Wednesday, July 2, 2014

American Exceptionalism, Republican Tea Party Style

by Sunnyjane

Name one American who lost a freedom when Michael Sam kissed his partner.  
The Tea Party radicals in what passes for today's GOP has two pat phrases in their anti-democracy arsenal: Taking Back America and American Exceptionalism.  Obviously, they believe that by accomplishing the former, they can achieve the latter.  Was the USA considered exceptional way back in 1780?  I forget.

These days, Tea Party American Exceptionalism seems to consist of, but is not limited to, being first in gun deaths, first in starting wars, first in preventing women from securing proper health care, and first in denying anything that has the slightest whiff of that scientific stuff.

Let's look at a few examples.

When Religion Trumps Science

(Image courtesy of The Daily Beast)
After years of exhaustive research, Biblical scholars have unanimously determined that not all modern advances in gynecology can be found in the New Testament.  And yet, the fate of American women's health is in jeopardy because of five Roman Catholic justices -- Kennedy, Roberts, Alito, Thomas, and Scalia.  Sorry, guys, but your religion is not supposed to harm other Americans.

Let's get something straight here:  The Supreme Court's decision favoring Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood in this suit is not about their religious beliefs.  Hobby Lobby buys their craft-crap from China, where abortion is frequently mandated by the government; the company's pension plan holds $73 million that invests in pharmaceutical companies that manufacture emergency contraceptive pills, intrauterine devices, and abortion-inducing medications;  and their former healthcare plans provided for these same medications, without objection.

No, this is about putting the first scalpel to the Affordable Care Act, and it is just the beginning.  The President's enemies will continue to employ death by a thousand cuts to slowly rip  apart a badly needed -- and very popular -- healthcare law that covers millions of people in this country, all out of spite.

Is that American Exceptionalism?

Needlessly Poisoned by the Air We Breathe

A bunch of science (eek!) advisers is imploring the Environmental Protection Agency to enact stricter limits on ozone, which is adversely affecting the most vulnerable in our country.  Children, the elderly, and citizens with asthma are experiencing a decrease in lung function and an increase in respiratory symptoms and airway inflammation.

Of course, the GOP wants to do away with the EPA because they don't care to hear news like that and they don't believe in all that sciencey stuff anyhow.  Isn't that sort of like burning down your house because you dislike the color it's painted?

So what if Grandma and the kids are sick?  Take 'em to the doctor and get 'em some medicine!  Unless, of course, they don't have healthcare, and then...

Is that American Exceptionalism?

Who Needs Gun Control?  We Need People Control!

The gun lobby's creed.
Several posts ago we had some, um, out-of-town pro-gun visitors to Politicalgates. They didn't hang around long and, in general, were not terribly obnoxious.  For one thing, those of us who replied to their comments kept asking for citations to their statements; few were forthcoming.

But I did take the time to research some of their assertions and found one that was correct: The sale of guns is going down.  It certainly does not seem that that is the case, considering all the crazies who are open-carrying and shooting anything that moves.  However, here's the key: the NRA, gun dealers, and gun manufacturers are in a panic over this situation, and have resorted to appealing to the fringe elements in our society. 

The NRA fully supported universal background checks -- including at gun sale events -- after the Columbine High School massacre in 1999.  Today, however,  background checks are too cumbersome, too intrusive, and too inefficient.  (Translation:  Holy Shit, those damn background checks are lowering our sales!)  So bring on the likes of Ted Nugent to appeal to the fringe.  And though not exactly how he wanted it, Glenn Beck exposed the NRA as anti-government extremists.

How's that for American Exceptionalism?   

Some Exceptional American 2014 GOP Candidates   

We're not going to have any more candidates who are unelectable!
Which one of these two headlines is a Daily Currant satire piece and which is real:
      Todd Akin Claims Breastmilk Cures Homosexuality


    GOP Candidate Charges Opponent Is Dead, Represented By A Body Double
I know, I's difficult.  Actually, the Todd Akin headline is from the Daily Currant; the other one is true, and that is scary.  Timothy Ray Murray believes that Oklahoma GOP Rep. Frank Lucas was found guilty of something or other and was put to death in Ukraine several years ago.  All you have to know here is Frank Lucas as never been to Ukraine and he appears to be very much alive.  Snort!

Cesar Chavez -- the Arizona guy who changed his name and his party to try to win an election -- didn't even get a chance this time: a judge disallowed half of the signatures on his nomination forms because they were illegible.  Oops!

A Michigan slug wants citizens to forgive and forget about his criminal activities and his weird sexual fetishes and vote for him to join the state legislature.  Uh huh. 
And speaking of slugs people who want to be a candidate, you have to wonder what Priebus thinks the GOP's chances are when three potential 2016 saviors -- Christie, Walker, and Perry -- are embroiled in Grand Jury investigations.  Added to them, of course, is once-golden boy Bob McDonnell.  His trial starts July 28.

What wonderful GOP representatives of American Exceptionalism.

End Note

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