Nick Matzke posted Entry 2178 on April 5, 2006 10:07 PM.
Trackback URL: http://www.pandasthumb.org/cgi-bin/mt/mt-tb.fcgi/2173

Someone in Texas forwarded this to me, from the Texas Academy of Science:

Subject: Texas Academy of Science and Dr. Eric Pianka
Date: Tue, 4 Apr 2006 15:17:19 -0600

I, and the Board of Directors of the Texas Academy of Science (TAS), would like to clarify our status concerning the Distinguished Texas Scientist (DTS) presentation by Dr. Eric Pianka on Friday, 3 March 2006 at the 109th annual meeting in Beaumont, Texas.

Candidates for the DTS award are nominated by the general membership of TAS. Submitted supportive documentation is reviewed by the TAS vice-president and a committee of TAS Fellows. The candidates are individually ranked by each member of the committee and the totals compiled. The top candidate is contacted by the vice-president and if he/she accepts, is willing to attend the annual meeting and give a presentation, then TAS reimburses his/her travel, room and board expenses. The selected DTS receives a plaque at the Awards Banquet and no other remuneration.

As I have stated before, we (TAS) select the DTS speaker based upon his/her academic credentials and contributions to Science. We DO NOT mandate nor put constraints on the subject he/she decides to address, nor will we ever. The views expressed by any speaker (DTS or any of the 200+ presenters) are his or hers alone and are not meant to represent the Academy as a whole. To clarify this position for future presentations, we will include an appropriate disclaimer within the meeting program.

Whether or not we (TAS) as a body agree with the statements that Dr. Pianka made in his presentation is irrelevant. We are an Academy of individuals, and as such, each is free to make his or her alignments. TAS neither condones nor vilifies Dr. Pianka’s statements. We would like to state, however, that many of Dr. Pianka’s statements have been severely misconstrued and sensationalized. The purpose of his presentation was to dramatize the precarious plight of the human population. He did nothing more than apply commonly accepted principles of animal population dynamics to humans; an application not unique to this presentation and one that can be surmised by any student of ecology.

Dr. David S. Marsh
2006 President, Texas Academy of Science
2006 TAS Board of Directors

(bold added)

In other news, there is a lot of rumor-mongering in the ID blogosphere and some of the media about a “transcript” in the possession of the Seguin Gazette-Herald, the first newspaper to report on this, just after Mims’s own account. One news story said they weren’t giving it out for some reason – The Seguine Gazette-Herald says they will be posting a transcript of the second Pianka lecture, given in early April, later this week. My gut feeling is that if there were any “gotcha” moments in there, we would have seen them already, since the Seguin Gazette-Herald has pretty clearly been drinking Forrest Mims’s coolaid from the beginning. One important tidbit that no one seems to have noticed is that Forrest Mims happens to be a longtime resident of Seguin, TX, population ~24,000, and Mims himself sometimes writes for the Seguin Gazette-Herald. Also strange is the fact that an audio recording of Pianka’s direct reply to the Seguine Gazette-Herald reporter’s question, “I don’t advocate killing people”, never made it into the Gazette-Herald‘s story.

This news story from UT Austin’s The Daily Texan, although not without its flaws, has some more details on the (required!) FBI interview with Pianka, and many supportive comments from people who actually know and work with the man.

For the irony-deprived wingnuts out there who still don’t get Pianka’s jokes, like these guys, here’s another sample of Pianka humor for you to go into hysterical convulsions over.

Commenters are responsible for the content of comments. The opinions expressed in articles, linked materials, and comments are not necessarily those of PandasThumb.org. See our full disclaimer.

Comment #95060

Posted by Matt on April 5, 2006 11:50 PM (e)

It’s interesting that Dembski’s now offering to bet that Pianka’s popularity will soon decline. Not that Pianka will be charged with anything. Not that he’ll be judged by the FBI as any kind of a threat. But that his public image will become tarnished.

There’s only one reason I can see for making this wager in this particular fashion. It’s because Pianka’s public image is something that Dembski et al. can affect. As with the attempt to re-assign blame for the cost of Dover’s attorney’s fees to the post-decision board, Dembski knows that repeating hysterical charges will rally his base and hurt his enemies, regardless of the truth. I see Dembski’s wager as a statement, in effect, that he intends to see Pianka’s public image demolished.

The smearing of Eric Pianka is evidence that Dembski and the DI have abandoned any pretense of even wanting to contribute to the scientific discourse. It’s all about the culture war.

This is the start of a long campaign, folks.

Comment #95061

Posted by Sir_Toejam on April 5, 2006 11:56 PM (e)

This is the start of a long campaign, folks.

start?

This idiocy “started” long ago. this is just the latest iteration.

Comment #95064

Posted by Matt on April 6, 2006 12:18 AM (e)

Well, the idiocy started long ago. But they’ve only recently ramped up the Rovian tactics.

I actually think that Dover has been such a monumental crisis for them that the DI is switching over to a kind of scorched earth policy. Whereas they until recently have portrayed themselves as members of the scientific academy – dissidents, but still scientists – it looks to me now like they are abandoning that stance.

The Wedge no longer applies: the entire ID game-plan has degenerated to “Swift-boat any scientist you can”.

That’s pretty new.

Comment #95068

Posted by Stephen Erickson on April 6, 2006 12:34 AM (e)

Marsh’s statement looks pretty solid. I approve.

Dembski, on the other hand, is a pathetic little prick. Reporting someone to the Department of Homeland Security based on hearsay is a disgusting tactic.

My theory on Dembski is that he basically sold his soul for notoriety’s sake. Sure, he could have been a reasonably successful mathematics or philosophy professor at a second-tier university, but how much more satisfying to be the darling of the anti-science set! You get to travel frequently and speak before adoring audiences!

I also suspect that he’s gotten far beyond actually believing in his own crap. It’s just that he’s ridden this pony far too long to get off now.

Comment #95071

Posted by Andrew McClure on April 6, 2006 12:44 AM (e)

Matt wrote:

There’s only one reason I can see for making this wager in this particular fashion. It’s because Pianka’s public image is something that Dembski et al. can affect. As with the attempt to re-assign blame for the cost of Dover’s attorney’s fees to the post-decision board, Dembski knows that repeating hysterical charges will rally his base and hurt his enemies, regardless of the truth. I see Dembski’s wager as a statement, in effect, that he intends to see Pianka’s public image demolished.

And so, as always, the Intelligent Design movement continues to pioneer new and innovative work in the field of public relations.

Comment #95072

Posted by Registered User on April 6, 2006 12:47 AM (e)

the entire ID game-plan has degenerated to “Swift-boat any scientist you can”.

Well the fundies are the experts at swift-boating and have been … forever.

I’m not sure it’s accurate to say that this is part of the “ID” game-plan. It’s just fundies being fundies. Remember when the fundies put out “The Clinton Chronicles” where they accused Clinton of murder? I hope so. That was not too long ago. Remember whose cable station carried ads for the “The Clinton Chronicles” long after the bogusness of “The Clinton Chronicles” was well-documented (as if that was necessary)? It was Jerry Falwell’s cable station. What is Falwell up to now? Among other things, he is fund raising for Liberty University, where revisionist history and revisionist science scripts are memorized by little fundie morons. Is Liberty University taken seriously by anyone?

Ask Republican Senator and presidential candidate John McCain.

Comment #95074

Posted by Sir_Toejam on April 6, 2006 1:02 AM (e)

Meh, McCain’s not really a fundie, he’s just too stupid to realize the collateral damage he causes, like most neocons, when they placate the religious right to garner a larger political base.

Comment #95075

Posted by Sir_Toejam on April 6, 2006 1:03 AM (e)

on that note, since he is a likely candidate for the next election, I would encourage all to write him and show him how damaging placating these idiots has been and will continue to be to the US economy.

Comment #95094

Posted by GSLamb on April 6, 2006 6:13 AM (e)

I believe the McCain reference was due to the “turn on him like a pack of dogs” maneuver the far right is doing since his AFL-CIO talk.

Comment #95104

Posted by Corkscrew on April 6, 2006 7:39 AM (e)

I’ve never understood - what actually does “swift-boating” mean? It’s the name of a PR company, right?

Comment #95112

Posted by Aagcobb on April 6, 2006 8:54 AM (e)

Hi, corkscrew

I’ve never understood - what actually does “swift-boating” mean? It’s the name of a PR company, right?

A group of right wingers calling themselves “swift boat veterans for truth” launched vicious attack ads lying about John Kerry’s war record during the last presidential election, which helped obscure the fact that their candidate was a draft dodger and went awol. Swift boats were small boats used during the Vietnam War; it was very dangerous duty, and John Kerry won medals for his service on a swift boat.

Comment #95113

Posted by Matt on April 6, 2006 8:58 AM (e)

The “Swift-boat Vets for Truth” was the astroturf organization that dedicated itself to portraying John Kerry as a coward and a war-criminal, and so to divert attention from George Bush’s mediocre (to say the least) career in the Texas National Guard.

The PR firm that help coordinate the attacks also represents the Discovery Institute.

“Swift-boating” is more or less the destruction of someone’s reputation in order to deflect attention from one’s own failings.

Comment #95114

Posted by mplavcan on April 6, 2006 9:01 AM (e)

“Swift-boating” now refers to a deliberate campaign of misinformation promulgated to tarnish the reputation, and thereby credibility, of someone. Such tactics have been around for a long time, and are not limited to Republicans by any stretch of the imagination. However, in the past US presidential election, a group of conservative veterans ran a propaganda campaign against John Kerry disparaging his credentials as a war hero, specifically claiming that his medals received for wounds were undeserved, and his commendations for bravery in combat were based on fraudulent claims. Kerry served on a “Swift Boat” in Vietnam – a small river patrol boat. The claims of the veterans were largely shown to be fraudulent or dubious at best, yet the unremitting propaganda clearly damaged Kerry’s campaign. The relentless, aggressive savagery of the smear campaign was such that the name stuck for the practice.

Comment #95119

Posted by Gerard Harbison on April 6, 2006 9:57 AM (e)

All good liberals know that the politics of personal destruction began with the Swift Boat veterans. The verb ‘to Bork’ never existed; no one ever went digging though Clarence Thomas’ video rentals.

Yes, it’s disgusting, and we should discuss issues, not personalities. But let’s not pretend one side is blameless. In the last 20 years, both sides have done it, and dozens of people, left, right and center, have been smeared.

Comment #95122

Posted by Arden Chatfield on April 6, 2006 10:12 AM (e)

All good liberals know that the politics of personal destruction began with the Swift Boat veterans. The verb ‘to Bork’ never existed; no one ever went digging though Clarence Thomas’ video rentals.

Yes, it’s disgusting, and we should discuss issues, not personalities. But let’s not pretend one side is blameless. In the last 20 years, both sides have done it, and dozens of people, left, right and center, have been smeared.

While this is now a standard GOP talking point, I hope you don’t actually believe this “oh, everyone’s guilty of this, so the Republicans have done nothing wrong” nonsense. I also see you had to reach all the way back to the ‘80’s to find similar examples of Democratic perfidy. Betcha can’t think of any others, eh?

It’s matters of degree. The GOP does this shit to Democrats far far more often than Democrats do it to Republicans, and when Republicans do it, the shit they come up with is simply made up. The Democrats did not lie about Bork. Compare this to what Rove did to Kerry or what was done to Cleland in 2002.

If you’re going to claim to be ‘disgusted’ by this behavior, don’t make excuses for your side when they do it as a matter of routine.

Comment #95123

Posted by Robert King on April 6, 2006 10:19 AM (e)

Although I’ve never had much time for Dembski I am suprised at the how low this individual has sunk. Reporting someone to DHS on heresay evidence and, in particular, gloating over it is the action of a mean-spirited and probably mentally ill individual. It is certainly unchristian in any conventional sense.

Further, not only is this an abuse of the DHS it is a waste of taxes - isn’t there some law against making frivolous charges?

How about some of the high profile academics who frequent this site develop an online petition that condemns Dembski’s actions, publicize it to get as many signatures as possible from scientists, and then send it to Dembski’s School president, to the National Academy and the media, If anyone takes this up I suggest that it be (i) apolitical and (ii) not an attack on ID.

Comment #95128

Posted by Russell on April 6, 2006 10:42 AM (e)

I’ve only been following this from the corner of my eye, so to speak. Is this stuff about Dembski and the DHS real? Is there are link or reference?

Comment #95129

Posted by Russell on April 6, 2006 10:44 AM (e)

that is, “[b]a[/b] link or reference?”

[damn cold medication!]

Comment #95130

Posted by caerbannog on April 6, 2006 10:48 AM (e)

Here is what Bork wrote in National Review just last December:

“Liberty in America can be enhanced by reinstating, legislatively, restraints upon the direction of our culture and morality,” writes the former appeals court judge, now a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. “Censorship as an enhancement of liberty may seem paradoxical. Yet it should be obvious, to all but dogmatic First Amendment absolutists, that people forced to live in an increasingly brutalized culture are, in a very real sense, not wholly free.” Bork goes on to complain that “relations between the sexes are debased by pornography”; that “large parts of television are unwatchable”; that “motion pictures rely upon sex, gore, and pyrotechnics for the edification of the target audience of 14-year-olds”; and that “popular music hardly deserves the name of music.”

The man has the instincts of an Iranian mullah. Democrats were entirely right to keep him from taking a seat on the Supreme Court.

Comment #95136

Posted by Julie Stahlhut on April 6, 2006 11:12 AM (e)

Most of the regulars here have seen this, but check out this post on UD to ascertain Dembski’s attitude towards human suffering after natural disasters.

Comment #95138

Posted by Lee on April 6, 2006 11:21 AM (e)

Being a political junky.

‘To Bork’ is significantly different than ‘To swiftboat’

Comment #95142

Posted by Matt on April 6, 2006 11:37 AM (e)

Gerard Harbison makes the truly absurd comment:

All good liberals know that the politics of personal destruction began with the Swift Boat veterans. The verb ‘to Bork’ never existed; no one ever went digging though Clarence Thomas’ video rentals.

Yes, it’s disgusting, and we should discuss issues, not personalities. But let’s not pretend one side is blameless. In the last 20 years, both sides have done it, and dozens of people, left, right and center, have been smeared.

The points being made were that:
1. Dembski and the DI are as much as promising to destroy Eric Pianka’s reputation
2. They’ve hired Creative Research Concepts, the PR firm that helped the Swift Boat Vets smear Kerry.

What’s the objection to calling this the “Swift-boating” of Pianka? How does your referring to Bork do anything other than attempt to divert attention from the very real parallels between the Kerry smearing and the Pianka smearing?

I was making a serious point. If you disagree, then explain why you do. Don’t revert to some kind of mindless “but the Democrats did this too” response. It shows a lack of ability to think on your own.

Comment #95146

Posted by Corkscrew on April 6, 2006 12:07 PM (e)

Matt wrote:

I was making a serious point. If you disagree, then explain why you do. Don’t revert to some kind of mindless “but the Democrats did this too” response. It shows a lack of ability to think on your own.

Guys, let’s not get unnecessarily political. I read Gerard’s comment as a pre-emptive stand against this turning into a republican-bashing session, which is fair enough. He explicitly wasn’t disagreeing with you, or claiming that swift-boating was acceptable; he just thought it was all getting very partisan and wanted to prevent that.

I think he was mistaken, but I can see why he’d have made that mistake. Let’s not make mountains out of molehills.

Thanks to everyone who helped answer my question :)

Comment #95154

Posted by Gerard Harbison on April 6, 2006 12:50 PM (e)

All the way back to the eighties. LOL! How old are you?

Comment #95155

Posted by Gerard Harbison on April 6, 2006 1:01 PM (e)

Matt rather uninsightfully wrote:

What’s the objection to calling this the “Swift-boating” of Pianka? How does your referring to Bork do anything other than attempt to divert attention from the very real parallels between the Kerry smearing and the Pianka smearing?

Kerry made his own service an issue. Having done that, it was legitimate to question the details of his service. Let me remind you that in the same presidential campaign, a national media outlet paraded ludicrously badly faked documents aimed at attacking Bush’s term in the Texas Air National Guard.

If you’re interested in protecting Pianka, I’m with you. If you’re interested in disseminating Democrat talking points, you lost me. Your choice.

Comment #95156

Posted by Lee on April 6, 2006 1:13 PM (e)

Gerard Harbison,

Don’t forget while the documents were fake, the information they contained was never disputed (the White House even acknowledged the information as accurate).

Comment #95158

Posted by Gerard Harbison on April 6, 2006 1:20 PM (e)

Fake but accurate! LOL!

Comment #95167

Posted by Ed Darrell on April 6, 2006 2:04 PM (e)

There is really a world of difference between borking and swift-boating, the key difference being that borking involves the use of accurate writings from the victim, who then sinks himself with explanations making it clear that his real views are wilder than the wacky stuff in print. Swift-boating requires the wholesale fabrication of a case that a hero who gave blood to defend his country, didn’t really do it. John Kerry’s case gave the tactic its name, but the worst case was in Georgia, where quadra-amputee U.S. Sen. Max Cleland, who lost some or all use of all four of his limbs in service to his nation in Vietnam and then bravely defended veterans benefits and rights as Secretary for Veterans Affairs, was called a ‘coward’ and ‘soft on military issues.’

Bork really wrote the stuff he was accused of writing; Kerry and Cleland actually served and were wounded by enemy fire, not in a lawn-mowing incident.

In short, swift-boating is done by dishonest right-wingers; borking exposes dishonest or dangerous right wingers. One is done under cover of darkness (swift-boating) to avoid detection of the truth; the other exposes truth to the light.

(No, my bias isn’t showing – yet.)

Comment #95173

Posted by bigdumbchimp on April 6, 2006 2:35 PM (e)

“All good liberals know that the politics of personal destruction began with the Swift Boat veterans. The verb ‘to Bork’ never existed; no one ever went digging though Clarence Thomas’ video rentals.

Yes, it’s disgusting, and we should discuss issues, not personalities. But let’s not pretend one side is blameless. In the last 20 years, both sides have done it, and dozens of people, left, right and center, have been smeared.”

And please lets not forget Bush and the Theoncon smear campaign against John McCain Here ins SC in 2000.

Comment #95175

Posted by Sir_Toejam on April 6, 2006 2:45 PM (e)

Fake but accurate! LOL!

think a little longer there, or drink some coffee to stimulate your brain.

the papers were faked, the information in them was not.

get it.

Comment #95176

Posted by Arden Chatfield on April 6, 2006 2:48 PM (e)

Kerry made his own service an issue.

Is there any reason why Bush didn’t make his own service an issue?

Having done that, it was legitimate to question the details of his service.

Translated from Republicanese, this means ‘it was legitimate to make up lies about his service’.

All the way back to the eighties. LOL! How old are you?

Probably older than you, judging from your picture.

(Nice try, but sort of a cheesy way to try to win an argument.)

I remember the Bork trials quite well. Judge comes up for confirmation. People find extremist (authentic) writings by judge. Judge denies he’s an extremist. No one believes him. Judge fails to get confirmed since people don’t like his views. Simple as that. I do hope you dont honestly think that’s the same as a ‘smear campaign’. Or, alternately, if the same thing is ever done to a judge who’s deemed ‘too liberal’, I trust your sense of fair play will cause you to call it a ‘smear campaign’ as well.

Seriously, have any examples of Republican martyrdom that aren’t a load of shit?

Comment #95177

Posted by Stephen Erickson on April 6, 2006 2:50 PM (e)

Russell, the link to Dembski proudly tattling on Pianka based solely on hearsay:
[url]http://www.uncommondescent.com/index.php/archives/984[/url]

Comment #95178

Posted by AD on April 6, 2006 2:54 PM (e)

As a registered Republican, allow me to be the first to say that an increasing majority of my party disgusts me to no end. I’m very much for a balanced budget, running surpluses, and keeping the government out of people’s lives (by, say, forcing them to be taught another persons religion, for example…).

Increasingly, none of those things are what Republicans claim to stand for. We have huge deficits, porked out budges, and the government intruding in clearly abusive ways in people’s lives (Schiavo, anyone?). Worse, I see people making rationalizations for PR tactics that, at best, can be described as despicably idiotic and at worst are quite possibly criminal.

Bork probably got shafted to a point, but he brought much of it on himself with his extreme views. Clarence Thomas remains wholly unimpressive to me as a SCOTUS member, likewise. I don’t recall the democrats raising serious issues about Roberts, however, and he’s quite conservative but qualified. Kerry, though, was unjustifiably screwed. Does anyone here seriously believe that he lied to get his medals, or that he was a coward in vietnam?

Slandering war veterans bothers me deeply. That is downright shameful conduct, and I will be the first to say the Republicans have done far too much of it. If the DI and Karl Rove remain in power, I’m quite likely to become an independent in the future and stay that way regardless of future changes in the party. Here’s to hoping people like McCain win out (and, as mentioned, he’s been swift boated as well).

Comment #95179

Posted by Arden Chatfield on April 6, 2006 2:54 PM (e)

Seriously, have any examples of Republican martyrdom that aren’t a load of shit?

That is, other than ones like Bush/Rove smearing McCain.

Comment #95180

Posted by Gerard Harbison on April 6, 2006 2:55 PM (e)

So Ed’s point is, it’s impossible to be ‘soft on military issues’, if you’ve blown yourself up, possibly with your own grenade (accounts differ) while serving your country? Because Max Cleland was maimed in a horrible accident, his record on national security should not have been questioned?

In other words, we shouldn’t criticize X’s stand on issues, because of who X is? Isn’t that just the flip side of criticizing candidates rather than issues?

Look, in any case, this is not the place to argue this. I just wish that the undoubted majority of political liberals/Democrats/progressives on this forum would realize that turning this into a partisan battle won’t further the cause of science. Those of us who consider ourselves pro-evolution conservatives are quite well aware of, and are disgusted by, the influence of the religious right on the GOP. We agree with you about Pianka; we agree with you about Dover. That, surely, is what’s relevant to Panda’s Thumb. Reminding us of why we disagree with you on a bunch of other issues isn’t.

Comment #95183

Posted by AD on April 6, 2006 3:10 PM (e)

So Ed’s point is, it’s impossible to be ‘soft on military issues’, if you’ve blown yourself up, possibly with your own grenade (accounts differ) while serving your country? Because Max Cleland was maimed in a horrible accident, his record on national security should not have been questioned?

And Pat Tillman is a total wuss and coward because he was shot by our guys, right?

This is precisely what I’m talking about. If you want to debate someone’s stand on defense, you might want to talk about how they voted on defense issues, or what the rhetoric they are using is. Accusing anyone who was in the military and serving in combat of either cowardice, ineptitude, or something similar without legitimate document evidence is insulting to all veterans in this nation.

And yes, “accounts differ” sounds a lot like the DI speak for “Well, some people believe evolution is scientifically false”…

If you want to stick to the issues, that has to cut both ways. This is precisely my objection with the DI and IDiots. They don’t stick to the battleground and fight fair.

Comment #95184

Posted by Darby on April 6, 2006 3:12 PM (e)

One thing I haven’t seen discussed (and this seems an approporiate venue) is the lack of understanding the whole “cull the humans with disease” idea. Diseases are only good at removing a sizeable fraction of a population when the population is pretty much trapped in large numbers together. In a “free range” population (which most humans are), diseases quickly evolve reduced virulence - those variants that harm the host the least, keeping them up and moving about, are preferentially spread; the more benign the symptoms, the more successful the strain. SARS spread mostly in hospitals; Spanish flu probably needed the trenches of world war one to stay virulent for a while; HIV is a rare instance of a virus that can kill the host but doesn’t for a long contagious while. Ebola in its current form would never affect enough hosts to be a major problem, and the world would have to get generally much nastier to be susceptible to a real pandemic. You can even see this in how avian flu is affecting domestic flocks very differently than wild flocks (it’s even debatable whether what’s in the wild birds is even what’s affecting the domestics anymore).

Comment #95185

Posted by Robert King on April 6, 2006 3:15 PM (e)

Gerard,

I agree with you 100% - pandasthumb isn’t the place to argue Dem vs Rep politics. Such pure political discussions here will only end up getting evolution labelled a “liberal” position (even more than it currently is by the ID people).

Bob

Comment #95187

Posted by Matt on April 6, 2006 3:22 PM (e)

I don’t know, or care, if Kerry “deserved” somehow to have his patriotism and courage challenged. For that matter, I have no opinion on whether he’s particularly patriotic, or courageous, or simply is another political grandstander.

But maybe we can table the partisan bile long enough to re-read the major points that were being made:

* The DI is smearing Pianka in a way that is reminiscent of what was done to Kerry by the Swift Boat Vets. Maybe some think it’s also similar, perhaps more so, to what was done to Bork 20 years ago. But note also the main point I tried to make:

* The DI has hired the PR firm that helped the Swift Boat Vets to smear Kerry.

Is it so difficult to see why I drew the parallel with the Swift Boat Vets and not with Robert Bork?

Or are we now in a new PC era where every time we mention perfidy on one side we have to equally note and condemn perfidy on the other? Maybe I should have added a disclaimer to my earlier post:

The Wedge no longer applies: the entire ID game-plan has degenerated to “Swift-boat* any scientist you can”

*But note that what was done to Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork 20 years ago was just as bad as what the swift boat vets did.

Would that have nurtured everyone’s delicate political sensibilities enough so that they could actually respond to the topic of the post?

Comment #95192

Posted by Corkscrew on April 6, 2006 3:44 PM (e)

Is it so difficult to see why I drew the parallel with the Swift Boat Vets and not with Robert Bork?

As I mentioned before, I’m fairly sure that that was almost exactly not what he was saying.

I would count it as a personal favour if people would first reread this article before responding further on the political issues.

Comment #95193

Posted by Gerard Harbison on April 6, 2006 3:58 PM (e)

the papers were faked, the information in them was not.

Really? So if there was authentic information in them that was not faked, why was it necessary to fake them?

Comment #95195

Posted by David B. Benson on April 6, 2006 4:20 PM (e)

Because the original Texas National Guard reports in the archives “somehow” disappeared…

Comment #95196

Posted by Gerard Harbison on April 6, 2006 4:22 PM (e)

Accusing anyone who was in the military and serving in combat of either cowardice, ineptitude, or something similar without legitimate document evidence is insulting to all veterans in this nation. And yes, “accounts differ” sounds a lot like the DI speak for “Well, some people believe evolution is scientifically false”…

Max Cleland’s own account was that he thought that the grenade dropped from his webbing, since this had happened in the past; he picked it up, and it went off in his hand. A member of his unit later said the grenade might have been his. That is why “accounts differ”.

Comment #95198

Posted by Arden Chatfield on April 6, 2006 4:23 PM (e)

Interesting how if we ask Harbison to answer questions, he says “this is not the place to argue this”, but this restriction somehow doesn’t seem to apply to him.

Comment #95199

Posted by Corkscrew on April 6, 2006 4:35 PM (e)

Interesting how if we ask Harbison to answer questions, he says “this is not the place to argue this”, but this restriction somehow doesn’t seem to apply to him.

Interesting that neither side of this incipient, and completely off-topic, row appears to be able to resist the urge to lay into the other. From an outsider’s perspective, it’s kinda disappointing - I’d always thought that smart people would display more willpower than this.

If everyone’s happy to carry on ranting about their personal hot-button issues, I shall take it as implicit authorisation to start going on about the evils of Microsoft, the problems of software patents, the horrors of ID cards (only relevant to UK folks) and anything else that comes to mind. You have been warned.

Comment #95201

Posted by Gerard Harbison on April 6, 2006 4:40 PM (e)

All right, Arlen, I was going to let it drop, but since you seem to object to that, I won’t. You claim

Judge fails to get confirmed since people don’t like his views. Simple as that. I do hope you dont honestly think that’s the same as a ‘smear campaign’.

So how was publishing a list of his video rentals part of the process of examining his writings?

Comment #95203

Posted by Sir_Toejam on April 6, 2006 4:52 PM (e)

So how was publishing a list of his video rentals part of the process of examining his writings?

examination of source material?

:p

Comment #95211

Posted by Arden Chatfield on April 6, 2006 5:10 PM (e)

All right, Arlen,

‘Arden’.

I was going to let it drop,

No, you wanted everyone ELSE to drop it, but not to drop it yourself. You wanted to stop others from asking you questions, but you didn’t care to reciprocate. I was actually going to let the subject drop.

but since you seem to object to that, I won’t. You claim

Judge fails to get confirmed since people don’t like his views. Simple as that. I do hope you dont honestly think that’s the same as a ‘smear campaign’.

So how was publishing a list of his video rentals part of the process of examining his writings?

Actually, I was talking about BORK, not Thomas, since that’s what the conversation was originally about. Adroit way of changing the subject.

Also, was the list of video rentals about Thomas an actual lie? It related to the sexual harassment charges against him that came up. Irrelevant to the process of choosing a SCOTUS judge?

And, uh, do you have another case of Democrats doing one of these smear jobs on Republicans in the last, say, 16 years? If not, the balance certainly seems awfully lopsided, which was my original point – that this ‘la de da, both sides do it, both sides are equally guilty’ business is basically bullshit when you consider who’s doing 99% of this.

Comment #95212

Posted by Steviepinhead on April 6, 2006 5:12 PM (e)

I would tend to agree that it’s ordinarily none of anybody else’s business what videos some judge-to-be has elected to watch in the privacy of his living or bedroom.

I don’t remember what the specifics of the video-rental list showed, or why they were claimed to be relevant.

But specific kinds of relevance that might trump the general rule stated above might readily be thunk:

For instance: Judicial candidate has given off every kind of straight-arrow, goody-two-shoes, anti-obscenity, anti-sex crime, anti-homosexuality, pro-family values kind of vibe, but the video list is heavily weighted toward porn, including rough trade, male-male, snuff, etc. porn.

I still don’t care what the dork watches, really, in and of itself, though most of this sounds pretty ookey, but I may well care–and be persuaded that there’s some relevance–if there’s a distinct hypocritical disjunct between outwardly-proffessed and privately-expressed values.

Especially in the case of a life appointment to the highest court.

Comment #95213

Posted by Bill on April 6, 2006 5:12 PM (e)

Corkscrew wrote:

Interesting that neither side of this incipient, and completely off-topic, row appears to be able to resist the urge to lay into the other.

Perhaps some people are seeing the same tactics used in this discussion that we see from the IDC crowd? Our dishonesty is the same as your using our writings/actions against us?

Comment #95215

Posted by GSLamb on April 6, 2006 5:30 PM (e)

As long as this no longer has anything to do with the OP, I would like to make my stand against “40-minute” drycleaners that take three days to clean clothes.

Anyone who is against me is a poopyhead.

Comment #95218

Posted by Corkscrew on April 6, 2006 5:33 PM (e)

Perhaps some people are seeing the same tactics used in this discussion that we see from the IDC crowd? Our dishonesty is the same as your using our writings/actions against us?

And by “you” you mean who, precisely? If you’re thinking I’m a republican*, you’re wrong - I vote Lib Dem, which is about as left-wing as you can get in the UK. I have no idea who’s right about the political issues. I’m just freaked out that a factual question has blossomed into a minor flamewar.

Guys, if you think the person on the “other side” is trolling, just don’t feed them. There is no way this row should have lasted more than maybe three posts, even if one side were actively trying to stoke the flames (which, IMO, is not the case).

*Apologies if I’ve misread your comment.

Comment #95220

Posted by Don Baccus on April 6, 2006 5:36 PM (e)

Well, just to make things clear regarding Max Cleland, it’s true that he lost his limbs in an accident involving a hand grenade.

However, prior to that he was awarded a Silver and Bronze star, and had been wounded in combat. He fought at Khe Sanh. He had volunteered to return to the battle at Khe Sanh when things got dodgy, and was enroute when the accident that disabled him took place.

Somehow the word “coward” doesn’t seem to fit.

Comment #95221

Posted by Tyrannosaurus on April 6, 2006 5:38 PM (e)

I thought this was the Panda’s Thumb, not defend your favorite political persuasion. Doh!!! silly me.
Gentlemen please let’s discuss about Dumbsky et. al. and their complete disregard for truth and honesty. For partisan politics there are plenty of other outlets.

Comment #95222

Posted by Bill on April 6, 2006 5:50 PM (e)

Corkscrew wrote:

And by “you” you mean who, precisely? If you’re thinking I’m a republican*, you’re wrong - I vote Lib Dem, which is about as left-wing as you can get in the UK. I have no idea who’s right about the political issues. I’m just freaked out that a factual question has blossomed into a minor flamewar.

If that is true, then this is not directed at you. As you say, this revolves around a somewhat factual question: is pulling out Bork’s written/spoken record, or even Thomas’s video rental record, the same as using false assertions to attack the combat record of a decorated war hero for political purposes, or making a bad-faith terrorism report about someone for publicity purposes?

Comment #95224

Posted by Gerard Harbison on April 6, 2006 5:57 PM (e)

Actually, I was talking about BORK,

So was I. They did it with Thomas too, of course.

Comment #95225

Posted by Popper's Ghost on April 6, 2006 6:01 PM (e)

Look, in any case, this is not the place to argue this. I just wish that the undoubted majority of political liberals/Democrats/progressives on this forum would realize that turning this into a partisan battle won’t further the cause of science.

Someone used the term “swift-boat” in a generic fashion and you went all Republican partisan scumbag on us, so spare us the hypocritical lecture, j**k*ss.

Comment #95227

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on April 6, 2006 6:17 PM (e)

Democan, Republicrat —– (shrug)

Comment #95228

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on April 6, 2006 6:22 PM (e)

Those of us who consider ourselves pro-evolution conservatives are quite well aware of, and are disgusted by, the influence of the religious right on the GOP.

And, more importantly, are in a position to actually do something about it, unlike the Democans.

McCain is our best chance to remove the fundies from their position of dominance.

I suggest we take it.

Comment #95230

Posted by Popper's Ghost on April 6, 2006 6:24 PM (e)

No equivalence holds. Matt wrote The Wedge no longer applies: the entire ID game-plan has degenerated to “Swift-boat any scientist you can” and Corkscrew, not intimate with American politics, asked what the term meant. Aagcobb and other explained, necessarily with facts about nasty behavior by Republicans. No one claimed that “the politics of personal destruction” started with that or that any group is blameless (but there are degrees of blame). But it’s de rigueur among partisan scumbag filth that any criticism of their party be answered with a strawman tu quoque argument, and so Harbison served his up:

All good liberals know that the politics of personal destruction began with the Swift Boat veterans. The verb ‘to Bork’ never existed; no one ever went digging though Clarence Thomas’ video rentals.

Yes, it’s disgusting, and we should discuss issues, not personalities. But let’s not pretend one side is blameless. In the last 20 years, both sides have done it, and dozens of people, left, right and center, have been smeared.

Not a word of that is relevant – it’s just a pathetic attempt to deflect factual criticism of Harbison’s partisan scummates.

Comment #95231

Posted by Bill on April 6, 2006 6:27 PM (e)

you went all Republican partisan scumbag on us, so spare us the hypocritical lecture, j**k*ss.

I think this is getting too harsh, and I’m someone who thinks the point is long past where people defending the current republican party get the assumption of good intentions/different views rather than delusion, fundamentalism, or something worse.

Let’s keep the name-calling to the climical level, folks.

Comment #95233

Posted by Bill on April 6, 2006 6:30 PM (e)

Let’s keep the name-calling to the climical level, folks.

Uh, that’d be clinical.

Comment #95234

Posted by Julie Stahlhut on April 6, 2006 6:33 PM (e)

The SwiftBoating of John Kerry was primarily an example of what people can do to a political opponent given enough money, access to mass media, and willingness to employ slander and libel as tactics. It’s also much easier to spread a damaging story, spurious or otherwise, than it is to take it back. Given the popularity of ants-in-a-jar “news” TV, it’s very, very easy to get a few hundred thousand people yammering in rage about a perceived threat, insult, or slight that has little or no basis in fact – and to keep at it even after the story has been thoroughly debunked.

I sincerely doubt that any political party has a monopoly on the willingness to manipulate public opinion. And, yes, I am a politically liberal voter.

Comment #95235

Posted by Popper's Ghost on April 6, 2006 6:34 PM (e)

I think this is getting too harsh

It got too harsh when Harbison derailed the conversation with his idiotic and dishonest ad hominem slam: All good liberals know that the politics of personal destruction began with the Swift Boat veterans.

Comment #95236

Posted by Popper's Ghost on April 6, 2006 6:37 PM (e)

Uh, there’s a huge gap between “willingness to employ slander and libel as tactics” and “willingness to manipulate public opinion”. Of course both parties share the latter.

Comment #95240

Posted by Bill Gascoyne on April 6, 2006 6:42 PM (e)

It’s also much easier to spread a damaging story, spurious or otherwise, than it is to take it back.

Thus the entire Creationist/ID quagmire, which is what we’ve been sidetracked off of.

Comment #95243

Posted by Popper's Ghost on April 6, 2006 6:48 PM (e)

Only slightly. The issue was swift-boating, and what happened here is a good example of how criticism of the swift-boating gets deflected and reflected back at those offering the criticism. “teach the controversy” and “both parties do it” aren’t that far apart, really.

Comment #95247

Posted by AD on April 6, 2006 7:05 PM (e)

Thus the entire Creationist/ID quagmire, which is what we’ve been sidetracked off of.

Actually, it’s a pretty interesting case study in the facts and tactics commonly used, and the usual observed reactions.

So here’s a thought - why doesn’t someone start a scientific association, which solicits money from private citizens, industry, and scientific organizations.

Then, whenever the IDiots do something particularly egregious or slam a scientist, this organization then swift-boats whoever did it.

Fight fire with fire?

Comment #95248

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on April 6, 2006 7:10 PM (e)

Look, in any case, this is not the place to argue this. I just wish that the undoubted majority of political liberals/Democrats/progressives

(raises hand) Excuse me, but I am a *radical*, thank you very much.

:)

on this forum would realize that turning this into a partisan battle won’t further the cause of science. Those of us who consider ourselves pro-evolution conservatives are quite well aware of, and are disgusted by, the influence of the religious right on the GOP. We agree with you about Pianka; we agree with you about Dover. That, surely, is what’s relevant to Panda’s Thumb. Reminding us of why we disagree with you on a bunch of other issues isn’t.

Which is precisely why the endless religious wars at PT are also so silly and useless.

There, THAT should give everyone something else to fight about….

Comment #95254

Posted by Reed A. Cartwright on April 6, 2006 7:41 PM (e)

ADMIN NOTE

This has gotten way off topic. Do we really need fifty posts about Kerry, Cleland, McCain, Thomas, and Bork on a thread about Pianka?

Comment #95257

Posted by KiwiInOz on April 6, 2006 8:53 PM (e)

Lenny, does that make you a free radical?

Comment #95258

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on April 6, 2006 8:56 PM (e)

Lenny, does that make you a free radical?

Well, it’s been a few years since I was arrested. :)

IIRC, the last time I was arrested was at the White House, back during the First Gulf War.

Comment #95317

Posted by Registered User on April 7, 2006 12:55 AM (e)

McCain is our best chance to remove the fundies from their position of dominance.

I suggest we take it.

Hahahahhaahaahh.

Lenny, you must be joking.

If not, then this is surely the silliest thing you’ve ever said.

And one other thing: it seems to me it’s only the “registered Republican” types around here who threaten to take their little green footballs and go home whenever their political allegiances are questioned.

I think George Bush is the worst president in the history of this country and anyone who voted him for was clueless or deluded. Just my opinion.

Now, you can boo hoo hoo hoo about that or you can stop for a second and realize that half the country agrees with me and the an overwhelming majority of the country thinks the guy stinnks.

And then you can look at the Republican party as a whole and ask yourself why it is that so many prominent Republican leaders – including “straight talk” John McCain – recite the Discovery Institute script and play up to the fundies.

So why vote Republican? If you’re wealthy and want to get wealthier, then it all makes sense to me. Otherwise, you’re a sucker. Just my opinion. But don’t imagine that I can’t back up my opinion with reams of facts.

A guy named Chris Mooney wrote a book about Republicans and the War on Science. Was Chris lying to us? I haven’t seen much indication that Chris was lying.

The Swift Boaters accused John Kerry of war crimes, of intentionally shooting kids in the back, of shooting himself to earn a purple heart. And Republican apologists and fundies recited the script up and down the blogosphere and right to the faces of Americans watching TV. All this is documented. Pretending this didn’t happen or diminishing what happened by comparing it to the confirmation hearings of Bork or Thomas is a sign of stupidity or mental illness.

To address Lenny’s point about the “dangers” of pointing out facts which make Republicans and religious people uncomfortable I can only say: deal with it.

Republicans and religious people need to deal with the events of the last 6 years.

I’m never going to forget what happened in the last 6 years, and I’m never going to stop reminding people of what happened.

Someone wrote this laughable comment:

Those of us who consider ourselves pro-evolution conservatives are quite well aware of, and are disgusted by, the influence of the religious right on the GOP.

What the hell is a “pro-evolution conservative”? You mean you aren’t a reality-denying moron?

The GOP in 2006 is virtually synonymous with the “religious right.” If your conservative and disgusted by the fundies then you’re a typical DEMOCRAT.

Comment #95318

Posted by Registered User on April 7, 2006 1:00 AM (e)

And please let’s not try to parse what’s happening to Pianka out of the bigger picture.

Is Mims a Republican do you suppose? Does he have any political connections?

Connect the frigging dots.

Comment #95320

Posted by Sir_Toejam on April 7, 2006 1:22 AM (e)

actaully, I tend to agree with those who point out Mims’ vendetta against many folks at his univeristy, Pianka included, as being sufficient motivation on his end.

However the gross overpublication of Mims mischaracterizations was entirely due to the religious-right PR machine, and THAT is a good place to start connecting dots.

I’d say it’s worthwhile to show over and over how this has backfired on them.

Rely on the testimony of the insane and what do you get?

This always seems to happen eventually, as one or the other of these idiots pulls some lamebrain stunt like Mims just did.

Now if only the Republican majority would use times like this to further distance themselves from the fundies, maybe they could finally break the ties the neocons have so carefully and ubiquitously cultured since the neocons started utilizing fundies as a powerbase in the late 70’s/early 80’s.

Based on McCaine’s recent actions, I doubt it tho.

However small the chance, Lenny does have a point. McCaine HAS been rather wishy washy in his support of the far right. If you are a republican, this is your best chance to promote the dissolution of this political right-wing lovefest.

I think that has about as much a chance of happening as Hillary being elected president, which is to say very small, but still possible.

Comment #95324

Posted by Julie Stahlhut on April 7, 2006 6:50 AM (e)

Now if only the Republican majority would use times like this to further distance themselves from the fundies, maybe they could finally break the ties the neocons have so carefully and ubiquitously cultured since the neocons started utilizing fundies as a powerbase in the late 70’s/early 80’s.

I think that Sir T. has very nicely summarized the rise of the fundamentalist bloc in the United States. I don’t buy for a minute that the political power of fundamentalists comes from some kind of critical mass of religious fervor. Rather, religious fervor has been very carefully cultivated, bottled, and marketed for political ends.

Tangential but not irrelevant: Here’s a wonderful quote from actor Stephen Fry.

“Family life, family values, decent normal family, family fun, family shopping, family leisure. The word is used these days much as the word ‘Aryan’ was used in Germany during the 1930s.”

Comment #95330

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on April 7, 2006 7:24 AM (e)

I think George Bush is the worst president in the history of this country and anyone who voted him for was clueless or deluded. Just my opinion.

Couldn’t agree more.

Now, you can boo hoo hoo hoo about that or you can stop for a second and realize that half the country agrees with me and the an overwhelming majority of the country thinks the guy stinnks.

Indeed, two-thirds of more of the country (1) disagrees with the Gulf War, and (2) disagrees with the illegal warrantless use of wiretaps.

Yet, when some brave soul introduced a measure into Congres to censure Bush for it – not impeach him, not arrest him, just CENSURE him, just say “he shouldn’t have done that” — no one, absolutely no one at all, Democan or Republicrat, had the balls to say so out loud.

Half the country, simply isn’t being represented at all. By anybody.

The GOP in 2006 is virtually synonymous with the “religious right.”

The McCain wing has been the only force to challenge the domination of the fundies in the Republicrat Party and the government. Or even ATTEMPT to challenge it.

The Democans haven’t done diddley. They rolled over and played dead every time.

They should adopt the jellyfish as their new party mascot.

If your conservative and disgusted by the fundies then you’re a typical DEMOCRAT.

Alas, nobody being offered by the Democans is electable – least of all Hillary Clinton. Quite aside from the fact that the Democans have done virtually nothing to distinguish themselves from the Republicrats.

That leaves McCain.

If we focus on the Democans in the next election, then we will lose. Again. We need to split the Republicrat Party and force it into internal civil war. The McCain wing can do that (indeed, it’s the only hope to do that). We need to have the fundie nutters start COSTING the Republicrats elections. Until that happens, we will never be able to remove them from power. And the Democans have demonstrated that they are quite unable to do this on their own. They need the McCain wing.

Comment #95332

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on April 7, 2006 7:28 AM (e)

However small the chance, Lenny does have a point. McCaine HAS been rather wishy washy in his support of the far right. If you are a republican, this is your best chance to promote the dissolution of this political right-wing lovefest.

I think that has about as much a chance of happening as Hillary being elected president, which is to say very small, but still possible.

Small chance, yes. But currently the ONLY chance.

And even if it fails this time, it lays the foundation for further growth and a bigger chance in the future.

There is (and always has been) an anti-fundie faction in the Republicrat Party. It needs to be supported. Particularly since the Democans have proven themselves utterly impotent.

So Ralph Nader won’t get my protest vote this year. John McCain will.

Comment #95346

Posted by J-Dog on April 7, 2006 9:49 AM (e)

Lenny - I agree with almost everything you write on PT, BUT I just don’t see McCain as the answer.

Anyone that speaks at Jerry Falwell’s Liberty U, as McCain will do for their 2006 commencement, is NOT OKAY in my book. Yes, I saw him dissembling on Jon Stewart’s Daily Show, and the reason, or excuse given by McCain, that he “will say the same thing he says at all commencements” so it’s okay, strikes a sour note with me.

So I think McCain, is not the answer, but sadly no, I do not have a better answer. Do you have anyone else besides McCain that MIGHT “lead us out of this wilderness”? Obama? Franken?

Comment #95348

Posted by Mark Decker on April 7, 2006 10:05 AM (e)

“Alas, nobody being offered by the Democans is electable — least of all Hillary Clinton. Quite aside from the fact that the Democans have done virtually nothing to distinguish themselves from the Republicrats.”

Bullshit. How about Mark Warner, the very popular Virginia governor who has that nice mix of being a popular Southern Democrat, telegenic and a self-made businessman. He also has that glow of being a “moderate,” much in the Bill Clinton mold.

Beyond that, you’ve got some heavy-hitters like Biden and Bayh (another popular Democrat from a “red state”). And I don’t think Hillary is quite the inevitable loser people make her out to be. She has trounced such notions before, remember. I personally don’t like her very much, but if it’s a choice between her and, say, Rick Santorum, I would put my money on her.

It’s pretty darn stupid to be dismissing any of the candidates as “unelectable” in 2006. Would people have seen Bill Clinton as “electable” in 1990? Probably not.

Honestly, this notion that McCain is going to get the GOP nod is silly. I’m not saying he won’t, but it sure isn’t inevitable. Given that the party apparatus is STILL doing everything it can to smear him in public (just follow Drudge and his hard on for dissing McCain), I think his chances of getting the nomination aren’t so hot.

I also wouldn’t count out Feingold, although I see him much more as VP material for the eventual nominee. Still, he’s got a spotless record and is one of the few Senators who has been consistent in his stances and is full of integrity.

Comment #95357

Posted by Lee on April 7, 2006 10:38 AM (e)

The future of the Republicans is going to be partially determined by how well the Democrats do in these midterm elections.

If the Dems are able to take back The House and/or The Senate, there is a high probabity (IMHO) that the Repubs would turn away from the fundies.

If the Dems lose ground, then it is going to be a long marriage with the fundies for the GOP and there is no one out there that has the politcal capital (or fortitude) to try and break it up.

If the Dems lose ground there is absolutely no way McCain or Guiliani (sp?) will be the nominee in ‘08. Both are pro-choice (McCain less so) and against the Federal Marriage Amendment (again McCain less so). The ‘08 nominee will be a Sanatorum/Frist type.

/back to your regularly scheduled science talk

Comment #95407

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on April 7, 2006 5:37 PM (e)

So I think McCain, is not the answer, but sadly no, I do not have a better answer.

Neither do I.

Which is why McCain is the answer.

Comment #95409

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on April 7, 2006 5:46 PM (e)

Honestly, this notion that McCain is going to get the GOP nod is silly. I’m not saying he won’t, but it sure isn’t inevitable. Given that the party apparatus is STILL doing everything it can to smear him in public (just follow Drudge and his hard on for dissing McCain), I think his chances of getting the nomination aren’t so hot.

Well, I couldn’t care less if Daffy Duck got elected, as long as he helps to remove the fundies from power. (shrug) And of course, the very reason why McCain is getting so much opposition within the Republicrat Party is that the fundies don’t want him, and vice versa.

Given The Shrub’s latest, uh, approval ratings, this election is the Democan’s to lose. I sincerely HOPE that they discover a backbone somewhere deep inside them.

But alas, I won’t hold my breath waiting.

Comment #95420

Posted by Arden Chatfield on April 7, 2006 6:46 PM (e)

So I think McCain, is not the answer, but sadly no, I do not have a better answer.

Neither do I.

Which is why McCain is the answer.

No, McCain is no answer at all. No one who brownoses the religious right like he’s been doing is our friend.

The answer is no Republican at all.

Comment #95435

Posted by 'Rev Dr' Lenny Flank on April 7, 2006 8:56 PM (e)

The answer is no Republican at all.

Well, good luck with that. (shrug)

Me, I’d rather have McCain running against any Democan.

That way, the fundies lose no matter what.

Comment #95494

Posted by Popper's Ghost on April 8, 2006 5:03 AM (e)

Yet, when some brave soul introduced a measure into Congres to censure Bush for it — not impeach him, not arrest him, just CENSURE him, just say “he shouldn’t have done that” —- no one, absolutely no one at all, Democan or Republicrat, had the balls to say so out loud.

While the majority of Dems in Congress are afraid of their own shadows, this statement is factually incorrect – Barbara Boxer and Tom Harkin both stood up and supported Feingold’s resolution, and of course many registered Dems support it, and plenty have blogged about it. Aside from the factual error, the political analysis is grossly mistaken – regardless of their misguided election-oriented calculations that lead Dem politicians to resist making strong statements that they fear will alienate “swing voters” (don’t these politicians read the polls?), there are huge policy gaps between the Dems and the Reps. While it was fashionable for Naderites to talk about tweedledee ad tweedledum back before Bush got into office, it’s downright moronic to do so now.