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REAL SOLUTIONS FOR EDUCATION

death and life of education

Can people on the Right pound a lick of sense into the rockbrains of the rampaging Loony Right?

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At the link, hear NJ Gov. Chris Christie tear into the other-than-"good" people in Congress who last night turned their backs on the victims of Superstorm Sandy.
They have the still North in their hearts, the hill winds in their veins,
and the GRANITE of New Hampshire in their muscles and their brains,
and the GRANITE of New Hampshire in their muscles and their brains.

-- the grand climax of a mercifully disused old college song

by Ken

We actually used to that old college song in olden days, and some of us relished the silliness of all but boasting of that granite in our brains, something you would normally wait for your enemies to accuse you of. (By the way, my caps on the word "granite" aren't editorial. They're meant to convey the spitting emphasis on the word made by the musical setting.)

Well, the latter-day Rampaging Right is laying incontestable claim -- with its cozy mélange of plumb ignorance, unbridled indecency, and depraved savagery -- to the mantle of Supremest Rockbrains of the Universe. And of course these toxic life forms couldn't be more pleased with themselves. Do you suppose there's any chance that people from their own side of the political spectrum might be able to make contact?

LOS ANGELES TIMES

Enraged Chris Christie blasts Boehner, House GOP over Sandy aid
By Paul West
January 2, 2013, 1:47 p.m.

WASHINGTON -- Enraged over Congress' failure to approve disaster relief for victims of Superstorm Sandy, Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey unloaded Wednesday on House Speaker John A. Boehner and Republican lawmakers in Washington for putting "palace intrigue" ahead of their official responsibilities.

Washington politicians "will say whatever they have to say to get through the day," Christie said, adding that, as a governor, he had "actual responsibilities" -- "unlike people in Congress."

Christie, a potential 2016 GOP presidential contender, reserved his most blistering words for the Republican House speaker.  He described Boehner, variously, as selfish, duplicitous and gutless for reversing course at the last minute on Tuesday night and refusing to allow a vote on a $60-billion aid package before the current Congress adjourned.

Christie said that as a result of "the speaker's irresponsible action," there will be further delay in federal disaster aid to New Jersey, New York, Connecticut and other areas hit by the October storm. He pointed out that it had been 66 days since the storm hit and that areas struck by other hurricanes in recent years had received relief packages in far less time. . . .

The other Republican conspicuously on the warpath today about the GOP Sandy Bungle, Long Island Rep. Peter King, I'm afraid doesn't really count here. You might think he has closer ties to the House GOP crazies than does Governor Christie, since for some years now he has cast his political lot with them, but unfortunately for Poopy Petey, the House GOP loonies will recognize only too well that he hasn't changed his adoptive policy of "Screw the bustards!," applicable to everyone with legitimate claims on the polity who happens to be outside the Kernel of Craziness. No, it's just that now the Poopster finds his people as prime specimens of the bustards that modern-day conservatism exists to screw. When you've made yourself a leading voice for bustard-screwing, you're in awkward territory when you find yourself the bustard-in-need. You can too easily be dismissed as a mere "special interest."

THEN THERE'S THE MATTER OF THE SAVAGES WHO
JUMPED WILDLY ON THE FALLEN HILLARY CLINTON

Here's where WaPo right-wing columnist Kathleen Parker once again shows her value. She has hard-to-impeach conservative credentials and yet has repeated declined to leap off the cliff of sanity with her fellow ideologists.

The character assassination of Hillary Clinton

The new year began not with a cannonball off the "fiscal cliff" but with an outbreak of conspiratorial cynicism.

This time it's Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, whose fall and concussion, followed by a blood clot between her brain and skull, has prompted an embarrassment of theories. The gist: That woman will do anything to avoid testifying about Benghazi.

Several commentators on the right opined via Twitter and TV, those most deadly hosts for the parasites of rumor and innuendo, that Clinton was faking her concussion to duck out on her appearance before congressional committees investigating the attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Libya that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans.

Naturally Kathleen wants it understood: "The sentiment that Clinton might not wish to testify on the matter is not without reason." But, she says,
the attacks on Clinton during her illness, essentially attacks on her character, have been cruel and unfair. What must the world think of us?

Clinton, who fainted as a result of dehydration after a bout of flu, hit her head and suffered a concussion, after which a blood clot was discovered. She had to be hospitalized while blood-thinning medications were administered and monitored.
Although her critics backed off once the clot was reported, initial responses ranged from "She's faking" to demands for proof of her concussion.

One writer demanded her medical records. John Bolton, former ambassador to the United Nations, called Clinton's affliction a "diplomatic illness" to avoid testifying about Benghazi. Later he suggested that details were skimpy in an effort to protect her potential 2016 presidential run.

"I think it's the too-cute-by-half approach that's reflected in the absence of transparency that's going to end up damaging her and damaging her credibility," he said on Fox News.

Again, Clinton may well prefer to miss her day before the firing squad, but it is unlikely that doctors or a hospital would assist a secretary of state -- or anyone -- in concocting a fake affliction.

And good on Kathleen, she doesn't stop there. She has the temerity to insist on a modicum of logic. Considering the people she's dealing with, this can be viewed as either astonishingly bold or merely pointless. Still, she makes the pont.
[Y]ou can't have it every which way. Immediately after the Benghazi attacks, Clinton took full responsibility for the events and was accused by Republicans of falling on her sword to protect President Obama. Now that she's temporarily indisposed and unable to elaborate on her admitted responsibility, those same critics insist she's trying to avoid taking personal responsibility.
Eventually our Kathleen retreats into a safe bunker of even-handedness, which fudges the issue of where the breakdown in sanity and civility has really occurred. But she couches the argument reasonably.
The viciousness of the pundit class is disheartening and disgusting. And these days everyone's a pundit. Got an opinion? Why, step right up to the microphone. If you're "good TV," you too can be a "contributor."

Out in the hinterlands, where Americans consume "news" that suits their political proclivities, opinions are formed on the basis of what-he-said. Reputations and lives are ruined on the tines of pitchforks glimmering in the light of torch-bearing mobs. And those are just the "news" shows.

One doesn't have to be a fan of Hillary Clinton, though a Bloomberg poll says that two-thirds of Americans are, to feel tainted by the relish with which she and many others have been attacked -- unfairly and disproportionately. Susan Rice, who was Obama's favorite to replace Clinton as secretary of state, comes to mind.

But this isn't a problem only for women or Democrats. The rush to character assassination seems to be our only bipartisan imperative and is a blight on our political system. In this brooding age of superstition and portent, every misspoken word is a lie, every human error a hanging offense.

This is to suggest not that we be naive or credulous but that we seek some balance in our approach to discovery. At the moment, we seem to be ricocheting between hysteria and delusion.

Eventually, Clinton will have to step forward and take her medicine. She is slated to appear before the House Foreign Affairs Committee in mid-January, though the date hasn't been set. The nation clearly needs answers on what happened in Benghazi, and no doubt Clinton will provide them.

This is not blind faith in a favored politician but respect for a process that relies on accepted rules of order. We owe our representative to the world -- which is to say, ourselves -- at least this much.


My guess is that the response on the Loony Right to the heresies of Governor Chris and Columnist Kathleen will be mostly scorn and derision. Given them credit for standing up and being counted, though.

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Original author: KenInNY
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