Browsing the archives for the US culture category.

Would you use the word terrorist there?

Politics, Presidential Elections, US culture, US Elections, US Politics

The news addicts among you will already have seen this one:

Think Progress has the transcript:

[BRIAN WILLIAMS]: Is an abortion clinic bomber a terrorist, under this definition, governor?

PALIN: (Sigh). There’s no question that Bill Ayers via his own admittance was one who sought to destroy our U.S. Capitol and our Pentagon. That is a domestic terrorist. There’s no question there. Now, others who would want to engage in harming innocent Americans or facilities that uh, it would be unacceptable. I don’t know if you’re going to use the word terrorist there.

“Have we really reached the point at which the Republican ticket wants to parse the meaning of the word “terrorist”?,” Steve Benen asks at the Washington Monthly. He also wonders, “does John McCain, who sat silently during the exchange, agree with this?”, before answering his own question: “Actually, he might. ThinkProgress noted a couple of weeks ago that McCain has “repeatedly voted against protecting Americans from domestic terrorists carrying out violence at abortion clinics.”

Violence against abortion providers, fig. 1

Violence against abortion providers, fig. 1, based on NAF data.

What kind of views does Palin’s take spring from? How widespread has the anti-abortion strand of domestic terrorism been? Are there any trends?

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Finally! A Political Wife Says “Sayonara…”

Congressional Elections, US culture, US Politics

This can be filed under “Well, that’s not really a surprise” category.

Terry Mahoney, wife of Rep. Tim Mahoney (D-Fla.) has filed for divorce, according to the Palm Beach Post. — Politico

Silda and Eliot Spitzer on a Very Bad Day.  Nonetheless, they just celebrated their 21st wedding anniversary.

Silda and Eliot Spitzer on a Very Bad Day. Nonetheless, they just celebrated their 21st wedding anniversary.

You’d certainly THINK it wouldn’t be a surprise. But actually, this is one of the very few incidences I can remember when the aggrieved wife sent the no-goodnik packing.

Hillary Clinton? Nope. Silda Spitzer? Nope. Suzanne Craig? Nope. And on and on and on — Joe lists some of the others here.

They have their horrible press conferences where they stand to the side and look miserable and humiliated (is this really necessary? can’t the guy just apologize on his own?) and yet they STAY. Why?

Thats Terry under Tims armpit.  Surprisingly hard to find a photo of her -- every one Ive found has Tim front and center and then shes off in a corner somewhere.  Foreshadowing, anyone?

That's Terry under Tim's armpit. Surprisingly hard to find a photo of her -- every one I've found has Tim front and center and then she's blurrily off in a corner somewhere. Foreshadowing, anyone?

Maybe the wives of politicians have already resigned themselves to the possibility of their husbands fooling around — certainly seems to be an occupational hazard. Maybe the kind of people who would put up with a politician husband at all are the ones who are especially attached to the perks — and especially averse to losing those perks by divorcing. Maybe politicians are better than other people at convincing their wives to stick around once they mess up — all that public speaking helps, ya know? (Unless of course they don’t want to stay married, like Rudy — then they convey the news in a press conference.) Maybe it’s not actually that unique to political couples — maybe it just seems that way, but in fact these couples stay together after misbehavior at about the same rate as non-political couples.

Who knows.

It’s awfully refreshing to see someone finally refuse to play the game, though. Good luck, Terry.

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Republicans in Margaritaville

Politics, US culture, US Politics

I love Jimmy Buffet’s “Margaritaville.”  Not for the tune though that’s fine, it’s always been about the lyrics for me.  I enjoy hearing the evolution of the singer’s viewpoint, the self examination, the final conclusion.  Reading Republican commenators these days is like listening to the “Margaritaville” applied to real life.

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Reaching across the aisle

Politics, Presidential Elections, US culture, US Elections, US Politics

I mean, listen to these two videos, and you gotta admit that this man unites the country.

(In comparison, take a look at McCain’s less fortunate musical adventures …)







(“Because we shoot to kill, And you know we always will, It’s Obama, it’s Obama”?)

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Demagogues Rising

Culture, Economy, Politics, US culture, US Economy, US Elections, US Politics

American writer and satirist H. L. Mencken wrote “The demagogue is one who preaches doctrines he knows to be untrue to men he knows to be idiots.” Patricia Roberts-Miller in her book “Democracy, Demagoguery, and Critical Rhetoric” defined demagoguery as “polarizing propaganda that motivates members of an ingroup to hate and scapegoat some outgroup(s), largely by promising certainty, stability, and what Erich Fromm famously called ‘an escape from freedom’.” Hilter was a infamous demagogue, blaming the woes of a post WWI Germany on the Jews. Joe McCarthy looked for Communists around every corner. Today, the American financial system is in its worse crisis since the Great Depression, Americans are facing uncertainty in employment, prices are rising and savings are falling. The time is right for the rise of the Demagogues.

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