It’s hard to believe, but George W. Bush was once the second coming of the Stupid Messiah©. Legions of dumb-struck followers predicted a legacy of greatness second only to the Gipper. Today, people run from him like the sight of a boil being lanced on Mitt Romney’s wrinkly, pasty ass. But George still appeals to some. They hold him in such great esteem they’ve cannonized Bush as an objet d’art.
Artist Paul McCarthy has immortalized the Dubster in flagrante with a pig and what appears to be a deformed pig, heretofore unknown sea creature, or chupacabra. The piece is done in either mud or shite, which I favor for its texture. McCarthy calls it Static (Brown) and the French just loved it at International Fair of Contemporary Art (FIAC) opening at the Grand Palais. This is a legacy of greatness to be proud of and I’m sure George the Elder and Queen Bar agree.
This isn’t the first time George’s Bush family jewels have been on display. In fact, McCarthy has portrayed the former Shitkicker-in-Chief before. In Train, Mechanical Bush is a horny dwarf in flagrante with the same pig and chupacabra. However, he wears a jet pack and is mechanical in a wan terra-cotta color. McCarthy has also entertained his disturbing Bushian fetish with the same pig-fu*king pose in both pink, and ironically, blue.
Washington artiste Kayti Didrikson showed a nude Man of Leisure, King George being served an oil well crown by The Big Dick. Didriksen based the painting on a famous work by impressionist Man of Leisure, King George that hangs in the Musee d’Orsay in Paris. Pretty high-falutin’ stuff for a good ol’ Texas cowboy who was all hat and no cattle. But then, George always loved high art – like those Presidential Seal boots of his. However, Didriksen does make an historical error since George should be presenting the crown to Dick, symbolizing the true king in the relationship.
George isn’t always nude though. Artist Dan Lacel, Painter of Pancakes, shows Bush cozied up with an Easter Bunny under a gay rights rainbow, symbolizing George’s belief that homosexuals are a mere secular humanist myth. It’s not clear why Lacel didn’t place a pancake on Bush like he does with so many other famous subjects from Barack Obama to Dan Lacel, Painter of Pancakes. The butter sensuously dripping from her crępe nipples is tres magnifique! So is one of the Pancake Master’s new works featuring Mitt Romney, “with his head held in a scissor lock by a pair of female legs, while he keeps his eye on a pancake which is threatening him with maple syrup.” BTW, don’t miss, Barack Obama Nude On A Unicorn & Lindsay Lohan / Volcano Extinguisher either. It portrays, “Barack Obama administering some tough love to actress Lindsay Lohan, whose tears serve to extinguish the recently problematic Icelandic volcano”. It’s truly magical!
Politics and art have so many parallels. The both have more than their fair share of surrealism and Dadaism. They both elevate the mundane – like George – to a more etherial plane. And, they have lots of pretty colors and squiggly, smudged lines. And they cater to audiences with more cash than they know what to do with – just like George.
America! I love this country!
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Fox?s Peter Johnson, Jr. ? a legal analyst who also happens to be Roger Ailes? personal attorney ? visited Fox & Friends this morning to ?ask? if President Obama deliberately allowed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans to die in Benghazi in order to avoid antagonizing Libya. Johnson posited this theory even though he admitted he had ?no evidence? for it. But, of course, there was no challenge from host Heather Nauert.
The discussion was supposedly in response to a report that a U.S. drone witnessed the last hours of the attack on the Benghazi consulate. Predictably, Fox has pounced on that in its neverending efforts to use Benghazi to bring down President Obama. Just as predictably, neither of the two chickenhawks here mentioned how sensitive and risky a military intervention would have been.
Even if Johnson had served in the military, you have to wonder why Fox would trot out a legal analyst instead of say, a national security professional, to make such an accusation. Could it be because nobody with a national security reputation to maintain would be willing to do it? Not that that was any kind of problem for Nauert. She treated Johnson as if he were a legitimate expert. But I guess when you?re the boss? attorney who?s going to argue?
As Johnson and Nauert talked, a graphic blaring ?TERROR ON THE RISE? appeared behind them. A banner on the screen read, ?POLICY OF APPEASEMENT.? Just in case anyone didn?t get the message.
Have we become eyewitnesses, mere eyewitnesses to the attacks on America, without any action by us at all? Nothing? Did we trade off, and I have no evidence for this. Did we trade off the lives of our ambassador and three other Americans for that crowd? Were we afraid to fire into that crowd from above? (Were) we afraid to take on the militants in that crowd for killing other folks that were on the perimeter? Were these people expendable as part of a Mid East foreign policy? Were we afraid of inflaming the Arab street when we?re so concerned about the resilience of the Arab spring? These are the questions that need to be asked.
As the Fox Newsies beat their chests with showy patriotic concern for the deaths of the Americans killed in Libya, they seemed not to care a fig that Ambassador Stevens? father has spoken out against the politicization of the tragedy and has said that it has no place in the presidential campaign. Apparently, that concern sits on the same dusty Fox News shelf as its concern for the thousands of ?expendable? Americans in Iraq who died as part of George W. Bush?s Middle East policy.
?I wanted to run for the presidency in the worst possible way,? George McGovern joked after his lopsided 1972 defeat, ?and I did.?
Yet the man who died yesterday at 90 deserves a better epitaph than that. He lost a disastrous election as the last traditionally liberal Democrat to run for the White House, but his story encompasses much more.
He was at the cusp of change in American political and social life, from the optimistic sense of Martin Luther King that ?the arc of the universe is long but it bends toward justice? to the darker vision that prevails today.
Less than two years after McGovern lost to Richard Nixon, the victor resigned in disgrace over criminality at Watergate, which began with a break-in of Democratic offices to undermine McGovern?s 1972 run, which needed no help to shoot itself in the foot.
After selecting a running mate who had been treated for depression with electro-shock therapy and having to drop him, it was all downhill for McGovern, who now goes down in history as a hopeless loser but, with his passing, America loses something as well.
Son of a Methodist minister, he earned a Distinguished Flying Cross for crash-landing a plane under fire and went on to become a U.S. Senator from South Dakota who opposed the Vietnam War, but his timing was bad.
The nation was reeling from the murders of Dr. King, JFK and Robert Kennedy while running for the White House in 1968 and ready to turn away from the liberal activism that had led to advances in racial and gender inequality.
Nixon promised to calm the fears of ?the Silent Majority? who had been unsettled by all that turmoil, and the time was not right for a relatively unsophisticated McGovern, who was unable to navigate the new political waters.
Yet, he lived long enough to call for the impeachment of Bush and Cheney for the Iraq War and, in his last years, restate his social credo:
?We are the party that believes we can?t let the strong kick aside the weak. Our party believes that poor children should be as well educated as those from wealthy families. We believe that everyone should pay their fair share of taxes and that everyone should have access to health care.?
McGovern?s passing is a reminder that, no matter how much life changes on the surface, some things remain the same and that it isn?t just the winners who fight the good fight.
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Possessing the privilege in this country that comes with owning a penis, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) tells women of America that ensuring pay equity is just a legal headache.[...]
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MR. ROMNEY: I ? I ? I want to make sure we get that for the record, because it took the president 14 days before he called the attack in Benghazi an act of terror.That Mitt Romney got caught telling a falsehood, in real time, in front of tens of millions of live viewers, was not the big surprise. Romney tells lies, all the time, in front of everyone. What was so shocking about Romney getting caught lying about President Obama's reaction to the horrors of the terror attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya was that it was a member of the traditional media who called him out. Usually, members of the traditional media don't bother with real time fact-checking, and debate moderator Candy Crowley never has been known as overly friendly to Democrats, but this Romney falsehood was just too big and too ugly, with facts too obvious to ignore. And Republicans have reacted to this unexpected interlude into the realm of reality with accustomed derangement.
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Get the transcript.
MS. CROWLEY: It ? he did in fact, sir.
So let me ? let me call it an act of terrorism ? (inaudible) ?
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Can you say that a little louder, Candy? (Laughter, applause.)
MS. CROWLEY: He did call it an act of terror.
When Romney got all excited, and wanted everyone to note that Obama at the debate had called the Benghazi terror attack a terror attack, so he could make the false point that the president had waited two weeks before first calling the terror attack a terror attack, you could almost see Crowley scowling and thinking, "Oh, bullshit!" But the most interesting aspect of that defining political moment was the expression on Romney's face. The lifelong petty little bully seemed to think he had a gotcha moment, just as he seemed to think he had a gotcha moment the day of the attack, when he smirkingly tried to score cheap and sleazy political points off a still developing story that was really about horror and sadness and irreparable loss. To anyone with a basic sense of humanity. But if you watch the video of Romney during that seminal moment of the second presidential debate, what is most striking isn't his juvenile demeanor, it's the confidence that was fueling that demeanor. And that's where we get to the real story.
Romney tells lies as naturally as he breathes, and Steve Benen has compiled a weekly tally? 38 pages of lists of Romney's lies, adding up to hundreds, if not more than a thousand, individual Romney lies. It's a truly impressive achievement by Romney, and perhaps in his honor we will in the future refer to all political lies as Romneys, but in this instance he seemed actually to believe what he was saying. And that's where we start to get to the real story. Romney's mendacity is so complete, so total, so absolute, that even he no longer knows when he is lying. He lives in an alternate reality. But Romney is just one among a crowd of mendacious Republicans, while the larger and more disturbing reality is that the entire Republican Party now lives in an alternate reality, a collective delusion that increasingly bears little relation at all to even demonstrable facts and verified scientific truths. Romney and Republicans do consciously tell lies, and they do it often and without conscience, but they accord no negative value to lying because they accord no positive value to even the existence of truths. As noted by Jonathan Bernstein, in the Washington Post:
This was the night in which the conservative closed information feedback loop and its close cousin, lazy mendacity, caught up with Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney ? in a big way.Romney got caught in a sleazy blatant falsehood, in real time, in front of a massive live audience, and the reason for it was that he is so used to speaking to reality-challenged right-wing audiences that he no longer knows what is real and what is not. Because the Republican Party could not exist in its modern form if it and its propagandists had any relationship with the truth. Its entire agenda depends on the creation, the promotion, and the inculcation of fictive narratives.
Romney has been doing this for, literally, years now. His main platform on foreign policy, after all, is to reject an ?apology tour? that never happened and that people have been correcting him on for years. He?s come up with the new one, ?unraveling,? recently, but hasn?t bothered to fill in anything ? at all ? about what is unraveling, or how. Nor is it just foreign policy. His tax plan doesn?t come close to adding up, and his jobs plan doesn?t, either. He repeats flat-out lies again and again, no matter how many times they?ve been shot down. As I said, lazy mendacity ? even where the facts would do well for him, as in trillion-dollar deficits, he chooses instead to constantly claim that Obama doubled the deficit, which isn?t true. Sure, every candidate exaggerates and stretches and spins, but Romney?s complete apparent indifference to bother to get things right is unusual.Romney and the Republicans live in an alternate reality, where demonstrable facts are ignored, where lies can be repeated so many times that even those telling them forget they are lies, and where no one is allowed to interject the truth, even when the truth is as easy to prove as quoting a transcript or viewing a video. The Republican Party has so many problems right now, but none is bigger than its willful disregard and even disdain for factual truths.
The question is: Why shouldn?t he do it? Republican-aligned media surely aren?t going to call him on it. Indeed, within the GOP political loop, there?s no one who is even going to realize that they have a basic factual thing wrong; that?s what happens when you convince yourself that the neutral press is out to get you, and you?ve trained your supporters to only pay attention to what they hear on Fox News and the Rush Limbaugh program, so you had better stay tuned to them yourself or else you won?t be able to talk the way you need to. Of course, that?s how a candidate winds up insulting half of America, because that?s what high-level party donors expect to hear.
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Breaking in Wisconsin ...WISN 12 News has learned that a mass shooting has taken place near the Brookfield Square Mall.WISN 12 News has been told that this is a "mass casualty" situation and that the scene is not secured.1:19 PM: Abe Lubetkin is a local[...]
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Republican Senate candidate Todd Akin (MO) on Saturday accused of his opponent, Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill, of creating big government policies and fetching them back to Missouri "like a dog."
"She goes to Washington, D.C., it?s a little bit like one of those dogs, 'fetch,'" Akin said at a fundraiser, according to audio obtained by PolicMo. "She goes to Washington, D.C., and gets all of these taxes and red tape and bureaucracy and executive orders and agencies, and brings all of this stuff and dumps it on us in Missouri."
"It seems to me that she?s got it just backwards. What we should be doing is taking the common sense we see in Missouri and taking that to Washington, D.C., and blessing them with more solutions instead of more problems."
Earlier this year, the Republican congressman offended female voters by asserting that women could not get pregnant by "legitimate rape." He later compounded problems by insisting that McCaskill had not appeared ?ladylike? during their latest debate.
?I think we have a very clear path to victory, and apparently Claire McCaskill thinks we do, too, because she was very aggressive at the debate, which was quite different than it was when she ran against Jim Talent,? Akin explained, according to the Kansas City Star. ?She had a confidence and was much more ladylike [in 2006], but in the debate on Friday, she came out swinging, and I think that?s because she feels threatened."
Business fraud isn't really a crime, not if the political hacks on the Supreme Court and the Federalist Society lower court judges can help it.[...]
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Fox and the NYT are reporting new information suggesting that the attack may have been caused by the video.
During Senator George McGovern?s 1972 presidential race, just out of college and back in my hometown of Los Angeles, I worked at the campaign?s Fairfax Avenue office, which was in the epicenter of L.A.?s Jewish community. Someone there (I don?t remember who) got the idea to print up a leaflet that proclaimed, in bold letters, ?Nixon is Treyf??treyf being the Yiddish word for not kosher, filthy, you shouldn?t eat it. The leaflet then went on to list reasons why President Nixon wasn?t good for the Jews. (We didn?t know at the time that Nixon had ordered a purge of Jewish economists from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, or that would have headed the list.)
Fast-forward 18 months to the Watergate hearings. As the hearings kept turning up crime after crime committed by Nixon?s re-election campaign, Republicans were desperate to uncover at least one dirty trick committed by the McGovern effort. The best they could do was introduce the ?Nixon is Treyf? leaflet into evidence, and call the former director of the Fairfax office to face a barrage of GOP questioners who wanted to know how the campaign could have printed and distributed such a scurrilous attack. The ex-director apologized for his lack of judgment, and that ended it. Except that, by the time the full Watergate story came out, it was clear that Nixon was as treyf as treyf could be.
Second note: In December of 1980, I was visiting Washington and driving my rental car up Connecticut Avenue. Stopped at a red light, I saw George McGovern, all by himself, coming down the sidewalk with a huge smile on his face; he was positively beaming. What the hell was he smiling about? I wondered. He had just lost his Senate seat one month before in the Reagan landslide. Then it hit me: Winter was upon us, and he didn?t have to shlep around South Dakota anymore, as he would if he?d been re-elected. Defeat had few consolations, but less time spent freezing in a sub-Arctic state was surely one of them.
Third note: Obituaries of McGovern have noted that he was the only Democratic presidential nominee of modern times not to get the AFL-CIO?s endorsement. More precisely, labor split on whether to endorse him. Uber-hawk George Meany, the AFL-CIO president who not only supported the Vietnam War but reviled the peaceniks and all the new-politics crowd (women, non-machine blacks, college students) who rallied to McGovern?s cause, never even considered the idea of endorsing McGovern. But nine major unions, including the UAW, the Communications Workers, and AFSCME, did support him, foreshadowing the growing foreign policy (and other) divisions in labor that eventually (23 years later) led to the ouster of Meany?s chosen successor, Lane Kirkland, as AFL-CIO president and his replacement by SEIU?s John Sweeney.
Fourth note: George McGovern was not just a staunch liberal, but also the most decent human being to be a presidential nominee in the past four decades. That obviously was no guarantor of victory or even judgment, but it certainly guarantees that those of us who remember him do so with great fondness.