The Left’s Racism Fixation Lacks Critical Thought

As most of you probably caught in the conversations last week, I have spent a fair amount of time over the last two weeks attempting to hold coherent conversations with some of the folks over at the Huffington Post. I was once again drawn into that world when resident hack Bob Cesca wrote an article two weeks ago claiming that the Tea Party Movement was all about race. He followed that article up with a second article claiming the same thing, but with a itsy bitsy caveat last week. His caveat was that perhaps there were some who disagreed with Obama’s policies that are not racists. What that amounted to, in my opinion, was Cesca saying they are all racists 100 times and somewhere in the middle saying one time maybe some aren’t. Then he gets to claim he didn’t say they were all racists…. see there was this time that I clearly said that I don’t think they all are. You’ll have to do better than that Bob. So I am going to address this racism claim, from my own perspective of course. As for the pictures to accompany this article, I am going to stick to nothing but pictures of people of color at tea party rallies, since Bob’s supporters claim they don’t exist.

But first I have to say that I am going to provide numerous examples of what I encountered while I was “conversing” with the commenters to Bob’s article. In his second part, Bob offered up an email from a random “conservative” who was a racist as part of his proof that the entire movement is about nothing but race. So after countering Bob’s faulty logic in part one (this article), I am going to provide tons of quotes from the comments of just these two articles to back up the assertions that I am going to make. But before I get into discussing the commenters on Cesca’s articles, I am gong to address his primary claim. I will then address his commenters in a separate article posted simultaneously to this one. But before I deconstruct Cesca’s rant, I offer a quick video from (GASP!) a black woman who is tired of claims of racism being directed at the tea party movement. Tell her she is a racist Bob.

Cesca offers that the tea party movement is really about racism. It doesn’t have to do with taxes or the size of government or a move towards socialism. It has to do with race. To quote Cesca, “The tea party is almost entirely about race, and there’s no comparative group on the left that’s similarly motivated by bigotry, ignorance and racial hatred.” To back up these claims he offers the following points:

  1. The tea party is an extension of, and follow this, talk radio which is an extension of Fox News which is an extension of the Republican Party which is responsible for the “Southern Strategy”. Therefore the tea party must be about race.
  2. He offers to deconstruct a sole tea party representative’s statement, making those regular loose arguments to claim contradiction. While no mention of race is made, he posits that since he can prove the other stuff is contradictory, then obviously the only thing left as a reason to dislike Obama’s policies is race.
  3. A major point he attempts to make is that the tea party was not around protesting when the previous administration did some of the same things that this administration does, therefore the reason they are protesting now is because of race.
  4. He claims that “from the outset, the tea party was based on a contradictory premise (the original tea party was a protest against a corporate tax cut). And when you throw out all of the nonsense and contradictions, there’s nothing left except race.
  5. A white candidate would never be accused of being a secret Muslim. A white candidate would never be accused of being a foreign usurper. Only a black candidate with a foreign name would be accused of “palling around with domestic terrorists.”
  6. The constant claim that Beck and Limbaugh are racists and Beck was a major driver of the tea party movement, therefore the tea party movement is racist. I got this more from a twitter message from Bob than from in the article.

All of these were just in part one of his completely opinion, devoid of facts to back it up “article”. So let’s go through them, shall we?

The Tea Party is an extension of….

False. While I know that folks on the far left want to believe this nonsense, I have been in contact with tea party organizers from the very beginning. I remember having a phone conversation with MadMom way back before the first protest. The tea parties were not organized by the GOP. Many, many folks involved with the movement also renounced their affiliation with the Republican Party. They were fed up with the federal government in general, not just one party. The links Bob attempts to make are broken right there. In fact, the tea party movements were about a final frustration with expansion of government, increases in taxes, and usurpation of individual liberty. Many of those that I spoke to in the movement early on expressed outrage about the Patriot Act as being the beginning of their frustration. The TARP fiasco further fueled their angst. Finally we had a stimulus bill that was little more than liberal spending madness, a move to adopt cap and trade despite its failure elsewhere, and a promise to turn health care into a right, which many felt that it should not be.

The Southern Strategy existed, Bob. I absolutely agree. And it was a horrible thing that I think the GOP should be ashamed of. And it may still be in play for the GOP. I cannot claim otherwise because I am not part of the GOP leadership. However, I find it hard to believe that the black Chairman of the GOP would agree to continue any form of the Southern idiocy today. That doesn’t mean there aren’t people persisting behind the scenes. But it is not a major part of the tea party movement.

Deconstruction of Pam Stout’s comments

Before I even begin to answer his deconstruction, allow me to point a MAJOR fallacy that Bob perpetuates, and he does so several times in both articles. Bob attempts to prove that you are not correct about whatever it is that you say. You can say that you dislike Obama because of x, y, and z. And those three things have nothing to do with racism. He offers his version of why you are wrong on x,y, and z. He then posits that because he was able to prove you wrong about x,y, and z, the obvious conclusion is that you are a racist. After all, Obama is black, and if your reasons for disliking his policies are wrong, then underneath it all the real reason is you are a racist. This is a logical fallacy. Even if he were correct in deconstructing her reasoning, that does not then mean that she must therefore be a racist.

As for his deconstruction. The tea party is against parts of regulatory reform, including the bank fees meant to recover TARP money. That does NOT mean that they are for TARP. Another fallacy argument. What it means is that they are against those policies. Personally, I oppose them because I oppose the idea of government being involved in the banking industry. Which is why I also oppose TARP. He does a decent attempt at discrediting her disliking “created crisis”. Those things he points out are real. People oppose the solutions because they won’t fix the problem. And the fact is that government makes those crisis into something that they are not. And that is the difference. The health care crisis is a far different crisis from what the politicians spin it to be. Thus the politicians solutions are not helping to solve the problem, they are helping to solve the politicians created version of the problem. There is the problem, Bob. One which you refuse to acknowledge as a possibility.

Failure to protest during the previous administration

You know, this one is almost a legitimate claim. It is legitimate in that the majority of the folks that are participating in the current tea party movement were not protesting during W’s 8 years. I think there are some legit reasons as well. I think that many independent minded Americans have been growing increasingly frustrated for many years. We feel as though neither party is interested in helping the American people. As I stated above, the Patriot Act was a big part of the first push, followed by TARP. By that point, there was no reason to protest. W was going out of office in a few months no matter what. The GOP had gotten us that Patriot Act, and they no longer had a majority in either house of Congress or soon, the White House.

Obama swept in on a wave of “hope and change” that many of us didn’t believe. We were right for the record. There is nothing different with this administration outside of their increased boldness and speed of legislation. On top of this, we saw a plan for a drastic change in our social structures. Cap and trade, an immediate repeal of Clinton’s successful welfare reform, A decision to make health care a right, therefore mandatory government coverage if it isn’t available elsewhere. We saw government intrusion into private industry happening at a higher pace and level than in the past. The banks, the housing industry, the auto industry. We saw calls for more bailouts from print media and other groups. We saw corrupt unions having a front seat at the table of government. Overall we saw government growing in leaps and bounds, and corruption growing at the same rate. And we saw a Congress that continually decreased their concern for what the people had to say. We finally had enough, and we took to the streets to say so.

What you fail to note is that political activism against the party in power is not a new thing. There were massive protests against President Bush and his policies. I had no issue with that. We had Code Pink and Cindy Sheehan. We had protests with Bush depicted as Hitler and heard groups claiming that blacks in the GOP administration were traitors to their race, that they weren’t “real” black people. But we didn’t call you all racists for doing so. We didn’t say that your anger was irrelevant. We saw it for what it was…. opposition to the political stance of the party in power.

There’s nothing left but race

You make two mistakes in this assumption, Mr. Cesca. You first assume to know why people were out to protest. I never saw a major part of any beginnings of the tea party movement having anything to do with corporate tax cuts. The major themes in the beginning were taxes are too high, government is overstepping its proposed scope, and Congress is no longer serving the people. And based on your false assertion of what the movement was about, you draw an even more incorrect conclusion.

Because you commit a major logical fallacy faux pas when you say “because this is not true, then this other thing must be true.” You live in a world where you believe that the burden of proof in this topic lies on the people you accuse. It is not. The burden of proof is on you, Bob. It is impossible to prove a negative. It is impossible to prove that I am not a racist. Yet you claim that because people cannot prove they aren’t racists, then they are by logical assumption guilty of such. Major logical fallacy sir. You commit another major fallacy when you claim that because you can prove these certain people involved in some way are racist, then it follows that the movement is based on race. I can prove that I have dark hair. It doesn’t follow that all tea party folks have dark hair.

And the claim that you make that proof lies in the fact that the people who aren’t racists don’t spend enough time calling out those who may be is simply small-minded. I take a stand on my principles. It isn’t my job to fix someone else’s principles. And because I don’t beat up the guy who shows up at a rally with a racist sign doesn’t mean that somewhere deep in my soul I really agree with him. It means that I have no right to commit violence on non-violent people. He is a bigot. I am not. Anyone who would draw the conclusion that I am also a closet bigot for not “dealing with him” is also not smart enough for me to care what they think on that subject. I don’t see you calling out Code Pink for the bull they pull, but I don’t take that to mean that you are in agreement with them.

A white candidate would never be accused of…

To quote this more accurately, Bob said, “A white candidate would never be accused of being a secret Muslim. A white candidate would never be accused of being a foreign usurper. Only a black candidate with a foreign name would be accused of “palling around with domestic terrorists.”

It is sad that those who subscribe to this reasoning actually lack the insight to see anything but race as a reason for accusations. Let’s take the first one: being a secret muslim. First of all, it is the fringe that accuses him of being so. But did you stop to think that the reason that accusation is out there is because he went to a muslim school, was fathered by a muslim father, and who’s only publicized religious attendance is in a church where Jeremiah Wright spouts off hateful rhetoric that is very similar to muslim anti-US rants? Of course not. But you misrepresent history as well. Jefferson, Lincoln, and Taft were accused of being atheists during their campaigns, a claim as radical then as muslim now. And they were, the last I checked, white.

The foreign usurper thing has never been an issue for me. I have been clear that I don’t think that Obama is a foreigner. I don’t spend my days decrying those that believe otherwise. But perhaps, instead of skin color, you might point to the fact that he refused initially to release a valid birth certificate. Or that he has a grandmother who claims she was present at his birth in Kenya. Are these claims valid? Who knows, and for my part, who cares. But they certainly offer a more plausible reason for the questioning of such than color of skin.

As for the last one. Wow. I am not going to simply belittle you on this one, Bob. But are you aware of who Bill Ayers is and what he has done? Bill Ayers is/was a domestic terrorist. A self-admitted one. That is not conjecture or a fact made up by kooky racists. And Obama and Ayers share a history. How much of a history they share is certainly open for debate. I guess it ranges from Obama’s political career started in Ayers living room to the two served on a board together and barely know one another. I guess only they know the truth. But I think that the relationship between Barack Obama and a known domestic terrorist is a bit more plausible of a reason to assume people make that claim than because his middle name is Hussein.

In other words, you offered not a single shred of evidence to back up a claim that the reason for those accusations had anything to do with the color of his skin.

Beck and Limbaugh

One of the biggest claims appears to be that, like the idiots carrying a racist sign, the folks who subscribe to the tea party ideas do not call out Beck and Limbaugh for being racists. In fact Bob went as far as to say that not a single tea partier has disavowed the sentiments of Beck and Limbaugh, so therefore the entire movement is racist.

Let me be clear. I do not listen to Rush Limbaugh. I literally have not heard Limbaugh on the radio in probably 6-7 years. The only time I remember hearing anything from him directly was when he delivered the speech on “what conservatives are”, which I think was a CPAC speech, but I am not sure. I here some of the things he says second hand (from the media). I think he is basically a blowhard and he does an entertainment show for people who think like him. He appeals to non-critical thinkers, much like Cesca does.

I think that Beck is a clown. I have read some of his books. His books are great. He is less conspiracy theory and more talking about the founders and the concept of individual liberty in his books. They are rational and sane. But when he is on the TV, he is pure show. His theatrics take away from a few salient messages and give credence to far more fringe ideas and claims. Again, I see an entertainer who plays to those who are not willing to dig and find out what is truth and what is not. In that way he is very much like Olbermann, all bluster and no credibility. The difference is that in his books, he has credibility around political discourse. Olbermann, outside of his MSNBC nonsense, only has credibility as a catchy sports commentator.

I don’t see Beck or Limbaugh as leaders in the tea party movement. Beck was a gigantic part of the tea party push early on. A main driver. But let’s not forget that when he was doing that, his message was one of government is too big, too intrusive, and he continually asked if there was anyone in Congress we could trust. That appealed to many folks because what they heard from him was that both sides suck now. Something which we all agree on. Is he a racist? I don’t know. I don’t really watch his show enough to say. I could accept that he might be. But I think, again, the burden of proof is on the accuser. I haven’t seen enough from anyone to prove that Beck is a racist.

Conclusion

In finishing up this article I have a few thoughts. First, Cesca claims that racism is only possible from the mind of the majority. In other words, blacks cannot be racists because they don’t have the power to be racists. This is about as stupid a statement as any I have ever heard. To be more clear, Cesca claims, “I hasten to note that I’m talking about real racism, insofar as it’s impossible for the majority race — the 70 percent white majority — to be on the receiving end of racism. That is unless white males, for example, are suddenly an oppressed racial demographic.” This is a common fallacy tactic. The attempt it made to change the definition of a term in order to make it fit the argument of the person changing it.

Racism is nothing more and nothing less than holding certain opinions or beliefs about someone based on their race. To believe that all blacks are smarter or dumber than another race is racism. To believe that all white people are a certain thing is racist. Those perpetrating racism claims and pushing to use race as a tactic have been attempting to change this definition for years to something that simply doesn’t make any sense. They are attempting to claim that in order to be a racist, you have to have power. They are dead wrong. A black man who hates white people is a racist. I white man who hates black people is a racist. No power necessary. What takes power is discrimination. And that is a whole different ballgame. Do not fall into this silly trap that Cesca and others attempt to set by changing the definitions of words in order to eliminate themselves as eligible. You don’t need an ounce of power to be a racist. You only have to have an irrational belief about someone because of their race. They will attempt to tell you that the “intellectuals” define it their way. Don’t fall for it. Remember that the intellectuals they quote are people who think just like them. Because if they don’t agree, they wouldn’t consider them intellectuals!

The tea party movement is not racist. Are there folks in the movement that are racists? I have zero doubt that there are. But to take the actions of a few knuckleheads and conclude that the entire movement is therefore racist lacks any critical thinking ability at all. The claims of racism coming from the left are, at best, unfounded. It was simple to refute all of the claims above. They simply don’t make any sense, that is unless you fervently want to believe them.

Cesca is a race-baiter. And he thrives on writing controversial hate articles that are well accepted within his very small circle. Bob’s problem is that what he writes is nothing more than false rhetoric disguised as intellectual thought. I counted no less than 24 logical fallacies in these two articles that he wrote. He has zero interest in finding solutions to today’s problems. He is only interested in getting pats on the back for the solutions he believes to be right. It is stuff like what he offers that does nothing but increase the divide in this country, blinding all of his readers to the faults of the far left, and demonizing all those who fall anywhere else on the spectrum. As a result, he is a major part of the problem in today’s America. As I have often stated, this country will get fixed the day that the ordinary folks on the left and the ordinary folks on the right come together and realize that they have been getting screwed by both parties. People like Cesca work very hard to make sure that doesn’t happen. After all, what would he do with himself if everyone realized he was part of the problem?

But that isn’t going to happen anytime soon. Because those who trumpet his greatness lack the ability to apply any level of critical thinking to what they are debating….. but that is Part 2 of this article.

Bob Cesca: The Tea Party Is All About Race

Bob Cesca: The Tea Party Is All About Race, Part 2

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Comments

  1. bydesign001 says:

    These rants of racist accusations by the left is nothing more than “tainted realities” intended to keep America separate, divided and distracted.

    In furtherance, it is the equivalent of the pot calling the kettle black. There is nothing more racist than the Democratic Party in collusion with Black leaders feeding such mistruths to the Black community. Such tainted realities are intended solely to keep the Black community in check and in its place for the benefit of a progressive agenda.

    There is a name for this, PLANTATION POLITICS. See, http://wp.me/pjGfE-1im.

    • Posting for comments!

    • To be fair though, both sides do it. Not that I approve of either side being idiots, I think it’s important to point out that both sides are equally libelous.

      Now, for the comment that’s going to draw some fire:

      Obviously, I have never been to a tea party. But I have seen plenty of footage from the media, on youTube, etc. It appears to me that, perhaps, 1 in (wild guess) 1,000 attendees are legitimate racists. These are the asses who come wearing swastikas or with signs calling for “lynchin’ the darkie”, or the ones saying he’s a Muslim and therefore evil, etc. A tiny minority.

      But visible none-the-less. And they are highly vocal. And they attract a disproportionate amount of attention – of course the cameras are going to point at the guy spouting off on why three-fifths of a person should not be allowed to be President.

      So here is the million dollar question: When these idiots show up at a rally, why does nobody have them escorted off the premise immediately? Allowing them to stay gives the appearance that they represent a legitimate position of the tea parties.

      • Richmond Spitfire says:

        I don’t know Matt…but, could it be the reason that they have every right to be there as anyone else?

        That is the beauty of America…you may not agree with someone else, but they have the same right as you and me to freely spout BS too!

        Matt, the Tea Parties are about personal liberty….People who love liberty aren’t going to smack down someone else’s liberty just because the other’s message isn’t what they want to hear. More than likely, a person who loves liberty will simply whisper to their companions, “look at that idiot” and laugh among themselves.

        • I understand your point – I do. Especially when it occurs in a public place, say a park*. But when it happens in a convention hall etc, someone is paying for the use of that place. Someone organized it. The idiot has no right to be there if the organizers don’t want them there.

          *damn socialist parks

      • Mathius

        That’s an easy question. They are ROOKIES at this organizing and protesting stuff. No internal police/crowd control, no shills in the crowds to get the heat up. Did you notice the pictures of the “spontaneous” student protests last week had kids wearing shirts with “marshall” on them? Not the tea parties.

        At least up until now.

        They are also far more polite and tolerant than any other group.

        I attend the local parties and meetings of these people. When someone gets up and rants about something most of them disagree with they just remain silent. They let the person finish an then they move to the next.

        It has been one of the things I have enjoyed being around them. They don’t start shouting down those they disagree with. They politely wait their turn and then express their personal view on the matter. If some wingnut is standing there on the street with them they just ignore him.

        That has been my observation.

        Hope you had a great weekend.
        JAC

        • I had a good weekend – I could have done without the flood in my basement though.

          It’s a fair point you make, but I have to stand by my question. No one is policing the crowd – great. But shouldn’t they have someone there to make sure that the message isn’t poisoned by neo-nazis and the like? I know that that isn’t want the tea parties stand for, but the goal of the tea parties isn’t just to make noise. They want to accomplish something. And they can’t do that if they allow themselves to be painted as accepting of (or worse, supportive of) overt racism.

          • Buck The Wala says:

            You make a good point Matt. I completely agree – of course there are racists in the Tea Party (much like any other party), though this clearly does not make the Tea Party itself racist. The larger point here is why does the Tea Party not distance itself from the extreme showing up at its events. This is also the point that Ratigan was making in that interview we had discussed awhile back, albeit very ineffectively.

            • I think it is more of a problem of protests in general that the crazies will show up and be allowed to keep their wtf sign. During the Bush years, what signs made the majority of the news. Only the most ridiculous ones. Just like now the signs that scream the loudest are shown while the majority is ignored. The media only wants ratings while they are covering any protest, left, right, middle, or crazy. The media can take as much footage as they want, edit it down to just the crazy people and you got your 30 second clip.

              What if the people that display the wtf signs are asked to take it down? I can easily see that they would refuse because of the attitudes on political sites that USW talks about in his other article today.

            • 1st Amendment, how do you make the crazies leave a public event? The Klan still has rallies, what is to stop some of those loons from attending? And I think people like that want a confrontation, they want attention and even violence. Ignoring them
              unless they initiate violence is likely the best way to deal with them.

              • Perhaps. Note that not all rallies happen in public – many happen in homes or convention halls. Your First Amendment right doesn’t extend onto private property. The ones in parks, I understand doing nothing, but when it’s in a hall, I think someone should boot them.

                Yes they probably just want attention, but you’re giving them the attention by allowing them to be there. Let them be crazy elsewhere.

          • Mathius

            Your question remains only because you see something that did not exist at the time.

            Namely, WHAT tea party?

            WHAT movement?

            The left argued they were just a bunch of unorganized scofflaws. Now they want to claim they are an organized effort based on racism. Sorry, can’t be both. They had it right the first time.

            I answered your question Matt. Its called lack of aggression towards others. Or, TOLERANCE.

            Most people do not confront those they think “out there”. Most people don’t become politically active. The first rounds of the tea parties were these “most” people with the smattering of traditional activists mixed in. And the “who got mixed in” depended on “where” the party occurred.

            In parts of Montana the Militia Movement folks showed up. In others it was the Libertarians and Ticked off Republicans, in others it was more of a mix including “liberals”.

            This is a dangerous game of associating guilt with inaction Matt. While you and Buck are much more civil you are playing the same game as those at HuffPo with the question.

            The insinuation is that they are racist because nobody threw the racist guy out of the meeting. Totally ignoring the nature of the folks involved.

            And of course the big one, who knows whether they didn’t condemn these folks. We have no idea what happened after the pictures were taken.

            One more thought. There is racism being read into many signs where I think PC is more at play. The JOKER poster used by USW was accused of racism itself.

            All the Tea Parties are not the same today as they were a year ago. Some have been coopted. So now we can not judge last year by this years actions.

            You can not judge all by the actions of some.

            It still is not an organized and orchestrated movement across the country. And much of it is still run by rookies. Which is why I love it. Messy but honest. So far!!!

          • bydesign001 says:

            “policing the crowd”? Why? There are no concerns of riots breaking out. No one is kicking in any doors and everyone regardless of their views are for the most part well mannered and “in line” (pardon the expression). Not everyone needs to be policed.

      • bydesign001 says:

        The reason those nutjobs radicals are so visible is mostly because they are the ones sought out by the media who has no interest in peaceful, calm and quiet protesters. Hardly fair and definitely unbalanced.

  2. Hey.. I read Cesca..

    • Does Dread Pirate read Cesca? That’s the question…..

      • He does – but mostly just for comic relief and as an occasional source of links to worthwhile websites (recall that that is how he arrived at SUFA). He is, however, getting annoyed with Cesca’s obsession with passing the health care bill and would like to hear about something else for a change.

        He reads this while sipping on an ice cold Dr. Pepper.

      • He would also like to know why he is required to file an application with the town in order to be allowed to cut down trees on his own property.

        He would also like to know the government is allowed to throw him in jail for failing to do so.

  3. Richmond Spitfire says:

    Hello all,

    I don’t mind saying that I’m attending Anger Management Counseling to help me better control my passive-aggressive tendencies towards my Ex and his attempts at controlling.

    So far, almost everything I’ve learned is preached here (from a “Rules of Engagement” standpoint) here at SUFA…

    This is a refreshing site…I’m so glad that I clicked that link from Fox News to get here a year ago!

    I can’t stand reading the comments at FOX News (or anywhere else). There is such nastiness from everyone…doesn’t matter if L or C….

    Hope everyone is having a wonderful day!

    Best regards,
    RS

    • I suggest you go rent Stranger on a Train. Watch it several times. Then do as you see fit.

      • Richmond Spitfire says:

        Hey Mathius…

        I’ll probably never rent it…so, please do feel free to give me the low-down.

        Best Regards,
        RS

        P.S. I am so sad that the points I won for guessing your age are worthless. I was trying to save them up so that I could redeem them!

        • Short version: A man (we’ll call him Bob) hates his wife and meets another man (we’ll call him Jack) on a train who hates his father-in-law. They jokingly agree to kill eachother’s person. Jack will kill Bob’s wife while Bob has a rock solid alibi. Bob will kill Jack’s father-in-law while Jack has a rock solid alibi. Because they don’t know eachother and have no connection to the victim, nobody will be able to figure it out. Bob thinks it’s a joke, but Jake actually goes ahead and kills the wife then pressures Bob to fulfill his end. (I haven’t seen this for a while, so forgive any inaccuracies). The moral is: go meet a stranger and have them kill him for you while you are documented being elsewhere.*

          And who says Mathius points are worthless? They’re fiat – they have value because I say they have value. Keep saving them up.

          *Dread Pirate Mathius adds: violence is only acceptable in self defense.

          • Richmond Spitfire says:

            What a vile story.

            As much as I personally dislike the ex, his existence does have worth.

            • Indeed. I was trying (and failing) to amuse you.

              • Richmond Spitfire says:

                Hmmm Mathius…

                Let me clarify…Vile as relating to my particular situation.

                I sure as heck am not Mother Teresa, and I would be lying if I were to say that I’ve never had thoughts of just wishing him away.

                But wishful thinking of this nature on my part is truly selfish of me – my kids need their Daddy!

                I hope you are having a great day…and you do amuse me a great deal!

                Best Regards,
                RS

          • A Puritan Descendant says:

            Sounds a lot like “throw Mama from the train” with Danny Devito and Billy Crystal. If my memory is correct.

  4. I’ve been to several tea party events and Cesca is as far off as can be, but realize his purpose is to minimize them and will do so in any possible way.

    Just like Mathius and Buck above – jump on the “if tea partiers aren’t racist they shouldn’t let anyone there with a bad sign” mantra. First, I’ve seen very few of these, but my reaction would be to ignore. They are as entitled to be there with their opinions as I am. Will the MSM seek out these types first? Of course, because it fits their agenda. Come on guys, certainly you’re onto that game by now?

    I don’t understand your flagging of Limbaugh and Beck, USW. They each bring some perspective to the overall picture and quite frankly, I’ve learned a lot from both. Do I believe and faithfully follow everything they say and do? Of course not. It’s like you feel you need to give Cesca something, so you’ll bash these two. Don’t engage.

    • Kathy,

      I felt the need to express what I thought of those two because I was being honest. Can you learn from the two of them? absolutely. But Limbaugh has a history of saying some pretty nasty things, and when I listened to him in the past, I found that he made similar leaps in logic to those that Cesca makes. I am sure that those who read Cesca regularly also find that they learn things from him, but that doesn’t dismiss the vitriol that he encourages and creates. Limbaugh is no different.

      Beck, IMO, has a base set of beliefs that are solid, as evidenced by his books. However, when he gets on the air at Fox News, he has a tendency to draw conclusions and to offer information that is sometimes just as logically disconnected as what we see from Cesca. I don’t hate either one, and I don’t hate Cesca. I think all three are part of the problem in the political world today. They incite their listeners to generalize about their ideological opponents and suspend critical thought at times.

      And I think my track record shows I don’t feel I need to give an inch when it comes to those who oppose me. But I will never refuse to acknowledge the things that I find to be true. I personally wish Beck would cut the theatrics and stick to the messages in his books. I believe it would make him more popular and certainly more credible.

      USW

      • Richmond Spitfire says:

        I’m just curious…Is it possible that a person such as Glenn Beck and all of his theatrics and stage props are the impetus that some people need to see to fully understand his message?

        • Absolutely RS. I believe that the reason that he uses the props he does is because they make more of a point for him. He is breaking it down to an easily understandable message. I actually find that his TV show is enjoyable. And I don’t take away the fact that he has a lot to say that there is truth to. But we should apply the critical thinking skills to his message just as we do to Cesca’s. It is that due diligence in ensuring that the message reaches a rational conclusion that will separate us from the HuffPo folks who refuse to think critically.

          • And that is exactly what he (Beck)informs his listening/viewing audience to do…check for themselves…

      • I stopped caring much for Limbaugh years ago, and I have downright arguments with him now because he is anti-third party (which is something I would obviously take issue with. That said, I still think he is a smart guy, tho a bit caustic (I can say the same about Howard Stern, except Stern doesn’t say anything useful). I still listen to him tho, just to get an idea what the Republicans are up to. Plus he was the first radio show I ever heard that was biased in a non-liberal direction, and he sort of got me into thinking seriously about politics.

        Beck I like a lot, but I have never seen his Fox show. I like his books and I like his radio show, even tho there are plenty of points of disagreement I have with him. I think the part I like most is that I have heard him transition from a conservative to a libertarian along a similar path to myself, only slower and with more of a religious bent. It is nice to hear the progression, I relate to it well since I was only about 4 to 5 years ahead of him in my transition. I have heard his TV show is theatrical and a little crazy, but some of the crazy stuff appears to be true, so I try not to judge too fast. Perhaps I should watch his show sometime, then I would know the answer to this question. I certainly would not classify either as racist, tho I can understand where people have gotten that impression about Limbaugh. He steps in it a lot these days with how he says things. He criticizes others for racism, but seems to be able to say it in a way that makes him look racist, or a way that can be easily twisted to portray that impression.

        As for the racist tea party stuff, it is an annoyance, and I know that a lot of rank and file persons are taken in by the accusations, but not many intelligent persons are fooled. I just wish intelligent persons were not in such short supply in this country. I guess that will be a subject for the “Lets find a fix: education post that I hope is coming at some point. 🙂

  5. Richmond Spitfire says:

    For your enjoyment…

  6. posting for comments

  7. It’s funny how you talk so much about logic in this post, because I’m almost sure that Casca is aware he’s not being logical. I think he’s aware that emotion appeals to people much more than logic. Very few people have the training to be able to identify logical fallacies, they’ll just read his articles and nod their heads, “yep, those racist white Tea Partiers, I knew it, I knew they just hate black people (an Mexians, bot not Asians so much)”.

    The mass of Americans, who were educated in public schools, have been trained to respond in exactly this way. For the record though ALL politicians and political commentors use this emotional appeal at least some of the time, though the commentators on the left seem to really be in love with emotion at the expense of logic.

  8. Seriously. What the hell is wrong with the Texas school board?

    Or are these just unfounded rumors?

    • Not allowed to use the word “capitalism”, but must refer to it as the “free enterprise system”

      Not allowed to teach that the Constitution prohibits favoring one religion over another

      Education about terrorism must emphasize the Muslim variety and play down the domestic variety

      Expanded importance of “the conservative resurgence of the 1980s and 1990s, including Phyllis Schlafly, the Contract with America, the Heritage Foundation, the Moral Majority and the National Rifle Association.”

      Dropped Thomas Jefferson from the list of world history standards, replaced with Protestant theologian Jean Calvin

      Teach that the founders did not favor a secular form of government

      Describe the U.S. government as a “constitutional republic,” rather than “democratic”

      Elevated prominence of Reagan. No mention of Ed Kennedy or Sotomeyer

      I have a radical thought: Let’s let teachers rather than politicians decide what gets taught in our schools.

      • Buck The Wala says:

        That’s not a radical thought – that’s lifted directly from the NYT article from this morning on this very topic!

        And no, these are not just rumors. For whatever reason – and maybe someone else can enlighten me as to why – the Texas School Board has an inordinate amount of say on the national curriculum as they somehow control the text of the vast majority of textbooks used.

        • The reason is that they are such a big market that it’s more cost effective to design textbooks for Texas and sell them elsewhere than to try to sell multiple editions. It’s kind of the same think with how California mandates certain carbon standards and it’s not worth it to the car manufacturers to have to produce two sets of cars, so they bow to the stricter standard for everyone.

          • Buck The Wala says:

            I’m all for a stricter standard as for cars. I’m not for such a phenomenon applying to textbooks nationwide.

            Though part of the NYT article said that as publishes move more towards electronic publication it will gradually become cost effective to provide different texts to different states.

        • USWeapon says:

          Is there anything stopping every state from producing texts within their own state? So if Texas has an inordinate amount of input, I would say that that it is due to the fact that other states are too lazy to do it themselves. Am I wrong on this? Is there some law that requires the rest of the states to use the textbooks created by Texas companies?

          • Buck The Wala says:

            From my understanding it isn’t Texas companies. There are only a handful of publishers out there. Since Texas is purchasing the largest number of copies, they have more say in what goes in the texts.

            • USWeapon says:

              Ohhhh. I didn’t realize that. I will have to think on this a bit. Wouldn’t California have equal power in such a situation? I am not cool with ANY state having power to dictate the curriculum in other states, so I don’t like it either way. I am simply wondering if this is an issue or merely an opportunity for some ambitious young man or woman to offer a more honest alternative.

      • USWeapon says:

        Mathius,

        Not allowed to use the word “capitalism”, but must refer to it as the “free enterprise system”

        Seems silly, but I don’t understand why this might be an issue.

        Not allowed to teach that the Constitution prohibits favoring one religion over another

        While I don’t agree with this line of topic for school. The constitution DOESN’T prohibit favoring one religion over another. It prohibits government establishing an official religion. While I believe that government should not favor one over another, the Constitution does not phrase it that way.

        Education about terrorism must emphasize the Muslim variety and play down the domestic variety

        Can’t defend this one. Terrorism is terrorism. If you want to talk about it, talk about all of it. Muslims aren’t the only ones that do it. If they are going to emphasie muslim terrorism, which may be warranted these days, they should be required to provide honest discourse as to WHY those terrorists believe what they do. Honest conversation on the US actions that provide impetus is warranted.

        Expanded importance of “the conservative resurgence of the 1980s and 1990s, including Phyllis Schlafly, the Contract with America, the Heritage Foundation, the Moral Majority and the National Rifle Association.”

        I am not a big fan of this aspect. I don’t think these topics should be ignored. And they should perhaps have an increased presence in terms of discussion. I believe it might be good to have students have open discussions about these topics, as it may help us to start putting some of the contradictions within these philosophies to rest.

        Dropped Thomas Jefferson from the list of world history standards, replaced with Protestant theologian Jean Calvin

        In my opinion, simply ridiculous. Jean Calvin has zero relevance for today’s kids. Thomas Jefferson, on the other hand, was a central figure in our history.

        Teach that the founders did not favor a secular form of government.

        You can’t revise history, no matter what Texas says.

        Describe the U.S. government as a “constitutional republic,” rather than “democratic”

        You have a problem with them providing an accurate description of what the US government is? We are a Constitutional Republic.

        Elevated prominence of Reagan. No mention of Ed Kennedy or Sotomeyer

        Reagan shouldn’t be elevated. But should be discussed where relevant to history. Edward Kennedy should also be a topic that gets a fair amount of attention. Sotomeyer? She hasn’t done anything. Do they place a lot of importance on Roberts, Thomas, Alito, or any other SCOTUS justices that would warrant equal time to Sotomeyer?

        I have a radical thought: Let’s let teachers rather than politicians decide what gets taught in our schools.

        I second your motion. But let’s go further. Let’s let individual school districts and parents decide what gets taught in their schools. What I wonder is whether you see the parallels between what I believe you support, which is the federal government having a say in public education curriculum, and something like this where a different group has a say in public education curriculum.

        • Buck The Wala says:

          I would be more OK with the federal government having a say in the curriculum than ‘reverse federalism’ or whatever you would call it when one state has a direct say in the curriculum of practically all other states.

          With the former at least in theory I have some control over the process through my elected representatives. This is not the case in the latter.

          • The Federal Government has NO business here. This is something that should be handled on a State level…at the highest…the best way IMO is for it to be handled on a more local level.

            • Buck The Wala says:

              I tend to agree. Personally as far as education is concerned the specific curriculum should be decided at the very local level, but there should be national standards as well.

              Going back to this scenarious though, assuming you had to choose one of the following, would you prefer: one state imposing its will on all other states, or the federal government imposing its will on all states?

              • USWeapon says:

                If I was FORCED to choose one of those two scenarios (Which are both unacceptable to me), I would prefer the federal government. That is the only one of those two situations where the people of the other 49 states have at least a chance to have a voice in what they are presented. I have no voice in Texas.

              • Buck The Wala says:

                Precisely my point, and why I believe this issue is more important than it may seem at first glance.

        • I just copied and pasted the list. Some of these I am ok with and others I think are simply ludicrous. (Removing Jefferson? Are you kidding me?!?)

          But here’s where I have a serious problem with it. You say “You can’t revise history, no matter what Texas says.” Perhaps, but a whole generation of children will grow up believing this. You don’t see this as a problem?

          I’ll let Buck discuss why the Constitution prohibits the promotion of one religion over another. I’m sure he’ll use all sorts of fancy Latin words.

          • Buck The Wala says:

            I would if I understood them myself!

            • Let me see if I can help: Judicial Precedent, Case Law, Expressio unius est exclusio alterius (The express mention of one thing excludes all others), In pari materia (Upon the same matter or subject), and my personal favorite: Interpretation in Light of Fundamental Values (Statute does not violate fundamental societal values).

              Go Bunky! Elucidate!

              • Buck The Wala says:

                I’m impressed.

                Don’t forget:

                Ipso facto. Status Quo. E Pluribus Unum.

              • Et Cetera!

              • Let’s just take my favorite: Interpretation in Light of Fundamental Values (as established under 143 U.S. 457 (1892))

                This, in a nutshell, means that there are fundamental values upon which our society is based (among these is freedom of religion). When a law is vague (“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof[…]”), it shall be interpreted in light of supporting those principles.

                Therefore, since a primary goal in the design of the US was to allow people to practice whatever religion they want, the Congress may not establish an unofficial religion by favoring one over the other.

                How’s that? I should have been a lawyer…

              • Buck The Wala says:

                As much as I’d love to play Devil’s Advocate with you, I dont’ have time today and pretty much agree with your analysis.

                But remember young wannabe lawyer, that is only one of several guidelines for interpretation.

          • USWeapon says:

            I think you misunderstood my position. I was agreeing when I said you can’t change history. Allow me to rephrase:

            No matter what the idiots who decide to change history believe, history is history. They have no right to attempt to re-write history in the textbooks, which would in turn falsely portray that history to a generation of youth who are forced to use them. In other words…. Hey Texas, you can’t re-write history and think I am OK with it.

            Better?

            • No, no, I got that you felt that way. (I would have known you felt that way without even asking).

    • USWeapon says:

      I think it is being blown out of proportion a bit. Just my opinion.

      • After seeing Dylan Ratigan’s “interview” of Mark Williams I will never watch MSNBC. Getting a sound bite for ratings is one thing but inventing something that has nothing to do with the real story for political preference is just unethical. I’m surprised there isn’t a lawsuit for defamation.

        • USWeapon says:

          Jake,

          I don’t think I have seen you here posting before, so welcome. I do think that the Ratigan thing was fairly horrible. I tend to believe that it certainly was a bad moment for MSNBC in the eyes of clear thinking people who don’t fall for the everyone opposed is a racist trap. But….. be careful to not fall into the same trap that those on the left do with Beck. Because he goes off the rails once in a while doesn’t mean that Fox News is something that should be abandoned. Don’t get me wrong, MSNBC gives us TONS of reasons to never watch it again. But don’t let a single Ratigan idiotic moment (he has lots of them) be the reason. Take in their entire body of work so that you can appreciate the level of suck that is MSNBC at its most potent. lol

          USW

  9. TexasChem says:

    What racism?
    I am so sick of hearing this term thrown around so loosely.
    In your every day dealings in society how much racism do we actually see in America?
    This term is being coined as a crutch for the morons on both sides of the fence that cannot argue a valid point any other way so it invalidates what they are argueing in my opinion!

    Rednecks associate with rednecks.Gangstas’ with gangstas’.Metrosexual elitists with metrosexual elitists.Commonner with commoner; royalty with royalty.Whatever floats your boat.

    My point is people tend to stick with their own.Folks that share common beliefs band together in all aspects of society to further those beliefs and feel comfortable, safe and secure.

    Instead of crying wolf in terms of racism these people should be shouting down the negative impact of behavioral thoughts and actions that impede societies growth towards every member having a compatibility in which all members could live amicably.This has yet to happen in mankinds quest for a utopian society.I say tomatoe you say tomato.

    • TexasChem says:

      And in regards to the History texts…”Those who win the War win the right to write history!”

      This is a concept that has not and will not change.Ever.
      Since the ability of man to keep written records it has been so.

      There is no arguement here at all to debate.

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