender registry list.  But it doesn’t end there.  Judge Hatch had some choice words for the victim of this crime –

If you wouldn’t have been there that night, none of this would have happened.

That offensive enough?  Well, she continues.

You learned a lesson about friendship and a lesson about vulnerability.

Or maybe this.

When you blame others, you give up your power to change.

Yeah, a woman judge is who is actually telling a victim of sexual assault that she is at fault here.  Yeah, by that logic, if a person chokes on food, it’s there fault for eating.  If a kid gets caught by a stray bullet at a drive-by, it was his fault for being there.  If your house gets destroyed by a hurricane, it’s your fault for living there.

This is offensive.  This is totally and completely offensive on so many levels.  This is a judge, an actual judge, who gives this sexual predator a slap on the wrist, at best, and then decides to make this about a woman being in the wrong place, and painting her as not the victim, but the reason for this to happen.

Where does this judge get off?!  Where does this come from to believe that she has the right to tell this woman that this is her fault?!  The absolute LAST thing that a woman who was in this position needs to hear, from a person in a position of authority, is that this was their fault.  The levels of cruelty in that statement are unforgivable.

But beyond that, it is worse because think about this – she is advocating that men who sexually assault women shouldn’t be accountable for their actions!  How sick is that?  This is one of the most disgusting pieces of inhumanity that has ever been uttered by a federal judge.

Where do people like this come from?  People like Todd Akin, who stupidly enough said that if a woman is “legitimately raped,” the body will just shut it down, and that it isn’t that bad.  Sure, he said that was a dumb thing to say, but here’s the punch line – he never said he was wrong!  And the reason he did that is because of the next voting cycle.  He knows that if he admits that that was a stupid thing to say, his opponent will come in and say that it’s true that a woman who is raped doesn’t need an abortion, because that is what the morally backwards base wants to hear.

Judge Hatch is a disgusting human being.  She is a foul, venereal disease on the zeitgeist of America.  But here is the truly horrifying thing – she is in a position of power.  Her, and people like Todd Akin are getting into positions of power in this country.  Why?  It’s not because of a lack of liberal voting, though that certainly is an issue.  No, it’s because, and we need to accept this, the Republican Party, which makes up half (give or take) of this country’s voting block, is perfectly fine with electing and having these monsters represent them.  That is the kind of people they are.

This country is filled with voters who want to see women suffer, to see women get assaulted and raped, and when they are put in a position to justify their point of view, they will say – it was the woman’s fault, because she was there.  That is what America has produced.

These are the kinds of people who have a voice in this country.  America, there are a lot of days when I find you to be a disgusting place.  Can you blame me?

Arizona effectively legalizes doctors lying to patients

It isn’t often that one can point to something that the government of America has done and talk about how it is beyond foul.  In the world of right-wing insanity, this has got to be a step up.  It really doesn’t get much better than this.  In Arizona, there has been a new law that has been passed that say a doctor can lie to a patient about their own child.

You see, despite all the anti-choice propaganda, a lot of these women are having abortion for the reason of sparing a child from having to live a life that would be nothing but suffering.  Whenever it is found that children have birth defects, the mother gets to have the option to abort, and save both herself suffering, and the fetus’ suffering.

It is called the “Wrongful Birth” law.  It effectively allows a doctor to withhold information about a woman’s fetus if birth defects are found, in the interest of preventing her to have an abortion.  This even includes if the defects are so serious that they could kill the mother.  This law allows doctors to completely ignore the Hippocratic Oath.

This is going to be a short and sweet post.  Arizona law-makers, thank you for sending a “Screw You” message to women everywhere, along with to decency.  The levels of selfish conceit here I are blinding.  It cannot be argued that this is a law that is attacking women.  They will dress it up as protecting babies, but it is entirely done to take the choices away from women.

And this leads to the ultimate truth about the “pro-life” movement.  For the most part, it isn’t “pro-life.”  If they are against capital punishment, and the wars, then one can accept that they are pro-life.  However, for the most part, it is simply anti-choice.  They are against the fact that women in this country are able to choose for themselves how to conduct their lives.  Since the Republican base has now transformed almost entirely into middle-aged to elderly white men, then it makes a lot more sense why this is so.  These people have always been against women.

However, as with all the laws that these conservatives insane-asylum rejects have put out, it ignores the true consequences of its reach.  Prenatal care is for more than just the problems, like birth defects.  It exists to help find out if there are life-threatening complications, such as ectopic pregnancy, which can kill a mother if she doesn’t abort.

But given other bills, like the ones that say that there should be no abortion even in the instance to save the mother’s life, it is no surprise the Republicans went down this road.  Women, you have to take action.  Get as many as you can, and tell them all – do NOT support a Republican vote.  Even if you are a conservative, these people are beyond that.  They have gone into the realm of your typical insane asylum, and it needs to stop.

Peace out,

Lefty

The Poison of Being Republican

It isn’t really all that hard anymore to show how Republican candidates are awful people.  The tragedy of this is that it making the actually moderate Republican voters lose faith in their party.  But if one wants to examine this issue in a serious way, it really doesn’t take more than looking beyond Rush Limbaugh.  His comments about Sandra Fluke made the front page.  45 advertisers and counting have backed away from his show, not wanting their brands to be forever tarnished by him.  Given this, one would naturally conclude that he would back off a little, be more careful.

But this isn’t a perfect world.  In this world, Limbaugh comes back from making incredibly sexist comments, by making more incredibly sexist comments.  He talked in his latest show about the author, Tracie McMillan.  Apparently, according to him –

“What is it with all of these young single white women, overeducated — doesn’t mean intelligent.”

It’s becoming increasingly apparent that Limbaugh doesn’t like women.  That much is clear beyond a doubt.  He didn’t argue with McMillan’s work on its merits, he simply dismissed it because she is a woman.  This man is a sexist.  And his audience is sexist too.  There are women who call into his show, hopping on that bandwagon, but the number is very small.  The fact is that the bulk of his audience is men who are just as hateful of women as he is.  This, of course, leads to the modern problem of the Republican Party – it’s poison to everyone who is a part of it.

Take a look at the presidential campaigns of the Republican candidates and its easy to see what’s wrong – nobody likes ANY of these guys running for the oval office.  The primary voting numbers are beyond dismal.  It’s to the point where Republican candidates are showing up in states are aren’t able to come close to filling up a room for them to speak at.

And it makes perfect sense.  People like Rick Santorum, who wants to get rid of all pornography, all abortion, and all birth control.  Over 90% of women in this country use birth control, either for the sexual aspect, or for the health effects it can have on things like ovarian cysts.  Santorum wants to throw away any and all chance of them being able to get help.

Next up, there’s Newt Gingrich.  It isn’t hard to see why Gingrich isn’t popular.  He’s scum, and the Republican voters know it.  He cheated on and subsequently left one wife while she was dying.  He then ditched that one later.  He is a horrible person.  The voters know it, and they have no interest in him.

Ron Paul still have a very large cult following, but because he doesn’t go for the Republican establishment’s side of things, he is never going to get the nomination.  He talks about issues I don’t agree with, but at least he is consistent, which is something that the one who is looking to be the front runner isn’t.

Mitt Romney, what can you say?  Oh, right – he’s a flip-flopping, pure politics Republican.  He will say anything to get elected.  He tries to come off conservative, but the hardcore conservatives see right through that.  He will try to be moderate, but the moderates just don’t care.  They don’t like this guy, and it shows.

The fact is that it is becoming poisonous to be Republican right now.  The female vote has jumped ship, once and for all (pretty much).  Minorities are barely involved with them, because they have clearly been against them.  The LGBTQ community knows that they are not their friends (though neither are the Democrats, which leaves them high and dry on all sides).  The Republican base now is almost entirely made up of middle-aged and elderly white men.  This isn’t a good number to work with, and it is showing in the polls how little it is helping them.

To put it into context how little faith people have in the Republican Party – Joe Miller, from my state of Alaska.  He ran the most hardcore-conservative race that I have seen in this state (in my lifetime).  He lost to Lisa Murkowski because the Republican voters didn’t find him palatable, and a lot of Democrats that I know voted for her because Scott McAdams was a nobody, and they knew it.  Republicans don’t like these people, because they aren’t moderate.  The Tea Party got rid of their moderates, and now, it is becoming a battle of values, not issues.  That’s not what voters want to hear right now.

So, Limbaugh isn’t that big of a surprise.  He is just a symptom of the overall illness within America’s conservative movement – it’s dying.  The people who make up its base are dying or getting too old to care.  Women aren’t on board.  Minorities are scarcely on board.  The LGBTQ community hates their guts.  It’s poisonous to be a Republican right now.

Peace out,

Lefty

GOP Authorizing Rape Before Abortions

The language in the title may sound excessive, but if you listen to what is said, and you see what is affiliated with it, then really, there can’t be any other way of looking at it.

For those who are unaware, Virginia has recently passed a law that makes is so that a woman has to get an trans-vaginal ultrasound before they get an abortion.  But why call it rape?  For one thing, this totally destroys the Constitution of this country.

It’s been on the block for years.  It’s kind of nice to know that America is finally killing it.  The Patriot Act destroyed the 4th and 1st Amendment.  SOPA and PIPA would have totally obliterated them, but they failed.  Now ACTA is trying to finish them.  Of course, that doesn’t even matter because the government did what SOPA and PIPA would have done anyway, when they took down MegaUpload.

And the Republican delegates of Virginia don’t even care.  Delegate Todd Gillbert basically made the case that a majority of abortions are a matter of “convenience.”  That this is all fun and games for women.  Not only is that an offensive statement, but in lieu of what is happening, it makes this whole affair even worse.

This is what the GOP wants to shove into rape victims

If one has ever seen the probe (featured right) that is involved with trans-vaginal ultrasound, it basically looks like a dildo.  These things are now going to be forced into the uterus’ of women in Virginia.  But the really sad part is that it doesn’t stop there.  In Texas, states all over the Lower 48, and now here in Alaska, similar legislation is being presented.

This is a total violation of the rights of women.  And the reason it is being done is even more insidious.  It is in order the shame these women.  To coerce them into not having this procedure.  Not only is forcing a woman to do something like this beyond humiliating, but it is being done for the express purpose of making them do what the GOP wants.

It is kind of interesting that this “family values” crowd is making such a big reappearance in the last few years.  Groups like the American Family Association have been coming back.  This coincides with the picking up speed that Rick Santorum is getting in the GOP primaries.  The far-right conservative base is making another appearance, and this is what it brings with it.

Legislation that would force invasive procedures onto women who could have been raped.  They were raped once, and now the GOP in Virginia has legislated that they be raped again.  As Americans, we cannot stand idly by and let this happen.  There needs to be some action.  People like elected officials are making the case that abortions are done for “convenience.”  They are shoving devices that look like dildos into women.  This is NOT how a government operates in a civil society.

But the bigger issues is – if this government thinks that this kind of thing is appropriate, does America have a future?  It is getting harder and harder to answer that question, because there doesn’t seem to be as huge outrage.  Granted, that may be because this is new.  A Category-5 Storm of media lambasting and online attack may still come.  And if it does, that’s good.  There needs to be another Komen for the Cure level reaction to this, because these people are not “moral crusaders.”  They are charlatans who wear the clothes of kind people.

This legislation is unconstitutional, it is unethical, and it is un-empathetical.  And above morality, empathy is what is needed.  Clearly, the GOP candidates who backed this in Virginia, and anybody who will back it her in Alaska doesn’t have ANY of that whatsoever.

Peace out,

Lefty

Rick Santorum vs. Sex

A recent article in Salon magazine kind of spells out a lot of what is happening right now in this country.  The pro-life movement has always said that they are against abortion.  They want to preserve life (how many of them eat meat?).  But that argument is really falling by the waist-side when you think about it.

With new prescriptions being made, like the Morning-After Pill, Plan-B, and emergency contraceptions of all kinds, the fact is that with modern pharmaceuticals, it is getting so that abortions are less and less necessary.  One would think that this would slow down the anti-choice (pro-life) activists, right?  If there are no abortions happening, how can this be a problem?

In the article mentioned above, it talks about how Rick Santorum, the presidential candidate who came in only eight votes behind Romney is against birth control.  All birth control.  Here’s a quote from the man himself –

One of the things I will talk about, that no president has talked about before, is I think the dangers of contraception in this country.

Add to that quote (from the article) –

Many of the Christian faith have said, well, that’s okay, contraception is okay. It’s not okay. It’s a license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.

So, how are things supposed to be?  That’s an easy question to answer, when looking at Santorum’s religious affiliation.  He is a hardcore and old-school Catholic.  This means that he is one of the Catholic crowd who believe that any sex that isn’t missionary and for the express purpose of procreation is wrong.  It is a telling sign of something that the pro-choice crowd doesn’t think about nearly enough.

It’s not enough that anti-choice individuals are against abortion.  That at least makes a modicum of sense.  As Bill Maher said –

I get that, I just don’t agree with it.

But this isn’t that.  In fact, the disturbing part seems to be that the more options that are created to prevent having women to have to go through an abortion, the louder the opposition becomes.  The question is – why?  To answer it for Santorum, one must, unfortunately, look to his holy book.

According to Genesis 38: 8-10, the story goes that a man named Onan had a brother, but the brother died before he could bear offspring.  In accordance with tradition, it was customary for the brother to have sex with his brother’s widow.  However, when in the act of intercourse, he pulls out from her, and his “seed” fell to the ground.  Of course, God got angry (he does that a lot) and struck the man down for his actions.  Now, thanks to that verse, the Catholic church is of the mind that no sperm must be wasted.  All sex must result in reproduction.

This brings us back to the current situation with Santorum.  He is against all forms of contraception, even in the case of married couples.  For real, if a couple doesn’t want to have kids, too bad!  Not only is this non-sensical, but it is also wrong.

But one just has to ask – why?  What possible good comes from this kind of ideology?  This is more evidence that religion and state mixing always has negative consequences.  Now we have a Presidential candidate who wants to get rid of any and all possible ways of practicing safe sex.

And the worst part is that he isn’t done there.  There was a quote from Dan Savage on Countdown with Keith Olbermann.

One of the things I’m constantly reminding people about Rick Santorum is that he doesn’t merely have an anti-gay agenda, he has an anti-straight agenda too.

Santorum is against gay marriage, against all forms of abortion (even in the case of rape and incest.  Who knows, crazy as he is, maybe against saving the life of the mother too), against pornography.  This guy is against sex.  He is totally against sex.  This is a problem, and it needs to be addressed, because the bigger societal question becomes – how did this guy get into public office?  How did he become so powerful?  How do people this deranged acquire so much political status?

America, we can do better, and we need to.  Now, there is no doubt in anybody’s mind that Santorum isn’t going to win the primaries.  He is too extreme for the majority of Republicans and right-leaning moderates.  But this needs to be addressed.

We need to save our rights to have sex.  Sex is fun.  Protect it.  Otherwise, we may not have any choices.

Peace out,

Lefty

The Tea Party and Political Ignorance

The Tea Party is an interesting monster in the world of Republican politics.  Since this publication is based in Alaska, there is a unique perspective that is here.  Sarah Palin has been one of the driving voices of a movement that was very quick to spring up, and very quick to be taken in by the GOP.  The Tea Party stands as a referendum of political ignorance and as a backlash against minority voters getting the rights of any kind.

There have been a lot of statements by the Tea Party that were it not for minority voters, Obama wouldn’t have been elected in 2008.  This is true, very true.  However, when they say it, they say it like this is something to lament.  Why?  Why is the fact that the minorities get a right to vote something that we should look down upon?

They are told by the talking heads Bill O’Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter, and people like that that they are being oppressed.  They criticize those who are getting social security, or medicare, not seeming to understand that they are almost all on the bottom 50% of the social strata, and therefore, are either getting these services themselves, or not paying into them, so it doesn’t really matter.  But the talking heads tell them what they want to hear, so it doesn’t really matter.

The Tea Party seems to not care about the fact that they are not being oppressed in any way.  They are told that we need to go back to a time when only the white and the rich had the ability to vote.  Oh, and they also have to be men.  Were it not for women voters, the Democrats would have lost every single election of the 20th centure with the exception of Goldwater vs. Johnson.  The Tea Party has been mobilized to further the agenda that those who follow it believe in.

Their agenda has been pretty clear – lower taxes to unsustainable levels, and what we do pay, only the poor should pay.  They want to get rid of the rights that the minorities and the gays have fought tooth and claw for.  They want to massively increase this nation’s military industrial complex, not seeming to understand that conventional war is out-dated.  All of what they want is nothing more than political ignorance.

But really, when one thinks about what they want, the left’s response has been pathetically worthless.  One thing that the liberal politicians don’t seem to understand is that while it used to be good politics to negotiate with your opposition, giving and getting, it is not longer palatable.  But compromisers like Obama seem to not understand this key fact.  The left has spent years trying to stave off the endless onslaught of attack from the Tea Party, and every compromise that is made is losing ground on the social front.

This is a culture war, and the left is losing, badly.  The fact is that if something is not done soon, there won’t be a left-wing side of politics.  It has to be a grassroots movement.  From the ground up, we need to get more left-leaning politicians who aren’t hardcore.  They have to be articulate, they have to be level-headed.  They have to understand that things are not as simple as 1,2,3.  They have to be willing to stand tall, though, and not endless compromise with the right.

One reality is that Obama is a compromiser.  He is probably going to get reelected not because of his merits, because he has very few of those, but because the GOP competition is so unbelievably weak, and the GOP don’t seem to understand that the American public is not dissatisfied with Democrats, we are dissatisfied with the system at large.

Liberals, it is time for you to step up.  We need a unified plan, to counter this ignorance-driven narrative that the Tea Party lives by.

Here is what the liberal plan should look like –
1. We want a stronger social safety net, including (but not limited to) universal health care.
2. The rich need to pay more taxes.  There is no good reason to bleed them dry, but asking them to pay more taxes is not unreasonable.
3. We want an end to our military actions in the Middle East.
4. We want nation-wide right to gay marriage.
5. It is time for the federal government to legalize, regulate, and tax individual drug use, on all narcotics.  Just because it is dangerous doesn’t mean it is going away.  If we bring all drugs under one banner, control their quality, and control how much people get, we can make this business safer.
6. We need to get god off of our money, tax churches, and make the priests who fondle little boys get to find out what happens to a child molester in a typical American prison.
7. We want a ground-up reformation of an all but broken education system.
8. We want a police force that is accountable, and who is held to a higher standard, and trained to help people.  The Occupy movement has shown that the police are above the law, and they know it.

So, that is the agenda that the left needs to adopt.  Sound simple, no?  The Tea Party has destroyed moderate Republicans.  There are almost none left.  Mitt Romney might be considered one, but he goes wherever the wind blows.  This movement has taken over the Republican Party, and if we don’t do something fast, then all the progress that people in this country have made will be lost.  The Tea Party, no, all of the Republican Party has become a machine heading toward a single goal – to destroy the rights of all minorities, and to take America back to the 1800’s, or at least the 1950’s.  The time for compromise is over.  Now is the time for action.

Are you on board?

Peace out,

Lefty

Obama’s Debt Ceiling Address Stresses Compromise. Is He Serious or Not?

So, tonight was Obama’s address to the nation regarding the debt ceiling debate.  I will say that it was well-timed, since things are getting crunched now and it is looking bleak.  Everything is on the line now, and we can’t afford to let this issue not get talked about.  Of course, since the typical American doesn’t care about the political future of this country (even though this is infinitely more than that), this is an issue that is only talked about in political circles when the fact is that this is a lot bigger than politics.

For those of you who don’t know, it is pretty simple.  Raising the debt ceiling isn’t saying we can spend more.  It is allowing us to pay the bill this government has already spent.  A common piece of rhetoric around right-wing bloggers and political commentators is that the debt ceiling doesn’t exist.  For real, there are those in the conservative base who believe the debt ceiling is an imaginary creature that is like the boogie man.  But it is real, and it is here.

So, here is the real danger – America’s credit rating.  Our AAA credit score is the best thing that this country has going now.  If we get downgraded, it could mean some real trouble in America’s future.  Given how the world economy is looking right now, this nation needs as little trouble as possible.  And for a long time, this debt ceiling issue wasn’t an issue.

For a long time, it used to be pretty routine that the debt ceiling would get raised and nobody talked about it.  It is only recently given the pointless indignation that the new conservative party has in this country that they have decided to make this a huge issue.  Of course, this is just another issue that they hold the American taxpayer hostage so they can get their way.  Cheap, tasteless, and leading this country in a very bad direction.  Of course, since they represent the rich, they don’t care.

But back to the President’s address, he was actually pretty clear.

In the year 2000, the government had a budget surplus.  But instead of using it to pay off our debt, the money was spent on trillions of dollars in new tax cuts while two wars and an expensive prescription drug program were simply added to our nation’s credit card.

Now, Obama did talk about the fact that this nation does have a debt problem.  It isn’t a mystery that it does.  When you have a massively bloated military budget which is being funneled into two wars, the recession did real damage to this problem, it is a problem.  But the big thing the conservatives aren’t getting is that their attention is being directed toward the wrong things.

Now, I am with the YouTuber, The Skeptical Heretic.  He says that looking at entitlement programs isn’t the worst idea.  They are going to be a problem in the future.  It can’t be helped.  The fact is that Obama is right that the only way to make things work is to meet in the middle.  It has to be a mix of cutting spending and raising taxes.  Not for the debt ceiling, but to fix the economy in general.  Of course, investment into infrastructure must also happen, to attract new businesses.

But back to the address, his thought was about compromise.  Now, the big thing here is that his version of compromise sounds great.  But the reality is that the Republicans don’t want his version of compromise.  They want total an utter surrender.  It is interesting that that Boehner was given the shaft by a Tea Party group who rejected his plan for raising the debt ceiling.

The first approach says let’s live within our means by making serious, historic cuts in government spending.  Let’s cut domestic spending to the lowest level it’s been Dwight Eisenhower was President.  Let’s cut defense spending at the Pentagon by hundreds of billions of dollars (I like that one!).  Let’s cut out waste and fraud in healthcare programs like Medicare, and at the same time let’s make modest adjustments so that Medicare is there for future generations.  Finally, let’s ask the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations to give up some of their breaks in the tax code and special deducations.”

Well, there you have it.  On paper, that option sounds pretty good.  If both sides came at this level-headed and were looking to do the right thing, this would be a very good option.  The problem is that both sides don’t come at this level-headed.  Both sides don’t approach this option equally.  Both sides don’t look at it from a calm perspective.  Both sides are not willing to budge on either side.  The Democrats and the Republicans have to be willing to feel the pain.  Granted, taxing the rich is a great thing to do (something which Republicans will burn the ship before letting happen), but the Democrats do have to look at entitlement programs eventually because the fact is that there are problems with them.

But the fact that Republicans are not willing to let the talk of increasing taxes come up at all says something.  They are not willing to even bring it to the table and to realize that the rich are just fine.  They don’t have to worry about being in financial trouble.  Taxing the poor is where that comes from.  But they are being the party who is not budging on this.  Democrats are actually looking at this in a lot of respect from an openness to talking things out, but the Republicans are digging their heels and not even letting the notion come to the table.

The fact is that to fix our debt problem, it has to be a mix between cutting spending and generation revenue.  Asking the rich to pay is the right thing to do.  We will eventually have to look at entitlement programs.  We might as well look at it now.  But the fact is that Obam himself gave the greatest reason we are still having this debate, and why we can’t afford to have it.

The only reason this balanced approach isn’t on it’s way to becoming law right now, is because a significant number of Republican in Congress are insisting on a different approach, a cuts-only approach.

There’s the problem.  Your move, Republicans.

Peace out,

Eli

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