Thank Gozer It’s Friday Open Thread


Obama is off schmoozing and fundraising. Why should he be the only one having any fun? It’s a 3-day weekend!


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Obama States The Obvious

President Obama speaks on the situation in Ukraine

ABC News:

President Obama admitted today that his administration does not yet have a strategy to combat the militant Islamic group ISIS that has seized large chunks of Iraq and Syria.

When the president was asked if he would seek Congressional approval for U.S. attacks on ISIS targets in Syria, he responded, “I don’t want to put the cart before the horse. We don’t have a strategy yet.”

It’s been obvious for a while that Obama doesn’t have a strategy. He doesn’t have a clue either.

Following his remarks, Obama convened a meeting with the National Security Council in the Situation Room, with Vice President Joe Biden, Kerry, and several senior military advisors.

Since video emerged Aug. 19 showing the beheading of American journalist James Foley, Obama has fought back against fresh criticism of his foreign policy, promising to be “relentless” in his fight against the emerging threat posed by ISIS.

Obama, Biden and Kerry – now there’s the foreign policy dream team from hell. How did someone so clueless get to be our commander in chief? I think I know.

Contrary to the fevered paranoid fantasies of the far, far right, Obama is not some Manchurian Muslim candidate who was groomed by powerful and shadowy forces to turn America into an Islamic nation. The answer is much simpler.

First of all, Obama is incredibly arrogant. The “H” in “BHO” stands for “hubris”. If Obama was merely ignorant that wouldn’t be as bad. Especially when it comes to Muslims, Obama thinks he knows more than everyone else because of his childhood and college experiences in Indonesia and Pockistan.

Although stating the truth about Obama’s Muslim roots was deemed racist during the 2008 primary and general election, Obama later admitted he attended a mosque his stepfather, Lolo Soetoro, and had gone to a Muslim school for two years. Later, while in college, Obama traveled to Pockistan with his roommate, a member of a wealthy family from Karachi.

This information didn’t come from Infowars or WND, it comes from ABC News:

At a fundraiser in San Francisco, Ca., Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., claimed he had more world experience than his rivals, Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and introduced a new bit of biographical information.
“Foreign policy is the area where I am probably most confident that I know more and understand the world better than Senator Clinton or Senator McCain,” Obama said, according to the Huffington Post.

“It’s ironic because this is supposedly the place where experience is most needed to be Commander-in-Chief. Experience in Washington is not knowledge of the world. This I know. When Senator Clinton brags ‘I’ve met leaders from eighty countries’ — I know what those trips are like! I’ve been on them. You go from the airport to the embassy. There’s a group of children who do native dance. You meet with the CIA station chief and the embassy and they give you a briefing. You go take a tour of a plant that [with] the assistance of USAID has started something. And then — you go.”

“You do that in eighty countries,” Obama said, “You don’t know those eighty countries. So when I speak about having lived in Indonesia for four years, having family that is impoverished in small villages in Africa –knowing the leaders is not important — what I know is the people…I traveled to Pakistan when I was in college — I knew what Sunni and Shia was [sic] before I joined the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.”

This last part — a college trip to Pakistan — was news to many of us who have been following the race closely. And it was odd that we hadn’t hear about it before, given all the talk of Pakistan during this campaign.

So I asked the Obama campaign for more information.

Apparently, according to the Obama campaign, In 1981 — the year Obama transferred from Occidental College to Columbia University — Obama visited his mother and sister Maya in Indonesia. After that visit, Obama traveled to Pakistan with a friend from college whose family was from there. The Obama campaign says Obama was in Pakistan for about three weeks, staying with his friend’s family in Karachi and also visiting Hyderabad in Southern India.

Why is this important?

Obama’s childhood and college experience with Islam qualifies him to understand the Arab world the way someone who attended Sunday school when they were 6 and 7 and then spent a couple weeks in church camp as a teenager is qualified to understand the conflict in Northern Ireland.

Now add to this the years that Obama spent in the pews at Trinity United Church listening to the anti-Semitic views of Jeremiah Wright and hanging around with people like Rashid Khalidi and the anti-Israel/pro-Palestine Left of Chicago.

Total it all up and you have an arrogant prick who doesn’t have a clue standing up in front of the country while wearing an ugly suit and admitting he doesn’t have a strategy for dealing with an existential threat to Western civilization.

He doesn’t have a strategy or a clue for dealing with Russia either. So what is he doing about it?

The President will hit three fund-raisers over the holiday weekend and squeeze in some playtime at the wedding of the Obama family’s personal chef, Sam Kass, and his bride, MSNBC host Alex Wagner.

Permanent Vacation

Permanent Vacation

Posted in Barack Obama, Worst President Ever! | Tagged , | 139 Comments

The NFL’s New Domestic Violence Policy and the Law of Unintended Consequences


USA Today:

NFL toughens its stance on domestic violence

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell admits he was wrong on the Ray Rice decision, and Goodell took an important step Thursday towards showing the league is serious about cracking down on domestic violence as well as sexual assault.

In a lengthy letter sent to every NFL owner on Thursday, Goodell announced enhanced policies and discipline under the personal conduct policy that will result in a six-game suspension for a first offense related to domestic violence or sexual assault and an indefinite ban for a second offense committed by any NFL personnel.

Goodell drew major criticism since the announcement last month that Rice, the Baltimore Ravens running back, would be suspended just two games for striking his then-fiancee at a New Jersey casino and being caught on camera dragging her unconscious body out of an elevator.

“We allowed our standards to fall below where they should be and lost an important opportunity to emphasize our strong stance on a critical issue and the effective programs we have in place,” Goodell wrote in the letter to owners.

“My disciplinary decision led the public to question our sincerity, our commitment, and whether we understood the toll that domestic violence inflicts on so many families. I take responsibility both for the decision and for ensuring that our actions in the future properly reflect our values. I didn’t get it right. Simply put, we have to do better. And we will.”

Goodell’s letter also says the league’s response to domestic violence or sexual assault “will include new elements of evaluation, treatment and family support, as well as enhanced discipline. We will address these issues fairly and thoughtfully, respecting the rights of all involved and giving proper deference to law enforcement and the courts.”

Call me cynical, but I suspect that Goodell’s decision had more to do with public relations than it did with any genuine concern with domestic violence and sexual assault.

I don’t know of anyone who thinks domestic violence and sexual assault are okay. I want to make clear that I am not defending either one. But being against domestic violence does not make this new policy a good idea.

For example, wouldn’t a lifetime ban punish the wives and children of NFL personnel too? Knowing that your husband and the father of your kids will have his earning potential destroyed puts those women between a rock and a hard place.

I have other concerns as well, mostly having to do with proof and due process. Can a player still be suspended if no charges are filed? What if a player is banned for life and then acquitted by a jury? What about the effect of domestic violence diversion programs?

Last but not least, are domestic violence and sexual assault really a problem in the NFL, or is this just a knee-jerk reaction to a single incident?

The problem with reactive policies and laws is they end up invoking the Law of Unintended Consequences.

Posted in Domestic Violence, Klown Musings, NFL Football | Tagged , , | 75 Comments

#Truthy: a scheme out Goebbel’s Christmas Wish List

This story was mentioned in the comments a couple of days ago:

From the tweeted link:

In the future the Truthy research team hope that the public will use the tool to report on other Twitter users.

More coverage:
Twitter data to track social pollution

Researcher at the Indiana University created the “Truthy” database to track the political smears, misinformation, and other social pollution. So far, the University has been granted $919,917 for the project.

The major aim of creating this database from Twitter is to identify the creators of the memes, whether they are professional political activist or regular internet users. According to Truthy “About” page, content spread by the shady machinery of high-profile congressional campaigns is an example of the political daub spreading the misinformation and other social pollution. The core idea of this project would be the identification and containment of such content. Truthy is capable of identifying the false and misleading ideas, hate speech and the dissident propaganda, thereby encouraging open debate.

Seems to be working:

Posted in 2014 Elections, Big Brother is Watching, Department Of You Can't Make This Shit Up, Domestic Spying, Freedom of Speech, Politics | Tagged , | 91 Comments

Recurring Dream Poll

Let us explore our dark and twisted collective psyches.
For fun.

(Check as many as apply to you.)

Open thread.

Posted in Uncategorized | 136 Comments

Golf Clap – Obama Bombs at the American Legion

This is what happens when Obama ventures outside his Potemkin bubble of sycophants:

Tepid clapping greets unpopular Obama’s VA speech at American Legion convention in his first speech to group since 2011

President Barack Obama faced a tough crowd on Tuesday – American military veterans – and fell flat on his applause lines as he failed to win over the American Legion’s convention-goers.

His 35-minute speech seemed to have reminded the audience of the stark divide between the White House’s policy choices and the feelings of the men and women often called on to carry them out.

A Virginia legionnaire who served in the U.S. Marine Corps told MailOnline that ‘a small group of Obama’s admirers – and there are some here – sat near the front and tried to generate applause for him about 10 times.’

‘They didn’t get much pickup,’ the retired lieutenant colonel said of the ‘instigators’ gathered at the Charlotte, North Carolina event, but ‘they were persistent. You could tell when the applause was genuine and when it wasn’t. It was obvious to everyone here.’

Most of the veterans sat on their hands, leaving awkward silences where White House speechwriters expected ovations.

‘Some of these guys – well, most of them – remember that Obama sent Biden to speak to us last year in Houston, and blew us off entirely during his 2012 campaign.’

That year, the president sent a 3-minute video message instead of coming to Indianapolis. Mitt Romney, his Republican rival, flew 1,000 miles to speak in person.
The veteran asked MailOnline to conceal his identity. ‘I don’t need that kind of trouble,’ he said. ‘I work for a government contractor.’

After the customary introductions and thank-yous to dignitaries, Obama spoke for nearly eight full minutes on Tuesday without a single clap.

He touted his foreign policy bona fides, boasting that ‘even countries that criticize us – when the chips are down and they need help, they know who to call. They call us. That’s what American leadership looks like.’


‘Sustaining our leadership, keeping America strong and secure, means we have to use our power wisely,’ Obama cautioned, in keeping with his slow approach to battling ISIS and other terror groups overseas.

‘History teaches us of the dangers of overreaching and spreading ourselves too thin, and trying to go it alone without international support, or rushing into military adventures without thinking through the consequences.’



If I was one of the White House spin doctors I would probably point out that the American Legion is older, whiter and more conservative than average, and it is a male-dominated organization. I’m surprised that Obama didn’t just blow them off completely.

Poor Barry, he has never done well outside of his comfort zone. Without of crowd of people cheering and chanting his name he seems lost and confused.

Yesterday’s speech was a far cry from this:

Obama’s finest speeches do not excite. They do not inform. They don’t even really inspire. They elevate. They enmesh you in a grander moment, as if history has stopped flowing passively by, and, just for an instant, contracted around you, made you aware of its presence, and your role in it. He is not the Word made flesh, but the triumph of word over flesh, over color, over despair. The other great leaders I’ve heard guide us towards a better politics, but Obama is, at his best, able to call us back to our highest selves, to the place where America exists as a glittering ideal, and where we, its honored inhabitants, seem capable of achieving it, and thus of sharing in its meaning and transcendence.

That was Ezra Klein back on January 4th, 2008. I never saw what Ezra saw.

Apparently, neither did the American Legion.


Posted in Barack Obama, Worst President Ever! | Tagged , | 72 Comments

Totes Stupid Tuesday


This wasn’t the post I was gonna write.

Tara Culp-Ressler at ThinkProgress:

Why Rape Prevention Activists Don’t Like The New Nail Polish That Can Detect Roofies

A group of four college students is taking the media by storm with the development of an innovative nail polish that can detect date rape drugs that have been slipped into young women’s drinks. While the new product has captured its fair share of headlines over the past week, sexual assault prevention advocates warn that it’s not necessarily the best way to approach the sexual assault epidemic on college campuses.

Four male students at North Carolina State University have created a nail polish that changes color when it comes into contact with several common drugs intended to incapacitate victims. According to the undergrads, their goal is to “invent technologies that empower women to protect themselves from this heinous and quietly pervasive crime.” Although the product isn’t available yet, their Facebook page has already been flooded with positive responses from people who can’t wait to give it a try.


“I think that anything that can help reduce sexual violence from happening is, in some ways, a really good thing,” Tracey Vitchers, the board chair for Students Active For Ending Rape (SAFER), told ThinkProgress. “But I think we need to think critically about why we keep placing the responsibility for preventing sexual assault on young women.”

Women are already expected to work hard to prevent themselves from becoming the victims of sexual assault. They’re told to avoid wearing revealing clothing, travel in groups, make sure they don’t get too drunk, and always keep a close eye on their drink. Now, remembering to put on anti-rape nail polish and discretely slip a finger into each drink might be added to that ever-growing checklist — something that actually reinforces a pervasive rape culture in our society.

“One of the ways that rape is used as a tool to control people is by limiting their behavior,” Rebecca Nagle, one of the co-directors of an activist group called FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture that challenges the societal norms around sexual assault, explained. “As a woman, I’m told not to go out alone at night, to watch my drink, to do all of these things. That way, rape isn’t just controlling me while I’m actually being assaulted — it controls me 24/7 because it limits my behavior. Solutions like these actually just recreate that. I don’t want to fucking test my drink when I’m at the bar. That’s not the world I want to live in.”


“The problem isn’t that women don’t know when there are roofies in their drink; the problem is people putting roofies in their drink in the first place,” Nagle pointed out.

“I think a lot of the time we get focused on these new products because they’re innovative and they’re interesting, and it’s really cool that they figured out how to create nail polish that does this. But at the end of the day, are you having those tough conversations with students, and particularly men, who are at risk for committing sexual assault?” Vitchers added. “Are you talking to young men about the importance of respecting other people’s boundaries and understanding what it means to obtain consent?”

People shouldn’t steal, but nobody says that padlocks reinforce a pervasive theft culture.

But wait! there’s more!

Melissa McEwen at Shakesville:

Being able to detect roofies in your drink only protects you; the person who put them there can move on to someone who isn’t wearing nail polish.

How can you argue with logic like that?

I don’t want to be the victim of ANY crime. I keep my valuables locked up. I don’t flash large wads of cash in public. I avoid sketchy neighborhoods. I take reasonable precautions to protect myself and my possessions.

If I didn’t take precautions and someone robbed me, they would still be wrong. Somebody might say I was “asking for it” but nobody would treat that as a “get out of jail free” card.

Rape is a bad thing. In prison, murderers have high status but the only thing lower than rapists is child molesters, which is basically child rape.

Unfortunately for the rest of us there are some predators out there who look like human beings. The best way to protect yourself against predators is to avoid them. If you can’t avoid them a gun comes in handy because talking to a pack of hungry wolves is a waste of time.

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