We’re all Mormons now: politicizing marriage and calling it ‘deeply held religious beliefs’


via: Where are MY magic underpants?

The completely political lens of ‘deeply held religious beliefs’ on marriage:

Social Conservatives “Never Viewed” Marriage “Through A Political Lens Before”?

Al Cardenas, president of the American Conservative Union, made this unusual statement about how social conservatives view marriage: 

Social conservatives believe that marriage is a traditional event between a man and a woman. Some do it for moral issues, some do it because of deeply held religious beliefs, and some purely because they think a family should constitute — should be constituted by a man and a woman raising their children. But we never viewed it through a political lens before. It was more viewed as a deeply held religious belief. This puts it in a political context. [...]

Seriously?… That’s… revisionist. Neither Gregory nor the other panelists challenged Cardenas, though their facial expressions during his remarks may have betrayed some incredulity. [...] Back in February, Mitt Romney gave his speech to the 2012 Conservative Political Action Conference — which is hosted every year by Cardenas’ ACU — and one of the headline-grabbing moments from that speech was when Romney boasted of his efforts to combat same-sex marriage in Massachusetts:

[...] On my watch we fought hard and prevented Massachusetts from becoming the Las Vegas of gay marriage. When I am president I will defend the Defense of Marriage Act, and and I will fight for an amendment to our Constitution that defines marriage as a relationship between a man and a woman.

The crowd, of course, loved it. Perhaps the political activists in the audience just didn’t realize that the politician speaking to them was politicizing marriage. 

Religious ‘belief’ is the excuse for the war on marriage equality, which is fought on the political battleground:

That GOP Gay Marriage Memo

You may already have seen the following memo on the gay marriage issue from President Bush’s 2004 pollster Jan van Lohuizen… It’s a fascinating document — not so much for the argument it makes (that Republican should essentially embrace marriage or call off the war against it) as the data it advances. Because the numbers it shows pretty convincingly make the argument that the war over gay marriage is basically over.

[...] Recommendation: A statement reflecting recent developments on this issue along the following lines:

“People who believe in equality under the law as a fundamental principle, as I do, will agree that this principle extends to gay and lesbian couples; gay and lesbian couples should not face discrimination and their relationship should be protected under the law. People who disagree on the fundamental nature of marriage can agree, at the same time, that gays and lesbians should receive essential rights and protections such as hospital visitation, adoption rights, and health and death benefits.”

Straight political calculation, based on public opinion, for the best electoral outcomes.

Meanwhile, fundagelicals, your ‘deeply held religious beliefs’? Keep ‘em. They’ve got nothing to do with equality under the LAW.  Establishment Republicans agree (secretly, for now) with average people on that much.

Morning Bunker Report: Sunday 5.13.2012

WHAT THE REPUBLICAN PARTY STANDS FOR TODAY—————————–—

Mitt Romney panders to the far-right Christian fundagelicals who think his religion is a cult – Toward the beginning of the ceremony, Mark DeMoss, a well-known Evangelical and longtime Romney supporter, took to the podium to vouch for the Mormon candidate. He recounted a meeting between Romney and Dr. Falwell four years ago, after which the candidate sent the pastor a chair engraved with the words, “There’s always room for you at my table.” “I trust him to do the right thing,” DeMoss said. “To do the moral thing, to do what’s best for our country. I trust his integrity, his moral compass, his judgment, and his perfect decency. Finally, I trust his values, for I feel they mirror my own.” It was meant to be a unifying moment of culture war diplomacy on DeMoss’s part, a nod to his fellow Evangelicals that Romney was, in fact, one of them. But in the middle of his speech, an angry voice from the back of the graduates’ section interrupted: “Hey Mitt! Jesus is the only way!” [...] For the thousands of conservative Evangelicals on campus Saturday who reject the candidate’s claim to Christianity, Romney may represent a compromise: They’re voting for him because they can’t do better. —  Mitt Romney’s Pitch To The True Believers [image: arcaneimages]

  • THE BOND between Romney and Christian fundagelical fascists will be a shared hate of those who are different: “As fundamental as these principles are, they may become topics of democratic debate. So it is today with the enduring institution of marriage. Marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman. The protection of religious freedom has also become a matter of debate. It strikes me as odd that the free exercise of religious faith is sometimes treated as a problem, something America is stuck with instead of blessed with. Perhaps religious conscience upsets the designs of those who feel that the highest wisdom and authority comes from government.” - Mitt Romney, speaking at today’s commencement at Dead Dead Dead Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University.
  • Romney backs away from supporting same-sex adoption — “Well, actually I think all states but one allow gay adoption. So that’s a position which has been decided by most of the state legislatures, including the one in my state some time ago. So I simply acknowledge the fact that gay adoption is legal in all states but one.” — Raw Story
  • JESUS CHRIST Himself is too ‘counterculture’ for this place: No ‘Counterculture’ Hair Allowed At Liberty University — the rules governing hair on Liberty’s campus are very strict. From the rules for men: Hair and clothing styles related to a counterculture (as determined by the Student Affairs Deans’ Review Committee) are not acceptable. Hair should be cut in such a way that it will not come over the ears, collar or eyebrows at any time. Ponytails for men are unacceptable.

Wait, Suddenly Right-Wing Bloggers Don’t Want Candidates Vetted? — In the wake of the Washington Post’s unflattering article yesterday about how five of Mitt Romney’s high school classmates recalled the Republican candidate leading an assault against a presumed gay schoolmate, pinning him down, and cutting his long hair while tears filled up in the boy’s eyes, conservative bloggers were indignant the Post would bother with such trivial pursuits. -“Is a decades old high school story really ‘news’?” (Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin.) -“Cutting-edge reporting from WaPo: Let’s take an in-depth look at … Romney’s cruel high-school pranks.” (Ed Morrissey) -“It’s a waste of time and energy and effort.” (Fox News’ Karl Rove.) -“BREAKING NEWS: Mitt Romney Went to High School. Seriously.” (Erick Erickson) Suddenly the far-right press thinks it’s pointless to delve deep into a candidate’s past in search of clues about his personality and clues to what shaped him into an adult. Suddenly they mock efforts by the press to paint a detailed personal portrait of would-be presidents by combing over their biographies. In short, suddenly right-wing bloggers are strongly opposed to vetting. — Media Matters

YOUR LIBERAL MEDIA: NBC’s David Gregory To Headline Conference For Major Republican Advocacy Group — The Society of Professional Journalists’ Code of Ethics states: Journalists should: — Avoid conflicts of interest, real or perceived. — Remain free of associations and activities that may compromise integrity or damage credibility. — Refuse gifts, favors, fees, free travel and special treatment, and shun secondary employment, political involvement, public office and service in community organizations if they compromise journalistic integrity. Regardless of whether Gregory is being paid for this event and of what he says in his keynote, allowing the NFIB to raise money for its political mission using his name, reputation, and celebrity appears to be at odds with journalistic ethics. — Think Progress

Arizona Ron Paul supporters boo Romney’s son off stage — Supporters of Ron Paul booed the son of presidential hopeful Mitt Romney off the stage Saturday at the Arizona Republican Party convention as he sought to solidify support for his father’s nomination. Hundreds of state GOP members were gathered at Grand Canyon University to elect delegates for the national convention in August in Tampa, which is expected to select Mitt Romney as the official Republican nominee to challenge President Barack Obama. — azcentral.com

PRESIDENT OBAMA / DEMOCRATS————————————————————

Obama Camp Ties Romney To JP Morgan Scandal — The Obama campaign is seizing on the news that financial giant JP Morgan lost billions of dollars trading derivatives with customer funds to attack Mitt Romney for wanting to repeal the 2010 law meant to curtail these kinds of risky bets. “Rolling back Wall Street reform, as Mitt Romney proposes, would be reckless,” says Obama camp spokeswoman Lis Smith in a statement to TPM. “The law promotes transparency, limits the types of risky investments that can be made with deposits insured by federal taxpayers, and prevents investment losses at one bank from threatening the whole financial system. Returning to the failed policy of letting Wall Street write their own rules would put all of us at greater risk of another financial crisis and leave us vulnerable to another taxpayer-funded bank bailout like the one shortly before President Obama took office.” — TPM

Obamacare: A Mother’s Day Gift For All Moms Throughout The U.S. — People always say good health is the greatest gift, so let’s make health a priority this Mother’s Day. Now that I am a mother myself, I am even more appreciative that I have health insurance that covers the care I need. All moms deserve the kind of quality, affordable care that I was lucky enough to receive while pregnant and postpartum, and Obamacare is working to make that dream a reality. — Think Progress

HOW JOURNALISM is done: MSNBC’s Chris Matthews Demonstrates How To Handle Tony Perkins On Television — Perkins’ presence on MSNBC isn’t surprising – the hate group leader has become a regular guest on the network over the past several months, and has typically been treated as a credible, uncontroversial political figure, especially on Hardball. On Thursday, however, things were different.For nearly 15 minutes, Matthews, with the help of Frank, grilled Perkins on his views on homosexuality, marriage equality, and same-sex parenting. Matthews challenged Perkins’ anti-gay misinformation, held him accountable for past statements, and demonstrated how out-of-the-mainstream his extreme positions really are. This is exactly the kind of interview that major news outlets should be conducting when dealing with someone like Perkins. — Media Matters

Dianne Feinstein Defends Obama On Gay Marriage: ‘What’s Wrong With People Being Happy?’ — When asked whether Obama had made a political calculation in endorsing gay marriage, Feinstein rejected the idea. “I don’t think it is a flip flop and there is no political calculus in this, because it is not smart from a political point of view. It doesn’t make sense,” Feinstein said. “From a personal point of view, I can tell you what happened because it happened to me,” she continued. “You get to know more and more gay couples and you see the happiness. You see the economic security that marriage brings. And even more fundamentally, you can see children who otherwise would not have an adopted home being able to have that home. And so same-sex couples raise children, they do a fine job. And I think when you see this — and it has happened in California — more and more people say, ‘What is wrong with people being happy?'” — HuffPo [image: randomactsofchaos]

BREAK UP BIG BANKS: A message from Bernie Sanders — J.P. Morgan Chase revealed that its in-house trading operation lost $2 billion in the past six weeks. “The debacle at J.P. Morgan Chase reaffirms my view that the largest six banks in this country, including J.P. Morgan Chase, which have assets equivalent to two-thirds of our GDP, must be broken up. This is important in order to bring more competition into the financial marketplace and to prevent another ‘too-big-to-fail’ bailout,” Sen. Bernie Sanders said. “At a time when 23 million Americans are either unemployed or underemployed, huge financial institutions should not be involved in ‘making wagers or high-stake bets.’ They should be investing in the productive economy creating jobs and improving our standard of living.” — Crooks & Liars

Betty White says she ‘very, very much favors’ Obama — As she prepares to visit the Smithsonian Institution and National Zoo next week, White told The Associated Press she “very, very much favors” President Barack Obama in the election. The 90-year-old actress said Friday she is very bi-partisan and has stayed away from politics all of her life. She usually never says who she is for or against because she doesn’t want to turn off any of her adoring fans. White says in this year’s election, she likes what Obama has done and “how he represents us.” – HuffPo

It’s Mormon Cultist Day at fundagelical Liberty University!

Two items of interest from the The Maddow Blog

  1. When President Obama endorsed marriage equality this week, he announced a position that his church, the United Church of Christ, has supported for quite a while.
  2. Falwell U. offers a course that identifies Mormons as belonging to a “cult” that must be defeated.


via: christopherstreet

I keep reading about how Romney can’t close the deal with the fundagelicals no matter what he does. Christ, what does he have to do?  Beat up a gay kid?

TRUE STORY: 

Among Mitt Romney’s timid responses this week after President Obama’s endorsement of marriage equality was an admission that he was “fine” with same-sex couples adopting children, saying, “that’s something that people have a right to do.” But by Friday afternoon, he was already backing away from that position, suggesting that he merely “acknowledges” that many states offer same-sex adoption — Mitt Romney’s Support Of Same-Sex Adoption Lasts One Day


via: christopherstreet

Mitt Romney Will Not Be Distracted by ‘Counterculture’ Hair During His Liberty University Speech — That’s because, according to the school handbook, “hair and clothing styles related to a counterculture (as determined by the Student Affairs Deans’ Review Committee) are not acceptable” at Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University, where Romney is giving a commencement address this Saturday. “Hair should be cut in such a way that it will not come over the ears, collar or eyebrows at any time,” the handbook continues.


via: liberalsarecool

Mitt Romney’s defenders speak out (all two of them): According to Ann Romney, Mitt is still the “crazy” guy from high school who loves “playing jokes” on people. And according to his high school friend Gregg Dearth, Romney probably was merely acting “jokingly” when he bullied John Lauber. Dearth, who didn’t witness the attack, imagined it was probably a barrel of laughs, the kind of thing that might “traumatize” or “scare” somebody, but “no harm, no foul.” So there you have it, folks. Mitt Romney was a crazy jokester who liked to traumatize and scare people unfortunate enough to be his lesser, but there’s nothing wrong with that. And he’s still the same guy today that he was back then. No harm, no foul.


via: guiseppegetto

Jonathan Chait: Perhaps that is the deeper fixation: It is not enough for Romney to have perfect hair. Others must have terrible hair.

Steve Benen / Maddow Blog: But for the larger mainstream, the commencement address suggests Romney’s post-primary shift away from his party’s more extreme elements still isn’t happening. What’s more, despite all the talk about his focus on the economy, the Republican’s anti-gay agenda is reinforced, not just with his push for a constitutional amendment, but with his decision to visit a school that considers itself a “hard liner institution against the homosexual menace.”


via: corporationsarepeople

Morning Bunker Report: Thursday 5.10.2012

WHAT THE REPUBLICAN PARTY STANDS FOR TODAY—————————–—

BIPARTISANSHIP to the modern Republican: after defeating Sen. Dick Lugar in the Indiana primary, Richard Mourdock dismissed Lugar’s parting shot.
 
Source: sandandglass

PART OF SEN. RICHARD LUGAR’S searing concession statement — “Too often bipartisanship is equated with centrism or deal cutting. Bipartisanship is not the opposite of principle. One can be very conservative or very liberal and still have a bipartisan mindset. Such a mindset acknowledges that the other party is also patriotic and may have some good ideas. It acknowledges that national unity is important, and that aggressive partisanship deepens cynicism, sharpens political vendettas, and depletes the national reserve of good will that is critical to our survival in hard times. Certainly this was understood by President Reagan, who worked with Democrats frequently and showed flexibility that would be ridiculed today — from assenting to tax increases in the 1983 Social Security fix, to compromising on landmark tax reform legislation in 1986, to advancing arms control agreements in his second term. I don’t remember a time when so many topics have become politically unmentionable in one party or the other. Republicans cannot admit to any nuance in policy on climate change. Republican members are now expected to take pledges against any tax increases. For two consecutive Presidential nomination cycles, GOP candidates competed with one another to express the most strident anti-immigration view, even at the risk of alienating a huge voting bloc… If fealty to these pledges continues to expand, legislators may pledge their way into irrelevance. Voters will be electing a slate of inflexible positions rather than a leader…” Ezra Klein

COLIN POWELL: War with Iraq was never debated — Former Secretary of State Colin Powell provides what may be the most authoritative confirmation yet that there was never a considered debate in the George W. Bush White House about whether going to war in Iraq was really a good idea. [...] “By then, the President did not think war could be avoided,” Powell writes. “He had crossed the line in his own mind, even though the NSC [National Security Council] had never met — and never would meet — to discuss the decision.” — HuffPo

 
AFTER WEEKS of blaming Obama for rising gas prices, Fox News is asking if the decrease in gas prices may be a bad thing, links the decrease to a weak economy and, again, blames Obama. — Fox News: Rising gas prices were bad. Now falling prices are bad. Both are Obama’s fault

MICHELE BACHANN granted dual Swiss-American citizenship — “Congresswoman Bachmann’s husband is of Swiss descent so she has been eligible for dual-citizenship since they got married in 1978,” said her spokeswoman Becky Rogness said in a statement given to the Politico.com website and other US media…“Recently some of their children wanted to exercise their eligibility for dual-citizenship so they went through the process as a family,” the spokeswoman said. — Raw Story 

  • BACHMANN HAS ISSUES with the truth — even about this: Her statement that she has been a citizen since 1978 is based off a technicality – at the time of her marriage, automatic citizenship was granted to those who married Swiss citizens. However, Marcus Bachmann, her husband, did not register their marriage with Swiss authorities until this year – meaning that the Swiss government was not aware of it until recently. — Politico
  • AS A CITIZEN OF SWITZERLAND, Bachmann [and her kids] can now partake in a healthcare system that is the envy of the world. It has transparent costs, it is consumer driven, and it provides near universal coverage. It also has an individual mandate: all Swiss citizens are required to purchase basic health insurance. You may recall that the current Supreme Court challenge against Obamacare rests on the contention that its health insurance mandate is unconstitutional. The Swiss mandate seems to only apply to all residents of Switzerland, so Bachmann may be able to get out of it by not living there full time. — The Daily Beast

PRESIDENT OBAMA / DEMOCRATS————————————————————

OBAMA: ‘Same sex couples should be able to get married’ — It’s a breakthrough moment for a president who already has a rather impressive record on advancing LGBT rights, and an unexpected step forward for the gay-rights movement. — Steve Benen [image: drunkonstevphen]

  • That isn’t an “impressive” record. It’s AMAZING. That’s what flummoxes me about many activists. Those are real accomplishments, yet we still had folks (Dan Choi, Aravosis, I’m looking at you) flaming the President. …What is listed here are real actions. …But even if Obama had maintained his earlier position on same-sex marriage, he still has done more to advance gay rights than any other President, by a ridiculously wide margin. Faced with a congress more hostile than what Bill Clinton ever faced, he is UNDOING much of the damage inflicted on the gay community by none other than Bill Clinton. — John Cole

THANK President Obama for supporting marriage equality!

~~~

REID DRAWS A LINE on Rolling Back Sequester – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) announced yesterday that Senate Democrats would not agree to replace mandated spending cuts unless Republicans agree to a “balanced” approach that asks the wealthy to help pay for it. — Roll Call

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS sees a lesson for the United States in the European elections — “In the United States and around the world, the middle class is in steep decline while the wealthy and large corporations are doing phenomenally well. The message sent by voters in France and other European countries, which I believe will be echoed here in the United States, is that the wealthy and large corporations are going to have to experience some austerity also and that that burden cannot solely fall on working families. In the United States, where corporate profits are soaring and the gap between the rich and everybody else is growing wider, we must end corporate tax loopholes and start making the wealthy pay their fair share of taxes. At the same time, we must protect Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Austerity, yes, but for millionaires and billionaires, not the working families of this country.” — Crooks & Liars

FROM PETER ORSZAG, after reporting on new evidence that the incomes of the very rich are far more sensitive to economic growth than in the past: If anything, high-earning households should be the ones most in favor of aggressively boosting the economy in the short run — and not just out of benevolence. Yet I suspect, without definitive proof, that support for additional stimulus declines as one moves up the income scale. — Well, I suspect that he suspects right. I also suspect that the very rich (a) just flatly don’t believe that Keynesian stimulus works, and (b) know for sure that tax cuts will increase their disposable incomes. So it’s Team Austerity for them. Sure, they’ll have to ride out the bad times by letting one of the yacht scrubbers go, but everyone has to make sacrifices, right? — Kevin Drum

image: Austerity Fever | NYTimes

“Same-sex couples should be able to get married.” — President Obama

Straight from the horse’s Tumblr:

Breaking: Obama endorses marriage equality!
President Barack Obama said in an interview with ABC that “it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married.”

With his Wednesday announcement, the president reversed his longstanding position on the issue. It came on the heels of his own vice president and education secretary saying they were in favor of gay marriage.

(Read more)

And, naturally. Of course from Fox “News”!

via: reallyfoxnews

Here’s what Fox News would have also been against (and many in the South still are!):

via: think-progress

Note: An important point from Adam Serwer: President Obama endorsed marriage federalism

Obama has adopted the sameposition that Vice President Dick Cheney did in 2004, when Cheney said he believed in marriage equality but that the states should be allowed to decide by a show of hands, as North Carolina did Tuesday, whether gays and lesbians have the same rights as everyone else.  Cheney served in an administration that was extremely hostile to gay rights. With the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, the administration’s refusal to defend in court the federal ban on same-sex marriage, and Wednesday’s endorsement of same-sex marriage federalism, Obama is the most pro-LGBT rights president in US history.

Wednesday morning’s 4 marginally interesting things

1) ROMNEY THE RICH RUSSIAN ADVERSARY

Mitt Romney’s 4-car fantasy home — At Mitt Romney’s proposed California beach house, the cars will have their own separate elevator. There’s also a planned outdoor shower and a 3,600-square foot basement — a room with more floor space than the existing home’s entire living quarters. A project this ambitious comes with another feature you don’t always find with the typical fixer-upper: its own lobbyist, hired by Romney to push the plan through the approval process. […] But it may not help Romney — whose wealth has caused him trouble connecting with average folks — to be seen building a split-level, four-vehicle garage that comes with a “car lift” to transport automobiles between floors, according to 2008 schematic plans for the renovation obtained by POLITICO that are on file with the city of San Diego.

  • Car Elevators In Action — Mitt Romney is getting one, and they’re kind of awesome.
  • Mitt Romney: Silly voters, elevators are for cars, not people!His appreciation of elevators in his capacity as a private citizen didn’t show up, however, when he was Governor of Massachusetts. In particular, Romney — like many Republicans — was hostile to requirements for elevators imposed by the Americans Disabilities Act (ADA). [...] On June 26, 2006 Romney vetoed an improvement project with the price tag of $40,000 with his line item veto. The project would have allocated the money to Woburn Development Authority for improvements to an elevator to meet the standards set in the ADA. The whole state of Massachusetts couldn’t come up with $40,000 to refurbish an elevator so that people with disabilities could use it. By contrast, when Mitt Romney wanted to convince the city of La Jolla, California that his beachfront mansion needed its own private car elevator, he spent $21,000 just on the lobbyist he hired to help make that happen.
  • Mitt Romney’s Many Homes – Republican Presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney drew more attention today for ill-timed plans to triple the size of his La Jolla, Calif. home and add a car elevator. It’s not his only property, however, and here’s a look at his other lodging.

Not Ready to Lead — Mitt Romney thinks the president doesn’t need to be an expert on foreign policy; he’ll just call his lawyers to figure out what to do.


LOL ROMNEY: Making Friends All Over the Place — Russian President Dmitry Medvedev tweaked Mitt Romney for his characterization of Russia as the “No. 1 geopolitical foe” of the United States, saying the comments did not reflect the current relationship between the two countries. “It is very reminiscent of Hollywood and also of a certain phase in Russian-U.S. relations,” Medvedev said at the end of the nuclear security summit in South Korea Tuesday. […] Medvedev urged Romney to take the current climate into account if he hopes to win the presidential election. “My first advice is to listen to reason when they formulate their positions. Reason never harmed a presidential candidate,” Medvedev said. “My other advice is to check their watches from time to time: it is 2012, not the mid-1970s.”

2) ‘COLOSSAL DICK’ SANTORUM  

Santorum loses lead at home to Romney — Santorum, who represented the state in Congress for 16 years until he was defeated in a Senate election in 2006, saw his lead over Romney evaporate from 29 points to 2 points in the past month, according to the Franklin and Marshall College poll conducted from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania’s primary election takes place on April 24, along with liberal northeastern states like New York and Connecticut which Romney is favored to win. If Santorum loses or scrapes by with a narrow win in Pennsylvania, he will come under pressure from senior Republicans to pull out of the race.

Santorum, Gingrich open to VP slot — Rick Santorum sat down with radical TV preacher Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcasting Network, which asked the former senator if he would consider an invitation to join Mitt Romney’s Republican ticket. “Of course,” Santorum said… Also yesterday, Newt Gingrich was asked on Fox News about a possible V.P. nomination. Though the former Speaker said an invitation is unlikely, he added, “I wouldn’t say no.” At least on the surface, Santorum and Gingrich scoff at the very idea of ending their presidential bids, and in public, continue to tell voters that they remain viable candidates. But when they both sit down for televised interviews, and both signal a willingness to accept roles on the ticket, Santorum and Gingrich are signaling a level of resignation and defeat neither has made up until now. As one GOP strategist told TPM, “Rick Santorum saying he would be open to being Romney’s vice president undermines the logic of his delegate campaign. To win his delegate race, he has to demonize Romney. He has now cut that path off.”

3) THE OTHER TWO

Gingrich, Strapped for Cash, Lays Off Third of Staff — Gingrich, insists that he is still a viable candidate despite a third-place rank in the delegate count. He has hinged his entire strategy on hoping Mitt Romney is incapable of securing the 1,144 delegates needed to become the nominee, resulting in a contested GOP convention this summer. Earlier Tuesday in Annapolis, Md., Gingrich told reporters “the money is very tight obviously” and suggested his communications staff would soon announce a series of layoffs. Gingrich significantly cut back the number of scheduled campaign events he holds. Currently on his schedule, he only has one event a day for the next three days.

We call this one “Ron Paul with Sad Meat.”More where that came from.Where is Ron Paul? — Two things Ron Paul isn’t doing: He’s not winning — he has yet to place first in a primary or a caucus, either this cycle or last. And he isn’t making a lot of appearances on the campaign trail — over the past week, he has held only three campaign events, while his rivals’ events have numbered in the dozens. Four things Paul is doing: He’s appearing on late-night TV; he’s having a town hall at the University of Maryland in College Park on Wednesday; he’s holding what his campaign describes as a “giant” rally on Thursday at the University of Wisconsin in Madison; and he’s airing TV ads criticizing his rivals over last week’s Etch a Sketch incident. [image: ccindecision]

4) TEABAGISTAN

Arizona lawmakers push to take over federal land – Another “sagebrush rebellion” is spreading through legislatures in Arizona and other Western states with a series of formal demands that the federal government hand over title to tens of millions of acres of forests, ranges and other public lands. […] Legal experts say the movement is based on a misreading of federal law and the U.S. Constitution and will almost certainly fail to survive court challenges…”In an era of apparent fiscal responsibility, why would the state seek billions of dollars of liability and management responsibility to assume ownership over the (25 million) acres or so of parks, forests and public lands in Arizona?” said Matt Skroch, executive director of the Arizona Wilderness Coalition. “It is ill-conceived, it is irresponsible and it makes absolutely no sense.”

‘Obamacare’ and the Right’s Own Private Universe — It is a small miracle of mass communication that complete and total bullshit is so quickly and easily converted into incontrovertible fact out of which can be created a world of public events completely real, but completely divorced from what the rest of us recognize as reality. Take poor Sandra Fluke. It is now an article of faith on the Right that she asked all of us to pay for “her” birth control. “Real women pay for their own birth control,” the crowd on the steps chanted today, and there were more than a couple of signs warning her not to expect “our” money to pay for her obviously overindulgent sexytime. Of course, Fluke did nothing of the sort. … Also, today, folks told me that Obamacare “finances abortions.” (It doesn’t.) I heard that it will mandate “euthanasia.” (It won’t.) Even the death panels got a workout again. We have half the country living in its own universe of belief, with its own history, its own politics, and its own physical laws. It’s like running elections against the anti-gravity party. It is not healthy for any of us. [image: phroyd]

Worst Persons in the WorldThe Daily Caller released a series of Trayvon Martin’s tweets yesterday, and once again the far-right is attacking and attempting to discredit an innocent child — and this time, the child happens to be dead. So classy, these people. Limbaugh and Beck attacked Malia Obama, Malkin stalked Graeme Frost and others — there are literally dozens of examples of the Fox News / AM radio crowd attacking children and noncombatants like Sandra Fluke. Why? Because they’re bullies and scavengers who can only prey upon easy targets.

Divide and Conquer For Jesus — Stay classy, homophobes: The leading opponents of same-sex marriage [National Organization for Marriage - NOM] planned to defeat campaigns for gay marriage by “fanning the hostility” between black voters from gay voters and by casting President Obama as a radical foe of marriage, according to confidential documents made public in a Maine court today.

Alan Simpson on abortion rights and homophobia: am I dreaming?

I’m astounded. And speechless. I have a newfound respect for former Senator Alan Simpson (R-WY):

SIMPSON: Who the hell is for abortion? I don’t know anybody running around with a sign that says, “Have an abortion! They’re wonderful!” They’re hideous, but they’re a deeply intimate and personal decision, and I don’t think men legislators should even vote on the issue.

Then you’ve got homosexuality, you’ve got Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. We have homophobes on our party. That’s disgusting to me. We’re all human beings. We’re all God’s children. Now if they’re going to get off on that stuff—Santorum has said some cruel things—cruel, cruel things—about homosexuals. Ask him about it; see if he attributes the cruelness of his remarks years ago. Foul.

Now if that’s the kind of guys that are going to be on my ticket, you know, it makes you sort out hard what Reagan said, you know, “Stick with your folks.” But, I’m not sticking with people who are homophobic, anti-women, moral values—while you’re diddling your secretary while you’re giving a speech on moral values? Come on, get off of it.

Watch the video…

Sadly, in today’s Republican / Tea party, Simpson would definitely not pass their purity test.

So this happened:

This very “serious” man is deciding who should have the right to serve in our military:


Do you suppose The “Maverick” likes @Sn00ki‘s avatar, is that why he keeps tweeting her? Thank God he didn’t know Snooki existed in 2008.

“It’s the maverick way: spend a year studying whether soldiers deserve full civil rights, and a half-an-hour deciding who will be your presidential running mate.”

JON STEWART, on John McCain’s disingenuous, asinine call for a “study” on how repealing DADT would impact U.S. military forces, on The Daily Show. (via inothernews via Liberals Are Cool)

Let’s watch The Daily Show mock McCain: