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May 03 2012

Celebrate the National Day of Reason with resistance and rebellion

Obama is getting everything wrong lately. First he declares 1 May to be Loyalty Day, in which we are to pledge allegiance to the flag; what a horror. To me, May Day will always be International Workers’ Day. It is not a day to pledge blind obedience to authority, but the exact opposite. But of course, Barack Obama, corporate tool, would want to subvert that.

And he also wants us to kowtow to nonexistent deities today, by going along with this horrible right-wing notion of a national Day of Prayer. Fuck that noise. Today is the National Day of Reason, and I will bend no knee to ghostly vapors, nor will I beg any gods for favors, ever.

No Gods, No Masters!

That should be the theme for this time of year, our Atheist Spring. It’s also fitting that that slogan was the product of the International Workers of the World, and was adopted by early feminists.

If we do not strike the fetters off ourselves we shall be knocked about until we forget the fetters. To our society apologists, and to their plausible excuses for modern impression, the only adequate answer is — we have done with your civilization and your gods. We will organize society in such a way as to make it certain for all to live in comfort and leisure without bartering their affections or their convictions. Let us turn a deaf ear to the trumpet-tongued liars clamoring for Protection, Patriotism, Prisons, Police, Workhouses, and Large Families. Leave them to vomit their own filth and let us take the good things mother earth daily offers unheeded, to us her children.

Things haven’t changed much since Sanger wrote that in 1914.

141 comments

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  1. 1
    David Marjanović

    Obama is getting everything wrong lately. First he declares 1 May to be Loyalty Day, in which we are to pledge allegiance to the flag

    – gah – –

    *pukes on Obama’s shoes*

  2. 2
    Gregory in Seattle

    To be fair about Loyalty Day…. From the Wikipedia:

    The holiday was first observed in 1921 as “Americanization Day,” and was intended to counterbalance the celebration of Labour Day on May Day (May 1), an internationally celebrated holiday for the commemoration of the Haymarket Massacre in Chicago in 1886.

    Loyalty Day is celebrated with parades and ceremonies in several U.S. communities, like Batavia, Illinois, although many people in the United States remain unaware of it. Although a legal holiday, it is not a federal holiday, and is not commonly observed.

    It was made an official holiday by the U.S. Congress on July 18, 1958 (Public Law 85-529). Following the passage of this law, President Dwight D. Eisenhower proclaimed May 1, 1959 the first official observance of Loyalty Day.

    With the exception of Eisenhower in 1959 and 1960, and the years 1966 thru 1974, Loyalty day has been recognized with an official proclamation every year by every president since its inception as a legal holiday in 1958.

    So this is Obama’s third proclamation of Loyalty Day. Clinton made eight such proclamations. In fact, it seems that Richard Nixon was the only president NOT to make it (crimeny, there goes another irony meter.)

  3. 3
    jonnyscaramanga

    The loyalty day, and the pledge of allegiance, is by far the most frightening aspect to me.

    The Day of Prayer is at least well-intentioned, even though it’s a waste of breath and a Day of Reason is much more needed.

    Whereas mindless allegiance to a flag – or anything – is the kind of dogma that stops people achieving their potential. Everything must be questioned.

  4. 4
    AJ Milne

    We should absolutely make the National Day of Reason the International Day of Reason. I could celebrate such a day.

    (/… granted, if so-called (barfs again) ‘Loyalty Day’ is any guide, probably what this will eventually also mean is everyone else in the world will be celebrating it, and some dazedly regressive future US regime will pervert it to ‘National Hug Uri Geller Day’ or some equally stomach-turning travesty, within the US borders.)

  5. 5
    ragarth

    Klingons had gods once, then they killed them.

  6. 6
    tc99mman

    True believers of whatever stripe do not question their core beliefs. A successful politician on the national stage in the USA today, like it or not, must keep his/her atheism hidden. A tenured university professor is not constrained in this way. Call it bad faith if you wish. I call it pragmatism.

  7. 7
    Antiochus Epiphanes

    tc99mman: Obama is no more an atheist than the Pope.

  8. 8
    sawells

    PZ, your starting line- “Obama is getting everything wrong lately”- should surely have read “Out of all the many things that Obama is doing, here are two specific minor things which have attracted my attention and which I don’t like”. Perspective.

  9. 9
    AJ Milne

    … a Day of Reason is much more needed.

    Indeed. If only because in certain quarters, it would be such an exception to see it so celebrated.

    Or, y’know, actually practiced. Seriously: as if the primping preachers and politicos who declared that ‘Day of Prayer’* bullshit need a day set aside for it. They drop to their knees before their invisible friend at the drop of a hat (or writ) anyway.

    Hell, I might almost grant them their stupid day without complaint… If they’d keep their mumbled incantations to only that date.

    (*/See also ‘Day of Conspicuous, Hypocritical and Distinctly Silly Public Displays of Piety’)

  10. 10
    d cwilson

    I find it interesting that, according to the left, Obama is a “corporate tool” while on the right, he’s considered a pinko-commie who uses coded words like “Forward” to signal his Marxist allegiance. The reality, of course, is actually that he’s a centrist much like Clinton was.

    The idea of a Loyalty Day is chilling to me, but as Gregory in Seattle pointed out, it’s a relic of the cold war and a tradition that’s over 50 years old. I’d rather see it and the National Day of Prayer proclamation left on the dust heap of history, but to say that these are proof that Obama is a “corporate tool” is right on par with the right claiming that Obama’s use of the word “Forward” is proof of his long-standing Marxist ties.

  11. 11
    Ingdigo Jump

    The Day of Prayer is at least well-intentioned, even though it’s a waste of breath and a Day of Reason is much more needed.

    No it isn’t. Especially when you look at the history of the National Day of Prayer and Congressional Prayer Breakfast and all that and exactly WHO is/was pushing for them.

  12. 12
    Ingdigo Jump

    @Wilson

    Clinton was a corporate tool.

    Centrist in America is pretty right wing on the international scope.

    Plus Obama is more right and authoritarian than Clinton with his expansions of espionage and assassination industries.

  13. 13
    Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human.

    I find it odd that we USAnians are so worked up about whether or not people say a pledge of allegiance to a flag! When I joined the Army, we did not pledge allegiance to the flag. We did promise to defend the Constitution of the United States of America against all enemies. This idiocy of loyalty to a symbol is rediculous. How about some loyalty to the Constitution and the rule of law?
    [/rant]

  14. 14
    pentatomid

    NO GODS! NO MASTERS!

  15. 15
    David Marjanović

    It goes without saying that I’m with comment 13.

    I find it interesting that, according to the left, Obama is a “corporate tool” while on the right, he’s considered a pinko-commie who uses coded words like “Forward” to signal his Marxist allegiance. The reality, of course, is actually that he’s a centrist much like Clinton was.

    Except that Clinton was only a centrist by US measures. He’d fit comfortably into any European conservative party, and I don’t mean the left fringe of any such party.

  16. 16
    Synfandel

    sawells wrote:

    Out of all the many things that Obama is doing, here are two specific minor things which have attracted my attention and which I don’t like

    Well said, sawells. The hyperbole was a bit much.

  17. 17
    Gregory in Seattle

    @d cwilson #10 – Keep in mind that today’s center was hard right 30 years ago: we recently saw the amazing sight of Democrats quoting Ronald Reagan to support their economic policy as Republicans called those same quotes Marxist and anti-American.

    This generation’s centrist was last generation’s unreasoning reactionary.

  18. 18
    Steve LaBonne

    Quoth d cwilson:

    The reality, of course, is actually that he’s a centrist much like Clinton was.

    And thus, a corporate tool much like Clinton was.

  19. 19
    PZ Myers

    It’s not hyperbole. Obama is a moderate Republican, by the standards of 20 or 30 years ago. We have drifted so far to the right that voters today can’t see how conservative he is.

    You think it’s only two things? Allow me to mention some others: expansion of the faith-based charity policies, expansion of the killer drone program, maintenance of our war footing, expansion of the powers of the presidency. He’s far better than the Republicans who oppose him, but do not mistake him for a progressive.

  20. 20
    horse

    @Synfandel @sawells

    If you take off the rose-colored glasses you’ll see Obama has crossed the line to being worse than Bush on far too many issues.

    That’s not hyperbole, that’s fact.

    He hasn’t brought hope and change, he’s extending the status quo across the board.

    Same bullshit, different day.

  21. 21
    Ms. Daisy Cutter, General Manager for the Cleveland Steamers

    Sawells and Synfandel, your Obama cheerleading has been noted. Perhaps you ought to join the other Obamabots over on DailyKos, where you can cheer for Dear Leader to your hearts’ content.

  22. 22
    julietdefarge

    I really have never understood the whole pledge of allegiance thing. It amounts to no more than saying “Gosh, I really like this country, not that I have experience with other countries that I can compare it to.” When I joined the Army I took an oath that was quite serious. Requiring children and adults who have no access to state secrets and no ability to take up arms is meaningless. Come to think of it, it’s meaningless for everybody- I’m sure all those anti-government militia members recite the pledge, but they are pledging to the fantasy republic in their minds.

  23. 23
    Ingdigo Jump

    The pledge is a minor form of brainwashing.

  24. 24
    Gregory in Seattle

    @PZ Myers #19 – As a gay man, I would like to add a few more things, like his support of “states rights” in his very weak statement against California’s Proposition 8; his failure to comment on North Carolina’s Amendment 1 when he was in that state last week; his continued insistance that marriage is “one man and one woman”; his fighting tooth and nail against a judicial repeal of DADT, his cowardly lack of support for a legislative repeal and his finally having to be dragged into signing a legislative repeal when it was passed despite him; his refusal to take any step towards the repeal of DOMA even as he mouths platitudes about respecting families.

    And those are just a few things off the top of my head, I would be happy to do some actual research.

  25. 25
    Ingdigo Jump

    His refusal to make a single note of encouragement or support when members of his base were maced and beaten by local police?

  26. 26
    tomfrog

    PZ:

    No Gods, No Masters!

    The Internationale (cf. International Workers’ Day):

    There are no supreme saviours
    Neither God, nor Caesar, nor tribune.

    (at least in the original French version, sang here by Pete Seeger)

  27. 27
    d cwilson

    Many people are pointing out that Clinton and Obama would be considered conservatives in most other countries or even by the standards of America 30 years ago.

    That is true. When I called them centrists, I was speaking in terms of how they fit into contemporary American politics.

    I guess the main point I was trying to make is that I’m growing wearing of people using hyperbolic terms like radical Marxist and corporate tool.

  28. 28
    katkinkate

    There seems to be a strong pressure pushing American politics into the corporate-friendly right, due to the tendency of those who speak up too much in support for helping the working class and civil liberties tend to be assassinated. eg. the Kennedys, Martin Luther King and several others I saw posted somewhere recently. (and I’m too lazy to look up)

  29. 29
    dano

    Per Wiki,
    The National Day of Prayer (36 U.S.C. § 119)[1] is an annual day of observance held on the first Thursday of May, designated by the United States Congress, when people are asked “to turn to God in prayer and meditation”. Each year, the president signs a proclamation, encouraging all Americans to pray on this day.[2] The modern law formalizing its annual observance was enacted in 1952, although it has historical origins to a mandate by George Washington, the first president of the United States.[3][4][5]

    Its constitutionality is being challenged in court by the Freedom From Religion Foundation after their first challenge was unanimously dismissed by a federal appellate court in April 2011.[6

    You have every right to do as you want on this glorious day but I for one will be saying many thanks to God. Thank you for creating such a wonderful place where everyman/woman can be heard and may pray or not pray to whomever they wish. 5/3/12 is a GREAT day to be a Christian!!

  30. 30
    Ingdigo Jump

    @D cwilson

    Oh SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO sorry we made you uncomfortable.

  31. 31
    Ingdigo Jump

    @Dano

    Fuck you.

    You have every right to do as you want on this glorious day but I for one will be saying many thanks to God. Thank you for creating such a wonderful place where everyman/woman can be heard and may pray or not pray to whomever they wish. 5/3/12 is a GREAT day to be a Christian!!

    yeah cause all those other days are so rough.

  32. 32
    pentatomid

    dano,

    Noone gives a shit about what you spend the day doing. If you want to waste your time talking to your invisible friend, fine. Go away.

  33. 33
    Scr... Archivist

    PZ, please note: The “I” in “I.W.W.” stands for “Industrial”.

  34. 34
    Steve LaBonne

    I guess the main point I was trying to make is that I’m growing wearing of people using hyperbolic terms like radical Marxist and corporate tool.

    How exactly is it hyperbolic to call corporate tools corporate tools? Falling all over themselves to promote “business-friendly” policies is the hallmark of centrist politicians the world over.

  35. 35
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Dano, is your faith so weak that you need an act of the president to back you up? If there was no national day of prayer, would you forget to pray?

    Also, your history is shit.

  36. 36
    Ingdigo Jump

    @dano

    Hey can I send you an e-mail debating my sex life on that day?

  37. 37
    sawells

    @21: that’s unworthy of you, Ms. Daisy Cutter: I pointed out excessive hyperbole on PZ’s part, and you reacted as if I had said “Obama can do no wrong”. We’re supposed to be about reason and critical thinking, not tribalism. I’m not even a US voter- I’m in the UK and I vote Lib Dem. We have our own problems :)

  38. 38
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Dano, still no evidence for your imaginary deity, so you are a delusional fool who believes in false things.

    Which is why you have no credence here. You are delusional.

  39. 39
    Ingdigo Jump

    Since you’re so keen about public announcements of private matters.

    I’ll also measure and catalog my toilet dealings and send you the log.

    National day of prayer is a great time to take a shit

  40. 40
    Ingdigo Jump

    We’re supposed to be about reason and critical thinking, not tribalism.

    FFS it isn’t hyperbole. It was listing two recent things AS EXAMPLES. PZ even stated an abridged “reasons why he sucks” list in the thread. Acting like those were the two only issues and that the comment was hyperbole is amazingly dishonest and obtuse.

  41. 41
    sawells

    Oh wow, this is worse than I thought. “Rose-coloured glasses?” “Cheerleading?” It’s in your heads, guys.

  42. 42
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Sawells, it seems that you are here just to complain. PZ answered your complaint that he just has minor objections with a list of problems with Obama. And instead of acknowledging that, you go after an other person that you thought was being uncivil to you.

    You think it’s only two things? Allow me to mention some others: expansion of the faith-based charity policies, expansion of the killer drone program, maintenance of our war footing, expansion of the powers of the presidency. He’s far better than the Republicans who oppose him, but do not mistake him for a progressive.

    What do you have to say about any of this. Are any of them minor? Is PZ wrong? Is he mistaken?

  43. 43
    sawells

    “Amazingly dishonest and obtuse”? Holy fuck. Overreaction much?

  44. 44
    truthspeaker

    d cwilson says:
    3 May 2012 at 8:44 am

    I find it interesting that, according to the left, Obama is a “corporate tool” while on the right, he’s considered a pinko-commie who uses coded words like “Forward” to signal his Marxist allegiance. The reality, of course, is actually that he’s a centrist much like Clinton was.

    In other words, a corporate tool much like Clinton was.

  45. 45
    pentatomid

    sawell,

    Just admit that Obama is far from being a wonderfull president. He may have been the best choice in the previous elections, and he’s certainly the best choice for the next (which isn’t all that hard), but he’s not great either. Sure he’s done some good stuff too, and he has had to work with a lot of resistance from the right wing, which hasn’t exactly made his job any easier. But the shitty things he’s responsible for are still shitty things, and there’s quite a lot of those.

  46. 46
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Sawells, you had forty five minutes to answer PZ’s reply to you but it seems you would rather complain.

    Seems very dishonest.

  47. 47
    Alexandra (née Audley)

    Oh, if we’re still listing why Obama sucks, let’s not forget healthcare reform, while we’re at it! Almost a carbon copy of MA’s healthcare system, which was signed into law buy a… *gasp!*… Republican!

    If Obama was any sort of leftist, instead of a corporate tool*, we’d have our damned single payer healthcare system by now, instead of a wishy-washy reform measure, which is going to be struck down by SCOTUS, anyway.

    *Come on, I can’t be the only one to notice that the health care law basically hands customers to the insurance companies.

  48. 48
    pentatomid

    Oh, and sawells, we don’t take kindly to tone trolling here, so don’t even go there.

  49. 49
    Matt Penfold

    @21: that’s unworthy of you, Ms. Daisy Cutter: I pointed out excessive hyperbole on PZ’s part, and you reacted as if I had said “Obama can do no wrong”. We’re supposed to be about reason and critical thinking, not tribalism. I’m not even a US voter- I’m in the UK and I vote Lib Dem. We have our own problems :)

    Sorry about this idiot.

  50. 50
    Steve LaBonne

    I’m in the UK and I vote Lib Dem.

    Well, I can’t insult you any worse than you just insulted yourself. Chump.

  51. 51
    Ingdigo Jump

    “Amazingly dishonest and obtuse”? Holy fuck. Overreaction much?

    really? That’s an overreaction?

    Ironically, I think you are overreacting

  52. 52
    sawells

    @42: Okay, fine, I’ll leave all the rest of you, who are not “here just to complain”, to your complaining. How shocking of me to comment on the OP rather than on things said after I’d commented. You guys have fun! Constant bitterness is fun, constructive, and good for your mental and emotional health; as is turning aggressively on your own allies.

    There will be a small prize for anyone using the phrase “Stick the flounce”, or rather, there won’t be.

  53. 53
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    So, you’re complaining about describing Obama as a corporate tool?

    Uh. He is.

    Here’s a more disturbing thought: Obama is the last president elected before the Citizens United ruling. Think on that, and weep.

  54. 54
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    meh…

  55. 55
    Matt Penfold

    @42: Okay, fine, I’ll leave all the rest of you, who are not “here just to complain”, to your complaining. How shocking of me to comment on the OP rather than on things said after I’d commented. You guys have fun! Constant bitterness is fun, constructive, and good for your mental and emotional health; as is turning aggressively on your own allies.

    Wow, not even a very good troll. No staying power.

  56. 56
    Anthony K

    Hey dano:

    Get your fucking stupid, lazy ass back to this thread and answer the fucking questions that other people had the courtesy to answer when you asked them, you cowardly, lying glob of sputum.

  57. 57
    Ingdigo Jump

    How shocking of me to comment on the OP rather than on things said after I’d commented.

    Yes because that means you’re not actually listening to anyone. I realize communication is difficult when your ears burn at terms like “obtuse” and if you can’t handle it please put on your big kid pullups and go play away from the adults.

    You guys have fun! Constant bitterness is fun, constructive, and good for your mental and emotional

    Have fun slandering those who mildly disagree with you as bitter and insane!

    as is turning aggressively on your own allies

    You know what you have a piont. It’s very ingrateful for us to turn on you so harshly after all you’ve….

    Wait. how the fuck are you an ally?

    There will be a small prize for anyone using the phrase “Stick the flounce”, or rather, there won’t be.

    That was clever in a way that is not clever

    Jesus, overreaction much?

  58. 58
    pentatomid

    How shocking of me to comment on the OP rather than on things said after I’d commented

    Facepalm!

  59. 59
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    You’re treating Wells like a troll now? Seriously?

    Wow.

  60. 60
    Ingdigo Jump

    Should I recognize sawells? They’re certainly acting annoying.

  61. 61
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    Should I recognize sawells?

    Yes. He’s consistently been one of the best commenters on these blogs for years.

  62. 62
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    SC, it really was rather easy. Sawells made a complaint, saying that PZ needed perspective. PZ answered him. And instead of answering back, sawells acted like a tone troll.

    Or do you, of all people, think that sawells had a defense of Obama’s presidency?

  63. 63
    Matt Penfold

    You’re treating Wells like a troll now? Seriously?

    He acted like a troll. Seems quite reasonable therefore to treat him like one.

    You seem surprised that we would treat trolls like trolls. Care to explain why ?

  64. 64
    Ingdigo Jump

    Don’t recognize him. He’s certainly not acting very mature or reasonable here. For reasons laid out. Again the same complaint someone made about being rational not tribal. If someone fucks up they fuck up. He’s acting like a jackass here.

  65. 65
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]
    Should I recognize sawells?

    Yes. He’s consistently been one of the best commenters on these blogs for years.

    Funny, I don’t remember him. And I have a decent memory for trolls.

  66. 66
    dobbshead

    No Gods, No Masters!

    My freshman year at RPI (~2006) I saw scrawled in chalk on a staircase:

    “No god but knowledge, no savior but science”

    I’ve always liked that maxim. As far as I can tell, though, it’s not in common use. Thought I would share.

  67. 67
    Ingdigo Jump

    @Esteleth

    Allegedly, that’s why you wouldn’t remember him :-p

  68. 68
    pentatomid

    You’re treating Wells like a troll now? Seriously?

    Uhm… Since they haven’t said anything productive at all, and done nothing but complain, it seemed appropriate.
    I don’t care how brilliant they may be, bullshit is bullshit.

  69. 69
    Ms. Daisy Cutter, General Manager for the Cleveland Steamers

    d cwilson:

    I guess the main point I was trying to make is that I’m growing wearing of people using hyperbolic terms like radical Marxist and corporate tool.

    Yes, both sides are just as bad!!!!!

    Ing:

    I’ll also measure and catalog my toilet dealings and send you the log.

    Um, care to clarify this?

    Steve LaBonne:

    Well, I can’t insult you any worse than you just insulted yourself.

    Beautiful.

    Sawells, fine, you’re not an Obamabot, but you’re still tone-trolling. And picking sides is not “tribalism,” for fuck’s sake. It’s called having principles.

    You guys have fun! Constant bitterness is fun, constructive, and good for your mental and emotional health; as is turning aggressively on your own allies.

    Aw, someone’s feelings are hurt.

    SC, just because Wells has been a good commenter before doesn’t mean they shouldn’t get called out on bullshit.

  70. 70
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Incidentally, dobbshead, we were at RPI at the same time. Intriguing.

  71. 71
    Ms. Daisy Cutter, General Manager for the Cleveland Steamers

    Ing, I’ll give Wells credit for a wonderful riposte to one of the Harvard Humanists that included the sentence (not verbatim), “And I went to Oxford, not one of your jumped-up colonial outfits.”

    I haven’t really seen that many impressive comments from them after that, or, indeed, that many comments at all. Just an occasional remark. The petulance they displayed here doesn’t speak well of them on the whole.

  72. 72
    Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls

    Yes. He’s consistently been one of the best commenters on these blogs for years.

    Maybe some other blog with SB or FTB, but I don’t recall it making much in the way of contributions here. Unless it changed ‘nyms when we transferred to FTB, I don’t recall it from SB.

  73. 73
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    You seem surprised that we would treat trolls like trolls. Care to explain why ?

    Funny, I don’t remember him. And I have a decent memory for trolls.

    He’s not a troll. FFS. If someone (not to mention a regular on these blogs, who’s defended Aquaria against the likes of James Croft) is getting that sort of exaggerated tone-troll response from one or two mildly critical posts, there’s something wrong.

  74. 74
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    If the shoe fits, wear it.

    If sawells has previously been great, but is now acting like a troll, then he’s acting like a troll. FFS yourself. Past behavior is not a protective against current trollishness!

  75. 75
    dano

    Ing #36 feel free instead to email [email protected] but if I were you I would just go straight to the big man himself rather than waiting on an email. It’s up to you but I prefer the latter. You could also post on here for a possible answer to your questions. http://www.guideposts.org/ourprayer/answered-prayers
    They offer some great insight on common issues that plague us in the 21st century. They have even been known to offer a suggested prayer if you care to use it. Knowledge is power so I am hoping some of my suggestion will help you out. Happy Day of Prayer!

  76. 76
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    SC, I will repeat myself. Sawells claimed that PZ lacked perspective. PZ pointed out a number of numbers of problems he has with Obama’s presidency. Instead of replying on this, sawells whines about incivilty and over reactions.

  77. 77
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Damo, how fucking arrogant are you? Telling an atheist to pray.

    Also, funny how you did not answer my questions to you.

    Your faith must be very weak, you sad little man.

  78. 78
    Matt Penfold

    He’s not a troll.

    His comments here suggest otherwise. If you cannot be bothered to read what he has said here, and it seems you cannot, then your opinion is worth fuck all.

    Now stop being a total fuckwit. You do this sometimes, and it does you no favours.

    Just go away until you are being sensible again.

  79. 79
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    2009. And he was commenting here, at B&W, and elsewhere before and since. He’s a regular on these blogs.

    Anyway, I don’t have time for this. I’ve said my bit.

  80. 80
  81. 81
    Nick Gotts

    I find it interesting that, according to the left, Obama is a “corporate tool” while on the right, he’s considered a pinko-commie who uses coded words like “Forward” to signal his Marxist allegiance. The reality, of course, is actually that he’s a centrist much like Clinton was. – dcwilson

    Tosh – and a fine example of the golden mean fallacy. Obama, when he came to office in the wake of the crash of 2008, had an opportunity to roll back unaccountable corporate and executive power – which no President has had for a generation. He made it abundantly clear within his first months that he intended the exact opposite.

    I’m in the UK and I vote Lib Dem. We have our own problems :)

    You may think it’s amusing that the people you voted for are supporting the most reactionary government the UK has had at least since the 1930s. I don’t.

  82. 82
    Matt Penfold

    Anyway, I don’t have time for this. I’ve said my bit.

    And fucking stupid it was. Anytime you want to say sorry for that, feel free. In the meantime, take your concern and fuck off.

  83. 83
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    So, SC, you have time to complain about how he was treated but not enough time to read what he said.

  84. 84
    Matt Penfold

    And SC, at the moment it has to be said you are behaving like a troll as well.

  85. 85
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    You may think it’s amusing that the people you voted for are supporting the most reactionary government the UK has had at least since the 1930s. I don’t.

    I am afraid I am not as knowledgeable about international politics as I should be. This government is more reactionary than Thatcher’s?

  86. 86
    Matt Penfold

    I am afraid I am not as knowledgeable about international politics as I should be. This government is more reactionary than Thatcher’s?

    In some ways yes. Thatcher could not start the process of dismantling the NHS (although she probably wanted to), whereas the current Government is doing just that, at least in England. They have also implemented changes to the welfare system Thatcher could never have done.

  87. 87
    consciousness razor

    If sawells has previously been great, but is now acting like a troll, then he’s acting like a troll. FFS yourself. Past behavior is not a protective against current trollishness!

    What the fuck makes sawells’ comments trollish? All I see is simple disagreement. Is that all it takes?

    Instead of replying on this, sawells whines about incivilty and over reactions.

    Perhaps they were overreactions. It’s not as if sawells was spewing dano-esque garbage or otherwise acting like a real troll. Merely objecting to being misrepresented as a “cheerleader,” etc., is not like whining about incivility. Tone is irrelevant and so is whining about it, but misrepresentations are relevant to the discussion and trying to clear that up is nothing at all like trolling.

  88. 88
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Janine,
    I’m not an expert in British politics, but I’d categorize Cameron and Thatcher as about even. Cameron is more corporatist than Thatcher, but that’s about it.

    I welcome UK hordelings correcting me, btw

  89. 89
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    So, SC, you have time to complain about how he was treated but not enough time to read what he said.

    I read PZ’s post, what sawells said, people’s responses, and his responses to them. I’ve also read probably hundreds of his past comments, and know that he’s not a troll of any sort. He’s someone who (gasp!) criticized, rightly or wrongly, PZ’s post.

    ***

    His comments here suggest otherwise. If you cannot be bothered to read what he has said here, and it seems you cannot, then your opinion is worth fuck all.

    Now stop being a total fuckwit. You do this sometimes, and it does you no favours.

    Just go away until you are being sensible again.

    You’re a caricature, Penfold. And this is a waste of time.

  90. 90
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Matt Penfold, sounds like what is happening in the US. The current crop of Republicans are working doing what Reagan could only dream of thirty years ago.

  91. 91
    horse

    KG said

    Obama, when he came to office in the wake of the crash of 2008, had an opportunity to roll back unaccountable corporate and executive power – which no President has had for a generation.

    This x a billion.

    So much opportunity to do so much good totally flushed down the shitter. The few good things he managed to let squeak by cannot offset the massive amounts of bad he’s signed off on. That people aren’t as outraged about him as they were Bush sadly shows the massive levels of, “must not denigrate my political party” is still being towed.

  92. 92
    Ms. Daisy Cutter, General Manager for the Cleveland Steamers

    Being called a racist troll is worse than actually being racist trolling.

  93. 93
    Matt Penfold

    You’re a caricature, Penfold. And this is a waste of time.

    And you are trolling in defence of a troll, so please do fuck off you tiresome fuckwit.

  94. 94
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    He’s someone who (gasp!) criticized, rightly or wrongly, PZ’s post.

    So you have no problem with the fact that instead of answering PZ’s response, he whined.

    The bad form is not (gasp!) that he criticized PZ’s post, the bad form is that PZ answered and sawells ignored it.

    Frankly, you are usually better then this.

  95. 95
    Matt Penfold

    Matt Penfold, sounds like what is happening in the US. The current crop of Republicans are working doing what Reagan could only dream of thirty years ago.

    Well pretty much the entire crop of current Tory MPs are Thatcherites, and quite a few are well to the right of Thatcher. Some are quite open about their desire to dismantle the NHS and welfare state, and about their desire to reduce the level of human rights in the UK.

  96. 96
    truthspeaker

    Matt Penfold says:
    3 May 2012 at 10:54 am

    In some ways yes. Thatcher could not start the process of dismantling the NHS (although she probably wanted to), whereas the current Government is doing just that, at least in England. They have also implemented changes to the welfare system Thatcher could never have done.

    They had an advantage over Thatcher, in that Tony Blair (another centrist corporate tool) had already started the process of dismantling the NHS.

    This is why centrist corporate tools are a problem – they give the right wingers a head start.

  97. 97
    bubba707

    Loyalty? Loyalty up requires loyalty down and our leaders have no loyalty to us, instead considering us potential enemies. Under those circumstances I owe this country no loyalty at all. I refuse to grant loyalty to hypocrits that condemn torture by others whilr engaging in it and excusing it for themselves. Day of prayer? For what? Prayer has never accomplished anything and most of those praying don’t really believe it’ll do anything anyway. It’s nothing more than a pointless public display of fake piety. As for Obama, he’s a worse scumbag than Bush and the best that can be said for him is his opponents are even worse. The cause of it all is the voting public. Ignorant jackasses brainwashed into accepting the dominence of a corrupt 2 party system and stupid enough to believe anything their favorite flavor of crook says. If the rest of the world declared the US a rogue nation and imposed sanctions I think I’d just laught and say about time.

  98. 98
    truthspeaker

    bubba707 says:
    3 May 2012 at 11:14 am

    Loyalty? Loyalty up requires loyalty down and our leaders have no loyalty to us, instead considering us potential enemies. Under those circumstances I owe this country no loyalty at all.

    Having loyalty to one’s country is not the same as having loyalty to one’s government. The former often precludes the latter.

  99. 99
    gmacs

    “Corporate Tool”

    I get the feeling that PZ would like authority taken away from the powers that be and placed in… different hands. Hey, I’ll bring the wonderflonium.

  100. 100
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Of course, nowadays when I hear the phrase “corporate tool” all I can think of is Captain Hammer.

    And Captain Hammer is much cooler than anyone currently in office anywhere.

  101. 101
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    And Captain Hammer is not at all cool.

    Shit, Moist is cooler than Captain Hammer.

  102. 102
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    Not disagreeing with you there, Janine.

    But Captain Hammer is still cooler than any politician in this world. Well, Bernie Sanders excluded.

  103. 103
    Anthony K

    The bad form is not (gasp!) that he criticized PZ’s post, the bad form is that PZ answered and sawells ignored it.

    The problem is when ‘bad form’ starts earning shit like:

    And you are trolling in defence of a troll

    What kind of fucking absurdity is that?

    Essentially, what cr said in 87.

    So, sawells ignored PZ’s response in favour of criticising Ing’s and Ms. Daisy Cutters’ reactions (the latter of which was clearly hyperbole). Clearly, sawells is the Worst Thing Ever™, and now the Troll Alarm is being hammered like the buttons at a Street fighter tournament.

    What the fuck gives?

  104. 104
    Matt Penfold

    What kind of fucking absurdity is that?

    The kind of absurdity that is a factual statement. Sawells was tone trolling, and SC was defending him by also trolling about tone.

    SC can say some very intelligent things, but she also has a record of being incredibly stupid, and this seems to be a time when she is being stupid.

    Now care to explain how you managed to write such a pile of crap ? You are capable of doing much better, so why not this time ?

  105. 105
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    In my case, what the fuck gives is that PZ gave an answer and sawells ignored it.

    Why the fuck is this so difficult to understand. I do not give a fuck what Ing and Ms. Daisy Cutter said. Sawells could have easily ignored it and stayed on the issue that he raised.

  106. 106
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Let’s hear it for the Echo Chamber™ that is Pharyngula.

  107. 107
    Nick Gotts

    This government is more reactionary than Thatcher’s? – janine

    Yes; as truthspeaker says, they were starting from a position where the opposition she faced has been greatly weakened by over thirty years of reaction, which began in 1976 (yes, the pre-Thatcher Labour government had already started the rightward shift, when it quite unnecessarily went crawling to the IMF for a loan of a paltry few billion dollars). Thatcher never dared to start dismantling the NHS, nor the state school system, nor to announce the intention to privatise the Post Office; and the current government’s attacks on people with disabilities – begun under New Labour but greatly intensified – are about as vile as you can get: people with terminal cancer are being told they are fit for work.

  108. 108
    Matt Penfold

    – are about as vile as you can get: people with terminal cancer are being told they are fit for work.

    Now be fair, if they are expected to be dead by the end of the month they are allowed to scrounge of the state.

  109. 109
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    …people with terminal cancer are being told they are fit for work.

    Have to squeeze the last bit of production from these people.

    (Yes, I meant for that to be bitter. And scare of anyone who believes this.)

  110. 110
    AJ Milne

    … So this is Obama’s third proclamation of Loyalty Day. Clinton made eight such proclamations. In fact, it seems that Richard Nixon was the only president NOT to make it.

    There is something distinctly pathetic about that.

    I mean, this contrast (Nixon didn’t bother, huh?) makes it smell a smidge of bootlicking, to me.

    Yeah, it’s like: ‘Damn… Seein’ as I’m seen by certain asswipes on the right as too progressive whatever I do, let’s be very certain to call it Loyalty Day to assure people I’m not some damned Commie or somethin’, or, y’know, someone who might actually have sympathy for some other terribly suspect reason (like, say, mere humanity) for anyone who might have got killed in the Haymarket Affair or in the shootings the day before or railroaded in the subsequent trial… Nor who might actually realize that yeah, workers can actually get a pretty shitty deal sometimes, and recognizing the labour movement and the people who’ve died or otherwise suffered in such conflict is, after all, probably the fucking least the chief executive of the country in which all this actually happened might do.’

    No, dear. I know there are these freaks out there who are watching me like a hawk for such things so they can scream ‘Commie’ at the top of their lungs. So instead, I’m gonna go hard the other way and do my best impression of Big Brother here instead to mollify them.

    (/Not that anyone so bloody-mindedly regressive will ever vote for me. But like that ever stopped me from lying down right on the spot on the carpet they’ve indicated they’d prefer.)

  111. 111
    Matt Penfold

    Have to squeeze the last bit of production from these people.

    A truly fucking evil part of it is that 75% of people who are turned down and appeal against a decision that they fit to work (not just because they are dying from cancer) have their appeals upheld.

    The Government knows the system is fucked, and that is how it wants it.

  112. 112
    Esteleth, [an error occurred while processing this directive]

    The thing that gets me the most about Cameron and the NHS is that he has spoken (quite movingly, IMO) about his son and how good care his doctors gave him, etc etc etc.
    So now he wants to damage the NHS so that the next parent in Cameron’s position won’t have that support? Who the what now?

    Oh, but I forgot: Cameron is special.

  113. 113
    Anthony K

    Now care to explain how you managed to write such a pile of crap ? You are capable of doing much better, so why not this time ?

    So past behaviour does confer some protection, doesn’t it? Glad we can lay that little canard to rest.

    (And if you think that I’m going to fall for such a childishly emotional manipulation technique, you’ve got a few thinks to rethink.)

    Why the fuck is this so difficult to understand.

    What part of “The problem is when ‘bad form’ starts earning shit like: ‘And you are trolling in defence of a troll’” gives you the impression that I don’t understand that?

    The problem, as I clearly stated, is that sawells did something in “bad form”, and all of a sudden we’re seeing idiotic shrieks of “troll”, when there’s clearly an actual troll in this thread.

    So, sawells instead took issue with MDC’s “Sawells and Synfandel, your Obama cheerleading has been noted. Perhaps you ought to join the other Obamabots over on DailyKos, where you can cheer for Dear Leader to your hearts’ content.” Really? For taking offence to that he’s a troll, and so is everyone calling into question his being assigned the status of troll?

  114. 114
    Matt Penfold

    The thing that gets me the most about Cameron and the NHS is that he has spoken (quite movingly, IMO) about his son and how good care his doctors gave him, etc etc etc.
    So now he wants to damage the NHS so that the next parent in Cameron’s position won’t have that support? Who the what now?

    I agree, he did speak very movingly. So why the hell he is letting Lansley loose on the NHS I don’t know. The only credible explanation I have heard is that because Cameron is actually towards the left of his party, he had to pander to the right-wingers, although that does not explain why he did not use the Lib-Dems to put a stop to the “reforms”.

  115. 115
    truthspeaker

    Esteleth, Who is Totally Not a Dog or Ferret says:
    3 May 2012 at 11:50 am

    The thing that gets me the most about Cameron and the NHS is that he has spoken (quite movingly, IMO) about his son and how good care his doctors gave him, etc etc etc.
    So now he wants to damage the NHS so that the next parent in Cameron’s position won’t have that support? Who the what now?

    Oh, but I forgot: Cameron is special.

    Cameron is wealthy. The next wealthy parent in Cameron’s position will have no problem purchasing treatment for his child.

    Middle class and poor parents in that position will have to go into debt for the rest of their lives to pay for treatment for their children, which means more income for the banks that issue such loans. It’s a win-win for everyone involved. Well, everybody who matters.

  116. 116
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    The problem, as I clearly stated, is that sawells did something in “bad form”, and all of a sudden we’re seeing idiotic shrieks of “troll”, when there’s clearly an actual troll in this thread.

    Brownian, all I did was point out to sawells that PZ addressed his criticism. He choose to ignore it. That is where I think his bad form is located.

    And I did address the troll known as Dano. Dano choose to ignore my questions to him.

  117. 117
    Matt Penfold

    Still, Sawells and SC have both fucked off, so it is a good result.

  118. 118
    nooneinparticular

    Personally I think PZ was much to kind to Obama. His is administration is, in many ways, Bush administration III. Perhaps the biggest disappointment in modern American politics. He is at best a centrist who panders just as badly and just as often as all the rest.

  119. 119
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Matt, in this case, I will tell you to fuck off. I like and respect SC. I just happen to think she is wrong in this case.

    You like I like and respect you. I just happen to think you are wrong in this case.

  120. 120
    pentatomid

    Brownian,

    I agree that some of the responses to sawells’ original posts were overly harsh, in particular this:

    So, sawells instead took issue with MDC’s “Sawells and Synfandel, your Obama cheerleading has been noted. Perhaps you ought to join the other Obamabots over on DailyKos, where you can cheer for Dear Leader to your hearts’ content.”

    I did call them a tone troll (or rather I cautioned them not to start tone trolling) as I felt their comments were heading in that direction and they were apparantly not interested in responding to PZ’s answer. I’m kinda sorry I said that. I apologize for it and I do get that they were offended, but I’m still bothered that they didn’t bother to reply to PZ or defend their position with substance rather than complaints.

  121. 121
    Alexandra (née Audley)

    Truthspeaker,
    Ah, welcome to the US!

    Seriously, how can another country look at our system and say “Daaaaayymn, I want that!”?

  122. 122
    pentatomid

    Matt Penfold, you are seriously pushing it. Stop it. Neither SC nor Brownian deserve the shit you’re giving them. Even Sawells was, in retrospect, probably treated a bit to harshly (though I get where that came from). He may have been a bit whiny and tone trollish, but at least he was not being horrible.

  123. 123
    nooneinparticular

    oh. I meant to say, I didn’t know what to do today to “resist and rebel”. In some ways I guess I’m just not very imaginative. I didn’t even know it was National Day of Reason until I peeked into Pharyngula this AM.

    HOWEVER. I was walking to work and, having had one too many cups of coffee, really REALLY had to pee. Thought I’d stop by a coffee shop and use the facilities. Then I happened by a church. With lots of shrubs just outside the front steps and folks inside doing whatever they do in there (sacrificing babies?). They seemed to be singing something. A hymn, I suppose. The shrubs looked parched. So I watered them while singing along. Well, I wouldn’t exactly call it singing. Still….

    Best I could do on such short notice.

  124. 124
    Anthony K

    Brownian, all I did was point out to sawells that PZ addressed his criticism. He choose to ignore it. That is where I think his bad form is located.

    Yes, you did, and I apologise for not being clearer: that is a fair criticism, and was well stated, as were pentatomid’s comments, especially the clarification in 120.

    And I did address the troll known as Dano. Dano choose to ignore my questions to him.

    Again, I apologise if it came across that I was impugning you for not responding to dano. I was just using dano as a point of comparison as an actual troll in the same vein as consciousness razor’s comment 87.

    Anyway I’ve stated my issue, people have responded to it, and the conversation seems to have resolved itself and moved on to other things, so I’m going to leave this particular issue alone now.

  125. 125
    Aquaria

    If someone (not to mention a regular on these blogs, who’s defended Aquaria against the likes of James Croft) is getting that sort of exaggerated tone-troll response from one or two mildly critical posts, there’s something wrong.

    Please don’t drag me into this pissing match. I’ve barely commented in weeks, what with trying to sort out my college crap and trying to finish my novel.

    Sheesh.

  126. 126
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Aquaria, I see you hanging out at Ed’s more often anyways.

    But I snark. Hope you get through all of that crap soon.

  127. 127
    Inaji

    Aquaria:

    I’ve barely commented in weeks

    I’ve noticed and I just wanna say I miss you!

  128. 128
    Illuminata, Genie in the Beer Bottle

    Perhaps you ought to join the other Obamabots over on DailyKos, where you can cheer for Dear Leader to your hearts’ content.

    not if they’re atheists. DailyKos does not like atheists. It’s a packed sea of religious privilege wrapped in “we’re soo oppressed by meanie atheists for being religious!”

  129. 129
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    I haven’t really seen that many impressive comments from them after that,

    I have little doubt. If he had been commenting here recently, he wouldn’t have been so surprised at how much things have changed.

    ***

    Or do you, of all people, think that sawells had a defense of Obama’s presidency?

    I want to respond to this, because I like and respect you, too, and because I think it speaks to my objections. (The question is too broad if it’s about Wells’ response to PZ’s wording, but that does’t really matter.) I had vigorous disagreements at the time of the last elections with truth machine, Bill Dauphin, brokenSoldier, OMs, and others. tm was actually something of an Obama cheerleader, and was fairly obnoxious on the subject. But I prefer those arguments to an environment in which people who argue with or criticize PZ’s posts on the subject are quickly declared “Obama cheerleaders” and complainers and run off of threads.

    ***

    Please don’t drag me into this pissing match. I’ve barely commented in weeks, what with trying to sort out my college crap and trying to finish my novel.

    Sheesh.

    There was no attempt to drag you into anything, Aquaria, and there’s no pissing match. Your name was mentioned incidentally in the context of providing evidence for sawells hardly being a tone troll. Unless you want to disagree with the implicit suggestion that your posts have been subject to tone trolling, or that he’s been among those responding to that, there’s no response called for, and certainly no need for any sheeshing.

  130. 130
    anolan

    Dr. Myers—

    If I could be nitpicky, the title of the union in question is the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), also known as the Wobblies. Not the International Workers of the World, though that is a fine title for a union, too.

    Yours,

    Andrew Nolan,
    annoying historian

  131. 131
    beergoggles

    I much prefer the prez declare it Loyalty Day over National Day of Prayer. Granted, supporting labor would be even better but I can just imagine the whining and butthurt from all his rich political funders were he to actually do that. So yeah, our prez is a corporate whore but he’s still made some incremental progress in areas that a Republican admin would have regressed in.

  132. 132
    Rich Woods

    To me, May Day will always be International Workers’ Day.

    Hurray!

    After all, the thieving capitalists have taken every other day of the year from us.

  133. 133
    Ms. Daisy Cutter, General Manager for the Cleveland Steamers

    Illuminata:

    DailyKos does not like atheists. It’s a packed sea of religious privilege wrapped in “we’re soo oppressed by meanie atheists for being religious!”

    To be fair, DailyKos is a packed sea of all sorts of privilege. But, yes, the lefty xtians who think they’re all MLK, Jr. — especially the pastors — really grind my gears. Sanctimonious and belittling one minute, whining and screaming the next.

    Unrelatedly, I’m kind of surprised that the drama in this thread didn’t center on OMG SOSHULIZM!!

  134. 134
    Moggie

    sawells:

    I’m not even a US voter- I’m in the UK

    Seems a bit arrogant for a Brit to instruct politically-aware American liberals on how they should judge Obama’s performance.

    and I vote Lib Dem. We have our own problems :)

    Vote, present tense? Then don’t you dare smile about it, you Tory-enabling fucker.

  135. 135
    jamesevans

    Obama just likes to remind us from time to time that Dems can be idiots too.

  136. 136
    Aquaria

    Aquaria, I see you hanging out at Ed’s more often anyways.

    But I snark. Hope you get through all of that crap soon.

    Haven’t been there in weeks, either. At all. I still check some of the posts here, when I have time.

    I’ve barely commented in weeks

    I’ve noticed and I just wanna say I miss you!

    Thanks. Now instead of chewing out people online, I’m chewing out people at admission offices for losing my application. TWICE. Thank goodness I’ve held onto my transcripts until they get the application!

    So all the yelling I’ve been doing IRL means my life is complete.

    Unless you want to disagree with the implicit suggestion that your posts have been subject to tone trolling, or that he’s been among those responding to that, there’s no response called for, and certainly no need for any sheeshing.

    1) I know what you were trying to say. It’s just that I’m sure there are other people who would be a better, more recent example than someone like me who has barely been posting on Pharyngula for quite a while now. As in not at all or close to that for over a month. I know so little of what’s been going on here that I don’t know who the commenter is, and I don’t care. I also don’t care if this person defended me or not, so your link was a waste of time. I mean, how nice, whatever he said, but I wasn’t remotely concerned about it.

    2) What do you think a pissing match is? Hint: Look at this thread!

  137. 137
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    1) I know what you were trying to say. It’s just that I’m sure there are other people who would be a better, more recent example than someone like me who has barely been posting on Pharyngula for quite a while now.

    It was a good example. I don’t need a recent one. And I don’t eed your approval.

    As in not at all or close to that for over a month. I know so little of what’s been going on here that I don’t know who the commenter is, and I don’t care.

    That’s totally irrelevant. Nothing about my comment was directed at you, and you were not its subject.

    I also don’t care if this person defended me or not, so your link was a waste of time.

    The link was not for your benefit. I linked to it i that post because I was trying to explain to you that you had no reason to respond to my comment unless you were disputing some point of fact in my example, which you weren’t, so I have no idea what your point is supposed to be.

    I mean, how nice, whatever he said, but I wasn’t remotely concerned about it.

    For someone who’s so uninterested in people defending her, you seem to have time to spare to toss in random comments at the mere mention of your name.

    2) What do you think a pissing match is? Hint: Look at this thread!

    That’s your characterization, with which I disagree. This is ridiculous and tiresome. The discussion was not about you, and I don’t need your permission to mention your name.

  138. 138
    Setár, Elvenkitty

    d cwilson #10:

    I find it interesting that, according to the left, Obama is a “corporate tool” while on the right, he’s considered a pinko-commie who uses coded words like “Forward” to signal his Marxist allegiance. The reality, of course, is actually that he’s a centrist much like Clinton was.

    “Centrist” is a weasel-word used by and to refer to:

    1) politicians who take some nominally liberal stances, in an attempt to hide their support of such things as torture, crony capitalism and abuse of civil liberties.

    2) pundits who incessantly make fact-free assertions about how liberals are “just as bad” as conservatives, and who always call for “bipartisanship” yet conveniently always call on the liberals/Democrats to make concessions to the conservatives/Republicans.

    They’re not in the “centre” in any sense. They’re conservatives who are attempting to hide behind their lack of overt craziness.

    Case in point 1: Obamacare is Romneycare, minus coverage for illegal immigrants (and possibly abortion?) and a public option. It was originally a Republican idea, dreamed up by the Heritage Foundation which is a conservative think-tank.

    The Republicans are now against it.

    Case in point 2: Cap and trade was originally a Republican idea, supported in the 2008 elections by Presidential candidate John McCain.

    The Republicans — including McCain himself — are now against it.

    Case in point 3: The Violence Against Women Act was passed by a split Congress, and reauthorized by both Democratic and Republican Congresses.

    31 Republican Senators (all men) voted against reauthorizing it this year, and the Republican-controlled House now wants to strip protections afforded to (among others) Native Americans and GBLTQ people — protections that had to have been approved by Congressional Republicans when the Act was originally passed and reauthorized — from VAWA.

    Obama and Clinton are conservatives, not “centrists”. The Republican Party just keeps moving to the right, and we keep listening to deluded fools like Jonathan Haidt and Joe Scarborough who keep crowing about how “liberals are just as bad”, so Obama and Clinton now look like “centrists” compared to the fools in the Republican caucus, even though the veteran and established Republicans have been in since Reagan.

    And do you want to know who else looks like a “centrist” thanks to the Republican Party’s hard-right shift?

    That’s right — Ronald fucking Reagan.

  139. 139
    Kristof

    “No Gods or Kings. Only Man.”

  140. 140
    crocswsocks

    I wouldn’t be surprised if there is literally zero turnout at the voting booths this year. I turn 18 in July, and have no idea if I’m going to bother showing up. How sad is that?

  141. 141
    Amphiox

    I wouldn’t be surprised if there is literally zero turnout at the voting booths this year. I turn 18 in July, and have no idea if I’m going to bother showing up. How sad is that?

    It would indeed be sad, as the lower the turnout among voters in your demographic, the greater the likelihood Romney and the Republicans will win. They have their fanatical base, who will always come out and vote for them.

    Is that what you want to happen?

    Don’t give me this “democrats are just as bad”, or “Obama is a conservative too”, crap.

    So what?

    The question is, who is worse Obama and the Democrats, or Romney and the Republicans?

    Who would you rather have hold of the reins of power, the Democrats, or the Republicans?

    Don’t give me this “I wish there was a third party that was truly progressive I could vote for,” either.

    There ISN’T a third party. Not right now. Right now, in 2012, the ONLY question that matters is: Who would you rather be in control of the US government, right now, in 2012, the Democrats, or the Republicans?

    In the longer term, with which party in power do you think it will be easier to move the Overton window back leftwards to the progressive end of the spectrum? The Democrats, or the Republicans?

    The Republicans are COUNTING on your apathy. You not voting is PART OF THEIR POLITICAL PLAN. They have spent FOUR YEARS working on this, with obstructionism to interfere with Obama’s agenda in hopes of disillusioning his more politically naive supporters, and voter suppression laws to make it even harder for these demographics to vote.

    Are you going to be their sucker?

    Is that what you want?

    This applies to ALL of you who are American progressives, not just the author of the post I blockquoted.

    If you are a progressive and you do not vote in 2012, and the Republicans win, then you, yes you, are partly responsible for every regressive thing that they will do once in power for the next four years. Every. Single. Thing.

    VOTE DAMMIT. VOTE.

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