At last year's CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conference) event, the keynote speaker was Rush "I hope Obama fails" Limbaugh. This year's is Glenn "Obama is a racist" Beck. Who are the real leaders of the conservative movement? Clearly not any of their politicians. This party is turning to hate tv/radio hosts while their fired up listeners and viewers have turned into rabid dogs who no longer fear showing bigotry and hatred. In fact, they seem to be "out and proud." What is in our future when the most angry are the anti-intellectual crowd who are enthused enough to show up and vote? I hope Democrats are paying attention and Independents don't allow themselves to be lulled into a false sense of responsible policy. Don't for one minute buy into Republicans are for smaller government. That is a myth that the Democrats need to start literally proving to the people. Taking the high road in politics will never again be a possibility. Just ask John Kerry.
We got some interesting little tidbits this week from CPAC. I'm going to run down a list of some of the more interesting one's. Former Massachusetts short term governor Mitt Romney claimed among other thing's that the Bush record wasn't all that bad compared to the current president's. "I am convinced that history will judge President Bush far more kindly -- he pulled us from a deepening recession following the attack of 9-11, he overcame teachers unions to test school children and evaluate schools, he took down the Taliban, waged a war against the jihadists and was not afraid to call it what it is -- a war. And he kept us safe." Let's see where I disagree...oh yeah, all of it. I would like some kind of evidence where he pulled us out of a recession after 9/11. Anyone got anything? All "No Child Left Behind" did was force schools to push kids through that weren't necessarily ready. The schools became more concerned with their own evaluations rather than the students. He took down the Taliban? Really? Why hasn't this bombshell been on the news? What does Willard know that the rest of us don't? More nonsense being suggested that Obama doesn't call our military occupations -- war (totally proven to be false) and my very favorite...Bush kept us safe...except for that one really, really big time and a few smaller one's that no one really remembers...at least no one who get's all their information from Fox News.
Tim Pawlenty didn't want to go unnoticed, so on the day Tiger Woods spoke at his apologetic press conference, TimmyPaw remarked, "I think we should take a page out of her [Elin Wood] playbook and take a nine iron and smash a window out of big government in this country." Do these guys ever outgrow junior high humor? They probably fart in public and insinuate it was someone else just for laughs.
Florida wannabe senator Marco Rubio (R)said, "The president couldn’t find anywhere to set up a teleprompter to announce new taxes,” while he was reading off of a teleprompter. This "Obama uses a teleprompter" thing is so friggin' old already. Name the last president or politician who didn't use one. I think the thing that drives me crazy is the dummies who actually think that both Bush's, Reagan, Palin, Bachmann and the rest of their hero's speak off the cuff...well, I guess in Palin's case, it's true.
Erick Erickson, editor-in-chief of the conservative RedState.com blog, offered up some honesty while discussing the right wing's infrastructure when he noted, "We've got Fox News." It's not like it's a secret, but they're now getting brazen enough to admit it.
As Human Events editor Jed Babbin introduced Grover Norquist, he quipped, "And let me just say, I'm really happy to see Grover today. He was getting a little testy in the past couple of weeks. And I was just really, really glad that it was not him identified as flying that airplane into the IRS building." Seriously? They couldn't even wait until the IRS building in Austin stopped smoking? How do you joke about a terrible event sparked by an unstable man which caused several injuries and two fatalities, including the pilot...just one day later to boot? Don't forget, these people call themselves compassionate conservatives. Way to stay classy, conservative movement.
One surprising thing happened at CPAC. When California Young Americans for Freedom’s Ryan Sorba launched into a denunciation of the conference for inviting GOProud, he was roundly booed off the stage. In response to jeers following his initial screed, Sorba said, "the lesbians at Smith College protest better than you do." Way to go Smith College, you've been in the limelight twice this week! This one positive reaction by the crowd does not for a second make me think of amending the title to this blog entry.
The crowd chanted, "Run, Dick Run" when Dick Cheney was introduced by daughter Liz. The pair took turns with their usual anti-Obama rhetoric. You know the one's, he doesn't keep us safe, he's a socialist, he's a one term president, yadda, yadda, yadda. Were these people seriously hibernating from January 2001-January 2009? I have no other explanation as to their rational for wanting to return to the good ol' days of the Bush-Cheney Dictatorship. I'm not on board with everything Obama has done, it's the difference with our side, we don't march lock step. However, to think the current state of affairs is in any way Obama's fault is just plain ridiculous. In my opinion, if Obama would put Elizabeth Warren in charge of everything financially culpable to our government and let her make the decisions without getting in the way, we'd be on our way to a solid long-lasting recovery! She has been the only one consistently making sense out of this whole financial debacle.
Rachel Maddow who was in D.C. for a Library of Congress event decided to take in CPAC while she was in town. She was accosted from a guy who literally got into her face, got somewhat physically threatening and threw literature at her (To Keep Our Honor Clean: We Must Oppose the Homosexual Agenda for the Military). She said, Thank you. Who are you? and he yelled in her face, "We're normal people, what about you?" As Rachel stated on her show, "He did not in fact seem like normal people, but more specifically he was from an organization called Tradition, Family and Property whose booth I sought out later. They say that it would be unclean to have gay people in the military - and they have this neato gold Welsh looking crest." Except for that one creepy individual, Rachel said everyone was very nice to her. I still find it amazing that these people don't understand that gay people are already serving. Removing DADT isn't about allowing gay people to join the military, it's about letting them continue to serve even if someone finds out they're gay! I don't understand how they're missing that fact!
Mr. Everyman, Glenn Beck with trusty chalkboard along side, gave his keynote speech Saturday evening. Among his claims: He said, "The progressives are a cancer to our society." He used some pretty deceptive "historical" information to back up his misinformation. Did you know Herbert Hoover was really a progressive? How can you even spin that claim? He had percentages of various claims all over his trusty chalkboard. This is another case of taking one of the worst president's in history and trying to chain him to our side. The Beckerheads in the audience don't know any better and certainly aren't going to do a fact check. Did you know you have the right to "pursue" happiness, but you do not have a right to health care or housing? In Glenn's world, his pursuit of happiness is complete. He lies for a living and is very well paid for it. The health care opinion didn't surprise me, but the housing one sure did! Funny how he didn't tie any crime statistics to his uneven rhetoric about homelessness on his chalkboard. Did you also know the progressive tax rate is a bad thing? He got a standing ovation and a huge roar from the crowd for that one. He's making $23M per year and they're making a bit less than that! What is wrong with people? They not only vote against their own best interest, they're cheering an entertainer for telling them they're stupid! I guess having a modern infrastructure isn't important to a group of people who look back wistfully on the 50's. Speaking of going back in time, he compared the 20's to now, saying that it was a great time because that's when the middle class was made, failing to mention how they were exploited by their employers. He also failed to mention that in the 20's, African Americans, recent immigrants, farmers and a large part of the working class population lived below the poverty line of $2,000 per year per family. He was correct saying it was the decade of radios, motion pictures and cars becoming more affordable with mass production. However, to combat the exploitation of those same workers, the UAW for example, was eventually founded in May 1935. Manufacturing and "gasp" unions are what actually made the middle class. Conservative Republicans have been methodically destroying them ever since. Furthermore the comparison is void, we still made stuff then, we don't now. We now have unfavorable trade policies and a global economy. He also got a huge cheer for saying he took one class in college before dropping out. After telling everyone he didn't care about their personal story, he told his. We know he was a drunken, drug addict whose first wife left him, blah, blah, blah. I'll give him one thing, the misinformation he hands out to support his point of view doesn't seem to wear on his conscience at all.
Finally, Ann Coulter called Keith Olbermann a girl (amongst several other anti-liberal, anti-Democrat remarks). That's fine, he's just as much a girl as Coulter used to be! Not that there's anything wrong with being a transgender Ann (or is it really Arthur?). I really don't care about that stuff, but this is arguably the most hateful, vile public personality at this time. You reap what you sow.