Doomsy’s Do-Gooders and Dregs (2013 – Pt. 9)

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Prior related posts appear below:

Part 8
Part 7
Part 6
Part 5
Part 4
Part 3
Part 2
Part 1 (with setup)

Dregs of the Year Nominee

Wisconsin state senator Leah Vukmir (and once again, guess which party?) earns a dubious mention; she was asked here by the Center for Media and Democracy for records pertaining to her participation in a meeting of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) last spring in Oklahoma City. After saying no, the Center for Media and Democracy sued her for the information in June.

So Vukmir responded with a defense that, as the story tells us, basically would gut that state’s open records law.

I realize that, if I said something about every single legislator who does ALEC’s bidding, I probably wouldn’t have time to live very much of the rest of my life doing other stuff, but on this occasion, I’m going to call out Vukmir, who could save everybody a lot of aggravation, to say nothing of taxpayer dollars, by doing the right thing, particularly since that state’s Republican attorney general is defending Vukmir (such is life in Scott Walker-istan – and by the way, the Center has successfully sued 6 other Repug politicians for the same info).

Do-Gooder of the Year Nominee

Minnesota parochial school teacher Kristen Ostendorf, who came out here, announcing that she was living with a woman (and a Dregs citation to the school, which fired her as a result – I don’t know about you, but I smell a lawsuit)

Dregs of the Year Nominee

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder put an “emergency manager” in charge of Detroit to oversee the city’s finances, a guy named Kevyn Orr (of course, Orr isn’t responsible to any actual constituents, only Snyder – this is the stuff that happens when people don’t bother to vote and Repugs win elections).

Well, a guy named Gary Brown was appointed under Orr as chief compliance officer, or something, and apparently he was responsible for a power outage in that city on September 11th. And during 90-degree weather. What could go wrong?

Oh, and he thought it was funny too, explaining that he wanted to teach the city a lesson, or something.

Um, did you want to communicate to everyone that you’re a heartless dick? Well then, I would say that the message was received loud and clear, and you’ve earned your citation (here).

Dregs of the Year Nominee

L.Z. Granderson of CNN for writing, hours after the gun massacre at the Washington. D.C. navy yard, that “gun control isn’t the answer” here. How the hell does he know?

Oh, and get a load of this…

This is why gun-control advocates need to abandon the routine of using mass shootings to turn law-abiding citizens into social pariahs and instead focus on something that could work.

How many goddamn times do we have to point out that the vast majority of NRA members are indeed law-abiding citizens who favor common-sense gun control measures opposed by the rabid NRA “leadership”? Hell, Wayne LaPierre even opposed Toomey-Manchin, which would have made a federal gun registry illegal!

Granderson’s bio tells us that he’s a member of the National Association of Black Journalists and the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association, so I guess he’s a de facto liberal (if I’m wrong, I’ll stand corrected). So what, is this more faux “equivalency” to offset the quite-righteous indignation of Piers Morgan?

This is CNN?

Update 12/13/13: Actually, Granderson would do well to read this by Fareed Zakaria, his CNN co-worker (I’m sure Zakaria’s program will be interesting).

Dregs of the Year Nominee

Chuck Todd(ler), for basically saying here that it’s not his job to call BS on the Repugs when they start spouting their garbage, in this case concerning health care reform (yep, rip and read from Drudge/RNC talking points, belly up to the bar at happy hour and make sure to pass the sweet and sour shrimp – does that about cover it?).

…and with that in mind…

Do-Gooder of the Year Nominees

CREDO Mobile, which launched a petition in response that was sent to NBC News, telling Todd to do his job here (oh, but Todd said he was “misquoted,” the second-to-the-last refuge of a scoundrel)

Dregs of the Year Nominee

Adrian Moore of the Koch-funded (and therefore absurdly titled) Reason Magazine, for saying here that “when you’re unskilled, you should not expect to be able to make a living off of your ordinary day’s labor,” even though that standard was once perfectly acceptable in this country when we used to have a thriving middle class…

Do-Gooder of the Year Nominee

As a Roman Catholic, I realize that I am obligated to pretty much go along with whatever Pope Francis pronounces even though I may disagree with it, but that being said, I have to say that I think he’s getting off to a promising start based on this, in which he called for more balance within the church and not treating the “culture wars” stuff as the be-all and end-all, talking more about social justice also and embracing liberation theology in his home continent, among other positions that I think are pretty darned enlightened (and I think I read somewhere that he was even looking at priestly celibacy, believe it or not – have to double-check that…and also, good stuff here too of course)

…but let’s not forget about stuff like this too (Update 12/26/13: But kudos once more for this.)

Dregs of the Year Nominee (“Certain Kind of Fool” Citation)

Vernett Bader, 54, of North Charleston, South Carolina was arrested by police here for allegedly stabbing her roommate when he wouldn’t turn down the music he was listening to, by the group The Eagles (luckily it wasn’t Michael Bolton, or she might have used a thermonuclear warhead)

Dregs of the Year Nominees

Duquesne University gets a dishonorable nod for claiming it doesn’t have to allow unions in its university, citing a 1979 Supreme Court decision exempting “church-operated schools” from parts of federal labor law. As Ian Millhiser of TP points out here, though…

Catholic canon law calls upon employers to “observe meticulously also the civil laws concerning labor and social policy, according to the principles handed on by the Church” and to “pay a just and decent wage to employees so that they are able to provide fittingly for their own needs and those of their dependents.” Similarly, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops proclaimed last year that “[o]ur Church has long taught that unions are ‘an indispensable element of social life, especially in modern industrialized societies’ . . . and are examples of the traditional Catholic principles of solidarity and subsidiarity in action.”

And on that subject, university officials might do well to read this also.

Dregs of the Year Nominees

This goes to the Melissa Goodwin and David Gaultney, two judges of the three on the panel of the Texas Court of Appeals in Austin who overturned the conviction of Tom “Bugman” DeLay, formerly of the U.S. House of Representatives, for allegedly scheming to influence Texas state elections with corporate money (here).

Oh, and did I mention that they’re both Republicans, and the third judge on the panel who voted to uphold the conviction was a Democrat? And that the trial judge said during the punishment phase that DeLay was guilty? And that the two Republican judges substituted their assessment of the facts for that of 12 jurors who personally heard the testimony of over 40 witnesses over the course of several weeks of Delay’s trial and found that the evidence was sufficient and proved DeLay’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt?

Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg asked that this travesty be reviewed by the Texas Court of Appeals. As well it should be.

Do-Gooder of the Year Nominees

The Starbucks coffee house chain, for telling customers that guns are no longer welcome in their cafes, though they stopped short of an outright ban, probably because, quite rightly, it’s a bit much to expect a lot of thin and slightly built teenage and twenty-something (at least at the one near me) employees (probably because they barely have enough dough to scrape by with a minimum of food) to enforce it by going up against some of these burly and often overweight elderly male gun nuts who insist on showing “their external penises,” as Atrios puts it (here)

Dregs of the Year Nominee

In September, AIG CEO Bob Benmosche compared public outrage over AIG’s bonuses to the Deep South lynching African-Americans (here).

As Think Progress tells us…

It’s been five years since AIG was rescued with a $85 billion loan from the government after the mega-insurer mismanaged itself to near collapse, and it’s hard to see how they were victimized, let alone “lynched.” Since then, AIG has expressed its gratitude by paying executives $165 million in bonuses, briefly considering suing the government for more, and expressing disappointment AIG never received a “thank you” from government officials.

And it’s not the first arrogant remark AIG’s defenders have made regarding criticism over outlandish bonuses. Wall Street and its allies have likened similar criticism to sexual abuse and Nazi Germany.

I can’t think of another country besides this one where someone like Benmosche could do what he did, along with the rest of his “bankster” pals, and still remain a free man and not be in prison instead, or dealing with some type of harm to his bodily person (don’t wish to encourage that…I realize that another country probably would let him “skate” like this one has – just saying I can’t think of one right now…more here).

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Dregs of the Year Nominee

NRA lobbyist Tony Makris, a particularly vile individual, apparently is famous (in a way) for helping Charlton (“Cold, Dead Hands”) Heston’s rise through the organization – the Crooks and Liars post tells us that he shot an elephant in Botswana numerous times in the face until it died, and then celebrated with a glass of champagne.

Oh, and by the way…

Botswana announced in 2012 that an all-out ban on commercial elephant hunting would go into effect in January of 2014 over concerns of sharp declines in wildlife species.

The outrage over the NBC Sports broadcast comes as authorities in Zimbabwe this week said that poachers seeking ivory had used cyanide to poison at least 81 elephants.

Tony Makris, a real “man’s man,” huh?

Dregs of the Year Nominee

Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin, for ordering here that same-sex partners of service members in the Oklahoma National Guard not receive the spousal benefits that their partners earned and that their heterosexual counterparts enjoy (always wondered about the bit with her and that state trooper awhile back – that disappeared from the headlines right quick)

Dregs of the Year Nominee

Florida prosecutor Angela Corey said here that “I think social media is going to be the destruction of this country” in response to the news that Marissa Alexander will get a new trial; she fired a gun in the air to fend off her husband, who she feared because of past violence – Alexander used that state’s “stand your ground” law in her defense, the same law that ultimately acquitted George Zimmerman in the death of Trayvon Martin.

Actually, Corey is dead wrong – social media was responsible for the outcry that highlighted this miscarriage of justice and played a role in winning a new trial for Alexander (or is she just itching for a conviction and doesn’t care how she gets it?).

Dregs of the Year Nominee

John Culberson for this (that horrible day remains as nothing but a political abstraction for lowlifes like him)…

Dregs of the Year Nominee

CNN news model Dana Bash, for effectively echoing yet another stupid Republican Party talking point when she asked Majority Leader Harry Reid of the Senate, during the government shutdown that started in September, why he didn’t care about kids with cancer, or something – as the Think Progress post tells us, the Repugs supported the infamous sequester and other budgets that cut funding for scientific research (of course, Heaven forbid that Dana trouble herself by doing dumb stuff like, y’know, some actual fact-checking and research…by the way, the “cancer” charge against Reid is particularly disgusting in light of this)

Dregs of the Year Nominee

Repug U.S. House Rep Randy Neugebauer, who chewed out a park ranger at the World War II memorial in Washington, D.C. for not allowing tourists to enter during that ridiculous shut down in September – as Dan Amira of nymag put it here

Anyone want to see something truly disgusting? Here’s Texas congressman Randy Neugebauer, a Republican who supports the shutdown, telling a park ranger, as news cameras roll, that she should be “ashamed” for keeping tourists out of the World War II memorial. As if it were her call. As if she was responsible for shutting down the government. Bravo for speaking truth to power, Randy Neugebauer. You’re a big man.

Based on this account, though, it looks like Neugebauer got a taste of what he deserved from at least one bystander.

Dregs of the Year Nominees

Earl Conlon and his group of “right-wing truckers” planned a demonstration on October 11th, called the “Truckers Ride for the Constitution,” because, as Think Progress told us here, they “are fed up with a variety of headaches caused by the government: Fuel efficiency standards enforced by the Environmental Protection Agency, Obamacare, state and local laws over idling their trucks, and “insurance companies purportedly requiring technological updates,” according to US News and World Report.

Oh, and who exactly do they plan to “arrest”? Why, Nancy Pelosi and Dianne Feinstein, of course, two female Democrats who have supposedly “violated their oath of office.” Of course, Conlon and his fellow idiots don’t provide actual proof.

So, because they want to have a hissy fit, they decided to use their surrogate body part appendages (I’ll let you, dear reader, “fill in the blank” there…see Atrios above), in this case tractor-trailers, to snarl traffic on the D.C. Beltway (and believe me when I tell you that the Beltway is one of the most heavily congested roads I’ve ever driven in my life, and it doesn’t matter whether it’s rush hour or not).

To me, this is the Teahadist mindset writ large. These overgrown six-year-olds are unhappy about the Democrats in our government (many of whom were re-elected last year, including President Obama), so they’re going to stage an illegal action to make life miserable for the majority of people who disagree with them.

And I wished the cops had thrown all of their sorry asses in jail (though, based on this, it turned out to be much ado about nothing, as usual…tee hee).

Dregs of the Year Nominee

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops for this (despicable)…

Dregs of the Year Nominee

George Will, for comparing the Affordable Care Law to the Fugitive Slave Act here (yep, blow that dog whistle a little louder, Mr. “I Avoided The Vietnam War By Running Away To Divinity School”…that cushy gig at Fix Noise awaits)

Dregs of the Year Nominee

CNN’s Wolf Blitzer gets a dubious mention for parroting the GOP talking point that health care reform should be delayed because there have been computer “glitches” with the rollout in October (to set up the exchanges).

There are a lot of ways to “unpackage the stupid” here, but I’ll point out probably the most obvious fact for starters; as John Amato points out here, nobody has to register for health insurance until next January 1st (if they’re not already covered by their employer, and those so covered include a huge majority of this country, though that probably will change over time), so there’s ample time to work out the “glitches” until then.

Also, speaking only for myself here, I should point out that I’ve worked in computer software development for a long time, and I’ve never known of a major release of software that didn’t have “glitches.” The real news would be if the initial rollout of the online exchanges had taken place with no problems whatsoever.

I’ve asked it before and I’ll ask it again – this is CNN?

Do-Gooder of the Year Nominee

Wide receiver Brandon Marshall of the Chicago Bears for this (and a Dregs citation to the oh-so-august-in-their-imaginations National Football League for punishing him)

More later…

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