Bad Deeds for 2/17/2010


Texas Triumph of Ignorance (Texas, Meet the Flintstones) – Nearly a third of Texans believe humans and dinosaurs roamed the earth at the same time, and more than half disagree with the theory that humans developed from earlier species of animals, according to the University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll.

Democrats (28 percent) are less likely than Republicans (47 percent) to think that humans have always existed in their present form. Has life on earth always existed in its present form?

Republicans are more likely to agree (29 percent) than Democrats (16 percent). Republicans are less likely to believe that humans developed from earlier species of animals; 26 percent agree, while 60 percent disagree. Among Democrats in the survey, 46 percent agree that humans evolved from earlier species; 42 percent disagree. Perry’s voters were most hostile to this premise — 67 percent disagree.

About the same numbers of Democrats and Republicans — 43 percent — disagree with the idea that dinosaurs and humans lived on the planet at the same time. Republicans were slightly more likely to agree with the idea (31 percent to 27 percent). Perry had more voters in each group on the GOP side, but Kay Bailey Hutchison had the largest share of voters who believe in that coexistence.

David Prindle, a University of Texas government professor, says the results recall a line from comedian Lewis Black. “He did a standup routine a few years back in which he said that a significant proportion of the American people think that the ‘The Flintstones’ is a documentary,” Prindle says. “Turns out he was right. Thirty percent of Texans agree that humans and dinosaurs lived on the earth at the same time.”


WellPoint Hikes Rates; Directors Make Big Gains on Stocks – Three WellPoint board members have collected a combined $625,517 in gains from stock options in the Indianapolis-based health insurance giant as the company has faced national media scrutiny and barbs from the Obama administration over premium increases as high as 39 percent.

For example, Sheila Burke, a WellPoint director since 2004, had the largest single gain, $360,989, by cashing in 9,920 of her WellPoint options, according to a regulatory filing. Those options allowed her to buy the stock for $25.61 a share on Feb. 5. She sold those shares the same day at the then-market price of $62 a share. Burke was chief of staff to then-Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole from 1985 to 1996.

WellPoint director William H.T. Bush gained $167,428 from exercising options to buy 3,056 WellPoint shares for $6.34 each Feb. 9 and selling that stock for prices ranging from $61.12 to $61.13 a share. Bush is the brother of former President George H.W. Bush.

Donald Riegle, a former Democratic U.S. senator from Michigan, gained $97,100 from exercising 5,000 options, priced at $44.18 apiece, then selling that stock for $63.60 a share Feb. 4.


Glenn Beck’s Plan for Captured Taliban Leader: ‘Shoot him in the head’ – On Fox & Friends Tuesday, Glenn Beck said, “We’ve just captured the second most wanted guy in Al Qaeda. The first thing out of my mind — shoot him in the head. Shoot him in the head before it goes into a court and we’re doing all this nonsense back and forth. He’s a bad guy. Shoot him in the head.”
(The only phrase that Beck got right is, “out of my mind.” – JLV)


More Hypocrisy About the Stimulus – The non-partisan checked into the stimulus hypocrisy claims and found several cases:

• Rep. Geoff Davis, R-Kentucky, voted against the bill, saying it was full of pork. But in December of 2009, he sent out a press release announcing that a $1 million dollar-plus grant would be given to the Carroll County School District.

“As it happened, on the very same day, Davis sent out a separate release in which he referred to the “failed trillion-dollar ‘stimulus’ bill,” according to Politifact.

• Rep. Phil Gingrey of Georgia said his no vote was due to concern over government spending and the rising debt. But in October, he was photographed in a local newspaper in Cedartown, Georgia, giving a ceremonial check for $625,000 in stimulus funds to local leaders, which the newspaper noted would go for new sidewalks, landscaping and other city projects. Politifact noted that Gingrey spokeswoman told the newspaper that because the project qualified for federal stimulus funds as “shovel-ready,” Gingrey “presented the proposal at the federal level.”


More False Statements About the Stimulus – There are some whoppers like:

· “Vice President Joe Biden’s meeting “with the transparency and accountability board . . . was closed to the public.” – Sarah Palin, Rated FALSE
· “I didn’t endorse” the federal stimulus bill. – Charlie Crist, Rated FALSE
· I couldn’t take stimulus money because it required “universal building codes.” – Sarah Palin, Rated FALSE
· “In North Carolina, they used stimulus money to hire one new state worker. His job, apply for more stimulus funds from the taxpayers by the way of the federal government. – John Boehner, Rated FALSE
· The stimulus has “$30 million in there to protect mice in San Francisco.” – Mike Pence, Rated FALSE
· The stimulus bill includes “$300,000 for a sculpture garden in Miami.” – Eric Cantor, Rated PANTS ON FIRE.
· Inside the stimulus package “is anti-Christian legislation that will stop churches from using public schools for meeting on Sundays, as well as Boy Scouts and student Bible study groups.” – Newt Gingrich, Rated PANTS ON FIRE.
(Newt wins the fear-factor award! – JLV)


As Republicans Bash Stimulus, the Stimulus is Saving Renewable Energy Projects – On a mountain top 80 miles northeast of Bangor, Maine, in country where houses and gravel pits are mere pinpricks on a map green with forest, Paul Gaynor is making stimulus work. Gaynor, chief executive of First Wind, is using $40 million in federal funds to help build a wind farm that will produce enough power for 13,000 homes and has created 200 construction jobs.

Without stimulus, First Wind’s project — and most renewable energy projects across the country — may not have happened.

“To us, it’s been essential to get through the nuclear winter of financing ability,” Gaynor said, referring to the dark days of early 2009 right after the financial collapse. “The recovery act was the bridge that got us from a broken market to one where projects actually get done.”

The Energy Department said that from the start of the program in July through September, the last month for which data is available, over $1 billion has been paid to finance 32 projects nationwide. Ethan Zindler, head of North American research at Bloomberg New Energy Finance, said that without the stimulus, maybe only half the 2009 projects would have been built.

Following Republican Logic One Step Further
Republicans say the stimulus bill has not created any jobs.
One-third of the stimulus bill was tax breaks.
Therefore, tax breaks … don’t create jobs.
H’mm .. they disprove their own statements by their own statements.


Republican Lawmaker (and Trained Journalist) Plagiarized Washington Times’ Anti-Climate-Change Rant – Rep. Matt Wingard, who has a degree in broadcast journalism, admitted on Monday that he lifted his speech from an editorial entitled “Osama and Obama on global warming,” which sought to link Osama bin Laden’s recent declaration on global warming to the US president’s policies. (Note: The Washington Times is owned by Unification Church founder Sun Myung Moon.)

Wingard told the Wilsonville Spokesman that he had planned to send out a press release explaining that his speech came from the (Moonie) Washington Times. And he did that on Monday, but only after Kari Chisholm at Blue Oregon published a story showing Wingard’s speech to be almost exactly the same as the Times editorial.

Wingard reportedly also lifted several paragraphs from columnist Margaret Wente in Canada’s Globe and Mail.

Chisholm reported, “Matt Wingard’s entire speech was plagiarized. Well, all of it except for a single six-word sentence – and a bunch of minor wording changes designed to hide the plagiarism. Make no mistake: it’s those minor wording changes that are the most damning of all — if he’d been merely reading an article and forgot to mention that, the text would have been verbatim. He was covering his tracks.”

Chisholm added that copyright infringement is “hypocritical for a guy that goes on and on about property rights.” In a follow-up story, Chisholm noted that “[t]his incident is especially damning for Wingard because he’s a trained journalist.”


Arizona Candidate Claims Obama Birth Certificate is an ‘Identity Theft’ Issue – Former Rep. J.D. Hayworth, who on Monday officially entered Arizona’s Republican race against Sen. John McCain, defended his recent call for President Barack Obama to produce his birth certificate, suggesting his questions stem not from conspiracy theories that Obama was really born in Kenya but from concerns about identity theft.


Checking Up on Obama’s Campaign Promises

  • Promises Kept 96
  • Compromise 33
  • In the works 272
  • Stalled 85
  • Broken 15





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About Jim Vogas

Texas A&M Aggie, Retired aerospace engineer, former union member, Vietnam vet, Demcratic Party organizer, husband and father.

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