Tuesday Reads: Evil is as Evil Does

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Good Morning!!!

I really don’t want this to turn into a mini version of my mom’s rants on “people are no damn good”  that I grew up hearing as frequently as some kids hear bed and supper time prayers.  However, it seems that some of the things I’m reading these days just cry out for mom’s mantra on the nature of humanity.  The last few days have seen a constant stream of evil on parade.

On Sunday, David Koch tried to convince ABC viewers that he wasn’t real “evil” because he actually was socially liberal.  Yeah, lot of good that does us when every National Park is timber and animal free, fresh water has been fracked into nonexistence, and every school in America never turns out another scientist.  Doesn’t this guy have enough money yet that he can just quit destroying the planet like some cartoon villain?

“I’m basically a libertarian and I’m a conservative on economic matters, and I’m a social liberal,” Koch responded.

Walters then asked Koch why he uses his wealth to elect socially conservative candidates if he supports gay rights and a woman’s right to choose.

“Well, that’s their problem. I do have those views,” he said.

“What I want these candidates to do is to support a balanced budget,” he added. “I’m very worried that if the budget is not balanced that inflation could occur and the economy of our country could suffer terribly.”

Asked whether he thought it was fair that he’s able to influence elections because of his vast wealth, Koch said that he obeys federal limits on how much he can contribute to individual candidates.

But Koch and his brother, Charles, also donate large sums to support the arts and other philanthropic causes. Walters asked why, then, Koch has developed a reputation as an “evil billionaire.”

“Well, I don’t understand that,” he said.

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Yeah, he sure has his priorities straight.  Fuck People. Fuck the Planet.  Fuck the Economy.  Just don’t fuck with my right to exploit every resource every where possible.

PolitiFact has named it’s Lie of the Year, 2014.  Yup, it’s the damned hyped-up exaggerations on Ebola just ready made to prime the outrage pump of dumb red state Americans.  Notice we heard nothing more about it once Fox News turned out its idiot viewership to let lose the plague of congressional republican locusts on the nation?

Yet fear of the disease stretched to every corner of America this fall, stoked by exaggerated claims from politicians and pundits. They said Ebola was easy to catch, that illegal immigrants may be carrying the virus across the southern border, that it was all part of a government or corporate conspiracy.

The claims — all wrong — distorted the debate about a serious public health issue. Together, they earn our Lie of the Year for 2014.

PolitiFact editors choose the Lie of the Year, in part, based on how broadly a myth or falsehood infiltrates conventional thinking. In 2013, it was the promise made by President Barack Obama and other Democrats that “If you like your health care plan, you can keep it.” While no singular line about Ebola matched last year’s empty rhetoric about health care, the statements together produced a dangerous and incorrect narrative.

PolitiFact and PunditFact rated 16 separate claims about Ebola as Mostly False, False or Pants on Fire on our Truth-O-Meter in 2014. Ten of those claims came in October, as Duncan’s case came to the fore and as voters went to the polls to select a new Congress.

The Northern White Rhino will likely go extinct in a few years because a lot of Chinese Men are worried about Dick Performance.  There are only five left now and they are all elderly and in Zoos and Reserves.   This just makes me want to cry and hate people.

A northern white rhino has died at a San Diego zoo, leaving only five worldwide and bringing the species closer to extinction.

Angalifu, 44, died of old age Sunday at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park.

San Diego Zoo Safari Park announced that Angalifu, one of six remaining northern white rhinos in the world, died Sunday.\nCredit: \tSan Diego Zoo/Helene Hoffman\n
San Diego Zoo Safari Park announced that Angalifu, one of six remaining northern white rhinos in the world, died Sunday. Credit: San Diego Zoo/Helene Hoffman

“With Angalifu’s passing, only five northern white rhinos are left on the planet, including Nola, our elderly female,” the zoo said in a statement.

He was one of a handful of northern white rhinos left worldwide, including a few at a wildlife conservancy in Kenya. There are no known northern white rhinos left in the wild.

Northern white rhinos and southern white rhinos are different subspecies genetically.

Last year, the International Union for Conservation of Nature declared the northern white rhino as “teetering on the brink of extinction.”

Rhinos are killed by poachers almost exclusively for their horns, which sell for tens of thousands of dollars.

Experts say that rhino horn is becoming more lucrative than drugs. The demand is driven primarily by buyers in East Asia, who believe it cures a series of ailments.

Meanwhile, pregnant women are being victimized by state laws and health officials that can’t seem to keep their religious views to themselves. A woman was placed in jail because of Wisconsin’s personhood law.  The woman’s not a person, but war-on-womenthe 14 week old fetus evidently is now and can be protected on the word of any religious hysteric that happens to be a nurse.  Here’s a story where the state put lives at risk out of the concern of religious zealots that believe that women can’t be trusted to be pregnant.  Here’s a story that violates every citizen’s right to privacy and every health care giver’s oath to do no harm.

Tamara Loerstcher was suffering from an untreated thyroid condition and depression and had begun to self medicate with drugs when, in late July 2014, she suspected she might also be pregnant. Loerstcher, uninsured at the time, went to an Eau Claire, Wisconsin, hospital for medical treatment and to confirm her pregnancy.

After submitting to a urinalysis, Loerstcher disclosed her past drug use to hospital workers. But instead of caring for Loerstcher, who as it turns out was 14 weeks pregnant, hospital workers had her jailed.

Those are the allegations in a soon-to-be-filed federal civil rights lawsuit by attorneys from National Advocates for Pregnant Women, the Carr Center for Reproductive Justice at New York University School of Law, and the Perkins Coie law firm.

Loerstcher and her attorneys, in a call with reporters, detailed her experience, including her alleged mistreatment by Wisconsin officials and the ongoing deprivation of Loerstcher’s constitutional rights under a Wisconsin law that grants authorities the power to involuntarily detain and confine a pregnant woman for substance use if she “habitually lacks self-control” and her substance use poses a “substantial risk” to the health of an egg, embryo, or fetus.

The Wisconsin policy is similar in nature to radical “personhood” laws pushed in state legislatures controlled by anti-choice lawmakers. “Personhood” amendments, which would outlaw abortion at any stage of pregnancy, were roundly rejected by voters in several states on Election Day.

According to Loertscher and her attorneys, unbeknownst to her, as hospital workers were preparing a prescription to treat Loertscher’s thyroid condition, they were also initiating unborn child protection proceedings on behalf of Loertscher’s then 14-week-old fetus.

Loertscher and her attorneys claim that within days of Loertscher seeking care, hospital workers had already turned over Loerstcher’s hospital records to the state without Loerstcher’s knowledge or consent. They also claim that with those records in hand, state officials filed a petition accusing Loerstcher of abuse of an unborn child and held a hearing in which the state had appointed an attorney, known as a guardian ad litem, for the 14-week-old fetus, but granted Loerstcher no meaningful representation.

At the hearing, Loertscher and her attorneys allege she was ordered by the court into in-patient treatment even though she had not used drugs recently and voluntarily sought medical care. When Loerstcher refused to go to in-patient treatment, she was held in contempt of court and sent to jail, where she was held for 17 days without prenatal care and subject to abuse and harassment.

“This was my first pregnancy, so I didn’t know what to expect,” Loerstcher told reporters. “I was having lots of cramping and a lot of stress from everything and they [jail officials] wouldn’t allow me to see the doctor. They told me I would have to see a jail-appointed doctor who told me she wanted me to take a pregnancy test to confirm the pregnancy even though that’s why I was in jail, because I was pregnant. They knew that’s why I was there.”

Loerstcher claims she refused the pregnancy test, and in response, correction officials put her in solitary confinement and threatened to use a taser on her. “The jail doctor told me if I chose to miscarry, there wasn’t anything they could do about it anyways,” Loertscher said through tears.

About a week after Loerstcher’s release, she says she got a notice in the mail from the state stating they had found she had engaged in child abuse.

“It was really devastating to get that letter,” said Loerstcher. Unless it’s overturned on appeal, Loerstcher’s name will appear on the state’s child abuse registry for life. That would mean Loerstcher, who is a certified nurse’s aid, would be unable to work in her field, noted her attorney, and that she would be barred from ever volunteering at her son’s school after he is born in January. “This has very serious ramifications for her life and economic stability long term,” said Sara Ainsworth, director of legal advocacy at the National Advocates for Pregnant Women and counsel for Loerstcher.

In order to be released from jail, Loertscher had to sign a consent decree agreeing to additional drug tests, so she remains under state custody to some extent, her lawyer said.

GOP and WomenMore evidence that Republicans can’t be trusted to govern as written by Steve Benen.   No idiot media seeking continual bipartisanship, there  simply is no Bipartisanship Santa.  A vote for a Republican is a vote for a destroyed economy, a destroyed ecosystem, a destroyed school system, and a lot of disenfranchised Americans who will have their rights stripped away quickly.

Just one month later, there’s already ample evidence that those assumptions about Republican maturity were completely wrong.
Republican Tom Price, the incoming House Budget Committee chairman, said his party could demand steep spending cuts in exchange for raising the debt ceiling next year, the most provocative comments by a senior GOP member to date on how negotiations could play out. I think the only ones to benefit from this are the best credit repair companies and banks.
The Georgia congressman, during an hour-long briefing with reporters Friday, said the expected mid-2015 debate over whether to raise or suspend the debt ceiling offered Republicans an opportunity to make a sizable imprint on government policy.
The far-right Georgian added that he wants to see Republicans bring back the so-called “Boehner rule” – an arbitrary policy that demands a dollar in cuts for every dollar increase in the debt limit – that even Republicans recognized as ridiculous a couple of years ago.
“I prefer to think about it as opportunities and pinch points,” Price said, apparently using “pinch points” as a euphemism for “causing deliberate national harm.”
It’s worth emphasizing that Price isn’t some random, fringe figure, shouting from the sidelines – the Georgia Republican next month will fill Paul Ryan’s shoes as chairman of the House Budget Committee.
In other words, it matters that Price envisions a strategy in which Republicans threaten to hurt Americans on purpose unless Democrats meet the GOP’s demands.
That said, Price would be wise to start lowering expectations – his intention to create a deliberate crisis will almost certainly fail.
The gist of the plan is effectively identical to the scheme hated by House Republicans in 2011. Next year, the Treasury Department will alert Congress to the fact that it’s time to borrow the funds necessary to pay for the things Congress has already bought. As Price sees it, the GOP-led Congress will tell the Obama administration, “We’ll cooperate, but only if you slash public investments. If not, we’ll default on our debts, crash the economy, and destroy the full faith and credit of the United States.”
Why Price or anyone else would want to slash public investments right now – hurting the economy, just as the recovery gains steam – is a bit of a mystery.

No conversation on evil can forget Dick Cheney. I’m not sure how close you’ve been following the Dick Cheney Torture-rama Press tour, but it’s pretty disgusting.  I’m usually not up for Conor Friedersdorf, but even he thinks Cheney’s an Evil Dickhead.  Cheney’s interview with Chuck Todd on Sunday was like watching one of those mad scientist movies.

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That exchange leaves no room for mistaking former vice-president Cheney’s position: better to chain a man to the wall of a cell, douse him in cold water, and leave him there to freeze to death, even if he later turns out to be innocent, than to release that same man and risk not that he detonates a nuclear bomb in Manhattan, but that he ends up “on the battlefield,” where there’s a chance he could harm Americans. What if fully one-in-four prisoners tortured by the CIA were innocent?

Cheney is still unmoved:

CHUCK TODD:

Is that too high? You’re okay with that margin for error?

DICK CHENEY:

I have no problem as long as we achieve our objective.

The ends justify the means.

There is no clearer illustration of the morally corrosive nature of torture than the once unthinkable position that Dick Cheney is unashamedly espousing on television. The position is even less defensible than the conceit that the Office of Legal Counsel defines what torture is. It is so indefensible that Cheney himself can scarcely maintain it.

You have to wonder where you measure on the vast barometer of human sewage if Conor Friedersorf won’t defend your evil ass as a former Republican ‘Conservative” Vice President.

Jon Stewart for the win, however.  “Puppet Master Cheney’s mind” is “the scariest fucking place in the universe.” 

“George W. Bush, thank you for not dying while you were in office,” Stewart said to the former president.

When pressed by Todd to explain his definition of torture following the release of a Senate report criticizing the CIA’s “enhanced interrogation” procedures, Cheney continually defined torture as the events of the 9/11 attacks.

“I see — that’s just what meets the definition of torture in his mind,” Stewart said. “His mind, I assume, being the scariest f*cking place in the universe.”

Stewart then tried to get a peek inside the “presidential puppet master’s” mind, only to find a scene out of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic.

“Never took him for a brony,” Stewart observed.

What set Cheney apart, Stewart explained, was his ability to set the “moral bar” for the U.S. at anything just shy of the worst thing that had been done to the country, as well as his confidence.

“He’s impervious to doubt,” Stewart said. “It never enters his mind that the confident, plain-spoken pronouncements of truth are often times complete bullsh*t.”

shutterstock_101263915-800x430There, name that republican presidential candidate for 2016 over in that line up.  Whichever one gets on the ballot, there will be a Koch entering his backside. My guess is that he’ll have Dick Cheney on the campaign trail for him too.

 And, yes, David Koch is Evil.  Amanda Marcotte gets it right.

Here’s the thing about men like David Koch: Making money is basically just a video game to them. For the rest of us, making money is about being able to pay for things we need and want, such as rent and food and actual video games. But David Koch has made so much money that he literally cannot spend it all. There is nothing he would want to buy he cannot already afford. The only purpose at this point in making more money is for the pleasure of beating your high score. In other words, it really is just a very consuming video game. But unlike when you kill people in Call of Duty or crush candies in Candy Crush, the game David Koch is playing is very real. Millions of people will suffer and die because he wants to “win” his video game by manipulating the public to avoid taking action on global warming. That is evil and hateful and selfish on a level that puts the word “selfish” to shame.

And no, being pro-choice and pro-gay doesn’t make up for it. That’s like having a hobby of strangling kittens and then saying it’s all good because you donate clothes to Goodwill once in awhile. Worse, actually, because David Koch isn’t actually pro-choice in any meaningful sense, because he gives money to anti-choice activists, as documented by Adele Stan at RH Reality CheckThe Koch brothers give money to right wing umbrella groups, who then give it to anti-choicers. Why is fairly obvious. This is about manipulating misogynist, anti-sex hysteria in order to elect politicians who are on board with the anti-environmentalist agenda. A manipulation that is, in itself, evil on a couple of levels, both because you’re manipulating people and because you’re engaging bad people who have bad motivations to hurt and control others. It’s terrible, hateful behavior all the way down.

With that, I’ll leave you to grade papers.  I’m pretty sick of humanity at the moment and I do not understand how any one with a will to survive could vote Republican anymore.

Anyway, I dare y’all to find good news today.  Please!!!


37 Comments on “Tuesday Reads: Evil is as Evil Does”

  1. bostonboomer says:

    The story about that poor pregnant woman in Wisconsin is horrifying. The fetus gets a lawyer and advocate and the pregnant woman gets no representation at all. She’s put in jail where her jailers are permitted to threaten harm to the fetus. It’s beyond belief, but it’s reality. I can’t believe this is happening in America.

    • I know BB, it made me ill to read it. And Dak is right, Koch is like one of those evil villains in the comic books. Cheney is the Dark Lord, no question.

      • dakinikat says:

        I put up her entire story rather than just excerpt it because there is just so much wrong with what they did to her it was hard to leave anything out.

    • Pat Johnson says:

      This is what happens when the “crazies” take over the world. The genesis is “religion” and a belief in the supernatural who supposedly leaves “messages” to these people as they carry out “god’s will” to the extreme.

    • dakinikat says:

      And were talking a 14 week fetus that she could abort without question too so she technically would be blocked from exercising her constitutional rights. I hope that she sues the shit out of all parties.

      • NW Luna says:

        That story is appalling. Health care professionals should care for the woman. A fetus is not a person. And don’t they understand that if a pregnant woman is in good health, that will help her fetus also?

        We’ll be back to having poorhouses again. Vote Republican and turn the country back 2 centuries.

        • dakinikat says:

          This is a good reason why my daughter took her Ob/Gyn practice to Washington State. She said she didn’t want to have to deal with making life or death decisions based on whatever religious craziness the state decided to pass.

    • ANonOMouse says:

      It’s disgraceful how pregnant women in many states are seen only as incubators. The personhood movement needs to stomped out like a roach.

  2. Pat Johnson says:

    It certainly is beyond my limited comprehension why anyone would vote for the GOP.

    “We want to take the fillings from your back teeth while we are at it,! You would have to be braindead to agree but this is exactly what is happening out there thanks to these morons who view “progress” as a dirty word. Helped along by Barack “I had no other choice but to bend over” Obama the last 6 years have been nothing but stupidity all around.

    And what spells “satisfaction” to the Koch’s? Owning every dime on the planet? When is enough enough? Apparently being “hailed” as a billionaire isn’t quite enough unless the planet itself becomes useless, the air contaminated by carbon, the drinking water unsafe, and the food chain is disrupted by forever digging. This maybe when they say “we’ve won!”

    I woke up this morning to find that my city council has voted to increase my property taxes! For someone on a fixed income this does not come as “good news”. Oh, and our local food banks are begging for contributions this holiday season because donations are drying up.

    Merry Christmas to the Koch family and those “greedy guts” just like them who will never have to worry where their next meal will come from.

    It’s all good!

  3. Fannie says:

    Looks like Camille has been hitting the stories about Jackie, and decided to hitch hike on the Rolling Stone retracting the truth. I feel for her, but here is what she says, WHO IS THE VICTIM……….her husband. Nothing about the 2005 stories from women, and those that settled with her husband. She forgets about that.

    http://jezebel.com/camille-cosby-releases-statement-comparing-cosby-allega-1671434064

    • bostonboomer says:

      Sadly, she is an object of pity at this point. She’s so deep in denial that she seems to be losing touch with reality.

      • Fannie says:

        Agreed, wanted to post Morning Joe, who’s seems to think the media needs to better vet assault claims. WTF? Oh, file this under arts and entertainment.

      • Pat Johnson says:

        I wish I could “feel sorry” for her but I don’t. She knows, at least from 2005, what he was capable of when he opted to settle that molestation claim. This should come as no surprise to her.

        If she is planning to “stick by” him then she should refrain from making statements that cast him in the role of “victim”.

        Better yet, follow the example of Elin Woods who threw Tiger to the curb after chasing his sorry butt with a golf club!

  4. bostonboomer says:

    I just want to put this here in case Janicen doesn’t see my comment on the Monday post.

    {{{{Janicen}}}}

    I’m so sorry if I hurt your feelings. You are very special to me and to this blog. I always appreciate your positive point of view and I’m sorry for the sarcastic “humor” in my post yesterday.

  5. NW Luna says:

    Handwriting vs typing

    Computers may dominate our lives, but mastery of penmanship brings us important cognitive benefits, research suggests ….

    In a paper published in April in the journal Psychological Science, two US researchers, Pam Mueller and Daniel Oppenheimer, claim that note-taking with a pen, rather than a laptop, gives students a better grasp of the subject.

    The study focused on more than 300 students at Princeton and the University of California, Los Angeles. It suggested that students who took longhand notes were better able to answer questions on the lecture than those using a laptop. For the scientists, the reason is clear: those working on paper rephrased information as they took notes, which required them to carry out a preliminary process of summarising and comprehension; in contrast, those working on a keyboard tended to take a lot of notes, sometimes even making a literal transcript, but avoided what is known as “desirable difficulty”.

  6. dakinikat says:

    Just what this country needs, another Bush CIA operative/NeoCon

    Jeb Bush announcing today his exploratory campaign for President in 2016.

    http://time.com/3635737/jeb-bush-announces-presidential-exploratory-run/

  7. dakinikat says:

    Backlash brewing over prayer rally Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal planning at LSU; religious group planning event opposes gay marriage, other rights efforts

    http://theadvocate.com/news/11102407-123/backlash-brewing-over-prayer-rally

  8. bostonboomer says:

    Sandy Hook was horrendous, but imagine 132 children killed in one school. My God!

    http://www.smh.com.au/world/taliban-attack-on-pakistan-school-how-one-boy-survived-20141216-128o0c.html

  9. dakinikat says:

    I totally could see my mother doing this in her heyday

    ‘Oh God It’s Mom’: Brother Operatives Get Surprise C-SPAN Caller

    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/woodhouse-mother-calls-c-span

  10. This is something, after the prosecutor discredited all the “dark” witnesses for lying: Report: Darren Wilson’s Key Witness Lied About Everything Read it it is something.

  11. dakinikat says:

    Fired Hill Aide Sues Over Gender Discrimination, Hostile Workplace

    Read more: http://www.nationallawjournal.com/id=1202679199549/Fired-Hill-Aide-Sues-Over-Gender-Discrimination-Hostile-Workplace#ixzz3M6Ddkkx1

    A former staffer in the office of U.S. Rep. Blake Farenthold, R-Tex., is suing her old workplace alleging she was illegally fired in a sexually-charged environment after she complained about mistreatment.
    Lauren Greene, who had served as Farenthold’s new media director and then communications director, alleges her former boss “regularly drank to excess” and once told his executive assistant he had “sexual fantasies” about Greene.
    Those fantasies, Greene’s lawsuit says, created what she perceived as a mutual awkwardness in which neither person seemed eager for one-on-one meetings. Still, Farenthold, according to the complaint, “regularly made comments designed to gauge whether [Greene] was interested in a sexual relationship.”

    Yes… it’s another family values republican pervert!!!

  12. bostonboomer says:

    Second graders in Massachusetts peacefully protested police shootings during recess. One girl’s father is a cop and got upset because it was “anti-cop.” Notes had been sent to parents telling them there was going to be a lesson about Michael Brown and Eric Garner, and they could have opted out.

    http://abcnews.go.com/US/graders-ferguson-protest-sparks-controversy/story?id=27634646

  13. Sima says:

    Bwahahahahahahahaha. I’d say I’m sorry for the police chief but… hahahahahahahaha. Clean up your department! (this is in reply to Dak’s comment about the NYPD 3 star police chief. My comment didn’t post in the right place, apparently)