Wednesday, November 30, 2011

"Dirty Rotten Scoundrels"

"He walked out in the spring of 1980.... By September, I went into the hospital for my third surgery. The two girls came to see me, and said, "Daddy is downstairs. Could he come up?" When he got there, he wanted to discuss the terms of the divorce while I was recovering from my surgery." - Jackie, his first wife.

A friend of mine was telling me a story about Newt Gingrich today (not the story surrounding the quote you just read), and in his story Newt's behavior and actions were so low down and dirty that I had a hard time believing that even Newt was capable of such behavior. He said it is well documented and that one of Newt's former aides even wrote about it in a book.

As soon as I got home I started researching the story, and.....

"Kip Carter, his former campaign treasurer, was walking Newt's daughters back from a football game one day and cut across a driveway where he saw a car. "As I got to the car, I saw Newt in the passenger seat and one of the guys' wives with her head in his lap going up and down. Newt kind of turned and gave me this little-boy smile. Fortunately, Jackie Sue and Kathy were a lot younger and shorter then."

You might want to Google that name, Kip Carter, when you get a chance.

Of course there is more; Newt is quite the hell raiser. My man makes Herman Cain look like the guy William Harrison was writing about back in the day.

No wonder Herman feels like folks are picking on him. Newt must feel like that vain Emperor these days. He called himself a celebrity today, and in his mind, I am sure that he is.

Finally, I have to blog about another guy who might make even Newt look good.

"Every civil servant wants to experience his or her legacy firsthand--but not the way that onetime Arapahoe Sheriff Patrick J. Sullivan Jr. has. Sullivan, a nationally renowned law enforcement leader, was arrested on drug charges and is now being detained in the Denver area jail that bears his name.

Sullivan, who in 2001 was named the National Sheriff Association's "Sheriff of the Year," was arrested on suspicion of trafficking methamphetamines.

Local news station CBS4 began an investigation of Sullivan last month on a tip that he had agreed to meet a male informant, providing drugs in exchange for sex. He was subsequently arrested by the South Metro Drug Task Force and is currently being held on a $250,000 bond.

And in an incredible twist of fate, Sullivan now cooling his heels at The Patrick J. Sullivan Jr. Detention Facility, named in his honor.

"The allegations of criminal behavior involving Pat Sullivan are extraordinarily disturbing," said Grayson Robinson, Arapahoe County's current sheriff. "While the arrest of the former sheriff is very troubling, no one, and particularly a former peace officer, is above the law. This is the most shocking thing I've ever been involved with."

Sullivan, 68, has been retired for nine years, but had been serving as director of safety and security for Cherry Creek Schools.

"This is a very sad time for the Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office and our community," Robinson said. The CBS4 report also found that for several years Sullivan has posted bond for multiple suspects held in drug cases at jail facilities across the state.

As recently as 2008, Sullivan was an active participant in state and local methamphetamine task forces, helping Colorado draft a plan to deal with the surge in meth-related crime." [Source] h/t to my man Dan for this story.  

I guess if you are going to go to jail you might as well go to a jail that was named after you. *shaking head* Penn State. Syracuse. I swear you just can't trust anything anymore in A-merry-ca.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The doctor, the racist, and the robe.

"The man helps us all by taking a pedophile off the street and they give him four f&^%$#@ years!"

Man you black folks are hard on each other. That's what I overheard some  black dude telling another one in the crowded CJC (Criminal Justice Center) lobby today while I waited for an elevator. Everyone within earshot, like me, probably heard them, but everyone pretended not to. Some things are not even cool to think about.

Anyway, I read that the good doctor is suicidal; apparently his lawyers didn't do a good enough job of preparing him for the worse. The Judge sure didn't seem to like Doctor Murray very much.

 "The judge was relentless in his bashing of the 58-year-old Murray, saying he lied repeatedly and had not shown remorse for his actions in the treatment of Jackson. Pastor also said Murray's heavy use of the powerful anesthetic propofol to help Jackson battle insomnia violated his sworn obligation.

"It should be made very clear that experimental medicine is not going to be tolerated, and Mr. Jackson was an experiment," Pastor said. "Dr. Murray was intrigued by the prospect and he engaged in this money for medicine madness that is simply not going to be tolerated by me."

Pastor also said Murray has "absolutely no sense of fault, and is and remains dangerous" to the community.

The judge of the most disturbing aspects of Murray's case was a slurred recording of Jackson recovered from the doctor's cell phone."

I didn't like the cell phone recording, either. But four years (two for sure in the County) seemed a bit harsh. I don't think the good Doctor is a danger to anyone but himself right about now.

Finally, as most of you know, I am a notorious racism chaser. But I am also a huge advocate of free speech, so every now and then I become conflicted when I have to choose between the big R being offensive and the big R having the right to offend.

This latest case in England is a great example.

In case you all haven't heard the story or seen the latest video which has gone viral, this white lady in London did what a lot of you white folks would love to do while taking public transportation; she allowed her inner klan to flow.

"A woman in South London was arrested after she was caught on tape unleashing a racist tirade on an unsuspecting train car full of passengers.

A two-minute clip went viral across the internet of the rant late Sunday, with many horrified viewers and celebrities tweeting to help find the woman.

“BREAKING: The woman in the #MyTramExperience video has just been arrested. Excellent. See how vocal she is in a police cell,” British-born talk show host Piers Morgan tweeted.

The woman, in the clip, can be heard telling people "you ain't English, you ain't English either - go back to your own f--- country."

She also demands that black people on the train go back to their own country, which she claims is "Nicaragua".

When another passenger asks her to watch her language because of the children on board, she replies, "Yes fine, I have a little kid here."

A small child in her lap remains silent, playing with what appears to be a toy dinosaur, throughout the disturbing rant.

At one point, the video shows, she tells a woman, "You ain't British - you're black." [Story]

That's just precious. Isn't it nice when racists can pass on their ignorance to their children?

Still, I have news for you; this lady should not have been arrested. It's not like she started a riot or anything. (Although I suppose that you could make an argument that she might have started one.) If she wants to make a fool of herself in public (with her child present no less) by all means let her go. No one was hurt, so it's all good as far as I am concerned. Having to live with herself is punishment enough for this poor woman.

BTW, speaking of displaying ignorance; I see where the Smithsonian's new section for us Negroes will be displaying some recently donated klan robes. Again, I am fine with that. The klan is as A-merry-can as apple pie, and every A-merry-can should be able to see and read about their long "rich" history.



Monday, November 28, 2011

Herman's latest adventure.

I am sure that you all have heard of Herman's latest missy adventure by now: A modern day Scarlett O'Hara from Atlanta named Ginger White (Yes, that's her name. I swear you can't make this stuff up.) is saying that Herman was her Rhett Butler for 13-years

Now I am going to shock some of you, but I am not going rip Herman Cain for his alleged affair. This is not like allegedly harassing women and making sexual advances towards them against their will. As Herman's lawyer said earlier tonight, this was something that happened between two consenting adults. Besides, a 13 year affair with someone other than his wife would not affect how Herman does his job as president. Some of our better presidents in A-merry-ca (See Bubba & JFK) were known philanderers. Hey, the man leading the GOP pack was cheating on his wife while she was dying for crying out loud.

Still, I am begging Herman to get out of the race. He is killing us married guys out here. Every time one of these stories hits the news we get the fuzzy eyeball from out significant other. That is not cool. He has got to know by now that he has no shot of ever winning the republican nomination. They just can't trust the guy anymore. He is ruining the republican brand. They have all got to be thinking the very same thing: "What's next?"

Finally, I knew that you A-merry-cans loved to shop. But this next story is a bit much:

"A Black Friday shopper who collapsed while shopping at a Target store in West Virginia went almost unnoticed as customers continued to hunt for bargain deals.
Walter Vance, the 61-year-old pharmacist, who reportedly suffered from a prior heart condition, later died in hospital, reports MSNBC.

Witnesses say some shoppers ignored and even walked over the man's body as they continued to shop, reports the New York Daily News.

Friends and co-workers saddened to learn of his death, expressed outrage over the way he was treated by shoppers.

"Where is the good Samaritan side of people?" Vance's co-worker Sue Compton told WSAZ-TV.

"How could you not notice someone was in trouble? I just don't understand if people didn't help what their reason was..." [Source]

Their reason was 50% off on the latest electronic tablet item. Santa has to put something under the tree.

Poor Walter, someone should have told him that shopping is serious business here in A-merry-ca. It's a matter of life and death.    


Sunday, November 27, 2011

Mi amigo Newt.

If any of you reading this believe that you are good enough to play safety or linebacker in the National Football League, please apply to the Philadelphia Eagles c/o the Philadelphia Sports Complex on South Broad Street here in Philadelphia. Thank you.

This was just ugly.

Anywhoo, the blog must go on.

I see where Newt Gingrich had his Sistah Souljah moment with the republicans. The wingnut purist are mad about his immigration stance, but Newt is trying to move to the middle, so he wants to seem like a "compassionate conservative."

The thing is, there is nothing compassionate about Newt. (Just ask his first wife.)
Newt tends to be somewhat of an asshole who pretends to be smart. He likes to take swipes at the media and everyone else who questions whatever he does, but that's just Newt.

Sad story out of Arizona where a Marine who defended his country in Iraq was shot to death in his own home by a Tuscon, Arizona SWAT team.

"TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Jose Guerena Ortiz was sleeping after an exhausting 12-hour night shift at a copper mine. His wife, Vanessa, had begun breakfast. Their 4-year-old son, Joel, asked to watch cartoons.

An ordinary morning was unfolding in the middle-class Tucson neighborhood — until an armored vehicle pulled into the family's driveway and men wearing heavy body armor and helmets climbed out, weapons ready.

They were a sheriff's department SWAT team who had come to execute a search warrant. But Vanessa Guerena insisted she had no idea, when she heard a "boom" and saw a dark-suited man pass by a window, that it was police outside her home. She shook her husband awake and told him someone was firing a gun outside.

A U.S. Marine veteran of the Iraq war, he was only trying to defend his family, she said, when he grabbed his own gun — an AR-15 assault rifle.
What happened next was captured on video after a member of the SWAT team activated a helmet-mounted camera.

The officers — four of whom carried .40-caliber handguns while another had an AR-15 — moved to the door, briefly sounding a siren, then shouting "Police!" in English and Spanish. With a thrust of a battering ram, they broke the door open. Eight seconds passed before they opened fire into the house.

And 10 seconds later, Guerena lay dying in a hallway 20-feet from the front door. The SWAT team fired 71 rounds, riddling his body 22 times, while his wife and child cowered in a closet.

"Hurry up, he's bleeding," Vanessa Guerena pleaded with a 911 operator. "I don't know why they shoot him. They open the door and shoot him. Please get me an ambulance."

When she emerged from the home minutes later, officers hustled her to a police van, even as she cried that her husband was unresponsive and bleeding, and that her young son was still inside. She begged them to get Joel out of the house before he saw his father in a puddle of blood on the floor.

But soon afterward, the boy appeared in the front doorway in Spider-Man pajamas, crying.

The Pima County Sheriff's Department said its SWAT team was at the home because Guerena was suspected of being involved in a drug-trafficking organization and that the shooting happened because he arrived at the door brandishing a gun. The county prosecutor's office says the shooting was justified." [Story]

Oh, the old "justified" shooting excuse. After all, he was a "suspected" drug dealer. But six seconds after crashing his door you start blasting into his home with his wife and child inside? (Shot sixty times!)

I will wait to hear more about this one.

Finally folks, if you happen to be unemployed and see an ad. offering you a job on Craiglist, please do your research before you head off to your new found nine to five. It seems that there might be someone killing folks who answer to Want Ads on Craigslist.

These serial killers seem to be getting more and more creative.

Be careful out there everybody, the Internet can be a wonderful place, but it can also get you killed.

*Image courtesy of and cartoonist Taylor Jones


Saturday, November 26, 2011

The Grinch!

Someone recently hacked into my Yahoo account and sent messages to my peeps pretending to be me. I would like to apologize to all the folks on my e-mail list for that. Hopefully the problem has been corrected.

I have a lot of haters, but I am not going to blame it on one of them just yet. Hackers will be hackers.

Anyway, social media can be a wonderful thing. We tweet;we blog;we Facebook; and it's all good.

Unfortunately, it seems that some folks are a little overly sensitive when it comes to being tweeted on. It's almost Christmas so I guess it's time for the Grinch to appear. 

"The governor of Kansas faced an online trashing Friday for tattling on a teenaged girl who sent out a critical tweet during a visit to the state capitol.

Emma Sullivan, 18, was hauled into her principal's office and ordered to write letters of apology after one of Governor Sam Brownback's office contacted the tour organizer to complain about the offending note on the social networking site Twitter.

"Just made mean comments at gov brownback and told him he sucked, in person #heblowsalot," Sullivan wrote, despite not saying anything to Brownback during the visit -- she said she wrote it to get a laugh out of her friends.

The principal "laid into me about how this was unacceptable and an embarrassment," Sullivan later told the Wichita Eagle.

"He said I had created this huge controversy and everyone was up in arms about it... and now he had to do damage control."

Sullivan had just 60 followers on Twitter when she wrote the offending note Monday. Two days later her story hit the local news ahead of the generally slow Thanksgiving holiday weekend.

By Friday morning, she was on CNN discussing the issue of censorship and free speech.

A lively discussion filled a dedicated Facebook page. Nearly 1,300 new people signed up to follow her Twitter feed, which until that point had been primarily devoted to her thoughts on the Twilight series and other typical teen musings.
"I'm mainly shocked that they would even see that tweet and be concerned about me," Sullivan -- who did not immediately return a request for comment -- told the paper Wednesday.

"I just honestly feel they're making a lot bigger deal out of it than it actually was."

Brownback's office regularly monitors social media for references to the Republican governor to see what his constituents are saying about him, spokeswoman Sherriene Jones-Sontag told the Eagle.

His secretary forwarded a copy of the tweet to organizers of the school-sponsored event "so that they were aware what their students were saying in regards to the governor's appearance," she said.

"We just felt it was appropriate for the organizers to be aware... because of what was said in the tweet."

Brownback's office did not immediately return a request for comment Friday." [Story]

Republicans sure are a bunch of sensitive folks. You would think that the governor of Kansas has better things to do than to snitch on an 18 year old for speaking her mind about him.

Finally, I still can't get over my man Andrew Sullivan.

I have an open challenge to him over on the aforementioned twitter. Whenever he is ready to take up my challenge, he can pick a spot in D.C.  (I will pay for it), ride that bicycle of his over, and then we can get it on Jeopardy style.

We could charge a small fee for admission and the winner gets to give the proceeds to his favorite charity.

He will have a chance to prove the Bell Curve, and I will get a chance to show the world that he is full of s*&t.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Green Friday, and Andrew Sullivan wants to bring back the Bell Curve.

Today is Green Friday in A-merry-ca. It is a day of crass commercialism designed by merchants and corporations to get gullible shoppers into stores. Prices have been marked up so that they can be slashed right back down with coupons and promises of price cuts in the stores.

Of course, as we all know by now, it's working. Pepper spray, shootings, bomb threats, and mobs at every box store door. I don't think that Jesus wanted us to prepare for his birthday quite like this. Professional shoppers (see Mrs. Field) have been preparing for this day for months. (15,000 at the Mall of America!) So for all of you amateurs out there, you shop at your own risk on days like these.

I tried to brave the "madding" crowd today. (Today. Not early this morning. Not last night. Today!) People watching was interesting, but I just couldn't take the crowds after awhile. I will get whatever gifts I have left online. It's a shame God didn't have two sons who were born months apart. Oh well, Cyber Monday is just a few days away.

Finally, I used to respect the writings of blogger Andrew Sullivan; he was one of the few conservative writers in A-merry-ca who I considered relevant. So imagine my shock when I read what Jason Johnson penned over at Politc365 about Sullivan's contribution to the Bell Curve debate. At first I thought that Johnson's take on what Sullivan wrote might have been misguided, but then I read Sullivan's post for myself and I....well, read it for yourself:

"Two points: research is not about helping people; it's about finding out stuff. And I have long opposed the political chilling of free inquiry into any area of legitimate curiosity or research. I'm not going to stop now. Secondly, I agree that there would be very little, if any, use for this data in our society, apart from the existence of affirmative action. But when public policy holds that all racial difference in, say, college degrees, are due to racism, a truth claim has already been made. So the p.c. egalitarians have made this a public and social issue by a statement of fact they subsequently do not want to see debated or challenged using the data. That's an illiberal position, in my view.

I remain gob-smacked by the resilience of IQ differences between broad racial groups, controlling for much other data. Maybe if we understood what was going on - which particular and subtle combination of genetics, culture and generation makes this the result - we could help increase equality of opportunity. Maybe racial categories themselves have become so fluid and opaque the whole area is now moot. Maybe we should accept that differences in outcomes among racial groups have some element of irreducibility to them. Maybe the answer is to abolish racial affirmative action and replace it by class-based forms. Maybe the answer is to abolish affirmative action altogether (my preferred outcome). But all these questions depend on a thriving research culture which has been chilled by politics. That's what saddens me." [Source]

Holy s^%*! Johnson was right! A big WTF? for my British friend.

I have more of an appreciation now of how Johnson ended his post:

"Because everyone’s work proves that their people are the smartest. In fact, even when Roland Fryer, a brilliant academic at Harvard showed what a farce IQ tests are, his work was largely ignored. Less than 4 years ago Dr. Fryer’s research showed that IQ levels, which are supposed to be immutable, are equal for African American and White children but differences only show up on tests once they’ve been in public schools for 2 years proving that the impact of racism and schooling is muting IQ scores more than actually assessing them.

Of course, his research was largely ignored by the press and pundit mags because it didn’t support the sexy self-aggrandizing narrative that people like Andrew Sullivan live by: Whites are smarter than Blacks, but it is their extreme benevolence that leads them to allow us to play house in the societies ‘they’ve’ created."

Not all of us Mr. Johnson. Some of us still choose "to play" in the fields.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Ai Weiwei, blogging, and never having to say you are sorry.

This will be a quick post, because I am actually feeding my blogging jones while the Mrs. is on the phone. (Yes, she is Tony Danza in this household.)

Anywhoo, today is Thanksgiving Day, and everyone is reflecting on what they have to be thankful for. Here is the thing, if you are actually alive to reflect, you have a hell of a lot to be thankful for. Nothing is better than life. What you choose to do with it is on you.

Still, as an avid blogger, I am thankful that I am not living in The People's Republic of China. I was just reading about Ai Weiwei in my latest issue of GQ Magazine, and all I could do is shake my head. It's never cool when you can't freely speak your mind.

So I am thankful for being able to speak freely....most of the time. (Mrs. Field can be like the Chinese government at times, but that doesn't count)

Before I run off I want to slam the folks over at NBC. (So glad I can speak freely.) WTF were they thinking when they apologized to Michele Bachmann for a song The Roots played when she was introduced on Jimmy Fallon's show?!

"Bachmann received a letter Wednesday from Doug Vaughan, NBC's senior vice president for special programs and late night, that apologized for what happened and called the incident "not only unfortunate but also unacceptable," said Alice Stewart, the Republican presidential hopeful's spokeswoman.

According to Stewart, the letter also said the show's band, which played the song "Lyin' Ass Bitch" by Fishbone as Bachmann first appeared on stage, was "severely reprimanded...."

Fallon had offered an apology via Twitter on Tuesday, but Bachmann then called for an official apology from NBC.

The controversy started Monday when the Minnesota congresswoman walked out to greet Fallon on stage, and the show's band, The Roots, played the Fishbone song.

Bachmann admitted being oblivious to the slight, telling Fox News on Wednesday that she "wasn't aware of it at all."

She insisted the treatment she received through the song amounted to "sexism," and she added that it "wouldn't be tolerated if it was Michelle Obama and shouldn't be tolerated for a conservative woman, either."
Still, she said, "I'd love to go back again."

Some of Bachmann's ire was directed toward the drummer of Fallon's house band, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson.

"If that song had been played for Michelle Obama I have no doubt that NBC would've apologized to her and likely they could've fired the drummer or at least suspended him. None of that happened from NBC and this is clearly a form of the bias on the part of the Hollywood entertainment elite," Bachmann said." [Source]

Oh please! You said that you were "oblivious to the slight", so I don't want to hear it. They would never have the balls to do it, (Wait, was that reverse sexism? I said balls.) but NBC should have told you that they will apologize when NASCAR apologizes to the First Lady and Dr. Biden for what went down in Florida

Here is the difference Ms. Bachmann: you are a politician running for office, Michelle Obama is the First Lady representing the office of the presidency in these divided states of A-merry-ca. The members of The Roots believe that you have lied about some of your positions and misrepresented the position of others in the past; they were just letting you know about it in a clever way.

I am not so sure that NASCAR should apologize to Michelle Obama,either. More than likely those were not NASCAR officials booing her. (At least I don't think so.) But NBC should definitely not have apologized to you.

I guess we are all free to express ourselves if we follow it up with an apology.

For that, I am not thankful. 

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Turkey fever.

It must really suck to be a turkey in A-merry-ca. Can you imagine a day dedicated to millions of people eating your ass? If you are a young turkey that is not the kind of future you want to look forward to. "What are you going to be when you grow up there little turkey?" "Some lucky family's meal on Thanksgiving Day, sir. And if I grow really big and strong, I will feed a really large family on Thanksgiving Day."

Wow, talk about f*&^%d up options.

Anyway, I wonder what would have happened if the Pilgrims (and let's not forget the Wampanoags) had caught some wild pigs instead of wild birds during that three day celebration back in 1621? A lot of us would have been pretty much left out of this whole Thanksgiving Day thing. I know I would have. Thank you Governor Bradford.

I know that I don't act like it sometimes, but I really have a lot to be thankful for. ---I can't even begin to count the ways.--- I suspect that a lot of you reading this feel the same way. You are bonding with your families and friends while surrounded by all the creature comforts that life affords you. It's hard to think about those folks here in A-merry-ca -and all over the world- who don't have much to be thankful for, but we should. And we should never forget how fortunate we are.

Life is all about perspective, and we should always keep things in their proper perspective. We should also do whatever we can to improve the plight of others less fortunate than we are. I know that you Christians reading this already do that, but I just thought that I would remind you

So Happy Turkey Day A-merry-ca, enjoy your meals tomorrow while you connect with your loved ones. And remember; be grateful for what you have. Because if you think about it; you could have been a damn turkey.

Pic courtesy of

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Don't get mad, get even.

I must say that I am disappointed with O. His peeps are crying" woe is me" after seeing the first Mitt Romney political ad. for the 2012 election.

Yes, it's deceitful and misleading, but so what else is new? This is politics; politicians and political campaigns lie. And Mitt, as we all know, will do anything to get elected. Anything. His only mission in life is to become the next president of these divided state of A-merry-ca.

So O, instead of getting mad, your people should be trying to get even. Start digging up all those sound bites and old pictures hidden in Mitt's closet, and I guarantee you that you won't have to use deceptive tactics to make your point.

There is enough flip flopping out there to bury the soulless one many times over.

Anyway, I am settling and getting ready to watch the republican debates. Newt is leading now, so it should be fun.

I just hope that there are no children in the audience; Newt might want to put them behind the cameras and have them clean up the stage.   

Pic courtesy of Merry Poppet blog.


Monday, November 21, 2011

The [not so] "Super committee".

There must be a lot of kryptonite in Washington these days. It sure seems like it took out that so called "Super committee". The "Super committee" wasn't so super after all, and after months of wrangling they did not come up with a way to cut 1.2 trillion (that's trillion with a T) from A-merry-ca's deficit.

There is no bipartisanship in Washington these days, elections are just around the corner and we have to get that beige dude and his Afrocentric wife out of the people's house.

"Obama said Republicans in Congress rejected what he called a balanced approach to deficit reduction that included tax increases on the wealthy.

"Despite the broad agreement that exists for such an approach, there are still too many Republicans in Congress that have refused to listen to the voices of reason and compromise that are coming from outside of Washington," Obama told reporters after the super committee announced its failure.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, said Democrats "were prepared to strike a grand bargain that would make painful cuts while asking millionaires to pay their fair share, and we put our willingness on paper," but Republicans "never came close to meeting us halfway."

His GOP counterpart, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, argued that an agreement "proved impossible not because Republicans were unwilling to compromise, but because Democrats would not accept any proposal that did not expand the size and scope of government or punish job creators."

Somebody is lying, and I suspect that it's my man from Blue Grass Country. I am no Phi Beta Kappa from the London School of Economics, but it doesn't take an economic genius to figure out that you have to do more than just cut government programs to reduce the deficit. You have to raise revenue as well, and in order to do that we have to....wait for it...wait for it....yep, raise taxes.

But republicans will not do that, because they have pledges to keep. If you want to find where all the kryptonite is kept in Washington you might want to look under Grover Norquist's bed. This dude has some serious powers. Let's just call him Lex Luthor.

"Steve Kroft: A lot of people think you're the most powerful man in Washington.

Grover Norquist: The tax issue is the most powerful issue in American politics going back to the Tea Party. People say, 'Oh, Grover Norquist has power.' No. Grover Norquist and Americans for Tax Reform focus on the tax issue. The tax issue is a powerful issue.

Grover Norquist is trying to be modest. Since creating Americans for Tax Reform at Ronald Reagan's behest back in 1985, Norquist has been responsible, more than anyone else, for rewriting the dogma of the Republican Party.

Norquist: The Republicans won't raise your taxes. We haven't had a Republican vote for an income tax increase since 1990.

Kroft: And this was your doing?

Norquist: I helped. Yeah.

It began with the simple idea of getting Republicans all over the country to sign an oath called the "Taxpayer Protection Pledge," promising their constituents that they would never, ever vote for anything that would make their taxes go up."

But we will see how serious these republicans are when it comes to sticking to their pledge. Come midnight tomorrow night the fallback plan kicks in, and that could mean cuts in...(*Gasp!*) defense. Not to mention other programs such as Social Security, Medicaid, and Veteran's benefits.

Lex Luthor, you are a baaaad man.


Sunday, November 20, 2011

No love from the NASCAR crowd.

What ever possessed Mrs. O and Second Lady Jill Biden to cause them to go to a NASCAR event? NASCAR?!! Still, I have to give them credit for trying to reach out to our single digit IQ friends.

  "First Lady Michelle Obama and Second Lady Jill Biden were booed at the Homestead-Miami Speedway Sunday, where they were present to Grand Marshal the final races of the NASCAR Sprint Cup.

They were also visiting to raise support for a White House initiative that encourages businesses to hire veterans." [Source]

Okay, they were there for a good cause, so I can't really knock them for going into the "Lion's Den". It must have been hard for them. They had to have known that those "good ole boyz" weren't going to exactly roll out the welcome wagon for them.

That NASCAR crowd is always tough on certain folks. 

Speaking of being tough on certain folks; there is no one tougher on those same certain folks than one Mr. Clarence Thomas.

Well now, as luck would have it, old Clarence has some problems of his own:

"WASHINGTON -- Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.) is turning up the heat on Justice Clarence Thomas based on new information that builds upon previous reports of his alleged ethical lapses.

In late September, Slaughter had sent a letter to the Judicial Conference of the United States to request official action on Thomas' multiyear failure to disclose his wife's income from various conservative think tanks and activist organizations. The Judicial Conference is the principal policy-making and administrative body for the federal court system.

On Friday, Slaughter submitted a new letter, this time addressed to Chief Justice John Roberts in his capacity as the presiding officer of the Judicial Conference, to update and clarify the September letter.

At issue is the fact that Thomas repeatedly checked a box titled "none" on annual financial disclosure forms in response to a question about the sources of spousal income. Yet during those years, his wife, Virginia Thomas, worked for the conservative think tank Heritage Foundation and for the Tea Party lobbying group Liberty Central, which she helped found.

The first letter asserted that Thomas' nondisclosures persisted "[t]hroughout his entire tenure of the Supreme Court," which began in 1991. It was fair to infer from his "high level of legal training and experience," Slaughter wrote, that the justice's failure presented the type of "willful" behavior that federal law requires the Judicial Conference to refer to the Department of Justice for investigation.
Friday's letter, however, states that Thomas actually did report the sources of his wife's income until 1997, therefore heightening the inference that the justice had not "misunderstood the reporting instructions," as he asserted in January when he filed seven pages of addenda correcting his omissions over a six-year period." [Source]

Whoops! I think Clarence might have some "splainin" to do.

Pic courtesy of Celebrant Says.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

American suckers.

I think it was Marx who said that "Democracy is the road to Socialism".

"There was a time when the captains of finance and industry were proud of the label capitalist. “Forbes—Capitalist Tool” was a magazine popular with the Wall Street crowd. Schools taught about the benefits of capitalism over its biggest enemy, socialism.

Somewhere along the way, the enthusiasm for capitalism began to wane. Maybe it had to do with the fact that real wages were dropping and benefits were being slashed while the super-rich were whooping it up. More popular-sounding phrases began to take over. Countries were being pressured to accept “free markets.” The people who put up “venture capital” were called“entrepreneurs.” The magazine of multi-millionaire Steve Forbes became just plain “Forbes.”

Then came the housing crisis, the stock market dive, the jobs crisis, the budget cuts, the credit card crisis—in other words, the boom-to-bust crisis of capitalism that was inevitable in this profit system. The super-rich demanded, and got, trillions of dollars from the government to shore up their banks and other financial instruments.

But for millions of workers and dispossessed, the bottom has dropped out of their lives. More and more they are realizing this is the product of capitalism.
A national telephone survey was conducted recently by the polling firm Rasmussen Reports. It asked a simple question: Which is better, capitalism or socialism?

Just four months ago, in December, a similar poll asked people if they preferred a “free market economy” over one managed by the government. Some 70 percent were for the free market. But now, it seems, they don’t think capitalism is so “free.” In the new poll, two-thirds said big business and big government work together against the people’s interests. Now only 53 percent say they prefer capitalism over socialism. Among younger people, 37 percent prefer capitalism, 33 percent socialism, and 30 percent are undecided.

After so much Red Scare propaganda in this country, a lot of people are confused about socialism—although fewer than before. What if the questions were phrased this way:

Would you prefer an economy run by workers (socialism) or by bosses (capitalism)?

Would you prefer an economy geared to meeting people’s needs (socialism) or geared to producing profits for a few (capitalism)?

Do you think people should have a right to a job, a home, education and health care (socialism), or that the rich should have the right to fire, evict, foreclose, underfund the schools and deny medical care (capitalism)?" [Source] 

Republicans are always calling Obama a Socialist. He is not. In fact, he is closer to everything that they hold dear than to someone who is progressive in his thinking or leadership.

The irony is, of course, than under Obama wealthy corporations in A-merry-ca have become wealthier than they were under their great leader, W. The middle class has been shrinking for a long time, and under Obama, thanks to the disdain that those who control wealth in A-merry-ca feel for him, it has been getting worse. 

They sit on record profits and refuse to invest in jobs, and they outsource more jobs to other countries, causing more A-merry-can workers to lose their jobs here at home.

Don't expect this to change anytime soon. If things hold true to form Flipper Mitt will take the White House come November, 2012, and they will be partying on Wall Street once again.

Sadly, the folks on Main Street really won't care, because they understand that while the ideologues on the right celebrate a political victory, their lives will not change. In fact, unfortunately for them, it will only get worse.     


Friday, November 18, 2011

"What Would Jesus Do?"

So some dude tried to take out his Oness. Dude was from Idaho (Gee, there is a shock.) Apparently God told him to do it because O was the antichrist. (My man would make a perfect GOP candidate for president.) He actually thought that he was Jesus. The thing is, he does look like JC. Just look at that picture. He could be JC's little brother or something.

But I don't think that JC would go around shooting up the White House. Even if the antichrist was living there. He would have found more creative ways to get rid of him than just to send his little brother to shoot up the place. (Digression alert! Why was it so easy to  do a drive by on the White House? "Cops had rushed to Constitution Ave. Friday night following reports of gunshots being sprayed from a passing car. The street is a half-mile from the White House, across the South Lawn and The Ellipse.

Ortega-Hernandez’s car was found shortly after the shooting near the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge that crosses the Potomac River to Virginia.
Inside, investigators found a semiautomatic weapon.

While the feds wouldn’t say what part of the executive mansion was hit with gunfire, White House workers were spotted Wednesday inspecting a window on the floor where the Obamas’ bedroom is located, CBS News reported.
One bullet, however, pierced an exterior window but was stopped by the bulletproof glass, the Secret Service reported." WTF?!)     

I bet wingnuts are all saying that he is Jesus. They might take it as a sign.

Hopefully they will listen to their fellow republican, Lauren Pierce, and not act out their fantasies. Even though, as she says; it's "tempting".

"AUSTIN — The president of the College Republicans at the University of Texas at Austin Lauren Pierce, tweeted that shooting Obama was tempting, but discouraged her followers from shooting him.

The tweet came hours after a man was arrested for shooting at the White House.
Y’all as tempting as it may be, don’t shoot Obama. We need him to go down in history as the WORST president we’ve EVER had! #2012.” [Source] 
Yes, but wwjd?

Finally, my heart goes out to the parents of little Jasmine McClain. The poor child hung herself after being bullied at school.

Sadly,this seems to be a trend. I blogged about a teacher who bullied his student the other night, because I know that this kind of tragedy can occur when bullying goes unchecked.

Folks who are being bullied don't always reach out because they are afraid. We have a duty as adults to look for all the signs and reach out to those who are too vulnerable and fearful to help themselves.  

Thursday, November 17, 2011

"Stereotype breakers."

A friend of mine from the islands is literally a rocket scientist. Dude has a PhD in aerospace engineering from Cornell University, and he is a bigwig at some large company. (Northrop Grumman, I think)

Anyway, he doesn't fit the stereotype of what a some folks think that a rocket scientist should look like, which, to me, is a beautiful thing. It's always great to see stereotypes shattered.

I love Eminem, Jeremy Wariner, and Mick Hucknall. I also love Tiger WoodsJerome Iginla, and Darius Rucker.

A white rapper who can spit with the best of them, a white boy who has some serious pipes (listen to a Simply Red track when you get a chance), and a white boy that can get down on the quarter mile like Michael Johnson. On the other side; a black man who kicks ass in golf, (or used to) one whose moves on the ice are "Sid the Kid" like, and one who can sing Country & Western well enough to make the most hard core redneck cry. These are all stereotype "shatterers" and all are welcome additions to the human race as far as I am concerned.

I am writing about this because of a story I saw today about Packers wide receiver Jordy Nelson. Dude is a straight beast at the wide out position, and he is a white boy. What I loved about the story was how candid he was about the fact that he uses being white to his advantage. Why? Because defensive backs are letting stereotypeitis (don't look for that word grammarians, I made it up) throw them off their game.  

"A Super Bowl hero is crediting his eye-popping success this season to old-school racial stereotypes.

Green Bay Packers receiver Jordy Nelson, who is white, has become one of quarterback Aaron Rodgers' favorite targets and believes his skin color has been somewhat of an asset.

Nelson broke into the spotlight a year ago by scoring a crucial touchdown in his team's Super Bowl XLV win over the Steelers, becoming just the fourth NFL wide receiver ever to post nine catches for 140 yards and a score in the Super Bowl.
Other Packers receivers joke that Nelson is the beneficiary of being the only white receiver on the team, suggesting opposing defensive backs don't think of Nelson as a big a threat.

Nelson tells the Green Bay Press Gazette that he's used this racial bias to his advantage. "Honestly, I think it is (a factor)," Nelson told the Press Gazette. "As receivers, we've talked about it. I know (cornerbacks coach) Joe Whitt tells me all the time, when all the rookies come in, he gives them the heads up, 'Don't let him fool ya.' That's fine with me."

Packers teammate Greg Jennings, who is black, believes Nelson isn't like other white pass catchers who've played in the NFL. "It's easy for someone to say, 'Oh yeah, he’s like one of those other white receivers,'" Jennings said. "He's not. I'm sorry. He's not. He knows how I feel about it. Maybe I'm a little biased because he is a teammate, but from watching him day one to right now, totally different player."

Among the top 15 NFL wide receivers in yardage, only New England Patriots star Wes Welker, the league leader in receptions and yards, is white.

Jennings went on to tell the Green Bay Press Gazette that race is indeed part of the story. "He uses that to his advantage," Jennings said. "Don’t put this out there because that’s our secret. But no, seriously, he has taken full advantage of every position that he’s been in whether it be special teams with the kick return game, now being the No. 2 ... however you want to put it, he's taken full advantage of it. It’s not because he didn’t put the time in. It's not because he's the white guy. A lot of it has to do with the fact that guys look at him say, 'OK, yeah, he's the white guy, he can't be that good. 'Well, he is that good. He's proven to be that good, and it's because of the work and the time that he's put on not only on the field but in his preparation off the field."

Apparently people have been underestimating Nelson for a while. He went from being a walk-on safety as a freshman in 2003 to posting the most prolific single season in Kansas State history, with 122 receptions for 1,606 yards in 2007.
Rodgers, the favorite to win league MVP honors, joined the conversation about racial perceptions with a teammate during Green Bay's blowout win over the Vikings on Monday night. "I was talking to 'Wood' (Charles Woodson) in the fourth quarter and he said, 'When you see Jordy out there, you think, 'Oh well, he's a white wide receiver. He won't be very athletic.' But Jordy sort of breaks all those stereotypes," Rodgers said during his weekly radio show in Milwaukee this week. "I am not sure why he keeps sneaking up on guys."

He wouldn't sneak up on me, I don't have stereotypeitis. If I see Jordy lining up across the field from me in the National Football League I would know that he belongs. {Story} 

Sadly for some of my color aroused friends, they just can't say the same thing.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The million dollar historian.

Congrats to Newt for rising in the republican polls. My man is right up there with Mr. 9-9-9 and Flipper Mitt. It should be interesting to see how they run down the stretch.

Still, Newt might want to stop prepping for his debates against Barack Obama and start figuring out how he is going to get out of his latest little problem.

"..Gingrich said he didn't remember exactly how much he was paid, but a former Freddie Mac official said it was at least $1.5 million for consulting contracts stretching from 1999 to 2007. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss a personnel matter.

Speaking with reporters in Iowa, Gingrich said he provided "strategic advice for a long period of time" after he resigned as House speaker following his party's losses in the 1998 elections. He defended Freddie Mac's role and said, "every American should be interested in expanding housing opportunities." Long unpopular among Republicans, the federally backed mortgage lender has become a focal point of anti-government sentiment because of the housing crisis.
Gingrich said he welcomed scrutiny into the matter. "Everybody will dig up everything they can dig up," he said. "That's fine, they should."

I am glad you welcome the scrutiny Newt, because you are going to get it.

"In 2008, Gingrich suggested in a Fox News interview that then-presidential candidate Barack Obama should have to return campaign contributions he had received from executives of Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. He said that in a debate with Obama, GOP presidential nominee John McCain "should have turned and said, `Senator Obama, are you prepared to give back all the money that Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae gave you?'"


"Gingrich's history at Freddie Mac began in 1999, when he was hired by the company's top lobbyist, Mitchell Delk. He was brought in for strategic consulting, primarily on legislative and regulatory issues, the company said at the time. That job, which paid about $25,000 to $30,000 a month, lasted until sometime in 2002.

In 2006, Gingrich was hired again on a two-year contract that paid him $300,000 annually, again to provide strategic advice while the company fended off attacks from the right wing of the Republican Party.

Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae for years had been under scrutiny from Republicans on Capitol Hill who opposed government involvement in the mortgage business and wanted to scale back the companies' size and impose tough regulation."


"In last Wednesday's Republican presidential debate, Gingrich sought to explain his role at Freddie Mac as that of an "historian" sounding dire warnings about the company's future. He said Freddie Mac officials told him "we are now making loans to people that have no credit history and have no record of paying back anything, but that's what the government wants us to do." He said his advice was to tell them, "this is insane."

"I said at the time, this is a bubble ... this is impossible. It turned out unfortunately I was right," Gingrich said.

Former Freddie Mac executives dispute Gingrich's description of his role.
Four people close to Freddie Mac say he was hired to strategize with his employer about identifying political friends on Capitol Hill who would help the company through a very difficult legislative environment. All four people spoke on condition of anonymity to be able to discuss the personnel matter freely.
Freddie Mac executives hoped that would speak positively about the company and its business model as he circulated among conservative groups and help to build intellectual support within his party.

Freddie Mac executives were looking to Gingrich to offer up new, inventive ways to think about old problems, the officials said, but that didn't materialize." [Source]


"He said his consulting firm, Gingrich Group, offered “strategic advice for a lot of different companies” but that he had done no lobbying.

GOP rival, Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, wasted no time in slamming Gingrich on Wednesday for "shilling" for the company.

Last week, Gingrich was asked at a GOP debate in Michigan what work he had done to secure a $300,000 payment from Freddie Mac.

“I offered them advice on precisely what they didn’t do,” he replied. “My advice as a historian, when they walked in and said to me, ‘We are now making loans to people who have no credit history and have no record of paying back anything, but that’s what the government wants us to do.’ As I said to them at the time, this is a bubble. This is insane. This is impossible.”

A Bloomberg News story earlier this week disputed Gingrich’s account, saying that those familiar with Gingrich’s work don’t recall any warnings about the company’s business model—and that instead, his job was to rally support for Freddie Mac among Republicans in Washington."

Historian?! Is that what they call pimps on K Street these days? Nice.
Jack Abramoff, of all people, called Newt corrupt. That's like being called a racist by David Duke.

Newt, enjoy your time at the top of the polls, I am guessing that you won't be there very long.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The bully and the "future welfare recipient."

One of the biggest welfare programs in this country's history, the GI Bill, benefited a lot of white folks after World War II. Because of it many of them were able to buy their first homes, (Google Levittown, Pennsylvania when you get a chance) and they had their college tuition paid for by a thankful and generous government.
Buying those homes helped to establish generational wealth to many of these people, and it helped to set up their children and grandchildren so that they, too, could chase the A-merry-can dream.

Please stay with me, I am talking about welfare for a reason.

Unfortunately, not all of A-merry-ca's citizens were able to benefit from this wonderful government sponsored program. And, sadly, they gave and sacrificed blood sweat and tears in World War II as well.
So why am I talking about welfare tonight?
Because of folks like Derek Howard. A man so Ignorant and misguided that he allowed his bigotry to get in the way of his better judgement.

"As reported by the Kansas City Star and KCTV News, among other outlets, Marcus Williams Sr. and his son, Marcus Williams Jr., filed a racial harassment suit against the Winnetonka School District after Winnetonka (Kan.) High basketball coach Derek Howard called the younger Williams a "future welfare recipient" while the student was posing for a picture in a school hallway, then repeated the comments while Williams filmed him on his cell phone.
Here's how Marcus Williams Jr. described the incident to KCTV:
"[Howard] was doing a daily jog and he stopped and he said, 'Hey, take a picture and then at the bottom: future welfare recipient,'" the student said. "I just felt belittled, crushed and utterly discouraged."

Marcus Williams said this comment was typical of those he has endured for the past two years. So he grabbed his cell phone and asked his coach to repeat his remarks.

The coach can be heard laughing and saying, "Future welfare recipient who? Students that don't get good grades."
According to the Williams family, Howard's comment was just the latest example of racially insensitive comments from the longtime basketball coach. The younger Williams told KCTV that he refused to try out for the school's basketball team for the 2011 season because Howard told African-American members of the team that they would grow up to be laborers who earned less than $30,000 annually. The teenager claims that he repeatedly asked the coach to stop making the insensitive comments, but that the coach ignored those pleas.

After the younger Williams brought video of the coach's comments to the school principal, Howard was summoned and apologized. Yet the Williams family feels there wasn't any sincerity in the coach's apology, and won't be comfortable with the incident's resolution unless Howard isn't employed by the school any longer; the coach is currently on paid administrative leave.

"Countless times I told him, 'Hey, this is hurting my feelings and you should stop.' I guess he thinks I'm just a kid and he can do whatever he wants," Marcus Williams Jr. told KCTV. "I think he just apologized to take the heat off of him and I don't think he means what he says."

Meanwhile, the elder Williams insists that more students will come forward with similar complaints about the coach in the days to come. In the meantime, he insists the family's discrimination suit isn't about money; he simply wants the coach to issue a public apology and agree to get counseling.

"There's other kids coming forth, telling my son that they're glad somebody stepped up," Williams Sr. told the Star. "Ultimately, we want to shed light on how some teachers are bullying our kids. I don't care about money right now, man. I'm standing up as a concerned parent." [Story]

First of all Mr. Howard, WTF were you thinking? So you show your ignorance on camera while the offended party is actually filming you? I guess bigots bullies just aren't too bright.

BTW, poor grades only equals future welfare recipient if you happen to be poor or of a certain race. Some folks can make poor grades and run for president and even become governor of A-merry-ca's second largest state.

In closing let me say this: Teachers should not be bullies. They also should not have ignorant views, but if they can do a good job of teaching and keep their views to themselves, I say let them teach. But a bully should not get that kind of leeway, because a bully can't hide the fact that he is a bully, and invariably he will act out in ways that are harmful to the children that he is charged with teaching.  

Mr. Howard is a bully. And that's why he shouldn't be teaching. Not because of his narrow minded and ignorant views about welfare. Hell, if that was the case, the unemployment rate in this country would be closer to 80%.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Et tu, T.G.I. Friday's?

WTF is wrong with these chain restaurants in A-merry-ca? First Applebee's, and now T.G.I. Friday's. (That's a shame; I actually like T.G.I. Friday's)

"NEW YORK — A New York man is suing TGIFriday’s for firing him after he told his boss he voted for Barack Obama in 2008.
Michael Verzillo, who is Black, claims his white boss, regional manager Tanya Edwards, launched a campaign against him after he revealed his vote and then fired him.

Verzillo, a 15-year company worker, said he was falsely charged with changing expiration dates on food and leaving early during a snowstorm.
“She sent me home two days before Christmas,’’ said Verzillo, and then fired him by phone." [Source]

Mr. Verzillo, if you worked for TGI Friday's for 15 years why weren't you managing the joint? Damn!

Anywhoo, next time keep who you vote for to yourself, because you never know who might be listening.

Speaking of never knowing who is listening, I know my man Mr. 9-9-9 is hoping that no one listens to an interview he did with a Wisconsin paper. Folks, please don't watch it, I am no fan of Herman Cain and I honestly felt sorry for the guy. (BTW, Herman, I told you that if you allegedly attacked a woman of a certain race this would happen.) Why do republicans think that they can just run for president and have zero knowledge about the world?

"Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain struggled to answer a question during an interview Monday when asked whether he supported President Barack Obama’s foreign policy in Libya.

A top aide said later Monday that Cain had not had enough sleep.  

The exchange over Libya with the Georgia businessman came during a meeting with the editorial board of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Cain hesitated when asked whether he agreed with Obama’s decision to back Libyan rebels in overthrowing Moammar Gadhafi. The longtime Libyan dictator was killed last month.

“I do not agree with the way he handled it for the following reason,” Cain said in the videotaped interview.

“Uh, nope that’s, that’s a different one,” said Cain, who fidgeted in his chair and crossed his legs. “See, I got to go back, see, got all this stuff twirling around in my head. Specifically what are you asking me, did I agree or not disagree with Obama?”' [Source]

If Herman didn't have enough sleep this might be why:

(CNN) -- A former boyfriend of Herman Cain accuser Sharon Bialek said Monday that she told him in 1997 that Cain touched her inappropriately after the pair had dinner together in Washington, D.C.

Dr. Victor Zuckerman told a news conference that Bialek came back to Chicago from the trip and told him what happened.

"When she returned, she was upset," Zuckerman said a news conference arranged by celebrity attorney Gloria Allred. "She said that something had happened and that Mr. Cain had touched her in an inappropriate manner...."

Zuckerman, a pediatrician, described himself as a registered Republican who is not supporting any candidate so far in the 2012 presidential campaign. He said he neither asked for nor received any money for going public with his support for Bialek's account of what happened.

When he heard of the sexual harassment allegations against Cain, first reported by Politico on October 30, Zuckerman called Bialek to ask if she was involved, he told the Monday news conference.

She told him no, but Zuckerman said when Bialek heard Cain's denial of any sexual harassment in his past, she was "livid."
"She felt she had to speak out," he said." [Source]

Do you know who the blond with the makeup by Glidden is now, Herman?

Finally, have any of you ever heard of Bounce TV? Don't worry, you are not alone.

Unfortunately, according to some folks who have been tuning to this new black digital television channel, it might be just more of the same.

I am still waiting for the all news black television network that focuses on A-merry-can and world news. The operative word being news. You Negroes like music and drama too damn much.    

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Foreign policy debate: Facts vs. The republican Candidates.

The republicans debated foreign policy the other night, and, as is to be expected, there were some issues.

"WASHINGTON (AP) — Herman Cain contradicted himself on torture, Mitt Romney offered a prescription for challenging China that didn't add up and Newt Gingrich seemed to forget about crucial help by Pakistani intelligence in running down terrorists.

Factual missteps in the latest Republican presidential debate suggested that on some the knottiest foreign policy and national security issues of the time, contenders were out of their comfort zone. Several raised the prospect of an eventual war with Iran that the U.S., by any current measure, is ill-prepared to start.

A look at some of those claims Saturday night and how they compare with the facts:
ROMNEY on President Barack Obama and Iran: "What he should have done is speak out when dissidents took the streets and say, 'America is with you.' And work on a covert basis to encourage the dissidents."

GINGRICH: "First of all, as maximum covert operations — to block and disrupt the Iranian (nuclear) program, including taking out their scientists, including breaking up their systems. All of it covertly, all of it deniable. "

THE FACTS: It is widely believed that the Obama administration has been covertly attacking the Iranian nuclear program. By definition, covert action is not publicly acknowledged, so criticizing Obama for not doing something that he might very well be doing adds little to the debate. On just one front, there are strong suspicions the Obama administration either unleashed the sophisticated Stuxnet computer worm on Iran's nuclear program or supported Israel in that effort. The attack infected systems at the Bushehr power plant and set back Iran's nuclear development.

It is also believed the administration has provided secret help to Iranian dissidents, even if to little effect so far. Romney, Gingrich and most other contenders do not know what the U.S. is doing, and not doing, covertly. Michele Bachmann, as a member of the House intelligence Committee, might. If so, she's legally barred from talking about it.
ROMNEY on China: "On Day One, it's acknowledging something which everyone knows, they're a currency manipulator. And on that basis, we also go before the WTO and bring an action against them as a currency manipulator. And that allows us to apply, selectively, tariffs where we believe they are stealing our intellectual property, hacking into our computers, or artificially lowering their prices and killing American jobs. We can't just sit back and let China run all over us."

JON HUNTSMAN: "I don't think, Mitt, you can take China to the WTO on currency-related issues."

THE FACTS: As Huntsman, former ambassador to China, said, the World Trade Organization has no specified mandate to adjudicate allegations that a country is manipulating its currency to gain an unfair trade advantage. But using currency in a trade dispute hasn't been tried, so it's unclear how that might play out in practice.

Even if the international trade panel does take the case, any remedy would come long after Day One. As a highly political case, it would drag out. For example, the U.S. and European Union have been litigating a dispute over alleged subsidies to Boeing and Airbus since 2004, with no resolution in sight.
Nor is it clear how a currency case could address the theft of U.S. intellectual property, an issue unrelated to the price of Chinese exports.
CAIN: "I will trust the judgment of our military leaders to determine what is torture and what is not torture. That is the critical consideration."

CAIN: "I would return to that policy (waterboarding). I don't see it as torture. I
see it as an enhanced interrogation technique."

THE FACTS: Cain's conclusion that waterboarding is a legitimate means of interrogation contradicts the judgment of military leaders — and his own statement that he would be guided by them. The Army Field Manual prohibits waterboarding. It was the CIA, with the approval of the White House and Justice Department that conducted waterboarding, not the armed forces. As president, Cain could certainly decide that interrogators need not be constrained by the Army Field Manual rules. But if he did so, he would not be letting military leaders determine the tactics.
GINGRICH: "We don't have a reliable intelligence service. We don't have independent intelligence in places like Pakistan. We rely on our supposed friends for intelligence. They may or may not be our friends. And the amount of information we might or might not have, might or might not be reliable."

THE FACTS: U.S. killing of a succession of al-Qaida figures in Pakistan, none more prized by America than Osama bin Laden, demonstrates that the United States indeed gets vital and reliable intelligence out of Pakistan. While it may have been true when Gingrich left government in 1999 that the CIA's spy network was limited, since 2001 the agency has dramatically expanded its on-the-ground operations worldwide. The CIA station in Islamabad is now one of the most important in the world and officers there are responsible for building sources and helping select targets for the long and successful campaign of drone attacks.

Gingrich is right that Pakistan's intelligence agency is an often-unreliable U.S. partner and elements of the country's power structure have supported U.S. terrorist enemies. But as the bin Laden raid shows, the CIA is hardly impotent in its ability to operate alone in Pakistan.
ROMNEY: "The president should have built (a) credible threat of military action, and made it very clear that the United States of America is willing, in the final analysis, if necessary, to take military action to keep Iran from having a nuclear weapon."

GINGRICH: "Every possible aspect short of war of breaking the regime and bringing it down. And I agree entirely with Governor Romney. If, in the end, despite all of those things, the dictatorship persists, you have to take whatever steps are necessary to break its capacity to have a nuclear weapon."

CAIN: "I would not entertain military opposition.... We could deploy our ballistic missile defense ... warships strategically in that part of the world. We have the biggest fleet of those warships in the world. And we could use them strategically in the event that they were able to fire a ballistic missile."

THE FACTS: It is an open question whether the U.S., stretched thin by two long wars and a massive debt, is in a position to make a credible threat of war against Iran right now.

As it stands, U.S. plans to put additional forces in the Middle East, including in Kuwait, are part of a military hedge against Iran. So is a program to put missile defense radars and interceptors at sites around Europe and the region. The threat of U.S. attack might become more credible in time, whether from Obama or the next president.

Meantime, Obama, like George W. Bush before him, has not ruled out military action against Iran as a final resort.

The U.S. certainly has military force readily at hand to destroy Iran's known nuclear development sites in short order. This is highly unlikely, however, because of the strategic calculation that an attack would be counterproductive and ultimately ineffective, spawning retaliation against U.S. allies and forces in the region, and merely delaying eventual nuclear weapons development.
GINGRICH: "You're giving some country $7 billion a year. So you start off — or, or, in the case of Egypt, $3 billion a year. So you start off every year and say, 'Here's your $3 billion, now I'll start thinking'? You ought to start off at zero and say, 'Explain to me why I should give you a penny.'"

THE FACTS: In supporting Rick Perry's proposal to make every recipient of U.S. foreign aid justify the money before it is approved, Gingrich exaggerated the amount of aid the U.S. gives to Egypt. The Congressional Research Service says total aid to Egypt is about $1.5 billion annually.
BACHMANN: "Now President Obama has made a very fatal decision in Afghanistan. He's made the decision that by next September, our troops will be withdrawn. "

THE FACTS: By September 2012, Obama is only planning to withdraw the additional forces he sent in. Once the 33,000 "surge" troops are gone, 68,000 will be left. They are to be pulled out gradually and won't be gone until the end of 2014, barring some change in the drawdown of troops.
RICK PERRY: "This country can sanction the Iranian central bank right now and shut down that country's economy. And that's what this president needs to do, and the American people need to stand up and force him to make that stand today."

THE FACTS: Perry is right that sanctions have stopped short of tough action against Iran's central bank, which handles the country's massive oil commerce around the world. The debate moved on without the pros and cons of that step being explored. The option of banning U.S. and European dealings with the bank is being considered by Western powers and their allies, even if it is a stretch to expect such a move would shut Iran's economy as Perry suggested. The downside risk is significant: Isolating the bank could drive up oil prices and imperil the fragile world economy." [Source]

Those pesky facts always seem to get in the way of a good republican debate.

Oh well, it doesn't matter, the partisans will stand by their man- or woman- no matter what. Facts be damned!