Constitution 2.0: money talks and bullshit walks

Bad attitude and strange bedfellows at the dawn of the Reich, and What Would Hunter Do, anyway?

Ever since five members of the Supreme Court declared the Constitution unconstitutional yesterday morning I’ve been in something of a snit. Along the way, I’ve said a variety of things that struck me as insightful, pithy, even witty. Others, however – bitter, lonely misanthropic types simmering in their own humorless bile – seem to be finding me mostly snarky and cynical.

So here are a few samples. You be the judge. Assuming you’re a corporation with enough spare cash that your opinion matters, that is.

  • Early on, my S&R colleague Brian Angliss lamented that this is how democracy dies, or something to that effect. My reply: “From where I sit democracy has been dead for some time. This is more like vandals pulling over the headstone.” See? Wasn’t that clever? Continue reading

Take a tea partier to bed to save American democracy

Never thought I’d invite a member of the Tea Party to join political forces with me. But it’s going to take an odd and broad coalition of folks who comprise “We the People” to fight back against today’s U.S. Supreme Court action granting stunning new power to corporate America to buy our government. The Court, in a 5-4 decision, rolled back all limits on the rights of organizations to spend money to influence the outcome of federal elections.

Overturning key provisions of McCain-Feingold campaign finance law and flouting a century of precedent, the decision opens the floodgates to a torrent of spending by banks, insurance companies, energy companies, automakers, pharmaceutical manufacturers, chemical producers, agribusiness giants and media oligopolies — both domestic and foreign – to sway races by buying candidates. And to trash American democracy in the process. Continue reading

Oh Noes!!11! Glacirs not meltin. Mak IPCC bad!

In case you haven’t heard, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is dead, done in by the nefarious failure to check a single reference in a 3000 page report. Or rather, that’s what climate disruption deniers want you to think. Here’s what’s really going on.

Back in 2007, Working Group 2 (WG2) of the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) put together a large list of what climate disruption was likely to impact around the world. One of the impacts was reduced availability of fresh water due to rapidly melting glaciers around the world, and especially in the Himalayas. One of the specific claims was that all Himalayan glaciers could melt by 2035, an amazingly and likely unrealistically fast rate of melting. After an Indian government minister questioned this claim, scientists looked into it and found that the date was incorrect and that internal procedures for vetting references weren’t followed in this particular case. As as result, the IPCC has issued a formal statement of apology for the error.

And if this were about any other topic except climate disruption, that would be the end of it. Continue reading

The devil and me

So now that we have the domestic drama of “Kennedy’s seat” being lost and the Democratic Party proving that it’s brazenly incompetent and disastrously out of touch, the earthquake in Haiti can be moved below the fold. But before one of Bill Clinton’s friends gets a big wad of “aid” money to build new sweatshops in Haiti, there are a few things we should talk about.

Not only were we treated to the historically inaccurate (and frankly bat-shit insane) sweet nothings that Pat Robertson’s Warrior Jesus whispers in his ear. We’ve also had the good, Dr. Wesley Stafford – CEO and President of an organization called Compassion International – agree with Pat’s thesis. Theoretically, Dr. Stafford knows of what he speaks; his organization is very active in Haiti. It pairs tens of thousands of Haitian children with direct sponsors in the U.S. and is active throughout the nation.* On a recent Focus on the Family appearance, Dr. Stafford said, “Haiti … has been a disaster in almost every way long before this ever struck. And it is a nation, between you and me, I guess, that Satan has had absolutely free reign in that nation…”

Count me convinced, and we’ll get to David Brooks a little later on.
Continue reading