Bad Deeds for 8-26-2010


Rick Perry’s Bomb about Bombs: Perry Lies or He Doesn’t Know Where the Border Lies – In an interview about border security, Texas Gov. Rick Perry told Fox News that bombs exploded in El Paso. “You’ve got bullets hitting the city hall in El Paso. You’ve got bombs exploding in El Paso,” said Perry. “The border with Mexico is a war zone.”

Perry was likely referring to last month’s deadly car bombing in Juarez [Mexico], not El Paso.

El Paso Mayor John Cook said Perry’s verbal flub doesn’t help the Sun City’s image. “It’s like an uphill battle almost, swimming against the tide, trying to convince people that the violence hasn’t spilled over,” said Cook. And Cook said those perceptions of El Paso are hurdles to overcome when trying to attract business to the region. “It doesn’t help when the governor comes out and adds to that perception that the violence has spilled over,” said Cook.

Cook said city leaders will continue to spread the message that El Paso is a safe community, the second safest city in the nation.


Rick Perry Wants Help From the Federal Government That He Doesn’t Want to Be a Part Of – Of all people, Governor Rick “Let Us Secede From the Union” Perry is losing his cool and is calling for the federales to come save him from the border war. No, it’s not that simple, Gov. Perry. You don’t get to bad-mouth the federal government only when it’s politically convenient. You don’t get to refuse federal stimulus funds and make wild statements about “state rights” and then turtle up when the shots start firing. As governor, you have the ability to move National Guard troops down to the border – go do it. Send some Tea Party militias and Minutemen people, too. Make sure they’re well-armed – well, I guess you don’t need to do that, they already are. Are you running a self-sufficient Republic or is Texas actually part of the Union?


Texas Textbook Massacre Leader Gives Speeches to Neo-Nazi hate Groups – David Barton, who runs an outfit called WallBuilders out of Aledo, Texas, led the recent effort to rewrite Texas textbooks. Barton has twice addressed white-supremacist organizations with ties to neo-Nazis, but both times has done so accidentally, he says. Accidentally addressing a neo-Nazi hate group can happen to even the best of folks. But doing it twice?

Barton has also been a leader in the movement to rewrite American history to remove Civil Rights leaders and knock down the wall separating church from state, arguing that it is a myth.


Absurd and Illogical: Republican Representative Says Building the NY Community Center is as Offensive as the N-Word – Rep. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), who is running for the state’s U.S. Senate seat against Democrat Robin Carnahan, yesterday went on The McGraw Show on St. Louis’ KTRS and condemned plans to build an Islamic cultural center near Ground Zero by saying it was “just as inappropriate” as the racial tirade that recently cost Dr. Laura her radio show.


John Boehner’s Economic Plan Would Increase Deficit By $3.781 Trillion, Think Tank Finds – House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) was short on specifics during his much-touted economic address in Cleveland this week. A subsequent report analyzing his suggestions, the progressive think tank NDN estimates that the plans could exacerbate the deficit by roughly $3.7 trillion over the next ten years.


Boehner Lies About the Recovery Act – On the very same day that House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) declares in a major speech that the Recovery Act has “gotten us nowhere,” first, the nonpartisan CBO announces that the Recovery Act has created as many as 3.3 million jobs nationwide and lowered the unemployment rate by as much as 1.8 percent through March of this year, and then the Ohio (Boehner’s home state) Department of Transportation announces that nearly 9,500 construction workers were on the job on Ohio Recovery Act transportation projects in July, the highest monthly total since it began.

I suspect those nearly 9,500 Ohio construction workers and 3.3 million Americans at work thanks to the Recovery act would disagree with Rep. Boehner’s statement that the Recovery Act has “gotten us nowhere.”

And then to make his dance even more complicated, leading economist Mark Zandi said today that the Congressman from Ohio was “just wrong” that the Recovery Act has “gotten us nowhere:” Asked about Rep. Boehner’s claim that “all of this ‘stimulus’ spending has gotten us nowhere,” Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics said “that is just wrong, the stimulus has been very helpful.”


Katrina Re-Development Money Ended Up Going to Oil Companies – Standing in a generator-lit French Quarter square 17 days after Hurricane Katrina, President George W. Bush ended his first major prime-time address in the post-catastrophe city with a call for reinvestment in the battered region. Speaking in a dark, mostly empty New Orleans, he described a business-incentive program that would lure people and commerce back to devastated Gulf Opportunity Zones in Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi. Within these GO Zones (also known as disaster areas), subsidies would “create jobs, and loan guarantees for small businesses, including minority-owned enterprises, to get them up and running again,” Bush told an audience still wide-eyed from endless newsreels of poor black people stranded on waterlogged rooftops.

But five years after Congress passed the Gulf Opportunity Zone Act of 2005, more of the tax-free benefits have gone to the state’s powerful oil industry than to development in hard-hit areas. New Orleans has so far received a total of $55 million in bonds shared between eight projects—or less than 1 percent of the more than $5.9 billion issued statewide. None of the bonds issued for New Orleans projects went to development in hard-hit and still-struggling areas like the Lower Ninth Ward.

Instead, the federal largesse has been poured into oil companies operating far from New Orleans. Since Congress’s unanimous approval of the GO Zone Act, Louisiana officials have issued nearly $1.7 billion in tax-free bonds—about one third of the total issued—for projects that contribute to the production of oil. Preliminary approval has been secured to tap millions more.


New York City Cab Driver Slashed for Being Muslim – A college student who did volunteer work in Afghanistan was charged Wednesday with slashing a taxi driver’s neck and face after the driver said he’s Muslim. A criminal complaint alleges Michael Enright uttered an Arabic greeting and told the driver, “Consider this a checkpoint,” before the brutal bias attack occurred Tuesday night inside the yellow cab on Manhattan’s East Side. Police say Enright was drunk at the time.


Another Brazen Anti-Muslim Attack – In another brazen anti-Muslim incident, a man wandered into a mosque in Queens Wednesday night, shouting racial slurs and urinating all over prayer rugs. According to police, a drunk Omar Rivera shouted “terrorists” before relieving himself in the Iman Mosque. He stuck up his middle finger and cursed at everyone.


The Summer of Republican Race-Baiting – Earlier this year, Republican Party chairman Michael Steele admitted that the GOP has engaged in Southern Strategy politics: employing racial, anti-minority code language and fear-mongering as a means of energizing the party’s white Christian base.

This is a fact. The Southern Strategy is real, though it’s no longer exclusively “southern.”

Fact: the Republican Party routinely tweaks white fear, paranoia, prejudice and resentment in order to win votes and score political points at the expense of demonized minority groups. They engage in stereotyping and misinformation and they rarely, if ever, use the “n-word” these days, though they might as well. After all, as the Strategy goes, blacks and minorities aren’t voting Republican anyway, so… let fly.

And it works. So well, in fact, that it’s still actively used on AM talk radio and on Fox News Channel as a ratings-grabber, not to mention as a recruitment tool for the various tea party groups. If you can effectively convince the majority race that they’re being somehow victimized by the significantly smaller minority, you have a seriously powerful (and clearly immoral) psycho-weapon in your arsenal.

The Republican Party machine does it all the time and is still taken seriously as one of our two major parties. This is unacceptable. And so we have to keep talking about it and exposing anyone who plays this terrible game, while underscoring why it’s such a stain on our politics and values. We have to prevent our discourse from moving beyond that point of no return — to make sure that the exploitation of racial intolerance at the highest levels of politics and the media doesn’t become just another accepted facet of the American debate.


More Republican Hypocrisy – Republican Senate candidate Ken Buck had requested at least $5 million in earmarks for projects in the county where he served as attorney general. On the campaign trail, Buck has railed against pork-barrel projects including signing a pledge to refuse earmarks in the next session of Congress.

In Wisconsin, Republican Senate candidate Ron Johnson received a $2.5 million government-issued loan in the 1980s to expand his factory. Like Buck, Johnson has made railing against government spending a main feature of his run for office.

In Indiana, Republican Senate candidate Dan Coats has run on a platform of preventing a government takeover of private enterprise, only for it to be discovered that he lobbied the Senate on the TARP for a company he represented.

Also in Indiana, Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels reversed course this week on a pledge he had made to reject federal aid for teachers and Medicaid. Daniels had actually been supportive of the aid before he came out against it during a national television appearance.


TennesSee No Evil (nor Reality) – On the Daily show last night, Aasif Mandvi visited Murfreesboro, Tennessee, site of a planned mosque, and met with Laurie Cardozza-Moore, the leader of the mosque opposition. Mandvi sat back and listened as Cardozza claimed her opposition had “nothing to do with religion” before she listed a slew of “facts” about Islam ranging from what they eat to how it is a actually a “political system of global domination.”

“You do know I’m Muslim,” Mandvi said at the end of her lengthy rant, to which Cordozza replied: “Nobody’s perfect.” Then it gets crazier and funnier. Watch the video at the link.





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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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