Month: July 2011

Bringing the Crazy, Part II: The Really?! Edition

This woman, who is also the current front-runner for the Republican Presidential Nomination (much to the chagrin of most Republicans) believes that the settlement finally being given to Black Farmers for the discrimination they suffered at the hands of the USDA amounts to fraud and should be given to flood victims in Mississippi.

This man believes that anyone who supports President Barack Obama is “threat to the gene pool” and has also written a threatening letter to a fellow congressperson.

And this man seems to have an unnatural obsession with Muslims. He believes that anyone who wants to build a mosque is not only espousing Sharia Law (what is it with Republicans and Sharia law?) but is trying to negate the separation of Church and State. Thus, in one of those moves that sends my friend the First Amendment straight to the bar, he calls for folks to have the right to block the building of mosques in their neighborhoods. Granted, no other religion has to go through stuff like this, but like I said, homeboy has an unnatural obsession with Muslims.

So without further ado, I now present “Bringing the Crazy, Part II: The Really?! Edition”.

We’ll start with a dude so Islamophobic that he makes Rick Santorum look tolerant, Herman Cain. Cain, who raised a couple of million dollars this election cycle isn’t bringing much heat in Republican Presidential Nomination polls, but he’s saying all the stuff that Tea Party-ers (and other ignorant folks) seem to want to hear.

Over the weekend in an interview with Fox News’ Chris “My father is probably so disappointed” Wallace, Cain said all the usual Tea Party stuff like ‘We don’t need to raise the debt ceiling!” and “We don’t need for rich folks to pay their fair share (or any) taxes.” But since his repertoire includes such bon mots as “I know that all Muslims are terrorists and I’m not comfortable with them being in my cabinet,” “Muslims believe in Sharia Law”, and other stuff that would indicate that while he doesn’t really know any Muslims, he has no problem saying really stupid shit about them, I wasn’t surprised to hear him say that the government should be able to ban mosques from being built.

This coming from a dude who says that we need to read the Constitution. Funny, but if you read the Constitution, it says that you can’t ban anyone from building a religious institution anywhere they want to.

And you want to be president? Really?

But while Cain is offensive to those of us who understand the First Amendment, he’s not as head-scratching as Allen West.

For those of you who don’t know who West is, and really, unless you’re a political wonk like me you don’t know, he’s a Congressman from Florida who was swept into office during the 2010 Contract on America wave. He’s, and this should be no surprise to you, another Tea Party favorite who should really be kept away from live microphones whenever possible.

Why? Because occasionally stuff that comes from guys who don’t realize that not even Kid of Kid and Play is wearing the high-top fade anymore comes out of his mouth. As part of a blog posting regarding the economy, he blends his opinion on tax policy (namely that he’s a believer in Trickle-Down Economics) with some fallacies about President Obama’s tax policies and ends on the following note:

“I must confess, when I see anyone with an Obama 2012 bumper sticker, I recognize them as a threat to the gene pool.”

Now I’m not one of those people who believe that if you’re black you have to support President Obama. Everyone’s entitled to their own way of thinking and with supporting whom they wish politically. It’s a free country and it’s a beautiful thing to have the choice of voting between at least two black men for the nation’s highest office.

But if I don’t think the same way you do I’m a threat to the gene pool? Really?

As if that wasn’t enough, West took exception to a speech that fellow Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (who is also chair of the Democratic National Committee) made regarding his support for a House budget proposal that probably won’t make it through the Senate and would probably be vetoed if it ever made its way to President Obama’s desk.

Wasserman Schultz said that she couldn’t believe that a Congressman from South Florida, where I’m guessing every doctor accepts Medicaid and Medicare, would support a plan that cuts these programs in favor of cutting taxes to folks who can afford to buy mansions on South Beach and ride around in private jets.

(She didn’t say the South Beach and private jets part. That was me.)

Now that’s not news really. It would be news if West didn’t take exception to what Wasserman Schultz said considering the fact that she’s a Democrat and he’s a Republican. But despite the fact that she didn’t mention him by name, West decided to take it personally…

“Let me make myself perfectly clear, you want a personal fight, I am happy to oblige. You are the most vile, unprofessional ,and despicable member of the US House of Representatives. If you have something to say to me, stop being a coward and say it to my face, otherwise, shut the heck up. Focus on your own congressional district!,” West wrote. “Understand that I shall defend myself forthright against your heinous characterless behavior,” West continued. “You have proven repeatedly that you are not a Lady, therefore, shall not be afforded due respect from me!”

Just because I’m curious to know, I wonder in what ways the Congresswoman has proven to West, a former Military Man, that she is not a lady. Did she let her skirt ride up in public? Did she drink him under the table? Or, does her position as head of the DNC, and the gene pool tarnishing connected to it in West’s mind, cause him consternation?

But the winner and still champ in the Presidential Olympics of Crazy is, my favorite reason to stay away from the water in Minnesota, Michelle Bachmann.

That’s because she wants to deny Black Farmers something they should have gotten when they asked for it the first time: money to maintain their farms.

According to LaBachmann, who is currently at the top or near the top in the GOP Presidential Polls, giving these farmers the money that they won in the lawsuit filed in the Pigford case (a case that was led by a farmer from North Carolina, resolved in favor of the plaintiffs in 1999, and held up until President Obama said ‘give these dudes their $1.2 billion and stop fooling around’) amounts to…

Well, I’ll just let her say it…

“When money is diverted to inefficient projects, like the Pigford project, where there seems to be proof-positive of fraud, we can’t afford $2 billion in potentially fraudulent claims when that money can be used to benefit the people along the Mississippi River and the Missouri River.”

Now I’ll admit that this doesn’t top LaBachmann’s assertion that Black kids were better off during slavery, but i’m wondering where she gets this crap. I mean, you’re running for president. If this is your idea of courting the Black Vote, I would have to say it’s failing miserably. It’s also showing that you either (a) slept through or (b) were daydreaming about the day that you’d meet a chubby man in an industrial strength closet and marry him (oops! Did I say that?!) during history class.

‘Cause you sure didn’t pay attention!

I wonder how many Republicans are going to be asking themselves come November, “How did we get here?” when it comes to all three of these folks.

Well I can answer that question for you.

In 2010, you all made a deal with the Devil to get the House of Representatives. You asked him to get your power back and you didn’t care how, or with whom, he did it.

But here’s the thing about making a deal with the Devil. You don’t know who he’s going to use to fulfill your need and you don’t know what the payment plan is going to look like in the end.

Folks like Cain, West and Bachmann are the kind of folks he chose to use to get the Republican Brand back on top. The good news is, it worked. The bad news is, these folks are as crazy as Junebugs and have all but assured that you’re going to not only lose the House again, but that while the President is still gonna be a Black Guy, he’s not gonna be one of yours.

In other words, the Devil has taken his money off of the top…and has left you with lint in your pockets…

Bringing the Crazy…

When I last wrote about the Republican nominees for President, I pointed out the fact that Michelle Bachmann, the Republican Congresswoman who never seems to be at a loss for words, had managed to get through the first of the Republican candidate debates without making any major faux pas.

I also pointed out that we shouldn’t expect Bachmann to stay off of the Crazy Train for long. When you have a reserved sleeping bunk for interstate travel on said train, getting on and off is no problem for you. Hell, Bachmann might have a long-standing reservation on the Acela car with her level of crazy.

Well, she’s back in her bunk and, as she often does, Bachmann, a favorite of people who couldn’t define socialism if their lives were on the line (or as they’re sometimes called, The Tea Party), has brought her stunning lack of knowledge of American, African American, or any other kind of history with her.

Apparently, Madame Bachmann has signed one of those things that always seem to bite Conservatives in the ass: a family values pledge. Bob Vander Plaats, a social conservative from Iowa, has put together this pledge entitled: “The Marriage Vow: A Declaration of Dependence upon MARRIAGE and FAMILY” (emphasis theirs).

Now for the most part, the pledge has the usual boilerplate “family values” language. You can’t get divorced. Gay folks can’t get married unless they marry folks of the opposite sex and live like normal folks. (Believe it or not, I just had that discussion with someone yesterday.) Rejection of all of those parts of the First Amendment that say that we have freedom from religion as well as freedom of religion. No Sharia Law. No abortions. Pretty standard stuff.

(Not to change the subject too much, but where did the idea that Sharia Law was coming to America come from? Did it come from the same folks who said President Obama is a Secret Muslim from Kenya?)

But the part of the pledge that seems to stand out for a lot of folks, particularly a lot of black folks, is this one:

Slavery had a disastrous impact on African-American families, yet sadly a child born into slavery in 1860 was more likely to be raised by his mother and father in a two-parent household than was an African-American baby born after the election of the USA’s first African-American President.

Okay. Let’s talk about this.

First of all, if you sat through even five minutes of Roots, you know that this statement is inherently wrong because let’s face it, the job of the slave master in those days was to make black women single parents, if they were allowed to truly be parents at all.

You see, the only reason why black men and women were allowed to get together in a sexual way during slavery was to produce more “young, black bucks”. These weren’t love connections for the most part. They were the master’s way of ensuring he’d have a steady supply of slaves to work the fields, cotton gins, and to serve as nannies for his kids.

For those slaves who did find love, marriage was out of the question. Marriages between slaves weren’t recognized and even if the slave masters did recognize that these two “darkies” had jumped the broom, it didn’t prevent him from selling either half of this couple whenever the need arose. The kids were fair game for the auction block as well and were often taken away from their parents at a very young age to be sold to another plantation.

Heck, at least the kids of single parents in the Age of Obama get to stay with at least one parent…and there’s no FOR SALE sign on ’em either!

So a basic knowledge of history renders Mr. Vander Plaats inaccurate…and a little silly.

Now why is Madame Bachmann the only one who has come up in connection to this historically inaccurate pledge?

Well, there’s two reasons:

First, is the fact that we’ve been regaled by Bachmann’s lack of knowledge of African American History before. A few weeks ago, she tried to tell us that the Founding Fathers were trying their hardest to end slavery. Granted, it took them about 100 years, a Constitutional Amendment, and a Civil War, but they were busting their asses to change things….at least according to Bachmann.

And secondly, Bachmann has been the only GOP candidate to sign this pledge so far. That’s no real surprise because she’s the only one just thrown off enough to take it as seriously as Vander Plaats wants the GOP candidates to, but it’s kind of telling that the other candidates haven’t touched it with a 10-foot-pole.

(Heck, Newt Gingrich would probably touch it and turn into a pillar of salt right there.)

Now you’re allowed to adhere to whatever beliefs you want to adhere to. It’s your world. I’m just trying to live in it.

But some information from a study done regarding President Obama’s Twitter Town Hall this week should tell these candidates that instead of returning the phone calls of Vander Plaats and his social conservative ilk, they should be talking to people who can answer a question that would be far more beneficial to black families than what they’re discussing right now.

That question: Where can I find a job? That’s what most of the folks Tweeting the White House wanted to talk about. They weren’t interested in a lack-of-history-lesson.

Now this being a free country and all, you can run on whatever platform you want when you’re running for elected office.

But I can’t help but laugh derisively when I see conservatives sign family values pledges like this at the same time they’re making sure that families don’t have the minimum they need to keep themselves together: things like health care, education, and heck, a job.

Maybe you all should pledge to do something about that…