And you decked some fucking blackshirt

My reaction to Rush Limbaugh’s apology, like my reaction to Komen’s shit-canning of Karen Handel, is two words: Uh. Winning.

Rush Limbaugh and Nancy Brinker backed down because they were scared, mostly of losing sponsors. They didn’t see the error of their ways, they saw their careers flash before their eyes.

There are those of you (though I’d like to think I’ve alienated most of the hard-core totebaggers at this point) who think that everything would be fine in American politics if Mark Shields could just make the most thoughtful, incisive possible argument to David Brooks. You know I ain’t down with that shit, Lieutenant. Human beings are greedy, fearful, irrational beings, and most (maybe all) of what makes conservativism ascendant right now is its ability to scare — xenophobes into voting against their own economic interests, “journalists” into deference, elected officials into toeing the teahad line, liberals into keeping their mouth shuts — and bribe (do I even need to give you examples?).

Andrew Breitbart’s so-called success is a testimony to the power of intimidation. Anne-Laurie’s post gives a perfect example.

Never forget that. When liberals cower in fear of the awesome moral and political power of right-wing Bishops and talk show hosts, we lose. When we say “I wish a motherfucker would try to ban contraceptives”, we win.

Limp Apology

After getting hit in the wallet, Rush backs down, sort of:

For over 20 years, I have illustrated the absurd with absurdity, three hours a day, five days a week. In this instance, I chose the wrong words in my analogy of the situation. I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke.

I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress. I personally do not agree that American citizens should pay for these social activities. What happened to personal responsibility and accountability? Where do we draw the line? If this is accepted as the norm, what will follow? Will we be debating if taxpayers should pay for new sneakers for all students that are interested in running to keep fit?In my monologue, I posited that it is not our business whatsoever to know what is going on in anyone’s bedroom nor do I think it is a topic that should reach a Presidential level.

My choice of words was not the best, and in the attempt to be humorous, I created a national stir. I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices.

No one is talking about recreational sex except for you perverts. You were the ones talking about it, debating how much sex young coeds were having, and begging for videos, you jackass. We’re talking about that women being able to have medical treatment covered under their health care insurance that is part of their compensation from their employers.

He’s just such an asshole.

“Slut” is the New “Liberal”

Proving that Rush runs the conversation in the Republican Party, the California Republicans’ Communications Director has rolled out her new strategy–if you disagree with Rush, then you’re a slut.

Let’s remember that the whole slut thing started with Darrell Issa, who was supposed to be the ball of fire House Oversight chair who would make Democrats pee their pants and cry for their mothers. It was his genius strategy to bring a bunch of old, white, male clerics to testify about how their precious religious fee-fees were harmed by insurance covering contraception. Sandra Fluke was the Democrats’ response to that sausage fest. As soon as she appeared on the scene, Issa’s bullshit religious freedom talking point got turned into a full-on slut shaming exercise:

Beating up on a college student is not good optics, and refocusing on her argument that this is about contraception instead of getting the focused squarely on the Obama Administration’s disdain for religious liberty and the First Amendment….is simply not very helpful to the cause.

That’s a DC Republican strategist, who, like Issa, thought the Republicans could play with fire and enjoy its gentle glow from a civilized distance. Any moron can see that a half dozen old white bishops and rabbis aren’t upset about the First Amendment–they’re pissed that they don’t control when, where and how women have sex. To think that the current Republican base would be content with a hint in that direction, rather than a full-throated roar, just shows that establishment Republicans like Issa and this unnamed strategist are completely out of touch with the monster that’s eating their party alive.

The War On Women

The phrase War On Women is starting to crop up on some of the internets. I recommend using the phrase as much as possible. I’ve made it a tag.

We’ll know we’re winning when Politifact rates it as “false”.

The shape we’re in

A good summary from Steve M.:

For those who are still in denial about the extremism of modern-day Republicans, the past week — hell, the past 24 hours — should have been a cold slap in the face, a big jolt of reality. Rush Limbaugh, praised for years by Republicans, declared an honorary member of the House freshman class in the Contract with America year of 1994, pal to Dick Cheney all through his time as vice president, attacks an advocate of contraceptive coverage as a slut and a prostitute and, after being criticized, doubles down, demanding that the woman “post [sex] videos online” in return for contraceptive coverage. Sheriff Joe Arpaio, honorary Arizona co-chair of Mitt Romney’s 2008 campaign, backer of Rick Perry last fall until he dropped out of the race, object of the entreaties of Rick Santorum, holds a press conference today to reassert that the long-form Obama birth certificate is a fake. (Santorum, when he met with Arpaio last week, was briefed on Arpaio’s birther “investigation” and didn’t immediately distance himself from the sheriff.) Oh, and what else? Nearly every Republican senator  voted for the Blunt amendment? Andrew Breitbart died and much of the right concluded that President Obama murdered him? And, five days ago, Rick Santorum declared that anyone who wants more Americans to have access to college is a “snob”?

And only a few months til we’re told that we’re a right-center nation who should respect Mitt Romney’s Hayekian modesty.