Monday, October 2, 2017

Whether it's Vegas or Bama or Wisconsin, gutless politics has consequences

NOTE FROM JAKE- Tom Petty's heart attack and some reflection has led me to water this down a bit. I hope the point still gets across.

The recent victory in the GOP primary by American Taliban member Roy Moore led Esquire political columnist Charlie Pierce to write an outstanding article calling out the failure of voters and the media for allowing such a wackjob to be in position for taking a spot in the US Senate.

Pierce’s column is fittingly titled “I’m Out of Empathy. I’m Out of Pity. I’m Out of Patience.”
Any report about Roy Moore that doesn’t specifically refer to him as a right-wing extremist is not worth your time. No more “firebrand.” No more impotent yap about his “controversial views.” Roy Moore is an extremist or the word no longer has meaning. If, as appears likely, he gets elected to the Senate from Alabama, then a majority of Alabama voters are extremists, too. If he gets elected, then the Republican Party ever more should be referred to as an extremist party. That, of course, is if we’re being honest about what’s really going on in this country in 2017.

And, no, when it comes to the people who voted for Moore, I don’t have to “respect their beliefs.” I don’t have to “understand where they’re coming from.” I don’t have to “see it from their side.” These people are preparing to make a lawless theocratic lunatic one of 100 United States Senators, and that means these people are about to inflict him and his medievalism on me, too. If you think that Roy Moore belongs in the Senate, then you are a half-bright goober whose understanding of American government and basic civics probably stops at the left side of your AM radio dial. You have no concept of the national interest and very little concept of your own, unless, as I suspect, you’ve made your own fears, and hating people and hawking loogies in all directions, the sum total of your involvement in self-government. You are killing democracy and you don’t know it or care. If you had any real Christian charity in your hearts, you’d keep Roy Moore in the locked ward of your local politics and not loose him on a nation that deserves so much better than him.

Why do I not have to “respect their beliefs,” besides the fact that most of those beliefs belong in a cage? I don’t have to “respect their beliefs” because the U.S. Senate to which they are preparing to send him is in the process of screwing them with their pants on and they could care less….

I’m out of empathy for this stuff. I’m out of pity. I’m out of patience. And, not for nothing, but Moore’s opponent is a guy named Douglas Jones. In 2001, Jones convicted two men for the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham in 1963, one of the iconic white supremacist terrorist acts of that period. One of those bastards already died in prison and the other keeps getting denied parole. If you’d rather be represented in the Senate by a lawless theocratic lunatic, rather than a guy that finally got justice for four murdered little girls, well, you deserve anything that goddamn happens to you.

Very statesman-like

But dimwits in Alabama are only the latest group to earn this derision. One of the reasons for my anger at last night’s record mass shooting in Las Vegas (in addition to my affinity for Vegas) is that it is a predictable outcome of the National Rifle Association’s outsized influence in our politics in a majority of states and the US Congress.

In the NRA's America, this will happen.

The NRA has bought GOP elected officials, and allowed increasingly powerful guns and ammunition to proliferate without regard to the number of people killed or the increase of fear to our society (disgustingly, they thrive on that). But the real infuriating part of that reality is that NRA’s control wouldn’t be possible if it wasn’t for scared, gutless fools voting GOP because of “gun rights”.
Hey rubes, the ability to legally own a FUCKING MACHINE GUN ON THE 32ND FLOOR OF MANDALAY BAY has nothing to do with your ability to own a rifle to shoot deer in the woods. And amazingly, it is legal to carry a machine gun into the Manadalay Bay hotel.
Nevada law does not require firearms owners to have licenses, register their weapons, or limits the number of firearms an individual posses. Automatic assault weapons and machine guns are also legal in the state as long as they are registered and are possessed in adherence to federal law, according to the National Rifle Association.

Nevada does not prohibit the transfer or possession of assault weapons, 50 caliber rifles or large capacity ammunition magazines. Local law enforcement issues concealed handgun licenses. Open carry is legal without a permit.
Let me also state that walking around strapped with an AK-47 has nothing to do with having a pistol in your house if you are a law-abiding, sane person. If you can’t understand that difference, or if you think “a well-regulated militia” allows you act like an arrogant, armed jackass no matter how it affects anyone else, go fuck yourself.

My same request applies to the people that are hiding behind “the flag” and “the troops” when they see NFL players of color protest 2nd-class treatment of their fellow Americans. And our Governor disgustingly pandered to this mentality yesterday.

The race-baiting sentiment is bad enough, but that a-hole is NOT the person to be playing the "thank you veterans" card.

For any of you who might think Walker had a point with his tweet- do you not recognizes that this is not about the anthem or the flag, but is about deficiencies in this country that need to be brought to the average person’s attention? No one is accusing you of being racist or an oppressor because you have white privilege, and if you think it does, then that speaks a lot about YOU, and not the people kneeling or raising their fists.

For you to hide behind the flag and the troops to ignore these legitimate issues, and to support the GOP out of symbolic bullcrap is what allows these political atrocities to continue, and continues this country’s downward spiral. So here’s my memo to low-info, sheltered white America. Do you duty as a citizen, LISTEN, and LEARN, give a damn about OUTCOMES and not symbols, and try to make this a better society instead of caring about your own precious feelings. Take some responsibility for your vote, act like decent adults, demand that politicians do the same, and recognize that the world does not end at the tip of your nose.

You have allowed yourself to be exploited by selfish interests that do not give a damn about the future of this country, or about your well-being. You can stop this self-defeating cycle the following way- by learning from events and history, and dealing with reality to improve things for the future, instead of clinging to how you wish things would be. Your previous bad choices in the voting booth are hurting all of us in this country, and our democracy can’t continue to go on if you continue to be this self-centered and idiotic every other November.

Like Charlie Pierce, I am done with this situation. What’s most infuriating is that there’s only so much I can do about it, because it seems the only way we as a state and a society can improve is if some people learn a lesson and/or feel consequence from the mess that they allowed to have happen. You in the low-info, single-issue voter world are down to your last chance, and your Bubble needs to be broken.

I'd prefer it if you put on the Big Boy and Big Girl pants, and did it yourself.


  1. To me, it seems like now we are at a real politics impasse. Never been to Vegas or had any desire to check into that whole $$$ scene.

    I've been to big important places, like NYC, DC, Chicago, but our media culture obsesses the big so much that it snuffs out the ordinary. According to Kos, some 90 people daily are killed by guns.

    I have a gun for deer hunting. It's not an assault weapon, and when I bought it could not imagine the lengths that the NRA, etc., would have on our lives. We are a sick people now, and just look at this Las Vegas atrocity to make you think...

  2. The grave question is what to do.

    Over the past dozen years since the assault weapons ban was allowed to lapse, the NRA as served as a marketing division for firearms manufacturers and performed exceptionally well. We have millions of semi-auto high capacity firearms out in public hands, and they're going to be operational for decades.

    In that regard, we have a large group of cows that is out of the barn, across the field, through the fence and gone.

    Without an Australian-style confiscation program (not happening here) this is the world we live in.

    You can actually shit in your own house enough that no amount of work will make it clean again. It's permanently and irrevocably fucked.

    I despair to think that we're there. Bill O'Reilly is right in a way I don't think he appreciated - this is the price of freedom. It's just because he hasn't had to pay the cost yet that he finds it acceptable - like the guy who has no problem with the prices at dinner as long as somebody else picks up the check.

    This is the firearms nation they've created, and by losing elections we've allowed them to create. I'm not the least surprised that Republicans won't touch gun control any more than I was surprised with their actions after Justice Scalia's death.

    What continues to baffle me is Democrats are unable to make any ground against them. Just how bad to things have to get before those who support the status quo have to pay the price?

    1. I don't get it either. You'd think law-abiding gun owners that respect the outdoors would turn against the GOP for trying to destroy wetlands and other protected, scenic areas of the state.

      I've waited 6 years for people to figure out they're being played by the ALEC-GOPs, and Walker's low approval ratings indicate that some get it. But it's gotta translate into action at the ballot box.

  3. Our military and veterans protect our freedoms and form of government; Republicans dishonor them with every Gerrymandered district and Voter Id law that is enacted.

    1. Ain't that the truth. You'd think that people would recognize that actions speak louder than words or symbols.