Sunday Night Horrowshow Open Thread: As American As A Burning Cross

MSNBC finds a way to phrase the GOP problem… delicately:

There are five counties in the state of Alabama where more than 30 percent of the 25-and-over population has a college degree, according to the U.S. Census. Strange won three of those counties and did so fairly convincingly, by about 8 points, 54.1 percent – 45.9 percent.

But the rest of state went against the sitting senator and the margins for him got worse as the percentage of those with a college education dropped.

There are two counties where the college education rates were between 25 percent and 30 percent. Moore won those counties by about 6 points, 53.2 percent – 46.8 percent. The rest of the counties have fewer than 25 percent of the population with a degree. Moore won them by more than 18 points, 59.2 percent – 40.8 percent.

Those education numbers have a special significance when you look at the Republican Senate seats that are up in 2018. In eight of them, all but Utah, the college-educated population numbers are below 30 percent, which is roughly the national average.

The Alabama results suggest the Republican voters in those states may be ready for a more populist, anti-establishment candidate — one that would challenge the incumbent and pull him or her toward the more populist end of the GOP.

To be clear, these college education figures aren’t solely about education, they are about people living in different economic and cultural worlds…

In other words: “We’re not gonna spell it out, but there’s a genuine fear among the people who make a living off the GOP that it’s turning into the house brand for ignorant rubes who’ve never had to meet anyone they weren’t related to.”

(And, of course, they’re heavily armed.)
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Late Night Open Thread: Ross Doubthat Longs for a Little Tidy White-Bread Sharia Law

“President Pence”, he murmurs to himself, and would slip a hand down his pants if he didn’t believe that sort of thing leads to blindness and hairy palms…


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He’s not calling for an Inquisition, for pete’s sake! He just wants all the gore and dirty talk firmly removed from the public arena!

(Ref: God had His men leading the charge for righteousness.”)

If Erick Erickson is the HOA director of the GOP’s gated community, Ross Douthat is the pastor of the neighborhood’s “nondenominational” megachurch.

And if I thought they were capable of it, I’d say the suits doing the hiring at the NYTimes should be ashamed of themselves for encouraging him.



Open Thread: Spare A Thought for Mr. Pence

Maybe Mike Dense really is as dumb as he’s famously supposed to be! Maybe he’s just a loyal GOP footsoldier willing to repeat whatever pieties he’s fed… so long as he’s free to commit Bad Touches on innocent NASA equipment and any social legislation postdating the 1860s…



Auschwitz: The GOP Does Not Understand This “Shame” of Which We Speak

No matter how low you’ve seen them go, the Repubs can always find new depths!

I’m not embedding the video, but you can see it at Esquire, if you must. Their rebuttal:

The horrors at Auschwitz were perpetrated by a government, not a terrorist organization. It was not some outside force acting on Germany: Adolf Hitler rose to power with the assent of the German people, and his crimes were possible—and, technically, legal—because he generally enjoyed the consent of a large segment of the population. The problem with Nazi Germany was not military weakness. It was the ideological depravity of a government run on a toxic brand of right-wing nationalism that demonized foreigners and multiple subgroups within German society—but most prominently, and terribly, Jewish people.

The last time Higgins made national headlines, it was when, in a Facebook post addressed to “all of Christendom” after a terror attack in London, he had a suggestion for how to treat every “radicalized Islamic suspect.”

“For the sake of all that is good and righteous,” he wrote, “kill them all.”…


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Late Night Open Thread — Christ: What An A**hole

Maybe Erick Infinite Ericks is just envious of the “Dumbest Man on the Internet” title. At least he took the ‘studying for my preacher license’ line out of his bio, because it seems like he’s never actually read the New Testament. Where’s a [Jesus: facepalm] GIF when you need one?…



My Sojourn in Gilead

I read “The Handmaid’s Tale” decades ago, but as many have noted when discussing the upcoming release of the Hulu miniseries, its theme is more relevant than ever. That’s because a beady-eyed Christo-fascist gender role-absolutist who thinks women should be compelled to hold funerals for miscarriages is one bloated, erratic, 70-year-old junk food junkie’s heartbeat away from the presidency.

In Atwood’s dystopian novel, the Christo-fascist nation that replaces the United States is called the Republic of Gilead. Oddly enough, I have some experience dwelling in a place called Gilead.

My mom was a hippie in the 1970s and an indulgent single mom with a laissez faire parenting style. But she had no qualms about foisting my sister and me off on her fundamentalist Christian parents during the summer so she could enjoy some free time.

I don’t blame her, but the abrupt imposition of rules and structure gave my sister and me whiplash every year. Never more so than when our grandparents began shipping us off to a summer camp run by Bible-believing Christians. The name of the camp was, I shit you not, Camp Gilead.

It was a regular summer camp in some ways. There was canoeing and arts and crafts. There were wienie and marshmallow roasts around the campfire. But there was also religious indoctrination. Campers were compelled to attend chapel daily, and girls were required to wear long skirts to the services.

To comply with the rule, I pulled a skirt over my shorts and wore it to chapel with my customary t-shirt, high-top Converse sneakers and a hideous green-and-white striped hat I’d won at the fair by throwing darts at balloons. I also carried a small Swiss Army-style knife at all times in my front pocket — a kid could get away with that sort of thing back then.

During one particularly tedious sermon, I put my feet up on the hymnal rack in front of my hard, wooden pew, partially unlaced my sneakers and practiced tying nautical knots with my shoestrings. I soon got them in a terrible tangle that tied my feet together.

As I struggled to extricate myself, one of the church ladies began playing the hymn that signaled the service was coming to an end, and we were all compelled to rise for the closing prayer. I could stand up, but try as I might, I couldn’t undo the knot in my shoelaces or break them.

Hoping that the supervising adults’ eyes were closed during the prayer, I hiked my skirt up to my waist, dug the knife out of my shorts pocket, bent down and cut my shoelaces. It worked, and I was able to walk out of the chapel in the orderly recessional rather than hopping as if in a sack race.

Weird how reading a review of an upcoming miniseries on a Christo-fascist dystopia can recall childhood memories. Anyone else planning to watch “The Handmaid’s Tale?”



Open Thread: Mike Pence (R-Gilead), Chieftain of the ‘Prayer Warriors’

Today, per the NYTimes, “Pence and Ailing Senator Deliver Votes to Block Family Planning Money“:

Senate Republicans, aided by Vice President Mike Pence and an ailing Georgia colleague who hobbled into the Senate chamber on a walker, voted on Thursday to proceed with a measure to undo an Obama administration rule preventing states from blocking funding for family planning clinics that also provide abortions.

The vote was one of a string of showdowns to reverse Obama-era regulations, but this one unfolded with all the drama of numerous past conflicts over abortion funding — with Mr. Pence casting the deciding vote in his role as president of the Senate.

Taking money away from Planned Parenthood has been a longstanding goal of congressional Republicans, but each effort has been blocked by Democrats and President Barack Obama.

Even full control of Washington by Republicans has not made the process easy…

In case anyone was wondering about the ‘Mike Pence is suuuper weird devoutly religious, you guys!’ articles earlier this week — now you know. The GOP was signalling to its Talibangelical base: Pay no attention the foul-mouthed Commie-loving free-spender in the Oval Office; when push comes to shove, Our Man Mike will cast the deciding vote against slutty women, uppity browns, and every other unsettling social development since 1956.

From the Washington Post, “Karen Pence is the vice president’s ‘prayer warrior,’ gut check and shield“:

Friends and aides… say she is the Pence family “prayer warrior,” a woman so inextricably bound to her husband that even then-candidate Trump understood her importance and consulted her in critical campaign moments…

The Pences were married in a Roman Catholic church in 1985 but later became evangelical Christians.

In 2002, Mike Pence told the Hill that he never eats alone with a woman other than his wife and that he won’t attend events featuring alcohol without her by his side, either.

Supporters and critics alike cite her as a force behind her husband’s socially conservative stances, including his opposition to gay marriage and the religious freedom law he signed as governor of Indiana, which opponents worried would allow business owners to discriminate against gays and lesbians by citing religious concerns.
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