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"I Remember..."

  • Posted on: 30 October 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

The following video expresses why I'm not voting Republican this year. And I'm not voting for the Tea Party, which is a Republican-supported creation of Libertarian billionaires designed solely to help whittle away potential opposition to GOP candidates.

The YouTube video, called I Remember, cites many of the reasons that a vote for putting -- or keeping -- any member of the Republican party in any position of power is a vote against the best interests of the nation.

Watch, and remember:

 

 

Hat-tip Leslie of DelphiForums.

 

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"If the Tea Party wins, America Loses" -- Keith Olbermann's Special, On-Target Message

  • Posted on: 28 October 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

__________

You are willing to let these people run this country? This is the America you want? This is the America you are willing to permit? These are the kinds of cranks, menaces, mercenaries and authoritarians you will turn this country over to?

If you sit there next Tuesday and let this happen, whose fault will that be?

__________

Keith Olbermann offered one of his "Special Comments" on 10/27/2010 9:33:43 PM ET entitled "If the Tea Party wins, America loses." The Tea Party -- fondly known more often by a riff drawn from their own initial choice of a name, the Tea Baggers -- represents the worst cross section of the lunatic fringe with racists, homophobes, corrupt Republican conservatives and wholly uninformed segments of the citizenry.

If they, or their Republican party counterparts, gain or maintain any presence in Congress or in state governments this coming November, America loses -- big time. For specific examples, and for the entire Special Comment, play the video.

An excerpt from Keith's comment begins below the video.

 

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It is as if a group of moderately talented performers has walked on stage at a comedy club on Improv night. Each hears a shout from the audience, consisting of a bizarre but just barely plausible fear or hatred or neurosis or prejudice.

And the entertainment of the evening is for each to take their thin, absurd premise, and build upon it a campaign for governor or congressman or senator. The problem is, of course, when it turns out there is no audience shouting out gags, just a cabal of corporations and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and political insider bloodsuckers like Karl Rove and Dick Armey and the Chicken Little Chorus of Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck.

And the instructions are not to improvise a comedy sketch, but to elect a group of unqualified, unstable individuals who will do what they are told, in exchange for money and power, and march this nation as far backward as they can get, backward to Jim Crow, or backward to the breadlines of the '30s, or backward** to hanging union organizers, or backward to the Trusts and the Robber Barons.

Result: the Tea Party. Vote backward, vote Tea Party. And if you are somehow indifferent to what is planned for next Tuesday, it is nothing short of an attempt to use Democracy to end this Democracy, to buy America wholesale and pave over the freedoms and the care we take of one another, which have combined to keep us the envy of the world.

__________

And it continues. Full transcript here.

 

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Two Years, Three Months.

  • Posted on: 24 October 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

Crossposted from DailyKos.

On 60 Minutes tonight, they did a piece on the deep recession. The part that hit hard was hearing how many people have lost their jobs, their 401K, their IRA, savings and other retirement -- and many who have been in that situation for two years or more after being successfully, gainfully employed before the bottom fell out of the economy.

One of the most striking -- to me -- has been unemployed for two years and three months.

That's before the 2008 election. That's sometime around July 2008.

That's before Obama won the presidency. That's when Bush was still president, and the GOP still had significant control of Congress. The economy was still in free-fall.

And nobody was being held accountable.

It's now October 2010. The freefall has been arrested -- for now -- but all efforts to spur a strong recovery are being actively resisted by both the GOP and the Tea Party, spurred on and supported by growing donations from the corporate elitists and oligarchy who have stepped up to the plate to take up the slack after the Abramoff money sluice was interrupted.

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Mutiny, Music and Mayhem At Meridian Primary School in Greenwich, Captain Jack Style

  • Posted on: 8 October 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

When a budding pirate, aged 9, from the Meridian Primary School in Greenwich wrote to Captain Jack Sparrow for help mutinying against the teachers, the Captain's alter ego decided it was worth a short jaunt from the nearby locale where he was filming "Pirates of the Carribean: On Stranger Tides."

(c) CAVAN PAWSON via the DailyMailFrom the article in the Daily Mail,

She said that she was then asked by the star to make herself known from the assembled pupils once he arrived, and gave her a cuddle. 

Beatrice marvelled: 'He gave me a hug and he said, "Maybe we shouldn't mutiny today 'cos there are police outside monitoring me."'


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-1318516/Johnny-Depps-surprise-visit-London-primary-school-Captain-Jack-Sparrow.html#ixzz11kw7DXVS

Not a bad way to plan or stage a mutiny -- the kid shows some promise. :)

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Phishing, Taxes, The US Treasury and You

  • Posted on: 7 October 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

It's that time of the year, folks -- a swarm of emails have been coming out from spoofed addresses, claiming to be from the customer service section of Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (eftps.gov).

NOTE: The IRS never sends emails to taxpayers. Pass that tidbit on, and help take a bite out of cybercrime...

It starts off with the following:

__________
From: EFTPS Tax Payment [mailto:customers@eftps.gov]
Sent: today, this month, real recent time
To: yourbusinessname@yourbusinessurl.com
Subject: Your Federal Tax Payment has been rejected. Report ID: xxxxxxxx (some numbers, sometimes sequential if from the same spammer/phisher/cyber-criminal/needle-dicked bugfvcker)

Your Federal Tax Payment ID: 012345678 has been rejected.

Return Reason Code R21 - The identification number used in the Company Identification Field is not valid.

Please, check the information and refer to Code R21 to get details about your company payment in transaction contacts section: http://eftps.gov/R21

In other way forward information to your accountant adviser.

EFTPS: The Electronic Federal Tax Payment System
PLEASE NOTE: Your tax payment is due regardless of EFTPS online
availability. In case of an emergency, you can always make your tax payment by calling the EFTPS.
__________

What changes, slightly, is the subject (sometimes the message has "URGENT" at the start of the subject, sometimes not), the content (sometimes the line "In other way forward information to your accountant adviser" is present, sometimes not). The URL "eftps.gov/R21" is not the actual URL that the message redirects you to -- that's just the URL label. The actual URL differs, usually directing people to a server in Russia through a variant of the domain name "eftpsxxxxx.com" where the "xxxx" is a series of numbers. A traceroute on the various URLs comes back with different domain hosts / admin information, but the email headers from any message you receive usually include an ip address (and sometimes a source node) for where the message may actually be from -- or at least one of the potential zombie machines it was sent from.

Should you receive any such emails (I've received about 12 so far over the past few days), there's a quick and easy way to report them to the IRS (see below). In general, any time you receive a suspicious email claiming to be from the Treasury or US government, you can go to the US Treasury's website for contact information about how to report the phishing attempt, or -- if you've been a victim of a cybercrime, particularly if you've lost money or property -- you can go straight to the IC3 site and file a complaint (or 2, or 3 -- or 12 -- as the case may be).

For this particular email scam and for cases specifically involving the IRS and tax scams, go to the IRS page for more information. The IRS is already aware of this particular scam, but you should still report it and provide the details of the email source to help their cybercrime investigators track the perpetrators. Usually, a great and simple method to do this as well as report these types of fraud involves the following:

  1. View and copy the full header information of the email,
  2. Forward the email message to phishing@irs.gov, with a copy of the full header information pasted within

Easy-peasy.

Whatever you do, do not click on the links of any suspicious emails, even those purporting to be from the IRS or US Government, unless you can be sure that the link goes to where it says it is going.

More information is available about this at the IRS site on fraud/phishing/abuse (same IRS link as provided a few sentences ago).

Be careful out there, and remain ever-vigilant for those cyber-criminals who'll try to steal you blind almost as fast as the Bush/Cheney Administration and their Republican Congressional majority gutted the national treasury and destabilized our entire economy and infrastructure.

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The Myopia of the Masses: My Own "Better Off Dead" Experience

  • Posted on: 1 October 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

Crossposted at DailyKos.

If you haven't read the diary "...is surely better off dead" by Auntie Neo Kawn of DailyKos yet, go read it now -- I'll wait.

This diary is an additional build upon it -- my own experience as one of those who the comment "better off dead" refers to.

When you're ready and you've tipped, rec'd and commented over on Auntie's piece, feel free to drop below the fold to get my take. And thank you for your time.

 

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James O'Keefe: Conservative Porn Star, "Journalist" and "Activist"

  • Posted on: 29 September 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

The video says it all:

This is the kind of tawdy trickery and confabulation that includes 'malice aforethought' in high doses -- it's how "conservative activists" role. They manufacture their scoops -- like the ACORN trickery -- and lie, cheat, misrepresent the matters to their adoring (and sadly deceived) public. When caught with their pants down, however, they deny deny deny.

James O'Keefe, conservative "activist" and pseudo-journalist, now almost porn star.

It looks like that pimp getup he wore for creating the doctored ACORN video must've agreed with him more than he'd like to admit.

Hat-tip to Barbara Morrill of DailyKos for the lead.

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From A "Contract On" To A "Plague Upon"

  • Posted on: 25 September 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

First they took out a Contract on America. Then they weakened it, undermining democracy and freedom, crippling national security and taking away liberties, then they crippled the economy, the environment and our educational system.

Now, they're trying to call down a Plague upon America.

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Looming Election Brings Back Same Old GOP SOP: Voter Caging, Voter Suppression and Undermining Democracy

  • Posted on: 21 September 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

A huge story is breaking about a massively coordinated attempt by the Wisconsin GOP, the group Americans for Prosperity and a coalition of Tea Party teabaggers to suppress the vote in that state among minorities and students. Major elements of the story so far can be found on DailyKos in a diary by xofferson and a follow-up by One Wisconsin Now.

Voter suppression, particularly through means of voter caging, has been a major weapon in the GOP's arsenal and is brought to bear against citizens particularly likely to vote Democratic -- or at least almost guaranteed to not vote Republican.

ePluribus Media has covered this topic extensively in the past, and below the fold you'll find a list of many of our past pieces, showing elements that tie together voter suppression strategies such as voter caging along with manipulation of the DoJ (particularly the Voting Rights division) and US Attorneys, who'd be the ones who'd have to investigate any claims of irregularities -- real, imagined or fabricated on the backs of tea-stained elephantine fat cats.

If the Wisconsin voter caging story intrigues, interests, offends and angers you, then take a deep breath and venture forth for a more in-depth range of topics that really illustrate just how far the GOP will go in order to compromise democracy and to promote their party, partisan politics and political power over the interests of the nation and her people. The list begins immediately...

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An Outsiders Description of the Tea Bagged Right's Fantasy 'Neverland'

  • Posted on: 19 September 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

Further explorations of the Tea-Bagged Right's 'Neverland' fantasy world, taken from an ongoing discussion at DelphiForums. Here, one of the folks mentions a common element to a popular form of "I've found Jesus" stories, and my response. Feel free to pick up the conversation in the comments below.

>> It's common in some right-wing Christian circles to claim 'dabbling in Witchcraft' before they found Jesus as a way to strengthen their conversation story.

Those stories almost always fall apart when looked at by any actual Modern Pagan and/or Witch. <<

Those stories use a type of common myth-perception that reinforces the need to ~not~ bother to verify facts, as those facts would shatter their ongoing narrative with shards of awareness from the realm of reality.

That won't do for those who prefer to live in the comfy-zone of mentally unchallenged thought and wild conspiracy-theory based fantasy.

From the piece that I'd posted on ePluribus Media yesterday:

All we need now to complete the set is some idiot with a name starting with "C" who claims to have dabbled in witchcraft and clearly can't tell the different between between witchcraft (which, in modern usage as a religion, generally refers to neopaganism) and satanism...

Oh, wait -- nevermind.

If any of their fellow myth-perceiving Tea Bagged masses happen to stumble across the article, they'll have the ability to read the linked Wikipedia citations.

The vast majority won't, judging from past experience. A few enterprising ones may check to see where the link goes and will likely announce "Wikipedia? That's not a reliable source!" and the rest of the rabble will take up the call like a shield, reinforcing their collective mental shield against any assault of information or reason and protecting their groupthink mentality from harm.

It's what they do.

Explosive Consequences

  • Posted on: 18 September 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

A friend recently made the observation that Sarah Palin's decision to explore -- and probably take aim at -- the 2012 Republican Presidential nomination could result in the ultimate destruction of the (currently highly corrupt and obscenely disingenuously arrogant) Republican Party leadership, politicians / pundits and all.

I think that's possible and agree, but within a half-a-tick of reading my friend's words I had another thought.

A much darker one, and one that is at least equally likely to occur.

Here's what my friend said:

__________

Even if she doesn't win the nomination, the damage she can do will be incredible -- because she's such a selfish drama queen she'll pitch a destructive hissy-fit when she loses and her supporters will sit on their hands for the nominee.

__________

And here are my thoughts on it:

__________

There's another, darker aspect that we need to keep in mind, too: the folks who initiated the Tea Party did so by igniting and provoking the "Borg" of the radical right.

Those various bonfires have been steadily stoked and fed, all the while building a much larger supply of potential powder kegs made from smoke, mirrors, straw and excrement.

If the 'baggers feel they've been swindled out of having "their" victory (through the vagaries of fortune and a new mystical rite called 'Democracy'), they're likely to set themselves off.

It's like building a LEGO robot that moves by pogo stick, then steadily loading it with old sticks of dynamite and nitro, and tying it all to mercury-filled deadman's switch.

The GOP's lost sight of the controller for their ill-conceived LEGO robot-monster, and it's not going to be pretty.

And there may be far more unintended consequences, and casualties, than even the GOP's most stalwart murderers and thieves would be comfortable with.

__________

So, there you have it: the potential for the law of unexpected consequences to rear up and bite us all in collective ass.

What do you think? Please jump in and discuss with us in comments below.

 

To see this discussion at its original location, check out this thread at Pulling to the Left on DelphiForums. Feel free to jump in here, too -- the water's fine. -- GH

The New Meaning of 'Self-Sacrifice'

  • Posted on: 18 September 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

From Ashley Todd's self-inflicted backwards "B" to Beth Storro's self-inflicted acid attack, we have the beginning of a new "ABCs of Self-Sacrifice" for Jesus, for God and country.

All we need now to complete the set is some idiot with a name starting with "C" who claims to have dabbled in witchcraft and clearly can't tell the different between between witchcraft (which, in modern usage as a religion, generally refers to neopaganism) and satanism...

Oh, wait -- nevermind. It's a good thing Christine O'Donnell is such a strong spokeperson for the Tea Party and "values movement." She can quickly rise up through the ranks of Tea Party apostate and become a co-chair of Fantasyland with Sarah Palin, who has ~also~ dabbbled in "witchcraft" -- African witchcraft, in fact -- as part of her holy "Christian" background.

I'm sure America and the world would just love to see what kind of damage restoration these two wackos -- and all their friends -- have in store for us.

 

Reichwing Rug Rant Fail

  • Posted on: 5 September 2010
  • By: GreyHawk

Reichwing -- er, I mean "right-wing" -- crazies are up in arms again, this time making a stink about the recent renovation of the Oval Office. They've keyed in on one particular element, and apparently think it's as damning as any GOP hypocrisy. Nay, worse, in their minds.

The charge? That the a quote on the rug, attributed to Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King, isn't correctly attributed, and thus a subject for controversy. The hate-mongers on the right claim that the quote originates with nineteenth-century Unitarian minister, Theodore Parker.1 That claim isn't wholly without merit -- anyone who reads Parker's words can see that the quote draws upon the words and meaning of Parker's work.

But it is not a quotation from Parker's piece. It's a paraphrasing of his words, and a summation of the point made in a paragraph.

For those who can read and make actual judgements on their own, here are the words of King and the words of Parker for comparison, in the context in which they appeared.

King's use of the words, in context:

__________

"I come to say to you this afternoon, however difficult the moment, however frustrating the hour, it will not be long, because truth crushed to earth will rise again.

"How long? Not long, because no lie can live forever.

"How long? Not long, because you shall reap what you sow....

"How long? Not long, because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice."

__________

Parker's use of the words, in context:

__________

"I do not pretend to understand the moral universe; the arc is a long one, my eye reaches but little ways; I cannot calculate the curve and complete the figure by the experience of sight; I can divine it by conscience. And from what I see I am sure it bends towards justice."

__________

King paraphrased Parker's words, making it his own within the context of his speech and creating the actual quote "The arc of the universe is long, but it bends toward justice." That's King. It's what Parker was driving at, but compare the words -- King's quote is a summation, a paraphrasing and contraction of the point Parker was making. King made the words short and memorable, creating a quote in the process that can be attributed to his words, his context, and yet providing a hat-tip toward Parker's thoughts.

Parker made the point, but did not provide the quote.

Hat-tip Pilkington on DailyKos for providing and linking to both original quotes, thinkexist for the Parker quote and Arthur Howe on Salon for the King quote.

1 phrase identifying Parker's name and position taken from here.

 

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