Louisiana Republicans blame Obama for … Katrina

You can never overestimate where the level of stupidity of an uninformed population will take you:

According to a Public Policy Polling survey, 29 percent of Louisiana Republicans say President Obama is more to blame for the botched executive branch response to Hurricane Katrina while just 28 percent blamed George W. Bush. A plurality of 44 percent said they were unsure who was more responsible, even though Hurricane Katrina occurred over three years before Obama entered the presidency when he was still a freshman Senator.

Here’s the poll:

louisiana

So, 73 percent of Louisiana Republicans don’t know that George Bush (the Dumber) was president when Hurricane Katrina wiped out their state but either “know or suspect” President Obama didn’t respond fast enough to the disaster.

This really isn’t a multiple choice question.

And as we dig deeper into the numbers, we see that 8 percent of Louisiana Republicans want Sen. Ted Cruz (R – O, Canada) as their presidential nominee, but the plurality is pushing for Kentucky’s Rand Paul to take the White House. Good luck with that.

It’s almost unfair to throw a trick question like “Who do you think was more responsible for the poor response to Hurricane Katrina: George W. Bush or Barack Obama?” into a political poll, but, given the response here, it is essential for people to see the total disconnection from reality of the followers of one of the major political parties and understand whom they want to run the country after 2016.

The GOP attack on Colonel Sanders

Another Republican offends another constituency:

Democratic lawmakers couldn’t believe their ears as they listened to Sen. Vicki Marble, R-Fort Collins, deliver a long soliloquy explaining that more blacks and Hispanics live in poverty, in part, because of fried chicken.

The comments came during a meeting of the Economic Opportunity Poverty Reduction Task Force Wednesday at the Capitol as lawmakers on the committee were presented with a number of statistics highlighting racial disparities in the poverty rate.

“When you look at life expectancy, there are problems in the black race: sickle-cell anemia is something that comes up, diabetes is something that’s prevalent in the genetic makeup and you just can’t help it,” Marble said. “Although I’ve got to say, I’ve never had better BBQ and better chicken and ate better in my life than when you go down south and you — I love it.”

Because when you talk about minorities and poverty, fried chicken naturally flows into the conversation?

Will we get a non-apology apology?

Marble released a statement Wednesday night.

“My comments were not meant to be disparaging to any community,” she said. “I am saddened they were taken in that regard. I take my responsibility seriously and I hope our work on this committee will offer real solutions to the health and financial challenges of our vulnerable populations.”

Nope. No apology here. She’s just saddened that people reacted to what she said.

 

Time Machine: ‘The Great Train Robbery’ (1903)

I’ve been doing these Time Machine posts of movies that are more than 100 years old for more than a year now, so I’m shocked that it took me so long to put up one of the major classics of early cinema, “The Great Train Robbery.”

Granted, the acting is bad (the shooting victims really ham it up), the continuity is confusing (how does a posse catch up so quickly with a group of bandits who had a long head start on a train) and the action is ridiculous (all that shooting and the horses in the middle of it aren’t killed?). Let’s not overlook the never-ending gunplay. (Shooting at a dancer’s feet on a crowded dance floor?)

But it is a milestone in film making, even though the classic western was made in New Jersey for $150.

Considering we’re seeing something that was filmed 110 years ago, what strikes me the most is that the action it is depicting likely would have happened within 50 years of the time of filming. Let’s assume the filmmakers were depicting an Old West train robbery. Their reference would have been from the mid- to late-19th century. From a time standpoint, we are farther away from this movie than the filmmakers were from their concept of the era of train robberies. Our ancient history is their recent history.

And that’s why this movie is a Time Machine.

Sen. Ted Cruz, Canadian citizen

Tea Party poster boy and right-wing Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz seems to have run into a problem as he considers a bid for the presidency.

He’s a Canadian.

Here’s his birth certificate:

Ted-Cruz-birth-certificate

Now, unlike the birthers, I can read. And I see the line that says “Name of Mother Before Marriage: Eleanor Elizabeth Wilson. Her Birthplace: Wilmington, Delaware, U.S.A.” That means that Ted Cruz is an American. Just like John McCain, who was born in Panama and ran for president as a Republican, and just like Mitt Romney’s father, George Romney, who was born in Mexico and sought the presidential nomination in the 1960s as a Republican.

English: Ted Cruz at the Republican Leadership...

The Cuban/Canadian usurper

Oh, and Barack Obama — whose birth certificate says his mother was born in Wichita, Kansas, and who, unlike Ted Cruz, John McCain and George Romney was born in the United States (Yes, birthers. Hawaii is a state.) — is an American.

If I had the brain of a birther, I could riff on Ted Cruz’s birth certificate all day.

He was born in Canada! But his dad is from Cuba and they snuck into America through the Canadian border! Is he one of those “terror babies” Louis Gomert is always talking about?

His father is from Cuba! Did his father work with Fidel Castro? Is he a communist?

This birth certificate doesn’t prove anything. It doesn’t say “Ted” anywhere. Who is this Rafael Edward Cruz? Does he speak English?

What’s a geophysical consultant? Is that some kind of “one-world-government” adviser?

But Ted Cruz is an American. If you’re born to an American woman anywhere in the world, and your birth is registered with the American Embassy, you’re an American. That’s all you need. If you’re born anywhere in the world and your father is an American and married to your mother (no matter her nationality), and your birth is registered with the American Embassy, you’re an American. That’s all you need. If you’re born on American soil, and your parents aren’t American, you’re an American. That’s all you need.

But Ted Cruz is Canadian, as well. If you’re born on Canadian soil, you’re a Canadian. So technically, Ted Cruz could run for the Canadian Parliament.

Isn’t the exploding head of a Tea Party birther a sight to behold?

But we won’t see it (from the Washington Post):

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) announced Monday evening that he will renounce his Canadian citizenship, less than 24 hours after a newspaper pointed out that the Canadian-born senator likely maintains dual citizenship.

“Now the Dallas Morning News says that I may technically have dual citizenship,” Cruz said in a statement. “Assuming that is true, then sure, I will renounce any Canadian citizenship. Nothing against Canada, but I’m an American by birth and as a U.S. senator; I believe I should be only an American.”

Now I’ve seen references to “The Manchurian Candidate” as the Ted Cruz story has developed. But the difference there is that Raymond Shaw was born in America to American parents.

Oh, yeah. And Michele Bachmann is Swiss.

Texas regulation: Organic farms or fertilizer plants?

Sometimes, you’ve gotta wonder about Texas:

A small organic farm in Arlington, Texas, was the target of a massive police action last week that included aerial surveillance, a SWAT raid and a 10-hour search.

Members of the local police raiding party had a search warrant for marijuana plants, which they failed to find at the Garden of Eden farm. But farm owners and residents who live on the property told a Dallas-Ft. Worth NBC station that the real reason for the law enforcement exercise appears to have been code enforcement. The police seized “17 blackberry bushes, 15 okra plants, 14 tomatillo plants … native grasses and sunflowers,” after holding residents inside at gunpoint for at least a half-hour, property owner Shellie Smith said in a statement. The raid lasted about 10 hours, she said.

Local authorities had cited the Garden of Eden in recent weeks for code violations, including “grass that was too tall, bushes growing too close to the street, a couch and piano in the yard, chopped wood that was not properly stacked, a piece of siding that was missing from the side of the house, and generally unclean premises,” Smith’s statement said. She said the police didn’t produce a warrant until two hours after the raid began, and officers shielded their name tags so they couldn’t be identified.

The state of Gov. Rick “Remember My Name Because I Don’t” Perry unloaded a swat team against an organic farm because its grass was too tall? Texas thinks this is worth regulating, but it won’t regulate this?

That’s the fertilizer plant that blew up in West Texas this past April. This is what Rick Perry said a few days after the explosion (from the Dallas Morning News):

Gov. Rick Perry said Monday that spending more state money on inspections would not have prevented the deadly explosion. He said that he remains comfortable with the state’s level of oversight and suggested that most Texas residents agree with him.

People “through their elected officials clearly send the message of their comfort with the amount of oversight,” he said.

Now obviously, the brain trust in Texas saw organic farm, thought “Hippies,” and came up with “They must be growing pot.” Except “17 blackberry bushes, 15 okra plants, 14 tomatillo plants … native grasses and sunflowers” are not pot. But even if there was weed amid the acreage, a burning field of marijuana, at worst, gives everyone a contact high. A burning fertilizer plant explodes and kills more than a dozen people and leave a bunch more injured.

So which one does Texas feel is the bigger threat to the population. Organic farms.

Oops!

Mulder was right! The truth is out there.

Here’s one for the X-Files:

The CIA is acknowledging the existence of Area 51 in newly declassified documents.

George Washington University’s National Security Archive obtained a CIA history of the U-2 spy plane program through a public records request and released it Thursday.

National Security Archive senior fellow Jeffrey Richelson reviewed the history in 2002, but all mentions of Area 51 had been redacted.

Richelson says he requested the history again in 2005 and received a version a few weeks ago with mentions of Area 51 restored.

Officials have already acknowledged in passing the existence of the facility in central Nevada where the government is believed to test intelligence tools and weapons.

Richelson believes the new document shows the CIA is becoming less secretive about Area 51’s existence, if not about what goes on there.

Even the dad in “Independence Day” knew what was going on:

 

The nuclear threat (in a chart)

It’s pretty clear where the nuclear threat is:

nuclear-weapons-world

There are two countries that can easily blow everything else off the face of the Earth. The ones that everyone freaks out about (Pakistan, North Korea) would be gone in a flash, literally, if they ever launched anything against anybody.

Once you get by Russia and the U.S., everyone remaining on the list could still be a danger. But if the U.S. or Russia launched their arsenals, we would all go the way of the dinosaur.

 

Tsunami: A deadly force of nature

This is what it’s like to be caught up in a horrific natural disaster. The period of calm when people mill about on their routines. The sudden warning where people know something bad is about to happen but don’t fully understand the enormity of the impending doom. It’s interesting to see how people wandered down to the river to see what was happening.

And then, all hell breaks loose, and people are running for their lives.

That’s what these people experienced when the 2011 tsunami barreled through Japan, left countless dead and crippled a nuclear power plant.