Tag Archives: Dickory

Republicans Make History in a Sad, Childish Way

As reported on NBC News in “Republicans decline to hear president’s budget“, the republican controlled House and Senate budget committees have made the historic decision to refuse a formal hearing of President Obama’s $4.1 Trillion  budget. Such a hearing has been a bipartisan courtesy extended to the President since the 1970’s.

The statements released by the leadership (pictured above) defend the action with assumptions and trite, personal criticism. Enzi, for example, claims that the administration is “unconcerned with our $19 trillion in debt.” Price assumes that the proposal will, “double down on the same failed policies.” The hearing, of course, would imply no acceptance of the proposed budget. It would, in fact, be an opportunity for criticism based on its actual content.

In essence, they were faced with the opportunity to be (or pretend to be) cooperative and respectful of their peers and they opted to throw a puerile public tantrum.

Verdict

The Budget and Accounting Act of 1921 requires the office of the President to submit a budget to congress, as a request, annually. It does not require Congress to hold a hearing of the submitted budget. This is the simple, bipartisan courtesy that the current leadership has chosen to ignore.

The Republican leadership responsible is charged with Dickory in the First Degree. As a result, they’re sentenced with the loss of their big-boy pants until they grow the hell up.

Ben Carson Apparently Thinks the United States and “The Howdy Doody Show” are the Same Age

Ben_Carson_at_CPAC_2015As reported by RawStory.com in “Ben Carson: Pledge of Allegiance and other ‘founding documents’ prove America is a Christian nation” Ben Carson is under the impression that the United States is, tops, 60 years old. The soft-spoken Republican Presidential Candidate and former neurosurgeon told a gathering in Gainesville, GA that he would work to place God at the “center” of American culture:

“The pledge of allegiance to our flag says we are one nation under God. Many courtrooms in the land on the wall it says ‘In God We Trust.’ Every coin in our pocket, every bill in our wallet says ‘In God We Trust. So if it’s in our founding documents, it’s in our pledges, in our courts and it’s on our money, but we’re not supposed to talk about it, what in the world is that?”

In light of this we’d like to remind Ben that “In God we Trust” was only made the national motto in 1956. It was 1957 that the phrase began appearing on paper currency (although it had appeared on some coins as early as 1864). As for the pledge, it was written in 1892 and officially adopted in 1945. However the phrase “under God” wasn’t added until 1954. It’s also worth noting that none of these are clear about exactly which God is to be trusted here.

Verdict

For those – like Mr. Carson – that need a refresher history course: None of these happened during the actual founding of the country. Rather, all of these changes were direct results of the Red Scare and McCarthyism. Seemingly, Ben Carson prefers decisions made during a period of mass hysteria and distrust by a paranoid, homophobic blowhard rather than the considered opinions of our actual Founding Fathers.

Carson is either demonstrating willful ignorance or flat out lying. In either case he earns a sentence of Dickory in the First Degree.

Many People in Idaho don’t Understand the Constitution

Idaho RepbulicansAs reported by John Timmer in Ars Technica, “Idaho Republicans want Bible in schools for ‘astronomy, biology, geology’“, the State Republican Party Central Committee of Idaho doesn’t understand the laws of the country in which they operate. In an otherwise rather dull set of proposed resolution they’ve included Resolution 2015-P20, “A Resolution Supporting Bible Use in Idaho Public Schools“.

In short the resolution, basically, says that 1) because both the state Constitution and the state Republican platform mentions a god, 2) that they believe a known lie about congress promoting the use of The Bible in schools in 1782 and 3) that the Supreme Court has upheld the use of The Bible in schools when used as piece of historical literature that it should be legal to use it all over the damn place (emphasis added):

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED,That the Idaho County Central Committee encourages the Idaho legislature to draft and support a bill stating that the Bible is expressly permitted to be used in Idaho public schools for reference purposes to further the study of literature, comparative religion, English and foreign languages, U.S. and world history, comparative government, law, philosophy, ethics, astronomy, biology, geology, world geography, archaeology, music, sociology, and other topics of study where an understanding of the Bible may be useful or relevant;

The resolution is mum as to why The Bible would be appropriate for use in Biology and Astronomy but not, say, Mathematics or Physics.

Verdict

As most school-children (well, at least those not in Idaho) are likely aware: use of The Bible in public schools, outside of its legitimate standing as a piece of literature, is an illegal promotion of religion. It’s sad that those wishing to run the country can’t be bothered to learn how it works.

The Committee’s ignorant, and likely willful, misunderstanding of the law earns them a shared charge of Dickory in the First Degree.

Donald Trump is a Terrible Person

Donald TrumpAs being reported everywhere (ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, USA Today,  TheDaily News, The New York Times, CNN, The Boston Globe and about a million others) Donald Trump is now officially running for president, rounding out the Republican field at an even dozen. This was pretty damn sad.

Almost as quickly, many sources let us know just how full of shit he was. This was even sadder:

If asked our opinion, we’d say that Trump isn’t really serious in his bid and that it’s simply a ploy to collect as much of the Republican’s crazy fringe as he can to eventually sell them off to the highest bidder with an endorsement. Serious or not, this move does make Trump, officially, a politician which allows us to cast judgement.

The Verdict

Trump is a politician that drenches us in Dumbassery, Douchebaggery and Dickory in torrential amounts. He has no positive traits whatsoever. He is convicted of the “Triple D”: Dumbassery, Douchebaggery and Dickory all in the Worst Degree. He is a terrible human being and is so sentenced to please, in the name of all goodness and light in the world, just go away.

Todd Russ (and the Majority of the Oklahoma State House) is Sadly Deranged

Todd Russ, OklahomaAs reported on “LGBTQNation.com”, “Okla. House OKs bill shifting issuance of marriage licenses from state to clergy“, the Oklahoma House passed House Bill 1125. The innocuously named bill – which let’s remember has passed the House – would mandate that all marriage licenses be issued by clergy, effectively eliminating secular marriage completely in the state.

The bill, as we all know from “Schoolhouse Rocks”, still requires passage by the State Senate before becoming a law. With a solid Republican majority behind the effort, however, that seems likely. Looks like the cartoon will need to be updated to reflect the inevitable Supreme Court challenge.

The law would require a ceremony to be performed and certificate to be issued by a “preacher, minister, priest, rabbi, or ecclesiastical dignitary”. Russ claims this “protects” county clerks from having to “recognize” same-sex marriage.

Todd clearly doesn’t realize that non-religious people, according to recent polls, make up as much as a third of Americans. Marriage, secular or otherwise, provides numerous secular benefits ranging from tax breaks to estate disposition to hospital visitation.

Verdict

Russ and, apparently, a majority of the Oklahoma House of Representatives fail to understand that marriage as a legal arrangement has as long a, if not longer, history than marriage as a religious rite. They also clearly enjoy wasting taxpayer time and money with ridiculous assertions that have absolutely no chance of passing constitutional muster.

For all of this we charge the Oklahoma House of Representatives with Dickory in the First Degree and Accessory Dumbassery. They are sentenced to remain, for the rest of their natural-born lives, in an Oklahoma that will soon leave them behind culturally, socially and politically.

Classic Sadness: Peter Palumbo calls Jessica Alquist “Evil”

PeterPalumboJessica Ahlquist was 16 in 2011 when she questioned and then, with the help of the ACLU, brought legal action against her high school for prominently displaying an official Christian School Prayer.  After nearly a year she (obviously) won her case.

Jessica earned few friends locally with her brave actions.  She was repeatedly bullied by both other students and teachers, anonymously threatened with physical violence, rape and death and even earned the public ire of several famous conservatives.  As vile as these were however our concern is with Peter Palumbo, her local state representative.

Peter decided to sum up his feelings about Jessica on a local talk radio station where he labeled her an “evil little thing“. This is detailed more fully in these Examiner.com and Cranston.patch.com pieces. This elected official singled out a child brave enough to suffer threat and insult to defend our constitution as “evil”. Soledad O’Brien interviews Jessica about this in this CNN clip from 2012:

On a positive note while Jessica lost many local friends she gained thousands of admirers around the world.  So much so that Hemant Mehta, of FriendlyAtheist.com, was able to raise over $40,000 from the atheist/freethinker community to fund her future education.

Verdict

Palumbo, like many politicians, fails to understand the Constitution.  By his statements he places personal beliefs above his civic duty.  He is most sad however – desperately, terribly sad – for attacking a little girl that clearly could do his job better than he can.

A good man, if he disagreed with her, might have engaged Jessica on the issue.  He might have admired her bravery and the sheer gumption she displayed at so young an age.  He could have marveled that a child still too young to vote would have such a passion for the foundational ideals of our country.

Palumbo took another path: he called her names.  Rep. Palumbo earns twin charges of platinum-level Dickory and Dumbassery – and our eternal disdain.

Another Sad Man doesn’t Understand the Constitution

DennisKruseTo add to our unfortunately regular theme of elected officials that simply do not understand the Constitution JCOnline.com reports that Indiana Sen. Dennis Kruse files bill that would allow schools to require saying Lord’s Prayer.  The Huffington Post has another take.

The bill would allow schools to require daily recitation of “The Lord’s Prayer” (although apparently students could opt out with parental permission).  Kruse is well known for repeatedly attempting to introduce bills which would allow the teaching of creationism in public schools.  In a clear attempt at irony Kruse, a longtime state senator, is the Chairman of the Senate Education Committee.

Happily it does look like the bill has very little chance of reaching a vote.  Senate President Pro Tempore David Long feels that Kruse may have backed the bill “to make a statement, not expecting a hearing.”  Although he clearly understands the issue Long is still a politician and equivocates his statement:

“It’s a clear violation of the interpretation of the First Amendment by the United States Supreme Court.  It’s not a personal opinion on my part.”

On the positive side he did assign the bill to a procedural committee known as a “burial ground” for bad legislation.

Verdict

Kruse’s willful misunderstanding of the law earns him a clear charge of Dickory in the First Degree.  However his persistent and repeated offenses show a marked lack of remorse.  We find no recourse but to brand him a repeat offender and place him on the national registry.

Mr. Kruse you must now visit your constituents, door-to-door, and inform them that they have an asshat resident in their legislative body.