Oklahoma spent eight years under full GOP rule, with Republicans controlling the governorship and the legislature, passing a fully ALEC-compliant slate of laws that benefited the wealthy at the expense of the poor; the result has been a catastrophe for the party's fortunes in Oklahoma, to say nothing of a catastrophe for Oklahomans, whose schools are running four day weeks so teachers can made ends meet by getting a day's work at Walmart (no wonder they're on the verge of striking); while Republican lawmakers have run amok, introducing bills demanding that creationism be taught in schools; or that protesters be bankrupted for peaceful assembly; and making the state a haven for forced-labor camps masquerading as drug rehab centers. Read the rest
In 2013, Tea Party activists claimed that they'd been singled out by the IRS for political reasons, and that's why their associated nonprofits were not being approved by the tax agency. In reality, a longrunning investigation found that the IRS was merely incompetent and understaffed, but the Tea Party's tactic of going after the referee rather than the system worked for them: the result was an IRS that has had its resources cut even further, leaving it less -- nor more -- able to evaluate charitable organizations that apply for tax-exempt status. Read the rest
Benjamin writes, "Missouri Governor Eric Greitens has called for a special session to basically make Saint Louis less of a 'sanctuary city' for those seeking abortion. This special session will lead to some pretty hefty taxpayer expense, of course, and has faced some opposition. In an inexplicable turn of events, this has lead to state Representative Mike Moon [R-Ash Grove] [@realmikemoon, +1 573-751-4077, Mike.Moon@house.mo.gov] a member of the Tea Party, to literally slaughter/Indiana Jones de-heart a live chicken, on video. Because, abortion." Read the rest
All of the GOP's bluster about election fraud couldn't save the budget for the Election Administration Commission, the federal agency that deals with software security risks in America's creating, Windows-2000-based voting machines. Read the rest
In 2004, under then-governor Rick Perry, the Texas Education Agency secretly instituted a plan to cap the number of students receiving special education support at 8.5% -- far less than the national average. Read the rest
Tea Party-dominated states across America passed laws banning cities from providing high-speed internet access to their residents, even in places where the cable/telco duopoly had decided not to sell broadband; last year, the FCC issued an order stating that these laws were null and void. Read the rest
Brother Phil writes, "The Public Defender's Office in Missouri is chronically underfunded by a governor who can always find money for his pet projects. However, they do have the power to draft any lawyer to serve as the defense in a case if they don't have one spare.Guess who just happens to be a lawyer..." Read the rest
The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals has invalidated parts of North Carolina's voter suppression laws, ruling that the requirement to show photo ID was enacted "with racially discriminatory intent." Read the rest
When the Supreme Court struck down the Voting Rights Act in 2015, we learned that the 2016 election would be the first in two generations without the basic protections for equal voting rights for all people. Read the rest
Towns in Mississippi and other Tea Party-ruled states with large (often private) prison industries are totally reliant on state/fed funding transfers to local prisons for cash and jobs, forced prison labor to provide local services for free, and War on Drugs arrests and minimum sentencing to fill those jails. The first tiny steps toward criminal justice reform have eroded the underpinnings of the whole system, leaving the towns facing collapse. Read the rest
The Omnibus Budget Bill passed this week, and Paul Ryan managed to cram the domestic mass surveillance law CISA into it, but that's just the appetizer in a banquet of corrupt DC horsetrading embodied in 2,000+ pages that indicts the entire US legislative system. Read the rest
Beloved reality TV star and noted child molester Josh Duggar is idolized as a cherished paragon of traditional family values by presidential candidate Mike Huckabee and other social conservatives. The Tea Party darling is now being sued for half a million dollars by a woman he paid to have sex with. Read the rest
Pastor Kevin Swanson has some unusual tips for parents who attended his "National Religious Liberties Conference." After he interviewed fellow Tea Party darlings Mike Huckabee and Bobby Jindal, he went on to describe how he would celebrate one of his children getting married to a person of the same gender:
"There are families, we're talking Christian families, pastors' families, elders' families from good, godly churches whose sons are rebelling, hanging out with homosexuals and getting married and the parents are invited. What would you do if that was the case? Here is what I would do: sackcloth and ashes at the entrance to the church and I'd sit in cow manure and I'd spread it all over my body. That is what I would do and I'm not kidding, I'm not laughing."
What a party animal!
He also had advice for parents of children whose minds had been poisoned by Satanic, pro-homosexual propaganda like Harry Potter and How to Train Your Dragon: murder them.
“For tens of millions of parents it would be better that a millstone be hung around their neck and they be drowned at the bottom of the sea.”
In the video above Swanson also screams "don't you dare carve happy faces on open, pus-sy sores!" Darn, there goes my plans for the weekend. Read the rest
Rick Wilson, a Republican, has a terrific essay in The Daily Beast that explains why Trump is so appealing to some people (Wilson calls them the Troll Party), and how these trolls are leading a "witch hunt for apostates" within the Republican party.
Read the rest
So who comprises the Troll Party? Some of them are a distaff faction of the Tea Party, angry that the leadership in Washington doesn’t pursue their agenda with the bloody-mindedness and tempo they demand. Many are angry that the GOP lost to Barack Obama twice and, in their minds, allowed through action or inaction a set of economic, social, and cultural changes that make them feel powerless. For them, supporting Trump feels like rebellion. They crave a sense of agency in the face of a political culture in D.C. that they believe loathes and disregards them.
Others are reality television viewers who don’t get the artifice and irony, even after almost two decades of the form. Some are walking, talking comments sections of the fever swamp sites. Some are your aunt or mom, sending the long, rambling chain emails about Obama’s birth certificate with multiple forwards, fonts, colors, and glittery eagle gifs. Some pose as strict Constitutionalists, loyal unto death to the founders, except when Trump is talking.
Some of the dregs of the creepier neighborhoods of Reddit, Voat, and 4chan have joined for the lulz. The Troll Party looks at the kooks, the overt white supremacists (oh, pardon me, “race realists”), neo-Nazis, flaming anti-Semites, birthers, truthers, Jade Helmers, chemtrailers, and assorted other conspiracy whackjobs in their midst and shrugs it off with a grin.
Maine's Tea Party Governor Paul LePage (R) has doubled down on his lie that Stephen King left Maine to avoid paying income tax; King is a proud taxpayer who views "taxes as a way of paying back the state that has given us so much." Read the rest