It’s been a while since we’ve had one of these. I’ve been busy with fairly big stories and issues over the past few weeks, both here and on Veracity Stew. However, a number of small yet irritating items need to be covered, and this is just the place to do it. Have at it. And feel free to comment.
Paul Ryan, badass Catholic-at-Large
It’s amazing how the GOP uses religion to further it’s twisted agenda. In an election cycle, it’s using both sides of the coin. The GOP is generally intertwined with Fundamentalist Christians. This time, they’re trying (rather unsuccessfully) to align themselves with the Catholics.
Paul Ryan (R-Wis) invoked Catholic teachings to defend his Draconian budget proposal which slashes programs for the poor. To be specific, his cuts would take $770 billion over ten years from Medicaid and other health programs for the poor. He would take an additional $205 billion from Medicare, $1.6 trillion from Obama’s health care reform; $1.9 trillion from a category called “other mandatory.” That category includes food stamps, welfare, federal employees pensions and support for farmers. Paul Ryan can’t be a very good Catholic, or he’d know his religion’s historical positions on this topic.
Needless to say, he has come under attack from his religion, so he spent last Thursday trying to defend his position in a speech at Georgetown University. Prior to the speech, dozens of faculty members signed a letter to Ryan, criticizing “continuing misuse of Catholic teaching to defend a budget plan that decimates food programs for struggling families, radically weakens protections for the elderly and sick, and gives more tax breaks to the wealthiest few.”
In defending his budget, Ryan insisted that there can be differences among the Catholic faithful on this issue. Really? It’s funny how there can be differences among Catholics on this issue, but not on the issues of birth control, abortion and same-sex marriage. Again, what we have here is the classic GOP hypocrisy when it comes to faith and government. Basically, it’s whatever suits the GOP’s political purpose at the time.
For a moment, let’s take religion completely out of the equation. Let’s just talk for a moment about being a decent secular human being. Nowhere in Ryan’s budget do we talk about making the wealthiest pay their fair share. Nowhere do we talk about cutting funding for the immoral and, by the way, illegal wars we are waging in the Middle East. If we did all of that right now, none of these programs would need to be touched. What Ryan’s budget does is take care of the wealthiest of Americans (by far the minority in this country) while selling the vast majority of Americans up the river.
Oh, and by the way, Rep. Ryan, in case you weren’t aware of this: The Catholics are against the wars as well, and have voiced that opinion since the first Iraq war under George H.W. Bush.
More alarmist Right-Wing Christian bullshit from batshit crazy Cindy Jacobs
Did you ever wonder where Cindy Jacobs comes up with the stuff she says? Does she ever actually check facts? Or is she just so intent on bringing Biblical prophesies to fruition that the facts don’t much matter? Perhaps she’s just clinically insane. Or a combination of all of the above.
Her latest alarmist Christian warning is about health care reform. According to Cindy, the government will require an RFID chip be implanted in your finger in order to get any kind of health care. Now, we all know the Christian significance of the RFID chip, right? Well, in case you don’t, according to the Christians, the RFID chip is the “mark of the beast” referenced to in Revelations 13:16-18. I don’t see the connection but, hey, that’s just me.
This whole RFID chip rumor dates back to the derailed health care reform attempt of the Clinton administration. So, it’s nothing new under the sun. It reared its ugly head again, particularly in Christian circles, when the original health care bill, HR 3200, was first proposed. Some have even said that the chip not only carries your personal information, but it is also linked to your bank account. HR 3200, of course, was never signed so it’s a moot point. However, even if it had been signed, that little RFID chip stipulation is not in the bill. Nor is it in the bill that was actually signed, which is HR 4872.
Here are the actual facts: Neither bill mandates anyone be implanted with an RFID chip or any other device for any reason. Both bills, however, called for the creation of a registry that would help the Department of Health and Human Services collect data about medical devices used “in or on a patient.” This refers to devices that patients agree to have implanted in them during a surgical procedure, like a pacemaker. The purpose of the registry would be to track the effectiveness of the device as well as facilitate sending out notifications in the event of a manufacturer’s recall.
So, there you have it: Fact vs. Biblical Alarmist Fiction.
For Obama, another EPIC FAIL on LGBT civil rights
It’s not like this is the first time this has happened. Nope. It’s happened several times since 2008, in fact. On April 12, a group of lobbyists and activists for LGBT civil rights was informed that the Obama administration would not issue an executive order banning discrimination against LGBT people who work for federal contractors, in spite of the fact that candidate Obama campaigned in support of this order while running for president. Then, in true Obama fashion, on April 17 the White House announced that it’s time to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA). This is called trying to have it both ways during an election cycle. Frankly, every LGBT American has to know there’s not a chance in hell that ENDA is going to pass.
It absolutely will not pass in this version of the GOP controlled House. And, in spite of having a Democratic majority in the Senate (a slim one at that), it’s not even a certainty that it will pass there. Moreover, Barack Obama knows that. What trying to pass ENDA now will give Obama is something to blame on the GOP as he tries to prevent loss of support in November from a what has to be a very disappointed LGBT community. Make no mistake about it: We gay people were instrumental in getting Barack Obama elected back in 2008. He made a lot of promises, and has gone back on the vast majority of them. In fact, Barack Obama’s performance in this arena can best be described as dismal.
As you know, Barack Obama’s position on same-sex marriage is “evolving,” whatever that means. That also has been evolving since 2008. It isn’t a question of evolution. It’s a Constitutional issue. You either believe in the Constitution or you don’t. Apparently, he believes in the Constitution only when it’s politically expedient. The best thing that can happen is that the Democrats add support for same-sex marriage to their 2012 platform. Then Barack Obama will have to fully evolve. You can be sure he isn’t going to do that on his own.
That’s it for this issue. Thanks for reading, and feel free to leave comments!