In The Des Moines Register, Reka Basu challenges Congressman Steve King’s statement that no “subgroup” has contributed anything to civilization matching the contributions of European Christians. With some help, she compiled a list of contributions from others:

So I’ve called on Facebook friends to help enlighten you. I asked people to submit their favorite examples of non-Western people’s contributions to civilization.

Here is some of what they shared:

Algebra. The number zero. Peanut butter. Accounting. Cotton. Gunpowder. Fireworks. Meritocracy. Language. Law. Government. Philosophy. Building construction. Wine. Food. Religion. Philosophy. Corn. Agriculture. Silk. Plumbing. Tools. Jazz. Blues. Beer. Pasta. Paper. Arabic numerals. Books. Writing. Gandhi. Buddha. Astronomy. Chess. Herbal medicine. Bread. Soap. Surgery. Ayurveda. Math. Wireless (Bose). Silicon Valley (largely Indians). Sanskrit. Banking. Money. Insurance. Lacrosse. Music. Hospitals. Optics. Voting. Woodblock type. Stirrups. Art. Philosophy. Farming. Human rights. Blood transfusions (African-American Dr. Charles Drew). Blood banks. Aqueducts. The compass. Porcelain. Massage. Tea. Rock ‘n’ Roll. Chocolate. Coffee. Architecture. Philosophy. Athletics. Tai Chi. Carnatic music. Bharat Natyam dance. Papyrus. The modern state. The public library. Gynecology. Universities. Acupuncture. Sewer systems. Engineering. Democracy. Original thought. Clocks. Maps. Yoga. The Sabbath.


Leonard Pitts, Jr., can only shake his head and sigh at the Republican Hate-Fest in their fact-free Never Never Land:

Did Florida Gov. Rick Scott really say he could remember “when terrorism was something that happened in foreign countries” — as if four little girls were never blown to pieces in a Birmingham church, and an NAACP lawyer and his wife were never killed by a bomb in Scott’s own state?*

Did Silicon Valley entrepreneur Peter Thiel really say, “It’s time to end the era of stupid wars,” as if it were Democrats who dragged Republicans into Iraq with promises of flowers strewn beneath American tanks?

Did Ben Carson really link Hillary Clinton to Satan? Did the crowd really chant, repeatedly and vociferously, for her to be jailed? Did at least two Republicans actually call for her execution?

Follow the link for more.


*Remember, in white-wing world, these are not examples of “terrorism.” These are examples of “putting them in their place.”



Catherine Rampell notes that, despite their small-government protestations, what Republicans truly want is a nanny state, one that mops their tears, protects them from the real world, and coos over their booboos, all the while keeping them swaddled in their bigotry and prejudice. A snippet:

What kind of nanny state do these alleged fans of limited government desire? The kind that fulfills their wildest fantasies, yes, but more importantly that cocoons their constituents from offense, discomfort and perhaps even financial distress.


They . . . want policymakers to bar transgender Americans from using the public bathroom of their choice, lest those in neighboring bathroom stalls feel vaguely threatened.

They want government to protect religious freedom, yet they also want government to expel holders of select religious beliefs — a policy that couldn’t possibly pass constitutional muster even if you could figure out a way to implement it.

They also want their small, spartan government to round up and deport 11 million undocumented immigrants, quickly and on the cheap, but “in a very humane way, a very nice way.”

Follow the link for more on the liturgy of white-wing whining.



Via C&L.


Shorter Newt Gingrich: Sharia and Sharia alike.


Donald Trump, wearing buttons saying

Click to see the image at its original location.

17 July 2016 · Comments Off on Misdirection Play, Shilling for Pence Dept. · Categories: Culture Warriors, Political Theatre, Politics of Hate

The punditocracy are united in marketing Mike Pence as somehow a sane and safe choice for vice president, a calm and cultured counterweight to Trump’s trumpeting boorishness.

Erika D. Smith begs to differ. Here’s a bit of her column:

A year ago, I left Indiana, in large part to get away from the first-term governor and his policies that too often seem to punish anyone who isn’t white, straight, male, middle class and Christian. In fact, cities in California and across the country are dotted with young ex-pats who are proud to call themselves Hoosiers – not “Indianans” – but want nothing to do with a man hell-bent on running his state like a church.


On paper, the two men are very different – in an ulcer-relieving way, if you’re an establishment Republican or a social conservative. But look a little closer, as I have in meetings with him as member of the editorial board of The Indianapolis Star, and you’ll see that they’re really just two sides of the same crazy coin.

Like Trump, Pence is tone deaf and uninterested in learning what he doesn’t know. He’s an ideologue who surrounds himself with people who tell him what he wants to hear. His bubble is so airtight that differing opinions often come as a complete shock to him.

Think of your Bond villains: which is more dangerous, the quiet one stroking a cat or the loud one brandishing a gat?

Remember, a soft-spoken fanatic is still a fanatic.

16 July 2016 · Comments Off on Role Models · Categories: Culture Warriors

Republican reading platform:  We reaffirm the sanctity of tradition marriage, (picture of Trump appears) all three of them.

Via The Bob and Chez Show Blog.

16 July 2016 · Comments Off on Nobody Expects the Spanish Republican Inquisition · Categories: Culture Warriors, Political Theatre, Politics of Hate

15 July 2016 · Comments Off on “Barefoot and Pregnant” · Categories: Culture Warriors

At the Boston Review, Kate Manne starts with Donald Trump’s overt contempt for women (even as he lusts after them) and reasons backwards to the more subtle and common aspects of misogyny and what it means. She concludes it’s all about keeping women in their place, their place, that is, as defined by the misogynists. A snippet:

Trump’s blunt kind of misogyny is a good place to start in understanding the general phenomenon. It is so crude, shameless, and unapologetic that we run little risk of getting lost in its nuances. But we must ask the natural next question: What happens to misogyny when it acquires a little subtlety or goes underground and manages more by way of plausible deniability?

The answer, all too often, is that it is transformed into moralistic forms—which are not, as (right wing apologist and professional misdirection player David–ed.) Brooks seems to imply, historical artifacts. What unites these varieties of misogyny, past and present, and moralistic and non-moralistic alike, is that they enforce the patriarchal order by lifting men up and taking down women.

13 July 2016 · Comments Off on The Platform of the Pervy Party · Categories: Culture Warriors, Political Theatre

The Republican Party is still preoccupied with sex.

Honestly, can’t they think of anything else?

06 July 2016 · Comments Off on Misdirection Play, the Cost of Culture Wars · Categories: Culture Warriors, Republican Hypocrisy

Charlotte Rampell points out that Republican culture wars are getting expensive. Here’s some examples from her list of culture wars. She makes the “misdirection” in the “plays” quite clear:

Facing a public education crisis? Take a page from North Carolina and pass a law regulating where and when people can pee.

Is your state so broke it’s shaving days off the school year? Copy Kansas and implement some draconian antiabortion legislation.

Have the highest uninsured population of any state? Look to Texas and pass even more draconian antiabortion legislation.

Are your constituents unhappy with declining economic opportunities? Check out Indiana, Arkansas and Georgia, among others, and introduce legislation to make it easier to discriminate against gay men and lesbians.

Has your state’s credit been downgraded nine times? Is your governor facing a sex scandal? Have you become the nation’s tragicomic punch line?

Find role models in New Jersey, Alabama and Florida, respectively, and join the crusade against Planned Parenthood.

Follow the link for the expense report.

06 July 2016 · Comments Off on How Stuff Works, Republican Religious Freedom Dept. · Categories: Culture Warriors

Title:  America's Best Christian, Mrs. Betty Bowers, describes how religious freedom works.   Image of woman holding Bible saying,

Via Michael in Norfolk.