Posts tagged: hypocrisy
[…] If you can name an issue, you can own the issue. And we must stop letting Republicans name themselves “pro-life” and Democrats as “pro-choice.” It is a huge distortion.
In my world, you don’t get to call yourself “pro-life” and be against common-sense gun control — like banning public access to the kind of semiautomatic assault rifle, designed for warfare, that was used recently in a Colorado theater. You don’t get to call yourself “pro-life” and want to shut down the Environmental Protection Agency, which ensures clean air and clean water, prevents childhood asthma, preserves biodiversity and combats climate change that could disrupt every life on the planet. You don’t get to call yourself “pro-life” and oppose programs like Head Start that provide basic education, health and nutrition for the most disadvantaged children. You can call yourself a “pro-conception-to-birth, indifferent-to-life conservative.” I will never refer to someone who pickets Planned Parenthood but lobbies against common-sense gun laws as “pro-life.”
“Pro-conception-to-birth, indifferent-to-life conservative” seems to accurately describe most Republican policy statements. If only media would describe it that way.
Tennessee Tea Party Rep Dr. Scott DesJarlais — a serial philanderer who told a court he’d cheated on his wife four times — calls himself anti-abortion. His website says, “All life should be cherished and protected. We are pro-life.” He has consistently voted for legislation that restricted abortion. But when he got his mistress pregnant, he insisted that she get an abortion.
Hypocrisy in a politician? Say it isn’t so!
Back in 2008 when gas prices spiked, Fox News said “no President has the power to increase or to lower gas prices.” And that the best way to reduce gas prices is to reduce consumption, so Americans should “get rid of those gas guzzlers, buy decent insulation for your house.”
But now, Fox News is blaming high gas prices on Obama
Two videos showing various clips with their air dates show a pretty striking change in the rhetoric about gas prices, which seems to correspond to the change of presidents.
In addition to the concentration of sporting talent and global media, the London Olympics will host the biggest mobilisation of military and security forces seen in the UK since the second world war. More troops – around 13,500 – will be deployed than are currently at war in Afghanistan. The growing security force is being estimated at anything between 24,000 and 49,000 in total. Such is the secrecy that no one seems to know for sure.
During the Games an aircraft carrier will dock on the Thames. Surface-to-air missile systems will scan the skies. Unmanned drones, thankfully without lethal missiles, will loiter above the gleaming stadiums and opening and closing ceremonies. RAF Typhoon Eurofighters will fly from RAF Northolt. A thousand armed US diplomatic and FBI agents and 55 dog teams will patrol an Olympic zone partitioned off from the wider city by an 11-mile, £80m, 5,000-volt electric fence.
Beyond these security spectaculars, more stealthy changes are underway. New, punitive and potentially invasive laws such as the London Olympic Games Act 2006 are in force. These legitimise the use of force, potentially by private security companies, to proscribe Occupy-style protests. They also allow Olympic security personnel to deal forcibly with the display of any commercial material that is deemed to challenge the complete management of London as a “clean city” to be branded for the global TV audience wholly by prime corporate sponsors (including McDonald’s, Visa and Dow Chemical).
It is important to remember that all this is ostensibly designed to secure the spectacle of 17,000 athletes competing for 17 days. Even if London’s overall security budget remains similar to that of Athens, that works out at the startling figure of £59,000 of public money to secure each competitor or £3,500 per competitor per day. In 2004, the cost in now-bankrupt Athens was £90,000 per competitor (for a smaller number of athletes than are likely to attend London). This was a major contributor, as part of the overall £10bn costs, to Greece’s subsequent debt crisis.
In the context of post-austerity Britain, these figures are eye-watering. Even more remarkably, given that Olympics budgets have drawn down from many other public and lottery funds, and are no doubt adding hugely to UK national debt, the Daily Telegraph recently argued that the security operation for the Olympics were “key to aiding the recovery of UK plc”.
Republicans have been accusing Obama of waging war on the Catholic Church, if not on religion in general, because he won’t let the church have its way on issues like birth control.
However, the same politicians who are attacking Obama have voted against the Catholic Church in a number of other (even bigger) policy issues. Are they waging a war on the Catholic Church, or are they just being hypocritical for political gain?
Juan Cole in AlterNet has put together a list of Catholic teachings that conservatives ignore or reject, while at the same time obsessing about birth control:
- Pope John Paul II was against the war in Iraq.
- The Conference of Catholic Bishops denounced the Bush use of preemptive war.
- The bishops require that health care be provided to all Americans.
- The Catholic Church opposes the death penalty for criminals.
- The Conference of Catholic Bishops wants the federal minimum wage to be increased.
- The same US bishops also want welfare for all needy families.
- They also say “the basic rights of workers must be respected — the right to productive work, to decent and fair wages, to the organization and joining of unions…”
- The US bishops also demand the withdrawal of Israel from Palestinian territories occupied in 1967.
- They also condemn Arizona’s law on immigrants and suggest that it is a harbinger of American Nazism. They say that illegal immigrants should not be treated as criminals.
How do the Republican presidential candidates stand on these issues?
Arizona Sheriff Paul Babeu is a rising star in the Republican party, largely because of his strong stance against illegal immigrants. His first moment of fame was in 2010 when he appeared in a television ad with John McCain calling for the US government to “complete the danged fence” along the southern border. He’s also been a frequent guest on Fox News talking about immigration issues, was named the co-chair of Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign in Arizona, and is running for Congress.
But his star has taken a sudden stumble, as his lover of over five years has outed Babeu as gay. Conservative Republicans being exposed as gay is so common it is hardly worth mentioning, and I especially wouldn’t bother in this case since Babeu has not been a particularly outspoken opponent of gay rights. His private life (as Babeu himself responded) “is exactly that”.
The twist that makes this worth mentioning is that his ex-lover is a Mexican immigrant named Jose. The two met on an online gay dating site in 2006.
But the really hypocritical part is that when their relationship ended badly, Babeu sent a lawyer after Jose. The lawyer falsely claimed that Jose’s immigration visa was expired and that he could be deported if he ever went public with the relationship. The lawyer tried to get Jose to sign an agreement that he would never breathe a word about the affair. Jose’s attorney, who also spoke directly to Babeu’s lawyer, confirmed her client’s account.
So which is it? Did Babeu have a long relationship with an illegal immigrant with an expired visa? Or did he take advantage of the hostile anti-immigrant atmosphere in Arizona to threaten a legal immigrant with deportation?
The Boston Phoenix’s Cindy Carioli points out that on the same weekend that the New York Times carried a column from Bill Keller decrying piracy as a war on creative people, the Times’s op-ed page pirated an article to which the Phoenix holds the copyright. And of course, the Times is the same corporation that claimed that aggregating its RSS-feed headlines in a mobile app was piracy, and shut down an app called Pulse.
Hypocrisy in action.
The article at “pirated an article…” is worth reading.