Friday, May 31, 2013

Surprising Study: Conservatives Lie!


One of the biggest lies by any Conservative in the last few decades, and the starkest lies from any Conservative in recent memory that caused more deaths and misery for so many, can be described by a Facebook posting:



But on with today's post...

Politifacts has a rather checkered reputation with both sides of the political spectrum as a fact checker as Rachel Maddow found out. The Wikipedia entry on Politifacts mentioned, for example, that "(i)n February 2011, Rachel Maddow criticized PolitiFact for incorrectly stating that she denied that there was a budget shortfall in Wisconsin, providing a clip of herself explicitly stating that there was a budget shortfall on her own show.[27]

As is always the case though, the Conservative leadership may be lying about the lying too, as Taranto of the Wall Street Journal said PolitiFact was 'less (a) seeker of truth than servant of power', after it ranked as 'Lie of the Year' Sarah Palin's claim that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act would lead to 'death panels'.[25][26] A Wall Street Journal editorial criticized the ruling, saying that the legislation would 'convert insurers into government contractors in the business of fulfilling political demands... All citizens will be required to pay into this system, regardless of their individual needs or preferences. Sounds like a government takeover to us.'[13]

Sounds just like another lie compounding another lie to us.



At any rate, today's post, "Study: Republicans Lie," has undergone a headline change from the original essay, "Do Republicans Lie More Than Democrats?  Politifact Ratings Say 'Yes -- But Is The Fact-Checker Biased?," since - as our regular readers know - we have shown repeatedly that not all Conservatives vote Republican, but all Republicans are Conservative.
"Men by their constitutions are naturally divided into two parties: 1. Those who fear and distrust the people, and wish to draw all powers from them into the hands of the higher classes. 2. Those who identify themselves with the people, have confidence in them, cherish and consider them as the most honest and safe, although not the most wise depositary of the public interests. In every country these two parties exist, and in every one where they are free to think, speak, and write, they will declare themselves. Call them, therefore, Liberals and Serviles, Jacobins and Ultras, Whigs and Tories, Republicans and Federalists, Aristocrats and Democrats, or by whatever name you please, they are the same parties still and pursue the same object. The last one of Aristocrats and Democrats is the true one expressing the essence of all." --Thomas Jefferson to Henry Lee, 1824. 
"Both of our political parties, at least the honest portion of them, agree conscientiously in the same object: the public good; but they differ essentially in what they deem the means of promoting that good. One side believes it best done by one composition of the governing powers, the other by a different one. One fears most the ignorance of the people; the other the selfishness of rulers independent of them. Which is right, time and experience will prove. We think that one side of this experiment has been long enough tried and proved not to promote the good of the many, and that the other has not been fairly and sufficiently tried. Our opponents think the reverse. With whichever opinion the body of the nation concurs, that must prevail." --Thomas Jefferson to Abigail Adams, 1804. 
"Men have differed in opinion and been divided into parties by these opinions from the first origin of societies, and in all governments where they have been permitted freely to think and to speak. The same political parties which now agitate the U.S. have existed through all time. Whether the power of the people or that of the [aristocracy] should prevail were questions which kept the states of Greece and Rome in eternal convulsions, as they now schismatize every people whose minds and mouths are not shut up by the gag of a despot. And in fact the terms of Whig and Tory belong to natural as well as to civil history. They denote the temper and constitution of mind of different individuals." --Thomas Jefferson to John Adams, 1813.
"The division into Whig and Tory is founded in the nature of man; the weakly and nerveless, the rich and the corrupt, seeing more safety and accessibility in a strong executive; the healthy, firm, and virtuous, feeling confidence in their physical and moral resources, and willing to part with only so much power as is necessary for their good government; and, therefore, to retain the rest in the hands of the many, the division will substantially be into Whig and Tory." --Thomas Jefferson to Joel Barlow, 1802. 
"The parties of Whig and Tory are those of nature. They exist in all countries, whether called by these names or by those of Aristocrats and Democrats, Cote Droite and Cote Gauche, Ultras and Radicals, Serviles and Liberals. The sickly, weakly, timid man fears the people, and is a Tory by nature. The healthy, strong and bold cherishes them, and is formed a Whig by nature." --Thomas Jefferson to Lafayette, 1823.

While the study was able to show that the Party of No is also the Party of The Big Lie, the ratio of lying between the Parties remains questionable without access to the study.

We believe the ratios are closer to 1% and 100%, but on with the essay, just substituting the word "Conservative" for "Republican.":

"Does PolitiFact.com, a popular fact-checking outlet produced by The Tampa Bay Times, have a bias against Republicans?

"Considering the results of a new study by The Center for Media and Public Affairs (CMPA) at George Mason University, some will surely answer affirmatively. Analysis of the first four months of President Barack Obama’s second term found that PolitiFact rated Republicans’ claims false three times as often as Democratic statements.

"Naturally, the first reaction in this instance is to assume an anti-GOP bias, especially considering the recent scandals surrounding Benghazi, the IRS and the Associated Press. Considering the extra scrutiny on the Obama administration and a push for viable and truthful information about these scenarios, one would expect Democratic claims to be fact-checked more regularly and diligently (at least in the current climate).

"But, alas, this isn’t the case.

"Of the 100 claims that were examined by PolitiFact (46 by Democrats and 54 by Republicans) from January 20 through May 22, 32 percent of Republicans’ statements were rated 'false' or 'pants on fire,' indicating that these politicians weren’t being truthful. On the flip side, just 11 percent of Democratic claims were given the same designation.



"And what about claims of truth?

"While Democrats saw 22 percent of their statements rated as 'entirely true,' only 11 percent of Republicans’ statements were labeled the same. A similar dynamic existed for claims that were seen as “mostly or entirely true” (54 percent for Democrats versus 18 percent for Republicans).

“'While Republicans see a credibility gap in the Obama administration, PolitiFact rates Republicans as the less credible party,' said CMPA president Dr. Robert Lichter.

"Digging into the findings, one can come to one of two conclusions: Either there’s a bias against the GOP — or Republicans lie much more fervently than Democrats (at least during the first four months of Obama’s second term).

"As CMPA notes, this isn’t the first time that analysis of PolitiFact’s work has yielded disparities. In the past, the Mitt Romney campaign was given more negative ratings that the Obama campaign. Again, it’s possible the former lied more regularly, although many would debate this.

(And in Salon.com's take on the press release, they noted:



"Undoubtably, Republicans would blame this on 'bias,' accusing the fact checkers of operating as little more than Democratic Party shills. 'We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers,' Romney pollster Neil Newhouse famously declared last summer after the campaign got whacked for running nakedly false ads.")

"Read all of the results of the latest CMPA study about PolitiFact."

Left out of the Blaze.com story was the following, from the original press release:

"Despite controversies over Obama administration statements regarding Benghazi, the IRS and the Associated Press, Republicans have continued to fare worse than Democrats, with 60% of their claims rated as false so far this month (May 1 – May 22), compared to 29% of Democratic statements – a 2 to 1 margin.

"This study’s findings are similar to those of a previous CMPA study, which found that PolitiFact gave more negative ratings to the Romney campaign than the Obama campaign during the 2012 presidential election campaign.

"Examples of PolitiFact ratings:

"Pants on Fire: Michele Bachmann decries “huge national database” run by IRS with "personal, intimate" details. (May 15, 2013)

"True: Obama says bipartisan background check plan “outlawed any (gun) registry.” (April 17, 2013)"

Conservatives and their Sheeplets rail against Politifacts as much as they do against Wikipedia, or any other site that deals in facts rather than pipe dreams and nightmarish Conservative talking points, and while we don't believe in the absolute numbers of the survey, we have proven time and time again that Conservatives lie because they have to.

For the background behind this premise, please read "Conservatism: The Big Lie," here --> http://www.criminalizeconservatism.com/2012/08/conservatism-big-lie.html.



One of the most important ideas we have imparted since the inception of this site is that we can decipher any news story by or about the Other Side by knowing that everything they say and do is a lie.  Any and all statements from any right-winger is based on a lie, every action a Conservative capo takes is based on a lie, and everything a Conservative Sheeplet communicates on the web is a meme, promulgated originally by a lie from Conservatism's vast collection of consiglieres and capos.



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"Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else."

Margaret Mead (American cultural anthropologist, writer, and speaker who wrote

the controversial *Coming of Age in Samoa.* 1901 – 1978)

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Thursday, May 30, 2013

30 Titles From Fox And The Onion — Can You Guess Which Are From Where?


The Progressive Populist has a hilarious piece last month called, "15 Of The Dumbest Political Facebook Posts From Right-Wingers! (Face-Palm Alert!)."



One of the posts reminded us of another essay this month from Addictinginfor.org, "30 Titles From Fox And The Onion — Can You Guess Which Are From Where?," reminding us that with the exception of Dave Barry Conservatives are woefully low in the humor department (n.b. Dennis Miller and Victoria Jackson) and we reprint the essay for your viewing pleasure, with a few pics to capture the stylistic flavor of the two "news" agencies:

"What if Anonymous secretly switches Fox and the Onion’s articles around? Would anyone notice? Well, we’re about to find out.

"Below are 30 titles of 'news' articles, taken either from the Onion or the Fox News website (note: some articles are from the opinion section). Your job is to guess which website they are from. How many do you think you can get right?


1) “Obama Supporter Has Perfectly Improbable Explanation Absolving President From Blame For Scandals.”

Answer here.



2) “Palestinians, Israelis Come Together To Mock Obama’s Hopelessly Naive Speech.”

Answer here.



3) “A HAPPY SURPRISE: Wife Drops 100+ Pounds During Soldier’s Time Away.”

Answer here.



4) “Radical Treatment Option Needed for Obama’s Scandal Sickness.”

Answer here.



5) “Obama, Rachel Goldstein Really Hitting It Off On Group Trip To Israel.”

Answer here.



6) ”Obama Slow Walking into Scandal Swamp.”

Answer here.



7) “Nation Supposes It’s Outraged By White House Scandals.”

Answer here.



8) “Scandals Prompt Comparisons Between Nixon, Obama Administrations.”

Answer here.



9) “IRS Reportedly Grilled Pro-Life Group About The ‘Content Of Their Prayers’.”

Answer here.



10) “Completely Self-Absorbed Obama Gets Up And Just Talks For An Hour Straight.”

Answer here.



11) “Obama Sarcastically Asks How Israel Afforded Such A Great Missile Defense System.”

Answer here.



12) ”American Citizens Split On DOJ Memo Authorizing Government To Kill Them.”

Answer here.



13) “Boehner Just Wants Wife To Listen, Not Come Up With Alternative Debt-Reduction Ideas.”

Answer here.



14) ”Illinois Lawmakers Crack Down On Social Media ‘Flash Mobs’.”

Answer here.



15) “Romney Blames Loss On Successfully Communicating His Message To Minorities.”

Answer here.



16) “Why the Bible Is The Best Graduation Gift You Can Give.”

Answer here.



17) ”USSR Wins Space Race As U.S. Shuts Down Shuttle Program.”

Answer here.



18) “Obama is failing as CEO of America, Inc.”

Answer here.



19) “Obama Seeks to Calm Jitters on his Health Law.”

Answer here.



20) “‘This Is A Pointless Trip,’ Obama Says While Shaking Hands With Netanyahu.”

Answer here.



21) “Obama Fires Blanks in First Test of Second Term Clout.”

Answer here.



22) “Obama Blanks On What He’s Ineffectually Urging Congress To Take Action On Now.”

Answer here.



23)”Republicans Press For More Documents On Benghazi, Dems Say Case Closed.”

Answer here.



24) “It’s Time For President Obama And Justice Thomas To Talk.”

Answer here.

(This is one of our favs: a same-sex couple)


25) “Texas Republican Sen. Cruz eligible To Be President Should He Decide To Run.”

Answer here.



26) “Atheist Stephen Hawking and Church of Scotland both determined to demonize Israel.”

Answer here.



27) ”Obama Says Military Leaders ‘Ashamed’ Of Their Failure To End Sexual Abuse.”

Answer here.



28) “The Mass Exodus Of Christians From The Muslim World.”

Answer here.



29) “The Reelection Of Barack Obama: Four More Years Of Crushing America’s Hopes And Dreams.”

Answer here.



30) ”Congress Passes ‘America Is #1′ Bill.”

Answer here.



Try this test on Conservative friends and family members, if you have the misfortune to have any, and stand back to see the fun and frivolity ensue.

While this post isn't really demonstrative of criminalizing Conservatism, it does point to possibilities inherent in the Sheeplet belief system in regard to their intellectually-challenged minds as we've shown in 57 previous posts (http://www.criminalizeconservatism.com/search/label/conservatives_are_stupid), and offers yet another piece of evidence that the Sheeplets are to be pitied rather than punished when Conservatism is finally banned from the country.

Yes, the essay indicates the depths of stupidity, insanity, hatred, and paranoia that the righties have infected the country with, but fun is fun and we've promised to add a little entertainment to our efforts to educate the uninformed and apathetic voter.



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"Common Sense: A state midway between stupidity and intelligence."

Voltaire, Philosophical Dictionary.


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Wednesday, May 29, 2013

America Is Sinking, And Sinking FAST.


In the last couple of days, we've picked up several articles on the phenomenon, "American Is Sinking," starting with:

An essay from Tom Englehardt at Truthout called "Terracide and the Terrarists: Destroying the Planet for Record Profits," where we find that, "...referring in particular to the men who run what may be the most profitable corporations on the planet, giant energy companies like ExxonMobil, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, BP, and Shell -- you’re the one who’s going to pay, especially your children and grandchildren. You can take one thing for granted: not a single terrarist will ever go to jail, and yet they certainly knew what they were doing...It wasn’t that complicated. In recent years, the companies they run have been extracting fossil fuels from the Earth in ever more frenetic and ingenious ways. The burning of those fossil fuels, in turn, has put record amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere. Only this month, the CO2 level reached 400 parts per million for the first time in human history. A consensus of scientists has long concluded that the process was warming the world and that, if the average planetary temperature rose more than two degrees Celsius, all sorts of dangers could ensue, including seas rising high enough to inundate coastal cities, increasingly intense heat waves, droughts, floods, ever more extreme storm systems, and so on."



Meanwhile over at Alternet.org, Paul Bucheit's story, "The Real Numbers: Half of America in Poverty -- and It's Creeping UpwardThe Census Bureau has reported that one out of six Americans lives in poverty. A shocking figure. But it's actually much, much worse," we discover the Conservatives have slowly crept towards their goal of economic domination over the rest of us, that "'The decade of the 2000s witnessed the most rapid change in the percentage of married mothers earning more than their husbands of any decade since 1960,' said Philip Cohen, a University of Maryland sociologist who studies gender and family trends. 'This reflects the larger job losses experienced by men at the beginning of the Great Recession. Also, some women decided to work more hours or seek better jobs in response to their husbands’ job loss, potential loss or declining wages,' (as)...nearly four in 10 families with children under the age of 18 are now headed by women who are the sole or primary breadwinners for their families, according to a report released Wednesday by the Pew Research Center,":

Astrid Riecken/FOR THE WASHINGTON POST - Julie Guyot-Diangone takes her children outside to play near their home. Guyot-Diangone is a single mom and the sole breadwinner

"Paul Buchheit teaches economic inequality at DePaul University. He is the founder and developer of the Web sites UsAgainstGreed.org,PayUpNow.org and RappingHistory.org, and the editor and main author of 'American Wars: Illusions and Realities' (Clarity Press). He can be reached atpaul@UsAgainstGreed.org, and he writes:

"The Census Bureau has reported that 15% of Americans live in poverty. A shocking figure. But it's actually much worse. Inequality is spreading like a shadowy disease through our country, infecting more and more households, and leaving a shrinking number of financially secure families to maintain the charade of prosperity.

"1. Almost half of Americans had NO assets in 2009

Analysis of Economic Policy Institute data shows that Mitt Romney's famous 47 percent, the alleged 'takers,' have taken nothing. Their debt exceeded their assets in 2009.

"2. It's Even Worse 3 Years Later

"Since the recession, the disparities have continued to grow. An OECD report states that 'inequality has increased by more over the past three years to the end of 2010 than in the previous twelve,' with the U.S. experiencing one of the widest gaps among OECD countries. The 30-year decline in wages has worsened since the recession, as low-wage jobs have replaced formerly secure middle-income positions.'

"3. Based on wage figures, half of Americans are in or near poverty.

"The IRS reports that the highest wage in the bottom half of earners is about $34,000. To be eligible for food assistance, a family can earn up to 130% of the federal poverty line, or about $30,000 for a family of four.

"Even the Census Bureau recognizes that its own figures under-represent the number of people in poverty. Its Supplemental Poverty Measure increases, by 50%, the number of Americans who earn between one-half and two times the poverty threshold.

"4. Based on household expense totals, poverty is creeping into the top half of America.

"A family in the top half, making $60,000 per year, will have their income reduced by a total tax bill of about $15,000 ($3,000 for federal income tax and $12,000 for payroll, state, and local taxes. The Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Census Bureau agree that food, housing, and transportation expenses will deduct another $30,000, and that total household expenditures will be about $50,000. That leaves nothing.

"Nothing, that is, except debt. The median debt level rose to $75,600 in 2009, while the median family net worth, according to the Federal Reserve, dropped from $126,400 in 2007 to $77,300 in 2010.

"5. Putting it in Perspective

"Inequality is at its ugliest for the hungriest people. While food support was being targeted for cuts, just 20 rich Americans made as much from their 2012 investments as the entire 2012 SNAP (food assistance) budget, which serves 47 million people.

"And as Congress continues to cut life-sustaining programs, its members should note that their 400 friends on the Forbes list made more from their stock market gains last year than the total amount of the food, housing, and education budgets combined.

"Arguments about poverty won't end. Neither should our efforts to uncover the awful truth.



"Note: This is an updated, corrected version of the original article, approved by the author."


And what is "the awful truth?" While uninformed voters were looking the other way as usual, their cries of "were number one!" turned into a peak into the present, not the future - the present: at The Land of The Paupers And The Home of the Homeless.

The con, "Trickle Down Economics," is the main culprit as we see not only from a look at Wikipedia's entry that, "The economist John Kenneth Galbraith noted that trickle-down economics' had been tried before in the United States in the 1890s under the name 'horse and sparrow theory.' He wrote, 'Mr. David Stockman has said that supply-side economics was merely a cover for the trickle-down approach to economic policy—what an older and less elegant generation called the horse-and-sparrow theory: "If you feed the horse enough oats, some will pass through to the road for the sparrows." Galbraith claimed that the horse and sparrow theory was partly to blame for the Panic of 1896.[14]



"Proponents of Keynesian economics and related theories often criticize tax rate cuts for the wealthy as being 'trickle down,' arguing tax cuts directly targeting those with less income would be more economically stimulative. Keynesians generally argue for broad fiscal policies that are directed across the entire economy, not toward one specific group.

"In the 1992 presidential election, Independent candidate Ross Perot called trickle-down economics 'political voodoo.'[15]

"In New Zealand, Labour Party MP Damien O'Connor has, in the Labour Party campaign launch video for the 2011 general election, called trickle-down economics 'the rich pissing on the poor'.

"A 2012 study by the Tax Justice Network indicates that wealth of the super-rich does not trickle down to improve the economy, but tends to be amassed and sheltered in tax havens with a negative effect on the tax bases of the home economy.[16]"



And a more partisan but no less true look at Conservative "economics" from Allen Clifton at Forward Progressives, "The Con of Trickle-Down Economics," he writes:

"...it doesn’t take into account the one flaw we’ve faced since the dawn of humanity–basic human nature. Human nature is often very greedy, and those who have the most, in many cases, tend to be the greediest.

"The old saying 'absolute power corrupts absolutely' in reality means power of any kind often corrupts. With our society placing so much emphasis on money, it has made having money equal having power. Trickle-Down Economics puts the health of a nation into the “generous” hands of the rich and powerful.




"But you have to ask yourself, who benefits most from this philosophy? Who stands to gain the most by shaping an entire economic ideology around this belief? It doesn’t take rocket science to figure that out–the rich and powerful. Whose power in politics has grown thanks to rulings such as Citizens United, which allows big corporations the freedom to give unheard of sums of money to any political candidate or party? Yup, you guessed it—the rich and powerful.

"Nearly all credible information you can find over the last 30+ years shows that middle class pay has remained pretty much stagnant. This fact remains indisputable as the income for the top 2% in this country has skyrocketed, and never more so than in the last decade. Yet even with that indisputable information, you have millions of Americans who accept this economic theory.

"It’s a magnificent con.



"The rich and powerful have convinced millions to vote against their own interest. Right now, instead of supporting closing loopholes for individuals and big businesses that make millions (or billions), an entire political party has instead focused on cutting programs that mostly help lower and middle class Americans. They’ve screamed 'class warfare,' yet have not supported a single deficit reduction solution that includes a sacrifice from the top 1%—even opposing the elimination of a tax break for people who own corporate jets.

"It seems insane to think that a middle class American would fight to protect the tax rate of someone who makes a hundred times what they make, all while advocating the slashing of programs they themselves benefit from.

"And the worse things get, the more tax breaks they want. Their talking point is near perfection:

“'Well, how will raising our taxes create jobs? We need lower taxes so we can create jobs and boost the economy!'

"They’re right, raising taxes won’t help create jobs, but lowering them didn’t help either. At least with increased tax revenue we wouldn’t need such drastic cuts to public employment like Republicans have pushed for the last 4 years.



"Republicans ignore the fact that we had historic economic growth, and all-time low unemployment, under President Clinton–with higher taxes. They’ve also ignored the fact that we faced the worst economic crash in 80 years, and shed millions of jobs, while we had the lowest tax rates in our nation’s history. These are two simple realities that easily prove the falsity of the Republican rhetoric that “tax cuts are vital for job creation”.

"Ask yourself these questions: Over the last 30 years are most jobs gaining or losing benefits? Are people gaining or losing their pensions? Are they working less or more? Are health care plans getting better or worse?

"Keep in mind when you answer these, that over the last 30 years executive pay and benefits have hit historic highs and corporate profits have skyrocketed."

For the rest of the story, go to --> http://www.forwardprogressives.com/the-con-of-trickle-down-economics/

Very little else remains to be seen:  Conservatism has ruined our country, and unless it is criminalized we're going to continue to sink until the golden age of the New American Feudalism begins.  Criminalize Conservatism NOW.



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"A man in a bookstore buys a book on loneliness and every woman in the store
hits on him. A woman buys a book on loneliness and the store clears out."

Doug Coupland, Canadian Novelist.


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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Why Average Voters Vote For Republicans


In the closing sentence of yesterday's post, "10 Crazy Things The Right Did This Week," we noted that, "The Conservatives and their spokesman would seem entertaining to the average Martian on his first visit here if it wasn't for the horrific aftereffects of such comments: the belief instilled not only in their Sheeplets that they are telling the truth, but also the belief of the average uninformed voter in the Conservatives' lies after the media and think tanks get through with them," and today's reprint of Robert Sobel's piece in the Examiner, "Misinformed USA: Why average Americans vote for Republicans," tells us why we should never believe, nay - even read - anything from the Conservative "think tanks" such as the Cato Institute and the Heritage Foundation."
"It's not to say that Fox News, the Cato Institute and others like them totally lie because that would be too difficult to pull off. What these think tanks do, is take a fact and twist it to fit their own personal agenda, leaving out key information that would contradict with the platform they're trying to create."
"One can only wonder why average working class Americans would vote for a party that is so obvious in their bias towards the wealthy. It would make sense that someone in the top 1% of the income bracket would vote for the Republican party since they have the wealthiest American's best interest at heart. You could even make the case that highly religious Christians would vote for Republicans even though, at times, they vote against their own best economic interests. So the question remains, while scratching your head, why do working class Americans vote for Republican candidates?




"I recently sat down and spoke with an acquaintance of mine, trying to get a grip on what people are thinking about the future of our country. He said he will vote for Mitt Romney because, 'we need a business person to get our debt down.' I asked where he got his news, and after trying to deflect from the question, the answer finally came. 'I don't pay attention too much, but when I do, I watch Fox.' Fox News is the primary source for information for millions of Americans across the country and that's where the problem starts.

"Whether it's Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity or other right wing ideologues, Fox News is a tunnel vision information outlet with only one particular agenda that is being pushed through. Millions of Americans watch Fox News, listen to the likes of Rush Limbaugh, Neal Boortz, Michael Savage and others while getting information from right wing think tanks like the Heritage Foundation and the Cato Institute. With big businesses and billionaire allies, the truth and facts in American have gone from a clear right and wrong, black and white situation to muffled shades of gray. It's not to say that Fox News, the Cato Institute and others like them totally lie because that would be too difficult to pull off. What these think tanks do, is take a fact and twist it to fit their own personal agenda, leaving out key information that would contradict with the platform they're trying to create.



"A perfect example in describing the way groups like the Cato Institute operate is a report that came out by alternet.org. In the early 2000s, the Cato Institute released a report that suggested that families receiving welfare were making between $17,000 and $25,000 a year, but the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities countered that claim. The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities showed that the average income for welfare recipients was below $9,000 a year, which is nearly $3,000 a year below the poverty line.

The misinformation also comes from another right wing think tank, the Heritage Foundation. In 2011, when Paul Ryan released the 'Ryan' Republican budget, the Heritage Foundation claimed that unemployment would drop to 6.4% in 2012 and to 2.8% in 2022. A report released by theWashington Monthly pointed out that these claims were extremely exaggerated. The CBO, the Congressional Budget Office, showed the errors of the Heritage Foundation's report and the director of the Heritage Foundation's Center for Data Analysis, William Beach, was forced to walk backed the claims.



"In 2009, the Heritage Foundation released ads attacking the Employee Free Choice Act, a bill that was brought to congress that would give all employees the right to form a union without fear of being fired from their current job. Since the Heritage Foundation is bought and paid for by million and billionaire conservatives, the idea of having workers unite with more power and freedom threatens their control at the top. The ads released painted a false picture about the Employee Free Choice Act, claiming that unions will bully workers into joining them with an attempt to take money from the employee. According to the Huffington Post, the Heritage Foundation 'frame(s) the EFCA issue based on bald-faced lies. Business-financed "think tanks" like Heritage propagandize workers against their own interests in psychologically sophisticated ways, often pulling on their heartstrings and framing their anti-union stance as "common sense."



"Average Americans need to be more informed about what is going in the country, but also where to get their information. The argument isn't about holding a liberal or conservative ideology, it's about facts that are based on truth or information that is based on twisted logic. Americans need to learn to dig a little deeper to find honest reporting, not just believe something that falls in their lap at the expense of a billionaire funded think tank or news organization."

This piece would seem to be a bit elementary for many readers, and note that even in an unbiased description of think tanks -- Wikipedia's entry: "In some cases, corporate interests have found it useful to create 'think tanks.' For example, The Advancement of Sound Science Coalition was formed in the mid-1990s to dispute research finding an association between second-hand smoke and cancer.[21] According to an internal memorandum from Philip Morris Companies referring to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), 'the credibility of the EPA is defeatable, but not on the basis of ETS (environmental tobacco smoke) alone. It must be part of a larger mosaic that concentrates all the EPA's enemies against it at one time.'[22]

"According to the Fairness and Accuracy in Media, right-wing policy institutes are often quoted and rarely identified as such. The result is that think tank "experts" are allegedly sometimes depicted as neutral sources without any ideological predispositions when, in fact, they represent a particular perspective.[23] In the field of education, think tank publications are subjected to expert review by the National Education Policy Center's 'Think Twice' think tank review project.[24]



"A policy institute is often a 'tank', in the intellectual sense: discussion only in a sheltered group protected from outside influence isolates the participants, subjects them to several cognitive biases (groupthink, confirmation bias) and fosters members' existing beliefs. This results in surprisingly radical and even unfeasible ideas being published..."

Note that, "right-wing policy institutes are often quoted and rarely identified as such. The result is that think tank 'experts' are allegedly sometimes depicted as neutral sources without any ideological predispositions when, in fact, they represent a particular perspective."

For a list of Conservative propaganda mills masquerading as "think tanks," such as the Americans for Tax Reform, the Cato Institute, the Kemp Foundation and the American Action Network, go here --> http://think-tanks.findthedata.org/d/t/Conservative.  If you see a study by any of them, don't even bother reading it...



Conservative capos were even startled by the obvious bias in a "study" published earlier this year, a flawed piece that a even a middle school student would have been able to find false -- not just misleading, but false  (http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/wp/2013/05/06/conservative-leaders-slam-heritage-for-shoddy-immmigration-study/).  And there's some fantastic irony here as the Cato analysis "...found that immigration reform would add $1.5 trillion in growth over ten years while forcing out 11 million immigrants (the Heritage solution) would lower GDP by $2.6 trillion over ten years," thus putting immigration reactionaries out of business temporarily until they can drum up another "study."

Like all of the Conservative propagandists on the airwaves, the Limbaughs and the O'Reillys, Conservative activist groups calling themselves objective should be an object of scorn, not respect.  Their aims are exactly the same: to rid the country of the democratic principals that the Founding Fathers started, and putting a new American feudal system in its place.



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"It is dangerous to be sincere unless you are also stupid."

George Bernard Shaw


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Monday, May 27, 2013

10 Crazy Things The Right Did This Week

In their series, "The Tea Party And The Right," Alternet's post, "10 Crazy Things The Right Did This Week," or  "It's been another week of the insane, inane, and outright offensive," is a perfect piece to entertain and educate us on this national holiday:

"It's been another week of the insane, inane, and outright offensive. Here's your top ten - with illustrations:

"1.  Pennsylvania governor can't find any Latinos to work for him. Gov. Tom Corbett (R-PA) told a Spanish-language newspaper this week that he didn't have any Latinos working for him. There are approximately 18,000 Latinos just in the Harrisburg, PA area alone.



"2.  Pennsylvania governor remembers single Latino who works for him. A day after saying he didn't have any Latinos working for him, Corbett suddenly remembered a single Latino appointee working in his administration.


"3.  Conservatives freak out over Boy Scouts decision to admit gays. Here's the ten best conservative freak-outs over the group's decision to admit gay scouts while maintaining a ban on gay leaders.



"4.  Tea Party congressman mansplains his anti-abortion views. Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), speaking at a hearing about an unconstitutional ban on abortion after 20 weeks that House Republicans are championing, told a witness that she should've been forced to wait and give birth rather than have an abortion even though her fetus had no brain function.



"5.  Top Republican called Obama's national security speech "a victory for terrorists." The comments were made by Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), the top Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee. Chambliss defeated a decorated, triple amputee veteran in 2002 by running an ad juxtaposing his opponent with images of Osama bin Laden.



"6.  Texas GOP continued its obsession with limiting women's rights. The Texas GOP introduced another 24 anti-abortion bills this year, but thankfully none of them advanced.


"7.  This man could be the next Lieutenant Governor of Virginia. Virginia Republicans nominated an extremely anti-gay, anti-abortion minister who has a long history of making insensitive and inflammatory comments. Here's his 20 craziest tweets.


Bishop E W Jackson @ewjsr
If Bill Clinton was the "first black President," Barack Obama is the "first homosexual President," based on their respective affinities.
4:20 PM - 10 Oct 2009

"8.  RNC chair melts down. In an effort to attack the president, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus threw out attacks so over the top that the Morning Joe crew called him out.


"9.  GOP senator says implementing Obamacare is just like an illegal coverup. Because of her efforts to implement Obamcare, Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) likened Health & Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to convicted criminal Oliver North.


"10. GOP senator defends Apple's efforts to avoid billions of dollars in U.S. taxes. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), in a move reminiscent of Rep. Joe Barton's infamous apology to BP in the wake of its disastrous oil spill, apologized to top Apple officials for being called in front of the Senate to explain how they use complex structures and gimmicks to avoid paying U.S. taxes."


The Conservatives and their spokesman would seem entertaining to the average Martian on his first visit here if it wasn't for the horrific aftereffects of such comments:  the belief instilled not only in their Sheeplets that they are telling the truth, but also the belief of the average uninformed voter in the Conservatives' lies after the media and think tanks get through with them.


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"Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to
read."

Groucho Marx


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