Will Republicans Sabotage the Deal With Iran?

UntitledIn addition to being unapologetic warmongers, Republicans are literally incapable of giving President Obama credit for anything, and the proposed deal with Iran regarding their nuclear program is no different. After 47 Republicans tried to tank the deal by what many regard as a traitorous act, it seems the President has succeeded anyway; not with support from Congressional Republicans, but in spite of them. Though many details still remain to be hammered out, the reactions from the Right Wing thus far are predictable. Bob Corker is claiming they set the stage for the deal:

corkerfinreg

“We know we have already played a positive role. I think everyone would say that congressionally mandated sanctions helped in a strong way get Iran to the table. The fact that they knew Congress was going to weigh in helped them get us a deal that isn’t worse.”

Um, yeah. Lindsey Graham insists almost anybody could have gotten a better deal :

lindsay-graham-proud“The best deal I think comes with the new president. Hillary Clinton would do better. I think everybody on our side, except maybe Rand Paul, can do better. That is one way of looking at this program: keeping the interim deal in place, it’s been fairly successful have a new crack at it with a new president that doesn’t have the baggage of Obama.”

How about that Rand Paul jab, sounds like a catty little schoolgirl. We all know: The only “baggage” President Obama has, the “baggage” he’s had throughout his entire presidency, is the do-nothing, un-American, to hell with the country Republicans. Let’s be clear: Non-Proliferation experts, people who know what they’re talking about, are hailing the President’s success.

Even so, Traitor Tom Cotton , Benjamin Netanyahu’s adopted son, has already declared:

Tom Cotton

“I’m going to do everything I can to stop these terms from becoming a final deal.”

Of course he is, it doesn’t matter that he doesn’t even know what the terms are yet. If only Conservatives would stop electing guys still wet behind the ears.

mccain-grimace-crop1Then there’s poor John McCain, practically stroking out over losing a chance to go to war. So much so, he’s egging Netanyahu on to start one, as The Center for Research on Globalization reports:

He urges Israel to “go rogue.” He supports bombing Iran – preemptively attacking a nonbelligerent country threatening no one.

Endangering millions of Iranians. Maybe incinerating them with Israeli nuclear weapons.

“The Israelis need to chart their own path of resistance,” McCain blustered.

This is one problem Americans will always face with Republicans: They don’t know how to do anything but war, and they’re not even good at that, as the debacles in Iraq and Afghanistan have shown. They do however love tough talk, and carrying out pretend war scenarios in their heads.

Steve Chapman at the Chicago Tribune writes in his piece, “No Iran Deal Could Convert Republicans“:

Amid all the criticism of President Barack Obama‘s proposed agreement with Iran on its nuclear facilities, it’s worth keeping in mind that some people just can’t stomach the idea of arms control.

They do not hope for good agreements. They hope for no agreements.

When …[Reagan] signed the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty in 1987… William F. Buckley’s National Review called the accord “catastrophic.”

There is one big difference between Reagan’s arms agreements and this one. The Soviets were allowed to have thousands of nuclear weapons. The Iranians are allowed to have zero.

Conservatives though, are hell-bent on doing anything and everything to deny President Obama his legacy, even if it means destroying this country’s standing in the world. For them, the U.S. reneging on a deal would be no big thing.

Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La. questions whether the deal is good enough:

bill-cassidy“Congress needs to review and approve the deal to ensure it is in the best interest of Americans. Until Congress can confirm these negotiations meet our standards, and those of our allies, I will reserve judgment.”

Yes, he actually claimed Republicans have standards.

Ted CruzOver in the conservative fantasy land known as “I could be President”, Scott Walker and Ted Cruz have both said they would cancel the deal with Iran on day one if elected. There’s a mature stance.

rick-perryFormer Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who probably hasn’t even had anyone explain the agreement to him yet, claims it’s “…riddled with concessions…” (He just can’t remember any of them).

huckabee

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee is “…very concerned with the framework of this deal.” (He thinks the militant gay Iranian community has something to do with it).

rubioFlorida Sen. Marco Rubio declared it a “colossal mistake”, in between huge gulps of bottled water.

Jeb_BushJeb Bush says “I cannot stand behind such a flawed agreement.” (Doubt he’ll be standing at all come 2016)

Ben_CarsonBen Carson, (Yeah I know, but Conservatives still believe he’s a contender) called the Iranians  the “…superior negotiators”. Geez, successfully separate a couple of brains and suddenly he’s a foreign policy expert.

Johnathan Chait at New York Magazine writes:

“…the conservative case against the Iran deal is hard to take seriously because the right has made the same case against every major negotiation with an American adversary since World War II.”

Op-Ed for the Los Angeles Times explains:

…the GOP’s approach to foreign affairs has become so uniform that any dissent from within is almost immediately slapped down…

… as the 2016 campaign heats up, the Republican presidential candidates are likely to adopt ever more bellicose positions as they attempt to surpass one another in brandishing their national security credentials.

Yes, he said the candidates’ national security credentials…

Huckadoodle’s Sour Grapes

Mike Huckabee, one of the poor, picked-on bigots of the religious right, had this to say about the victory against bigotry in Indiana and Arkansas (my emphasis):

The reason that those corporations put the pressure on Indiana and Arkansas was because the militant gay community put the pressure on them. I found it a little hypocritical when you have companies – even, and I love Walmart, big company in my home state – but they do business in China for gosh sake. I mean, I don’t think the Chinese are exactly the paragon of human rights. You’ve got Apple Computer – they’re selling Apple computers in Saudi Arabia. Is Tim Cook going to pull out of there? I don’t think so. He doesn’t mind making millions, if not billions of dollars, in cultures and countries where human rights are really an issue. And I think these corporations really oughta either be consistent – quit making money from these countries that are really oppressing human rights, and quit bowing to the pressure – and just sell their stuff. That’s what they’re in business for.

There’s no “militant gay community”, but there certainly are millions of Americans of every sexual orientation or gender identity who militantly oppose bigotry. And we were ecstatic to hear big business speak out so forcefully against discriminatory legislation. Now, if Huckabee and the religious right want to admit that its wrong to ship American manufacturing jobs overseas to countries with human rights issues where goods are produced by workers that are paid next to nothing, that’s a conversation worth having.

Another RWNJ’s Hitler Comparison Fails

All of these right wing clowns comparing Obama to Hitler at every turn or claiming the President is “appeasing” Iran as others appeased Hitler (or appeased Syria, or whichever country is in the news at any given moment) need to go back to school and brush up on American and world history. It was U.S. conservatives like Henry Ford who supported and appeased Hitler and fought against the U.S. intervening into WWII while a Democratic President actually beat Hitler and won WWII. And that was after saving the U.S. from conservative greed that caused the Great Depression. Interesting how President Obama also saved us from conservative greed that nearly caused the second Great Depression, and pulled us out of an illegal war that should have landed the Bush Administration in prison, and restored our reputation in the world that was so badly damaged by Bush & Cheney’s “cowboy diplomacy”, torture, and killing 100’s of thousands of innocent Iraqis.

The only reason conservatives make those ridiculous comparisons to Hitler is because of their extreme guilt over being continually on the wrong side of history. George Bush’s grandfather, Prescott Bush, was directly involved with funding Hitler and his Nazis. His company’s assets were actually seized in 1942 under the Trading with the Enemy Act. Republicans funded Hitler’s rise to power.

Matthews had it right – its fucking disgusting when they compare our President in any way to Hitler or Nazis. Because the fact is, the Republican party was very supportive of Hitler and the Nazi party back then, and they’re the closest thing we have to the Nazi party in America, today.

Indiana And Arkansas Pass “Fix” To Discriminatory Laws

Today the Governors of Arkansas and Indiana signed “fixes” to their discrimination based on religion laws. The Republican Governor of Arkansas claims the AR law now “mirrors the Federal law” but the Indiana fix still has issues. From the LA Times:

The [Indiana] amendment offers some protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, the first time an Indiana law has addressed the issue. But the amendment stops short of being a separate anti-discrimination law, which some critics of the law had sought. Indiana has anti-discrimination laws, but they do not cover cases involving sexual orientation.

The Human Rights Campaign, a national advocacy group for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people, said more battles would come.

“Though this legislation is certainly a step back from the cliff, this fight is not over until every person in Indiana is fully equal under the law,” said Chad Griffin, the group’s president. “At the federal level and in all 50 states, the time has come in this country for comprehensive legal nondiscrimination protections for LGBT people that cannot be undermined.”

Bigots never recollect who’s sensibilities they offend…they’re lives depend upon it

nurse statementBigots rely upon other people’s decency to NOT treat them with the same horrific behavior and pain they inflict upon others. Conservatives, Tea-bags, Libertarians and of course Nazis, forget their lives frequently may depend upon the good character, they indisputably are deficient.

Walmart Says “No” Arkansas Obeys: Religious Bill Rejected

ark hutc vs walmart over lgbt policyLike the old saying goes, “money talks and b*((%$!t walks”. Governor Asa Hutchinson (R) – AR (above right), received an informal directive from retail giant Walmart, to rescind, renounce… oh hell, ‘don’t sign that bill’. It didn’t hurt that Hutchinson’s fellow Gov-thug to the north, Mike Pence (R) – Ind is catching 360 hell for signing his version of the Religious Freedom Act; a transparently veiled legislation meant to undermine LGBT civil rights’ protections. Walmart, headquartered in Bentonville, AR issued an official statement referring to the impending policy that “threatens to undermine” the state’s inclusive spirit and does not reflect the company’s values.

Consider the power of one corporation wielded over one state. A very public display of the crushing fall out upon society from the passage of Citizen’s United, & McCutcheon. Imagine if corporations put aside their fervent indulgence in greed and profit, but turned their influence toward altruistic initiatives:

  • Instead of Newport News Industrial Corp permitting a hostile work environment or denying black workers promotions, imagine ensuring they received a fair shake without a federal mandate or litigation.
  • American women wouldn’t have to wait until 2058 to earn equal pay with their male counterparts.
  • Businesses would value people’s contributions in lieu of exploiting the desperation of immigrants with sub-par wages, regardless of education and skill set. Pitting employment prospects against native-born workers.
  • Koch industry would divest from fossil fuel and go green to protect the climate….(ok, even I can’t keep a straight face on this one)

Yes, a fleeting moment in Oz that gave a pause to the glass half full. Haven’t seen a national populace, bold revolt in a long while, refreshing and unsettled.

bigotry disguised as hatredBoth Hutchinson and Pence refuse to cede the policy is discriminatory and dangerous to unraveling the fabric of individual civil rights. Scratch that. Instead, both governors are playing the political game of returning this spiteful legislation to each state law makers for revision. The only revision I can perceive for conservative aspirations is complete abandonment for public accommodation for not only the LGBT community but tosses in the whole ‘shebang’…the rights of minorities and immigrants. An entire restoration of Jim Crow and then some for good measure….

The Arkansas religious act does exactly that!

The state places the burden of proving a discriminatory act, behavior, issue, policy isn’t a devout belief is placed upon the government or plaintiff: “there is not a higher protection offered by the state than the protection of a person’s right to religious freedom.”

Arkansas legislation ensured NO local statute can forbid discrimination in employment, housing, or public accommodation—can ever be “essential” enough to override a claim for religious exemption.

A devious legal manipulation of a sharpened,  jagged-edge lying within the foundation of the Constitution. No one can restate the right’s obsession to repeal diversity and equality for historically oppressed marginalized segments of the American society. Inescapable, yet welcomed measures by conservative to “take back America” with bigotry. Unlike the 1960’s, today’s broader, more inclusive coalition of LGBT, women, people of color, folks of good conscience, immigrants (both sides of the legal persuasion), environmentalist, are ALL prepared to stand in their way. Time for progressives to besiege their state houses with liberal, nascent legislation and policy…. by replacing reactive with proactive strategies.

The Backlash Against Indiana-Style Bigotry Continues

indiana protestIndiana’s members of the radical, religious right are learning there’s a high cost to bigotry.  These are the high profile individuals, organizations and local governments, so far, that have taken action to ensure their dollars are not invested in the Hoosier state and to encourage their employees and customers to boycott the state:

  • Salesforce.com cancelled all company events in Indiana including sponsorship of Indy Big Data. CEO announced, “We are forced to dramatically reduce our investment in IN based on our employee’s & customer’s outrage over the Religious Freedom Bill. Today we are canceling all programs that require our customers/employees to travel to Indiana to face discrimination.”
  • EMC, Cloudera, Pivotal, Isilon, Platfora, Amazon Web Services and Oracle pulled their Indy Big Data sponsorships.
  • Heads of Apple, Yelp, and pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly have taken a public stand against the discriminatory law.
  • Angie’s List CEO: “We are putting the ‘Ford Building Project’ on hold until we fully understand the implications of the freedom restoration act on our employees, both current and future. Angie’s List is open to all and discriminates against none and we are hugely disappointed in what this bill represents.”
  • PayPal founder and Affirm CEO Max Levchin: “However it’s dressed up, it’s a signal that discrimination is welcome in this state. I encourage Paypal’s new CEO and other CEOs in Silicon Valley to evaluate their relationship with the state of Indiana.”
  • Gen Con video game conventions CEO wrote this letter to Pence in which he reminded Pence that his convention provides a $50 million boost to the Indiana economy and he basically threatened that if the legislation was passed it would “factor into our decision-making on hosting the convention in the state of Indiana in future years.”
  • In sports, the NCAA, the Final Four coaches, former NBA and WNBA players, and even NASCAR came out against the Indiana law. The NCAA said it may look at moving events.
  • Mayors in Seattle and San Francisco barred city employees from traveling to Indiana on city expense. The Republican mayor of Indianapolis spoke out against the discriminatory law and signed an executive order banning discrimination based on sexuality or gender identity in his city.
  • Travel guide site Gogobot posted this on their Indiana page: “Note: Gogobot is a company that supports equal rights for all people, regardless of their race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation or gender identity. If you are traveling to or intend to travel to Indiana you should know that on March 26, 2015, the Governor of Indiana signed the religious objections bill into law. Critics of this law say that it may legalize discrimination against travelers due to their sexual orientation.”

The boycotts that came after the passage of Arizona’s “papers please” law were nothing compared to this. Indiana is not only losing business investment, its in danger of losing an entire generation of young, educated adults who will take their education and skills to a more progressive, diverse state.

Honey Maid Sends A Message To Indiana

honeymaid graham crackers we serve everyone

For Indiana’s Conservatives, Everyone Else is a 2nd Class Citizen

ind_ResolutionPlusPeople are angered by Indiana’s Governor Mike Pence (R) signing the Religious Freedom law as a qualifier to extend the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act, RFRA, from organizations and groups to individuals. However, if you regularly consume the news like a good meal, you acknowledge the Hoosier state has charged backward with their attacks to specific classes of citizens. The religious right doesn’t relegate their HATE to the LGBT community but lavishes their tentacles around the necks of individuals who refuse to share their beliefs. Given conservatism is a regressive ideology, we’re going to review stories in reverse chronological order…..

lgbt flagLGBT First up, Gov. Pence pens his signature to a law freeing individuals from the religious burden of interacting, serving anyone else perceived as a member of the LGBT community. The RFRA of the 1990s originates with two members of a Native American Church were fired from their drug counselors’ positions in Oregon for their use of Peyote in sacred ceremonies.  The Supreme Court disagreed with the plaintiffs, hence the Clinton Administration crafted legislation and the President signed new federal law meant to protect the practitioners of DIVERSE religious beliefs from unfair prosecution, burden or undue scrutiny.

Fast forward 20 + years and 19 other states exploiting and distending RFRA into an odious rational broaching the limitations of disenfranchising people from public accommodation. Today, a carved path oozes from the decisive disaster of Hobby Lobby elevating employers’ intolerance above worker autonomy.  The folks at Lambda Legal nailed the multifaceted Hobby Lobby on the nose: “religious interests now trump other interests in many circumstances, with religious believers entitled to impose their views at others’ expense in ways systematically rejected in the past. Like the multipurpose misuse of RICORacketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act , Hobby Lobby is destined to abuse, marginalize populations by  ambitious, back-tent-bible-thumping-revivalist possessed with the legal-zealotry to unravel a last half-century of social progress. The Christian right’s immediate task: stymie the victory for advancing equality achieved in Windsor vs United States.

Indiana Governor Signs Law With Anti-LGBT LobbyistsAlthough voices from multiple quarters of the business, industry and entertainment have asserted their opposition, Arkansas has pursued the identical intent in passing their state legislation. Both states’ laws distinguish themselves by inviting lawsuits between private parties while in other 19 states, litigation is between organizations, groups, businesses. Governor Pence ‘train spotted’ Sunday talk shows knowingly precluding this critical distinction.


female-symbolWOMEN
 Earlier this week, Indiana served a crushing blow in the GOP’s ‘War on Women’ by serving the first conviction and 20-year sentence of 33 year-old, Purvi Patel, on the charge of feticide. Following a miscarriage at 25 weeks, Ms. Patel improperly disposed of the fetus’ body and sought medical help for heavy bleeding at a local hospital. A few years earlier, Bei Bei Shuai, a Chinese American-woman, attempted suicide while pregnant, survived but the fetus did not. Ms Shuai spent a year on prison on charges of feticide before release based upon an agreed-upon plea deal.

Both cases highlight the double standard of criminalizing, vulnerable ASIAN women in lieu of providing the desperately needed care. It is a frightful deterrent for women to seek medical help for fear of prosecution.

hc symbolHEALTHCARE  In light of conservatives’ obsessiveness of protecting unborn life at the consequence of the afterbirthed, their near-sighted, blighted perception inflamed a dormant HIV epidemic. Legislatures successfully strangled Planned Parenthood funding, for fear of providing abortions, yet also terminated critical services like HIV testing and general medical care for under-served populations. Enraptured with another foolish idea, Pence and his cronies let four clinics throughout the state go unfunded and subsequently close….now the GOP has relinquished control to the CDC for management of this recent crisis. Let’s all hear it for the imbecilic Republican vision of eliminating the federal government, except for disease or war.

Yes, conservative leadership like Governor Mike Pence demonstrates the consistent lack-less vision that inevitably backs residents into an unforgiving, compromised position of despair. Most notable Pence supporters and his discriminatory Religious Freedom Restoration Act, is the entire bench of 2016 GOP Presidential wannabes. Bush – Paul – Rubio – Cruz and (Huckabee, who goes without saying), all eagerly hopped on the ‘bigot band wagon’. As Dr Julian Bond, iconic civil rights leader stated of such legislation: “this cloaks discrimination in the guise of religion — and it will mark people of color, LGBT Arkansans, religious minorities and women as second-class-citizens”. Given the national outcry, people of sound mind and good conscience remain aware of the true intent of these biases to justify diminution of equal treatment under the law and fairness. Hopefully, they are vigilante and remember ‘who’ and ‘where’ politicians stood on this issue as they donate to campaigns and their caste ballots in future elections.

Pence Signed Discriminatory Law With Anti-LGBT Lobbyists, Including One Who Helped Write The Bill

Courtesy of GLAAD:
Indiana Governor Signs Law With Anti-LGBT LobbyistsBreaking: Just hours after Little Rock Mayor Mark Stodola urged Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson to veto AR’s version of a “discriminate via religion” bill, Arkansas-based retailer Walmart urged the Arkansas Governor to veto the bill.

John Sununu Should Just STFU

Mediaite reports:

The White House announced Monday morning that President Barack Obama will travel to Kenya in July, his first trip to the country as president, though his fourth to the continent.

(…)

sununuJohn Sununu (R) sounded unenthused about Obama’s trip, intimating Obama was resurfacing the birther issue and paying more attention to his “travel plans” than the Middle East.

“He’s going to take advantage of the last two years and go to all the places he wants to go to,” Sununu said.

But then he added: “His trip back to Kenya is going to create a lot of chatter and commentary amongst the hard right, who still don’t see him as having been born in the U.S. He’s just inciting some chatter on an issue that should have been dead a long time ago.”

Most intelligent people might think that a guy born in Havana, Cuba, whose ancestors came to the U.S. from the Middle East (of Palestinian ancestry), and whose mother was born in El Salvador, might not wade into the birther BS.

Sununu’s own party will probably eventually turn on him, ala the Grover Norquist witch hunt currently heating up in Islamophobic circles (which I might add is somewhat amusing).

As for Obama going “all the places he wants to go, who is John Sununu to talk; he had to resign for misuse of taxpayer funds for his travel shenanigans. As the Sun Sentinal reported in 1991, Sununu:

…ran up hundreds of thousands of dollars in air travel costs while flying in military jets to political rallies, ski resorts and his dentist.

By some accounts, Sununu was a pompous, condescending, arrogant, jackass while in office; obviously, nothing has changed. If he wants to be of any service to the country now, his best path would be to just STFU.

U.S. Air Force Spammers?

So, we rejected the IP 132.3.49.81 for multiple attempts to hit our comments with spam. The IP belongs to the ISP and Organization “United States Air Force” out of Oklahoma (hostname offutt-pxyw4e.afnoc.af.mil). Could be recruiters. Could also be right-wingers in the Oklahoma Air Force who are unhappy with my stance against neo-con wars. In case I have not been clear in previous posts, I am 100% against the neo-cons’/Presidential-wannabes’ latest push for war with Iran. War profiteers like Cheney and Halliburton can kiss my skinny white ass.