Special Olympics? What’s So Special About Them?

Apparently to the GOP, not much:

The House GOP’s budget, which passed last month, takes a hatchet to programs for disabled kids and Special Olympics athletes. The proposed cuts could force the closure of at least one Special Olympics program, which is funded through the Department of Education. Dubbed Project UNIFY, the program serves more than 750,000 students in 43 states and draws from techniques used in Special Olympics training for activities in public schools.

The program includes sports teams that pair disabled athletes with nondisabled athletes; developmental activities for young children with disabilities; and anti-discrimination programs to combat bullying in schools. Special Olympics president and CEO Tim Shriver has said the program is at the forefront of a national movement to fight bias against the disabled and, in a recent interview on MSNBC, he denounced the GOP cuts: “It wasn’t a haircut—it was a guillotine job for the programs for health and education for children with special needs.”

I can’t decide if they are doing this just because they are mean-spirited assholes who care nothing about anyone other than the super-rich who should get tax cuts every six months, or if they are just going after it because the Kennedy’s were involved.

The safe bet is probably both.

Although, in fairness, I am sure Reason magazine will have a Nick Gillespie video up outlining a free-market solution for this. I mean, were you ever charged tickets to attend the special olympics? Why not? What about jersey sales and concession profits. There are all sorts of revenue streams there, no doubt. Pull yourself up by your bootstraps, you slackers.






115 replies
  1. 1
    Violet says:

    Those kids should all be working anyway. Slackers.

  2. 2
    GregB says:

    Underage special needs children are a great untapped source of potential labor.

    Let’s get on this.

  3. 3
    Comrade Javamanphil says:

    Why choose? They are mean-spirited assholes with a vindictive streak a mile wide and a personal sense of being victimized that would make a sociopath blush.

  4. 4
    Mike G says:

    Why would you expect any sympathy for the learning-disabled from a party that exalts willfull ignorance and celebrates stupidity.

  5. 5
    Scott says:

    Special Olympics and Poison Control are for closers.

  6. 6
    biff diggerence says:

    Since these kids are ex-utero, shouldn’t we expect GOP legislation to have them, uh . . .

  7. 7
    Bob L says:

    Those special needs children should have thought of that when they made those bad birth choices. Next time don’t take the easy way out by being disabled.

  8. 8
    Alwhite says:

    Back to the attic you gimpy fuckers. The brave new world the GOP is building does not have space for those not ‘perfect’ as they are.

  9. 9
    Dave says:

    Fetuses that will become disabled and special needs kids are precious snowflakes that deserve our protection and love.

    ACTUAL disabled and special needs kids are drains on the State and hold back the economic engine of America.

  10. 10
    Kyle says:

    Meanwhile in Very Surprising News, John Boehner cries again, during a speech to Congress by Australian PM Julia Gillard:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-12692689

  11. 11
    kdaug says:

    But don’t you realize how much those kids make, what with their fat contracts and endorsement deals…?

    These fucking pukes put the Mongol Hordes to shame.

  12. 12
    biff diggerence says:

    . . . slaughtered?

  13. 13
    Paul M says:

    John, ask yourself “Is there anything about the Special Olympics that will further profit the wealthy.” No? Well, there’s your answer.

  14. 14
    soonergrunt says:

    Republican elected officials are mean-spirited greedy brutal assholes.
    In other news, water is wet, dirt is dirty, and chicks and ducklings are cute.

  15. 15
    General Stuck says:

    I got no snark for this bullshit. Other than slap a big fat Godwin on their pasty asses.

  16. 16
    Dan says:

    so if our choice is between socialists and sociopaths, why do socialists have a bad name?

  17. 17
    4tehlulz says:

    >These fucking pukes put the Mongol Hordes to shame.

    Don’t disrespect the Mongols like that; they at least did the brutality themselves.

  18. 18
    4tehlulz says:

    >Other than slap a big fat Godwin on their pasty asses.

    HAWT

  19. 19
    ruemara says:

    green. fucking. balloons.

    I can’t understand how such hate-filled, disgusting assholes gained power, nor can I understand how they have any support, but my BP skyrocketed overnight and I’m in a terrible fight with my partner on whether or not to allow our pet to die with some dignity or let him linger on starving himself and huddled in a corner until his poor old body gives out. Between outside news and inside news, I’m giving up on humanity, happiness and bacon.

  20. 20
    JPL says:

    Can we expect Sarah to comment on this soon or will she just ignore it?

  21. 21
    Mike Kay (Ding-Dong-Broder's Dead) says:

    Surely, Palin will release a statement opposing this… surely.

  22. 22
    Culture of Truth says:

    Snooty elitist kids, acting like they’re so damm special…

  23. 23
    Exurban Mom says:

    Republicans think sports and extracurriculars are only for rich kids.

    Seriously. We had a failed school levy in our area, that resulted in a varsity sport at the high school costing over $600 per sport. Someone I know said, ‘oh, it’ll be fine. The kids who really want to be there will be there, and the pain in the butt kids will stay home.’

    You know who really needs those kinds of programs? The Pain in the Butt kids. I wonder if Sarah Palin has been asked about this…

  24. 24
    zmulls says:

    @Scott #5

    You get a set of steak knives!

  25. 25
    soonergrunt says:

    @ruemara: I’m terribly sorry about your situation with your partner and your pet. Please don’t forget that your partner is coming from the same place you are with regards to your pet. You’re just not going TO the same place. That’s rough stuff, and I hope you guys can work it out for the critter’s sake.
    Having said that, I gave up on humanity a long time ago. But I’ll never give up on bacon.

  26. 26
    dmsilev says:

    I give it an even chance that within the next year, someone in the GOP will propose the poverty solution advocated by Jonathan Swift in _A Modest Proposal_, but do so in all seriousness.

    dms

  27. 27
    Violet says:

    @Mike Kay (Ding-Dong-Broder’s Dead): @JPL:
    Families with special needs kids should just work harder to take care of their own. That’s how Sarah does it. She’s just a regular hardworking commonsense patriotic freedom-loving American. If she can do it, so can they!

    Oh, sorry. My PalinBot 3000 machine got a little stuck on the Buzzwords function.

  28. 28
    MattF says:

    …and if you can’t pull yourself up with your crutches, that’s unfortunate.

  29. 29
    Turgidson says:

    Wow, I never imagined they’d take their stupid “personal responsibility” nonsense (and big lie) to its logical extreme. Now literally everyone will need to pull themselves up by the bootstraps. Eeeeegad.

  30. 30
    soonergrunt says:

    Cue Uncle Clarence Fuckwit to blame Obama in 3…2…1…

  31. 31
    Violet says:

    @MattF:
    Crutches? They should be so lucky as to have crutches.

  32. 32
    kdaug says:

    @Dan:
    Love your framing.

    Stoled.

  33. 33
    agrippa says:

    Consequences. Elections have consequences.

    People who stayed home – instead of voting ( never mind what should have preceded voting)- have only themselves to blame. It was clear as crystal what the GOP was going to do.

    For those voted GOP: Be careful what you wished for; you are getting it.

    GOP doctrine, and the doctrine of those who faithfully vote for them: Root hog; or, die.

  34. 34
    danimal says:

    The GOP couldn’t come up with safe areas to cut (you know, waste, fraud and abuse), so they put together a lot of cuts knowing that the cuts would never actually occur after negotiations with Senate Dems and President Obama. They just wanted to hit their $100B $61B target and the actual substance of the cuts wasn’t particularly thought out. They would shit nails if port security or immigration funds were actually cut, but those are in the list, too.

    IOW, the GOP voted on the cuts without really knowing, or caring about the specifics. Special Olympics funds will be restored after the grand compromise with Senate Dems and President Obama.

  35. 35
    lacp says:

    Every dollar wasted on these kids is a dollar that could have been spent by Medicare on scooters for fat-assed Tea Partiers. Keep your socialist disabled hands off it!

  36. 36
    Violet says:

    Seen on Twitter about what’s happening in Madison:

    Large crowd outside King St. Entrance just told that Senate is proposing bill to change recall laws (which are in constitutional). #wiunion

  37. 37
    Brian G. says:

    Things can only be funded by the federal government! Anyone who doesn’t think something should be funded by the Fed must hate that thing and not want it to exist! These are the only logically possible positions!

  38. 38
    me says:

    (which are in constitutional)

    Huh? Unconstitutional or in the constitution?

  39. 39
    PurpleGirl says:

    @ruemara: I’m sorry your pet is in such an extreme condition. Having helped a friend to make a similar decision about his beloved Dobie, I feel for you. I hope you are able to let your pet go with dignity.
    It is the right thing to do for the pet and your peace of mind (and your partner, although your partner may not realize it now). I hope the situation is resolved sooner rather than later.

  40. 40
    Paul in KY says:

    @ruemara: If the partner is being unintentionally cruel, then you have to step up & end the poor thing’s suffering.

    You can debate the pros & cons after you have done your last good deed for your animal.

    Best of luck.

  41. 41
    me says:

    Apparently the answer is in the constitution.

  42. 42
    4tehlulz says:

    @me: I think he meant “incontinent”.

  43. 43
    kdaug says:

    Oh, and another stoled meme from a thread a few weeks back:

    Let’s do remember to soak the rich before eating.

  44. 44
    Matt says:

    @Dan:

    The sociopaths have a better PR operation; after all, advertising is a lot easier without pesky “morals” getting in the way of the lies…

  45. 45
    The Moar You Know says:

    Have you ever seen a kid in a wheelchair mistake a flight of stairs for a ramp? Comedy gold.

  46. 46
    Loneoak says:

    How do we know these kids are actually cognitively disabled? Huh? I say check the kerning on their birth certificates. READ THE BILL.

  47. 47
    Violet says:

    They’re protesting in front of M&I Bank that supported Walker: http://twitpic.com/486xck. People are withdrawing their money from the bank.

  48. 48
    beltane says:

    The GOP wants to force women to give birth to disabled children in order for them to be displayed in circuses and freak shows just like in the old days. These people are all sadists, depraved, worthless specimens of the human species.

    The only good thing about all this is that when the day of reckoning comes there will be tens of millions of Americans who will have been stripped of all compassion for their “betters”. Perhaps a certain amount of venom is necessary to bring about real change.

  49. 49
    Amir_Khalid says:

    The Special Olympics were founded by the late Eunice Shriver. As I recall, she had a son-in-law who was a prominent Republican politician, Arnold Somethingorother. Then again she was a Kennedy and a liberal, so maybe that trumps the Republican connection.

  50. 50
    Violet says:

    Firefighters withdrawing money from the bank:

    the firefighters just withdrew over $100,000 from M&I bank and are encouraging others to do the same. Play the bagpipes! #wearewi #wiunion 15 minutes ago via TweetDeck

    http://twitter.com/charkin/sta.....0398999552

  51. 51
    4tehlulz says:

    @beltane: HAHA

    Like they’ll really be a day people figure out that being the guy wearing the jackboot is not a worthy goal…

  52. 52
    Yutsano says:

    @Violet: Is it wrong of me to hope that they go after the firefighters and police unions next? They’ve shown themselves to be much disloyal to the cause after all.

  53. 53
    Violet says:

    @Yutsano:
    Sorry, who is who when you say “they”? If you mean the GOP going after the firefighters and police unions, then I’m all for it. No one should be exempt. It seems the firefighters understand this a little, based on the bank protests.

  54. 54
    trollhattan says:

    @Amir_Khalid:

    Yup, this is surely another edition of “Up yours, Kennedys!” “courtesy” of the GOP.

    Do they have a set schedule for spitting on JFK, RFK and TK’s graves, or is it done more ad hoc?

  55. 55
    Cris says:

    You know who else didn’t care about disabled people?

  56. 56
    Suffern ACE says:

    Conservatives, for reasons that I don’t quite understand, really hate the idea of self-esteem. Kids are in the special olympics because they can’t compete with other kids. That the kids and their parents gain from this is overshadowed by the fact that self-esteem is involved. Self-esteem ranks right up their with relativism and empathy as the liberal values which must be destroyed if we are to save our society from it’s enemies. The more we attack those kids, the better off we’ll be.

  57. 57
    Kryptik says:

    So they’re going to spite everyone by unilaterally Amending the state constitution to prevent themselves from getting recalled? Perrrrfect.

    Anyone want to take a running bet on how long until they actually succeed (and considering the pattern, they probably will. Assholes always somehow manage to fucking win now)?

  58. 58
    Kryptik says:

    @Suffern ACE:

    Well, they’ve already convinced me that my life is not only worthless but that the entire country hates me and deservedly so, seeing as I’m a brown liberal part-time student who can be either mistaken for a dirty Messican illegal or a swarthy Mooslim terrist, depending on how much sun I got the day before.

  59. 59
    Yutsano says:

    @Violet: Sorry, early morning (for me anyway but I shan’t brag) and I was unclear there. I am referring to the GOP here. Dickheads will do anything their rich overlords say just to get a tiny sliver of their table scraps.

  60. 60
    Mnemosyne says:

    @ruemara:

    That’s so hard. No wonder your BP is going up.

    Our own Werebear has some really good advice on her website. It’s aimed at cats, but it applies to all pets:

    How Can We Know When It’s Time?

    She has a whole series listed under “Saying Goodbye” in the right-hand column of the site, so there are several articles on the whole topic of pet illness, death, and mourning.

    When our cat Natasha was dying of cancer, the vet told us that it was all about her quality of life. As long as she was still functioning (eating, drinking, peeing and pooping) and interacting with us, her quality of life was probably fine. If she started hiding or stopped doing any of the above, that’s when you need to seriously consider euthanizing the cat so it doesn’t have to suffer.

  61. 61
    eemom says:

    @ruemara:

    I am so sorry. If it helps at all to convey to your partner, years ago when one of my beloved doggies reached that stage, I — hoping to avoid the inevitable — asked my vet hopefully if an old dog might just pass away peacefully in his sleep. Her response was, “that hardly ever happens.”

  62. 62
  63. 63
    Violet says:

    @Yutsano:
    And who did you mean here?

    They’ve shown themselves to be much disloyal to the cause after all.

    Have the firefighters and police been disloyal to the union cause?

  64. 64
    Cris says:

    @JPL and Mike Kay:
    From the same Mother Jones article.

    While she served as Alaska’s governor, Sarah Palin attempted to halve funding for the state’s branch of the Special Olympics. (The proposal didn’t pass muster, and the final budget actually included a slight increase in funding.)

    Why should she give a fuck, her kid is provided for.

  65. 65

    Thank goodness President Obama is boldly countering attempts like this by powerfully asserting the need for government spending in this economic downturn rather than arbitrary cuts.

  66. 66
    Shinobi says:

    @ruemara: I”m sorry about your pet.

    I had to make the decision to put my parent’s cat to sleep last fall while my dad was out of the country. I regret complying with his wishes (which involved intensive care) instead of letting our sweet kitty spend a little while in some grass in the sun, and then going to sleep. I know however, that my father would have had a hard time forgiving me if I had made that decision in his absence.

    I hope you can find find some resolution with your partner. It is going to hurt to lose your furry friend, but if you don’t come to some agreement about how he goes, you will both end up resenting each other. (There is nothing like a little anger to take the edge of grief.)

  67. 67
    Carnacki says:

    What those facing special challenges is need are Special Tax Cuts!

    Tax cuts, the solution to all of the problems.

    Cancer needs a cure? Tax cuts!

    People starving? Feed them Tax cuts!

    An asteroid heading towards Earth? Stop it with a Tax cut!

  68. 68
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Kryptik: They can’t just pass something like that in the leg. and have it take effect. Recalls are in the state constitution. The fact that they are trying to do it shows that they have gone ’round the bend though. Seriously, the Republicans’ behavior ver the past two days indicates to me that they just don’t care about appearances, rules, or anything but their short term agenda.

  69. 69
    Carnacki says:

    @dmsilev: I commented the other day someone at the GOP is using that satire as their game plan.

  70. 70
    srv says:

    Does anyone have a bookmark on John’s Class War rant from last year? The one with all the charts and how the rich were winning by miles.

    We need a “best of” feature, right after that edit thingy.

  71. 71
    Social Outcast says:

    Being disabled is the kid’s fault, the GOP thinking goes. So they should live with the choices they made, or something. I’m sure there is some twisted logic they’re using to justify this.

  72. 72
    Shinobi says:

    @Carnacki: The kicker at the end of the satire, is that it all turns out to be the Democrat’s fault after all.

  73. 73
    Cris says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Seriously, the Republicans’ behavior ver the past two days indicates to me that they just don’t care about appearances, rules, or anything but their short term agenda.

    That’s what’s really fascinating to me about their current power-drunk bender. One of the things that really impressed me about the early Bush Administration is how much they represented the long game — I mean, the GWB admin represented the culmination of a power consolidation that had been in the works since Nixon. But once they got there, they’ve gotten more and more reckless with what they worked so long to attain. Maybe it’s because they opened the gate for themselves and the lunatics rushed in too.

  74. 74
    Kryptik says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I’m still not totally convinced that they can’t just suddenly invent some law to unilaterally pass that will inoculate them completely from recalls. But that’s because the assholes have proven remarkably adept at doing that exact sort of thing in order to destroy the great Lib scourge. From the Citizens United ruling, to the Michigan ‘Koch Township Buyout Bill of 2011’, they’ve managed to do just about everything they want wantonly, damn whatever constitution they have to burn to get their way.

    @srv:

    It’s the Inequality, Stupid – Mother Jones

  75. 75
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Kryptik: I understand your worry, but, in this case, it is groundless. Take a look at the link in this comment above. Poor bastards have simply lost the plot.

  76. 76
    Yutsano says:

    @Violet: Blah. No more commenting before work. Walker thought the police and firefighters were in his back pocket because they endorsed him. They betrayed the Emperor. They will be next on the block.

  77. 77
    piratedan says:

    well I see no reason why the GOP of Wisconsin wouldn’t just do away with the recall of publicly elected officials altogether. Obviously they were put into power by the good people of Wisconsin so that must mean that they have a mndate to serve in perpetuity, then have the right to pass down their positions through the oldest child to ensure that Wisconsin has the representation that it deserves.

  78. 78
    kay says:

    I’m still amazed they’re going to spend a whole day yelling at U.S.Muslims.
    Is this unprecedented? Just hectoring a certain religious group under color of Congressional hearings? I think it is.

  79. 79
    eemom says:

    OT via Steve Benen: Bobo has evidently decided that he does “do humor” after all: asked to opine about the Gnewt’s prospective candidacy, he quipped pithily “I wouldn’t trust that guy to run a 7 Eleven, let alone a country.”

    yuk yuk yuk. Ain’t he a card?

  80. 80
    Todd Pearson says:

    My brother is severely mentally handicapped, and he has participated in the Special Olympics. I don’t think that this is a simple issue in a non-perfect world where government’s ability to help everyone has limits. The government already pays for everything relating to his room, board, and 24/7 care. How much is it fair for me to ask? That is all.

  81. 81
    Kryptik says:

    @kay:

    You’re making the same grave mistake as all Dirty Fucking Hippies do: Assuming that Mooslims are or deserve to be even considered Americans to begin with. Thank god we have Rep. King to set all our stupid brown asses straight.

  82. 82
    Poopyman says:

    On the WI front, the Plum Line has results of polling that shows 2 Rep senators to be definitely vulnerable to a recall. Need 3 at minimum, though.

  83. 83
    me says:

    @Poopyman: I wonder what the polling for the Democrats looks like. My state senator, Wirch, won comfortably last time and I don’t think he’s vulnerable, but I’d be interested in seeing polling.

  84. 84
    Poopyman says:

    @Poopyman: Oh, and the bill they rammed through calls for any state worker who strikes or participates in a sickout to be fired.

    (H/T Kos)

  85. 85
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Poopyman: Not to beat a dead horse on this, but I have serious doubts that this law will go into effect any time soon. Within five minutes of the bill being signed, the first lawsuit challenging and seeking an injunction against its enforcement will be filed.

  86. 86
    Poopyman says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: No doubt. The stakes just keep getting higher, is all.

  87. 87
    Kathy says:

    @Mike Kay (Ding-Dong-Broder’s Dead): Most likely not since she thinks they are making the cuts satirically.

  88. 88
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Poopyman:

    Because it’s so easy to find replacement firefighters and police officers on a moment’s notice.

    Heck, if the teachers strike in sufficiently large numbers, they’ll have to teach kids in the auditorium just to have enough substitutes to keep an eye on everyone.

    ETA: This is what unions have strike funds for. Hopefully they’re sufficiently funded. Here in Los Angeles, when the grocery store workers went on strike, it dragged on long enough that they ended up doing food drives.

  89. 89
    Violet says:

    @Mnemosyne:
    A general strike would show people just how valuable union workers are. It could also backfire and tick people off. I’d kind of like to see it happen, though. People power.

  90. 90
    kdaug says:

    @kay:

    No, just that religion has replaced political beliefs this time around. (See: McCarthy)

    This is, in fact, the oldest story in America. Used to do it to witches.

    Every 30-50 years, the pearl-clutchers get their dander up about something stupid, and we all have to sit through a stupid charade while they do their stupid shit, and then a few years later everyone looks back and says “Duh, that was stupid”. When I was a kid, Ozzy Osbourne caused suicide and day-cares were filled with baby-killing Satan-worshipers.

    It’s a nice distraction for those who want one.

  91. 91
    catpal says:

    @Todd Pearson: I understand what you are saying. I work with the special needs population and they do get a good amount of government assistance. Is it ever enough? NO.

    the point is that the Repigs CHOOSE to Not Fund programs that they don’t like, particularly if a Kennedy name is involved even remotely.

    Now if only, the DEMS had been so Ruthless with No Funding to Faith-Based Discriminating Orgs and Religious Nut Groups, and the Wasted Abstinence Only crowd.

    Special Olympics is a wonderful Org, that deserves every dollar they can get from everyone.

  92. 92
    Jonny Scrum-half says:

    Todd Pearson — Thanks for injecting a credible opinion that doesn’t reduce the issue to a simple partisan mud-flinging contest.

    I actually like Reason Magazine, and my initial reflex upon reading John Cole’s post was to try to defend Nick Gillespie. Unfortunately, the truth is that Gillespie has been quite the hack ever since Obama was sworn in.

  93. 93
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Violet:

    I think the general public in Wisconsin is sufficiently riled up that strikers would have their support. When the grocery stores in So Cal tried to break the unions, their stores were practically empty as people went to independent or union stores instead, and that strike went on for four and a half months. When UPS went on strike, pundits predicted a huge public backlash and were shocked that people actually supported them.

    When these strikes affect someone you actually know — the grocery store clerk you see every week, the UPS guy who brings your packages every day — they have a lot more support than a strike by strangers.

  94. 94
    Judas Escargot (aka ninja fetus with a taste for bruschetta) says:

    @Suffern ACE:

    Conservatives, for reasons that I don’t quite understand, really hate the idea of self-esteem.

    Well, there’s only so much self-esteem to go around in the world. And conservatives need it more. So… sorry, kids.

  95. 95
  96. 96
    trollhattan says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    And then there’s the Walmart Way(tm): when a store votes to unionize, close the store.

    http://www.businessweek.com/ma.....971115.htm

  97. 97
    Judas Escargot (aka ninja fetus with a taste for bruschetta) says:

    @Kryptik:

    I’m still not totally convinced that they can’t just suddenly invent some law to unilaterally pass that will inoculate them completely from recalls.

    If the WI AG is GOP, too– who will enforce the recall law as it stands now? Won’t be him. And it’s not like the Feds or SCOTUS will step in to help the citizens of Wisconsin against their rogue state govt.

    I believe a recent President referred to the US Constitution as “a goddamned piece of paper” not too long ago. In hindsight, he sounds like a moderate today.

  98. 98
    opie_jeanne says:

    @Mnemosyne: That strike was really something.

    I crossed the lines twice in those 4 months, and apologized to the picketers when I did so. I had no time to drive to the independent stores both times. What was remarkable was how truly bad the replacements were that were doing the checking. One checker* had to ask a customer what the vegetable was that she had placed before him: Brussels sprouts. This was a white guy in his 40s, no accent, not even an out-of-state one. He grew up here. Maybe his mom never fed him vegetables, but seriously, where do you find someone like this?

    *I almost referred to him as the scab checker but that would have sounded really bad.

  99. 99
    Mike in NC says:

    The House GOP’s budget, which passed last month, takes a hatchet to programs for disabled kids and Special Olympics athletes.

    Deplorable. Maybe they need to organize a Special Olympics strictly for Republican politicians.

  100. 100
    ruemara says:

    Thanks to all of you for the kind words. We finally agreed that any kitty that will starve himself for over a week is a kitty that is done with things, thank you please. Our beloved first cat has gone to the Cat Heaven, where mice and birds are fat and slow, every meal is fresh salmon, shrimp and herring and there are laps galore. We were at odds a lot and thank you Werebear, your website improved his last year tons. I thought I was completely prepared to lose him since he’d been so sick for the past few years but at the end, I seemed to made of tears, and snot. As a photographer, I couldn’t help but take lots of pics, but the best stuff is from almost a decade ago and not digital. Rest well, Smudge, somewhere up there, a little tuxedo cat is spinning on a broken office chair seat, tail waving in the air and having a ball making himself dizzy.

  101. 101
    eemom says:

    I thought I was completely prepared to lose him since he’d been so sick for the past few years but at the end, I seemed to made of tears, and snot

    same here when I lost my beloved Rambo who I mentioned above.

    One is never prepared.

    One can only hope there is really a Rainbow Bridge. No matter how many times I read that thing I still can’t keep from snivelling.

  102. 102
    Paul in KY says:

    @ruemara: Glad you made the correct decision. Smudgie had a great owner. I checked out the pictures, he was a very handsome cat.

  103. 103
    ET says:

    them: But the private sector (business and individuals) and nonprofits will pick up the slack.

    me: Along with the slack of dozens/hundreds of other areas that were negatively affected by the budget cuts.

    them: Well I guess the private sector and capitalism will determine what projects and services people want badly enough to pay for.

    me: After they have paid their mortgage/rent, their electricity, their water bills, bought their food….

    Basically – for them the magical capitalism fairy will solve all the problems with no losses when she waves her wand.

  104. 104
    Maude says:

    @ruemara:
    I will be thinking of you.

  105. 105
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @ET:

    Basically – for them the magical capitalism fairy will solve all the problems with no losses when she waves her wand.

    I always thought the capitalism fairy was a dude.

  106. 106
    catpal says:

    @ruemara: so sorry. I had to make the very difficult decision this past december when my cat became very ill and my wonderful vet told me she was suffering. best to you.

  107. 107
    thalarctos says:

    @ruemara: virtual hugs, ruemara. may the grief soon give way to the good memories of Smudge.

  108. 108
    Svensker says:

    @ruemara:

    Big hugs.

  109. 109
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Todd Pearson:

    The government already pays for everything relating to his room, board, and 24/7 care. How much is it fair for me to ask?

    I guess my retort would be, you’re not the one asking. Your brother is.

    I think it’s our responsibility as a society to do everything we can to make every citizen healthy and productive. My cousin who is retarded has gotten a huge amount of services over the course of her life and, thanks to those services, at the age of 45 she was able to move into her own condo (it had been my grandmother’s until she passed away, and my aunt and uncle bought it from the rest of the family), hold down a part-time job, and have some measure of independence.

    Seventy years ago, she would have been sent off to a state institution and lived her life there staring at the walls. It would have been a much, much cheaper solution, especially since she probably wouldn’t have lived to her current age, but aren’t we all better off having her be a productive citizen participating in society to the best of her ability?

  110. 110
    Wolfdaughter says:

    What chafes my ass is that not only are these Republicans mean-spirited, but that they and their supporters are so fundamentally UNSERIOUS in their proposals to cut expenditures. They nickel-and-dime, proposing cuts to programs that they don’t personally benefit from, while the big elephant (I use the word advisedly) is military expenditures.

    The Democrats aren’t much better but at least they don’t propose cuts on the backs of the poorest and neediest. USUALLY.

    We’ve got to band together and throw these sociopathic Republicans out. If we can actually unite enough to that, I think we might have enough collective clout to let the Democrats know that they’d better get serious about helping the majority of people or we’ll vote them out, too.

    My heart goes out to you, Ruemara. I’ve been there, too.

  111. 111
    Ohio Mom says:

    I don’t know which to go with, so here’s both:

    Todd Pearson, do you mind if I ask you where you live? Cause we’re not getting much help in paying for our kid’s (on the autism spectrum) needs, and the way things are going around here, I won’t be surprised if the little bit of assistance we do get is yanked away. Maybe we’ll move to your part of the country.

    Shorter Todd Pearson: I got mine, baby! (And he did get his, because not too long ago, his brother would have been living with and completely dependent on him.)

  112. 112
    Todd Pearson says:

    Mnemosyne: Actually, I’m “asking” because I’m now his legal guardian, and we personally pay for everything that the State does not.

    Ohio Mom: What did I say to piss you off?

  113. 113
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Todd Pearson:

    Mnemosyne: Actually, I’m “asking” because I’m now his legal guardian, and we personally pay for everything that the State does not.

    I was thinking in more of a philosophical way — the things that the government does for your brother are not (or should not be) done for the benefit of your family. They’re done for his benefit. Yes, you guys also benefit, but that’s a side effect. If you became unable to care for your brother, he would become a ward of the state, and that’s because most people recognize that he’s a person in his own right and we can’t leave him to starve if his family becomes unable to care for him.

    As far as questions about his actual care go, that’s up to you, and I do not envy you those decisions at all. But I do think you should be able to get all of the assistance you need for him without having rich assholes whine about their crippling 35% tax rate on income over $379,150.

    ETA: And this will probably make me sound like a bad person to some people, but I don’t think you should be required to impoverish yourself before you can get care for him because, again, the care is being provided for him, not for you.

  114. 114
    Ohio Mom says:

    Sorry for the delay in responding. We’ve never participated in Special Olympics but I know it has been a life-changing program for many and I know how hard the road we special needs families travel is. I would never begrudge another special needs family ANYTHING they found helpful — though I have certainly been jealous when I’ve heard about a program somewhere else that sounds like it might be a good fit for my kid and it isn’t available to us.

    Yes, I was snippy. I should have said, Hey! Let’s stick together here! And everything Mnemosyne said.

  115. 115

    […] This is just cruel: The GOP is being “mean-spirited” by targeting the Special Olympics, says John Cole at Balloon Juice. Or maybe this assault has to do with the organization’s Kennedy connection — CEO Tim […]

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