Archive for the ‘Tea Party’ Category

Democrats have a chance to redeem themselves for their massive failure to show up in Wisconsin and once again they’re blowing it.

I’ve been thinking that Democrats are losing the war against Republicans because Progressives are just too damn smart for their own good but lately I’ve been rethinking that. I’ve decided, the problem is, to borrow a quote from one of my all-time favorite movies, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, “Morons. I’ve got morons on my team.”

If you could do something to remove the one person in elected office that could be held responsible for driving our entire country into the ground over the last three years wouldn’t you do everything in your power to get rid of him? Well, as it turns out that one person is vulnerable and the national Democratic Party is once again MIA.

No. 1 Obstructionist

Rep. Eric Cantor/Some rights reserved by DonkeyHotey

Eric Cantor. That smarmy, self-righteous, self-serving, lying excuse for a Congressman is up for re-election in the 7th District in Virginia. I suspect many of us didn’t know that until last week when Rachel Maddow interviewed Democratic Strategist Dave “Mudcat” Saunders on her show. We also didn’t know Cantor could lose.

Saunders, who worked on the successful campaigns of former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner and Sen. Jim Webb, and the 2008 John Edwards Presidential campaign, told Maddow that Cantor is the epitome of “standing in the way”. He believes Virginians and Americans don’t want people standing in the way and recent polls would seem to indicate he is right.

In a Harrison Hickman poll published by Think Progress June 26, fifty nine percent of Virginia voters in Cantor’s district say they would vote for a candidate that would work with President Obama at least some of the time. (We all know that Cantor’s cooperation with President Obama was non-existent.) Voters in the district also say they would support a pro-choice candidate by a rate of 68 to 23. (Eric Cantor has a100 percent rating from the National Right to Life Committee.) Forty-three percent of his constituents say they would be willing to replace Cantor, compared to 41 percent who say they would vote to keep him. And we all know what disdain we all feel for the current Congress.

There is no doubt that Cantor is, as Saunders says, one of the most unpatriotic beings walking the streets of this country. He has demonstrated that time and again.

“He’s a bought and paid for crook. … We’re in the midst of a coin-operated government and he’s the leader,” Saunders told Maddow.

This is also no doubt, as Saunders says, a national opportunity. Cantor can be beaten and he has the perfect candidate to beat him, Wayne Powell. Powell is a retired Army Colonel, a small business owner and a community lawyer, who believes in social justice for gays and straight women, and economic fairness for all people.

Saunders has committed on his website to among other things:

  • eliminating incentives for corporations to outsource jobs overseas;
  • to opposing the Cantor-Ryan Budget that destroys Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid for the benefit of private health insurance companies and financial interests;
  • to tirelessly fight for women’s rights so that women are free to make their own health care decisions and have access to affordable, accessible medical care such as contraception, without government interference;
  • and to end Washington’s collusion with the oil companies, and end billions of dollars in handouts for companies that are already making record profits, while creating jobs and protecting our natural resources by investing in new forms of energy.

Here’s where the “morons” part comes in.

Most Americans can’t vote in the 7th District in Virginia, so who is in the best position to affect the outcome of this election that indisputably affects us all? The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (The DCCC). The DCCC is in the unique position of being able to reach across the country and into any state to support any Democratic candidate running for office this fall.

Why isn’t this organization concentrating on this effort? Morons. If it supports no other candidate in the whole country, this is one race the DCCC should support. We know Eric Cantor. We know he is the face of evil. We know he must go. We know the DCCC is falling down on the job. Those who support the DCCC must insist that it become actively involved in supporting Powell now. We cannot have another situation like Wisconsin where the incumbent wins likely because there was so much outside money spent on his behalf and so little support for his Democratic challenger until it was too late to make a difference.

Recently I got this email:

BREAKING: Boehner donates $4.1 million to save his Speakership

We just got word that Speaker Boehner is in all-out panic mode. He donated over $4 million to our Republican counterparts to try to save his teetering majority.

President Obama needs a Democratic majority — and we can make it happen.

Donate $3 or more right now to win a Democratic majority for President Obama >>
Thank you,

Kelly Ward
DCCC Political Director


We need to tell Steve Israel, the DCCC Chairman, that we demand specific actions showing that the DCCC is getting behind Powell now or we will stop sending him our contributions.

I agree with Saunders about Cantor. I want to do to him what he has done to the country:

“We don’t just want to beat him we want to ruin him.”



Independent thinking isn’t encouraged in the military. Marines don’t all have those same haircuts because they want them. They don’t run through those obstacle courses, dress alike or even go to live in Iraq or Afghanistan for years just because they want to do so. You don’t question your superiors in the military because you can’t. Lives depend on unquestioned authority. Once you take the oath, you don’t get to pick and choose what you will and won’t do.

As a Marine, I’m sure that if U.S. Marine Sgt. Gary Stein gave an enlisted man or woman an order he would not expect him or her to ask why? He would expect immediate compliance.  He should expect no less of himself.

Gary Stein chose the Tea Party over the Marines, his President and his Country and so he has no right to whine when his Country demands he turn in his uniform.

A Marine Corps administrative board has recommended that U.S. Marine Sgt. Stein be given an other-than-honorable discharge because it says he violated the Uniform Code of Military Justice and the Department of Defense policy on political speech when he posted anti-Obama comments.

Sgt. Stein claims he was exercising his First Amendment rights on his Armed Forces Tea Party Facebook page when he posted pictures of the President superimposed on posters of the movies “Jackass” and the “Impossibles” (which he re-titled the “Horribles”) and also posted that he would not obey an order from President Barack Obama.

In creating and administering a public Facebook page and in posting comments which his superiors say “were prejudicial to good order and discipline, and (which) could have influenced junior Marines” on a Facebook page used by Marine meteorologists Stein chose to walk a not-so-fine line. He made a deliberate choice to continue to walk that line when the Marines suggested his Tea Party page might reflect poorly on the Marines. Stein took down the page, and made the decision on his own to repost the page after adding a disclaimer saying that it was not a product of the United States Armed Services and modifying his stance on the President to read that he would not obey an “unlawful” order.

Department of Defense Directives 1344.10 limits permissible political activity while one is in active service. That is as it was when Sgt. Stein enlisted and that is how it continues to this day. The Directive states that a member of the Armed Forces on active duty “may express a personal opinion on political candidates and issues, but not as a representative of the Armed Forces.”

Stein maintained in a lawsuit filed in Federal Court that he was exercising his First Amendment rights and was not in violation of military policies when he criticized President Barack Obama on his Facebook page. He argued that even if he had violated the policy then the policy was itself unlawful as it violated his right of free speech. He sought to stop the administrative separation hearing that ultimately recommended his dismissal. The Court on April 13 refused to intercede in the military proceedings.
All protestations aside, Stein pretty much gave up his First Amendment rights when he joined the Marines, at least as far as criticizing his Commander in Chief goes and he knew it. The military has had a policy since the Civil War limiting the free speech of service members, including criticism of the Commander in Chief.

The argument that he wasn’t identifying himself as a Marine on his page doesn’t fly. The argument that he was on his own time or not on duty doesn’t work either. Marines, soldiers, sailors, are kind of like police officers, fire fighters or parents; they are never off duty, even when they take off their uniforms.

Then there’s that pesky oath he took when he enlisted. The one that goes like this:

      “I, __________, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.”

 See, on day one he promised to “obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me” both of which he flouted in suggesting he would decide what was an unlawful order. The Marine Corps cannot risk keeping a Marine who may decide to lay down his arms if he decides he disagrees with the cause.

Stein cited a 1999 District Court case, Rigdon v. Perry, as support for his argument that he maintained free speech rights but that argument fails for a couple of reasons. First, it is a Memorandum Decision and therefore cannot be relied upon as precedent and second, that case dealt with military chaplains and the right to free speech in the context of religious freedom.

In that case the Court said:

The “speech” that the plaintiffs intend to employ to inform their congregants of their religious obligations has nothing to do with their role in the military. They are neither being disrespectful to the Armed Forces nor in any way urging their congregants to defy military orders. The chaplains in this case seek to preach only what they would tell their non-military congregants. There is no need for heavy-handed censorship, and any attempt to impinge on the plaintiffs’ constitutional and legal rights is not acceptable.”

This case applies to military chaplains, which Stein is not, and their religious messages even when those messages have political overtones.

It is important to note that the Court said:

“Again, there is no evidence that military readiness or efficiency would be jeopardized(emphasis added) by permitting chaplains to preach in accordance with their religious beliefs.”

You see, when you talk about a chaplain preaching you’re not talking about someone giving a life and death order. The Court noted that military chaplains don’t affect the military part of the military. In Stein’s part of the military, military readiness or efficiency is the very reason for its existence.

So Sgt. Stein was warned and he deliberately chose to pursue his political activity. The administrative board did not buy his argument that the rules were not clear regarding criticism of the Commander in Chief specifically by “social media.” The board’s recommendations of an other-than-honorable discharge go to a general who will either accept or deny them within the next three weeks. If the general disagrees with the board, the case could go to the secretary of the Navy.

 Sgt. Stein was clever enough to make fun of the President. He needs to be man enough to face the consequences.
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