Saturday, April 28, 2012

Paul Ryan throws his idol Ayn Rand under the (most likely government funded) bus

Growing right wing celebrity, and boy genius, Paul Ryan has been having a pretty bad week. The other day he said his faith inspired his ultra right wing budget agenda. Certain high ranking officials of said faith said he's full of shit.

“Our problem with Representative Ryan is that he claims his budget is based on Catholic social teaching,” said Jesuit Father Thomas J. Reese, one of the organizers of the letter. “This is nonsense. As scholars, we want to join the Catholic bishops in pointing out that his budget has a devastating impact on programs for the poor.” [...]
“I am afraid that Chairman Ryan’s budget reflects the values of his favorite philosopher Ayn Rand rather than the gospel of Jesus Christ,” said Father Reese. “Survival of the fittest may be okay for Social Darwinists but not for followers of the gospel of compassion and love.”

 If you'll pardon the pun, Goddamn!

Since the Republicans, including Ryan, were complaining endlessly that disobeying the Bishops was tantamount to declaring war against religion itself, at least when it came to the issue of contraception, I was curious to see how Ryan would respond to this. I have to say, I was somewhat surprised:

I reject her philosophy [...] It’s an atheist philosophy. It reduces human interactions down to mere contracts and it is antithetical to my worldview. If somebody is going to try to paste a person’s view on epistemology to me, then give me Thomas Aquinas [...] Don’t give me Ayn Rand.
 I thought he was simply going to dismiss these Bishops as dirty commies, but no, he actually went ahead and disowned one of the most important figures that shaped his philosophy.

Now, many people have pointed out that Ryan has an amazing level of contempt for his followers, given that he's blatantly lying and hoping no one will notice. But while that deserves to be pointed out, I'm much more interested in what Ryan actually means when he says he "rejects her philosophy". When he says he "rejects her philosophy", is he just referring to the atheism portion? How does one "reject her philosophy" while still supporting a low tax, low regulation, safety net shredding budget that Rand herself would be ecstatic over?

As for being a fan of Thomas Aquinas? Ryan may want to pick another role model:

Things which are of human right cannot derogate from natural right or Divine right. Now according to the natural order established by Divine Providence, inferior things are ordained for the purpose of succoring man's needs by their means. Wherefore the division and appropriation of things which are based on human law, do not preclude the fact that man's needs have to be remedied by means of these very things. Hence whatever certain people have in superabundance is due, by natural law, to the purpose of succoring the poor. For this reason Ambrose [Loc. cit., 2, Objection 3] says, and his words are embodied in the Decretals(Dist. xlvii, can. Sicut ii): "It is the hungry man's bread that you withhold, the naked man's cloak that you store away, the money that you bury in the earth is the price of the poor man's ransom and freedom."  (Question 66, Article 7.)

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Breaking: Majority of troops donating to presidential campaigns hate the troops

I eagerly wait for Rushbo to report that a majority of the U.S. military has been infiltrated by Al Qaeda/Saul Alinsky operatives:

[I]n March, it was Obama that scooped up the most support from the armed forces — about twice as much as Paul, in fact. Romney remains an also-ran when it comes to backing from the military.
Overall, Paul retains the lead. Analysis of data shows that so far in this election cycle, members of the military who donated more than $200 have given Paul’s campaign about $333,134, versus $184,505 to Obama and just $45,738 to Romney.
But in March, Obama and Paul switched places. Members of the military sent $36,448 to Obama and just $17,733 to Paul. Even though Romney solidified his position as the presumptive Republican nominee, military donations to his campaign remained anemic — only $8,630.
Of course, it's only fair to point out that this doesn't necessarily mean that a majority of people in the armed forces vote or consider themselves democrats:

While recent polls show that roughly one-third of the public considers itself Republican, 57 percent of the active-duty military identified themselves with that party – with two-thirds of officers, compared to 49 percent of enlisted personnel, checking the Republican box.
Compared to 32 percent of the civilian public who described themselves as Democrats, only nine percent of military officers and 16 percent of enlisted personnel did so. Twenty-nine percent of the military respondents either said they were independent or declined to answer the question.
 I'd like to see a more recent poll  to compare (this one was conducted back in 2003), but I still think it's a safe bet to say that it would still favor the Republicans easily  Still, it's an interesting little nugget.

Oh, and hopefully Mr. Limbaugh doesn't go as easy on these phony soldiers as he did last time.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

This week in Bizarro World...

So I was just surfing the intranets, and I came across this comic on one of the message boards I frequent:

I really shouldn't be surprised at some of the (to quote a famous, batshit ex-presidential candidate) choots-pah that some wing nuts display, yet sadly I am. Here we have a comic that implies that the evil, socialist dictator, the same one who dreamed of subjugating the American people with socialized medicine, is in fact the one who wants to make cuts (and not the grandma loving Republicans) the biggest socialized medicine program in our history! Never mind that, those "cuts" are cuts to health care providers and not medicare beneficiaries. Also, never mind that Paul Ryan's budget - which nearly every Republican in congress and current Republican presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, supports wholeheartedly - would be the one that actually makes grandma-killing-level cuts in medicare.

Pesky little details like that aside, expect this moronic line of attack from the Republicans to continue from now until the election. It really would be nice if the so-called liberal media actually challenged such an accusation, but experience has shown that that's apparently too much work.

This really shouldn't be that difficult though. Medicare is 100% socialized medicine, run COMPLETELY by the government. Obamacare, on the other hand, despite how many times Sean Hannity says so, is NOT socialized medicine. It's a system where people who don't have insurance, are mandated to buy it from the PRIVATE sector. To say that Obama wants to cut a socialized medicine program to fund a private insurance program goes against the very image of Obama that the right wing has cultivated for the past four years. The thought of cutting medicare is a Republican's wet dream, not a Democrat's. They've been wanting to do this shit since 1960s, and it's time the media called these douchebags out on it.

Postscript: Additionally, as it has been mentioned already by others, but one other tiny, idiotic problem with this line of criticism is that these same Republicans are constantly blaming Obama for treating medicare as a sacred cow that can't ever be touched. You can't have it both ways, people.