The Company You Keep: Rand Paul Edition

Rand Paul groundhog day driving

We continue to be amazed with the flexibility and agility of Schrödinger’s Candidate Sen. Rand Paul, the  2016 Goat Rodeo contender and noted Aqua Buddhist, who defying all laws of physics manages to be on all sides of all issues.

First some background:

You may recall in 2013 Cliven Bundy’s unprecedented land grab to avoid paying one million Ameros in federal grazing fees to the Bureau of Land Management. His grab was much fêted by the right wing media in the name of Freedom!  And soon Bundy was joined by ammosexuals and militia groups hoping to start something bigger.

Then Bundy released his ground-breaking Sociology Study on The Negro, and the bottom fell out of Bundymania, which gave Wingnuttia a sad, though The Confederacy wing of the party loved him even more. And there was that attempt to start a revolution when some members of the militia guarding Bundy’s ranch murdered two police officers, covered them with a Gadsden “Don’t Tread on Me” flag, a note saying the revolution had begun and a swastika, and proceeded to kill a shopper at Walmart.  They died in a shootout with police shortly thereafter.

Rand Paul made the calculation that supporting this particular racist and armed crackpot might not work out to his advantage. In public and on the record, Paul said that Bundy’s musings about whether African-Americans would be “better off as slaves” were “offensive and I wholeheartedly disagree with him.”

So Let’s open Schödinger’s Box and see the status of things now!

Fast-forward to yesterday and Rand Paul is addressing Bundy and his fellow Nevadans in some tiny place called Mesquite. The meeting had a total of 50 attendees, so it is a long way for a national candidate to go for a small payoff, but that’s the way of the Aqua Buddha.

Anyway by the end of the meeting, Bundy proclaimed that they were as two hearts beating as one, or more accurately:

“In general, I think we’re in tune with each other. I don’t think we need to ask Washington, D.C. for this land. It’s our land.”

So the question is, what did Schrödinger’s Candidate say that would make Bundy all tingly and moist in his nether region?

“I think almost all land use issues and animal issues, endangered species issues, ought to be handled at the state level,” he said in an interview with The Associated Press. “I think that the government shouldn’t interfere with state decisions, so if a state decides to have medical marijuana or something like that, it should be respected as a state decision.”

No story about Sen. Paul is complete without checking in on the status of the much proven Charles Pierce 5-Minute Axiom (the Paul family can make limited sense but once the clock hits the 5-minute mark, the crazy starts to fly out of their mouths, and the whole operation goes TILT), CNN tells us what happened next:

“At issue recently have been debates over whether the greater sage grouse — a type of bird — should be listed as an endangered species, a move that would significantly affect the regulation of land along the California-Nevada border. The lesser prairie chicken has also been subject to debate.

“Paul suggested that the private ownership of more land would help save some species.

“Sometimes I’ll say flippantly if you sold the chicken to somebody, there’d be plenty of them,” he said. “When things are owned, there’s lots of cows. Cows are not endangered. Neither are chickens, really. The sage brush grouse would probably be less likely to be endangered if somebody owned it and allowed it to reproduce. So there are ways of handling it.”

(Hat tip: Crooks and Liars, AP Big Story, Bloomberg, CNN, Raw Story)

2016 Goat Rodeo Special Announcement: Chris Christie Is In, Guys!

giant-baby-Christie

You guys, NJ Gov. Chris Christie just ended years of speculation and cannon-balled into the 2016 Goat Rodeo! Under investigation and with a favorable rating of 22% (“In last week’s NBC/WSJ poll, 55% of GOP primary voters said they couldn’t see themselves supporting him — the second-worst percentage here behind only Donald Trump’s 66%.”), Gov. Sammiches brings a lot of gravity, er, gravitas to the race.

Reviving Grandpa Walnuts’ Straight-Talk Express meme, Christie’s campaign slogan is, Telling It Like It Is!, which seems to include telling “unpleasant truths,” like how he plans to cut Social Security, which really ought to endear him to the Seniors.

“It is time to tell investors that America is again open for business.”

But the bridges will be closed? Here’s Christie’s economic plan, according to Bloomberg:

“In a Christie administration, tax brackets would be reduced to three, from six, with burdens ranging from less than 10 percent to 28 percent, he said in a New Hampshire policy speech. He would end some deductions, though leave those for first-home mortgage interest and for charitable giving.

“For businesses, he would allow a one-time chance to bring back profits earned overseas at a lowered tax rate of 8.75 percent. For a corporate tax rate that he called the highest in the industrialized world, he proposed a 10 percent cut, to 25 percent. “

Say, how is his economic vision working in Jersey?

“Even as Christie traveled internationally, his home state has lagged behind the U.S. and neighboring states on jobs and revenue growth. His 2010 cancellation of Access to the Region’s Core, a Hudson River rail link between Manhattan and New Jersey, snuffed a potential $9 billion in business revenue and 44,000 permanent jobs, according to the Government Accountability Office, which monitors spending for the U.S. Congress.”

So maybe what Christie is really running on is his super-sized personality and his extreme moxie in yelling at people who are not as powerful as he is?

“I get accused a lot of times of being too blunt and too direct and saying what’s on my mind just a little bit too loudly. I know if my mom were still alive, she would say to me, “I taught you that in a trusting relationship, you don’t hold anything back.”

The Morning Quote And A Shorter Ted Cruz

Ted Cruz hosannaTed Cruz tells NPR that states not specifically party to the Obergefell ruling can, you know, disregard the Supreme Court:

“Those who are not parties to the suit are not bound by it… The parties to a case cannot ignore a direct judicial order, but it does not mean that those who are not parties to a case are bound by a judicial order.”

Shorter Cruz: “You told me I had to go to bed at 8, you didn’t tell me I had to sleep.”

Tiger Beat on the Potomac Wins The Morning!

Tiger Beat on the Potomac (thanks Charlie!) wins the morning with an excerpt from Ted Cruz’ book, From Doubles Tennis to Internet Porn: My Year as a Supreme Court Clerk.

“Most of the justices were in their 60s or older. Few knew much or anything about the Internet. So the librarians of the court designed a tutorial for them. … In a small room gathered the chief, O’Connor, and their respective law clerks. The librarians’ purpose was to demonstrate to the justices how easy it was to find porn on the Internet. …

“Here I was, a 26-year-old man looking at explicit porn with Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, who was standing alongside the colleague (my boss) she had once dated in law school. As we watched these graphic pictures fill our screens, wide-eyed, no one said a word. Except for Justice O’Connor, who lowered her head, squinted slightly, and muttered, ‘Oh, my.””

“Amateur,” Clarence Thomas did not mutter under his breath as he pushed the Court Librarian out of the way, “let the maestro do the driving.” He cracked his knuckles and his ten arthritic fingers banged the keyboard as if on the hands of a much, much, younger man.

“Nino, this one’s for you: Naughty Nuns in Bondage!”

The Evening Quote: From ¡JEB!

NotChimpy and Chimpy

NotChimpy and Chimpy

“If we don’t try to broaden out the map, we’re going to have to win with an inside straight, to use a Vegas term. Inside straight flush or whatever. It’s just not going to happen. I’m not a big gambler so I don’t know any gambling … Does that sound stupid when you say that?”

The Smarter Bush®, NotChimpy

The Donald: Feminist

Trump and KingI’ve longed for the day when women who run for office would no longer be held to the strange sexist standard of having their attractiveness assessed by our media elite pundits. And if that cannot happen, I figured I would long for the day when men would have their fashion choices be analyzed by the pundits, too, you know to make it fair.

I’ve waited a long time for this, but I never thought it would be short-fingered vulgarian Donald Trump who would be blazing this equal opportunity trail:

“People often ask him what he’d do differently if he were elected president, he said.

“I would probably comb my hair back. Why? Because this thing is too hard to comb,” he said. “I wouldn’t have time, because if I were in the White House, I’d be working my ass off.”

I Now Pronounce You Party Of The First Part

Rand-in-box-1

It’s been a few weeks since we looked at what Sen. Rand Paul, the brotastic pseudo-libertarian candidate on all sides of all issues has to say, so let’s look inside the box with Schrödinger’s Candidate!

You might recall that last summer Sen. Paul came out in support of a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. This spring you might recall that Sen. Paul was on record telling us that Marriage Equality offended him and that perhaps the country should move to contracts instead of marriage licenses:

And with that foreshadow, today Sen. Paul wrote an Op-Ed in Time in which he expands upon his theme of contracts v. licenses:

“The 14th Amendment does not command the government endorsement that is conveyed by the word “marriage.” State legislatures are entitled to express their preference for traditional marriage, so long as the equal rights of same-sex couples are protected.

“So the questions now before us are: What are those rights? What does government convey along with marriage, and should it do so? Should the government care, or allocate any benefits based on marital status?

“And can the government do its main job in the aftermath of this ruling — the protection of liberty, particularly religious liberty and free speech?

“We shall see. I will fight to ensure it does both, along with taking part in a discussion on the role of government in our lives.

“Perhaps it is time to be more careful what we ask government to do, and where we allow it to become part of our lives.”

But following the Charles Pierce 5-Minute Rule on the Paul family (they make sense until you hit the magic number and then the whole thing turns into a tilt-a-whirl) Paul leaves off the important bits: what happens if all marriages become contracts?

For instance, what happens to tax policy that allows couples to file jointly or have an exemption for dependent children? Or what of property held jointly? Sen. Aqua Buddha sort of leaves those questions hanging. I guess the marriage is only as good as the contract and whoever writes it up will have to be very thorough. Contracts also have starting and ending dates usually. (‬ Britney Spears rejoice! The 30-minute marriage awaits you!)

It’s also worth noting that Sen. Aqua Buddha’s own proposal for a flat tax flies straight into the wood chipper with his latest brain fart, what with deductions for children, etc.

So Sen. Paul, instead of asking us what happens if Government gets out of the marriage business, why don’t you do the legwork to tell us what would happen if your suggestion is adopted?

But in the meanwhile, we might have a test case of his Randian Fantasy: Mississippi (where else) state Rep. Andy Gipson, the chairman of the state house judiciary committee, is floating just such an idea of eliminating state marriage licenses altogether:

“One of the options that other states have looked at is removing the state marriage license requirement,” Gipson said. “We will be researching what options there are. I personally can see pros and cons to that. I don’t know if it would be better to have no marriage certificate sponsored by the state or not. But it’s an option out there to be considered.”

“Oklahoma lawmakers this year considered a bill that would have had clergy and notaries sign off on marriage paperwork, taking state judges and county clerks out of the process. In Alabama, at least one county stopped issuing any marriage licenses months ago.

“Gipson, an attorney and Baptist minister who opposes gay marriage, caused a stir last year when he said: “I believe the time has come for people of faith in Mississippi to prepare for the overturning of our constitutional ban on it,” noting then that Friday’s high court ruling was inevitable.”

So the state would get out of the marriage bidness, but you would have to have a religious ceremony in order to have the paper work approved and filed? Sorry atheists, you don’t count.

There is no end to the rat-f’ing that Y’all Qaeda will do to hurt the ‘mos, even if it hurts themselves even more.

The Morning Quote

Gomer and the Gomerette

The Gomer (Uncle Sugar) and the Gomerette (Jethrene)

“When the president lit up the White House the other night with rainbow colors, I guess that’s his prerogative. If I become president, I just want to remind people that please don’t complain if I were to put a nativity scene out during Christmas and say, you know, if it’s my house, I get to do with it what I wish despite what other people around the country may feel about it.”

Uncle Sugar, who once again shows us he doesn’t understand how the First Amendment works, or is unaware that the White House is not private property, or both?

We’ll go with both.

One Lump of Stupid or Two, Frothy?

Don’t touch that video, there’s Santorum on it!

“Can you imagine if instead of if the president spent all his time talking about global warming, if he talked about the importance of marriage and fathers and mothers taking responsibility for raising this children in healthy homes?”

Earlier in the clip, Santorum pushed for the Second Worst Idea in politics: that the Supreme Court should be elected.

Claim Chowder, Jindal Style

Portraits of Courage, Cont.

Boy exorcist and noted volcano scholar Bobby Jindal

Boy exorcist and famous volcano scholar Bobby Jindal

We noted on Saturday that boy exorcist and noted volcano scholar Bobby Jindal stood tall, grabbed the bull by the tail and faced the situation and told the world that the SCOTUS be damned, there will be no ‘mos getting hitched in Louisiana!

Bobby Jindal will not be made a fool by the Supreme Court!

Instead, Jindal made a fool of himself by retracting his previous bravado statement of defiance while on national teevee. Reports Politico,

“We don’t have a choice. Our agencies will comply with the court order,” the Republican presidential contender said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” after being asked why his state is the only one that has not yet issued marriage licenses to same-sex couples.”