Posts Tagged ‘mexico’

The Top 8 Dumbest Things about the Republican Party

May 1, 2009

This feature is part one of a two-part series centered on the two major political parties in the United States.  For The 8 Dumbest Things about the Democratic Party, click here.

Is the Republican party going to be ok?

Is the Republican party going to be ok?

8.  Republicans believe that The War on Drugs can be solved if we throw everyone into prison.

Republicans get to take credit for the first recorded usage of the term “War on Drugs.”  It was used by Richard Nixon in 1969 as a way to fire up the base of the party against the counter-culture hippies that despised the Vietnam War.

Thanks to the War on Drugs, our prisons are overfilled.  The cost is so high to run some of these prisons that they have to be sold to private companies.  The legislature of California actually considered selling San Quentin prison this year because of the terrible financial shape that the state is in.

And drug cartels love the illegality of drugs more than Republicans do.  Drug demand in the United States will continue and the cartels increasingly find clever ways of evading the DEA.  In fact, cartels are now building semi-submergable vessels that can avoid RADAR and infra-red in Costa Rica.  They pack these boats with up to seven tons of cocaine and park it on a deserted beach in the United States. If they can get seven tons of cocaine to the coast of the United States without being detected, they can get seven tons of anything into our country.

Legalize drugs.  Pull the rug out from under the black market.  Levy taxes on the drugs and use that money to educate kids and help addicts get help.  This is exactly what happened during prohibition.  Legalizing drugs will help to stop the violence and the kidnappings in Mexico and in the southwest.

7.  Republicans demonize higher education.

From discounting professors in their “ivory towers” to laughing in the face of modern economic theory, Republicans love to rally their base on the premise of their shared mediocrity.  Ann Coulter believes that American teachers are “inculcating students in the precepts of the Socialist Party of America—as understood by retarded people.” (link)

There are intellectuals in the party, but you’ll find few conservatives that know them by name.  For every David Brooks, there is a Carrie Prejean.  For every George Will, there is a Joe the Plumber.

This isn’t to say that there are plenty of idiots in the Democratic Party as well.  The difference is that Janeane Garafalo doesn’t get microphone time at the Democratic Convention, while Joe the Plumber, a moron, is viewed as some everyman harbinger of truth in the Republican Party.  The problem with this outlook is that it eventually permeates into the politicians themselves.  The Palin phenomenon.  A folksy former sportscaster that bounced around from college to college without any sense of history or moder political theory is voted into the governorship of Alaska.  Same thing happened with Michelle Bachmann.

The hard right tarnishes the image of the Republican Party just like the Taliban tarnishes the image of Islam.

6.  Republicans believe that corporations are more trustworthy than the government.

Let’s get this out of the way quickly.  The government has done some shitty thingsBut they have also done plenty of good things.   Let’s look at the current financial crisis as a microcosm for the shittyness of government versus the shittyness of corporations.

The government allowed for corporations to create the derivatives market as well as offer subprime mortgages to people that couldn’t afford them.  That’s shitty.

The corporations took these allowances and had a field day.  Not only did they offer subprimes to the people that couldn’t pay them, but they bundled the mortgages into a security and bet on the outcome of the security.

Johnny thinks Group A of subprime mortgage holders will only pay back 40% of the loan while Philp believes that Group A will pay back 80%.  Johnny decides to bet $32,000 on the outcome even though he only has $1,000 in the bank.  Philip bets $28,000 even though he only has $900.  Group A only pays back 40%.  Johnny wins.  Now how the fuck is Philip supposed to pay him?

5.  Republicans believe that the government doesn’t belong in your pocketbook, but it does belong in your ovaries and in your bedroom.

It seems that every time the Republican party is asked about fiscal policy, the only two words on their lips are “tax cuts.”  We’re in a war?  We Need Tax Relief.  We’re in an economic booming period?  More tax cuts.  We’re in a recession?  Tax cuts, tax cuts, tax cuts.

People used to be offended if one was yellow and one was dark brown.

People used to be offended if one was yellow and one was dark brown.

Republicans believe that the best judge for whether you should carry your child is the federal government.  In fact, they believe that your Church should have no say in the matter.  They believe that a marriage between gay people somehow infringe on their rights.  There are going to be gay people that your children are going to be exposed to whether they are allowed to marry or not.  What difference does a certificate matter to you?

4.  Republicans believe that the Second Amendment of the Constitution is the only important one.

Not a peep came from the Republican party when George W. Bush all but suspended the Fourth Amendment with the warrantless wiretapping program.  Hell, even after he left office and we discovered that John Yoo had readied an additional memo that would have limited the First Amendment, there was no significant backlash at the Drudge Report and Red State.

But when anyone says that you probably shouldn’t be able to carry an assault weapon capable of shooting 30 times in 10 seconds, Republicans go apeshit.

Here is my compromise.  You can buy any gun you want.  However, that gun is only allowed to fire three bullets before you reload.  Gun manufacturers must make it so that a reload takes more than thirty seconds.  Military and police guns do not have to follow these regulations.

Many Republicans will say that that inhibits their ability to protect their family in case the government comes to get them.  But that’s idiotic.  The government has nuclear weapons, genius.  If they want a police state, then they’re going to get one.  Until then, three shots is all you get.

3.  Republicans say they reject big government when they are out of power, but balloon government when they are in power.

I don’t know how much longer Republicans will fall for this nonsense.  During the reigns of Reagan, Bush, and W. Bush, government grew on a massive scale.  Hell, George W. Bush added the entire Department of Homeland Security.  Government spending went through the roof with all three GOP presidents.  None of them ever balanced a budget or saw a surplus.

fiscal-conservative

It wasn’t until Bill Clinton balanced the budget late in his second term that many Americans finally realized that “fiscal responsiblity” did not belong on the Republican party platform.  Of course, the minute W took office, he squandared the surplus by adding significant tax cuts for the wealthy.  Most republicans don’t realize that the government has to PAY for tax cuts.  It is a signficant loss in revenue.  I’ll allow you to argue supply-side economic theory when a Republican balances the budget.  Until then, Bill Clinton’s “socialistic” 3% tax hike for wealthy people balanced it just fine.

2.  Republicans have shitty sources.

I don’t give a damn what some politician “believes” about global warming or Evolution.  If I want to hear about global warming, I’ll talk to chemists, geologists, and climatologists.  If I want to hear about Evolution, I’ll talk to a biological anthropologist or primatologist. There is no “big science” lobby.  These people do not get paid anywhere close to the bullshit experts from the oil lobbying firms.  They are scientists whose reputation is contingent upon their adherence to the scientific method.

Many, many scientists would like nothing more than to disprove global warming or Evolution.  They would be instant celebrities in the scientific world and they would be written about in textbooks for centuries.    But that doesn’t happen.

1. The people that vote for Republicans

On April 15, 2009 an estimated 189,000 people across the United States participated in Tax Day Tea Parties.  While simultaneously calling for an increase in defense spending, tea partiers were enraged at the 3% increase in taxes for people who make over a quarter of a million dollars a year.  Only 5% of working families in the United States will see a tax hike.

But don’t tell that to the teabaggers.

Sure, you get freedom of speech.  You just dont get to dictate policy when your guys lost.

Sure, you get freedom of speech. You just don't get to dictate policy when your guys lost.

If you asked them, taxes were through the roof on everything.  Even though the protests were sponsored by Fox News as well as two of the biggest lobbying firms in Washington, the majority of tea-party goers swallowed the kool-aid that this was a grassroots movement.

To be fair, the most vocal people on Fox and CPAC do not represent Republican voters collectively.  After all, the most moderate candidate in the Republican primaries John McCain won the 2008 Presidential nomination.  I suppose the proof of where the party is headed won’t be known until 2012.  If a Jindal, Palin, Romney, or Gingrich is selected, then they’re going in the wrong direction.  But if Jon Huntsman Jr.  is able to secure the nod, we may see a more reasonable, more intelligent Republican party.

All that and I didn’t even mention getting us into crazy wars, justifying torture, and the annual gay sex scandals.

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Republican Senator stripped funding for flu pandemic from stimulus bill

April 27, 2009

Republican Senator from Maine Susan Collins stripped funding for a flu pandemic preparedness program from the economic stimulus bill before becoming one of only three GOP Senators to vote for the bill.  The funding would have cost $870 million.

Everyone in the United States and Mexico is pissing their pants about swine flu even though it’s only killed about 6% of infected people.  The problem, however, is that it is killed perfectly healthy young adults in Mexico, not the very young and very old.  During the Influenza Pandemic of the early 20th century, the same thing happened.  A healthy person’s immune system actually worked against them by over-responding to the germs, effectively drowning their lungs with fluid.

It’s important to note that two drugs have worked very well in combating swine flu.  Tamiflu and Relenza seem to work very well in cases seen in the United States.  So far, 28 students from a New York private school have been infected.  No one in the United States has died from swine flu.

God hates Republicans lately.  Just weeks after Bobby Jindal railed on superfluous spending on volcano monitoring, Mount Redoubt in Alaska blew up with little warning from the scientific community.  Now, a Republican Senator who used to brag about stripping the funding from preparedness for a flu pandemic, is going to have to justify it to a nation scared shitless by the 24-hour media networks.

Do not worry about swine flu.  Do not sit in front of the television all day waiting for the latest numbers from CNN.  Do not hit “Refresh, Refresh, Refresh” on the CDC website.  I assure you, more people will die in car accidents today than will die of swine flu.

RWP Rating: Strange

Quick Link: Republican judge wants to legalize marijuana

March 29, 2009

Jim Gray, a former judge in Orange County, wants to legalize marijuana immediately in order to stop the violence in Mexico.

Politicians get reelected talking tough regarding the war on drugs.  Do you want to hear the speech? Vote for Gray. I will put drug dealers in jail and save your children.

FULL STORY: Los Angeles Times

Real News of the Day: Obama won’t entertain marijuana lobby

March 27, 2009

Despite being the number one issue from the online community, President Obama refused to take legalization of marijuana seriously as a legitimate way to improve the economy.  From his first “Web Hall” in the White House, the Obama Administration set up a web tool where users could vote on which questions to ask the President.

The culprit.

The culprit.

With over two million votes, the overwhelming winning question asked the following:

“With over 1 out of 30 Americans controlled by the penal system, why not legalize, control, and tax marijuana to change the failed war on drugs into a money-making, money-saving boost to the economy? Do we really need that many victimless criminals?”

Obama cleverly rephrased the question as such: Would legalizing marijuana improve the economy? And his answer verbatim was the following:

“I don’t know what this says about the online audience.  The answer is no I don’t think that is a good strategy to grow our economy.”

He didn’t take the question seriously.  Instead of a smart answer about a viable alternative to dealing with the drug cartels in Mexico, Obama poked fun at the TWO MILLION people that voted it to the top of the question list.  The online world is no longer a small and separated community from the American public.  The online world is the American public.  Obama should know this after running a successful campaign that utilized the Internet like no campaign before it.

That being said, it isn’t all Obama’s fault.  Most of the people that want marijuana legalized are young people, under the age of 40.  Most of the people that want to keep it illegal are over 50.  The problem is that people over 50 vote in every single election.  Politicians kiss geriatric ass more than any other demographic because the payoff for securing their vote is guaranteed.

The youth vote sucks and has always sucked.  Even in the midst of Obama-mania, the President still knows that he must cater his message to older voters.  If you want pot legalized, then vote in elections!

It really is Vote or Die if you live in the Southwest.

It really is Vote or Die if you live in the Southwest.

But his answer could have been a lot worse.  He actually never said anything about not legalizing weed in the future.  He just doesn’t think that legalizing it will solve our economic problems, which the question didn’t really ask.  But it’s somewhat true.  Legalizing pot will not magically pay for the huge amount of money that AIG owes to companies like Goldman Sachs.  It will not clean up naked credit default swaps and it will not act as a regulatory agency for investment banks.

But legalizing pot and other illegal drugs would stop the failed war on drugs.  It would immediately cut off revenue for the most dangerous cartels in Mexico.  It’s time that our politicians took this issue seriously and didn’t hide behind jokes.  The violence in Mexico is spreading over our border.   In 2008 alone, there were exponential increases in kidnappings in the Southwest.  We’ve got to get this under control.

These cartels are strong right now.  The footsoldiers in the biggest cartels in Mexico are as big as the entire Mexican army.  When they are in the United States, these cartels buy assault rifles.  They are heavily armed, intelligent, and extremely rich.  Yet we have the power, at any moment, to pull the rug out from under them.  By legalizing narcotics, we can dismantle these organizations and stop the violence.

The same thing happened during Prohibition.  Al Capone and his friends ran bootlegging rings that made them millions.  But when the United States gave up on their ridiculous war on alcohol, the mob never fully regained its strength.  Usage is actually less in countries where drugs are legal.  The statistics are in, yet stupidity is reigning supreme on this issue.  It’s time to take the logical steps to ensure that Mexico is not the newest failed state.